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To Hate Adam Connor: Chapter 29


I read the interview. I read the interview again and again, trying to make some sense of it, but nope, my name was still there and I was accused—quite bluntly—of breaking up a marriage.

How could I have broken up something that wasn’t even there? Were these people this stupid?

When I started reading it for the fifth time, Olive had to yank the tablet away from the death grip I had on it.

“What the hell?” I shouted, then lowered my voice when the other people turned around to give me the stink eye. I leaned forward in my seat and gripped the edges of the table to anchor myself. Then my phone started going off and my rage hit another level. “How did they even get my number?”

Olive sighed. “It’s a mess.”

“It’s more than a mess. What the hell did I do to her?”

“You didn’t do anything, Lucy. I suspect this is just to get the spotlight off her and onto Adam…or she is trying to get back at him; who knows. Ever since their divorce, she’s been all over the place. You know the saying There’s no such thing as bad publicity…I think she took that to heart.”

We were downtown at our favorite café, waiting for Olive’s new publishing team to arrive so we could go over their plans for her next novel. More than that, it was a celebration of the deal. We learned about the interview from Megan, Jason’s publicist, when she called to let Olive know there was a whole media frenzy surrounding it and that it was likely I’d be pestered by phone calls.

If I’d known how true that was, I would’ve never have left the house that morning. The moment we drove out of the gates, we were followed by paparazzi.

“Maybe she was hoping to get back with him. I mean, apparently she was, according to her. Maybe if I hadn’t climbed that damn wall, they’d be back together by now. Adam never said anything about a reconciliation, but what do I know about their relationship, right? They were married for years and not only that, they have a kid together.”

“Don’t go there, Lucy. If they were meant to be together, it wouldn’t have mattered how many walls you climbed.”

I took a deep breath and exhaled.

“We can leave, you know. I’m sure if we called Jason or Adam they’d come and get you.”

“Why do I have to run away, though? I didn’t do anything. And I want to be in this meeting, dammit. I didn’t do anything wrong that requires me to tuck my tail and run away from the vultures.”

The table started vibrating again, so I grabbed my phone and turned it off completely; it was either that or drop it into the glass of water in front of me.

Before Olive could speak, her phone started to go off. I growled and dropped my head into my hands in frustration.

“No, wait, it’s Adam. Do you want to answer?”

I thought about it. I shouldn’t have felt the need to, but unfortunately, I did. “I don’t think I can do that right now,” I admitted finally. When Olive winced and eyed her phone, I added, “It’s not him, Olive. I just don’t want to talk about this right now. I want to act like it never happened for at least a few more hours and focus on the meeting.”

“Okay, so we won’t answer. You’re right. He knows where you live anyway, so it’s not like you can run away.”

“These last few days I’ve been wondering whose side you’re on, and this kinda gives me the answer, I guess.”

She gave me a cheesy grin. “What can I say? I love that he made you fall in love with him so easily, and I think you’ve met your match; he won’t let you go easily no matter what you do or say. I think you’re curse-free, Lucy Meyer, and you don’t know what to do with yourself.”

“Please.” I snorted. “I’ll be curse-free the day I marry someone, wearing a white dress. That’s the tipping point in our family. No one has quite made it there yet. And even then—”

Olive’s gaze shifted, and she grabbed her water glass to hide an even bigger smile behind it.

“What’s wrong with you? Why are you snickering?”

She gestured behind me with a quick chin lift, and I turned back to find freaking Adam Connor barreling toward us with quick, angry steps.

“Why is your phone off?” he asked as a greeting.

“What the hell are you doing here?”

He gripped my elbow and pulled me up. “You’re coming with me. We have things to discuss.”

As pissed as he looked, his grip on my arm wasn’t firm, so I shrugged it off with a quick twist.

“Although everyone seems to think I’m a nanny these days, I’m actually an agent and have a meeting. I’m not going anywhere right now.”

His frown deepened, and he turned to Olive. “Is it okay if she skips this one?”

Olive was listening to our exchange in fascination. “Oh, please,” she piped up. “Take her away.”

The next thing I knew I was being ushered out through a back door and into a waiting SUV.




The ride back to Adam’s house was dead quiet.

As soon as we walked through his door, I whirled on him. “That meeting was important to me, Adam.”

“And you’re important to me. Why did you ignore my calls?”

