Home > Body Games (Games #5)(8)

Body Games (Games #5)(8)
Author: Jessica Clare

So I took my sweet-ass time, pretending to hesitate while people around me hurriedly stripped. I watched them out of the corner of my eye. Kip, I'd seen naked before. But everyone else was removing clothing so fast that I wondered if they'd even thought about it.

Well, everyone except for the girl with the short hair who'd been so lovey-dovey on her boyfriend. He was looking at the girl, and she had her arms crossed over her chest, a mutinous look on her face. All her clothing was still on.

Apparently I had competition for being the slowest person to undress on the island.

Kip looked over and noticed that I hadn't removed a stitch of clothing, even as he slid on his shoes. "What are you doing, Annabelle? Come on! It's a fucking race!"

I was well aware of that. It was a race I was going to throw deliberately unless he stopped being such a douche. After all, I certainly did not want to be naked on national TV. It wasn't exactly going to help with my 'Reality TV slut' reputation. "Did you ever stop to think that maybe I don't want to play naked? I certainly don't want to play with you!"

Someone raced past, raining sand onto me as he ran buck-naked for the finish line. Others followed him, and the beach was nothing but naked body parts and colored boxes.

Kip hopped up, shoes tied, and grabbed his box. He looked as if he'd wanted to run after the others, but hesitated again. "Come on, Annabelle, please. I really want to play."

I pretended to consider it, toying with the hem of my shirt. "I want an apology first."

He looked confused. "For what? Not calling you after we hooked up? I thought it was just an island thing--"

"Not for that," I hissed, looking around to see if a camera had captured that. Sure enough, there was a guy with a camera not three feet away, filming in our direction. Dammit. They'd heard everything. "I want you to apologize for the way you made me look last time."

He blinked. "Like a hot babe?"

"Like an idiot!" God, I was tempted to rip my shirt off and strangle him with it. "You totally played me."

"It was just a game. Damn. How was I supposed to know you were making all those lovesick confessions to the camera?"

My cheeks flushed red. He had a point. "You know what? Forget it." I shrugged and dropped my hands. "I don't think I want to play after all."

"Annabelle, please," Kip begged. He dropped to his knees dramatically in the sand and put his hands under his chin in a mimic of prayer. "Please. You know we can go really far if we work together."

That was the thing. I didn't want to work with him. I glanced around.

The girl with the short Miley-hair still had her arms crossed over her chest, looking furious. "Absolutely not, Brodie," she told her partner. "If I wouldn't do it on TV last time, I won't do it this time."

"It's just skin, baby," he told her, rubbing her shoulders. "It's no big deal."

"It's a big deal to me," she said, and looked on the verge of tears. "Except this is worse than last time, and you know it."

"Hey, hey," the guy named Brodie said gently. He went to the girl's front and cupped her face. "I don't want to play if you don't want to play either, Kandis, baby." He leaned in and gave her a sweet kiss on the mouth. "We have our money. We can just go home if that's what you want to do."

"I don't know what I want to do," she said miserably, watching as Kissy and Rusty - the older rednecks - limped across the finish line with their colorful boxes. Cellulite and flab was bouncing as they trotted, but I had to give them credit. They'd bared all and given it the old college try. Then, Kandis looked over at me, and the look in her eyes was sharp. "Are you not undressing either?"

"I'm still deciding," I said uneasily. "What happens if neither of us undresses?"

"Then you're both out," Chip said, "And we'll team your men together."

Kip brightened. "So I get to stay?"

Brodie looked hesitant. He looked over at partner. "I don't want to play without her."

Kandis shook her head, wiping her tears. "You might be better off without me."

So…wait.

If I refused to undress, Kip still got to play and I'd be sent packing? I’d be double screwed and Kip could still win the money? On what planet was this a good idea?

I watched the two men consider, and then I spurred into action, ripping my shirt off over my head.

Over at the finish line, someone cheered. "You can do it," a voice hollered in my direction. Surprised, I turned to gaze down the beach. It was Hunky McHunkerton that had sat next to me on the boat ride over. My cheeks flushed as others began to cat-call in an encouraging way. Hunk clapped encouragingly, not trying to make the process gross at all.

Just…encouraging.

That was rather nice.

I stared directly at the three people left and dropped my shorts, revealing bright green lacy panties that matched my bra. God, I wished I'd brought something a little more conservative. I'd wanted to feel empowered, though, so I'd gone all in when it came to my clothing, including sexy panties. At least they weren’t period panties, I told myself, and sucked in a breath as I reached for my bra.

“Hurry up,” Kip encouraged me.

But I froze. Everyone was staring at me. Before, they’d all undressed at once so it was no big deal. Now that they were all naked and I was the only one waiting to undress? All eyes were turned to me. I hesitated, staring around me. Was this a mistake?

“Come on, girl,” Emilio shouted. “Shake your money-makers!”

A laugh rose up from the other contestants, and they began to holler and cheer louder. For some reason, it broke the awkwardness of things and I unclasped my bra and raised it into the air, twirling it like a lasso. More cheers erupted, and even uptight Kandis gave a little laugh. I flung it to the ground and then reached for my panties. Sucking in a deep breath, I closed my eyes and wrenched them to the ground.

And then it was done. Amid whoops and cheers, I stepped out of my sandals and my panties and was naked on the beach. I took the shoes Kip shoved into my hands, stuck them on my feet, grabbed my box, and hauled my way to the finish line, Kip a few leaps ahead of me. My face burned with humiliation, and I tried to walk as smoothly as possible so my boobs (and any other jiggly parts) wouldn’t bounce too much. Despite all the nudity around me, I kept my gaze firmly locked on the ground.

When I crossed the finish line, I dropped my box and exhaled heavily. I’d done it. For better or for worse, I was going to be in the naked edition of Endurance Island.

Kip immediately grabbed me into a bear hug. “You are awesome, Annabelle—“

I gave a squeal of dismay and wriggled out of his arms. “Don’t touch me! I’m naked, for Pete’s sake!”

He gave me a wounded look as I pushed him away, as if I’d hurt his feelings.

Irritated, I crossed my arms over my breasts protectively (there was nothing to be done for my poor bare lady parts below, but at least they’d been waxed — another Endurance Island grooming must).

Kandis and Brodie, still clothed, stood on the far end of the beach. Kandis had a pretty upset look on her face, but Brodie put a hand on the back of her neck and pulled her against him into a hug. “It’s okay, baby,” he told her. “I’m not upset at all.”

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