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  • BD Storey

Sunday Snippet - 02/25/2024

Today's snippet is from Love's More Than a Number  - Book Two in the Bare Ridge Series - Coming Soon from B.D. Storey! This is a reverse age gap contemporary romance featuring businesswoman, Kathi, and the farrier at the barn where she rides, Mark, who has been admiring Kathi from afar for awhile now.

In this snippet (really not a snippet but more a full chapter), our heroine, straight-laced businesswoman and widow, Kathi, is getting ready to go out with friends to celebrate her upcoming 40th birthday. Little does she know what the night holds for her, and especially not that she'll make a phone call to a certain hot farrier in the midst of her celebration! And we won't even think about what happens the next morning when she wakes up and finds that the certain hot farrier is waiting for her...


Chapter 5

I was finishing up my makeup when the doorbell rang. Mary was one of the few people in my life who had the gate code to just come over any time she wanted, and, true to form, she was right on time for our girls’ night out. I opened the door and a smiling Jill marched in, followed closely behind by a laughing Mary.

Jill was wearing a cherry red mini-dress. It was so tight that one glance told me she wasn’t wearing underwear. The front was cut low enough that any bra would have been visible, and the bottom was short enough that if she bent over, everyone would know all her secrets. Her hair was a high mess of curls, with a few loose tendrils falling around her face. Around her neck was a small leather choker with three diamond studs embedded in the front. The five-inch stiletto heels she wore were as red as her dress. I shook my head in amazement, and possibly a little awe. She could definitely carry the look off.

“Happy Birthday! It’s time to party!” whooped Jill, hugging me, then grabbing Mary & pulling her into a group hug. I closed the door behind them as they moved into the front room. As I followed them, Jill gave me the once over, then shook her head.

“Is that what you’re wearing?” she asked, her voice filled with clothing-choice disgust.

I looked down at the jeans and the nice blouse I was wearing, then back up at her, raising my eyebrows. “What’s wrong with what I’m wearing? Mary is wearing almost the same thing.” I waved my hand at her. “Aren't you a tad bit overdressed?”

Jill flipped her hand at Mary. “If I thought I could get her to wear a dress, I would. Besides, she’s the driver. There’s no fun for her tonight.” She started pushing me towards the hall, heels clicking on the hardwood floor.

“Bedroom, now,” she demanded. Her finger poking me between the shoulder blades felt like a police baton.

“But” was all I got out before she smacked me on the ass.

“No ‘buts’. Move it. We don’t wanna be late.” Almost laughing at the determination in her voice, I hastened my steps to avoid another threatened butt smack.

Once we were in my room, she descended on my closet like a swarm of locusts. She started tossing hangers to the side, muttering to herself, pausing occasionally to glance at the item she held.

I turned to look at Mary, who was leaning against the doorway and trying not to laugh.

A skirt came flying my way, smacking me in the face. I pulled it off and held it out, recognizing it as one I hadn’t seen in years.

I shook my head, protesting her choice. “Jill, this skirt is too small.”

“That makes it perfect,” she said, darting over to my dresser, holding onto a white shirt she had dug out of the deep recesses of my closet. A pair of my nice, lacy, red panties flew at me, followed by the matching push-up bra.

Ignoring the look of uncertainty that I’m sure covered my face, Jill grabbed the skirt from my hands and dumped everything on the bed. She began tugging at my shirt.

I snarled, pushing her hands off of me. “I can dress myself, thank you very much.”

She waved her hands towards me. “Well then, girl, get a move on. There’s booze to drink and asses to squeeze.” She tossed the words over her shoulder as she stalked back into my closet.

I glanced at Mary, who grinned and shrugged. When she wanted to be, Jill was the proverbial immovable object. I stripped down and began redressing, mumbling to myself about crazy geriatrics.

I managed to tug the skirt on, but it was a challenge. It was a mini pencil skirt that I bought on a whim a few years back and had never worn. It was snug, but not uncomfortable. Luckily, the panties Jill had picked out were cheekies. I didn’t feel any panty lines as I ran my hands down the sides and across my ass.

The shirt Jill had tossed me was something I purchased for an intimate dinner with Jeremy. An in-home dinner. It was sheer to the point of being virtually see-through and had driven him wild that night because I hadn’t worn a bra. While I was preparing dinner, his eyes stayed locked on my boobs. I don’t think he managed three bites before he was all over me.

The shirt fell about two inches above my skirt and exposed my belly. The sleeves were long and cuffed. In the mirror, the red bra shone through the sheer material like a star. The reflection of my tight stomach made me also glad I had kept up on the crunches.

