Gavin by Anna Scott - Read Online
Gavin
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Summary

Eight years ago, Dawn put it all out there, she laid her heart at Gavin's feet only for him to reject her. 
Now, he wants her back, the amazing friendship they once shared and all that she offered him that one fateful night. 
Theirs is a long journey, full of pitfalls, misunderstandings and miscommunication. 
Eight years is a long time, they're different, changed in so many ways, how will they find their way back to each other; especially, when one of them is fighting to keep her heart safe? 
It takes real courage to open up, to share wholly with another person, and to love without reservations. 
Will Gavin be able to win her back? 
Can Dawn trust him not to break her again?

Published: Anna Scott on
ISBN: 9781524226497
List price: $2.99
Availability for Gavin: Redemption Romance, #3
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Gavin - Anna Scott

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Anna

Prologue

Dawn

That man is going to be the one, I will give him everything – tonight. My body, my heart and my virginity; I’ve saved it all for him.

I reminded myself of all that, as I watched Gavin McNeil unfold himself from the cab of his truck and walk up the sidewalk toward my front door.

You’re home! I all but squealed as I watched Gavin advance through the front door of my mom’s house.

I didn’t think you were going to get leave. I’d wrapped myself around him the moment he stepped inside. Thankfully, Gavin returned my fierce hug, but didn’t bounce up and down on his toes like I had.

I didn’t care if I looked silly, I was excited. Gavin had been a close family friend for the past ten years. His family had moved across the street from us when I was only eight, I’d looked up to him. At the age of twelve, he had seemed so worldly and mature to me.

Even then, he was tall and handsome. The first time he’d come to my defense with the neighborhood mean-girls, I’d fallen in love.

I couldn’t miss your birthday; what is it now, sixteen? I started to take offense, but saw his teasing smile, so I pulled back and slugged him in the stomach. Unfortunately, it hurt my hand more than his tight belly.

Ow, that was rude. I mock-pouted indignantly. You could at least have the decency to act hurt.

Pinching my side, Gavin used his other hand to rub at his middle and gave me a feigned expression of pain. Shaking my head, I laughed at his silliness.

One thing I’d always admired was Gavin’s ability to make light of any situation. He was a jokester for sure, but he had great skill at diffusing heated situations with his wit.

Come on, I need some food. The Marine Corps doesn’t feed us, you know. He slung his arm over my shoulder and practically dragged me toward the kitchen.

As soon as we turned into the room, I heard his mother’s loud shout of excitement. Looking over my shoulder, I watched her run full-speed to her son. He turned and grabbed her up, hugging her tightly to him. He was so tall, her feet dangled almost a full foot off the ground.

Of course, the favorite son is home. I whirled around to meet the dark, irritated gaze of Zach, Gavin’s older brother. His sneered words made me so angry. I couldn’t imagine how two, such different men could have been brought up by the same soft-hearted woman.

Don’t be a jerk. I snapped back. I was never good about holding my tongue. I hated the way Zach treated his younger brother, at least he seemed much kinder to his mother.

I had often wondered if Zach’s animosity came from years of comparing himself to the taller and exceedingly more handsome Gavin. It wasn’t that Zach was ugly, he just didn’t have that same thickly muscled frame or the striking good looks of his brother. Zach was also at least three inches shorter than Gavin, which probably didn’t help.

I’d always wanted a sibling, an older brother would have been wonderful, but I’d want one like Gavin, not like Zach. Gavin was fun, but always protective. Zach was just irritable and easily angered, all the time. I’d never known him to protect anyone – but himself.

A couple of years ago, Zach had actually cornered me at a Fourth of July party. His mother had been hosting that one and Gavin had been overseas.

It was odd, Zach had followed me into the house, when I’d gone in to grab something for his mom. He’d cornered me and pressed his body to mine, in a way that made me extremely uncomfortable. I’d only been sixteen at the time, but even then, I knew that what Zach was doing was wrong. He was a lot older than me, way too old to be acting like that with an underage girl.

