Good morning! Every Friday in July I’ve given away one of my titles for free at All Romance. This week you can get The Beautician and the Billionaire Episode 5: The Captain fro FREE!
Episode 5 is a pivotal time for Charisse and Conor:
He shot up and knocked his chair over. Her eyes stayed on his. She appeared unbreakable, completely different than the other morning when he thought one wrong word might make her crumble. He preferred her strong like this.
He stepped around the desk, stopped right next to her and brushed her hair away from her ear. He trailed his finger down her arms, gratified by the goosebumps that erupted on her skin. His lips brushed against her ear as he whispered, “Did you enjoy your time in my penthouse?”
Her body shifted in a quiver. She kept her face forward as if he still sat behind his desk. “You know I did.”
“No, I don’t. You ran away and then let your dad set you up on a date with another man, one of my employees even.” He heard the steel edge in his voice as his anger grew at the recollection. “Why did you do that to me?”
His hand slid around her waist and pulled her toward him until his erection rubbed up against her hip. His other hand slid up from her waist, grazed over her breast and stopped on her cheek, forcing her to look at him.
Her veneer finally cracked, and her eyes pleaded with his. “I didn’t mean to hurt you. I just wanted my salon back without feeling indebted to you for your generosity.”
He leaned in as if he would kiss her, but at the last second, he turned her head so he could whisper in her ear again. “I’ll make one final offer for your salon. You can have it back if you agree to be mine for three weeks.”
Down: I did not get the choir directing job I wanted. I was offered the job directing the Children’s Choir. Admittedly, I have a lot more experience teaching children (see Masked Hearts), but it’s not the hours and money I wanted.
Up: I played pinball with my dad followed by coffee with my cousin! My dad was in town briefly and I managed to have lunch with him twice. There is a new old-style arcade here and we had a fun afternoon beating each other at pinball. Then my cousin who lives in Italy is visiting her parents in Santa Fe and came to Albuquerque for a few hours. I had a great time catching up with her, and I’m looking forward to seeing her again while she’s in Santa Fe.
Down: Business is down for writing. I really pushed myself during the spring and feel like it had an inverse effect on readership. I don’t understand what happened. It’s depressing. So I’m stepping back from the blog and publishing. I’m going to focus my energy on the next Holiday Cafe short story and the next Holiday Cafe novel. I apologize if you are one of the few people who read and enjoyed Shifting Into Love. It will reemerge after the Holiday Cafe books are done.
Up: Nails for a Billionaire is free today everywhere but Amazon. If you need some nail ideas for the weekend, look no further than my book!
I hope you’re having a great summer!
Today’s FREE book is The Beautician and the Billionaire Episodes 1-4!
Charisse withdrew her shaking hand, making a fist in the hopes he wouldn’t see it. She’d been prepared for his cold business mask—the one she was sure he used when taking over companies. Instead he’d arrived with sincerity and honesty. She’d almost leaned in and kissed him when he told her why he’d been such a rat bastard after the shampoo yesterday.
She should’ve kept her restraint instead of practically offering to undress him. Jeez Louise, she was getting in way over her head.
He watched her as he slowly slid his tie out from beneath his collar and undid the top buttons of his shirt. To keep herself from undoing the rest, she turned away and pulled out a towel from a shelf behind the sink.
Steady girl. You’re not ready for a relationship, especially with a tycoon like Conor Grishin.
But the words in her mind echoed hollowly throughout her head as she concentrated more on the way his body eased into the chair. Fantastic butt and broad shoulders just as she liked them. She tucked the towel around his collar and pressed on his shoulders to indicate he should lean back. She didn’t speak for fear her voice would shake like her hands.
But he understood and leaned back with his eyes closed. She drew her hands away slowly as he’d done when he touched her arm early. Turning on the water, she sprayed it over her hands until it was hotter than she’d had it get yesterday. She guessed by the way he drank his coffee fast while it was scalding, he wouldn’t want the water lukewarm.
The water cascaded over his head. “Is that too hot?”
“Not at all,” he said. His voice already sounded drowsy. He must not take much down time. She combed her fingers through his hair and raised the bottom of his head up to make sure the back got wet too. When she began massaging the shampoo into his head, she relaxed the muscles in her arms and allowed her connection to him to guide her fingertips.
He exhaled a long breath. His face appeared serene. The Mozart music made her recall her fantasy of walking through the gardens of Versailles. But France was so far away. They should start with dinner. No, he’d just asked her to shampoo his hair, not go on a date.
Her gaze trailed down his chest, broad like his shoulders, over his slim torso and right to a large bulge in his pants.
