Midwest Fighter (Kendall Family Book 2)

BOOK: Midwest Fighter (Kendall Family Book 2)
3.05Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads
Midwest Fighter
Book Two in the Kendall Family Series
Jennifer Ann

T
his ebook is licensed
for your personal enjoyment only. This ebook may not be re-sold or given away. If you would like to share this book with another person, please purchase an additional copy for each recipient. If you’re reading this book and did not purchase it, or it was purchased for your use only, then please purchase your own copy. Thank you for respecting the hard work of this author.

This is a work of fiction. The names, characters, places and incidents are products of writer’s imagination or have been used in a fictitious manner. Any resemblance to persons, living or dead, actual events, locales or organizations is entirely coincidental. Any trademarks, service marks, product names or named features are assumed to be the property of their respective owners, and are used only for reference. Namely: Chevy, Glock, Taser International, Middle-earth,
Downton Abbey
, MIT, Boones Farm, Ford Bronco, NIN, Facebook, BMW, Mad Hatter, Valentino, Louis Vuitton, Tom Ford, Kool-Aid, Calvin Klein, Hermes, Backstreet Boys, YouTube,
Fight Club
, Jameson, Billabong, Saks

MIDWEST FIGHTER (KENDALL FAMILY #2)

Copyright © 2016 Jennifer Ann Naumann

All rights reserved.

Cover designed by Najla Qamber Designs

Image © Lindee Robinson Photography

ASIN: B01GGYKW7E

T
o my spirited
friend Sharlo for (unknowingly) loaning me your awesome name. Here’s hoping we catch another epic concert together one day soon!

Chapter 1
JAMES

T
he sudden blow
to my jaw creates a blinding flash before everything turns white behind my eyes. I reel back, unsteady on my feet, trying to focus my blurred vision on the complicated artwork in colored ink dancing ahead of me.
Fuck
. I didn’t see that one coming. I don’t see the next one coming either until I’m flat on my ass.

Insult to injury, the handful of spectators watching us spar roar with laughter, putting my teeth on edge. It must be a fucking riot to see someone my size knocked down, especially since it never happens. I spit my mouthguard out and try to catch my breath.
I’m never going to live this one down.

The goofy face of my good buddy Asher comes into focus. His cocky-ass grin makes me want to go another round. “You alright, JD?” he asks, removing a glove to offer his hand. “I didn’t expect you to go down that hard.”

“Don’t look so proud of yourself,” I say, unwilling to accept defeat. Becoming a skilled fighter is the only thing that keeps me centered. It’s the only way I can fight the demons from my past that have taken permanent residence inside my head. If I fail at this, I fail at life. There’s no other option. “It was a flash knockdown. You caught me off guard for once.”

Chuckling, Asher hooks his tattooed arm under my bicep to help me get back on my feet. “It’s perfectly understandable you’d be distracted the way Ivy Slater’s been eye-fucking you all night.”

Once standing, I give him a little shove. What my life-long buddy in crime lacks in height compared to my 6’3” mass, he makes up for in muscle and brawn. His obsession with tattoos has made him popular with the local ladies and his stout pipes have awarded him the unofficial title of arm-wrestling champion in the Blue River community. He even once beat out some old dude that held an impressive title in Vegas. Accordingly, I’ve made it my mission to beat him down in the ring. This is the first time he’s ever had an upper hand.

I knock my gloves together and bounce on the balls of my feet. “You ready to finish this or what?”

Shaking his head, Asher begins to remove his gear. “Can’t, man. I have to be at work in, like, fifteen minutes.” A grin pulls over his wide lips as he looks over my shoulder. “Are you sure you don’t want to tap that? I’d offer to do it for you if I wasn’t so scared ‘Manda would cut my balls off and hang them from her rearview mirror. She seems to think we’re a thing now.”

I follow his gaze to where a few of the local girls sit on the crusty old sofa Asher’s older brother scored a few months back. Seeing Ivy and her friends on the damn thing that has probably absorbed its share of bodily fluid over the years from Asher and his brother bringing women out makes my chest burn. Who knows what kind of diseases are crawling around on the raunchy fabric? One of these days I swear I’m going to drag it out of Cupp’s shed and torch it. Filthy animals can’t keep it in their pants long enough to take a girl somewhere decent.

When Ivy’s flirty gaze meets mine, her lips bend with a grin. It’s no secret to anyone that she’s been trying to get with me for awhile now. Long blond hair, blue eyes, nice rack, respectable ass, and legs that go on forever, she’s most guys’ idea of the perfect woman all tied up with a bow if you can get past her wild tendencies. If she hadn’t slept with my twin brother a couple years back, I’d probably consider taking her out on a date. But that shit’s non-negotiable. I’m not messing with anyone who has had their mouth around Hunter’s dick. Just because we shared a womb doesn’t mean I’m up for sharing women.

And besides, she’s not the one I want, the one I’ve had more day-dreams about than I could ever admit to another living soul.