“I ignored every call, not just yours. And like I said, I was busy.”

“I’m not gonna let you stew on something like this, Lucy. Not if I can help it.”

“Okay then, talk.” I crossed my arms over my chest and waited for him to go on.

After he watched me for a long minute, he offered me a seat, which I rejected.

“Okay, Lucy. Okay. Let’s do it your way—as long as you don’t run away from me. The interview…she says it’s me in the sex tape, that it’s us; it isn’t.”

“You brought me here just to say that? You were married, Adam. So you had sex and recorded it. So what? Do you think that’s why paparazzi are hounding me? To ask what I think about it?”

The sex tape thing wasn’t even on my radar. Would I have watched it? Absolutely not, but that part of the interview wasn’t the issue. He walked closer to me, and I dropped my arms, ready to bolt.

“I bought the tape.”

He took a step forward, and I backed away with a frown on my face.


“This morning, I paid one million dollars to buy a sex tape that proves my ex-wife cheated on me while we were married, with a director…most likely so she could get a role in his movie—which she didn’t.”

“Why did you do that?”

“Because she is forcing my hand. I won’t go in front of cameras or give interviews to fuel this stupid thing she started, but I could do this. So I did. Now, if she insists on coming after me—or you for that matter, she’ll know I can prove her every word wrong.”

It was time for me to take a seat. “You’re gonna blackmail her?”

“Not exactly blackmailing. In theory, it is, actually, but she can’t take the chance of it getting out, so I won’t end up using the tape anyway. Now that’s not what I need to talk you about. I just wanted you to know that interview is the only time she’ll utter your name. If she keeps at this cheating thing, she’ll have to deal with the consequences.”

“If that’s not it, then what did you want to talk to me about?” I leaned back and braced myself.

“I’m going to tell you a little story. Vicky, my sister…she was eighteen when she moved to Paris. Her friends here weren’t exactly the best influence on her, and she got into drugs…not heavy stuff, but still drugs. As we discussed before, my parents threw a lot of parties and as much as I tried my best to keep her away from it all when she was younger…after she reached a certain age, my help wasn’t needed. Long story short, she hooked up with the wrong people and…got pregnant.”

I frowned, not sure where he was going, but listened carefully. Adam sat down on the other end of the couch and tightened his hands into fists.

“My dad and mom arranged for her to go to Paris to stay with my aunt who lives there. They couldn’t risk a scandal like that. She was a month and a half pregnant when they sent her away. And Vicky…she was so young, Lucy.” He glanced at me with a small smile and looked away. “I tried my best to shield her from my parents, but in the end she made her own choices. I guess sometimes no matter how much you want to save someone, you just have to accept the fact that you can’t, not unless they let you.” He shot me another look then got up and started walking around.

I didn’t like where his story was going. I didn’t like it at all.

“She didn’t want to raise the baby, but she didn’t want to have an abortion either. And, well…” He raked his fingers through his hair and let out a dry laugh. “I’ve never said this to anyone before. Feels weird.”

He walked to the window and just stood there silently with his back to me. He had the same expression on his face he’d had the first night we had spied on him. The only difference was this time around there was no barrier between us, no walls, no glass windows. He was just a few feet away from me.

“My parents weren’t so keen on the idea of giving the baby up for adoption,” he continued. “They were sure it would end up coming back to them. While this whole thing was going on, I was with Adeline. She came to Paris with me when we visited Vicky. She only knew about the pregnancy because she was there when I got the news, and I was in love with her and why shouldn’t you trust the person you love, right?”

Facing me, he waited for something, or maybe he was preparing himself.

“Aiden isn’t your son,” I said, pointing out the obvious to ease things for him in case that was what he was waiting for.

“He is my son, Lucy,” he corrected me immediately. “The moment Vicky gave birth to him and I held him in my arms he became mine, and he will always be mine.”

“But how?” I blurted. “I mean…I don’t get it.”

“Adeline’s idea. Mind you, she didn’t share it with me first. She told my parents, and they jumped on it.”

“But how?” I repeated again. Did I feel stupid for asking the same thing over and over again? Sure…but I really wanted the answer. “I remember seeing her photos, Adeline’s…I mean…she was pregnant.”

