you. You got me?” My silence probably speaks volumes. I’ve never been any good at doing as I’m told. In fact, I have a really bad habit of doing the opposite. “Carla, I’m serious. I need to talk to my brothers and tell them what’s going on and see if they can help out when I have to be on site.” Inwardly I groan. “I don’t want anyone to get hurt because of me. What if he gets to Lily? We can’t involve anyone else. Please Ramon,” I beg trying to give him my ‘can’t refuse me anything’ eyes. “That is not going to work this time. Have you forgotten what that bastard did to you last time and what he threatened when you ran?” He releases me, sitting up with his elbows resting on his knees while running his hands through his hair. “We need help Carla. I can’t be with you twenty-four-seven. I promise to only tell Sebastian, Lucien and Ruben okay. I’ll keep Michael out of it and hopefully that will keep Lily away from it all… Shit, Sebastian isn’t going to take this lightly,” he says, looking at me. “I know.” “Lucien rang me while I was on the way up to tell me to bring you over to the folks’ ranch for dinner so I’ll get them alone and tell them what’s going on… I’m also going to tell them that we’re just friends.” I start to shake my head , but Ramon cuts off anything I’m going to say. “He’s my brother Carla and I’ve never seen him like this before. I can’t let him continue to think you’re mine. I admit it was fun at first seeing him want someone he thought he couldn’t have, but I can’t continue… Shit, my mom’s going to be pissed.” “I can’t go,” I whisper, which brings his eyes back around to mine. “Everyone is going to be angry with me ; Sebastian for not telling him the truth about us, your mom because every time she looks at us she has weddings and babies on her mind. Oh my god, Ramon. Please don’t force me to go,” I finish on a childish whine, burying my face into my hands. Ram on starts rubbing my back. “Look, the only person Sebastian is going to be pissed at is me. In fact, my whole family is likely to be pissed with me okay. I also don’t want to leave you here alone even though the security is one of the best in the city.” He’s waver ing, I can hear it in his voice and now he’s sitting considering all the pros and cons of me staying here. “You really don’t want to go?” he asks , rubbing his neck. “I know I’ll have to face everyone, but today I really want to stay here. I’m going to read for a while to try and take my mind off everything then I’ll shower and maybe read some more.” I smile at him and take hold of his hand. “I’ll be okay. I feel safe here and I’m not sure I can handle Sebastian if he gets angry with me. Not today.” Ramon sighs before leaning in and kissing me on my cheek . “Okay. I’ll let security know on the way out not to let anyone other than my brothers up to the apartment from now on unless they check with me first.” “Thank you.” He kisses me again before standing. “I’m going to get a quick shower first.” Without replying, I sit and watch him leave, hoping his family doesn’t get too angry with him, or me for that matter, because of our deception over our non-romantic relationship, especially Sebastian.
Ramon is starting to annoy the hell out of me pacing back and forth now that Lucien, Ruben and myself are sitting out on the back porch while Dad is distracting Mom somewhere in the house. Driving to the ranch , I’d been looking forward to seeing Carla again, albeit a tad nervous considering my text message to her the night of my near fall from grace. I’d been delighted with the first half of her reply, but disappointed with the second part a lot more than I care to admit. “Sebastian? You with me?” I blink, bringing Ramon into focus. “Yeah.” I rub the back of my neck while watching my brothers stare