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Contemporary Romance

Excerpt: While It Was Snowing

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Chapter 1

Whipped cream.

Yes. That was exactly what she needed. The missing ingredient.

And it was a little uncomfortable standing here, stark naked.

The longer she waited for Harry to arrive at the cabin, the longer she started to have all these not-so-random, worrisome questions pop in her head.

Was this the most ridiculous scheme she’d ever thought of? Quite possibly, yes. Perhaps some would point to the time when she had participated in a flash mob in New York City with a former one hit wonder.

Was standing here naked too obvious? Like, hey, Harry, I know we’ve been best friends since forever, but ta-da! I have really big boobs and a vagina! Use them! Please! I beg of you!

Was this considered sexual harassment? After all, what if Harry had decided to wait for her in the cabin only wearing his glasses, an adorable bowtie, and his cock out in full display?

Okay, that would have garnered no complaints on her end.

But . . . perhaps it wasn’t a good idea to stand about with one’s tits, vagina, ass, and body quite like this. She wasn’t a small woman. She was big. Beautiful. And she was confident in who she was—for the most part. Harry knew that about her. Still, he had never seen her naked.

What if he didn’t want her?

That would be horrible.

She was also procrastinating, big time. Gah, get on with it, already, Felicity Anne. Yes, she would get on with it. It was always a bad sign when she started talking to herself in the third person, as she would adopt a Queen of England accent in her head.

She strode to the fridge and opened it. She’d come prepared for the weekend getaway—Harry still thought their families were coming along (oops)—so, naturally there was an unopened can of whipped cream along with other practical necessities to get them through a wild weekend of mutual nakedness.

Felicity removed the seal and shook the can in one hand, much like those infamous Shake Weight commercials. She started laughing, because the motion did look like she was jerking something off. And now her long-deceased Nana would be proven right: Felicity Anne Evans was surely going to Hell. Well, at least, she would have a good time beforehand—and probably down in Hell, too. Most likely all the good people were there. Discounting the serial killers and Nazis, of course.

Shake, shake, shake.

Nothing worse than squirting out whipped cream and not even getting one spurt.

Shake, shake, shake.

Yup, it had to be ready now. Definitely.

She eyed the can, then her heavy breasts. What to cover, what to cover? Just the nips? Or make it a bikini thing, like that scene from that teen football movie starring Dawson? She had always been a Pacey girl herself, and a part of her held out a secret hope that Pacey and Joey would get together in real life. Yeah. She was totally procrastinating here.

Perhaps she should start down below. That seemed like the wiser idea. Breasts could wait. She aimed the whipped cream can at her vagina and squirted.

“Holy mother of fuuuuuuuuuuuck!” she screamed. “Cold! Cold! Cold!”

She had never used so many exclamation points in her life, not even when she opened her candy store, Fat Lady Sweets, four years ago, on her twenty-fifth birthday.

She gritted her teeth as the cream slipped down into places where whipped cream should never go. “Gahhhhhhhhhhh!”

Felicity quickly covered the rest of her vagina and ignored the dollop of whipped cream on the hardwood floor. She would clean it later. Surely, her body had gotten used to the shock now; therefore, putting it on her breasts wouldn’t be so bad.

Squirt. Squirt. Squiiiiiirt.

“You’re a filthy liar, Felicity Anne!”

And now the whipped cream was sliding down her nipples. Great. She had to fix it. But how?

Arrows.

Yes. She’d make arrows on her body. Why not state the obvious to Harry? Sure, some men didn’t like directions, but Harry was not the typical man. He listened.

She glanced down when she was done. It actually looked okay. A little smeary, but hopefully she wouldn’t be standing here like this for that much—

Knock. Knock. Knock.

Harry was here.

Oh God.

Harry.

Was.

Here.

And she was naked.

Covered in whipped cream.

Dripping it actually.

And her best friend since she was seven years old was going to walk in that door and never, ever, ever speak to her again. Because she had whipped cream harassed him. She had to abort the mission. Now.

“Felicity?” Harry asked. “You there?”

She also needed to cover herself. Bathrobe! No, no, it was upstairs. She would never make it in time. And he would see her through the open window in the main family room area.

The closet! It was right near the front door, but if she was quick, she could yank it open, jam herself in her parka that hit her mid-thighs, and make up some excuse. She was very good at making up excuses.

