Book Title: Winning It All (A Hometown Players Novel, #4)
Author: Victoria Denault
Genre: Sports Romance
Release Date: September 6, 2016
Publisher: Forever & Forever Yours | Grand Central Publishing
Hosted by: Book Enthusiast Promotions
I am nothing if not competitive and I will not let this man – this delectable stranger - feel like he’s won some kind of Flirt Off. I don’t pull back far from the kiss, just enough to break our contact. My eyes flutter open at the same time his do and any hint of that smile on his lips is gone. I see the debate flickering behind those unreal crystal blue eyes and dark, heavy eyebrows. I feel the hesitation. His hand on my jaw gets looser. His thumb lifts up like it’s going to sweep my lips again, but it doesn’t. He stops because I pulled back and it’s made him uncertain. Good. I don’t want to be the only one off-balance here. But he doesn’t want to stop – I can sense that, feel his desire radiating off of him. I can see the debate in his head dancing behind those light eyes. Does he play it cool and wait for me to make another move, or does he just go for what he wants, admitting to himself and to me, that he can’t resist just as much as I can’t?
He tightens his grip on me and I smile for the briefest second before it’s forced from my face when he leans in and captures my lips again. This time he’s the one who gave in. Now we’re even.
Val sprinted down the narrow passage, crashing through mud puddles and leaping over bags of trash that littered her escape route. She followed the alley when it turned right, scanning her path for any opening into the street that might save her life. Before she found a way out, the alley dead-ended at a tarp-covered chain-link fence with barbed wire on top and a padlock trapping her inside.
“No!” Val yanked on the padlock. It didn’t budge. She tried the only door in the alley, a metal behemoth flush with the brick—locked. “Goddammit, no!” She kicked the door, and it barely moved.
Val pulled out her pistol and pressed herself into the corner of the alley’s dead end. She’d been in firefights before while in the military, though not against American citizens, and not alone. She didn’t stand much of a chance against two armed cops when she had nowhere to hide and no cover for support. In all her visions she’d never seen her own death. There was no reason this couldn’t be it.
But she’d be damned if she was going down without a fight. Val planted her feet on the wet pavement, gun trained at the alleyway’s bend, ready to shoot the first thing that entered her line of sight. The rain picked up, an icy October shower that matted her hair to her face and would have chilled her to the bone if not for the wild adrenaline racing through her veins. For what seemed like an eternity she listened to the approaching footsteps and stood her ground, waiting to die.
Then she heard it—a chain rattling. Val ripped her gaze away from where her killers were due to arrive any second to see a set of bolt cutters slip through the fence and snap the padlock off. The chain slinked to the ground, and someone pulled the gate open.
One of her pursuers had somehow doubled back, and now they surrounded her.
Val spun around to face her flanker, finger on the trigger to let loose a hail of bullets into Sten or his friend’s smug face. She gasped and just barely stopped herself from firing as she registered Max Carressa standing in front of her, holding the bolt cutters and recoiling from her gun. She hardly recognized him in jeans and a black motorcycle jacket, a baseball cap deflecting the rain out of his startled face, though his gorgeous eyes were a dead giveaway.
“What the hell?” she said.
Max grabbed her arm. “Come on!” He glanced behind her, where Chet’s murderers thundered up, just around the corner. “Do you wanna die here or not?”
Victoria Denault loves long walks on the beach, cinnamon dolce lattes and writing angst-filled romance. She lives in LA but grew up in Montreal, which is why she is fluent in English, French and hockey.