Home > The Bet (Winslow Brothers #1)(2)

The Bet (Winslow Brothers #1)(2)
Author: Max Monroe

“Actually, I was looking for you.” I wasn’t. “See, I remembered you still owe me money from that play-off game last month, and figured it was high-time I reminded you.” I smirk, shrug, and stop to lean against the wall just outside the dancers’ dressing rooms where I know he’s headed.

“Of course, you cheap bastard.” He throws his head back on a laugh.

“Cheap bastard?” I question and put a hand to my chest. “Are you talking about me? The guy who told you the Mavericks were going to win that play-off game, and you definitely shouldn’t take that fucking bet?”

This isn’t the first time the two of us have bet on something. Surely it won’t be the last either. Maverick is addicted to trying to beat me, and I’m addicted to wagers and challenges.

He laughs and rolls his eyes, coming to a stop across from me. “Yeah, but the only reason you probably knew is because your sister is married to fucking Wes Lancaster. It’s like goddamn insider trading.”

“Don’t be bitter, dude. I told you not to bet against them. Hell, the team has your damn name, for fuck’s sake.”

“Whatever.” He rolls his eyes at that. “What do I owe you again?”

“One hundred big ones,” I respond. “And don’t try to sweet-talk your way out of it with cries of poverty. Even though you suck ass at dancing, I’ve seen the way women shove dollar bills down your pants. I know you’re good for it.”

Mav waggles his brows. “You jealous, bro?”

“Jealous? Of what, exactly? That you spend your nights letting women fawn over the idea of your dick so you don’t have to cry when they see how tiny it actually is?”

“Fuck off,” he retorts. “We both know there’s a reason why you’re the one who gets the people to the party and I’m the one who entertains the people at the party. Only one of us has real talent.”

A laugh jumps from my throat. “Get real. I could dance. I could fucking dance circles around your ass. You think your tips are good? Ha. The number of tips I could pull in during one night would blow your mind.”

“Man, I’d love to see you put your money where your big, obnoxious mouth is,” he snaps back on a hearty chuckle. “There’s a bachelorette party coming in tonight. It might disappoint the bride, but it’d be a fun opportunity to watch you fail.”

“I’d rock that bride’s world.”

Mav cracks up. “Jude, with all due respect, you’ve never danced a day in your life. Much less danced like I dance. You’d fail spectacularly.”

I waggle my brows. I can’t help it. It’s the thrill I’m always chasing, the high I can’t seem to quit. And this bastard is going to pay for doubting my abilities.

I square my shoulders and lean forward, right in his face, and ask, “Wanna bet?”

 

 

Sophie

“Party of ten for Sophie Sage,” I tell the big, burly bouncer behind the velvet rope.

The man is dressed in all black and has a perpetual scowl etched across his lips, but I’m assuming it comes with the job territory. Every Friday and Saturday night, he’s tasked with the responsibility of filling this club with partygoers who will have a good time, but also, won’t act like total assholes.

Sure, it sounds simple enough, but all it takes is standing in the never-ending line outside—in the bitter February cold, mind you—for a mere five minutes with people yelling and shouting toward the bouncers at the door to understand it’s not simple at all. If anything, the man is being paid to deal with verbal harassment and demanding, drunk idiots. All night long. Add in a constant barrage of pimple-faced teens with fake IDs and the credit card they stole when their parents weren’t looking, and I’d rather rub poison ivy on my eyeballs than switch places with him.

He glances down at his clipboard and then back up at me. “I take it you’re Sophie?”

“That’s right. I am her, and she is me,” I respond somewhat awkwardly through a shivering jaw. My breath hangs in the air for a few seconds, and I tuck my arms deeper into my faux fur coat and try to keep the shivers from migrating to my knees.

He moves his gaze past me, to my twin sister Belle, our elder sister Katelynn, and then over the rest of our small group that includes seven of Belle’s closest friends—Laura, Tasha, Kirsten, Jackie, Tonya, Bri, and Devon.

All of these women either went to college with Belle at NYU or work with her at MK Modeling Agency. I know some of them better than others since Belle and I spend so much time together, but these people definitely qualify as more “hers” than “mine.”

“Who’s the bride-to-be?”

“That would be this gorgeous girl right here with the sash,” I comment and step back to wrap my arm around my twin.

Belle smiles, and the rest of our already-tipsy group hoots and hollers, which then makes my sister bury her face in my shoulder.

I giggle and give her a reassuring squeeze.

All thanks to the awesome bachelorette party I planned for my sister, our group is having the time of their lives, is well on their way to being three sheets to the wind, and is ready to bring the night on home at our fourth and final stop at one of New York’s hottest new nightspots, Club Craze.

“Whoa. You two are—” the bouncer begins, and I immediately recognize his intro as the precursor to what everyone says when they see Belle and me together.

“Identical twins,” I answer for him with a knowing smile. “You know, like a brunette version of the Olsens.”

Belle snorts. “Though, we’ve never met Uncle Jesse. And we aren’t recluses in our adult age.”

I’m half tempted to roll my eyes at the two of us and the fact that it sounds like we give this rehearsed speech every hour on the hour, but the bouncer’s reaction outshines my mental battle with self-deprecation. I don’t know if this dude has never seen identical twins in person or what, but he just keeps glancing between Belle and me like we’re two aliens that just stepped off our UFO. Our eyes may be green, but our skin isn’t. At least, not yet. Maybe after a few more hours of drinking, it will be, though.

Thankfully, when Tonya obnoxiously offers to show the man her G-sized ta-tas if he’ll get us inside before they turn into literal witch’s tits, he focuses back on his clipboard, and that scowl of his almost turns into a smile.

“Clothes need to stay on for now,” he says and shakes his head. “But once you’re inside and escorted into your private VIP party room…” He winks at Tonya. “Then, you can live it up in whatever way you please.” He licks his lips and mutters to himself, “I really need to think about asking for a job reassignment.”

Tonya laughs and leans up onto her toes to place a drunk kiss on his cheek.

“Private VIP party room?” Belle whispers into my ear, obviously too panicked to focus on the episode of The Bachelor: Nightclub Bouncer Edition taking place in front of us. I turn away from the action to give her a reassuring flick of my eyes and squeeze around her shoulders, and by the time I turn back, our previously stoic bouncer is unclipping the velvet rope and letting us inside, hijinks with Tonya concluded.

I’m a little sad to have missed some of the action, but Hallelujah! for warmth.

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