Monday, 20 January 2014

Scored - an excerpt!

The Danger of a White Bikini!

A white bikini looks great against tanned skin, there is no doubt about that, but what many ladies - including myself on a beach in Spain - have found out is that they can be completely see-through when wet! Below is an excerpt from SCORED my sexy soccer novel starring Nicki, a sports journalist, and Tate Lewis, captain of the England football team. 

After a hotel mix-up and a flood in Lewis' exclusive suit, the couple find themselves rooming opposite each other in the Hotel Donbass in Dontesk, The Ukraine. Then, following a super-embarrassing incident in an elevator that includes a vibrator with a  mind of its own, Nicki is keen to avoid sexy Lewis, unfortunately things don't go to plan...

 Hotel Donbass in Dontesk

Hotel Donbass pool

My room was lovely. Spacious and opulent with a great big bed, flamboyant furniture and decorated in rich creams, golds and a splash of purple.
I unpacked my minimalist wardrobe of jeans, T-shirts, a couple of fleeces in case the weather turned, and one pretty dress, a standard little black number that hugged my hips and waist and had a clever internal support that boosted my cleavage and made it possible to go without a bra.
Sipping on a cup of tea, I flicked through the hotel brochure. The restaurant menus looked divine, as did the treatments on offer at the spa. Perhaps I should treat myself to a facial or a massage, or better still put one down to expenses. I scanned the price list. Okay, maybe not.
But they did have a pool. A very luxurious-looking pool with hydrotherapy jets, large loungers around the edge and a jungle of potted ferns and palms that led out onto a terrace. I could go for a swim; that was free for hotel guests.
I dragged a white bikini from the side pocket of my case. It was a designer brand, bought in a retail outlet for a fraction of the price it would have been sold for originally in some swanky London store. I’d been waiting for an opportunity to wear it for the first time.
I nipped into the bathroom, freshened up using the complimentary lemon and neroli fragranced toiletries, then slipped into my bikini. Pulled a big, fluffy robe around myself and checked the hotel map in the information booklet. I only had to get to the elevator and head down to the basement and I’d be at the spa. I was sure plenty of people just wore robes when moving between their rooms and the pool.
I was just about to leave when a thought hit me. Damn. How could I go to the pool now? Lewis had been holding trunks and goggles when I’d seen him. If I showed up for a dip he would definitely think I was tailing him. I clicked my tongue on the roof of my mouth in irritation. I’d been looking forward to stretching out in the water after my long day. Letting those nice hydro-jets pound onto my aching shoulders.
A sudden noise in the hall outside caught my attention. Footsteps, a door being opened. A few seconds later the loud thud of it shutting.
Great. That sounded directly opposite. Lewis had obviously finished his swim and gone back to his room. That would leave the pool free for me to use, and of course, anyone else in the hotel, but as long as it wasn’t him that was fine. The last thing I needed was to bump into him for a fourth time in less than twenty-four hours. A restricting order would be knocking at my door faster than I could say penalty shoot-out.

