Into my bar, at ten o'clock on a Saturday night strolled a man I'd thought I never would see again. I sat up a little straighter and my hand clenched so tight around my snifter of whiskey I was surprised it wasn't immediately crushed. There was no mistaking the miserable bastard.
If I hadn't recognized the fine black hair, straight and newly streaked with silver at the temples, if the blue eyes hadn't pierced my soul to the quick in a brutal assault, if the tall lanky figure weren't so very familiar, I'd still have known him.
Because my body recognized him. My heart raced, my blood heated, and the dick that had been completely un-swayed by Rory's charm the other day hammered against the zip of my jeans in immediate demand.
His gaze swept the room and a silent hush seemed to follow in its wake. Blue eyes settled on me, and he strode confidently forward. I remembered every tiny detail of his face: thin aquiline nose, narrow lips, tight jaw. When his eyes met mine they heated and sparkled and I fought to stay still, to stay on my stool. Leaping up and running forward to embrace my ex wasn't going to happen.
He stopped at Rory's stool next to me, and I shouldn't have been surprised when his hand fell on my thigh. I was proud of the fact that I neither jumped nor flinched when a thin fingered hand squeezed my thigh through my jeans. I didn't have the strength to push him away—never that, but I didn't react the way he thought I would, and I marked that up as a point in favor of my having learned at least some of the harsh lessons this guy had taught me.
The heat of his touch disturbed me; the equilibrium his very appearance had thrown off balance spun out of control. I heaved a deep, relieved breath when he broke eye contact with me and turned to Gerry. "I'll take a scotch on the rocks."
Gerry nodded, and I could see the curiosity in his youthful face, but I didn't have the wherewithal to explain. Instead I gathered enough of my inner reserves to speak. "Cannon. Long time."
He sat on the stool and smiled at me. "I’m divorced. And out. Told my family. Hazel was justifiably upset, hence the divorce. Craig didn't give a shit; he still hates me and probably always will. Seth... Seth wants to meet you."
That last bit caught me taking a steadying sip from my glass and ended with me choking on it. "What?"
He ignored my question while I took another fortifying drink. "Told my bosses. Turns out as long as I'm not flirting with the patients on the operating table, they don't care. Or can't legally care, which amounts to the same thing in the long run."
"Cannon..." What the f**k?
"Those were the things you asked of me, Aaron. You said when I was single and out to come and find you. Here I am." He stared at me expectantly.