"Mom. Dad. This is my ... uh ... boyfriend. Toombs. Jeff." Jinx inhales sharply. "You can just call him Toombs." She steps aside in the hallway of her parents' modest home to reveal every parent's worst nightmare: me.
Jinx's dad is a hulk of a man. Thick around the middle and almost as tall as he is wide, he looks me over from head to toe. There's plenty for him to inspect, all of it ... colorful. He takes his time slicing me open like broken glass. I steel myself for the impending questions-or maybe downright insults-and hang the closest thing I got to a smile on my face. Offering my right hand to her father, I say, "Nice to meet you, Mr. Donato."
His gaze lingers at my throat. "Boyfriend, huh?" He practically spits the words. His voice is gruff. His glare piercing. His grip firm. I flex, pumping a little extra muscle into the shake, and wait for him to let go before I do.
He turns to his wife and gestures to his neck as if I'm fucking invisible. "What's this...