Billionaire Unloved - Page 68

“When is your birthday?”

“Next month,” she answered. “A few days after I get married.”

“Aren’t you cutting it pretty close?”

Lia shrugged. “It doesn’t matter since the wedding is already planned.” She stooped down as she said, “Which reminds me that I have an invite for you and your hot guy over there.”

I took the invitation from her hand. It seemed I was going to have more than one wedding to attend in the near future. “I’d love to come,” I replied.

“Honestly, if I’d known about you sooner, I would have asked you to do the cake, but Stuart is anal. Everything was worked out months ago.”

“That’s okay,” I said hurriedly. “I don’t have a ton of experience doing huge cakes alone.”

Lia nodded. “Honestly, sometimes I just want the wedding to be over. It’s consumed so much of my time, and I’ve been wanting to jump on Indulgent’s popularity by getting another store for a while now. Zeke deserves to get paid back for the enormous risk he took in being my partner, too.”

“He’s not going to be your partner anymore?”

She shook her head, and her eyes grew sad. “We were never meant to be permanent partners. It was a loan for him. Zeke and I have known each other since we were teenagers. He did it just because we’re friends. And he’s pulled his weight, even though he didn’t have to. He helped every step of the way.”

“Does he really need the money back?”

Lia pulled a face. “Oh, God, no. He isn’t as wealthy as Jett by any means, but he’s still filthy rich. But I want to pay him back. We aren’t related or involved in any way, and he stuck his neck out for me. But I guess anybody who is ambitious needs a hand when the money isn’t there.”

I thought about her comment for a moment. “I know what you mean,” I told her a few minutes later. “It was hard for me to take loans and gifts from Jett, especially when I knew I couldn’t pay him back anytime soon.”

“Your honey has more money than God,” Lia replied. “And he’s your guy. Why would you worry about that?”

“The same reason you worry about paying Zeke back.”

“But Zeke and I aren’t involved. And if he really wanted to give me a BMW and I knew he’d never miss the money, I’d probably take it because we’re friends.”

“I barely knew Jett,” I confessed. “I was homeless and the victim of human trafficking. Jett saved my life.”

Lia looked stunned as she answered, “Oh, honey. I’m so sorry. Were you hurt?”

“Long story. I’m okay, but do you have any idea what it’s like to suddenly step into a fairy tale when you’ve lived most of your life as a prisoner of your circumstances?”

“Like Cinderella,” Lia said in an awed tone.

I nodded. “Pretty much. Jett is almost too good to be true. Sometimes I’m afraid that I’ll wake up and discover all of this is a dream.”

“I get that,” Lia said. “But Jett adores you. It’s pretty obvious. And I doubt there’s anyone in the world who deserves a happy ending as much as you do. Take what he’s offering you if you want it, Ruby. I’ve learned not to question some things in life. Good and bad things happen. It’s how we handle those good and bad times that matter.”

“But he buys me extravagant stuff.”

“It’s only a luxury in your world. Think about it, Ruby. Jett has never known a day when he wasn’t incredibly wealthy. It was a way of life for him even before Lawson really became a tech giant. If you think about it, Jett giving you a car is like you giving me a new pair of shoes or something. Those things are inconsequential to him, but it’s a very big deal to you. So you can just give him a kiss, thank him, and move on after he gives you another car or a new mansion.” She hesitated before she added, “Shit, I can’t believe I just said that.”

I laughed because the look on her face was priceless.

“No, you’re right,” I admitted. “His net worth is so enormous that it really is nothing for him. I guess that’s just so hard for me to accept.”