Wed to a SEAL (Hot SEALs) (Volume 8)

By: Cat Johnson

CHAPTER 1


Which one?

That was the only unknown weighing on Rocky Mangiano’s mind as he swallowed a gulp of beer and perused the choices before him.

After being home for something like a grand total of seven days over the past seven months, which girl to choose to spend a little time with tonight wasn’t a bad dilemma to have.

Rocky was there alone, but that didn’t mean he’d be lonely, thanks to the plethora of ladies employed by the strip club.

His teammates weren’t around, not even the few single ones who he might have persuaded to join him. Since they were finally home from back-to-back assignments—hopefully here to stay for at least a little while—the guys had scattered to see family.

Brody Cassidy was visiting his folks in Alabama, but there were hints that a girl there who was more of a draw than good old Mom and Dad.

James “Mack” MacIntyre had been summoned by his father to . . . somewhere. Rocky wasn’t sure where Mack’s dad lived, not that it mattered. His teammate was busy for the weekend.

His usual drinking buddies’ absence wouldn’t put a damper on Rocky’s evening. He hadn’t come to the club seeking male companionship.

No, sir, he certainly had not. He was here for company of the female variety.

He feasted on the colorful scene before him.

Red. Blue. Purple. Gold. The strippers’ sequined costumes, designed to catch the eyes of the male patrons, reflected the stage lights, sending thousands of shards of reflected light through the air to where they landed and danced on every surface.

Warring with the sequins for attention was the glitter. It coated every inch of the girls’ exposed skin, skin which came in every shade from ivory to bronze to deep cocoa brown.

Sure, it was frigging annoying to go home from the club covered in glitter and cheap perfume. Both seemed nearly impossible to get off his skin and his clothes. But it would be far more annoying to finally get home safely from a mission only to sit in his room all alone.

They’d been through some rough shit this last round. He needed to blow off a little steam. All he needed to figure out was who to do it with.

Focused on the creative gyrations of the girl currently on stage, he took another sip of the beer, happy and content to take his time in this decision.

Was enjoying drinking alone a sign that he had a problem? Nah. He didn’t think so in this instance.

Besides, he was far from alone. Hell, he was surrounded by people—both men and women—and for a change not even one of them was shooting at him.

That in itself was worthy of celebrating with a drink … or two.

Two. That was an idea. Maybe he wouldn’t choose just one girl. He’d been overseas so much this year with no expenses except the small storage unit where his shit lived when he was away that he’d been stockpiling his pay.

He could more than afford a couple of visits to the back for private lap dances tonight.

“Hey there, big guy.” The sultry words, spoken low and close to his ear from behind him, cut through the music being pumped out of the sound system and directly to his gut.

Rocky turned in his seat to get a look at the familiar bleached blonde. He recognized her as one of Brody’s past favorites.

Of course, that was before Brody’s very recent aversion to the strip club, which Rocky suspected was due to the addition of that girl back home in Alabama. Not that his buddy had willingly come right out and admitted that. It was like pulling teeth getting anything personal out of Brody.

Some guys kept things close to the vest. Brody was one of them, but the signs were there. The man who never took leave had done so an awfully lot lately. That, to Rocky, had serious relationship written all over it.

Rocky, on the other hand, couldn’t be bothered keeping secrets in his personal life. He had to keep too many secrets from family and friends for work already.

With women he liked to be open about things when he could be, such as feelings and plans for the future . . . or lack thereof.

That’s what he planned to do with this lovely young lady who’d come to seek out his company.

Smiling, he turned more fully to face her. “Hey there, sweetheart.”

“Alone tonight? Where are your usual buddies?” She ran one long, colorfully polished fingernail down his arm.

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