Jan 30, 2013

Wednesday Wonder!

Normally our lovely Rachel Bailey would be here to post and chat with you today but she has no power and no internet access with the floods in Queensland at the moment so instead we're bringing you a bonus fun day today!

  Meet a super talented duo, Carolyn Scott and Rookie!

Jan 28, 2013

Funday Monday!

Hi! Thanks for popping in to visit us here at the LoveCats DownUnder! 

Today we're bringing you this adorable jigsaw from JigZone! 

Have fun!

Click to Mix and Solve

Jan 25, 2013


with Sharon Archer 

Today, I've got a Catwalk model that's just a bit different!
Meet Helen Lacey's adorable Ginger!

Over to you, Ginger!



Big paddock behind my human slave’s house. I have to share it with four horses.

Human Slave
Helen and Hubby  

Well, I like food.

the birds that swoop me, especially the Plovers.

to keep eating all the food I can.

Sociable or Aloof
I’m very sociable and I love big cuddles

 Night Owl or Early Bird
I like to walk around at night because it’s cooler. I sleep during the day.

Favourite Pastime
Sleeping Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

Favourite Toy
There are some barrels in my paddock that my human slaves race around sometimes when they’re riding the horses. I like to scratch my head on them. But they usually fall over when I do this. Shhhh . . . don’t tell that’s it’s me doing it. They think it’s the horses.

Best Friend
my best friends are my human slaves. I’m not so keen on the horses I share my paddock with. Because young Calvin runs around like a mad thing, and tries to steal my hay.

What do you like to sharpen your claws on?
If I had claws I think I might sharpen them on Calvin!

Most embarrassing moment
Well, I walk pretty slow. Actually, I walk really slow. That’s because I’ve been around a while. So when my human slaves call me to the fence because someone wants to pat me, it takes ages for me to get there. That's pretty embarrassing. Especially when I can hear them saying “poor old thing”. But speed isn’t everything! Good looks count too!

Lovely to get a different perspective on the Catwalk, Ginger!   I have to say you're a wonderfully calm, placid cow - not like the spooky bovine boys that live next door to us!

Jan 24, 2013

G'day Y'all

by Emmie Dark

Hello lovecatters! As you might have guessed from my posts on LoveCats, I tend to travel quite a bit and I'm often posting from different places in the world. Well, it's the same deal this month and that's why my post is a little delayed -- after all, it is still Wednesday (morning!) here in Los Angeles!!

And I have to say, winter here in LA beats the stinkin' summer weather at home in Melbourne right now. We've got blue sky, sunshine, about 25 during the day. Chilly enough at night to need a jacket, but that also means snuggling into bed with the doona. Quite frankly, it's no wonder the rich and famous choose to base themselves here.
Venice Beach. Yes, it is winter.
Spotted my first celeb yesterday -- Jason Segel from "How I Met Your Mother". He was just walking down the street with his arm around his girlfriend, all casual-like. (I imagine his girlfriend is probably someone famous too, but I don't pay enough attention to the right kind of magazines to know that. In fact, I have probably walked passed dozens of celebrities but I just don't know who they are!)

Last weekend I went to Texas to visit with a friend. I got to see Dallas and the gorgeous city of Austin. The slogan for Austin is "Keep Austin Weird", and it's definitely my kind of weird. The city is full of food, music and quirky peeps. It's also the home of the Texas Longhorns (college football team) of whom I have become a serious and loyal supporter (at least, I own a lot of merchandise now). One of these days I'll actually get to see a game, but at least this time I got to meet Bevo, the team mascot -- not surprisingly, a longhorn steer.

G'day, y'all.
Texas is definitely a place for good food and lots of it, if you're so inclined. My friend (a native Austonian) took me to the secret, best barbecue place in the whole of Austin. Do you remember the opening credits of The Flintstones? Where Fred pedals his car into the diner and gets served a rack of ribs that are so huge they tip the car over? Yes, that.

