Royal (Conner Brothers Construction #5) - Cee Bowerman
“Just for the record, don’t piss off the office manager.”
“I got a Band-Aid!”
I looked down at the happy little girl walking into the elevator in front of me and smiled.
“And it’s an Elmo Band-Aid. Those are pretty special,” I told her. “Did you get a booboo?”
“I got a blood test,” the little darling said seriously. “I get them all the time, and I always get a Band-Aid.”
“Well, look at you. Such a big girl, huh?” I said as I looked at the woman standing next to the elevator panel. She was a tiny thing, probably only as tall as my chest. When she smiled up at me, I was stunned. She was absolutely gorgeous. I had to talk to her so that when the elevator door opened and poured us out into the lobby, she didn’t walk right out of my life. “Did you get a Band-Aid too?”
“I did not,” the woman said with a laugh. “No blood test for me today.”
“I didn’t get one either,” I said, pretending to be heartbroken. “I went all the way to the fourth floor and didn’t get anything cool.”
“That is sad,” the little girl told me with a frown.
“Fourth floor? Do you have a new baby?” the woman asked as she peeked at my bare ring finger.
“No, no baby for me,” I told her with a grin. “No wife and kids on the horizon just yet. I delivered some flowers and cookies to the nurses up there. I do it every couple of weeks.”
“You’re one of those guys,” the woman whispered in awe.
“Those guys? That sounds like it’s a bad thing.”
“No!” the woman said, her eyes roaming from my face down to my feet and back up. “That’s not a bad thing at all.”
“Who are those guys then?”
“The brothers,” she explained. “The ones that bring the gifts in appreciation for taking care of your sister and her babies.”
“Then, yes,” I said with a nod. “I am one of those guys after all.”
“I’m sorry about your sister,” she said with a sad smile. “I hope your family is doing okay.”
“We’re alright,” I assured her. “The babies are thriving and we’ve even got a few more on the way.”
“Two of my brothers have women they’re dating that are expecting.”
“I guess the twins will have some friends to play with when they get older.”
“They sure will. How did you know about my sister?”
“I work here,” she told me as the elevator doors opened.
The little girl rushed out through the doors, tugging on her mom’s hand, as she nearly yelled, “Come on! I need to get my sucker!”
“It was nice to meet you!” the beautiful woman called over her shoulder as she was dragged away.
“It was nice to meet you too,” I called after her as I gave them a half wave.
I hadn’t really met her. I knew she worked here at the hospital but not which department or even which floor. I didn’t know her name or have any way to get in touch with her, and now she was gone. I could follow her into the gift shop, but that would probably be too weird, I thought to myself.
“If it’s meant to be, it’s meant to be,” I mumbled as I walked out into the sunshine. “I gave up women for a year anyway.”
I’d toss that aside for just one more smile from that beauty.
“I’ve got your bag, Ro,” I told my twin as I walked up to where he was standing with his girlfriend, Thea. We were dressed almost exactly alike with minor differences in the details, just like we’d planned. He was wearing a white shirt with no tie, and I had on a gray shirt with a dark red tie. “Hey, T.”
“Hi, Royal. You look very handsome in your suit and tie,” Thea said as she gave Ronan a mock glare. “It’s very nice of you to get dressed up for the occasion.”
“Suck up,” Ronan growled at me.
“She doesn’t have a sister, so I’m trying to steal her away from you,” I told my brother with a laugh. “Come on. I’ll help you get into your monkey suit.”
“I’ll see you in a bit, baby,” Ronan murmured to Thea before he leaned down and kissed her again. “Love you.”
“Are you sure you’ll be able to keep your hands off of her until the big reveal?” I asked Ronan after we had crossed the room. “Can’t be all kissy-kissy if you’re my stand-in.”
“Kissy-kissy? What are we - four?”
“You know what I mean,” I retorted.