Meet CHANCE MILLER from CHANCE ( Last Man Standing) #MAP #preorder #sweetromance

So I have to tell you, I love a sexy lawyer hero.

I mean, who doesn’t?

CHANCE MILLER, divorce lawyer extraordinaire, knows the whole happily ever after dream is an urban myth. He deals with miserable and wedded warring couples every day and swears staying single keeps him sane and happy. His friends and family consider him the last single man standing and fear he’ll never find someone and settle down. But Chance relishes his carefree status and unencumbered lifestyle and has no plans to change anything.

If only his relatives would stop trying to set him up with their version of the perfect woman.

Here are a few things you need to know about this hunky barrister :

~ a secret about his parents has formed his thoughts on relationships

~ he feels obligated to his extended family

~ he is addicted to coffee

~ he has a sweet tooth – and for more than just sugary baked goods!

~ he doesn’t see himself as good husband-material

~ he adores his younger sister and would do anything for her

~ he secretly hates his job

~ he’s excellent at his job, which makes hating it a conundrum

~ he likes kids

Want to learn more about this sexy Last Man Standing? CHANCE releases on 9.12.2022 but yu can preorder your copy here, now: CHANCE (LMS)

And check out all the other LAST MAN STANDING books in the series – all books are STAND-ALONE romances.

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Photo of the day, day 231

A hazy return to home port.

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Photo of the day, day 230

Sunrise on our return to NYC/NJ

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It’s a #KINDLEVELLA giveaway event @ BOOKTHRONE

FIND NEW & AMAZING STORIES ON KINDLE VELLA this month!
🔥Start Binge-Reading.🔥
🎁BOOKTHRONE and contributing authors are giving away a $250 Amazon Gift Card to one lucky reader. Enter the giveaway for a chance to win.
https://www.bookthrone.com/august-kindle-vella-giveaway

MY Kindle Vella murder/mystery, VINDICATION Is part of this great giveaway.

Someone is murdering teenage girls in Washington, DC. The FBI’s special division, the SPCD – the Sexual Predators of Children – has been working the case for the past 6 months. When a Senator’s daughter goes missing, the team, led by Tucker Petrie, has to call on retired profiler – and his past partner – Kella O’Brian. Reluctantly, she rejoins the team and they search for a link to the girls who have been abducted, then killed.

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Photo of the day, day 229

I think this one was the best.

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Come to the Keene TOADSTOOL BOOKSHOP this Saturday to celebrate Independent Bookstore Romance Day

This upcoming Saturday, August 20th, is National Independent Bookstore ROMANCE DAY!

I love having a holiday tailor-made for me, LOL.

This Saturday evening, beginning at 6pm at the Toadstool Bookshop in Keene, NH, 3 romance authors ( moi, included) will be celebrating the genre with a “Ladies Night” panel discussion on all things romance related.

Here’s the press release from the Toadstool:

A Ladies Night:

 Three Authors & the love of Romance

Bookstore Romance Day is a day designed to give independent bookstores an opportunity to celebrate Romance fiction—its books, readers, and writers—and to strengthen the relationships between the Romance community and their fans.

We ( the Toadstool) will host a panel of three amazing romance authors.  Come join us and get the inside scoop on what it is like to be a romance author and learn about the personal experiences our guest authors had in the field. 

Guest Authors:

Clair Brett

Karen Coulters

Peggy Jaeger ( MOI!!!)

I hope all my Keene friends come to see us. It promises to be a fun evening of talk, laughter, and all things romance!

All of my newest titles will be for sale, including

Mix and Match

The Sheriff & The Psychic

Merry’s Ghost

The Haunting of Wilton June

Chance

FIxing Christmas

Angel Kisses and Holiday Wishes.

See you all Saturday at 6pm!!!

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Photo of the day, day 228

As a romance writer, this spoke to me. As a tourist….not so much!!

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Vindication is an NN Lights Mystery & Suspense Bookish selection today! #serialmurderer #FBI

I’m so excited to be a part of @NNP_W_Light’s Mystery and Suspense Bookish Event. Check out all the mystery/suspense/thriller books and enter the giveaway to win a $35 Amazon gift card: https://www.nnlightsbookheaven.com/mystery-and-suspense-bookish-event

My book VINDICATION is spotlighted here today on NN LIGHT: VINDICATION

And you can check it out here on KINDLE VELLA VINDICATION.