Just a small dinner for me, thanks.
I had the "junior plate" which consisted of two ribs. TWO. I managed to eat one. It was delicious and I kept eating way beyond "full" because it was so yummy. (Oh, and FYI, the beer I drank is a local brew called Shiner Bock, a brewery that's been around for decades which was formed by European immigrants who definitely knew how to made a decent lager.)

The only thing I missed out on in Texas? I did not once see any sexy cowboys. I didn't even see any non-sexy cowboys. Still.... that's just a reason to go back!!

PS -- My good news is that while I'm over here I'm working on the copy edits for my brand new erotica novella, "Spellbound", due out with Destiny Romance in March! I'll keep you posted.

Jan 21, 2013

Funday Monday!

Puzzle Day!

It's Ballambar here at the moment which is the 'season of the butterflies' and we have lots of these orange-brown beauties in our garden ...

Click to Mix and Solve

Let us know how you get on with this jigsaw from JigZone!

Jan 20, 2013

Sunday Smooch with Rachael Johns . . .

Welcome to another LoveCats DownUnder Sunday Smooch!

Today we have a smooch from Stand In Star by Rachael Johns ........, but first ... the winner of last week's Sunday Smooch Giveaway is -- Jo Fereday!

Can you please contact Jennifer St George via the contact page at www.jenniferstgeorge.com to recieve your eCopy of The Convenient Bride .......

And now for today's Sunday Smooch from  Stand In Star by Rachael Johns ........

As an anthropologist, Holly McCartney is more comfortable in a museum than shopping on Rodeo Drive. She isn’t prepared for the media frenzy on her arrival in L.A. to accept a posthumous acting award for her late sister….or for her sister’s gorgeous friend Nate Devlin to come to her rescue. Though he resents her for some reason, she can’t fight their irresistible chemistry—especially when the paparazzi force her to stay at his mansion.

Photographer Nate only agrees to help Holly survive Hollywood for her sister’s sake, but she soon gets under his skin in a way no other woman has. The more time he spends with her, the more his attraction grows and he finds himself opening up to her in ways he never expected. But will ghosts of the past stand in the way of their perfect Hollywood ending?

Scene set-up: [ Nate and Holly are two characters at odds from the start. Both have pre-conceived assumptions about each other due to their relationships with Holly’s dead sister. However, despite not really liking each other, neither can ignore the attraction. The kiss takes place while they are begrudingly spending time together because Nate doesn’t want her trekking around Hollywood on her own.]

Nate stared at Holly wondering what spiraled through that pretty little mind of hers. She hadn’t said a word since he’d explained his relationship with Daisy. He’d never needed to defend his actions to anyone but right now he wished Holly would speak. For some perverse reason, he didn’t want her thinking badly of him.
Come on, say something.

Her mouth clamped the straw of her shake like it was a lifeline, her perfectly delicious lips filling with blood. And all he could think about was kissing them.

When she put the drink down, the thought that had been invading his sanity all day finally conquered.
He reached his arm around the back of her neck, slipped his fingers up into her wig and leaned toward her. Not thinking about the ramifications he touched his lips against hers, tentatively at first, unsure whether she’d slap him or respond.

A tiny moan escaped her mouth as she met his kiss with a surprising but arousing intensity. The sound tipped the lust and desire that had been building up in his body all day barreling over the edge. Both his hands now tangling in the hair of the wig, he deepened the kiss, teasing his tongue along her lips and encouraging them to part. When they did, her tongue danced with his and his breathing came in short, shallow jolts. The desire to take their kiss to the next level threatened to overcome him.
Just as his hands began to trek down her face, her neck, anticipating going further, a camera flashed mere inches from his face.

Nate’s chest tightened as he tore his mouth from Holly’s and pulled back. He rushed to locate the culprit, ready to plant his fist in the face of whatever scum had tracked them here.

