Take a Chance - Chance #1 - Abbi Glines Page 0,1

didn’t seem to give a shit about Nan. Harlow lit up a room when she walked into it. There was a peacefulness about her that was hard to explain. It made you want to get close to her and see if you could soak it in. She made it easy for someone as selfish as Kiro to love her. Nan made it hard for normal people to love her—much less someone like Kiro Manning.

“No, I’m fine. I was just going to wait and eat with you if you planned to eat here. If not, I’ll just eat a sandwich in my room.”

Kiro started shaking his head. “I don’t like that. You’re in there too much. I want you to stop reading for tonight. Grant is here and he needs some company. He’s a good guy. Talk to him. You can have dinner together while he waits for Nan to return.”

Harlow stiffened and finally glanced my way, but only for a moment. “I don’t think so.”

“Come on, don’t be a snob. Grant’s a family friend. He’s Rush’s brother. Have dinner with him.”

Harlow’s spine stiffened even straighter. She went back to not making eye contact with me. “He’s not Rush’s brother. If he were, it would be even more disgusting that he’s sleeping with Nan.”

Kiro grinned like Harlow was the funniest person in the world and he was proud of her spunk. “My kitten has claws, and apparently only you bring them out. Sleeping with the evil sister has put you on my baby girl’s shit list. Now that’s funny as hell.” He looked extremely amused as he took another long draw from his joint.

I wasn’t amused. I didn’t like the fact Harlow hated me. I wasn’t sure how the hell to fix it, though. Turning my back on Nan wasn’t possible. She wouldn’t be able to handle someone else dropping her. Even if her slutty ass deserved it. I wouldn’t let myself think about the boy band she was currently sleeping with. Guess I was wrong about those guys. I thought for sure they were sleeping with each other. Instead, they were all sleeping with Nan.

“Have a good night, Daddy,” Harlow said, then turned and walked out of the room before Kiro could demand she stay with me.

Kiro laid his head back and closed his eyes. “Shame she hates you. She’s special. Only known one other like her, and it was her mom. Woman stole my heart. I adored her. Worshipped the fucking ground she walked on. I would have thrown all this shit away for her. I had planned on it. I just wanted to wake up each morning and see her there beside me. I wanted to watch her with our baby girl and know that they were mine. But God wanted her more. Took her the fuck away from me. I won’t ever get over it. Never.”

This wasn’t the first time I had heard him ramble on about Harlow’s mother. He did it whenever he got high. She was the first thing that came to his mind. I hadn’t known that kind of love. Scared the shit out of me, though. I wasn’t sure I ever wanted to know it. Kiro had never recovered. I had met the man when I was a kid and my dad had married Rush’s mom. Rush had begged his dad, Dean Finlay, the drummer for Slacker Demon, to take me with them on one of his weekend visits.

I had been in awe. It had been the first of many weekends. And Kiro would always talk about “her” and curse God for taking her. It had fascinated me, even as a child. I had never witnessed that kind of devotion.

Even after my dad’s short marriage to Rush’s mother, Georgianna, I had remained close to Rush. His dad still came to pick me up sometimes when he got Rush. I had grown up personally knowing the most legendary rock band in the world.

“Nan hates her. Who the hell can hate Harlow? She’s too damn sweet to hate. Girl hasn’t done anything to Nan, yet Nan’s mean as a goddamn snake. Poor Harlow stays away from her. I hate to see my baby girl so defenseless. She needs to toughen up. She needs a friend.” Kiro set his joint down in an ashtray and turned his head to look at me. “Be her friend, kid. She needs one.”

I wanted to be a lot more than Harlow Manning’s friend. But she wouldn’t even look at me.