ReBlog: #TBT “The Meet”

#TBT “The Meet”

TBT banner

In honor of Throwback Thursday, we go back to In the Best Interest of the Childand the day Olivia Chandler and Bruce Bellamy meet.

~~~

“Turn right in 1500 feet. Your destination will be on the left. 18569 Kilmer Lane.” Olivia was glad she had keyed the Bellamy’s address into her GPS system since fatigue from a rather busy and emotional morning had overtaken Rena right after Olivia entered the freeway. Several times during the forty-five-minute drive the sleeping child cried out. Olivia didn’t know if pain or fear were the cause, but it made her uneasy, regardless.

Four months ago, Rena was living a normal life, no doubt trying to talk her parents into a cellphone and a Facebook account. Now her mother was gone, she had no idea how her father was, and she had pain every day to remind her of those things. Olivia wondered if she’d had any time to mourn. Did anyone hold her and let her cry? Was she allowed to at least express how much she missed her mom?.

It wasn’t lost on Olivia that the two times Rena had mentioned her mom that morning, both were of her death. There were no memories of bedtime stories, birthday parties or preparing meals together. Her injuries kept her from attending Irene Averest’s funeral. Olivia doubted anyone even gave her an obituary from the service.

Olivia made more mental notes of things to look into about Rena’s case when she saw 18569 up ahead. She slowed in front of the brick colonial home and put the car in park, not believing what she was seeing. And the hits just keep on coming. The home so resembled her own, she would bet the same firm designed them. She remembered all the trips to the architect’s office while their home was being built. In her mind, she saw Curious George books and a set of The Bible Story Books. A gumball machine? In the corner? She was sure there had been one.

Olivia snapped out her memories when she saw movement at the side of the house. Making sure Rena was still sleeping, she exited her vehicle, following the sidewalk to the driveway where a flatbed tow truck came into view. A large, burly, dark-haired man was winching a late model Mercedes up onto the flatbed. Nearby, a far shorter man stood with his arms folded across his broad chest, obviously not happy.

As she got closer, Olivia believed the shorter man to be near her age, even though a head full of curly black hair gave him a more youthful appearance. Olivia smiled as she passed the tow truck driver, noticing how his eyes lingered on her hips. The shorter man didn’t seem to notice her until she was right in front of him, and he started as though coming out of a trance. “Hello. Can I help you?” Olivia widened her smile.

“Hello. I’m looking for the Bellamy residence.” He regarded her warily.

“I’m Courtney Bellamy. What can I do for you?” She stuck out her right hand.

“Mr. Bellamy, I’m Olivia Chandler, Rena’s court-appointed attorney. It’s nice to meet you.” Courtney Bellamy visibly relaxed.

“Nice to meet you, Ms. Chandler. My wife, Marissa, mentioned you were meeting with Rena today. We can chat shortly, I just have to see when this guy will have my car up and running.” He spoke the last part of the sentence in a raised voice, making sure the tow truck driver heard him.

The driver pulled a face in his direction.

“C’mon, Court! I don’t even know what’s wrong with it. How can I tell you when it will be fixed?”

“There is way too much going on in this family for us to depend on one car, Bruce. There will be whining, tears and harsh words… and my wife will be upset too!”

Olivia and Bruce both laughed out loud at Courtney’s snarky comment.

“Let me get it back to the shop and find the problem. If it’s not a quick fix, I have a loaner vehicle you can use until yours is ready. Deal?” Courtney pumped his fist in the air.

“This is why you’re my favorite mechanic! I love you, man!” Bruce guffawed.

“No. I’m your favorite mechanic because I’m your cousin and give you family discounts!”

“Well, there’s that too,” Courtney quipped.

Reaching for the side door entrance, Courtney Bellamy addressed Olivia.

“Forgive me, Ms. Chandler. Would you like to have a seat inside while I wrap this up?”

“Please, it’s Olivia. And actually, I have a sleeping Rena in my car out front.”

“Oh! I thought the medical shuttle was bringing her home. And call me Courtney.”

“That was the initial plan, but she was getting tired, and I didn’t want her to have to sit and wait not knowing how long the shuttle would take to get to her. Bringing her myself was easier.”

“How kind of you. Let me grab her chair, and I’ll meet you out front.”

“Sounds good.” Olivia turned and started back down the driveway.” Courtney threw one last taunt at his cousin.

“Bruce, if you put one scratch on my baby, I’m calling your mother!”

“And if you call my mother, I will call YOUR mother and tell her who really broke the garage window when we were kids.”

Courtney gasped.

“You wouldn’t dare!”

