Runaway Groom Ebook
Runaway Groom Ebook
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- Fake Relationship
- Second Chance
What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas … or so she thought.
Maggie Reynolds, always a bridesmaid, never a bride, has been running herself ragged trying to keep her lakeside resort afloat. When she attends her college roommate’s wedding in Las Vegas, she is determined to let loose and hook a groomsman, even though she can’t flirt to save her life. Sparks fly when a handsome stranger comes to her rescue, but humiliation soon follows when he disappears as quickly as he arrived. Determined to put the sizzling night with Owen Jacobs out of her mind, she catches the next flight home and moves on with her life. Until she can’t.
Owen Jacobs, former SEAL dog handler, has only one mission: to find the woman who stole his heart during one night of passion and whose memory kept him hopeful during his last, dangerous assignment. Looking forward to starting a new phase of his life, Owen tracks down Maggie in her hometown of Deer Creek Falls, Minnesota, only to find that she’s done a better job of forgetting the past than he has. Or has she? Never one to give up without a fight, Owen devises a way to stay, determined to make Maggie see that what they shared in Vegas was no one-night affair.
Intro into Chapter One
Intro into Chapter One
Alexis dangled her best friend Maggie’s newest purchase
in front of her: a pair of black lace panties. “You’re finally taking my
advice. Perfect place to hook a groomsman. You know what they say: what
happens in Vegas . . .”
Maggie rolled her eyes as she snatched
the undies from Alexis and threw them in her suitcase. “Yes, I know the saying,
and I’m keeping my options open.”
“Thatta girl.” Alexis tossed a box of
condoms into Maggie’s bag. “You can’t be too careful.”
“Really? You think I need an entire
box? I’ll be there one night.” XL? Maggie quirked her brow at Alexis and
wondered if this was wishful thinking on Alexis’s part or if she had an extra
box on hand. Maggie grabbed a handful from the box and shoved them into the
side pocket. She handed the box back to Alexis, then yanked her suitcase off
the bed. “I’ve got to go.”
“Remember, no overprotective brothers
hovering over you,” Alexis said.
“Yep, looking forward to it. I intend
to take full advantage of time away from my family and the small-town gossip.”
Maggie hadn’t seen her college
roommate for a few years and was excited to be part of her wedding. It was the
perfect time to travel to someplace warm and rejuvenate before the busy tourist
She headed for her car and Alexis
yelled after her, “Have fun!”
Maggie dragged her broken-wheeled purple suitcase through
the opulent lobby of the five-star hotel on the Las Vegas strip. Could this day
get any worse? Her flight from Minneapolis had been delayed two hours because
of a late-March snowstorm, leaving her no choice but to change into her cotton-candy
pink bridesmaid dress in the Vegas airport bathroom. The V-neck, with its softly
gathered pleats, double-layered spaghetti straps and A-line skirt, was
definitely her favorite bridesmaid dress yet, but along with the shoes, it had maxed
out her credit card. Luckily, her room was reserved and paid for by the bride
and groom. She had blisters on her feet from having to run through the airport
in her new four-inch heels and then stand in them the rest of the day, but she
knew if she removed her shoes now, she wouldn’t want to put them back on.
Maggie had made it to the wedding just
in time to grab the groomsman’s arm and walk down the aisle. The only time she’d
got to see her friend was when they hugged in the receiving line before another
well-wisher pushed her aside and latched onto the bride. After a few feeble
attempts at flirting, she gave up and left the cocktail reception early. Tired
and hungry, all she wanted now was to relax in a bubble-filled tub and continue
to read the book she’d started on the plane, the newest title by L.C. Brooks.
“Here, let me help you with your
She turned and looked into a pair of brilliant
cerulean blue eyes. The sexy men on the covers of her romance novels had
nothing on the one standing in front of her. She glanced at his left hand. No
wedding ring. She scanned him head to toe, her body quivering in all the right
“Thank you. I think I just need a
screw.” Maggie’s hand flew to her mouth, and her face heated. “I mean—my
suitcase needs a screw.”
His smile turned her to goo.
When they reached the reservation desk,
the sexy specimen set her lopsided suitcase next to her.
“Sexy and a gentleman.” Maggie
bit down on her lower lip. “Geez, I said that out loud, didn’t I?”
“You did.” This time his lips turned
upward into a full grin.
His smile made her heart flutter, and
she almost forgot about the stabbing pains radiating from her feet.
A woman behind the desk called out,
“Excuse me, sir, I have you all set.”
Maggie watched him walk away as she
waited for the next concierge.
“How may I help you?”
Maggie stepped up to the counter. “Hi,
I’m sorry I didn’t check in earlier. I have a room reserved under Maggie
Reynolds. I’m part of the Sterling wedding party.”
The woman typed on her keyboard, looked
at Maggie, then back down, scanning the screen in front of her. “How many
nights for the reservation?”
“Just one, tonight.”
The woman’s fingers flew over the keys.
“I’m sorry, ma’am. We don’t have any reservations under the name Maggie
“Try Magdalene Reynolds.”
Click, Click, Click. “No. I’m sorry, no reservations for
a Magdalene Reynolds either.”
Yep, this day just got worse. “There must have been a mix-up. Do
you have any rooms available?
“No. I’m sorry, we’re completely
A new voice interrupted. “Oh, Maggie.
I am so sorry! I forgot to tell you. I didn’t book you a room. I wasn’t sure if
you were coming.”
Maggie would recognize that voice
anywhere. She turned, thinking she’d like to wipe the faux smile off B.B.’s
“Really? Because I’m in the wedding
party, and I sent my confirmation months ago. Obviously, the bride knew I was
“Oops. I must have missed your
“I’m sure that was it.” Maggie gave
Barbara Bennett, whom she mentally referred to as Barbie Bitch, the best
saccharine smile she could muster. Since college, Barbie had been holding a
grudge. How was Maggie to know the guy asking her out was Barbie’s boyfriend at
the time? Maggie had only agreed so he’d leave her alone.
With her credit cards maxed, she’d
have to call one of her brothers to bail her out. They’d call and book a room
at a different hotel in a heartbeat, no questions asked.
The panty-droppingly gorgeous man who
helped her earlier appeared at her side. “Sweetheart, you’re here. I apologize
for missing the wedding. For some reason, the hotel didn’t have our
reservation. I managed to get us the presidential suite.” He picked up her
suitcase with one strong arm and wrapped the other around her waist.
What-Happens-in-Vegas-Stays-in-Vegas. Maggie glanced at Barbie and back into the eyes of the
man who held her close. Maggie had excelled at acting in high school. She wouldn’t
have landed the lead in Grease if she couldn’t play a convincing Sandy.
She even prided herself on having a decent singing voice.
Maggie whispered in the man’s ear,
“Mmm, you smell good.” She wasn’t lying; he did smell good, a woodsy pine scent
that reminded her of home. She noticed he lifted his brow in surprise, but he
He kissed her on the temple. And just
like that, the night took a turn for the better.
“Oh, who are you?” Barbie smiled.
“Owen. Maggie’s boyfriend.”
Owen turned his back on Barbie. Swoonworthy.
“How about we get a bite to eat before
we enjoy our room?” he asked Maggie.
Oh boy, this man was smooth. Barbie
stood watching the exchange with her mouth agape.
Maggie wasn’t about to shatter the
ruse. “I’m ready when you are.”