“Why the fuck are you sorry?” Henry asked, getting to his feet. He rounded the desk with speed and planted himself on the edge in front of her. “You weren’t the one driving the fucking car.”
His harsh language always surprised her. She’d grown up around men who cursed all the time. With Henry, she always expected something different. He was a successful businessman, so shouldn’t he talk differently?
She licked her suddenly dry lips and stared at him. “I don’t know what happened. I wanted to thank you for pulling me out of the car.”
The doctor who tended to her had told her if it wasn’t for Henry placing a tourniquet above her wound she’d have bled out and possibly died. The very thought of dying scared her. Her own thoughts made her feel guilty as Julia hadn’t survived. Julia’s funeral had been over a week ago. It had taken her this long to build up the courage to come and see Henry.
“I’m doing fine.” He reached out and touched one of the crutches she was holding. She tensed up wondering what he was thinking. “What about you?” he asked.
Easy conversation between them had never worked. Whenever they were alone, silence always worked better.
“I’m fine.” She stared at the ground. Her best friend was dead, and she didn’t know how to deal with the pain of losing her loved one. She didn’t have any family of her own, as they hadn’t liked her moving to the city to be near her friend.
“You’re not fine.” He stood, closing the small distance between them. Henry tilted her head back with a finger underneath her chin. “You don’t get to lie to me, April. Tell me the truth.”
The intensity of his blue gaze struck her hard. Her body, which worked against her, responded to the smallest of his touches. This was the guilt she hated. There was something about Henry that called to her. His gruff voice, the hard, chiseled features, even the day-old stubble he always sported, awakened something within her. Henry was her best friend’s man, and she’d curbed those feelings for so long she didn’t know what she believed anymore. His hatred of her sure stopped her from wanting anything to do with him.
“Everything hurts,” she said, gasping. “I’m sorry. I just needed to see if you were okay. I rang Julia’s phone today, and I remembered—” April stopped as a fresh wave of pain coursed through her entire body.
He cupped her cheek, pulling her against him. Without thinking, she released the crutches and held onto him. Henry smelled amazing. She didn’t know what he used, but it was heady.
Julia’s face appeared in her mind, and all the thoughts and feelings Henry inspired, she pushed aside. This was not her man. He’d never be her man. April withdrew, releasing a gasp as her balance almost gave out.
“Don’t do anything stupid,” he said. Henry held onto her waist as he leaned down to grab her crutches. Once the two sticks were back under her arms, she stared at him, conscious of the touch against the side of her breasts from the backs of his fingers. “You’ve got to learn to be careful.”
She nodded. “I will. I’m sorry for coming here.”
“You’ve got to learn to stop saying sorry. Not everything is your fault.”
Again, April nodded, turning away from him. Moving toward the door, April wished she hadn’t come to him. Staying at home with the memories made it hard for her to focus. Why did she need to come and see Henry? He was probably moving on to another woman. She’d seen the women around him even with Julia. They flocked to him as if they knew something about him.
Shaking all the unease from her mind, she went to the door about to open it when his voice interrupted his thoughts.
Henry stared at April’s round ass, distracted by the tempting curves on display. He ran fingers through his hair as he stared at her retreating form. Seeing April with her dark brown skin, long black hair, and soulful eyes, the guilt returned once again. For the past week he’d been trying to avoid getting in touch with her. They both lost Julia, yet he couldn’t bring himself to go to her. Ever since he first met her, he couldn’t control himself around her. When he first met Julia, the attraction had been instant. One week after meeting Julia and becoming an official couple, she’d introduced him to April.
His well-organized world came crashing down around him. April inspired so much inside him, but there was no way for him to break up with Julia just to go with her best friend. The very thought repulsed him.
“Wait,” he said, unable to watch her go. She looked so damn pitiful with the crutches and the cast on her leg. All he wanted to do was wrap his arms around her, pulling her against him.