After dropping my robe onto a wicker lounger with deep cream cushions, I waded down the steps into the pool. Cool water wrapped around me, caressing my aching limbs like soothing hands. Bliss. Even more blissful because I had the place all to myself.
There were voices coming from the terrace. Three double doors were flung open to the sunshine and the breeze. I couldn’t hear what was being said, just the low hum of conversation.
Kicking out, I swam on my back toward a large silver tap-like jet and watched the shimmering reflections on the roof. They shivered and shook, the sunlight rippling across the ceiling in sparkling waves. Sighing, I moved beneath the jet, let the blasting water jostle and jolt me, bash against my travel-weary shoulders.
I shut my eyes. The heavy pounding was heavenly, massaging away several days of stress and strain. I tipped my head back, smoothed my hair from my face and allowed the water drag the sodden strands over my scalp and down my back. Later I would use the luxurious-smelling shampoo and conditioner in my hotel bathroom and tame my curls ready for tomorrow’s match. I was bound to see Phil there. I hoped he wouldn’t ask me too much about the Donbass and the players. Likewise, I hoped Reg wouldn’t give me a hard time later when I just did a report about the architecture and history of the hotel rather than a detailed account of my meeting with the team captain.
Just the thought of Lewis conjured an image of him in my head. His smile had had a devastating effect on my lusty hormones, sending them skittering this way and that. Prodding and poking me, and reminding me that it had been just over a year since I’d taken a man to my bed. How blessed was Naomi to get her hands on his hot body? She must know she was the luckiest woman on the planet.
I rubbed my fingertips over my shoulders and chest, blindly making sure my bikini was still covering my modesty. Sure Lewis was drop-dead gorgeous, but he was also a really nice guy. He’d been kind enough to make sure the press conference was fair, polite enough not to use the word vibrator in the elevator, and then more than happy to help out a stranger struggling with a keycard. And to top it all, he went to church like a good boy. He was perfect, there was no other way to describe him. I wondered what he saw in Naomi, whose reputation as a diva preceded her. Perhaps it was all for show and beneath the veneer she was a sweetheart.
Somehow I couldn’t imagine it.
I sighed and decided to relax on one of the soft loungers and let the breeze tickle over me as I dried.
Opening my eyes, I stepped out of the blasting jet.
Standing at the side of the pool were four England players staring straight at me.
Suddenly I was glad of the extra support the water gave me. My knees felt weak, and my stomach turned a cartwheel.
What the hell?
Neil Bryers stood at the far left, his dark skin gleaming and a wide, white grin on his face. Next to him was the goalie, Ted Hatton—he was tall and skinny, famed for his big hands, and right now he also had big eyes. Then came Liam Taylor; the baby of the team at only nineteen, he wore bright orange flowery swim trunks and was gripping a towel at crotch level, twirling it around his fingers. Finally, Lewis stood with his hands on his hips and his mouth slightly parted. He didn’t have the soft, smiley expression he’d had in the mental image I’d been enjoying. In fact, he looked beyond pissed off.
Damn, I really should have stayed in my room. I could hear that restricting order winging its way toward me.
But what could I do? I was here now, in the water, and they were there, waiting to get in.
I took a deep breath and waded toward the steps, wishing there was a little more support in my bikini top. I could feel my breasts shifting as I moved. With each step they bounced and jiggled. There wasn’t a damn thing I could do about it.
The players stayed stock still and continued to stare. I wondered about flashing them a smile then decided against it. That would just make me look like a footy groupie. And I certainly didn’t fall into a WAG-wannabe category. I was a serious reporter, here for the game, not the players.
Gripping a steel bar, I exited the pool, the water splashing away from my body as I rose. Typical that was where they were standing and I had to walk right past Lewis to reach my robe. I caught his eye briefly. He’d pulled down his brows, narrowed his eyes and was gnawing at the inside of his cheek. I dropped my gaze and admired, for the shortest pocket of time, his broad chest and the scribble of blond hair at the center that led a tantalizing trail downward, past his navel to the waistband of his shorts.
I reached my robe and used it to dab against my face, wiping away the drips. Thankfully, I heard the shuffle of feet, someone mentioned the sunshine outside, and I was aware of the players moving out of the pool area.
Dropping the robe onto the lounger, I took a deep breath and sagged my shoulders.
“It’s see-through, you know.”
Standing directly in front of me was Lewis.
I was shocked to see him when I thought I was alone again. “What?”
“Your bikini, it’s completely see-through.”
I pulled in a sharp intake of breath and glanced down.
Oh fuck! He was right. My white bikini was opaque. My nipples were dark and erect, poking at the pathetically thin material, and my little strip of pubic hair…fuck, you could make out every strand and the first indent of my labia.
“Shit.” I scrabbled with my robe, but Lewis was already holding it open for me.
“Here,” he said.
“I, er, thanks.” I shoved my arms in and pulled it tight around my body. Every millimeter of my flesh prickled with embarrassment. “Shit, I didn’t know, it’s new, I—”
“Hey, these things happen. Trouble is, these guys are all on enforced celibacy. Seeing a beautiful woman standing in a see-through bikini underneath flowing water might just tip them over the edge, if you know what I mean.”
Oh my God. Had I heard him right? Had Lewis Tate just called me beautiful?
“I’m really sorry,” I gabbled. “I didn’t know. I’ll just go and…and…” And what, get dressed, curl up under a stone and die?
He cocked his head and studied me. “I’m not complaining on my behalf, but Liam’s just a baby. He barely has the self-control needed to cope with Fellows’ damn rules.”
I gripped my hair into a ponytail and squeezed it to wring out the pool water. “Like I said, I’m sorry.”
“No apologies.” He was watching me fiddle with my hair. “But if I catch him trying to bed some Ukrainian chick later then I’ll know who to blame.”
“Well, I’m sure it won’t come to that.” Words and thoughts were tumbling in my head. Was I really having a conversation with Lewis about his team’s struggle with celibacy?
“You’d better hope it doesn’t.” He twitched his mouth into a half smile. “Perhaps I’ll go and order him to have some quality alone time. Take the edge of it. That usually helps, doesn’t it?”
My intestines knotted. “I don’t know what you mean.”
He shoved a hand through his hair and it flopped messily around his face and temples. “Sure you do.”
He turned and walked away, in the direction of the terrace. His movements were so easy and graceful he almost glided, his body under absolute control. If I hadn’t been so ruffled at the bizarre conversation we’d just had and his parting comment, I would have enjoyed seeing the way the sinewy muscles in his back sat taut beneath the skin, shifting ever so slightly with each step.
But I was seriously ruffled. My cheeks were burning and the traitorous bikini felt cold and sticky against my skin. There was no way I could chill out by the pool now. The relaxed state of a few minutes ago had evaporated and in its place sat yet another dagger of mortification.
There was only one thing for it. Clearly, I couldn’t be trusted out of my hotel room, because each time I did venture out some humiliating incident occurred with Lewis. I would shower and change and order room service. In fact, I would only come out for matches over the next few weeks. That would be the best thing. I would live there, it was certainly sumptuous enough. Perhaps then I’d be able to avoid any more toe-curling episodes of shame.