He’d told me that the following night, before he left to go back to base, we were going to go out on a date. I’d looked at him like he was crazy, which, I thought he was, and told him no, straight out. He’d been so mad, his eyes had burned with fury, and when he pressed his body in, even closer to me, I could feel him against my stomach, he was hard.

I was sixteen, after all, I wasn’t naïve about that kind of thing, but from a guy at least eight years older, it had been a little scary. Thankfully, one of Zach’s aunts had come in, not paying any attention to us, but her presence had broken the spell. I’d made sure to never be caught alone with him again.

Here, just one more. My best friend Selene handed over a refilled Solo cup a few hours later. I knew it didn’t just have the punch in it, my mom had made, Selene had spiked it with the vodka bottle she hid inside her bag.

I’d already had three of these, and was beginning to feel pretty buzzed, but if I was going to find my courage and do what I’d planned to, I needed the confidence booster.

Thanks, I whispered back, not letting on what we were doing. If my mom or Gavin’s figured out that we were drinking, they’d give us a stern lecture, and take away the alcohol. The last thing I wanted was for Gavin to see that, I didn’t want him thinking of me like a scolded little girl, I wanted him to see me as a woman.

Where’s Ty? Selene asked, looking out the front window. I had to catch my laughter, Ty was one of my very best friends, with Gavin away so much, Ty had been around for me a lot in the past few years. The huge secret was, Ty was gay, so Selene’s mammoth crush on him wouldn’t do her any good.

He’s working until late. Her crestfallen expression was pitiful, and part of me wanted to tell her, just so she didn’t have her hopes up about something that wouldn’t ever happen, but I’d never betray Tyler like that.

I focused all my attention on Gavin, once more. He’d changed some in the six months since I’d last seen him. His muscles were getting bigger, somehow, it was crazy how much he must work out for a physique like that. I wondered what they all looked like when they exercised together. That would be a great spectator sport. My nipples hardened at the prospect of watching such a spectacle and I felt a dampening between my legs.

My body had changed a lot over the past year. My breasts had grown, my hair had gotten longer and my curves had definitely made themselves more obvious. I’d had a couple of boys at school show interest, but I always rebuffed their advances, knowing just who I was waiting for. Tonight was the night.

So, what’s the real reason you’re home? I heard Zach snap at his brother after our moms had gone to sit and relax in the front room.

I got leave, Gavin replied shortly. I knew there wasn’t any love lost between these two.

You going to the sandbox? My head snapped around to look at them, not really sure what that meant, but having a bad feeling about it. Gavin’s mouth tightened in frustration as he took a swig of his beer and looked away from his brother.

I had no idea what the sandbox was, or why Gavin seemed so irritated tonight by his brother’s questions, but I was just drunk enough to do something about it, something monumentally stupid.

Leaning up on my tiptoes, I whispered, let’s go outside, into Gavin’s ear. I felt his rigid body grow even tighter against me, but as he relaxed, I saw him nod slightly and he turned to head to the back yard.

Turning to follow, I glanced at Selene one more time and almost laughed out loud at her audacious wink. Thankfully, I held it inside, but as my foot crossed the threshold after Gavin, I heard Zach’s last muttered barb.

Bout fuckin’ time you hit that. My body tensed at the sneer in his voice. I didn’t hate anyone, but sometimes I really wanted to hate Zach.

Thankfully, I didn’t think Gavin had heard him, if he had, my plans probably wouldn’t be successful. I needed them to work. I’d been in love with Gavin forever, it seemed, I’d saved almost everything for him, for this night, I knew he would make it perfect.

Gavin

The last thing I needed right now was to punch my brother in his face. It was Dawn’s night, we should all behave, not act like idiots. Also, I knew that punching him wouldn’t change anything. He seemed to like his asshole behavior. Why he took it out on me, every time I saw him, didn’t make sense though. Zach had been an asshole since we were kids, even before Dad died. Zach was just like our father.