She ran to the closet, just as the front doorknob started turning.

Shit, shit, shit.

Shiiiiiiiit.

She yanked on the closet door. It was stuck. Noooooooo! Harry started to push the front door inward.

Ack!

She crossed the few inches and slammed her body against the front door.

It didn’t close.

She pressed harder, even as Harry pushed back against it.

“Felicity? I think the door is stuck on something. Could you help me out?”

Not in this lifetime.

And who knew Harry was so strong? It wasn’t like he advertised himself like his older brothers, Truman and Del, did. Granted, Truman and Del co-owned a construction business, but Harry must be hiding those muscles under the plaid shirts and corduroy jackets he sometimes wore.

Maybe when Harry pulled off that bowtie, his square-framed glasses, and undid the buttons on his shirt, his chest would be hard and his arms sinewy. She would have to trace her fingers along his abs and his muscles would leap at her touch. He would utter her name in that deliciously low voice of his, and then—

“Felicity, where are you?”

Right. Fantasy on hold. Perhaps if she stretched her arm, she could reach the closet door. It was only a few feet away . . .

She turned sideways, and Harry was able to open the door a little bit more. She quickly faced forward looking into the cabin—Harry wouldn’t be able to see her this way. Then she leaned forward and stretched. Her fingers just grazed the doorknob. Only one more inch, and she’d be home.

“Felicity.” He shoved. Hard. “It’s cold.”

Almost there.

Almost . . .

There—

She reached too far and stumbled toward the closet door, spinning around, just as the front door flew inward, with Harry tripping in.

And he was headed straight toward her.

His blue-green eyes, almost teal-like in their color, widened behind his glasses, taking in her nakedness. He smacked into her. Arms flailed, noses bumped, legs tangled. They crashed to the ground in a snow and whipped cream piled heap.

Harry was on top of her.

When she had fantasized about Harry being on top of her, she had never, ever once thought this is how it would turn out.

He was still clothed, for crying out loud.

Priorities, Felicity.

“Felicity.” Harry swallowed heavily, pushing his glasses up the bridge of his nose. Melting snowflakes littered his dark brown hair, his eyes looking anywhere but at her.

“Hello, Harry,” she said, deciding to brazen it out.

“You’re naked.”

“Not really. You’re covering me.”

His cheekbones went bright red. Awwww. How freaking adorable.

He darted a glance at her. “In whipped cream.”

“Yes.”

“There’s a trail of whipped cream throughout the cabin.” Harry looked over his shoulder at the partially opened door behind them. “And you left a mark.”

The imprint of her breasts and vagina were on the back of the door. How embarrassing. But she was also naked, and the mess was what he focused on.

He swallowed heavily. “And, like you said, I’m on top of you.”

Much better.

“I should get up,” he said.

If she wasn’t mistaken, a part of him was already up.

“I’m naked,” she reminded him.

“I—I know.” He got up, quickly turning his back on her.

She stood as well, not bothering to cover herself. What was the point? He’d pretty much seen and felt it all. But Harry was back to avoiding her. That wouldn’t do at all.

“Harry, aren’t you wondering why I’m like this?”

He straightened, his shoulders going back stiffly, and walked to the front door to grab his duffel bag. “I assume I’ve interrupted something of the romantic nature. It’s that new co-worker you hired. The sugar guy from Switzerland.”

Ah, Sven. He was very cute.

“No, Sven,”—there was no way she could say Sven without a sighing a little—“is not here. I’m alone.”

He closed the door finally, careful to avoid the whipped cream imprints, and turned toward her. His eyes focused solely on her face. It was kind of cute how he was trying to be a gentleman. There really was no need for that, though. Not if she had her way.

“You’re—you’re alone?”

She nodded.

“Then . . . then . . .” Harry blinked behind his glasses. “Why?”

And now was the time to tell him. She could do this. She was going to do this. She took a deep breath and let it all out.

“I’m naked for you.”

He stopped in the midst of picking up his bag from the floor. “Um, what?”

Did she really have to repeat it? Gah!

“I’m naked for you.”

“Okay, so you did just say that.” Harry stared at her. “You did, didn’t you?”

“Yes.” She shuffled from foot to foot, and more whipped cream fell to the floor. Soon, she really would be naked-naked.

“Why?”

