Title: The Wedding Dilemma
Author: Mariah Ankenman
Genre: Contemporary Romance, Romantic Comedy
My life has always been pretty predictable. Run into burning buildings, save those in distress, be a hero. Shoot the shit with my fireman buddies, come home, and do it all again tomorrow. Little did I know that a random SOS call from a woman stuck in a plaster cast with nothing underneath (I swear I only caught a flash of skin) would throw me for a complete loop. Until I see the flighty artist again. At my mom’s engagement party. To her dad. Suddenly the unpredictable woman I couldn’t stop thinking about is my soon-to-be-stepsister. Yeah, the same one I mortified when I accidentally saw her a tiny bit naked. This should make family gatherings way more interesting. Except when your mom’s as loaded as mine is, you can never fully let your guard down when a guy comes sniffing around. So I can’t help but be suspicious, even though his daughter’s the perfect blend of beautiful and wild. As we spend more time together, prepping for our parents’ wedding, we both agree that maybe there’s nothing wrong with having a little bit of fun in the meantime. But if she knew I was investigating her dad on the side, she would never forgive me…
He arched one brow, his lips curling once again in that wicked smile that threatened to set her panties on fire.
He took a step closer. “Been thinking about me lately, Tamsen?”
If he only knew. No. He shouldn’t know. And she had to stop thinking about them. They were going to be family soon. It was naughty. Wrong! She meant wrong, not naughty. Jeez, she really needed to get her hormones under control. Maybe she did need to find the time to sneak in a quick date or two. Or at least a few minutes with her battery-operated boyfriend.
He chuckled, low and deep.
Ooooh, she liked that chuckle. Too much. She wanted to wrap it up and take it home, pull it out in the dark of the night, and press it against her until the only thing she felt was Parker’s warm, rumbly voice caressing every inch of her body.
There went her artist brain again. Dreaming up improbable situations that defied the laws of physics.
Whatever. She barely passed physics anyway.
Parker stepped forward. Now mere inches separated them. She could see the dark stubble on his sharp jaw, the flecks of deep green in his golden eyes, the fullness of his bottom lip. Oh, how she wanted to grab a brush and paint that lip, and those eyes, and really everything on the man. Or maybe she should break out her clay and sculpt him. Naked.
Her heart started to pound a furious beat in her chest. Yeah. She’d bet Parker would put Michelangelo’s David to shame.
“Can I have your number?”
“Huh?” Her brain had short circuited. He was too close, too handsome, too...everything.
“For the party planning. We need to talk in order to plan the party, right? Though, if you want to hire a planner on the DL so we don’t have to deal with any of this nonsense, I’m all for it.”
She frowned. Warm fuzzies squashed by his comment. She knew Parker wasn’t as excited for their parents’ upcoming nuptials as she was, but could the guy show an ounce of excitement for his mother? Personally, she loved planning a festive get together. Seeing the smiles on the guests of honor’s faces when they saw all the hard work that went in to celebrating them.
“We promised we would plan it. I don’t think your mother would approve of you pushing it off onto someone else. Besides, it will make her happy.”
He sighed as if the party was a giant burden rather than a fun celebration.
“You’re right. Sorry, I’m not really a party-planning guy, but if it makes my mother smile, I’ll do it.”
Awwww, and the warm fuzzies were back. She supposed she should give the guy a break. He might just be having a hard time with his mom remarrying. She might be excited for her dad because her mom had been gone for so long, but she had no idea what Parker’s situation with his own father was like. This wedding thing might be harder on him than it was on her.
She held out her hand. “Give me your phone and I’ll put my number in.”
He pulled his cell from his pocket and unlocked it so she could put in her contact info. She handed it back and he started typing. A second later, her phone pinged with a text message notification.
“And now you have mine.” He smiled, slipping his phone back into his pocket. “It was great to see you again, Tamsen.”
He leaned closer, so close she could feel the heat of his breath on her cheek, smell the rich sandalwood scent of his aftershave. A shiver raced up her spine as his lips brushed her ear.
“Though I really wish it had been under less...familial circumstances.”
Just as her body screamed, to hell with it all, and threatened to jump his bones in the middle of their parents’ very crowded and fancy engagement party, he pulled back and gave her a wink.
“See you soon.”
Then he turned and headed across the room, allowing her to exhale the biggest breath of pent-up sexual energy in her life. Oh no. This was so bad. She could not have the hots for Parker. Well, she could, and she obviously did, but she couldn’t do anything about it.
No. Definitely not.
Ugh, this was so unfair! And now they had to spend time together planning a party for their parents. How? How was she going to keep her hands to herself around all that delicious temptation?
Her stomach pitched and dipped with the knowledge, fluttering with all kinds of naughty anticipation.
She was glad her father was happy, but right now, Tamsen wished he had picked anyone other than Victoria Kincaid to fall in love with.
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If you want laugh-out-loud, red hot steamy romance guaranteed to make you smile then The Wedding Dilemma is the book for you! Plus, super-hot firefighter hero, need I say more?
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Bestselling author Mariah Ankenman lives in the beautiful Rocky Mountains with her two rambunctious daughters and loving husband who provides ample inspiration for her heart-stopping heroes.
Mariah loves to lose herself in a world of words. Her favorite thing about writing is when she can make someone’s day a little brighter with one of her books. To learn more about Mariah and her books, follow her on social media or sign up for her newsletter.
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