DIRTY FILTHY BOY - Chapter 6
AS SOON AS WE REACH THE FAR SIDE OF THE PARKING LOT, MacKenna lets me have it. “That stunt you pulled in there was embarrassing.You humiliated me.”
I shrug. “Don’t know why. I saved your food.”
“You actually think that macho posturing is going to prevent someone from stealing it?”
“Yep. The men won’t touch it. Too scared of what I’ll do to them. The women think it’s romantic what I did. You might want to say thank you, by the way.” I throw in to get her even more riled up.
Her jaw drops as smoke practically steams out of her ears. “Thank you? Thank you?” Her pink cheeks turn apple red, and she goes from beautiful to stunning.
I execute a small bow. “You’re welcome.”
Her eyes bulge. “You’ve got some nerve, you know that.”
Smiling, I cross my arms across my chest and broaden my stance. “It’s all part of the Ty package.”
“The Ty package?”
I wink at her. “I can show you, if you like.”
“You could show . . .” She fists her hands. “I could just . . .” She struggles not to blow a gasket. Wouldn’t that make a magnificent sight? But after a few seconds, she gets control of her temper and whooshes out a hard breath. “Men.”
“Yep.” I rock back on my heels. “That’s what I am.”
A cold breeze slashes between us, tussling her gorgeous curls, making her shiver. It might be early September, but the weather’s turned cooler, and the wind’s blowing like a son of a bitch out of Lake Michigan. That sweater she’s wearing can’t possibly keep her warm. I could volunteer my services to heat her up in my SUV, but she’s nowhere ready to go to the next level with me. A challenge, that’s what she is, and I love a challenge.
Without looking at me, she dives into her purse and retrieves her car keys. “Well, I better get going. Thank you for the interview and lunch.”
Another gust of wind turns her nipples rock hard. And suddenly reality smacks me in the face. She can’t go to the Boys & Girls Club in that sweater and tight skirt. Either will have my teammates salivating. Both, and I’ll have a fight on my hands. She needs to change clothes to prevent bloodshed. I point to her. “That sweater and skirt won’t work. You’ll need to put on something else—jeans, a sweatshirt, sneakers—to go to the rec center.”
She looks down at herself. “What’s wrong with what I’m wearing?”
“Nothing. It’s a perfect outfit for work. But we’re going to throw around a few footballs and you might be required for show and tell.” There is no might about it. I will use her to teach the kids how to throw a perfect spiral.
Her face scrunches. “Show and tell?”
“I’ll demonstrate how to pitch the ball. And you’ll be my assistant.” I pull out the car keys from my jacket, twirl the ring around my finger.
“I’ve never thrown a football.”
“And that’s why the kids will get a kick out of it. If I can teach you how to lob one, it’ll give them hope.”
“Use one of your teammates. They certainly know how to throw . . . and catch.”
“And risk being smacked by a whiff of funky BO? I don’t think so. You”—I lean in and breathe in her lavender-rose scent—”smell way better than any of them.”
She peeks up at me through her lashes, a flirty move, but doubt she realizes it as such. From everything I’ve seen, she doesn’t seem the flirty kind.
“I’m not going to win this argument, am I?”
I grin, sensing a victory. “Nope.”
“Fine. I’ll go home and change. I’ll meet you at the Boys and Girls Club.” She tosses over her shoulder as she heads toward the edge of the parking lot.
My key twirling comes to a dead stop, and I rush after her. I’ll be damned before I let her risk that drive by herself. The B&C Club is in a dangerous part of town. Anything could happen to her on the way over. “I have a better idea. Why don’t I follow you to your place. After you change, we can head to the club in my car.”
“I don’t think that would be a good idea.” By now we’ve reached the junker she climbed into at the Outlaws parking lot. There’s a dent in the rear passenger door that wasn’t there before.
“Did somebody hit you?” I point to the car.
“No. I dinged a column in my apartment lot. The parking there is . . . tricky.” She inserts her key into the car door. “I’ll just—” She struggles to get the door open, but it won’t budge. “Umm, drive myself.”
Not in that piece of shit car, she won’t. She probably doesn’t want me to know her address, but her objection is moot. “I know where you live, MacKenna.”
Her head jerks up from fighting with her car door. “What? How do you know?”
“You provided that information to our press office in the form you filled out.”
Her eyes widen. “And they gave it to you?”
I lean against my cherry Porsche Cayenne SUV which just happens to be parked next to her junker. “You must have forgotten to check off the box that prevents them from sharing your information with the Outlaws staff.”
