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eBooks GROW ON TREES (ebooksgrowontrees) | 78 comments $2.99 or Less eBooks for May!

Click here for today's featured $2.99 or Less eBooks! (updated daily)
http://www.ebooksgrowontrees.com/#!tw...


message 3: by L.K. (new)

L.K. Evans | 1 comments Keepers of Arden (The Brothers Volume 1) by L.K. Evans Keepers of Arden is 2.99 and can be purchased here:

Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view...

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Keepers-Arden-T...

B&N: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/keepe...

iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/keep...

From 05/01/14 till 05/15/14, I'm donating 100% of the ebook profits from sales to the ASPCA (American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals).


message 4: by Stephanie (last edited May 05, 2014 10:46AM) (new)

Stephanie Collins (withangelswings) With Angel's Wings is $2.99 and can be purchased at:

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Angels-Wings-St...

or

Barnes & Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/with-...

Thanks so much!
~Stephanie


message 5: by Casey (new)

Casey Keen (caseykeen) Paranormal Romance! $2.99 on Amazon:

http://www.amazon.com/Ill-Be-Damned-A...


message 6: by G.J. (last edited May 06, 2014 10:45AM) (new)

G.J. Griffiths (gjgriffiths) | 18 comments All three of G J Griffiths' novels available from Amazon for $2.99 or less during May 2014. If the new novel (second in series) So What's Next! is purchased before May31 then you may claim the first book in the series FREE! Visit G J Griffiths website, www.gjgriffithswriter.com for more Giveaway details.

http://www.amazon.com/So-Whats-Next-W...
(Amazon UK: http://www.amazon.co.uk/So-Whats-Next...)

So What! Stories or Whatever! (first book)
from Amzn USA: http://amzn.to/1cA3H5O
from Amzn UK: http://tinyurl.com/o4s5uxd

Fallen Hero is around $1.50 from Amazon USA: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B008PFCPUK
and around £1 from Amzn UK: http://tinyurl.com/mqk2nkn

Check out the Free Gifts carefully-crafted by Minibuds by visiting www.gjgriffithswriter.com


message 7: by Martha (new)

Martha O'Sullivan (marthaosullivan) | 9 comments Last Chance, the conclusion of the Chances trilogy, by Martha O'Sullivan is $2.99 or less in May!