His fist stopped short as he registered the owner of the camera—a short, sweet-faced old Asian woman.

Hollywood is the last place on earth Holly from STAND-IN STAR would like to visit! What is the last place you would like to go?
Leave a comment to go into the draw to win a eCopy of Stand In Star, which is a January 2013 release.
Come back next week when the winner will be announced ..... and a Smooch from Sizzling Shorts by Barbara DeLeo with be posted.

Jan 18, 2013

And The Winner Is . . . .

By Helen Lacey

With Oscar time coming up, the Golden Globes a recent event (Yay to Hugh Jackman!), test cricket, the Australian Tennis Open etc – there seems to be a whole swag of things happening where people can be competitive in their chosen field and be in with a chance to take home a statue, a cup, a title or some other manner of prize. For romance writers there is the upcoming Rita and the Golden Heart, the Romantic Times award and closer to home the Ruby, Emerald, Ella and very soon the ARRA awards (Australian Romance Readers Awards). As well as numerous smaller writing contests for both published and aspiring authors. That means there is plenty of opportunity to be recognized and/or rewarded, although often the nomination is reward enough.

I was thinking about this the other day when a writer friend told me a story about her elderly father, who’d worked in public service all his life and upon retirement began pursuing his passion for fish. At first I thought she meant finishing, but no, this was the fish-tank variety. He joined an aquarium society (I didn’t know there was such a thing) and after some time began entering competitions with his marine aquarium. My friend told me that her dad just came back from a competition and had won Best In Show for his Harlequin Tusk-Fish and a also very respectable second for Best Display. She had a photo of her dad holding up his trophy and his happiness about his win was delightful. Seeing his commitment made me realize that everywhere, all over the globe, people are chugging away at their chosen craft, hobby, or job, putting themselves ‘out there’ much like an author does every time a book gets subbed to a publisher or  it hits the selves. Or like an actor does with every movie. Or like a contestant does on Masterchef. Or a tennis player does every time they walk onto centre court.

Passionate people are everywhere in life - so what’s your passion? Is it painting? Parenting? Parachuting? Are you a scrapbooker? Latin dancer? Athlete? Whatever our job, hobby or career - if we do it with passion and commitment, that makes us all winners - regardless of how many awards or tropies we might or might not win.
Are you pursuing a long-held passion at the moment? Or have you discovered a new passion in 2013? I have a copy of my January Harlequin Special Edition, His-And-Hers Family to give away to one commenter.

Jan 16, 2013

Legends on LoveCats ........ Lilian Darcy

LoveCats DownUnder are delighted to welcome the wonderfully talented Lilian Darcy to our Legends segment today.

