Dirty Game:A Secret Baby Sports Romance(4)

By: Violet Paige

“Oh, Sierra. Finally. We’ve been waiting for you.” The hostess trapped me in a bear hug. “I want to re-introduce you properly to the island. Come on. Come on.”

“I-uh.” She tugged on me and I had no choice but to follow.

“Henry! Come over here. Leave that fire to the boys. I want you to meet the Sierra Emory I was telling you about. Lindy’s niece.”

A tall, white-haired man with weathered skin and kind eyes handed off a long stick he was using to stoke the fire and walked toward us.

“Shirls, who do we have here?”

“Hi.” I extended my hand. “Thanks for having me tonight.”

I handed Shirley a gallon of ice cream. It was the only thing I could think of to bring at the last minute.

Shirley’s armful of bracelets shook as she took the treat. “Aww, you shouldn’t have. That is so sweet. Henry, isn’t this sweet?” She handed the ice cream to her husband. “I couldn’t believe it when I ran into you today. You want something to drink?”

“Sounds good.” I nodded. Alcohol might be the only way to survived this.

“The tide’s coming in and we don’t have much beach here, so we had to move the coolers to the boats to make room for the fire pit. We’ll just walk down there and get you something.” Shirley extended an arm and waved in the direction of the steaming pot.

After leading me across a grassy lawn and making introductions to the corn hole players, Shirley guided me down a path to the narrow sandy beach.

Shirley squealed and stopped the tour in front of a solid-built woman, who looked to be about forty. Her sunglasses were perched on top of her head, and she had a beer in one hand.

“Jojo, you remember Sierra Emory don’t you?”

“Nice to see you again. How’s it going at Lindy’s?” Jojo asked.

Jojo had worked at the post office when I was growing up. My aunt would stop by every afternoon and they talked. I never paid attention. For the first time I wished I had. I had absolutely nothing to say to this woman.

“It’s good.” I smiled. “Busy.”

Shirley tugged on me. “Everyone’s glad you’re here.”

“Yes, it is nice to have a little social activity for once this summer.”

Jojo laughed. “Now that you know Shirley Lane, your social life will never be dull again.” She took a sip of beer. “Shirley, don’t you think there are a few more people we could introduce her to?”

I thought I caught a conspiratorial wink exchanged between the island women.

“Yep. Yep. I’m headed to get her some drinks right now.” She turned toward me, leading me away from Jojo and to the boats pulled ashore.

Three skiffs dotted the ebbing beach beyond the fire pit. The sterns were lapped by incoming waves, and the bows were pulled high onto the shore.

“Sierra, I’m right behind you. I forgot to tell Henry where to stash the ice cream. Help yourself to whatever you’d like.” She pointed to the boat lineup. “I’ll be right back.” Turning on her heels, she scampered off to find Henry.

Why were all of the drinks on the boat? This was ridiculous. I continued the search for drinks. I wondered if there was anything other than beer. Just one drink and I was out of here.

“Blake, catch!” A deep voice called out from the farthest boat just as I was knocked to the ground by a figure running backward. All I could make out were outstretched arms and an airborne can of Bud Light.

“Score!” the receiver yelled, holding his beer can in the air and flashing a smile after his twenty-yard reception.

“Hey! Not so fast with your victory dance, quarterback.” I fumed from the sand.

An islander spun around, casting a shadow across my face.

“Let me help you up. I’m really sorry.” He extended a hand.

Brushing the sand from my legs and assessing the damage, I pulled myself up.

“Sorry?” Who in the hell knocks a girl down like that?

I realized that, other than a little wet sand stuck to my favorite shorts, I was fine. But I wasn’t about to let my cocky assailant know that. I was ready to launch into a verbal tirade on why he should have been paying more attention, when I looked up and lost my words.

I took in the muscular six two frame topped with sandy hair. I had only seen eyes that color once before. They were a grey-green I couldn’t forget. They were sexy bedroom eyes that threw every good comeback I had out the window.

“Blake?” I sputtered, finding my voice.

He threw everything out the window. Holy shit.





“What are you doing here?” she asked. Her eyes seemed to light with as much fire as I had running under my veins.

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