Too Wicked to Keep

Too Wicked to Keep by Julie Leto Read Free Book Online

Book: Too Wicked to Keep by Julie Leto Read Free Book Online
Authors: Julie Leto
    â€œI know.”
    â€œI want it back,” she said.
    â€œI told you. I’ll do whatever it takes to get the painting for you.”
    She stared at him with such intense focus, he nearly looked away. “That’s not what I meant. I want what you took from my heart. Think you can find that, too?”

    T HE MINUTE THEY LANDED , Abby wrapped herself up in the minutiae of getting them from the airport to her apartment without more than minimal conversation. Though she’d tried to dig a little deeper into what had transpired five years ago between her and Daniel, he’d skillfully spun the topics away from anything personal. For the duration of their two-hour flight, they’d exchanged little more than small talk.
    But that, in itself, was revealing.
    Time had not made him cavalier about what had happened between them. He had regrets, which was only fair, since she had them, too.
    Outside the casino, Daniel’s touch had blown apart the emotional containment built by Marshall’s unconditional forgiveness. Questions she’d set aside in order to concentrate on her marriage now exploded in her brain. What vulnerabilities had Daniel noticed about her first? How had he breached her understanding of right and wrong so easily? Why had he learned about her secret fantasies when she’d never confessed them to anyone else?
    Had he ever really loved her?
    For so long, she hadn’t cared about what Daniel felt. She’d concentrated only on Marshall’s love, which she’d cherished. But now she needed answers. Moving on would require them, and more than anything, she wanted to put her past to rest so she could live again—and hopefully, someday, love again. And since the collector who had her painting would show the work to the public in a little over a week, she only had until then to close this chapter of her life for good.
    But instead of deconstructing the foundation of their affair, she and Daniel had spent the rest of the flight sipping wine and talking about his newly discovered brothers.
    Or rather, his newly acknowledged brothers. He’d actually known about them both long before either Alejandro, the Spanish auction-house owner, and Michael, the FBI agent, learned about him—a fact that pretty much summed up the man she was counting on to save her family from humiliation. To keep the upper hand, Daniel made it his business to know everything he could about any nemesis, even when his “nemesis” was a blood relative…or a woman he’d once claimed to love.
    Luckily, she had honed her own information-gathering skills since they’d last met. From her private investigators, she’d learned about his arrest and subsequent release from jail. But from Daniel, she’d found out that he no longer thought Alejandro was a stuck-up prick, and that he’d gone to New Orleans to steal the ring he was now wearing, but instead had helped Michael rescue two women from a psychotic rapist.
    â€œSo are you going to tell your brothers where you are?” she asked, hunting in her clutch bag for the keys as her driver pulled up to the covered awning in front of her apartment. Though she’d downsized from the brownstone Marshall’s parents had leased to them during her marriage, she was eternally grateful that she’d picked a place with more than one bedroom. Inviting Daniel into Marshall’s house would not have been right. Putting Daniel up in a hotel would make planning his theft too difficult. She needed to keep him close—but not too close.
    â€œNo,” he replied, folding his arms against the blast of Chicago cold.
    She hurried to the front entrance so they could get out of the frigid wind. “Don’t you think you should?”
    Abby keyed in the code to her building, then waited while Daniel swung open the door. At nearly three in the morning, the doorman had left his post and the chilled October

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