Kate ships tons of fictional couples, but IRL her OTP is her and Mick, the hot quarterback she’s crushed on since, like, forever. With only one semester left of senior year, it’s now or never if she wants to land him in time for prom. Since she’s flirtationally challenged, she enlists Cooper Callihan, the guy who turned popular seemingly overnight but who used to be a good friend.Cooper lives and breathes rowing, but his partner just broke his wrist. When he remembers Kate’s good with a set of oars, he strikes a deal: help him train, and he’ll make sure her crush notices her. Only he didn’t know how addicting spending time with her would be. Or how the more successful the Operation is, the more jealousy he experiences.The mission has been set. The troops have their marching orders. But what if the target is the wrong guy all along?Disclaimer: This Entangled Teen Crush book contains stargazing, accidental swimming, and poker swindling. This kissing practice will melt your ereader…and give you a new couple to ship.
The boat bumped the shore before I realized how close we were. I stood, planning on jumping onto the dirt and grass embankment so I could help pull the boat to shore. I nearly fell in the water but managed to land on a muddy spot instead, my shoes making a sloppy squishing sound.
When I grabbed the boat and tugged, it was heavier than I expected. My foot slipped, unable to get any traction in the slimy sludge, and I fell backward, all my momentum now working against me. As squishy as the mud was between my fingers, it sure was hard on the butt.
Cooper’s laughter came out sputtered at first, like he’d made an attempt to stop it, but then he laughed full out, the boat rocking as he folded over. I flicked mud at him, but it barely hit his legs, which was hardly satisfying.
Once he semi-recovered from his laughing fit, he took a large step and jumped onto the dry part of the shore. Show off. He tugged the boat up next to him, then extended a hand to me.
“I like how you took care of the boat first,” I grumbled as he grabbed my clean hand.
“Well, it doesn’t have feet. It’s hardly fair to expect it to climb onto the shore.” His implication was clear—he expected me to have that ability. He yanked me up, and I nearly bumped into him. My hands automatically went to his waist.
He gripped my upper arms. “Whoa. You steady?”
Suddenly, I didn’t feel steady at all. My stomach did a sommersault, and my skin tingled underneath his large, warm hands.
I must just be lightheaded from standing up so fast—that was it. I shook off the momentary dizziness, and glanced down. My muddy hand left a big smear of brown across his T-shirt and the top of his jeans. “Oh shoot, I got your clothes messy.”
He shrugged and his voice came out low. “I don’t mind getting dirty.”
My gaze shot to his. Apparently I was the one with muddy hands and dirty thoughts, but then dawning crossed his features.
“You thought I was giving you some line, didn’t you?”
I shook my head. “No. Of course not.”
“Mmm-hm. Guess you’re not quite as serious as I thought.” He tipped his head toward his truck. “C’mon. Let’s get you home before the rest of your thoughts drift into the gutter and you offend my delicate sensibilities.”
I opened my mouth to tell him he was the one who put them there, but luckily I stopped myself just in time. No way that wouldn’t come out sounding inappropriate, and then he’d get the wrong idea and think I was crushing on him or something and run in the other direction.
That’d leave me with two social disasters on my hands, because I’d never pull off my goal to land Mick without Cooper by my side.
Cindi Madsen is a USA Today bestselling author of contemporary romance and young adult novels. She sits at her computer every chance she gets, plotting, revising, and falling in love with her characters. Sometimes it makes her a crazy person. Without it, she’d be even crazier. She has way too many shoes, but can always find a reason to buy a pretty new pair, especially if they’re sparkly, colorful, or super tall. She loves music and dancing and wishes summer lasted all year long. She lives in Colorado (where summer is most definitely NOT all year long) with her husband and three children.
You can visit Cindi at: www.cindimadsen.com, where you can sign up for her newsletter to get all the up-to-date information on her books.
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