“She wasn’t. She spent a lot of time in Paris, with Vicky. The house wasn’t in the city, so the possibility of them getting photographed was slim to none. When she was here, back in Los Angeles, she wore one of those fake pregnancy things. Same when she posted on social media. Trust me, it looks frighteningly real, and I was filming anyway, so neither one of us was spending a lot of time in the city anyway. Only a handful of people knew about Vicky’s pregnancy, Dan being one of those few, so there was no one who could link everything.”

“Wow.” What else could I say?

“Adeline wanted to get married and what better time to tie the knot than when your girlfriend is expecting?”

“Again, wow.”

And he just kept going.

“My parents thought it was the perfect solution to everything. Vicky was okay with it. To be honest, she didn’t care that much. Everyone was happy.”

“And you? Were you okay with it all? Were you happy about it? I get it, your sister was only eighteen and that’s young to have a baby on your own—by the way, who was the father?”

Another forced smile. “She isn’t sure. Convenient, isn’t it?”

I continued, “Yeah, well, what I was trying to say is, she was young, okay, but you weren’t that old either. You were what? Twenty-two?”

He gave a quick nod. “A baby would have been a big scandal when the mother was only eighteen and the daughter of the perfect Hollywood couple, not to mention an unknown father. It could have either been one of Vicky’s friends, or hell, maybe dear Mom and Dad’s. With the way Vicky was, it was impossible to guess. But Adeline Young having my baby and us getting married…that would be good news. Great news. And I loved Adeline. And I loved my sister. I thought maybe she’d said okay because if I kept the baby, she’d get to see him.”

“She still lives in Paris, doesn’t she?”

“Yes. She’s been clean ever since she learned about the pregnancy, but yes, she doesn’t want to come back here. So I go to her. I take Aiden with me, and I go to her, every year on her birthday.”

“So she can see her son,” I guessed quietly.

Adam nodded. “So she can see what a beautiful son she has, but she wants nothing to do with him.”

“Adam…I don’t even know what to…” I wanted to go to him, but I also wanted to hear everything he wanted say, so I stayed put and waited for the right time.

“She doesn’t want Aiden to know about her, so Aiden will only know Adeline and me as his parents. I don’t mind that anymore. This last time…when we were in Paris for Vicky’s birthday, neither my parents nor Vicky spent more than a few minutes alone with Aiden. I never want him to feel unwanted, never want him to work so hard to gain someone’s attention like that, so I don’t think we’ll be going back to Paris any time soon.”

I didn’t want Aiden to ever feel unwanted either. I’d never wish that on anyone, let alone a child.

“Well, fuck them. If they can’t see what a gorgeous and smart kid he is…I’m sorry, I know they are your family, but fuck them.”

“Up until the moment I held him in my arms, I wasn’t sure I could do it. Sure, I didn’t mind the getting married to Adeline part because I loved her, but a baby? Like you said, I was only twenty-two myself. What the hell would I know about raising a baby? But then they gave him to me, and I…”

He got up and walked away. This time I went after him, but stopped before I was too close.

Keeping his back to me, he kept explaining. “I touched his face, those little fingers, those cheeks.” There was a smile in his voice. “He was born premature; he was so little, but so perfect. How could anyone want to give him away?”

He turned around and looked surprised to find me standing so close to him.

“But the papers? The birth certificate?”

He raised his hand and tucked a piece of hair behind my ear. “You have no idea what people with so much money and power like my parents can do…can buy. Our publicist, Michel, had his own fixer; that’s one of the reasons he is such a good publicist.”

I shook my head. “It all sounds so crazy.”

“It is.”

“So why did you tell me all of this?”

“There is more than one reason.”

“And they are?”

“I wanted you to know everything because you scare me, Lucy Meyer.”

What the hell?

Giving him a disbelieving look, I asked, “I scare you?”

A nod.

“The other reason is because I want you to know everything. I want you to know that I trust you. I want you to know that the night I had to leave you alone with Aiden, she was threatening to talk to the media and let them know Aiden wasn’t our son. She thought it would be enough to eclipse the sex tape. That’s why I left in a hurry.”

“Why would she do that?”

“To save what is left of her career. To make me look bad. She is making one mistake after another. Up until you and me got photographed with Aiden, she had become the villain of our story. Now that you’re literally in the picture…”

“She wants to make me look like the villain so she can be the good one and slink away into the night.”

