Jun 5, 2016

Sunday Smooch with Helen Lacey

Welcome to another LoveCats DownUnder Sunday Smooch!

Today we have a smooch from Helen Lacey but first 

... the winner of last week's Sunday Smooch Giveaway is Laney4

Can you please contact Christy McKellan on christy (@) christymckellan (Dot) com to receive your copy of Once Week With The French Tycoon.........

And now for today's Sunday Smooch from Lucy & The Lieutenant by Helen Lacey........


Dr. Lucy Monero feels like the oldest virgin on the planet. Still crushing on her longtime neighbor, she's waited a lifetime for her first…and last. The man she'll marry. And now he's back—the star of her fantasies, ex-cowboy-turned-army-vet Brant Parker. The physician in her recognizes a wounded soul, but the woman in her burns for his touch. Lucy's head is filled with visions of white lace and white picket fences.

The last thing Brant needs is the walking, talking temptation that is Lucy. He may be out of his army fatigues but he still carries his demons. He's a loner, not the marrying kind that the hometown sweetheart deserves. So why can't he stop wanting her? 

(Lucy has arrived at Brant's late one evening after he had an accident with a power tool and injured himself. They have gone to his small apartment upstairs so she can tend to the injury)

She looked up and met his stare head-on. God, he loved how she did that. Eye to eye. As though, for that brief moment in time, there was no one else in the world but the two of them. It felt like tonic. Like salve. As though her green-eyed gaze had the power to heal.

Of course she didn’t...that was crazy thinking. But the more time he spent with her, the more difficult it was to keep denying how much he wanted her. Because wanting might turn into needing. And needing was out of the question. He couldn’t afford to need anyone. And not someone as sweet and lovely as Lucy Monero.

“Are you sure? Your mom’s worried you’re... She’s scared because she thinks you take too many risks. As if you don’t care.”

Brant’s stomach tightened. His knew his mother frequently talked to Lucy, and it would be naïve to think he didn’t regularly turn up in their conversations. But he hated the idea that his mother was worrying about him unnecessarily. “What are you saying? That my mom thinks I’m reckless?”

“That’s part of it.”

His stomach continued to churn. “And what else...suicidal?”

She shrugged as though she didn’t want to acknowledge the idea. “Maybe. It happens to soldiers all the—”

“I’m not,” he said, cutting her off as he squeezed her fingers. “I’m very happy to be alive and plan to stay that way for a long time.”

“I hope so,” she said, whisper quiet.

 Brant tugged her closer. “I promise I’m not depressed or suicidal.”

She didn’t look entirely convinced. “Depression can show itself with varying symptoms. Do you sleep well?”

“Mostly,” he replied, hating that he was suddenly under the microscope but inexplicably unable to move away from her.

Her expression narrowed. “I don’t believe you.”

The truth burned his tongue. “Okay, so sometimes I don’t sleep...sometimes I pace this room for hours or stare at the ceiling. That doesn’t mean I’m depressed or suicidal.”

“No,” she replied. “Not on its own, but when you combine insomnia with other things, it can manifest itself into more.”

“There are no other things.”

“No?” she queried. “What about moodiness? Solitude?”

“If I was as disagreeable as you seem to think, I wouldn’t be reopening the tavern.”

“I didn’t say you were disagreeable,” she shot back quickly. “In fact, you’re very charming and easy to talk to most of the time—like you were last night. I needed someone and you were there for me.”

It didn’t sound much like a compliment. Still, he didn’t release her. And she didn’t pull away.


“But you rarely, if ever, talk about yourself,” she replied. “And that can be harmful to a person’s well-being.”

“So, I’m not much of a talker. That doesn’t make me a head case.”

She flinched. “Now you’re angry. Being vulnerable doesn’t make you weak, Brant. Something bad happened to you over there, didn’t it?”

His tone grew hard. “It was a war zone...bad things happened all around me and to a lot of people.”

“I know that,” she said, reaching up to touch his face. “But it’s you I care about.” Her fingertips were warm, her touch electric.

His stomach dropped. Damn, she just about undid him.

Brant groaned. “Lucy...stop.”

She didn’t move her hand. “I can’t,” she said and then fingered the small scar on his chin. “How did you get this?” she asked, moving her fingertip to the scar at his temple. “And this?”

“I don’t remember,” he said vaguely and stared into her face.

Her cheeks were ablaze with color. Combined with her glorious hair and bright green eyes, it was a riveting combination. And he was immediately drawn into her gaze. Into the very space she possessed.

Brant moved his free hand to her nape and gently rubbed the skin at the back of her neck with his thumb. Her eyes widened immediately and a rush of soft breath escaped her. He couldn’t have moved away even if he’d tried. She was pure temptation. Pure loveliness. And he wanted her. Brant wanted her so much it was making him crazy.

He said her name again, watched as her lips pouted a little in pure, sweet invitation.