“Jill, I can’t wear this out in public. Find something else,” I whined, still looking at myself in the mirror. I also couldn’t help thinking that my legs looked damn good in the skirt, but I wasn’t telling her that.

She stepped back out of the closet with a pair of black heels. At four inches, they were the tallest heels I owned. She paused in front of me, giving me the once over, having me twirl.

“Perfect. Now you’re ready to party,” she cooed.

“Jill, I look like a college girl getting ready to prowl frat row on a Saturday night,” I said, slipping on the heels she held out to me and wrapping the ties around my ankle.

She rubbed her hands together in glee as she laughed. “Close. There will probably be frat boys where we are going.” She grabbed me and began pulling me towards the front door as I stumbled along behind her. Five minutes later, we were in Mary’s purple hell-wagon and roaring north towards Denver, AC/DC blaring through the speakers. That drive was the last clear memory I had of the night ahead.


My eyes blinked open, and I quickly shut them. The inside of my head pounded like a horse thundering down a track. I tried to swallow but my throat felt like someone lined it with sandpaper. It hurt to breathe. Hell, it hurt to think.

Groaning, I dragged my legs up and over the edge of the bed. As I struggled to sit up, the world spun like a carousel. My feet hit the cold hardwood floor, sending a shock through me to match the pounding in my head. It took a few deep breaths to fight down the urge to decorate the floor with whatever foulness was in my gut. I struggled for control of my stomach and head, considering it a win that I hadn’t collapsed to the floor in a heap.

Vague memories flashed behind my eyes. Jill. Mary. A dance club. Guys. Young guys. Tequila. A lot of tequila. I made a mental promise to myself to never drink tequila again. As my head thumped again, I changed that promise to just never to drink any alcohol again.

Before I could contemplate how to stop the horse that was galloping through my head, the door opened up and Mary came into the room.

“Morning Sunshine. Happy Birthday! It’s past noon and time for all the good little campers to rise and shine!” she said, all chipper and non-hangover-y. I immediately wanted her dead.

“I hate you,” I whimpered, holding my head. I mentally begged the head horse to please stop running.

“And that’s the thanks I get for bringing water and ibuprofen,” she said in a sing-song voice.

“Fine. I love you again. Gimme,” I groaned, holding my hand up and flipping my fingers. Shit, even that hurt.

Mary put the life-saving pills in my hand. I sat them on my tongue and held out my hand and a bottle of water got placed in it. I moaned when the cold goodness washed through my mouth. I swear it was all soaked up by my tongue and nothing went down my throat. The bottle was empty before I knew it.

Mary took the empty container from my hands. “I put one of Jake’s t-shirts and a pair of Julia’s sweatpants on the end of the bed. Fresh towels are in the bathroom. I even took pity on you and left a toothbrush and toothpaste. Take a shower, and when you’re ready, find the kitchen. I’ll have coffee ready, Party Girl. Oh, and I had Jake go get your car and bring it here. Didn’t know what time you’d be crawling out of bed and I’ve got lessons soon.”

I groaned, putting my head between my hands and resting my elbows on my knees.

“Please. Please tell me I didn’t do anything too wild.”

The bitch just laughed as she left the room. At that moment, I hated her so much. And then it hit my pain-riddled brain. She didn’t answer me.

Shit. What had I done last night?

As I shuffled to the bathroom, I tried to remember what had gone on that night. One thing was definitely sure. I was definitely too old to be acting like a twenty-year-old college girl prowling the clubs. How did I ever let Jill talk me into last night?

Thirty minutes later, after a steaming hot shower, I felt more human. Mary had left a small plastic bag on the end of the bed. I picked up the skirt and shirt from the floor. The state odor of spilled tequila wafted up, making my already unhappy stomach roil. Holding my breath, I shoved the soiled skirt, shirt, and panties into the bag. I had no intention of letting any of those items touch me until at least two washings. I glanced around for my bra but didn’t see it. Never mind. I’d have Mary find it later. I gathered the rest of my stuff from the dresser and shoved it into the bag before leaving the bedroom.

I stumbled slowly down the hall, the horse in my head down to a slow trot, thanks to the painkillers and the shower. I sniffed and caught a whiff of coffee. Like a bloodhound on a hunt, I latched onto that heavenly aroma and followed it into the kitchen.

Julia was sitting at the table munching on what appeared to be apple wedges. She also had a bowl of grapes. The mere sight of that piece of fruit had my stomach debating leaving the party early. I gulped hard, begging my stomach's contents to please stay home.