“Darn it. I was so worried about the Ron Moss interview I gave it back without reading the small print.” She gnaws on her lip, obviously upset about her personal data being disseminated for anyone to see.
Her discomfort tugs at me. “The Outlaws Press office sharing your details. That’s a problem for you.”
Those crushed bluebell eyes of hers gaze helplessly up at me. “Yes, I’d prefer my private information kept just that, private.”
I grab my cell, dial the number of the head of PR. “Trevor? It’s Ty Mathews. The information MacKenna Perkins provided to you, home address, personal stuff. Can you erase it from our system?”
She stands in front of me, rubbing her hands up and down her arms. Predictably, my cock reacts at those tight nipples of hers. Damn it. It’s going to be a long afternoon if I don’t rein in my lust. Like the gentleman I’m not, I order my hard on to give it a rest and turn so my body blocks her from the wind. “They’ll need to retain your business info if you want to interview any member of the team. Is that okay?”
“She’s fine with that. Okay, Trevor. Thanks.” I click off, bury the cell in my leather jacket. “Done.”
“Thanks.” Her nose is bright pink. Her eyes are watering. My blocking the wind hasn’t helped her enough. She’s freezing.
Much as I want to pull her into me and warm her, I resist. Don’t want her hightailing it again. But obviously, she needs to get away from the wind. “So, do you want me to swing over to your place and we can ride together from there?” Her eyes sparking with interest, she glances from her POS to my sweet ride.
Good. All I have to do is reel her in.
“If we go together to the rec center, you’ll get to ride in my car.” I click my key, slide the door open. The Porsche Cayenne is a thing of beauty—Carmine Red on the outside, black on the inside, the Chicago Outlaws’ team colors. “It has Bose Surround sound, GPS, Sirius satellite radio.” I pause for dramatic effect before I go in for the kill. “And heated leather seats.”
Her eyes round with wonder and her mouth forms a perfect “O”.
My lips curve into a smile. I thought that would do the trick.
Once she stops drooling over my car, I get her door open so she can climb into that sorry excuse of a car before following her to her place. I’m glad to see her parking garage requires a card to enter, but the inside is shit. Potholes big enough to eat a tire, crappy lighting. No wonder she ran into a garage column. Dirt and sweat stink up the elevator. The hallway leading to the unit on her floor is no better; it reeks of cabbage and onions.
Her cheeks bloom pink as if she’s embarrassed of the place. “It’s not much, but it’s the best I can afford. And my neighbors are nice.”
Damn, she must have caught the expression on my face. “That’s good.”
“And there’s a security station on the ground floor. You have to show ID to get in.”
Thank fuck for that.
Three security locks guard her door, each of which opens with a different key. When we enter her apartment, she offers me something to drink. All she’s got is water, tea and some fruity drink. While she runs into her bedroom to change, I make myself at home on her mud-colored couch and guzzle the H2O. But soon I’m up exploring the place.
Her tiny apartment smells like her. But that’s about the only thing it has going for it. The springs on the couch leave something to be desired. Probably got it at a garage sale or maybe it’s a remnant from her college days. The TV can’t be more than 26-inches wide. Didn’t know they still sold them in that size. Her kitchen contains the usual appliances—a stove, refrigerator. But they both look like they’ve seen better days. I don’t see a dishwasher and there’s a rack next to the sink, so she must wash her dishes by hand.
She deserves better than to live in this crappy dump. Aside from the small size and the smells outside her unit, I’m not totally convinced about the security of the building. I’ve got connections in real estate—people who owe me favors, acquaintances, friends. Surely, I could hook her up with a better place to live. The problem will be talking her into it.
Ten minutes later, she emerges from her bedroom, changed into jeans, a sweatshirt and sneakers. Although the outfit is supposed to make her shapeless, nothing can hide her amazing breasts. They’re large, perky and the reason God invented boobs. Their bounce all the way back to the elevator has me gnashing my teeth. As if my suffering’s not bad enough, she has trouble with her seatbelt, so I get an up close and personal of her world-class tits when I help her snap it on.
We arrive at the Boys & Girls Club to pandemonium. A few hundred kids, their parents, the media. It’s a fucking three-ring circus. But our head of PR has been there, done that, and he manages to control the insanity. With a few choice words, he corrals everyone inside the rec center, while the Outlaws take the stage. The head of the club introduces us one by one to loud cheers. I give the usual “Stay in School, Don’t Do Drugs” speech I’ve given hundreds of times before.
