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A Match Made In Maui

Written by Nina Singh

Chapter Six

Morning came all too soon. Not that Tessa had been able to get much sleep. She'd tossed and turned all night, thinking of exactly what they would say to each other and how her heart would handle seeing Jason again. She had half a mind not to show. It would serve him right. But that wasn't her style. She told him she'd be there and she would be.

Besides, maybe he had a point. Maybe it was high time they finally aired out some of the issues and history between them.

He hadn't been there for her when she'd needed him the most.

An hour later, a familiar face met her at the entrance to the resort café when she reached the door. Rita, the bride. It was a rare sight to see her dear friend without her intended by her side.

“How is it that you’re alone, for once?” Tessa teased.

Rita laughed. "Clint's still asleep." She looked down toward her toes before shyly adding, "We were sort of awake most of the night."

A pang of longing speared through Tessa's heart. Her friend looked so happy. Love for her groom practically shone in her eyes. Tessa had so badly wanted to believe she might have found that kind of love herself once. But it had all been a cruel mirage.

“Want to join me for a cup of coffee?" Rita asked.

Tessa shook her head. "I'm sort of here to meet someone."

Rita opened the door and waited for Tessa to enter first. "Oh, yeah? Who?"

"Uh...you're not going to believe this but Jason's here, after all."

Rita paused in her tracks. "Oh, Tessa. I honestly didn't know. I promise you that neither Clint nor I invited him. We know things are difficult between the two of you."

Tessa was quick to reassure her friend. "I know. He's not here for the wedding." Well, not technically.”

"Would you like Clint and I to ask him to leave?" Rita's eyes were full of concern.

Tessa shook her head. "No. Thank you, but that’s not necessary. In fact, he even offered to himself. Asked me if I wanted him to.”

“And you told him to stay?” Surprise rang clear in Rita’s voice.

“I think he might be right that it’s time we hashed out some of the issues between us. For closure.” At the least, she had to find out exactly what he wanted to tell her. For all she knew, he was about to announce his own wedding plans and wanted to tell her in person. A thudding ache pounded in her chest at the thought. “And like I said, he isn't here for the wedding," Tessa repeated.

"Then why is he here?"

Tessa inhaled a deep breath as her eyes found the man himself. Jason sat alone at one of the tall tables along the wall. Dressed in khaki shorts and a form fitting black T-shirt, he looked like every girl’s island fantasy. Tessa’s breath caught in her throat at the sight of him. Rita must have noticed as she gave her upper arm a reassuring squeeze.

“That's what I'm here to find out," she answered. Then she braced herself for the emotional turmoil that was sure to come once she sat down across from the man she should have gotten over long ago.

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