To keep her job, Sarah Hart needs a sizzling article for her romance column. While on vacation in Hawaii, she grabs the first handsome tourist on Waikiki Beach, and makes him a deal. She’ll set him up on a few dates, all expenses paid, and watch him fall in love. Then she'll take his story, say sayonara, and still have a job. But Keith Hanover is no player, he’d rather charm Sarah. His deal is if she can’t find him true love, than she must meet him on Sunset Beach for a date.
Her search for his perfect match begins an unruly adventure of close talkers, criers and a few Abbey-normals. There's shark diving, a mad scientist, crazy roadside fruit stand kids, Dole ice cream lickers, and paparazzi. Will Keith even make it to the date with Sarah before running from her set-ups?
“I have to be honest with you, Keith, because I don’t have much time with you.” I continued to scan the poolside. “Once we find you a girl to ask out, you really have to make an effort to pursue her. I mean, life is too short to let that special someone get away, you know? Romance doesn’t come easily, and if you wait, you just might miss your opportunity to start up a long intimate affair. Do you get what I’m telling you? Find a girl here, ask her out, kiss her passionately with plenty of tongue, and take her to bed for a night to remember.”
Keith jumped in the pool causing a giant splash beside me.
I stepped to the pool’s edge, leaned down, and watched Keith surface.
He wiped the water from his face, took in a deep breath, and glanced at my cleavage. He covered his eyes and turned around.
“What is the matter with you? Did you hear anything I said?”
“Yeah,” he replied.
“Well, are you gonna do it?” I asked.
Keith turned around slowly as I lifted my sunglasses. He held out his hand.
“What?” I asked.
He quickly grabbed my hand and pulled me in.
I let out a quick startled scream and plunged into the cool water. When I surfaced his face was close to mine. “I wasn’t actually going to swim. I usually only lay out.” I went to swim for the stairs.
Keith blocked my path and wrapped his arm around my waist. He looked into my eyes and quickly moved in. His lips met mine as he closed his eyes.
I hadn’t been kissed in a long time. What was he doing? His lips were soft and strong, and his broad shoulders were drawing me closer. I closed my eyes and felt his mouth open. I wanted more. I hadn’t given out more since my last mistake with Max, the real photographer of The Southern Shore. He wanted nude pictures of me so he could submit them to Playboy. What a bad judge of character I was. Keith’s tongue slowly entered my mouth, and my heart raced. I pulled back quickly. “What is happening here?” I asked, pushing him back.
Keith opened his eyes. “I’m sorry. Was that too forward, too fast?”
I ignored his question and swam to the steps. Marching toward my towel I felt confused. How dare he kiss me? What did he think he was doing? Adam was right, people only came here for flings, and I was not one of them. I yanked the towel from the chair and dried off my hair and face.
Keith strode toward me. “With all that stuff you said, I thought you wanted me to kiss you,” he said, with his hands out, looking confused.
I burst out into laughter. “Not me. Stay focused. You’re supposed to find someone else! Wow, you are forward. Are you like this all the time?”
Keith shook his head then ran his hand slowly down my arm. “Why can’t you be the someone else?”
“Because I’m the writer for the romance article. I scope out people falling in love and post their unusual encounters, romantic courtships, proposals, stuff like that. I can’t be the story. Do you want me to write about you or should I find someone else?”
He combed his hand through his hair and picked up his towel. “Here, I thought you were interested in me and practically begging me to be aggressive. I haven’t met a romantic interest in two years, and I’m not about to just pick up anyone, sleep with her, and give you a story.” He wrapped the towel around his waist and picked up his key card. “Good luck, finding a fling to follow.”
I grabbed my notepad and hurried behind him. “Wait!”
Keith turned around. “What?”
“You mean, you’re telling me if you found a woman on your vacation and ended up in bed with her that you would fly home and not consider it a fling?”
Keith moved in, hooked his index finger on my bikini bottom at my hip, and tugged me closer, his answer breathing into my ear. “I only go to bed with women I’m in love with. If I fell in love on my vacation and ended up in her bed, I’d fly to the ends of the earth to follow her home.”
A chill went up my spine.
He quickly released me, and without looking back, walked away.
I flipped open my writing pad. Not a fling man. His honorable philosophy intrigued me but left me without a story. I rushed up to his side.