False Start (Mavericks #1)(8)

By: Julianna Marley

“But that’s not all! We are also featured in the local paper!” he squealed. Again, something so unlike him, as he pushed the day’s issue of The Charleston Post into her hands. Placing the unread card down on the desk, she quickly scanned the last page of the sport’s section for the article in the right hand corner reading it aloud:

“Monaghan’s Big Win for Charity.”

Her eyes immediately finding the picture of Jax handing the giant check to the founder of the SCWC for the amount of three hundred and fifty three thousand dollars, she couldn’t hide her grin. He tried so hard to get out of speaking at the event, it was endearing actually, and the way he had been looking at her while he pleaded still had her blushing, even now. Reading the small print under the charming photo, her heart paused.

“I’m glad that tonight was a success for the women and children’s center, but I really can’t take any of the credit for this event. It was all the gracious guests who donated and my incredible event planner, Alivia Moore of Save the Date events.”

Alivia’s eyes went wide at his acknowledgement, holding back the urge to scream and jump up and down because Charlotte was still on the phone with a potential client. Hopping over to Ross and giving him another huge hug, she felt the sting in her eyes begin.

This was it.

This was why she left Virginia.

This was why she worked so hard.

And this was why she had spent every day for the past twelve months putting all she had -mentally, emotionally and physically - into this business. This was the payoff and it felt so damn good.

Assuming Jax had no idea what he had done by mentioning her name in the paper associated with such a major event, she was beyond grateful that he had just given her the extra push she so desperately needed into the direction she just knew she was headed.

“So what’s the plan now, boss?” Ross asked, smiling so hard his face was red. She had been so worried that night when she arrived at the dinner and he had told her to just trust her abilities as a planner and he had been right.

She hated when he was right.

“Well.” She looked around placing her hands on her hips deciding where to start with four new accounts at once, as the phone rang for the third time since walking into the office.

“Set-up appointments with every one of these new clients. I want to talk to them and get a real good feel for who they are and what direction they want to go with their parties, especially the weddings,” she instructed letting out another satisfied sigh. She couldn’t believe it. The phone hadn’t stopped ringing and she was finally feeling what she spent so many days longing for; the reassurance that the business was going to be okay. There had been so many months wasted in the office with nothing but silence filling the space and too many sleepless nights worrying about failing. The only reason she had hired Charlotte in the first place was because she needed Ross’s full attention after taking over Jax’s account.

Sliding up to the bouquet of flowers sitting on the desk, Ross leaned down smelling the bright colored roses that now matched her cheery mood.

“And who are these for?”

Looking down on the desk, she picked up the small white card.

“They are for me,” she smiled opening the card, reading it aloud, her heart flipping inside her chest.


Thank you again for making me look good Saturday night.

Everything was perfect.


P.S. You still owe me.

Good lord, even with only three sentences he had the power to make her blush. Looking up, she met Ross’s grin, trying to hide her surprise.


Avoiding eye contact she slipped the card back into the envelope nonchalantly, her hands shaking. It was no big deal. Just a client thanking her for a job well done, that was all.

“What do you mean what? The hottest football player on the planet just sent you flowers.”

“So? He was thanking all of us for everything we did for the event, that’s all,” she said, refusing to look at him and Charlotte, her cheeks still flushed from the last line of the card, but they didn’t need to know that. There was no other reason he would send her flowers other than to thank her. Especially a bouquet this exceptional, which seemed fitting coming from the man who sent them.

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