“Exactly. But now she can’t. If she talks about Aiden to anyone, I’ll release the video. If she utters one more word about you, I’ll release the video. A blowjob wasn’t the only thing on there, and even though she believes the other guy’s face can’t be seen, she is wrong on that. If the video doesn’t do the job for her, I’ll start giving my own interviews and she really wouldn’t want that.”

“Tell me all of this isn’t happening because of me, Adam.”

He cupped my cheek in his hands. “This isn’t happening because of you, Lucy. If there weren’t those pictures of us together, she’d find something else to get her way. She has no ties to Aiden. He was the reason she wanted a divorce, which is why I was always planning to get sole custody. None of this is happening because of you.”

“Why do I scare you?” I wanted to get back to that because I didn’t get it. I didn’t get how I could scare him, of all people. He, however, was scaring the shit out of me at that moment, and to be honest, I was done talking about the wicked witch.

“Because I said I love you and you never said anything.” His thumb caressed my cheekbone, and he kept his eyes firmly on mine. “I wasn’t expecting to hear it back from you, at least not yet, and I’m okay with that, but you acted like I’d never said anything.”

“I didn’t mention it again because that was adrenaline talking, not you.              ”

“Oh? Is that so?”

The way his eyes were moving around my face…it was so tender, so loving that a lump formed in my throat.

“You have nine beauty marks on your face. Did you know that?”


“Um…no, I’ve never counted them.”

“I have. My favorite is this one.” With the tip of his fingertip he touched my skin, right below my eye, and then let his finger trail down to my jaw.

I did nothing but watch his eyes follow his finger as he stopped right at my chin and tipped my face up to his.

Holding my breath, I waited for his kiss, hoped for it, but he held it back from me. Then his eyes met mine.

“I love you, Lucy Meyer.”

He wanted so much from me…yet he wanted nothing at all. First he had pushed for the relationship and just when I was getting used to that idea, now he wanted more. It might have been nothing for some, but it was everything for me.

Closing the distance between us, he whispered, “I know you’re scared too, Lucy, and you know what…if there is one thing I’ve learned about love, it’s that it should scare you. A little or a lot, it doesn’t matter how much, but it should make you feel. And you, my beautiful, stubborn Lucy…” He brushed his lips against mine, just a quick touch, and pulled back. “You scare me—no, I promised to be honest with you: you terrify me, Lucy, and I love it. I will never take you for granted, and knowing that you won’t let me…you’re the one I want, Lucy Meyer. You’re the one I fell in love with.”

Every word sending an arrow to my heart, I just stood there, my body trembling slightly, my breath caught in my throat. I simply watched him watch me. He cupped my face gently with both of his strong hands and kissed my lips. My breath shuddered out of me in a rush. I was in so much trouble. Pulling back, he kissed my nose, my eyes, my forehead, and my lips again.

“Now you’re going to kiss me, Lucy. I know you won’t give me the words, but I need you to give me your best kiss,” he whispered, his lips moving against mine. “And then you’re going to give me a chance, the same chance you gave Jameson. I deserve it, and you deserve me.”

Oh, the asshole. He was going to get more than a kiss.

When I opened my mouth and invited him in, he didn’t hesitate before taking everything from me. It was a slow kiss, our heads moving in sync with each other, our tongues gentle. When I understood what was happening, why I was feeling like I was on the verge of crying, I held on to his arms and let him take over. He took another step into me, our bodies resting against one another.

Safe with one another.

I knew I would remember this moment years later; I knew when I would look back, when I would think of Adam, I would feel his warm, strong hands cradling my face. I knew I would remember the truth of his words ringing in my ear, whether he was there or not.

When it was over, he simply rested his forehead against mine, and we just breathed in each other’s air. I hoped it had been his best kiss. I hoped no one would ever kiss him like that again, that I would be it for him, that my lips would be it.

“Tell me I’m a good kisser, Lucy,” he murmured, his eyes closed. “Tell me I’m your best.”

A soft laugh escaped my lips. I slid my arms around his neck and held on to him just a little tighter as I stretched on my toes so I could trail my nose against his neck and get more drunk on him.

“I taught you well; of course you’re good now.”

He laughed and wrapped his arms around my waist, his steady heartbeat beating against mine.

I took a deep breath, closed my eyes, and stood still in the safety of his arms.

“I don’t want you to be taken away from me, Adam.”

