Nights of Fantasy

By: Sherelle Green


Six months ago…

“If you want me to leave with you, you’ll have to kiss me first.”

Jaleen Walker glanced at his friends before setting his eyes on the woman who was making it extremely difficult to keep his distance. He’d arrived at the bar ten minutes prior, along with the other men celebrating his friend Aiden’s bachelor party.

When Aiden Chase had received a call from his soon-to-be wife, Summer Dupree, Jaleen’d watched Aiden’s face turn from excitement to concern when he learned his fiancée had had one too many fruity drinks. It had only taken a minute for Aiden to announce that he wanted to crash Summer’s bachelorette party.

Since Summer was like a little sister to Jaleen, he hadn’t argued with Aiden and had quickly informed the guys that the bachelor party was about to become coed. Jaleen hadn’t even known Aiden for an entire year, but the two had immediately hit it off when Summer had taken him to a holiday celebration last year.

Summer and Aiden were getting married in less than forty-eight hours and Jaleen couldn’t be happier for the both of them. It seemed like all of his friends were tying the knot and he’d been to more pre-and postwedding celebrations over the past few years than he could count.

Now that the men had arrived at the chic Miami lounge, they learned that Summer wasn’t the only one tipsy. Most of the women appeared to be feeling a buzz and dancing as if they didn’t have to get up in the morning for rehearsal. Reacting quickly, each husband, fiancé or boyfriend went to their significant other to join them on the dance floor, leaving only those unattached to watch the scene unfold.

“I’ll be right back,” Jaleen said to Danni, ignoring the way her lips curled into the perfect pout.

Jaleen looked at the remaining men and motioned for them to group together. “Maybe we should get all the women some water,” he suggested to his friend Luke, Aiden’s friend Dax, Summer’s cousin Malakai and a few others. “Then I’ll ask Aiden and the others if they need help getting any of the other ladies back to the hotel. But, fellas, let’s remember that these women are friends with Aiden and Summer, so we have to act respectfully.”

“Agreed,” Dax said as the other men nodded their heads. “I think I have a bottle of aspirin in my rental car, so I’ll grab that, too.”

Jaleen glanced at Malakai, both men knowing that the statement was made for the men who weren’t either family or like family to the happy couple. They didn’t have to worry about Luke and Dax because both were stand-up men.

Once they’d gotten the bottles of water and aspirin ready for the women, they returned to the group. Jaleen almost laughed at the way Luke and Dax made a beeline for two of Summer’s friends and business associates, Nicole LeBlanc and Aaliyah Bai.

“They are so predictable,” Malakai said, shaking his head. “I assume you’re going to find Danni?”

Jaleen didn’t have to respond because Malakai was already heading over to the other men to assist with a couple of Summer’s high school friends. It was well-known news that although Jaleen and Danni were constantly bickering, they had a close friendship. He wouldn’t be surprised if bets were going around the group that they’d be the next pair to start dating. But Jaleen knew that could never happen. He wasn’t exactly a one-woman type of man. Although he never dated more than one woman at the same time, he had a reputation for not allowing a woman to make it past the one-month mark.

Jaleen glanced around the VIP area and dance floor, finally finding Danni in the corner of the lounge. As he approached, he tried to ignore the soft sway of her hips as she moved to the beat of the music. She looks beautiful. All the women were wearing teal dresses while Summer was in all white. Despite the fact that the dresses were each similar in style, it was Danni’s teal formfitting dress that had his undivided attention.

“There you are,” he said when he’d reached her. “Why are you all the way over here?”

“Because I knew you would find me.” Her eyes sparkled with interest. “And I didn’t want all our friends to see when you kissed me.”

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