Home > Romancing the Billionaire (Billionaire Boys Club #5)(5)

Romancing the Billionaire (Billionaire Boys Club #5)(5)
Author: Jessica Clare

So she took a shower, changed into flannel pajamas, read a mystery novel in bed, and went to sleep. Or tried to, anyhow. Her entire body was a locked mass of angry nerves, and she stared up at the ceiling, just brimming with frustration.

Jonathan Lyons had kissed her.

He’d waltzed back into her life like he hadn’t abandoned her ten years ago, when she’d needed him the most. Still selfish after all these years. Some people never changed. She thought of the look on his face as she’d kneed him in the balls. It hadn’t even been satisfying, really. She’d been so damn angry, and he’d looked so shocked and utterly surprised.

And hurt.

Like he couldn’t believe that his Violet would harm him.

And that just made her crazier with anger. Like she was the unreasonable one. Twitching with frustration, Violet threw back the covers and stormed across the bedroom and into the living room. Her messy condo was tiny, but she didn’t require a lot. She just needed a work area and a bed. Heading to her shelves full of books, she went to the section where she kept personal photo albums. Her mother’s albums filled up most of the shelf, but there was one tiny album she pulled from the end and blew the dust off of.

The cover was decorated with a Greek key design, and she’d written AKROTIRI 2004 on it in bold, stylized letters. Returning to her bedroom, she curled up in the blankets and began to flip through the photos.

Her first—and only—trip to assist her errant father. Her mother had been against it, but Violet had been so excited to go, so very dazzled at the thought of spending the summer with her intelligent, famous father that she’d looked forward to it for what felt like forever. People joked that her dad was something like Jacques Cousteau for archaeology. She supposed that would be apt, if Jacques had neglected his family for two decades and driven his wife to drinking.

Violet flipped through the photos, thinking of that summer. Here was a picture of herself and her father near the excavation, pointing at a portion of a wall and smiling. Both of their faces were browned from the summer, and her hair was in two long, dark braids streaked with wild color. She was wearing a hideous pair of sunglasses and a tank top. Behind her in the picture, his hand at her waist, was Jonathan Lyons.

God, she’d been so in love with him. So incredibly stupid, but in love. As soon as she’d gotten to Santorini to spend the time with her father, she’d discovered that he’d invited a whole host of his students to his summer expedition as well. She’d been hurt, initially, having thought that she’d be special in her father’s eyes, but her hurt soon turned to interest when she met Jonathan Lyons. Lyons Motors was famous—or infamous—for a line of cars that was rapidly becoming a joke, and he wasn’t interested in the family business at all. Thin, a little geeky, and utterly enthusiastic about everything in the world, she’d thought Jonathan was cute.

There was something so incredibly exuberant and earnest about Jonathan that she’d loved. Whereas every move her father made seemed to be completely calculated, Jonathan appeared to live in the moment, and she adored that. His excitement for the dig was unquestionable. He’d been the first on site every morning and the last to leave. If something needed to be researched, Jonathan threw himself headlong into it.

He was a hundred percent intensity, bundled into an attractive nineteen-year-old college boy.

He’d been irresistible to her.

By the end of the first week, they were spending a lot of time together. By the second week, he’d kissed her and she’d flung him down on her bed and they’d screwed like rabbits. By the time a month had passed, she was in love.

By the time the second month had passed? She was pregnant with his baby.

It wasn’t that they weren’t careful. They were. They used condoms every time, but even condoms aren’t infallible, and they’d been full of youth and enthusiasm, and sometimes he stroked in her a few times before putting on a condom, just because it felt so damn good for both of them. Jonathan had approached sex with the same intensity that he approached life—he was voracious and insatiable.

She had to admit, staring down at his photo, that he’d pretty much ruined her for other men. No other sexual experience had even come close.

Which sucked.

At nineteen, she hadn’t even been upset that she’d become pregnant. She was utterly in love with Jonathan, and mentally linking their last names together and picking out names for the baby. If it was a boy, she’d call it Theseus DeWitt-Lyons, and a girl would be Ariadne DeWitt-Lyons, based on the myths of the labyrinth of Crete. She’d dreamed of marrying Jonathan and returning stateside to finish her college education and raise her family. It was clear that her father looked at her not as a daughter but as just another student on his dig, and she craved a family—a real family. She’d never had a functioning family, and the dream of a happy home was an intoxicating one. Instead of fantasizing about archaeological finds, Violet’s head was filled with nurseries and starter homes. A husband and a wife and a child that was doted on and adored by both parents.

That was her new dream, and she couldn’t wait to get started with Jonathan.

But she didn’t want Jonathan to marry her just for the baby. She wanted him to marry her because he loved her and because he wanted to marry her. That was part of the fantasy, after all. She’d seen what it was like, firsthand, when parents married for the baby instead of for love. His family had money, and she wanted it to be his idea for them to get married, not hers, or it’d seem like she was simply digging for his fortune. In reality, Violet didn’t give two craps about whatever car empire the Lyons family had. Her perfect life involved a homey cottage somewhere, family dinners with both children and husband, and kissing her spouse as he went off to work for the day. Some women dreamed of careers; Violet dreamed of a nuclear, close-knit family. It was all she’d ever wanted after a childhood of her mother’s depression and miserable hidden drinking binges, and her father’s long absences. She just wanted to be surrounded by love.

She’d been such a naive idiot back then.

Irritated, Violet flipped to the next photo in her book. Another of Jonathan, their cheeks pressed together as they stood on the Santorini beach. She remembered that night. That was the night before everything changed. They’d had a weekend furlough, and they’d decided to spend it together. They’d enjoyed a romantic dinner and spent the night at a hotel in Fira, and in bed, Violet had confessed her hopes to him. That she wanted nothing more than to start a family.

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