The Good Life

 

TheGoodLifePaperbackCover

Charming and philosophical…”–Goodreads review

“Delightfully addictive!”–Amazon review

 “This is like I love Lucy meets the Brady bunch meets a Janet Evanovich novel (It rivals her for sure)…What a fab read especially if you need a beach read. This is for you!” —Amazon review

Available in paperback and digital format:

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“The Good Life”

 Detective Kyle Anderson is a man of simple tastes and reasonably low expectations. Give him a juicy steak and no homicides, and he’d call it good. When his sister Katelyn got engaged to his best friend Dominic, he’d figured the worst of the unnecessary drama in his life was over. But that was before Dom’s free-spirited, twig-eating, exasperating sister Demetria came back to Nebraska and completely hijacked the planning of the wedding, starting with inviting Dom’s ex-wife Isabel. Now Kate’s so determined to prove Isabel is up to no good that she insists Kyle date her to keep her away from Dom. Soon Kyle is so knee deep in Anderson-Valentini dramatics, he’s thinking of changing his name and moving to Tibet. If he could just get Demi the impossibly sexy granola-flake off his mind long enough to do it…

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Author’s Note: Contains both shorts The Bird Day Battalion and The V-Day Aversion as well as the full length novel The Good Life.

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***

Listen to me read a scene from the book:

***

Read the first chapter of “The Good Life”:

By Genevieve Dewey

CHAPTER ONE

“Kate?”

“Mmmn.”

“Kaaaatelyn.”

“Mmmn.”

“Yo, Skate!”

Katelyn set her pencil down on the spreadsheet she was double checking—old school style—and took a deep breath.

“Yo?” she replied, and then finally raised her head. What part of ‘I’m working’ was he not grasping? “Are you Rocky now, Dom? Is this another role-play thing?”

Dominic grabbed the back of her chair and rolled it away from the desk.

“Hey! I can’t—I’m almost done—at least let me save my work.”

“It’ll keep.”

“No, it won’t! What if the power goes out or something? I’ll lose all the stratigraphy data I just input.”

Dom reached up and scratched his head, scrunching his eyebrows. “Are the dead things still going to be dead? Yes. Still buried in dirt? Yes. Are we going to be dead and buried in dirt if we don’t leave now for the engagement party my mother is throwing? Yes.”

Dom grabbed her hands and yanked her out of the chair.

Katelyn glared at him. “I don’t excavate ‘dead things’. Pottery is made of clay, sometimes—”

“Normal people don’t work on Saturdays, babe,” Dom interrupted.

“Yes, they do, sometimes. My brother does.”

“Kyle is a cop. They are not normal people.”

“For Pete’s sake, that’s a ridiculous thing to say!”

“Let’s goooo,” Dom drawled.

“And nurses, and cooks, and soldiers…”

“Yes, all service industry people. Of which you are not.”

“Authors! And athletes!” she countered with one finger up. She tried to make it look like she wasn’t biting the smile off her lips. The slight flare of his nostrils and crinkle around his eyes told her she wasn’t fooling him one bit.

She tugged at her trapped hands and stepped back towards the computer. He let go of her hands, but only long enough to loop an arm around her middle and hitch her over his shoulder.

Kate gasped in surprise. “Oh. Em. Gee. You did not seriously just do that!” she squealed.

She pummeled his rear while he laughed and carried her down the hall.

“Oh, em, gee, I can’t believe a twenty-eight year old woman just said ‘Oh. Em. Gee.’ And please, babe, I’ve known you since infancy. You’ve backed that file up in at least three places and obsessively after each entry.”

After Dom set her down by the front door, Kate blew the hair out of her face and glared at him. He grinned unrepentantly and handed her purse to her. She stopped trying to disguise the smile on her lips.

“Besides,” he continued, only slightly breathless. “Speaking of role playing… Didn’t you just say the other night you like the caveman thing?”

