“Bring her up already.” Dimitri waves at me and disappears into the plane.

I look down at Tessa in my arms, her head against my shoulder, her auburn hair partially covering her face, and I feel my heart clench. What if she never forgives me? I was taken aback by the smack. Not that I didn’t have it coming, but it just didn’t feel like her. Tessa doesn’t have a mean bone in her body, and I drove her to that kind of anger.


Not only that. God knows the fucking nightmares she might have because of that piece of shit Nick. Maybe his death will help ease that for her. Or maybe it will just make me more of a monster in her eyes.

There was no choice in ending his life. Nick was like a dog with a fucking bone, and once he knew I’d taken something from the safety deposit box, he would have stopped at nothing until he got his hands on whatever it was.

I didn’t want him coming after us, not that he would’ve been able to find us, but it’s better this way. I hope that Heavy thinks I got scared after popping Nick and that’s why I took off. Not coming in for my share of the take. I don’t see him searching me out to give me my cut, so I’m certain our business is finished.

I take the stairs two at a time, entering the extravagant plane. I’ve been on nice planes before, even a few private ones, but none as big as this. I knew Dimitri had money, but for fuck’s sake, this is beyond that.

“There’s a bedroom.” He points to the back of the plane. “First door on your left.”

I nod, thanking him. “I’m going to lie with her until we take off so I don’t have to buckle her in.”

Dimitri just nods in response and takes a seat in one of the comfortable-looking chairs. I make my way to the back of the plane and open the bedroom door. It’s a pretty good size, and there’s a bed right in the middle of the room

I lay her down in the center of the bed, taking off her shoes, then joining her as I start to feel the plane move.

I pull her to me, burying my face in her hair, something that I find myself always doing with her now. Just the smell of her seems to calm me. I breathe her in, telling myself she’s okay. Seeing that gun to her head, even knowing it wasn’t loaded, ripped me apart inside. I’d never felt such blind rage before in my life.

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Kissing the spot under her ear, I try to enjoy this moment for a little while. I know when she finally comes to, things won’t be like this anymore. I’m going to have to fight to make her want to stay with me. I can only pray that one day she will want to stay.

“Choose me,” I whisper, knowing she can’t hear me.

And I will fight to keep her until I take my last breath. I wish I could say I was unselfish enough to let her go, but I just can’t. I don’t think I could breathe without her.

I spent so many years just drifting through life, one job after another, thinking I had things figured out. Then there she was, sitting right in the middle of my exit strategy. Plans had already been made. I’d already gotten Heavy’s attention on the bank, and before I could even try to pull out, he already had his sights set on her. My little fox.

If I’d known she was out there, maybe I could’ve built a better life. Done things a little differently. Not gotten mixed up in the things I did when I was living on the streets as a kid. But back then it was mostly just about eating. I might not have been as dirty as some of the other criminals, but I still broke the law. Played by my own rules.

I hold her for a little longer before I pull myself from the bed, knowing Dimitri is probably waiting for me. I lean down and press a kiss to her lips.

“Love you, baby,” I tell her, as she rolls to her side and reaches out for something. A little furrow appears between her brows when she comes up with nothing. It makes my breath catch. That’s gotta be something. In her sleep she’s still looking for me, reaching out to grab a hold of me.

I take one last look at her before heading out of the room to find Dimitri, who’s still sitting in the same chair I left him in. I take the one across from him as he takes a sip of some brown liquor from his glass.

A tall blonde flight attendant appears. “Can I get you something to drink?” She bends over a little, trying to give me a shot of her cleavage, but I just turn my head and shaking it, dismissing her.

She tries again, making her voice drop a little, like I didn't understand what she was offering me. I want her to step back. I can smell her perfume, and it's eating away at the sweet smell of my little fox that I still have in my nose. “Are you sure I can’t get you—”

“He’s not interested,” Dimitri pauses for a second, “Cindy.” He’d clearly forgotten her name.

She huffs a little as she walks away.

“I don’t know where the agency gets some of these women, but next time I’m requesting a man. My Laura would be raising hell right now if she was here.” He says it with a smile on his face. Yeah, I think I’d get off on the idea of my woman being jealous over me, too, because right now I think she probably just wants to smack me again.

“You got it?” he finally asks.

I reach into my back pocket, retrieving the small package and my phone, and toss them on the table.

Curiosity gets the best of me. “What comes in such a small package that a man will willing to pay over a hundred million for?”

Dimitri opens the envelope and pulls out a small box. He opens it gingerly.

A simple ring sits inside. I raise my eyebrows. The ring is nothing to write home about, just a gold band with an emerald. Only a carat by the looks of it, if that—nowhere near the price he paid for it.

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