“Bryce Matthews doesn’t do the whole nice boyfriend thing. Chocolates and flowers—girls can forget all that. And he certainly doesn’t care about the gossip and rumors that follow him at school and around town. If anything, the talk amuses him. Bryce isn’t lacking in confidence. He knows himself and he knows his limits. One of those hard limits is Madison Issac. Bryce can never have her, and he’s perfectly fine with that. Sometimes the fantasy is better than the reality anyway.
Madison Issac thought she was a pretty good judge of character. But she’s surprised at how gentle and comforting resident bad-boy and next-door neighbor Bryce Matthews is when we finds her crying in the park.
Maybe there’s more to Bryce than people think? So Madison begins to wonder. Can a guy like Bryce ever change his ways? Can a girl like Madison really be into a guy like Bryce?
With hearts and reputations on the line, this kind of love can be scandalous.”
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Expand Chapter One
I repeatedly hit the X button on my PS4 controller. “Die, bitch!”
Graham is no help whatsoever. He keeps taking out the wrong people, and I know he’s doing it on purpose. “Seriously, man! What are you doing?” I yell at him.
He pushes pause. “Dude, are you ready to go get Maddy and get this shit done today?”
Inwardly, I groan. He knows how I feel about Madison Issac, my next-door neighbor from hell. As kids, I knew she was too good for me—a dark-haired princess a frog like me could never touch. Not that I wanted to. I learned real quick what girls like her did, thought, and acted. They’re nightmares. And Madison is probably the worst kind. She’s a priss with a decent face and killer brains but a world-class bitch. I swear she was born with a stick wedged so far up her ass it probably sprouted branches. “Man, she’s a freaking buzzkill.” I go to unpause the game, but Graham glares at me.
He’s my homeboy. We’ve been best friends since fifth grade, but sometimes he’s clueless as all hell. I know he only hangs out with Madison because he uses her to ace his classes. And, okay, I kinda use her too, because I copy off Graham. But that’s beside the point. Getting good grades shouldn’t require hanging out with her all the freaking time.
The only reason she and I even sort of tolerate each other is because of Graham.
“No, she’s not. She’s just Madison.”
I raise a brow. “Are you trying to tell me you secretly have a spank bank for the girl now?”
Graham frowns and punches me in the shoulder. “Dude, no! She’s just a friend.”
I shut down the game and nod. “Yeah. You trying for friends with benefits?”
He glowers. “That’s not cool. You know I look at her as a sister, fucker!”
“Don’t get pissed at me. I mean, don’t get me wrong. If she wasn’t such a raging bitch all the time, I’d probably try to hit that.”
Graham looks as if he’s about to punch me in the face. “I hate you. Why can’t you two just get over whatever shit is between you? Seriously, it’s senior year. I don’t want to referee every fight you guys have this year.”
“Calm down. I’m not even going to give Smalls any shit this year. But for real, if she starts those jokes about jailbait and then points to me again, I might strangle her.”
I haven’t dated anyone underage and gotten in trouble for it. I was tossed in juvie a few months back for tagging a building. Okay, not really me. I was with some people who tagged a building. When the cops showed up, some of us got caught. I smoke, so my lungs aren’t exactly in tip-top shape for running distance. I know it’s disgusting, and I should quit, serves me right, yadda yadda. I took the rap and got thrown in with the delinquents. Two weeks and some probation. I can’t mess up for a whole year, or I’ll go to the slammer for defacing property. Well, during the last week of school, I’m standing there talking up my next conquest, and Madison walks by me and says to her friend Emily, “Isn’t that cute? She’s taking the jailbird’s bait. If you two hook up, I’m calling you Jailbait.” Then she laughed like she was the funniest person ever.
I glare out my window at her house. Graham sighs. “Oh, come on. That was kind of funny. You know she’s just getting back at you for the wet T-shirt bullshit you pulled on her at Greg’s party.”
Okay, in all fairness, that was a dick move on my part. But I’m an asshole. Everyone who knows me knows this, especially Madison. I’m not going to apologize for being me. She was wearing a white T-shirt, and I happened to stumble upon some water balloons. So, I may have run up to Greg’s balcony with a bowl of filled balloons and waited for Madison to come into view. Then I launched them in a way that got her T-shirt soaked, revealing the parts she always keeps hidden. Literally, the girl goes swimming in dark shirts.
I’m a guy. We like boobs and ass. Sorry, ladies, if this offends. Some of us aren’t as open about it. Those of us who are are pigs. We know this. We just don’t care.
Anyway, Madison’s sharp green eyes found me through the laughing crowd, and she made the slit-your-throat sign at me. Pissed off, raging mad, and blushing red, Madison is actually really hot. That’s probably why I love tormenting her so much. Plus, it amuses me.
Graham punches me in my shoulder again. “Dude. Come on. We’re heading to Maddy’s, and then we’re getting this stupid list done so my mom can stop riding my ass about being lazy.”
“Um … You are lazy.”
I shrug and make my way to the door. “You are, man. Admit it—you’re only friends with Madison for the homework perks.” Because beyond that, I don’t see any other reason he’d be friends with her. The girl doesn’t drink. She doesn’t smoke. She hardly goes to parties. But Graham is a stoner, parties, and drinks a lot.
He shakes his head. “It’s called smart tactics. Besides, she doesn’t mind. If she did, she’d have said something.”
We walk up to her porch, and I dread every freaking minute of it. Graham knocks, and we wait.
Giveaway Ends March 4th
One (1) winner will receive a $10 Amazon gift card and a digital copy of Bryce by Natalie Decker (INT)