After Colby’s injury, Edgard left and Trevor hadn’t gotten close to anyone again until Chassie. Much as he loved everything about her, moving onto her homeplace meant he hadn’t met many of the locals besides Gus and Chassie’s assorted West and McKay relatives. Chassie wasn’t overly social, but she’d grown up outside of Sundance and, whenever they went to town, it was obvious she knew everyone.
He’d liked having Edgard to tool around with in the truck. Fixing equipment, doing shit work that Chassie shouldn’t have to deal with—though she’d pop him upside the head for hinting she had less guts than any man. Lord. He’d really missed that “buddy”
part of his relationship with Edgard and it’d be worse once Edgard left.
So where did that leave them? Despite the comment his truck was ready, Edgard hadn’t indicated he’d be moving on soon. Chassie hadn’t been chomping at the bit to kick him out either—even after last night. It boggled Trevor’s mind that not only had Edgard sought out Chassie to soothe her after the business with Meridian, he’d exerted a calming influence on her that day she’d caught them together, an easy solace that Trevor hadn’t managed after being married to the woman for a year.
In reality, Chassie had spent more time with Edgard in the last two weeks than he had. Edgard had accompanied Chassie on the morning cattle checks. She’d taken him to town for supplies. They cooked supper together. Hell, that flirtatious Brazilian had been teaching Chassie Portuguese and how to tango.
If Edgard stuck around would Trevor be jealous if Chassie and Edgard became close in a way that had nothing to do with him? Even when Trevor didn’t have a right to be?
Would Chassie be jealous? Or would she roll with it like she’d rolled with everything else?
She knocked on the door and poked her head in. “Hey, hon. Edgard’s back. There’s something he wants to show me in the barn.”
Trevor grinned. “Chass, baby, a country girl like you oughten be fallin’ for that tired old line. For shame.”
“It’s only a tired line if it don’t work. Obviously it’s worked on me, since I’ll be in the barn with him.”
“Can I come? Or is this a private showin’?”
“Please.” She rolled her eyes. “After what I was shown last night, I think that
‘privacy’ ship has sailed for all three of us, don’t you?”
No coy bullshit. “I’m damn glad you’re always so straightforward. It’s one of my very favorite things about you.”
Chassie blushed. “Thank you. But your sweet-talkin’ ain’t keepin’ me away from my present.”
Trevor lifted both brows. “Edgard bought you a gift?”
“So he says.”
“This I gotta see.” He slipped on his coat as Chassie nearly skipped ahead of him to the barn.
Inside the dark space, she yelled, “Ed? Where are you?”
“Back here, sweetheart.”
Chassie raced to the corner stall and stopped at the open door. “Omigod. Are you serious? Is that really for me?”
“Yep. She’s all yours. Nothin’ to be scared of. She’s friendly. Really friendly. See?”
“Edgard, you sweetie-pie, I could just kiss you!”
Talk about being friendly.
“That’s a mighty big temptation.”
“Look at her. She’s darling.”
“Oh for fuck’s sake,” Trevor muttered. He’d kill Edgard if he’d bought Chassie a horse. Kill him.
The stall had been cleaned since this morning and a fresh layer of straw spread out.
Chassie was on her knees. Edgard was right beside her. Close beside her. Practically on top of her.
The next sound he heard wasn’t a whinny, but a baaa-baaa. Chassie laughed and leaned against Edgard, allowing Trevor to see the animal.
“Why in the hell did you buy her…Jesus, is that a goat?”
He blinked. Nope. The furry creature was still right there. “Why did you buy my wife a goat?”
“Because she wanted one.”
“Right. Since when have you wanted a goat, Chass?”
“Since always,” Chassie retorted. She returned her focus to Edgard. “Do you think she’ll be lonely?”
“Not for long,” Edgard said with a big smile.
“Always?” Trevor repeated. “Why didn’t I know that?”
“Because you don’t know everything about me, Trevor. A girl’s gotta have some secrets.”
“Yeah? If it’s such a great big secret then how did Edgard hear about it?”
“Chassie told me one of the first days we were out doing chores.”
“I’m surprised you remembered. We’ve talked about a lot of stuff.”
“And some stuff, not so much, eh, querida?”
Trevor ground his teeth together. “What kind of stuff?”
But Chassie ignored him as she was too busy rubbing her fingers on the top of the goat’s head. “Ooh, feel right here. She’s so soft.” She placed Edgard’s hand under hers and they stroked the grayish-white coat together.
