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Our hotel was right on the water and the sun was sinking into the ocean when we arrived. It was absolutely stunning, especially the expansive marble-floored lobby, with its dark rattan furniture and sculptures of mermaids and other sea creatures. It was island-chic, and I very much approved. I hadn’t really been on an adult vacation like this. Growing up, my family vacations consisted of camping in upstate New York or driving to the coast for a day trip. This was a whole other world, and I immediately relaxed into the easy island vibe. I could definitely handle this.

Once checked in, we dropped our bags and agreed to meet in the hotel bar in ten minutes. Braydon and I sat waiting for Ben and Emmy for a good forty minutes, sipping fruit cocktails and laughing as we watched a group of tourists. When they finally made it downstairs, we were on our third drink and Emmy’s just-fucked hair was a dead giveaway about what they’d been up to. As if I had any doubts.

“Cheers to island sex,” Braydon announced as they walked up, their cheeks still flushed. “Was it good?”

We all burst into laughter. “Be nice to my wife.” Ben curled a protective hand around Emmy’s hip.

“Hey, I’m just proud that you guys didn’t christen the plane and join the mile-high club,” I said as they took their seats. “You kept us waiting, and now I’m starving.” I picked up a menu.

“Yeah, we worked up quite an appetite as well,” Ben said as he smiled at his blushing bride. Lord, they were ridiculous. We hadn’t intended to have dinner at this little island-themed bar, but since we were here and hungry, we all gave in and found appetizers on the menu to share: deep-fried calamari, shrimp cocktail, and other yummy island favorites. Soon, we’d downed several rounds of drinks and were all tipsy and full.

“Let’s go for a walk on the beach. I need to dip my toes in the sand,” Emmy suggested.

“Sounds great,” I chimed in.

After an overdue visit to the restroom, we met the boys at the front of the restaurant. They’d settled the bill with our server and were standing near the hostess booth waiting for us. The poor hostess across from them looked like her eyes were going to pop out of their sockets. Her mouth was hanging open and her fingers were gripping the wooden podium in front of her, like she was fighting to remain standing. I knew the feeling. I elbowed Emmy in the ribs and gestured to the girl who was beyond smitten with our two men. They were a feast for the eyes. They’d yet to notice the girl, and were laughing and talking among themselves. They looked beautiful. Sheesh, they were beautiful. Two of the most sought-after men in the world. And they were with us. Pride surged through me.

Emmy and I shared a knowing, devilish glance, each with the same naughty thought. We strutted up to our men and planted a big kiss on their respective mouths. Braydon’s arms encircled my waist and my eyes slid closed. I forgot about the hostess—hell, I forgot my own name as I lost myself in the kiss. Emmy clearing her throat next to us was the only thing that pulled me away. Screw seeing the beach—the ocean had been there for centuries and it’d likely still be there tomorrow. I wanted to be alone with Braydon.

“Bray . . .” I tugged his hand. His eyes met mine and he must have read me like a book. He did have a striking talent for that.

“We’ll catch up with you guys tomorrow,” he said to Ben and Emmy.

“Are you sure?” Emmy asked.

“The beach will be there,” Braydon said, reflecting my own thoughts. “My kitten and I need to celebrate.”

Emmy’s eyes danced on mine. I could tell she was truly happy for me. I felt warm and tipsy and decidedly happy that I’d come to Hawaii. If only I could have predicted how wrong I’d be about this trip.

10

After a room service breakfast of fragrant local Kona coffee and delicious pineapple tarts, I changed into a pair of shorts and a tank top. Emmy and I had plans while the guys worked. I leaned over and planted a kiss on Braydon’s mouth as he sat in a lounge chair on our lanai. “I’m meeting Emmy for pedicures. I’ll see you after lunch?”

His hand found my hip and he pulled me closer for another kiss, like he wasn’t ready to say good-bye just yet. Even though we’d made love last night and this morning. Things were starting to feel more solid between us, and to say I liked it would’ve been a giant understatement. “Mmm,” he confirmed, his mouth refusing to leave mine.

“Good luck today.”

He patted my butt and released his hold. “Have fun with Emmy and make sure you charge your pedicure to my room. I want to treat you.”

“You don’t have to do that.”

“I know. I want to. Now go, have fun.” He patted my butt and sent me on my way.

After a morning of having my feet scrubbed and my toes polished, Emmy and I ate lunch by the pool and flipped through gossip magazines. We sunned ourselves while sipping frozen fruity concoctions. It was absolute perfection. I loved that we were comfortable enough that we didn’t need to fill the silence with mindless chatter. We just laid back, basked in the relaxing sounds of the waves crashing, and took in the sun’s warming rays. I couldn’t quite believe this was my life. I was here, on the island of Maui, with my bestie and our men, who were two of the world’s top male models. It was kind of crazy.

By three o’clock we were all sunned out and in need of some shade and a shower to rinse off the sweat and suntan lotion. Plus, we figured the guys would be back from their shoot by now, and though neither of us admitted it, I think we both missed them. Lord help me, it’d only been a handful of hours since I’d last seen Braydon, and I already craved more. I was thankful he’d invited me, and that I’d let my stubbornness go and followed him here.

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