The moment I walk onto the field, I spot the Callahans posing for the cameras and I go in the opposite direction, not wanting to interfere, and not wanting to look like I’m lurking around them either. I go and search for Wade instead, and I find him standing on the sidelines, chatting with his teammates and what looks like a couple of reporters. The reporters try to ask them questions, but they’re all laughing and giving each other a hard time.
Giving me the chance to wait patiently and admire him.
Which isn’t a hardship. He looks amazing in his uniform, those tight gold (fine, I know gold isn’t a great color, but Wade makes it work) pants clinging to his thick thighs, his brown hair a sweaty mess, the black lines beneath his eyes smudged, his helmet dangling from his fingers. He’s broad and tall and imposing and I remember what it was like this morning, sitting in his lap on my bed, my mouth fused with his and wrapped all around him. He’s so incredibly masculine and delicious, and I can’t believe I have to pretend he’s all mine.
I sort of want him to be all mine. No questions asked.
Like that’s ever really going to happen.
When he spots me, it’s like the air shifts and all the hairs on my body stand on end. I can feel his gaze lingering on my body, and I turn my head to find him watching me, a pleased smile on his handsome face when his dark gaze meets mine. He says goodbye to the guys and then makes his way toward me, his easy, confident stride making me die a little inside.
I could watch him approach me like that all damn day.
Wade stops directly in front of me that smile still stretching his lips wide. “Hey.”
“Hi.” That’s all I can come up with. My brain is just—blank.
“So. What did you think?” When I frown, he continues. “Of the game.”
“Oh!” Duh. He must think I’m an idiot. “You played wonderfully. And when you caught the ball and ran in that touchdown in the third quarter…”
He grins, pleased with himself. “I know, right? It was pretty fucking awesome.”
“Wade!” He always seems to watch himself around me. He’s very careful. Respectful. So I’m not used to him dropping f-bombs. Not that I care. My brother and his friends curse all the time, so it never really bothers me. Still. “You shouldn’t curse in public.”
“Ha. Get used to it,” he mutters before he hauls me in close and gives me a blistering kiss.
I lose myself in that kiss. There’s plenty of tongue and heat, and one strong arm is wrapped tight around my waist, his large hand palming my butt. He’s got on all the pads and equipment still so I can’t really feel him, but that’s okay.
He still feels pretty damn amazing.
“Think they got enough photos of us kissing just now?” he whispers against my lips a few minutes later. I crack open my eyes to find him watching me and I stare up at him blankly. “Well? Do you?”
Reality crashes down upon me, reminding me that yes that amazing kiss was completely bogus and I need to get my head out of the clouds.
Withdrawing from his embrace, I nod, needing the distance. I’m all shaky. My body feels like it’s been electrified just by his lips—and his hand on my butt—and I don’t know if I can walk straight. Let alone think straight.
“Oh yeah. I’m sure they did.”
He smiles. “Good. Just keeping with the plan.”
“Right.” I nod. Take a shaky breath, then letting it out in an equally shaky exhale. He’s turned me into a total mess and he has no clue his effect on me.
In fact, he’s downright oblivious. He’s already thinking ahead, talking about our plans tonight, which aren’t real. They’re just some put on thing to give the media-slash-stalkers something to talk about. “Give me some time to shower and change and then I’ll be out. Is that okay?”
As if I have any right to demand something else. I’m not really his girlfriend, after all. “That’s fine.”
“Fable’s still around to hang out with, right?” When I nod, Wade does too. “Cool. I don’t like thinking of you out here all alone. See you in a bit.” He drops a kiss on the tip of my nose and then walks away, but I don’t watch him go.
Why torture myself? I’m twisted up enough.
I’m about to make my escape and go in search of Fable when a man wearing a red T-shirt with a 49ers emblem emblazed on the front and a pair of pressed khaki shorts stops directly in front of me, a friendly smile on his face.
“Hi.” He sends me a knowing look. “Well, look at you.”
“Um, hi,” I say in return, tilting my head to the side, trying to figure out if I know him. Considering the social circles my parents moved in, I’ve met a lot of people over the years. Maybe I know this guy?
Or maybe not. He’s sort of—odd. The way he’s staring at me, like he’s trying to figure me out. It’s unsettling.
“You’re Sydney Walker, right?”
“Yes?” I’m dying to say who’s asking, but I remain quiet. I don’t want to be rude. And there’s no need in making this any more uncomfortable than it already is. “Can I help you with anything?”
What’s this guy’s deal anyway?
“Just making sure you’re who I thought you were, and you are. Nice kiss, by the way. Great distraction you’ve got going on, this so-called newfound relationship you’re having with the new kid. Though none of it is for real. We all know the truth about you and Callahan.” He smirks and then strides away, never once looking back. I’m left watching him leave, wondering who the hell he was, and who he might work for.