Drawn to You: Volume 1

By: Vanessa Booke



Now I’m glad that Ceci decided not to follow me when I left for some fresh air. My best friend has a knack for seducing men and women. Some are even twice her age. Fortunately for me, she’s on her best behavior tonight. At least so far. I look up to find the handsome waiter staring at me. His face looks incredibly familiar, but I can’t put my finger on when I’ve seen him before. Perhaps I saw him waiting at another party.

“Do you work at the hotel?” I ask as I try to fill the silence.

“No, I’m just here for tonight.”

I wince as he runs my finger underneath hot water and warmth spreads through my body as his leg brushes mine. The employee bathroom doesn’t give us much space to move, especially when it isn’t any bigger than a broom closet. I focus my attention on his hands hoping to calm my fluttering heart. I watch him as he meticulously wraps a small piece of gauze around my palm. His hand smoothly moves the cloth across my skin and the mere touch sends a shiver down my body.

He looks up as if noticing my reaction, and I feel the air slowly sucked out of the room. His finger brushes across the top of my hand with familiarity. Several seconds pass in silence, as the tension in the room grows thicker.

“So you never told me your name,” I say.

Unfortunately, talking to guys is not on my skills list. Even Ceci would agree. A look of disappointment crosses his face as he contemplates my question. Did he already tell me his name and I forgot?

“It’s Tristan.”

Tristan? The name rolls over me like cold water filtering through my veins. It’s been a long time since I’ve heard that name. A very long time. I bite back a gasp at the realization of who he is. Tristan Knight. Our Tristan. The last person that I ever thought I would see here. He looks different from what I remember. His once scrawny features are not replaced by thick muscles and a rugged jawline.

“Are you here with someone?” he asks, pulling me from my thoughts.

The unusual question catches me off guard.

“Someone?”

“You look too young to be here on your own,” he says, wrapping a piece of surgical tape around my finger. The touch of his hand sends a hot streak over my body and to my center.

“I’m sixteen,” I reply.

He pauses for a moment and looks down at me. The gesture pulls my gaze to the suit that he’s wearing. I didn’t notice it at first, but there’s something about the smoke color that brings out the green in his hazel eyes.

“Only sixteen?”

“Yes,” I laugh. “How old are you?”

“Twenty-one,” he smiles.

“I see.”

“It’s such a pity…” he begins to say.

“What?”

“That I can’t kiss you.”





SIX


TRISTAN



The shocked look on Emily’s face makes my lips itch to follow through with my jest. I don’t know why I said it, but the thought of kissing her was the first thing that flew out of my mouth. As much as I would like to think that it isn’t true, I’d be a fucking liar. In fact, I feel like a fucking pervert for even saying it. She’s sixteen. Even the idea of other men looking at her that way would make me crazy. Who am I kidding? I’d punch the fucker that got near her. Christ. Seeing her makes me feel out of control.

I haven’t spoken to her these past four years and now here I am, acting like a little school boy as I trip over my thoughts. I need to focus. I’m not here to reconcile my relationship with them. I’m here to confront Stefan about my mother and that’s it. Perhaps I’d feel better if I punched him in the face. Maybe then I could move on.

“We should get back to the party,” I suggest.

“Do you really not know who I am?”

A look of disappointment crosses her face as she brushes back a strand of her hair. To be honest, I wasn’t even sure she remembered me. Maybe I was making those years with the StoneHaven family a bigger deal than they were. After all, I was just part of the help. It didn’t seem like it back then, but maybe I was kidding myself. Perhaps they spent time with me because they couldn’t find anyone else to entertain them. I can’t think of any other reason why they didn’t come looking for me.

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