Skinny pants, p.1
“OKAY, JACK,” SHE THREW HER HANDS IN THE AIR, “you’re really being a jackass, and my ability to forgive doesn’t extend to people who just won’t get out of their own way.” She turned and started heading back down the mountain. She’d catch up with the girls on their usual hiking trail on the other side.
Macie suddenly heard footsteps behind her. For a moment she thought it was just a jogger coming down the hill, until she felt Jack’s strong hand on her wrist, yanking her back.
“Wait. I’m sorry. It’s just that…I saw my ex this morning.”
“Oh.” It couldn’t have been easy. “Are you all right?”
“I will be. I just don’t think,” he said, “that I’m—I’m not ready…” his voice trailed off.
“What, Jack?” she whispered, placing her hand on his arm. “You can tell me.”
He stood there for a moment and then stepped in, closing the space between them and pressing his firm body against hers.
Macie’s breath stuck in her chest as she stared up into his intense green eyes. Electricity hummed in the air around him.
“Fuck it.” He speared his fingers through the back of her hair and kissed her hard.
PRAISE FOR MIMI’S HAPPY PANTS SERIES
“I was laughing out loud by the second page, and had completely fallen for the hero by the second chapter. Another delicious hit from the wildly talented Pamfiloff.”
—Lauren Layne, New York Times bestselling author on Leather Pants
“Leather Pants is a page-turning snuggie I want to cuddle with all night. Bring on the cookies and the matchmaking. I’m ready for another installment.”
—Tanya, Heroes and Heartbreakers on Leather Pants
“What amazes me about Mimi as an author is her ability to write so many different series, all with a different feel, and yet still retain that quality which makes her books so clearly identifiable as hers.”
—Leigh, Guilty Pleasures on Leather Pants
“Pamfiloff’s skilled pacing ramps up the tension and attraction between Bennett and Taylor as they crisscross the globe together, and their consummation feels like a well-deserved payoff for them and the reader.”
—Publishers Weekly on Tailored for Trouble
“A quick read that will have readers laughing at the witty heroine and her series of misadventures, and relishing the tension between the sexy protagonists.”
—Patricia Smith, Booklist on Tailored for Trouble
“Swoony, sexy, and laugh-out-loud funny! Bennett Wade is an absolutely delicious hero—and this book left me wanting more.”
—New York Times bestselling author Laura Kaye on Tailored for Trouble
OTHER WORKS BY MIMI JEAN PAMFILOFF
Digging A Hole (Book 3, The Ohellno Series)
Check (Part 3, Mr. Rook’s Island Series)
THE ACCIDENTALLY YOURS SERIES
Accidentally in Love with…a God? (Book 1)
Accidentally Married to…a Vampire? (Book 2)
Sun God Seeks…Surrogate? (Book 3)
Accidentally…Evil? (a Novella) (Book 3.5)
Vampires Need Not…Apply? (Book 4)
Accidentally…Cimil? (a Novella) (Book 4.5)
Accidentally…Over? (Series Finale) (Book 5)
THE FATE BOOK SERIES
(Standalones/New Adult Suspense/Humor)
Fate Book Two
THE FUGLY SERIES
it’s a fugly life
THE HAPPY PANTS SERIES
The Happy Pants Café (Prequel)
Tailored for Trouble (Book 1)
Leather Pants (Book 2)
Skinny Pants (Book 3) <-You are here.
IMMORTAL MATCHMAKERS, INC., SERIES
The Immortal Matchmakers (Book 1)
Tommaso (Book 2)
God of Wine (Book 3)
The Goddess of Forgetfulness (Book 4)
THE KING SERIES
King’s (Book 1)
King for a Day (Book 2)
King of Me (Book 3)
Mack (Book 4)
Ten Club (Series Finale, Book 5)
THE LIBRARIAN’S VAMPIRE ASSISTANT
The Librarian’s Vampire Assistant (Book 1)
THE MERMEN TRILOGY
Mermen (Book 1)
MerMadmen (Book 2)
MerCiless (Book 3)
MR. ROOK’S ISLAND SERIES
Mr. Rook (Part 1)
Pawn (Part 2)
THE OHELLNO SERIES
(Standalones/New Adult/Romantic Comedy)
Smart Tass (Book 1)
Oh Henry (Book 2)
The Happy Pants Café
Mimi Jean Pamfiloff
A Mimi Boutique Novel
Copyright © 2018 by Mimi Jean Pamfiloff
All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, distributed, or transmitted in any form or by any means, including photocopying, recording, or other electronic or mechanical methods, without the prior written permission of the writer, except in the case of brief quotations embodied in critical reviews and certain other noncommercial uses permitted by copyright law.
This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, brands, media, and incidents are either the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. The author acknowledges the trademarked status and trademark owners of various products referenced in this work of fiction, which have been used without permission. The publication/use of these trademarks are not authorized, associated with, or sponsored by the trademark owners.
