When I wake I’m alone, but I can hear the TV out in the living room blaring a baseball game, so I know I’m not really alone. I smile at this. He’s still here, watching baseball in the living room. Like he belongs here.
Maybe he does belong here?
Rook, stop it. He’s a player, he’s a user, and he’s probably got a million girls strung out all over this city. That’s why he left last night and that’s why he came back so late. And then you went and let him sleep in your bed and act like he’s your boyfriend.
This has got to stop.
I roll off the bed, still clutching my sheet to my body, then pad over to the laundry closet in the hallway.
“I already took care of it.” Ronin calls out.
“Took care of what?” I ask, peeking around the corner to see him. He’s kicking back on the couch, feeding himself peanuts and drinking a beer. “Sheesh, comfortable much?”
“You know what the best part of living next to the baseball stadium is, Rook?” he asks, ignoring my snarky remark.
I shrug and simultaneously listen to the Charge! organ music on the TV and the fans outside in the stadium as they go wild.
He points to the bag of peanuts in his hand. “Baseball park peanuts at home.” He grins a huge, wide-eyed, baseball-is-awesome-and-so-are-peanuts grin.
“You went over there to get peanuts?”
“No.” He shakes his head. “I got a guy.”
I laugh. “What? You have a peanut guy? Like a peanut dealer, who stands on the corner and sells peanuts from the curb as you drive by?”
“Nah, that’s stupid. He delivers them to the freaking door. Anyway,” he says, waving a hand at me. “I folded your laundry for you and do you know what I found out?”
“What?” I ask, shaking my head.
“That you do not own any panties.”
My whole face goes hot. “What?“
“Panties, Rook,” he says, pointing to the laundry closet with his bag of stadium peanuts. “I folded your seven articles of clothing over there so that when you woke up you’d have something to wear besides that sheet, and I found no undergarments.”
I open the closet and there are my seven articles of clothing sitting on top of the stackable washer lid. Folded. “Uh…”
When I turn Ronin is standing next to me taking a swig of beer. He swallows and grins. “I can help you out with that, if you’d like.”
“I’m lost. Are we talking about getting me panties, or taking them off me?”
He laughs. “Both, I think. Come on.”