Chapter Six

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On the second day of our getaway, our doors had been banged on violently as early as six in the morning, with an authoritative voice demanding we wake up and head downstairs for breakfast before all the good stuff run out. And taking my rumbling stomach as my cue, I had jumped out of bed before my eyes had even fully opened. I had freshened up and changed into a pair of white shorts and a loose tanktop faster than I could say "breakfast".

As I stepped into the small kitchen, the smell of crispy bacon and sweet maple syrup accompanied by pancakes wafted through the air. My footsteps came to an abrupt halt when I recognized Seth standing behind a counter, a pink floral apron wrapped around his torso, and a bright yellow spatula in his hand.

He raised his head and his eyes immediately brightened at my arrival.

"Finally!" He rushed to grab a plate and violently slammed it on the counter, making me jump. "Someone is here. I did not wake up an hour early to cook these huge batches just for my personal amusement." Seth frowned.

Still at loss of words for the unusual image in front of my eyes, I stood quiet with my mouth agape.

"Sit your ass down and eat the breakfast I made," Seth demanded, a dangerous look behind his eyes. For a second, he appeared as a perfect replica of my strict mother.

"Yes, Chef." I saluted him, marching towards a stool. "Did you really make all of these on your own?" My mouth watered at the sight of the breakfast buffet. He had made all types of sweet and savory goods.

"Someone had to feed you rascals. But I had some help." And on cue, the cheerful owner of the inn, Mrs. Patterson, came trotting into the kitchen wearing a pink apron identical to Seth's. When her eyes met mine, they squinted happily as she offered me a wide smile.

"Good morning, dear!"

My heart nearly melted at her adorableness. "Good morning! Hey, thank you for all of this, everything looks so great," I motioned towards the several plates on the counter.

She waved her hand, "oh, it's nothing. Enjoy your meal, darling." She reached the fridge and pulled out a bottle of orange juice, which she then took outside. When I craned my neck to sneak a glance at the dining room, I found that a couple men were occupying the table, having their breakfast as well.

"Have a go at it." Seth's comment brought me back to where we were as he gestured towards the plates, and I didn't need to be told twice. I grabbed a warm, crispy bacon and took a big bite out of it, then reached for two chocolate chip pancakes, setting them on my plate and pouring a generous amount of maple syrup on top.

"Hallelujah!" Noah's exclamation sounded by the kitchen door, followed by Ariel's groan.

"Could you tone it down a bit?" She frowned, reaching for a stool. She was never a morning person.

Seth grabbed a mug and slammed it in front of her, pouring steaming-hot coffee in it. "This should help."

Ariel reached out for the creamer and poured a whole lot into the coffee. She raised the white mug to her lips and took a big sip, sighing in content as the steaming drink soothed her morning nerves.

"Where's Elliot and Bella?" Noah asked Seth.

"Probably doing what couples do," Seth shrugged carelessly, and Noah wiggled his eyebrows at me.

I scrunched up my nose, stuffing my mouth with more pancakes.

"Good morning," a husky voice boomed through the kitchen, and we turned to find its source. Vincent stood by the doorway with a lazy smile on his lips, his dark hair disheveled. He wore a black shirt and plain white shorts. A second later, Xavier and Levi walked up behind him and also muttered quick good-morning's.

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