The Boss (Chateau #3) by Penelope Sky



“She’s my sister—”

“Go.” I kept going, walking out the bedroom door, down the hallway, and to the staircase. The last thing I wanted to do was watch her walk out of my life when I’d expected her to stay with me forever. She said she would never leave me, even if she could, but that was a lie, another lie from someone I trusted, and I was too blind to see it. But I forced my indifference, my coldness, and turned off every feeling inside my chest and made it empty, and I walked down the stairs to where Magnus waited.

Her heels tapped against the wooden staircase as she emerged. “Raven!” Her voice cracked in emotion, echoing in the foyer, showing the depth of her love that she never felt for me.

Raven moved forward, ignoring me. “Baby sister…”

Melanie ran the rest of the way then collided with Raven, the two of them holding each other, crying, whispering to each other.

Raven held her like a mother held a child, supporting the back of her head and rubbing her back, closing her eyes like she was so unbelievably happy to be reunited with the person she loved most.

Magnus watched them together, his eyes less intense when he watched Raven’s happiness.

Raven pulled away and cupped her cheeks. “Let’s go home.”

Melanie nodded.

Home. When will you be home? Her voice came back to me, her beautiful eyes on me as she sat beside me on the bed where we made love through the night. I thought I was home.

Raven took her hand, and the three of them headed to the door.

I watched them go, arms by my sides, powerless to do anything because I wouldn’t go back on my word. When I made a promise, I kept it…unlike everyone else.

Melanie stopped at the door then turned back to me.

My eyes burned into her face, hoping she would reconsider and stay with me. Momentarily, the peace she gave me returned, the quiet happiness that she provided to my broken soul.

Guilt. Pain. Remorse. It was in her blue eyes. But there was nothing else.

“Goodbye, chérie.”





Twenty-Three





Tears of Misery





Melanie

Magnus parked in front of the apartment building.

I looked through the rain-splattered glass and saw the window to Raven’s office, the one that had a distant view of the Eiffel Tower. We vacated the car, and my beautiful dress was ruined by the rain that poured down on us. I moved to the stoop that led to the stairs, but when I turned back around, Raven wasn’t behind me.

She stood with Magnus in the rain, like neither one of them cared. “Go ahead without me.”

I nodded before I glanced at Magnus, the enigmatic man who only had eyes for her. While she looked at me, he stared at her just the way Fender stared at me. With that dark intensity, that possessive stare, that all-encompassing feeling that made you feel watched even through a solid barrier.

And that was the moment I knew.

Those same dark eyes. That same brown hair. That same powerful presence. That same silent command.

Magnus was his brother.

I went up the steps and to the third floor where Raven’s apartment was. The door was unlocked, so I let myself inside, seeing that it was exactly the same as the day we left. Her coffee mugs were in the glass cabinet. Her pink dish towel with the Eiffel Tower printed on the front on the kitchen island. Pictures of her friends from college on the fridge. I moved forward to the window in the living room and stared out across the apartment. The same man I remembered sat at his desk with his laptop in front of him.

It was hard to believe it’d only been a few months…when it felt like an entire lifetime.

I moved through the apartment and approached the window that gave a view of the city’s most famous cultural landmark. It was still daylight, so when the sun fell, those lights would shine the way I remembered.

My eyes dropped down to Raven and Magnus on the street.

They talked, standing several feet apart, sharing no affection but a connection that I could see with the naked eye.

I had no idea what to do with myself, so I took a seat at the desk and watched the rain pelt the glass in front of me, the sound comforting but also heartbreaking.

Because I used to listen to the rain for hours while I was in bed with Fender.

When he slept beside me.

I inhaled a deep breath as the tears burned my eyes, suddenly feeling everything at once. The second he was gone, it was like a gaping hole inside my heart. Blood flooded in, and my heart couldn’t beat the same anymore. It ached every single time. It struggled with every beat. Brought more pain every time it tried to keep me alive.