Katelyn flushed magenta. “Not when the caveman’s dragging me next door to his mother’s. I usually like to ignore the fact she lives next to me.”

“Well, I usually like to ignore the fact my fiancée lives a town away instead of moving in with me like she promised,” Dominic replied as they walked across the freshly cut, but mostly brown lawn.

“A suburb away, technically speaking,” Kate muttered.

“What’s that? Something about a Swingline stapler, Milton?” Dom asked, turning around and walking backwards.

He smirked and waggled his eyebrows.

He’s damn lucky he’s so sexy, Kate thought.

“If you trip over a hose and land on your ass, don’t expect any sympathy from me,” she bantered playfully. “But don’t worry, if you do fall, we all know your mommy will kiss it and make it all better.”

“Oh, burn!” Kandace shouted, leaning off the rail on Ramona’s porch. Her husband Steve chuckled and pulled her towards the door.

The self-satisfied smirk disappeared from Dom’s face and he froze mid-gait, wrinkling his nose. Katelyn grinned and smacked him on his firm rear as she walked past him. Her sense of victory was short lived though, because not only was every member of both of their families minus Kevin crammed into Ramona’s tiny living room—and looking quite sour about it—but judging from the mischievous gleam in Dom’s eyes as he sat down, he’d be paying her back… intimately… and soon.

“I would just like to start the festivities by getting the most important thing out of the way,” Kandace said as soon as everyone had sat down.

Ramona looked affronted.

It was rather sassy to upstage the hostess, Katelyn thought.

“And that is to say…” Kandace continued, pivoting in her seat to look Katelyn in the eyes. “I told you so. And you’re welcome. No really, there’s no need to name your first child after me. Just knowing I am his or her distinctly cooler aunt will be enough payment.”

Then Kandy leaned back against Steve’s chest, crossed her legs on the coffee table, and smirked. Steve grimaced and checked his watch. Three-fourths of the room sent their eyes to the ceiling.

Dom nodded at her with a faux-smile and a falsetto ‘aww’. He flicked a baby carrot at her. “Stay classy, Kandy.”

Kandace raised her middle finger in response.

“Quit it, you two!” Ramona and Bridgette said in unison.

There was a beat of silence then everyone laughed.

Katelyn leaned forward in her chair and then pushed Kandace’s feet off the table. “Mrs. Valentini—Ramona—I appreciate you having us, but obviously, we’ve all known each other for many years, so there’s no need for the ritualized meeting of the families prior to nuptials—”

“What she means to say, Mom, is we’re glad to be here, thanks.”

Ramona’s confused and glazed expression cleared up and she beamed adoringly at her only son.

“Wonderful!” Ramona clapped her hands together once. “I thought we could discuss how each of us can have a part in the wedding. Everyone here is delighted you two kids have finally decided to tie the knot, but we need to really settle on a time and place.”

Katelyn looked around the room and ‘delighted’ wasn’t the adjective she’d use to describe the occupants. ‘Bored’ and ‘indifferent’ were more accurate descriptors with a heaping scoop of ‘smug’ from Kandace.

“Mom, actually, we—” Dom began to say, but Kellie interrupted.

“I’m quite certain I’ve faxed over the information on the venue to you, Ramona. I’ve managed to reserve Dundee Bar and Grill for the rehearsal supper—”

“Oh, nonsense, it’s so small and such a run-down area,” Ramona said.

“Actually, no, it’s not. And it’s quite a trendy area for weddings these days,” Kellie argued.

“You know, we don’t need—” Dom began again.

“And easier for the out of town guests to see the sights of Omaha,” Kellie continued over him.

Ramona waved a piece of celery at Kellie. “That may be, but it’s nowhere near where any of us live!”

“The point being, it’s close to the park where Kate and Dom will have the ceremony,” Kellie gritted out while glaring at the drooping celery stalk.

Kellie’s voice was beginning to get that brittle and pert tone that everyone in the Anderson family knew signaled her digging in her heels.

