By: Candy Caine
Evie Bennington and Dillon MacAllister sizzle on the dance floor. And between the sheets. The green-eyed hunk professes his love for Evie and promises never to leave her. Then suddenly, inexplicably, Dillon disappears. Evie is devastated and wonders if her mother’s warning about trifling white men is true after all.
About the Author
Whether she’s writing a short story or novel, Candy Caine will make her interracial romances hot and spicy. Always striving to entertain her readers, Candy tries to breathe life into her characters, making life often interesting for her husband, Robert back in their home on Long Island, NY. And both are trying to teach their fifteen-year old yellow Lab, Sammy, new tricks.
Candy loves to hear from her readers. You can reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Visit her website at www.candycaine.com.
Evie Bennington stepped into the shower. She had a little time before she was to meet up with her study group at the coffee shop. The hot water felt good on the back of her neck Read More
Evie Bennington stepped into the shower. She had a little time before she was to meet up with her study group at the coffee shop. The hot water felt good on the back of her neck soothing away some of the tension from the day.
First, she’d overslept, missing breakfast in order to get to her first class on time. It had rained heavily the night before and was still drizzling when she tore out of her dorm and raced to class. Then some guy on a bike roared through a giant puddle splashing her and soaking her jacket thoroughly. She sloshed into class and a puddle formed around her shoes as she sat through the lecture.
Then, on her way to her next class, her roommate, Shawna, texted her that she wouldn’t be able to pick up the tickets to see Getting Weird With Adam Devine, after all, and would Evie mind picking them up? Tickets would be available after five that day at the University’s Union Information Center and Evie knew the tickets would go fast. That meant she had to be there early.
By the time Evie got over to the Union Information Center at 4:00, the line was already snaking around the side of the building. Evie sighed. Resigned to a long wait, she took out her iPad and started doing some Internet searches for a paper she was researching. By the time the ticket office opened, there was an even longer line behind her. Gradually, she moved up in line, praying the tickets wouldn’t be sold out by the time she got to the ticket window.
Then she noticed—him. No way could she miss the shaggy blond hair and the tall six-foot plus frame with impossibly wide shoulders. He was the annoying know-it-all from her undergraduate biochemistry class. She hadn’t seen him in a couple of years, since she got her Bachelor’s degree, but she remembered him well. Back then he thought he was God’s gift to women. He always had some giggly co-ed attached to some part of his anatomy.
And he was about to break into the line in front of her. Evie couldn’t believe it! He was cutting directly in front of her, slapping the back of the chunky guy in a leather jacket who stood in front of her. Unbelievable!
“Thanks for holding a place for me, man,” he said to his friend.
To make matters worse, by the time Evie got to the ticket window, all the tickets were gone. Fuming, she started to walk away, but caught a glimpse of the blond guy waving two tickets in front of a girl. He was bragging loudly, “Look what I’ve got.”
A look of utter hero worship appeared on the girl’s face making Evie want to puke. Red-hot anger rose from within her as she watched the guy practically pat himself on his shoulder. That was what pushed Evie over the line. Those should have been her tickets!
She stormed over to confront the jerk. “Nice job, Casanova. Next time, stand in line like the rest of us common folk.”
Moss green eyes widened as they took in her angry face.
“Those tickets belonged to me. I waited in line over an hour for them!” After saying her piece, Evie stormed off.
The shower beginning to cool brought Evie back to the present, but she still steamed over the ticket incident. She was stepping out of the shower when she heard knocking on the door. “Shawna! Can you get that?”
But, moments later, the knocking had become dull thuds. Where the hell is Shawna when I need her? Evie knew the answer to that rhetorical question, since her roommate was out more often than she was in the dorm.
Whoever was out there was now pounding on the door. Good Lord! Who the hell is out there making that racket, she thought, as she wrapped a towel around her. “Chill! I’m coming!”
Evie pulled open the door. Her jaw nearly dropped to the ground. Her eyes opened wide in disbelief, because standing there looking handsome and smug, was Casanova. His eyes slowly roamed over her figure before giving her a wink. “Nice.”
“What do you want?” Evie asked, her hazel eyes blazing with anger.
“Umm, Sarah Layton. Is she here?”
“No, smart guy. She’s one room over to the right,” Evie spit out.
“Your right or mine?”
“Yours.” She gritted her teeth.
He was about to say something else, but Evie was in no mind to listen and began to shut the door on him. Just then Shawna strolled up the corridor.
“Hey!” she called out. “Can I join this party?”
“Now you show up?” Evie said to her roommate.
“I wouldn’t miss this hottie for anything,” Shawna said, giving Casanova the full blast of her megawatt smile.
“Gotta lay rubber. Got places to be,” the object of her lustful looks said and headed toward Sarah Layton’s dorm room.
Evie shut the door as Shawna entered.
Shawna asked, “Was he coming or going?”
“Neither. He knocked on the wrong door.”
“Too bad,” her roommate replied. “I’d love to make toast out of that slice of white bread.”
Evie rolled her eyes. Shawna didn’t meet a pair of pants she didn’t long to try on.