It sucked, I’d looked up to my big brother once. Before dad had died during the first Gulf War, Zach had done his best to protect our mom and me when dad came in pissed at the world. He’d try to redirect Dad’s attention onto himself, to take the beating that was sure to come. It rarely stopped Dad from at least getting to mom, but by then Zach would get me out of there and into the special hiding place he’d set up for me.

I couldn’t understand a boy who would do so much for others, to do his best to protect us, why now he would emulate the man who had terrorized us all. Did he not see the connection? Maybe he didn’t, I had no idea. The thing was, after Zach had gotten me hidden, and safe from Dad, he’d go back out there, usually with a bloody nose and busted lip, and get between the much bigger man and our mom.

Looking back, I could see that Dad had some serious PTSD shit going on, I’d seen plenty of that in my short time with the Corps. I knew too, from mom telling us as kids, that Dad’s parents weren’t nice either, so after a childhood of being given shit, and living through however many difficult situations in the Army, where he’d made his career, he’d become, probably just what he’d feared. Though, I had no way of knowing it, I couldn’t imagine my sweet mom falling for a guy who’d been an asshole to her.

My Gran and Pops were still in love, my Pops held Gran’s hand, held doors open for her, even held out her chair at their own dinner table, every day. They’d been like that since I was little, probably long before. I couldn’t imagine that with an example like them, my mom would have strayed so far off course with a total dick. There must have been something she’d seen in my father, but by the time it had gotten really bad, the war had begun, then he was gone.

A couple of years ago, she’d told me that she hadn’t planned for us to be there when he got back, she already had made plans with her parents to come back to Texas and live, she didn’t want Zach and me to live in that kind of home anymore. With the way things worked out, no one knew, that the new war widow had been about to leave her husband.

I had to wonder, how many situations, there were like that all around me. I knew, from personal experience, that very few things were as they seemed, including my Sweet Dawn, who’d pulled me out back to spend time with her, instead of dealing with my dick-of-a-brother.

She’d had her own ups and downs in life, I’d been there for plenty of them, but now, I worried about her. With me gone so much, we didn’t communicate like we should, and I had no idea what she was dealing with day to day. I did know that some new douche had been hanging around for the past few years - Tyler.

Fucking jackass name. He’d taken her to the prom, and from what I heard from my mom, he’d taken her to all the dances since they were both Sophomores. I’d been gone by then, and couldn’t do dick about it.

What was I supposed to do, anyway? I was twenty-two and about to be deployed - again. I couldn’t tell her - a sweet, naïve eighteen-year-old - that I wanted her, that I wanted her to wait for me. I didn't even know how long I'd be gone or if I'd come back. I wouldn't tie her to such an uncertain future. She deserved everything, and that was a hell of a lot more than I could offer.

I wondered though, where the fuck this Tyler guy was now. I’d seen him briefly once about a year ago, he was a football player, like I had been, and he’d dropped her off after a game. I’d watched and hadn’t seen him lean in to kiss her or anything, which had been good, for me. I hadn’t had to beat the shit out of the kid. It was strange though, if they'd been dating all this time, why wasn't he all over her? I knew I would be.

Taking a seat on the bench near the far fence, I forced myself to relax. It was nice of Dawn to come out here with me, to help me settle down. She was always like that, thinking of other people, always sensing what they needed and doing her best to help them.

Considering how she’d grown up, she was remarkably unmarred, naïve even. She’d been born to an eighteen-year-old single mother who had been kicked out on her ass by her judgmental, up-tight parents and abandon by Dawn’s father - whoever the hell he was. I wasn’t sure who even knew. I’d never seen him coming around, not in all the time I’d known her had I even heard of him meeting her.

She sat down next to me, much too close for comfort. I tried to shift away from her, but she followed, pushing her hand into the crook of my arm. The touch was unsettling, causing feelings I had no business acting on. She was way too young, besides, I was going to be deployed to parts unknown. I had to keep reminding myself of that, otherwise, I’d never be able to hold out.

