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Ryder Malloy. Selfish. Arrogant. Self-absorbed. Prick.
An epitome of manliness. Six-foot-three, all hard, chiseled muscle.
My brother’s ex best friend, and my new client.
Four years ago, he took my innocence and left – without a word.
Today, he’s the star quarterback who needs an image makeover,
And I’m his publicist, who doesn’t quite believe him.
Task at hand: Swallow my hate for him and concentrate on the job at hand – making Ryder look like a real life knight in shining armor.
Complications: I’m falling for him all over again.
Well, sleeping with a client is a no-no.
Making out with him on my desk – a bigger no-no!
Making a baby with him?
What was I thinking!
|Books by Author:|
My life was nearly perfect. I’d earned my college degree a month ago and just finished my first week as a marketing assistant at a PR firm in St. Louis, Missouri. I had parents who were proud of me, and a brother I adored was getting married in a week. I had several great friends who were with me now as I entered the bar section of the restaurant we liked to hang out at sometimes.
“Do you think dancing Jack will be here this week?” My friend Jenny asked our other friend Tanya, who’d gone home with a handsome yet awkward dancer last week.
“I wouldn’t mind another go-around with him.” She winked. “What about you, Katie? Think you’ll find your lover boy?”
Both of my friends knew that I was still a virgin. I knew deep down they thought it was scandalous that I was twenty-one years old and never had sex. They were nice enough not to tease me about it, but they’d also made it a goal to have me turn in my V-card ASAP.
“You never know.” My being a virgin wasn’t a religious or moral decision. Mostly, I’d been so focused on school and getting my career started that I didn’t spend a lot of time dating. The few opportunities I’d had to sleep with a man, I just wasn’t into it. I’d been too nervous or not aroused enough.
As we passed the bar, I scanned the area and my eyes stopped on a familiar face. I had to do a double take because I was sure my eyes were deceiving me. Ryder Malloy couldn’t be sitting by himself in a crowded bar. He was a hometown hero. Second string quarterback for the Nashville Copperheads football team. How was it no one was bothering him for an autograph?
I watched as a middle-aged man approached him.
Ryder looked at him and scowled. The expression was so fierce, the man lifted his hands in surrender and backed away. Ryder downed his shot and waved to the bartender for another.
“Hey, I’ll meet you guys in a minute,” I said to my friend. “I need to check on something.”
Ryder was my brother’s best friend since kindergarten, and so it wasn’t a surprise he was in town. He was my brother’s best man in his upcoming nuptials.
To me, Ryder was the epitome of manliness. He was six-foot-three, all hard, chiseled muscle. He had bronze hair and sapphire eyes, but he didn’t have the pretty boy looks that often went along with light hair and blue eyes. He had a rugged, nearly dangerous look that filled every sexual fantasy I had. Since I first discovered masturbation, he’d been the start and end of every orgasm.
Not that he knew about that. He saw me as Danny’s little sister, and even if I wasn’t, he wouldn’t have been attracted me. He gravitated to model-gorgeous women with great bodies, a type my brother shared.
Me, I was pretty, and I had curves, but more than most men appreciated. Then there were the glasses. Some people could pull off glasses and look pretty, even sexy. I wasn’t one of those people. I just looked like a nerd.
So, while Ryder wouldn’t be the one to pop my cherry, he was a long-time friend and clearly something was up.
As I moved closer, he turned and gave me a scowl.
I smirked. “That won’t work on me Ryder Malloy, so don’t even try.”
The scowl actually deepened. “Did Danny send you?” The slight slur to his words suggested he’d imbibed a few shots.
I frowned, wondering what the heck was up. “No. I’m here with friends. What’s going on?”
“Your brother is a fucking dick.”
I jerked back. “What happened?”
He shook his head and turned back to his drink. He downed it and waved to the bartender. “Another Jack Daniels,” he said ordering another shot of whiskey.
I hopped up on the barstool next to him.
“I’m not in the mood, Katie.”
“Okay. We don’t have to talk about my dickhead brother.” My brother wasn’t a dickhead, and I couldn’t imagine why Ryder would say that unless there was some issue about the business deal they were trying to strike. But I also knew that pushing the subject now would make him back away.
He snorted. “Prick.”
The bartender gave me a look as he set the drink on the counter. “Last one, hotshot.”
Ryder glared at him.
I nodded to the bartender letting him know I’d try to take care of it. Normally, I’d have called Danny, but since he was the source of Ryder’s desire to drink to oblivion, I decided I need to handle it.
Ryder downed the next glass.
“Why don’t we go to my place?”
“I like you, Katie, but—”
“Not for that. It won’t look good if you get photographed completely lit.”
“You say that now, but if you get in trouble with the team—” I took a different route. “I got a bottle of Corsaire Ryemageddon for graduation,” I mentioned the Tennessee whiskey that he’d given me.