Authors: Julie Brannagh
To Lisa Lindstrom and Neil Snyder
Your real-life love story is more beautiful than any romance I could write.
for a living, but I do not have the words to adequately express my gratitude to my agent, Sarah Younger of Nancy Yost Literary Agency, and my editor, Amanda Bergeron of Avon Impulse. I could say thank you for their patience, their enthusiasm, and their encouragement a million times, and it wouldn't be enough.
Thank you to Elle Keck, Amanda's assistant, who's done a lot for me too. I am a very lucky author and so grateful for her help.
Speaking of lucky, thank you to the copy editing staff at Avon Impulse. They could write a bestselling tell-all on my issues with punctuation, correct sentence structure, and grammar.
Thank you to my husband, Eric. I could never do this without you. I love you.
Catherine, the flight attendant in
, is named for one of my readers after she won a drawing. Congratulations, Catherine Edwards! I hope you'll love this!
Thank you to the lovely Amanda LeBlanc for helping me find a flight attendant to talk with for my research.
Thank you to the amazing Jenny Eilts for answering all of my kooky research questions, giving me a great peek into the life of a flight attendant, and being a delight. Your airline is lucky to have you!
Thank you to every flight attendant on every flight I have ever been on. You've gone above and beyond to help terrified-to-fly me get to her destination, and I am so appreciative. A special shout-out to Alaska Airlines; you've all spoiled me for every other airline.
I'd like to thank Charlie Whitehurst for signing with the Seahawks and staying here long enough for me to wonder what the life of a backup QB might be like.
Thank you to the Seattle Seahawks for interviews they have given in various forms of media. Not only are they a tremendous help with my research, I look forward to fictionalizing a certain quarterback's giving up his first-class seat during a flight to a soldier. I hope he's okay with that.
Thank YOU for buying my book! I hope you'll enjoy it. I could never express how much you mean to me. I'm on Facebook at
. Stop by and say hi! XXOO
a loud crack as he rolled over in his date's bed and onto something buried in the sheets. He looked at the sleeping form next to him and sighed in relief when she didn't stir.
He extracted an e-reader from under one of his hips as he sat up and stared at a large horizontal fracture in the screen in the dim light from her bathroom. Crap. Grant couldn't remember her name, but he was willing to bet she remembered his. Even more, she was probably going to be pissed about the broken e-reader.
Shaking his head to clear out some of the cobwebs, he knew he needed to get his ass out of here. He had a hundred bucks in his wallet. He'd leave the money to replace the e-reader (along with a note) ten seconds before he walked out the front door of her apartment. Still too drunk to drive, he would call Uber as soon as he got outside.
He'd met her at a bar last night. She was exactly what he'd wanted: a woman who wanted one night with him. They'd had a lot of drinks, and they'd taken a cab to her place. Minutes later, they were naked. He'd had her twice before they both fell asleep from sheer exhaustion. He wondered what the biggest aphrodisiac was for the women who fucked his brains out on a regular basis: that he played pro football or that they were delighted to discover he was an excellent lay. She'd have several orgasms to remember him by.
The Sharks' PR department worked overtime to craft his squeaky-clean image. Grant had arrived in Seattle as a result of being drafted out of his small, conservative Christian college's football team. The Sharks had cut their former backup QB after a DUI and a sexual assault arrest. Grant was in the right place at the right time. Grant's parents were also the nationally known pastors of a megachurch in Texas, which seemed to seal the deal for the Sharks.
It was clear in Grant's Combine interview with the team's head coach and the general manager that any hint of bad behavior in his personal life would not be tolerated. The team believed Grant's background and football skills would go a long way to smoothing things over with angry fans. Grant wanted to play for Seattle. It was the perfect situation.
The Sharks' PR department circulated pictures of him to the local media with approved datesâgirls from the local Christian college, for instance. He'd take them to dinner and a movie or a game. He'd walk them to their front door by ten
, kiss them on the cheek, and make sure they were safely inside before he got in his car and went looking for what he really wanted: raw, anonymous sex with someone he knew he had no intention of seeing again.
He didn't lie to anyone he was with. He had told each woman before they went to her place that he was in for one night and one night only. He told them he didn't have sex without protection, which he provided. They nodded, smiled, and tried every sexual enticement in their arsenal to change his mind. It seemed that the women he dated always wanted what they could not have. If he met someone who boinked his brains out and told him to leave as soon as he got dressed, he'd be back for more. So far, it hadn't happened.
