Love and Rumors: A Summer Sisters Beach Reads Contemporary Romance (The Summer Sisters Book 1)
one. Double-bagged the bastard to keep him from popping up from behind potted palms and making his blood pressure shoot through the roof. The little prick had helped Finn’s bad-boy image with all those angry shots he’d sold to the papers, but it hadn’t been healthy fun, like the rest of his image building had been. So far.
    “Yours expired,” Austin said with a grin. “Yesterday.” He took a sip of his beer, his eyes glittering with some other tidbit he was holding back.
    Finn clenched his hands and waited.
    “Oh, and Canada is out of California’s jurisdiction.”
    Of course it was.
    Austin dropped a simple business card onto the bar as he stood. He leaned closer. “You haven’t been fresh news for almost a week. If you want to change that, I have a few ideas.” He tapped the card. “Call me.”
    Finn stared straight ahead, ignoring the offer. Austin was not the kind of paparazzo he would collaborate with. For one, you had to trust the photographer not to sell you out when you were creating a story together. He’d rather take the time to create a paparazzo out of Nature Nut than shake hands with this guy.
    “I have many happy celebrity clients. I can provide references if need be.”
    “Then why aren’t you working for them right now?” Finn said, turning to stare down the large man.
    “This guy bothering you, Mr. Alexander?” the bartender asked, his beefy arms folded across his puffed out chest.
    “Just leaving.”
    Finn slipped a twenty into the tip jar after Austin hurried out, letting the bar’s screen door slap in his wake. Finn held his breath, staring at the closed door, wondering what to do. What step to take next. It was a scriptless choose-your-own-adventure, and he was at a crossroads, unable to read ahead and figure out which path he ultimately wanted.
    He should return to Hollywood.
    Instead, he made himself comfortable and ordered another rye and Coke.
    “No scotch on the rocks?” the bartender joked, referring to Finn’s famous character in the action series Man versus War .
    Finn gave him a polite smile and a silent no . He guessed Daniel Craig, Pierce Brosnan, and Sean Connery had to put up with a lot of martinis—shaken, not stirred—so he could put up with a few scotches on the rocks.
    Scanning the bar, he searched for a rowdy group of young men who could swoop him into their festivities, building things up until he’d caused enough trouble to get sold to the celebrity magazines and websites. The bar was filling up, happy hour starting, red maple leaves stamped on faces. But no rowdy men full of testosterone.
    He yawned and fought the temptation to go back to his kitschy cottage. He supposed the one good thing about being a bad boy was that trouble usually came knocking. Fame, fortune, and good looks equaled anything he wanted. All he had to do was wait. Wait for it to come through the bar’s screen door.
    And right now some narrow hips were swaying toward him, and his body perked up. Strange. He usually preferred a fuller figure. Why was this beanpole grabbing his attention?
    His eyes crept up the familiar outfit.
    The photographer.
    She was back.
    He spun back to the bar, sucking his lower lip into his mouth as he rubbed his cheek absently. Hours later, he swore he could still feel the imprint of her slender palm. He lifted his cold glass to the handprint and turned farther from the door. The condensation seeped through his five o’clock shadow, the coolness a comfort.
    Why hadn’t his stubble been irresistible to her? He knew his blue eyes shone straight out from his face when he was unshaved. He was primal. Real. As irresistible as a plate of fresh chocolate chip cookies outside a pothouse.
    Damn sexy. And yet she’d rejected him as if he was a high school loser and she was the prom queen.
    He was supposed to be the prom king, making her weak at the knees. She was supposed to be just some girl who was happy he’d looked her way. But instead, she’d balked

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