by Clay Cormany
Genre: YA Romance
Release Date: November 4th 2014
What does a high school boy do if he thinks the girl of his dreams will be an assistant for the softball team his mother coaches? Easy! He volunteers to be an assistant, too. That's what Jace Waldron does in Fast-Pitch Love. It might be his only chance to make a move on Stephanie Thornapple while her boyfriend is away. But Jace's plans go awry, and soon he faces the double challenge of coaching a team of mischievous preteen girls and learning there is more to romance than physical attraction.
The skinny student recoiled from the push, his back thumping into the wall behind him. His books fell to the floor as he raised his hands to guard against the punch that seemed imminent.
“Don't hit me, Carson,” the student pleaded.“I didn't mean anything by it.”
Carson Ealy, all two hundred thirty pounds of him, loomed over the frightened student like a hungry bear. “How can you say you 'didn't mean anything by it,'?” he snarled. “You asked her out, didn't you?”
“Not … not really. I just thought Stephanie might like to stop by my house to … to see my tropical fish. She … she … she lives just around the corner from me and now that school's out –”
“Shut up!” Carson yelled. He grabbed the quivering boy under the armpits and lifted him until his shoes dangled at least a foot off the floor. “Stephanie doesn't want to see your stupid fish or your Barbie dolls or your beanie baby collection. She doesn't even want you to ask her the time of day. And you know something else?”
The student, his face whiter than paste, shook his head.
“I don't want you to either cause if you do, I'm going to twist your head off. Capisce?
The student nodded frantically. “Yeah, yeah, sure, I cap –”
Carson dropped the kid like an unwanted toy and watched him slink away. The handful of students who witnessed the encounter also began to walk on. Some of them might not have known what it was all about, but Jace Waldron did. He knew the skinny student made the near-fatal mistake of putting a move on Stephanie Thornapple. Jace had never made that mistake – but he sure thought about it.
A new student at Ridgeview High, Stephanie joined Jace's American history class right after Christmas break. She sat a little ahead of him and one row to the right, giving him a near-perfect position to admire her near-perfect beauty. Only minutes before watching Carson bully the student with tropical fish, Jace had gazed at Stephanie while working on his history final. In the midst of answering questions about the Great Depression and the Cold War, he imagined himself making out with her.