Home > Oblivion (Lux #1.5)(11)

Oblivion (Lux #1.5)(11)
Jennifer L. Armentrout

Go figure. “You sound just like my sister. No wonder she loves you so much already.”

“Dee has taste…unlike some,” she said, and there it was again, the attitude. “And she’s great. I really like her, so if you’re over here to play big, bad brother, just forget it.”

God, she was a little firecracker.

“That’s not why I’m here.” I gathered up the bucket and various sprays and cleaners, and when I glanced over at her, I thought she might be staring at my mouth. Interesting.

“Then why are you here, other than delivering a crappy apology?” she asked.

Placing the supplies on the porch steps, I lifted my arms and stretched as my gaze flickered over to her and stayed. “Maybe I’m just curious why she is so enamored. Dee doesn’t take well to strangers. None of us do.”

“I had a dog once that didn’t take well to strangers,” Katy quipped.

For a moment, I didn’t move, and then I laughed—a real laugh—and it sounded strange to my own ears. Shit. She was quick.

Her gaze dipped, and then she cleared her throat. “Well, thanks for the car thing.”

And she was clearly dismissing me.

I crossed the distance between us—and I hadn’t even moved that fast—but based on her soft inhale, I’d caught her off guard. I was right in front of her, and she smelled like peaches again.

“How do you move so fast?” she asked.

Ignoring that loaded question, I let my gaze roam over her face. What was it about her that had my sister bouncing all over the place? Her tongue was sharp as a knife and she came across as intelligent, but there were literally billions of humans like her. I didn’t get it. “My little sis does seem to like you.”

She opened her mouth and then snapped it shut. A moment passed. “Little? You’re twins.”

“I was born a whole four minutes and thirty seconds before she was.” I lifted my gaze to hers. “Technically she is my little sister.”

“She’s the baby in the family?” Her voice sounded different as she lowered her gaze.

“Yep, therefore I’m the one starved for attention.”

“I guess that explains your poor attitude, then,” she shot back.

“Maybe, but most people find me charming.” Sometimes.

Her gaze flicked to mine and then stayed. Something shifted in those gray depths. “I have…a hard time believing that.”

“You shouldn’t, Katy.” Her name sounded strange on my tongue and in my thoughts. That damn little piece of hair had fallen free again, brushing her cheek. I caught it between my fingers. “What kind of color is this? It’s not brown or blond.”

She tugged her hair free of my grasp. “It’s called light brown.”

“Hmm,” I murmured, lowering my gaze. “You and I have plans to make.”

“What?” She stepped around me, putting some space between us. “We don’t have any plans to make.”

I sat down on the steps, stretched out my legs, and leaned back on my elbows. Plans. Plans. I needed plans. My mouth was moving faster than my brain.

“Comfortable?” she snapped.

“Very.” I squinted up at her. The front of her T-shirt had dried—the greatest idea known to man and Luxen formed in my thoughts. “About these plans…”

She remained standing. “What are you talking about?”

“You remember the whole ‘getting my ass over here and playing nice’ thing, right? That also involves my car keys?” I crossed my ankles as I glanced at the tree line. Man, I was such a liar. “Those plans involve me getting my car keys back.”

“You need to give me a little more of an explanation than that.”

“Of course.” I sighed. “Dee hid my keys. She’s good at hiding stuff, too. I’ve already torn the house apart, and I can’t find them.”

“So, make her tell you where they are.”

“Oh, I would, if she was here. But she’s left town and won’t be back until Sunday.”

“What?” She paused. “I didn’t know that.”

“It was a last-minute thing.” Uncrossing my ankles, I started tapping my foot. “And the only way she’ll tell me where the keys are hidden is by me earning bonus points. See, my sister has this thing about bonus points, ever since elementary school.”

The bonus points thing was true.


“I have to earn bonus points to get my keys back. The only way I can earn those points is by doing something nice for you.”

She let out a loud laugh, and I looked at her, my eyes narrowing. “I’m sorry, but this is kind of funny.”

Her lack of sympathy for my nonexistent problem was amusing. “Yeah, it’s real funny.”

Her laughter was slow to fade. “What do you have to do?”

“I’m supposed to take you swimming tomorrow. If I do that, then she’ll tell me where my keys are hidden—and I have to be nice.” Totally sounded like something Dee would say. I was rather proud of myself.

Katy stared at me for a moment, and then her mouth dropped open. “So the only way you get your keys back is by taking me swimming and by being nice to me?”

“Wow. You’re a quick one.”

Her laugh this time was actually quite evil sounding. “Yeah, well, you can kiss your keys good-bye.”

I cranked my head back and waited for her to say she was just kidding. “Why?”

“Because I’m not going anywhere with you.” Smugness rang in her voice.

“We don’t have a choice.”

“No. You don’t have a choice, but I do.” She looked over her shoulder at the front door. “I’m not the one with missing keys.”

Huh. Perhaps I was a bit too much of a dick the first two times I talked to her. Good thing she didn’t know I briefly considered burning her house down. “You don’t want to hang out with me?”

“Uh, no.”

“Why not?”

She rolled her eyes. “For starters, you’re a jerk.”

I nodded. “I can be.” Not going to disagree with that.

“And I’m not spending time with a guy who’s being forced to do it by his sister. I’m not desperate.”

“You’re not?”

Anger flashed across her face, and again, it transformed her features. “Get off my porch.”

Completely committed to my plan, I pretended to consider it. “No.”

“What? What do you mean, no?”

“I’m not leaving until you agree to go swimming with me.”

She was so going to blow a fuse. “Fine. You can sit there, because I’d rather eat glass than spend time with you.”

I was genuinely amused by that statement. “That sounds drastic.”

“Not nearly.” She started up the steps.

I twisted at the waist and caught her ankle. Damn, her skin was incredibly soft. Fragile. I kept my grip loose. Her gaze lowered to mine, and I forced a smile that had gotten me excused from many school assignments. “I’ll sit here all day and night. I’ll camp out on your porch. And I won’t leave. We have all week, Kitten. Either get it over with tomorrow and be done with me, or I’ll be right here until you do agree. You won’t be able to leave the house.”

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