The real fun begins when we go outside. The kids line up in front of their favorite player. As usual, mine is the longest. After I hurl a few balls, I use MacKenna to demonstrate. Predictably, she can’t throw for shit. When I mention she throws like a girl, the kids crack up, just like I knew they would. Soon I have even the littlest ones lobbing the ball with confidence, if not very far.
When she wanders off to write something into her note book, a fresh one, I keep my eye on her. She walks toward the opposite end of the field where Ron Moss is catching balls from a bunch of kids. When another receiver takes his place, she exchanges a few words with him. I talked to him yesterday before the game to clue him into what really happened with their interview. He’s a great guy who doesn’t hold a grudge. Soon his head’s bobbing and he’s smiling at her. She says something and gets a thumbs up before he goes back to working with the kids.
She jots something in her notebook before she stops to observe our left tackle, Maddox ‘Mad Dog’ Buchinski, who’s teaching a huge kid how to block. He has nowhere as many kids as I do, so the few he has are getting quite a bit of instruction from him.
When next I look up she’s talking to our kicker, Ryan Jackson. My hackles rise. Unlike the other players, who’re giving 100%, Ryan’s barely participating. When she asks him a few questions, he totally ignores the kids to put the moves on her—flashing that smarmy smile of his, laughing at something she says. Ryan’s the scum of the earth. A world-class athlete who’s allowed his fame to go to his head. He’s caused nothing but trouble with the other Outlaws—picking fights, insulting players. Most of them hate him. If it weren’t for his field-goal kicking golden leg, he’d be off the team.
But even worse than his humongous ego are his dubious morals. He chases anything in a skirt, especially younger women. Oh, he’s careful to card them. Last thing he wants is to be caught having sex with someone who’s underage. Still, there’s something offputting about a thirty-seven year old man screwing an eighteen-year old girl.
Before I go over there and put a world on hurt on the bastard, our head of PR blows the whistle, signaling the end of scrimmage. I patiently sign a few shirts and balls while keeping an eye on MacKenna and Ryan. But when he touches her, I can’t control myself. I pound toward MacKenna, grab her arm and haul her away.
“Wait” She trips, and I tighten my grip to keep her from falling. “That was rude. I was talking to Ryan.”
I keep up the pace, not slowing down one bit. “You don’t talk to him. You hear me.”
We’re close to where the media lies in wait, cameras clicking away. “Who’s the lady, Ty? New girlfriend?”
Damn it! I should have thought this through before I went all ape shit. If there’s one thing, the Outlaws’ organization is adamant about is good press. Whatever a player has to do, he must present a positive image. And right now, there’s only one way to do that. My grip slides down and grabs her hand. “Smile for the reporters, MacKenna.”
Thankfully, she obeys me. She clutches her notebook to her chest and smiles. Until we get inside my SUV and I snap her into her seatbelt. Then she lights into me. “What was that all about? Why did you drag me from Ryan Taylor?”
All screeching tires, I peel out of the parking lot before somebody snaps a photo of her screaming at me. I don’t answer her until we’re well away from the club. “He’s a sleazeball. All he wants is to nail you.”
“Oh? And you don’t?”
“Give me some credit, MacKenna. I’ve been the perfect gentleman so far.” Well, perfect for me.
Other than breathing hard, she’s silent until we take the highway out of the city. “Where are we going? This is not the way to my apartment.”
“My house. We need to talk.” She needs to understand professional football, and I’m not just thinking about the game, but the players as well. She needs to learn who she can talk to and who she needs to stay away from.
“Don’t I get a say in this?”
I firm my lips. “Nope.”
She mumbles something under her breath. Neanderthal, among a few other choice words. Yeah. I get it. I’m dragging her to my cave. Perfect gentleman flew out the window the second I hauled her away.
I shouldn’t have acted the way I did. I know it. She knows it. My overprotective streak’s flying a mile high. Something I haven’t felt in a long time. Since college, I’ve stuck to women who knew the score, staying away from dewy-eyed virgins who have no clue. Angry with myself, I smack the wheel.
“What’s wrong?” Her voice quivers with emotion. God, don’t let it be fear. Couldn’t handle that from her.
“Nothing.” ‘Ignore her,’ Warrior Ty whispers. You can’t afford to care about her. You can’t allow your emotions to get involved. That way lies disaster. You need to focus on football and your injured arm before coach takes you out of the game. But I’m not listening. Somehow she brings out the rescuer in me. I may have only known her a few days, but I ache to protect her against any and all harm. To give her the life she should have. But let’s face, the part of me that’s mainly in charge is my cock. And the damn thing’s rapidly growing out of control.