And, yet another The Wild Rose Press author joins me today for Friday Funny. Please welcome Nancy Jardine. The excerpt she sent for Take Me Now is both cute and has the chemistry buzzing between her two main characters. What a treat! Enjoy:
Aela Cameron goes to the Scottish island of Lanera, to interview for a temporary job with Nairn Malcolm. In plaster casts, after a mysterious accident, Nairn now needs a pilot and an office manager. Unfortunately, the travesty of an interview is only three days after the accident; he’s still concussed and collapses. Aela puts Nairn to bed, with help from his father, Ruaridh. Checking him during the night has its moments.
The following morning…
“I do initial consultations for the expensive yachts and vessels we produce, at venues of the client’s choice, hence the need to travel so much. Ruaridh handles other negotiations here on Lanera.”
“Okay, got Gale Breakers.” Aela’s mumble came after Nairn rattled off the last details on Gale Breakers.
Another of Nairn’s companies used worldwide locations for providing extreme sporting experiences—water based ones like white water rafting, river tubing, canyoning and different kinds of bungee jumping.
“Adrenalinn Adventuring?” she asked, remembering the name from her initial searches.
Nairn nodded. An attempt to steeple his fingers failed and mild curses ensued when his arm cast slipped off the edge of the desk. His grumpy moans about his ineptitude made her smile. It was gratifying to know the guy could laugh at himself, and loosen up a bit, though Nairn Malcolm laughing at himself was just too unsettling.
“I’m impressed, Miss Cameron. How did you know that?”
Her answer was nonchalant. “A little internet research before coming to Lanera yesterday. Your companies have nice names, and sell exciting merchandise.”
Nairn’s tight smile acknowledged his appreciation of her compliment as she continued to jot.
“Adrenalinn Adventuring also provide land based experiences like tank driving, dirt buggies, quad biking, sphereing, bogshoeing,” he rattled on.
“Whoa! Whoa! Hold on a minute.” The peremptory, pleading tone she used stemmed his flow. She’d devised her own system for note taking, but his lecture was stretching it to the absolute limit. Smiling up at him, an apologetic grin broke free. “Got my notes in a tangle. Can you backtrack, please?”
“Do you always take such thorough notes, Miss Cameron?”
Aela looked to see if he was teasing; his infinitesimal change of tone implied it as he made proper eye contact with her. How disconcerting! There was just something there he wasn’t quite masking. A flush of arousal rippled through her that she squashed, again. It took a moment to rally her thoughts enough to answer him.
“Initially, till I’ve got the basics,” she said, changing her pencil during the lull. “Okay, so those last pursuits? Did you say sphereing?
“Rolling down a hill in a large plastic ball like a hamster,” Nairn drolly supplied. A hint of a smile broke free, a marginal twinkle in both of his eyes.
Oh my! Aela’s stomach flipped again. The man was definitely thawing. Why did his almost-smile have to be so appealing? She remembered the feel of those lips against her own and wished she hadn’t for she wanted reruns, and more reruns. But that wasn’t going to happen again. In a contrary way she didn’t want him to be anything other than a detached employer. Temporary job, that was all. She determined to keep her tone light and airy. “Yeah! I know that as zorbing. Tried it in New Zealand. Fantastic fun.”
“I expect you had lots of experiences on this world trip of yours, Miss Cameron.”
Nairn’s low husky tones rippled down her backbone: far too delicious.
“Oh, I did, sir.” She decided she wasn’t rising to his cryptic bait, sexual or otherwise. Her clarification sounded prim, even to her own ears. “On my trip I experienced things I wouldn’t have done at home, all equally exciting. But I’ve never heard of, or tried bogshoeing.”
Nairn Malcolm’s looking for the impossible. He needs a highly skilled, enterprising aide who’ll be at his beck and call 24/7. No ordinary Jane Doe will do. He doesn’t expect the only candidate who drops in at his Scottish castle for an interview to be so competent…or so stunning.
Aela Cameron’s got exactly the right mix of talents to satisfy all Nairn Malcolm’s needs, and more. She loves the jobs he needs done, adores his castle, and finds his frenetic lifestyle energising. But she’s only looking for temporary: not to fall in love with the man.
Can Nairn convince Aela she’s tailor-made for him in every way…and not a passing fancy?