Moira Brody knows Paul Webster better than he knows himself. But neither one of them know that he as in love with her as she is with him. These lifelong friends will have to look at each other with fresh eyes and brave hearts. And even the single-digit temperatures and snowcapped peaks of the Lake Tahoe winter are no match for their long-bridled desire.
Blurb and Excerpt (PG) 
       The black ice cast an eerie sheen on the road ahead and the glare of the oncoming high beams had Paul squinting as if at the summer sun. The weather was coming in fast and he wondered if Moira had gotten home safely.
      Or at all.
      Or alone.
      He should’ve gotten her roses. 
      But he didn’t.
      Because she’s...Moira. Effortlessly beautiful, remarkably grounded, perpetually good-natured Moira. 
      And tonight she was something else.
      Irresistibly sexy. 
      In tight-fitting jeans and a scooped-neck top he’d never seen before. 
      With her freshly washed, begging to be touched spiral curls skimming her shoulders.
      And eye makeup.   
      With red lipstick.
      She smelled pretty good too. Like spring rain and lilac laced with desire. 
      All for the guy begging for roses at the flower shop. For someone he’d been “interested in” for a while. For whom he had a last minute arrangement thrown together. 
      From his cuttings.
      For his girl.
      Paul huffed out a harried breath.
      Is that what she was? 
      Apparently not. 
      But he sure as hell wanted her to be. 
      He slammed on the brakes and the Beemer swerved, then leveled, sliding into the precarious U-turn.  
      It took Paul twice as long as usual to get back into town with the slick roads. And by then the temperature had dipped enough to turn the spitting rain into pellets of steel. A frigid, damp sleet akin to the block of ice that had staked a claim in the pit of his stomach.
      Turning the high-curbed corner, he heaved a halfhearted sigh of relief when he saw no car in the driveway and a hodgepodge of lights burning inside. 
      She was home. 
      Alone.
      Unless they came in one car, he prepared himself through gritted teeth. 
      Paul knew the garage code, but didn’t want to scare her, so he opted for the conventional route. He could see her profile through the slates of the plantation shutters as he made his way up the flagstone path to the front porch. She was in the kitchen fussing with something, still dressed up like she hadn’t been home long. 
      Alone, it would seem.
      His throat muscles contracted as his mind began to race. Had her date seen her home or had they parted ways at the office? Gone somewhere for a drink after dinner? Made another date? He looked on as Moira stepped back from the beaded board kitchen island, arms drawn across her chest, and appraised her work. The midnight blue jeans sat just below her hips, hugging every one of her curves from hip to ankle and Paul found himself disturbingly covetous. The sheer shirt rested at her waistline and when she bent over, the dimples at the small of her back implored him to wonder what came next. And her breasts looked bigger somehow, like they’d grown overnight. The mere thought of it made his heart skip a beat and his cock begin to grow ridged.   
      Seemingly pleased with her work, she reached for the dish towel flung over her shoulder and dried her hands.
      That’s when she saw him out of the corner of her eye.
    She did a double-take, then mingled with his soulful gaze momentarily. He thought the corners of her mouth curved slightly upward, but the distance between them was too great to be sure. She shook off whatever she was thinking and walked toward the front door. He visualized her on the other side, squeezing her eyes shut and taking a few deep breaths before opening it. She greeted him with a wobbly, “Hey.”  
      She looked captivating in the amber light. Her eyes were languid and clung to his as if unwittingly attached. Her lips were naked now and Paul told himself it was from eating. The tendrils around her face had doubled, like some vagabond strands had fallen from the clip at the crown of her head. Also from natural causes, he forced himself to assume. “Hey,” he returned. “Can I come in?” 
      “Of course,” she invited blandly, ushering him in.     
      Stepping inside, Paul rapid-fired, “I’m glad you’re home. I wanted to—”
      “Where else would I be at eleven o’clock at night?” she cut him off.
      “I don’t know.” His mind was suddenly a mare’s nest and his palms were beginning to sweat. “I wasn’t sure what your plans were for the rest of the evening.”
      “I’ve been home for almost an hour,” she informed him crisply. 
      “Alone?” His eyes scanned the house beckoningly. 
      “Yes,” Moira patronized. “It was just dinner, Paul.”
      On Valentine’s Day, he silently added. “About that, I came by to apologize.” He wondered if she sensed the audible relief in his voice. “I shouldn’t have assumed we’d see each other tonight. And I certainly shouldn’t have assumed you’d be,” he bit off the word, “available.” He looked away then, into the cottage-style kitchen, and saw what she’d been working on.
      Flowers.
      His flowers. 
      She must have acquired clairvoyant powers in those few seconds, because her tone softened and she said, “I had to bring them home. They were too beautiful to waste.”
