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“Give me one of those.” Sarah was slumped back in a cast iron chair as she said the words, her injured leg tucked up in front of her.
“Hell, no,” Dylan said as he lit his cigarette, shielding the lighter from the wind. He took a long drag from the cigarette, the coal lighting up, the faint sound of the tobacco burning audibly in his ears.
“I’m eighteen now.”
He raised an eyebrow, glancing over at her. After the too intense discussion with Carrie, he’d stepped outside for a smoke, planning on a little solitude. Sarah had followed him out onto the balcony. Twenty stories up, he could see most of Bethesda and parts of northwest Washington, DC spread out below his feet.
“I don’t give a shit if you’re thirty,” Dylan said. “I’m not giving you a cigarette. If you want one that bad, buy your own.”
“You’re kidding, right? I don’t leave the house. I’m a cripple, didn’t you know that?”
He slumped into the seat across from her. “You’re no more a cripple than I am. Actually your injuries weren’t as bad as mine.”
She shrugged. “I’m not a soldier.”
“Better toughen up, then. What’s this about you being a cripple?”
She sneered. “It’s nothing. Mom and Dad basically laid down the rule I couldn’t ever leave without an escort.”
“Alex said you home schooled this year?”
“Tutors, mostly. I can’t imagine what it cost. But it’s changed everything.”
She raised her eyebrows. “You went to high school. You know what I’m talking about.”
Dylan shrugged and took a drag off his cigarette. “I don’t really. My high schooling wasn’t exactly normal.”
Her eyes widened a little, then she said, “Oh, that’s right. I forgot. I remember the night Alexandra told Dad you’d dropped out of school. He was overjoyed.”
“I’m sure he was.”
Unexpectedly she leaned forward, tilting her head slightly to the right, a serious expression in her eyes.
“You’re drinking again, aren’t you?”
Dylan froze. For nearly fifteen seconds he didn’t move. Then his eyes darted to the sliding glass door.
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Charles has been a soldier, nonprofit executive, short order cook, IT manager and run a restaurant. He doesn't believe in specialization.
✦ CHECK OUT MY REVIEW FROM THE PREVIOUS BOOK IN THE THOMPSON SISTERS SERIES✦
All can be read as Stand-Alone
“Love meant a lot, it meant everything, and it meant nothing.”
“Sometimes you have to make choices, and they're imperfect, but they're the only choices you can make and live with yourself.”
“Because you make me better. You make me-you make me feel like I matter. Like my life matters. I feel like, with you, I can do anything in the world. That we can do anything in the world. And we will.”