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Authors: Rachell Nichole

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Spicy with a Side of Cranberry Sauce

BOOK: Spicy with a Side of Cranberry Sauce
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SPICY WITH A SIDE

OF CRANBERRY SAUCE

 

 

Rachell Nichole

 

 

 

www.loose-id.com

Spicy with a Side of Cranberry Sauce

Copyright © December 2012 by Rachell Nichole

All rights reserved. This copy is intended for the original purchaser of this e-book ONLY. No part of this e-book may be reproduced, scanned, or distributed in any printed or electronic form without prior written permission from Loose Id LLC. Please do not participate in or encourage piracy of copyrighted materials in violation of the author's rights. Purchase only authorized editions.

 

eISBN 978162300081-3

Editor: Serena Stokes

Cover Artist: Mina Carter

Printed in the United States of America

 

Published by

Loose Id LLC

PO Box 809

San Francisco CA 94104-0809

www.loose-id.com

 

This e-book is a work of fiction. While reference might be made to actual historical events or existing locations, the names, characters, places and incidents are either the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously, and any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, business establishments, events, or locales is entirely coincidental.

Warning

This e-book contains sexually explicit scenes and adult language and may be considered offensive to some readers. Loose Id LLC’s e-books are for sale to adults ONLY, as defined by the laws of the country in which you made your purchase. Please store your files wisely, where they cannot be accessed by under-aged readers.

* * * *

DISCLAIMER: Please do not try any new sexual practice, especially those that might be found in our BDSM/fetish titles without the guidance of an experienced practitioner. Neither Loose Id LLC nor its authors will be responsible for any loss, harm, injury or death resulting from use of the information contained in any of its titles.

Dedication

To Tyler, thanks for sparking the premise for this book.

And to Amy, thanks for letting me use not only your likeness, but also your name.

Chapter One

Where the hell was the cranberry sauce?

Amy Easton turned down the baking goods aisle, searching for the last item Martha needed her to get. She had to find the damned can. This holiday would be perfect if it fucking killed her. The chains on her boots jangled as she hunted. The gallon of milk and box of stick butter froze her hands, but the store had been out of carts, and Martha needed both ingredients for first thing in the morning.

Amy dodged an older lady pushing a heavy cart and still didn’t spot the right display. The stock boy had told her it was on aisle six, and here she stood. Cranberry sauce-less. Sighing, she turned back around and headed up the aisle again, gazing left and right. She forced herself to slow down, fearing she’d miss the display. Thanksgiving just wouldn’t be the same without cranberry sauce.

Martha was a domestic goddess. The way Mom used to be, the way Amy would never be. So when Martha had panicked after failing to get in touch with her son on his way from the airport, Amy had volunteered to go get the groceries. She would be useless in the kitchen tomorrow, so it was the least she could do. Besides, it got her out of the house and away from the smooching her dad and Martha kept doing when they thought she wasn’t looking.

It was sweet, really. Amy couldn’t be happier with the way her dad was slowly coming back to life under Martha’s tutelage, but she could do without seeing him making out.

She wanted to throw her hands up or punch something. Where the hell was it?

There!

She spotted the display across the end of aisle six. One lonely can sat on the shelf, as if it waited just for her. She hadn’t thought Martha was the kind of person to leave the shopping till the last minute, but apparently a few items had slipped her mind this year. With her and Dad down visiting, she wouldn’t be surprised if Martha was a little worried about how the holiday would go.

A tall man with reddish-brown curls was heading down the aisle across from hers, his gaze locked on the can. Oh, hell. She didn’t know where else to go around here to find the sauce. She had to get to it first. She picked up the pace, and just as he turned the corner at the end display and reached for the can, she bodychecked his cart. The cart slammed into the shelf and pushed back against her. It bounced into her hip, and she fell back onto the hard floor, the milk and butter crashing to the linoleum beside her. The jug burst open, splashing milk all over. Okay, not the most brilliant idea she’d ever had. She glanced up at the man’s stunned face just as the can of cranberry sauce flew off the shelf toward her.

 

MASON RIDER GRABBED the can as it careened off the shelf and threatened to cave in the poor woman’s head. She flinched and yelped, but sighed when she realized it was only his hand before her face. Big hazel eyes and rosy cheeks greeted him when he moved his hand.

“Thanks,” she said.

He set the can on the shelf and then offered to help her up. She wiped her palms on her jeans and then took his hand. The slide of her soft fingers against his brought a flush to his skin. He savored the heat but tried not to let it show on his face. But as he gazed into her eyes, he saw an answering spark of lust within them.

He tugged her to her feet, and she wobbled. He grabbed her arm to steady her, wanting to prolong the physical contact between them as long as she would allow. The leather of her thin jacket was just as soft as her skin had been beneath his fingers. She gasped at the contact but stopped swaying.

“Are you all right, ma’am?” he said.

She nodded, still holding on to him tightly, and he wasn’t in any rush to let go. “Ma’am? Do I look old enough to be a ma’am?” Her voice was damned near acerbic, and the spark he’d seen in her hazel eyes was gone. Maybe he’d imagined it. What in the world had he done to deserve such a tone?

She was definitely a Yank. And freaking feisty. She must be new to Austin, or she’d be used to everyone ma’aming her by now.

“No, of course not. It’s just…” How did he explain it was just as natural as breathing for him to call her ma’am?

