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“You sure needed it a minute ago.”

“I didn’t ask you to help me.”

“You didn’t refuse it, either.”

I took a deep breath. What is wrong with this guy? It was as if he found pleasure in arguing with me. “Well, now I’m refusing it.”

“Too late. He’s already on his way,” he said, nodding toward the tow truck that was headed in our direction.

“I don’t want it!”

“Fine. When he pulls up, you tell him that and make him realize you’re wasting his time.” He rolled his eyes and shrugged. “Your call, raccoon eyes.”

“I don’t even know what that means!” I huffed back at him.

He pointed at my eyes.

Crap, again.

My mascara was running.

“Some guy hurt you?” he asked, a hard look on his face.


His bottom lip twitched, and he stepped back. Right as I thought he would open up, just when I thought he would offer me some words of wisdom to make me feel better, he blurted out, “Don’t be so fucking dramatic. No dick is worth falling apart over.”

Oh…well then. “That’s exactly what I didn’t need to hear.”

“It’s true, though. You’re crying over someone who probably isn’t worth it.”

“What makes you think he’s not worth it?”

“Because. You’re. Fucking. Crying. People don’t sit there sobbing over someone who makes them happy.”

A chill raced down my spine as he snapped at me.

“Why do you have to be so dang straightforward?” I snapped back, my emotions jumbled up from his unnecessary harshness. “Why couldn’t you just say something nice and leave it at that? Or, you know, not say anything at all?”

“People don’t need nice; they need the truth. I find it ridiculous that a guy has this kind of hold on you. Have some self-respect. It’s insane to give full control of your emotions to someone who doesn’t give a damn about you.”

“He does care,” I argued, though I knew it was a lie, feeling as if I had to stand up for my hurts. If Jackson knew Finn hadn’t cared about me at all, it felt as if he’d won somehow. “You don’t understand. We have history. It’s not just some silly fling like what you have with all those random women.”

He stood taller, his face tensing. “Oh yeah, that’s right, you know all about me, don’t you, princess?”

The discomfort caused by my comment was apparent, and I instantly felt bad. “I didn’t mean to offend you…”

“You can’t offend me because I don’t give a damn what you think, just like the dude who hurt you.”

“You don’t have to be rude. I’m just saying, what Finn and I have…” I paused and took a deep breath. “What we had was real.”

“Had. Past tense.”

“That doesn’t change the fact that he’s the love of my life.”

Jackson rolled his eyes so hard, I thought they’d get stuck in the back of his head. “That is the stupidest thing I’ve ever heard in my life. Yes, the love of your life would be the guy who made you cry without giving a fuck about your feelings.”

“How do you know he doesn’t care about my feelings?”

“Trust me, he doesn’t.”

“What do you know? You probably don’t even know what love is.”

He grumbled and stuffed his hands into his pockets. “You don’t got to know what love is to know what it isn’t. Go ahead, though, keep crying over a dick who’s not even thinking of you. Trust me, princess, no number of tears from you is ever going to make him love you, but, by all means, keep crying. Hell if I care.”

He didn’t say another word. As the tow truck pulled up, I was one hundred percent ready to tell the driver I didn’t need his help, but when he stepped out of the vehicle, he gave me the kindest smile. He was a bigger guy, not chubby but built, and his body was covered in tattoos. He was older too, with his fair share of gray hairs. The way he smiled had a way of canceling out all the rudeness Jackson had shot my way.

“What do we got here, Jack-Jack?” the guy asked, patting the top of my car. I glanced at the name sewn onto his work shirt: Alex.

“A piece of crap. I was gonna have you tow it into the shop to take to the scrapyard later, but she said she doesn’t want your help. She just wanted to waste your time,” Jackson replied dryly, making Alex frown.


“I didn’t say that!” I protested quickly, giving Jackson a narrow stare before turning toward Alex. “I’d love for you to help me out.”

He grinned brightly as if all he knew how to do was smile. “It’s no problem. I’d love to help you out. Let me just hook it up. Do you want me to drop you off anywhere?”

“No, really, it’s fine. I can walk. I just have to grab my luggage.” I walked to the back of the car and opened the trunk. Before I could grab the suitcases, Jackson was there with his mean look, lifting them up for me.