Eternal

By: Rachel Van Dyken


CHAPTER ONE



Demetri

“THAT’S CHEATING.” I POINTED to Lyss’s pink phone and sighed. “Like serious cheating.”

She rolled those gorgeous bright blue eyes and leaned in. Cherry ChapStick floated into the air, making me lose focus. Damn it! The vixen smacked her lips together and grinned. “You were saying?”

“Women suck.” I growled, snatching her phone out of her hand and thrusting it into the air. “And I don’t care that he’s cute or…” I made air quotations, phone still in hand. “…that he’s married so it’s okay.” I handed her the phone back. “Rules still apply!”

“Chill.” Alyssa patted me on the arm like I was five. “It’s not like I’m listening to JT.”

All the air rushed out of my lungs.

Yeah, the man was basically a god. So Lyss wasn’t allowed to listen to anything that resembled JT or his music. It was jealousy speaking. No matter how many records I made. How many times I’ve guested on shows and done worldwide tours. I still didn’t want my woman listening to another dude croon into her headphones. I mean, come on. I knew firsthand how emotional music could be. When I wrote love songs, it was always Lyss’s face that came to mind.

“Besides, Ashton Hyde is amazing. His newest single is ridiculous.” She pulled out the headphones and pressed play.

The guy’s silky voice floated through the car. I swore and tried to ignore Lyss as she danced all seductively in the front seat. I also made a mental note to send him a really aggressive email where I threatened his dog or something. Right, that’ll teach him, Dem.

It was the exhaustion speaking.

We were picking out wedding music.

And it was not going well.

She wanted Ashton Hyde.

I wanted John Legend.

Yeah, we weren’t meeting in the middle. It didn’t help matters that our wedding was only two days away, and we’d yet to pick out music. On top of that, Nat, my brother’s wife, was seriously ready to pop out a child any time now, and Jaymeson, the other best man, was filming a movie — meaning, his schedule was almost as insane as ours.

We’d been given a one-week break from tour to pull off the wedding and birth of my niece.

Right, like you could plan a birth. Then again, Nat was convinced she’d have to be induced.

We had one week, and then we were on the road again for another two months. At least it was the last leg of the tour.

Clearly, I hadn’t thought the time crunch through.

“How about…” Lyss turned the music up louder. That’s it! I was calling Ashton’s agent and giving him a piece of my mind for releasing a song that had my girlfriend ready to throw her bra onto a stage and proclaim undying love.

The shit was good.

Real good.

Damn, if he showed his face, I would end him.

I smiled cheerfully in the rearview mirror.

See? Weddings brought out the worst in people!

Alec’s ringtone started going off. I snatched my phone from the console and answered. “What?”

“Dude, guess who’s going on tour with us for the second half?”

I had a sinking feeling I knew who.

I prayed I was wrong.

I looked at Lyssa, sweat dripping down my brow. “Who, man? Who’s coming?”

“Ashton Hyde!” Alec damn-near shouted, making my ear ring. “Isn’t that great? The cross-promotion is going to be insane for our newest single. We’re going to do a duet of his new song and lay it down for Jaymeson’s movie. This is huge!”

“So. Huge,” I said dryly. “Watch me contain my excitement.”

“He’s really nice...” Alec continued talking while I contemplated poisoning the guy. “…and he’s bringing his wife.”

“Bonus. He’s married, so he won’t steal ours.”

“Um…” Alec chuckled. “…feeling a bit insecure?”

“That damn song has been on repeat for the past seven days, so yeah, a bit insecure, man, and I’m getting married!”

Long pause and then, “You do realize he wrote that song about his ex-fiancée, right? The one that died?”

“Well, thanks for that… making me feel like shit for hating him. I can’t hate a man who does that!”

“Thought so.” He laughed. “Listen, go drink some tea.”

I rolled my eyes.

“Take Lyss out for dinner.”

I clenched the steering wheel harder.

“And if all else fails, just remember you get wedding sex in forty-eight hours.”

“Thanks.” I sighed, feeling some of the tension ease around my shoulders. “I needed that.”

“What are brothers for?”