Her hands froze for just one moment. Then she drew back and turned the water on. So maybe dinner was an option. Or maybe he was hoping to get down and dirty at the sink. She stifled a nervous giggle. He was probably just hoping she hadn’t noticed. But how could she not? He was huge.
It was good to be a woman. Her panties had been wet since he’d touched her arm at the couch, but she wasn’t advertising it.
After she finished rinsing his hair, she took out a fresh towel and dried his hair, sneaking peeks at his lap—still bold and big. Her face burned with embarrassment or desire, she wasn’t sure which. She dropped the towel into the sink and styled his hair with her fingertips. She should just tell him she could style his hair at her chair. And ignore what was going on in his pants.
He still had his eyes closed and appeared at peace. He hadn’t fallen asleep again had he?
She stepped to his side and put her hand on his shoulder. “Conor?”
He gave a sigh, but didn’t open his eyes and didn’t say anything. She tugged at the towel around his neck. He finally lifted his head up and opened his eyes.
“I thought you’d fallen asleep again,” she said with a smile as she removed the towel around his neck and also dropped it into the sink.
His hand caught hers and his other hand wrapped around her waist. A second later, she was sitting on his lap with her legs hanging over the armrest of his chair. Her whole body tingled. She blocked off her rational mind telling her she wasn’t ready for any sort of intimacy and allowed the emotions and lust to flow freely.
He searched her face and gazed at her lips before pressing his own gently against hers.
Be sure to buy Episodes 5-9 to go with it!
Have I held you in suspense long enough? I was up all night working on Shifting Into Love. The style is quite hard to maintain so it’s taking a lot of rewriting individual sentences that stick out when I read it.
I can’t believe this is it for Charisse and Conor! I feel like there should be a parade or something. Thanks to all of you who have read through the story! Please stay tuned for news about Shifting Into Love. Also, drop me a comment or an email if you want to see more stories in the Beautician and the Billionaire world. There’s five other stylists to write about plus Marie, but I’m having a hard time judging if that’s where I should spend my energy.
And now, the Happily Ever After…
He held his hand out to her. When she took it, he stood up with her following his lead. When they entered the salon area, she squeezed his hand and exclaimed, “It’s even lovelier than today. The lights, the quartet…I can’t believe it.” She pushed a strand of stray curls behind her ear. Continue reading
Good morning! Tomorrow is the end of our time with Charisse and Conor. I hope you’ve enjoyed the story as much as I have sharing it with you.
Conor’s hand shook as he lit the candles. He’d had a small round table brought into Ma Charisse where the love seat and coffee table usually were. It was set with a white tablecloth, Wedgwood china plates with gold rims and Waterford Crystal. The sterling silverware shimmered with the flicker of the candle. Continue reading
I’ve been wanting to do special Shifting Into Love nails, but the story and the cover are taking all of my skills, which drains all of my energy.
And the stories aren’t paying my bills yet, so I’m in search of a job. I had interview two today for a choir directing job I’d really like to get. I’m having a third interview for it in a couple of weeks. Was it the nails that got me the third interview? 😉
“Can we sit down?” asked Gianna.
Charisse stared at her. Gianna seemed more comfortable than Sunday, wearing jeans and a blue untucked blouse with long sleeves. Her curly hair was pulled back in ponytail, making the mother daughter similarities striking.
“Yes, of course,” said Charisse, finally. She led her over to a small couch.
They sat and stared at each other. Charisse’s nerves made her clench her jaw. She didn’t want to be the one to begin. Continue reading
Good morning! There’s been a couple of posts at night I’d like to direct your attention too. First is my FREE Friday post. I’m going to be setting a different book for free each Friday this summer through the end of July. Also please check out my Shifting into Love posts especially about the cover and cowboy or biker 🙂
The Beautician and the Billionaire ends next week. I hope you’ve enjoyed reading it as much as I did writing it!
After a cup of much needed coffee, she approached Raul at the fountain and said, “Mother’s coming by soon. Feel free to go on break or leave for the day if you like. I can’t tell if you want to see her again or not.” She still hadn’t told him Gianna wanted to apologize to him. It would be too awkward, and if her mother wanted to apologize, she’d do it. Continue reading
Some walk-in customers had followed the lady luvs in, and soon appointments arrived. The salon was packed all day. Conor left soon after everyone started working to do some of his own work. Charisse interviewed the manicurist Letti had found, while she gave Charisse a simple French manicure. Her name was Kari, and she was in her thirties. She had her shiny black hair cut in a stylish bob that was longer in the front than in the back. Her nails had a pearlescent polish with a few gems to be glitzy without being too flashy. The French manicure she gave Charisse showed her skills, and Charisse told her if she kept the customers happy that day, the position was hers. Continue reading