“You really need to get your woman under control.”
Carrick laughs. “Ha! If it were possible, I’d have done it ages ago. So, can I tell Andressa that you’ll be here soon and that you’re over the fucking moon that she’s brought you a date?”
“Is the date hot?”
“If you like that type.”
“They’re seriously bendy, right? Then, yeah, tell Andi I’m over the fucking moon, and I’m skipping over fucking rainbows that she’s brought along a yoga instructor as a date for me. I’ll see you in ten, dickface.” Then, I hang up the phone.
Resting my head back on the seat, I blow out a breath, rubbing my clean-shaven chin.
I got rid of the beard. I even had my hair cut.
I thought it was about time. And it will show India that I am really trying to clean myself up.
Okay, so pep talk, Silva…
I will not have sex with the bendy yoga instructor—unless she is absolutely clear on the fact that it is a one-time thing. Then, fucking her will be fine.
Unless she’s dog ugly, of course.
And I will not get drunk. I’ll fuck the bendy yoga instructor because I actually want to, because there’s chemistry, and not because I am wasted or want to forget myself in her body.
If only India could hear me now, she’d be so proud. She’d be proud that I’m not going to screw somebody.
I laugh in my head at that thought.
Since India started treating me, my drinking has slowed down to a stop, and the random hook-ups are also nonexistent. I haven’t had sex since that night with those two women that caused me to run late for my appointment with India the next day.
It’s not been easy, but working on my issues with India is giving me purpose, something I didn’t have before. My goal is to work toward getting back in a car, driving it, and then eventually racing.
One step at a time, no matter how long it takes.
Well, aside from being about to enter the last year of my contract. That kind of puts a time cap on it.
The taxi pulls up outside the restaurant. I pay the driver and climb out.
It’s started to rain, so I quickly make my way inside. The maître d’ approaches me. She instantly recognizes me. I’ve gotten very familiar with the look people get in their eyes when they recognize who I am.
“My friends are already here. I’m joining Carrick Ryan.”
If she recognizes me, then she definitely knows who Carrick is.
“I’ll take you to your table.” She gives me a coquettish smile.
It’s impossible for me not to return it. I’m a flirty bastard by nature.
As I follow behind the maître d’, I check out her ass.
Nice. Curvy. An ass you could grab ahold of while you fucked her.
But it’s nowhere near as good an ass as India’s.
“You’re late,” Andi says as I approach the table, giving me a chastising look, but there’s a smile on her lips, so I know she’s not as mad as she might like to make out.
As I reach the table, I let my eyes flicker over to the yoga instructor.
Dark hair. Pretty face. Big tits.
“Sorry.” I lean down and kiss both of Andi’s cheeks. “You look lovely, as always.”
“Oi, dickface. Hands off my wife.”
“Good to see you, too, Ryan.” I smirk at him.
Grinning at me, he stands, and we do that handshake and half hug that us men like to do.
“Been a while. You doing okay?” he quietly asks me.
I meet his eyes, giving him a nod. “I’m doing good.”
“Leandro, this is Katrina,” Andi says.
Turning to Katrina, I smile at her, properly looking her over, as I move around the table where, of course, I’ve been strategically seated next to her.
She has a strappy red dress on, and her ample cleavage is spilling out of it.
I put my hand out to shake hers. “Nice to meet you, Katrina. I’m Leandro.”
She slips her hand into mine, and I kiss her cheeks, but I feel nothing. No spark or connection.
A strange sense of relief settles inside me.
I’m relieved that I don’t have a connection with the hot woman? What the hell is wrong with me?
India. That’s what’s wrong with me.
She’s the only person I feel that spark with, and she’s the only woman I can’t have.
Story of my fucking life at the moment.
Every time I touch India, I feel something that I haven’t ever felt with a woman, even before the accident. Sure, I’ve sparked and connected with women in the past, but what I feel every time I touch India is pure exhilaration. Like I’m about to start the greatest race of my life.
“I know who you are. And call me Kat.” She gives me a flirty smile, just like the maître d’ did moments before.
“What can I get you to drink?” a waitress asks, appearing at our table.
I glance at the table and see what everyone’s drinking. Carrick’s on the whiskey, like usual, Andi has a beer, and Katrina has a glass of red wine.
I want to keep my mind clear tonight, so I’m not going to drink. “I’ll just have a lemonade with a slice of lime.”
“Are you driving tonight?” Kat asks me.
“No.” I pretend not to see the smile on Andi’s face. I know she thinks I drink too much.
I did drink too much.
Kat turns in her seat to me, pressing her knee right up against my thigh. “So, why aren’t you drinking?” she asks, like it’s a given that I should be drinking. That’s probably because of what she’s read and heard about me recently.