Happy WiPItUp Wednesday
! woo hoo! 1 week until Christmas. Got your shopping done yet? *grins*
Here's another installment from Courted by Trouble, 3rd book in the In Hyacinth series. Last week I gave you a snippet from the beginning of the book. This week, I thought you might want to see Stephanie's first meet with Chris. Stephanie has been hiding from the world for over a year because of what happened with her father. Her friend Cami has managed to get her out to the local coffee shop.
“Strange. I keep expecting dirty looks,” Stephanie admitted.
“Why? You aren’t at fault here. And don’t look at me like that. You aren’t. And if it takes us the rest of our lives, I’ll nag it into you somehow. I’m right.” Cami paused and then grinned. “And if it’s Marjorie Farthing? Just laugh in her face.”
“Why? You know she’ll be the first to make a comment.”
“True. But I know something about her,” she said with an evil glint in her eyes. “She and James had to get married.”
“Well, it was the end of their courting year.” Everyone had to either get engaged, married, or get out within a year. The whole community knew that.
Cami snickered and looked around to make sure nobody was listening. “Dad and Jerod would tan my hide if they caught me gossiping, but you need the ammunition. Her mother caught the two in a less than honest position in Marjorie’s bedroom. That’s why their engagement happened literally one week before their wedding.”
Grinning as while Stephanie didn’t wish anybody harm, there was a certain pleasure in knowing that Miss Perfect Marjorie who had made fun of the three of them, picking on Dora something fierce because of her weight, messed up. “Did she get pregnant?”
“What they were doing can’t get you pregnant,” her friend said with a snicker. “But it would make all the tongues wag in this town, let me tell you.”
Laughing, Stephanie relaxed into her chair. Sitting with Cami like this made her almost feel like they were still in high school. The only thing missing was Dora. “I need to go find Dora and see how she’s doing.”
Cami pulled out her phone as it beeped. “Drat. I have a meeting with a client in thirty minutes so I have to go. If you find her, let her know I want to see her, too. Maybe we could have a girl’s night in. Get some movies and just chat.”
Camille gave her a tight hug and then jogged out of the café, the phone to her ear.
Stephanie couldn’t stop the smile that spread across her lips. Cami wanted her to design her wedding dress. While it terrified her, it was also exciting. She hadn’t done that in far too long. It was such a pleasure to think about that she lost herself in the daydream of it as she doodled on a spare napkin. Townsfolk came into the café and left and she barely noticed, so engrossed in the design taking shape on the thin piece of paper.
Picking up her coffee, Stephanie looked up into a pair of deep green eyes. Sitting at the table next to hers was a man with shaggy brown hair, a strong, square jaw, and a very nice smile. His smile spread as she kept looking at him and turning pink as she realized what she was doing, she looked back down at her coffee. Staring at a guy was childish and something she had no right to do anyway. It wasn’t like she had a happily ever after in her future. Sighing softly as her joy from spending time with Cami evaporated at the thought, she tried to go back to sketching on the napkin. It was something she had done all her life and as a seamstress it came in handy. Now that she had agreed to design and make Cami’s wedding dress, she would be doing it a lot.
“Excuse me.” Even without looking up, Stephanie knew it was the green-eyed man. Slowly she raised her head and once again looked into his eyes. “I don’t think I’ve seen you here before. But then I’ve only lived here for two months. Name’s Christopher Triton.”
She gulped on a suddenly dry mouth. There was a time when she would have flirted back shamelessly, but not anymore.
“Shy?” he said quietly. “That’s okay. I’m just beginning to know the ins and outs of Hyacinth. I’m sure my aunt and uncle can fill me in.” His tone was teasing but her throat closed up and panic struck her chest.
“Excuse me,” she gasped, grasping her stuff and running out of the café.
Courted By Trouble
Coming Dec 20th from Lazy Day
Pre-order now from Amazon
Stephanie Knight’s life wasn’t easy. Even brought up in Hyacinth, discipline had not been a part of her family growing up. After her mother’s death, she made many mistakes and after the worst, ended up almost homeless. Thanks to her best friend’s father, she had a safe place to live while she tried to get her life together. Fear of people’s reactions kept her away from Hyacinth, but when her best friends found her again, she could no longer deny her desire to truly live.
Christopher Triton moved to town and turned her life upside down. With the support of her friends, Steph slowly got her self-esteem back. When Christopher declared his intention to court her, she couldn’t imagine anything more wonderful. But things were never smooth sailing for Stephanie. Thankfully, with a strong man at her side, she was able to weather the tough spots. His discipline allowed her to let go of all past guilt and grasp onto her positive future. His love helped her feel as though she could do anything. Which meant the world when her strange past came to call.
About the series In Hyacinth:
Hyacinth, Washington is all about traditional values. In Hyacinth; its residents live their lives by discipline; there is a strong male head of house; and words like trust, honor, and kindness aren't just buzzwords. Each story in the series is of a young woman (18-20) and her struggle to figure out who she is in this little town while at the same time going through Hyacinth's old-fashioned courting system. On their way to meet, get to know, and finally marry their princes, these heroines grow in ways they and their town never expected.
Courted by Discipline
, Book One is available
Courted by Fall, Book Two is available
Check out some more great WIPs
Labels: bloghop, Chris, Courted by Trouble, In Hyacinth, loving discipline, Stephanie, Wip It Up