Tough as Nails

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Summary

Life just keeps coming at you sometimes- all the time. You keep trying so hard to do the right thing, but keep failing. Add someone who wants nothing to do with you, someone you can't or shouldn't have- but you are sure you share a soul. Oh and don't forget the one who secretly wants to change everything about you but is so good at manipulating you just enough to keep coming back for more. Sprinkle in some mystery, karma, some super hot sexy time and you're not even half way through the week! But don't forget, you're not 21 anyone, your not even on the upside of 30!. Life is going to keep happening regardless if you plan every detail, fly by the seat of your pants or just go with the flow. The question you should ask yourself is, how tough do you have to be to take what you want and keep it? Blake Dalton would like to remind you, "You're gonna be tough as nails so you don't need a man to make you happy. You will want a man and he'll make you happy, but you won't need him to make you feel good. You won't settle, hun. Don't you dare settle for anything less than everything." Welcome to the 2nd soundtrack of my life.

Genre:
Romance / Erotica
Author:
Leigh McQueen
Status:
Ongoing
Chapters:
47
Rating:
3.0 2 reviews
Age Rating:
18+

Who's gonna save us now?

“...You said, “Hey, whatcha doing for the rest of your life?”
And I said, “I don’t even know what I’m doing tonight”
Went from one conversation to your lips on mine...”

-The Chainsmokers, Bebe Rexha


~Blake~

I’m a stinky, sweating, tired mess. I’m rushing through aisles of my new local super market. My oversized tote rustles my side with everything inside that’s not mine- jingling like the girls dumped their piggy bank in the bottom. Lucky for me, they did not this time, or I’d be dragging it, cursing it for slowing me down more. To add to my frustrations, Travis just called to tell me I had to hurry and grab drinks since he ordered pizza. Knowing him, he probably didn’t even give it a thought to update our address in the app.

Actually, he hates the app, so he probably called it in and made some poor kid feel like they were his servant just so they’d obey his grumpy orders and make his change of address.

Annoyed at reminding myself, I have not been on this side of town since moving back here the last year, I take a deep breath. Just because I grew up here, doesn’t mean I remember everything. Like, where stores and gas stations are. That’s why I have a phone with Siri- if the backstabber will listen.

“Dang it! Where are the sodas? Who would set up a store like this?” It makes about as much sense as the overly cheery, teenage cashier who just smiled and pointed somewhere like her finger would magically connect the dots.

I groan in frustration, looking up at the aisle signs, so not watching where I was going. I swear, I must be that human who is always available for a candid video. Sure enough, I tuck my stray hairs behind my ear that keep sliding from the messy knot on my head, I start the slow descent on the obnoxiously shiny, suddenly wet floor. “Whoooaaa, Oh shi-”

The same time, I close my eyes. An instinct of my stupidity, I guess. To add to this embarrassment, I hear a male voice, “Ahhhh Shi-!”

I collide with a man. I think it’s a man anyway. I feel a hard chest and wide shoulders- I swear I must have reached my limit on depravity that Travis gives me- ha rather does NOT give me. I’m not trying to fondle this man. He could be ugly, or my dad’s age, or a stalker...

I have been tackled before- play fighting. You prepare for those kind of spills. You know it’s going to hurt like a mutha, but you brace and take it with a little more grace. I’ve also fallen and been pushed- not cool by the way. Although the initial jolt is surprising and very difficult to avoid pain, it’s not that bad. But no amount of stupid, drunken, young adult pranks- I mean nothing- prepares you for sliding, falling, rolling and tumbling with another human.... Or the awkward that happens after.

Warm, large hands pull my mind from the inner turmoil I’m having as they trying to brace my ribs when we start to lose our battle against gravity. Right under my leg, trying to stop my large ass from flipping backward, cracking my skull wide open, his very sculpted quad braces me. Sweetheart, I’ve been blessed with this cushion for a reason; your leg is not gonna hold all 170 pounds of me. This padding will live.

This blur of a man pulls some Matrix style gravity side bend, fast as lightning. I land with a very loud oomph on top of him all while my arms swing wildly, resembling windmill should stretches. I am pretty sure if I had gotten those implants like I’d wanted before Travis and the girls, they would have burst right on this poor man’s chest, soaking his face, splashing liquid all over this damn slippery floor.

