Oct 26, 2014

Sunday Smooch with Rachel Bailey

Welcome to another LoveCats DownUnder Sunday Smooch!

Today we have a smooch from  Rachel Bailey's Cover Story, but first...

... the winner of last week's Sunday Smooch Giveaway is Fedora! Can you please email Stefanie (at) Stefanie-London (dot) com to receive your copy of Breaking The Bro Code. 

And a bonus winner announcement: the winner of Jennifer St George's Giveaway is Lyn! Can you please email jstgeorgeauthor (at) gmail (dot) com to receive your copy of Tempted by the Billionaire Tycoon.

And now for today's Sunday Smooch from Rachel Bailey's Cover Story.

Tobi Fletcher's career is going places. Just ask her. Any day now, she's going to write the story for her Sante Fe newspaper that will Make A Difference. Of course, Pulitzer prizes and the like will soon follow.

Unfortunately, her editor doesn't have the same vision. His vision has her investigating a series of gnomicides. Yes, gnomicides---the wanton murder of garden gnomes.

It's a nightmare for Tobi. She's spent her life working towards a career she can be proud of---and proving she's nothing like her mother. She's intelligent, independent and so uptight she can't even let go to sneeze properly---and, unlike her colleagues, she certainly can't appreciate the funny side of the situation. She wants to work on the big story---a cover-up in a Senator's office.

Reluctantly, she interviews Simon, the man who reported the 'incident' to the newspaper---clearly a lunatic---his four-year old daughter, and the other residents of the street. Along the way, Tobi discovers there are many truths and secrets to be uncovered---other people's as well as her own. The question is, will the truth really set her free?

Scene set-up: Tobi and her sister are at a fair celebrating all things gnome, when she runs into Simon. Simon, his daughter and Tobi's sister all buy a stick of cotton candy / fairy floss, but Tobi's never liked it much. While his daughter and Tobi's sister stroll around, Simon and Tobi take a seat on a park bench away from the action and he tells her he hasn't looked at another woman since he met her...

My heart missed a beat. “Y-you haven’t?” My vocal cords were unaccountably uncooperative, but my eyes were following orders—they transferred focus to my shoes.

“No, and I keep asking myself why. It’s not like you’ve given me an ounce of encouragement or even been pleasant on more than a couple of occasions.”

“Well . . .” It was true, but it didn’t sound so good out loud.

“Although you do run from me a lot, and that tells me something.” I could hear a smile in his voice. “And you did drag your sister away from me earlier. If you didn’t care, I don’t think you’d react so strongly.”

Why did this man find it so easy to see through my every action? Despite feeling a little cornered, I was intrigued enough to probe a little. “Did you come up with any answers, when you asked yourself why?”

“At first, I wondered if it was because you seemed unattainable. I haven’t been with anyone since Isabel died, and so I figured my subconscious had picked someone I couldn’t have.”

It sounded plausible, like one of Grace’s psychobabble theories, and the knowledge was devastating . . . until I remembered he’d said “at first.” I raised my head and looked into his eyes and saw the heat lurking there. “But you don’t think that now?”

“Nope.” He moved closer on the bench seat, close enough for our thighs to touch. A shiver shot up my spine.

“W-what do you think now?”

“Now I think it’s that you plain turn me on.”

That flame that had been simmering low in my belly since we’d run into him leaped back to life. I had to restrain a shiver as Simon kept talking.

“There’s something about your uptightness that makes me want to be the one to make you lose control.”

I swallowed.

His voice dropped to a hoarse whisper even though no one was near. “I want to see you in my arms, so out of control that you’re writhing and screaming with the pleasure of it.” He picked up my hand and raised it to his lips. He kissed my palm gently, eyes not leaving mine. “I want you mindless with wanting me.”

He laid my hand back in my lap, then plucked a piece of cotton candy from the stick he still held. Almost too slowly, he reached forward to put it in my mouth. My lips opened and he placed it on my tongue.

The spun sugar melted almost immediately, leaving an intense sweetness coating my taste buds. It was something that would normally make me turn up my nose, but for some reason, the effect fanned that internal flame more.

When I could get my voice to work, it came out huskier than I remembered. “Are you having some?”

His eyes were still on mine as he nodded and bit into the pink cloud. His tongue looped out to pull the pink mass into his mouth and, dammit, I was jealous of cotton candy. He plucked another piece and held it out to me and I reached forward, this time brushing his fingers with my lips. My breathing had become shallow and fast and, as the sweetness melted in my mouth again, I glanced at Simon’s chest. It was moving in a similar rhythm to mine, although it was much more muscular and framed by nicely defined shoulders. I had another flash of him in T-shirt and boxers on my couch and almost groaned.

My gaze drifted back to the cotton candy and suddenly, I wanted the sweetness in my mouth again. I felt something fall away—possibly good sense—and wanted to experience everything I’d been denying myself. Now.

I wrapped my hand around Simon’s on the stick and moved it closer to his face, my own following closely behind. My cheek brushed his roughened one as I bit into the soft candy. As the sugar dissolved, I could feel Simon’s breath—hear his intake of air. His scent mingled with the sugar and filled my senses. Nothing existed besides him, me and candy.

