Cocky Hero Club Mister Know-It-All
A romantic comedy set in the world of Vi Keeland and Penelope Ward’s Stuck Up Suit
What’s a girl to do when she discovers that her boss/boyfriend (I don’t need a lecture,
thank you very much!) is a cheating windbag?
Dump him and quit her job, of course.
After that, it was supposed to be the Summer of Me—a totally self-indulgent few
Except that I met a drop-dead gorgeous Viking with a bossy attitude.
We clashed on his arrogance and crassness, but geek bonded over Star Wars and Star
He offered himself as a no-strings-attached candidate for my get-my-groove-back sex
plan, and I left because he already had a girlfriend, even if they were on a break.
But I couldn’t stop thinking about him.
I really, really needed to find someone less complicated, but he infiltrated my thoughts.
He was hot, after all (And his towel might have slipped on purpose.) Seriously hot.
No matter how many times I decided not to pursue anything with him, he kept showing a softer side of himself.
But we couldn’t keep going like that, neither here nor there.
Some decisions had to be made.
One that could change everything.
If someone had told me how my Summer of Me would end? I’d never have believed them. But I regret nothing
“Cute, Steamy and a real geeky treat, Mister Know It All was an absolute joy to read.
With well rounded, wonderfully written characters, all the emotional feels and a treasure trove of funny geek references that had me both impressed and in stitches, this book completely captivated me, making it hard to put down (who needs sleep anyway). I'm in awe - this might have been my first Amélie Duncan book, but it definitely won't be my last.” Goodreads Review
Excerpt from CHC MISTER KNOW-IT-ALL
Ford: I’m here. Just come over to the row of chairs, and I’ll help you get your luggage.
I scanned the crowd for him but only saw families, airport personnel, and a guy who had me doing a quadruple take. Hot damn!
He was a Viking-looking designer-suited guy who looked like a model with neatly coiffured pale-blond hair. His facial features were heady in their impact: high, chiseled cheekbones, firm jaw, and wide, full lips. He was gorgeous and polished, from his crisp blue shirt tucked neatly into his perfectly pressed slacks down to his black leather shoes, though unprepared for the chilly weather here. Where’s his coat?
And why was I already thinking of ways to fuss over him?
I hate men, I reminded myself. Correction, I hated helpless men like Randall.
However, I glanced over at Mr. Viking Hot Stuff again. He brooded as he stood there, posing, and perusing the crowd, obviously not pleased with whoever had him waiting. Or was this part of some photo op? Not sure. But then his laser focus spun on me, and he squinted.
My lips pursed. If you don’t want to be checked out, stop posing, poser.
The luggage alert horn sounded, notifying travelers their bags had arrived, and I went to join the other passengers in hauling the bag from the carousel. I saw my carpetbag with the Captain Picard nametag coming around my path. I pushed back my sleeves, poised to retrieve it, only to watch an enormous hand lift it effortlessly off the turnstile.
I whipped my head around to see who I could yell at, and it was none other than the brooding Viking. He pulled the handle up and rolled it behind him and over to where I stood, stopping close enough to tower over me. Lashes darker than his hair surrounded his cobalt eyes. They stared with weight and mystery that had me looking away first, something I never do with a man. It was a war of wills and a tool to intimidate.
I squared my shoulders and turned back to him with my lips pressed together firmly. Stay strong.
“You’re Jasmine,” he said, a statement rather than a question.
“You’re Ford,” I parroted back. Of course, that had to be him. “How did you know I’m Jasmine?”
He picked up the Picard tag on my luggage. “Soraya sent a photo too. You were supposed to text me when you arrived. I saw you check your phone, but you didn’t text me back.”
My cheeks heated. “You were watching me?”
“Yes, I was. I figured you were going to try to give me the slip after I came to pick you up. But let me tell you now, you will see me while you’re here. I won’t avoid coming around, even if you choose to be awkward.”
My mouth dropped open. “I’m not… I may have considered leaving, more so because I can take care of myself.” I may be only twenty-two, but it felt like I’d been looking after myself for more than the five years since I left high school.
He smirked. “Somerville, Massachusetts, isn’t New York City. Look at you. You haven’t even closed your purse, and your phone is hanging out of your jacket.”
I lowered my brows and snapped my bag back in place with my phone inside. “I’m just off the plane. No one would do anything here at the airport.”
“Wrong answer. New York may have gone Disney family-friendly, but it’ll still swallow geeky little college girls who think they know everything.”
I stretched to my full five-foot-four height and placed my hands on my hips. “I’m not some fragile little thing, and I don’t appreciate being reduced to as much, thank you.”
“My friend Blair thought like you, and I went against my better judgment by letting her handle things on her own in a place she didn’t know. I’ll skip to the end, where she’s on her third surgery to reconstruct her face. So, I’ll keep things real with you. I’m not dropping you off anywhere. You’re not doing anything unescorted as long as I’ve agreed to watch over you, so you might as well make peace with that.”
Viking or Neanderthal? And just how was he planning to make me come with him? Throw me over his shoulder?
“I may be small, but I’ve taken Krav Maga at the gym for two full years. I bet I could take you down.”
