Duke's Redemption

Page 57

“So, Duke, when are we going to get to the real juicy stuff? Like when are you going to admit that you like long walks on the beach and a nice bubble bath after a long day?”
He looks over at me with one eyebrow raised. “As for a beach, I’ve never been. But as for a bubble bath, if it was with you, I’d take one every damn day for the rest of my life. Anything that lets me see you naked I’m down for.”
I giggle. “You don’t need an excuse to see me naked. You can just ask.”
With all the seriousness he can muster, he turns to me and asks, “Can I see you naked?”
Deciding to call his bluff, I start to pull my shirt over my head.
“Avery,” he warns.
My hands stop with my shirt still clutched in my fingers. “What? You asked to see me naked.”
“Yes, but if you take that top off, and I see those delicious tits of yours, I will have no choice but to pull this truck over to the side of the road and fuck you. And Darlin’, this is a small town. Best believe someone will be watching us.”
Why does the thought of that turn me on?
“Let ‘em watch,” I say.
“Christ, Avery,” he responds through gritted teeth. “Put your shirt down. Tonight, I promise to take off all of your clothes and worship your body all fucking night.”
“You better,” I tease.
A couple of minutes later, we are pulling up to a cute little house with a huge oak tree out front.
“So, this is where the famous Duke Samson grew up, huh?” I ask, taking it all in.
“Not exactly. My mom ended up moving out of my childhood home a while ago. It had too many memories. Plus, I think that she hated us living next to Louisa.”
“To be honest, I think she was jealous of the relationship that Louisa and I had. It bothered her that I thought of someone else as a mother figure when I thought of my own mom as more of a sister.”
Hearing Duke talk more and more about his mom makes me realize that he and I both led some fucked-up childhoods. I’m glad both of us came out on the other side as decent human beings.
Since I know he’s already stressed out, I decide to listen to Duke and wait in the car until he comes around to open my door. Chivalry may be presumed dead, but it is sure alive and well within Duke Samson.
When we get to the porch, the front door looks open, but the screen is shut. Duke loudly knocks on the wooden part.
It takes a moment, but a woman with bright red hair appears and walks toward us. When she takes a moment to realize who is standing there, she stops dead in her tracks as her mouth falls open.
I take a good look at her as she finally starts to walk toward us again. Duke must take after his dad because he looks nothing like this woman. She has brassy red hair that hangs in springy curls that she tries to contain with a clip. Her eyes are a pale blue color in contrast to Duke’s dark ones.
I wonder how old she is. I know Duke said she had him young, but this woman has definitely aged well. Aside from a few tiny wrinkles around her eyes that form as she smiles at us, she doesn’t show any signs of aging.
“Well, hey there, Sugar!” She squeals as she opens the screen door for us.
Before Duke can say a word, she wraps him in a hug. As uncomfortable as he may be, he still manages to hug her back.
“Hi, Momma.”
“I didn’t think you were going to be able to make it.”
“Yeah, plans changed,” he mumbles. “Mom, I’d like you to meet my girlfriend, Avery.”
This time, when her eyes go wide, I worry they may pop right out of her head. She turns to me and smiles. “Hi, Avery. It’s lovely to meet you, Darlin’. I’m Tammy.”
“Nice to meet you,” I say as she pulls me in for a hug.