Can true love happen twice in one lifetime?
If you like a love story that’ll make you laugh and cry and root for the hero, a story of first love, lost love and second chances at love, it’s all right here!
Brandon thought he had his life planned out. After high school and college were behind them he was going to marry the girl of his dreams. Unfortunately, life – and love – don’t always go as planned. When tragedy strikes before they can make their dreams a reality, Brandon isn’t sure he wants to let anyone that close again.
He’s sure her memory, and their child, is all he’ll want or need. So when he
starts feeling sparks of attraction for his daughter’s godmother, he isn’t sure how to
react. Stung once by life’s fickle whims, he doesn’t want to
risk his heart again – especially when he has an innocent child to consider, too. But fate – and a hard headed little girl – have other plans…and they think Brittney and Brandon are a perfect fit. Can Brandon find room in his wounded heart for Brittney? Can he be persuaded to take another chance on love?
What Inspired You to Write Your Book?
Death happens, and it's really hard when it happens to the one you thought you'd be with forever – especially if children are involved. Not many love stories cover that topic, or of finding love again, and trusting enough to give your heart again after such a loss. I wanted to try to show the sorrow of loss and the silver lining of finding love again.
How Did You Come up With Your Characters?
When the story came to me, the characters moved from the ether into the front of my imagination. That's how it happens for me…either I'll come up with an idea and the characters come forward or the characters start shouting their stories until I capture it in a story.
Brandon studied the small white colonial with the contrasting black shutters like it was his first visit – as if he hadn’t been there countless times before. What little saliva he had left evaporated. His mouth and throat felt as parched and dry as the west coast desert in the middle of a drought as he drove up the sparkling white circular drive to the imposing blood red front door. He swallowed hard and wiped each hand on the slippery material of his dress pants, gripping the steering wheel tightly with the opposite hand as he did. Heaven forbid he swerve and flatten a shrub! Sighing, he grimaced at the dark smears left by his sweaty palms. Should have wiped them on the rough cloth seats beneath his ass. Smooth move, Ex-Lax, he snarled inside his head, that’ll make a great impression, won’t it? Puffing out a shaky breath and tugging at the stiff collar of the heavily starched and ironed dress shirt he wore, he fought the urge to raise his arms and sniff his pits.
“I’m here for Melody…” He shook his head and coughed. Too abrupt and high pitched. He sounded scared. “Hi, Mr. H, I’m here to pick up your daughter.” Nope. “Good evening, Sir. I’m here to pick up Melody for the prom.” Beads of sweat gathered on his forehead. One dripped into his eye. It stung. Cursing, he rubbed the offended eye with his fist, before blotting his forehead with a napkin he found in the valley between the seats. Why am I so nervous? He laughed, shaking his head. He knew the answer. This was the night – the night they were supposed to go all the way. Melody had finally turned eighteen the previous month, a couple months after he had – they were adults, now. Besides, everyone knew they were gonna tie the knot one day – after college, after they had jobs and could afford their own place. It was time to move their relationship forward. Or at least that’s what Melody said.
He pulled up behind Mrs. Halston’s maroon Honda Civic and placed the gearshift of his old blue and rust Chevy pickup in park. Turning the key in the ignition, he pocketed the small silver keyring and winced as the motor spit and sputtered for several seconds before finally wheezing into grudging silence. Glancing into the visor mirror, he straightened his tie and stared hard into his reflection and his familiar blue eyes. Would they know? Would they be able to tell? Nerves dotted his flushed face with more moisture. Did he look guilty? He studied his reflection. More nervous than anything, he decided. Reassured, he opened the door, grabbed the corsage box from the passenger seat, and slid to the ground.
The sweet fragrance of roses in bloom tickled his nose. Mrs. Halston loved her roses. They were everywhere – climbing the walls of the stately white colonial, crowding the borders of countless flowerbeds that accented and separated the front and back yards, draping the fences along the horse pasture like the colorful Pashmina scarves the upper-class ladies adorned their necks with every spring. The heady fragrance overwhelmed him a little, and he fought back a sneeze.
As he straightened his charcoal grey tuxedo jacket, he glanced around for Mr. Halston’s large white Silverado 2500. It wasn’t in the drive! His heart pounded, but before his hopes rose too high, he spotted the tail end peeking out of the barn behind the house. He felt his whole body droop. Was he in for another not so subtle conversation about the older man’s gun collection? It used to intimidate him, back in his sophomore and junior years, but not as much anymore. He was a man now – and Melody was a woman. They had yet to go all the way, but that didn’t mean they’d been totally chaste through the years. They’d done things over the course of their relationship – and the old fuck never had an inkling of it. He grinned, snickering, then quickly wiped it away, lest the older man be watching. Maybe he didn’t have an inkling, but that didn’t mean he was stupid. That was why Melody usually instigated…okay, always instigated – Mr. Halston was scary. He’d been a Marine for twenty years, signed up right out of high school, and his demeanor showed it. He kept his silver streaked brown hair cut short in the military style, stood tall and ramrod straight, shoulders back, or at parade rest, arms behind his back, at all times – he never slouched, ever. Brandon wasn’t even sure he could.
Checking his breath by cupping his hand in front of his face and exhaling, Brandon sighed and approached the door before they could come looking for him.
“Bout time you made your way over here.” The cherry red glow winking in the dark shadows of the porch alerted Brandon to the presence of Melody’s dad at about the same time that the wind shifted direction and wreathed him in tendrils of sweet smelling smoke from the cheroots the retired soldier favored after meals.
“Is she ready?”
He fought the urge to roll his eyes. “Then why does it matter how long I took to head this way?”
“Gives us time to talk.”
“About your impressive gun collection and what will happen to me if I lay a finger on your little girl?”
“Nope.” He patted the cushion beside him. “Have a seat.”
“All due respect, but I’d rather stand. I’m a bit nervous…Mel wants to dance tonight.”
“I can dance,” he defended himself, “I just don’t like to in crowds.”
“Yeah, I know what you mean. I’m the same way.”
“Wow, I didn’t think anything phased you.” Brandon relaxed a bit.
“Didn’t say it phased me. Said I knew what you meant.” Brandon could see his scowl in the amber glow of the thin cigar. In an abrupt change of subject, he demanded, “Gonna be any drinking at this prom?”
“Just sodas and fruit punch.”
“Don’t get smart with me, boy.”
“I’m not! You asked if there was going to be drinking, and I told you what we’d be drinking.”
“I know how these things are. My prom wasn’t that long ago. I expect you to take care of my little girl; keep her safe.”
Brandon nodded, swallowing hard. “I will.”
“Sample the punch before every glass. If it tastes funny, don’t give it to her. Understand?”
“Good. I’ll go check and see if she’s ready.”
I am a southern girl, born and raised in crawfish country. I love to write romance – and read science fiction and fantasy, horror, romance and erotic romance. I'm a bit of a poet, but mostly when I'm feeling emotional. My friends tend to come to me when they need poems. I've been all over the continental US. My fave state? Oregon, because it has it all – beaches, ocean, mountains, caves, valleys, desert. I've been to Canada. I've driven an 18 wheeler…I'm 5'1", lol. I wanted to be a race car driver, but my first love is reading/telling stories. Why? Because between the covers of a book, you can go anywhere, be anything, and do whatever you like…all in the span of a few hours.
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