He knew he was playing with fire for being so public. He knew he should find a woman who was interested in a mutually beneficial (and highly confidential) arrangement. He wasn't callous or cavalier toward anyone else's feelings. He just wasn't interested in getting tied down to anyone, at least in the short term. If he got caught having multiple one-night stands, his carefully constructed image would blow up in his face, and any chance he had of succeeding Tom Reed, the Sharks' starting QB, would be gone.
He understood his behavior could be chalked up to doing the forbidden, to the idea he was getting away with something he shouldn't do. What kind of idiot would jeopardize eight million dollars a season for standing on the sidelines with a clipboard sixteen Sundays a year by taking such a risk? The Sharks organization wanted their fans to believe Grant spent his evenings with his playbook and turned in early. Alone. Preferably after reading a few pages of the Bible and saying his prayers. He was a normal, healthy guy with a normal, healthy sex drive. Was this a crime?
Grant wanted to watch the Sharks' starting QB Tom Reed on the sidelines holding a clipboard as Grant threw TD after TD. He wanted to be the guy in the hundred-foot-tall mural screen painted on the side of Sharks Stadium. He also wanted to be the guy who'd get his pick of twice as many women who all wanted to do him. After all, the ladies wanted the real thing: a starter.
He clicked on the small button that activated the e-reader. It still worked, despite the cracked screen. He saw the title of the last book she was reading,
; a picture of him crossing the tarmac at an airport to get on the Sharks' team plane was on the cover.
He'd been the subject of a lot of press, but someone had written a book about him? He hadn't seen this yet. He was surprised his agent or the team publicist hadn't told him about it. He'd have to call them both tomorrow. Maybe he should take a look at a page or two to figure out if this was an unauthorized biography.
He touched the unbroken part of the screen with his fingertip, and the text appeared.
And I shoved Parker's football pants down with both hands. He was naked beneath and sporting a gigantic erection.
“Want it?” he said.
“Yes.” I unzipped my jeans and wriggled until both jeans and underwear slipped to my knees. I unhooked my bra and pushed my sweater up around my neck. I lay back on the hood of his car in the team's parking lot, spreading my legs, entirely exposed to him. In full view of anyone walking past. The parking lot was full of cars; it was a matter of time before we were discovered.
I reached down to touch myself, to move my fingers in the wetness I felt dripping out of me. I wanted to show him I could come from staring at him and stroking my clit. I wanted him to see it all and to want me as badly as I wanted him.
“Fuck me,” I said.
He yanked my jeans and my panties off and pushed my legs up over his shoulders. I couldn't concentrate on anything besides his arms caging me, his mouth on mine, his hard, massive dick entering me seconds later. I arched into him, my nipples scraping against his rock-hard chest. He grabbed my ass to pull me into his pistoning hips. Somehow, it was even more thrilling to know we might have an audience, and I ground into him as a result.
“Oh, God. Fuck me! I have to have you!” I told him as I moved against him. He pounded into me, over and over. I heard flesh slapping against flesh and the muffled groans of satisfaction deep in his throat. I wrenched my mouth from his, raked my nails down his back, and let out a loud cry.
“More!” I cried out. “Harder!”
“Oh, I'll give it to you harder,” he growled as he thrust again. I wrapped my legs around his hips as tightly as I could. My clit rubbed against his pelvis as I moved against him. The hood of his car was cold but slippery against my back. It was going to be covered with our juices by the time we were done. There was nothing like the smell of sex; it surrounded us in the cold night air. I reached down to grab his ass with both hands, pulling him closer.
“Faster,” I cried. “More!”
“I'll give you more,” he said roughly. “I'm going to fuck you, and then I'm going to fuck you again. Right here. Where everyone can see us. They'll know how dirty you are, how badly you want it. How you'd fuck them too.”
He was breathing hard. He thrust faster, and I could feel myself coming, lust and adrenaline coursing through my bloodstream as I reached between us to rub my clit. “That's it,” he said. “You want it. You want everyone to see you coming all over me, don't you? Come for me. Come now.”
I let out a scream as my entire body convulsed around him. The waves of pleasure and release went on and on. I must have blacked out for a few seconds; I could hear applause and whistles as I came to. I saw a knot of guys a few feet from us; I was beyond caring that I was laid out like a naked, panting feast in front of them. I was limp in his arms, and he grinned down at me. He turned, made a slight bow to the onlookers, and turned back to me. His dick was already getting hard again as I watched.
“Ready for round two?” he said. “I'm going to do every nasty thing to you you've ever dreamed of. In front of them. And you're going to love every minute of it.”
Grant stared in shock at the broken e-reader's screen. What the hell was this?