#FirstKiss Friday, #ReadARegency, Christmas, Friends to Lovers, Historical Romance, Holiday, Regency Romance, Sherry Ewing
Welcome, my lovelies, to my First Kiss Friday blog. Today I’m hosting and giving you a glimpse from my Christmas novelette, A Mistletoe Kiss found in the Bluestocking Belles’ boxset Belles & Beaux that releases December 15th. Grab your copy now at the special preorder price of only $0.99!
I have to admit when I was asked to write such a short story, it pretty much freaked me out. How was I supposed to manage something under 10k words? I’m pretty windy when it comes to my stories but I somehow managed a lovely story featuring Miss Sophie Templeton who first appeared in her sister’s story, Under the Mistletoe. Although this excerpt isn’t a first kiss scene because I don’t want to spoil the ending, I hope you enjoy this scene. Happy reading and happy holidays!
She began playing again. One tune after another until she grew bored with the keyboard. What difference did it make how well she played if Spencer wasn’t in the room to hear her? As if she conjured the man up with her thoughts, the men returned to the parlor causing Sophie to lose her breath when Spencer came to stand by her chair.
“I am sorry to cut our evening short, but I must return home. In my eagerness to visit with your family, I completely forgot that I had agreed to dinner with my parents,” Spencer stated looking a bit embarrassed. “I’ll have some explaining to do.”
“Let me get your coat and hat. I’ll inform a lad to bring your horses out to the front.”
She left the room, delivered her message to one of the staff, and then went to a closet to retrieve Spencer, and Lord Charville’s things. Taking hold of Spencer’s jacket, she held the fabric up to her nose and inhaled while the heavenly smell of spice filled her senses. She heard footsteps coming closer to the foyer and didn’t want to be found out, so she quickly retrieved the other coat and their hats.
Spencer came into view, took Evan’s things and handed them to the man who returned to the parlor to say his farewells.
His hand brushed hers when he reached for his coat. “Will you walk me out, Sophie?”
Her heart would never be able to stand being this close to him, but she would take the chance she might survive their brief moment of privacy. She took her own redingote from the closet but before she could slip her hands in the sleeves, Spencer took the garment from her.
He went behind her to assist her with putting on the garment, his hands briefly resting on her shoulders caused her to tremble. He then went to open the door giving her the opportunity to bow out if she felt so inclined. Nothing could be farther from her thoughts.
The night was cold, and Sophie could see her breath in the air as she exhaled. The clip clop of horses was getting closer causing her to realize that he would be leaving her soon. Plus, Lord Charville would be exiting the house at any moment. She didn’t have much time!
He took her hand this time bringing it to his lips. “Ah… there it is…”
“What?” she asked in confusion.
“The sound of my given name passing your lips as though you are happy to be alone with me,” he answered tucking her hand in the crook of his elbow. He began walking toward the road. “I have waited years to hear such a sound, if I am being perfectly honest.”
“You have?” she gasped out.
“Yes, I have. It’s been torture waiting for you to grow up,” he said caressing her hand.
She halted their progress to the road not believing he was speaking the truth. “You’ve been waiting for me?”
“Yes.” A simple answer with so many possibilities.
“Why me?” Her eyes widened when she realized she had spoken the words aloud.
He took his hands to caress her cheeks. Leaning down, he stared into her eyes. “Because you were worth waiting for, my dear.”
She closed her eyes hoping for her first kiss. But she was to be disappointed when the front door opened, and they broke apart.
Belles’ & Beaus:
A Bluestocking Belles Collection
Release Date: December 15th
Preorder for only $0.99
Just in time for Christmas 2022 comes this boxed set of eight charming stories of love, family, and miracles. Each Belle has contributed a tale set in the festive season–one just long enough to fit in between tasks at this busy time of the year. The tales are unrelated, except by the festive season.
Some have been written for this collection, some are made-to-order stories never before published, some have been used as fan giveaways. All are delightful.
- A Mistletoe Kiss: Sherry Ewing
As Christmas approaches, Sophie Templeton’s one wish is a kiss beneath the mistletoe from the man who holds her heart. Spencer, Earl of Wilmott has been quietly waiting for Sophie to grow up. Has he left it too late to make his offer?
- The Magic Christmas Stew: Susana Ellis
The life of an idle spare was no life at all for retired Captain, Daniel Winthrop. He was capable of doing many things, but they all required a wealthy bride. Governess Emily Bainbridge feared being pursued for her fortune, so she kept hers a secret. Will this pair find the courage to conquer their pride and risk all for love?
- Flowers for His Lady: Alina K Field
After her fall from grace years ago, Eleanor Gurnwood has made a family of the villagers in her vicar-brother’s parish. His rising career means she must choose between continuing as his minion or staying with the village. Then her past rides in on a white horse in the form of Major Sir Bramwell Huxley.
- An Angel’s Promise: Rue Allyn
Artis MacKai might be only a little girl, but she is not going to let a blizzard, wolves, or a deadly enemy stop her from rescuing the stolen mare and foal who are the hope of her family. It will take the spirits of her parents, a determined boy, and her desperate brother to save her.
- Room at the Inn: Caroline Warfield
A fatherless child requires a village with room in their hearts. A hardhearted baroness makes it impossible. The Honorable Declan Alworth steps up to make room in his heart and his home for the little treasure. How can the vicar’s niece, Maera Willis, resist either one of them?
- Zara’s Locket: Jude Knight
After Zara MacLaren is dismissed from her post on Christmas Eve, things go from bad to worse. When a goldsmith recognises the locket he once made in the hands of a would-be seller, he sets out to find her. What seems bad fortune might just turn into a Christmas miracle.
- Three Ships: Elizabeth Ellen Carter
Laura Winter lives on a tidal island that is home to a lighthouse. On a late November day a violent storm brings not only the handsome Lieutenant Michael Renten but also a clutch of pirates bent on wreaking mischief.
- The Beau of Christmas Past: Cerise DeLand
Years ago, Alyssa and Declan were caught enjoying a Christmas kiss, which broke Alyssa’s betrothal to another man, and caused the pair to be exiled, far from their families and one another. Home for Christmas, will they find the past something to be overcome? Or fulfilled?