A Pleasing Temptation(2)

By: Deborah Fletcher Mello

“Yes, sir,” Kamaya nodded. “I really am sorry.” She turned her eyes toward her twin brother, suddenly wishing she could find a hole to crawl into. Damn, how old am I? she pondered, feeling very small under the scrutiny of her parents.

Kendrick wrapped her in a bear hug, laughing heartily. “It’ll be all right, Yaya,” he said, calling her by the pet name he’d used since they were two years old. “We all know you didn’t mean it.”

Kamaya gave her siblings a look. Deep down she had meant it, and each of them knew it. Maitlyn winked at her.

Feigning exhaustion, Kamaya shook herself from her brother’s embrace. Rising from where she sat, she moved toward the rear of the luxury aircraft and claimed an empty window seat in the back corner. Waving a hand for the stewardess she asked for a blanket and a pillow. After covering herself from head to toe, she closed her eyes and pretended to fall asleep.

For another ten minutes her parents bemoaned her situation and then, just like that, the conversation stalled, everyone seeming to fall into their own thoughts. Kamaya welcomed the quiet, grateful that she was no longer the center of the unwanted attention. She was even more appreciative that no one had been able to read the emotion on her face as she, too, had suddenly wondered why there was no significant partner in her life.

A soft sigh eased past her lips as she snuggled deeper beneath the warmth of the blanket around her shoulders. Kamaya had never put much thought into her own happily-ever-after. She had always considered relationships that lasted longer than a minute to be an anomaly. For every one that seemed to be going well, she knew a dozen others that had imploded with a vengeance.

Kamaya had never imagined the perfect guy to grow old with, because she truly believed none existed. Even when her siblings had each fallen head over heels, one after the other, she’d waited with bated breath for the other shoe to fall on each of their relationships.

Her sister Katrina had been the first. She had been married, widowed, and left a single mother at a very young age. Her heartbreak had set the tone for what Kamaya never wanted to see in her own life. Then Katrina had been seduced by corporate attorney Matthew Stallion. One of four wealthy brothers out of Dallas, Texas, Matthew had swept Katrina off her feet. The two then married, and were now raising Katrina’s son Collin and their own child, Matthew Jacoby Junior.

Their eldest brother, billionaire Mason Boudreaux III had been next, finding forever with the only Stallion sister, Phaedra. The two were now building another successful empire with their two sons Cole and Fletcher, and their daughter Addison.

Following on Mason’s heels, their brother Guy had gotten a lifetime gig with filmmaker Dalia Morrow, their passionate premiere netting them five achievement awards: two sets of twins, Sydney and Cicely, and Zora and Langston, as well as their son Oscar. Their brother Darryl had been next. Truly his, Camryn Charles had designed their future from start to finish, their only daughter, Alexa, tossed into the mix.

Big sister Maitlyn, the second mother of the Boudreaux brood, had crashed and burned with her first marriage, but she’d actually tried it again, her heart afire for Zakaria Sayed, the very best friend of Kamaya’s twin, Kendrick. Maitlyn and Zakaria’s daughter, Rose-Lynn, son, Zayn, and a baby yet to be named, had the couple making up for much lost time.

Kendrick had never been interested in a long-term relationship, and was solely focused on his top-secret career. On the subject of marriage, the twins had seen eye to eye. Then Kendrick had gotten himself lost for twelve days of pleasure with a client. Vanessa Harrison had been his dream come true, and when he’d finally come up for air, he, too, had been ready to walk down the matrimonial aisle.

Even the most conservative of the Boudreaux siblings, the son everyone had sworn would be the last to marry with him being so committed to his career, had beaten Kamaya to the altar. Their brother Donovan had flown around the world to the Tuscan heat chasing his dream. Now he and renowned author Gianna Martelli were writing their own love story as they awaited the birth of their first child.

And now, with Tarah, the baby of the family, suddenly someone’s missus, Kamaya found herself on the hook, everyone anxious for her to catch and reel in her own happy ending. But, truth be told, despite all that happy everyone in her family claimed to be having, Kamaya just wasn’t willing to trust any man with her heart.

Maitlyn dropped into the seat beside her. “You good?” she asked, concern ringing in her loud whisper.

Kamaya nodded. “Yeah, I’m fine.” She lifted her eye toward her parents who were huddled in conversation. “They still mad at me?”

Also By Deborah Fletcher Mello

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