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One Last Time: A Second Chance Romance by Lauren Wood (1)

Prologue

Anna

 

“What do you want to do tonight?”

Matt’s answer was always much of the same. He didn’t even have to say it out loud because I already knew what was on his mind. The look that he gave me was enough of an answer. I knew what he wanted, and I just waved him off. “That can’t be the destination Matt. That’s just part of the journey. What are we going to do tonight?”

“You know I don’t know what the hell you’re talking about when you talk all mystical like that. Destination, journey, I don’t care what you call it, I just want in you.”

I grinned, unable to help myself and then asked him again. It was the age-old question and while I wanted to go out to the beach and swim naked, he was talking about going to a house that he said was haunted. It wasn’t what I had in mind, but it had to be better than doing nothing all night.

“Do you really think that it’s haunted?”

I didn’t believe in that sort of thing, but it was hard to deny the appeal. It was something different and it was a good place to try something new. Matt was always down for something like that and it was something he’d do with his buddies. I wanted us to go and see what happened. I was always safe if he was by my side, so I wasn’t too worried about it.

“Okay.”

“Well there is a bet that no one can stay there overnight, so I think we should camp out.”

It didn’t sound like something I’d do, so maybe that’s why I made sure that we did it. I never wanted to be pushed into a rut. It was hard to pretend that college life wasn’t going by fast and it made me think that these moments were the ones that I was going to remember later. I didn’t want to only have memories of saying no. Besides, if Matt was there, it would always lead to sex and he wasn’t the only one that was in the mood for that. I was always in the mood for it. It was the perfect ending to any night.

“Fine, we will grab a sleeping bag from the dorm and then we’ll go from there. I’m not worried about ghosts, but it’s been getting cold lately. What do we get if we stay all night?”

“Bragging rights.”

I just shook my head because that was only a reward to a man. Women didn’t care that much about staying in a haunted house. It wasn’t going to make me look any cooler.

We agreed to grab a few things out of my room like drinks and blankets before we set out in his truck. He told me the story of how the house was way out in the woods. It used to be home to a family that was slaughtered as they slept from some deranged person that had escaped out of the mental institution not far down the road. I knew it was all crap, but the way he told the story drew me in and I couldn’t help but wonder if there was a sliver of truth. The truth was always somewhere under the surface in every great story.

“So, what happened to the crazy guy?”

“He wasn’t seen again for a couple of years. He’s supposed to watch the house. Some say that he’s alive and some say that he’s dead and his ghost watches it, waiting for his next unsuspecting victims to come.”

“Really, that’s all you got?”

Matt shrugged. “That’s what I hear. If nothing else, it’s a good place to fuck.”

I nudged him with my shoulder. “What makes you think that you’re going to get any of that?”

“Because you’re you.”

“What does that mean?”

He didn’t answer me, but his hand went down my shorts and into my panties before I could say much of anything. I gasped as his fingers pushed between my lips and inside of me. His digit slipped in without anything to stop it and I closed my eyes to the pleasure. He just felt so damn good. I forgot why his hand was down there until he spoke up. I was too worried feeling it, to really think of anything else.

“You are always wet and always ready. So, fucking hot…”

His voice trailed off and I pushed his hand away. “Get off me trying to prove a point. I’m getting all hot and bothered and you’re just messing with me.”

“I was the one that wanted to stay home and see how many times I could make you come.”

His words reminded me that I was the one that wanted more, but it was hard to think of much else after what he just did. I don’t know what it was about Matt, but now I couldn’t think straight, and I was having to push my thighs together. The action just brought on more feelings of need and I groaned out loud.

“Why did you have to do that?”

“Are you ready to pull over?”

“No, we’re going to the haunted house. Remember?”

He didn’t look so happy with my decision, but I wasn’t so happy about it either. It was like he was toying with me. I wanted to talk about what came next. This was his last year because he was ahead of me one and that meant that he was going to be leaving soon. I’d tried to get him to talk about it before, but he was very good at using sex to sidetrack me. It worked most of the time and it worked preventatively this time.

“We’re almost there. I just thought you might want to stop for a little bit of time and see what happens. I can tell how ready you are.”

“Like you said. I’m always ready so I can wait.”

He growled at me and I smiled back at him. Matt didn’t like his words getting used against him, so I made sure to do it as much as possible.

The car stopped not too long after that and we sat outside of the trail that was supposed to lead us to this house. I don’t know what it was doing up here, but it was probably some hermits at one time and now it was just a party house. Either way, it would be good to do something different.

The air was colder when I got out of the low-lying truck and I looked up at the dark trail. It was creepy enough without the bullshit stories and I wouldn’t be caught dead walking up there if he wasn’t with me. Matt was going to keep me safe in a place that didn’t feel that way.

I heard something in the distance and I asked him about it, but he just started chuckling. “You’re not going to be able to freak me out Anna. It was one movie and that was a long time ago.”

“It wasn’t that scary, and it was last month.”

I could see the expression on his face and it made me giggle a little more. Why was I provoking him when I knew I was the one that was freaked out more out of the two of us? I didn’t like the idea of ghosts, let alone being in a house that was supposed to be inhabited by them. I didn’t like to be scared either, so to say that I wasn’t looking forward to this was an understatement. It was fine back when it was just talk, but now that we are here, I don’t know, I was kind of nervous.

He took my hand and told me everything was going to be okay.

“I know. It’s just kind of creepy here, that’s all. I don’t like going in the woods like this. I don’t know anyone that does.”

Matt didn’t say anything else which I was thankful for because it would most likely be making fun of me. I know that I wasn’t supposed to believe in all of that and I didn’t, it’s just…

A twig snapped next to my side of the trail and I jumped about a mile, landing in his arms and Matt thought it was hilarious.

“It’s just a racoon or something Anna. You got to chill out. You’re making this way too easy.”

I didn’t know what he was talking about, but I was just trying to calm myself like he said to. This was certainly not my element and it was hard to say what was going on. Why did I feel so jumpy?

When we got to the house, I looked up at the sagging roof and there was a spot in it that might have a hole. I couldn’t see all that well because it was so dark out, the moon the only light and a shiver ran through me. This was where he wanted to stay the night? I asked him, and he grinned. Why was this knucklehead looking excited to do this? I just didn’t understand it and I was quick to try and get my mind right. He was just messing with me. That’s all this was.

“Do you really want to do this?”

“Only if you want to.”

I agreed, but something was bothering me. This place was creeping me out far more than I thought it was going to. But there was no backing out now. I’d agreed to it and now I was going to be forced to stick it out.

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