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25. Apr. 2016


The Ninth Inning series presents Memphis Angels’ shortstop, Jordan Johnson.

Jordan Johnson loves his wife more than anything. After suffering a traumatic loss together, he’s willing to give her whatever she needs. She needs space, he’ll give her space. She needs time, he’ll give her time. However, when Heidi asks for a divorce, Jordan refuses to give it to her. It’s tough sometimes, but Jordan won’t stop fighting for them.

Heidi Johnson’s life seems to be a fairytale with the perfect baseball husband, the great vacation beach house, and a good career. Then, tragedy hit her from nowhere. Now, she’s trying to figure out which way is up and which is down. She figures leaving Jordan and focusing on opening her own business will make the pain go away, but it doesn’t help. Finally, she tells Jordan a divorce is what she needs, but he’s too stubborn to give her what she wants the most.

Jordan won’t give up on her and Heidi won’t change her mind. Will he push her further away by reminding her of what they had? Will she push him too far with her rejections that he’ll never come back? Or can they save their marriage?

When they’re put into the ninth inning, will Jordan be able to hold tight to Heidi or will her stubbornness be the end of the game?

25. Apr. 2016

Über den Autor

Lindsay Paige is the author of multiple Young Adult, New Adult, and Sports romances. She also enjoys writing books with characters who deal with anxiety and depression, issues which are close to her heart. Lindsay is a North Carolinian who loves watching hockey, sharing puns, having conversations with her miniature Schnauzer, rewatching episodes of M*A*S*H, and living her dream of writing books for a living.Lindsay has written the following books/series:Bending Under PressureBold as Love seriesBracing for Love seriesCarolina Rebels seriesDon’t PanicSanity seriesYou Before MeWithout a DoubtShe has cowritten the following series with Mary Smith:The Ninth Inning seriesOh Captain, My Captain seriesThe Penalty Kill trilogy

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Jordan - Lindsay Paige

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Season 2 of

The Ninth Inning Series

Copyright © 2015 by Lindsay Paige and Mary Smith

Smashwords Edition

ISBN-13: 978-1311592736

All rights reserved.

Without limiting the rights under copyright reserved above, no part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in or introduced into a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form, or by any means (electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise) without the prior written permission of both the copyright owner and the above publisher of this book.

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, bands, and/or restaurants referenced in this work of fiction, which have been used without permission. The publication/use of these trademarks is not authorized, associated with, or sponsored by the trademark owners.

Smashwords Edition License Notes

This ebook is licensed for your personal enjoyment only. This ebook may not be re-sold or given away to other people. If you would like to share this book with another person, please purchase an additional copy for each recipient. If you’re reading this book and did not purchase it, or it was not purchased for your use only, then please return to your favorite ebook retailer and purchase your own copy. Thank you for respecting the hard work of this author.

Table of Contents

Title Page

Chapter One

Chapter Two

Chapter Three

Chapter Four

Chapter Five

Chapter Six

Chapter Seven

Chapter Eight

Chapter Nine

Chapter Ten

Chapter Eleven

Chapter Twelve

Chapter Thirteen

Chapter Fourteen

Chapter Fifteen

Chapter Sixteen

Chapter Seventeen

Chapter Eighteen

Chapter Nineteen

Chapter Twenty

Chapter Twenty-One

Chapter Twenty-Two

Chapter Twenty-Three

Chapter Twenty-Four

About the Authors

IT’S TIME. MY fingers shake as I type the words Memphis divorce lawyers in Google. I can’t keep letting Jordan think there’s a chance for us because there is no possible chance. Our marriage, our life together, is all over, but he still calls and thinks one day I’ll come running into his arms as if nothing happened.

Page after page, I click through names and addresses, but I have no clue what I’m looking for. Finally, I just click over to the next page and pick the name at the top. I shake my head at the name: Love and Attorneys, Divorce Specialist. That’s an oxymoron if I’ve ever seen one. I write down the name and number before I lock up the salon and head to my apartment.

It’s dark out, and I hold my pepper spray tightly in my hand. Jordan has sent me one every month since Trent’s wife was murdered. It’s the one thing I’ve kept from the numerous gifts he sends. I make sure the car doors are locked before I drive off.