Someone is murdering teenage girls in Washington, DC. The FBI’s special division, the SPCD – the Sexual Predators of Children – has been working the case for the past 6 months. When a Senator’s daughter goes missing, the team, led by Tucker Petrie, has to call on retired profiler – and his past partner – Kella O’Brian. Reluctantly, she rejoins the team and they search for a link to the girls who have been abducted, then killed.

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Photo of the day, day 227

No a bad turkey….

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Photo of the day, day 226

At first, I thought this was a nun…but it’s a mermaid. Silly me.

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Photo of the day, day 225

As seen in the port of Bermuda.

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Photo of the day, day 224

Our cabinboy was very talented with the towel animals. This is a sloth ( in case you couldn’t guess)

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A #Mystery & #suspense #bookishevent from NN Light; #entertowin #death

I’m so excited to be a part of @NNP_W_Light’s Mystery and Suspense Bookish Event. Check out all the mystery/suspense/thriller books and enter the giveaway to win a $35 Amazon gift card: https://www.nnlightsbookheaven.com/mystery-and-suspense-bookish-event

Today, my mystery short story collection DEATH BETWEEN THE PAGES, exclusively available on Amazon Kindle Vella is spotlighted. Here’s the NN Link: DEATH

A cheating husband. A group of widows. A hospital bed. A priest. What do they all have in common? Death.

And don’t forget to enter the giveaway:

Enter to win a $35 Amazon US or Amazon Canada gift card

https://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/92db7750183

Open Internationally. You must have an active Amazon US or CA account to win.

The giveaway runs from August 9 – August 18, 2022.

The winner will be drawn on August 19, 2022.

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Photo of the day, day 223

Sunrise our first day out to sea…

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And another #LastManStanding bites the dust! Today, it’s BAXTER by Kathleen Lawless

The next man to fall is BAXTER REID. Today, Kathleen Lawless‘ book released to rave reviews. Check out this feisty and set in his way film director.

BAXTER ( Last Man Standing)

Film director Baxter Reid is used to giving directions, not taking them!

Especially from April Thomas, who has been hired by Baxter’s agent to enhance the director’s less than illustrious social standing to help place him in the running for an Oscar-worthy film project he’s after.

Baxter is everything April dislikes. Cocky, arrogant, disdainful of women. Or has the media deliberately portrayed him that way? Either way, she has her work cut out to give him a social media makeover.

Reluctantly, Baxter goes along with April’s regime to improve his image, but when a smear campaign comes to light and they work together to trace its origin, surprises catch them both off guard.

Excerpt:
Inside the sound stage, April looked around at what appeared to be organized chaos with people in headsets clutching clipboards, running back and forth. “I don’t see Baxter Reid.”

       Mike, Baxter’s agent, flashed her a dazzling look. “He’s uh, he’s tied up for a bit.”

       April’s gaze narrowed. “But he is expecting me.”

       “Not exactly.”

       “Hmmph.”  April crossed her arms over her chest. Just then, the decibel level dropped. Holly Snow, media darling and star of a recent hit movie appeared with Baxter on her heels.

       “She looks smaller in person.” April had lived in LA long enough to not be starstruck every time she saw a celebrity. No matter how famous, stars were just people, more often than not wearing a fancy façade to disguise their insecurities.

       “I don’t know his secret, but Bax makes her look bigger on screen.  Otherwise, viewers would know her stunt double does all the real work.”

       “Is it true Baxter Reid never hires female stunt people?”

       “They call them stuntmen for a reason.”

       April spun to face her client. How had he managed that?  Come up behind them without being seen.

       “You know I don’t appreciate strangers on the set.” He spoke to his agent but his eyes were taking her measure.  ‘Not pretty enough to be an actress’ shifted to, ‘what are you doing here with Mike?’

       “Hopefully you two won’t be strangers for long,” Mike said.

       “Latest Tinder date?” Baxter drawled.

       “Revitalique,” Mike said.

       Baxter’s brow furrowed. “Is that a new dating ap?”

       “Not.” April didn’t appreciate being talked about as if she wasn’t there.  “It’s an agency specializing in image makeovers.”

       “Good,” Baxter said. “Mike could use one.” He turned as if to leave.

“I’m not here for Mike.” 

       Baxter did a half turn, waiting.

