Authors: Layla Wolfe
Tags: #romance, #Fiction
A Stepbrother Cowboy Romance
Copyright © 2015 Layla Wolfe
ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
Cover art by Red Poppy Designs
Edited by Claudia Morfit
All characters and events in this book are fictitious. Any resemblance to actual persons living or dead is strictly coincidental.
Regarding E-book Piracy
This book is copyrighted intellectual property. No other individual or group has resale rights, auction rights, membership rights, sharing rights, or any kind of rights to sell or to give away a copy of this book.
To Nikki Holmes. For your in-depth look at how to build my own bucking chute.
I met him on the shittiest day of my life.
And being arrested for prostitution wasn’t the worst part.
Legend had it my new stepbrother was called Dynomite because, well, he spewed like a raging volcano.
That only made me hate him more, thinking about his damned volcano. I loathed him and his arrogant vanity, his smug self-assurance. Dyno Drummond had no reason for vanity as far as I could tell. He was just an outlaw, a horse that couldn’t be tamed, a down and dirty vaquero who dreamed of being a rodeo star.
He busted his way into my life, my house, fucking everything that walked. Not me. I was Miss Squarepants, Head Bitch, holier-than-thou cheerleader who couldn’t be touched. Dyno called me a Force-Me Queen. If only I knew what that meant.
My football playing boyfriend was a brainless goon. My BFF coveted and loathed Dyno just as I did. Dyno’s only friend was the alcoholic Native American, Sequoia, the kid on the fast track to nowhere.
Seven years ago, the shit hit the fan. Dyno left, did a few tours as a SEAL, and came back different—decorated, mature. He thinks he’s tough enough to rejoin the circuit and become a bareback bronc champ again. He thinks he can break me, too. Well, he’s got another thing coming.
I don’t break easily.
Go to my room.
A Stepbrother Cowboy Romance
t was the
shittiest day of my life. And being arrested for prostitution wasn’t the worst part.
The worst part was meeting Mr. Dynomite.
I mean, what a dumb fucking nickname! He probably christened himself. At the very least, couldn’t he have spelled it the normal way, ‘dynamite’? Mr. Dynamite wouldn’t be half as asinine. Okay, it would still be moronic. And why did he run around trying to show
girl exactly why he was called that?
But I digress. I didn’t get to be the deputy in my high school cheer squad for being a fucking moron, but I didn’t understand why the cops were handcuffing me at first. I was wearing low-slung cutoff jeans with a giant pewter buckle with my red-and-white checked shirt tied around my midriff, between my boobs in their push-up bra. Also, I was standing with a group of other young women dressed identically in front of the Astro Bowling Alley.
And I was wearing rhinestone-encrusted cowgirl boots.
Couldn’t the cop see I was an aspiring buckle bunny following the CCPRA circuit? My buckle announced it from ten miles away! Every bronc rider in Last Chance aspired to The California Cowboys Pro Rodeo Association, and my boyfriend Lawson entered some of the rough stock events. Too bad we weren’t with Lawson, any boys, or any team ropers at the moment, and I was bending in the window of a passing sedan giving an old guy some directions. Maybe my boobs were sticking in the geezer’s face, I don’t know. Maybe he was an undercover cop, and a pretty good one at that. But when the real cop car pulled over with its cherry flashing, the geez peeled off.
The cop shined his flashlight in our faces. We automatically put our arms up to cover our eyes, maybe making us look more suspicious. “Are any of you girls over eighteen?”
My best friend Olivia stepped forward, bold as ever. “I am, officer. We’re about to graduate high school. Are we doing something wrong?”
“Underage drinking, for one,” said the cop, pointing his Taser at my beer can.
I stuck out my lower lip. That was the beginning of my legal troubles that night. I had always been the rebellious one. Even though I was deputy of our cheer squad, I was still the black sheep. I was the only one who smoked cigs, who had tried any drug harder than recreational Ecstasy. Although I was from a rich ranching family, I stole things sometimes just because I could. A rich family doesn’t equate to a good home life, and after my mother died of cancer six months before, I had just gone downhill, filled with angst, self-cutting, and self-loathing. Now I proved this to my squad mates by sassing the cop.
