Home > Jock Row (Jock Hard #1)(15)

Jock Row (Jock Hard #1)(15)
Author: Sara Ney

If Tessa or Cameron noticed the smell, neither of them mentioned it.

Rowdy’s eyes damn near bug out of his skull he’s so excited.

“You have got to be shitting me. Are you serious? Scarlett, you’re fucking awesome.”

I blush beneath my winter jacket, smiling inside the collar, yet I hold the carton of Asian noodles hostage, out of his reach. “You can have this when you tell me how you knew I’d be here tonight.”

He’s desperate, so he folds like a house of cards in a soft breeze. “I sat next to the window like a damn dog waiting for its owner to come home. Now gimme.”

I removed my mittens before digging in my bag of tricks, so our fingers touch when I hand him the food, eyes locking before I pull away, brushing away an invisible lock of hair against my cheek.

“Staring out the window like a goddamn puppy.” He shoves a forkful into his mouth, grumbling.

“Good boy.” I reach over and pat him on the shoulder. “I hope you like General Tso’s chicken. I wasn’t sure so I just brought two of my favorites.”

“I’d eat anything, including the ass out of a dead skunk—this is perfection.”

This whole night is perfection, and if it was something other than what it is, tonight would have been the perfect date.

We eat in silence as I mull over what the ass of a dead skunk might taste like, and where the hell he comes up with his analogies, and how he had the balls to eat meatballs out of a dumpster.

“Oh shit!” he laments. “I’m the worst host.”

Rowdy stands, dragging the cooler closer to the stairs, patting the top with the palm of his hand. Cajoling. “Here, have a seat.”

I plop down, container in my lap, steam rising into the night air, forking the noodles into my mouth.

“What’s that you’re eating?” He’s staring rudely into my container, making love to it with his wanton gaze.

“Shrimp lo mein.”

Rowdy licks his lips, interested. “Would it be uncouth of me to suggest a trade?”

Uncouth? Honestly, what guy talks like that?

“You want to trade? Now?”

“Not right now—you eat half of yours and I’ll eat half of mine and then we’ll switch.”

“You’re not afraid of germs?”

One thick brow goes up, along with the right side of his pouty lips. “Remember that story about how I ate meatballs out of a dumpster?”

“The visual will linger in my mind forever.”

“I’m clean, promise.” Two of his fingers get lifted in the air. “STD and drug free, tested monthly.”

“My god.” I laugh, choking. Wave my hands around for air, dying dramatically. “Water! Water!”

“Watch your back, I might let you choke—I’m that hungry.”

I shoot him a glare, still coughing. “You”—cough—“are”—cough—“the worst.”

Cough.

“So you keep pointing out.”

He sees an opportunity, seizing it to capitalize on my weakness, grabbing my carton as I hunch over on the cooler, choking and laughing and gasping for breath.

Stabs his fork into my lo mein, piercing a shrimp and popping it into his fat face.

“You horse’s ass, give me back my dinner!”

I can’t even swat at him, I’m laughing so hard, eyes watering.

Rowdy pushes at my forehead to keep me at bay, to keep me from grabbing my dinner back like an annoying older brother, the palm of his giant hand singing my skin.

I can’t stop laughing, not even when he tips the container toward his face, shoveling the contents into his open mouth, spilling noodles on his jacket in his haste to beat the clock.

It’s disgusting.

It’s hilarious.

When he finally comes up for air, his face is a mess, chunks of celery and carrots stuck to his chin, just below his bottom lip.

“I can’t even look at you right now. You’re so gross.”

“I told you I was hungry. I wasn’t fucking around.”

“I’m never bringing you food again,” I lie. “You have zero manners, and I didn’t bring any napkins—I wasn’t expecting you to be such a slob.”

He couldn’t care less. “Come on, that was funny.”

“Maybe this is the reason you’re single,” I tease, watching as he tries to lick the sauce off his chin, pink tongue darting out. “Who would kiss that face?”

“I’m not single because I have bad manners, and trust me, plenty of girls have wanted to do more than kiss this face.” Sadly, he’s not even bragging; he’s just stating a fact, and we both know it.

“Everyone knows jocks make bad boyfriends.”

“What the hell would make you say that?” His head gives a sad little shake at the same time he stuffs more noodles into his waiting mouth. “Where are you getting your facts?”

“The power of observation.”

“Fact: plenty of those guys inside are in relationships.”

My brows go up, interested. “Is that so?”

“Well…no.” He laughs. “But that doesn’t mean they’d make shitty boyfriends.”

I smack his arm, palm lingering on his forearm.

“If you had to guess how many guys on the baseball team were in actual, committed relationships, how many would you say it was? Ballpark it.”

“Haha, very punny.” He tosses his white carton into a giant garbage can at the end of the porch, trying to grab mine back. “I don’t know, five?”

My laugh cuts into the dark, clear as a bell, rising above the sound of the music from inside the house. “Out of how many players?”

“Thirty?”

“Well…” I smirk, digging my plastic fork into the white container, digging around for what’s left of my noodles. “You are pretty damn adorable, I’ll give you that.”

Rowdy cups his ear with his giant man hand to better hear me with. “Say again? Talk into my good ear.”

I demure, avoiding his blazing green eyes. “Say what again?”

“You just admitted you think I’m sexy.”

“I never called you sexy.”

I laugh. Nudge him in the bicep when he scoots closer on the cooler beside me, taking up most of the space with his massive thighs.

They burn holes into the legs of my pants, from the tops of my thighs down to my ankles.

Zing.

Sizzle.

“Your mama better get you to the otolaryngologist and have your hearing checked—I said you were adorable. God, you and your giant, inflated ego. I’m surprised you haven’t drifted off into the clouds.”

“I’m sorry, but I cannot see the difference between adorable and sexy.”

I mean, really—how does a person not roll their eyes at him a million times?

“I think you’re adorable.” He’s leaning forward, hands braced on his knees. Neck craned toward me, green eyes unflinching.

“Cute adorable or sexy adorable?” I almost choke again, holding my breath, waiting for his answer, heart beating so fast I actually lose oxygen.

His nostrils flare. “Scarlett…”

But we’re interrupted, just like in every cliché movie where two people sharing Chinese takeout who are about to kiss for the first time in the freezing cold always are.

Two girls push through the front door, and for a split second I think it’s Tessa and Cam. It’s not. Both girls are decked out in high heels and short dresses, way too skimpy for the cold, pre-winter weather we’ve been having, and I bury myself deeper into my puffy coat, self-conscious.

These girls are blatantly flaunting their sexuality while I’m bundled up like I’m waiting for the blizzard of the century to hit town, holding a steaming pile of carbs with a side of soy sauce.

Slightly embarrassed for the first time in three weeks, I pull at my gray knit cap, annoyed that I even care, that I’m having insecure thoughts in the first place—it’s so unlike me.

One of the girls—she’s beautiful and willowy and aggressive, if her stance is any indication—stops when she sees Rowdy, jutting out her hip, posing, toe of her high heel pointed at the floor.

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