NEHL - Jack

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Chapter Five


I couldn’t believe he just left like that. I mean I knew he was tired, he was yawning during the whole meeting, and he did play a hell of a game, but I was a little disappointed.

“Do I dare ask why you are giving a player a ride?” Garrett asked and I knew I was in trouble.

“He’s sharing a room with Eric till he finds a place.” I said like it was no big deal even though I knew it was.

“Maddie,” he said shaking his head.

“I know sir, but he didn’t have a place and after what he did for Eric at the practice I couldn’t let him suffer. We have a couple of off days now till the next game. I will help him find a place, I swear.”

“Good enough, but make sure you do. I don’t want this getting around.” He said more sternly.

“Yes sir,” I said upset enough as it was. I liked having Jack around. He was different and, when he looked at me, I don’t know, I felt desired. I mean what girl doesn’t want to fell desired?

I closed up my office and then hurried home to find that it was later than I thought and both guys were already in bed. I would talk to Jack tomorrow, and help him find a place.


“Morning,” I said walking into the kitchen. I was so tired last night that I knew I kind of left without saying much. I would do better today.

“Morning Jack, we need to go apartment hunting for you.” Maddie threw out like it was no big thing.

Shit I must have messed up bad last night by not taking her offer of a ride. I liked being here, and I loved being with her. We were already in such an easy rhythm, that everything just felt natural.

“I see, I’ll go pack,” I said turning around.

She laughed. “I think it will wait till after you get some coffee.” She brought me a cup and I nodded. “Mister Green heard me offer you a ride and well, I screwed up, and now he wants you in your own place as soon as possible.”

“Oh, heck players share apartments all the time.” I countered.

“Well, most players aren’t living with their sisters, who happen to work for the team, and said sister living with a player goes against company and league policy, and so that was my lecture last night.” She explained and I hated seeing her being the one in trouble. I should have worked harder to find a place before now but I hadn’t wanted to.

“I’ve got one we can look at this morning if you want?” She said smiling.

“Do we have time; I mean practice is at eleven?”

“I think we do,” she said smiling like she knew something I didn’t. I finished my coffee grabbed my coat and followed her out of the apartment. We walked outside and I headed for the car and she didn’t. I turned and saw she was walking down the road and I hurried to catch up with her.

“Maddie, I can’t afford anything in this complex.” I said meaning every word. I was working on the minimum salary cap, and I didn’t have a lot of cash.

She smiled. Damn I loved that smile and the way her dimple popped. My heart was a goner from the first time we met, but each time I saw that smile it was like it was falling all over again.

We were about two housing complexes down and she led me up the path of another one where a woman was waiting at the front door. “Kaley Middaugh, Jack Crabb, forward of the Syracuse Storm, and in need of an apartment.”

I shook her hand which was like a dainty woman not really trying to make a strong impression. “It’s my pleasure Mr. Crabb. Please follow me. We just had this one bedroom come available.”

There was no elevator and we were on the second floor and all the way to the end of the building when she opened the last door, number twenty three. We walked inside and it was small, like real small.

“Before you wrinkle your nose, go look at the kitchen.” Maddie said giggling.

I walked in and turned to the left and I was in the kitchen. It was an open floor plan. The room had two doors, one to the bathroom and one to the bedroom. That left the kitchen and living room all as one with a counter, or breakfast nook separating them. The kitchen was as big as Maddie’s and the appliances were clean and well maintained.

I loved the kitchen and I really didn’t care about the living room, since I would hardly be in it. I walked into the bedroom and saw there was enough room for a bed and dresser but had no closet. The bathroom was big enough for my body, and the shower was big enough for me as well. This would work, if I could afford it.

“It’s alright,” I said coming back out. “How much are we talking?”

“The apartment is five hundred a month, and allows for parking of one vehicle. Electric and water are included, anything else is your responsibility. The appliances are electric and as well as the baseboard heat and hot water tank.” Miss or Mrs. Middaugh said I wasn’t sure which she was.

I had to fight the urge to scream. “Well, it fits into my budget. I’ll take it.”