“Better get your
ass
movin’ so you’re not late for work,” I mutter to Asher, removing my gloves before grabbing both a towel and bottle of water from the edge of the make-shift ring.

As I take a long drink and wipe a layer of sweat off my abs, Ivy skips our way. Even though Minnesota is having another bi-polar day and it’s no more than 40 degrees outside, she’s wearing skin-tight jeans and a sleeveless top that reveals just exactly what she has to offer. Ivy’s a nice enough girl. I just wish she’d settle down and leave more to the imagination for once. Guess she knows what she’s doing, though, because the sight of all those curves makes my dick perk with attention inside my compression shorts.

Throwing one arm over the top rope, she scans my naked chest, her tongue wetting her glossy lips. “Tough break tonight,” she teases, giggling. “Are you going to Roadrunners from here?”

I take another swig of my water and shrug. “I’ll probably head up there after I shower.”

“You could give him a hand washing his…
back,”
Asher suggests to Ivy before throwing an exaggerated wink my way. Though I want to lay him flat for the comment, I slap his raised hand before exchanging our usual fist pump. “You did good tonight, bro,” he tells me. “Don’t let a well-placed uppercut throw you off your game. I’ll see you at the bar.”

Grumbling to myself, I follow him out of the ring and toss my gear into my duffle bag. Without acknowledging Ivy, who follows my every move like a lost puppy, I slip into my sweats and thick sweatshirt before heading for the exit.

“Better luck next time, JD!” Cupp calls after me from somewhere inside the shed, snickering.

I hold my middle finger up over my head before pushing through the shed door into the cold night. Refusing to accept the fact that I’m not interested, Ivy hurries to keep up at my side, drowning me in a haze of nauseating perfume.

“Can I catch a ride with you?” she asks. “Missy and Taya aren’t going uptown until way later and I don’t want to miss the band. Everyone’s saying they’re supposed to be really good.”

A low groan rumbles in my chest. She apparently isn’t one to accept defeat either.
“It’ll be a good hour before I make it up there. I have to grab something to eat.”

“I don’t mind!” she insists, hooking her arm through mine. “I could use something myself, you know, to soak up all the booze and shit.”

Memories of the last time I saw her out with her friends trickle into my head. Shit-faced out of her mind, she danced on the bar-top in her bra while the other woman she came with whooped in encouragement. Nearly got my ass kicked by a couple of horny pricks when I threw her over my shoulder and drove her to her house, tucking her in and locking the door behind me.

“You should be more careful,” I say with a growl rising in my chest. “There are too many assholes around here that would take advantage of you.”

She leans in, pressing her hard tits against my arm, and kisses my cheek. “Then I guess it’s a good thing I have my fierce bodyguard.”

Hearing her refer to me as “hers” doesn’t sit well in my gut. I shake my head, trying to think of a way to shut this shit down before she assumes
we’re
anything. A red-blooded American guy can only resist a sweet little body like hers rubbing up against him for so long before giving in. And my raging hard-on is eager to remind me I haven’t been laid in months.

“You need to learn to look out for yourself,” I mumble.

I don’t argue when she climbs into the passenger side of my Chevy parked right outside. It’s kind of nice to have company for a change on the fifteen minute ride out to the farm. I haven’t dated a whole lot since high school as most women I’ve been interested in seem to be after the money they think I’ll inherit one day. Everyone knows Dad and his older brother are filthy rich as they own half the farmland in the county, drive the newest equipment, have the biggest houses, and spend most of their winters vacationing somewhere tropical. Doesn’t mean I’m reaping in the benefits. Though I do have the added bonus of living in my parents’ house rent-free and driving a truck owned by the farm, I get paid an hourly wage and have to work my ass off to make a decent living.

Like all my siblings, I had plans that didn’t involve sticking around. But I’ve learned plans change when you’re caught cold, just as in boxing. Thought I was going to college with the girl I’d been dating since freshman year of high school and eventually we’d marry. Then Mom died. After I made the decision to farm with Dad and Uncle Orin, Olivia announced on graduation night that she wasn’t going to spend the rest of her life in Blue River and I never saw her again.

“I haven’t seen you around lately,” Ivy comments while putting on her seatbelt. The strap pushes her breasts together even more until it looks like they’re going to spring free. “I was hoping you’d stop in for a drink when you picked your dad up from Roadrunner’s a couple nights ago.”

Grinding my teeth together, I turn the key in the ignition and my truck roars to life. Keeping tabs on Dad was the main reason I decided to stay in Blue River. He’s always been a good man, the kind that would give his friends the shirt off his back. But he never really recovered after the love of his life died. And too often he relies on booze to numb the pain.

Family has always come first in my life, and I’d do anything to protect them. I just wish they would at least make an effort to take better care of themselves. I’m the one who’s always keeping track of everyone, making sure they’re staying out of trouble. I’m the one who’s always losing sleep over our three sisters who have spread out across the country.

