Overtime for Love(8)

By: Synithia Williams



“Angela.” Her low seductive voice broke through his daze.

He blinked. “What?”

“My name is Angela. Not Angel.”

Of course. Angel suited her better, though. Her lips curved into a hesitant smile that snatched his ability to think. To breathe. Talk.

Man, he hated this. Seeing her made him feel like the awkward, tongue-tied teenager he used to be. The quiet kid who didn’t know how to talk to girls. Put a basketball in his hands, get him in front of a crowd of reporters discussing his latest game or business venture, and he knew exactly what to do. Have a pretty woman he liked smile at him and his voice box disconnected from his brain.

She was really here. And now she was frowning. Which meant he was just staring instead of talking.

Isaiah let go of her wrist and took a step back. “What are you doing here?” Props to him for keeping his voice normal. Maturity had at least given him the ability to hide his discomfort better.

“Aunt Angela, you know Isaiah Reynolds?” Cory, the boy Isaiah had quickly noticed during the camp, spoke up. Cory had been quiet, a bit sullen, especially when the girls in the camp were around, but he was great with a basketball. Reminded Isaiah a little of himself. Maybe more than a little.

Isaiah looked at the young boy, then back at Angel… Angela. “This is your aunt?”

Cory nodded. Angela reached for the silver charm on her necklace and played with it. Her slim fingers brushed the smooth caramel skin of her chest exposed by the V-neck opening of her blouse. That night in the bar, the lace edges of a black bra peaked out from the scooped neckline of her tank top. Was she wearing a lace bra today? He was tall enough. All he’d have to do is lean a little toward her and he’d be able to see down that V…

Isaiah took another step back. What the hell? You’re not Cory’s age. No staring down her blouse.

“I am,” Angela said.

An uneasy thought crept into Isaiah’s brain. People went to great lengths just to be close to a professional athlete. He may still occasionally get tongue-tied around a beautiful woman, but he wasn’t stupid.

“Did you—did you sign him up…because of me?”

Her eyes widened for a second. Her hand dropped from the necklace. She slowly turned to Cory. “Can you go wait for me by the car?”

Cory raised an eyebrow. “What for?”

“Because I said so. Now go to the car.”

Cory let out a heavy sigh. “Fine. ’Bye, Mr. Reynolds.” He waved, then shuffled away, mumbling something under his breath.

Angela glared at her nephew’s back. When he was out of earshot, she turned her sharp gaze Isaiah’s way. She stepped to the side of the door of the gym and he followed so they wouldn’t be so out in the open.

“Did you really just accuse me of bringing Cory here because of you?”

The disbelief in her tone sounded sincere. But he’d been in the league for seven years and he’d heard all kinds of “sincerity” from exuberant fans before.

“It’s a fair question.”

“It’s an insulting question.” Anger sparked in her brown eyes. “And a very egotistical one.”

“Egotistical?”

She crossed her arms over her chest. “Why in the world would I stalk you? Much less, use my nephew to do that?”

“I once had a man break his son’s arm so I would come visit him in the hospital. I’ve had people do crazy things to try and get close to me.”

That doused the flames in her eyes. “Seriously? Someone would do something like that to his own son?”

He wished it wasn’t true. For every hundred normal fans there was always one crazy one that took things too far. “Fans can be crazy.”

The tightness of her crossed arms loosened and the tension in her stance relaxed. “Look, the organization I work for has five slots for this camp every year. One of the kids we chose had to back out at the last minute. My boss offered the space to Cory.”

He cocked his head to the side. “Sweethearts?” he asked skeptically.

She shook her head and the corners of her lips rose slightly. “That’s my part-time job. I work full-time in an office that manages court-appointed advocates for kids.”

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