1/ Please tell us a little about your journey to first getting published?
 In two words, short and clueless. The very first romance I wrote was accepted by Mills & Boon in London, but although this sounds enviable it actually wasn’t good for my long-term career for quite a while. The book only just squeaked in as being of “publication standard” and it took much honing of craft before editors and readers began to take me seriously. It would have been much better to hone the craft in private, and leave those early and now quite old-fashioned books buried in a bottom drawer! Fortunately, I’ve now had the rights to most of those reverted to me so that they won’t be out there in ebook land, ambushing some poor unsuspecting reader.
2/ How many books have you had published so far in your career?
 81 category romances, 3 women’s fiction novels, 2 on-line serials, so I’m going to say 86.
3/ The world of publishing is ever evolving, how have you stayed on top of trends and continued to give your readers what they want?
 By caring about what I do and focusing on what I love. You can’t please everybody, so I think you just have to write stories and characters that you find gripping and engaging yourself, and hope that enough readers feel the same way.
 4/ What has been the highlight of your publishing career so far?
 Receiving two Rita nominations in two different categories in 2003 was pretty cool. Also, embracing the brave new world of self-publishing has been very exciting. I obtained the rights to my Mira Australia novel “Cafe du Jour” and re-published that, and since then have also published another women’s fiction novel “All Dressed Up” and a historical women’s fiction novel, “Saving Gerda.”
5/ Which of your books is your favourite, and why?
 That’s a hard one. “Cafe du Jour” and “Saving Gerda” are both very much books of the heart. One reader email or positive review for these books will make my whole day. Of my more recent romances, “A Marriage Worth Fighting For” is one I’ve especially loved, as it’s such an unusual story, with a heroine who doesn’t sound all that likeable on the face of it. How often do you have a romance heroine who admits to herself that she married her husband for his money? I love that readers have seen beyond this to what Alicia is really like, because I adore her.
 6/ Are you a plotter or a panster?
A horrible, messy mix of the two. I dive right in, then realise I don’t know where the story is going and plot for a bit, then write again and the story goes off in a way I didn’t plan so then I have to revise my ideas on where it was heading, etc, etc.
7/ What’s the one piece of advice you would give aspiring authors?
Pay attention to your process. Understand it, nurture it, track what you need to do to make it work at its best. Don’t neglect it, and don’t neglect to re-fill the creative well, or you will burn out sometime down the road and have no idea what to do about it.
 8/ What do you love most about being a romance author?
 Making a living on the stories in my head is a real privilege. It has it’s downside, but the freedom and flexibility, the celebration of creativity, the thrill of knowing that I’m reaching and touching readers. The other huge plus is the friendships with other writers - gorgeous, funny, warm, fabulous women.

Lilian's most recent release is Saving GerdaSaving Gerda” available through www.backlistebooks.com
and A Marriage Worth Fighting For” from Harlequin Special Edition 
Leave a comment to go into the draw to win an Amazon voucher for an Ebook copy of either, Saving Gerda, All Dressed Up or Cafe du Jour - winners choice!

Thank you Lilian for visiting LoveCats today and sharing your wonderful journey . . .

Jan 14, 2013

Food Obsessions

I’m completely obsessed with food this month. There’s nothing inherently unusual about this for me, I’m always either thinking about what I just ate, planning the next meal, or wondering why I didn’t marry Jamie Oliver so I could be a bazillionaire and have a man who’d cook for me instead.

Raspberry Macarons - Twin Two
There are two main reasons why I’m more obsessed than normal with food. The first is that Twin One and Twin Two have dedicated their entire lives to perfecting the art of the macaron. If you’re like me and imagined that a macaron is a chocolatey, coconut thingy, you’d be wrong.

A macaron (de Paris) is a teeny little sweet that’s like a cross between a meringue and a friand. It comes in a whole lot of flavours and only the devil himself knows how to cook the bleedin' things. If you’ve made meringues before you’ll know that you need to be oh-so-careful not to knock the air out of them, but with macarons, you also have to fold in ground almonds. The result of not sticking to the myriad macron making rules, is something that looks and tastes like a sweet bullet rather than a light-as-air but chewy macaron.

Lemon Macarons - Twin One
Today the girls made the FIFTH batch in a week (am thinking of buying some chooks for all the eggs we’re going through) and this is what they looked like. Pretty impressive?! Twin One believes the key is leaving the mixture to set in the little shapes before cooking, Twin Two believes you need to keep the egg whites in the fridge for three days before making. I don’t care, I just get to eat gorgeous macarons day in, day out.

The other reason I’m so obsessed with food at the moment is that the current heroine in my work- in- progress is a chef and the hero doesn’t know a bagel from a blinis. What he does know is how to turn around someone’s damaged image and that’s what he’s been employed to do with my PR disaster celebrity chef. There’s lots of hot kitchen fun and three-cheese gnocchi to boot.

Do you have a recipe that you’ve tried and tried to perfect? A success or a failure? Or are you secretly addicted to all those cooking shows?

Jan 13, 2013

Sunday Smooch with Jennifer St George .....

Welcome to another LoveCats DownUnder Sunday Smooch!