      Like her.
      No, like them.
      With four wide steps he advanced into the antique white kitchen he’d designed. “Where are the roses?”
      She followed him. “At the office.”  
      “They’re not too beautiful to waste?” he quickened in a thick voice, turning to face her. 
      “No, they are.” Her breath hitched. “They’re just not from you.”      
      Her emerald saucers were filling behind their licorice lashes and she was biting her bottom lip, trying to hold back the tears. Paul couldn’t have stopped himself from going to her if he’d wanted to.              
    “Moira, what are we doing?” he entreated, gripping her forearms. “What have I done? Have I lost you?”      
      She shook her head from side to side and her eyes began to empty, leaving sooty tire-like tracks on her china doll face. Tipping his head back in silent thanks, Paul took her in his arms. She moved into his body, sobbing through sawed-off breaths.
      “Tell me nothing happened. Tell me there’s nothing between you and him,” he prayed out loud after an affecting moment.       
      She answered by burrowing her head deeper into his shoulder and wreathing his middle. He felt her breathing level off and he kissed the top of her coal-black mane. She smelled like a subtle version of earlier, infused with wine and garlic. Hope replaced the uneasiness in his stomach and he heard himself say, “I had to force myself not to go back there. I’ve been driving around for hours, going crazy.”
      She angled out of his grasp just enough to make eye contact. Suddenly she was the girl he used to know again, not the woman tying his insides into knots. Or maybe the perfect combination of both. Her eyes began to shine and a satisfied smile curved her lips. “You have?” 
      “Yeah. Like outside my mind crazy.” He laid his lips on hers and tasted the salt from her tears. She melted into the kiss, then the next. He wondered if she could sense him growing behind the zipper. Or the spool of want unwinding into a thousand frazzled threads in his gut. Gasping for air, he released her mouth and cupped her face. “You make me crazy, Moira Brody.  Absolutely crazy.”
      Her breath caught in her throat and her eyes began to swell again. She swallowed hard and allowed, “Then I like you crazy.”
      Resting his forehead on hers, he let the night roll down his back like a recalcitrant tumbleweed. Then he closed his eyes and appealed, “Do I need to fight for you, Moira?”
      She laughed a little. “Well, Jason did bring flowers, dinner, wine.”
      “I brought flowers, dinner, wine,” Paul defended high-mindedly, straightening. “Did you ever get the Chinese food?”
      “Yeah, it’s in there.” She nodded over his shoulder at the sub-zero they’d picked out together.
      “It’s your favorite. Cashew chicken.”
      “Thank God,” she gushed, dabbing the outer corners of her eyes. “I’m starving.”
      Paul’s nose wrinkled. “Did Bernini’s have a bad night?”
      “Not from what I picked at.”
      “Poor guy,” he gloated through a chuckle. “Went to all that trouble for nothing.”
      “I wouldn’t say for nothing,” Moira demurred, her eyes dancing with innuendo. “He seemed to enjoy the evening.”
      “Oh?” inquired Paul, stepping out of her embrace.
      Gleaming now, she raised her eyebrows mischievously. “Yeah.”
      He felt his expression plummet. “Did he kiss you good night?”
      “He did,” preened Moira. 
      Paul couldn’t believe how much that bothered him. “Did you want him to?”
      Her face instantly sobered. “No,” she avowed, then finished with hushed care. “I wanted you to come back.” 
      “I did.” As if he’d had any choice in the matter. Paul drew her to him again and ran his hands up and down her willowy back. “I had to.”
      “That was all I could think about during dinner,” she lamented into the crook of his shoulder. “That I could’ve spent Valentine’s Day with you.”
      “Don’t let it happen again.” He leaned back and dried her tearstained cheeks with his thumbs. “I know I won’t,” he warned gallantly. 
      “I didn’t want it to happen to begin with.”
      “Good to hear.” He kissed her nose with the puissance of a snowflake. “Think he’ll call you?” 
      She shrugged matter-of-factly. “Yeah.”
      “What will you say?” 
      “What should I say?” Her voice was hopeful.
      “No.” He reached into his jacket pocket. “And thank you.”     
     Her eyes narrowed in confusion as she took the red velvet box from his open hands. “What is this?”
     He gestured toward the white satin bow-topped lid with a tip of the head. “Open it and find out.” 
      Moira obliged as Paul looked on eagerly. A tiny gasp escaped her throat when she saw the studs inside.
      “I know they’re on the small side, but you’re not one for flash.”
      She glided her fingertips over each diamond. “They’re beautiful.”
      “Megan thought they were perfect.” Just like you, he almost said. 
      Her astonished gaze shifted upward. “Megan?”      
      “She’s not sick. She found another sitter for tonight.” He paused to let the benevolent betrayal sink in. “So we could spend Valentine’s Day together.”
      “Oh, Paul! I’m so sorry!” she effused. “I had no idea.”
      Neither did he. Until just now. And the realization hit him like a ton of bricks. “You can make it up to me tomorrow night,” he told her extemporaneously. “We’re going on a date. It’ll be our first one.”