“Kellie, we appreciate you—” Katelyn started to placate, but Ramona plowed over her.

“I see no reason why they can’t get married at Mahoney Park. It’s much closer. No need to hassle with downtown traffic. Am I right, Bridgette? Right?” Ramona asked Kate’s mother in an equally brittle, slightly hysterical tone.

Bridgette merely puckered her lips while slathering peanut butter in an agitated manner on the poor, battered celery.

“Pick your evil, I guess,” Kandace drawled, and then placed her feet back on the coffee table. “Deal with tourists at Mahoney, or deal with the Dundee DINKs.”

“Watch your language, Kandace Marie!” Bridgette admonished, pushing Kandace’s feet back off the table.

Kyle snorted. He was still in his Omaha Police jacket and unsubtly standing right next to the front door.

“It means dual-income, no kids, Mom,” he said without looking up from his phone. “And can we wrap this up, please?”

Dominic’s sister Demetria laughed softly in response, and somehow it captured everyone’s attention. Katelyn could never figure out how she did it. It was a sort of breathy, tinkling ‘ha-ha-ha’ that resonated on a different existential plane. Like the dog-whistle of laughs. She was perched in a Zen-like position on an ottoman at the edge of the dining room, forcing most of the occupants of the living room to crane their necks to look at her.

“Forgive my interruption,” Demi breathed, because she never spoke like a normal person anymore, she imparted wisdom… breathlessly. “Have any of you considered what Dominic and Katelyn would like to do?”

“Get married,” Dom affirmed. He stood up and slapped the sides of his jeans. “If you guys need to take off, that’s alright. Let’s not worry about it today. We’ve got a date finally, and that’s enough. So… Just eat, drink, and be merry, and what not.”

“Yes, the details will work themselves out,” Katelyn agreed, although she didn’t know how, seeing as everyone had their own favored version of events.

She had to admit, it was a good thing Demetria had come to help Kellie with the wedding planning. For as odd as Demi was currently acting, she did have a calming sort of aura these days, and a knack for knowing how to resolve problems. And Lord knew when the Andersons and Valentinis got together for any event, chaos was not far behind. Katelyn didn’t mind any of the ideas Demetria and Kellie had come up with, she just wished someone would pick one and stick with it. What was the point of having someone else plan your wedding if they kept making you make the decisions?

Kate watched Dom turn and look pointedly at Kyle. Kyle was frowning at Demi, with one nostril flared like a hound trying to suss out its prey.

Dom cleared his throat to get his attention. “Before you take off, Kyle, are you still on board with being my best man again?” he asked.

Kyle’s eyes shifted to Katelyn’s. His face lost its distracted air and he wrinkled his nose at her.

Translated: Do I have to?

She made her fish face in response.

Translated: Yes.

He crossed his eyes and she smirked at his capitulation.

Kyle turned his gaze from hers and grinned at Dom, then drawled in a fake 40s Noir film way, “I shur-pose… If y’made it worth my while, see? A little whish-key and cee-gars…”

Dom chuckled and they shook hands. Kyle started to leave but turned around in the doorway. “Wait. What is the date this time, and who’s the maid of honor? Anybody would be a step up from last time. That woman looked like she could break me in half. I seriously feared for my life.”

Everyone in the room laughed again.

“Yeah, Izzy’s cousin was a tank. Hard to believe she was related to someone as beautiful and delicate as Isabel,” Dominic replied.

Kate frowned. Dom didn’t often talk about his first wife, but when he did, it was always in a flattering manner. Not to put too fine a point on it, but it killed her with jealousy. Which she knew was laughable, not to mention petty, considering the man had confessed to being in love with Katelyn his whole life and claimed the reason his marriage didn’t work out was because he still held a torch for Kate.

