He held out his hand to her.
Rhys couldn't take her eyes off his dark green eyes. They always made her shiver and quiver in places that only he could manage to do. Strong tanned hands that were capable of great strength patently waited for her to set her hand in his.
Jaden smiled when her hand touched his. His grasp was firm as she swung her leg back in.
He didn't let go of her hand.
Rhys wanted to pull away but the vibe that travelled up her arm kept her hand in his.
"I can't believe that we are standing together alone after all this time."
Rhys felt her insides do a flop and her skin felt a tingle. "I can't either," she said.
His smile felt like being held in his arms and apart of her wanted to go into his arms.
She had to fight it. That's what everybody would want.
Strength that she found finally took her hand away from his. There was a slight protest but he let go of her hand.
"We have much to talk about and your father has told me the news. I think it is wonderful that you will be back in New Orleans."
Rhys cleared her throat not knowing what to say to him. Fortunately Garrett came into the room and saved her from having to think of something to say.
"I heard you were here." Rhys watched Garrett stride in straight toward Jared and shake hands with him. Jared stood a good four inches taller than Garrett. She couldn't help but notice that these two were most powerful. One a hybrid and the other like her--a Diamond were cat.
They both glanced over at her. Garrett grinned, "I bet you were surprised."
Rhys sucked in air.
"I think I did surprise her alright. But I don't think for the reason you are thinking. She had one leg swung over the window ready to leap out."
Garrett tilted his head at her. "Really?"
Rhys looked away. Both of them chuckled.
"Well, at least you caught her before she leaped out. You will have fun trying to keep up to her antics."
It sounded like to Rhys that Garrett was warning Jaden that he would have his hands full.
"I can handle her."
Rhys glared at him even though both men were now ignoring her. It was like she disappeared into the walls or something. She was going to say something but caught herself. Why do I want to talk to these two? I need to get to Kellan and find out what has happened. She looked out the open window and then at them. They were still not giving her any attention.
When will they leave?
Finally Garrett marched up to her. "Why don't you come down with us? Unless you want to try and make another escape?"
She gritted her teeth. Oh how she would like to throw him out the window and not just once--over and over.
She shrugged. Rhys could feel those green eyes studying her trying to get inside her head to see what was going on. She shut her mind down. She did remember how good he was at reading people's vibes. Jaden was usually right.
Garrett went ahead and Jaden waited for her to come up beside him.
Rhys made sure their arms didn't touch. She didn't want to rekindle any kind of bond to him.
As they went down the stairs Jaden leaned over to her. Rhys instantly put distance between them. Jaden pulled back. Whatever he was going to say thought Rhys, he decided not to.
Rhys took a deep breath as her last foot touched the floor.
Simon met them all. "Jaden, I see you have found Rhys. I hope your little reunion went well?"
Rhys knew what he was looking for. He wanted to hear her falling into his arms and throwing herself at him--just like she did when she was younger.
Garrett chuckled. "Jaden caught her trying to escape out the window. But she came in for Jaden."
She narrowed her gaze at Garrett who just ignored her.
"That is nice to hear. I'm glad that she wanted to be with Jaden."
Rhys so badly wanted to correct them but she couldn't. Jaden was being quiet as if he was waiting for her to say something about him being there.
"Let's all go and have a celebration and then dinner together. Josh will be back shortly and we will be all together then."
Rhys wondered where Josh had gone. It sounded like Simon had sent him on a mission.
Simon slapped Jaden on the shoulder. "I'm so glad you made it here so that you can accompany Rhys back to New Orleans."
Rhys felt an odd vibe go through her.
The next thing she knew Simon led Garrett out of the room shutting the door behind them. Jaden didn't follow them. He stayed in the room with her.
Her whole body went stiff as she watched him come a little closer to her.
"We are finally alone. You don't know how much I've missed you. I've thought about you constantly and when your father contacted me, I was over the moon. To be back with you is an answered prayer."
Rhys swallowed hard as her chest was taking on a lively beat. She still didn't know what to say to him. She wondered how much Simon had told him. Did he know about Kellan?
She stepped back a bit but was careful to make it look like she wasn't trying to put a distance between them on purpose. Rhys knew that Jaden was an important piece in Simon's game for control. She had to play this out carefully.
"New Orleans has missed you as well. The smells of the gardenias and roses are the same. The shops you loved are still there and there's more to see that I can't wait to show you."
All Rhys could do was stare at him with her mouth open and not say anything. She was sure that anything that came out of her mouth now would be nonsense.
Instead she took a deep breath in an attempt to say something that would not make him angry. "Look Jaden, I know this is an awkward time for us and as you know there has been a lot happen from the time we separated."
You're sounding like an idiot Rhys, shut up all ready! It just kept coming out.
Without warning Jaden swept her up in his arms and kissed her deeply.
It was as if they were back in New Orleans. She could smell the roses and gardenias of a hot summer's night. His kiss tasted of spiced wine and memories of silk satin sheets slipping away from her naked body letting those green eyes of his take all of her in. Her body fell into his wanting to bring back the memory to life. She wanted to smell and taste him all over again.
"You see Garrett," Simon said in an almost whisper as they both observed the couple from the door that he slightly opened. "Jaden coming here was the best thing. I think a late summer wedding will be nice, don't you?"