Martha O’Sullivan’s Chances trilogy is available now from Red Sage Publishing. Second Chance, the trilogy opener, is a reunion/love triangle romance that keeps the shores of Lake Tahoe blazing hot long after the sultry summer sun has set. Chance Encounter, the trilogy's second installment, heats up San Francisco’s chilly days and blustery nights with white-hot passion and pulse-pounding suspense. And in Last Chance, the conclusion of the trilogy, lifelong friends-turned-lovers melt the snow-packed Sierras into lust-fueled puddles despite the single-digit temperatures of the Lake Tahoe winter.
The Chances trilogy by Martha O'Sullivan. Available at: marthaosullivan26.wix.com/marthaosull... 

 http://eredsage.com/store/OSULLIVAN_M... 

http://www.amazon.com/Chance-Chances-...

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/last-...


message 8: by Claude (new)

Claude Crowe (ClaudeCrowe) | 3 comments 'Kitty Blue' is a sassy Pride & Prejudice reboot set in outback Australia. Now features on the reading list of Open University Australia! New edition published 14 April 2014.

Amazon reader reviews:

“I could not put this book down and read it with barely a break. It touches all human emotions. The characters are layered beautifully. Kitty is a wonderfully strong, contemporary woman and her love interest, Adam Clancy, stole my heart as a modern day Mr Darcy – there is something attractive about a lawyer with a social conscience! (Think of a young, handsome Jeffrey Robinson.) The enigmatic Aboriginal artist, Murrandoo, rips at our collective guilt. And Adam’s persistent and prissy admirer, Blanche, just made me laugh out loud!” - Debra Burridge

"I enjoyed seeing how the author cleverly reimagined the pride and prejudice story in a modern Australian setting. The sub plot about the Aboriginal artist added another layer of interest. I'd recommend it for an easy holiday read." - Jane Austen fan

Kitty Blue #Kindle (USA) http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00EUPDCT2

ITunes
Kitty Blue https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/kitt...

Nook
http://www.barnesandnoble.com/s/claud...

Kobo
Kitty Blue on Kobo http://store.kobobooks.com/en-US/eboo...


message 9: by Mary (new)

Mary Waibel | 9 comments Charmed Memories (A Princess of Valendria Novel) by Mary Waibel

CHARMED MEMORIES is on sale now through midnight May 11 for $1.48

https://museituppublishing.com/bookst...


message 10: by Mary (new)

Mary Waibel | 9 comments Different Kind of Knight (A Princess of Valendria Novel) by Mary Waibel

DIFFERENT KIND OF KNIGHT is on sale now through midnight May 11 for $2.75.

https://museituppublishing.com/bookst...


message 11: by Renita (new)

Renita Bryant (renitabryant) | 1 comments YESTERDAY MOURNING is currently $2.99 during the virtual book tour (ends 5/17)!

Latest 5-Star Review (by Jersey Girl Book Reviews):
In her debut novella, Yesterday Mourning, author Renita Bryant weaves a heartfelt and touching story of love, loss, forgiveness and healing.

Yesterday Mourning is a poignant tale that follows two women as they struggle to reconcile their separate yet shared troubled family past that forever binds them together. It is a powerful and compelling tale that takes the reader on an emotional roller coaster ride, yet leaves them wanting more.

The author easily draws the reader into Yvette and Vera's lives, you can't help but become invested as their family story unfolds, you'll feel the full gamut of emotions, and it will give you much food for thought towards your own family relationships.