“Everyone drinks in Last Chance,” I claimed. “We’re always out here on Manilow Avenue drinking.”
,” said Olivia under her breath. A few of the other girls took several steps back, leaving me basically alone with the cop on the sidewalk.
I hate pigs anyway, and this cop looked just like one as he glared impudently at me, waddling forward. He waggled his Taser, as if to warn me of the consequences if I should move. “Who bought the beer for you? You
aware you have to be twenty-one in California in order to purchase beer.”
I wasn’t about to admit Lawson had purchased the beer with his fake ID before leaving to score some weed. I just waved my Coors around. “I don’t need to divulge anything to you, officer. It’s my Fifth Amendment right to not self-incriminate.”
Olivia bravely stepped back up. “She doesn’t mean that, officer. We just found the beer sitting here, some bum must have left it—”
But the officer whipped cuffs off his duty belt as his partner got out of the squad car. “So you admit you bought the beer yourself,” he said, “in addition to solicitation out here on Manilow Avenue. You just made my job a lot easier.”
Several of my friends gasped loudly, but that was the extent of their protest. I swear to fucking God! Sometimes friends are worthless. Cops were manhandling me just because I was enjoying a beer and being a Good Samaritan by giving some old guy directions! It didn’t take long for me to utilize my dad’s name.
In the back of the squad car I struggled fruitlessly against my cuffs. I knew that throwing a fit would be futile and probably even land me in more hot water. But I had to stand up for myself against this wrongful arrest. Being convicted would ruin my chances of getting into an Ivy League college, even if those odds had been growing slimmer and slimmer with each passing month. “My dad is Cliff Pleasure, owner of Hardscrabble Ranch,” I whined through the grating that separated the front and back seats.
I was heavily pissed off, but I guess the larger part of me knew that something bad was going on. I was probably fairly drunk too, having polished off my customary two beers to each of my friends’ one. I remembered this burnout guy from school being arrested for public intoxication. Sequoia Crooks was some kind of Native American, I guess, and probably shouldn’t drink at all. He lived near our golf course—yes, Hardscrabble Ranch had its own golf course—in our former cow boss’ house. Anyway, Sequoia was always making a laughingstock of himself by showing up drunk at rodeo events thinking he was about to compete. He sometimes
compete, but one day he was so stumbling wasted that the arena director had just called the cops on him. Drunk in public, or some such bullshit.
I knew I’d blown my chances at a good college, but I couldn’t live with an arrest on my record. My life had been fucked since my mother’s death, but I still had
sense of pride.
“Oh, Cliff Pleasure,” said the arresting cop, whose nametag said he was Sergeant Vassar, like one of the colleges I had hoped to attend.
“You know him?” I asked sweetly, but the asswipe wouldn’t answer.
A slow sense of panic began to set in as they “hauled me into the station,” as they say. They didn’t read me my Miranda rights—didn’t that mean I wasn’t arrested?—but they did fingerprint me and throw me into a holding room with some
hookers. Boy, these gals were the real deal, with their violet eyeshadow and surgically enhanced boobage. Suddenly I felt very small and insignificant, just a juvenile delinquent playing at being an adult. Drinking beer and talking back to cops, what was I thinking? My mother would be completely ashamed of me. She’d always been a lady, running the ranch with a genteel but firm hand. I’d never even
to measure up to her if I stayed on this track.
“Did you see that hot stuff who just came in?” one hooker asked the others.
“Cop or criminal?” asked another.
“Criminal, but boy, what a juicy pup.”
“Pup? Working our turf?”
“I don’t think he’s working. I just mean he’s got that pup look. There he is, Britny! Look—he’s just a slim, built twink. I swear he can’t even grow a right beard.”