From the best-selling author of Awakening and Reflection
Mona Van Hove has spent a lifetime trying to let go of her dreams of a man that doesn’t want her. From the moment she saw him, Mona knew that Wade Stalls was the only man for her. Too bad he ran the other way as fast as he could.
Wade Stalls took one look at Mona and knew she was the one he wanted, but she was too young when they met. Now, she’s grown and just as desirable, but she treats him like a pariah every time he tries to get close to her.
When he finally gathers up his courage to confront her, he finds her in the arms of another man. Is it too late for them? Or will they finally find their way into the only place either of them wants to be … with each other?
Wade Stalls whipped his pick-up into a parking spot and checked his reflection in the rear-view mirror. Today was the day. He’d let this go on too damn long.
Slamming the door, he locked the truck and headed across the street. Entering the café, he was assaulted by the aromas of coffee and pastry. This was normally where he caved in. He’d tell himself he was going to do it. He’d get in line, order his coffee and watch his plans fall apart in front of his eyes. Every. Single. Damn. Time.
He wasn’t getting in line today. He wasn’t waiting passively. He was going to seize the bull by the –
His chest squeezed and the breath in his chest dissolved. Scanning the café, he saw no trace of his quarry. With his plans derailed, he was at a loss. The adrenaline that had been sustaining him began to fade.
With no better course of action presenting itself, Wade placed his order and took up residence at a table that afforded him a complete view of the café. Another alteration for him. Usually, he’d be so frustrated by the time he’d gotten his coffee, he’d just leave. He didn’t think he’d ever taken the time to sit down.
Wade had never really noticed how packed the café was. Or, how everyone seemed so happy. The tables were filled with students and couples. Everyone was chattering and not just with each other. They talked amongst tables like old friends.
She’d done well for herself and he was proud of her. On the other hand, she treated him like he had the plague. For the life of him, Wade couldn’t figure it out. He didn’t think he’d ever done anything to her to warrant it. And, he very much wanted to do things to her. Lots of things. Lots of dirty, erotic things that put those full, luscious lips to use.
He shifted in his seat acutely aware he was getting a hard-on in public. That was not acceptable. He hadn’t come here to indulge his fantasies of her. He did that often enough in private.
He’d come to confront her once and for all and to ask her out. He was tired of being a chicken-shit coward around her. He wanted her. Hell, he’d wanted her as far back as high school, but she’d been too young. His conscience hadn’t allowed him to go there. She wasn’t too young any more, though. Nope, she was all woman now and it was time for him to man up and remember he had a pair.
A glance at his watch told him his time was running out. Where was she? This was highly unusual for Mona. Her schedule was as routine as his and he counted on seeing her every morning. He’d arrived early today just to be certain he had time to talk with her, but he had a job site to get to and he made a point of always being on time. Wade had developed a reputation as the man to turn to for contracting in River Rock and did what it took to maintain it.
Frustrated at having his plans thwarted, Wade picked up his coffee and stood. Turning toward the exit, he felt his knees give way at the sight that greeted him. With a hard thunk, he landed back in the chair. Paralysed, he could do nothing but watch.
Hailing from Washington, DC, Elene Sallinger first caught the writing bug in 2004 after writing and illustrating several stories for her then four-year-old daughter. Her writing career has encompassed two award-winning children's stories, a stint as a consumer-education advocate, as well as writing her debut novel, Awakening - a novel of erotic fiction that won the New Writing Competition at the Festival of Romance 2011.
Find her on Goodreads at: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6524900.Elene_Sallinger