Nick was talking to her but Tenley was struggling to listen. She wasn't sure what to do anymore. However, she knew one thing for sure. She loved Colton Wells more than anything and there wasn't going to be a time she would ever stop. She wasn't fair to Nick. She knew that. She was fully aware that even if her and Colton never fixed things, she would just end up alone. She would never get over her estrange husband.

"Ten," she pulled from her thoughts at the man on the other side of the kitchen. "Are you even hearing me?" Nick wondered; almost positive the beautiful brunette didn't listen to anything he had just said.

"I'm sorry," she apologized spinning from the sauce she was making to look at him. "Want to try it?" she held up her spoon as Nick slowly approached. "It's hot," she blows on the red sauce before pushing it into his waiting mouth.

"It's good," Nick took a sip of his water to cool his mouth off. "Little sweet…" he spoke and her head dropped as she spun back to the sauce. "You're the only person I know who puts sugar in pasta sauce."

"Yeah," Tenley listened to him chuckle but she frowned. "My mom makes it like this. The kids have always loved it," she felt she needed to defend with a shrug. 'Colton always liked it'. She thought to herself and sighed spinning back to her…whatever Nick was. She didn't even know anymore. "Nick?"


"We umm…we need to talk," Tenley put the lid back on the sauce and moved to sit next him. A confused look on his face as he looked at the sad woman.

"What's up?"

"Nick…" she repeated his name and pulled in a long breath. "You're so amazing. You're amazing to me and my kids…"

"Why do I feel a but is coming?"


"Quit repeating my name Ten and just tell me what the hell you're trying to say," Nick's tone was short as he stood, almost positive he knew where this was going. He wasn't dumb. He saw Colton chase after Tenley and he knew he was over at her house more than he liked. However, he never said anything about it. He figured that is her ex and father of her children. Of course, he would be around. "You're ending us." It wasn't a question just a statement and her head dropped as a tear sprung in her eye. "For him?" he hissed shoving back from her and pacing through the kitchen.

"Nick, it's not fair for you," Tenley started to explain. "I'm not ending us for Colton. I'm ending us because I do care about you and it's not fair for you."

"Not fair for me," he released a dry laugh with a shake of a head. "Don't act like you're doing this for me, Tenley. Don't act like you're not doing this for him."


"Are you fucking him?" his tone harsh and Tenley's head dropped knowing she couldn't lie to him. "Isn't that fucking great," Nick caught the answer with a shake of a head. "This whole time I've been trying to help you and be here for you and you were sneaking off to go fuck you're ex."

"No!" Tenley shook her head that not at all true. "Nick, I swear on anything it was one time a few weeks ago. One time. It hasn't been going on. It just…it just happened."

"Screwing someone doesn't just happen, Tenley. You don't just slip and end up in bed with someone," he growled so pissed in that moment. "I knew it. I knew something was going on with ya'll but I ignored it. I allowed myself to think he was your children's father and it was nothing, but I knew. I should have never gotten involved in this. My dumb ass just believed you when you said it was over."

"I thought it was Nick," Tenley tried to convince herself of that more than him. She really thought she was strong enough to walk away this time. "Nick…"

"You used me," he shook his head annoyed. Tenley starting to shake her head but his hand flew up. "Yes, you did. You used me to play house with and him to get your rocks off."

"That's not fair, Nick," her own temper grew as she stood. "And that is not true."

"How is it not?" he yelled and stepped to her. "How? You aren't fucking me," his tone ice as his eyes locked on hers. "Been almost eight months and not one time have you even tried too. I thought it was because you weren't ready."

"I wasn't."

"But you were all fine and ready to spread your legs to that bastard," he hissed and her hand on reflex came up flying across his fast.

"He isn't a bastard…" she growled as Nick sent daggers into her. "I did not spread my legs as you so kindly worded it to some random stranger in a bar. My husband. He was my husband and I'm sorry it happened and I'm sorry it hurt you but I will not stand here and let you speak bad about him when you have not a damn clue who he is."

"Oh, I don't? I don't know how he made you cry? How he broke your heart? How he abandon his children!"

