He was here not because he wanted to see her, wanted to build a relationship, for god’s sake, but for business. Business!

When, when would she ever learn?

She tried to focus on what he was saying, but the words kept slipping out of her mind faster than she could process their meaning. She wanted to hit him, throw things at him until nothing remained in reach. She wanted to scream.

“You want to buy my land?” she managed after a silence.

His expression registered surprise. “All of it? No, no, not at all. That’s not what I’m talking about.” He had finished eating and stood up. “Do you want me to take your plate?”

She looked down at the plate, nearly half of her food still there. “Yes, I’m not very hungry.”

“I didn’t mean to upset you,” he called over his shoulder. “I thought this would be great for you.”

“I’m sorry,” she murmured. Whatever might have been a future with Alex, she needed to get past it. Hadn’t she already thought this through? Why did she want Alex and feel disappointed about this when she had made up her mind about relationships? About men? She took a big drink of water and rubbed her forehead where a sudden headache raged.

“I know you’re attached to this land,” he continued, sliding back into the chair across from her and leaning forward as he eagerly pursued his discussion. “This project would use only a hundred acres, less if you want. And it would be the strip along the road, assuming you have the kind of frontage I’m thinking about. Do you have a survey?”

With all the conflict raging in her mind, she couldn’t pay attention to what he said. “I don’t know. Probably. There was something with the deed when I inherited the place.”

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