Christmas Curveball Monday Excerpt

[ 0 ] December 2, 2013 |

Release day is Thursday so I want to give you guys one more long excerpt from Christmas Curveball before then. Enjoy!


Kevin couldn’t wait to hear her answer. If her brother hadn’t told Rachel, then how the hell had she found him?

“And I have to answer this before I’m allowed passage inside?”

At least. If he’d let her in at all. Dammit. It’d been months since he’d seen her and he’d hoped by not being in Winston-Salem proper, he wouldn’t have to run into her often. And when he did have to see her, she’d be around her brother, aka his best friend.


She sighed. “Fine. That day you sat out on the dock at the lake with my brother, freezing your butts off telling tall tales, I heard you tell him you’d found the perfect house, but it needed to be fixed up.”

What the hell? Was she covering for her brother? “You weren’t anywhere around there.”

“Actually, I was under the dock.” She looked down at her feet as she scuffed her shoes into the porch. “I’d been collecting things along the shore for my class and wanted some shelter from the wind. I hunkered down under the dock and was drawing scenes from the lake and bigger pictures of some of the items I’d collected. I was working on a collection of coloring sheets I could make copies of and hand out.”

She looked up at him, her tone changing from defensive to accusatory. “You guys came out there, dragging your chairs, disturbing the peace and quiet with all your talk.” Her eyes held mischief, not matching the accusation in her voice.

“You should’ve said something.”

“No way. I was there first. You should’ve checked to see if you were truly alone.”

Kevin racked his brain, trying to think of everything he and Tim had talked about that day. Too many things, most likely. Half the stories they told each other were made up. Did Rachel know that? She’d called their talk tall tales. But did she know which parts were lies? Doubtful. But the mischief-making look in her eyes had spread to her slight smile and he knew she was still playing with him.

“How were we supposed to know we needed to check under the dock on a day with that kind of weather?”

“TBFY.” Too bad for you.

Ah, Rachel. They fell so easily into their usual, familiar patterns, like squabbling siblings. Except what he felt for her was anything but brotherly. Lord, if her brother knew what Kevin thought about Rachel sometimes, Tim would kick his ass. Or he’d try, at least. Though with Kevin’s arm in its current state, Tim probably had a slightly better chance than usual. But if he let her into his house, then he’d forever have the image of her there and he wouldn’t be able to wipe that from his thoughts, or fantasies.

“You didn’t tell me how exactly you found this place.”

“Seriously? I have to tell all my secrets before I’m allowed in?”

“If you want to be warm, you can always get back in your car and go back home.”

“Who elected you Mr. Grumpypants?” She shifted her stance and looked uncomfortable. Good. He shouldn’t be the only one uncomfortable. “I, well, you described the place pretty well to Tim, and later I went online to check out some of the houses for sale.”

Ugh. She hadn’t. She had. Why did she even care where he lived? Why would she go to this much trouble? Other than that she could never leave a mystery unsolved. That had to be it.

“And, well, I sort of kept an eye on the ones that ended up sold and found the address of this one when I did a property search about a month later. It was listed under your super-duper secret corp name that I might’ve overheard that particular day. But I haven’t told anyone else. I promise.”

“You little stalker, you. I can’t believe you did that.” The more pressing question was why, but he wasn’t sure he wanted the answer to that yet.

“I’m not really a stalker when I waited till now to use the info I got.”

“Whatever puts your mind at ease and lets you sleep at night. Rachel the stalker. What a ring that has to it.”

“I’m…” She stopped and turned partially away from him. “Fine, I’ll go. I’m sorry I bothered you.”

All of a sudden, the most important thing to him was not letting her leave yet. Not like this. Although it would help in the long run, he couldn’t let her drive home after all this. He had to be an idiot for wanting to spend more alone time with her when he couldn’t have her.

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