“Wonderful, come by the office today after practice and sign the lease and we will get the ball rolling.” She said and then left.

I looked at Maddie. “Lease?”

“They only do year lease agreements here, but we won’t find a better apartment. Beside if you get called up, we can sublet.” She said like it was no big deal.

“Called up? Maddie, I’m more worried about being cut.” I struggled to say.

“Jack, you heard what Mister Green said. Even by some chance you can’t play he will give you a job as a scout. You will need the apartment. Now say thank you Maddie.”

“Thank you Maddie,” I said smiling just realizing how close I would be to her.

“Now say you are awesome Maddie.” She said giggling.

“You are awesome Maddie,” I said moving closer to her.

“Um Jack why are you getting so close,” she said backing up till her back was against the wall and her breathing was becoming hurried.”

“Maddie, you are awesome,” I said again then before she could talk I kept going. “You are also smart, cute as can be, and the perfect conversationalist and the one woman in this world that seems to keep my attention on something other than hockey.”

I leaned in so we were very close. “I am going to kiss you now Maddie Maddison because I want nothing more than to feel your lips on mine. Just tell me no if you want me stop,” I said as my mouth got closer and closer to hers.

Then my lips were on hers and it felt so warm and inviting I didn’t stop. This is the woman I wanted and I wasn’t letting her go.


Jack was kissing me. Oh my god Jack was kissing me. His lips were on mine and I was returning the kiss with everything that I had. I wanted him to know this wasn’t one sided and I wanted him as much as he said he wanted me.

I mean he said I was cute, how do you take that. I mean wouldn’t I rather be beautiful? Oh shit is that his tongue, yes, yes it is. Oh that feels so damn good. I mean cute is good right? I mean in the big scheme of things cute is better than but ugly, but, oh shit his lips are on my neck and I can’t resist that.

I lean into his kiss and I feel him. I mean really feel him pressed hard against me trapping me against the wall. His hands, oh his hands are sliding under the bottom of my shirt. Oh yeah, the feel of his fingers against my naked stomach.

“Ring,” shit my cell. No it was a mistake. It wasn’t my cell. “Ring,” son of a “Do you want to get that,” he asked removing himself from tight against me.

No I don’t want to get it. Instead I fumble with my purse and take out my phone. “Mister Green,” I say to myself and Jack. “Yes sir,” I ask?

“We have two possible trades on the table. Can you get a hold of Jack, and then have both of you in my office as soon as you can.” He asked.

“Yeah, Jack is right here.” I said without thinking.

“Maddie,” Mr. Green said exasperated.

“Sir, I am looking at apartments with him. The real estate agent is here with us. He found a place and has to do some paperwork, but I’m sure he can finish it up later. I will tell him and we will be on our way.”

“Oh, well, yeah that works. See you both soon.” He said hanging up.

“Where is the agent, I thought she left?” Jack said coming close to me again.

I put my hand out to stop him. “We have two trades on the table. The boss wants us there as soon as possible. For the record, he doesn’t like the two of us together.”

“Yeah I think I got that.” Jack said smiling but he wasn’t backing away. “Of course the most important thing is how do you feel about the two of us?”

Shit, talk about loaded questions. I think we would make beautiful babies, was not something I probably should say right now. “I won’t lie and tell you that I am not attracted to you. Of course I can’t afford to lose my job either. So,” and I drag this out because I really don’t want to say it “it may be better if we stop before this goes too far.”

“Is that what you really want?” He asked like he was reading my face. I don’t know what he saw while I was thinking of the right way to reply, but he seemed convinced of something all of a sudden.

“Jack, I don’t know what that look means on your face, but we need to stop really. I need this job.” I said.

“I know.” Then he ushered me with his arm out of the apartment and back down the stairs. We were on the sidewalk headed back when he finally said something. “Maddie Maddison, I’m not giving this up between us. If I have to play it cool for a bit, I will, but I’m not giving up. See you at the office,” he said jumping in his old jeep and closing the door.

Well good Jack Crabb, because after that kiss I don’t think I want you give up.

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