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Authors: Yvette Hines

Bet on a Mistletoe

BOOK: Bet on a Mistletoe
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Bet on a Mistletoe

By
Yvette Hines

 

Lorna
Morgan has found herself on the road home for Christmas, dejected, defeated and
dead broke. Returning to her small town where time seem to standstill was not
in her goals for the future. Ending up caught in the middle of a holiday bet,
stirs up past feelings and emotions, she’s not sure she can handle a second
time around. She had to keep herself focused and not get distracted by a
tall-frame, cerulean eyes and midnight black hair. Nothing was there for her
except a plan to get
herself
away again.

Richard
Patterson’s Christmas just got brighter. Lorna got away from him nine years
ago, but not this time. Santa has brought him a ginger coated dream and he’s
ready to be the bad boy Lorna has always believed him to be. But, this time
he’s going
to
make it his job to convince her that
every thing she needed was at home with him.

 

Bet on a Mistletoe

By
Yvette Hines

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

TEASE
PUBLISHING

www.teasepublishingllc.com

This is
a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents are products of the
author’s imagination or are used fictitiously and are not to be construed as
real. Any resemblance to actual events, locales, organizations, or persons,
living or dead, is entirely coincidental.

     

Bet On
Mistletoe

A Tease
Publishing Book/E book

     

Copyright©
2007 Yvette Hines

ISBN:
987-1-60767-087-2

Cover
Artist: Kendra

Interior
text design: Stacee Sierra

     

All
rights reserved. No part of this book may be used or reproduced electronically
or in print without written permission, except in the case of brief quotations
embodied in reviews.

 

Tease
Publishing LLC

www.teasepublishingllc.com

PO BOX
234

Swansboro,
North Carolina 28584-0234

     

Tease and the T
logo is  Tease Publishing LLC. All rights reserved.

Chapter One

     
“Damnit!
Damnit! Damnit!” she yelled and banged her fist on
the steering wheel of her car. “Give me a break!” She stared out the window and
watched smoke bellowing from her car like chimney fire.

     
“Only
my car would over heat in the dead of winter while it was snowing.”

     
Her
throat became tight and she struggled not to cry. This was not her year at all.

     
Peering
out the windshield, it was dark except for the beam of light from her car. She
didn’t expect to see anything and she didn’t. The winding two-lane road was
bare at ten o’clock at night. Twenty miles from town or the center of Carlton
County and there wasn’t a soul in sight to give her aid.

     
Glancing
down at the thermostat gauge as the needle bobbed high, she sighed.

     
The
temperature was dropping fast outside, she could only hope her car would cool
off quick and allow her to inch up the road until she reached her childhood
home.

     
Dropping
her head on the steering wheel, ready to give into a gut-wrenching ‘woe is me’
she heard a tapping on her window. Her heart thumped, she couldn’t see who it
was with the light dusting of snow covering the glass.

     
She
prayed it wasn’t some escaped criminal. Rolling the window down halfway she
peeped out. A blast of icy wind greeted her, as it quickly sucked the warmth
out of the car. Blinded by a wide-beam flashlight, she squinted at the shadow
behind the light.

     
“I saw
your car on the side of the road, do you need assist…” The words drifted away.
“Well, I’ll be damn! Lorna Morgan.”

     
“It’s
me.” Lorna still couldn’t see who was out there. Raising her hand, she tried to
shield her eyes and get a glimpse of the person.

     
The
light moved to a different angle, and her vision was filled with the most
devastating, blue eyes she’d ever seen--cerulean blue. She remembered them
being sexier when viewed with midnight black hair that curved just right at the
tips. “Richard Patterson.”

     
“In the
flesh,” he smiled. “With the steam coming up from your hood, I’d say you’re
having a little bit of car trouble.”

     
His
strong southern lilt showered her with warmth. A sound she didn’t hear often
living in D.C. “A little.” This would not have been the way she wanted to
present herself in town after nine years.

     
“It
runs hot at times. I figure, I’ll just wait it out. As cold as it is, it
shouldn’t take too long.” She hoped.

     
“That’s
just silly. It’s too cold to sit out here by yourself. I’ll give you a lift to
your parent’s house and the car will be fine ‘til morning.”