“Stay away from my mother, and I’ll stay away from yours.” He caught Olivia’s eye as she passed and winked. She laughed at the easy banter of the cousins, and just for a second wondered what it was like to have someone in your life who had known you all of your life.

Hearing her name being called just as she reached the sidewalk, Olivia turned to see Bruce jogging towards her. He stopped, only after he had more than invaded her personal space. He was taller than she first thought. Her three-inch heels put her at an even five foot, ten inches, and she still had to take a step back and raise her head to see his face. His light brown eyes had an amused glint to match the devilish smirk on his clean-shaven face. His collar-length dark brown hair was curly, though not as much as Courtney’s, and had the beginnings of grey at the temples much like her own.

“Forgive me if I’m being forward, Ms. Chandler, but I wanted to give you my business card. I own Bellamy’s over on Mason. If you ever need anything… um, for your car… call me. She reached for the card. “Anything… at all.”

The man was shameless. Olivia couldn’t help but grin.

“Call me Olivia and thank you. That’s nice of you.” Glancing at the card in her hand, a realization dawned on her. “Wait. You’re that Bellamy? Bellamy Motorsports of “We have twelve locations to serve you in Hennepin and Olmstead counties?”

His face turned on the most amazing shade of red.

“Guess you’ve seen our commercials, huh?”

She laughed as she backed towards her car.

“Yes. A time or two… or twelve. The commercials never mentioned you were so… hands on.” His eyes widened, but she pointed at the tow truck and continued before he could respond. “The boss answering service calls?”

He slid his hands into his back pockets and cocked his head to the side.

“Okay, you got me. But Court won’t let anyone else touch his Precious. I was with him the day he bought her, but I’m not sure who owns whom? Marissa always teases him by telling him she’s leaving and he can have the house, but she’s taking the kid and the car. He nearly has a heart attack.”

She reached her car and noticed Rena was still sleeping. There was no sign of Courtney at the front door yet. She heard movement behind her and noticed Bruce had taken two steps in her direction.

“I didn’t see a ring. Are you married?”

“No.”

“Involved?”

“No.”

“Do you want to be?” Olivia tried without success not to laugh.

“You’re not the shy type, are you Bruce?”

“Nope. But I’m not this forward either.” Suddenly serious, he continued. “It’s just not every day I meet a woman I’m so drawn to… this is the first time it’s ever happened.” The sincerity in his voice caused her pulse to race.

“I’m flattered, Bruce.” He started to say something else, but a sudden noise drew their attention to the front door as Courtney backed the wheelchair down the one step entrance, then turned and headed towards Olivia’s car.

“Olivia?”

She glanced in Bruce’s direction, but looked away, unable to hold his intense gaze. “Olivia?”

Taking a deep breath, she met his gaze.

“Call me.”

She smiled and gave him a single nod. His attention made her feel light-headed, but she knew she’d never call him. She couldn’t. He seemed like the type of man who wanted all or nothing… and nothing was all she had.

Courtney brought the wheelchair to a stop in front of her. “Cinderella’s carriage has arrived. Shall we wake her?”

Olivia moved to the car door as she unlocked it with the remote. She reached in to unfasten Rena’s seat-belt but caught the banter between the cousins.

“Bruce, go fix my car.”

“Shut it, Court!”

“I’m nominating your house for Thanksgiving dinner this year!”

“And I’ll nominate yours for Christmas dinner! And I’ll insist great-aunt Mae bring her dogs… all four of them!”

“You’re an evil man, Bellamy.”

“We share DNA, Bellamy.”

If Olivia didn’t know they were grown men, she would have sworn they were seventh graders. Rena stirred and looked around, confused.

“Hey, angel. You’re home.” Still disoriented, Rena tried to sit upright. She cried out in obvious pain and gripped Olivia’s arm. “It’s okay, angel! It’s okay, I got you! Just breathe through it. C’mon, now. Breathe.” Olivia took her own advice and took two deep breaths to calm herself. She couldn’t comfort the child if she needed comfort herself.

“Olivia?” She looked back at Courtney. “She’s as light as a feather, but that cast adds weight. Step back and I’ll transfer her to the chair.” Rena still held Olivia’s arm, but her grip was loosening.

“You okay, angel? Mr. Bellamy wants to transfer you to the chair. You’ll feel better once you can stretch out in your bed, okay?” Rena nodded, and Olivia stepped back out of the way to give Courtney room to transfer her to the chair. She could feel Bruce’s eyes on her but refused to look at him. Her face grew hot, and she felt awkward and out of place. Her resolve was weakening, and she was about to look in his direction when a green minivan pulled up behind her car.

Bruce clapped his hands together.

“Oh yeah! The fun is really about to start.”

