For those who have been asking, I thought I’d share a writing sample from my latest release Mara’s Passion, Book Three in the Saving Shenanigans Trilogy. Enjoy!
While he made his way to a nearby table, the crowd praised him. He waved them off, but Mara could tell he was pleased with the attention. She was about to sit herself, when Jake stepped up behind her. The band began a slow tune.
“May I?” Jake held out his hand for a turn.
Mara hesitated. This is trouble with a capital T. I should have known he’d ask me to dance. Damn. Why didn’t I leave earlier?
“Oh, come on. It’s just a dance.” His grin spread. Mara couldn’t resist his handsome face. She couldn’t explain it, but the ruffian appealed to her in his Neanderthal kind of way. After being with the refined Frenchman, Jacques, for ten years she didn’t understand her attraction to Jake. He was the exact opposite of the chef who’d found her in New York, given her a career, and would soon yank it away from her.
Grabbing her hand, he pulled her close. “You look like you’re trying to decide whether or not to push the button on a nuclear warhead. I’m not that dangerous. Come on.”
Oh, if you only knew, boyo. You’re too freaking cute for your own good. But Mara didn’t pull away. She let him tug her against his broad chest, wrap one arm around the small of her back, while the other hand held hers close to his shoulder. His heart beat against her breast. The woodsy fresh scent he always wore filled her senses. Her stomach did a little flip. She fought against it. She had no time for a man. She needed to go to New York and get her life in order. She knew she was needed here for a little while longer, but, after her last very uncomfortable encounter with Jacques several weeks ago, she also needed to face him in New York.
She’d told the man who’d taken her in over ten years ago it was over, but she was under contract with him for at least two restaurants. Maybe Gavin could help her untangle herself from the mess—Jacques wouldn’t give in without a fight. He was nothing if not possessive, and she’d made him a great deal of money over the years. Pride warmed her at the thought of the popularity she’d gained in New York. People flew in from all over the country just to eat food she prepared.
While Jake whirled her around the floor in a slow waltz, she glanced around the pub. It was full of happy faces, couples celebrating the joy of a wedding. It was home in a way home had never been before. Her last memories before she went to New York were anything but happy. Her father had treated her like a bastard child all her life, and even though she’d felt guilty about it, she’d run at her first opportunity, never looking back. The news Gavin had just shared with her still amazed her. She planned to get him alone and sober very soon. She needed to know what more there was to the story. There was no way she believed her father had asked him to look for her. In her heart of hearts, she believed Gavin had looked for her on his own. It touched her.
As Jake twirled her with one hand, she glanced into his face. She followed his lead with ease, marveling at what a smooth dancer he was.
“You know, for a caveman, you’re not a half-bad dancer.”
Jake chuckled. “It’s because I’ve had several beers and a few glasses of champagne. Don’t get used to it.”
“Had no plans for that,” she quipped.
Before she realized it, he’d worked them over to an area just to the right of the dining room away from the dance floor. The music wound down and, on the last bar, he lowered her into a dip. She stared into those whiskey-brown eyes, her heart thumping. He lifted her upright, his gaze never leaving hers. Before she realized what he was about to do, their lips met. Nothing too demanding, just a soft gentle kiss, but what it did to her blood was anything but gentle. Passion flared in her body, taking her off guard. Before her brain could stop her mouth, she returned the kiss. His lips were warm and firm, demanding hers to part, which they did. When his tongue dipped in for a quick plunder, she lost all feeling in her legs almost slipping boneless to the floor.
As quick as it started, Jake broke the kiss, leaving her breathless and trembling. It was a good thing he’d backed her into the bar, or she’d have fallen flat on her own ass. Blinking, she stared at the lopsided grin on his face. Passion flared to anger at his smug expression. How could he take advantage of me like that?
The romantic mood of the night, the champagne, Gavin’s emotional news…all of it had made her vulnerable. The cocky son of a bitch had swooped right in, taking her off guard.
Reaching back, she slapped him hard across the face then escaped toward the unfinished kitchen.
“What the hell was that for?” He called after her, but she continued toward the exit without looking back.
Damn him, damn him, damn him. He had no right to kiss me. Who the hell does he think he is? I am not some bar slut he can just plunder at will.
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Hope you enjoyed it! Let me know what you think.