All the Way (Romancing Manhattan #1)

All the Way (Romancing Manhattan #1)

Kristen Proby



“It’s about fucking time,” my brother, Kyle, snarls from his seat next to me. He’s twitchy and mean, both indicative of the drugs coursing through his veins. Although he always had a mean streak. The drugs just make it worse.

“Your sister has been in the hospital and your parents’ property had to go through probate,” Finn Cavanaugh, my parents’ attorney, replies from across the desk. He’s a tall man, broad-shouldered in his fancy suit, and his dark hair is short, styled impeccably around his masculine face.

He’s much younger than I expected.

“Like I give a shit,” Kyle replies, and sends me a sneer. “You’re just being a fucking baby.”

“Or, you know, I jumped out of a second-story window while my parents burned to death and broke my leg in four places.” I shrug and then shake my head and dig my fingertips into my forehead, praying for the incessant pounding there to ease. “I lost everything.”

“Drama queen.” Kyle rolls his eyes and rubs his dirty fingers over his mouth.

“I can’t work,” I remind him.

“You’re rich.”

Same argument, different venue. “I can’t dance with this leg, which means I can’t work.”

“Poor baby,” he says, and then lets out a manic laugh. “Who cares? You’re getting too fucking old for Broadway anyway. They were about to can your ass. I hope you saved some of that money they’ve been paying you.”

More bullets to my ego, my heart. My head. Because he’s not exactly wrong. Thirty-two is old for show business.

But damn it, I love it. And I wanted to leave under my own terms. Not because my parents were killed and I was hurt in the process.

“Let’s get to this, shall we?” Finn asks, and slides a bottle of water my way.

“Yeah, let’s do it. How much do I get?” Kyle asks, and waits, his eyes pinned on Finn. His foot is bouncing, making that thump thump thump noise with each motion, and I want to beat him over the head with my crutch.

“I can read this in its entirety, or—”

“Just get to the fucking chase. What do I get?”

Finn sighs and glances to me, shuts the folder in front of him, and folds his hands on his desk.

“Kyle, your parents set up a trust for you. You will receive fifteen hundred dollars per month to cover your rent and utilities, with the stipulation that you enter drug rehabilitation and finish the program. After one year of sobriety, and with regular clean blood tests, the trust will award you a lump sum of fifty thousand dollars each year until your death.”


I glance at Kyle and see that his face has gone bright red with fury.

“If you refuse treatment, you forfeit any and all inheritance.”

Kyle’s mouth bobs open and closed for several seconds, and then he turns to me, royally pissed off.

“Did you do this?”

“Like I had any idea what Mom and Dad put in their will.” I roll my eyes and grip my hands in fists in my lap while Kyle stands and begins pacing the room. “You may want to call security.”

Finn nods and presses a button while he continues to watch Kyle. He looks calm, but his jaw twitches, and I can see that he’s angry at Kyle’s behavior as well.

“What does she get?” Kyle demands, pointing at my head.

“Everything else,” Finn replies simply. “Your father’s partnership in his firm will be sold. London inherits the properties and all of the other monies.”

“Are you fucking kidding me?” Kyle roars, leaning over Finn’s desk. “She stole my money! That belongs to me! She has plenty of her own goddamn money. What am I supposed to do? I have nothing because those people wouldn’t help me, and now I’m left with nothing again?”

“No, you can take the option of getting help,” Finn reminds him, but I just shake my head. That’s not going to happen. We’ve been trying to do this for years. “The rehab would be paid for, and you can stay there until you feel confident that you’re ready to rejoin society.”

“Bullshit,” Kyle bites out, and sweeps all of Finn’s papers off of his desk in one big motion. “I should kick your motherfucking ass.”

“Enough!” I yell just as three security guards come inside and take him by the arms to escort him out.

“This is bullshit,” he repeats as he’s dragged down the hallway. The door closes behind them, but I can still hear him yelling.

Finn and I sit in silence for a long moment. I wish my leg wasn’t broken because I’d love to stand and walk to the windows that look out over Manhattan. Mostly, I’d like to turn away from Finn so he can’t see the absolute anguish on my face.

I’m an actress. A Tony Award–winning one, at that, but I just can’t hide my feelings today.

“I’m sorry,” I say at last, and clear my throat. “As you can see, my brother isn’t well.”

Finn doesn’t say anything, he just reaches for his phone and calls his assistant. “Please bring in some hot tea.”

He hangs up and watches me in silence until the tea arrives. He pours us each a cup and passes one to me, along with sweetener and milk, and when we both have our tea the way we like it, he says, “Do I have to worry about him coming after you to hurt you?”

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