I figured since I'm hoping to post a longish Valentine's Day update on the weekend, it'd be okay to share something super short. All characters are Janet's. Mistakes are mine.

"Ram told me you were up here."

"Ram has a big mouth."

"He's paid to have a big mouth, Babe."

I touché-saluted him with the bottle of beer I'd taken from his fridge.

"What are you doing here?"

"I missed you?" I said.

"I'd believe that if you hadn't framed it as a question."

I blew the curl that refused to stay in my ponytail up off my forehead. Ranger didn't press me further. He just stared at me until I did what he wanted me to.

"Fine. I hate my apartment and my life. I want new ones. I was also out of beer," I admitted, taking a swig from the one I stole. "I thought once I drank one, in a better place that reminds me of a part of my life that doesn't suck, I'd be okay to go home, get changed for dinner, and be able to tolerate a few hours with my family."

He moved in close and inspected the bottle sitting on the table. "You're nearing the end. Do you feel any better?"

"Nope. This was obviously a mistake."

He pressed a kiss to my head before sitting down beside me. "Why?"

"Because I love your place, you're actually here instead of on five, and I really don't want to trade the peace and the company for what's awaiting me in the Burg."

His eyes locked on mine and my breath got stuck in my lungs.

"I have a one-word solution to all your problems, Babe."

"You do?"


"What is it?"