"He never abandoned his children. He is an amazing father," she will defend that until her last breath. Colton might have messed up a few times, but he was and will always be there for his children. She'd never take that away from him.

"Just a shitty husband," Nick argued and Tenley's eyes set into a glare a moment before she started to ease it. She shouldn't be mad at Nick. He really didn't do anything wrong. He was a good man and he was just hurting.

"I don't know what will happen with Colton and I. We may never get back together, but I do know it's not fair to be with someone knowing I can never give them my heart."

"So that's it," he released a dry laugh snatching his keys off the counter. "One last blow of Colton Wells, huh? Fucked you up so much you'll just end up alone. Whatever Tenley. Enjoy being alone," he spun from her and out the front door.

"Fuck!" she screamed falling back into her chair and dropped her head to her hands as tears started to fall. She was so over crying.

"Sorry I have to work again," Raine apologized as she wiped down the bar. "I know you wanted to spend the day together."

"We are together," James shrugged, eating a fry on his place and smiled. "Can't help you have a job, Ray."

"I know, but you have to leave in a couple days and I hate most of the time here I've worked," she told him leaning on the bar. She normal worked a lot but this week she was mad about it. However, each day she worked James would happily sit at the bar and eat some food and just wait until she got off. One day he did go to lunch with EJ and Laken, but showed up right after. It was nice, made her shift go by faster it felt.

"I really don't mind, babe," he grinned up at her with a shrug. "I've had a great time this week. Even with all the parents," he told her and she laughed shaking her head.

"Well, they really like you," Raine leaned on the bar, stealing a fry. "You have everyone like you. Though I think Ariel might like you the most," she laughed causing James to smile. He really did become fond of that little firecracker. After the cheer competition she begged he go to get ice cream with her and he couldn't say no. She stuck by his side the whole time explaining everything that had happened that week at school.

"She is so cute. Has a lot of energy. Must run in the bloodline, because God knows I can barely keep up with you," James joked causing Raine's jaw to drop and throw a fry at him. "What?" he laughed throwing it back.

"You're mean," Raine told him in a matter-of-fact tone and he chuckled. "Don't really hear you complaining when I'm draining that energy of yours."

"Oh, no complaints here," his hands go up in defense. "I'm just saying for someone so innocent you're a damn tiger in that bedroom."

"James!" she squealed, leaning across the bar and covering his mouth. "You stop that," she ordered as she glanced around and blushed afraid someone heard. Not that there was much business today. Another reason she was over work.

"Think they know about pool table over there?" he glanced at the men playing with their drinks on the ledge. "Or the top of the bar that poor old man is sitting."

"I hate you," her brows pulled into a playful glare causing him to chuckle. "I'm pure as snow I'll have you know."

"If you say so babe," James shook his head, knowing that wasn't true. She mentioned multiple times how nervous she was to be compared to over girls, but she had nothing to fear. Raine Wells knew exactly what to do in that department. "But when you do get off want to do dinner with me?"

"Are you going to be nice?"

"So nice," he promised and she smiled.

"Fine, I'll be off at 6," she winked before walking down the bar and continuing with her shift.

"Crazy girl," he shook his head and sat quiet. Suddenly another crazy girl popping in his head. They haven't talked much in the last year. The occasional text of 'just thinking of you, hope all is well' but not much more than that. Pulling his phone from his pocket he clicked the number he hadn't called in a while and listened to it ring on the other end.

"Hello," she answered on the third ring and he instantly smiled. "James you there?"

"Hey you," James breathed in the phone as he watched Raine move. "How you doing kid?"

"Oh my god James it's been forever! I miss you, how are you? I've been following your tour," she told him with a smile. So proud of what her friend accomplished.

"I'm good Collins, really good," he told her honestly as he leaned in his chair and crossed one of his arms. "How's college been?"

"So happy to be in my final year Tay called and said you were in town. I hate I missed you. Are you going back any time before the wedding?"

"I'm not sure. I'm actually about two hours from there right now."

