Pin Me Down
Publication date: February 28th 2017
Genres: New Adult, Romance
Mia Reynolds isn’t interested in relationships. She refuses to follow the same troubled path her codependent mother traveled. Now that she’s graduated from college and has a real job, paying her loads of money, the world is hers for the plucking. She doesn’t need a man at her side, keeping her from having fun. Especially Regi, whose brandy brown eyes and gravelly voice have haunted her since high-school. Together they’re gunpowder and fire, explosive but dangerous. She’s only willing to give him her body, but never her heart.
Regi O’Connell has been concealing his heartbreak for years. Despite the endless parade of women in his bed, throwing panties at him like confetti, there’s only one who girl who has claimed him heart and soul. But Mia refuses to give him a chance outside of the sheets. He’s her dirty little secret, one she has no plans on revealing to the world.
Sometimes all it takes is one incident, one flash of regret, to change who you were, and become who you are meant to be. Mia’s heart is unyielding, a lock-box without a key. She needs to let him in, or let him go. He’s giving it one more shot to show the women of his dreams that love doesn’t make you weak, but stronger than steel.
This second chance new adult romance novel features a commitment phobic heroine, and the alpha male who loves her despite it. As always in a Holly Dodd book, there is NO cheating and a HEA guaranteed.
Why do I do this to myself?
The Alehouse, a newish bar-bistro restaurant in Madison, Wisconsin, hummed with activity. I thought with how loud it was I wouldn’t be able to hear myself think.
I was wrong.
The buzz of conversation and the clink of glassware drowned out everything except what I needed it to.
That damn question. The one I’ve asked myself for over a year. It was on repeat, and I couldn’t break the cycle.
Why? Why? Why?
I could yell it to the fucking sky. I wasn’t any closer to answering my mental musing. I was a broken record with an apparent masochistic streak.
Every Thursday night, I arrived for the “Brewhouse Social” and hoped Mia would say something to me. That she would show me that she missed me as much as I missed her.
I might as well be wishing to find a fucking pot of gold. Mia hated me and would continue to hate me because of one reason.
I was in love with her.
I glanced at Mia’s stiff back. She stood across the room from me behind a wall of tables and friends; a physical line erected between us and armored with societal expectations. She was the hostess, the creator of this collegiate get together, and I couldn’t darken her door without express invitation. I was Quasimodo stalking Esmeralda from afar. Though Mia was aware I was close by and watching every move she took. Her stance said it all. Approach with extreme caution lest you get your balls served up on a plate like rocky mountain oysters.
I’d learned long ago, back when we were teenagers fucking around with sex, that Mia’s words could be scalpel sharp. The damage so superbly inflicted, the little slices so thin, you didn’t realize how messed up you were until later. My heart still bore the shrapnel from our last blow up. I was still a fucking mess. Her indifference created a constant dull ache which buffeted my chest. I wasn’t sure how much longer I could handle it before falling off the deep end.
Nope. Not this week.
I’m not fucking doing this again.
Shit, why can’t I quit her?
For the past fifty-two weeks and counting, Mia denied I even existed. She’d completely cut me off, carving me out of her life as if I never existed. Last January I’d pushed, telling her how much I loved her. As expected, she’d reacted badly. I hadn’t realized until that moment that everything between us was one sided. She was the love of my life. I was just a distraction for her. Then, I became her enemy.
I knew more of her than anyone else. She hid herself, and her heart, in a vault. The one I hadn’t yet figured out the combination to. I came back, letting her stomp all over my heart with her five-inch heels, hoping she’d give me a clue. Maybe crack the door and show me that there was a chance. No matter how much I vowed to stop, I always came back. I’d moved back to Wisconsin for her, hoping to reignite the spark between us; a reunion that would lead us skipping into a rosy future.
That didn’t happen. The emotional scars Mia bore made sure of it.
I tore my gaze away and blinked down at my drink.
I’d barely touched the beer I ordered. I swished it in the bottle, listening to the girl beside me talk non-stop. What was her name? Lisa? Fuck if I remembered. Not that it mattered. She was another pair of tits-and-ass that would distract me. Just like every girl I’d ever known. There was only one I wanted, and she treated me like a leper. It was stupid of me to come here and stupid of me to stay.
I took a swig of my beer and glanced at the time.
I’d asked Jolene Miller out on a date in physics. I was in the tail end of my pre-med career before I went to med school, and very little held my interest in the classes I took. I might look like a dumb jock, and play one when prompted, but that wasn’t who I really was.
