Wednesday, February 1, 2017
Blog Tour Excerpt: For Finlay by J. Nathan
Brooks mumbled something I couldn’t discern over the volume of my music.
My eyes cut to his. His ear buds dangled over his shoulders. I tugged mine out. “Huh?”
“Just wondering what pearls of wisdom you’re gonna bestow upon me today.”
“You need to stop hesitating when you drop back,” I told him, much to his obvious surprise. “Either do it or don’t. Did you see how those guys pummeled you?”
“See it? I was under it.”
“Yeah, well, your offensive line sucks. But you can’t give the defense a chance to get to you. Know where you’re throwing and hit the mark. Your receivers are good. They’ll get there.”
He stared at me, his eyes narrowed slits.
I wiped my face with the small towel I’d draped over the treadmill screen. “Don’t worry, you’ve got potential.”
He choked out a cough. “Potential? I’m the starting quarterback for Alabama.”
Those words—especially leaving his mouth—cut deep. The only reason he was playing was because Cole wasn’t. He best remember that.
“I’ve got more than potential,” he assured me.
“Yeah,” I said, my word clipped as I remembered why I despised him so much. “You’ve got a massive ego ready to destroy small countries.”
“All great athletes have egos. You’ve got to.”
Wow. My hatred toward him was growing by the second. “And you’re humble.”
He laughed. Didn’t he notice I wasn’t laughing?
We ran in silence. The pounding of our sneakers on the treadmills mirrored the pounding in my head brought on by his arrogance.
“What’s your deal anyway?”
I glanced over at him. “What’s that supposed to mean?”
“Not many girls know so much about football and wake up at four in the morning to run.”
I scoffed. “Hope you’re not implying I thought you’d be here.”
“I didn’t say that.”
“But you were thinking it.”
He smirked. “You’d be amazed at the lengths girls go to get my attention.”
My eyes flared. “I suppose you think I took some crash course in football just to impress you with all my knowledge.”
My face scrunched as I pressed the arrow on the screen to quicken my pace. “Keep dreaming, superstar.”
“Girls have done some whacked out shit.”
My eyes jumped between the wall in front of me and Brooks. “First of all, I’m not about to steal your towel because it has your sweat on it, nor will I be swiping your jockstrap to sell online. We, my friend, are victims of bad timing.”
“Yeah. Anytime you’re in my space, it’s bad.”