From the Start

From the Start Read Online Free PDF Page A

Book: From the Start Read Online Free PDF
Author: Melissa Tagg
Tags: FIC042040, FIC027020, FIC027000
rug covering his living room floor. The hammer in his head continued its pulsing as he made his way to the front door. He glanced down before opening the door—jeans, T-shirt. Same clothes he’d worn to the bar.
    He pulled the door open. “Let me guess. Ian called you.”
    “Didn’t have to.” Logan pushed past Colton, dropped his phone and keys on the entryway table, and made for the living room.
    Colton closed the door. “Make yourself at home.”
    “Don’t get sarcastic on me or I’ll deck you. Again.” Logan abandoned his suit jacket over the back of the couch, then made quick work of opening the patio blinds and pushing the glass door aside.
    Colton squinted against the assault of sunlight. But the fresh air? Had to admit that felt good. “Wait, deck me again?” He worked his sore jaw. Logan had done that?
    Logan turned. Blue tie, white shirt, pants as uncreased as Colton’s were wrinkled. And for a moment, shame pushed past the pounding in his head. That his friend—good, respectable, always-do-the-right-thing Logan Walker—was seeing him like this.
    Hung over. Bruised. A mess.
    “I didn’t want to hit you, but you insisted on driving.”
    “You punched me. I-I thought . . .” He ran a hand through shaggy hair. “There was this jerk at the end of the bar. I don’t remember exactly . . .”
    “Two of you got bounced before you could get into it. Bartender took your keys, said my number was the only favorite in your contacts.”
    Yes. Because he’d finally deleted Lilah from the list. Apparently all those times she’d visited him at the hospital, theconstant checking in as he worked his way through physical therapy—none of it meant what he’d thought: that there was still a spark of life in their relationship, that she still cared.
    No, apparently she’d only stayed in touch due to her work with his foundation, all the while moving on with her personal life.
    Which felt worse? The physical ache that seemed to have a grip on his entire body, or the humiliation slogging through him?
    Logan only stared at him as Colton slumped onto one of the stools at the peninsula counter dividing the living room and kitchen. “Guess I should say thanks.”
    “Don’t thank me. Just tell me what you were thinking.” Logan rounded the counter and entered the kitchen. He reached for a coffee mug hanging from a peg in the wall and slid it under the Keurig. “I know your life hasn’t been a load of fun lately, but getting drunk in a seedy bar? Picking a fight with a stranger?” Logan started the coffee maker. “That’s the kind of thing you stopped doing five, six years ago. Thought you’d gotten it out of your system.”
    Elbows on the counter top, Colton rubbed his eyes. “I didn’t pick the fight. I remember that much.” The Keurig gurgled to life. “He recognized me, made some joke about headlines and Lilah . . .”
    Logan waited until the coffee finished, then set the mug in front of Colton. “Drink up.”
    Colton obeyed, liquid hot and bitter in his throat.
    “So it was about Lilah.” Logan ran in the same political circles as Lilah, had actually been the one to introduce Colton to Lilah—recommended her for the job heading up the Colton Greene Foundation. Which was a joke in and of itself. Between Colton’s career—and then the loss thereof—and Lilah’s political activist work, they hadn’t even picked a cause to focus on. It was a foundation without a purpose.
    A little too similar to the man it was named after.
    Logan started a second cup of coffee, then turned back to Colton and pressed both palms on the counter. “I heard about the engagement. Have you talked to her?”
    Colton shook his head, looked up from his already half-empty mug. She’d stopped calling after her fourth attempt went unanswered. “You?”
    “She’s worried about you, Colt. We both are.”
    “Yeah? Well, don’t be.” He threw back the last of his coffee.
    Logan pulled the second cup of coffee
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