“I’d like to see you try. Ju-Jitsu and judo fifteen years.” Ford upped me with his fighting skills, and I was over him quick. But then he cracked a smile, and his face softened into exquisiteness. I mean, whoa. Hello, lust . . . but ick to his attitude. I thought Soraya surrounded herself with chill people. It made me wonder just what made her go for a stuck-up suit. Didn’t Soraya say he was a relative of Graham’s?
I peered at him. “I didn’t see you at their wedding.” He had a face I would have noticed and wouldn’t have forgotten.
“I couldn’t go.” He cleared his throat and looked away.
A man walked up to us, and he handed him my bag.
“Hey! Who was that? Is he driving?” I asked.
“No, he’s helping with the luggage,” Ford said. “I’m driving.”
“Oh,” I said, which was all I could think to answer.
Ford placed his hand on my back, and I didn’t remove it. The press of his warm hand sent a curious zinging sensation down my spine. Apparently, Ford didn’t need to carry me away. I actually let him take me like someone hypnotized to fall in line. I noticed the attention he received as he guided us outside the building and over to a shiny black Mercedes SUV parked out front. I mean, who wouldn’t admire him? I did . . . until he opened his mouth.
“I didn’t think they allowed you to park here,” I said to him.
Without asking and with fluidity, he removed my backpack, handed over my luggage, and paid the man who helped us. “They don’t, but it worked out today.”
The guy wasn’t above illegal parking. Hmm.
The stairs to the vehicle's passenger side were slightly obstructed by a cart return, and I hesitated because my stylish boots had a slippery sole. Ford took it upon himself to lift me by my hips into the seat with ease. I didn’t know why I held my breath, but I waited until he shut the door before releasing it. Jesus, what was with the manhandling? And why did I quietly like that?
I sank into the plush leather seats. Not bad. Ford’s car definitely beat my car that was full of books and empty latte containers.
“You want to rest after your flight?” he asked.
“It wasn’t long, but I want to take off my boots,” I said, wiggling my toes in the cramped space. Shopping for new shoes was now added to my plans for the visit. Along with a fling?
I hadn’t completely dismissed the idea. As Tam said, I was young and single. Randall took a year and eight months, not all of my twenties. Maybe I should go for a one-night stand to start?
I glanced over at Ford, who was focused on the road. I’d been taken aback by how gorgeous he was. I wasn’t usually attracted to pale-blond, blue-eyed men. They reminded me too much of the jocks in high school. The ones who made fun of me for blooming early and not losing my panties over sports. Ford seemed more sophisticated and refined. Was that what happened to the jocks when they got older? Did they grow hotter and suit up?
“Is my driving more interesting than the city?” he asked with amusement in his tone.
My head bobbed toward the window to look at the cars speeding along the highway.
“I’m not staring at you. I was thinking in your direction.” I cringed at my lame excuse for staring at him. Then I fiddled with the channels and turned on his stereo. A cheesy love song came on, and we both laughed.
“My . . . friend chose the music,” he mumbled before switching on talk radio.
“My ex claimed he loved classical, but whenever I was in his car, the Dave Matthews Band came on.”
Randall was a fraud, even when it came to his own taste in music, which I tolerated. The more I thought about his betrayal, the angrier I got. I made myself completely available to that man. I listened to him, supported his work, and helped him achieve his goals. Did he even care about me, or was he always after sex and a built-in servant? I know I dodged a bullet, but the sting lingered. Stop thinking about him. You’re moving forward.
A lump lodged in my throat.
“Are you all right?” he asked.
“Um . . . yeah. I feel bad that I’m putting you out. Sorry you had to come and collect a complete stranger.”
“I know Graham, and I’ve known Soraya for a while. They vouched for you, or should I be worried?”
“No, but I mean, you’re working, right?” I fiddled with the button on my jacket to avoid seeing my hands tremble like a starstruck teen.
“From the heaviness of your suitcase, you are too. Studies?” Ford asked.
“I’m actually finished for the semester. Just working on an extra research paper and maybe getting a head start on my courses for next semester. You mentioned you’re in business?”
“I’m an associate art director of software engineering at Morgan Financial Holdings.”
“Oh . . . yes,” I said. His title was quite the mouthful.
“You can adjust the seats, and they have a built-in massage.” He switched it on, and I purred.
He laughed, and I couldn’t help but look over at him and that sensational smile. It made him look warmer, happy. Sexy. Tam would definitely think Ford was fling-worthy. But then he asked in a snobbish tone, “Is that patchouli oil I smell?”
“Yes. It is.”
“I didn’t realize patchouli made a comeback.” I could hear the humor in his tone, but my snooty meter went off.
“I love it. A lot of people do.”
“It was only a passing observation. You like it. That’s all that matters.”
I narrowed my eyes at him. “So, after ten minutes of knowing me, you tell me I smell, and it’s cool that I don’t care that I do?”
“That’s not what I meant. Patchouli oil is popular in Sommerville. We’ll leave it at that. How about we just listen to music?”
He switched to a rock station and increased the volume, which was fine by me. I didn’t want to talk to an opinionated, arrogant jerk, no matter how good-looking he was.
Ford Lingren was definitely off the fling-worthy list.