1 a: intolerant of rivalry or unfaithfulness b: disposed to suspect rivalry or unfaithfulness 2: hostile toward a rival or one believed to enjoy an advantage 3: vigilant in guarding a possession
“Dom!” Letty snapped his name for the third time and he finally twisted around to look at her. Sweat dripped into his eyes and he swiped it away with the back of his hand. “Would you fucking listen to me?”
He crossed his arms over his chest and frowned at her. It was too hot to fight, but it was never too hot for her to do anything. She was fierce and untouchable.
There was grease on his fingers and it smeared on her arms when he grabbed her.
“What the hell?” she snarled, but she hooked her arms around his neck. Her skin was slick, her whole body warm and wet, and she pressed against him.
“You look good.” His voice rumbled in his chest and she twisted against him.
“Always do.” She palmed the back of his head with one hand and lifted herself up to kiss him. He skimmed his hands down to her ass, holding her in place so he could grind against her. His dick was hard; too many layers separated them, but it still felt good.
She jerked away from his mouth, breathing hard. “This isn’t listening.” But her words weren’t too steady and she rolled her hips against him. They needed to get naked and get to fucking.
“I’m listening,” he said, and grabbed the bottom of her shirt. It had been white once, but was now dingy, marked by the garage. She was, too, her skin roughened from the work, her muscles hard. He jerked it over her head and tossed it on top of the car.
She stepped back and stood in front of him in her coveralls and black sports bra, her skin glistening. Her hair was bound back in tight braids and her lips were swollen.
“Listen to me,” she said. “He’s trouble, and I don’t want him around.”
“He’s okay,” Dom argued and reached for her again. “I don’t want to talk about Brian.”
“I do!” Letty slammed one fist against her thigh. “I don’t like him, Dom, and I don’t like the way he looks at Mia, and I don’t like the way he looks at you.”
That stopped him cold. “What do you mean?”
“Like you’re some sort of fucking prize.” She put her hands on the back of her neck and tilted her head. He heard her jaw pop and then she looked at him again. “Maybe he is a cop.”
“He’s not.” Dom sounded more confident than he felt, but that’s always the way of it. He was the one in charge, he was the one keeping their family together. He didn't get to show weakness. “And you’re the only prize here.”
She huffed a sigh. “That’s fine out there,” she said and motioned vaguely toward the door, “but in here, this is you and me. I’m not a prize, you don’t have to be all tough guy about this. Brian might be a problem and I need to know what we’re going to do about it.”
“I’m taking care of it,” Dom said. “Trust me.” He reached for her again, and this time she let him pull her closer.
“I do.” She kissed him and slid her hands under his shirt, pressing her fingers – startlingly cool – against his skin. “But it’s not just you. I’m here. I’ll help. Whatever it is.”
That’s not how it worked, though. He took care of business, just like his old man.
“I’m not a thing, Dom!” Mia looked like she might take a tire iron to his head any minute. Or, since they were in the kitchen, chuck a pan at him. “I’m not something you can own.”
“I never said that.” His voice pitched lower into a growl, but it didn’t phase her. She had known him too long; she had heard him go through puberty and remembered when he was awkward and young. As awkward as he got, anyway, which wasn’t very.
Didn’t stop him from saying the wrong things to her all the time.
“You’ve got to stop being so damn jealous,” she snapped.
“What the hell are you talking about?”
“You’re jealous,” the fight started to run out of her and her shoulders slumped, “of Brian.”
He didn’t know what to say to that.
“Brian’s a punk.” It wasn’t even true, not really. Sure, he tried too hard to impress Dom, but he was used to the eager puppy treatment. It was even kind of funny when Jesse did it. “He’s not good enough for you.”
“You don’t get to decide that!” Mia sighed and rubbed her face with both hands. The kitchen was an oven and heat rolled out of it into the rest of the house. Even with all the windows open, it was miserable. He wanted to escape the garage, but it wouldn’t be any cooler there. “That’s the point, Dom. You don’t get to decide whether he’s good enough for me or not. Whether I date him or not. Whether I fuck him or not.”
His baby sister sure the hell shouldn’t be talking about sex. “Mia -- ”
She cut him off. “No. End of conversation. You don’t get to decide. You don’t get to be jealous. I’m not a possession. I’m not something you can control.” She stormed out of the room, bumping him with her elbow as she went.
Sweat trickled down his back and his shirt clung to his skin. The front door slammed.
He dropped his chin to his chest and rubbed the back of his neck.
He was fucked either way. If he ordered Brian away, Mia’d be pissed and sling anger through the house. If he let him stay, Letty’d kick his ass. Maybe it’d be easier if Brian was a fucking cop. At least then he’d know what to do.