Home > Fake Fiancée(9)

Fake Fiancée(9)
Author: Ilsa Madden-Mills

“So your breakup sucked too, huh?” Bianca Something was his ex’s name, and their tumultuous relationship had been the talk of campus last year. The sports media had even mentioned their crazy back and forth a few times. Heck, I’d witnessed them arguing once on the quad. I’d been coming around a tree when I saw them facing off, plain as day that they were having a huge fight. As I’d watched, she’d thrown a book at his head and yelled obscenities. He’d stormed off with his fists clenched.

A shadow crossed his face. “She screwed up my game last year. Can you believe she still throws herself at me when her boyfriend isn’t around?”

“Want me to kick her ass?”

He laughed.

I laughed.

And we stared at each other.

Okay, the staring thing was getting weird as heck. But I couldn’t stop—and neither could he. Heat grew in his gaze, and I felt my own body responding. Melting.

Get out of the fancy car, Sunny. Mr. Quarterback is dangerous.

“Wait,” he said as I moved to open the door. His hand touched my arm, lingering down to my wrist. My heart thundered. Good grief. I was as weak as a baby kitten.

I clenched my fists.

Keep your panties on, Sunny. Don’t. Fall. For. The. Quarterback.

My brain briefly noted that a football player was the only athlete I hadn’t dated. In high school, before I’d left to be homeschooled, it had been a scorching hot basketball player who could run down the court fast as lightning. At Southwest it had been a lean volleyball player with the softest kisses. Then it had been Bart, my latest, who was a sexy baseball player well on his way to the majors this spring. I sighed. The truth is I had a horrible, horrible thing for them. Call it opposites attract or whatever, but athletes were magnets to my heart, and once I let them in, they obliterated me.

“Yeah?” I studied his face, taking in the perfection of each feature.

He reciprocated the appreciation, his gaze skating over the V of my shirt just enough to make my nipples harden. Stupid nipples.

“Do you feel this thing between us? Like a connection?” he murmured and then scoffed a little under his breath as if the idea was ludicrous.

“No,” I lied.

“Really? The moment I opened my door, something strange happened.” He gave me a self-deprecating shrug. “That is, unless my girl radar is completely off the rails.”

I laughed, but then quickly sobered.

Why would the King of Leland Football be interested in me?

He was like . . . this famous football star that the entire university—heck, the entire state of Georgia—adored.

I mean, don’t get me wrong, guys hit on me sometimes when I went out. I have long blond hair and nice boobs, but I wasn’t anything special. My nose was a little too long and my cheekbones a little too broad to be considered a conventional beauty. I rarely wore makeup except for lipstick and mascara, and I wasn’t big on dressing sexy unless you counted skinny jeans and flats.

A black jeep whipped into the parking spot next to me and my breath caught.

“Someone you know?” Max asked.

“My ex.” The anxious feeling I’d woken up with grew in the pit of my stomach.

“You dated Bart Morgan, the pitcher of the baseball team? Huh. Maybe that’s why you look so familiar. Maybe I saw you at the athletic banquet last year?”

I nodded.

“He’s why you don’t date athletes?”

“He’s why I’m not dating anyone. All I want is to graduate and get out of here. I don’t need anyone but myself.”

“Ah. He played you,” Max said.

“Like a banjo.”

Bart exited his car, grabbed his book bag, and took off for the sidewalk. He never even glanced in our direction.

My face flamed at the memory of how I’d trusted him even though Isabella had warned me he had a reputation. I twisted my fingers into my hair, tugging on it.

Max’s eyebrows furrowed, and he pulled my hand out of my hair. “Hey. What happened between you two?”

I fidgeted, realizing that Max had been watching and scrutinizing my reaction to Bart.


Maybe it was because it was the first time I’d heard my name on his lips or maybe it was the scathing look he’d sent Bart’s back as he walked away—but whatever it was, I let myself sink back into the car.

“He . . .” My voice trailed off as I recalled his birthday party. It had been a warm night last spring, and I’d been exhausted after working my shift at the library. Excited to see him after his busy week of games and being on the road, I drove straight to the baseball frat house without calling him first. I found him at the back of the den, lying on a couch with his hands down another girl’s pants—in full view of everyone at the party. And totally oblivious I was standing there. Gaping at them.

He’d been such a LIAR.

Oh, baby, I love you.

Oh, baby, you and I are meant to be.

I chewed on my lip. “He was with another girl . . . I watched them . . .” I paused, remembering the humiliation.

“Want me to kick his ass?”

I half-smiled. “No.”

“You still care about him?”

“I shouldn’t. Do you still care about Bianca?”

“She’s going to be in our class.” His face hardened.

My mouth opened. “No way.”


I shook my head. “Aren’t we just a bunch of losers?”

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