For Cassidy, this reality show just got real.
When I was thinking of what to write about today, I realized that I’ve never shared an excerpt with you from Falling for You! How has this happened?? How will you even know if you connect to the story if I don’t share a little of it with you? So here it is an exclusive excerpt just for my Ladies in Red readers!
This is a little scene from the first few chapters of the book. At this point, Cassidy has just finished filming her first private interview with Evan as her cameraman and interviewer. The sparks have already started to fly! Enjoy!
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She walked to the edge of a grassy area near the pond. Ducks squawked to each other as they nibbled the grass. “I can’t believe I said my legs are my best physical feature. Seriously? Legs? I couldn’t have said my eyes, or my lips, or even my hair?”
Her legs weren’t even long. She considered herself far from being tall at only five and a half feet. Her legs were only good for getting her from point A to point B.
Cassidy startled at the sound of a loud snap behind her. She cried out in surprise and lost her balance. Her left ankle rolled to the side and a sharp pain shot up her calf. Before she could catch herself, she was on the ground, her leg bent under her with pain raging inside her ankle.
“Ouch! Crap.” Cassidy grabbed her ankle. “Stupid, impractical heels.” Tears filled her eyes as she rubbed her ankle. It was already starting to swell. She needed to get back to the house and see the production medic.
“Are you okay?” Evan appeared in front of her like her personal superhero—just missing the tights. And thank goodness for small miracles. Tights aren’t sexy on guys. Any guys. Ever.
She eyed Evan, confused. “Where did you come from? I thought you were still in the interview room.”
“I finished up with the interview stuff, but then I couldn’t find you. I poked my head out the backdoor and saw you out here.”
“Oh good, you have that on film.” Cassidy’s cheeks burned. “That’s great. Peachy. Now all of America gets to see firsthand what a total klutz I am.”
“Not a klutz so much as easily startled. Besides, you don’t know what they’ll decide to use and what they won’t, so don’t worry about it.”
Evan gave Cassidy a little wink, set down his camera, and scooped her into his arms before she could protest. She hesitated before slipping her arms around his neck. The desire to protest disappeared instantly.
I could get used to this.
“Let’s get you up to your room and I’ll find some ice for your ankle.” Evan readjusted her in his arms.
Oh crap. I weigh a ton. “I’m too heavy for you. Put me down.” She wiggled to get out of his arms before they gave out and she dropped to the ground.
“You’re not.” He adjusted her again. “Stop wiggling.”
“Look, your muscles are straining. I’m too heavy. It’s okay. I know I’m not like some of the other waifs here. I’ll walk.”
“You’re not heavy. My muscles are not straining, but thank you very much for that vote of confidence.”
“That’s not what I meant. Your muscles are obviously strong—I, oh brother, never mind. Just put me down so I can walk with dignity.” She pressed her hand to Evan’s chest, trying to free herself from his grip, but it was no use. His hold on her was strong and solid—oh boy, was it solid. There was no way those pectorals would let her fall.
Under her palm, Cassidy felt the contours of Evan’s muscles and his steady heartbeat beneath them. Her hand lingered a moment longer than needed, but she couldn’t force herself to move it. If anything, she wanted to trace the lines to see where they led.
“You’re not walking. You don’t want to risk hurting it more, do you? So I’m going to carry you with my dignity… and my wee, weak muscles.” Evan smirked, his eyes getting a new twinkle in them.
“Oh, shut it. That’s not what I meant and you know it.”
“That was a pretty good fall you took.” Evan’s smile widened.
“Do not laugh at me.” Cassidy wiggled her finger at Evan’s face. “I wouldn’t have fallen in the first place if someone had been a little quieter while they snuck around following me.”
“I wasn’t sneaking around. You make it sound like I’m some pervert. I followed you because it’s my job. It would’ve been easier to do that job if you’d waited for me in the great room like you were supposed to. Instead, you decided to wander around alone in the backyard.”
“It’s not like I went into the jungle on my own—it’s a backyard.” Cassidy shook her head. “And for the record, I did wait for you. You just took your sweet-assed time getting your camera and finding me. It’s not my fault you took so long.”
Cassidy stuck out her chin, determined to be right. “Maybe next time you’ll hurry up and stay a little closer to the person you’re supposed to be working with instead of screwing around in the interview room doing God knows what wasting time.”
Cassidy watched as the corner of Evan’s lips pulled up into a smile. His eyes sparked. “Sweet ass, huh?” He cocked one eyebrow at her.
“It’s a figure of speech not to be taken literally, of course,” she said, copying his very words from earlier.
Evan started walking toward the house. “Let me and my sweet ass get you back to your room. I don’t want that ankle to swell up more before it gets some ice.”
Cassidy cheeks flushed again for about the fourth time since meeting Evan.
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