“If you keep doing that, one day they’ll roll right out of your head,” Shawna warned, dropping her handbag on her bed. “You know the boy was choice.”
Evie pursed her lips. Shawna was right—the guy was hot and Evie hadn’t missed checking out his cute tight butt that filled his jeans perfectly as he walked away. Nor had she missed how his thick, shaggy blond hair fell to the back of his collar, practically inviting her to run her hands through it. His fair skin was clear with a smattering of freckles across the bridge of his nose. And when he smiled, he exposed dimples that matched the cleft in his square chin. Dammit! Why was she even thinking about him? She loathed guys like him and their smug attitudes. She wasn’t shallow like all those other girls who seemed to be so attracted to him. She’d never fall for just a pretty face. Let him turn heads as he walked by. Hers wouldn’t be among them.
* * *
The following morning Evie noticed Shawna hadn’t come home after the party the night before. Evie didn’t understand how her roommate could function as well as she did. Shawna, an inner city girl from the Bronx, New York, never turned down the chance to party. No longer on her grandmother’s tight leash, she wanted to cram as much fun in the freedom she now experienced being away at school.
At Ohio State University on a full scholarship like Evie, she had to maintain a B average. But unlike Evie, who constantly had to study, Shawna didn’t seem to even open her books. She was brilliant and able to read and retain the contents of even the most complex textbooks with ease. They’d been roomies since their freshman year in undergraduate school. Now they were taking the last of the required classes required to complete the Doctor of Physical Therapy or DPT program for short. At the end of the semester, they would be practicing physical therapists, but Evie had applied for a clinical residency in Orthopedics to further her clinical skills.
Evie took a quick shower and dressed, heading over to the cafeteria for breakfast. Her mind was wrapped around the exam in human growth and development she’d be taking later that afternoon. Though she studied as much as possible and had maintained a good grade average, she always feared doing poorly.
As Evie headed toward the cafeteria on autopilot, she went over several key points that might be on the exam. But she wasn’t too preoccupied to check out the guy walking directly in front of her in an Ohio State University jacket and a baseball cap. He had a nice butt. She passed him when he stopped to read a notice tacked to the bulletin board and took in his ruggedly, handsome profile. Oh, Lord. Not him again, she thought. Couldn’t she go anywhere on campus without running into Casanova?
Once inside the cafeteria, Evie’s mind shifted back to her upcoming exam and she got in line at the self-serve counter. She slid her tray along the rail, grabbing a breakfast sandwich, potato wedges and coffee. When she’d reached the end, she realized she’d forgotten orange juice and turned around quickly, slamming her tray into a guy behind her carrying a full tray of food. Her breath caught in her throat. Of all people on the entire campus, it had to be him.
Her purse dropped to the floor and food and drink from both trays flew everywhere. It would have been funny had Casanova not been covered in it. Orange juice streamed down his cheek and there were bits of scrambled egg in his hair. His jaw clenched as he tried to wipe the juice from his face. “Dammit! Can’t you look where you’re going or are you just naturally a walking disaster?” Then he realized who it was and exploded, “You!”
Everyone turned to gape at them. There were snickers from a few of the onlookers.
Mortified, Evie’s face heated. The contents of her purse had spilled onto the floor and Evie scrambled to shove everything back into the small bag. Like an idiot, she instinctively bent and reached for a tissue to wipe the juice off his face. However, the tissue was useless and shredded, leaving bits of paper stuck to his chin, making things worse. And the throbbing blue vein on his neck was beating out the message that he wasn’t too happy about their encounter.
Not waiting around for the fireworks, Evie dropped her tray into the used bin, muttered a “Sorry” and hurried out of the cafeteria.
“Wait!” Casanova called after her. “You—”
But the minute she got outside, Evie took off briskly without stopping or turning around. How could she have been so clumsy? Why hadn’t she paid attention to what she was doing? And why did she have to make an ass out of herself in front of that guy?
She snuck a peek over her shoulder and her breath caught in her throat. Casanova was walking in her direction. Was he coming after her? She ducked behind a large smelly dumpster. Crouching down and breathing only through her mouth, she felt foolish, praying he’d go right past without seeing her. He did and she hoped she’d never run into him again. Pun definitely intended.
As Evie got back to the dorm she ran up the stairs to her room. She searched her bag for her keys and couldn’t find them. She must have left them in her other bag on her dresser. Great! She banged on the door. When Shawna, wrapped in a bath towel answered, Evie all but fell into the room and collapsed on her bed.
“Who’s chasing your tail, girl?” Shawna asked as she dried her face with the edge of the towel.
Gasping for breath, Evie held up a finger indicating that she needed a moment to catch her breath before she could speak. “You won’t believe what just happened.”
“Try me. I’m from the Bronx, remember? There’s nothing I ain’t seen.”
Evie described the scene in the cafeteria for Shawna. If she had expected any empathy, she was sorely disappointed. Shawna roared with laughter.
“You wouldn’t think it was all that funny if it happened to you. I felt like a total moron.”
