Prescott College 2: Brandon Mills versus the V-Card

J.A. Rock & Lisa Henry

Smart, shy Prescott sophomore Brandon Mills is working hard to overcome his troubled past and be normal. With the help of his friends Mark and Deacon, and his brothers at Phi Sigma Kappa, he’s slowly coming out of his shell. But...
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Full Description

Smart, shy Prescott sophomore Brandon Mills is working hard to overcome his troubled past and be normal. With the help of his friends Mark and Deacon, and his brothers at Phi Sigma Kappa, he’s slowly coming out of his shell. But when he accidentally drenches a freshman in orange soda, he faces something he’s not ready for: a boy crushing on him.

Alex Kekoa pledges Phi Sig because it has everything he wants: a house full of nerds who won’t tease him for being smart, a dog, and Brandon Mills. Brandon is just the type of guy Alex needs to help fulfill his college ambition: losing his virginity. Except Alex doesn’t know that Brandon can’t stand to touch or be touched.

When Alex and Brandon are drafted onto the Phi Sig Academic Challenge team, their mutual attraction grows. If there’s anyone who can help Brandon discover it feels good to touch and kiss, maybe it’s klutzy Alex with his cute glasses and his dinosaur obsession. But as the competition--and their relationship--heats up, Alex’s determination not to die a virgin clashes with Brandon’s vow of lifelong celibacy, forcing them to examine what’s truly important to each of them about love.

  • Note:
    Brandon Mills versus the V-Card (Prescott College, #2)
Excerpt
Two hours later Brandon was hiding in his room. He’d made it through the first hour of the Phi Sig Meet and Greet before he’d run out of things to say and gotten the hell out. He sat on his bed with a book, pretending he wasn’t really hiding—he was studying—and he didn’t really need to be downstairs at all.

Next door at the Alpha Delt house, the bass was pumping and people were cheering. Brandon rolled his eyes at the noise before the disparate threads of it joined together into a chant: “Mark! Mark! Mark! Mark!

Brandon crossed the floor and stuck his head out the window, but he couldn’t see anything from here except the back corner of Alpha Delt. God. He hoped Mark wasn’t on the roof or something stupid.

A victorious cheer rose, and Brandon sighed with relief. Whatever dumb thing Mark had done, at least he hadn’t broken his neck doing it. Yet.

A few minutes later someone knocked at the door.

“Come in.”

Deacon stepped inside, holding his phone. “Did you hear that?”

“Yeah. What’s he doing?”

“Surfing.” Deacon sat beside him and held out his phone.

There was a blurred picture of Mark. On a surfboard. In the pool.

“And…” Deacon snorted. “Yes, we have video.”

They both watched, wincing, as Mark took a run up, jumped onto the surfboard, and rode it the length of the pool as the crowd cheered him on.

“He’s going to kill himself,” Brandon said, at the same time as Deacon said, “Crack his head open and die.”

They watched the video again.

Deacon shook his head. “You’d tell me, right, if I was being paranoid? I mean, that’s an incredibly stupid thing to do, isn’t it? It’s not just me.”

“No. It’s incredibly stupid.”

“I am going to kick his ass,” Deacon said, then corrected himself. “Arse.”

Brandon grinned. Mark didn’t have pet peeves so much as an entire menagerie of peeves, but first and foremost was the word ass. He’d been training Deacon out of its use for about a year now.

“Look,” he’d said last night at the bar, “I’ll eat your fries instead of chips, and I’ll learn what the difference is between a gallon and a liter, and how far it takes to walk a mile instead of a kilometer, but you will never take my arse away from me. Are we clear?”

“I wouldn’t dream of taking your arse,” Deacon had said, while Brandon had tried to pretend the conversation wasn’t happening.

Mark had sucked ketchup off his finger. “Actually, Deke, you can take my arse whenever you like, as long as you pronounce it right.”

Brandon had blushed as bright red as the ketchup, he was sure. Mark didn’t have much of a filter. He said whatever the hell he wanted and thought he could get away with it just because he had a cool accent and a wicked smile. And most of the time he was absolutely right.

Brandon sometimes envied his friend’s uninhibited nature. And then he remembered it led to riding a surfboard the length of a pool with a beer in each hand, and, following that scenario to its logical conclusion, would very probably end with a visit to the emergency room and a bunch of stitches.

Mark was crazy, which worked for him but was not Brandon’s thing at all.

“Sometimes I don’t even know why we’re friends,” he said jokingly, feeling a little uncomfortable when Deacon looked at him. Heat rose in his face. God, did Deacon think he needed his self-esteem boosted or, worse, that he was fishing for compliments? He forced a laugh. “Because he is cray-zee!”

Deacon laughed, and looked at his phone again. “Yeah,” he said, like he wouldn’t have it any other way. “Yeah he is.”

* * * *

Brandon wasn’t sure how it had happened, but somehow Deacon had managed to get him downstairs again, and suddenly he was mingling.