April met his gaze straight on. “I’m here for you.”

And check out all the LAST MAN STANDING BOOKS here: LMS

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Photo of the day, day 222

He so needed this vacay just to chillax.

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A #Mystery & #Suspense Bookish event from NN LIGHT; #Kindlevella #femaledetective #entertowin

I’m so excited to be a part of @NNP_W_Light’s Mystery and Suspense Bookish Event. Check out all the mystery/suspense/thriller books and enter the giveaway to win a $35 Amazon gift card: https://www.nnlightsbookheaven.com/mystery-and-suspense-bookish-event

My Mystery book today – exclusive on KINDLE VELLA – is THE JANE AUSTEN MURDERS voted a TOP FAVED Kindle Vella story 20 weeks in a row!

Enter to win a $35 Amazon US or Amazon Canada gift card

https://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/92db7750183

Open Internationally. You must have an active Amazon US or CA account to win.

The giveaway runs from August 9 – August 18, 2022.

The winner will be drawn on August 19, 2022, by NN Light.

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Photo of the day, day 221

Inside the ship. Haven’t the foggiest what this is supposed to be. Going up and down the stairs near it made me nervous.

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A new #LastManStanding book from Lucinda Race; #sweetromance #LMS

The next book in the LAST MAN STANDING series is out today from acclaimed author Lucinda Race.

BARRETT

Has the last man standing finally met his match?


Attorney Tallie Dorz has heard the rumors circulating through the halls of justice about the devastatingly handsome Judge Barrett Turner. As rumor has it, no woman has ever lasted longer than a couple of dates with this eligible bachelor. A chance meeting at a mutual friend’s house piques her interest. With one long, simmering look from the enigmatic jurist, she’s captivated and wants to crack his cool facade and melt his heart.

Barrett Turner has it all; a reputation as a respected judge, money, and good looks. What he doesn’t have is someone to share his life with. He’s the last man standing among his group of close friends. A brief encounter with gorgeous attorney Tallie Dorz changes all of that. The first time he sees her he’s captivated; the second time is during a meeting for a group of lawyers, and the third occurs when she appears before him in court. So much for the third time being the charm. There’s no way he would risk becoming involved with an attorney who handles family law. As captivating as she is, he won’t risk an obvious conflict of ethics.

Tallie helps another attorney by appearing, along with his client, in Judge Turner’s courtroom—her one and only appearance in family court before returning to her specialty of corporate law. Even though the judge with dark brown eyes scowled at her from the bench, she can’t help but wonder what it would be like to have him across the dinner table. Much to her surprise, Barrett calls her and asks her to have lunch, and she eagerly accepts.

When a case she’s working on puts a target on Tallie’s back, Barret realizes his feelings are more intense than just his usual fling. He vows to not let anything stop him from keeping her safe and, ultimately, winning her heart.
Can two career-minded professionals open their hearts to a lifetime of love?

Excerpt:

One Year Earlier

Barrett Turner stood and held up his hand as the wedding guests quieted down. “Hello. In case you haven’t guessed, I’m Carson’s best man, hence the tux.” A smattering of laughter rippled across the room and he swept an arm toward the table for two where the bride and groom sat. Then he nodded with a wide grin to the next table that held his four best friends and their wives. 

With a wink to Carson and Beth, he said, “Everyone thought Carson would never find a woman to love him enough to put up with his buddies. I’m happy to say somehow not only did he find someone who loves pancakes as much as he does, but she’s the only woman who’s made Carson happier than I’ve ever seen him. So, Beth”—he kissed his fingertips and waved them in her direction—“welcome to the family.” She gave him a happy, tear-filled smile and crossed her arms over her chest as if she were giving him a hug.

 “When Carson and I met our freshman year of college, I never thought we’d be gathered here today. Especially since, as the years went by, we voted him the most likely to be the perennial bachelor. I guess, as of an hour ago, that title has officially been passed to me and I’m now the last man standing. Beth, I’m thrilled to say you married a man I’m proud to call one of my best friends, and Bethy, just remember when you said yes to Carson, you got all five of us, plus the amazing women who said yes to our buddies; we’re a package deal.” 

Carson kissed his new bride’s cheek and she laughed. “Barrett, I knew what I was getting into, but thanks for the reminder.” 

