Home > Borrowing Bentley

Borrowing Bentley
Author: Melanie Shawn

Chapter 1



“The thin line between love and hate disappears real quick when ya use a lust eraser.”

~ Granny Turner

My heart is racing as I stand face to face, nose to nose, lips to lips with him. He makes my stomach turn. I’m not sure if that’s because I have butterflies, or I need to be sick. Maybe both.

“You want to kiss me.” Bentley’s deep voice rumbles from his chest.

I wish that he was wrong. I hate that he’s right. Pride and self-respect fight against every base need roaring to life within me.

“No, I don’t.” The bald-faced lie comes out as a breathless denial.

The right corner of his mouth tilts in what can only be described as a cocky half-grin as he places his hands flat on the lockers behind me. His chiseled arms on either side of my head, broad shoulders, and sculpted chest surround me, caging me in. The clean scent of his aftershave combined with his natural masculine musk is catnip to my senses.

At six foot two, he stands an entire foot taller than my petite five foot two frame. He towers over me. Acting purely on instinct, my chin lifts, tilting my head up. I stare into denim blue eyes, losing myself in his Sinatra gaze. His thick brown hair is disheveled, like he just rolled out of bed. His strong, masculine chin is covered in stubble and I imagine what it would feel like rubbing against my skin. Would it leave a burn? Would it tickle?

He licks his full lips and my mouth waters as I see his tongue run along the seam of those tempting lips.

My breath catches as he leans down slowly. Confidently. His face hovers above mine, a mere whisper away.

A tiny voice in the back of my head screams in protest.

Don’t do it.

Save yourself.


I lift my arms, attempting to push him away. I need to put distance between us. The moment my hands press against the muscular plane of his chest, heat radiates from his body through my palms. Tingles burst like fireworks on the Fourth of July at the contact, sending a delicious sensation rushing down my arms and through my body.

I can’t push him away. I just don’t have the strength in my limbs.

This is it, I prepare myself. It’s finally going to happen. So many feelings crash over me at once. Panic. Excitement. Fear. Desire.

I’m drowning in them. I’m underwater and I can’t reach the surface. A buzzing sounds in my ears, but it’s muffled.

I turn my head toward the noise, but Bentley’s hand gently cups my face, bringing me back so that our mouths are once again aligned.

If I do nothing, I know what’s going to happen. He’ll kiss me. His lips will press against mine.

I close my eyes. Everything is moving in slow motion and even though I don’t want to want him, the truth is, I do.

The sound comes again, this time louder, and I start to open my eyes.

“Ignore it. You know you want to.” His deep voice tempts me in ways that I don’t like…but also love.

I shake my head. I can’t ignore it. It’s the bell. We have to get to class.

“We have to go.”

I try to step away, but his large arms keep me trapped. I scan the area. Panic clouds my senses.

“You don’t have to follow the rules all the time,” he growls next to my ear and goosebumps rise on my skin. “Kiss me.”

No. This is wrong. I start to shake my head.

“Just one kiss. That’s it.”

He swipes his thumb across my lower lip and my entire body turns to melted butter. His eyes stare at my mouth with an intensity that heats me up from the inside out. My sex clenches at his predatory gleam.

Unable to reason my way out of this colossal mistake, I give in. I surrender. I yield to my worst impulse.

Closing my eyes, I exhale slowly and wait for the sensation of our mouths meeting. When it doesn’t happen, I rise up on my tiptoes, searching for the forbidden satisfaction of his kiss.

When I don’t find what I’m looking for I clench my fingers into an iron grip in an attempt to pull him near me, but I feel nothing. I reach out and touch nothing but air. Then I’m falling. Fast.

My eyes opened with a start and I winced at the bright light shining in through my window.

After a few moments of confusion, I wasn’t a teenager standing in a darkened hallway in my high school with Bentley Calhoun anymore. I was an adult, in my bed, alone. I realized that it hadn’t been a school bell I was hearing. The loud sound was my alarm going off.

I grabbed my phone from my nightstand to turn off the alarm and saw that I was late. That stupid nightmare had caused me to oversleep. Again.

“Crap,” I mumbled as I sprang out of bed and rushed to the kitchen to start a pot of coffee brewing and throw two pieces of bread in the toaster.

With breakfast and my daily dose of caffeine taken care of, I jumped in the shower and tried not to think about the recurring nightmare that had been haunting me since my senior year of high school, when a version of the horror I’d just relived during the REM cycle had actually happened.

The only times I ever overslept were when I had that nightmare. Which only ever happened when I was stressed or nervous about big events and life changes. Ya know…times when you’d want to be at your best and show up on time.

I’d almost missed my college orientation. I’d barely made it to graduation. I’d had to run to make the flight before I left for a three-month solo backpacking trip in Europe.

The Europe trip might not’ve been a big deal to other people, but it was huge for me. Since the moment of my conception, I’d been part of a trio. I was looked at as part of a set of three. I was a Turner triplet. We were identical, and most people in town didn’t even know which one I was. And it wasn’t like I lived in a sprawling metropolis. Wishing Well was a small town of less than five thousand people.

Everyone, including my parents and little sister Delilah, got it wrong. I’d been called Melody or Madison at least as many times as I’d been called Maisy. I understood the confusion. We all shared the same dirty blonde hair, and light brown eyes. We each stood a petite five foot two, had a slender frame we inherited from our mother, and the same upturned nose in the center of our heart-shaped faces.

There was only one person in my life that had never mistaken me for my sisters. Granny Turner. She always knew the difference. Never once had she gotten us confused. She’d passed away a couple of years back, and I still had a Granny Turner-shaped hole in my heart.

She’d been ahead of her time. She was a feminist before there was even a name for it. In WWII, she’d worked in a factory and been quickly promoted to foreman. She’d retained her job even after the men came back from war.

She’d had the quickest wit of any person I’d ever met and always said what was on her mind, whether it was appropriate or not.

There was one other person that had only mistaken me for another triplet one time in the near twenty-five years I’d known him. It was the same event, and person, that I had recurring nightmares about. Senior year of high school, Bentley Calhoun had kissed me in the hallway between the gym and the cafeteria. And called me Madi after.

The same sick feeling I’d gotten that day returned to me, but I tried to rinse it out along with my conditioner. I couldn’t let the man that had tormented me, not only in my dreams but also in my waking life, cause me to self-sabotage.

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