Damn it, I think my very fluffy hips just collided with his very bony ones. Those hands are firmly guarding my very safe cushions. Oh my god, my hands might have just punctured this guys organs ad I’m still keeping my eyes shut thinking about his hands cupping my legging clad ass.

He moans. “UUUughhh”

Very cautiously, I try to move my hands to right my self and open my eyes, hidden by my very messy bun. “I am so, so sorry. That was so stupid of me. I wasn’t looking. I-”

“Ummm, can you try to move your legs the other way?” He says as those warm hands moving to support my hips. I try to, doing some type of backward crab walk without kneeing his junk or knock him out with my bag. I’m a millisecond from sending this kid to the hospital for a busted head.

“Yeah shit, I am so sorry-” I am mortified. My ass is probably all bent over in the perfect view on the super market surveillance all over this guy .

“It’s alright. I wasn’t either. Are you okay, Pretty Lady?”

I hear his not so masculine voice almost squeak out. I jerk my head up causing more or my hair to fly forward. Did he just call me pretty?

The shock is very evident on my face, slowing move my eyes to where this young man is staring. My chest is literally falling out- no on a volcanic rush out of my sports bra tank combo, right into his face. My sweaty, in desperate need of a shower tits are in this teenager’s face. Oh kill me know!

As if I cannot be any more embarrassed, I realize the reason this guys voice was starting puberty again was quickly growing against my stomach. For Fuck’s sakes! You cannot make this shit up! I gotta figure out how the hell to get up and not expose this poor kid since he got up.

“Chasey boy, where’s you go?”

“Yeah, Chase, where’s you go?” I hear two other boys an aisle over about to round the aisle.

“I umm, shit. Let me move, umm... no, that... umm” I try to tuck my top and scoot back before they get a full show with my moon and this kids tent.

“Yeah, umm. Here, let me help you up.” The kid says a little stronger, but I barely hear him over the ruckus the other boys are making. Oh this kid is so flushed, I think even his brown wavy hair is turning red. He’s just adorable!

If these clowns could have just waited 3 second, even 2 seconds longer to round that corner...

“Whooaa ! Chasey! What the-!” The blonde looking jock sputters out while his eyes pop from his skull.

“Chasey, don’t practice in the aisles. Bet you knocked this poor lady on her as- butt.” The much more suave of the two jocks leans down to help right me and offer who I assume now is Chasey boy, a hand. I chuckle, and finally try to stand. I realize I probably would have fallen on my face again had Chasey boy not kept an arm under me steadying me.

“I am so, so sorry. I really wasn’t watching where I was going. Are you okay?” I try my best to channel my inner Mom persona and defuse whatever hell the kid’s two buddies are going to cause.

“Yeah, I’m fine. Sorry too.” He tries to right his shirt and shorts not so discretely.

“What were you looking for anyway?”

The blonde one chimes in, steeping forward, “Oh, I can help you Ma’am.”

Chasey boy shakes his head laughing, “Joey chill, don’t make Mikey start.”

Mikey, I assume, shifts in front of Joey, looking at me with a smirk, I can tell breaks a lot of school girl hearts, “Yeah I finish. Whatcha looking for, I can help you?”

“Haha, Thanks boys. I needed a laugh after today. I am not old enough to be called a ma’am. Mike need to work on your game a little more.” Joey jabs at Mikey’s chest laughing when I shot that nonsense down.

“Where in the hell is the soft-drink aisle? I’ve been the length of the store twice now. I even asked the girl up front, but she was not so helpful.”

The trio chuckle taking the hint that I am not biting. “Yeah that’s Yvette for you. Surprised she can find her way to anything but a c-”

Chasey spins me away from the other two and I hear Joey grunt. Chasey directs me to the front of the store, off to the right of the check out, in it’s own little corner, sits entire set of aisles devoted to water, soda, sports drinks, beer and just about everything I couldn’t find 10 minutes ago.

I groan, “You have got to be friggin’ kidding me!”

I palm my face and turn to walk off my embarrassment.

“Thanks boys. Hope your day is as wild as mine is!”

These boys start laughing and shoving each other, causing the other shoppers and that damn dingbat of a cashier to all look at us like they know better and I’m encroaching on her territory. Why do I always find another girl to piss off?