Today we have a smooch from The Convenient Bride by Jennifer St George, but first ...

the winner of last week's Sunday Smooch Giveaway is -- Chey!

Can you please contact Helen Lacey on mail (at) helenlacey(dot) com to recieve your copy of His-And-Hers Family

And now for today's Sunday Smooch from Jennifer St George ........

Sienna De Luca will do anything to save her family's hotel, and ruthless Italian businessman Antonio Moretti knows it. With problems of his own, he proposes a marriage of convenience and plans to use Sienna to secure his next business deal. But things don't go quite according to plan.

In keeping with her part of the bargain, Sienna travels to Venice to be with Antonio, who introduces her to a life of great luxury and opulence. Antonio thinks he can manipulate her at his will, but he soon realizes he has seriously underestimated Sienna, her intelligence, her skills, her courage – and her beauty. Unexpectedly, Sienna gets too close and when she discovers his dark secret, Antonio's perfectly planned life begins to unravel.

Scene set-up: [Sienna de Luca and Antonio Moretti have just left their wedding reception. It’s a marriage of convenience and Sienna’s discovered the marriage is to deceive Antonio’s own family, so she’s furious. But, she’s finding it harder and harder to fight the growing attraction between them. Now, she finds she can’t undo the buttons of her wedding dress…]

 ‘Ah … I need a little help.’ Sienna turned and pointed to the buttons holding her prisoner.
         He leant back in his chair. ‘I knew that kiss wasn’t an act,’ he said, running a finger over his bottom lip. ‘If you want to sleep with me, you only have to ask. There’s no need for these little games.’
Heat burst from her cheeks. Fury and indignation mingled in her blood, the toxic mix making her shake. Only her good upbringing prevented her from marching across the room and slapping his face.
       ‘Forget it,’ she said, storming back into the bedroom. She shut the door, only just managing not to slam it. Arrogant, self-absorbed pig …
Marching to the phone, she dialed.
       ‘Housekeeping,’ a bright voice answered.
The bedroom door opened. Damn, why hadn’t she locked it? Antonio strode into the room. She turned her back on him.
       ‘It’s Sienna De—’
‘Moretti,’ his smooth voice whispered in her ear.
        Sienna Moretti.
‘I’d like —’ She couldn’t quite remember why she’d called.
        Antonio took the phone from her hand and dropped it back in its cradle.
‘What do you think —’ she demanded, her harsh words and icy glare having no affect.
        Without a word, he took her by the shoulders and spun her around. His fingers quickly flicked free four buttons of her gown.
She opened her mouth to give Antonio a serve, but instead, a sigh of relief escaped her lips. She hadn’t realised how constricting the dress had been. She breathed deeply for what seemed the first time that day.
        ‘Thanks,’ she said quietly over her shoulder. She reached around, hoping now to be able to finish the job herself, but fate was not on her side.
‘Let me.’ Antonio languidly undid another couple of buttons, his fingers gentle as he slowly released the pressure of her cream confinement.
        ‘Antonio —’
‘Ssh,’ he whispered in her ear. His lips brushed her bare shoulder.
        The air rushed from her lungs and she made to pull away. She couldn’t control her body’s response to his touch. His arms wound about her, preventing her escape and drew her back against his chest. Her bottom settled against his hard thighs. He kissed the nape of her neck.
‘This is our wedding night,’ he murmured in her ear. ‘Let’s not fight.’ He freed another couple of buttons.
        ‘I wasn’t the one —’
He kissed the skin between her shoulder blades and her body shuddered in response.
       ‘D-don’t …’ She closed her eyes as he trailed kisses down her spine as he exposed her body inch by inch. She forced herself not to gasp each time he touched her. Breathing proved more and more difficult as desire pumped through every cell in her body. Rationally she knew she mustn’t want this. But a deep longing possessed her. She’d been fighting alone for so long.
No love.
       No passion.
No life.
       Making love with her husband – that would be the most natural thing in the world.
The few remaining buttons came free quickly under his deft hands. He ran his hands up her back to her shoulders and turned her. All her defenses collapsed as she yearned for his lips on hers. His body crushing hers.
        Now. Now. Now.
She wanted him to take her before reason drove sense into her lust-filled body.
        He cupped her face in both hands.
‘I want you to say it,’ he rasped, his dark eyes flashing with molten heat.
        ‘What?’ she breathed, almost blind with longing.
‘You want me,’ he ground out. ‘Say it.’
        She hesitated for a heartbeat. ‘I want you.’
His lips crushed hers and her world exploded as desire and aching escaped the tight control she’d imposed. He tasted of chocolate and whisky. She wound her arms about him and ran her hands over his muscular back. His tongue probed and thrust, exploring her deeply. The kiss became frantic as need drove her to want more and more. She tangled her fingers in his hair and drew him closer.
        ‘I want to see you,’ he growled against her mouth as he slid his hands up her body past her breasts. Her nipples hardened under his fleeting touch. He gripped the shoulders of her dress and slid it from her body.

