You can’t say no to a mistletoe kiss, no matter who’s under it!
Since leaving Brookhollow and her fiancé, Luke Dawson, twelve years earlier, Victoria Mason hasn’t looked back. She’s traded the small-town dream of marriage, kid and family Christmas dinners for late nights working at a high-powered acquisitions firm, lunches at trendy New York restaurants and jet-set vacations on the slopes.
So her latest work assignment, to acquire Brookhollow’s sporting goods store, poses a challenge for Victoria, in more ways than one. Because it’s almost Christmas, and she’s got other holiday plans. And the owner is reluctant to sell. And the owner is Luke.
If she can just wrap up the deal before she gets caught up in her old life and her old love… or becomes trapped under the mistletoe. Again.
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“Oh, relax. I saw him earlier today, replacing the burnt out bulbs in Ginger’s Christmas lights and he said he was looking forward to seeing you again, so I invited him to dinner.”
“Mom, he is my ex-fiancé, in case you’ve forgotten, and we haven’t spoken in twelve years. Not to mention my company is working for the store trying to buy out Legend’s.” Victoria paced back and forth in the kitchen.
“Business is business, honey. I’m sure you two will figure that stuff out. But can’t you just put it aside for the evening and have a pleasant dinner with an old friend? I’m sure Luke has long gotten over the fact you left him at the altar…. Even if his mother hasn’t,” she mumbled, rolling out the pie crust.
“I didn’t leave him at the altar.” Victoria stopped pacing, wondering how many timesshe’d had this conversation with her mom. Too many. “I called off the wedding two weeks before,” she added, “and, besides, he certainly didn’t try to stop me.”
Memories of those last few weeks before her supposed wedding day were painful to recall. The stress of the preparations—her mother and Luke’s mother forcing her to taste wedding cakes and try on dress after dress—even though her heart wasn’t in it. The entire time, hidden in her bedside table drawer had been the acceptance letter for a position with Clarke and Johnson Acquisitions. When she’d applied the summer before she’d never imagined the big firm in New York would accept her application based on her two-year business diploma. But they had and she’d had a month to decide. Keeping the offer to herself and struggling with her conflicted heart had created tension between her and Luke and had made her question her commitment to him. Their ideas about a life together had seemed worlds apart.
She’d chosen an unpaid internship with a dream of a future so different from the one he’d been planning, and left him behind. And whenever she wondered about her decision, she forced herself to remember that he hadn’t tried to stop her.
Her mother waved a hand. “You know what I mean. Anyway, it’s in the past. At leastI’ve learned to keep it there…unlike some people.”
Victoria shook her head. Her mother was impossible, and Luke’s mother would be furious if she found out. The two women, once best friends, hadn’t spoken since the day Victoria left town. According to her mother, she’d let the feud between them die, but Luke’s mother still held a grudge.
Her heart skipped a beat. How was shesupposed to sit at the same table with him, after everything they’d been through? She was here to do battle with him over a store. And this was supposed to be a pleasant evening? She peered through the glass opening of the kitchen door.
Luke shifted from one foot to the other on the front porch. Wearing clean jeans and his leather jacket, his short hair gelled into a spiky, controlled mess, he’d obviously gone home to shower and change.
Victoria made no move to let him in. Why couldn’t he have gotten fat? Or bald? Or both?
“Victoria, go take off your suit jacket and brush your hair, while I get the door.” Sheila removed her apron and straightened her sweater.
Victoria held out an arm to block her mother’s escape. “I have a better idea. You go get pretty for Luke, and I’ll let him in. He may as well get used to seeing me at my worst.”
About The Author:
I am an Edmonton-based author writing sweet contemporary romance through Harlequin Heartwarming, The Wild Rose Press, and Secret Cravings Publishing. Previous releases include-Mistletoe Fever, Mistletoe & Molly, and Mistletoe Bachelors.