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Pucked Up (Pucked #2)
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Miller “Buck” Butterson has been banging his way through life ever since a puck to the face fixed his messed up front teeth, and he was drafted into the NHL during his first year of college. After five years of deflecting goals on the ice and scoring them with puck bunnies across the Continental US and parts of Canada, Miller is ready for a girlfriend. A real girlfriend of the non-bunny variety. One he takes on dates and doesn’t jump into bed with after five seconds of conversation.
Miller thinks he’s found that woman in his teammate’s sister. Except, unlike Alex Waters, center, team captain and all round nice guy—who happens to be dating his step-sister—Miller’s manwhore reputation is well earned, and not blown out of proportion by the media. Beyond that minor detail, Miller doesn’t know the first thing about having a girlfriend. But he’s determined to make it happen.
What he doesn’t take into account is the amount of time and effort relationships require, or that constantly letting bunnies take selfies with him to post all over social media isn’t going to win him any points in the boyfriend department. Miller learns—not so quickly—that if he wants to make Sunshine “Sunny” Waters fall for him, he going to have to do a whole lot more than show her his stick skills in the bedroom.
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WASTED IS AS WASTED DOES
I’m super wasted. Like, messed up to the point that Lance, my teammate, has two sets of eyes.
“I’mma go home.” In my head those are the words I’m speaking, but in reality I think it comes out more like a groan. I take an unstable step toward the line of waiting cabs outside the bar.
Lance puts a hand on my shoulder, his grin sloppy. He’s almost as drunk as me. “Your car’s at my place, Butterson. Come back with us.”
“I can get it in the morning.” My words run together, but he seems to understand.
“Just get in the limo, man.” Lance looks to Randy, another teammate and one of my closest childhood friends, for backup.
“The trainer’ll be at Lance’s at ten-thirty, remember?” Randy says. “You can roll out of bed and right into the pool.”
“Then I don’t have to call you fifty times to get your ass up,” Lance adds.
“Come back with us, Buck!”
One of Lance’s puck bunnies uses the nickname I’ve answered to since I was a kid. My real name is Miller. I wasn’t named after beer. Plus Buck Butterson has a nicer ring than Miller Butterson—too many “ers” in it.
The three girls Lance has convinced to come back to his place are fixing each other’s hair and messing with each other’s makeup while I debate making bad choices.
Lance smiles—all horny bastard—and pats me on the back. “Come on, man, you’re gonna be away for a couple weeks. Last chance to party it up.”
I mumble something even I can’t understand and lean on the limo so I don’t have to hold my own weight. The shooters were a bad idea. There were too many. I might have paid for them.
I wait while the girls get in the limo. As drunk as I am, I still have a few manners left. The last one bends over, and her micro-mini rides up, giving me a full shot of naked beaver before she sits down. I’m definitely not getting in beside her.
Lance elbows me in the arm. “Get in, Buck.”
“You first. They’re your bunnies.”
Going back to Lance’s is not a good plan, but I’ve already said I would, and he has a point about my car being at his place.
He shrugs and holds on to the door frame, sticking his head inside. “Whose lap am I sitting on?” He throws himself into the limo.
The girls squeal, and laughter follows.
I put a hand on Randy’s chest to stop him before he gets in, too. “Don’t let me do anything stupid, ’kay, man?”
“Don’t worry, Miller. I’ll take on two if I have to.” He winks, but he’s serious.
Randy’s one of the few people who uses my real name, aside from my dad when he’s pissed. Growing up in Chicago, he lived down the street from me. We’ve played hockey together since we both learned how to skate. When we were drafted to the NHL in our first semester of college, we ended up on different teams. Five years later, we’re back on the same team again, Randy having been traded to Chicago after the season ended. Being off season, it took him all of two weeks to move back. It’s good to have him here. We’ve stayed tight over the years; if anyone is going to help keep me from fucking shit up, it’s him.
Randy gets into the limo and sits between two of the girls. This leaves the bench seat wide open for me. I slide in and stretch out, taking up the entire thing.
Lance already has his arm around Flash Beaver, and her friend in the middle seems like she’s not sure what to do. When she makes a move to sit with me, Lance hugs her to his side and whispers something in her ear. Her eyes widen, and she bites her lip, but she stays where she is.
Going home in a cab by myself would’ve been the smarter move. Then I wouldn’t be facing unnecessary temptation. Sometimes it’s hard as fuck to make the right choices, like removing myself from a situation in which bunnies will inevitably offer up pussy that I’ll have to turn down.
It’s not that I can’t go without. I’ve just been choosing the alternative for the past five years. And quitting cold turkey has been way more difficult than I ever expected. Lance and Flash Beaver have turned toward the corner of the limo now. I’m pretty sure he’s got his hand up her skirt already, judging by the giggle followed by a moan. I close my eyes and lean against the armrest. I’m tired. And hungry. I need pizza.
I root around in my pocket for my phone. I have messages: a couple of texts and a voice mail from my sister, Violet, and a few more from my girlfriend, Sunny. Well, she’s kinda my girlfriend. I want her to be my girlfriend. Sunny’s the reason Randy—or maybe Lance—is taking one for the team, and I’m sitting over here by myself.