This is an inspirational, honest, and raw story that wraps itself around you as you delve into the complex and complicated dynamic of Yvette and Vera's family. Through the drama and emotional turmoil of their pasts, their struggle to reconcile and move forward in their lives is breathtaking as they are taught life lessons about loss, love, forgiveness, healing, and redemption.

As I read this beautifully written story, I couldn't help but reflect upon my own family relationships. I recognized a similarity in the dynamic of my own family relationships that touched my heart, and left an imprint on my soul. I don't think that anyone will come away from this story without feeling some emotional connection.

Yesterday Mourning is an amazing story with a thoughtful and soul searching message that will stay with you long after the last words have been read.

AMAZON: http://www.amazon.com/Yesterday-Mourn...


message 12: by Jessica (new)

Jessica Kong | 6 comments A Lost Kitten (Sea-anan Saga, #1) by Jessica Kong A Lost Kitten. Star Wars with a ghostly twist. $1.99 Amazon: http://fb.me/2dmGZFmqD


message 13: by R.C. (new)

R.C. (RCReadWrite) | 2 comments $2.99 legal thriller
"The courtroom scenes crackle."
"The settings and dialogue sing with authenticity."
From the review site Menreadingbooks.com

Full review at their site (warning there are some spoilers) and the book is available for $2.99 for Kindle. If you like legal thrillers that will hold you attention you'll enjoy Hallways in the Night by R.C. O'Leary.

http://menreadingbooks.blogspot.com/2...


message 14: by Carys (new)

Carys Jones Hi,

I just wanted to promote that my new romantic thriller, Prime Deception, is currently on offer on Amazon US and UK.

When Lorna Thomas is found dead in her car everyone believes she killed herself. But the day after her death Lorna was set to sell a scandalous story to one of Britain’s biggest tabloid papers. For six months she had been the Deputy Prime Minister’s mistress.

Will Lorna’s secret die with her? While her family try to move on and come to terms with her death one person refuses to believe that Lorna killed herself. Her twin sister, Laurie is convinced that Lorna was murdered and she’ll stop at nothing to prove it, even if that means teaming up the very man her sister had been having an affair with…

http://www.amazon.com/Prime-Deception... Prime Deception by Carys Jones Prime Deception


message 15: by Matthew (new)

Matthew Arkin (matthewarkin) | 1 comments "A dead body is a lousy way to end a first date." But a Kindle Countdown Deal is a great way to get a discount on a terrific page turner. Check out In the Country of the Blind.


message 16: by Christy (new)

Christy Bower (christy_bower) | 27 comments The Secret of the Sword (Dragon Hollow, #2) by Christy Bower $2.99 Kindle

Book 2 in the Dragon Hollow Trilogy
(Get a free PDF of Book 1, The Legend of Dragon Hollow, when you sign up for my email list at http://christybower.com/email/

The Secret of the Sword (Dragon Hollow #2)
A tyrant has taken over the throne but what can Peter do? No one will believe he’s the rightful heir to the throne because he’s just a kid.


message 17: by Christy (new)

Christy Bower (christy_bower) | 27 comments The Rise of the Dragon King (Dragon Hollow, #3) by Christy Bower $2.99 Kindle

Book 3 in the Dragon Hollow Trilogy
Get a free PDF of Book 1, The Legend of Dragon Hollow, when you sign up for my email list at http://christybower.com/email/ )

The Rise of the Dragon King (Dragon Hollow #3)
The young king must contend with a horde of barbarians headed his way, a missing friend, a call for help from an ally, and a dragon seeking revenge on him.


message 18: by C.J. (new)

C.J. Hartland (cjhartland) | 1 comments REcovered by CJ Hartland is now $2.99 at http://amzn.com/B00JAGX0VQ

See what the reviewers are saying:
http://amzn.to/ScMeKN
http://bit.ly/1oLGmpq

REcovered by C.J. Hartland
REcovered by C.J. Hartland
alternative cover


message 19: by Gerald (new)

