Title: Christmas Wedding Wishes
Author: Debra Elizabeth aka Debra L Martin
Genre: Contemporary Romance
After being left at the altar, Callie Spencer needed a fresh start. She accepted a position as the Children's Librarian in a small Vermont town. Single dad Tom Sullivan was too busy raising his 4-year-old daughter to look for love, but all that changed when he meets Callie. Can these two fragile souls find love and heal their broken hearts?
It seemed an eternity before the Thursday morning Story Time rolled around. Callie stood in the Children’s Room, waiting with bated breath to see if Tom Sullivan came with his daughter. She had thought of little else but seeing his handsome face again. This time, she wouldn’t be caught off guard and hoped to prolong their conversation. The easy relationship he had with his daughter endeared him even more to her. She had always loved children and couldn’t imagine herself marrying a man who didn’t love kids.
What on Earth am I thinking? I haven’t spoken ten words to the man and I’m already thinking about marrying him?
Slow down, girl. Start by having a conversation with him first.
“Miss Callie,” came a joyful cry.
Callie glanced over to the stairs and saw Tom and Sophia heading her way.
Now be cool.
Say something witty.
Don’t stand there like an idiot.
Sophia ran up and hugged her legs. “I missed you,” the little girl said.
She patted Sophia’s back and gave her a quick squeeze. “I missed you too. I’m so glad you’re here for Story Time.” When she lifted her eyes, Tom stood in front of her, a mere twelve inches away. His chiseled features and intense eyes captivated her. A lump formed in her throat and all she could get out of her mouth was, “Hi.”
His blue eyes seemed full of mischief, and he gave her a lopsided grin. “Hi, yourself.”
She struggled to think of something else to say, but her mind was a total blank. What was it about Tom that turned her into a quivering mess? A mess that wanted to beg him to kiss her—kiss her long and deep while she ran her hands through his hair. Now that would be a proper hello.
Come on, you can do this.
I’ll ask him out for coffee. Yes, that’s not too forward.
Callie opened her mouth to ask Tom out for coffee before her courage died, but it was at that moment that Head Librarian Mary walked into the Children’s Room.
“Oh, good. I see you two have met,” Mary said, standing next to Tom.
“Yes. We actually met on Tuesday,” Tom said.
Mary squeezed Tom’s arm and began pulling him away. “Can I steal you away for a few minutes? I need you to look at the latest drawings. I think there’s something off, but I can’t put my finger on it.”
“Sure, happy to take a look.”
Callie watched him walk away and sighed. Again, she’d shown herself to be an aficionado of words. ‘Hi,’ was all she had managed to utter. Yes, that tantalizing tidbit of conversation would certainly keep her in the forefront of his thoughts all day. She couldn’t imagine what he thought of her. What had happened to all those witty things she thought of on the way to work today? Somehow, thinking about what she wanted to say and actually saying it to Tom when he stood in front of her was not the same thing. Definitely not the same thing. That sexy smile, his rich baritone voice that strummed against her skin like a fine-tuned instrument, and a body that begged to be touched were too much for her to process while trying to be witty at the same time. Maybe if he wore a bag over his head, she’d remember her witty lines.
“Miss Callie,” came more little voices, interrupting her thoughts. Sophia was once again sitting directly in front of her.
I wonder where her mother is? Is Tom divorced, separated? Might be good to find out before I embarrass myself by asking him out.
“Are you all ready for Story Time?”
The children cheered and Callie dove into reading the first story. She was in her element and delighted the children with the different voices the story called for. As she read, she stole looks around the room, but Tom had not reappeared. With the story finished, she asked the children to take their seats at the table. There were orange construction paper pumpkins, crayons and stickers at each seat. She was totally engrossed with helping the children color their pumpkin faces when she felt someone behind her.
“Those look good.”
She turned around and found Tom behind her. She swallowed hard and was determined not to miss another opportunity to talk with him. “Hey there. Aren’t they doing a good job?”
Tom nodded. “May I talk with you a moment?”
Callie’s heart rate went into overdrive. She wondered if he could hear the pounding in her chest. “Sure.”
They moved over to the side of the room. Callie held her breath. Was he going to ask her out?
“So, I was wondering if you’d like to have lunch with me sometime,” Tom said.
Callie gave him her prettiest smile. “Really?”
“Yes, really. I’d like to get to know you better, but if you’d rather not, I understand. It occurs to me I never thought to ask you if you were involved with anyone.”
Callie nodded. “No.”
“No? Is that no, ‘I’m not involved with anyone’ or no, ‘I don’t want to have lunch with you?’”
Callie chuckled. “The former and I’d love to have lunch with you. Thank you.” She watched as Tom exhaled. Had he been holding his breath waiting for her answer?
“I wanted to ask you on Tuesday, but Sophia’s timing kind of spoiled that,” he said with a chuckle. “She’ll be with the sitter tomorrow, if that’s not being too pushy.”
“Not pushy at all. Lunch tomorrow will be great.”
“Of course,” Tom said, wearing his own smile. He hadn’t been able to stop thinking about Callie since he met her and was looking forward to having lunch with her. He wanted to know everything about the delicate beauty. Before he left the library, he made sure to get Callie’s phone number so he could text her the directions to the restaurant.
What I love most about the holiday season:
I love the anticipation of watching my family and friends open their gifts, but most especially, the joy on my granddaughter’s face!
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Runs July 1 – 31
Drawing will be held on August 1
Debra writes sweet romance in contemporary romance and historical romance. She enjoys telling stories and has been pouring out her passion for romance since her teenage years.
Debra lives in New England with her husband and one very exhausted kitty.
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