Friday, 7 October 2016

High-Sticked - OUT NOW

"Todd 'Pretty' Carty isn't just the best in the league, he's also model-perfect, damn shame he's not gay...or is he?"

Dating Todd “Pretty” Carty was a trailblazing, headline-grabbing ride that shocked and divided a team, a sport and a nation. While controversy ruled, our feelings exploded and we couldn’t deny the desire that sizzled between us. Nothing, however, was easy outside the bedroom. Not when my world-class, fearless athlete wanted to shout from Everest that he was in love with another man.

But laying my heart on the line and having my picture dominating the papers was worth it. Everything about Todd turned me on. His bold hockey skills, his courageous attitude and the way he melted in my arms when I kissed him. I melted too, because he knew how to press my buttons, remind me of the man I used to be and take me to those places where ecstasy ruled.

The world might have trouble accepting us, but we’d committed to each other, mind, body and soul, and nothing could change that.

*Please note, High-Sticked was previously published with different cover art. It's also the only M/M in my HOT ICE series*


After hanging up my jacket, I filled the coffeepot. It was raining again so I shut the blinds against the dark evening and flicked on the lamps in my living room. I glanced at the mirror and rubbed my palm over my chin. I really should have shaved today. It had been two mornings now and I was looking Neanderthal. I’d make the effort tomorrow.
There was a loose thread on the old hockey jersey I wore. I’d order a new Gatsby one next time I was online. Or would I? I stared at the familiar penguin clutching his stick. It seemed strange, disloyal even to consider buying a blue-and-red Rangers jersey, but I was. And would I choose number six? Or would that be too weird?
The rich aroma of coffee wafted toward me and I wandered into the kitchen. I was just reaching for a mug when my intercom buzzed.
I wasn’t expecting anyone. “Hello?”
“Matthew, it’s me. Can I come up?”
Oh my god. He’s here!
“Yeah, er, sure.” I buzzed him in and replaced the handset. What did he want? Who cared? Todd Carty was here, the Rangers’ new golden boy was right this minute traveling up the elevator to my apartment. I hoped the damn thing didn’t break down again. It had been acting up lately.
I glanced around, heart thumping and stomach somersaulting. The place was as tidy as it ever got. It would have to do, and there was coffee on. Damn, I should have shaved.
I paused in the hall. Why was I thinking like that? Should have shaved. Of all the ridiculous things to go through my mind. As if Todd cared whether I’d shaved or not. He’d probably only stay a couple of minutes, ask if I’d been to the game and what I’d thought of it. It wasn’t as if my place was out of his way, he only lived on the next block.
Two solid bangs echoed around the hallway.
I paused for a few seconds before opening the door, relishing the knowledge that two hundred pounds of elite athlete was knocking for me. It wasn’t something that happened every day. But I could get used to it.
I was greeted by his smiling, heart-stoppingly handsome face, words of congratulations piling up in my mouth. But his smile suddenly slipped, his gaze dropped down to my chest and the corners of his eyes crinkled.
“What the fuck are you wearing?” He stepped quickly over the threshold.
I backed away, suddenly realizing how unnerving it must be for an opponent he was hunting down.
“What the fuck is that?” He prodded the center of my chest, right in the eye of the penguin.
“It’s a hockey jersey,” I said as my shoulders hit the wall. His voice was deadly quiet.
“It’s a Pittsburgh jersey.”
“Yeah, so?”
The door slammed. He’d back-kicked it closed. He pointed accusingly at the eighty-seven on the sleeve. “Not only is it a Pittsburgh jersey, it’s fucking Gatsby’s number. I hope to hell you didn’t wear that to the game just now.”
“So what if I did? No one would have seen. I had my coat on. It’s a hockey game, I wanted to wear my hockey jersey.” Okay, so perhaps instead of worrying about not shaving, I should have stripped off this top while I’d been waiting for Todd to ride the elevator. I’d had no idea he’d be so incensed by it. But the rise of color on his cheeks and the menacing way he was looming toward me told me he was not happy.
“I can’t fucking believe it,” Todd said. “I told you that wannabe fouled me last season, more than once, and then he whined like a girl to the ref whenever I went near him.”
I rested my palm over the number eighty-seven. “Gatsby is hardly a wannabe, more of a been-there-done-that, and besides, I like wearing his number.”
“Why?” He was so close now I could hear his breaths and see his chest rising and falling beneath his leather jacket. “Why do you like wearing his number?”
“Because not only is he a class player he’s also fucking gorgeous.”
He widened his eyes. “You think Gatsby is gorgeous?”
Not as gorgeous as you.
“He’s a hairy-assed pansy.”
Fleetingly I wondered whether Todd knew from locker room gossip whether Gatsby really did have a hairy ass. It was something I’d thought about myself over the years. But I didn’t have time to ponder now, because suddenly Todd gripped the bottom of my jersey and yanked it upward.
“Hey!” I grunted.
“Take it off.”
“Take it off. I can’t talk to you while you’re wearing it.” He was deadly serious.
“No,” I said again.
As soon as I did, I knew protesting had been a mistake. Todd now had that grim look on his face, the same one I’d seen on the big screen earlier when a call hadn’t gone his way. It was right before he scored his third goal. His lips twitched and his eyes let everyone know he was all about getting what he wanted.
“Then I’ll make you,” he said through gritted teeth.
I was aware of his hands on me. I was every bit as tall as him, but completely outmuscled. I didn’t have the time to train in the gym several hours a day like he did. But that didn’t stop me wriggling, shoving and fighting against the way he was dragging the jersey upward.
Cool air hit my stomach and I tensed my abs as I twisted. But it was no good. He was pressing into me now. Pinning me to the wall with his legs. My heart was racing, little prickles of excitement tickling over my skin, each spot he touched with his fingers and knuckles becoming sharp fizzes of awareness.
He was breathing harder now; so was I. I stared at his face, at his hair that had flopped over his eyes in our tussle. Suddenly I was blinded and had no choice but to lift my arms as the jersey was peeled off. It flew through the air and landed with a whump against the front door.
“That’s the last time you wear that,” he said breathlessly. “Next time you wear a hockey jersey it will be a Rangers one, and it’ll be number six.”
“You gonna make me?”
He smirked, his eyes full of triumph. “Yeah, I reckon I am.”

Don't miss the other 6 novels in my HOT ICE series!

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