Say You Won't Let Go (Page 12)

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There is no way I’d ever forgive myself if something had happened. Anger was all I allowed myself to focus on before, but the fear has wrapped around my heart, squeezing it until I’m ready to burst.

“I can’t fucking lose you,” I admit and then dive back into the kiss. There’s no tenderness. It’s pure need to feel her.

“I’m not going anywhere.”

She meets my roughness, pulling me harder to her mouth. Emily’s other hand claws at my back. I push up and remove my shirt, and she follows my lead and undresses. I need her. I don’t care how, but I need to be inside her.

“Damn right you aren’t,” I agree. She’s mine.

“Take me, Cooper.”

That’s exactly what I plan to do. “I’m not going to be sweet, baby.” I let her know as I rip her shorts down. “I need to fuck you.”

Emily’s hands go to my jeans, yanking at the button. Her small fingers work fast, freeing my cock from my pants. “Let me ride you,” she says, trying to push me on my back.

There’s no mistaking the fear in her gaze. She needs this as much as I do. Both of us are searching for something to control. My instinct to give her what she’s asking for overrides my own need.

I lie back, and she doesn’t hesitate. Emily’s thighs straddle me, and she grips my cock. Her hand pumps up and down and then she rubs herself along my shaft. Fucking hell. “Don’t tease me,” I warn.

Her one hand rests on my chest as she repeats the motion. I buck my hips up, needing to feel her heat. Finally, she relents and gives me exactly what we both want. She sinks down, taking me into her body as her head falls back.

My fingers grip her hips, and I set the pace. She rocks up and down, letting out noises as I lift to meet her thrusts. I watch her perfect tits bounce, revel in the sounds and smells that fill the room, inciting the pace and intensity of this moment.

“Yes!” she yells when I lean up, taking her nipple in my mouth. I dig into her back, holding her so I can suck hard. “Yes, more,” she begs. My teeth clamp down, and she loses it. Emily pushes herself faster and harder than before.

“You like that, darlin’?” I ask.

“God, yes.”

I’ll never forget the way she looks right now. Her head thrown back, riding my cock. The look of pure pleasure on her face. “Fuck me, Emily. I want you to remember who has you right now.”

She looks down, her blue eyes blazing. “I know exactly who has me.”

That’s it. I move quickly, flipping her on her back and plunging in before she has time to realize what happened. I pull out and then glide in slowly. I do this again, and she whimpers. Her fingers grip my ass as she lifts herself to make me go faster.

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“Do you know who has you now?”

“Yes.”

“Say it,” I demand.

“Cooper.” She says my name as a prayer.

I reward her by pushing all the way to the hilt. “No one will hurt you.”

Her eyes meet mine, and she nods. “I know.”

“No one else will touch you,” I promise.

Emily’s fingers press against my cheek. “Just you.”

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“I won’t ever let anything happen to you,” I vow.

“I trust you.”

Our pace has slowed, and the anger and fear are gone. I want this to last forever. I stop completely and take her face in my hands. Everything in my life shifts right here. The way she looks at me rocks me to my core. Before I can stop myself, I say the words that are screaming in my head. “I love you.”

Her lips part and tears fill her blue eyes.

Fuck. I should’ve kept my mouth shut.

“I thought it was just me,” she says as her eyes swim with emotion. “I thought that it was too soon and that I was crazy.”

My thumb wipes the tear that falls. “No, darlin’. You aren’t crazy, and it’s definitely not just you.”

“I love you, Cooper Townsend.” Her lips turn into a smile, and for the first time, I feel whole.

Chapter Ten

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Emily

“The rules are that I go where you go at all times. You don’t move unless I’m with you, understand?” Wade repeats himself for the third time as we stand at the door of the bus.

“I’m not slow,” I remind him. “I get it. You’re my shadow, and I need to always be sure I see your silhouette.”

Lame.

This is all so lame. A bodyguard…and not just any bodyguard. No, he had to get me one that’s a mix of the Hulk and Thor. Wade is six-foot-two and I’m a dwarf when I’m next to him. His brown eyes narrow as I repeat after him.

