The Matchmaker’s Playbook
Rachel Van Dyken
(Wingmen Inc. #1)
Published by: Skyscape
Publication date: April 5th 2016
Genres: Contemporary, New Adult, Romance
Wingman rule number one: don’t fall for a client.
After a career-ending accident, former NFL recruit Ian Hunter is back on campus—and he’s ready to get his new game on. As one of the masterminds behind Wingmen, Inc., a successful and secretive word-of-mouth dating service, he’s putting his extensive skills with women to work for the lovelorn. But when Blake Olson requests the services of Wingmen, Inc., Ian may have landed his most hopeless client yet.
From her frumpy athletic gear to her unfortunate choice of footwear, Blake is going to need a miracle if she wants to land her crush. At least with a professional matchmaker by her side she has a fighting chance. Ian knows that his advice and a makeover can turn Blake into another successful match. But as Blake begins the transformation from hot mess to smokin’ hot, Ian realizes he’s in danger of breaking his cardinal rule…
Read Chapter 1:
The tea? Cinnamon.
The coffee shop? Secluded. Dark. Inviting. The girl? Late.
And not just fashionably late, but the type of late that had me thinking she was going to be a no-show, which was common for a first meeting. At least 15 percent of our clients were no-shows. It was nerves. And fear that our system wouldn’t work for them and they’d be in worse shape than before.
The wood chair creaked as I leaned back and examined the small shop. A year ago people would have asked for my autograph. Then again, a year ago I had just been drafted by the Seattle Seahawks.
I rubbed my knee self-consciously as the aching pain returned, causing a raw edge of irritation to burn through my chest.
I checked my watch again, biting my cheek in annoyance. Twenty-three minutes late.
With a sigh, I reached for my tea one last time, drawing out the sip as I peered over the cup. Two more minutes and I was leaving.
The glass door shot open, the bell nearly clanging to the floor as it slammed against a nearby chair. A small mousy girl with plain brown hair stumbled through; her pale skin turned crimson as she touched her cheeks and nervously glanced around the room.
Most would give her a passing glance. But I wasn’t most.
I stared. Hard.
When her fidgety eyes finally settled on me, she blushed even deeper. It wasn’t unattractive, just very telling.
I pushed my chair back and stood. I had a feeling she wanted to run.
They were always nervous. Which was expected. Besides, I knew what I looked like. I wasn’t being vain, just drawing a logical mathematical conclusion after adding how many times I’d gotten laid to how many times I’d been asked if I was an underwear model.
Caramel-blond hair that somehow managed to look wavy and thick all the damn time? Check.
One dimple on the right side of my cheek? Check. Sexy crooked smile? Check.
Rugged badass-looking scar near my chin? Check. Smoldering hazel eyes? Check.
And don’t even get me started on penis size. Really, it just gets better the farther south your eyes go—trust me.
She took a faulty step backward, colliding with the magazine rack.
Several copies of the Seattle Weekly went flying across the floor.
With a flutter of busyness, she bent down. Her jeans ripped at the knees.
Yeah, I was going to have to rescue her. She was already a danger to herself.
With a patient sigh, I slowly walked from my seat and approached her. Lowering to her level, I peered over at the newspapers, calmly collected every last one, and stood.
She was frozen.It happened. Often. And unfortunately, it was a huge time-waster.
Because my business? It was flourishing, and time was my currency.
She was late.
Meaning she was wasting not just my time, but my money. Typically, I met my clients elsewhere, but I was short on time and wanted to see her in action. I was having some serious second thoughts as she grabbed one of the paper napkins and proceeded to blow her nose before stuffing the napkin in her front pocket.
“Stand,” I instructed, trying to keep the scowl from my face.
She gaped up at me, her mouth ajar, her eyes widening as her skin went from pink to white, all within a few seconds.
“Or,” I whispered, pinning her like a bug with my stare, “you can sit. But I highly doubt that’s the way to get on the good side of that barista you’ve been trying not to check out ever since you walked in that door.”