I’ll say, if that teeny glimpse is any indication. But I seal my lips as James leads me through a large utility room out into a narrow corridor. The sound of several voices chatting grows louder as we advance. I’m surprised, and a little uncomfortable, when James takes my hand and leads me into a vast open-plan kitchen and dining area. Floor-to-ceiling windows frame the room at the front, facing out onto the magnificent gardens.
All conversation mutes instantly, and eight heads fixate on me. I clasp James’s hand more firmly, previous discomfort forgotten. “Everyone,” he says, smiling warmly, “This is Faye.”
I do a quick scan of the room, and my eyes almost bug out at the sight of so much male hotness. Three near-identical-looking boys are seated on benches surrounding a long narrow table at one end of the room. They have the same dark hair and blue eyes as Kyler, but their faces are rounder and still a little babyish. The triplets, I’m guessing.
Two older boys are propped against one side of a long, wide island unit, eyeing me intensely. One of the boys straightens up, crossing his arms around his chest as he blatantly stares at me through almond-shaped blue eyes. Biceps bulge under the short sleeves of his shirt, and my eyes gravitate to the edge of the tattoo peeking out. His hair is longer than the others, but that messy bed-head look suits him.
Kyler is leaning back against a marble countertop, sporting an impressively blank expression. Another boy is at his side, blatantly checking me out. He’s a couple of inches shorter than Kyler and every bit as obnoxiously good-looking. He is wearing an unbuttoned black shirt and khaki shorts. Wide blue eyes lock on mine, and he winks. I lift a brow and his grin expands.
This gene pool is completely unfair to the rest of us mere mortals.
Add the obvious obscene wealth to the mix, and you have quite a heady combination. Girls must be crawling all over these dudes.
James squeezes my hand, and I refocus. Clearing my throat, I offer up a semi-confident smile. “Hi.”
A stunning blonde-haired woman steps forward to greet me. Wearing a figure-hugging black pants suit with a cream silk blouse and a string of pearls at her neck, she is the epitome of classic chic. Her short hair is styled into an edgy bob that works well with her heart-shaped face. Her pale blue eyes are carbon copies of Kyler’s.
“Oh my gosh, honey,” she says, smiling as she reels me in for a hug. “It’s so wonderful to meet you. I’m Alexandra Kennedy, but you can call me Alex.” I stand awkwardly in her embrace, conscious of the focused stares of her seven sons.
All eyes are on us.
She steps back, holding me at arm’s length. “Wow, I see my husband wasn’t exaggerating. You are stunning. Totally gorgeous.” Unease prickles my skin as she peruses my body. “Could you remove your sweater?”
This family is so weird. With a capital W.
My eyes dart to hers as someone shouts out, “Now we’re talking.”
“Kalvin!” James reprimands his son, and a low chuckle rings out in the room.
“What?” I staple my arms over my chest, making my intent clear.
“Alex.” James’ tone is exasperated. “Leave the poor girl, alone. She only just got here!”
“Relax, sweetheart.” She pats my arm. “I’m only trying to gauge your dimensions so Courtney can organize your closet.”
“You could just ask,” I suggest. “And Courtney is …?”
“My personal assistant,” Alex confirms. “She’ll organize some things for you. Here’s her business card.” She thrusts a white, black, and red embossed card into my hand. “Email her your sizes and requirements tomorrow. I already have a few items in mind. With your figure, and your height, you can carry off most any look.” She taps a finger against her lips as she ponders something. “Have you ever considered modeling, honey?”
A chorus of groans echoes in the room. “Mom! Seriously?” One of the triplets climbs out of his seat and crosses the floor. “Do you have to ask every person you come into contact with?” He stops in front of me, mock-bowing at the waist. Lifting my hand to his lips, he deposits a light kiss on my skin. “I’m Keaton.” He straightens up. “And you’re hot.” He flashes a cheeky grin, and I can’t help but reciprocate.
“And that’s Kent and Keanu,” he adds, pointing at the other two triplets who have yet to make a move. The stylishly groomed one gives me a quick wave while the sullen-faced boy barely tips his head in my direction. “Don’t take their lack of enthusiasm too personally,” Keaton explains. “Keanu, a.k.a. ‘The Poser’ is far too obsessed with himself and ‘The Delinquent’— that’s Kent—is probably too busy plotting his next criminal activity.” Kent scowls at his brother with barely contained annoyance.
I’m trying to figure out if Keaton is joking or serious when the boy lounging beside Kyler pushes off the counter and saunters toward me. I notice a faint purplish mark on the side of his neck as he stands directly in front of me. Reaching out, he rubs locks of my hair between his fingers. I jerk back out of his reach. “What’s with the hair?”
“What’s with the hickey?” I retort, flicking my fingers in the direction of his marked skin. He tosses me a lazy smirk, as Keaton chuckles.
“Kalvin! Stop,” Alex says, staging an intervention. “You’re being very rude.”
“We weren’t the one asking for her bra size.” Kalvin sends me a wolfish grin as he zones in on my chest. “C cup, if I had to guess. Of course”—he gives me a flirtatious wink—“I’d be more accurate if you let me feel.” He cups his hands suggestively. Keaton shakes his head and rolls his eyes.
I moisten my dry lips. “In your dreams, sunshine.”
“Don’t worry, sweetheart”— he strokes my arm in a languid manner—“you’ll definitely be featuring in a few wet dreams.”