I eased down into a chair, a light groan escaping my clenched lips. A cup of coffee appeared in front of me, along with a small plate containing two pieces of toast. I took a long sip of the life-giving nectar. A snort pulled my attention over to the fruit chomper.

Julia picked up a grape, but paused before she popped it into her mouth. “You look like you had a great night. Remember any of it?” Her shot fired, she popped the grape into her mouth and began chewing.

Mary slid into the seat next to me. She was also smiling at me, amusement dancing in her eyes. Alarm bells and red flashing lights went off in my foggy brain.

“What?” I croaked.

Mary took a sip of her coffee and then gave me that same sickeningly sweet smile again.

“Oh, nothing. Nothing at all,” she replied, exuding innocence.

I looked from Julia to Mary and got a sinking feeling in the pit of my already churning stomach. I closed my eyes and laid my head on my arms as both of them burst out laughing.

“You’re an excellent dancer,” said Julia.

I turned my head on my arms to take in Mary, who wasn’t even trying to hide her guilt. I tried to still my head and heart as I whispered to her.

“Please tell me you didn’t take pictures?”

Her answer was to shove her phone into my face. Even blurry-eyed, I could make out the photo of a couple of women and several guys on the dance floor. I wasn’t positive, but that appeared to be Jill and me surrounded by a sea of guys.

Raising my head back up, I took a deep breath and reached for a piece of toast, taking a big crunchy bite. As I chewed, I looked at my supposed friend, who wiped a suspicious grin off her face and tried to paste on a sympathetic smile instead. I wasn’t buying it. I nodded slowly towards the photo.

“Okay. I can live with that. I was just dancing and no one I know would be there, or know anyone there. That’s good,” I said, sighing with relief.

I looked at Julia just as she flicked her eyes to Mary and back at me. I glanced at Mary and that feeling of dread did a two-and-a-half double-gainer into the acid pool that was my stomach.

“Mary? It was just dancing, right?”


“Don’t you ‘well’ me Mary Attwood. What else?” I said, loudly and instantly regretting it. The horse, who had calmed down, hooked up a wagon and began running around my brain. I could feel my heartbeat behind my eyeballs.

I held up my hand. “Wait. Before I forget, I didn’t find my bra. If you find it, I’ll get it later.”

“About that,” Mary said. Her jaw muscle was twitching with her effort to not laugh. I just knew in my heart that I wasn’t going to like the answer to my next question.

Closing my eyes, I asked again, quietly. “Mary, where’s my bra?”

Mary actually grinned before she swiped at her phone and showed me another picture. It appeared to be of some light fixture or something. Given my troubled vision, it was hard to make out.

“Mary?” I fixed her with a look. “What is that? Where. Is. My. Bra?”

“You threw your bra up into the lights over the dance floor,” she said, barely containing her laughter, almost snorting. “And it was impressive how you stripped out of it and never even stopped your groove.”

Julia was no help. She giggled around her bite of fruit. “Damn, Kathi. Once I have this kid, we have got to have a girls’ night out.”

I glared at her and then tried to take a deep breath. It didn’t work very well.

“I’ll not be going back there, and its just a bra. Yes. Yes, if that’s all I did, I can live with it.” I breathed a sigh of relief.


All three of us looked at my purse. Was that my text sound?

After watching me fumble with the simple snap on my clutch, Mary took pity and reached over to open it for me. I pulled out my phone and glanced at it. Sure enough, there was a text alert. I processed the name. Blinked, wiped my eyes, and gave the name another look.


Why would Mark be texting me? And why, suddenly, was I filled with a sense of dread? Maybe it was nothing. Maybe he was coming to trim Ringo today and just wanted to check in. Yeah, that was it. Reluctantly, I clicked on the message icon.

Mark: Good morning. I hope you doing? Head hurting?


My heart dropped. Nope. Ringo wasn’t involved in this text. Shit. How did he know? I glanced up at Mary and then over at Julia, who took that moment to shove some grapes in her mouth. Even hungover, I could see her eyes sparkling as she tried not to laugh. I turned my attention back to Mary, my supposed, possibly soon-to-be-dead, friend.

I looked at her, seriousness, or at least as much seriousness as I was able to muster in my hungover state, radiating from my eyes. “Mary, did you tell Mark about last night?”

Mary looked shocked, one hand coming up to clutch at her chest.

“Absolutely not! I would never rat out a girlfriend like that. I’m hurt that you even asked,” she replied. The mirth dancing in her eyes combined with the haughty sniff at the end of her declaration of innocence just made my head hurt.

Julia snickered and used the apple in her hand to point at the phone.

“You gonna answer him?” she asked.

