Only one house has separated McKenzie Baker and twins, Luke and Olivia Harris, since birth. After seventeen years of wearing a path across the neighbor’s yard, Luke and McKenzie realize their friendship evolved and deepened even before they had fully learned what romantic feelings meant.
Both have flashbacks often, revisiting the tender, emotional moments that strengthened their bond since the age of five. However, Luke’s twin, Olivia, doesn’t share in their happiness, worrying the new relationship will change the ones she has with her best friend and brother. This disapproval quickly tests Luke and McKenzie’s intense love for one another.
Luke’s life has been mapped out for him since birth, with a sports scholarship hanging in the balance. He and McKenzie think their future together is finally on track, when they are struck with a much more serious dilemma.
During difficult times and a devastating accident, a bond between a brother and sister shines through, and Luke and McKenzie’s profound connection is undeniable. This story takes you on a journey of heartache and joy, leaving the belief that extraordinary love exists, and some hearts are destined to attach.
“Back to earth, Kenzie,” Luke says.
I glance up, and he’s smiling at me.
“Huh?” Why does he have to appear hotter daily?
“I often wonder where your mind wanders off to. Can you take mine with you? I’d prefer it over thinking about all the bullshit that goes on around here.”
“Please, what bullshit do you have to deal with?” Liv asks.
“Oh, I don’t know, Liv. How about all the people who are on my ass daily to make sure I keep my shit together? I’m not the only kid in this house. Someone else I know needs to have the heat put on them for a while.” He glances up long enough to glare at her.
“Poor, Luke. You’re the most popular guy at school because of how good you are at sports. I have a hard time feeling sorry for you.”
“I didn’t ask for your sympathy. What’s your deal, anyway?”
Liv pushes forward, signaling she wants up, so I raise to a sitting position and cross my legs. I’m now at Luke’s feet.
“I have to listen to girls talk about you daily. They’re always using me to get to you, and I’m sorry if that becomes tiresome for me.
“You need to date one of them already. I’m going to see if Mom needs help with dinner.” Liv is off the bed in seconds, flipping her long, dark hair before she goes out the door.
Luke shuts his magazine and launches it across the room. “How have we managed to put up with her all these years?”
“Give her a break. She lives in your shadow, and it wasn’t like that before high school.”
“You’re too nice, Kenzie.”
It’s always awkward when he gives me compliments. I flip my hair, like Liv often does, and look up to the ceiling. She’s as prissy as it gets.
“It’s a gift. I can’t help it.”
He chuckles before his gaze averts to the other side of the room. “Um, I heard Stewart asked you out.”
“Yeah, he did.” My long hair is everywhere now, so I attempt to pull sections to their proper places.
“Well, did you say yes?”
“I told him I wanted to think about it.”
Luke nods his head thoughtfully but still doesn’t look at me.
“So you like him?”
“I don’t know. He’s cute and has always been nice to me. I thought I’d see how he is at school, when we start next week. Do you think he’s only looking for one thing?”
Finally, Luke’s eyes meet mine. “If you go by Stew’s history, then I’d say yes, but I’ll deny I told you that.”
“Maybe it’s time I did it.”
Luke pulls away from his wall and sits straight up.
“You’re considering having sex with him?” he asks, sounding surprised.
“Not him, necessarily. I meant that maybe it’s time period.”
Luke covers his ears. “This conversation is done. If you start doing it, then that means Liv is or will be shortly thereafter, and then I’ll have to kill someone.”
Grinning, I stare at his handsome face. “It’s adorable when you get protective of your sister.”
“You’re calling me adorable? How girly is that? I think it’s tickle time.”
McKenzie is only in a tank top and shorts since it’s August, so it takes only a second to get to her armpits. I tickle her there before moving to her waist. She falls back on my bed and attempts to pull her knees up.
It’s her signature move, but I’m on to her tactics, so I put my left arm across her thighs as she begins to bring up her legs. She works to remove my right hand from her waist, giving me no choice but to bring her wrists together and wrap my hand around them.
Moving them above her head, I hold them there snugly, but this causes me to fall over on top of her. I’m struggling to keep her legs down when it hits me that my left arm is stuck between us, somewhat across her … you know and her smooth thighs.
Ah shit. Now that we’re older, it’s different when I tickle her. I mean, her body keeps changing. Kenzie is still laughing and breathing heavily. I stop moving, so she slowly does, too. Trying to get her breath, she turns her head to cough before swinging it back and looking at me.
Her light brown hair that’s woven with golden strands is pretty, and blue eyes that I swear couldn’t get any lighter gaze up at me. Will the day come when she stops getting prettier?
“You’ve figured me out. I need new moves,” she says, appearing nervous.
I can’t stop staring into her eyes. It’s been a long time since I’ve been this close to them. I feel her breath on my face, her body pinned beneath me, and I want to cover her mouth with mine. Why the hell is this happening again? I buried that feeling a year and a half ago. Well, I tried to, anyway.
I’m pulling a t-shirt over my head when I hear the doorbell. A smile spreads across my face as I jump four steps trying to get downstairs. I fling the door open and receive a bashful smile from Kenzie.
“Good morning. I hope you don’t mind that I came over early.”
“Of course not,” I say as I move out of the way for her to enter. Damn, she looks hot today. Kenzie always looks pretty, but it seems she made an extra effort to drive me insane today. Her golden hair is down and curled.
“What?” she asks before she looks down at her clothes.
“Huh?” I think I was busted checking her out.
“You looked me over for a long time. Is there something wrong with what I’m wearing?” She glances down again at her denim shorts and thin, lavender shirt, which buttons up.
I think I’m turning red. “No, Kenzie, nothing’s wrong. You always look great, but today you’re extra hot.”
She chews on her lip. “So you still feel the same this morning?”
Panic washes over me. Is she having second thoughts? “Yeah, do you?”
She shakes her head yes several times and grins, her happiness spreading to those crystal blue eyes. “I missed you already,” she says in a sexy, soft tone.
“I won’t be able not to touch you if you talk to me that way, Kenzie.”
“Did your dad leave for work?”
“Then touch me already, you confusing boy.”
She’s looking at me as if she’d let me do anything, and I desire to do everything, having waited to share each sexual experience with Kenzie. Cupping her face, I kiss her mouth, and she lets my tongue slip right into her warmth.
Arms circle tightly around my waist, her body pushing against mine, and I might have to kiss her all day and forever. I reluctantly release her lips and hug her.
“Kenz, you’re not making it easy for me to behave,” I whisper in her ear before I breathe in the sweet scent from her hair.
“I’m sorry, Luke. I’ve never felt anything like this before. I guess it’s the accumulation of all the years I’ve been near you but couldn’t admit how I felt … all the years I couldn’t touch you this way.”
Her face is against my chest, but her hand slides up my neck and into my hair. Shit. I pull her arm down and hold her out away from me.
“We have to go before I lock us in my room all day.”