Book: ENCORE PERFORMANCE (THE MATCHMAKER TRILOGY) by Bernadette Marie Read Free Book Online
Authors: Bernadette Marie
decisions on how he
wanted to handle Carissa Kendal. No matter what Carissa
expected of him, he wasn’t the marrying type or a family
man. He couldn’t risk her losing her heart over him.
As they neared the house, he looked over at her. What
if he lost his heart to her?
“I had a wonderful time.” Carissa swung their hands
between them as they walked up the front steps.
“So did I. I could get used to that every Saturday
“Well, at least you’re thinking about staying, then.”
His jaw dropped when she said that. For not wanting to
make commitments, he sure was doing it.
Carissa unlocked the front door and walked inside the
house. She kicked off her shoes, unzipped her sweatshirt,
and shrugged out of it. With two fingers she picked up her
shoes and laid her sweatshirt over her arm. He noticed her
routine. This was what she did every week and now it
included him.
“Time to get ready for work.” She stepped closer to
him. “How do we end our date ?”
Sweat trickled down the back of his neck. He took a
step closer to her and touched her cheek. He drew her
toward him and gently laid a kiss on those full lips he’d
been aching to caress with his own.
As he pulled back, her eyes remained closed. When
she opened them, he was looking right into them.
“That was nice,” she said on a sigh. “I’m guessing
you’re a great kisser.”
“Maybe tonight we’ll go on another date and you can
find out.” He slid his hand from her cheek down her throat
and lingered it there.
She raised her hand to his face, and it caught on his
stubble. It was then he realized he needed to buy a razor.
As she pulled her hand away, it caught his attention.
Quickly he grabbed her arm and turned it over, her inner
wrist up.
“Holy cow.” She pulled her arm away from him. “That
had to hurt like hell.”
Carissa’s eyes flew open and he knew defensiveness
when he saw it. “Yeah, it did.”
“What did you get it caught in?”
Her head tilted and her expression softened. “What?”
“I said what did you get your arm caught in?” He
reached for it and ran his fingers over her scar.
“I, um, I fell off my bike going down a hill.”
“Got your arm stuck in the spokes?” She nodded.
“Damn.” He raised her wrist to his lips and kissed the scar.
“I have to get ready. I’ll find you when I’m done and
we can make plans for tonight.”
She broke free from him and ran up the stairs to her
    As soon as the door shut Carissa paced the room and
let tears that had filled her eyes fall. Every emotion that
could possibly be felt surged through her body. She was
happy, sad, angry, and smitten to tie it all together. She sat
down on the bed and rested her head in her hands.
    In all the years she’d had that scar no one had asked
her what had happened in such a way. No, instead they had
looked at it and made their own conclusions. Which still to
this day made her angry. Anyone who’d been around her
biological mother assumed they were the same. She’d tried
to slit her wrists, so her daughter must have done the same
damn thing. Then there was that school counselor. Carissa
almost couldn’t breathe.
    She’d called her a liar and her father one as well.
Convinced that he was covering for her, she’d threatened to
take Carissa from her father. All because of the stupid scar
on her wrist from a bicycle accident.
    Sophia had scars and they had bonded over them.
They’d declared themselves warriors and never hid them
again under necklaces, scarves, bracelets, or long sleeves.
But pride in showing her scars didn’t stop people from
assuming she’d tried to end it all.
    She let out a long, steady breath and let the sadness she
felt from people not believing her drain away.
Then there was Thomas who assumed nothing. She’d
known Thomas Samuel going on three days and already
she was shedding tears over him, after having been fairly
suggestive toward him. What had her mother done by
bringing him into their

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