I get a cart from the front, load up the water, soda, beer for Travis and get the hell out of this store as slow-quick as I can. I swear, I have to remember where the other super market is since I cannot go back there anytime in the next year.

I make one more stop on my way to our new house by this adorable hardware store. I remember going here with my dad when I was little. Mr. Luther was so sweet to his wife. He just adored her. I can remember how I though I always wanted my man to look at me just like that... Some wishes, right?

Travis can just bitch all he wants about how long that took We are just unpacking now anyway. Even if I told him the truth, it’s not like he’d listen. That was something I don’t think even my best friend, Kris would believe. Actually she would if I told her how disgusting I was when I accidentally molested this hot teenager right before his friends found me shoving my chest in his face like I was making money off these cantaloupes.

Just a few blocks off the main street on this side of Lashbrooke, I see our house! I can’t wait to finish decorating. I can’t believe I finally found a Tudor! With this yard! The red door and white trim were it for me. I just fell in love. I’m claiming the back deck too. There are so many places I can put flowers! Normally, Travis would have shot down this house and I would have been crushed. I must have not annoyed him enough or maybe I did, because he saw me smiling after the walk through and asked, “Blake babes, I know you want it. Tell me how bad is this gonna dig into our savings?”

“Really? Really Trav!” I remember jumping up and down hugging him, smiling like a fool. He smiled that smirk I hadn’t seen in months and kissed me!

“Yeah... I think you need put a bid on it. It’ll be your dream house with all your flowers and ship shap yard barn stuff-”

“Farm-house and ship-lap hahah”

“Yeah, that stuff. No go call the broker. I think it’s under Blaire.”

Right at 45 days, we closed on my house and 2 weeks later, her we are! When we were in Atlanta, Trav kept the bars in his name since he’d inherited them before we were married and I kept the condo in my name for the same reason. When he bought the old bar downtown, I told him just do the same thing again and just pay for my decorating addiction. Well,he hated the decorating idea, but he did help sort my storage bins for the shed and garage.

Pulling in, I think, isn’t my house just adorable! I love how the driveway goes all the way from the street in front to the alley. There are several houses on the street like ours. I feel like this was a sign. The little alley way next to our neighbors that sneaks you around to the side road so you can bypass the busy road out of the neighborhood. And all the houses have the cutest decks, like this one but the garage could use some paint.

I pull up the drive, trying to be courteous of our neighbors as start to unload everything. I am do damn sore. We both took 3 days off to do this without movers. Trav had a migraine the entire time. I felt to so bad for him, but I keep begging him to see a doctor and get a prescription. We ended up finishing all the big items with little public altercations. Thank goodness my dad watched the girls the last 2 days. Speaking of, I can see the girls running around the kitchen island from here. I can’t wait to have breakfast in our new house! Ugh I’ll have to go back and get groceries... Maybe I can get Kris to go with me and then con her into helping carry them in so my arms don’t fall off. I’m on my 3rd trip from the back door to the trunk when I hear...

“Haha yeah, I see ya Mikey!” The truck door closes.

"Joey, Hit you up when I’m on my way to gym. Gotta grab some food.”

No...

No that...

This is not happening...

That is not the boy I got to 3rd base on in the super market!

I stand statue still with a case of water straining my very sore arms. This very second, I understand the true meaning of FML. This 6 foot something teenage boy rounding the corner from the alleyway, looks just as shocked to see me. Then he laughs. He starts full on belly laughing, doubling over just siting down on the pavement in the middle of his drive.

Yes, just laugh, laugh it off hott stuff. Here goes nothing. Lightning will be striking me down in 3... 2...

“Hi Chasey boy, I’m your new neighbor, Blake. I like to get lost in the grocery and accidentally maul unsuspecting boys.”

Lightning some how did not flash. Trust me, I was side eyeing the sky.

“Oh Blake, you’re gonna make my life so much fun! Whatcha gonna do to me next time, hmm?” That cocky little shit just kept laughing like I was the only one embarrassed to death.

“Yep, gotta keep the neighborhood on their toes. Or in your case, off your toes. Haha! Guess you’ll just have to wait and see cause I don’t even know what I’m doing tonight.”

I turned and didn’t look back. Travis can get the rest of this shit from my car. I’m gonna hide for days!


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