My apartment isn’t far from the salon and I like it that way. Owning a hair and nail salon isn’t something I ever dreamed of doing. I’m not one to take risks or wake up one day and open a business. However, the Memphis air has made me do all sorts of different things. I left Jordan. I want a divorce. I own a salon. I’m a boss and have employees. I’m on my own. If someone told me I would be doing these things ten years ago, I wouldn’t have believed them.

My apartment is a simple studio. I didn’t need anything big because it’s just me. Jordan still lives in the house on the west side, but it never felt like home to me. I feel at home here, though. I’ve never lived on my own. After high school, I moved in with some friends. I didn’t know if I wanted to go to a big university or not, and in the end, I didn’t go. I always had a love for hair, nails, and crazy haircuts. I ended up at cosmetology school and got my license.

It’s how I met Jordan. He was playing minor baseball in South Carolina and would get his haircut from me. At first, he was a cocky twenty-something thinking he was going to be a big shot in the MLB. My first impression was he was just an ass who liked to brag on himself, but one night, after a very long day, I ran into him at a bar. One thing led to another and a year later, we were married and he was brought up from the minors.

It began a long journey of trades, injuries, and more baseball drama than I care to think about. However, I stood by his side time-and-time again. Until...

My phone rings as I pour myself a glass of wine. Hi, Mom.

Heidi, how would I look with purple hair?

Like a fifty year old who is going through a midlife crisis. Why are you asking me? I laugh.

Actually, I was just seeing if you would tell me the truth. Your father isn’t listening to me and if he keeps it up, I’m going to start cooking him no-salt, low-fat dinners and see if he’ll listen then. She’s threatening him, but I know she’ll do nothing of the sort.

Mom, I’m sure Dad is just watching TV. You know how he is.

The old fart, Mom mumbles.

I laugh harder. I long to find someone who I could have a relationship like my parents have. They nag at each other, but they love each other more than their own life. I thought I had it with Jordan, but it disappeared a few years into our marriage.

How’s your day, Heidi? Mom asks after I stop laughing.

It was good and the salon is really starting to pick up business.

Have you talked to Jordan?

My parents love Jordan. They think of him as their son, and I sometimes wonder if they’re on his side in this whole matter, but they don’t say anything to me.

Well, he sent me flowers again. My desktop is beginning to look like a greenhouse.

He’s sorry and he loves you.

I’m contacting a divorce lawyer tomorrow. I’ve been putting it off because I wanted to get the salon up and going and make sure I was making the right choice and I am. So, it’s time.

The silence on the other end worries me for a moment. If you think that’s best for you, then okay. Mom’s tone tells me how sad she really is.

It’s going to be fine. I’m going to be fine. Jordan is going to be fine. I keep saying it again and again. The word ‘fine’ is my favorite word here lately.

Keep telling yourself that, dear.


HEIDI AND I bought a house when we moved here. Three weeks later, she left me. I knew she was struggling, and while I didn’t want to give her space, I’ve given her as much as I can. I send her flowers weekly. I call her every two weeks, though she doesn’t always answer. Unfortunately, I haven’t seen her in who knows how long.

I miss my wife. I miss her so much. It’s been too long. The thought of giving up on her, our love, and our marriage has never crossed my mind. She needed time and space, which I’ve given her, but as each day passes, I wonder when she’ll finally come home. When she’s healed enough that she can face our life and me again.

Our practice is a little later today, so I’m only in gym shorts as I start a load of laundry. This house is too big for me. I’m reminded of it every day and especially on those when I’m cleaning it. I wish I could share this house with Heidi like I’m supposed to be. Someday, I will.

A chime rings throughout the house, so I quickly drop in the detergent, close the lid, and head to the front door to see who has rang the doorbell. My jaw drops when I see my wife, looking anxious as she gives me a once-over. I trail my gaze over her, soaking in the curves I haven’t seen in too long, her new hairstyle, and simply how beautiful she looks.

Heidi, I smile. Is she here to come home? I step aside so she can come in, but she shakes her head. That’s not a good sign. My stomach twists into knots as I swallow hard.

