“So what’s the story with her?” I tried to keep my voice steady.
“What do you mean?”
“Do Cameron and Raina have something going on?”
He laughed. “No, definitely not. Much to her disappointment.”
Despite Darren’s infectious grin, my earlier inkling of jealousy surged. I looked across the room, searching for her figure among the crowd. Why? So I could give her a dirty look? Christ, get a grip.
Unable to find her again, I finished the last set with methodical determination.
“You okay?” Darren frowned, concern wrinkling his brow.
“I’m fine,” I mumbled.
“There’s nothing going on with them, Maya. I can assure you that.”
I managed a thin smile. “Thanks, but it’s really none of my business. I’m not even sure why I asked.”
Who was I kidding? Probably not Darren, master of female manipulation. I asked because I simply had to know. In that moment, nothing had been more important than finding out if he and Raina had history.
I hit the locker room and dressed quickly. The thought of her pursuing Cameron, regardless of his level of interest, pissed me off. That she might be trying to create friction between us so we didn’t get too close pissed me off even more.
Five days with Cameron and I was already marking my territory—unbelievable.
Cameron walked through the front doors as I was about to make my escape. S**t.
“Hey, I was hoping to catch you before you left.” He smiled, his eyes bright.
“Well you caught me.”
I wished I could light up for him too, but I was too pissed off, too much in my own head to be cheerful for him.
“Sorry, I got held up. I had some people doing some work at the house and had to stay late.”
Raina passed us, smiling sweetly at him before meeting my gaze.
“Hey.” He nodded casually in her direction.
Those two little words out of Raina’s mouth had me grinding my teeth. I scolded myself for caring. I shouldn’t care. I shouldn’t care at all. I pushed past Cameron and headed toward the front doors.
“Hey, where you running off to?” He grabbed my hand.
“I’m heading out. I’m pretty sure this marks the end of my week of torture. That was the deal, right?”
He frowned. “Is everything okay?”
“I’m fine. Just tired. It’s been a long week, you know.” My body weakened as I said the words. Cameron was right that working out had given me more energy, but right now all I felt was wiped out. Now I was emotionally exhausted and draining by the minute.
“Well, it’s Friday. You can take it easy now.”
“I plan to. I have a date with a glass of wine. I think I’ve earned it.” I had a date with a bottle, but I figured I would omit that small detail.
His eyes turned serious. “Maya,” he whispered, closing the distance between us and brushing my cheek. “What’s going on? You seem upset.”
I leaned into his touch, my whole body relaxing with the contact. I wanted him to pull me into his arms the way he had before, like I was already his. Why? Why did I want him so damn much? Why couldn’t I keep him at a distance like everyone else?
“Let me take you out. I can have Darren cover me tonight.”
“No, I’m fine,” I insisted. “I have to go. I guess I’ll see you tomorrow night. I gave Darren the details.”
His brow wrinkled. I offered him a small smile, hoping he’d leave me be. The past day might have given me a little clarity, but now I was as mixed up as I had been the last time we were together.
He released me and I pushed through the doors, relishing the cold. I needed air. I needed a drink. This week had been sobering, literally, but in that space Cameron’s presence had left me off kilter, more than usual.
The truth was that deep down I wanted Cameron to myself. When we talked about more, as much as I’d kept the possibility indefinite, that’s what I wanted. Except I’d buried that person long ago. Being attracted to him was one thing, but wanting to secure that special place in his world as badly as I did was another. The way I’d reacted after my brief conversation with Raina indicated how far I’d already fallen.
CAMERON. “What the f**k did you say to her?”
I slammed the door behind us and Darren’s eyes went wide.
“What the hell are you talking about?”
“Maya. What you did say to her?”
“I don’t know. We did a shoulder workout.”
I caught his shirt and shoved him against the wall.