After Greg’s professional football career ends, his agent gets him a job coaching college football, hoping it’ll help his tarnished image. Greg is less than thrilled with being sent to the bitter cold of Paradise Park, in spite of the name. He doesn’t expect much when he moves to town ready to start as the kicking coach for the Paradise Park Tomcats. Especially when his two kickers are a junior with a history of injuries and an untested freshman.
Isabella has held onto control of her life for years. As a single mom, she did it all. But with her son going off to college, she knows she has to let go and trust that he will make smart decisions and that his coaches will watch out for him like her friends have assured her the will.
With the media highlighting every failure of Greg’s he’s not sure he can handle the pressure of teaching two kids how to make something of themselves. When he meets Isabella though, he finally feels like the man he always thought he’d be. The one his sister assures him is in there somewhere. The one Greg doubted ever existed. Until Isabella made him want to come out and stay.
Excerpt from Icing The Kicker
The soft intake of air made Greg smile. He liked keeping her on her toes. Knowing she was alone, he rounded the tree so he could see her. She wasn’t leaning against the rough bark behind her, but the rounded hunch of her shoulders told him she wanted to. She probably worried she’d ruin her dress.
Greg wanted to ruin her dress, but in a very different way.
He shrugged out of his jacket and draped it over her shoulders. “I’m not cold, but thank you,” she said, immediately tugging it off.
Greg pulled it back onto her shoulders and pressed her back until her back hit the tree. “Relax. You looked like you were dying to lean again it.”
Isabella pulled the jacket tighter around her and ducked her chin. It looked like she inhaled the lapels, but just as quickly she straightened and pierced him with those molten chocolate eyes.
“Why are you being nice to me?”
“Why wouldn’t I be nice to you?”
Isabella shrugged. “I don’t know. Are you hitting on me?”
“Do you want me to?”
Her eyes answered the question for him. He could tell she wasn’t willing to voice it, but she liked the idea of him being interested in her. She was a single mom with a kid in college. Greg had a guess what she was seeing when their eyes met, but he pushed the thoughts aside and leaned closer to her, resting his shoulder next to hers on the large trunk.
“You’re going to ruin your shirt. And your coat. I shouldn’t be doing this.”
He gently pressed her against the tree again, stopping her movements. “The shirt and jacket can be replaced more easily than your dress. Bark will come off them easier too. Just relax.”
“I don’t know if I can relax with you looking at me.”
Greg shrugged. “Okay.” He turned and leaned his back against the tree next to her, looking out over the water a few feet away.
Isabella laughed softly. “You know that’s not any better.”
“You don’t honestly think I’m going to leave you here alone so some other guy can come hit on you, do you?”
“Might hurt your ego if I flirted with someone else, huh?”
It was Greg’s turn for a quiet laugh. “Something like that.”