About the Book
Playing house just got real…
When Joya Bennett wakes up after her brother’s wedding, half-naked and lying next to her lifelong crush, she’s mortified. OMG, did she try to jump his bones? Worse, did she succeed? Intending to lay low and housesit for her brother until the embarrassment fades, she sneaks away before he wakes up.
What she didn’t plan on is having company.
Lincoln Fisher doesn’t do relationships, but if he did, his friend’s little sister would be the one to tie him down. Good thing Joya had one too many drinks during the reception or he’d have crossed a line. Her brother would kill him if he found out all the places Linc wanted to kiss the sexy, auburn-haired beauty.
And now they’re stuck in the same house. For two weeks.
She’s off-limits. And he needs to keep it that way, even if the heat building between them is hot enough to blow off the roof…
Each book in the Wedding Favors series is a stand-alone, full-length story that can be enjoyed out of order.
Book #1 Bridesmaid Blues
Book #2 Random Acts of Marriage
Book #3 Properly Groomed
“What are you doing?” Linc asked from somewhere above her.
“Fixing a leak.” She shimmied deeper into the cabinet and adjusted the width of the wrench opening, then latched it onto a section of the pipe. “It just needs to be tightened a little.”
“Do you know what you’re doing?” Though not condescending, his tone did hold a note of doubt.
“Of course I know what I’m doing.” Okay, maybe she didn’t know the exact procedure for this job, but it was a tiny leak, not quantum physics. “I got this.”
With all her force, she torqued the wrench. That might have actually worked if the pipe hadn’t slipped. The mouth of the wrench lost its hold on the metal connector and slammed into the valve directly behind it, knocking the knob off at the neck. Cold water jettisoned from the opening, dousing her torso and filling her open mouth.
Her shriek was quickly cut off by her sputtering coughs. In one swift move, Linc grabbed her legs and dragged her out from under the sink, away from the geyser-like gush. She lay on her back beside him while he fought the powerful spray until successfully stopping the flow.
Water dripped from her hair and T-shirt, pooling on the floor as she climbed to her feet. Sitting on the floor, equally as drenched, Linc leaned against the cabinet door. “You got this, huh?” He smirked and rose to feet. “Might I suggest shutting off the water first as a precautionary measure?”
She swiped her hand across her face, dislodging the droplets from her lashes. “Good idea.”
Being embarrassed took a backseat to her complete inability to focus on anything other than the wet T-shirt clinging to his well-defined chest. Hot, owned a rescue dog, and he could fix things—it was almost too much to resist.
Without warning, he peeled his white T-shirt off and turned to ring it out in the sink. Sweet Jesus, if she made it through these next two weeks without attacking him it would be a miracle. Each muscle flexed as he rung the water from his shirt, and it took all her willpower not to reach out and stroke the glistening planes.
When he pivoted toward her again, her eyes darted to his face, hoping he hadn’t noticed her visually chugging his hotness. “Why don’t you go change?” His gaze dipped to her breasts, lingered, and then drifted back to her eyes. “Or not; I’m good either way.”
She glanced down and heat flooded her cheeks. Like a thin layer of tissue paper, her T-shirt lay plastered to her body, revealing every detail of her breasts. She slapped her arms across her chest and spun, exiting the room without a reply or backward glance.
A simple household chore, that’s all she’d wanted to do. Instead, she’d ended up in a wet T-shirt contest, and from Linc’s expression, she’d won hands-down. He’d made it crystal clear that he didn’t mind her flashing him. And she certainly hadn’t minded his brief bout of nakedness.
She closed the door behind her, inhaled, and then exhaled, forcing her nerves to calm. So what? He’d seen her boobs, kind of. For all she knew, he’d seen them last night. No big deal. Just plain old breasts, that’s all they were, not the lost Ark of the Covenant. He was probably used to it. There was absolutely no reason she should be embarrassed or awkward around him now. Actually, “you’re welcome” might be an even better response.
Heading to the bathroom, she shook off the familiar stirrings she called the Linc Effect. This didn’t have to be weird. They were adults now. She was completely in control of her emotions and actions—right? Sure, they might have slept together, but that didn’t mean something more serious was brewing.