She shook her head. “Never mind. I’m fine. I just broke my ass and spilled the milk. I’ll live. No use crying over it, right?”

He laughed at her caustic tone and choice of words. Broke her ass, huh?

“Did you really break it?” He barely stopped himself from laughing again. He let go of her upper arm, because it was becoming a bit improper to keep holding her. He licked his dry lips.

She rubbed her derriere as she turned it toward him. “No, it’s just bruised, I think.”

“Well, I can’t really see anything through the jeans,” he teased. Flirting was automatic for him, but he was here on official son business, not to have a one-nighter. His mother needed him. The first postdivorce holiday was certain to be difficult for her. Since Lewis wouldn’t be in until tomorrow, Mason was the only support she’d have tonight. He was already running late.

Damn his father for putting him in such a position. It was going to be hard with only him and Lewis there. Elly and Dan would spend Thanksgiving with Dad and his new girlfriend, which made Mason ill. They were supposed to switch parents at Christmas. As if Mason would voluntarily go see his father. The last thing he should do was pick up a woman in a grocery store.

But he couldn’t help the way his gaze followed the movement of her hand over her posterior. Or the way his perusal continued down the length of her legs to the leather biker boots. Hmm. Biker boots. Interesting footwear for this weather. His usual types were businesswomen or girlie girls. This tomboy intrigued him. And Yank or not, the woman before him was gorgeous.

She stopped rubbing her nicely shaped butt cheeks and shook out her slightly wavy hair, using her fingers to comb through the long tendrils. They bounced with her every movement. Not a complete tomboy after all. The warm orange sweater she wore set off her peaches-and-cream skin perfectly, and a soft blush tinted her round, perky cheeks. She was a knockout, even in jeans, a sweater, and leather jacket. He wondered what she’d look like all dolled up.

“So what were you in such a hurry for?”

She took the can of cranberry sauce off the shelf. “Last one.”

Crap.

* * * *

Mason thrummed his fingers on the steering wheel as he waited at the light, unable to keep the smile from his face. If only he’d gotten Mom’s voice mail back in Denver. He had over a dozen samples of Sally’s Spicy Cranberry Sauce for his ad team sitting in his office. If Mom had let him know earlier, he could have brought them. He needed everything planned out five steps ahead, and having a monkey wrench thrown into his schedule unnerved him. But maybe if his mother had told him ahead of time, he wouldn’t have met Amy.

The kindergarten teacher with a penchant for biker boots and swearing had just made his night. She’d flirted with him right up until he walked her out to the parking lot, going so far as to ask for his number so he could take her on a tour of Denver when she was there next week.

Forget the fact that the few days spent cheering up his mom would be difficult. Amy had made the unease burning in his gut lessen a bit. He’d been worried about Mom for a while. But he didn’t know if he should be more worried than usual or less so. Sometime during the summer she’d started acting like her old self again. Was she finally healing from the wounds his father had inflicted on her, or was it something else?

He turned into the holiday traffic and caught sight of Amy in a blue sedan. He waved to her, and she smiled at him before driving out of sight in the opposite direction. That was the way he’d be going if he weren’t still on the Great Cranberry Hunt. He hoped she made good on her promise to call him up when she was in Denver next week. She’d only be there for a few days of interviews before heading back home to New York. Just enough time to have a date or two, and maybe even a couple of late-night romps. It would be perfect. He could see it now. The minute he’d helped her up and felt the mutual jolt of attraction, he’d been working on a plan to get her alone in a bedroom. Or living room. He wasn’t real picky.

If it hadn’t been for his need to check on Mom, he would have asked Amy out for a drink right then. He could imagine her in a bar, surrounded by tequila shots and a good mix of salsa music. Armando’s, maybe. When he’d lived here, he used to love taking dates there for the great food and dancing. It would’ve been nice to take Amy and show her his moves.

Since he’d yet to find a proper Tex-Mex or salsa club in Denver, he’d have to settle for taking her on a tamer date when she came to visit. As he dodged holiday shoppers, he let his mind wander to all the dark places he wanted to take Amy. He stopped at a store on the other side of the city and grabbed the cranberry sauce. It was getting late. He had to haul it in his pickup truck to get back to his childhood home. He hustled, still thinking about his new friend Amy. He smiled as he drove into Palm Grove.

And froze when he turned the corner onto his street. Amy’s blue sedan sat in the driveway beside his mother’s car.

Chapter Two

Amy tossed the can of cranberry sauce onto the counter, humming to herself. She’d won the can. And maybe a date for next week too. Mason was sweet. Much too nice to fight her for the prized can she now admired, even though she was sure he’d been heading for it. She popped the new milk jug and the butter in the fridge; she’d had to go and pick up a second gallon after spilling the first all over the floor. She didn’t usually date nice guys. But maybe she’d make an exception for a six-two hunk with curly reddish-brown hair and electrifying blue eyes that spoke of intelligence and a dark sense of humor, despite his overall kind demeanor.

This was shaping up to be one hell of a Thanksgiving. She hoped Martha would continue to pull Dad out of his self-imposed solemnity and show him the reasons to celebrate that he’d forgotten over the past fifteen years. She was able to move on and be happy after her mother’s death, even wanted to celebrate in a way she hadn’t for a long time. Now it was Dad’s turn.

BOOK: Spicy with a Side of Cranberry Sauce
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