Logically, she really should feel sorry for Isabel. But logically, she still couldn’t figure out why a sexy, outgoing man like Dominic Valentini would choose a moderately pretty, frizzy-haired, home-fried Nebraska girl like her over a stunning socialite like Isabel Alesio. And even if he really had been in love with Katelyn his whole life, Dominic had to have loved Izzy also, to have married her. Thankfully, Isabel lived in Pittsburgh, so Kate didn’t have to worry who he’d pick if they were standing next to each other.

“Demetria’s going to be Kate’s maid of honor,” Ramona said from the couch. “One from each family. It’s only fair.”

She sent a quick side-glance at Kandace as if to challenge her to contradict. But Kandace only shrugged and looked at her nails.

Kyle snorted. “Great,” he drawled. “Does that mean we’re going to have to wear flower head dresses and walk barefoot in the park? Is that why it’s in the park? You guys are having a Wiccan hand-fasting or something?”

He side stepped the gut smack Dom sent him.

“Wicked what now?” Bridgette asked.

“Nothing, Mom,” Katelyn interjected. She glared at her brother then flashed a guilty, apologetic smile at Demi for his caustic words.

Demetria seemed unperturbed. She was gazing at Kyle like he was a painting in a museum and she was trying to place the artist.

“It’s October tenth,” she answered.

“But that’s the Pitt game!” Kyle exclaimed then turned to stare incredulously at Dominic.

Dom shrugged and rocked back on his heels.

Kyle’s mouth dropped even lower. “But you played for Pittsburgh!”

“I’m aware of that,” Dominic replied with another shrug.

“It’s, well, the idea is, everyone will be in Lincoln for the game, so the park will be—” Katelyn began to say.

“You’re telling me you want to get married in the park… in October… when the weather’s capricious at best… on a game day?” Kyle asked slowly, eyes darting between Katelyn and Dominic.

Kate frowned. Dominic hadn’t complained about it, but Kyle had a point, that was Dom’s alma mater. He had even gone on to play for the Pittsburgh Steelers. She looked back over at Dominic. He lifted his hands in a very Italian ‘whattaya gonna do’ gesture.

The room was unusually silent. Everyone still appeared bored but now with a tinge of wariness. Even the children had stopped their fidgeting.

“We haven’t, as of yet, actually determined what Dominic and Katelyn want to do, have we?” Demi gently broke the silence, still staring intensely at Kyle. “Which was the point of the family meeting, unless I’m mistaken, Kyle? For your information, the idea of the indoor park facilities was generously offered by your sister Kellen because a church wedding isn’t an option.”

Kate winced and looked at Kellie who had blanched. Everyone knew how much Kellie hated to be called Kellen. Not even their parents called her Kellen and they were the ones who gave her the name.

“I still don’t see why a church wedding isn’t an option,” Bridgette interjected, mouth in a sour-lemon pucker.

“Because Dominic has already been married once in the Catholic Church,” Ramona replied in a matching pucker.

“But it was annulled, Ramona. Do you need a letter from the Pope himself?”

“Ok, Mom…” Kate began.

“There’s no need to be sacrilegious, Bridgette.”

“Mom, she wasn’t…” Dom began.

Bridgette and Ramona stood up, hands on hips, faces mottled, and voices raised.

“Our priest says he won’t perform without—”

“Well, our pastor would be more than happy to—”

“If Dominic is having a church wedding it will be a Catholic wedding!” Ramona demanded.

“Oh bah! How ridiculous! A wedding’s a wedding,” Bridgette sneered.

“Oh, my religion’s ridiculous, is it? It wasn’t ridiculous when you sent your kids to Roncalli with mine!”

“That was for educational purposes! Tom is Catholic and I’m not, and yet we managed to have a Catholic wedding just fine. And raise five children in the—”

“It’s not a real Catholic ceremony if you don’t say Mass,” Ramona interrupted.

FWWWTT!

Everyone turned at Kyle’s whistle.

“Alright! I gotta get back to work. Nice chatting with you all,” Kyle said forcefully. He gave a mocking salute to Demetria. “Well done, Demi.”

