Wish I Might Bonus Epilogue

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“Great! I’ll get to work on the graphics for the social media campaign and have all that loaded into the portal by end of week.” Cecily scribbled a note in her planner so she wouldn’t forget.

Across her desk, Parker Addison extended a hand. “I can’t thank you enough for this. You’re putting Park Place on the map.”

Cecily shook her hand and winked. “You’re doing that all on your own. But considering my buying habits in your store, I wouldn’t turn down a friends and family discount.”

“You’ve got one for life. I need to get back to the shop.”

“Go ahead. I’ve got this covered. It was good to see you, Parker!”

As the other woman made her way out of the Whistlestop Marketing office, Cecily leaned back in her chair with a satisfied sigh.

“Another happy client?”

She glanced up to find her assistant, Aisha Hicks sticking her head around the doorway. Her neat rows of braids—in a fabulous shade of purple—were pulled back into a tail at her nape.

“Seems like. I’m putting together a template for you to fill out with their social media posts for the next six weeks. Should have it ready by the time you get back from lunch.”

“You got it. If you don’t need anything else, I’m about to head out.”

Aisha hesitated in the doorway. “Lunch might run a little long. Is that okay?”

“Girl, with everything you’ve been doing for me lately, you’ve more than earned it. Go forth and get a manicure or something.”

The younger woman grinned. “I’ll see you after.”

Glancing at the clock, Cecily decided to take the extra long stretch of quiet to catch up on some paperwork. There was nothing like clearing the decks. But five minutes later, the bell over the door jangled.

So much for paperwork.

Putting on her best client smile, she stepped out of her office to greet the newcomer, only to find her husband in the lobby. Her heart immediately fluttered at the sight of him. It never got old, that rush of excitement and love every time she saw him.

“I thought I’d find you here.” He lifted a bag. “I brought you lunch.”

“That was thoughtful of you.” She crossed the room to brush her lips to his. “Though I’m taking dessert first.”

His hazel eyes darkened, and she realized her mistake as he reached out to throw the lock on the door and flipped the sign to closed. “I do like the way you think.”

Despite the instant surge of, oh yes, please, she backed up a step. “Reed, this is my office.”

“It is.” He prowled forward. “And I have it on good authority that Aisha’s actually on a date with Mama Pearl’s great niece or cousin or… I forget how they’re related. But she’s on a date, so she won’t be back anytime soon.”

“Oh, does she now?” That explained the hesitation and warning she might be late.

“Mmhmm. I’ve left the bookstore in Brenda’s capable hands, so all indicators are that we can take our time and I can finally indulge in the fantasy I’ve had about you and that desk, Mrs. Campbell.”

They were already in the doorway to her office when he caught her, his hands curling around her hips. Blindly, she slapped at the switch that would turn the glass walls encasing her office opaque, thinking they’d been the best investment ever as her husband shut and locked the door and kept backing her toward the desk. Only when the pens rattled in their mug did he pause.

“Is there anything you need to save and close before we get started? For safety’s sake?”

A lesson they’d learned the hard way on more than one occasion when she’d brought work home.

“Good call.” She tapped a few keys and set her keyboard and mouse safely out of the way. “Now, Mr. Campbell, you can have your wicked way with me.”

He lifted her onto the desk, running his hands everywhere. “You know how much I love these Peggy Carter suits.”

Yeah, she did. So she’d bought half a dozen.

He’d stripped off her jacket and had her blouse halfway off when the phone rang. From his position between her breasts, he muttered, “Leave it.”

More than in agreement, Cecily made an inarticulate noise and tightened her fingers in his hair.

When the answering machine clicked on, her aunt’s voice spilled out of the speaker. “Cecily, honey, I have a problem.”

Even through the haze of lust, she could hear the upset and panic. Dinah McClure was never upset and panicked.

Struggling for a clear head, she pushed Reed back an inch and flailed for the phone. “Put a pin in that for just a minute.”

Her fingers closed over the receiver, and she lifted. “Aunt D? Are you there?”

“Cecily. You sound out of breath. Did I interrupt a client meeting?”

“No. What’s going on? Are you okay?”

“I am decidedly not okay. I have the worst case of writer’s block I’ve ever had in my entire career.”

Sagging with relief that this wasn’t a life and limb sort of emergency, Cecily blew out a breath. “But you don’t get writer’s block.”

“Exactly. I don’t know why I thought it was a good idea to switch over to romantic suspense when I’ve never written it before.”

Reed, evidently picking up on the lack of actual emergency, resumed his nibbling path from her breasts up her throat, which did absolutely nothing for Cecily’s ability to focus on the conversation.

“You… you wanted a new challenge because you were bored. You were really excited about it when your publisher went for the pitch.”

“That was before. I’m having a hard time making my plot line up with reality.”

“Aren’t you the one who’s always saying that you should aim for plausible, not realistic?”

“Yes, but the burden feels higher with this audience because a lot of them are going to know how things in this arena are supposed to actually work.”

As Reed gently bit her nipple through her bra, Cecily bit back a moan and a curse. “You need a professional consultant. It happens I know at least two here in Wishful, and I’ve got family ties to lean on for one.”

“You’d do that for me?”

“Of course, I would. Even if I didn’t owe you. Which I do. Why don’t you plan a trip down to visit? A change of scenery will do you good. That always gets you unstuck.”

“That sounds fabulous.”

Reed’s clever fingers dispensed with the clasp of her bra and drew it off, eyes dark with intent.

“Great. I’m kind of… in the middle of something. Why don’t you text me your availability and we’ll work out the details.”

“that sounds perfect. I’ll do that. Love you, sweet girl.” She paused, and Cecily would’ve sworn she heard a smile in her voice. “And tell Reed I say hi and sorry for the interruption.” With a snicker, Dinah hung up.

Dropping the phone back into the cradle, she dove both hands into her husband’s hair. “She totally knew you were there.”

He lifted his head. “Does this look like the face of a man who cares?”

She grinned at him. “No, it looks like the face of the man I love, who’s about to give me multiple orgasms for lunch.”

“Damned straight. Now, where were we?”

* * *

Cecily’s being sneaky. So am I. Read about the surprise pairing between Dinah McClure and former police chief Robert Curry in Who I Am with You, part of my Wishful Moments series of novelettes.

After thirty-five years being married to the badge, former police chief Robert Curry has more than earned his retirement. Time to kick back, relax… and be bored out of his mind. At least until he gets dragged to a dinner party he won’t soon forget.

Veteran romance writer Dinah McClure has dealt with short deadlines, grumpy editors, and two ex-husbands—but she’s never faced writer’s block before. Her niece brings together three former and current police chiefs to help tackle the problem, but it’s one silver fox who captures her attention.

As Dinah and Robert work together to unravel the tangle of her latest project, their collaboration kindles a plot twist she didn’t expect—an undeniable chemistry that makes her jaded heart yearn. Is she willing to take a chance on love off the page, or will their connection fizzle the moment she writes “The End”?

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