“I hate you both so much right now,” I said. I blinked my eyes several times, trying to clear them as I thought about a response. Denial makes a good first line of defense. I began tapping at the keys.

Kathi: I’m not sure what you are talking about, but I am fine. But thank you for asking. Bye.

I hit send, hoping that would be the end of it. My phone pinged almost immediately with a response. I started reading and, knew it was not the end. Not even close.

Mark: Well, when you called and woke me up at two this morning, you certainly sounded like you were having a good time, which, based on the conversation, I assume involved a lot of alcohol. :)

I closed my eyes and began shaking my head ever so slightly. Acid began burbling in my stomach.

Eyes still closed, I set the cell phone down on the table. “Mary. Please tell me I didn’t ‘drunk dial’ Mark from the club?”

“Nope, you did not,” she said. I breathed a sigh of relief, thoughts spinning through my head. But then what is he talking about? Did he just dream that I called him? Oh. Is he dreaming about me? What? And why does that make me feel all squiggly in my belly?

Then Mary broke through my thoughts. “You did it on the drive home.”

Oh. Dear. God. I dropped my chin down to my chest.

I moaned as I opened one eye to peer at Mary. Shit, she was still grinning. “If you still love me as a friend, you’ll tell me you grabbed the phone from me before I said something stupid.”

“Well,” she said. “I tried to take the phone, but you held it away from me and told me to, and I quote, ‘Leave me alone so I can talk to the stud.’”

I let my head drop slowly to the table, thumping my forehead lightly against my arms. Death was looking good. Please, let me die right now.


With a sense of dread, I read the new message.

Mark: And just so you know, I would find a saddle very uncomfortable.

“Saddle?” I croaked. How could this get worse?

Mary’s face lit up in recollection. “Yep. You told him you wanted to throw a saddle on him and ride him all night.”

Julia snorted. “Oh, I have to use that one with Jake.”

I groaned into the table top. “Please God, take me now. I’ll have to find a new farrier. I don’t think this could get any more embarrassing.” Then the universe showed me just how I was oh-so-wrong.


I looked at the phone and then up at the two of them. They both had expectant grins on their faces. Hussies.

I reluctantly glanced at the message.

Mark: And for the record, I don’t send those kinds of pictures to ladies. That information should only be provided in person.

I felt the blush start at my cheeks and rise along all the way to my hair. I looked over at Mary. A crowbar wouldn’t remove the shit-eating grin tattooed on her face.


Mary flushed red. Oh God. I knew it was going to be bad when she blushed.

She stammered out words I really hadn’t wanted to hear. “You, um, wanted to know how, you know, how big he was and if would send you a… well… a picture.”

Yet again I fought down the urge to throw up. Julia lost it, howling in laughter. While she celebrated my pain, I put my head back on my arms, swearing to myself that I was never drinking again or going anywhere with Jill. In fact, killing Jill would solve the problem nicely. They would throw me in jail and I’d never see these people again. Yep. Plan made.

“Oh my God, you asked him for a dick pic?” Julia asked once she got her breath. “Go Kathi!” she said, raising her hand for a high five, which I ignored.

“Right,” I said, dragging myself up out of my chair. Before the offending instrument delivered yet another embarrassing message, I powered the phone off and shoved it into my clutch. I downed the cup of coffee, praying the caffeine would jump start my recovery.

“If you two former friends will excuse me, I am going to go home, curl up into a ball, and die.”

I picked up my bag of dirty clothes and my clutch and held my head as high as I could. I looked over at Mary, nodding at her.

“Thank you for driving last night. For the record, I will never go out with you and Jill again. Ever.”

“Awww,” she said, grinning. “Jill will be so disappointed. She wanted to fix you up with one of the guys. He really liked your bra-removal moves.”

I glared at her, willing her head to explode, but alas, nothing happened. To her credit, she did walk me to the door and gave me a hug. She might have been chuckling while she did it, but she at least won a few friendship points back for seeing me out.

“Are you sure you don’t want me to drive you home?” she asked.

I shook my head. “No, thank you. I’ll be fine. The painkillers are somewhat working and I’ll keep the windows down. I’m right as rain.”

As I turned the doorknob, Julia got in a parting shot. “Hey, if he changes his mind and sends you a pic, how about sharing with us? Curious minds and all.”

I turned to her and slowly flipped her off. She laughed and went back to eating her fruit.

Stepping out into the bright light caused my eyes to water even as I threw a hand up to block the sun. As I moved off the bottom concrete step onto the sidewalk, I looked up and towards the driveway, searching for my car.