“Just mingle,” his mother used to say, waving her hand at a full room as though it was nothing to be worried about. Her smile was a little too bright though, a little too manic, as though she was afraid he’d ruin it. Milford was a small town, and everybody knew about Brandon and Mr. Fenimore. That was the worst part. In a city, maybe Brandon could have been anonymous, but not here. Even though his name was kept out of the paper, everybody knew.

After the trial, Brandon had begged his parents to move towns, or to at least let him change schools. But his dad was the town’s only optometrist, and he couldn’t just pack up and go. They didn’t have the money for boarding school, and they couldn’t send Brandon to St. Mary’s. They weren’t Catholic.

Brandon would have been Catholic in a fucking heartbeat if it had meant not having to walk back into his old school. He’d gone from being a reasonably popular kid to a leper, all in the space of a few months. First he wasn’t invited to birthday parties and sleepovers anymore, and then kids stopped coming to his, and somehow he became that kid—the one with no friends, the loner, the loser—all the way through until he graduated from high school.

He froze as he got caught up in a crush of people. Someone walking by put a hand on Brandon’s shoulder to steady himself as he squeezed past. Nothing threatening about the touch, nothing weird; the guy’s hand was there and then gone. But Brandon suddenly felt too hot. He pushed through the crowd, heading for the stairs, but as soon as he started up, he saw Tony on the landing, showing a group of rushees a video on his phone.

Fuck.

Brandon turned back and headed for the kitchen, not sure what he planned to do there.

He’d told himself Prescott would be a fresh start, but it hadn’t worked out like that. He’d told himself his sophomore year with Phi Sig would be another fresh start, but it had taken Deacon to coax him downstairs to mingle. And now look at him—freaking out because some guy had touched his shoulder. Maybe he’d have to wait until college was done to get that fresh start, or maybe it was never going to happen for him.

He went to fetch a soda from the cooler. A soda was good. It gave him something to do with his hands. He cracked it open as he turned and stepped into a group of rushees. The one closest to him squeaked a warning, but it was too late. Brandon had doused them both in orange soda.

“Shit,” he said, taking in a pair of wide, dark eyes framed by hipster glasses, and a mouth frozen open in surprise. “I’m sorry!”

* * * *

“Omigod.” Alex was sticky and orange. It was even in his shoes. “Omigod.”

“Come with me to the mixer, Alex,” his roommate, Evan, had said. “It’ll be fun!”

Sure.

“I’m sorry,” the guy said again. He looked as guilty as that Labrador, the house dog, had earlier when some seniors had busted her stealing a packet of chips. Alex actually believed him. Maybe this wasn’t some sort of Let’s Be Assholes to the Unsuspecting Freshman game. And really, Phi Sig didn’t seem like that sort of fraternity, but what the hell did Alex know? He’d been at Prescott for all of a week.

“I’ve got a shirt you can borrow,” the guy said. “Come up to the bathroom.”

“Okay.” Alex shot a narrow look at Evan. If I get tied up with duct tape and beaten to death in a hazing ritual gone wrong, remember to tell the police you saw me with this guy last. Which was probably too complicated to convey in a glance to someone he didn’t really know that well.

He followed his assailant up the stairs.

“I’m really sorry,” the guy said again, ushering him into a large bathroom. It was nicer than the ones in the dorms, and for the first time Alex saw the point in rushing a fraternity. It was still a communal bathroom, but it didn’t seem like the sort where you were afraid to walk around barefoot. The stalls actually looked clean.

“It’s okay.” He managed a smile as he reached for the hem of his sodden shirt, a little embarrassed to be taking it off in front of some stranger, but aware he’d look more foolish just standing there drenched in orange soda. Alex pulled his shirt off, dislodging his glasses in the process. When he finally readjusted them, it was just in time to see the guy transferring his stare fixedly to the bathroom tiles.

Cute.

Actually seriously cute.

He was a little taller than Alex—no surprises there, since most of the world was taller than Alex—with hazel eyes, blond hair, and flushed skin.

I officially have a thing for blonds now.

“I’ll go get you that shirt,” the guy said, and disappeared.

“Omigod,” Alex whispered to his reflection. “Do not get a hard-on!”

His reflection never listened.

Alex shoved his shirt into the sink and ran water over it before wringing it out as best he could. By the time he was done, Blondie was back.

“I think we’re about the same size.” He handed the shirt over.

Alex tugged the borrowed shirt on. It smelled like fabric softener, which for some reason struck Alex as incredibly sweet. Blondie used fabric softener in his laundry.

“I’m Alex,” he said, resisting the urge to cover his face with the shirt and just inhale.

“Brandon.”

They shook hands.

“I’m really sorry,” Brandon said again.

