Your Captivating Love (The Bennett Family #2)


by Layla Hagen

Chapter One

Logan

“How do you feel?” I ask my sister the second she climbs in my car.

Pippa straightens her shoulders. “Free. Finally.”

She just signed her divorce papers, so I suppose free is the appropriate word. However, free does not equal fine, which means my top priority for today is taking care of my sister and cheering her up.

This was easy when we were teenagers. All I had to do to brighten her up was to make sure there was plenty of ice cream around, and possibly take her to see a movie. Now that she’s thirty, things have changed, but I’m still her older brother, and it’s still up to me to find a way to lift her spirits.

“What do you want to do?” I question.

“Ava and Sebastian are having dinner at my favorite sushi restaurant. We could join them.”

“Sebastian won’t appreciate us crashing his date.” Our brother fiercely guards his time with his fiancée.

“Oh, we won’t,” Pippa says. The corners of her mouth lift up in a genuine smile for the first time today. I narrow my eyes, sensing foul play. In the months since she discovered what a scumbag her now ex-husband is, Pippa has taken up a dangerous hobby: matchmaking. She told our mother her plan is to find the perfect match for each of her siblings. Since there are nine of us, it’s an ambitious project. Her first target was Sebastian, our oldest brother. As ridiculous as I find Pippa’s idea, he did end up with the perfect woman for him.

Our parents have been married for more than thirty years, and they love each other. I can understand the appeal the perfect match has to Pippa. I envy our parents too, but as far as I’m concerned, what they have is impossible to find. It was a lucky strike for them, as it was for Sebastian and Ava.

Unfortunately, Pippa seems to be focusing her matchmaking efforts on me now. Unbelievable. I’m the CFO of a billion-dollar company. I can get my own damn woman if I want one.

“Pippa, will anyone else be joining Ava and Sebastian at dinner?” I ask.

“Ava’s best friend, Nadine. You know, the one who just moved here?”

Jackpot. I knew this was a setup. I have two choices: put my foot down and tell my sister to find another pastime, or suck it up and go with her plan. The problem: I can’t say no to any of my three sisters. I never could, which often led me into trouble in the past. I have a hunch the same thing is about to happen. But even armed with this suspicion, I can’t say no. If meeting this Nadine will take my sister’s mind off her misery, even if only for a few hours, it’s worth it.

“I’ve heard about her,” I mumble.

“Great, let’s go then.” As I rev the car’s engine, I glance at my sister again. Pippa is now borderline ecstatic, which means I’m a dead man.

Nadine, you’d better be fun, or sexy.

Chapter Two

Nadine

“Welcome to San Francisco.” My best friend, Ava, her fiancé, Sebastian Bennett, and I clink our glasses.

“I’m so excited. It’s finally sinking in that I live here now.” I moved to San Francisco two weeks ago; but I’ve spent most of my time running around getting my ducks in a row, which is why we’re just now having a welcome dinner. The place is perfect, with an outdoor bar overlooking the Twin Peaks, and an indoor restaurant. It’s elegant but not over the top, which I appreciate.

Ava has told me from the moment I arrived in town that the Bennetts are not snobs despite being billionaires, but I suspected her love for Sebastian made her biased. Upon meeting him and his sisters, Pippa and Alice, I realized Ava was right. They’re the opposite of snobs. Maybe it’s because they weren’t born into wealth.

In fact, Ava told me their family was scrambling to make ends meet when Sebastian started Bennett Enterprises more than a decade ago. Since then, it’s grown to be one of the most famous jewelry companies. This family has all my respect. I take meeting them as a good omen that things will be different for me in San Francisco. Better.

“Pippa, Logan, glad you made it in time for a drink,” Sebastian says to someone behind me. I turn on my heels and catch my breath. I’ve seen pictures of the entire Bennett family, and Logan caught my eye from the very beginning. But seeing him in the flesh is an entirely different experience. Dressed in a navy suit, Logan could easily grace a poster for men’s cologne. If they hung it on a billboard, I guarantee it’d cause major traffic accidents.

He’s hands down the sexiest man I’ve ever laid eyes on. He has broad shoulders and a muscular build, his high cheekbones emphasizing his dark eyes. His brown hair is ravished as if he just ran his hand through it. All of a sudden, my fingers yearn to touch those luscious locks and his full lips.

Damn.

It’s been a long time since a man affected me this strongly. Biting the inside of my cheek, I look away from Logan. The last thing I need right now is to be pining after any man, especially my best friend’s future brother-in-law.

“Logan, this is Nadine,” Ava says. Without hesitation, Logan shakes my hand. His touch lights a match inside me.

“Nice to meet you, Nadine.” Even his voice is sexy. I keep my hand in his a little too long before realizing it’s time to break off the contact. I withdraw my hand quickly, giving him a small smile.

“Let’s get you two some drinks,” Sebastian chimes in. He calls a waitress over and we order. She brings the drinks to us in no time.

We nurse our drinks while standing around a high bar table. I do my best to keep my gaze from Logan and fail often. Oh, what the hell... I might be on a self-imposed break from men, but that doesn’t mean I can’t admire a fine specimen of the male variety when I see one. Let the ogling of Logan Bennett officially begin.

“Let’s toast to Pippa’s freedom,” Sebastian suggests, snapping me out of my daydreaming. Right. I remember Ava telling me Pippa signed her divorce papers today. As we toast, I notice a shift in the siblings’ body language. At the word freedom, Pippa’s smile faltered. Logan and Sebastian both put a reassuring hand on her shoulder.

“If you want us to mess up the guy’s face or life, say the word,” Logan tells her, and I have the slight suspicion he’s only half joking. His grip on her shoulder tightens a notch, and Pippa’s smile returns. It’s endearing to see them show so much tenderness toward their sister. I’m an only child, so I wouldn’t know anything about this firsthand. It must be wonderful to have someone to rely on through the good and bad. I mostly have to rely on myself.

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