A goat. Chassie wanted a goat? What else didn’t he know about his wife?
Probably nothing as earth shattering as your love affair with a man.
“I can’t fuckin’ believe this.”
“Why not? Is Edgard buyin’ me a goat what gets your goat, Trev?” Chassie teased.
Edgard busted out in deep belly laughter and he high-fived Chassie.
“Very funny, Chass.”
“I thought so.” She cooed, “Isn’t she sweet?” at the animal.
Edgard kept grinning at Chassie with a very pleased look on his face. “Not as sweet as you.”
Chassie bumped him with her hip. “Do I need to get a bucket to catch the honey drippin’ from your mouth today?”
A low-pitched chuckle. “Maybe.”
Trevor stood there dumbfounded, feeling as if he’d materialized in another dimension.
“So tell me about my new pet. What’s her name?”
“Greta. Marlin said this little gal has a great disposition and she didn’t have any problems giving birth.”
“She’s pregnant?” Chassie squealed.
“At least her name ain’t Billy.” Trevor trip-trapped into the stall. He dropped to his knees to get a closer look at the creature, which was trying to eat a balled up piece of leather. Familiar leather. His eyes narrowed. “Hey. Is that my glove?”
“Oopsie.” Chassie gently tugged it out of Greta’s mouth, chastising, “Bad girl, Greta.”
The nanny goat lowered her head in apparent shame and let out a mournful baaa-baaa.
Edgard and Chassie both laughed.
“Did you feed her?”
“She probably needs a drink first. I’ll get a bucket of water.” Chassie was off like a bullet.
Greta butted Edgard in the chest until he scratched behind her ear. She butted him again and he shifted sideways until he and Trevor were hip-to-hip.
Just as Trevor was about to open his mouth, Edgard said, “Before you chew me out, Chassie needed something to cheer her up today.”
“Agreed. How’d you find a goat seller when you’ve only been here two weeks?”
“I asked Gus. He told me about Marlin Jones who lives out by Devil’s Tower. I’d planned to wait and take Chassie with me so she could pick one herself, but like I said, after losing Meridian this morning, she needed a pick-me-up.”
As they petted Greta, Trevor grumbled, “At least you didn’t buy her a damn horse.”
“Well, now that you brought it up, there’s something else I need to tell you.”
Trevor’s head swiveled toward that silky voice. “You didn’t—”
“No, I didn’t.” Edgard’s brilliant smile and mischievous eyes caused Trevor’s stomach to flip. Talk about pure sexual power. “You are so easy, Trev.”
“Ha ha. Asshole. Buyin’ my wife gifts. I oughta kick your butt.”
“You’re just pissed you didn’t think of it first. Besides, if I wasn’t allowed to gloat earlier, then you ain’t allowed to pout now.”
“I ain’t poutin’. Why would you think that?”
“Because that lower lip of yours is sticking out. Then again it always has.” Edgard’s slumberous gaze dropped to Trevor’s mouth.
That seesaw sensation jumped in his gut again.
“Damn, your mouth is tempting, way too tempting.” Edgard lowered his head.
Trevor remained motionless, one hand buried in the goat’s pelt. The sweet, soft tease of Edgard’s firm lips, the sharp scrape of teeth and a bristly beard, the erratic bursts of warm breath morphed into a gentle kiss. Trevor didn’t pull back; he just closed his eyes and let it happen.
Their bodies didn’t touch, but the palpable heat between them expanded. The subtle movements and wet glide of mouth on mouth was calming and tender and unexpectedly erotic. But necessary. Lord. As his heart rate picked up and Edgard’s taste danced on his tongue, Trevor realized just how necessary this kiss was.
An hour—a day—a week later, Chassie cleared her throat behind them.
Neither man jerked away guiltily. But knowing his lips were shiny and wet from Edgard’s, it was hard for Trevor to meet his wife’s curious gaze.
But oddly enough, her eyes were on the slyly grinning Brazilian. She set the water bucket down. “So, Edgard, was that kiss Trevor’s way of thankin’ you for buyin’ me a goat?”
“Yes. Although…it’s got me wondering how he might’ve thanked me if I’d’ve bought you a horse.”
Chassie laughed. Not a forced polite chuckle, her real, honest laughter. “You know, I was wondering the same thing.”
“Yeah? You could tell me your idea. Whisper it in my ear, soft and low, like this,”