A Cinderella Christmas
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by Stacy Dawn
Description: Her mother's ridiculous idea to gift her with 'a man' for Christmas is driving Angie Bellini insane! Every bachelor and his brother in Noelle are asking her to save them a dance at the upcoming wedding of Santa Claus Holloran's daughter. What's a girl to do to keep her sanity and thwart a scheming mother? Date the one man in town her mother despises, of course. Wes O'Connor doesn't like the plan Angie has coerced him into for two reasons: 1) He's still paying for the last time those big brown eyes made him do something stupid and 2) He doesn't want to 'pretend' to date the beautiful baker, he wants the fairytale to turn into a real happily-ever-after. Their ending may not be so happy, though, when they discover they aren't the only players in their little game of make-believe.
eBook Publisher: The Wild Rose Press, Inc./Sweetheart Rose, 2008
eBookwise Release Date: December 2008
15 Reader Ratings:
Available eBook Formats: OEBFF Format (IMP) [117 KB]
Reading time: 63-89 min.
Wes shifted in his seat, clenching and unclenching the steering wheel. How had everything gotten turned around? Sure, at the bakery, after seeing those beautiful brown eyes flare from friendly to frustrated to hopeful all in a span of fifteen minutes, he knew he wanted to know her a little better, again. Maybe pick up where his youthful mishap had detoured them.
But this was not how he pictured getting the date. He glanced sideways at her cute little nose scrunched in contemplation--of him. Wes gulped and darted his gaze back to the road.
The zip-zup-zip of her playing with the zipper on her jacket etched into the sudden silence.
"A-are you dating someone?" she finally ventured.
"No," he bellowed over her rapid interrogation. Geez, let a guy get a word in edgewise here.
Instead, she twisted around, leg back up on the seat again as comfortable as if she'd ridden in the truck a thousand times before. "Then what is it? Is it me? You find me ugly, repulsive?"
"No, Angie, come on!"
In truth, her position grazed her knee against his hip, sending currents of awareness straight to his chest. Repulsive? Not even close.
He focused his attention on the mid-morning street, counting the huge snowflakes to cool himself down. How had a simple delivery job become so complicated? He now realized why his father handled this end of the business. Ian O'Connor was a people-person while Wes preferred the uncomplicated company of the farm.
Slender hands latched onto his upper arm, effectively melting the snowflake theory.
"Please. I need help and you're all I've got at the moment."
With tight lips, he tried to focus on the road, but his gaze kept flicking back to her hands clenching his arm.
"For old time's sake, Wes. Please."
He made the mistake of glimpsing the dark eyes, big and round and rivaling any kicked-puppy-dog-look he'd ever seen. His jaw ticked tight, and he felt himself caving.
Be strong this time, Wes.
The hands around his arm pulled in small, pleading tugs while her lips quirked in a mischievous tilt. "I'll bake you a special batch of chocolate chip cookies..." she coerced. "Three batches ... better, a dozen!"
No use--the minute she batted those lashes, he was a dead-man-driving. The only choice left was to chuckle and shake his head in defeat. "Dad likes them too. Make it a dozen and you got yourself a deal."
"Oh thanks, Wes," she squealed. "You're a real pal."
His smile twitched to a wince at her euphoric outburst. Being her 'pal' was least on his list at the moment. They'd picked up right where they left off in high school--big brown eyes messing with his good sense. And, judging by this morning's events at the bakery, he wasn't finished paying for the first time.