Can you mix romance with softball? Jace Waldron hopes so. That's why he's volunteered to assist the girls’ softball team his mom coaches. But Jace has some surprises coming as well as some lessons to learn about discovering inner beauty.
The next three Dragons went down on a pop-up, a fielder’s choice, and an easy grounder back to Corey’s glove, giving the Valkyries their first win.
Parents cheered while their daughters created a mob scene at the pitcher’s mound, giving hugs and lifting each other into the air. Some of the players’ younger siblings got involved, including one little girl who did cartwheels and somersaults. Jace joined the celebration. He hugged Corey and Heather, patted Lauren on the back, and even gave Phoebe’s shoulder a quick squeeze. He was about to herd the team off the field when Sylvia bumped into him. She threw her arms around his neck.
"We won, Jace! Doesn’t it feel great to win?"
"Yeah, it sure –"
Before he could finish his sentence, Sylvia planted her lips on his slightly open mouth and gave him a kiss that made his head spin. The sight of their two assistant coaches kissing brought a chorus of giggles from the girls around them.
"Wow, look at the lovebirds," quipped Heather.
Sylvia broke off the kiss and took a step back.
"Oh, I’m sorry, Jace," she blurted, her face reddening, "I guess I got carried away."
He took a step back and caught his breath. "Maybe we better line the girls up," he said. "There’s probably another game here after ours."
As he and Sylvia watched their players slap hands with their defeated foes, it occurred to Jace that he wasn’t the least bit sorry Sylvia kissed him. And another more impudent thought also bullied its way into his mind. Maybe the mouthy coach’s description of Sylvia as a "hot chick" was not so far from wrong.
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organizations in his community, including Thurber House and the Ohioana Library.