     
Unable
to argue with that logic, she rolled up the window and grabbed her purse. It
wasn’t that she didn’t want a ride; it all had to do with being sealed in a
small space with Richard. Or Dick as he’d gone by in high school. The bad boy,
with too much cockiness for any girl’s good. No one in a skirt was immune to
his charm, especially not her.

     
Fortifying
her strength with a deep breath, she opened the car door and got out.
Unfortunately, Richard hadn’t moved from his position beside her car and they
now stood so close she could feel the material of his thick jacket brush the
front of her wool pea coat.

     
“You’re
shivering.
No longer used to this mountain winter?”
He
grasped her shoulders in his strong hands. “Why don’t you get in the truck, and
I’ll get your suitcase out the car.”

     
Speechless,
she nodded and passed him her keys. There was no way she was going to correct
Richard and tell him that her chill had nothing to do with the mountain
temperature and everything to do with him. Her thick boots made a crunch sound
in the snow as she walked toward his vehicle.

     
Once
inside she watched him move with quick efficiency. His body was a shadow in the
night, but she still enjoyed the view. In high school he’d kept his body in
shape by playing football and baseball.

     
She
wondered what he did now. Shaking her head, she chided herself, “Lorna, he was
none of your business then and he sure isn’t now.”

     
Opening
up the back door, he slid in her matching suitcases, then jogged around the
front of the car and got in.

     
“Man,
it’s going to be a good winter this year.” He winked at her.

     
Still the charmer
.

     
He
pulled the hat off his head, and tossed it on the dashboard. His dark hair
curled around his collar and his forehead. It made her want to reach out and
feel the silkiness curl around her fingers.

     
She
balled her hands into fists, to restrain herself.

     
“I was
shocked to see the snow. It’s usually just cold every year.” She confirmed,
trying not to watch the movement of his body as he secured his seatbelt and
shifted the truck into drive.

     
“About
three years ago, we got some flurries that settled but they were gone by
morning. Maybe this time it will stay around long enough for the town folk to
enjoy it.”

     
“Hopefully.”

     
“So,
what made you decide to come home this year? Usually, your parents go visit
you, but they said that you’d made other plans.”

     
Word in
Carlton County spread quickly. Everyone knew everything about everyone.

     
“Maybe
I wanted to surprise them.” She made the mistake of glancing at him. Those blue
eyes seized her for a moment, arresting her in the dim interior, before he
refocused on the road. They had searched her face, as if trying to seek out the
truth of her words. There was a kindness in his gaze that touched her heart.

     
Turning
to the side, she stared out of the small clearing in her window and watched the
dark shadows along the road.

     
“That’s
your right.”

     
It was
her right and her business. Then why did she feel the need to tell him the
problems that weighed on her.

     
“I’m
sure your parents are going to love seeing you. Hell, I’m glad to see you. But,
if you didn’t have the money I’m sure they would’ve come to you like always.”

     
Her
head snapped around to face him at those words. “What? What makes you think
that I don’t have money?” A dry chuckle bubbled passed her lips as she folded
her arms under her breasts. It wasn’t as if she had holes in her clothes.

     
“Look,
Lorna, I’m not trying to be in your business. But, most people who decide to
take a nine hour trip for the holiday do it with a functioning car.”

     
Gritting
her teeth, she said, “Anyone’s car can run hot.”

     
“Especially that one.
What is it, a nineteen ninety-one?” He
laughed.

     
“It’s a
foreign car. They have a long life span. It’s like a classic.”

     
“Old is
what it is.”

     
She
opened her mouth to deny it, when he cut her off.

     
“It frequently
over heats, the tires are bald, the paint is more gone than there, and you have
to wiggle the key so many times in the lock to get the trunk open, I thought it
would break off.”

     
Damn.
He’d pinned her down like a donkey at a birthday party missing a tail. She
drummed her fingers on her arms and sat in the car silently.

     
“Not to
mention all the wheels on your suitcase have broken off.”

     
Closing
her eyes, she tried to stave off the tears. Richard had read her so well all
her feelings of shame that had followed her every mile seemed to overtake her
at once.

BOOK: Bet on a Mistletoe
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