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After We Collided (After, #2) by Anna Todd Read Online (FREE)

“He’s coming, though?”

“No, I’m sorry. I don’t think he is, honey.”

“Oh.”

It’s a terrible lie and one that anyone who knows Hardin would see through, but I tell the little guy, “But he did say to tell you hello,” and I ruffle his hair a little. Now Hardin has me lying to children. Great.

Smith half smiles and sits back down at the table. “Okay. I like your Hardin.”

Me, too, I want to tell him, but he’s not mine.

Within fifteen minutes, twenty more people arrive, and Christian has turned on his super-high-tech stereo system. With only a click of a button, a soft piano melody spreads through the house. Young men in white-collared shirts begin to circle the room with trays of appetizers, and I help myself to something that looks like a small piece of bread topped with tomatoes and sauce.

“The Seattle office is breathtaking—you should see it,” Christian says to a small group of us. “It’s right on the water; it’s two times larger than our office here. I can’t believe I’m finally expanding.”

I try to appear as interested as I can as a waiter hands me a glass of white wine. Well, I am interested—I’m just distracted. Distracted by the mention of Hardin and the idea of Seattle. As I stare out the glass wall at the water, I imagine Hardin and me moving into an apartment together amid the excitement of a new city, a new place, and new people. We would make new friends and start a new life there, together. Hardin would work for Vance again and he’d brag all day and night about how he makes more money than me, and I would fight him to be allowed to pay the cable bill.

“Tessa?”

I’m brought out of my pointless daydream by the sound of Trevor’s voice. “Sorry . . .” I stutter and realize it’s just the two of us now, and he’s beginning or finishing a story that I wasn’t even aware he was telling.

“As I was saying, my apartment is close to the new building and right in the middle of downtown—you should see the view.” He smiles. “The Seattle skyline is so beautiful, especially at night.”

I smile and nod. I bet it is. I bet it really, really is.

 

chapter eighty-eight

HARDIN

What the fuck am I doing?

I keep pacing back and forth. This was a stupid fucking idea to begin with.

I kick a stone across the driveway. What am I expecting to happen . . . that she’ll run into my arms and forgive me for all the shit I have done to her? She’ll suddenly believe that I didn’t sleep with Carly?

I look up at Vance’s gorgeous house. Tessa probably isn’t even in there, and I’ll look like an idiot showing up uninvited. Actually, I’ll look like a dumb-ass either way. I should just leave.

Besides, this shirt is fucking itchy, and I hate dressing up. It’s only a black button-up shirt, but still.