* * * *

I hope you enjoyed that little excerpt, let's just say Lewis has no problems at all with see-through white-bikinis as Nicki later finds out!

The celibacy theme in the story was an interesting addition, and was actually a rule enforced on the England football team by one over-zealous manager several years ago before big games. It was controversial but none of the players made a public stand against it from what I remember, though I'm sure these hot guys had ways and means of getting what they wanted, just like Lewis does in SCORED!

Buy from Amazon for Kindle

Reader reviews for SCORED

"Lily Harlem's story of a famous footballer and a sports writer is one of the best happily ever after erotica novels I've read recently. I loved the behind-the-scenes look into the sports world mixed in with the heart-thumping sex scenes. Great, read for anyone who loves all kind of detail, in and out of the bedroom."

"I can thoroughly recommend Scored. It's a clever story with twists and turns and lots of hot sex and football. What more could a girl want!"

"Lovely romantic story that is sexy and very sensual. I liked the characters especially Nicky she was a girl with integrity, but sweet. Some of the things that happen to her are quite funny. Lewis was sex on legs, very handsome and irresistible. The love scenes were hot and passionate. With a fine cast of supporting characters made this a satisfying read. I liked the cover, the guy on the front looks to me very much like a player who once played for England."

"...this book had me from the beginning."

"Lily definately showed her love for the game and made me feel like I was right there watching... The romance between Nicky and Lewis was smoldering and when fanned with enough room to breathe it combusted."

"First book I have read by this author and I can't wait to read more."

"This is my first Lily Harlem title and I downloaded it on referral from a friend. It's the best thing I've done for myself in awhile. I will admit, that lately, I've turned into the East German Judge when it comes to books and this one blew me away. It was exciting to fall in love with characters again, to be so lost in an author's voice that I just kept turning the pages. - 

I'll be buying everything Ms. Harlem has available."

"Loved this book. Love romance books with sports heroes. Nice to have a change and have our guy be an English footballer. Very well written. Truly felt for our heroine. Sexy read."

"If you want a steamy short contemporary, then you have found it!! Hot alpha male man, nice heroine character, lots of steamy sex!"

"I loved the passion that Ms Harlem was able to put into her writing and you could also tell that she had done her research into various soccer tournaments because there was an air of knowledge portrayed that seemed genuine."

"This was thrilling (soccer games), sexy (footballers) and sensual (elevator kiss). Ms. Harlem words jumped on the page for me. I am a fan of her work now. I'm off to find more. I highly recommendation this for the sports fan in all of us."

"Scored is a book that has a great story line, meaningful character development and wonderful depth of character interaction. Woven into the story line is hot steamy sex; equals a marvelous book. If your a football (soccer in US) fan and want a good love story with hot sex, this is must read!"

What I love about Ms Harlem's work is that she writes in 1st person--and she's excellent at it--but at no time do I ever feel I've been denied the chance to get to know the hero. Ms Harlem expertly sprinkles lines throughout that show exactly who the hero is, what he's feeling--and the same goes for the secondary characters. Everyone is displayed so very well, and I'll admit to being a serious fan of this author's work, and Scored is my ultimate fave so far. This isn't just a gush-fest but an honest-to-goodness response to how I feel about this book... She (Lily Harlem) is very good. You don't just have to take my word for it either. Find out for yourself!

Thanks for stopping by, have a great day

Lily x

PS - If you want to check out my SCORED Pinterest page, click below.

1 comment:

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