"Really? Why? I didn't see that on your schedule or I would have booked time to come visit," Collins tried to remember the paper on her fridge but couldn't recall anywhere close to home. There was one about four hours but she thought that was next month.

"I met someone," he breathed out with a smile and Collins fell silent for a minute on the other line. "God, Cols…" James smiled as Raine's laugh filled the room and his smile grew. "I'm crazy about her."

"James that's amazing. I'm so happy you met someone," she finally spoke as she picked at a string on her pant leg. "What's she like?"

"Perfect," he answered honestly and Collins laughed. "Was actually going to see if you were free the next day or so and we meet up," he spoke, Collins only behind about an hour and half from him. "I'll drive to you," he told her when she remained quiet a minute. "Collins…"


"It would mean a lot to me kid," he told her nervous she'd say no. They hadn't seen each other in over a year. She flew out to one of his shows and it ended a little awkward for them both. "Please?"

"You know I can never tell you know," she smiled light. "I can't do it this weekend, but let me check my schedule really quick," she pulled her phone from her ear and looked at the calendar. "Next month? I can come to your show? I'll even pick her up for you."

"You're the best Cols," knowing he was extremely last minute on the get together.

"I miss you, James. Try to call more, please."

"I miss you too and I will. Don't be such a stranger, ok?" he asked and she agreed. "Talk to you later, Cols."


"You, ok?" Raine walked down seeing him hang up the phone and stare at it. "James?"

"Huh?" he shook his head of his thoughts and nodded. "Yeah," he sat the phone on the bar and smiled. "It was Collins."

"Oh," Raine's eyes widen a bit and eased again the cooler. "She, ok?" she asked, knowing James has spoken highly of the young girl to her.

"Yeah, she's fine. She's going to come to my show next month. I really want her to meet you."

"Think that might be a little awkward for her?" Raine leaned on the bar and asked. She didn't mind meeting Collins, she always wanted too. Figured she could probably tell her stories about James she didn't know. Yet, she didn't know if meeting the new girl in his life would make her feel weird.

"No, I don't think so," he shook his head, more trying to convince himself. "Think it'll be good for her. She's always wanted me to meet someone. She wants me happy."

"Then I can't wait to meet her," Raine nodded still not fully sure that was true. "Hey Colt," she beamed when Colton strolled into the bar a box of liquor in his hand. "Why you here so early?"

"Hey Ray, James…" Colton spoke putting the heavy box down. "Ken called his truck broke down and wasn't going to make it in time for our deliver," he explained looking over the paper work and checking each item. "I was on the way here, so just met up with him and grabbed the stuff."

"Well, aren't you the sweetest," Raine pinched his cheek causing James to laugh and Colton to groan knocking it away. "I'm glad though I was getting low on well vodka," she spun the bottle in her hand and placed it in the well. "Almost poured Doug the good stuff."

"Let's not…." Colton cut his eyes at her and she laughed. "You talk to Tenley today?" he asked casually, still studying the box. He kept to his word. He was giving her space but he didn't know how long it would last. He was trying hard, but it had only been two days and he thought he was going to explode if someone didn't tell him how she was.

"No…" Raine eyed him curious. "Was I supposed too?"

"Nope, just wondering," Colton shrug placing the papers down and leaning on the bar. "Just…"

"Checking up on her?" James questioned totally getting where he was coming from. He's been there where you love someone and know you can't reach out to them. Colton's head dropped with a groan.

"What's Nick doing here?" Raine looked at the parking lot of the man storming toward the building. "And why does he look pissed?"

"I don't know," Colton straightened up confused as well.

"Wells!" Nick stormed inside and heads turned. "You son of a bitch!" he stormed toward the blonde and before Colton could even react slammed his fist into his jaw.

"What the fuck?" James jumped up grabbing the pissed man not sure what happened. "Dude, chill…"

"Colton," Raine rushed to her brother's side holding his face up and seeing a split lip. "Are you ok?"

"Fine, Raine," Colton spit in the trash can next to him and turned to face the man almost sure why he was there. "Nick, this is my place of business so I think it's best you leave. Now." Colton made clear trying with everything in him not to take him out back and beat the ever-living shit out of him.