“Nowhere.”

I raise my hand in the Girl Scout salute. “I promise.”

He grumbles and crosses his arms over his chest.

Wade is unlike the other security guys around the tour. He’s dark, broody, and he exudes masculinity. Basically, he’s scary as fuck. We have bodyguards on staff. I don’t know why I have to have a designated one. Luke was more than capable of giving me one of his guys. After telling him about the incident, he promised his team would be on it, but Cooper wasn’t having it.

Hence why Wade is here now.

“So,” I say, rocking back on my heels.

“So?”

“Cooper says you guys have known each other a long time?”

“Yup,” he replies while scanning the area.

“You both did rodeo?”

“Yup.”

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Okay. Wade only gives one-word answers, got it. Cooper is on the flight now, and I long to talk to him. My show is in twenty minutes, and I should be backstage, smiling and drinking a beer with the crew. Instead, I’m worrying about the crazy person sending me letters and trashing my bus.

“Am I bothering you?” I ask.

“Nope.” Wade drops his sunglasses over his eyes, and I bite my lip. Looks like he’s done with our conversation.

Cooper couldn’t have found a friend who looks like he actually wants to be here?

I send him a text.

Me: I wish you were here.

“Emily!” Vince comes over with his arms up in the air. “Let’s go, girl!”

I glance over at my new best friend, who nods.

Here we go.

The music blares, alerting the crowd that the show is about to begin. I stand at the edge, and my legs feel like Jell-O. I can’t move. What if the guy is out there? What if he’s a part of the stage crew and he’s planning to drop lights on me Phantom of the Opera style? Maybe the guy is just going to bum-rush the stage and run away with me.

My eyes meet Wade’s dark glasses, and I try to breathe.

“Are you okay?” His deep voice is low.

“No. I can’t go out there. You can’t go out there, and I—” My heart pounds in my chest.

Wade pulls his glasses off and steps closer. “I will always be in your line of sight.”

“But what if I’m in his line of sight?”

“That isn’t what you should worry about,” Wade tries to reassure me. “All you should worry about is doing your job. I’ll worry about the rest.”

That sounds easy enough, only it’s completely irrational to think I’m not going to be scared. There’s no way I can do this. I just can’t. I want to go home to Bell Buckle where no one gives a shit who I am.

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Where Cooper is.

Where it’s safe.

Wade’s hand grips my shoulder and tears pool in my eyes. “Nothing will happen to you, Emily.”

“You can’t guarantee that,” I counter.

His lip turns into a cocky smile. “I can.”

I shrug out of his grip and look out at the microphone standing alone in the middle of the stage. That’s my home, and I’m afraid to go there.

“You have a choice.” Wade’s voice breaks me from my stare. “You can choose to let this person win and take away your life or you can go out there and live the life you’ve fought for. Do you think Cooper would’ve left if he didn’t think you were safe? If he didn’t think I was the absolute best at my job, would I be here? You don’t put the woman you love’s safety in the hands of a novice.”

Cooper’s name causes my heart to race. If he didn’t believe in Wade, he would be here right now. I know that without a doubt.

“I’m just scared.” My voice is small and trembles at the end.

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“Are you ready to get this party started?” the MC calls over the speaker.

I could throw up right now. My head starts to swim, and I know my face has gone bloodless.

“Look at me,” Wade commands. “When you’re out there, if you feel uncomfortable or someone makes you scared, look at me and scratch your nose. I’ll grab your ass and have you off that stage before you can sing another note. Okay?”

I nod. “Okay.”

The intro music cues, and I know I can’t hide anymore. “Please welcome Emily Young!”

There is a time to be scared and hide and a time to step up and be brave. I have to dig deep and find the inner strength to go out there and not let fear hold me back. I’ve done the work, I deserve this, and I have to trust Cooper’s judgment in Wade.

I plaster a smile on my face, grab my guitar, and step out into the lights.

When I stand in front of the microphone, I pretend it’s like my last concert. I envision Cooper standing in the crowd. My memory recalls his smile, his eyes, and the way he makes me feel.

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