Has Mesha got a Christmas gift for an unsuspecting Jack!
It's right between Thanksgiving and Christmas,
and snowing—in Louisiana.
Tags: marriage of convenience, pregnancy, mature heroine, heart-wrenching secret, compassionate helicopter mechanic, Louisiana snow
Will a snowy incident save Mesha and Jack from making a drastic decision?
Turnabout is fair play!
Just like the freakish December Louisiana snowstorm, Jack's visit to hand deliver the divorce papers that would end their marriage of convenience shocks Mesha. He soon discovers, purely by accident, that she cradles a shock of her own.
Will Mesha sign the divorce papers? Or will Jack persuade her to sign-on to love?
Louisiana Hot Sauce
Genre: IR / PG13
Noise pollution in the form of an advancing diesel motor cut into the quiet environment. The encroaching sound magnified, forcing her to peer up the road, her hand cupped over her eyes against the blinding snow. The huge red truck, haloed by amber rooftop lights, lumbered slowly over the outlying hill to drop off her radar. The drone persisted with purpose and in her direction. The fact someone else was crazy enough to be out in that weather validated her contagious enthusiasm. Losing interest in the traveler, Mesha took a few more pictures in preparation to return to the house. The increasing rattle consumed the quiet surrounding her, blasting the tranquil scene to smithereens.
Watching the dually eel by launched her suspicions.
The truck turned onto her lane and came to a dead stop, compelling her wariness at the intrusion. The tinted glass kept the occupant's identity secret. A trill slinked up her spine and it wasn't from the cold as she measured the distance to safety. Nervous about moving or remaining put, she chose to back in the opposite direction to increase her chances of escape.
The motor idled on ominously.
She watched as the driver's door crept open, a booted foot hit the motorized running board that slid out, a hand clutched the top of the door for leverage and a goateed and mustached Jack materialized, bracing both arms over the door. Snow gathered on his bare head as he studied her reaction without making any effort to get out of the truck. For the life of her, she didn't know why he turned up on her doorstep. It would have been simpler and a kinder, gentler thing to courier the divorce papers.
The coward in Mesha refused to let her feet move an inch more.
Jack waited for some sign from her granting him permission to come forward. All she did was gape at him in astonishment. Her image engraved in his brain and branded his heart. He thought fatigue played with his eyes when he'd spotted an orange apparition on the snowy road. The slippery surface made for slow going. So, it disappeared by the time he crested the next hill. Not in a million years would he have thought her the loony adventurer. The freezing temp caused him to question her condition, especially when he saw her shivers from his perch.
Someone had to make the first move. It might as well be him.
“Mesha,” Jack hailed her. The cold apparently affected her hearing, for she never responded. In a surprising move, she aimed her camera and shot a picture of him ogling her. “I would have gotten here sooner if not for bad visibility.”
Mesha tried to say something. However, fear sewed her lips together to keep her secret a secret a while longer. Loose snow showered down on her from limbs above. Her bare hand absently dusted at her jacket. A familiar sound arrested her heartbeat, yanked her alarmed eyes up suddenly then back over at Jack as the bough cracked before breaking with a thunderous roar.
“Mesha!” he screamed as he spotted flashes of color between the descending branches before she disappeared from sight, the fallen treetop obscuring his vision. “Me-sha!” Jack was out and running to her rescue, a cold sweat wetting his brow, afraid to see what awaited him; horrified at the cost to her if he didn't. He had no way to know her intuition told her to step backward a few feet just in the nick of time.
The close call frightened her to death, for pine needles grazed the exposed skin of her face, but the limbs missed her by fractions. If she hadn't moved when she did her body and that of their baby would be under all of that brush. The slushy footsteps racing her way belonged to Jack. She read the fear on his face as he realized what was about to happen. She heard his cries from the other side of the debris. His body rammed hers when he rounded the obstruction separating them.
“God, Mesha!” He hugged her tightly as the near tragedy replayed in his mind. “Are you okay?”
Jack pushed back to look her over.
“What are you doing here?” she asked and saw the light in his eyes dim. Hurriedly, she added, “I didn't mean it like that, Jack.” She lay into his chest. “We have to talk. There's something you should know.” She heard the air expel from his lungs as he groaned in relief. In addition to that, an errant sound buzzed by her ear.
“That can wait, Mesha,” he said in a dismissive tone. “Aside from the scratches,” he agonized, “you are okay, right?” He had to have an answer.
“You came all this way to deliver the papers.” Phlegm posed a problem as she worked to clear her throat. “Let's go inside.” The last thing she wanted to do was put off the inevitable.
She found her body super glued to his chest, for he wouldn't let go.
Mesha's reply certainly didn't give him that warm, fuzzy feeling. “You aren't hurt?” he stubbornly persisted.
“I'm okay,” she admitted, hoarseness creeping into her voice. The baby’s okay was what she craved to add.
~~Sweet, spicy romance – a heartbeat away~~