"I don't give a fuck," Nick lunged toward him again but James kept a tight grip. "You fucked my girlfriend!" he yelled and everyone's eyes went wide around the bar, but Colton's. His sore jaw just remaining locked and pulled in a long breath.

"No, no I didn't," Colton shook his head. It scaring Raine how unbelievable calm her bother was being. Pulling out her phone and sending a quick text hoping for some help.

"Yes, you did!"

"No," Colton's tone became harder as he stepped toward Nick. "I fucked my wife," there was almost a smug smirk tugging on his lips as he spoke it. "Last I checked we're still legally married. Not my fault you weren't giving her what she needed."

"Colton…" Raine placed her hand on his shoulder pulling him back a step. "People are staring…"

"Let them," Nick threw his hand up not giving a shit. He was hurt and pissed and wanted nothing more than to beat the shit out of whoever came near him. "You're going to destroy her," he growled pointing at the tall blonde. "You're going to completely destroy her and you don't give a shit. She's going to end up alone because you won't let her move on."

"You don't know a damn thing about Tenley and I. You don't have a damn clue what goes on with us," Colton felt he had this talk before with so many different people. Their whole relationship he felt he had to defend his love for the feisty brunette. "You don't know her, Nick. You may try but you don't. You got to try to take my spot to her and my kids, but it wasn't going to last. We both know that," he moved forward and pointed at Nick. James having released him but still stood between the two. "I have loved that girl since she was sixteen years old. Many have tired and all have failed at taking my spot in her life."

"Fuck you, Colton," Nick growled. "You love throwing out my wife, but you don't mean it," he shuffled half a step and Colton swallowed hard. "I held her when she cried. I sat there as she completely crumbled in front of me because of you! I put in months and when I finally feel we moved on you sneak in and fuck her and screw it all up. You're going to hurt her again. You're going to fuck it up and this time I won't be there to fix it. You two deserve each other," Nick shoved back James and spun on his feet out the door.

"Colton…" Raine touched his shoulder feeling how tense he was. "Colty…" she glanced at James who slowly eased back into his spot. Colton's eyes remaining on the man pealing out of the parking lot.

"Round on me!" Colton yelled across the bar at all the customers looking extremely uncomfortable. "Whatever you want… No Doug," he held his hand up at the older man with a smile. "Not top shelf for you."

"Damn," Doug dropped his hand and leaned in his chair.

"Colton," Raine tossed a look at James who also seemed confused by Colton's calm demeanor. "You're kind of freaking me out."

"I'm good Ray," Colton smiled. He actually smiled. Like that whole scene didn't happen. "I'm actually more than good."

"How? How are you more than good? You just got clocked in the face, Colton."

"Better man then me," James finally spoke so confused. "I would have drug his ass."


"What I would have," James told his girlfriend honestly with a shrug.

"You think that's the first time I've been hit because of Tenley Brady," he shrugged. "That was probably…I don't know the fifth…sixth... I can't keep up," the blonde spun around the bar to start making everyone a drink. "And like I told Hannah and Darren when Max his me in high school can't hit someone back when they aren't wrong."

"What! Max hit you?" Raine not knowing that. "Why? Ya'll are best friends."

"Yup," Colton popped the 'p' and handed out drinks.

"But Tenley is his sister," James completely understand being he's hit a few guys in his time for his sister.

"And I fucked up," Colton shrugged. "Kind of funny if you think about it. Max and Nick hit me for the exact same reason."

"Which was?" Raine questioned still completely shocked by this whole scene and his attitude.

"I slept with Tenley," Colton shrugged, James released a laugh and Raine's eyes rolled. "And I'm ninety percent positive I told Max the same thing I just told Nick. No one knows what is going on with Tenley and I."


"And I really don't give a damn it people know it or not, because just like then with this time it proved one thing to me."

"And that is?" James questioned.

"I'm getting her back," Colton smiled as he grabbed the papers off the bar and shrugged. "My girl is coming back," he moved toward the office leaving everyone behind him so confused.