Exclusive Excerpt: Next to You by Daisy Prescott

next to you

Next to You by Daisy Prescott is out today! It’s a standalone romantic comedy about a rugby player and an heiress in Aspen and I’m so excited to share with you a never-before-seen excerpt to whet your appetite!

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Synopsis

“If you want to date me, all you need to do is say the word. I’d never let you go.”

I added Sage to my rugby club’s annual list of women who are off limits thinking I could protect her from the gorillas I play with. Aspen’s a small town in the off season when the dating pool shrinks to the size of a melted snowflake. Never did I think I’d be the one to break the code and date her.

Even if it’s all for show. A wager between friends. An excuse to hang out with her more.

Nothing more than that.

Right?

***

Who agrees to date their best friend over a green smoothie? Apparently this girl right here.

Now the man-bun-sporting South African rugby god next door is my fake boyfriend. I need to rebuild my confidence after some poor dating decisions. Who could be better to fluff my ego than Aspen’s hottest bachelor?

This situation is a win-win.

Right?

Excerpt

Now tell me about this soft core porno you’ve been watching while I’ve innocently napped like a babe beside you.”

It’s not porn! You really must think I’m a pervert with all of your porn references tonight.”

When I opened my eyes, there were naked people on screen having sex. I might have missed the beginning, but as far as I could see, none of the important bits were shown. Therefore, not full on porn, but soft core. Like on French television.”

It’s a drama about time travel and eighteenth century Scotland.”

Ah.”

What?”

Gotcha. It’s intellectual. My apologies.” He puts a big chunk of meat into his mouth and chews while watching me.

You might enjoy it. Lots of naked breasts. Plus all the guy stuff.”

Aren’t naked breasts guy stuff?”

You know what I mean. Wars, fights, swords, espionage, and naked breasts.”

It sounds like James Bond in kilts.”

Better.”

Maybe I should watch from the beginning.”

I nod. “We can start tonight if you’re awake enough for it.”

He fiddles with the remote and brings up the on demand feature. “Ready?”

I fluff his two lonely throw pillows and make myself comfortable on the other end of the sofa. “Do you need anything?”

I’m good.”

I’ve read all the books and seen the show repeatedly. I’m a little obsessed and can probably recite chunks of dialogue verbatim at this point.

Stan tosses half of the throw blanket over my legs. 

I can feel his body warmth a few feet away. “This is better than Netflix and Chill.”

We should have our own tagline. Stew and Stare? Soup and Kilts?”

Those are both terrible.” I laugh at the idea of stew being part of a casual hookup.

Demand and slurp?” He winks.

Gross! Sounds like a bad date asking for a blow job.”

His easy smile fades. “Has that happened to you before? A date demanding oral sex?”

I give him a sidelong glance, my mouth hanging open in disbelief. “Um, all guys?”

His head jerks back. “All guys do not do that. I’ve never done that.”

Probably because you don’t have to. Women willingly and speedily offer to pleasure you all the time. Which is fine. I’m not judging your opportunities.” I so am. “But in the real world where the rest of us live, most women don’t drop to their knees and open their mouths with one look. Those women are often being paid for their enthusiasm.”

I’ve never asked, forced, or paid a woman to do anything she’s not keen to do. Ever.” His brows are lowered in a serious expression. I swear his eyes are a darker shade of pale, too. “Perhaps you’ve always dated terrible men.”

Neither of us say Logan’s name again.

No need to repeat the conversation.

It’s different for us regular people.”

Define regular?” 

I sweep my hand down my body. “Normal.”

He leans over and tugs a strand of my hair. “There is nothing regular or normal about you, my pink-haired flower.”

My hair’s not the only thing pink now. My cheeks flush from his words or his proximity. Maybe both.

I point at the TV. “Focus on the wonder of Outlander, Mr. Sweet Talker.”

I wonder how I’d look in a kilt.”

I’m never going to survive with an image of him wearing a kilt, and only a kilt, in my head. 

Terrible. Obviously, you have weak ankles.”

You’ve found my one weakness.” 

I take solace in your imperfections. Now pay attention. This part’s important.”

He’s snoring again by the middle of the second episode. I finish and quietly clean up without waking him before going home.

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