Funny things always seem to happen at weddings. 
Share a wedding story for a change to win an eCopy of The Convenient Bride.
Come back next Sunday, when the winner of today's giveaway will be announced -- and a
smooch from Man Drought by  Rachel Johns will be posted!

Jan 11, 2013

Just for Fun!

Some Jigsaw fun! 


Click to Mix and Solve

Jan 9, 2013


by Michelle Douglas

I’ve been Facebooked!

Last Wednesday I finally kept my New Year’s resolution from 2012—I joined Facebook. A year later than I’d promised myself, mind, but better late than never, right?

By the end of my first day I had 50 friends. By the end of my second day I had 90. I felt like the most popular girl in school! And I’m having fun navigating the waters and reading everyone’s thoughts and updates. I’ve even made the odd comment myself. So why has it taken me so long to dip my toes into these particular waters?

Well...there's one reason in particular...

We writers are told A LOT that we should be taking advantage of social media to promote our books. It makes my head want to explode. Talk about contrived and phony! The truth is, I think my readers are a lot like me—if they want to find when an author’s new release is due out they'll go to that author’s website and/or sign up for the author’s newsletter. They don’t need that kind of info force fed to them on Facebook (feel free to correct me if you don’t agree with me, mind).

So, till now, Facebook and I had been having a bit of a standoff.

All I want is to have a chat at the end of a long, hard day -- or perhaps in the middle of it. I might show off my new covers when they arrive because I’m always excited when I get them and usually email them to my friends anyway, but other than that I just want to chat and keep up with everyone. Cue sudden epiphany -- I can use Facebook however I choose to. And cue instant relief. :-)

So there you have it. I'm in control of technology, not the other way around. Not that you'd believe that if you saw me wrestling with my printer on occasion, though.

So what I want to ask you is -- do any of you have hints or tips as to how I should use Facebook? Is there etiquette I’m completely ignorant of? For example, some people have “liked” some of my comments—which is really nice—but should I like all the comments others make on something I post (and is it even called posting on FB?)? Should I respond to every comment others make about something I post? Is there’s anything in particular I should chat about…or not chat about? And here’s one that has me completely stumped—what view should I be in “top stories” or “most recent”?

Yes, I know, I’m completely clueless. Is there a book out there I should read? All help gratefully received. :-)

Jan 7, 2013

Happy New Year from Sue MacKay

Reading: That Thing Called Love by Susan Anderson
Listening to: Adele
Watching: crime shows

