Meet My Imaginary Friends: Dr. Grace Winter
Grace Winter grew up in Marienstadt with her sisters, Mandy and Abby, but she was both smart and ambitious. She became a pediatrician and worked for years in Baltimore before finally returning home. One afternoon Mandy persuades Grace to have a cocktail with her at the newly renovated Wilde Tavern. That is where Grace meets the new owner, handsome, sexy Boone Wilde, a former biker and bad boy, who has also returned to take over his father's business and raise the twelve year old daughter he never knew he had. Boone might be a bad boy but to Grace he looks awfully good! In this excerpt from The Christmas Daughter, Grace takes a chance and stops at the tavern just as Boone is about to close.
Boone drew two drafts and came around the bar to sit beside her.
“I heard you had a good time at the Bavarian Harvest Festival," Grace said. "Mandy said she saw you and Charity with your mother and sister at the Potato Pancake Picnic. She said Charity looked like she was having a great time.”
“Yeah. She's such a little sweetheart. I think things are getting better. She could be doing a little better in school but she seems happy. She's really good at helping Mom around the house. She still has her little blue spells, but not as often.”
“When she gets blue, can you talk with her about it?” She lifted her beer mug and took a sip. She wore a short black skirt and black stockings. When she crossed her legs he felt light-headed.
“She's opening up more and more. I hoped after that awful incident with Morris Vickery—if she knew he was in prison, she'd feel better and I think she does but the last few weeks she's been mad at her mother. She thinks about how her mother treated her and it makes her awfully sad.”
Grace nodded. “That's really common. It's a sad thing because children have such an attachment to the concept of mother even when the actual mother wasn't very good.”
“She tells me she's happy and, compared to what she had before, I suppose she is.” He sighed. “The thing is I want more for her than to just be content. When I told her how glad I was that she'd been born, and that she was part of my life, she said she was trying to believe me. I hope she's not so wounded that she'll never feel she deserves to be loved.”
Grace reached out and touched his face softly. “I don't think I've ever met a man like you,” she said. “I can't believe how caring you are.”
She leaned forward and kissed him slowly. He put an arm around her waist and lifted her off the bar stool and into his lap, kissing her deeply. He wanted to tell her that she was the most beautiful woman he'd ever known, but he couldn't seem to stop kissing her long enough to say it. He cupped his hand over the silky stocking covering her thigh and caressed her slowly.
She pulled back slightly, her mouth just far enough away from his so she could speak. “Do you want to make love with me?” she said. “Because I certainly want to make love with you.”
“Oh God,” he said, “of course, I do.” He pulled her in tight against his chest. “Right here?”
Her eyes flickered over his and she said, “Is it possible to make love on a pool table?”
He grinned. “I put that sucker together myself. It better be.”
“I've never made love on a pool table.”
He slid one hand around her back and the other under her legs, scooping her up into his arms. “I can fix that,” he said.