“It’s okay.” Alex dropped his gaze for a moment, searching for something else to say. Brandon was cute, and his shirt smelled nice, and Alex wished he had the courage to actually make a move. He was in college now. He was supposed to be brave and open and stuff, wasn’t he? This wasn’t high school anymore. Except Alex didn’t really trust his gaydar yet, and Brandon was giving off some seriously weird vibes.

Not looking when Alex had his shirt off. Specifically not looking. His flushed skin. The way his hand had shaken when he’d passed over the shirt.

Maybe he was straight but curious.

Maybe he was still in the closet.

Or maybe—Alex’s breath caught—maybe Brandon was a virgin too.

Omigod. How awesome would it be if they could be each other’s first time?

Best. Idea. Ever.

Copyright © J.A. Rock & Lisa Henry

Reviews

Customer Reviews

Review by Sandra Review by Hearts On Fire Reviews
Quality
I did not read book one, Mark Cooper versus America, prior to this book. Although it wasn't necessary, I can tell that I would have enjoyed that just as much as I did this one. Funny and sweet and adorkable and a little sad, but surprisingly low on angst given Brandon's past.

I don't even have that much to say, but I just had a blast reading it. Good relationship progression. I liked both guys a lot. I liked that we didn't get a rushed 'I love you' (although I totally would have believed it), and the 'I like you' was about the cutest thing, ever. Great secondary characters, Blake in particular.

Brandon's past was handled very well. Information was revealed slowly, although we were able to get the gist fairly early on. Watching Brandon grow and heal was beautiful to watch. It was not a quick fix. Love and/or great sex did not heal his wounds, time and friendship and effort and feelz did.

I honestly found myself laughing out loud, often with a silly grin on my face, at their sweet and dorky jokes/antics. Just good fun. Highly recommended.
(Posted on 4/21/2015)
A great read! Review by Crystal's Many Reviewers
Quality
I will start this review off with a warning, which I have never had to give this type of warning before when it comes to a review, but in this case I think it is completely necessary:

***Do not be wearing a shirt and pants that you enjoy while reading. And do not be eating or drinking anything while reading because you will ruin your clothes because you will ruin it.***

There, I said it. Now you have been warned!

Onto my review, I don’t really know what exactly to say about this book because it was such a great read, that I honestly do think that you should just buy the book and read it right now because it’s completely worth the money.

The characters were all amazing, I mean honestly there were some great ones in this book. My personal favorite was Blake, who once you start reading the book, you will understand why that is. He is just awesome and my personal hero! Don’t’ get me wrong, I totally loved Alex as well! Really, with lines like this, how can you NOT love him?

“He thought about sending him a friend request, but Brandon only had twenty-three friends, and Alex wasn’t sure that was a large enough group to be camouflaged in.”

I did enjoy how Mark was brought back into this book because he has such an influence on Brandon, and he has his great comic relief that was needed in some scenes. But don’t worry, because they did still talk about their emotions and stuff, because Mark found out how to make that happen!

“No, really. I read an article in Time about how guys share their feelings and whatever now. As long as we mention the name of a sports team once in this conversation, we’re totally manly.”

There were some scenes that were in this book that were very emotional, and very well done. There is some big lessons about love, romance, friendship, and forgiveness. I would also recommend having some tissues nearby because you might need them!

Overall, this was an amazing read and I can’t recommend it enough to everyone!

Reviewed by Crystal Marie for Crystal’s Many Reviewers
*Copy provided for review*
(Posted on 11/23/2014)
A mixed bag Review by Mishy
Quality
I loved Mark Cooper vs. America but Mark in this book was super annoying and distracted from the wonderful story between Alex and Brandon. (Posted on 11/7/2014)
Fun and sweet love story with a side of snark Review by Debra E
Quality
Funny and sweet and dealing with a serious issue without getting overly dramatic Brandon Mills versus the V-Card is a completely different story than the first book. If you enjoyed the snarky fun of Mark Cooper versus America and can do without all the kinky sex, you will enjoy this one too.

Even though Lisa Henry and J.A. Rock gave plenty of warnings that this book was going to be sweet and cute and full of awkward moments, I really didn't believe it was possible. I have to say though, Brandon and Alex are exactly as promised.

For Alex, a freshman pledging Brandon and Deacon's frat, it's love at first sight. Brandon doesn't know what to do about Alex's crush and seeks advice from best friend Mark and, unintentionally, Mark's frat brother Blake. Brandon has serious issues to work through, and there is no easy fix. Deacon and Mark, each offer Brandon their own particular brand of assistance, but Blake takes the top prize in being incredibly oblivious and supportive.

Although I did not get any kinky sex, I did get an awkward, and likely quite realistic, series of firsts between two awkward and clueless, nerdy college boys, with a heaping side of snark, and a glimpse of lacy underwear, all while letting out more than a few unladylike snorts and maybe tearing up just a bit. Another well done book by two of my auto-buy authors that has left me anxiously waiting for more.
(Posted on 10/29/2014)

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