Humiliation burns through Zwyk as he comes to the realization his bride has left him standing alone at the altar. When something seems too good to be true, it usually is. He should have known someone as vivacious as his bride-to-be would never settle for a paper pushing, XBox playing geek like him. While his heart isn’t exactly broken, his pride is wounded, and his confidence has taken a hit.
Rory hates that she had to tell Zwyk her sister has run away instead of marrying him. Well, she hates the pain her sister caused. She can’t exactly say she’s sorry the wedding is off. Maybe now she can make Zwyk see what’s been right under his nose this entire time -- her.
Praise for Rory and the Alien Groom (Intergalactic Brides 9)
"Jessica Coulter Smith has blended clever wit, a hilarious sense of humor, sexy and sensual with a bit of naughty thrown in, and chemistry to make a great love story. I highly recommend this book and the entire series to be put on the MUST READ NOW list."
-- 5 Stars from Nikki, Sensuous Reviews
"I sure did love this story. As usual, it was wonderfully written with engaging characters and an entertaining plot. I enjoyed the hot sex scenes but most of all I truly liked Rory and Zwyk. I love strong heroines who know what they want and go after it. Jessica Coulter Smith has become one of my favorite authors."
-- Tulip, Long and Short Reviews
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Rory and the Alien Groom (Intergalactic Brides 9)
Jessica Coulter Smith
All rights reserved.
Copyright ©2017 Jessica Coulter Smith
Zwyk stripped out of his clothes, balled them up, and threw them into the corner of his bedroom where they could rot for all he cared. He opened his closet, but every pressed shirt, every pair of khaki slacks, every polished shoe just made him want to rip everything to shreds and burn it. Brittany had tried to mold him into someone he wasn't, and now he was left with the aftermath. He grabbed everything by the handful, throwing the clothes onto the bed. When he was finished, a box in the back corner of the closet drew his attention.
Pulling it out, he opened the flaps and smiled when he peered inside. His favorite well-worn T-shirts and butter soft jeans were stacked inside, along with his beat-up Converse. They were the first clothes he'd purchased when he'd come to Earth and had remained his favorites until that she-devil had come into his life, tossing him on his head and stirring things up. He changed into the familiar clothes and already felt a hundred times better.
In the bathroom, he pulled the ponytail holder out of his hair and brushed the long strands, thankful he hadn't let Brittany cut it short like she'd demanded, claiming he had an image to uphold. That was a laugh. People barely noticed him, despite his tall stature. No one cared what he wore or how his hair was styled. He'd been an idiot to listen to her about anything. As much as it smarted that she'd rather run away than share her life with him, part of him felt relieved. He didn't have to be "on" all the time anymore. He could just relax and be Zwyk again.
He emerged from the bathroom and took a good look around his house. He'd let Brittany have free rein and do whatever she wanted with his home, reasoning that it would be hers soon enough. He'd never cared for the black and gray tones in the bedroom, or the Feng shui -- whatever the hell that was -- that she'd insisted on incorporating in his living room. Redecorating right this moment wasn't logical, but he threw the offending clothes across the room and ripped the comforter from the bed just the same.
When he got to the living room, he tossed all the decorative pieces, pillows, and pictures into a box and tossed them out the front door. It wasn't perfect, but it was a start. Thanks to the wedding that almost was, he had a week off from work, so there was plenty of time to put his stamp back on his living quarters and maybe find out if his friends were still speaking to him. They'd come to the wedding to show their support, but he knew they resented the time he'd spent with Brittany. She'd refused to hang out with his friends, no matter how much he'd begged.
Well, maybe not begged because he never begged. Unless the latest Call of Duty was involved. He'd get on his knees and promise anything to get his hands on an early release. He might not be a warrior on his world, but in the gaming community he was a badass to be feared and revered. A god among men. He might have a slight gaming addiction. He'd discovered the game systems on a trip to the local mall with his friends and their wives, and he'd been hooked ever since. Considering how far advanced his culture was compared to the humans, they certainly had better entertainment.
His poor game system was hidden away in the hall closet, banished there by Brittany along with two boxes of his games. He hauled everything out and started hooking it back up, petting the console and whispering words of contrition to it for his poor treatment the past few months. When it booted right up, he took that to mean he was forgiven for his transgression. Looking in the boxes of games was akin to opening presents on Christmas -- a human tradition he'd embraced wholeheartedly -- and he had trouble deciding what to play first.
There wasn't a better way to dive back into things than to play Gears of War 4. His Xbox Live membership had lapsed and his account had been deleted, so he'd have to enjoy one-player mode for now. Hell, he didn't even know if his gaming buddies were still around, assuming he could find them online after he made a new account. He'd just up and vanished on them three months ago. It was an asshole move, but Brittany had grabbed him by the balls. Well, figuratively, because she'd never gotten close enough to actually touch his balls. They'd kissed, but she'd always shied away when he tried to take things further, saying she wanted to wait for their wedding night. Now he had to wonder how much of that was bullshit. Had she detested him so much that she couldn't stand to be touched by him?
The game had just finished loading when there was a knock at his front door. Zwyk set his controller aside and went to answer, almost dreading who might be on the other side. If word had already spread about his failed wedding, any number of his friends could be on the other side with an "I told you so" ready on their lips, or worse, a pitying look in their eyes. He almost didn't answer, but something made him pull open the door.
His eyebrows rose when he saw who stood on the other side. "Rory?"
She grinned and held up two pizza boxes while she pushed her glasses further up her nose. "I thought you might need sustenance after your trying day. It's your favorite. Sausage and onion."
His stomach rumbled and he stepped back to let her in. It wasn't the first time she'd been to his house, but it was the first time they'd been alone. Was she feeling sorry for him? He'd have thought she'd be with her parents, trying to figure out where Brittany went. But then Rory had always seemed to follow her own rhythm. What was that Earth saying? Marching to the beat of her own drum?
He shut the door and followed her into the living room, where she set the boxes on the coffee table. He grinned a little, thinking about Brittany's head exploding if she saw such a travesty. It gave him the sudden urge to leave rings and scuff marks on the pristine surface. Juvenile perhaps, but refreshing. It was like he'd been freed from a prison sentence, and if that wasn't a sobering thought, he didn't know what was.
"Whatever you just thought, stop thinking it," Rory said as she opened the first box. "I figure we can just eat out of the box, but we probably should grab some drinks before I kick your ass on the Xbox."
He blinked at her. Did she just say...
"Drinks?" she prompted then shook her head. "Never mind, I'll get them."