With an uncertain future, there wasn’t any way I could start something with Dawn, no matter how much I wanted her. Her scent wafted through my nostrils, and as she rubbed the side of her breast against my arm, my dick went from semi-hard to throbbing with need.

What’s going on with you these days, little girl? I asked, adding the last on to remind myself of just who she was. When her body tensed next to me, I knew the comment had hit its target perfectly. I wasn’t sure, but I had a feeling she’d brought me out here for more than just getting me away from my brother. That couldn’t happen, not now.

Dawn seemed to relax back into me, pushing herself even closer. The November air was cold, but with her sitting this close, I couldn’t feel it. Her heat at my side was all I could focus on, well that and the feel of her luscious tits that seemed to have doubled in size since I’d seen her last. She’d always been pretty, but now with her long blonde hair that curled at the ends and her body that was definitely that of a woman, she was gorgeous.

Not much, just working so I can take more classes at school next semester. How long will you be home? Her soft, melodious voice rang through the silent night, wrapping me up in her sweetness. I wanted to stay right there, forever. Not. Going. To. Happen. Asshole! I had to keep telling myself, I couldn’t touch her.

Good, how’s your mom doing? I decided to go for the trivial. I knew how Sarah was, whenever I spoke to my mom, I got a full update on everyone, including Dawn, sometimes that was the hardest part about calling home. Knowing that she was there, the girl at home, I knew, or I thought I did, how she felt, that she wanted more between us. She was just one kiss away from being mine.

Instead of answering though, she moved in even closer to me, she’d be in my lap next. This shit was ridiculous. Moving her hand down from my arm, she traced little circles on my thigh - my fucking thigh. Was she trying to kill me?

Gavin? She purred into my ear, when had she moved her lips to my neck? Jesus, she was kissing the side of my neck. I loved the feel, loved the way her lips were soft against me.

Yeah? I asked, my voice sounding strained, which was about right, since my dick was being strangled in my pants.

Let’s go to your mom’s house. No one’s there right now. Was she out of her mind? Somehow she’d grown three extra hands, I felt one on my chest and one rubbing my thigh, moving way too high up. She was about to find out just what she did to me.

Instead of allowing her to discover how she affected me, I jumped up, ran my fingers through my almost non-existent hair and started to pace.

The nervous energy that was bottled up inside me, was overpowering, I wanted to pounce, wanted to grab her up, toss her over my shoulder and run to my mom’s. I wanted to throw her down on the grass right here, spread her creamy thighs and sink into what was surely the tightest pussy I’d ever feel.

I couldn’t, wouldn’t do any of that. I’d never leave her, abandon her to an unknown future, if I claimed her, it would be forever and I didn’t know if I had a forever right now.

Dawn, I - I started to speak, but before I got the chance, to finish I looked down to explain, something. I wasn’t sure what, but I was going to explain something.

When my head dipped, she was right there, again; right fucking on me! How did she move so fast?

What? I got out, before she lifted up on her toes and slammed her lips onto mine.

It took me a full thirty seconds for my body to get the message that kissing Dawn wasn’t what I was supposed to be doing. She felt so good pressed to me, her soft curves under my hands, my cock pressing hard into her stomach, I wanted her like nothing I’d ever wanted before.

I can’t have her, I can’t fucking have her, not now, not yet! I was screaming inside my head, until finally the message was relayed to my body. I took a giant step backward, moving my hands to her shoulders to keep her back, away from me.

Dawn, stop, I can’t do this, I can’t, we can’t. You’re too young, I’m going to be gone, I can’t. It’s not right, we can’t do this. You have to understand. I was frantically backing up, waving my hands around now, trying to get my thoughts in order. I needed to make her see, I didn’t want to hurt her, but she had to understand that this just wasn’t the time.

I’m not too young, Gavin McNeil, I’m eighteen! I’ve loved you forever, I waited. She yelled indignantly.

Wait, what? She waited? Was she? Fuck, I couldn’t think about her being a virgin, not right now. Fuck, she was killing me. There was absolutely no blood left in my brain. I had no idea how I was actually making words come out.