Her placid Zen demeanor finally receded and she slowly uncrossed her legs. “How is any of this my fault?” Demi asked as he walked through the door.

Kyle just shut the door with a sharp thwack. Ramona and Bridgette started arguing again and everyone began mumbling excuses for why they had to leave as well.

Once outside on the porch, Kate clasped Dom’s hand, waved at Mrs. Dickerson across the street, and they sighed in unison. Eloping was looking better and better every day.

“What the hell was that about with your brother and my sister?” Dom asked as they crossed the lawn back to Kate’s house.

“No clue,” Kate answered.

It was true that Demetria danced to her own drummer, but she certainly hadn’t done anything to warrant Kyle’s bad attitude. On the other hand, Demi did have a bad habit finding a person’s nails-on-the-chalkboard weakness and poking at it for grins and giggles. Katelyn just hoped they could figure out how to get along for once. The last thing she wanted was the best man and the maid of honor going at it at her wedding.

“And what the hell is a Wiccan hand-fasting anyway?” Dom continued.

“Now that I can answer. It’s based on the ancient Pagan tradition of—”

“Wait!” Dominic stopped her, and then started walking backwards again. He made a box with his fingers like a camera. “You got any reading glasses you could put on? It’s hella sexy when you pontificate.”

“Stop!” she laughed and swatted at him. “Weirdo.”

“I’m serious!”

Kate knew he was. Which was what made him a weirdo in her mind, but he was her weirdo. She leaned against the doorjamb then stopped his progress with her hand on his strong chest muscles, “I’ll put on some glasses if you put on your old jersey, Mr. Defensive Tackle. I can give you some one-on-one tutoring.”

“Oh yeah, talk nerdy to me…”

***

Kyle Anderson was still marveling at Demetria Valentini’s disingenuous ‘who me?’ attitude three hours into his shift downtown. He tossed the thick police file that Chief Sheridan had just given him in a skidding twirl across Detective Tommy Gates’ desk. Tommy stopped the file with his hand just short of the edge.

“Remind me, should some woman ever manage to remove my frontal lobe and my spine, to never ask you to be my best man. I like you too much,” Kyle said.

Tommy puckered his lips, scrunched his eyes, and half raised an eyebrow in response. Kyle barked out a laugh. Gates looked like the love child of Jessica Rabbit and the Godfather whenever he did that. Which… was pretty close to the truth, come to think of it. He sat down, leaned back, and propped his legs up on his desk. What a ridiculous waste of time that so-called ‘family meeting’ had been. Who would have thought one’s best friend marrying one’s sister could turn into such a pain in the ass?

“I mean, for starters, Tommy, who in their right freakin’ mind has a wedding during football season in Nebraska?” Kyle asked facetiously.

“Well, I guess if it’s an off weekend…”

“Naw, man for real? Would you? This violates an unspoken code written in the DNA of every person born within the state.”

“Well, technically, I was born in New York, so…”

“Your birth certificate says Nebraska.”

“Your Witness Protection tax dollars at work,” Tommy answered with a grin.

Kyle glared at him.

Tommy’s grin widened. “If it’s unspoken, why are we speaking of it?” he continued in a cheeky whisper.

“Unspoken, as in, goes without—never mind, point is, even you, transplant to this fine state, would not pick a game day for your wedding.”

“Prooobably—” Tommy drawled.

“And I bet that hot blonde you’re seeing wouldn’t either,” Kyle interrupted.

Tommy snorted.

“Ginny wouldn’t give two tinker’s da—”

“Valentini played professional football, for crying out loud!” Kyle interrupted again. “That’s how I know she’s behind this!”

“Who?”

“Now he’s all ‘whatever you say, ladies’ without any regard to the lineup. Not me, never! Nor would I ask you to be complicit in such an atrocity as my best man.”

