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The Perfect League

The Perfect League

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What can Briarwood's resident bad boy teach little miss perfect? A lot, actually, since he's her hot new tutor.

Beloved by her classmates and the newly minted captain of the girls' basketball team, Juliette's life is perfect. Except for the fact that she's one bad grade away from failing. A tutor might help, but that would mean exposing her deep dark secret—she's not perfect. Far from it.

But if word gets out, her team will lose their fearless leader and she'll lose her stainless reputation. Luckily, there's one name on the list of tutors who has nothing to do with her friends...or anyone else in the school, for that matter. Connor may not have friends, but it turns out there's a lot this bad boy can teach her. Like how amazing a first kiss can be, and how hard and fast two people can fall in love—even when they both know that this secret relationship is all sorts of wrong.

Main Tropes

  • Bad Boy / Good Girl
  • Opposites Attract
  • First Love

Intro Into Chapter 1

Everybody has their happy place. For me, that happy place was Briarwood Elementary School’s gymnasium on Wednesday afternoons. Once my basketball practice was done, I’d head over there to help coach their girls’ team.

These girls were good. Like, crazy good. And it’s not like I was biased or anything, but these girls might’ve been the best players the world had ever seen.

Okay, yeah. So I was biased. 

But my point was, I loved being there. I loved working with the kids. No matter what was going on in my life, at least I had that. I had these rambunctious girls who made me laugh and who reminded me how fun the game could be.

Don’t get me wrong. I still loved basketball. It was still my favorite sport, by far, but once you added the pressure of earning a college scholarship into the mix, it kind of lost some of the fun and gained a whole lot of stress. 

“One more layup, Andie,” I called out. The little blonde nodded, her expression fierce.

Man, I loved these girls.

But today, for the first time, this place wasn’t quite as happy for me. Some of the stress of my day followed me here because I knew I’d be seeing him. Connor Matthews.

I spotted him now, sitting hunched over in the bleacher seats and looking all sorts of out of place. He looked out of place in our high school, but here? He kind of looked ridiculous. He had his elbows on his knees and his head tilted down as he did something on his phone. His messy dark hair fell over his face so I couldn’t read his expression, but I didn’t need to. He’d be looking fierce—that was pretty much the only way he ever looked. Like he might get into a fight at any moment.

Every school has their bad crowd, and Connor was ours. 

Most of my friends were scared of big, bad Connor, with his bulging biceps covered in tattoos. They’d never admit they were scared, of course, but there was no denying his effect in the hallways. People tended to get quiet when he passed, and then start whispering as soon as he’d gone by. 

It wasn’t like we’d ever seen him be violent or anything. But he was always scowling or glowering or just looking pissed in general. More than that, he was a big guy and he had this tension about him, like he was wound up tight.

Half the time he walked the halls with earbuds in, even though that was prohibited, but I’m pretty sure even the teachers were intimidated by him so no one said anything.

Anyways, his being here at the grade school basketball practice wasn’t what was stressing me out. He was here most weeks, if not for the whole practice, then he came at the end to pick up his little sister, Gina. 

Luckily for Gina, she didn’t inherit her brother’s bad attitude, just his dark good looks. But her black hair was always pulled neatly back in a ponytail and her uniform fit in, unlike his grunge rocker look that looked like it came straight out of a 90’s music video.

His mere presence didn’t bother me. He always kept to himself and did his own thing, which was fine by me. He didn’t know I existed, and I was cool with that.


Except today, I was considering breaking through this invisible barrier we’d placed between us as if through an unspoken accord. As the only two people in the gym who were not pre-pubescent or a middle-aged coach, it wasn’t like either of us didn’t know the other was there. I mean, our high school wasn’t that big that he wouldn’t recognize me, but he never so much as nodded in my direction. 

I was always acutely aware of him, though. It was hard not to be. The guy stood out. But I respected the wall between us so I also pretended that he wasn’t there. Mutual ignoration. 

That’s not a word. I made that up.

The coach, also known as Mr. Danvers, fifth grade science teacher, blew his whistle to signal an end to practice. The girls hustled off the court, already talking and laughing in groups as they made their way to the locker room.

Connor hadn’t lifted his head. He’d wait until Gina came out. Then he’d get up, go over and take her pink sparkly backpack from her and lead her out to the parking lot. I never saw him smile at her, but he must talk, right? I mean, I didn’t think he was a mute. But if he did talk, I’d never caught anything he said. Gina seemed to talk enough for both of them, chattering loudly as they walked out the door.

I know this because I watched them every week. Not in a stalker way, but because the Matthews siblings fascinated me. Maybe because they were so very different, or maybe because I loved the part when big bad Connor took her backpack and slung it over his shoulder. That one gesture made the big bad wolf seem so very human. Sweet, even.

Still, watching him sit there with that predator vibe and that intimidating glare, it was hard to remember that sometimes I thought that maybe, just maybe, he had a soft spot. I had a few minutes to decide if I was really going to do this. I stared at his bent head, nibbling on my lower lip as I debated this course of action.

But what other choice did I have?

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