You are, you’re too young for me. I can’t see you that way, it isn’t right. I meant that I couldn’t see her that way, now, not that I wasn’t able to, because damn, I saw her exactly like that.

Unfortunately, I figured out what I’d said and what it had sounded like when her face paled, her eyes widened in horrified embarrassment and her entire body stilled, as if frozen in place. I watched as Dawn Adams’ heart broke, right there, in front of me and there wasn’t anything I could do about it.

I wanted to take her into my arms and explain, but she didn’t give me the chance. I would have given anything if she would keep waiting for me, but that was something I couldn’t ask for.

No, god, no. I’m so sorry Gavin. I, I can’t believe I did that. I guess I’ve had a bit too much, right? Party and all. I think I’ll just- She just stopped, didn’t say any more, just motioned toward the house and looked at it, longingly, as if all she ever wanted in life was to be in that house.

Wait, no, that’s not- I was too late to explain.

I watched, dumbstruck as Dawn rushed away from me, going in the side door, closest to her room. She was escaping. I’d fucked it all up. I’d wanted to explain that this wasn’t the right time, that I couldn’t do that, not now. I’d needed to be honest, but I’d fucked it up.

I’d never had a hard time talking to her, not to Dawn. I’d been in some sort of love with her too, forever. When we were young it hadn’t been like that and I hadn’t thought of her sexually until about a year or so ago, which had made me feel like an asshole, since she’d only been about seventeen. But damn, a man could only resist so much.

Two weeks passed without a single sighting of the blonde haired beauty. She graced my dreams every night and stayed in my thoughts every day. My mom had noticed my bad mood, but chalked it up to the deployment that was coming all too quickly. I wanted to talk to Dawn, to explain what I’d meant, to ease her bruised pride, but I’d never been given the chance.

Considering that she lived across the street, it was odd that I hadn’t seen her. She must have been working hard to avoid me. I had one chance left, just one, before I was gone for who knew how long.

Kissing my mom’s cheek one last time, I left her standing in the living room of her house with tears in her eyes. She’d been an Army wife and now had two sons in the military, so she was a pro at the hardest goodbyes.

I walked out, looked at my truck and over to Dawn’s house. Her car was in the driveway and her mom’s wasn’t. This was my chance.

Jogging across the small, quiet street, lined with old, small houses, I made it to her front door. No lights were visible inside, no noise, nothing at all. Was she hiding from me still?

I knocked loudly and rang the bell a few times, but heard nothing from within. She either wasn’t home or wasn’t coming to the door.

Glancing down at my watch, I saw that my time was up, I had to go. I’d waited too long, she’d avoided me too well, I wasn’t going to get the chance to talk to her now.

In total frustration and sadness, I slowly walked back, climbed into my truck and started to drive away, almost certain when I glanced over at her house once more, that someone was watching me from the front window.

Chapter 1

Dawn

Why the hell is he here? I asked myself for the fifth time, looking at Gavin McNeil for the first time in eight years. I knew it was him, walking into Aurora’s house, his body had changed, his face was somehow different, more angular, harder, but his eyes, those laughing chocolate eyes that hid so much, were the same.

He hadn’t noticed me, I wondered if he would. I knew he wouldn’t have forgotten me, it had been a long time, but we’d been close for too many years. Besides, my mom still updated me on his life, though not as much since his mom had gotten married and moved. Maybe he was seeing someone and would have someone meet him here later. That would be good, or bad, ah hell, it didn’t matter. This would be awkward regardless.

Shit, he’s coming over here, I thought, wondering if I could sneak out somehow. Could I escape down the hallway or out the back door?

Forcing my attention away from him, and engaging with Hope and Aurora again, I made a mental note of the location of my purse, and considered how long it would take to grab it and run out the front door. I tried to come up with a suitable excuse, something to get me away from the man I never wanted to see again, without looking totally rude.

I’d loved Gavin like only an innocent girl could. In my mind, he’d been perfect, he’d been