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EXCERPT REVEAL ~ Hail Mary by Nicola Rendell

 

 
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At a boxing gym in Chicago, Mary Monahan accidentally knocks out the most handsome man she’s ever met. After she wakes him up with a few slaps and some smelling salts, the very first thing he does is ask her out for ribs and beer. His name is Jimmy. He looks like a Gillette model. And he’s just too hunky to resist.

Jimmy “The Falcon” Falconi is mystified that Mary has absolutely no idea who he is. Mystified and refreshed. He is, after all, not your everyday NFL quarterback. He shops at Costco, has a soft spot for Pinterest, and is in the midst of an epic losing streak.

Jimmy falls for Mary fast and hard, the way he does everything—balls out and like it’s fourth and long. And he realizes he’s finally met his match. That stamina he’s so proud of? Doesn’t stand a chance against her Kegels.

But what they don’t know is she’s also his new physical therapist, recently hired by the Bears to work on his rotator cuff…and groin injury. If she can’t help him, he’ll be traded faster than they can say “offensive penetration.”

In spite of the thousands of internet memes featuring Jimmy’s face with captions like: “HEY GIRL, WANT TO TOUCH MY BALLS?” Mary finds herself falling for him and his unrelenting desire to make her his.

Until a toddler shows up at Jimmy’s door.

And throws their lives into total chaos.

***

To the reader: Contents includes love, sweetness, naughtiness, honey, champagne, and an HEA. Safe. 

 
 
 

 
 
Jimmy

Joe Namath said it: “When you win, nothing hurts.”
And I might be flat on my back with a headache like I just sucked down a smoothie too fast, but I’m fucking winning. Because look at that goddamned face. Fucking gorgeous. Freckles, those lips. Everything. Her body is hella hot, but that face. That face seals it.
Also, those tits. I groan and pretend I’m rubbing my temples. Actually, I’m looking at the curve of her stomach—the crease across her belly button. The edge of the tattoo just wraps around her side, accentuating the line of her waist. God, yes.
“I’m so sorry,” she says. “I’m not allowed to fight my own weight class anymore, but I thought you’d be able to take it.”
“Ouch.”
“Oh no.” She puts her hand to her mouth. “I mean…sorry. Just…I’m really sorry.”
I know she’s lying. She’s probably left a trail of unconscious guys from here to wherever she came from, but I’m not proud. I’ll be the next man in line. I sure fucking will. “What do you weigh? A buck fifty? And you knocked me out like that?”
“One fifty-seven!” The way she says it, she’s proud of it, and I love that. A buck fifty-seven. Sold.
“You can hit.” I explore the damage with my tongue. The hot, metallic taste of blood fills my mouth, and my saliva stings the cut on my bottom lip.
I glance around. Nobody’s paying any attention at all. Further proof that she’s done this before.
“Sorry. I wasn’t even thinking. Let me…” She dabs at my lip with a washcloth. I can smell the sweat, the salt, the heat. The sharp lingering smell of ammonia in my nostrils. A drop of her sweat runs down off her neck and lands on my chest with a plop.
She takes my face in her wrapped hands, looking from eye to eye. “I don’t think you’re concussed.”
Okay, so I know I’m not—I don’t know much, but I do know a concussion when I get one—but I’m going to go along with it because I need her to stay exactly like that. “Might be.” I follow her eyes with mine. “Head trauma can be very complicated.”
Slowly, a smile creeps up across her face, and a little dimple crimps her cheek. But she bites it back. “Your pupils look normal.”
Coconut. I can smell it. Definitely coconut. Good thing I’m already flat on my back. She holds up one finger and moves it to and fro in front of my eyes. I don’t follow it. I leave my eyes right there, on this fleck of brown in her left iris.
“If you can’t follow my finger, I think we have to call 911…”
I sniff, the ammonia still stinging my sinuses. “If I let you knock me out again, can I get you to keep doing this all night?”
She pouts and makes a fist of her wrapped hand. “Let me? Let me knock you out?”
“Oh yeah. Let you.”
She cocks her head, her eyes saying, Bullshit!
“Fuck, yes, I took the fall. Sometimes you got to throw the fight to get what you want.”
She lets go of my face, and my head lands in her lap. The curve of her thigh supports my neck. She gives me that look again, the one she gave me right before the lights went out. “Yeah? And what do you want?”
“I think you know.” I let my stare fall to her cleavage.
She presses her lips together, like she cannot believe I just said that.
Booyah. Now who’s on her heels?
I rip off the Velcro cuff from the glove on my right hand and shake it off. “I’m Jimmy.” I hold out my hand to her. She shakes it softly, and then her grip tightens and she pulls me up to a sitting position in the middle of the ring. She keeps her right hand knitted in mine, thumb over thumb, and gently supports my back with the other. “I really am sorry about that.”
“I’ll deny it forever.”
“There were witnesses.” She glances over her shoulder at the assorted groups of guys around the gym.
“Are you familiar with the down-low?”
“They took pictures. For the Knockout Wall,” she says, grinning.
Fuckers. Great. Just great. JIMMY FALCONI KNOCKED OUT BY GIRL IN PINK GLOVES. I can see it on Bleacherreport.com right now. “Polaroids burn super easy.”
Now she’s really smiling, and fuck is she pretty. Like, drop-dead gorgeous. The knockout with the knockout punch. “I’m glad you’re okay. If you never woke up, that would have been a lot of paperwork.”
I grunt-laugh, which also hurts because of that one-two-three combination to my spleen earlier. I grab my stomach and flop back down on the mat.
“Need ice?”
“Let me die with dignity.”
She gets stern. “Ten-four. We’ll remember you fondly.” And then she salutes me.
All this and she’s funny?
Alright, Falconi. Time to head for the end zone. Time to bring the Super Bowl ring home. “Fine. I’ll give you the win if you let me buy you dinner.”
Her eyes move over my face. “Dinner? There’s a blizzard coming. Also, you might need a stitch for that lip.”
“No way. I’ll get some superglue. Fuck the blizzard. Come out with me.”
“Tough guy.”
I study that hollow at the base of her throat and then meet her eyes to hold her stare. “Dinner and drinks.”
She stands and offers me a wrapped hand. Toe to toe, she sizes me up like we’re locked in some full-body arm-wrestling match. Christ.
But she still hasn’t said, “Don’t you play for the…” like everybody else always does. So I ask, “You like any other sports besides knocking totally unsuspecting strangers unconscious? Like maybe…football?”
I hold the ropes open for her and she steps through. Goddamn, those hips. That skin. The curve of her waist. The petals of the lace that barely touch her spine. And my mind kind of unravels in imagining where that tattoo goes and how sexy that ink must be on the skin of her ass.
“Nope. Is that a problem?” she asks. “That I wouldn’t know my touchdown from my…whatever? Going to put a cramp in our conversation, champ?”
“No problem at all.” Doesn’t matter if she knows me or not, because pretty quick here, I’m planning to have her saying my name. Over and over again.
 