While Jo hadn’t said yes, she hadn’t said no either. She should have arrived by now. Funny, Jo had been panting over me all year. I’d kept her at arm’s length because it felt wrong to go out with Mia’s best friend. Not that Jo knew about Mia and me. But I was done with Mia. Fucking over it.
Now that I was giving Jo a chance, she’d stood me up. Yet, I wasn’t surprised. Something had changed for her once Kevin Harris made his move last week. Changed in them both. I might be a doctor-in-training, but even a blind man could see what ailed them.
They were in love. And I was so jealous. Not because Kevin had Jo. I didn’t feel that way about her. But that he’d put his heart out there, and she’d accepted him — flaws and all.
I blew out a breath and glanced down at the dark-eyed girl nuzzled into my side. She was practically poured into her dress. The clingy charcoal material hugged every curve. She looked young, a teenager but still legal. She was fucking stacked, though, with a playboy bunny body most women coveted. I liked a girl with some heft to her.
“Hey, want to head into the back?” I cut her off mid-word, not wanting to hear more of her babble. There was only one use for a bar bunny, and talking wasn’t it.
She blinked up at me with an arched brow. The dark makeup smudged over her eyes was noticeable and made her look a bit like Mia in the right light. I could deal with that. Maybe I needed some role play to finally pry Mia out from beneath my skin. Mia and I were toxic, at least according to her, and I needed a cure.
The girl — Lucia? — gave me a sly smile. Her lips were plump and crimson. Perfect dick sucking lips. There was something familiar about her. Something I couldn’t put my finger on. Had I hooked up with her before? It didn’t matter. Since I couldn’t remember her it would be like fucking her for the first time.
“Sure,” she said. She wiggled against my side and linked her tanned arm through mine.
I gave her ass a pat and led her toward the back.
On the way, I caught sight of Kevin slinking towards the busy bar. He wore a Badger’s ball cap pulled low, a layman’s disguise that I thought was ridiculous. But it would fool a few, mostly the girls who gravitated toward him as if his dick was magic. Not me. He’d been my bro for the past few years. I hadn’t expected him to show up. Not with whatever was going on between him and Jo. She’d been distracted and sad in physics. Had they broken up? Maybe he was looking for an easy score to ease his heartache. I knew the feeling. I tilted my head to the brunet I’d left behind. She was ripe, ready to be plucked, and pouting that she hadn’t been picked for the evening. Madison was a college town, and there were always co-eds looking for an experience.
Kevin shook his head and slumped into a bar stool. His carriage was as stiff as Mia’s.
I shrugged and moved on. Everyone had a stick up their ass tonight. Not my problem.
I led my prize through the narrow aisles of the draft house and navigated around a nightmarish clutch of pseudo-intellects who wouldn’t know the difference between a Coors Light and a home brew. I wasn’t into the pretentious shit. If it was cold and amber, I drank it.
Pulling the girl closer, we shook off the college crowd and slipped into the dark. The back rooms of the Alehouse were perfect for my uses.
Over the past few months, since Mia had begun using the restaurant for her social promotion experiment, I’d introduced more than a few girls to the idea of a sexual exhibition against the bamboo-textured walls. Sometimes letting off a little steam was the only way to get through the night without having a total fucking meltdown over Mia. The dark allowed me to close my eyes and fantasize. The fact that the chick I was leading astray had a similar body type, the bronzed skin, and big ass of my favorite girl enhanced the illusion.
Laura? Whatever. She was all in as we darted into an empty room. She turned on me, showing her grit as she pushed me up against the wall right beside the door. “You’re such a big boy”.
“Yeah, I am.” Girls loved my size. I was six-feet-five in bare feet and bulked up like a Mack Truck. They loved it. I pulled more tail than Daniel Boone.
Except for Mia. But that was a lie. She fucked me when she wanted. Treated me like her dirty secret. Had for years. Ever since high school.
I squeezed my eyes shut. I wouldn’t think about that now.
I drained the rest of my beer in one gulp and set the empty bottle on a nearby shelf. “Are you going to keep talking or show me what you can do with that mouth.”
I didn’t give a flying fuck what she had to say. There was only one thing I wanted out of her. I wanted her to make me forget. Obliterate the pain that Mia’s rejection wrought in my chest. I was a sorry sack of unrequited love. Funny how shit like that goes. I had girls trying to lure me into relationships, and the one I wanted had turned one night stands into an art form. It would be laughable if it didn’t hurt so badly.