“I’d like to propose a toast to my very good friends Carson and Beth on your wedding day.” He lifted his water glass a little higher and said, “Congratulations to the new Mr. and Mrs. Baker. May you have many happy years ahead. Oh, and I’m available for babysitting but only after the kids are potty-trained.”

The room was filled with well wishes for the happy couple. Barrett took his seat and looked at his friends and then at Carson and Beth. He really was the last man standing, but it was a title he’d happily give up in a heartbeat if he could only find someone who had that special something he’d been looking for. Ever since law school, he knew he wanted to have a more traditional life. And like so many things in his life, he wouldn’t compromise on who she was. He was holding out for a once-in-a-lifetime kind of love. And if he never found that deep connection, he’d be single forever. His buddies had found their someone special so there was still hope, but approaching forty made him realize that his chances were dwindling for marriage, kids, the dogs, and the oversized SUV sitting in the driveway.

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the PARANORMAL DEFENSE AGENTS new in #PNR

Authors Amber Cross, Kate Richards, Temperance Dawn, and Ashlyn Chase have teamed together to bring you a fabulous new PNR titled PARANORMAL DEFENSE AGENTS

Many paranormals see themselves as superior to humans and will use their powers to get what they want, whenever they want. Ironically, that can make them very good—or very bad bodyguards. These are four stories of very good bodyguards.

Blinded by Desire by Ashlyn Chase
Elizabeth Fairchild is the 21-year-old secret daughter of the US president. She’s beautiful, stubbornly independent, and blind! To allow her to attend college in Switzerland, POTUS sends agent/shifter Max Wagner as her seeing eye dog. This asset will be difficult to protect—from his own desire.

A Pack of Love by Amber Cross
Someone is trying to kill archaeologist Brynn Connor. Until the culprit is found, werewolf Cole Grayson will protect her. A simple assignment, except the prickly woman has an issue with her “personal space” and doing his job puts him directly in it. Sparks, and fur, are guaranteed to fly.

The Mountain Lion’s Mate by Kate Richards
Diner server Emmalise Schaeffer is the daughter of a prince royal of a small European principality. Not that she knows it. A rival to the throne has taken out a contract on her life. Tom Katari feels confident he can do the job until his mountain lion announces that she is his mate. Now he must not only save her but figure out how to tell the boss he’s in love with his protectee. 

Hungry for Love by Temperance Dawn
Ava Laurant’s expertise in vampires is essential to protecting her new assignment, but when rock star Tyler Murray’s past comes back to haunt him, she must reveal her true identity.

The Paranormal Defense Agents anthology is a set of four books from award-winning and USA Today Bestselling Authors who were charmed by the idea of a Paranormal Defense Agency as envisioned by the amazing and talented Ashlyn Chase. They came together to bring to life four of the heroic agents of the Paranormal Defense Agency.

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Photo of the day, day 220

So, last week when it was 90+ degrees here, I sailed to Bermuda where it was 100+ degrees. Hee hee

Glutton for punishment, you say? That is me, I say. ( Nodding at YODA)

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#SundaySnippet #PNR #Ghosts THE HAUNTING OF WILTON JUNE

I know reviews for this story are all over the spectrum, but I just love the chemistry between Will and Jerica in THE HAUNTING OF WILTON JUNE.

“Have you ever been in a house that’s supposed to be haunted?”

Her eyes widened to the size of soda bottle tops and her cheeks paled, highlighting the raven color of her hair and brows. The fine tremor he’d noted in her hands before intensified.

“Hau-haunted?”

Even her voice changed, the timbre elevating almost to a Betty-Boop-screech.

“Yeah. If you haven’t, let me tell you the energy you feel in a house with a spirit is like no other you’ve ever felt. It’s like a cold wind invading your bones. One minute your body temperature is normal, the next all the hair on your body is standing at attention and your skin feels as if a thousand ants are crawling all over it. It’s an eerie sensation for sure and one you don’t soon forget.”

“You believe in,” she swallowed, “ghosts?”

“One hundred percent. I’ve seen proof they exist.”

She stared at him a few beats and he’d give anything to know what was behind her piercing gaze.
“And you’re not… you weren’t… scared?”

“Down to my toes,” he admitted, grinning. “But it was amazing, too.”

“How?”

“How was it amazing?”

She nodded.

