Authors: Wendi Zwaduk
Copyright ©2011 by Wendi Zwaduk
First published in 2011
Ever Fallen in Love
ISBN # 978-0-85715-624-2
(C)Copyright Wendi Zwaduk 2011
Cover Art by Lyn Taylor (C)Copyright August 2011
Edited by Stacey Birkel
This is a work of fiction. All characters, places and events are from the author's imagination and should not be confused with fact. Any resemblance to persons, living or dead, events or places is purely coincidental.
All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced in any material form, whether by printing, photocopying, scanning or otherwise without the written permission of the publisher, Total-E-Bound Publishing.
Applications should be addressed in the first instance, in writing, to Total-E-Bound Publishing. Unauthorised or restricted acts in relation to this publication may result in civil proceedings and/or criminal prosecution.
The author and illustrator have asserted their respective rights under the Copyright Designs and Patents Acts 1988 (as amended) to be identified as the author of this book and illustrator of the artwork.
Published in 2011 by Total-E-Bound Publishing, Think Tank, Ruston Way, Lincoln, LN6 7FL, United Kingdom.
This book contains sexually explicit content which is only suitable for mature readers. This story has a
The author acknowledges the trademarked status and trademark owners of the following wordmarks mentioned in this work of fiction:
Talladega Superspeedway: International Speedway Corporation
Chevrolet Impala: General Motors Corp.
Chevrolet Camaro: General Motors Corp.
Coke: The Coca-Cola Company
Pepsi: PepsiCo, Inc.
Homestead Miami Speedway: International Speedway Corporation
"Just once I'd like to catch a God damned break.” Tucker Poston had pulled into his garage stall and wrenched his race helmet from his head. “Bastard knew I was there and still shoved me into the wall.” He tossed the safety gear out of the window. “This shit has to end. I'm tired of racing crashed cars."
"Just like Cline knew you were there the week before, and yeah, the shit has to end. I'm tired of replacing crashed cars.” Guy Turner tapped on the roof of the car. “Get out, Poston."
Tucker ground his teeth together. Just what he needed...his ass handed to him on a platter. He wriggled out through the window. “Mr Turner, I swear—"
"Spare me the excuses."
Raking his fingers through his hair, Tucker glanced at the midway. Although he heard Guy's rant, the words didn't register above the roar of cars thundering down the backstretch. The tangy scent of race fuel and motor oil permeated the air. A whip of late-October breeze caressed his cheek. He noticed none of it after the flash of chestnut hair caught his eye. He shifted position to keep her in view, using the guise of removing the rest of his safety gear. He had to see this woman again. Make sure it was
"Are you listening to me?” Guy stepped into Tucker's line of sight. “She'd better be cute."
Tucker stared at his car owner. “What?"
"I know you ain't gettin’ any—when you do, you race well. Eighth place doesn't win races. So I am to assume you're checking out a woman.” Guy turned and whistled. “Holy shit."
"What?” Tucker tugged the zipper on his uniform down and flapped air into the suit. October in Virginia wasn't
"You're staring at Megan Rodney."
"Nah,” he lied as he rubbed his eyes and caught a flash of her face in his mind.
Heat stirred low in his belly. Memories of Megan and their past rushed into his brain—the taste of her kiss, the tickle of her hair on his cheek, the low tone of her sigh when they made love.
The moment he told her goodbye.
"I oughta set you up with her. She needs a good lay and you need to get your head out of your ass."
"Sure, sell me for parts.” In Megan's hands, he'd willingly offer whatever parts she wanted. His cock, his mouth, his tongue... Damn. If he didn't get his priorities straight, he'd be caught in the middle of the garage with a hard-on.
"Shit. You ain't got any parts she could use other than someone to direct her team. Women don't need to own race teams.” Guy threw his hands in the air. “Since we're in the garage area, why don't we talk cars? Got any ideas for how we make your speeds better? I'd love to have both my cars finish the race for a change."
Tucker turned his back on Megan's position. The cars. Right. Focus on something other than his cock or his irritation towards Guy Turner. “Maybe we should share equipment like you promised at the beginning of the season. Boyd's team could stand to share their findings once in a while.” He followed behind Guy as he strolled away. “I can make things work if I have the right equipment."
Guy stopped at the second car. “Lower your voice.” He groaned. “You make it sound like I give you shit and expect miracles."
"My rear end gear broke in two straight races. Makes me wonder what you
"You want good stuff? Prove to me you can handle it. Boyd gets better stuff because he's twenty-three and winning. I put the money where the performance is."
