The Enemy (It Happened in Charleston #2) - Sarah Adams Page 0,1

like the rest of the world and leave it on the table.

Still, Stacy should be receiving my telepathic BFF distress signals. I’ve been in here forever. She should be worried that I’ve either been kidnapped or am suffering from some serious stomach trouble. Both of which would warrant an appearance from someone who claims to love me like a sister.

Stacy is also the reason I am having to be reunited with the man I hate more than menstrual cramps. She and her fiancé, Logan, were high school sweethearts, and after over fifteen years in a relationship (yep, you heard me right) they are finally tying the knot. I would be over-the-moon excited for Stacy if Logan hadn't gone and asked Ryan to be his best man.

Although I think it’s debatable, Stacy says it’s customary for the best man to attend the groom’s bachelor party—which is what is happening tonight. Actually, it’s a joint bachelor and bachelorette party, because Stacy and Logan are one of those annoyingly in love couples that do everything together. They share a Facebook profile, order the dinner portion of every meal so they can split it, and even book overlapping doctors’ appointments. So it was really no surprise when they announced they were joining their parties together. We’re all having one fancy bar crawl, and I can think of at least one hundred things that could go wrong tonight. But all of them happen to Ryan.

1) I slip a laxative into his drink.

2) I squirt super glue onto his seat before he sits down.

3) I set his car on fire. (Don’t worry, I’ll wait until he’s out of it…maybe.)

I could go on and on, but you get the picture.

I can’t, for the life of me, understand why Logan and Ryan have stayed close friends even after graduating and living in different states. Sometimes I wonder what Ryan has been up to this whole time, but I don’t dare ask Stacy because I implemented a strict ‘no mention of the devil’ rule a long time ago, and I refuse to break it. Both Stacy and Logan know that even the slightest slip of Ryan’s name gets them put in the friendship doghouse for an entire week. Am I being petty? Yes. Absolutely. But I’m okay with it.

I’ve had twelve blissful years of Ryan-lessness. Well, almost blissful. That time, five years ago, when my fiancé cheated on me and I had to cancel my wedding sucked. Other than that, though, it’s been twelve years of success without worrying he will somehow swoop in and overshadow me. And if I could ever get off this toilet, I could go rub all my newfound success in Ryan’s face.

Thankfully, I hear the door open again, and I sit up straighter, determined not to mess up my lines this time. Fate is on my side as the woman chooses the stall beside me. Deciding not to risk it with chit-chat, I cut right to the chase. “Umm. Hi. I don’t mean to startle you…but the thing is, I’ve been in here for a while, and I was wondering if—”

I cut myself off when a hand shoots under the stall wall, clutching a bouquet of toilet paper. “Yeah, yeah, here you go.”

Yes! Finally! See, now this is a woman I can appreciate. Soul sisters. Women who understand each other! I briefly consider giving her my tube of red lipstick and asking her to exchange numbers, but I decide against it.

Once all my business is complete, I emerge from the bathroom like a hostage released from captivity. It’s good to be back in the world. Are the Kardashians still famous?

I make my way down the dark, slender hallway toward the bar. The music pulses through my chest, and my heels pound the floor with the confident strides of a six-foot Amazonian on the catwalk rather than the five-foot-two Southern dumplin’ I am.

Right now, I am all confidence—high on my own determination as I step out of the hallway into the trendy sports bar. I have no time to scan the room before I’m grabbed hard by the arm and yanked to the side.

“Ow! What the—”

“He’s here,” Stacy whispers loudly into my face. And WOW has she already had a lot to drink or what? I’m going to need to slip her a Tic-Tac.

“Who’s here?” But I know who she’s talking about. I’m just getting into character with my false disinterest.

“Didn’t you get all my texts?” She sounds frantic. It makes me laugh a little