Love Like Crazy
Aka Clay’s book
Release Date: June 18th, 2018
Army veteran, Clay Carrington, and Q Ranch heiress Christy Quinn’s world’s colliding.
Vegas was a trip, and that was an understatement. An understatement I couldn’t remember and that included the brunette in my bed.
That is until my pounding headache had me getting up for a glass of water and I saw the marriage license on the ground.
The words: Clay Carrington and Christy Quinn and holy matrimony staring me in the face.
I came to Vegas to get away, and the bratty owner’s daughter of the ranch wanted to come with. I didn’t even like the boss’s daughter, let alone want to marry her.
I guess things the happened in Vegas had a way of following you home.
**This book is a standalone in a series of standalones taking place in the fictional town of Friendship, Texas. You don’t need to read any of the previous books to understand this one***
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Now for the first chapter! (If you want to see me read this first chapter live, you can head to my Facebook page to watch!)
I’d always dreamed of going there, but I never thought it would be for the rodeo with the boss’s daughter bitching next to me on the plane ride from Friendship, Texas.
“If the blankets are that itchy and the lights that bright, why don’t you just go the fuck to sleep?” I growled as Christy writhed next to me.
Normally, I wouldn’t mind being in a small space with a petite brunette, but this chick was the bane of my existence. She just had to beg her daddy—aka my boss—to let her come with me to Vegas. Several of the Q Ranch’s horses were in the barrel racing competitions, and the old man wanted someone out there. I was the lucky one he trusted, but not too much if he was going to send her along.
“Really? You think I’d miss an opportunity to spend time in Vegas? Even if it’s with the Mohawked groundskeeper,” she snarled, her almond brown eyes narrowing.
“Groundskeeper? That’s the best you could come up with? Sweetheart, I’m the assistant manager of general operations. That’s a hell of a lot more than shoveling the shit you throw at me on a daily basis. Your dad should probably give me a raise just for dealing with you.”
Christy was a pain in the ass. Just a few years younger than me, she was “taking a break” from college. Which consisted of hanging around the ranch, pretending she was doing real work, but mainly just doing everything she could to nitpick. I couldn’t wait until we touched down, and I could get in my hotel room. At least have some peace without her.
“As long as you didn’t fuck up and lose whatever credentials we need for this rodeo stuff and our hotel, you can call yourself whatever you want,” she mumbled before turning toward the window.
It was only a long weekend, but every minute I was stuck with her would feel like an eternity.
If I thought dying on the plane from talking to Christy was bad, then I was pretty sure I’d gone to hell with the Lyft ride to the hotel. I needed a smoke and something strong to drink by the time we got to our rooms.
We had adjoining rooms, so I didn’t have to share the space with her. As long as I didn’t have to listen to her voice any longer.
The hotel room wasn’t anything super fancy for how luxe the actual hotel was, but I didn’t care. As long as I had a bed and a shower, it was better than the holes I’d slept in when I was in Iraq. Or anywhere I was stationed or deployed, for that matter.
It felt like a lifetime ago but was really only a little over a year ago when I was driving the truck that got hit, pinning my leg and putting me in a VA hospital. From there, I was medically discharged from the military and sent back to Friendship.
I know I was lucky as fuck since so many other guys lost limbs or their lives, but after getting out, I had no direction. I had literally just signed on for another four years. After only being back in Iraq a few weeks, BOOM, my military career was over. And I had no fucking clue what I wanted to do with my life, so I ended up working at the ranch as a bartender and eventually moving up to my current position.
Lying on the bed, I groaned from my sore muscles. It had been a long time since I’d flown and being stuck sitting next to Christy for that long didn’t help.
After connecting my phone to the Wi-Fi, I checked my email, then aimlessly scrolled through some sites.
Most days, the social media bullshit just pissed me off more than it entertained me. People from my graduating class pretending they had perfect lives. Sure, Slutty Sarah from study hall, I’m sure you’re super happy with your four kids, living in your mama’s spare room. All those hashtaged blessed posts said so.
But today, instead of sneering, I saw a familiar face that had me grinning when I recognized the background in her photo.
I met Angel Ellis during my first tour in Afghanistan. She was a reporter and one of the only women around. So naturally, we fucked like rabbits.
I hadn’t talked to her for a few years and didn’t know she was back in the States or, by her photos of the Stratosphere, that she was in Vegas.
I literally couldn’t remember the last time I got laid. Not since before my injury.
Hell, even if I just hung out with the chick and had a few drinks, it would be nice to see someone else who wasn’t a cowboy or Christy.
Pulling up the messenger app, I typed in Angel’s name and sent a message.
Me: Hey, it’s Clay. Just saw you posted a pic in Vegas, and I’m here for work. Wanna meet up for a drink or something?
She responded quicker than I thought she would, but that was more than okay with me.