I'm hoping everyone had a fabulous festival season. My DB and I certainly did, made all that much more special by the arrival of a very special wee man a few weeks earlier. We're head over heels with our first grandchild, Austin. I'm sure many of you know exactly how we feel.
And what a distraction he is, despite living nearly five hours drive away. Thank goodness for email and cell phones. My DB has always refused to learn to text but believe me, he knows now. These days you'd think he invented texting.
But as this photo shows, Austin's not so keen on the rocking horse we gave him. Maybe as he was only four weeks old we were being a tiny bit ridiculous but when we found the horse in the shop it followed us out to the car - if you know what I mean.
Which brings me to 2013 and what it holds. I'm currently working on my writing goals for the year, how many books, which genres, etc. Also trying to fit them around a trip overseas later on. We're heading to Paris to celebrate one of those big birthdays (you know - with a naught on the end) and where else to go but the city of love. Very exciting.
One of my smaller goals, and probably the most frustrating, is to learn more computer skills, especially around blogging and other means of getting in touch with readers. There's a huge world out there if only I was up with the play.
Of course I'm also going to lose weight, eat healthier, get fitter, be a better person, spend less on clothes, vacuum the house more often, foster a stray, never get angry with anyone. Yeah, yeah, blah, blah.
Have you made promises to yourself? And have you scraped them already?

Jan 6, 2013

Sunday Smooch with Helen Lacey .......

Welcome to another LoveCats DownUnder Sunday Smooch!

Today we have a smooch from His-And-Hers Family by Helen Lacey, but first ...

the winner of last week's Sunday Smooch Giveaway is Mary Preston! Congratulations Mary....

Can you please contact Sue Mackay at lsmackay (at) ts (dot) co (dot) nz to claim your prize .......

And now for today's Sunday Smooch from His-And-Hers Family by Helen Lacey ........

Coming Soon: JANUARY
Fifteen years ago, Fiona Walsh made a choice: to give her daughter up for adoption. But she'd never given up hope of meeting her little girl. So when opportunity for a reunion came knocking—in the form of her daughter's tall, dark and sexy uncle—she opened the door to her past…and found true love on her doorstep!

Businessman Wyatt Harper liked his life carefully ordered, with details falling neatly into place. As Cecily's guardian, her welfare came first. Yet his searing attraction to Fiona turned his entire world upside down—it was unlike anything he'd ever felt! This could be for keeps. But Wyatt had been burned before, badly. Could Fiona's tender ways win Wyatt's scarred heart—and make them into a family?

Scene set-up [Fiona and Wyatt have been doing their best to deny the chemistry between them, but after a few days apart they can't pretend any longer.]

She came around the bench and settled her hips against the counter.
            Wyatt tried to not think about how good her legs looked stretched out from the short skirt she wore. He had a hell of a time thinking about anything when she was so close.
            One brow came up. “You were surprised they granted you guardianship?”
            “Yes,” he replied, and wondered how she seemed to know what he was thinking. “My sister three years younger is married with her own children so I assumed Karen would believe that Ellen and Alessio would have been a better option.”
            “I think they made the right choice,” she said quietly. “Cecily thinks you’ve hung the moon, so you’re off to a good start.”
            “I don’t want to screw it up for her sake. She's been through enough.”
            “You won’t,” she assured him. “It’s been eighteen months since her parents passed away and she’s happy and healthy.”
            Wyatt bit back a laugh. “I’m not sure if that has anything to do with me.”
            “You’d be surprised. In my experience – as a teacher,” she qualified. “I see children from different backgrounds and situations, single parents, foster parents, grandparents, two parent families and they’re all doing the best they can. The thing is Wyatt no one gets it right every time.”
            He knew she was right and her words offered the kind of comfort he'd somehow forgotten existed. “Do you mean like thinking every teenage boy who so much as looks at her is after something?” Spoken out loud, it sounded ridiculously paranoid.
            She nodded. “Exactly. I wouldn’t encourage her to be friends with Trevor if I thought he couldn’t be trusted. You didn’t expect Cecily to spend every minute of her holiday with either of us, did you?”
            “I’m not sure what I expected,” he said candidly, suddenly wanting to kiss her so much his whole body was on high alert. “I didn't expect . . .”
            She stilled. “What?”
            “I didn't expect I’d be this . . .” Wyatt stopped, pausing to consider if admitting anything was wise at this point – when they both knew it couldn’t go anywhere. But for the last few days, he’d been going quietly out of his mind thinking about her. “I didn't expect I’d be this attracted to you.”        

