Lily just kept washing Tessa.
Aidan’s jaw was bunching good now as he reached in and turned off her water. He snagged a clean towel, pulled Tessa up to sit, and wrapped her hair in the towel himself—doing a damn fine job of it while he was at it, actually.
Then he led Tessa to Lily’s hair station, handed her a magazine from the rack—a Cosmo that promised to teach its readers how to blow their guy’s mind in ten moves or less. “Lily’ll be right with you,” he said.
“Take your time,” Tessa murmured, watching his ass in the mirror as he strode around the chair toward Lily, eyes dark with determination.
Before Lily could make her escape or so much as squeak, he’d hauled her into the back room again, slammed the door, locked it, and then glared at her. “Bro-zilian?”
She crossed her arms and said nothing.
“Hairy?” he asked.
She looked pointedly at the clock on the wall.
He dropped his head, rubbed the back of his neck, and said, “This isn’t going well, is it?”
“Well, how did you think it would go?” she broke her silence to ask, beyond pissed. No, make that beyond hurt. She opened the door. “I have to finish Tessa.”
Which she did in an hour and a half, and then looked up her next client.
It was Aidan.
“He waited,” Jonathan whispered in her ear. “He must want to talk to you bad.”
She turned to Aidan, who was not in one of their comfortable waiting chairs, but instead standing by the door, arms crossed over his chest.
“Ready?” she asked coolly.
“Not for a bro-zilian,” he said.
He looked resigned. “Anything else.”
She tried to think of something especially good. “A brow wax it is.”
He rolled his eyes up as if he could see his own brows. “What’s wrong with them?”
“Bushy.” They weren’t, of course. He was perfect.
“How about another haircut?” he asked.
Oh, hell no. He just wanted another scalp massage. “It’s the wax or nothing,” she said. “Yes or no?”
He chewed on that a minute. “Yes,” he ground out.
She wasn’t cruel enough to hurt him, or even give him a bad wax. But still, she didn’t realize her mistake until she had him in the private client room and was forced to lean over him very closely to apply the wax to his eyebrows. There was something incredibly intimate about the process, which she’d never given a thought to before.
His eyes never left hers. “Listen, Lenny was at the offices and he knew about the resort’s financial problems. I assumed—” He shook his head.
She stared at him, her heart heavy with hurt. She would have rather felt fury, because hadn’t she already done this? Fallen for a guy she thought she could trust? And then found out the truth? Why hadn’t she learned her damn lesson? “You what?” she asked. “You assumed that not only did I betray your trust but that I also slept with him? Are you kidding me?”
“There you go with the question on top of a question thing again,” he said.
She applied the strip and carefully ripped it from his skin.
“Son of a—” He blew out a breath.
“Another,” she warned, and did his other eyebrow.
“You know what’s crazy?” he asked after carefully sucking in a breath. “You women willingly do this to yourselves.”
“Hold still,” she said, and got the last stragglers.
“I’m sweating,” Aidan said in disbelief. He sat up, making his abs crunch in a very sexy guy way behind his shirt, the bastard. “Holy shit. I’m seriously sweating.”
“So did you figure it was me because of what happened at my last job?” she asked. “Where I got fired for revealing secrets?”
She decided she didn’t care and started to walk out, but he snagged her wrist. “Lily—”
“Nope, sorry, that’s all the time I have,” she said stiffly. “Enjoy your brow wax.”
“We’re not done here.”
“Oh, we so are. And I have another client.”
Thankfully this was true. She had a quick haircut and afterward started to go into the back because she badly needed a break from work.
Actually, she needed a break from her life.
This wasn’t in the cards for her. Halfway to the back, Jonathan called out for her. “You’ve got another one, Lily Pad. A blow out.”
Later she would marvel at Jonathan’s straight face. She moved to the front and came face-to-face with Aidan.
“Oh, for the love of—” She shook her head. “You don’t need a damn blow out—”
“The client is always right,” Jonathan said.
She turned to glare at him. “Whose side are you on?”
“Yours,” he said, which slightly mollified her. “Always. But I think we— I mean you should listen to him. I mean maybe he has a really good reason for being a bag of dicks.” He looked at Aidan hopefully.
Aidan turned and walked to the hair-wash station.
Lily followed. She was tempted to use icy-cold water but she couldn’t bring herself to act any more unprofessionally than she already had.
“So,” Aidan said while she waited for warm water. “Where were we?”
“With you accusing me of sleeping with Lenny and also saying something I didn’t. Because of what happened in San Diego.”
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