Olivia could tell he was enjoying the moment and glanced back to the minivan not knowing what to expect. A plump woman exited the van and rushed towards them. She was short – maybe five-feet in height – and African-American with a mass of hair worn in a long, natural, wavy style. Though plump, her hourglass shape was more than obvious. She wore little makeup, and she didn’t need too. Her full lips and smooth brown skin were enhanced by large expressive eyes that right now were filled with worry.

“What happened? Is everything all right?” Just as she reached Olivia’s car, Courtney raised Rena into his arms, pivoted, and placed her into the wheelchair. The woman glanced from face to face waiting for an answer. She threw a quick wave in Bruce’s direction, and he returned it.

Olivia smiled at her while Courtney leaned over Rena’s chair and kissed the woman on the cheek.

“Hi, Honey. This is Rena’s attorney, Olivia Chandler, and she bought the munchkin home. Olivia, this is my wife, Marissa.”

She took Olivia’s outstretched hand in both of hers and squeezed.

“Oh yes. We spoke on the phone. So nice to meet you. And thank you for seeing her home.” She patted Rena’s shoulder and kissed the top of her head. “Hey Munchkin. Did you hit all your markers in therapy today?” Rena nodded.

“All except the steps. I could only do two.” Marissa stepped behind her chair and started towards the front door.

“That’s still good. Remember last week you could only do one? Progress, munchkin, progress.” She stopped suddenly and turned around. “Courtney, what are you doing here?”

He folded his arms across his chest. “I live here.”

Bruce, Rena, and Olivia all snickered.

Marissa pursed her lips.

“It’s the middle of the day, Courtney.” He started.

“Oh! Geeze, yes. So much happening at once. The school called me. Brian has a low-grade fever and an upset stomach. He’s up in his room. The school nurse said she had called you first but didn’t get an answer. I figured you were still with your mom at the dialysis center.”

“They were short staffed today so Mom got a late start on her treatment.” She glanced up at the house. I told that boy to go easy on the chili con carne last night. He never listens, and this always happens.” She nodded her head in Bruce’s direction. “And why is Bigfoot here?”

The laugh escaped Olivia’s mouth before she could suppress it. These people were nuts… and she loved it. Bruce shot a glance at her and mouthed the word “traitor.”

“After I got Bri settled inside, I was going to return to the office, and my car wouldn’t start. I called Bruce to come over and diagnose the problem, but… she’s really sick. He has to take her in.” Courtney Bellamy looked as though tears might be a real possibility. Marissa turned her head and covered her mouth to hide the grin. She looked back and addressed Olivia.

“Please excuse our family, Olivia. We’re not usually this scatterbrained and dysfunctional. And we usually care more about our sick children than our sick cars.” Before Olivia could tell her they were all just fine, Bruce chimed in.

“Look up ‘dysfunctional’ in Webster’s and you’ll find our family portrait.” Marissa popped a clenched fist on one hip and shot back.

“Don’t you have little children to scare or people to annoy?”

“Yes, and here I am!”

“Problem child!”

“Diva!”

“Yeti!”

“Smurfette!”

Olivia heard someone join her in the laughter, but when she glanced at Courtney, his eyes were full of love and fixed on his wife. Olivia stepped around Marissa and looked down at Rena, who had dissolved into a fit of laughter. She clutched her bag of snacks with one hand and her stomach with the other. Olivia’s heart melted at the sight. She noticed Courtney step behind his wife, sliding his hand around her waist.

Rena was still laughing when he said, “Once they get started, they won’t stop until Rena laughs.” He kissed his wife behind the ear while giving the thumbs up to his cousin.

Olivia was taken aback. Most of what she’d just witnessed was a performance for Rena’s benefit. She was so glad she had not prejudged these people and admonished herself for any negative thoughts she may have had about them.

These were good, loving people who were just living life. Parents and kids get sick and cars break down, but it didn’t distract them enough they didn’t have time for a little girl who was… at least for now… an orphan. Although Olivia was sure the Bellamys and Averests must have had a strong friendship for Courtney and Marissa to take Rena in, she knew this family would help any child in need.

Olivia followed as Marissa pushed Rena into the house, but something made her stop and look over in Bruce’s direction. He was still standing there, hands in pockets, focused on her. Shaking her head, she smiled at him, which caused him to throw a big toothy grin back at her.

Marissa had cleared the doorway and Courtney held the door for Olivia. When she walked past him, he touched her arm lightly and said, “He’s a good guy.”

Her face heated again, but she was rescued when she heard Marissa call out to her to follow her voice to get to Rena’s room.

©2016 Felicia Denise, All rights Reserved