“Well, for one thing, it made me a believer. Most people aren’t and when you mention you know ghosts or spirits exist, they look at you like you need to be seen by the nearest shrink and then committed. My brother-in-law is a psychic phenomena junkie. In fact, he’s the reason I believe. Do you?”

“Do I what?”

He grinned across the table at her. “Believe in ghosts and goblins and things that go bump in the night?”
 

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Photo of the day, day 219

Post-Covid I nap a lot because I get tired. Maple is very supportive and never leaves my side.

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The #LastManStanding series starts off with a bang! MITCH, by @nancyfraser

I’m so excited to be part of this fabulous new series.

The first book is out and it’s a surefire winner from my pal and writing maven, Nancy Fraser.

Meet…MITCH

At thirty-five, Mitchell Pierce has everything he’s ever wanted. An award-winning architect with his own firm, he collects expensive cars, owns a luxury ocean-front home, and a vacation condo on San Padre Island.

The only thing intruding on his idyllic life is the realization that the majority of his closest friends have married, and had children, which seriously impacts his Sunday football parties with the guys.

Haley Charles is the newly hired project manager at Pierce and McKenna, Architects, one of the city’s most prestigious firms. At twenty-eight, she’s the youngest member of the management team, and determined to make a good impression on the bosses.

When a rush request comes in from one of the firms most valued clients, Mitch has to cover for his honeymooning partner. With the majority of the staff already assigned to ongoing jobs, he finds himself working overtime with the new, and disturbingly attractive, project manager.

Will the late nights and a few shared kisses have him rethinking his bachelor status? Or, is he truly going to be ‘the last man standing’?

And don’t forget to order the Last Man Standing cookbook, GAME ON SNACKS.

All the proceeds from the recipe book go to the WOUNDED WARRIOR PROJECT

Game On Snacks … every confirmed bachelor’s Sunday spread!
Twenty-eight delicious recipes. Everything from Appetizers to Sweet Treats.

A companion cookbook to the sweet romance series, Last Man Standing.
Fourteen award-winning, best-selling authors bring you fourteen stubborn men, and the food they love!

Will our fourteen feisty heroines be able to keep up with the fellows’ appetites?

All proceeds from this cookbook will be donated quarterly to The Wounded Warrior Project.

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Photo of the day, day 218

I’m working in bed. Maple is here for emotional support…although her snores are a bit distracting.

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Photo of the day, day 217

Done….

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Photo of the day, day 216

And here’s the rest of the tease….hee hee. Have you preordered CHANCE yet? Let me help you with that:

CHANCE ( LAST MAN STANDING)

Chance Miller, divorce lawyer extraordinaire, knows the whole happily ever after dream is an urban myth. He deals with miserable and wedded warring couples every day and swears staying single keeps him sane and happy. His friends and family consider him the last single man standing and fear he’ll never find someone and settle down. But Chance relishes his carefree status and unencumbered lifestyle and has no plans to change anything.

If only his relatives would stop trying to set him up with their version of the perfect woman.

Fredrika Poole already experienced her one great love, and the widow can’t read any future romance in her tea leaves. She’s content to bake, run her business, and care for her daughter.

When Chance meets Freddie and discovers her marriage thoughts run on the same road his do, he realizes she’s the answer to his prayer for keeping the relatives at bay. But the pixie barista has a way of making Chance question everything he’s always thought about love, marriage, and wedded bliss.

Will his last man standing status go unchallenged? Or will Freddie be the one woman he wants…but can never have?

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Photo of the day, day 215

A little teaser of what’s coming soon…

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Photo of the day, day 213

The 6 pm doggie play group in Jersey City…

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A July recap…what a month! #writinglife

I don’t usually do recap blogs because I’m always moving forward and looking in my rearview, but July 2022 was a BIG Month for me, so I decided to take a quick look back just so I could bask again in everything wonderful that happened to me, career-wise.

Indulge me, please, lol.

ROMANTICON 2022 was held on July 15th and I had the best time. It’s been a Covid-minute since I was able to attend a book signing and this one was fabulous, so fab, I’m already signed up for next year’s event!

July saw the publication of my first KISS romance book. A PRIDE OF BROTHERS: RICK & AIDEN became KISSapp-worthy, opening my work up to a whole new subculture of romance readers.