He pressed his palm against my back, holding me as tight and as close as I was holding him.

“I won’t let anyone take you away from me, Lucy. You can trust me on that.”

A teardrop slid down my eye, and I burrowed into his neck.

The next thing I knew, his hands were moving down my body, and I was swept off my feet. My face still in his neck, I let him carry me into his bedroom.

Gently laying me down on his bed, he settled on top of me, his body not even close to touching mine. His arms were braced on the bed, his face inches away from mine.

“I lose track of time when I kiss you,” I murmured, caressing his face. “You make me lose track of myself when you look into my eyes with such intensity, Adam Connor. You make me feel like I’m the only one.”

He exhaled and his eyes closed as he moved his head into my hand.

“You’re going to tell me you love me. Tell me and give me your heart, and I promise you, Lucy…I promise you I’ll take care of it.”

“You stole my heart, you jerk.”

“Not quite the right words, try again.”

I laughed softly. “I think I fell for you, Adam Connor.”

He started to say something, but I held my finger up against his lips.

“I love you,” I admitted softly. “You’re right, I love you, and it scares the shit out of me, too.”

His lips slowly stretched into a smile and my heart brightened with the beauty of it.

I haven’t mentioned what an asshole he is for quite some time, have I?

“I’ll take care of you.”

“Yeah, you keep saying that.”

“Because it’s true. You’ll never have to protect your heart again. It’ll always be safe with me, Lucy. You’ll always be safe with me.”

I swallowed the thick lump in my throat and ignored the way my heart was fluttering in my chest as if the space wasn’t enough, as if it was ready, eager, and willing to rest in the hands of Adam Connor.

Stupid, stupid heart.

Closing my eyes, I tried to remember how to form words and just breathe. Adam waited patiently.

“Adam…when I say I’m cursed, I’m not trying to be cute. I want you to know that, no matter when or how this ends between us, I will hold your secrets.” I shook my head in amazement and stared right into his eyes. “What you did…you’re an amazing person, an amazing father, though you obviously have questionable taste in women.” His lips curved up again, and he sneaked in a kiss, getting my heart all excited again.

“Thank you, baby.”

“That last one wasn’t a compliment,” I clarified.

He got in another stolen kiss that ended up causing me to pull him down on me so I could feel his weight press into me.

“Wait. Wait.”

He stopped, his breathing already heavy, along with my own.

“I’m rooting for you,” I whispered. “I never wished for a prince to save me, because I can save myself, thank you very much…but I’m wishing for it now, Adam Connor. I hope—and I can hope really really hard—that your kiss will break the curse. I hope it’s you, Adam. I hope you’re the hero of my story, because I deserve to be loved, goddammit. I deserve to have someone dance with me to no music.” I stopped so I could breathe and watched Adam’s eyes darken. “I deserve to have you to myself. I deserve to love you.”

He watched me, just watched for several silent seconds as I tried to quiet my screaming heart. Then without saying a single word, he reached to his back and slipped off his shirt, giving me a view of his ridiculously sexy upper body. Then he reached for my shirt, slowly, as if we had all the time in the world. I helped him by lifting my arms up, then when he went for my jeans, I lifted my hips, too. When it was all gone and I was completely naked in front of him—in more ways than one—he got rid of the rest of his own clothes, settled over me again, and pushed inside me without giving me any flowery words. I didn’t need any; I just needed him.

He was already hard, ready to fill me.

I took a deep breath and widened my legs as he pushed and pulled until he settled deep inside me, bringing us together in the most magical way; every orgasm with Adam had been magical thus far.

This time it was me who cupped his face in my hands and looked into the green depths of his eyes. “Don’t hurt me, Adam. Don’t disappoint me.”

“Never, Lucy.”

He took me with slow, steady thrusts, imprinting his cock on me, making my entire body ache for him, for the release only he was able to give me. Then he made me come around him, with nothing but whispers and promises on my skin and of course that big, beautiful cock of his. When it was his turn, he pushed his face into my neck, his cock as deep as it could go, and let go with a groan. He let me hold him until our heart rates lowered back to normal.

Raising his head, he asked me to say the words again, so I gave them to him.

“I’m so in love with you, Adam.”

Such beautiful words. Being in the same bed as him, looking into his eyes and admitting that I’d fallen for him, I hoped even harder that he’d be the one to break my curse.


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