Angel: Hey! It’s been forever! I’m here with some girlfriends for the weekend. We are about to grab dinner, but I’ll DM you where we end up after? Would love to catch up 😉
I hoped the winking smiley face meant something good, and that gave me enough time to shower, grab some food, go talk to some of the rodeo guys or whatever, then head out.
At least, that was the plan when I got into the shower, but as soon as I was out and had wrapped a towel around my waist, multiple loud knocks came from the door that connected my room to Christy’s. Why the fuck did her dad get us adjoining rooms anyway? Or who-the hell-ever booked it.
“What?” I growled, opening the door, only to have to swallow my own spit at the girl before me.
Christy was a natural flirt. Always flipping her glossy black hair over her shoulder and batting those long eyelashes whenever she wanted something. And today was no different as she stood there in a tight little black dress, showing off those perky breasts that practically spilled out of the top.
Not only did the girl look sexy as hell, but she raked her eyes over my body as if she was feeling the same way. I literally saw her gulp before her narrowed eyes met mine. “Why are you standing there in a towel?”
“Because I just got out of the shower. Are you upset I didn’t ask you to join me?” I asked, cocking an eyebrow.
“Ew. Showering is for getting clean. Not getting your tattooed man musk all over me,” she said, wrinkling her nose.
I smirked. “Obviously, you’ve never had good shower sex.”
She rolled her eyes. “Does everything have to be sexual with you? Can you just put your clothes on, so we can see these sponsors or whatever, get dinner, and then go out?”
“You and me? Go out?” I asked, holding my towel at my waist, where I noticed her eyes briefly flitted to.
“I’m a hot girl alone in Vegas. I know I could find plenty of cowboys downstairs to take me somewhere, but I don’t want to get roofied and wake up married to one of them.” She huffed.
“Kind of full of yourself, aren’t ya?” I smirked.
She rolled her eyes. “Like you aren’t staring at my tits right now.”
“Listen, A-cup, I’m not interested, all right? So, you can stop getting high and mighty on my ass,” I said, already walking away from the conversation toward the bed where my clothes were laid out.
“Hey! I’m a full B, I’ll have you know!” she called from somewhere behind me, then gasped when I didn’t answer and instead dropped my towel.
“Did you seriously just get naked in front of me? And is there a donkey tattoo on your ass?”
I turned slightly, looking over my shoulder to see her eyes zeroed in right on my ass and flickering to where I’m sure she got a glimpse of the other tattoo, right above my member. And possibly the piercing right under the head of my cock. “You are in my room, sweetheart.”
Grabbing my boxers, I slipped them on, then my jeans. All while Christy stood there, tapping her heels and huffing.
I turned around to face her, pulling on my shirt, then cocked an eyebrow.
“Are you done now?” she asked, crossing her arms over her size B chest that I was definitely staring at.
“I think so. Ready to go meet some cowboys?” I asked, sliding my wallet and phone into the pockets of my jeans.
Maybe she’d end up going home with one, and I’d get some time without my boss’s daughter who, no matter how mouthy she was, was also getting harder and harder to resist.
I thought I could ditch Christy and send her off with one of the many rodeo guys hitting on her, but of course, I couldn’t get that lucky.
When I got the message from Angel, I thought I could tell Christy I was calling it a night and go back up to my room. But before I could even respond or read the entire little blue screen that popped up, Christy grabbed my phone out of my hand.
“What the hell do you think you’re doing?” I barked, snatching my phone back from her tiny hands.
“Who is Angel? And why the hell are you meeting her at a club at Caesars? That doesn’t sound like your scene.” Christy frowned.
“Not that either of those things are your damn business, but Angel is an old friend who is also in town. I can walk you up to your room; then I’ll head over there,” I said, already heading toward the elevator, but then I noticed Christy didn’t move.
“Like hell, you’re going to leave me alone in my room.”
I turned around and walked back to her. “I’m not taking you with me to a club like some little-lost puppy that wants to come inside for kibble and a blanket.”
Her mouth hung open. “I am NOT a dog, and I can’t believe you’d even talk to me like that.”
I smirked. “Well, believe it, sweetheart. You and me, we’re both here on a business trip for the same company. That doesn’t mean we need to hang out or that I owe you shit. So, if you’ll excuse me, I have someone to meet up with.”
I turned to walk away when Christy’s voice carried over me. “It would be a shame if I called my dad, crying that his big, bad, Mohawked manager decided to use the company credit card to bet on a horse race. Ten grand down the drain.”
The hair on the back of my neck stood on end, and my face burned. Swinging around, I gritted my teeth, glaring at her smug face. “You know I wouldn’t do that, and the bank statements would prove that.”
She pulled a black card out of her little purse. “I’m sure I can find a horse to bet on at Caesars unless you have somewhere better for me to be.”
“Are you fucking kidding me right now with this blackmail?”