Tommy stared at Kyle, mouth ajar, his eyes narrowed and confused. Then he shook his head. “You’re right, Anderson. This is easily the worst crime I’ve heard of this year, hands down,” he drawled with faux seriousness then swung back around to his computer and started typing.

Kyle glared at his back. “Mock away, Gates. Mock away. You are not the one having to stand up at the altar next to a granola flake,” Kyle paused and channeled his inner Kandace by dramatically smacking himself on the forehead. “What am I saying? What altar? Because now she’s somehow worked her juju magic on the only sensible sister I have, and gotten Kellie to move it to the park.”

“Who? Katelyn?”

“No, Demi!”

“Who’s Demi?”

“The granola flake!”

Tommy turned around again and slowly arched a dark brow over an irritated eye.

“This is Katelyn’s wedding we’re talking about?”

“Yeah,” Kyle answered with a long, drawn-out sigh. He cracked his neck to relieve some of the tension family meetings always gave him.

“I’m just saying, because you’re bitching like it’s your wedding or something…”

“It’s the principle of the thing, man! I’ll be taking off work on a game day without getting to actually watch the game, and all for what is almost guaranteed to be a cluster-fuck of bad decisions. Everything was fine and perfectly normal until she got here.”

“Mmn-hmn,” Tommy went back to staring intently at the fingerprint scan running on his monitor. “Y’know, Anderson, it’s not that I’m not just deeply fascinated by the details of motor mouth’s impending marriage, but…” he trailed off and frowned at the file on his desk.

Kyle laughed. “I haven’t heard anyone call her that in too long to remember. She really never shut up when we were kids, did she? Now she pretty much hides in libraries and museum basements.”

Tommy grunted but didn’t reply. Kyle knew his mind was already reengaged in whatever he had been working on, probably the Duncan case. He grabbed the other file and got to looking busy in case Tommy asked him to assist on that. He’d rather eat broken glass than assist on that case. Nothing good ever came out of cases involving dirty politicians linked to organized crime.

Kyle Anderson preferred his cases a little more straight-up street gang and less white-collar racketeering and corruption—less chance of accidentally ending up working a desk job in Alaska. He’d rather accidentally end up dead from a guy in saggy jeans than work a desk job.

He spent a good solid ten minutes trying to let it go, but he just couldn’t. Just like he couldn’t seem to get the image out of his head of Demi sitting on that damn ottoman like a Buddhist monk pretending like she didn’t grow up on corn and beef brisket and homecoming parades like the rest of them. Demetria hadn’t been back to Nebraska in God knows how long, but now she was just swooping in and taking over, and suddenly everyone had lobotomies…

“On frickin’ game day! She’ll probably have us dancing naked in the park next.”

“Are we back on this again? Who is Demi the Granola Flake?”

“You know, Dom’s sister. Demetria Valentini. Always hung out with Grace Butler?”

Tommy shrugged without turning around.

“She moved away to Estes Park ages ago to run some sort of woo-woo shop for the tourists, and then—”

“Anderson,” Tommy interrupted.

“Yeah?”

“If this budding diatribe isn’t eventually heading towards an eye witness or a lead on the Duncan case, wrap it up. I’m on a deadline here. Press conference at six.”

Kyle rolled his eyes at the back of Tommy’s head, and then opened his own file.

“No offense, but, you’ve been a real dick since you got back from Chicago,” he said.

Tommy grunted and said nothing.

“Come on, if it was your sister getting married and someone tried to hijack it…”

“Eh, newsflash, Kiki got married and someone did try to hijack it, which was why I was in Chicago. What’s that about the Duncan case? Oh, you’d love to help? Why, I thought you’d never—”

“Asshat,” Kyle interrupted with a good-humored snort. He looked back down at his own file with a frown of deep concentration, just in case.

Tommy’s chuckles filled the cubicle. Suddenly he stood up, yanked a flash drive out of his computer, and grabbed the Duncan file. He popped Kyle on the head with the file then turned around and walked backwards as he spoke.

