Home: A Novel

Home: A Novel by Rachel Smith

Book: Home: A Novel by Rachel Smith Read Free Book Online
Authors: Rachel Smith
planting season and harvest. Dad had retired, and while he came out to the home place every day to see what we’re up to, his farming days were over.
    I told her all about the house. I not only remodeled the existing home but also added on two additional rooms and a porch.   T he porch was amazing. It ran the whole front stretch of the house and then wrapped around the side all the way to the giant, two level deck near the back. It was fucking awesome. A bitch to build, but nothing that five buddies and a couple cases of beer couldn’t tackle over a weekend. Since money was flowing steadily and I didn’t have a family to support, I spared no expense in buying the best of the best when redoing the house.
    And to be honest, I had the picture of Lil in my mind every step of the way. I tried to think of what she would choose. I knew if there was ever a chance to convince her to come home and be with me, I didn’t want her coming home to a dump.
    “Okay, so how’s the situation at your parents’ house?” I asked, refusing to call it her house. I had every intention of making it clear that she was moving in with me as soon as possible.   T he only problem was that I knew she had the tendency to be a little hot headed at times, and if I charged in there firing off orders she would more than likely kick me in the balls and walk away.
    I just needed to get my point across before she did something stupid, like buy a different house. Or worse, start building.
    “You should be good to go,” she answered. “Most of the paparazzi have given up.   T here are one or two guys hanging around still asking me   why   I quit the business. Even after I’ve told them all hundreds of times I just didn’t like it anymore, they won’t let it go.”
    Vultures. All of them. I had to hand it to Lil, she kept cool and calm the last few weeks where I would have unleashed hell. Every newspaper, late night talk show, daytime talk show and rag magazine had ripped the poor girl to shreds. First, they said she had a drug induced nervous breakdown and her parents forced her home or they would have her committed.   T hen, they changed their tune and said she was being shown up by younger talent and too jealous to play the game anymore. A few days later, she was stuck up and thought she was   too good   for Country Music. And the last one was the kicker. She had officially been kicked out of the business by everyone in the city of Nashville. Apparently, it only took twelve years for   everyone   to find out that she ‘couldn’t hack it’ and they forced her to quit. Never mind that she had countless nominations and awards to her name. She was a seven time Grammy winner for Christ’s sake!
    It took every ounce of restraint not to beat the living shit out of each and every one of them. My fighting days were long over, but I would resurrect them in a heartbeat to protect my girl.
    “I’ll be at your place shortly after six.   W e’ll grab a bite to eat at the café in town before we head to the game.”
    There was silence from the other end of the line.
    “You still there?” I asked.
    “Justin, I don’t know about that,” she answered. I could hear the hesitation in her voice. “Do a lot of people still go to the café before games? It just makes me nervous to be around so many people in a small space.”
    Damn it.
    “Lillian, you cannot live like this forever. I won’t let you hide away and not live your life. It’s bullshit.”
    I heard her sigh on the other end.
    “I will make sure you are safe. Always. Do you understand what I’m saying? Okay, this is not the conversation I wanted to have over the phone,” I stopped to take a deep breath. “Lillian, I take care of what’s mine,” I started.
    “WHAT?” she yelled through the phone. “Justin James DeLuca you did not just say that to me. If you think for one second that I will put up with that stupid alpha male crap then I’m not going anywhere with

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