Another wonderful honor for A PRIDE OF BROTHERS: RICK was to have it be turned into an interactive romance game under the Chapters App – and again, I now have an entire new fan/reading audience who are romance gamers. Who cool is that??? They changed the title to UNDER HIS PROTECTION and I’ve had a ball playing the game so far. New chapters are uploaded every Sunday morning.

I had a Cover reveal for my upcoming Dickens Holiday romance, SASHA’S SECRET SANTA with NN Light’s Bookheaven this month. It was so exciting introducing this cover because I lovelovelove it so much! Preorder links will go up soon!

And finally, I’ve got a Goodreads Giveaway for THE HAUNTING OF WILTON JUNE that will end tonight at midnight, so if you haven’t entered yet to win one of 5 print copies, here’s your last chance: Goodreads Givaway

Goodness! I can’t even imagine what August will bring. LOL

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Photo of the day, day 212

Maple and Kelly swimming again. This time Maple has the lead…and sole possession of the stick!!

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#SaturdaySnippet CHANCE (Last Man Standing) #sweetromance #fakedating #commitmentphobe

Who knew fake dating seem so…real?
From the upcoming CHANCE ( Last Man Series) addition:

Chance had the limo wait while he rode the elevator up to Freddie’s third-floor apartment. The building, a post-second world war brick edifice had seen some wear on the outside, but the interior was well-maintained and clean. No doorman stood duty so he located the apartment buzzer next to the name Poole, as she’d instructed, and once bid entry, found the single elevator.

The apartment door opposite the elevator opened as soon as he alighted from it.

“You must be Chance,” a woman he knew without a doubt was Freddie’s mother said. “I’m, Annika, Fredrika’s mother. She’s running a little late and asked me to greet you. Come in, come in.”

The apartment ran true to the original design. Railroad track rooms, one after the other off a long, spacious hallway. Hardwood floors that had seen many feet trample over them were, surprisingly, shiny, the wood glowing brightly. Photographs lined the hallway walls from one end to the other. He recognized a teenaged Freddie with her arm slung around a sullen, younger Lindsey.

“Well, look who it is. Mr. French Roast and a corn muffin.”

Chance grinned at the teen as she sashayed into the wide living room Annika had led him to.  At her side she held the hand of a small girl with red hair mimicking her mother’s and grandmother’s and startling blue eyes now wide with interest as they perused him from head to toe.

“You’re tall,” she told him. “I’m Dawn. I’m five.”

He crouched down in front of her and held out his hand. “How do you do, Dawn? I’m Chance. I’m thirty-nine.”

She glanced at his hand, but didn’t shake it, instead declaring, “You’re old.”

“I know,” he said, rising and sighing theatrically. A tiny tug pulled on his lips. “Some days it’s a wonder I can get out of bed.”

“Mommy says you’re taking her to a party.”

“I am.”

“And that I can’t come ‘cuz it’s a grown-up party. That’s not fair.”

“Life’s not fair, peanut,” Lindsey said as she lifted the child in her arms. “Get used to it while you’re young.”

“Lindsey Marie, the things you say.” Annika shook her head. To him, she said, “Fredrika will be right out. She got involved with something and lost track of the time. Would you like something to drink? We have water or I can offer you beer.”

“He drinks coffee, ma,” Lindsey said. “Buckets of it.” She rolled her eyes as she plopped down on the couch with Dawn still in her arms. The child giggled as they bounced.

“I’m fine, thanks,” he said.

“So, Fredrika tells me you’re a lawyer.”

“Yes, ma’am.”

“I think I would have made a good lawyer,” she said, nodding, a smile tripping across her face. “I like a good argument.”

From the couch, he heard a muffled, “No lie,” and clamped down on the laugh that threatened to seep from him.

“Okay, I’m ready. Sorry.”

He turned and simply lost his breath.

Gone was the ponytailed, overall-wearing, sneaker-shod barista he’d come to know. A vision in deep green had taken her over.

The simple, short-sleeved dress fell from her shoulders to cascade in a simple line to her waist, then flared out to billow just below her knees. Since he’d only ever seen her hair pulled up and back, high on her head, he was shocked at how long it was hanging free and loose about her in a tumble of waves. She’d gone simple on her makeup but managed to look fresh and utterly alluring. A tiny-heeled shoe completed the outfit.

She’d never looked less like someone named Freddie.

“You look lovely,” he said, finally finding his tongue.

Releasing 9.12.2022.