“Anderson, I’m going to need to have a sit down with this Valentini chick. Anyone who can get the most affable and laid-back cop on the planet this riled up needs to be a friend of mine,” Tommy said with a devious grin.

“Ha!” Kyle barked with an answering grin. “You been hangin’ out with your gangster pops so long you’re using mob lingo? Next thing y’know you’ll be calling her a ‘real stand-up gal’.”

Tommy snickered and turned around. As he walked away, he crooked his free hand behind him, middle finger expressing his parting thoughts.

Kyle’s phone rang and he snatched it up.

“Kyle! Thank God! I need your help,” Katelyn’s panicked voice squeaked in his ear.

“Hold on, what’s the matter? Are you hurt?” Kyle asked urgently, all senses suddenly alert.

“No, no, it’s just I need your help. The most horrible thing has happened!”

“What’s happened?”

“Demi invited Isabel to the wedding!”

Kyle scrunched his brows. Contradictory thoughts swirled in his brain, not the least of which was he wanted to shake his sister for panicking him over frivolous histrionics.

“Katie, horrible is when there’s been an accident and someone’s in the hospital. Horrible is when your house has caught on fire—”

“Kyle, for crying out loud! I know that I’m overreacting, but it doesn’t change the fact that Dom just left my house to pick her up at the airport right now! The wedding is not even for three more weeks!”

“And I should be concerned about your fiancé picking up his ex-wife at the airport because…?”

First of all,” Katelyn enunciated each word slowly and acerbically, “who invites the groom’s ex-freaking-wife to his wedding? Second of all, who goes to their ex-husband’s wedding at all, much less arrives three weeks early unless they want to get in the way?! Why would Demi even suggest this?” Katelyn’s voice cracked with a breathless sort of desperation.

Kyle lifted his lip in a snarl. “Well, Dom must think it’s no big deal or he wouldn’t be picking her up at the airport,” he suggested cheerfully even though, basically, he wanted to go find Demetria Valentini and wring her flaky neck.

“Kyle Jeffrey Anderson, if you do not get in your car and drive the few minutes it will take you to get to Eppley Airfield and pick Isabel up before Dom gets there, I… willnever… forgive you,” Kate ended in a low, ominous growl.

Kyle winced. Few things in life caused his twin to break out an ultimatum. Katelyn Anderson avoided unpleasantness with her loved ones the way everyone else avoided paying taxes. She was the people-pleaser twin. He was the people-pounder twin. They were both friendly, easy-going people until confronted, at which point, Kate would retreat, and Kyle would bust some skulls.

“I’m on my way,” Kyle said with a heavy sigh. “But you might wanna—”

“I’m texting him right now that you’ll do it instead,” Katelyn interrupted, relief practically pulsating in her tone. “Just pick Izzy up, flirt like crazy, and make her forget all about Dom.”

“You realize this is completely—”

“Huh-uh.”

“Ridiculous and unnecessary—”

“Nope.”

“Even Kandace would think this is—”

“Don’t want to hear it,” Kate cut him off with a click.

Kyle raised his eyes to the ceiling, stuffed his phone in his pocket, and put his Omaha Police jacket back on. He left a note for Tommy that he was in the field following a lead then got in his car to head up to the airport. It might be utterly preposterous as far as requests went, but it beat sitting at his desk and stewing over what a mess Dom was allowing Demi to make of this wedding.

Besides, Isabel Alesio was hot—movie star hot. Flirting with her for an afternoon because his sister had caught a temporary case of completely unwarranted wedding insecurity would not be a hardship. By the time Izzy was ensconced in her hotel room this evening, Katelyn will have remembered that Dominic voluntarily left said hottie before he even knew he could have a chance with Kate. Therefore, there was no reason for anyone to get worked up over Demi inviting her.

But Kyle was still going to wring Demi’s granola neck anyway.

–Copyright 2014, Genevieve Dewey.

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