Gerald Freeman (gerryaldridge) | 5 comments Appearances are what people THINK they look like. - Gerald Freeman FANTASTIC PROMO $0.99 NOW UNTIL - 6th June Kill Daddy A true story! An emotional ride into Africa and the human soul. Will the final destination be heaven, or hell? http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00FQQBV2O/Kill Daddy


message 20: by S. (last edited May 21, 2014 03:14AM) (new)

S. Brandis (selliotbrandis) | 1 comments Irradiated by S. Elliot Brandis
Irradiated

Irradiated is now available, and permanently priced at $2.99.

Irradiated is a post-apocalyptic / dystopian novel, the first in a trilogy. If you like your books gritty and dark, or want to see more female protagonists in science fiction -- this is the book for you.

The blurb:

A man thrust a baby into Jade’s hands. It trembled in her arms. The man had a message: escape from the tunnels and never return, her parents were already dead. Jade had a sister; she was irradiated.

Thirteen years later, her sister, Pearl, is coming of age. Rows of sucker-caps line her arms and hands. Her skin is coral pink. Each night, her dreams fill with visions of violence, depression, and fear.

On the surface, people have grown wild and dangerous. They scavenge, fight, and steal. Below, in the tunnels, they're controlled by a ruthless leader and an army of beings known only as Shadows. When both groups come searching for Pearl, sensing the power her dreams may hold, only Jade can stand in the way.

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00KAWN3ZM


message 21: by Martha (new)

Martha O'Sullivan (marthaosullivan) | 9 comments Last Chance by Martha O’Sullivan is $2.99 in May!

Last Chance (Chances trilogy #3) by Martha O’Sullivan

Moira Brody knows Paul Webster better than he knows himself. But neither one of them know that he as in love with her as she is with him. These lifelong friends will have to look at each other with fresh eyes and brave hearts. And even the single-digit temperatures and snowcapped peaks of the Lake Tahoe winter are no match for their long-bridled desire.

