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Worth Any Cost


Page 61




I stole a glance at Adam, and he was already watching me. My cheeks flamed as I suddenly felt coy and a bit ashamed of plotting our escape from these wonderful people who loved us so much. I swallowed a lump and turned my eyes back at Peter, incredibly moved.
"Mia, who'd have known that when you'd enter Adam's life, you'd change so much?" he said, taking my mom's hand with his free one. "You've made this family whole in so many ways. Like your husband-to-be, you are a fighter. You're his match in every way, and I'm certain that, together, you'll be an unstoppable force. Just remember to always talk to each other. Even when what you're talking about makes you vulnerable or afraid. Keep your hearts open to each other, but shored up against anything and anyone else that stands in your way.
"These words of advice are not so eloquent as I'd like them to be. From a humble man who has recently gotten a new lease on life. And I can't wait to see what mischief the two of you get up to. I have a feeling that, in your own ways and using your own special gifts, you're both going to change the world. To the wedding couple."
"Cheers," chimed Mom.
"To Adam and Mia!" Jordan toasted as we all sipped. Then, once we had, he added, "Damn. Topping that toast tomorrow night is going to be a bitch." We all laughed. "I guess 'Down the hatch, grab some snatch' is out?"
"Unless you want your ass handed to you," replied Adam, mildly amused. The rest of us snickered.
When we stood, Mom came around the table, kissed and hugged Adam, and then turned to me. "Have a great night, baby girl.

You're going to be a beautiful bride tomorrow. I can't wait." She held my face in her hands and kissed both cheeks, tears brimming her eyes.
"Thanks, Mom," I whispered.
Adam's hand was on my elbow, steering me toward the way out. He whispered in my ear, "We have time to hit the suite before-"
As we exited the restaurant, there stood the group of girls-Alex, Jenna, April, and Kat, with Heath in tow. They pounced. "This is a bride-napping. She's ours tonight."
Adam's hand tightened on my elbow, telling me he wasn't about to give up when we were so close to our goal.
I faked a big ol' yawn. "I'm, um, feeling really tired. Thought I'd go get some beauty sleep."
Kat's eyes narrowed. "You can sleep in tomorrow. The wedding isn't till sunset. C'mon. You two are going to be stuck alone together for the next three weeks. This is your last chance for girl time."
Stuck with Adam alone for the next three weeks sounded like heaven to me.
"We have to go over some important paperwork," Adam bullshitted. Was that his new euphemism for hot monkey sex now-paperwork?
Kat scoffed at him. "You're totally going to shag her. Don't think I don't see through that. Back off, dude."
Adam stiffened next to me, and I could feel the frustration running off him in waves. I turned to Kat. "Give us a sec?"
I pulled Adam aside and hugged him, kissing his cheek. "I think we'll have to save the consummation for our wedding night."
His gaze hardened and flicked to the side. He was trying to curb the feeling and go with the flow, but it wasn't going so well.
"You know, for two people bound to 'change the world,' we sure are having an inordinately difficult time sneaking off for a few minutes to hook up. This is ridiculous."
I put my hand on his smooth cheek. "Think how amazing it will be tomorrow. And-uh oh, I see Jordan loitering at your six o'clock. I bet he's going to drag you off for some guy time." I put my arms around his neck and kissed him soundly. "Now go. Have a few drinks. Have fun with the guys."
"I want to have fun with you." His arms encircled my waist. "Alone time fun."
I smiled. "Unless you've packed our mystery honeymoon with an obnoxious schedule, consider that our preferred activity for the next three weeks."
Stepping away, I released his hand and followed the girls out. We climbed to the topmost deck of the resort. There, beside a shimmering azure pool and our own private bar, we had our girl time. People grouped up in clumps, and I flitted from one to the next with a drink in my hand, taking care not to have too much. While they all got smashed, I was only pleasantly tipsy.
Perhaps I'd be able to slip away and find my groom tonight after all.
In fact, I was scoping out a possible escape route on the back stairway when I ran into a couple ferociously sucking face.
Stumbling, I stepped backward up the stairs, but they heard me, pulling away from each other. When the light hit them, I let out a breath. "Get a room," I told Jenna and William with maybe more snark than was necessary. Well, at least someone was getting some action tonight.
"We have a room," William replied happily. Jenna's cheeks were flushed, her blouse untucked-as if he'd had his hands up her shirt. His shirt was halfway unbuttoned. I cleared my throat and averted my gaze as they made themselves decent.
"Maybe you should use it, then," I grumbled.
Jenna came up the stairs with a radiant smile on her face, and William abashedly followed her. "This setting and all these wedding events are so damn romantic. And you two are such an awesome couple. Let's just say we were overcome, victims to passion," Jenna beamed.
William frowned at her overdramatic, and somewhat comical, admission. I counted at least three hickeys on his neck. Damn, Jenna…"overcome" or "in heat"? If it were anyone else, I would have pointed them out for optimal mocking purposes, but I could only imagine how much that would mortify William.
"I can't wait to see you in your dress tomorrow. You are going to be the most beautiful bride. This wedding is going to be unforgettable." Jenna hugged me then stepped aside. She was not entirely sober and wobbled where she stood. Fortunately, William was entirely sober. He put a large hand on her tiny waist to steady her.
Then he turned to me, and, to my surprise, he bent and kissed my cheek. "I'd say 'Welcome to the family,' but you're already my stepsister, so that isn't necessary." I laughed-I couldn't help it. William, as impeccably logical as always. "But I'm so glad that Adam is finally getting married. If anyone needed to find the right partner, it was him. And you are definitely the perfect one for him."






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