As a matter of fact, her brother had made it perfectly clear—every chance he got—that Linc wasn’t the right guy for her. Anytime he came up in conversation, Kyle was quick to counter with some fact about his friend’s bachelor life, making it sound as if it would be a cold day in hell before Linc would give up his freedom.
Not that she was looking for that level of commitment. But that didn’t mean she couldn’t have something in the now, though, right?
About the Author
Amazon Best Selling Author Boone Brux’s stories range from high fantasy to humorous paranormal.
Having lived all over the world, and finally settling in the icy region of Alaska, she's always looking for the next adventure. It's not unusual to find Boone traversing the remotest parts of the Alaskan bush, gathering information for her stories. No person or escapade is off limits when it comes to weaving real life experiences into her books or blogs.
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About the Book
Jane Dixon is a dating disaster. Flammable tablecloths and broken arms are just a typical evening for her unlucky companions. No wonder Jane never gets past a first date. But luckily her co-worker and new bff says he’s got loads of friends who’d date her more than once. If only she could stop thinking about how much fun he was to hang out with. And she’d never dropped a bucket of ice on his junk. Win.
All attorney Eric Blackwell has to do to make junior partner is not screw anything up for six weeks, which seems like a slam dunk until he finds himself matchmaker to the office “One Date Wonder” aka the boss’s daughter. It’s hard to stay focused when setting up the hottest girl he’s ever met with everyone but himself. Maybe he could just set her up with all the wrong men, and keep his hands off his new friend… Yeah. His promotion is toast.
Operation Smooth Sailing had officially entered week two. All Eric Blackwell needed to do in order to make junior partner at Dixon, Rosenbaum & Schoot was maintain the status quo for the next six weeks. Basically, he just had to stay under the radar and get the Anderson Enterprises acquisition to work out on paper without screwing anything up.
He straightened his tie and pushed the button for the fifteenth floor. Six weeks. No problem. Well, except for that little bit of bad news about some potential negative tax consequences for Anderson Enterprises that the analysis department had missed. Yeah, that.
He straightened his tie again. Being team leader, it was his task to brief Mr. Dixon on the details, and he’d been putting it off, hoping someone in his department would find some case law precedent, or a loophole, or a freaking magic spell to fix it.
The elevator doors slid open, and before he made ten steps into the lobby, a booming voice stopped him in his tracks. “This message arrived yesterday afternoon, Marcie. Why am I only now receiving it?”
The receptionist cleared her throat and slumped in her chair behind the semicircular teak desk in the lobby. “I’m sorry, Mr. Dixon. So many things came at once near the end of the day. I emailed your secretary and she said to—”
Face red, Mr. Dixon waved the paper in front of Marcie’s nose. He wasn’t a small man by any means, but when he was angry, he filled a room. “So, now you’re going to blame someone else?”
“No sir, your secretary said to… I… I…”
“There are two things I can’t abide: people who shift blame, and procrastinators.”
Yep, well, today probably wasn’t a good day to deliver late news about the analysis department’s mistake. Eric froze near the west wall of the lobby and did his best wood paneling imitation, hoping his dark suit jacket was sufficient camo to keep Mr. Dixon from noticing him. This was the last thing he needed first thing in the morning. He hadn’t even made it to his office yet.
“Dixon, Rosenbaum & Schoot prides itself on reliability, punctuality, and accuracy.” Mr. Dixon emphasized his statement with a palm slap on the desk, causing poor Marcie to almost launch out of her skin. “We expect all our employees to uphold this standard.”
“Yes, sir.” Marcie stared down at her hands.
Mr. Dixon folded the message and placed it in his suit pocket. “Well, then.”
Eric held his breath as the man strode with purpose toward the hallway to his office.
Shit, shit, shit. How did he do that? He’d never even turned around. No way could he have seen him standing there. “Good morning, Mr. Dixon.”
“I believe you are late delivering the financials on the Anderson deal. I’ll hold three o’clock open for you. Since I haven’t heard anything on this, I expect good news.”
