The Face-Off (Colorado Coyotes #5) Read Online Brenda Rothert

Categories Genre: Alpha Male, Chick Lit, Sports Tags Authors: Series: Colorado Coyotes Series by Brenda Rothert

Total pages in book: 50
Estimated words: 49239 (not accurate)
Estimated Reading Time in minutes: 246(@200wpm)___ 197(@250wpm)___ 164(@300wpm)

It was an average day in my above-average life: wake up hungover with a woman I just met, part ways, then drive to the arena for a home game with my pro hockey team. But when my car breaks down on the highway, a stunning waitress named Tess pulls over and surprises me by easily fixing it.
Great little detour in my routine, right? It would’ve been if her kid hadn’t lifted my wallet. Now I have to find Tess and get it back. When I discover that the money’s gone, Tess insists that her son work off the debt to me. And the more I get to know the spirited single mom and her hilarious family, the more I find myself at a crossroads. I’m in a personal face-off: The man I’ve always been vs. the man I want to be for Tess and her kids.

*************FULL BOOK START HERE*************

Chapter One


* * *

“Get up, asshole,” a female voice grumbles. Something hard and pointy hits me in the head and I swat the air aimlessly, eyes screwed shut.

I groan and lift my head from the pillow. Horrible idea. It’s pounding so hard I drop it right back down.

But the high-pitched voice is relentless. “I have to go to work and you’re not staying here.”

Shifting, I force myself to sit up. I squint against the sun pouring into the bedroom, which has yellow-and-white everything. Fuck. My head. How much did I drink last night? And why did an angry woman just throw...a shoe at me?

“Coffee,” I manage to say, sliding out of bed and checking the floor for my clothes.

They’re not there. I look down and find I’m still dressed, which is just weird. The last time I woke up in a woman’s bed fully clothed was...never.

“Buy your own coffee, fuckface.” The woman, a tight blond in a low-cut blouse, sneers at me. “The only reason I let you sleep here was because I couldn’t push your ass out of my bed once you passed out.”

Some of last night comes back to me. Her name is Lauren. We met at Mountain Top, a local bar. We were both there with friends—mine were all teammates and hers were all hot chicks hoping to hook up with a hockey player.

I lower my brows, confused. “Wait, we didn’t...?”

She laughs and crosses her arms. “Not even close. We walked in the front door and then you staggered in here and passed out in my bed. After puking on one of my houseplants.”

I nod, looking down. So that’s how much I drank. “Sorry about that.”

She shakes her head, disgusted. “Just get out. I’m going to be late for work.”

Work. Shit. My eyes widen as I frantically search the room for a clock. “What time is it?”

It’s a home game day, and I was supposed to set my alarm before I went to sleep last night.

“It’s time for you to get the fuck out of here.”

“For fuck’s sake⁠—”

She loses it. “It’s 8:12 a.m.! And I’m exhausted because you snored all night long. Get. Out!”

When she raises another shoe in the air, I shield my head with an arm and head toward the front door to her apartment.

Damn. She must have been some kind of horny last night to be this pissed off.

“Might as well take this with you. It’s ruined.” She picks up a plant in a shiny blue pot and shoves it into my arms. “There’s a dumpster behind the building. Just toss this on top of my hopes for a good time last night.”

I recoil, the smell of stale vomit making my stomach turn. “You don’t have to be so dramatic.”

“I’ve had that plant for three years!”

I wrap my left arm around the plant’s pot, turning away from the smell as I dig in my pocket for my wallet. I take it out and manage to pull out two fifties, passing them to her.

“Is that enough to replace it?”

She swipes the money and opens the door, glaring at me. “It’s fine. Have a nice life.”

My throat burns with dryness as I slink away, holding the plant as far away from my face as possible as I take the stairs down to the first floor. After dropping the plant in the dumpster, I call an Uber and walk around to the front of the building.

I’ve been burning the candle at both ends for a while now, not sleeping well on the road and staying out too late when I’m home. But it’s still not like me to pass out before I feed the kitty.

Must’ve been all the vodka shots we drank to celebrate our teammate Sergei’s return from an injury. I’ll never admit it out loud, but hard liquor packs a meaner punch at age thirty-two than it did at age twenty-two.

I’m going to be late no matter what at this point. I was supposed to be at practice at eight a.m. at the college arena our team is using while our new one is under construction. At least it’s not a road trip day. If I’d missed a flight, Coach would have ripped me a new one.

It’s October, so I can still get by with just a T-shirt and a flannel, even though it’s a little chilly this morning while I wait for my ride. I’d give my left nut for a cup of coffee, but I don’t have time.

My Uber driver is jamming out to some shitty New Age music on the drive to Mountain Top, where I left my car, so I use the time to check my socials and text my teammate Rowan.

Dom: Running late. Cover for me if you can.

Rowan: I’ll try.

Dom: You feel like death walking this morning? Or is that just me?