Billionaire Unveiled

By: J.S. Scott

I shifted position, sitting up in the bed so I could study the chessboard. “She loves him,” I said confidently. “I’m not sure she ever stopped.”

“I don’t think Blake did either,” Marcus admitted.

I nodded. “Then I’m sure they’ll sort everything out.”

“I hope so,” he said in a graveled voice. “If they don’t, he’ll be moping around like an adolescent.”

Deciding that I wanted the black pieces, I spun the board around. “I don’t believe that you don’t care whether or not your twin is happy.”

“I didn’t say that I didn’t care,” he reminded me.

So he does care, but he tries not to get involved? If I judged by Marcus’s attitude on the surface, I’d be tempted to believe he really didn’t give a crap about anybody but himself. But his actions told another story. He’d immediately found Blake once Harper had come to him about my kidnapping, and told his twin brother to straighten the mess out. He’d thrown the two of them together on purpose. I was sure he had.

“So you’d be happy if it happened?” I queried.

He didn’t answer immediately. Marcus’s gaze was on the chessboard since he got the first move with the white pieces, a position that gave him a slight advantage.

“Regardless of what you might think of me, I want my brother to be happy,” he replied simply.

I soon found out that prying information out of Marcus was going to take more energy than I had. Unfortunately for me, the guy was an amazing chess player, and I was beyond sorry that I’d allowed him any advantage after he kicked my ass.

Thankfully, he wasn’t the type to gloat too much, but it annoyed me just the same.

It took almost a week to the day I entered the hospital to get back out again. I still had some healing to do, but I was relieved when Marcus’s jet finally got into the air to take us back to the US.

Tate Colter, Marcus’s younger brother and the pilot of my rescue mission, had left yesterday morning, eager to get back to his wife, so I no longer had the distraction of his company. I liked Tate, and I was just as grateful to him as I was to Marcus for risking his life to save me and keeping me company while I’d recovered. I hadn’t gotten a chance to thank the rest of the team because I’d been too sick when they’d left, but I was truly thankful to all of them.

I leaned back against the leather headrest as Marcus’s large jet climbed to its cruising altitude. “Thank you for coming to get me,” I said in a breathless voice.

Never once had I mentioned my experience with my kidnappers. I answered questions, but I hadn’t wanted to talk about it. I still didn’t. But I’d thanked Tate before he’d left, and I knew I owed Marcus for taking such a major risk for somebody he barely knew.

“Just try to contain yourself from jumping back into another bad situation,” he answered from the seat next to me. “I get why you did it, but you had to have known that you were probably going to end up dead when you crossed the border.”

We hit turbulence while the jet was climbing, and I dug my short fingernails into the leather armrest. I’d never been a nervous flier before this trip home, but I was quickly discovering that my experiences in captivity had changed me. “I didn’t really think about it before I went,” I admitted to Marcus. “My fear for the kids who had crossed over before I did made me throw caution to the wind. I wanted to get them out. I didn’t take time to weigh the consequences.”

Yeah, maybe my actions had been reckless, but it had saved the teenagers.

If I had a choice of watching them die or risking a diversion by crossing over myself, I would do the same thing all over again.

“Think about the danger next time—before you act,” he rumbled. “You scared the hell out of your entire family. Harper was beside herself, and your brothers were ready to cross the border to find you themselves, which would have gotten them all dead.”

“It’s not like I was trying to get kidnapped,” I told him indignantly.

“Another few days of captivity probably would have killed you,” Marcus answered rigidly.

“They were already talking about killing me,” I confessed in a nervous tone, bringing up my captors for the first time all on my own.

“You understood them?”

I nodded as he turned his eyes to my face. “Yes. I speak some Arabic, but I never let on that I did. Since they weren’t getting any money, there wasn’t much reason for them to keep me alive. I guess I wasn’t even any fun to play with anymore. I was too broken down to put up much of a fight.”

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