Wild Card – Mari Carr

Wild Card by Mari Carr

Wild Card released this month, which means the final chapters in the Boys of Fall series are here. Be sure to look for Cari Quinn’s Going Hard and Erin Nicholas’ Full Coverage – also available!

Boys of Fall, book 3

It’s been a tough year for Lorelie. Following her dad’s heart attack, she put her own life on hold, terrified of losing the most important person in her life. As her father’s health improves, Lorelie struggles to find her way back to life as normal. Her girlfriends insist the answer is simple. Get laid.

Enter Glen Rodgers, Wade’s former band mate. He met Lorelie briefly at a party she’d hosted for her dad and the woman made a lasting impression. When he returns several months later, intent on taking a break from his own screwed up life, it’s obvious Lorelie is just the cure for his blues.

Both determined to kick-start their stalled lives, they rev things up…in bed, the hayloft, the backseat of her car. Unfortunately, reality interferes, leaving them no choice but to show their hands, forcing them to decide if they should fold…

Or go for broke and play the wild card.

Excerpt:

“How many of those former football players are in here?” he asked.

Lorelie scanned the room and he could see her doing a mental count. “I see five. The usual suspects.”

“The guy with Tucker and Jackson?”

Lorelie shook her head. “No. Nolan didn’t play on the team. He wrote for the school newspaper. Actually, he’s in town right now working on a book about my dad.”

“And what do you think they’d do if I kissed you right now?”

A seductive smile appeared. “I don’t have a clue, but the suspense is killing me. Should we give it a try?”

He wrapped his arm around her shoulders as she turned to face him. “Lori.”

“Yeah?”

“I don’t give a shit about those guys. I’m kissing you because I can’t stop myself.”

She reached up to touch his cheek. It was rough from a day’s worth of growth. He was suddenly sorry he hadn’t taken a second to shave again.

They both moved forward and met in the middle. He liked that. Liked that she wanted this as much as he did. His lips touched hers softly at first. She tasted sweet and smelled like sunshine. He didn’t have a clue what sunshine actually smelled like, but she was it. Fresh air and heat and a mountain lake—all rolled into one.

Her hand remained on his face, the touch as potent as the kiss. He tilted his head slightly, pressing her mouth open with his. Her tongue was there, stroking his, driving them out of the “sweet” range and straight into “sin city” in seconds. He tightened his grip on her shoulders with one arm while his other hand cupped her cheek. Her skin was as silky soft as her hair. The woman was the epitome of sensual perfection.

After a minute or two, Lorelie broke away.

He scowled.

“Gotta breathe,” she said, placing one, then two more quick kisses on his lips.

It took Glen a few minutes to catch his bearings, to recall he was in a crowded bar with loud music and laughter, surrounded by Lorelie’s friends. All those things had faded away when he’d kissed her, leaving only the two of them in a silent world where nothing else existed. He wanted to go back there.

“Lori,” Glen whispered. His head was spinning, everything except her face blurry, gray.

“I…” she started, licking her lips. “That…”

He nodded slowly. “Yeah.”

She blinked rapidly as if trying to regain her own focus. “I’m a little rusty.”

He chuckled. “God help me when you get your sea legs back then, because that kiss rocked my world.”

She smiled and flushed slightly at his compliment. “It’s been a long time since I’ve kissed a guy. I don’t remember it ever feeling so…overwhelming.”

“That’s a good word for it. You keep talking about your lack of dates and as always, I find it hard to believe there’s not a row of guys from here to the next state waiting to ask you out. No matter how deep the defensive line of football players around you.”

He meant his words as a joke, but Lorelie sobered. “Sort of lost track of myself after my dad’s heart attack. It’s taking me a little time to bounce back.”

Glen recalled his first impression of Lorelie back in October. “Caged bird,” he murmured.

She frowned. “What?”

“First time we met, I thought you looked like a caged bird.”

Lorelie considered his description. “That’s not too far from the truth. Let’s just say my dancing shoes are dusty from lack of use. I was there the night my dad had his heart attack. To say it scared me shitless is an understatement. For months, I never strayed far from home because I was afraid it would happen again and I wouldn’t be there to save him.”

“Where’s your mom?” It was a personal question, but the more he learned about Lorelie, the more he wanted to know.

“Died when I was born. Dad raised me on his own. He’s all I have.”

His chest tightened as he thought about the stress Lorelie had been under since last June. Wade had called him shortly after finding out about Coach’s heart attack. Told him he was going back home. At the time, Glen thought Wade was a fool for leaving Nashville and he’d banked on his friend coming back. Even though they hadn’t toured together for a couple years prior to that, the two of them had found plenty of opportunities to meet for drinks at the bar and talk shop. Then Wade reconnected with Charlene in Quinn and stayed gone. Glen had missed him.

“He’s doing better though, right?” Glen asked, recalling the conversation about Coach’s doctor’s appointment.

“Oh yeah. He’s on the mend. Has been for a while.”

“But you’re still worried.”

She nodded. “That’s not going to go away. Ever. I know that. I just need to find a way to deal with it.”

“Sounds to me like you need to let go. Have some fun.”

Lorelie gave him the sexiest grin he’d ever had the pleasure of being on the receiving end of. “My friends suggested I get laid. But your idea sounds okay too.”

He cleared a throat that had suddenly gone tight. “I think you should listen to your friends. They know you better than I do.”

Lorelie laughed loudly. “Wanna help me shake off some of this rust?”

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