Shit, I was whining.
I focused on the girl.
“Your wish is my command,” she laughed and sank to her knees. I
heard her more than saw her. She was a silk-skinned blur, caramel-colored hair from a bottle, and thick curves. I didn’t care who she was. What she wanted. She was a willing hole I was going to lose myself in. Sex allowed me brief splashes of pleasure in my miserable existence. It was a big reason why I was a raging man-whore. Maybe if I fucked enough girls, I’d find one with the magic pussy that would replace Mia.
She pulled my zipper down, the metal SNICK loud in the silence. Cold air seeped between the lapels and encircled my cock. The sounds of the bar came from far off, dampened by the thick walls that separated the banquet rooms from the rest of the upscale bar-restaurant duo.
I wasn’t hard. Not at fucking all. My head wasn’t into it. Never was. Not until biology kicked in.
She murmured a pout when she found my flaccid dick, but then her breath hitched. I was a shower. Even limp my cock was impressive. I pushed eight-inches. Legit, too. Not any of that lying bullshit. The width was only okay. I had a broad head, and that more than made up for any issues with girth.
Her wet mouth worked over the tip. I closed my eyes, letting the sensations course through me. No thoughts. No emotions. Just the skillful play of a slippery tongue swirling around my shaft, getting the blood coursing through my body. Before long she had a double grip on my dick, and all thoughts of Mia flew south like migrating birds chasing warmth in the wake of winter.
This was what I craved.
This was my drug. That in-between state between happiness and misery where I didn’t think. Didn’t feel. Just existed.
This was the salve a broken heart required. Nameless, faceless sex in a back room.
My hips pumped against her face while my fingers cinched in her hair, pulling her close until she choked. I shuddered.
That’s what I want.
She gurgled as her tight throat opened around my dick. The slick rush of spit drew my balls tight.
She pulled off with an abrupt pop. “Can we help you?”
Shit. Who’d caught us? I opened my eyes and spotted Jo loitering in the doorway. I hadn’t expected her to show up tonight. This was going to work against me. I knew it. “Fuck, Jo. This isn’t what it looks like.”
Jo’s acerbic laugh sliced the air. “Really? To me, it looks like you’re getting a blowie.”
Okay. This was exactly what it looked like. I urged the girl up, trying to get her off her knees. She wasn’t budging. Her name was on the tip of my tongue. Linda?
Fine, fuck her. If she wanted to stay kneeling, she could. I tried stuffing myself back into my pants. There was something too vulnerable about having my dick flopping out. Except the L-named girl had her hands there, pumping my shaft and keeping me half-hard. A shudder snaked down my spine, half arousal, half disgust. I was into exhibitionism, but this was extreme.
“It’s fine,” Jo said dismissively. “I just came looking for you to tell you I didn’t really feel like hanging out with you tonight. And I don’t think we should pursue anything in the future.”
Jo’s words held a finality to them that whipped my head her way. “Wait, what?”
“You had a fucking date tonight,” the girl squealed. Her hand tightened, threatening to tear my cock off, and I grunted at her grip.
What the fuck was her name. Shit, it was bugging me. Usually, it didn’t, but I had a feeling I was supposed to know it.
“I’m kind of hung up on someone else. You’re…well. You’re not what I’m looking for,” Jo said.
I shook my head. This was way too fucking surreal to be having a conversation like this while my dick was being jacked. “Are you fucking with me?” I was kind of relieved, though. Mia had been shoving me at her all year. As if giving Jo her fantasy would absolve her of lying to her supposed BFF. I knew how Mia worked. If I fucked Jo, she’d never touch me. I’d been desperate to invoke some reaction from Mia when I had asked Jo out tonight.
However, I wasn’t surprised Jo was begging off from our “date”. She and Kevin were stupid for one another. No matter what issues were currently fucking their relationship up, I knew neither of them would really quit.
Kind of like how I was with Mia. I was there for the long haul. I wanted to fix it — us — and Mia didn’t.
I managed to get my pants pulled up, just barely, when a screech blew through my life and upended my whole world. “Licia?”
I didn’t even need to see who stood behind Jo. I heard that voice in my dreams and nightmares. “Fuck, Mia.”
I knew she hadn’t come looking for me. Hell would freeze over before she sought me out. She’d seen Jo come into the Alehouse and went looking for her bestie. Still, I didn’t want her seeing me like this. Not that it would bother her. She fucked other men. I fucked other women. But I wouldn’t want to see her with her boys. No fucking way. Just the thought of it left me ill.