The black ice cast an eerie sheen on the road ahead and the glare of the oncoming high beams had Paul squinting as if at the summer sun. The weather was coming in fast and he wondered if Moira had gotten home safely.
Or at all.
Or alone.
He should’ve gotten her roses.
But he didn’t.
Because she’s...Moira. Effortlessly beautiful, remarkably grounded, perpetually good-natured Moira.
And tonight she was something else.
Irresistibly sexy.
In tight-fitting jeans and a scooped-neck top he’d never seen before.
With her freshly washed, begging to be touched spiral curls skimming her shoulders.
And eye makeup.
With red lipstick.
She smelled pretty good too. Like spring rain and lilac laced with desire.
All for the guy begging for roses at the flower shop. For someone he’d been “interested in” for a while. For whom he had a last minute arrangement thrown together.
From his cuttings.
For his girl.
Paul huffed out a harried breath.
Is that what she was?
Apparently not.
But he sure as hell wanted her to be.
He slammed on the brakes and the Beemer swerved, then leveled, sliding into the precarious U-turn.
It took Paul twice as long as usual to get back into town with the slick roads. And by then the temperature had dipped enough to turn the spitting rain into pellets of steel. A frigid, damp sleet akin to the block of ice that had staked a claim in the pit of his stomach.
Turning the high-curbed corner, he heaved a halfhearted sigh of relief when he saw no car in the driveway and a hodgepodge of lights burning inside.
She was home.
Alone.
Unless they came in one car, he prepared himself through gritted teeth.
Paul knew the garage code, but didn’t want to scare her, so he opted for the conventional route. He could see her profile through the slates of the plantation shutters as he made his way up the flagstone path to the front porch. She was in the kitchen fussing with something, still dressed up like she hadn’t been home long.
Alone, it would seem.
His throat muscles contracted as his mind began to race. Had her date seen her home or had they parted ways at the office? Gone somewhere for a drink after dinner? Made another date? He looked on as Moira stepped back from the beaded board kitchen island, arms drawn across her chest, and appraised her work. The midnight blue jeans sat just below her hips, hugging every one of her curves from hip to ankle and Paul found himself disturbingly covetous. The sheer shirt rested at her waistline and when she bent over, the dimples at the small of her back implored him to wonder what came next. And her breasts looked bigger somehow, like they’d grown overnight. The mere thought of it made his heart skip a beat and his cock begin to grow ridged.
Seemingly pleased with her work, she reached for the dish towel flung over her shoulder and dried her hands.
That’s when she saw him out of the corner of her eye.
She did a double-take, then mingled with his soulful gaze momentarily. He thought the corners of her mouth curved slightly upward, but the distance between them was too great to be sure. She shook off whatever she was thinking and walked toward the front door. He visualized her on the other side, squeezing her eyes shut and taking a few deep breaths before opening it. She greeted him with a wobbly, “Hey.”
She looked captivating in the amber light. Her eyes were languid and clung to his as if unwittingly attached. Her lips were naked now and Paul told himself it was from eating. The tendrils around her face had doubled, like some vagabond strands had fallen from the clip at the crown of her head. Also from natural causes, he forced himself to assume. “Hey,” he returned. “Can I come in?”
“Of course,” she invited blandly, ushering him in.
Stepping inside, Paul rapid-fired, “I’m glad you’re home. I wanted to—”
“Where else would I be at eleven o’clock at night?” she cut him off.
“I don’t know.” His mind was suddenly a mare’s nest and his palms were beginning to sweat. “I wasn’t sure what your plans were for the rest of the evening.”
“I’ve been home for almost an hour,” she informed him crisply.
“Alone?” His eyes scanned the house beckoningly.
“Yes,” Moira patronized. “It was just dinner, Paul.”
On Valentine’s Day, he silently added. “About that, I came by to apologize.” He wondered if she sensed the audible relief in his voice. “I shouldn’t have assumed we’d see each other tonight. And I certainly shouldn’t have assumed you’d be,” he bit off the word, “available.” He looked away then, into the cottage-style kitchen, and saw what she’d been working on.
Flowers.
His flowers.
She must have acquired clairvoyant powers in those few seconds, because her tone softened and she said, “I had to bring them home. They were too beautiful to waste.”
Like her.
No, like them.
With four wide steps he advanced into the antique white kitchen he’d designed. “Where are the roses?”
She followed him. “At the office.”
“They’re not too beautiful to waste?” he quickened in a thick voice, turning to face her.
“No, they are.” Her breath hitched. “They’re just not from you.”
Her emerald saucers were filling behind their licorice lashes and she was biting her bottom lip, trying to hold back the tears. Paul couldn’t have stopped himself from going to her if he’d wanted to.