Her hair tangled between his fingers and his grip tightened. She was looking at him, all eyes, all longing, and when he dipped his head, his intention clear, Brant heard a tiny moan escape her.

Her mouth was warm against his as their lips met. She shuddered, half resistance, half compliance, as if in that moment she wasn’t quite sure what she wanted. But it only lasted a second and then she relaxed against him. Brant instinctively pulled her closer. Her lips parted fractionally and he deepened the kiss, felt her shudder again before she opened her mouth to let him taste the softness within. It was the sweetest kiss he’d ever experienced, almost as though it possessed a kind of purity that had never been matched, or never would.

Brant suddenly felt as if he’d been sucker punched. Because he’d known, deep down, that kissing Lucy was always going to be incredible. Everything about her had been tempting him for months. Every look, every word, every touch, had been drawing them toward this moment. Toward each other. In that instant there was no denying it, no fighting it, no way he could have stopped himself from getting pulled deeper under her spell. And she felt it as much as he did, he was certain.

Her hands were now on his chest and then his shoulders, and he wrapped his arms around her, feeling her soft curves press fully against him. Her breasts, belly and hips pressed to him so perfectly her body was suddenly like a narcotic, drugging him mindless as the kiss continued and she tentatively accepted his tongue into her mouth in a slow, erotic dance that felt so good his knees weakened.

He pulled back when he needed to take a breath and stared down into her face. She was breathing heavily, as if she’d just run a marathon. And her green eyes were luminescent and shimmering with a kind of longing that heated his blood even further. He fought the urge to kiss her again. And again. Because he knew where it would lead. He wanted to make love to her so much he could barely think straight. He wanted to take her into his bed and peel off her silly pajamas and make love to every inch of her, over and over. He wanted to drug her mindless with kisses and to caress her skin until she begged for him to be inside her and then lose himself in her body for all eternity.

And knowing that she’d allow it was suddenly like a bucket of cold water over his libido.

He wasn’t about to confuse her picket-fence dreams any more than he already had.

Brant released her abruptly and stepped back. “You should leave.”

She moved unsteadily and gripped the table with one hand. “Brant... I...”

Her hurt expression cut through him, but he ignored it. “I mean it. Go home, Lucy,” he said coldly. “I don’t want you here.”

Do you remember your first love?

Leave a comment to go into the draw to win a copy of Lucy & The Lieutenant, Book 2 in the Cedar River Cowboys series from Helen Lacey and Harlequin Special Edition.

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

Smooch Graphic by WebWeaver


  1. Morning Helen

    Woohoo I loved this story what a beauty and that first smooch pulled at the heart strings can't wait for the next book in this series.

    And for the question yes I do remember my first love I was in year 2 and his name was Neil and he rode his bike to my place after school one day and kissed me LOL oh the memories :)

    Have Fun

    1. Hi Helen - thanks so much. I'm delighted you enjoyed Lucy & Brant's story. And thanks for sharing your first love story :)

  2. Looks like a fab read - love the blurb and smooch :)

    First love was my first real boyfriend. Tall, good looking and was staring on A Country Practice, the romantic in me was love struck with him.

    Like so many young loves, it last all of 4 weeks before he moved on to my BFF who "put out" because I didn't *sigh* Funny thing is, I'm still friends with my BFF 30 years later :)

    1. Hi Joanne - A Country Practice????? Now I'm all curious! :)

    2. He played Dr. Terence Elliott's son :) and was only in a few episodes :)

  3. Oh Helen! My first love turned out to be gay....
    The next one was a keeper though :-)

    1. Hi AA - you know, the 'next' one often turns out to be the 'best' one :)

  4. My first love was actually my one true love. The rest were just passing fancies - but fun.

    1. Hi Mary - that's lovely. Thanks so much for stopping by today :)

  5. My first true love rescued me and my horse when the person I'd travelled with had left us stranded because we'd won the dressage competition he thought he had in the bag.
    My hero drove 100 miles out of his way to take us home - and didn't leave until politics and distance came between us after he defected from Russia. All a bit cloak and dagger for a while and quite intoxicating.

    1. Hi Pam - what a great story! Thanks so much for sharing and for stopping by :)

  6. I remember my first love well because that's what I was lucky enough to marry. We met 42 years does ed we were kids, I was 15 and he had 17 years , and a few weeks ago we celebrated our 39th wedding anniversary .

    1. Hi Poli - congratulations on 39 years....that's wonderful. And thanks for stopping by LoveCats :)

  7. Helen, I so loved this excerpt. I want more. Looks like I'd better buy the book.

    My first true love is the man I married. Can I pick em or what? He's a keeper.

  8. Ooh, nice smooch, Helen! Loving the heat between Brant and Lucy.:-)

    Ah...first love. He came riding up on a horse...and my heart went pitter-patter. Unfortunately for me, like Amy above, he preferred guys to girls. We became great buddies instead. :-)