Untwisted Book 2.5
Falling in love was easy…
Figuring out the rhythm of being a couple, not so much.
Now that they’ve pressed play, life is going way too fast for Gray Duffy and Jazz Edwards. A super hot video has boosted their band Oblivion’s popularity even higher, and suddenly Gray and Jazz are the reigning prince and princess of rock. But as their private wedding ceremony in their most special place approaches, they realize they can’t go forward without facing their roots.
With new family members coming into the mix and old unresolved dramas coming to a head, one thing is for sure—the harder they rock, the bigger the drop.
The innocuous pale blue envelope sat on the table between Jazz and Harper. A smiley face sticker had been placed in one corner beside the recipient’s name and address, which had been written in bright purple ink.
Jasmine Edwards c/o Ripper Records.
The sender? Molly McIntire. The little sister Jazz hadn’t seen in a decade.
If it really was Molly at all.
“Interesting that it’s not made out to Jazz,” Harper said, folding her hands on her small baby bump. She was a couple of months farther along than Jazz and had that whole glowing thing going on, as evidenced by the rosiness of her cheeks and sparkle in her eye.
At least her eyes has been sparkling until Jazz asked her to meet for an emergency lunch at the Mexican restaurant near their apartment. Harper was about to move out of the place the members of Jazz’s band, Oblivion—Nick, Simon, Gray and Deacon—shared. Lucky Harper and her sexy manster of a husband Deacon had bought a little place in the Valley and were jumping ship.
They weren’t the only ones. Jazz glanced down at her engagement ring. Gray had mentioned just last week that he thought they should try to find a place of their own before the baby came in the fall.
Their baby, not Harper and Deacon’s baby. And no, contrary to what Nick had speculated, they had not added fertility drugs to the water in the Hollywood Hills. It was just coincidence.
Getting this letter now might be another one. Might.
“Molly didn’t call me Jazz. She was a little girl when I…left.” A nice way to refer to being tossed out on her ear and put into foster care. “She called me ‘Mine’, because she had trouble with Jasmine when she was a baby. I remember her standing in her crib crying for me, just saying ‘Mine’ over and over again. The name stuck.” Jazz smiled and sipped her iced tea. She probably should cut back on the caffeine but she figured her once a day iced tea couldn’t hurt that much. “My mom didn’t understand she meant me.”
“What did the letter say? Does it seem authentic?”
“I don’t know. I haven’t opened it yet.”
Harper sighed and pushed cheese off her burrito. “What does Gray think?”
“I haven’t had a chance to talk to him.” And she wasn’t bummed about that at all. Surely she could get through a whole day without having a crisis she absolutely had to discuss with her best friend. Her best friend who just happened to now be her fiancé.
“He had a big meeting with a producer today and he was distracted last night, thinking the guy wouldn’t like his stuff.”
Gray being distracted was a usual thing since he’d come back from rehab. At first she’d figured he was still trying to get used to not being at the facility any longer, but then she’d begun to realize that in the eight weeks he’d been gone, he’d developed a new obsession. He stayed up late almost every night, writing and playing his guitar. That wasn’t unusual. But how driven he was to produce new material was.
They had a wedding to plan, a house to buy and a baby on the way. He had debts to pay back. And evidently he needed to take care of all of those things right this very second.
“Are you okay?” Harper leaned forward. “This letter really has you rattled.”
There was no use in pretending otherwise. “Yeah. It does.”
“And you haven’t been able to talk about it with Gray, and that has you twice as messed up.” Harp took her hand. “I get it. I’m the same way with the big guy. It’s gotta be even worse since you’ve been confiding in him so long.”
“He’s just busy. I get it. He’s trying to be the daddy, you know?” She laughed and poked at her rice with her fork, although she wasn’t that hungry. Shocking enough in itself, since her kid had proven to be a marathon eater already.
“He wants to make sure everything is taken care of financially. You know how it is, our money isn’t always consistent and we’re not sure when we’re getting what.” Harp nodded and released her, and Jazz dropped her hand in her lap with a sigh. “Plus, he thinks he needs to pay me and his parents back as fast as humanly possible for the Cricket situation, although I’ve told him fifty times my money is his. He’s just too stubborn to listen.”
“A stubborn man? No way. I’ve never encountered one of those.”
Jazz grinned. Talking to Harper always evened her out. “So I guess I should open the letter, huh? No reason to freak out until I see what it says.” She ran the edge of one of her purple fingernails along the envelope. “Maybe she’s telling me to never bother her and she wants no contact.”
Harp snorted. “Somehow I doubt it. More likely she wants to shake you down for some cash.”
“What? Why would you think that?”
“Honey, you’re famous now. Gads, you’re even more famous now since that vid of you and Gray setting the bed on fire has been plastered everywhere.”
Jazz ducked her head and hoped like hell she wasn’t actually blushing. She was a grown woman.