 

 

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Nicola Rendell writes dirty, funny, erotic romance. She likes a stiff drink and a well-frosted cake. She is at an unnamed Ivy and prefers to remain mostly anonymous for professional reasons. She has a PhD in English and an MFA in Creative Writing from schools that shall not be named here. She loves to cook, sew, and play the piano. She realizes that her hobbies might make her sound like an old lady and she’s totally okay with that. She lives with her husband and her dogs. She is from Taos, New Mexico.
 
 
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EXCERPT REVEAL ~ Cleat Catcher by Celia Aaron and Sloane Howell

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Coming June 30th

 

Add to your Goodreads shelf now.

 

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Catcher.png

 

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What happens when an unrepentant Cleat Chaser meets the player of her dreams?

 

Nikki Graves has a history of going through the baseball roster with an eye for talent–the kind of talent that keeps things spicy between the sheets. But, once she meets Braden Bradford, catcher for the Ravens, her talent scout days are done. He’s the one.

 

Braden has never met a woman like Nikki, and he can’t get enough of her smart mouth and big heart. But life isn’t always as direct and certain as the connection between Braden and Nikki. When family objections and career trajectories begin to crowd the plate, will Braden be able to keep his catch of a lifetime?

 


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Kasey frowned, but then her expression lightened. “Say, Nik, you never gave me all the details from the lez experience you had in college. This game is boring as fuck. Entertain me with it.”

“It wasn’t really an experience. I just kissed a girl a little bit when I was drunk.” I shrugged as the first Ravens batter, Ramirez, strode to the plate.

“Not bad.” Kasey crossed her long, tan legs at the knee.

The guy sitting next to her gave her an appreciative up and down look, but her head was turned towards me so she didn’t see it.

“How much tongue are we talking?”

