Crushing on Him (Men of Summer 0.50) - Page 4

So the game was my chance to relax and have fun.

I stretched out on my bed, earbuds in, watching the Cougars on my phone. But I could never just watch. I always had to study the game too.

I could never separate being a catcher from being a fan. So I’d stopped trying. I studied the opposing batters, trying to guess the pitches that Rodriguez would call for. The backup catcher for the Cougars was behind the plate in the game since their regular catcher had twisted his ankle. When the Chicago Sharks’ first baseman came to the plate, I muttered, “Slider. Low and away.”

Yep. That was what Rodriguez called for.

“Fastball. High and tight.”


When the Cougars were at the plate, I did the same, analyzing each player’s hitting stance, imagining what I’d call for the pitcher to throw.

When Declan came to the plate in the second, I studied the way he rotated his hips, how he dug his heels in, how he lifted the bat just so. “Fastball.”

He popped it out to third base.

I pumped a fist. “Called it.”

The next time he was at-bat, I bet on a curve. The pitcher served one up and he hit it for a double.

Damn. Wrong call for both of us.

In the seventh, the bases were loaded with Cougars. Declan came to the plate. Adjusted his batting glove. Lifted the bat. Dug in.

If I were the catcher on the Chicago Sharks, what would I call for? How would I do my damnedest to get out of this jam?

The Sharks were ahead by two.

The game was on the line.

I’d seen Declan hit all summer. He had great eyes and patience for days. The man could wait for his pitch forever.

With guys like that, the pitcher had to get ahead in the count.

A four-seam fastball. Make him reach for it.

I was on the edge of the mattress, muttering, Come on, come on.

But the catcher called for a change-up.

And Declan swung, connected, and smacked the daylights out of it. It was going, going, gone.

I cheered, jumping up from the bed.

“Yes! Go Cougs!” I hooted and hollered, like the Cougars fan I was. Not a Declan fanboy.

When the game ended, a local sports reporter found him on the field, flashed a smile, and thrust a microphone in his face. “That was your first grand slam in your Major League career. How does that feel?”

Declan smiled, and my skin went warm. “I’m just happy it puts the Cougars that much closer to playoff contention,” Declan said.

The reporter pressed on. “But personally, what was going through your head when you hit your first grand slam?”

“Honestly? That my goal is to keep playing. To play long enough to keep hitting many more. That’s all I want.” He was so smooth. Such a pro with the media at such a young age. Only twenty-two. Four years older than me.

“And you’re off to an epic start. It’s been a terrific rookie season for you so far.” She rattled off some of his stats, his batting average, his home runs, his runs batted in. An epic start indeed.

It made my dirty mind wonder—what would it be like to see him finish?

Everything about him did it for me.

The way he talked with ease. The way he used his skills on the field. The way he handled himself with grace and confidence.

And the way he looked.

Declan Steele made my pulse surge.

The man was understated, sexy, tall and handsome, and I was crushing on him from afar.



Over the next few years, the crush lived where all good crushes reside—in that warm, hazy part of me. Sometimes when I was alone in my dorm room, I’d let my mind wander to Declan.

He’d joined the rotation of men in my mind. Celebrities like Jonathan Groff or Matt Bomer. Athletes like Robbie Rogers.

Porn stars too. I was quite a voracious consumer of porn, turning to the hottest subscription sites that featured sculpted guys with firm bodies. I liked what I liked.

And there was a whole host of men I could picture myself with.

Men I wanted to experience in the dark, under the sheets.

I’d picture the scorching kisses he’d paint all over my body.

I’d imagine tongues, and mouths, and lips exploring everywhere. Him, me—both of us at the same time.

Bodies coming together.

Him throwing me down on the bed. Taking me. Having me.

Or me doing the same to him.

Anything, everything.

It was all a playground I wanted to experience.

My brain cycled through image after image that brought me over the edge.

During the day, though, I stayed in the zone, doing my best in my history classes and hanging out with friends like Reese, since she now went to the same college as me, and I could see her on the reg.

On weekends when I didn’t have games, we’d go dancing with friends, check out local clubs. I’d flirt with cute guys; they’d flirt back. Sometimes I’d hook up here or there. Nothing serious, nothing that went too far, and no dates.

Tags: Lauren Blakely Men of Summer M-M Romance
Source: Copyright 2016 - 2023