In The Dirt

PP5 Cover 5Jo Marcinko always wanted to coach women’s lacrosse. When her former coach retired a few months after she completed her master’s degree, Jo applied for the job, and got it.

Eric Brown owed everything to his sister. After she gave up her future to make sure he had one, he always felt like he had to repay her. His chance came when the head coach job opened up. Eric, as the assistant coach, didn’t apply so his sister would get the job and he could be there for her to take some of the weight off her shoulders.

Except she didn’t get the job.

Jo dislikes Eric as much as she wants him. He’s drawn to her even more than he wants to see her fail. Only one of them can get what they want, but which one will it be?

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Excerpt from In The Dirt

“I’ll take a Yuengling. On tap,” he said, breaking into her thoughts and catching her still ogling him. A grin slid over his face, his eyes catching the light from the bar and twinkling. When the corner of his mouth tipped up, Jo caught the hint of a dimple. She nearly groaned. If only she could see a full grin. She knew that dimple would come out to play.

Jo was a sucker for dimples.

“Definitely,” Jo said, turning from him before her cheeks betrayed her secret desire. She could feel the heat climbing up from her neck and had to get away from him. Ignoring the taps to her left, and close, she went to the right to fill his glass. Years of practice taught Jo to hold the glass at just the right angle to maximize beer and minimize head in the glass.

Out of the glass, Jo preferred to maximize head.

“Phew,” she breathed, her cheeks heating all over again. If she could have fanned herself, she would have.

“He’s cute,” Holly said beside her, brown eyes lighting with mischief as she filled a glass with Bud Light. “I should have waited on him.”

Jo shook her head and rolled her eyes at her friend. “You’re boy crazy.”

Holly laughed. “Oh, no. He is all man.”

Jo glanced at him and had to agree. There wasn’t a boyish thing about the man waiting for her to return with his beer. He turned to watch her as she approached, smiling once again. Dimples appeared on both his cheeks and Jo nearly lost it. Damn.

“Here you go,” she said as she set the glass down in front of him. “Are you going to open a tab or are you waiting for a table?”

He sipped the beer then dug out his wallet. “Tab, please. I can order here, right?”

Jo nodded. “Of course. Do you need a menu?”

He shook his head. “In a little bit. Anything you’d recommend?”

Jo wanted to offer herself up for his buffet. He was getting to her. Her good news was messing with her head. That had to be it. She’d been so focused for years on getting her master’s and finding a great job. With all that behind her, she was all over the place.

“The burgers here are great. Most of our appetizers are good too, but kind of big. They’re better for sharing.”

“I don’t suppose you have a break coming up?”

Jo shook her head.

“Too bad. I was going to ask you to share with me.”

Jo couldn’t fight the grin on her face. She didn’t want to be charmed by him, but dammit she was. He was cute, he was nice, and she deserved to celebrate. “Well, maybe another time.”

His eyebrows shot up into his hairline like he didn’t expect her to say that. Hell, she didn’t expect to say it either, but she meant it. Even if she didn’t usually trust men, she enjoyed the hell out of them. He looked like a man who knew his way around a woman’s body and could turn her private celebration into a very fun two-for-one celebration.

“I’m going to hold you to that,” he glanced at her nametag, “Jo. But since you can’t join me, I guess I’ll wait on ordering for now. Prolong the time I get to spend talking to you.”

Jo grinned and ducked her chin. She had no idea what to make of him. Men usually hit on her, but rarely did they pursue her once they realized she wasn’t an easy lay. Of course, she was at times, but not ever at Hank’s. She didn’t feel right picking up men at her job. Something about not shitting where you work.

“Well, hold that thought,” Jo told him. “I’ve got to grab a few other drinks. You think about what you want.”

The look in his eyes told her unequivocally exactly what he wanted. When he reached below the bar and shifted in his seat, Jo knew their banter was having the same effect on him as it was on her. Would bathroom sex be hot or gross? Jo wondered, then mentally slapped herself for the thought.