Pulse / Page 40

Page 40



“And you’re trying to kill me with your questions,” Gavin countered, nipping her bottom lip, which she started to realize was something he loved to do. “You’re no longer allowed to say the words ‘lick it’ in my presence. Is that understood, Miss Cooper?”

His demand drifted over her like a caress, but she was about to push a few buttons. She popped a brow, her mouth curled into a smirk. “Lick… it… Caveman.”

Gavin’s eyes went wide right about the same time he dove his hand under her tank top. Emily squealed, squirming under his embrace. She yanked his hand away from her breast. “Gavin! No, I want you to open your gifts.”

“It’s a done deal,” he replied, his voice a desperate groan. “I’m convinced you’re seriously trying to kill me. I thought I was pretty on point with my game. Where did I go wrong?”

Emily released another giggle. “You could never go wrong, and I swear I’ll make it up to you later.”

Grinning, Gavin shook his head and sighed.

After kissing his cheek, she eased out from beneath him and straddled his lap as he sat cross-legged. Reaching for the bag that had gotten lost under the tangled mess of blankets, Emily smiled and pulled out a small envelope. “Here. This is something that you have to use for the rest of your life.”

Gavin looked at the envelope. Written across the front in Emily’s handwriting was:

With a small smile, Gavin pulled out a thin card, showing Emily had purchased him a lifetime subscription to Architectural Digest. It was then he realized she also remembered things he’d told her. Wrapping his arms around her waist, Gavin ducked his head, whispering a soft kiss on her lips. “You’d be happy with me if I was an architect?”

“I’d be happy with you if you picked garbage up off the side of the road if that’s what you wanted to do.”

“You would?” He knew Emily wasn’t with him for his money, but her answer somewhat shocked him. Most, if not all, women he’d encountered would’ve told him to stuff his dreams up his ass if he wasn’t making the millions he did with Blake Industries. Though a career as a sanitation worker would never be his choice, his heart warmed. He’d found a woman who would accept him under any circumstance he might find himself in.

“Of course I would,” Emily replied, tossing her arms around his neck. A teasing smile crept across her lips. “And I’m thinking you’d look pretty damn hot in the uniform.”

“Ah, always an ulterior motive.” Gavin popped a kiss against her forehead. She smiled, and his features sobered as he stared into her eyes. “Thank you. I love it.”

“No. Thank you,” she whispered against his lips. Unwrapping one of her hands from his neck, she reached into the bag and pulled out a small box. “I have more gifts for you. This one kind of coincides with the subscription in a weird way.”

Gavin smiled and started unwrapping it. Once he’d peeled the red wrapping paper away, he found a black box with the name Patek Philippe Calatrava engraved on it. Shocked, because he knew his time pieces as well as he did cars, Gavin knew it held a very expensive watch. Upon opening it, his suspicions were correct. Trimmed in gold, the piece was amazing and something Gavin could easily see himself wearing. He ran his fingers over the soft black leather wristband, his eyes taking in the fine, Switzerland-made contemporary design. Though the Breguet piece he was currently wearing dented his checkbook a cool $260,000, this particular Patek Philippe Calatrava must’ve cost Emily upwards of $25,000.

Emily smiled, and handed him a second card with the words:

Now he understood how the two gifts fit together. Gavin cupped her cheek and placed a soft kiss on her lips. “Thank you,” he whispered, stroking her hair. Emily smiled, but Gavin couldn’t help wonder how she was able to afford the watch. “Did you use the funds I put into your bank account to buy me this?” Gavin searched her face. Though she’d argued with him about dumping any cash into her account, spending it on him was the last thing he wanted her to do. “I told you not to buy me anything with that money.”

Emily rolled her eyes. “Do you like it?”

“Of course I like it. I love it. But I don’t want you spending money like this on me, Emily.”

With a sigh, Emily rolled her eyes again. Bringing his face close to hers, her expression became serious as all hell. “Gavin. First of all, I didn’t use the funds you gave me to buy it. I have my own, and I used some of it to purchase that for you.”

“Emily. Even though you make some extra cash waitressing, I highly doubt a substitute teacher’s salary would allow you to spend this much on a watch.”

Emily reared back, her brow raised. “Thanks for the compliment.”

Gavin pulled her closer, tucking her hair behind her ear. “I didn’t mean it like that, baby. But come on. I have a pretty good idea how much this cost. If you didn’t use what I gave you, how could you afford this?”

“Dillon—”

Gavin reared back in shock this time. “What?”

“Are you going to let me finish, Caveman?”

Eyes locked on hers, Gavin nodded. His words came out slow. “Yeah. I’m listening.”

“Thank you,” Emily replied, running her hands through his hair in an effort to settle him. “Dillon took the money I had from my mother’s life insurance policy and threw it into some IRAs, mutual funds, and different CDs. After I called off the wedding, I went through my financials. I took my name off several credit cards we’d had together, and I pulled my accounts from him. I transferred them over to a broker Trevor suggested. Let’s just say, if it’s the only compliment I can give him, Dillon knows how to grow a bank account. It nearly tripled over the year. I took a small loan against one of the accounts and bought you the watch. So again, I used my own cash. Not what you gave to me. Happy?”

“Happy?” Gavin parroted, pulling her closer. “I’m happy the woman I love was smart enough to yank her funds from her asshole ex’s control.” Trailing his hands along her back, Gavin brushed his lips along her jaw. “But I’m not happy she spent some of it on her charmingly sexy current boyfriend after he asked her not to spend that much on him.”

Emily laughed. “Oh, now all of a sudden you’re charmingly sexy?”

“You know it.” Gavin smiled, shooting her a wink. After replacing the watch he was wearing with the one Emily bought for him, Gavin’s face softened. “Really, Emily. Last big spending spree you waste on me, okay? I have everything I need sitting right here in my lap.”

Emily sighed and eased the last gift from the bag. “We’ll see. Now here. This is the one I insist you start using today.”

Gavin eyed her suspiciously and pulled the red bow from what appeared to be a clothing box. “Your expression tells me this is some kind of payback gift.”

“Sweet, sweet, Mr. Blake, you know me so well,” she purred, tossing her arm around his neck.

With another shake of his head and a smile, Gavin slowly, so slowly, peeled the green wrapping paper from the box. He hesitated, bringing his eyes to Emily’s. He could see she was becoming impatient. He chuckled when she tore the rest of the paper from the box and flipped off the top. Before he had a chance to get a look at what was in it, Emily yanked out a piece of bright yellow clothing. However, she was holding it balled up in her lap.


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