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Photo of the day, day 211

Grandma duty is so exhausting…..

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Photo of the day, day 210

I want to draw your attention to the black oval at the top of my phone. This is how long I was on hold with my credit card company when I decided to document this. The call timed out at 60 minutes and then I had to call and start all over again. I really miss being able to talk to live people and not automatrons.

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#ThursdayTease CHANCE #preorder #Fakedatingromance

I haven’t done one of these in a while and when I woke up I remembered today was Thursday, so…

From my upcoming addition to the LAST MAN STANDING series, CHANCE, dropping on 9.12.2022. Here’s a little something between the h/h to whet your preorder appetites!

“I’m so sorry about this,” Chance told Freddie as he pulled the car into traffic. “Nothing short of coming down with the bubonic plague was going to be a good enough excuse to get out of today. And if I told her I was sick she would have come straight to my apartment to check on me. Probably would have sent her private doc to visit you if we’d said you were afflicted. I’m so sorry,” he said again.

A quick glance across the front of the rental car showed him she wasn’t showing any signs of being angry or put out. In fact, he ventured to think it was the opposite. She looked resigned to it and content.

“Don’t worry about it.” She turned to glance at her daughter who was secured in the booster seat behind them, holding an iPad and with earphones in place. “I wasn’t doing anything today buy baking for tomorrow anyway, and I already got a head start on that this morning.”

“Still, I feel, well, guilty about all this. If I’d never asked you to pretend to be my girlfriend in the first place you wouldn’t have been ambushed into coming along today. My only hope is that after this they’ll leave me, us, alone.”

He remembered saying the same thing after the anniversary party and look how that had backfired.

“It’ll all be fine,” she said. “Where’d you get the car, by the way? I thought you didn’t keep one in the city.”

“I don’t. I rented it for the weekend. It was easier than depending on car service, plus, this way we can leave as soon as we want without having to wait to be picked up.”

Freddie’s laugh filled the cab. “We haven’t even gotten there yet and already you’re planning your escape.”

“It pays to plan ahead,” he muttered.

Why wasn’t she angry? Or at least put out by the situation? He was. In spades.

But saying no to his family wasn’t something he could do. He felt obligated to abide by his aunt’s wishes no matter how much they inconvenienced him.

 Freddie, though, had no obligation to his family. And yet, here she was, on a beautiful Sunday afternoon, going to a dinner that was sure to be emotionally trying, her daughter in tow, and acting like it was no big deal at all.

The more he came to know the woman the more intrigued he was by her.

Traffic, unfortunately in his eyes, was sparse and they made it over the bridge to his aunt’s Brooklyn brownstone in record time.

When he found a parking spot on her street he started to feel like some cosmic force was conspiring against him, making everything easy today so he’d be forced to stay longer than he wanted.

Freddie took Dawn out of the booster seat and once the child was on the sidewalk between then, she slipped her tiny hand into his, the other in her mother’s. Something shifted in his chest when he looked down at the little redhead and she smiled up at him.

“Mommy,” she said as they made their way up the stoop steps to his aunt’s front door. “Did you make enough cupcakes for me to have two?”

“We’ll see,” Freddie said. “It depends on how many people are here and how well you do with eating your dinner.”

“I’ll be good. Promise. I just hope they don’t have carrots.” She looked back up at Chance. “I don’t like carrots. I don’t like any orange food.”

He pressed her hand and said, “Me, neither.”

“Really?”

Her wide, blue-eyed wonder, made him laugh. “Can’t stand them.”

“Wow. I thought all grownups ate carrots.”

Chance rang the doorbell. “Not this one.” He took a deep breath when the lock shifted.

“Relax,” Freddie said.

“Impossible.”

The door was thrown open wide and his aunt pulled him into her arms, then pushed him away to do the same to Freddie. When it was Dawn’s turn to receive the exuberant welcome, he felt her body press against his leg, her little hand still holding tight to his. In a heartbeat, he picked up her so she wouldn’t have to be engulfed in his aunt’s killer grip and said, “It smells great in here. When are we eating?”

He caught Freddie’s dramatic eye roll as she presented the box filled with the cupcakes she’d baked to his aunt.

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Photo of the day, day 209

This little girl turned 2 on 7.25. Love her sososo much!

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Photo of the day, day 208

Taken in a friend’s backyard!

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