Tuesday, July 15, 2014

GETTING OUT OF HAND by Erin Nicholas

Sapphire Falls Book One

Genius scientist Mason Riley can cure world hunger, impress the media and piss off the Vice President of the United States all before breakfast. But he’s not sure he can get through his high school class reunion.

Then he meets the new girl in town.

Adrianne Scott loves Sapphire Falls. The sleepy little town has been the perfect place to escape her fast-paced, high stress lifestyle. Her only plans now include opening her candy shop and living a quiet, drama-free life.

Until Mason Riley bids four hundred dollars just to dance with her.

Mason sure doesn’t look—or kiss—like a genius scientist geek. In fact, he makes Adrianne’s heart pound like nothing she’s ever experienced. Passion like this with a guy who travels the world and parties at the White House should probably be a red flag for a girl who wants a simple boring life.

Good thing no one falls in love in a weekend.

© copyright Erin Nicholas, 2014

“’Kay all, Adrianne’s next.”

A hand shot up in front before Jack even asked for a bid.

Jack chuckled and started the action at thirty dollars. It quickly climbed to two dances and fifty dollars.

Adrianne. Mason had no idea who she was, but it was obvious she was damned popular. She was no Hailey Conner, and in Sapphire Falls she never would be, but at least the guys around here hadn’t missed the silkiness of the blond waves that fell to her shoulder blades, or the sweetness of her smile, or the perfect curve of her ass—

Mason straightened. What the hell was that? His type was about four years younger than Adrianne, twenty pounds lighter and not from Sapphire Falls.

“What’s her story?” he asked Drew.

“Adrianne Scott,” Drew said with an appreciative sigh. “She’s new.”

“Yeah. I noticed.”

“Been here a couple of years. She’s friends with Hailey. Everyone wants her.”

He’d noticed that too. And it bugged him.

“She’s not dating anyone?”

Drew chuckled and shook his head. “Nope. Not for lack of trying. She never dates. The first guy to kiss her gets a hundred bucks.”

Mason raised an eyebrow. He didn’t necessarily approve of guys kissing a woman to win money, but then again, he was quite sure that no man would want to kiss Adrianne just for money.

“Everyone wants her.”

The guys in Sapphire Falls might have more taste than he’d given them credit for.

He drained the beer he didn’t want and disliked immensely and decided to place a food order to go. This was all of no interest to him.

“Okay, sixty-five dollars and three dances with Miss Adrianne Scott. Going once—”

Then she laughed at something the woman next to her said.

And Mason was in trouble.

Well, hell.

“Three hundred dollars,” he called out.

Every single pair of eyes in the room turned to look at Mason at the same time.

He’d never been the center of attention without a microphone in front of him and a conference logo behind him before.

Certainly never in Sapphire Falls.

He stepped forward. He’d opened his big mouth, couldn’t really go back now. He should probably be more surprised that he’d bid like that, but he wasn’t. He was a genius after all, and while his brain and mouth almost never disconnected, paying a few measly bucks for a chance to dance all night with Adrianne Scott and hear that laugh again was a genius move.

“Did you say three hundred?” Jack demanded, pointing a wooden gavel at him as if challenging him to take it back.

“Yes, sir,” Mason replied, looking at Adrianne when he added, “For the rest of the dances tonight.”

Adrianne’s cheeks were pink and her eyes wide. She wore no makeup to enhance the features that were completely captivating him. Her hair was loose and she wore a simple white cotton tank under a denim shirt with blue jeans. Simple, unadorned, and yet he had never been more drawn to a woman.

Jack looked around the room. Obviously, it was unprecedented for a man to monopolize a woman for the entire evening.

“But it’s only—” Jack started.

“Four hundred,” Mason answered, still watching Adrianne.

“I don’t—”

“Maybe we should let the lady decide,” Mason interrupted, walking toward Adrianne.

“I can’t,” she said, shaking her head as he advanced. She was breathing a little fast and she darted her tongue out and wet her bottom lip.

He took another step toward her. “Then what are you worth?”

She swallowed and glanced around. “There’s only three dances left,” she said. “I can’t let you pay three hundred dollars for that.”

“I offered four,” he reminded her, moving in closer still.

She smiled and he couldn’t stop staring at her mouth.

“I meant that even three was too much.”

He was directly in front of her now, and only those within about ten feet of them could hear the conversation. “I didn’t tell you what I expected those dances to be like for four hundred dollars.”

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