Here's another peek into A Dying Gift just one day before release!
For a hot as fuck day, he was in a good mood. Jacob hadn't spit up on him that morning and his poop was thankfully not as sticky and stinky as it had been following his birth. That was some toxic shit, right there. He'd thought he wouldn't be able to handle it because, let's be honest, babies had some funky smells, but he'd only gagged the first few times. He'd even figured out to gently press on Jacob's lower tummy before opening his diaper to make sure the little stinker was done peeing after the first baby fountain surprise. Even then, he peeked first to see if Jacob was trying to lull him into complacency before he tried tagging him again. Tyler was feeling good about his daddy skills. He was feeling good about a lot of things. He was feeling good right up until he pulled into the lab's parking lot and spotted Priscilla queen of the concrete jungle and her gorilla goons. Oh, and Kian, couldn't forget Kian, tried, but Morpheus was a bitch and wouldn't let him. What the fuck was the salty prehistoric bitch doing here? He put the car in park, turned it off, and leaned his head back against the seat. Tyler took a deep breath. He could do this. He really could. If he focused his attention on Priscilla and not how Kian made his knees melt and his dick hard, he could do this.
"Come on, little man." He said glancing in the rearview mirror at the group waiting for him. "Time to meet Uncle Kian and great grandma methuselah."
Yeah, he was terrible sometimes, but he really disliked the woman.
Climbing out of the car, Tyler adjusted his hat and closed the door. He glanced at them from behind his sunglasses. How in the hell was Kian wearing a suit and not only not melting but looking as if he just stepped out of GQ? The bastard. Tyler shook his head and opened the rear door of the car. He climbed in and looked at Jacob who gave him another grin.
"Ready, pickle?" He asked. Jacob waved and kicked and gurgled as Tyler unlatched his carrier and backed out of the car.
"Is there anything I can help with?" Kian's deep voice brushed over his ears like a caress even as the suddenness of it made him jump a little.
"Geez Louise." Tyler snapped as he whirled around and glared at him. "Don't do that!"
"I'm sorry." Although the pursing of his lips indicated he was trying not to, at the very least, smile and so Tyler was going to call bullshit on his apology. "I didn't mean to startle you."
"Then don't sneak up on me all stealthy and shit." Tyler grumbled, trying not to let his eyes wander over the incredibly lovely way Kian's dove gray suit fit him. "What are you doing here anyway?"
"Well," Kian glanced over at Priscilla.
"How does she not get a crick in her neck trying to look down her nose at people taller than her?" Tyler mused blushing when Kian chuckled. "Oh, um, yeah, sorry about that. I just, she and I don't get along."
"My grandmother has made a habit of refusing to acknowledge anything that does not fall into line with her wishes unless forced to do so." Kian said turning back to him with a smile and oh, that smile was dangerous.
"Oh, Annie must have given her fits."
"You have no idea." Kian said softly. "From about the age of eight, she was alternately the lovely granddaughter and the little hellion depending on who was in earshot."
"I can believe it." Tyler said as he looked at Kian, at the way his eyes softened when he spoke of his sister, the sadness and pain there. Had Kian even gotten a chance to grieve before Priscilla was trying to order him about. "Could you grab the stroller out of the back?"
"Hm?" Kian said as if Tyler's words had pulled him from some distant thought. "Oh, yes, of course."
"The button is tucked underneath, just above the license plate." He said as he shifted the carrier and grabbed the diaper bag to fling over one shoulder. He closed the rear passenger door and walked around the end of the car to find Kian staring at the compact stroller in adorable confusion. "Yeah, I still wear that look half the time I use this thing."
"It looks…I'd rather deal with shareholders in a tizzy." Kian muttered.
"Tizzy? How is it that word totally suits you and yet you're not much older than I am?" Tyler chuckled.
"What do you mean?"
"It's an old-fashioned word." Tyler said as he grabbed the handle of the stroller, pressed the button, and jerked, allowing the weight of it to pull the stroller open and engage the locks. Kian's eyes widened and Tyler felt inordinately proud of himself. "Tizzy, it's…cute."
Kian smiled again. Oh, he really needed to stop doing that. "Most of the shareholders I deal with fit the word. Granps used it a lot to describe just about any situation where people got upset, particularly Gran."
"You're being awful nice today." Tyler said casually as he placed the infant carrier in the stroller, secured it in place, and pulled the shade over Jacob. "Not like the last time we met."
"I…was not at my best, I'll admit." Kian said rubbing the back of his neck. "And you caught me off guard."
"Honestly, you are not the type of man my sister usually dallies with." Kian said. Why was it so adorable the way he talked? "I was expecting a large, rather intellectually-challenged, athletic type with whom I would need to use small monosyllabic words."
"Ah, a dumb jock."
"If we must put it so bluntly, yes."
"Annie did have a type." Tyler said with a nod. "They never lasted very long, though, because of the fact they could barely string a sentence together. Once the sex got boring, she moved on."
"Then you see how you were…unexpected?"
"Yeah, I guess but it doesn't excuse the behavior or the demand. I'm not giving up my son and despite what your grandmother wishes, Jacob is my son." Tyler pointed out as they walked across the parking lot. "This second paternity test is only going to confirm what the first one said. It's a waste of time."
"I'm afraid Annie and I come by our stubbornness honestly." Kian said as they approached Priscilla and her goons. "Well, Gran, you can stop fretting, now. Mr. Koh brought Jacob as requested."
"Please, call me Tyler." He said as he looked up at Kian. "And a court order is hardly a request, is it, Mrs. Charlemont."
"We shall take the child from here." Priscilla said motioning one of her guards forward. "You may wait in the lobby."
"Oh, I don't think so." Tyler scoffed. "You must be smoking some good shit if you think I'm letting you walk off with my son."
"You are a vulgar hooligan."
"Gran, do not make this unpleasant." Kian warned his voice deep and firm, and that did something to Tyler he hadn't experienced before but definitely wanted to feel again, preferably when they were alone in a bedroom and naked. Kian hadn't pushed a button; he'd punched it like a boss. "I will accompany Tyler and Jacob. You will return home."
"Gran." Kian's voice brooked no argument. Stunned, Tyler could only stare as Priscilla held her ground for all of about two seconds before she managed to elegantly stomp to her car. Impressive, those centuries of practice must have helped. He turned to look at Kian with new respect and not a little interest. When Kian looked back at him Tyler felt caught in his vivid green eyes.
"Oh my, you are a dangerous, dangerous man, Kian Charlemont." He whispered.
"You have no idea, Tyler Koh."
"I'm afraid I might want to find out."
"I might want to let you."
"Good to know."
"We'd get arrested if we do it now." Tyler whispered.
"At the very least." Kian purred as he stepped closer.
"Damn." Tyler panted softly.
"Inside." Kian commanded. "It's too hot for Jacob and we want to get this formality over with as soon as possible."
"Okay." Was that really his voice coming out all breathy? Tyler wanted to wince but he was too busy staring at Kian's mouth. Then heat blossomed on his back and he was being guided forward into the cooler building. Yes, brain was melted and not from the damned temperature. He thoroughly placed the blame at Kian's feet and vengeance would be his…somehow.