“Three o’clock.” Eric’s stomach sank. Yeah…sank. Perfect. Man the lifeboats; Operation Smooth Sailing just hit an iceberg.
Once Mr. Dixon disappeared from view, Marcie covered her face with her hands. Crying did it to Eric every time—yanked his heart out and stomped on it. When he was younger, he’d do anything to stop his mother’s crying, and he’d do anything now. Poor Marcie.
He took a deep breath and approached the desk. “Hey, Marcie. Sorry about that. He’s really not all that bad.” Well, that was a bust. It came out more like a question than a statement of fact.
To his relief, her eyes were completely dry when she lowered her hands from her face. “Yes, he is. He’s…” But she didn’t finish her thought before the phone rang. “Dixon, Rosenbaum, & Schoot, could you hold please?” Without waiting for an answer, she pushed the hold button. “I just had a million things come in at once this morning, too”—she gestured to a foot-tall stack of mail on the corner of the desk—“and I can’t possibly handle all of it and answer the phones. And Mr. Dixon scares me.”
Yeah, second that. His grip tightened on the briefcase containing the bad news report on the acquisition. “Is there something I can do to help you?”
“No.” She adjusted her headset. “You’re sweet to ask, though.”
The elevator slid open, and a delivery guy stepped out with an enormous bouquet of flowers. Making a line straight for Marcie, he set the vase on the desktop and shoved a clipboard at her right as the phone rang again. She put two more calls on hold as the guy stood there, clipboard out, clearly unaffected by the harried receptionist.
“Can anyone sign for those?” Eric asked when the phone rang again. The deliverer handed him the pen, he signed for the flowers, and the guy went on his way while Marcie directed a call to the Worker’s Comp Department and another to the Family Law Division.
She stood and checked the card on the flowers, and with a groan, slumped down in her chair. “I have the worst luck ever. Of course they go to the office farthest from my desk.”
He turned the arrangement to find out who it was for. “Jane Dixon” was scrawled in blue ink on the undersized envelope held in place with a plastic pitchfork-looking thing.
Jane Dixon. Eric played the image of her through his head. Small and blonde with huge blue eyes—not anything like her father, the man currently waiting to kill Eric’s partnership dreams. He and Jane had been in the same meetings on occasion, but they’d never spoken to each other…just stared—well, he’d stared; she probably hadn’t even noticed him.
Jane put in long, long hours, like he did. He knew this because even though she worked in the Family Law Division and he in the Business Mergers and Acquisitions Department, her office was down the hall from his. One of the highlights of his day was when she walked by his open door. On most nights, her office light was still on well after nine o’clock when he packed it in to go home.
He stared at the card, dying to peek inside and see who was sending her flowers. Maybe a boyfriend… A strange ping of jealousy flared and he almost laughed. Jealous. He was the pitiful guy who left his door open to score a look at her. She didn’t even know who he was. It wasn’t like he’d ever dreamed of asking her out or anything—okay, well, maybe he had dreamed of it, but it was a ridiculous fantasy. Not only was there a strict non-fraternization policy at DR&S, she was the boss’s daughter, for fuck’s sake.
Jealous? Nope. Pathetic? Absolutely.
The switchboard lit up again, and the receptionist gave a frustrated huff.
“Listen, Marcie. I’m going down that hallway anyway. Why don’t I just drop these off for you?” He picked up the vase.
“Oh my gosh, Mr. Blackwell. You’re the nicest guy. Thank you so much.”
Nice… Yeah, being Mr. Nice Guy had nothing to do with getting a close-up look at Jane Dixon. Nothing at all. Again, pathetic. “Not a problem. I hope your day gets better.”
“It just did.”
Yeah, so had his.
About the Author
Marissa Clarke is a multi-award-winning, RITA® nominated author of romance for adults and teens. She lives in Texas, where everything is bigger, especially the mosquitoes. When not writing, she wrangles her rowdy pack of three teens, husband, and a Cairn terrier named Annabel, who rules the house (and Marissa's heart) with an iron paw.
Marissa Clarke is a pseudonym. Her real name is Mary Lindsey and she also writes young adult novels for Penguin USA.
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