||Mia’s head snapped toward James and she wondered why she was being attacked. This man was
almost an exact replica of the man she loved, broad shoulders, beautiful chestnut complexion, a mouth
full of white teeth and a killer smile. He didn’t however have Damien’s deep sexy voice, though his own
wasn’t bad. And he definitely didn’t inspire love in her the way his son did. No on the contrary, what
she was feeling for the older man was a definite distaste. There was something slimy about him. While
his mouth spoke of her hurting Damien, he’d used his eyes to undress her. She felt it as surely as if
he’d used his hands and she felt disgusted.
“Leave her alone, James.”
“I’m just saying I don’t see what all the fuss is about. She’s just a little slip of a thing. I don’t see how
she could have gotten the boy all twisted up like she did. I want to know her secret. What’s the harm
in asking her that?”
“It’s none of your business.”
Mia turned grateful eyes to Kathy before scanning the stage for Damien, praying he would hurry.
There were still three or four women hanging around him, wanting his autograph and he was obliging.
“Damien,” she whispered knowing he couldn’t possibly hear her. But somehow he turned and caught
her eye and his eyes widened in alarm. She could tell he was rushing through the next autograph.
Then he literally jumped from the stage and came toward her. A sigh of relief escaped Mia. This was
one time she was grateful to be rescued. She stood and so did Kathy and James.
“Hey, you came. I didn’t see you.” Damien said to his parents.
“No, I suppose you didn’t. Not when you kept looking over this way at this, little girl here.”
Again Mia felt dirty. There wasn’t anything wrong with the man’s words, not really even with the way he’
d said it. But her skin was crawling and it was no coincidence.
Damien’s arm slid around her and she could almost swear that he was trying to push her behind him.
“I didn’t know Mia was going to be here.” Damien answered his father’s unasked question.
“Then how did she rate a special seat right here in the front while your mother and I were stuck in the
dark, in some funky little corner? And by the way, hot shot, we had to pay to get in.”
James was poking Damien in the chest with his finger as he punctuated each word. Kathy was biting
her lip and Damien was embarrassed. Mia could understand. She was embarrassed for him. Then
again, dealing with family embarrassment was her specialty. Her mother had prepared her from a
lifetime of putting her in compromising positions how to deal with such situations. Besides she’d finally
noticed something she should have noticed before. James was feeling no pain. It was obvious he’d
had more than a few drinks.
“How come she rates and we don’t? We’ve been the ones supporting you. She had her ass off
somewhere doing God knows what, with whoever. But we know it wasn’t you. So why did you reserve
a front row seat for her and not us?”
Now it was definitely not her imagination. Damien was positioning his body in front of hers. He was
trying to protect her. Instead of feeling the intense anger and dislike for his father that she had felt a
moment before, she felt a surge of love for Damien.
“I’ll pay for your admission and your drinks. Just tell me what you spent.”
The sound of Damien’s voice was pure annoyance. Mia was extremely familiar with that tone.
“Fifty dollars, admission and drinks.” Kathy looked at her son and smiled weakly.
Mia watched at Damien’s hand went to his pocket.
“How the hell would you know? Did you pay for anything?” James interrupted. “It was a hundred.”
Mia observed this family situation, she saw the tightening of Damien’s jaw line from her position behind
him. She also saw as he counted out the money and handed it to his father that he didn’t have
anything left in his wallet.
“Now that you have your money, can I please give the two of you a proper introduction? Mia, my
parents, my mother Kathy Morrison and my father James Terrell." He continued before anyone else
got the chance to, “no they’re not divorced. They were never married. Sorry, Pop, I just thought I’d
beat you to it.”
He kissed his mother’s cheek and Mia watched the woman’s eyes as they shuttered and became
veiled. Damien had never spoken a lot about his parents, just that he’d moved back home with his
mother. His father, he hadn’t mentioned.
“Come on everyone, lets sit down.” Damien said.
“I still want to know how she rates a front row table.” James said as he crumbled Damien’s money and
put it in his pocket.
“Ashleigh asked me to reserve a table for her. I did.”
“You’re banging them both.” James asked.
Damien leaned over and whispered to his father and when he pulled away the man looked Mia over, a
slight sneer on his face.
“I’m sorry, Mia, it seems my son thinks I’ve offended you. Perhaps I was wrong in my assessment of
you. Maybe you didn’t think you were better than Damien or too good for him.” He turned from Mia to
glare at his son. “Maybe it was my son who’s gotten weak since he moved back home with his mama.”
A huge scowl replaced the sneer. “Man this woman’s got you whipped. I warned you about that.” He
then turned his glare on Kathy. “So you finally got your way. You managed to turn my son into a
freaking mama’s boy.” Well if I have any say about it and you know I always have,” he laughed
crudely. “I’m going to see to it that he changes back.”
He laughed at Mia. “Enjoy this while you can because I’m going to go find my sons balls. And when I
do I’m going to give them back to him and he’s going to start acting like a man again, no more shit
about pulling some woman on the stage and singing to her, telling the whole damn audience that he’s
in love with her.” He glared at Damien. “Do you think I ever did that with your mother? I’ll tell you.
Mia watched as Kathy winced noticeable as though she’d been hit. “I don’t--
“I agree with Mia,” Damien said interrupting her, turning to look at her, pleading with his eyes. “I don’t
think now’s the time for this.”
“Makes me no never mind.” James retorted. “I’m outta here.”
“James,” Kathy stood. “How am I supposed to get home?”
The look he gave her was one so intense that what before had been only dislike turned to something