As we head down the gravel road, Ivy’s fingers jab at each of the preset stations on the radio. She stops when Charlie Walker’s deep voice bursts from the speakers with the song he wrote for my sister. I cringe.
Wonderful.

“Oh my God!” she squeals, clapping her hands together. “It must be
so
weird for you to hear him on the radio like this! Is Evelyn bringing him home again anytime soon?”

With the mention of my sister and her new rockstar husband, I hunch over and grip the steering wheel tight. It was hard enough when Evelyn moved to New York, too far away to keep an eye on. Then I found out through some random fuckin’
email
that my baby sister was dating someone known as being a womanizer and I about lost my goddamned mind. When I flew out to confront her, I planned to drag her back home with me. If I had followed through, she wouldn’t be preparing to follow Charlie Walker across the country with rabid fans on their heels. The only reason I changed my mind was because of Evelyn’s roommate, Sharlo.

Sharlo
. Her unusual name alone evokes pleasurable thoughts that draw my balls tight. Not unlike Ivy, she’s blond haired and blue eyed, only her hair looks as soft as strands of silk, her much bigger eyes are a bright pacific blue like the ocean, and her body’s filled with curves in all the right places. She’s the very definition of soft and feminine.

Come to think of it, Ivy and Sharlo couldn’t be any
less
alike in every other way. From the limited time I’ve spent with Sharlo, she seems to be the type who doesn’t give a shit what other people think, and she’s unafraid to share a piece of her mind. And she’s smart, like
Harvard
smart. Plus she knows how to have fun without being annoying and dresses in a way that I can respect.

After she sat me down in their Brooklyn apartment, giving me an ass chewing for showing up unannounced to confront Evelyn, Sharlo somehow convinced me that I had done the wrong thing and needed to lighten up on my sister. I returned to Minnesota with my tail between my legs without Evelyn ever finding out that I had been there. The irony that I
hadn’t
flown all the way out there for nothing wasn’t lost on me when I couldn’t get the British fireball out of my head.

At Charlie and Evelyn’s Lake Tahoe wedding in December, I was eager as shit to spend time with her again. The temptation to have a one-night fling was strong, especially seeing her all decked out in a dress for the wedding. The way she looked both classy and sexy as hell made me seriously question my resolve not to get involved with my sister’s best friend. To my frustration, though, we parted ways without so much as a goddamned kiss. It was my fault for not letting her know what the mere sight of her did to me. Then again, what good would it have done me to hook up with someone who lives over a thousand miles away?

“Uh, you just missed your turn,” Ivy says, pointing over her shoulder at the road as we pass.

Cursing under my breath, I slow the truck and make a three-point turn. As much as I want to be with Sharlo, she’s off limits for too many fucking reasons. If I’m going to do something about the ache she started, I’ll have to do it with someone local.

“So…Evelyn and Charlie?” Ivy asks. “Are they coming back or what?”

“He’s going on tour,” I grumble.

Ivy doesn’t say anything more as we pull into the farm’s long driveway. The two-story house is dark, meaning Dad probably went to the bar for supper and Hunter’s probably off somewhere getting laid. There are days when I think it’d be easier to take on my twin’s lackadaisical lifestyle of pounding beers and going through meaningless affairs. It’d beat giving myself ulcers over everyone else’s shit and going home to jack off in the shower every night.

After I park the truck in the driveway, I glance over at Ivy. It wouldn’t be so bad to date someone hot who’s into me. It’s just hard to get past images of her all over my brother on that Fourth of July. Especially when I’m fairly certain they took the boat out after the fireworks to screw in the middle of the lake. But damn, do I ever need to hook up with someone. The memories of Sharlo have created a knot of pent-up frustration deep in my gut.

“Why are you always so…
intense?”
Ivy asks, pushing the center console up before sliding onto the center seat. She drags a fingernail up and down my thigh. “You need to learn to relax a little. Have some
fun
for once.”

I instantly harden inside my sweatpants with her touch. If I stare at her with squinted eyes, I can almost see Sharlo sitting in her place. It’s fucked up, but I’m ready to make do with what I have.

“I do know how to have fun,” I answer in a steady voice.

Staring into Ivy’s murky blue eyes, I set my hand on her jaw and lean down for a kiss. Her lips are sticky with lipstick or some shit and she tastes like stale vodka. Not the best first impression. Then her mouth opens and her tongue barges its way past my lips. The insistent strokes of her little tongue ignite the drive to relieve my sexual drought. With a growl, I dig my fingers into her hips and lift her to straddle my lap. Her hands are suddenly everywhere, setting my body ablaze.

BOOK: Midwest Fighter (Kendall Family Book 2)
3.05Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

Other books

The Broken Road by Melissa Huie
Last Car to Annwn Station by Michael Merriam
The Glass Coffin by Gail Bowen
Alaska Republik-ARC by Stoney Compton
5.5 - Under the Ice Blades by Lindsay Buroker
Cured by Diana