Then what she said caught up with me, and my brain vibrated in my ears. Licia? Oh shit no. Oh no.
I glanced down as the girl, who’d just been tonsil-deep on my dick, popped up like a loon. “Hey, sis.”
I thumped my head on the wall. Hard. Wake up. Wake up. This had to be a fucking nightmare brought on by school stress.
“You’re Mia’s sister?” I remembered little Alicia now. Thin and with braces, she’d been a blip on the radar back when Mia and I’d been high school seniors. Everyone and everything had been eclipsed by Mia back then. She was my whole world. Had been ever since my family moved into their neighborhood. I’d turned into a cliché. The All-American jock who’d lost his heart to the girl next door. Only she didn’t want anything to do with me outside the bedroom.
A sick feeling churned in my gut. There was no way Licia didn’t know who I was. No fucking way. She turned her cat-shaped eyes to me, and the deceptive glitter in them told me I’d hit the nail on the mother fucking head.
She’d known who I was. Known all along she was going down on her sister’s ex-fling. Licia walked in on Mia and me enough times and had been our own lookout after Mia admitted to something between us.
“Yep, don’t you see the resemblance?”
I’d been distracted, my head wrecked by thoughts of Mia. As it always was when I was around her. Now that she’d mentioned it I could see it in the shape of the face, the color of the eyes. Hadn’t I thought she looked enough like Mia that I could pretend she was her for a while?
Jo said something but my whole focus was on Mia. I stepped towards my heart, hands outstretched, imploring her to listen. “Mia wait, please.”
Mia turned on me. Rage flared through her whiskey-brown eyes, turning them the color of sherry. It was wild how her eyes got a little red when she was mad. Her whole body vibrated with suppressed emotion. “Don’t. Just don’t. My little sister? Fucking hell, Regi.”
I flinched, waiting for her anger to manifest into soul-cutting words. I dragged a hand through my beard. It wasn’t long enough to tug, but I wished it was.
What a colossal fuck-up. “I didn’t know.”
Whatever remaining hope I’d had that Mia would come back to me, would remember the promises we’d made the summer before college, went up in a puff of smoke. I would never forgive myself for being the cause of the hurt and betrayal simmering in her eyes. She looked ready to cry. No matter what bullshit life threw at her, my Mia never cried.
My heart cracked and fell out of my chest. She didn’t even bother to shred me with her words.
Instead, the love of my life stormed away from me, dragging my bitter, broken heart behind her.
I inhaled a shuddering breath. Jo shook her head at me. The look said it all. I’d done fucked up. She trailed after Mia, her voice swallowed by the clang of the bar.
There was no coming back from this. I blinked hard, completely forgetting Licia stood beside me.
“Now that they’re gone we can continue,” she purred as she rubbed her breasts against my arm.
I shoved away from her, my body recoiling in revulsion. “What the fuck is wrong with you. You knew exactly who I was.”
Licia tipped her head back. Folding her arms around her midsection, her stance grew defensive. “Yeah, so?”
There was something wrong with Mia and her sister. I shoved both hands through my hair and pulled it in frustration. “Don’t you have an iota of loyalty towards her?”
“Don’t you talk to me about loyalty, Regi O’Connell. She isn’t loyal to me, why the hell should I be loyal to her,” she said with a sharp hiss.
What had happened between Licia and Mia? Back when she’d been younger, before college, they’d been a solid family unit. And now her quest for revenge just cost me everything. Not that Mia would ever be mine. She’d said no when we were younger, and every year since.
Still, I’d hoped. Fucking hell, I’d hoped so hard. And now, only ashes remained.
“Stay the fuck away from me.” I shoved past Licia and into the bar, hunting my sobriety with the sour promise of alcohol.
Deep down I knew even getting blind-ass drunk wouldn’t make me forget.
Holly Dodd is an award-winning author. Her novel Covet won the 2016 RWA Beacon award for Romantic Suspense. A member of the Romance Writers of America, her stories are often spicy, with everything salacious right on the page. Ranging from the contemporary anti-hero, to paranormal and futuristic, she loves an Alpha Hero in any setting and a woman destined to keep him on his toes.
Calling Pennsylvania home, she loves autumn, the beach, and beautiful weather. When she’s not writing, reading, or baking, she’s wrangling her three psychotic felines, and wondering where her muse will take her to next.
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