USA Today Bestselling Author
After two of his teammates fall prey to the curse, Gage Collier realizes he’s got worse things to worry about than the power of the curse alone. He’s got his mother to fear, and the woman is on a mission. When a columnist spills the beans that the curse is in play and there’s only one victim left to be had, Gage’s mother spins a web designed to trap him into being its third victim and give her the grandbabies she’s been wanting. Though the bait she sets is tempting, Gage has no interest in falling in love. With his mother strategizing against him, Gage probably doesn’t stand a chance, but he’ll go down fighting before he takes this hit.
The Triple Play Curse has taken down two players, they are happily committed and in love. No one wants to be the next to fall, but Gage’s mother has other ideas.
She comes up with an ingenious scheme to set up Gage, I have to admit it was the perfect setup. Her friend Lucia cleans houses for a living and has a daughter who fills in for her from time to time.
The idea is for Lucia to get the job cleaning her son’s home, then pretend an injury so her daughter will fill in.
Getting the job was easy since all the other interviews were with twenty-somethings that only want a chance at snagging Gage. Since Lucia is an older woman, Gage took that bait, hook, line and sinker.
This is a favorite scene when Lucia’s daughter Talia takes over.
Gage finished his last lap and pulled himself up and out of the pool before toweling off. He’d always looked forward to the end of his morning workouts, but never more than he did nowadays.
Four days a week, he could walk to his kitchen and find breakfast ready and waiting for him when he got there. He hadn’t asked for it. Lucia just seemed to pick up on his needs. Within a day or two, she had figured out he always finished working out at ten thirty, and she had a scrambled egg white omelet ready for him. She would always throw in a different mixture of vegetables and top it with her homemade salsa. She’d also have a big plate of fresh cut fruit for him.
But, what he loved the most, was the way his house smelled when she was there. She would cook a big meal for him every morning that he’d devour when he got home later that night from the baseball field.
The mouthwatering smell of some kind of mixture of chicken and rice or enchiladas wafted through the condo to him now, drawing him to the kitchen before he’d even thrown a t-shirt t-shirt on. Hell, she’d outdone herself today. He didn’t know what he’d find on the stove, but he did know he’d have a hard time resisting the temptation to dig into it now instead of after the game. It wasn’t unusual for Lucia to have to beat him back from the stove with one of the wooden spoons she’d stocked his kitchen with when she discovered how little he had in the way of pots and pans and utensils.
Gage looped his towel around his neck and called out to Lucia.
“Hey, beautiful, what are you trying to do to me? Make me gain twenty pounds this season? I won’t be able to move if you keep this up.”
But it wasn’t Lucia who came out of his bedroom with his dirty laundry in her arms. It was a … hell, he didn’t know what she was. A goddess, at the very least. Her laugh matched Lucia’s to a tee, and her long black hair and fiery eyes were almost identical as well. But, she was younger and had a body that screamed out to him. Gage took a step back as she came into the kitchen. His hands felt like magnets, just pulling him in, begging him to take ahold of those round hips of hers and yank her body in close, tight against his.
She just smiled at him, her eyes sparkling with humor, seemingly unaware of the effect she had on him.
“You call my mother beautiful?” She put the laundry basket down on one of the counters and cocked her head at him.
“Your mother?” he echoed, stupidly. She raised a brow, then laughed again.
“My mother. Lucia?”
“Your mother?” he asked, yet again, not because he didn’t understand by now that this woman was Lucia’s daughter, but because his mind seemed to be stuck on repeat. Like a skipping record.
She was laughing as she shook her head, and reached for the plate with his omelet and fruit to hand to him, but he didn’t miss the puzzled look she gave him.
“You’re Talia?” he asked, finally, breaking loose of the hold she’d had on him and reaching for the plate. Lucia hadn’t told him much about Talia. She was Lucia’s only daughter, that much he knew. That was about the extent of it.
“You can’t be here,” he said now, still not touching his omelet.
That stopped her smile. “What?”
“Your mom is supposed to be here. Where is she?”
Now suspicion clouded her gaze and he felt like a jerk. Again. No, not again. Still. It hadn’t stopped. Because he’d been a jerk from the minute he’d seen Talia. She wore a long skirt that flowed loosely down around her ankles, taunting him. It seemed to dare him to find out what was hidden underneath. Her snug fitting shirt accentuated her full breasts, the only thing that had drawn his eyes away from those magical hips as they spoke.
“She hurt her back,” she said, cold now, all trace of her previous humor gone. “I’ll be filling in for her for the next couple of weeks. The doctor said she needs to take it easy for two weeks, or she might end up needing surgery and physical therapy.”
And, now he felt lower than low. “Is she okay? What happened? Was she in an accident?”
He thought he saw a flicker of softness cross her face again, but then she erased it, as though she wasn’t quite ready to forgive him yet. He didn’t blame her.
“Does she need anything?” Gage asked.
“No. My stepfather is taking care of her. She just needs to rest, so you’re stuck with me for two weeks.”
And, with that, she spun on her foot, balancing the laundry basket on her hip again, and exited the room.
Gage was left drooling, and wondering how in the heck he would get through the next two weeks without giving in to the walking, talking spitfire of temptation that was Talia Aguilar.
Lori Ryan. Game Clincher: A Triple Play Curse Novella, Book 3 (Kindle Locations 126-163).
In spite of all their best intentions, these two fall hard and fast for each other. So much so that they both retreat.
Lots of fun, laughter and a few tears as the curse comes to fruition.
5 Contented Purrs for Lori!
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Lori Ryan is a NY Times and USA Today bestselling author who writes romantic suspense and contemporary romance with steamy love scenes and characters you won’t want to leave in the pages when the story is over.Lori published her first novel in April of 2013 and has fallen in love with writing.
She is the author of the Sutton Capital Series; the Heroes of Evers, Texas; and the Triple Play Curse Novellas, a set of novellas with sexy baseball players at their core as part of Bella Andre’s Game For Love Kindle World. She has also published in Melanie Shawn’s Hope Falls Kindle World and in Robyn Peterman’s Magic and Mayhem Kindle World.
She lives with an extremely understanding husband, three wonderful children, and two mostly well-behaved dogs in Austin, Texas. It’s a bit of a zoo, but she wouldn’t change a thing. She loves to connect with her readers. Follow her on Facebook or Twitter or subscribe to her blog.