"No buts. Step up, improve your attitude, and I'll consider a change. Keep up the DNFs and you're out. Plain and simple."
"I don't set out to crash and I certainly don't like
finishing the damned race."
"You put yourself in a bad position when you don't qualify for shit. Make a change or find a new ride. Got it?"
"Got it.” Tucker sighed. Unless he won the next three races, getting through to Guy wasn't going to happen. He shuffled into the midway, looking the length of the space. The genius who'd had the idea to run the trucks and cars during the same weekend at the same venue needed a raise. Megan stood at the far end of the garage area, one hand on her forehead and the other gesturing at the nearby race truck. Whoever she spoke to—King Valletta, if Tucker wasn't mistaken—seemed to pay no attention to her frustration.
Tucker leaned on the doorframe and studied the picture she made. Dark waves of silky hair tossed around her shoulders. Her hips swelled gently, the kind of hips a man could hold on to during sex. His mouth watered. Did she still smell like flowers?
He stepped into the shadows as she hurried past his position. Despite the acrid scent of tyre smoke and gasoline in the air, he could've sworn he smelt the unique aura of her. Ten feet past where he stood, she stopped. His heart skipped a beat. Would she look at him? Though, why would she want to look at him? Bits and pieces of their argument ten years earlier came back to him.
"I'm going to be big time. I need someone who's willing to stand next to me and smile, not a woman who wants the spotlight for herself."
His stomach soured. He'd been a jerk. Since he'd walked away from Megan, every woman had proved the exact opposite of his expectations. Mitzy DeAngelo used him to leapfrog to another driver. Angelique worked out a recurring role on a reality show just before dumping him. Even his former publicist, Julia, fucked him over. The moment she got the chance to represent Boyd, she stopped returning Tucker's calls.
Tucker rubbed his chin. There had to be a way to regain Megan's attention—an honest way. He chuckled. Eric Trask worked for Megan on the truck circuit. Trucks happened to be racing later that afternoon. Squeezing the bill of his hat, Tucker grinned. Not the most plausible reason for going to the Blitz hauler, but he hadn't talked to his former friend in over a year.
Might be time to visit Eric after all.
Megan Rodney pinched the bridge of her nose and closed her eyes. Maybe watching the race from the comfort of the motor coach would help ease the tension headache building in her temples. The double-wide racing at Talladega always gave the fans a great experience, but, with Mathew Easton behind the wheel, great was the last word Megan would use to describe the racing.
"The wall is there to keep the spectators safe and the trucks on the track. Stop decorating it with Blitz paint,” King Valetta barked across the radio. “Find the damned draught and use it."
She opened her eyes and adjusted the mouthpiece. “King, you need to encourage him. He's trying."
"I can't encourage someone who isn't listening,” the crew chief snapped. “Get me someone I can communicate with and this shit won't happen."
"Watch your tone with me. The powers that be are still listening.” Fisting her hand, Megan glared in the general direction of the pit box. The boys behind the wall couldn't see her expression, but venting her frustration in a non-verbal fashion helped—a little. All she needed was a team fine for swearing over the radio. The last verbal obscenity fine had cost her a cool ten grand.
"My right rear's going. I've got a vibration,” Mat screamed. “I need to come in."
"You need to stay off the God damned wall.” King growled, the sound vibrating Megan's headset. “The yellow's out. Debris in turn two. Come in when the pits open."
Megan turned the sound down on the radio. Something had to be done. Mathew had skills behind the wheel, but King's barrage of insults wasn't helping him learn. She toyed with the white gold pendant draped about her throat. Options... Who on the team could fill in? Talk some sense into Mat and King? Eric? The idea held possibilities. Bob? He wasn't at the track if she recalled correctly. Damn.
Her gaze wandered over the pit area. Tucker Poston was ambling in her general direction. She snorted. If Tucker was still in the picture, he'd have everyone sorted out. Heck, he'd have them shaking hands and trading laughs after the race win. But he raced for MPR and he wasn't available.
So why not take a page from Tucker's playbook?
"We can't win if we aren't working together.” Megan slid her phone from her back pocket and pounded out a text to her car chief.
Get on the mic and calm Mat or convince King to step down. Something's gotta give.
"Come on, Eric,” she muttered. “Work with me.” Within moments, the reply text pinged and lit up her screen.
I'll be up.
She readjusted the sound on her headset while she focused her attention on the pit area. No sign of King or Eric. Damn. She tapped her foot and continued rubbing the pendant. Not that the trinket held much more than emotional value, but the action soothed her nerves. “Come on, guys."