Home > Fool Me Once (Foolproof Love #2)

Fool Me Once (Foolproof Love #2)
Author: Katee Robert

Dear Reader,

I have a penchant for “unlikeable” heroines. You know the ones—the heroines who make some people crazy while reading, who some readers feel should stop being so difficult and see what an amazing guy the hero is. Aubry falls into this category. She’s snarly and stand-offish and she simply doesn’t have the time or desire to let the hero cozy up to her. The woman is, quite frankly, a bundle of issues. We got to see some of that in Foolproof Love, but getting to really delve into her headspace was a treat for me. She’s a gem, and I hope she wins you over the same way she wins Quinn over.

And Quinn? Well, that man is hotter than he has right to be. He’s got an easy going surface, but beneath that, he’s just as intense as Aubry. They make quite the pair!



To Hilary, the Jules to my Aubry.



Chapter One

A wedding? Might as well be a goddamn funeral for all I’m going to enjoy it.

Quinn Baldwyn grabbed three beers out of his fridge, very carefully not looking at the invitation he’d stuck to the front of it. It was a constant reminder of the sword hanging over his neck—one he couldn’t avoid indefinitely.

His sister’s wedding. He hated running the gauntlet that was his ambitious family during the monthly dinners required to keep them off his back. Having to face the firing squad and all the bells and whistles at this wedding? Even worse. He didn’t have to see the elegant invitation to know that Jenny—and their mother—had pulled out all the stops in the wedding planning or that he’d be expected to put on his monkey suit and play the doting son.

It made him so fucking exhausted just thinking about it.

He’d stopped playing the political games his father demanded of him over a decade ago, and he wasn’t about to be drawn back into that world. Not now. Not ever. He much preferred the quieter life he’d chosen, working on the Rodriguez ranch, leaving the damn oil business to his family. The only reason he hadn’t cut out his old man completely was because of his little sister, Jenny. She lived in that world, and attending the dinners—and the wedding—was a small price to pay to make her happy.

A small price, though one that grated.

“You’re taking your sweet time in there, Baldwyn.”

He took a deep breath and tried to let the tension out of his shoulders. If there was anyone who’d pick up on it, it would be Adam and Daniel, and then he’d never hear the end of it. As far as they were concerned, Quinn’s father could take a flying leap and be done with it. They didn’t understand that it was easier for Quinn to do the bare minimum to keep his little sister from being torn in her loyalties. If he told his old man where to stick it, he’d be banished in truth, and Jenny would have to openly defy their parents to see him. He wouldn’t put her in that position. He refused to.

The only problem was that the older he got, the more his father started asking probing questions about his plans to settle down and create some more Baldwyns. With Jenny’s wedding right around the corner, there was no one else to focus on pairing off, and as the only son, as far as his father was concerned, it was Quinn’s responsibility to continue the family name.


He turned, forcing a smile onto his face. “Hey, pretty lady.”

Jules stood in the doorway, a bright smile on her face. The expression dimmed when she took him in. “Is everything okay?”

Not in the least. But he held up the beers. “Just getting my barmaid on.”

Instead of being appeased, she frowned harder. That was the problem with women—they saw too much. Oh, his buddies knew that something was chewing at him, but they were more than happy to let him stew over it until he was ready to talk. If he was never ready to talk? Hell, that was okay, too. But now that Adam was married to Jules, she was around a lot more often, and the woman was incapable of seeing a person in need without wanting to meddle. She meant well, but there was no fixing his situation. “Jules—”

“It’s okay if you don’t want to talk about it. Adam’s not really a sharer, either.” She took two of the beers from him. “I’m used to it.”

She wasn’t trying to guilt him, but guilt rose all the same. Quinn sighed. Telling Jules Meyer-Rodriguez “no” was like kicking a puppy—it just wasn’t done. And, damn her, she knew it. “Look, it’s complicated.”

“Okay.” She set the beers aside and hopped onto the kitchen counter, swinging her legs like a little kid. “I can do complicated. Hit me with it.”

What could it hurt to get some of his frustrations off his chest? He leaned over to look out into the living room, but for all intents and purposes, Adam and Daniel seemed engrossed in the Cowboys game going on. I bet that ass sent her in here on purpose. He popped the cap off his beer and took a swig. “If I tell you, you’ll leave it alone?”

“No promises.” She’d said it cheerfully. Everything about the woman was cheerful. It’d be aggravating as fuck if she wasn’t so genuinely nice. How she’d become such a good friend with that vicious little redhead, Aubry Kaiser, was beyond him.

He took another drink. “My sister is getting married.”

“Oh, how exciting!” She pressed her lips together. “Unless you don’t like her fiancé? Because that’s not exciting at all. That’s horrible.” She brightened. “Are we going to break up their wedding?”

“Hold your horses.” He held up a hand, rocking back on his heels. “That little scheme you had going with Adam last year has gone to your brain and made you power mad. And Brad is just fine. A little on the boring side, but fine.” As far as he could tell, anyways. The guy loved Jenny and wasn’t scared of their old man. More importantly, Jenny loved him to distraction and he made her happy. Quinn couldn’t ask for much more.

“Okay, then what’s the problem?”

Here it was. He almost backed out, made his excuses, and took off. But if he’d learned one thing about Jules, it was that she was more than capable of chasing his ass down and pestering him until he told her what she wanted to know. Frankly, he was surprised it had taken this long for her to turn her fixing eye on him and his problems. “My old man has decided he’s a matchmaker, and he’s getting more pointed with the women he’s trotting out in front of me like prize dogs.”

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