I closed my eyes and tried to remember the fall of my sophomore year, but it was hazy at best. I had way too much fun in school. “I think there was tongue, and she definitely felt me up over my shirt. I can’t remember if she ever went under, but I doubt it.”

“Nice.” Kasey set her beer down. “I think I need a reenactment. You know, to test you. Make sure you’re not running a game on Braden, pretending to be straight.”

I rolled my eyes as Ramirez swung and missed, strike one. “Not a chance. Besides, everyone knows I’m a Penis Flytrap.”

“Come on, just a little kiss.” She leaned closer as Kyrie snickered on my other side.

“No way.” I shook my head. “Braden would kill me.”

“I think Braden would be all about it. Just a couple of girls. One, his girlfriend, the other, like a sister to him. No harm in the two of us being friendly. Right, Kyrie?”

“Don’t drag me into this. I’m an innocent bystander.” She grabbed some more popcorn as Kasey’s confident grin surfaced.

I tried to ignore the hot blond trying to get into my panties. The next pitch was high and outside. Ball.

“Just a little experiment. That’s all.” Kasey’s tone turned wheedling. “It won’t count.”

“How many girls have you tricked into opening their legs for you like this?” I stared at her, not even close to falling under her spell.

She frowned. “Tons. What gives with you?”

“I love Braden.”

“Me too.” She moved closer, her big, pretty eyes open wide like the wolf’s in Red Riding Hood. “So how about you give me a little tit action as a sign of our love for him.”

Kyrie snorted.

“A little help here?” I turned to her.

“Nope.” She shook her head, a giggle falling from her lips. “I don’t get between Kasey and her prey.”

“Come on.” Kasey wrapped a lock of my hair around her finger.

I tried to keep the amused smile off my lips. “I’m trying to watch the game.”

Ramirez finally made contact, hitting a line drive and trucking it to first base.

Kasey didn’t even look. She kept her gaze on me.

I sighed. “Oh my God. If I say yes, will you leave me alone?”

She squealed. “Yes, I promise.”

“Fine, you can have a tit grope.” I’d taken many a tit grope from Kyrie, so this was nothing special.

She reached for the hem of my tank top.

“Hey!” I smacked her hand away. “Over my shirt and for no more than five seconds.”

“That’s it?” she pouted.

I tossed my hair behind my shoulder. “It’s that or nothing, you goddamn sexual predator.”

She smiled and licked her lips before focusing on my chest. “Fine.”

“Get to it.” I leaned back and dropped my elbows to the armrest, giving her maximum chest exposure.

She rubbed her hands together like she was Mr. Miyagi readying to fix Daniel-San’s leg. The guy sitting on her other side couldn’t take his eyes off us. I wondered if he was going to cream in his jeans.

“Here we go.” She hovered her hands over my chest as Kyrie shook with laughter next to me. “Luscious Nikki tits in three, two, one.”

“Hey!” Braden’s voice cut through the air.

I looked up and Kasey and I were on the kiss cam for the entire stadium to see.

“Kase!” I leaned forward, but that only pressed her palms to my tits.

The crowd went silent, and Kasey took the opportunity to give me a good squeeze. I smacked her hands away as the crowd went from silent to roaring with approval. I hid my scarlet face in my hands.

“Goddammit Kasey!” Braden was at the net yelling. “I’m going to kick your ass!”

I peeked through my fingers as a grinning Easton strode up behind him. “Come on, man. They’re just dicking around.”

“Kasey is a woman-stealer. She’s the devil!” He pointed a finger through the netting at Kasey, who was doubled over with laughter.

“I’m sorry.” I shook my head, my hands still covering my face.

“It’s not your fault. It’s the blond Satan sitting next to you!” The corner of his mouth twitched. He was holding back a smile.    

 


 

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Celia Aaron

 

Celia Aaron is the self-publishing pseudonym of a published romance and erotica author. She loves to write stories with hot heroes and heroines that are twisty and often dark. Thanks for reading.

 

Author Links

Twitter  Facebook  Web  Goodreads  Amazon page   Instagram

 

 

Sloane Howell

 

Sloane Howell lives in the Midwest United States and writes dirty stories. When not reading or writing he enjoys hanging out with his family, watching sports, playing with the dogs, traveling, and engaging his readers on social media. You can almost always catch him on Twitter posting something goofy.

 

Visit his web page http://www.sloanehowell.com to sign up for his mailing list to get updates on new releases, promos, and giveaways. Thanks for reading.

 

Author Links

Twitter  Facebook  Web  Goodreads  Amazon page  Instagram

 


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