For the next few weeks, we will be previewing titles from our brand new Women of W.A.R. series, available Feb 20. This week, we kick off our series with Game On, the flirty workplace romance from internationally best-selling author Nicola Marsh.
I liked working in a bar. Serving drinks, listening to life stories, dishing out advice, chuckling with the drunks. I could handle it all and frequently did at my dad’s sports bar, The Scissor Kick, Melbourne’s newest hotspot.
Arse-kicking Angie, they called me, and I liked it. I didn’t take crap from anyone.
So what the hell was I doing here, perched on a stool at a rival bar, doing some reconnaissance work for Dad but putting up with unwelcome advances from a bunch of Neanderthal pricks all in the name of research?
I braced as a group of four cute-enough guys approached, jostling and elbowing as I’d witnessed many times before, usually when I wasn’t the object of their intent.
‘Hey, are you Cinderella?’ Tall, Dark and Dickhead led the pack. ‘Because I can see that dress coming off at midnight.’
I bit back a groan, not summoning the energy to point out I wore a denim mini and a black tank top. Idiot.
When I didn’t respond, the second guy tried his luck. ‘You must be a hell of a thief, because you stole my heart from across the room.’ He clutched his chest to emphasise it and gazed at me hopefully.
I refrained from saying, ‘I may have vomited in my mouth a little.’ Just.
The third squared his shoulders, exuding cockiness. ‘Your lips look lonely. Would they like to meet mine?’
That did it. No more. I pointed over their shoulders. ‘Boys, there’s a door over there for a reason. Use it.’
‘Bitch,’ the first one muttered under his breath, as they collectively glared at me before swaggering away in search of their next victim.
‘Arseholes,’ I muttered, determined to be more protective toward unaccompanied females at The Scissor Kick in future.
Was this the type of crap women had to put up with on a night out? I wouldn’t know. I didn’t date. I didn’t socialise. I didn’t do much of anything but work nights at Dad’s bar and study days at uni. Though with a degree in sports management finally under my belt, I hoped to change all that.
I’d given Dad enough of my soul. He could find some other skivvy to tolerate his excessive demands.
‘That was painful.’ A laconic drawl from the stool on my left drew my attention. ‘Men are jerks.’
I rolled my eyes. I’d seen this ploy too, where guys berated their own sex in the hope of cosying up to a woman. Pathetic.
However, when I half swivelled on my stool and saw my next victim of a potential tongue-lashing, any putdowns fled.
This guy didn’t have The Look. The naughty glint in the eyes, the sleazy smirk, the roving stare. Uh-uh, this guy had the potential to command The Look from me.
Dark wavy hair. Dark soulful eyes. Dark designer suit. He didn’t need The Look because one glance from those eyes and women’s panties would drop all by themselves.
Lucky I was immune.
Though for a fleeting moment, as I remembered the last time I’d had sex an unmemorable eleven months earlier, maybe I should amend that to unlucky.
‘You’re a man. Doesn’t that make you a card-carrying member of Jerks United too?’
‘How foolish the woman.’
Against my better judgement, he had me intrigued. ‘What does that mean?’
‘It means that I’m upfront when I like a woman. I don’t resort to all that bullshit corny line crap. I tell her I want her and not to expect more than what I’m willing to give. If she reads more into it …’ he shrugged. ‘More fool her.’
My ovaries twanged. I may have met the male version of me.
‘Interesting perspective.’ I fiddled with the label on my boutique beer, an annoying habit I’d tried to conquer for years and failed. ‘Yet one question remains.’
An eyebrow arched. ‘What’s that?’
‘How foolish do you think I am?’
What happens next??
PRE-ORDER NOW (one click links below!) and tune-in this week for more from all three titles!
Angelica Bryant has a dream. The only child of a soccer legend, she pays her bills by working at her father’s bar while pursuing her goals: a role in sports management and a place in the newly established Women’s Aussie Rules league. Football is her passion, and she won’t let anything get in her way: including an ill-advised one-night-stand with one of Australia’s most successful agents.
Jaxon Flint thrives on success. His workaholic lifestyle keeps his agency and the athletes he represents at the top of their game – and all of his emotions at bay. Until he meets Angie, W.A.R.’s newest star, who undermines his carefully laid plans and gets under his skin. Is he willing to relinquish his careful control both in and out of the bedroom?
When Angie and Jaxon end up working together, it’s game on!
All three Women of W.A.R. titles release 20 February 2018!