Cover Design by We Got You Covered
Creative Editing by Latoya C. Smith (lcsliterary.com)
Copy Editing and Proof Reading by Pauline Nolet (www.paulinenolet.com)
Formatting by bbebooksthailand.com
The unauthorized reproduction or distribution of a copyrighted work is illegal. Criminal copyright infringement, including infringement without monetary gain, is investigated by the FBI and is punishable by fines and federal imprisonment.
Dedicated to Lindsay Kolodziej.
Woman, wherever you are, I just want to thank you for making us smile when we needed it most.
You will be missed.
About the Book
Praise for Mimi’s Happy Pants Series
Other Works by Mimi Jean Pamfiloff
Looking for More Comedies by Mimi Jean Pamfiloff?
About the Author
Why does that man think he’s God’s gift to women? Nurse Macie Franklin thought while staring at Dr. Chad Bollinger, who’d just come from exam room three and made a pit stop to flirt with one of the new nurses.
“He’s so scrumptiously tasty.” Kirsten sighed, standing a few feet away at Macie’s side in the nurses’ station. “Something about him makes me want to ovulate, bend over, and give up all my hopes and dreams just to wash his dirty underwear and make him coffee in the morning.”
His daytime-drama good looks made him nice eye candy, but he was as fake as they came and a complete manslut. He’d only been with them at Napa General, in the heart of California wine country, a little over six months, but he’d already slept with half the women.
Honestly, I just don’t get what they all see in him. Plus, he’d barely said three non-work-related words to Macie. No good mornings. No how are you todays.
“Sure. He’s kinda hot,” Macie muttered with a little shrug. “If you’re into tall, dark, and handsome doctors who think manwhoring is a sport.”
The Chadster, as they’d nicknamed him, strutted towards them—or toward Kirsten, to be exact. She was the kind of woman the Chadsters of the world liked to date—blonde, cute perky nose, and tight little body. Almost the exact opposite of Macie with her brown wavy hair, brown eyes, five-six height, and a rather generous ass. And boobs. A generous everything, really. She liked to think of herself as a woman with a lot to give. Once she found the right man, of course.
Don’t hold your breath, she thought, eyeing the Chadster and his despicably fake smile.
“Hey there, Kirsten. Havin’ a good one?” He winked, and Kirsten visibly melted.
“So, so good. Thank you, Dr. Bollinger,” Kirsten said sweetly, tucking a golden lock behind her ear.
“A bunch of us are getting together after work. Why don’t you come?” He lifted his dark brows in a sort of “Oh, I’m so handsome. Look at me!” facial pose.
“I’d love to.” Kirsten batted her eyelashes. “Macie, you’re free, right?”
“Huh?” Macie pulled herself out of her silent critique of the man’s hair. He used so much hairspray, it looked like brown plastic.
“Tonight. You’re coming too, right?” Kirsten said, trying to make it clear to the Chadster that the invitation needed to extend to both of them.
But he hadn’t invited Macie for one very good reason. She was completely invisible to the opposite sex and had been since her introduction to boys in kindergarten. Not long after that, she’d developed skin so thick, she began calling it her magic force field. Nothing got in or out.
Superhero in lavender kitty scrubs right here.
Fast-forward to adulthood, and Macie had made a great life for herself, which included a healthy self-esteem, a career she loved, and incredible friends. No boyfriend, though. It was something she’d learned to live without. Can’t have it all.
The Chadster glanced down at Macie. “Oh, Nurse Moo—I mean Franklin,” he said with a disgust-laced tone, “I’m sure you have plans already, but you’re welcome to join us.”
What the…? Macie’s force field flickered. Moo was a nickname used by her closest friends, Kirsten being one of them. He must’ve overheard Kirsten say it once or something. Either way, what sort of imbecile would invite himself to call her Moo in a professional setting and add that offensive tone? Like I’m lower than a cockroach wearing stained underwear.
Even Kirsten just stood there, half-horrified, half-awkward grimace.
“I’m speechless, Dr. Bollinger,” Macie said. “Truly speechless.”
“I know.” He chuckled pretentiously. “It’s not every day I’m this generous.”
Is he for fucking real? But the truth was, Macie had been dealing with assholes her entire life. Being overweight tended to bring the cream of the crop out of hiding. On the other hand, there was nothing worse than giving those sorts of people control over her happiness or self-worth, even if his comment really pissed her the hell off.
Macie smiled sweetly. “Thank you for that warm invitation, Dr. Bollinger, but I have plans with my vibrator—I’m sure your hookups can attest to how valuable that relationship can be.”
The Chadster sneered for a moment and then turned to Kirsten. “The Blue Iguana, six o’clock.” He headed down the hallway.
Kirsten’s mouth just sort of flapped for a moment while her gaze toggled between Dr. Bollinger’s back and Macie’s face.
