Melaniece is looking forward to spending a nice quiet holiday at her vacation home up in the mountains. Expecting to enjoy ripping open gifts with her family, she’s surprised when they spring the ultimate present on her: Michael Bannon. Could his unexpected appearance have anything to do with the strange vampire dreams she’s been having lately?
Michael is determined not to blow a second chance with the woman he should have loved years ago, even if it means revealing his true nature. Is a good guy willing to be very bad to get what he wants? Absolutely and forever.
Note for Readers: You must be over eighteen to read this excerpt.
With dinner done and dishes cleared, Denise and Melvin decorated the seven-and-a-half-foot real pine Christmas tree they’d picked up in town earlier. An overstuffed Melaniece slid onto the floor in front of the fireplace and watched them at play. Her fingers sank into the thick pile of the sheepskin rug as she lay on her back and moaned with a lopsided smile plastered on her face. Dinner had been fabulous. Denise had made Shrimp Creole with Dirty Rice and Melvin had whipped up a peach cobbler made with homemade butter crust. Oh god, she was so full, all she could do was lie there, soak in the warmth of the fire and hope she didn’t explode. But hell, if she did blow up she’d die fat and happy. Heh!When the doorbell sounded, she didn’t move from her warm spot on the floor. Besides, she had a good idea who it was and secretly wished the cockeyed nosy neighbor would just leave her customary Christmas cookies on the porch and leave.
“Get that, will you Denny?” Melaniece drawled sleepily, eyes half-closed. The soft footfalls of her daughter’s bare feet, the quiet click of the deadbolt and easy swish of the front door opening reached her ears. She waited to hear Denise’s “thank you for the gift, Mrs. Orley”. A few moments passed but the neighbor wasn’t calling out her customary holiday greeting, nor was Denise giving her usual Merry Christmas to whoever was at the door.
She definitely knew something was going on when the little hairs on the back of her neck joined her stomach in an out-of-the-blue spastic butterfly dance. Melaniece cracked open one eye and looked toward the door.
Two large suitcases sat in the middle of her now snow-covered foyer floor and Denise, who was doing a fabulous job of completely ignoring her, thus avoiding her stare of doom, helped a bundled, but familiar-looking, form out of a thick parka.
Melaniece glanced over at her son and froze. If the boy wanted her to believe nothing was out of the ordinary, his ear-splitting grin pretty much gave him away. But whatever it was, he wasn’t telling.
She watched layers of clothing fall away from the person. A jacket, sweater, snow pants and boots had been hiding a wide, solid-looking back, thick muscular thighs and an ass that couldn’t possibly belong to a mere mortal. Successfully swallowing the lump growing in her throat, Melaniece sat up, both mouth and eyes wide. Oh lord, had the kids ordered her a stripper? Woo, what a hunk!
Said hunk turned to face her and snatched a knit cap off his disheveled head to reveal tastefully cut auburn hair, startling green eyes and sinfully full lips.
“Holy. Shit,” Melaniece whispered.
Michael Bannon walked into her living room, eyeing her like the cat who’d swallowed the canary…or in this case, the partridge in the pear tree.