As if the universe had not smacked me enough, there stood Mark, leaning against his truck. I watched as he shoved his phone back into his pocket. He grinned and gave me a small finger wave.

Well, fuck a duck.

I may have been hungover and embarrassed, but the unfogged part of my brain still checked him out from head to toe. All of my lady parts convened a quick meeting. They agreed he checked all their boxes and wanted a closer examination. I promptly told them to calm the fuck down.

A light orange t-shirt stretched taut across his chest and shoulders, and with his arms crossed, his biceps threatened to rip his sleeves. A faded baseball hat sat on his head, holding back those shiny brown locks.

And dear Lord, the dimple that appeared when he grinned. God, if he was only ten years older.

Oh great. You asked him for a dick pic, and now you’re checking him out. You need therapy, girl, and lots of it. But this isn’t your first walk of shame, so pull it together.

I squared my shoulders, pulling myself taller as I stepped onto the gravel and gingerly walked towards him and my car. Barefoot on gravel was not the best way to be moving in a hungover state, but I wasn't going to give him the satisfaction of watching me fumble with putting on high heels. I also didn’t need to look behind me to know that my two ex-friends were at the window watching like spectators at a football game.

The handsome hunk stood there watching me, that self-righteous grin on his face, as I picked my way over the sharp rocks. When I got close to him, he touched his fingers to the brim of his hat. I didn’t look him in the eye. As I stepped around the front corner of my car, my heel came down on a piece of pointed gravel sticking up, causing me to yelp and jerk my foot up. I dropped my purse and flailed my arms out, trying to catch the fender of my car.

Mark stepped forward to help, but I threw up a hand, stopping him in place. The bastard grinned and stepped back as I bent down to pick up my belongings. Keeping up on my toes to save my abused heel, I limp-stepped to my car door. I heard Mark moving behind me, but I kept my eyes focused on my door as I thumbed the unlock button.

The unwritten rule of a shame walk was to never acknowledge the lesser beings around you. Own the shame, wear it like a cape. Be a shame superhero.

I opened my car door and tossed my belongings to the passenger seat before sliding into the car. Again keeping my focus straight ahead, I fumbled with my seat belt twice before it clicked into place. That seemingly impossible task completed, I started the car. I reached up to the visor and pulled down my sunglasses. I was sliding them on when Mr. Gorgeous Smugness imposed himself into my sight. He tapped lightly on my window. Taking a deep breath and composing my face into an emotionless mask, I hit the button on the armrest and the protective barrier slid down.

“Yes?” I asked, my tone filled with as much non-polite politeness as I could muster.

“You dropped these,” he said, his voice low and rumbly. I tried very hard to ignore that rumbly vibration as it moved over me, but despite my best efforts, a few of my areas purred in response.

I glanced down at his hand. The heat started at my neck and shot to the top of my head. Dangling from his index finger was a pair of lacy red panties. The very ones Jill had insisted I wear.

It must have been the last hurrah of the tequila coming from the depths of my veins, combined with the shiver his rumbling voice was giving me, because I didn’t immediately snatch them from his hand. Oh no. Instead, I had a sudden rush of bravery and without really thinking things through, responded. Not knowing where the hell this was coming from and really not caring at the moment, I used one finger to pull my sunglasses down my nose so that I could stare over them. I looked him in the eye as I gave him my best smirk.

“What, don’t want to keep them as a trophy? Isn't that what you young guys do?”

His grin slipped for a moment, and I could have sworn an intense look of disappointment flitted across his face. But it was only momentary, and in a blink, the grin was back. With a flick of his wrist, he tossed my errant underwear through the window and into the back seat. One arm resting on the top of my car, he leaned down closer to my open window, laying his other arm on the door frame.

“Kathi?” he said, lowering the volume of the rumble, but not its intensity. Only the tequila knew why I leaned forward to hear him better.


His eyes searched mine. “I don’t take what I don’t earn. But you know what?”

Don’t answer, it’s a trap.

“What?” Stupid tequila.

“I would love to earn them. Be safe driving home.”

My mouth hung open, my face flushed deeper red, and I swear the temperature in the car shot up thirty degrees. What the hell?

He nodded to me, pushed off the car, and turned back to his truck.

I sat there a moment, trying to catch my breath. His rumbling voice still echoed in my ears and caused a warmth to spread throughout my body as I put the car in reverse and backed out of the driveway. I was ashamed of the drunk call and letting myself get sucked into the last exchange. Mostly, though, I was ashamed that I scoped out his ass as he walked away. However, I wasn’t so ashamed as to admit that I would really like to see that view again.

It was going to be a long ride home.


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