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Not the Rebound Guy

Abby Knox

Copyright © 2021 by Abby Knox

All rights reserved.

No part of this book may be reproduced in any form or by any electronic or mechanical means, including information storage and retrieval systems, without written permission from the author, except for the use of brief quotations in a book review.

Publisher’s Note: This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents are a product of the author’s imagination. Locales and public names are sometimes used for atmospheric purposes. Any resemblance to actual people, living or dead, or to businesses, companies, events, institutions, or locales is completely coincidental.

Edited by Aquila Editing

Cover Designer: Mayhem Cover Creations

This book is dedicated to the memory of my grandmother. Thank you for the warm hugs, your sass mouth, your take-no-shit attitude, the laughs, for letting me paint your nails after arthritis prevented you from being able to do it yourself. Thank you for watching all the ABC soap operas with me when my mom didn’t want me watching “that trash.” Thank you for taking me shopping at yard sales and fire sales, and teaching me the value of a dollar. Thank you for that big haul of used Barbie clothes and furniture; that was one of the highlights of my entire childhood, and I felt like the richest kid in town. Thank you for teaching my mom, aunts and me how to make jam. Thank you for the handkerchief collection. Most importantly, during these incredibly difficult times, thank you for teaching me how to be generous even when I feel like I’ve nothing left to give. I love you and miss you like crazy, Grandma.


Chapter 1

Chapter 2

Chapter 3

Chapter 4

Chapter 5

Chapter 6

Chapter 7

Chapter 8

Chapter 9

Chapter 10

Chapter 11

Chapter 12

Chapter 13

Chapter 14

Chapter 15

Chapter 16

Chapter 17

Chapter 18

Chapter 19

Chapter 20

Chapter 21

Chapter 22

Chapter 23


About the Author

Also by Abby Knox

Chapter One


If you are lucky enough to be loved by an inexplicably generous grandmother, protect her with your life. And make sure you visit her more often.

If that person happens to be my grandmother, be prepared for a battle royale should you dare offer to stay in a hotel on those visits.

Case in point: a flight attendant glares at me while I’m trying to wrap up this ongoing argument on my phone. This plane is supposed to take off from LaGuardia in five minutes. For the last day and a half, Grams and I have been going back and forth about my accommodations on this visit.

“Grams, your house is tiny, and this is the height of your jam-making month. I’ll be in the way. When I sleep, I’ll be snuggling up against a crate of mason jars.”

“No granddaughter of mine is sleeping at that fleabag no-tell motel. I have plenty of room!” Grams is also part me, which means she’s not only stubborn but also tends to embellish.

“It’s a bed and breakfast in a historic house,” I correct her.

“It’s a dump,” she grumbles.

I can’t help but laugh because I know she doesn’t believe that. “It’s just up the street from you. I can walk over to you first thing in the morning to have breakfast with you. In my pajamas! That’s how much I love you, Grams. I’m giving up eggs Benedict.” Not to mention that gourmet breakfast comes with accommodations at rural Illinois prices and not NYC prices. She has no idea what I’m sacrificing. However, Grams does make the best breakfast on the planet. And her guest bedroom is cozy.

I should have given in on the hotel argument and instead focused all my energy on the question of the rental car, but like I said, I’m stubborn.

She insists, “The guest room is already ready!”

The flight attendant has passed me three times to deliver an evil eye and is now hovering. I honestly feel as if I’m in danger of being removed from the plane now. “All right, Grams. But I’m driving myself to your house. I’m renting a car, so do not come to get me, okay, goodbye!”

“Like hell you are!” I can hear her reply just as I disconnect.

I give the flight attendance a sheepish look and apologize, setting my phone to Do Not Disturb and dropping it into my bag.

As soon as I deboard the jet in Middle-of-Nowhere, Illinois, and check my phone, my notifications blow up.

In descending order based on the number of texts, my ex Jared has messaged me nine times; my supervisor Debbie, seven; my childhood friend Nora, three.

I read Jared’s text messages first because of all three, he is most deserving to be left on read.

“Just want to make sure you’re okay,” he writes. And then two minutes later: “I’m sorry for the way I ended things.” One hour after that, he added, “Don’t be mad, but I asked around because you blocked me on Facebook. Debbie said you took your vacation time. I’ll take that to mean you’re finally doing something for yourself. I’m happy for you. Have fun.”

I shake my head and scroll past the six other messages from my ex that were just versions of the previous texts. He has a weird way of showing he doesn’t want to bother me. Come to think of it, Jared exhibits odd behavior overall for someone who just dumped me for some bimbo he met on a spiritual retreat.

The phone rings while I’m scrolling through the messages. Debbie, of course, can never wait until I’ve texted back before needing my help with something.

“I’m so sorry,” I say calmly with a smile on my face, not even bothering to say hello. I’ve been practicing drawing boundaries with certain people, and Debbie is number one on the list. “I’m on vacation.”

Debbie launches in anyway. “I know, and I really appreciate that, Eliza. But there’s a problem with the last batch of Helix pages. The CEO says the final version doesn’t reflect his notes from the mock-up.”

I sigh heavily. My

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