Fiona sucked in a breath. Okay . . . what now? “Me either.”
            Not the most sensible response. Not even close.
            “Inconvenient then?”
            She nodded. “Very.”
            “Is avoiding me helping any?”
            Fiona rubbed her hands down her thighs and didn’t miss the way his eyes followed her every move. “Not so far.”
            Something hot and seductive swept into the room. It toyed with them for a moment, tracing the edges of the building awareness and she experienced a surge of longing so deep, so intense, her knees threatened to give way.
            “Fiona . . .”
            How he came to be in front of her she wasn't sure. She vaguely heard the chair being scraped back. There were no other sounds. Only her heart beating madly. Only some faraway voice telling her to stop whatever was about to happen.
            “Wyatt . . . we can’t . . . it’s not . . .”
            “I know we can’t,” he said softly.
            Fiona said his name again. Anything more wouldn’t come. When his arms moved either side of her, trapping her against the counter it merely intensified the desire scorching her skin, her blood, and her very bones. She tilted her head back to look at him and recognized the raw hunger in his blue eyes.
            She drew in a soft breath, waiting, feeling the heat between them rise like a coiled serpent. Her lips parted, anticipating his kiss. And wanting it. When he touched his mouth to hers every ounce of lingering resistance disappeared. There was nothing else. Only feeling. Only his kiss. Only Wyatt.
            She reached up and laid her hands on his shoulders. He was solid, strong, just as she’d expected. She'd been kissed before, had experienced desire before. But never like this. He leaned into her and continued to kiss her mouth, slanting his lips over hers with gentle provocation.
            Whoosh . . .     
            She'd heard about it, read about it, secretly dreamed of one day finding someone who would make her feel so alive.
            It’s only lust.
            Powerful, heady and electrifying. Exactly what it should be. But the warning voice in her head prevailed.
            It’s only sex.
            And sex wasn't enough to sustain anything other than a brief, forgettable relationship. She knew that. But as his tongue gently wound around hers, for one crazy moment it felt enough. The fact he wasn't touching her in any way other than the kiss was incredibly erotic to her senses. Nothing rushed. No quick hands. No hasty gratification. No demands. This was slow and seductive and captivating and he coaxed a response she gave willingly.
            When the kiss was over and he lifted his head Fiona kept her hands where they were. She looked up, met his gaze and knew her lips quivered, knew he’d see every scrap of desire brimming in her eyes.
            “Not a good idea?”
            She swallowed hard. “No.”
            He pulled back and straightened. “You’re right. It won’t happen again.”
            It seemed like a monumental promise. Too big. Too much. Something neither could hold to. He wanted her. She wanted him. But it wasn't enough. Cecily was too important. “You’re right . . . it won’t.”
            “I should back off.”
            “Yes, you should.”

Leave a comment for a chance to win a signed copy of His-And-Hers Family .......

Come back next Sunday, when the winner of today's giveaway will be announced -- and a smooch by Jennifer St George will be posted!

Jan 4, 2013

A very happy new year!

By Leah Ashton
Baby Ashton (less than an hour old!)
A very short LoveCats post from me today - as Baby Ashton and myself have been home from hospital only a few hours and she is *very* time consuming! (in the best possible way).

She was a little earlier than expected, scraping in just before the new year on Sunday. We were even able to watch some fireworks from our hospital room the next evening!

She is absolutely beautiful, and it is impossible to describe how lucky, and awestruck, and amazed I feel right now. I am also very much in a daze, and am miles behind on my emails and basically anything else that has been happening in the world. She's just had a very early morning feed, so I'm going to try and catch a few hours rest.

Happy New Year!