“Moira, what are we doing?” he entreated, gripping her forearms. “What have I done? Have I lost you?”
She shook her head from side to side and her eyes began to empty, leaving sooty tire-like tracks on her china doll face. Tipping his head back in silent thanks, Paul took her in his arms. She moved into his body, sobbing through sawed-off breaths.
“Tell me nothing happened. Tell me there’s nothing between you and him,” he prayed out loud after an affecting moment.
She answered by burrowing her head deeper into his shoulder and wreathing his middle. He felt her breathing level off and he kissed the top of her coal-black mane. She smelled like a subtle version of earlier, infused with wine and garlic. Hope replaced the uneasiness in his stomach and he heard himself say, “I had to force myself not to go back there. I’ve been driving around for hours, going crazy.”
She angled out of his grasp just enough to make eye contact. Suddenly she was the girl he used to know again, not the woman tying his insides into knots. Or maybe the perfect combination of both. Her eyes began to shine and a satisfied smile curved her lips. “You have?”
“Yeah. Like outside my mind crazy.” He laid his lips on hers and tasted the salt from her tears. She melted into the kiss, then the next. He wondered if she could sense him growing behind the zipper. Or the spool of want unwinding into a thousand frazzled threads in his gut. Gasping for air, he released her mouth and cupped her face. “You make me crazy, Moira Brody. Absolutely crazy.”
Her breath caught in her throat and her eyes began to swell again. She swallowed hard and allowed, “Then I like you crazy.”
Resting his forehead on hers, he let the night roll down his back like a recalcitrant tumbleweed. Then he closed his eyes and appealed, “Do I need to fight for you, Moira?”
She laughed a little. “Well, Jason did bring flowers, dinner, wine.”
“I brought flowers, dinner, wine,” Paul defended high-mindedly, straightening. “Did you ever get the Chinese food?”
“Yeah, it’s in there.” She nodded over his shoulder at the sub-zero they’d picked out together.
“It’s your favorite. Cashew chicken.”
“Thank God,” she gushed, dabbing the outer corners of her eyes. “I’m starving.”
Paul’s nose wrinkled. “Did Bernini’s have a bad night?”
“Not from what I picked at.”
“Poor guy,” he gloated through a chuckle. “Went to all that trouble for nothing.”
“I wouldn’t say for nothing,” Moira demurred, her eyes dancing with innuendo. “He seemed to enjoy the evening.”
“Oh?” inquired Paul, stepping out of her embrace.
Gleaming now, she raised her eyebrows mischievously. “Yeah.”
He felt his expression plummet. “Did he kiss you good night?”
“He did,” preened Moira.
Paul couldn’t believe how much that bothered him. “Did you want him to?”
Her face instantly sobered. “No,” she avowed, then finished with hushed care. “I wanted you to come back.”
“I did.” As if he’d had any choice in the matter. Paul drew her to him again and ran his hands up and down her willowy back. “I had to.”
“That was all I could think about during dinner,” she lamented into the crook of his shoulder. “That I could’ve spent Valentine’s Day with you.”
“Don’t let it happen again.” He leaned back and dried her tearstained cheeks with his thumbs. “I know I won’t,” he warned gallantly.
“I didn’t want it to happen to begin with.”
“Good to hear.” He kissed her nose with the puissance of a snowflake. “Think he’ll call you?”
She shrugged matter-of-factly. “Yeah.”
“What will you say?”
“What should I say?” Her voice was hopeful.
“No.” He reached into his jacket pocket. “And thank you.”
Her eyes narrowed in confusion as she took the red velvet box from his open hands. “What is this?”
He gestured toward the white satin bow-topped lid with a tip of the head. “Open it and find out.”
Moira obliged as Paul looked on eagerly. A tiny gasp escaped her throat when she saw the studs inside.
“I know they’re on the small side, but you’re not one for flash.”
She glided her fingertips over each diamond. “They’re beautiful.”
“Megan thought they were perfect.” Just like you, he almost said.
Her astonished gaze shifted upward. “Megan?”
“She’s not sick. She found another sitter for tonight.” He paused to let the benevolent betrayal sink in. “So we could spend Valentine’s Day together.”
“Oh, Paul! I’m so sorry!” she effused. “I had no idea.”
Neither did he. Until just now. And the realization hit him like a ton of bricks. “You can make it up to me tomorrow night,” he told her extemporaneously. “We’re going on a date. It’ll be our first one.”


Martha O’Sullivan’s Chances trilogy is available from Red Sage Publishing. Second Chance, the trilogy opener, is a reunion/love triangle romance that keeps the shores of Lake Tahoe blazing hot long after the sultry summer sun has set. Chance Encounter, the trilogy's second installment, heats up San Francisco’s chilly days and blustery nights with white-hot passion and pulse-pounding suspense. And in Last Chance, the conclusion of the trilogy, lifelong friends-turned-lovers melt the snow-packed Sierras into lust-fueled puddles despite the single-digit temperatures of the Lake Tahoe winter.

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