I won’t be here long, Jordan. I had to do this in person though. She clasps her hands in front of her, squeezing her fingers. Is there a day this week you’re free in the morning?

I’m confused at what she wants, but I answer. Wednesday. Why? Are you sure you don’t want to come in?

I’m making an appointment with an arbitrator for a divorce, she blurts.

What? My heart begins to hammer in my chest fast and hard; my chest aches. She can’t be serious. Heidi, I begin.

This is what I want.

I shake my head. No. I’ve given you everything you want; I’m not giving you this too. You were supposed to come back to me. You said you needed time, and I gave you that. You said you needed space, so I gave you that. I’ve done all that you’ve asked, Heidi. How can you want this? I’m completely baffled and heartbroken. This can’t be happening.

I’m not in love with you anymore, she whispers.

Right then, I feel my heart explode and crumble into tiny pieces. Not once have I given up on you, on us, and you want a divorce?

I’m sorry—

"Save it, Heidi. I don’t want to hear it. I’m living in this house that we bought. I haven’t been with anyone else. And then it slams into me so hard, I lean against the door for support. Is there someone else?" Is that why she wants to leave me? Because she’s fallen in love with another person?

No. I’m really sorry, Jordan, but I wanted to tell you in person. I’ll let you know what time the appointment is. She turns and walks down the stone path to her car.

I slam the door closed, leaning against it. What the hell? I’ve done everything right. I’ve done everything she wanted of me. Why does she want this? Why doesn’t she want to come home? Maybe she’s been away so long she forgot how good we were together. The time and space she needed might have been for the worse and not for the better. I’m starting to think so, especially now that she’s wants a divorce.

This time, I’m not giving her what she wants. I’m going to dig my heels in and hold on to our marriage, even if she doesn’t want it. After everything we’ve been through, we deserve that much. We deserve a fighting chance, even if I’m the only one fighting.

I’m in a sour mood when I make it to practice. Everyone seems so happy and chipper and it pisses me off. Why don’t I get my happiness? All I need is Heidi and she wants to take herself away from me. It’s always been Heidi. I don’t want to start over and search for someone else. I want her.

My anger and frustration fuel me instead of distracting me, thankfully. After practice, we watch some footage, and then hit the weight room. I wish there was a punching bag in here, but there isn’t. It’s probably for the best. It won’t do me any good to hurt my hand in any way.

What’s up with you today? Colby asks. He’s my closest friend on the team and our third baseman.

Nothing, I grit.

One of these days you’re going to explode if you don’t talk to someone.

Not today, old man.

He is one of the oldest on the team and we like to tease him about it. He’s pretty wise though. He is a good guy, helping whenever he can, however he can. He laughs. All right. I’ll leave you alone then. Let’s do some squats.

We head over to the bar with weights on each end. We place the weighted bar on our shoulders while we do squats. He’s crazy because he loves doing these. I don’t mind them, but I don’t love them. They are a good distraction though. Once I’m forced to return home, I decide that no matter what, Heidi is not getting this divorce without a hard-fought battle.


I SHOULD BE crying. I should be depressed. I should be drinking large of amounts of alcohol or eating ice cream out of the carton. Instead, I’m doing my quarterly accounting and billing books. I do feel bad, but there’s a part of me where relief is the only thing I feel.

Hey, girl. I look up and see Skye walking from the back room. She has the wildest hairstyle. This week, one side is jet black and the other fire engine red, but she’s an amazing stylist. I thought you left.

Nope, I point at the computer screen. I have paperwork still.

Are you okay? You seemed bummed out when you came back this evening.

Jordan and I are divorcing. It’s the first time I’ve said it out loud to anyone.

Oh, Heidi. Skye’s face turns sad. I’m sorry. Would you like to go out for a drink?

I shake my head. No, thanks. I’m going to finish this and head home.

Okay. Have a good night.

I smile as Skye leaves, and I hear the front door close. I return to my task and don’t look up until I am done.

When I finally make it home, it hits me. This is really happening. I sit on the couch and think of my life with Jordan. He’s a great guy and very caring. I know he’ll find someone soon and they’ll love each other. Going to the divorce lawyer is the right thing to do. He told me since we didn’t have a prenup and have been separated for so long, an arbitrator is the best solution

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