She smiled, but it didn’t reach her eyes. “So, are we going dancing or to the horses?”
I rolled my eyes, knowing I didn’t have a choice in this matter. If I called her bluff, she’d probably find a way to screw me over. Hopefully, I could ditch her as soon as we got inside. “Come on, let’s go.”
It had been years since I’d seen Angel, and at the time, she was gorgeous. Mainly because there weren’t any other girls around.
She was still pretty in the traditional sense but sitting in a gaggle of her friends, all with overdone hair, too much makeup, and those weird-ass one-piece romper things; I was starting to second-guess my decision.
“Which one is the infamous Angel?” Christy whispered her lips practically at my ear.
I tried not to think about the hot pain in the ass next to me and what her slight touch was doing to my aching dick. Instead, I sucked in a deep breath and walked toward my hookup and her friends.
Angel’s bloodshot eyes, rimmed in way too much gold liner, looked up, and she smiled. “Clay?”
“Good to see ya, Angel,” I said, leaning over and kissing her cheek.
She introduced me to the girls with her, whose names I could barely recall because they all kind of looked the same.
One of the girls pursed her lips as I sat down on a small, really uncomfortable black couch with my shadow taking the spot next to me. “Who’s your friend, Clay?”
“Christy and I’m not his friend. We’re kind of co-workers,” she said, holding her hand out to the girl who shook it limply.
“Are you in the military too?” Angel asked politely, taking a tiny sip of her drink.
Christy shook her head. “No, he works on my dad’s ranch.”
Angel laughed. “Didn’t see you for much of a rancher, Clay, or with a Mohawk. I guess things change when you leave the Middle East.”
“Yeah, they do,” I muttered, signaling for a waitress. I would need something if I had to put up with this shit all night.
“Are you okay, Christy?” Angel asked after the waitress walked away.
“Yeah, just a little bit of a headache. Long day and with the time change, just trying to catch up with everything,” Christy said, rubbing her temples.
“Need me to take you back to your room?” I asked, giving myself a flicker of hope that I could take her back and maybe get the hell away from this club. Christy was right; techno music and a bunch of people grinding against each other weren’t my thing.
Christy shook her head. “No. I’m fine. I just need some ibuprofen or something.”
“I have a bottle in my purse, if you need it,” Angel said, shoving her leather bag at the whining girl next to me.
“Thanks,” Christy said, pursing her lips and rifling through the bag, which I thought was some kind of a no-no with girls.
She pulled out a small bottle as the waitress came with our drinks. I tipped her, then noticed Angel and her friends had already started their own conversation. Not what I had in mind when I agreed to meet up with her.
“Here, if I have to put up with your shit all night, give me two of those as well,” I said, grabbing the bottle from Christy and popping two of the pills in my mouth, then chasing it with my beer.
Christy demurely took her pills and a sip of whatever fruity drink she’d ordered.
The group of girls across from us were laughing, but Angel turned toward us with her eyes wide. “You guys didn’t just take those pills from the white bottle with the label, did you?”
“Um, you told me there was ibuprofen in your purse, and that’s what this says,” Christy said, squinting as she held up the bottle.
Angel grabbed her purse and the bottle. “No, the red bottle with Advil written on it in Sharpie is my ibuprofen. This is my X.”
“WHAT?” I barked, almost spitting out my beer as every hair on my body stood on end. “Why the hell would you do that?”
“Where else would I put it when I travel? No one checks these bottles through TSA.” Angel blinked slowly as if I just asked the dumbest question ever.
“I just did drugs!” Christy stared wide-eyed at Angel and me.
Not only did I just do X accidentally, but I did it with my boss’s daughter, who I was pretty sure had never touched anything harder than beer in her life. There was no way I was letting this girl out of my sight now. Who knew what the hell kind of trouble she’d get into and what that would mean for my job.
“Wanna head up to our rooms and sleep it off?” I asked, taking Christy’s hand and ignoring the tingle sliding through my body. Definitely from the X and not from holding her fingers.
“I wanna dance … Think we can sweat it off?” she asked, nibbling on that bottom lip and looking at the dance floor.
The last thing I wanted to do was sweat and move against these other people in the club, but I figured the X would soon take over and I’d no longer be able to reason with anything. Better to have Christy in my sight for that, and sooner or later, I might not actually mind the dancing. And maybe if Christy kept her mouth shut, I could enjoy her company too.
Better than hanging out with Angel who was ignoring me anyway and stupid enough to bring X in an Advil bottle.
“If I say no, are you going to just let yourself get groped by some random club boys?” I asked, raising an eyebrow. A sense of possessiveness took over, and my stomach roiled.
She shrugged, a wicked smile crossing her lips. “Dance with me, and I guess we’ll find out.”
I rolled my eyes, then finished the rest of my beer before standing up and pulling her with me. “Fuck it. What’s the worst that could happen if we have one dance?”