on January 4, 2018
Genres: Contemporary Romance
“Good Morning Malibu, it’s another beautiful day on the west coast! I’m Noely Clark, your host: and I’m in the market for love…”
When the publicity team of the new local restaurant, Going in Blind, began their search for a hot, local celebrity to promote the wildly popular eatery, they couldn’t have found a better person than me.
Open to finding love? Check.
I signed up immediately.
A hopeless romantic with an exceedingly demanding schedule, I’ve found it impossible to find the man of my dreams—so Going in Blind seems too good to be true! That’s until they start setting me up on dates—three very different, very attractive, very distinct blind dates—and only one thing is for certain . . .
I’m in big trouble.
Good Morning Malibu,
I’m Noely Clark, and I have a choice to make.
The question is who will I choose; the suit, the rebel, or the jock.
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With both hands, I grip the tumbler and pour it back in my mouth like I’m trying to get the crumbs out of an almost-empty chip bag. The liquid burns my throat once again, but I welcome it. I welcome the shudders, loving how I can feel my body starting to float. I have one more glass, because why not? Yes, this was a good idea. A very good idea. I just need to loosen up, find my groove, feel the blind date—
I spin around in my chair, probably a little too fast, given I need to grip the back of my chair to steady myself.
“IceBiscuit?” My eyes don’t meet his. Instead, I’m at nipple level, taking in his very broad and muscular chest. Wow. Heat rises to the back of my neck, and I know it’s not the whiskey; it’s the powerful chest right in front of me, and are those . . . are those his pecs? They’re all defined and large and yummy and . . . sigh. Curiosity pops out of me before I can stop myself, and I poke his chest. When I’m greeted with a firm bounce, I giggle to myself. “Pecs,” I mutter under my breath. Yep, yummy indeed. IceBiscuit is putting the work in at the gym and not shoving cheesesteaks down his throat. Hand on his chest, my fingers diddling his shirt, I look up to find a very confused but familiar face.
Have you ever felt all the blood in your face leech out of you, as if every last piece of color drains from your features and falls to the floor from total and utter embarrassment?
Try not only diddling your date’s chest, but diddling the one and only Hayden Holmes’s chest.
Shaking my hand away, as if he’s burned me. I stand from my chair but stumble forward. Clearly, heels and whiskey don’t mix. I fall to my knees and curse under my breath. I pop up quickly, my legs feeling like a newborn calf’s, and throw my arms up in the air like a gymnast on her dismount. To add to the embarrassment, I say, “Nine point five, not a perfect ten, but I’ll get there.” I laugh nervously and right my shirt, while lowering my arms. “They don’t score like that anymore, but who’s really going to say fourteen-point-two-six-seven? I mean, especially when the viewers don’t know the degree of difficulty. You know?” Hayden just stares at me, so to put that final nail in my coffin, I punch his arm and say, “Gymnastics, am I right?”
Exposed and embarrassed, I glance at Danny, who’s watching from a distance with a look that says, I told you so. In my head, I shout back at him, “Shut up, Danny!”
Hayden reaches behind his neck and pulls on it, his large bicep flexing beneath his shirt. He’s dressed casually in a dark pair of jeans and tight-fitting, long-sleeved shirt. “Uh, are you okay?”
“Yep, fit as a fiddle.” I motion with a low fist pump across my body, as if to say, just dandy. Although I’m thinking just dandy would have been better than fit as a fiddle. Who can really know at this point? They’re both something my grandpa would say with a hop and a click of his heels in the air.
“Good.” He looks around, scanning the restaurant. “Never thought I’d run into you here. Are you ShopGirl?”
“I am but you can call me, Noely. Noely Clark.” I awkwardly grab his hand from his hip and shake it. “Nice to meet you.”
Puzzled, Hayden laughs. “I remember who you are, Noely.”
“Oh yeah, of course.” I pat my legs and say, “This is weird. I, uh, I didn’t think I would be matched with you, so I’m feeling nervous and intimidated. Because, you know, you’re all hot and whatnot with your hockey body and strong thighs and nice hair. And I’m sure if you turned around right now, I would see your high, tight ass.” My hands cup together and my face scrunches as I form a tight ass for him.
Note to self.
Whiskey equals truth serum. Shit. Shit and double shit. Why tonight? Why Hayden?
“Thanks.” He chuckles and looks over my shoulder. “Started early on the drinks?”
“Maybe.” I bite my bottom lip. “Third blind date and rough day equals more drinks for me.”
Hayden knowingly nods. “Got ya. Should we get some food in you so you don’t pass out onto your dinner?”
“Good idea.” I bop his nose, hating my inability to stop my hands from doing stupid things.
Hayden holds out his arm to me, which I take no time in grabbing. Ooo, so many muscles. I can feel his forearm rippling beneath my palm. Forearms are the new abs. I’m calling it now.