Publishing SHIFTER: Grizzly @ nook, kobo, PLAY & iBooks…

SHIFTER-BAR-emerald

Abe

 { Sexy Inspiration for ABE… }

My SHIFTER: Grizzly series has done well since the day I published PART 1. For over a year, I’ve left it up on Amazon and in the Kindle Unlimited program. I’ve decided to take it WIDE (a term that indie authors use) and that means readers on other distribution platforms will be able to buy and read.

Soon, the Grizzly series will be available at B&N nook, iBooks, kobo and PLAY starting in late April & late May! 😛

ABEintheWoods

 { More Sexy Inspiration for ABE… }

Be on the lookout!

~ Emerald 

A Teaser…

*  *  *

I, of course, arrived before he did. While waiting, I spotted a very attractive, rugged man who looked as if he’d be more at home in the mountains rather than a big, bookish, scholastic city like Boston.

I did a complete and utter double-take when he’d walked into the café and asked for me, by name. The hostess nodded politely in my direction and the smile on her face showed that she was as enamored by him as I was.

He was wearing a beaten, brown, leather jacket, a red and white flannel beneath it, a thin, white T-shirt beneath the flannel, jeans that hugged his package, front and back, just right and a pair of classic hiking boots. He was rugged, manly, and looked as if he’d just walked out of an Eddie Bauer catalog. Or something.

He wasn’t my typical type, but there was something about him… And it didn’t change the fact that he was a big, walking, sack of sexy-as-hell man-meat. Not that I should objectify my new temporary editor that way, mind you!

A few moments later, a complete stranger turned into an acquaintance, as he extended his hand in introduction and I found myself utterly mute in pleasant, but stupefied surprise.

I was so used to the nerdy, awkward, glasses-wearing, bespectacled editor type that the sexy, handsome, attractive meat-sack of muscles and scruffy rogue was about the last thing I’d ever imagined standing across from me.

“I’m Abe, good to meet you.” He said, his voice something like caramel and bacon all rolled together.

I blinked. I knew I had a name. What was it?

My mouth was suddenly dry and I reached desperately for my water. I took a quick sip and then sputtered out my name, half of it finding its way back out of my mouth and down my chin to dribble to my shirt.

“You okay there?” He said with a half-laugh, while sitting down.

I nodded and coughed a bit. It was such a Woody Allen moment that I didn’t know I was capable of ever reproducing. The world was on slow-mo and I was at the center of it. Embarrassingly so.

“You find the cafe okay?” I asked, desperate to get our conversation on track.

“Yes, it’s a good spot. I’ve been here a few times.”

“That it is, glad to hear you think so. Hope you’re hungry, my treat. I’m famished. I sorta forget to eat and sleep properly when I get in this type of writing zone.”

He seemed amused by me, the crinkle around his eyes was especially charming. It was right then that I could look at him long enough to fully absorb his facial features.

Warm brown eyes, rosy lips, apple cheeks, some day-old stubble, curly brown hair the color of chocolate, and a jawline that could cut a diamond, if needed. It all tapered down to a handsome Adam’s apple, and ended on a broad pair of sturdy, well-muscled shoulders.

The rest of him promised a lean, toned, muscular frame that seemed as rugged as the great outdoors. The cleft of his chest, at the nape of his throat was what did me in. His skin promised tantalizing sensual delight for my fingers…

Out of nowhere, our server appeared, her pen and order-pad ready and poised to scribble. “What’ll it be, Cass?”

I hadn’t really thought about it yet, too gob-smacked by Mr. Handsome to have looked over the menu. Not that I needed it. I knew it by heart.

“Let’s go with the usual, number three today,” I said.

“Pancakes, real maple syrup, bacon and hash-browns?”

“That’d be the one. Coffee and OJ too. Thank you,” I said, handing her the menu I really hadn’t needed.

We both looked at Abe at the same time to find that his keen gaze was on me. “What she’s having. Down to the OJ. Sounds good.”

Something about that delighted me. It seemed flattering but I didn’t know why.

Then I blurted out, “Oh, keep the bacon floppy please. I always forget to ask.” Simultaneously, Abe did the same thing and our server now had the most wicked, amused look on her face, peering back and forth at us.

“Alrighty then, floppy bacon for the both of you,” she said, winked and then strode away.

We looked at each other, a silly grin on my face and a goofy smile on his.

“Really?” I asked.

“Yes, really. I hate crisp bacon.”

“Me too! I thought I was the only one in the world?”

“Apparently not,” he answered, a wicked twinkle in his eye.

Oh good god, my panties.

I gathered up my wits and sensibilities. I had to get down to business or risk never being taken seriously by this beast – er, man, again!

“So, how long have you been editing?” I asked, desperate to get the conversation back on track, bacon-ordering shenanigans aside.

“Almost ten years now.”

“Nice, that’s reputable.”

“I like to think so. Although, I must admit, finding new clients in the area will prove a bit challenging. They’re a loyal bunch, in this town.”

“It’s true, we’re not fickle. Finding a good editor is like finding the love of your life. You hope it turns into an LTR.”

He grinned at that comment, a private understanding between us and then averted his gaze to look out the window, to the passerbys outside.

I continued, “I write in a genre that I’ve done very well in, but I need a break from it. So, I’m going to take some time and pursue a more literary endeavor for now.”

