Home > Beat by Beat (Riggins Brothers #5)

Beat by Beat (Riggins Brothers #5)
Author: Kaylee Ryan


Chapter 1





“Done,” I say to myself as I hit Send on the email and push back from my desk. I’ve been here at the office since early this morning. It’s usually my two oldest brothers, Royce or Owen, who arrive first, but now that they both have wives and babies at home, they don’t live to work like they used to.

Riggins Enterprises launched a new marketing campaign last month. It was my brainchild that I worked tirelessly on for months, and I’m happy to report that our reach is better than ever. Our accounts are growing in all regions, and it’s not just me boasting. The proof is in the numbers. Just ask my brother Owen. He’s the numbers guy, and he’s thrilled with the increase we’ve seen. Royce, my oldest brother, is the CEO, and he’s made sure to tell me several times in the last month what a marketing genius I am. Yes, I made him say it while I recorded it. I gotta take my praise where I can get it.

“You two are my favorites.” Layla’s voice carries down the hall. “Don’t tell Sawyer.”

“Don’t tell Sawyer what?” my sister-in-law Sawyer asks.

My sisters, well, my brothers’ wives, are here, and that’s the perfect excuse to take a break. Standing from my chair, I make my way to Layla’s desk at the reception area. “What’s that?” I immediately ask when I spot a container of something sitting on the corner of Layla’s desk.

“We were bored,” Aspen tells me. The shiny new engagement ring that my brother gave her last month sparkles as she moves her hand to point at the container.

“How bored are we talking?” I ask. “Bored, as in, let’s make some box brownies, or bored as in I whipped up a batch of homemade peanut butter bars. There’s a difference,” I tell them.

“Bored as in, we whipped up a batch of homemade magic bars,” my almost sister-in-law Aspen tells me with a grin.

“A bunch of hocus pocus,” I say, reaching for the container. Pulling off the lid, I’m assaulted with the smell of fresh baked goods, and this is my sister’s baking we’re talking about. You can’t have just one, so of course, I grab two.

“Careful, Marsh,” my middle brother Grant says as he approaches his wife, Aurora. “You might catch the magic bug,” he teases.

“I call bullshit. You just want the bars to yourself,” I say as I shove a bite of the magic bar into my mouth.

“My wife made the recipe,” he fires back. “I can have them anytime that I want them. Right, babe?”

“That’s right.” Aurora smiles at him.

“How are you two feeling?” Sawyer asks Aurora and Aspen.

If you’re confused, let me catch you up. My oldest brother, Royce, is married to Sawyer. She works here at Riggins, and they have a hella cute baby boy named Roan. He’s five months old, and I’m his favorite uncle. He can’t tell you that yet, but I’m confident that he will.

Next in line in the Riggins family tree is Owen. The second oldest and married to Layla, who also works here at Riggins. Layla and Sawyer work closely together to keep the five of us in line. They, too, have a hella cute little boy. His name is Carter. He’s a year-and-a-half old, and if I ask him who his favorite uncle is, he points to me. We’re going to pretend that he doesn’t do the same thing with my brothers. Let me have my moment.

Grant is my middle brother. He’s married to Aurora, who is Aspen’s sister. Aurora and Aspen own Warm Delights. However, it caught fire about five months ago, and they’re still dealing with insurance, waiting to rebuild. That’s okay because she’s expecting their first baby in a couple of months.

Conrad is the second to the youngest brother. He’s engaged to Aspen, Aurora’s sister, and they, too, are expecting a baby in a couple of months. She and her sister are due only a week apart. Neither planned it that way. It just sort of happened. By the end of the year, there are going to be two more baby boys joining the Riggins clan, and we’re all thrilled. Although, no one is more excited than my parents.

That leaves me—Marshall Riggins, the youngest of the Riggins brood and the last holdout. My dad and my brothers believe in what they call the magic of love. The five of them claim that when you find the one woman you’re supposed to spend the rest of your life with, it’s magical.

They claim that it changes you.

I’ve watched all four of my brothers fall in love. Each of them has found the woman they are meant to love forever, hence giving me four sisters, two nephews, and soon-to-be two more nephews. I don’t know if the “magic of love” is just something they all say to keep the rest of us from giving them shit about tying themselves to one woman for the rest of their lives, or if it’s real.

I don’t believe in magic, but I do believe in love.

I watched my parents growing up, and yeah, it would be nice to have that one day, but for me, I don’t know how to find it. How do you know if someone is with you for the right reasons? My family is well known, and yeah… I just don’t know. My mom is constantly telling me that I’ll never meet the woman I want to bring home to meet her at a club. However, I don’t really hit the clubs much anymore. It was something I always did with my brothers, and well, they all have families now. It’s just not the same without them.

Now, instead of a night out at the club, we gather together and build baby furniture or rearrange the furniture in their houses. Fun times. No, truthfully, it’s always a good time when I get to hang out with my family. My brothers, all four of them, are my best friends, so any time I can snag time with them and their wives or fiancées is a win.

Just don’t tell them that. I don’t want that shit going to their heads.

My phone rings, pulling me out of my head and back to the present conversation. Tugging it out of my pants pocket, I see Mom’s face. “Hey, Momma,” I greet her.

“What has you so chipper?”

“Oh, you know, just hanging out with my siblings eating magic bars.”

“Tell Aurora and Aspen to save one for me.”

I move the phone from my face and place it on speaker. “You’re on speaker. Tell them yourself,” I tell Mom.

“Girls, save one of those for me.”

“Don’t worry, we made extra,” Aurora tells her.

“Are we still on for dinner tonight for Dad’s birthday?” I ask.

“Yes. You all are going to be here at six, right?” Mom checks.

“We’ll be there earlier than that,” Royce tells her. “How’s my boy?” My mom watches Roan and Carter, she and my dad together, and you’d have thought she cured world hunger with how happy it makes her.

“He’s napping. Carter has already had his nap, and he’s outside with your dad playing in the sandbox.”

“Mom, don’t let him eat the sand,” Owen speaks up.

“Owen Riggins, I raised you and your brothers, and I think I’m perfectly capable of watching my grandsons. Besides, a little sand never hurt anyone.” Her tone is teasing.

“We’re on our way,” Owen fires back. There’s a tilt to his lips. We all know he’s just playing with her. Our mother is a superwoman. She has to be to have raised all five of us.

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