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Preview — The Bride Test by Helen Hoang
It wasn’t loneliness if it could be eradicated with work or a Netflix marathon or a good book. Real loneliness would stick with you all the time. Real loneliness would hurt you nonstop.
She smiled, but Khai picked up on her sadness, an unusual feat for him. Her eyes lost their shine, and when the bride’s dad hugged his daughter, she wiped a tear from her cheek. He was reaching for her hand when she pulled away to cover her mouth, smothering a laugh. Quan whispered something in her ear, and she laughed harder and shook her head at him, like they were old friends. Khai exhaled quietly and stared down at his hand. It hadn’t occurred to him to make her laugh. He didn’t even know how. Good thing there were people like Quan in this world.
She’d come to find him again. No one ever looked for him. They all knew he wanted to be alone. Except it wasn’t always that way. Sometimes he was alone out of habit. Sometimes it took effort to distract himself from the growing emptiness inside.
Khai’s chest swelled, and not once did he tell himself it was a heat flash or a health problem. He knew exactly what it was.