I paused, not wanting to reveal what I was planning to do. Talking about the Great American Novel was one of those things that you just didn’t discuss out loud. You pursued it vigilantly and quietly, under the radar until you could reemerge in the real world with your completed masterpiece ready and available for consumption.

“Did you have a chance to look it over yet?” I asked.

His gaze had returned back to me. “Yes, I think we’ll be able to work together.”

I let out a sigh of relief, unconscious that I’d even been holding one in. “Oh good. I’m glad for that. I am.”

He reached down to his aged leather bag and pulled out a super-slim MacBook. As he opened it, clicking and typing a bit, I watched his large, elegant hands that were masculine, gruff and utilitarian. Almost like he was a carpenter or had some sort of hobby that involved craftsmanship and his hands.

“Do you work with wood?” My question escaped me, coming out a bit blunt.

His eyebrows arched high and he grinned bigger this time, “Yes, I do. How’d ya know?”

“Your hands,” I said, nodding in his direction, “They look like hands that know the woodcraft.”

“You can tell that from looking at my hands?” he asked, seeming genuinely amazed at my astute observation.

“Yeah, I was raised around my grandfather who was a carpenter. He always took really good care of his hands but you could always see the work beneath their luster, so to speak.”

“That’s impressive. Nowadays, most people wouldn’t have a clue…”

I nodded, instantly pulled back to the good memory of my grandfather in his suspender overalls, working and whittling away on something in his woodshop, what he preferred to call his workspace.

“Thank you, you’re probably right.”

He nodded in earnest and then glanced at his laptop. “I started reading it on the way over, while on the bus. It has good bones. You’re pretty funny. I like that.”

Thank the gods! He thinks I’m funny. I’ll take it!

“Yeah? Good. Any other thoughts?” I asked.

“Well, my first impressions are favorable. I think I see what and why you’re making the switch. I’m not done reading but when I do, I’ll share my thoughts in more detail. I’d already started red-lining a few spots…”

He passed his MacBook over to me and sure enough, he was already editing my story. Impressive! I didn’t want to dive into the edits right then, respectful of his part in the process. Just like a writer needs to be allowed to get the words out, the editor needs to be able to scrutinize and critique without the writer looking anxiously over their shoulder.

“Wow, you are a go-getter, Abe. Looks good…” I said, passing the laptop back to him, an approving smile on my face.

“So, when do you need this done by?” He asked.

“As soon as you are able to, without forfeiting quality. I’ll gladly pay double,” I answered.

“No need, I can have it to you within a day. Tomorrow morning, will that work?”

“Yes, absolutely. You’re a godsend.”

“What’s the rush for, if I may ask?”

“Well, my agent. They’ve already seen the final version but it hasn’t been submitted to go to press yet. I want to get this into his hands, completed so I can pitch a switch-out without encouraging his wrath.”

“Smart. Well, I’m glad to be of service. I appreciate the opportunity and your trust in me.”

“Trust?” I asked.

“Ya know, we’ve never worked together. Being a referral,” he explained.

“Ah. Yes, of course. Well, I trust Charlene very much. If she recommends you, I know I’m in good hands.”

Another warm smile flourished on his face, “You like hands, don’t you?”

I flushed, squirming a bit and just then, one of my long curls broke free from the messy bun I’d piled my hair into that morning and dangled right in my face. Before I could push it back, he reached across the table and brushed it back and behind my ear.

Time stopped. It was such a sweet and innocent-enough gesture, but so full of potential caresses. His fingertips grazed the tip of my ear and it took everything in me to not visibly shudder in pleasure. My ears are one of my most heightened erogenous spots on my body. Something I kept a secret.

“There,” was all he said.

Then our food arrived, reminding me that I was starving. Eager to have the distraction, I dove in and shoved a few mouthfuls in. Not very ladylike, but at the moment, hunger prioritized over attraction.

“When was your last meal?” He asked, laughing in amusement.

“I don’t even remember. Truth.”

“You really do get in the writer’s zone. Good thing you’re not diabetic,” he quipped, then took his first bite.

“I know, right? If I don’t stop my crazy ways, I will be. I keep meaning to hire a part-time housekeeper slash cook. More to babysit my adult ass than to do the housecleaning. It’s sad really. Pathetic.”

Chewing, he nodded and once again, I saw that twinkle in his eye that somehow told me he approved. “Well, I appreciate a hearty appetite. Too many women these days deny themselves the pleasure of food.”

“Agreed, I’m not shy about food, at all.”

“More power to you. Serious.”

We fell into an easy silence, each of us eating and chewing. Somehow, whatever nervousness I’d had initially, started to dissipate. All sorts of crazy, romantic notions were still flying through my thoughts, of course, but we were now more relaxed around one another. I’d never met a man who was so easy to read and converse with. He seemed so straight-forward and upfront. All man, but with a warm, genuine demeanor. A gentleman. A sexy, rugged, flannel-wearing, gentleman.

He reminded me of one of my male-shifter characters, actually. Charming, a bit gruff but still polished. Confident in himself. A lady-killer, but not a bragger. Part cowboy.

While romanticizing my newfound editor, I found myself wondering who was currently warming his bed. The thought instantly made my knickers even damper.

Oh to be that lucky woman!

An hour later, our breakfast eaten and paid for, he’d politely excused himself after a firm handshake, promising to have the edited version for me to review. To my delight, we’d agreed to meet up again at the café the next day.

Walking back to my place, eager to collapse into the warm, inviting womb of my bed, I was tingly with his lingering effect.

Had I found an editor? Or my future husband?

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