Um. Seriously? Why else would she be in naked? For shits and giggles?

“You’re too overdressed, and I’m way too undressed for this convo.” She placed her hands on her hips, daring him to really look at her. “Here’s the Twitter version. We’re twenty-nine. Single. And haven’t you ever wondered?”

“Wondered?”

“You. Me. Together.”

“We’re friends,” he said. “Best friends.”

“So you haven’t thought about it? At all?”

He hesitated.

“I knew it!” She pounced, a thrill running through her body. Because if Harry imagined them naked together, then her plan for weekend sex was so going to work. “You totally have!”

“I didn’t say anything.”

“You didn’t not say anything.”

“That makes no sense.” Harry shook his head, falling silent for a moment. Realization dawned on his face as he once again looked around the cabin. “Our families aren’t coming up, are they? What exactly did you plan?”

“No, they aren’t.” She felt her face flame, because she had lied to him about that, but soon squared her shoulders. All was fair in love and sex. “Here’s my proposal. We have this weekend. Alone. Three days, two nights. Let’s give it a shot. If it doesn’t work out, it doesn’t work out. No harm, no foul.”

He frowned at her. “It’ll ruin things.”

“No, it won’t.” At least she hoped it wouldn’t. Plus . . . “You’ve seen me naked. So that could ruin things anyway. And our friendship has survived much worse.”

“I can’t think straight when you’re”—he gestured to her from head to toe—“like this.”

“You want me to get dressed?”

“Yes.”

Her shoulders slumped forward, her heart sinking. She had hoped to sex him up so much that she could tell him she loved him. Her magical hoo-ha had to be used for some good, after all.

“So no . . . smexytimes?” she asked.

A blank look from Harry. “I’ve been driving for the last five hours. I can’t think, much less process all of this right now.”

It wasn’t a no, but it wasn’t a yes. “We’ll talk at dinner.”

“Sure,” Harry said quickly. “Dinner.”

They both still stood there, not doing anything.

“Felicity, why aren’t you moving?”

“Oh,” she said. “That’s because my butt is bared. No whipped cream is covering it.”

He rubbed a hand over his face. “I won’t peek. I’ll even turn around. Just . . . go.”

“And we’ll talk?”

“Later,” he said.

She would give him time. Harry was always a little slow to catch up on things.

He lied.

He peeked at her butt. And he had thought about being with Felicity. A lot.

But he also knew better. Sex ruined things. Or so he had heard.

At the ripe old age of twenty-nine, he was still a virgin. He’d seen movies and read books—male virgins never performed well on their first try. Or second. Or third. Or even the fourth. What if he got naked with Felicity and then only lasted two seconds? What if it wasn’t good for her? What if Felicity didn’t like how he looked?

He was no Calvin Klein model, nor was he ripped like his two older brothers. He’d always been a skinny kid, and as he had matured, the skinniness had turned into a well-honed leanness. He was nothing to fawn over. He would never elicit secret fantasies by either gender. He was never going to be considered “hot” or “sexy.” He was a geek. A dork. A total nerd. And he had embraced that truth about himself long ago, but the thought about getting naked with the woman he’d fallen in love with at thirteen and then having her reject him, well . . . yeah. He didn’t want that.

Although . . . it did seem like Felicity wasn’t going to reject him. She had whipped creamed herself and then asked him point blank for sex. And what had he done?

Acted like a stereotypical virgin and shied away.

Pathetic.

But he didn’t have to be.

This could be the chance for him. The only chance to be with Felicity like he wanted to. He would shove all his insecurities aside. He wanted to be with her. In her. He wasn’t expecting to fuck her into love. His penis didn’t have magical properties, sadly.

But . . . but . . . but . . . he could have sex with her. For three whole days. Maybe it wouldn’t be good the first time. Or second. Or third. Or even the fourth. But he was a fast learner, and he sure as hell had thought about all the things he would do with Felicity if given the shot.

Never had he imagined she would want to be with him.

And he might be slow on some things, but he wasn’t totally stupid. He didn’t want to lose her, his best friend, and now his potential first.

There needed to be some ground rules so things didn’t get messy.

He looked around the cabin, at the smeared whipped cream all over the place, and sighed. It might be a little too late for things to not become messy. There were only two things to do.

Clean up this disaster.

And make sure things didn’t become any messier.


Excerpt: While It Was Snowing