“It’s okay, Kirsten. Don’t feel bad.” Macie sighed, shaking her head at the clipboard on the desk.
“But…but that was ruuude.”
“Rude is when someone knows better and still refuses to show respect or kindness. He doesn’t know any better.” For example, people didn’t go around disapproving of toddlers for eating with their hands or chimps for playing with their feces. The Chadster was a shallow heartless prick, and behaving poorly was simply what his species of man-pig did.
“No. That was rude,” Kirsten contradicted. “I’m not going tonight, and he’s officially banned from my sexy-time dreams.”
“Not necessary. Rub away.”
“Ewww. No.” Kirsten’s work phone beeped, and she looked at it. “Dammit. Mrs. Emerson just punched Rodrigo in the penis. Again.”
Rodrigo was one of the other nurses, and Mrs. Emerson was an eighty-nine-year-old woman with a very bad tic that manifested as a right hook.
“Ice packs were just restocked,” Macie said blandly as Kirsten took off toward exam room ten.
Suddenly, a moment that came along only once in a blue moon hit Macie and hit hard. Shame. Self-loathing. Whatever it was called, it felt like a dark cloud sweeping through her. She knew when these rare instances struck, it was best to let them flow like river water heading toward the ocean. The truth was, she didn’t hate herself. And once the sting of the Chadster’s blatant snub wore off, she would pick herself up by the bootstraps, brush off the dirt, and remind herself that she was a wonderful person.
“Macie!” Rodrigo called out, holding an ice pack to his nether region. He was a big Samoan-looking man with almond eyes, thick black hair, and deep olive skin. “There was an explosion at the brandy distillery. They need all available nurses and doctors in the ER.”
Oh no. “Okay. Can you sign me out on the staff board?” This wing of the hospital was only for adult medicine, which took care of the usual day-to-day nonurgent patients—colds, coughs, checkups, the usual. Their staffing board showed who was on duty, covering which doctors and exam rooms. The ER, downstairs, had its own board, but in cases like these, everyone had assigned areas. She had triage.
“Sure,” Rodrigo groaned. “Tell them I’ll be down in ten minutes.”
Macie would’ve laughed at the mental image of little old Mrs. Emerson belting him in the nuts, but right now she had to prepare herself for the very worst.
Seven hours later and almost ten at night, Macie took a seat in Café Sage—the hospital’s only cafeteria with green walls and furniture. It was supposed to be a whole healing-vibe motif, but it just reminded her of boogers. Nurses saw a lot of those.
Holding a hot cup of black tea, Macie released a stress-filled breath. What a day. She’d seen burns, blood, people screaming with lacerations to the face, and three cardiac arrests. That didn’t include the normal Friday night crowd of broken arms, flus gone south, and car accidents. She thought the flow of injured people would never let up, but eventually the auxiliary staff showed, and the patients were treated, sent to another hospital for specialized care, or were admitted.
She glanced up from her steaming cup to find Rodrigo standing there in his blue scrubs, looking like she felt—flogged from the inside out.
“What’s up?” she asked.
“You taking off?” he asked.
“Room six. An elderly woman—a Ms. Luci. She’s having chest pains and keeps screaming about muffin tops and cookies.”
Macie raised a brow.
He added, “No one’s been able to calm her. Can you give it a shot? We can’t do much until she consents to care and we know which medications she’s on.”
Macie blew out a breath. Well, she does like cookies. How bad can she be? “Sure.”
“Thanks. I’m heading over to the Blue Iguana for a beer. See you there?”
Macie refrained from making a gag sound. The Chadster would be in attendance. “I’m too tired, but thanks for the offer.”
Rodrigo smiled warmly. “Anytime, Macie.” He turned to leave but then stopped and faced her again. “You know, out of every nurse or doctor I’ve ever worked with, I’ve never met anyone like you. How do you stay so calm? It was a horror show tonight.”
True. People had come in with their clothes and hair smoldering. The distillery had caught on fire, and with the angry summer winds today, the flames had somehow spread to the warehouse, igniting the cases of brandy.
“It’s my force field,” she replied jokingly. “I’m like the Wonder Woman of emotions.” Tough as nails. Except for the Chadster’s earlier snub. For some reason, it still bothered her. But why? He wasn’t the first man to dismiss her because of her looks, and this wasn’t high school, where the popular boy had the power to crush her young, fragile heart. She was a grown woman now, and she decided whose opinion mattered in her life.
“I’m being serious,” he said. “It was rough. I threw up twice just from the smell. How did you keep it together?”
“I don’t know. I guess I just have incredibly thick skin,” she replied.
He stared for a moment and then laughed. “Good one, Macie. Have a nice night.”
Good one how? She jerked her head back, pondering why he’d said that. Did he see her as weak? No, he’d just told her how strong she was.