I am… it’s been a very trying week. Some of the reasons are personal and I won’t go into them here, but ending the week with the SCOTUS overthrowing Roe v. Wade was pretty much the capper on a completely shit week. That said, I’m not going to get all preachy here, I’m just too tired…
Instead, how about a real snippet from the next book that is releasing in October–The Fireman’s Christmas Wish. It’s Becker Lange’s book and honestly, Beck just melts my heart. I wasn’t sure how putting this grumpy divorced firefighter with chipper, sweet nursery school teacher, Harley Cole, was going to work, but wow, these two had fireworks!
Here’s the setup: Beck and Harley have slowly been becoming friends after he returned to River’s Edge following a bitter divorce. As the book opens, he grudgingly agreed to bring an old antique firetruck to the nursery school…this scene happens on their way to supper afterward:
She eyed him discreetly as he drove the few blocks from the preschool to the firehouse. At almost forty, he was killer handsome with a strong stubbled jaw and dark, slightly curly hair. He was built—as her grandmother used to say—like a brick outhouse, an old colloquialism that Harley had googled once just to see if it fit the Lange brothers. And it did, all three of them were solid—muscular, strong, and lean. Beck’s eyes ran the gamut from icy silver to stormy leaden to warm, intense gray depending on his mood. Lately, she’d started seeing the warm gray now and again. She worried about his state of mind, though…his state of heart.
Sometimes, talking to him was like walking on the edge of a knife. When he first got home, his laugh had sounded like someone who had forgotten how to be merry, like he was imitating what he thought he should sound like laughing. Frankly, he needed to learn how to have fun again—to be taken in hand by someone who reveled in everyday life and brought back to the real world with all its joys and sorrows. He’d lived with that dark cloud over his head for too long…
Because they lived a mere three blocks apart, a couple mornings a week, they met up on their daily runs along the River Walk. Although keeping their breathing even discouraged much conversation, it was good to have his company.
She loved to bake and experiment with new recipes, but she didn’t need the calories, and bringing her baked goods into the preschool only put her kids on a sugar high, so she’d drop by the firehouse with cookies or other treats for the firefighters when she went on a baking binge. He was always appreciative, friendly, kind, but hard to talk to. Slowly, they were becoming friends. At least she thought so. He’d picked up weight, the dark circles had disappeared, and he smiled more easily, but the grumpy exterior remained and she was longing to find the key to open up Becker Lange.
So there you go… just a quick snippet.
Gratitude for today: Warm sunny days, my air-conditioned house, hot-and-cold running water (we do so take that for granted!), a mani/pedi day with sister, dear good supportive friends.
Stay well, stay safe, work for women, remember Ukraine, and most of all, mes amies, stay grateful,