Skating the Line:San Francisco Strikers, book 2(3)

By: Stephanie Kay


Of course, shortly after that, he’d given her a ride home and shocked the hell out of her with an all-consuming kiss that had rocked her to the tips of her boots. A kiss that wouldn’t leave her thoughts and that she desperately wanted to repeat…and repeat…and repeat again. But he’d avoided her like the plague ever since.

He was a walking contradiction. Quiet, awkward, serious to a fault, but he kissed with a commanding, take charge attitude that she’d gladly relinquish control to. And she rarely gave up control to a man, if ever. She didn’t know how to read him, but she wanted to strip him down and climb his gorgeous body like a tree.

“But do you know enough to write an article?” Penny asked, cutting through all thoughts of Captain Cheese and that kiss. His mouth on hers, stealing every breath and brain cell she had. How he’d leaned down to kiss her because of his giant stature. She fought back the shiver and pushed the memory aside.

“That’s why I have you. Now that you’re an expert, you can help,” she said, turning her pleading eyes on her friend.

She wouldn’t tell Penny she’d pitched the article just to have an excuse to see Ben again. Or that she couldn’t stop thinking about him. Or his lips pressed to hers, his tongue sweeping away all cognizant thought. No. She definitely wasn’t here for that. It was all about the game.

***

A short while later, the guys were back on the ice. The anthems were sung and the first period started. Amanda turned her focus to the game as the object of her fantasies skated past again, the puck on his stick, his body shifting with each glide on the ice. It really was a thing of beauty.

“Do you want my book?” Penny asked, pulling Amanda from her drool-worthy thoughts.

“I should be good. It’s more of a surface piece. Getting tourists to experience more of the city,” she said. Ethan had given Penny Hockey Made Easy, a book to help her understand the sport. Penny’s love of facts was not a secret. It was adorable, and Penny had blasted through the book, becoming an expert in no time.

“Well, I can answer most of your questions. Or you can ask the guys after the game. Are you coming out tonight?” Penny asked, then popped a pretzel bite in her mouth.

“Probably not. Talking to the players isn’t something that everyone would be able to do, so I’m just going to base it on my observations. And maybe I’ll cite you as a reference.”

“Back up. You’re passing up a night out with hot hockey players? Are you feeling okay?” Penny asked, reaching up to put her hand on Amanda’s forehead.

Amanda leaned back. “Very funny, Penny. I’m fine. Just have a few posts I’m working on for my own blog that I need to finish tonight.”

“You work too much.”

Amanda laughed. “Says the workaholic.”

“I’ve been much better about that,” Penny said, her eyes glued back to the ice.

“So true. At least he’s good for something,” Amanda said, grinning. She could kiss Ethan for bringing her friend back to life. Friends for a decade, since Penny had stumbled into their shared dorm room the first day of college, Amanda had never seen Penny this happy. It was about damn time.

“He’s good for a lot of things,” Penny said, wistfully.

“Oh, do tell.”

Penny’s cheeks bloomed a brilliant red. “Nope. We were talking about you working too much.”

“I’d rather talk about this article. So, explain hockey to me, again.”

“Just watch. You’ll catch on. Just follow the puck,” Penny said.

“They’re so freaking fast,” she said, turning her attention back to the ice.

“They’re amazing,” Penny said, that wistful tone back as she watched Ethan.

Amanda tried to focus on the puck, on the guys skating up and down the ice. She wanted to go out with them tonight. She always wanted to go out. Being the life of the party was her M.O., and she’d perfected it over the years. But she had to write. Adventurous Amanda might be landlocked, but if she wanted to keep her subscribers interested, she had to dig deep for compelling content. She needed to plan a getaway outside of California in the very near future to give them something.

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