Then I turned and opened my mouth to more cotton candy—and Simon. The combination of the heat of his mouth and the unbearable sweetness melted any remaining reserve I had. His lips moved over mine, his tongue tasting, entwining.

I ran a hand over his shoulders, feeling the strength I’d seen there. Electricity tingled in my fingertips as they made contact with his skin, and the charge traveled up my arms and through my body. Was that normal? Maybe there was static electricity in the air. Who cared?

The faint sound of the cotton candy landing on the ground was followed by his newly freed arm wrapping around me, pulling me into his lap. I went with extraordinary enthusiasm.

He pulled back and sank his face into my neck. “Tobi, I want you so much.”

Want? Whatever I was feeling went far beyond want. Beyond any simple desire I’d ever felt before. Beyond the nicely contained version of sexual itch I was comfortable with. This was Hollywood-style lust. Without reason. Without sense.

Without control.

For a few more days, Cover Story is available at a special price of 99c at Amazon and iTunes, but you'll have to be quick if you want to grab it before it goes back to normal price. I have one copy to give away, and I'd love to hear if you think there's a food that's suited to kissing. Feel free to be inventive since I don't think Tobi would have guessed cotton candy would work for her!

Come back next Sunday, when the winner of today's giveaway will be announced and a smooch from Annie West will be posted!

Smooch Graphic by WebWeaver


  1. Hot! I'll never look at cotton candy/fairy floss the same way again. I'm boring and will have to go with chocolate... but the good quality dark chocolate. Yum! I've already got my copy of this book, so no need to put me in the running.

    I'm a little short on reading time at the moment so I wanted to come and get a peek at the smooch. (You're SO GOOD at writing sexual tension, so I knew it'd be worth spoiling myself lol).

    I can't wait to read it. Congrats on the new release, Rachel!

    1. Chocolate? You're speaking my language, Lauren! Especially good quality dark chocolate.

      Thanks for the congrats - this book has a special place in my heart. :)

  2. I too don't think I'll look at candy floss (as we call cotton candy here) the same either. I'm another boring one here - chocolate would be my preference too.

    You did such a good job with that smooch that I went and purchased straight away. I have it lined up to read after Annie's Damaso Claims His Heir, which I'm currently reading.
    The book would have been on the purchase and reading list anyway, but it moved up the list.

    1. Lyn, chocolate will never be boring! It's probably my favourite flavour in the world. Good choice. :)

      Hey, since you were going to buy the book anyway, I'm glad you got it at the sale price!

  3. What a fun excerpt, Rach! Tobi and Simon are in for some fun times, I think. ;-)

    Kissing food? Hmm…you know, hot chips have a lot to recommend them. It's the combination of salt and oil. It makes for a very moorish mix. ;-)

    1. Michelle, hot chips on a cold night. Maybe snuggled under a blanket, watching the stars. Oh, yes, I think there's a lot of potential there!

  4. Rachel, I did enjoy this! Cotton candy and kissing - who knew it worked so well?

    Hm, food and kissing. Chocolate I think but what about summer fruit - raspberries still warm from the sun and peaches? Smiling just thinking of it.

    1. Annie, summer fruit is perfect! Peaches would make a very fine kissing scene, and raspberries still warm from the sun? Gorgeous!

  5. Rachel, Chocolate dipped strawberries and kissing are perfect
    Also, who was last week's winner?

    1. Tammy, oh, yes! It's hard to beat strawberries dipped in chocolate for kissing food!

      Sorry about the winner not being there - it will go up later today. Stefanie has moved to the US and we're still giving used to talking across the time difference!

  6. Wohoo Rachel I am really looking forward to diving into this one :) and I too think that strawberries dipped in chocolate would be great of drinking champange with strawberries in it

    Have Fun

    1. Champagne with strawberries? Helen, that might be my favourite suggestion so far. So many good ideas! Hope you enjoy Tobi and Simon's story. :)

  7. Ooooo, what a fabulous Smooch, Rachel.

    Any kissing that included Cookies and Cream Ice-Cream would suit me just fine.

    1. Jen, that is a most excellent suggestion. In fact, now it's ticking over in my mind... There might be a cookies and cream ice cream kissing scene in a future book now... :)

  8. Rachel, for me it would be steak (medium rare) and red wine. But after reading your excerpt there are endless possibilities.

    1. Lol, Sue, I can't imagine steak as kissing food at all, but then I'm a vegetarian so maybe that's why. Red wine, however, sound perfect for kissing!

  9. Oh, smashing Smooch, Rachel! Love the chemistry between Tobi and the determined Simon!

    As for my choice of kissing food - there are a lot of chocolate lovers here and I'm one of them! I'll go with chocolate covered liqueur cherries. Though... I have to say that the salty hot chips have got me thinking about how lovely that would be too...

    1. Chocolate covered liqueur cherries is quite a specific choice, Sharon, but luckily it's an amazing one too. In fact, I think you should write it into your current book. I dare you. :)

  10. Chocolate is always a natural, I think--it's got great texture, and the flavor tends to linger a bit, just as a good kiss ought ;)

    BTW, is last week's smooch winner only a secret to me? It's dotted out for me ;)

    And happy congrats, Lyn!

    1. Fedora, I agree with you - chocolate is great on several levels, from texture to flavour. :)

      Last week's winner will be up soon - sorry about the delay!