“Chill, girl. It was an accident. You didn’t go to that cafeteria this morning with the intent of dumping the dude’s tray—unless…you wanted to get his attention.”
“Bite your tongue.”
There was a knock at the door and Shawna went into the bathroom to finish dressing.
Evie went to answer the door. She felt as if she’d fallen into a parallel world where nothing made any sense. And everywhere she went, she saw Casanova, who was standing there now. “Why are you doing this to me?
“Doing what?” He asked, cocking his head to study her.
His gazed disturbed her. “Hounding me. Everywhere I go, you’re there.”
“What? Are you crazy?”
Evie narrowed her eyes. “I’m crazy?”
“Hey, I’m the one who’s been wronged here.”
“That was an accident!” She said in exasperation. “And if you weren’t there, it wouldn’t have happened.
“Really? How do I know you didn’t do it on purpose because you want me?”
“Want you? You think I’m certifiable?”
They glared at each other for several beats until he said, “You know, you’re kinda cute when you’re mad.”
Evie felt her face heat at the laughter in his moss green eyes. Thank God her bronze skin tone wouldn’t show her blush. “Why are you here? You already know which dorm Sarah’s in.”
“I’m not here for Sarah. I stopped by to give you this.” Grinning, he dangled a set of keys.
So that’s what happened to them. She snatched them from his hand. “Thanks and goodbye.”
“Jeez! That’s gratitude for you,” he said as the door closed in his face.
When Shawna came out of the bathroom, she asked, “Who was that?”
“No one,” Evie replied. How dare he laugh at her?
“By the way, there’s a rally on Friday night,” Shawna said. “You’re coming with me. No arguments.”
“I really have to study. There will be other rallies.”
“This is an important one—”
“Yeah, they’re all important, but I need to keep my grades up or else I’ll lose my chance for a residency. I worked too hard to let that happen and you know it.” Evie began to gather her books.
“You study way too much. You need to have some fun. The nuns at school back home had more of a life than you.” Shawna folded her arms across her ample bosom and tapped her foot. “You’re coming, whether you like it or not. Don’t piss me off.”
A beeping sound was heard, signaling a new text on Shawna’s phone. Evie watched as her dorm mate replied. Arguing with Shawna was futile and Friday was several days off. That girl could be as ornery as a wildcat and Evie was in no mood for another confrontation with anyone. She waited for Shawna to finish her reply before speaking. “Gotta go to class. See you later.”
“Maybe,” Shawna replied, eyes still glued to her iPhone.
* * *
On Friday night the excitement sparked in the air like electricity. The campus was abuzz and psyched up as everyone geared up for the big football game against Michigan the following day. Shawna wasn’t exaggerating when she called the rally important. It was the most important one of the year. The two rival schools met this time every year to duke it out on the football field.
Evie reluctantly agreed to accompany Shawna to the rally. There was no way to change Shawna’s mind once she decided on something. Her stubborn determination was as unbending as iron. The girls, joining the endless stream of other students, made their way to the football field.
The bleachers were filling quickly and they had to climb to reach the empty seats. Some idiot tossed a beach ball, of all things, across the bleachers. When another just-as-bright person dove to catch it, he caused a chain reaction of falling bodies. Evie was shoved hard and fell sideward off her seat. Eyes closed tightly and arms flailing, as if attempting to fly, she landed several rows below in a soft lap.
“You? This is effing unbelievable!” A deep voice rumbled.
Evie opened her eyes and gasped as she looked up with disbelief into the amused eyes of the man into whose lap she had fallen. How she wished she could be beamed up by Scotty in Star Trek. Of all the laps in the bleachers, how the hell did she end up in Casanova’s lap?
Evie struggled to raise herself up and flee. Only he was holding her down.
“Let me go!” Evie continued to struggle.
“Nope. Not a chance.” He appeared to be enjoying himself.
“I’ll scream,” Evie threatened.
“Go ahead,” he replied smugly. “I doubt anyone will hear you through all this noise.”
“Look, I’m really sorry about the other day—the accident…the door in your face… I didn’t mean to be nasty,” she pleaded.
“Yes, you did.”
“Well—maybe the door in the face…a little bit.”
“Glad you admit it. Now how about declaring a truce?”
Evie frowned. “Do we have to?”
He began to laugh. Evie couldn’t believe it. He thought it was all so very funny. The person sitting to his right behind him leaned forward and Evie could see Shawna waving at her. No not really waving, but giving her the thumbs-up sign.
“Okay, you had your laugh. Let me go.”
“You’re kidding, right?”
Evie was at a loss for words. His arms were strong and the feel of his muscled thighs against her bottom was sending tingling feelings through her. That and a suspicious bulge nestling against her lower back. “Why won’t you let me go?”
“Because, for one thing, the rally is about to start and there’s no place for you to go,” he said, flashing a dimpled smile that could melt the coldest of hearts.
Evie looked around her. He was right. The bleachers were filled to capacity. “What’s the other thing?”
“We have to seal our truce,” he murmured as his lips covered hers.