~~~

Check out the full story!

Best Interest 3D book

Amazon Button

Goodreads button

~~~

via #TBT “The Meet”

“Good Christian folk took you in…”

Giveaway Time! Win FREE Books Now — When Women Inspire

Didi Oviatt

I signed copy of Search for Maylee is one of few select prizes in a HUGE and very exciting celebration giveaway on When Women Inspire. I’m so honored to be selected in having one of my books be a part of this!! Check it out, and enter to win!! 😍😍

We’re having a Rafflecopter giveaway. For 3 FREE paperbacks! Enter now before it closes on July 7th. The post Giveaway Time! Win FREE Books Now… 6 more words

via Giveaway Time! Win FREE Books Now — When Women Inspire

View original post

Attorney. Friend. Woman. Daughter?

New Thriller!

Didi Oviatt

Call me weird, obsessed, paranoid, twisted or whatever, but I have this nasty little habit of trying to guess what kind of killers people would be… if they were actually killers, that is. Whenever I see someone in a crowd who stands out among the rest, I see it. It all depends on their size, the way they move, the look in their eyes. Everything plays a part, and the image is usually fairly detailed. Then, I jot down my observations for future use.

*****

Yep, that’s it! ^^^  The very first paragraph of my very next thriller novel!!  I’m so excited about this one I can hardly breath!!  I haven’t announced any sort of plan, or even any update on the progress of my WIP. But, I finally feel like I’m close enough to finishing up the first draft to say:  I’M SO CLOSE AND SO IN LOVE WITH…

View original post 204 more words

“She was all alone…”

Search For Maylee By Didi Oviatt Review!

Have you checked out this review of Search for Maylee yet?

culturevultureexpress

Image result for search for maylee book

Search For Maylee (2017) by Didi Oviatt is a wonderfully gripping read about a very important issue.

This book follows the protagonist Autumn as she sets about finding her niece Maylee who went missing close to her graduation from high school three years ago. Autumn begins to try to find Craig who she believes is involved in her disappearance and moves to where it is now thought he lives. Along the way she meets a group of young men including a central character called Jeremy who has many secrets of his own. Their combined secrets make for a very complex and interesting friendship. Among all this mystery and crime there is also some romance with Chance who has been working on Maylee’s case.

The love Maylee and Autumn have for one another is wonderful. It reminds of me and my sister’s relationship where we always look out for each other…

View original post 364 more words

Splash into Summer $250 Cash #Giveaway

Have you entered the cash giveaway yet?

D.E. Haggerty

Splash into Summer

$250 Cash Giveaway

June 1st to 20th

Enter to win $250 in PayPal Cash or a $250 Amazon Gift Code

Thanks to this fabulous group of authors you have the chance to win $250!

Sponsor List
I Am A Reader
Lori’s Reading Corner
Bound 4 Escape
Julie Coulter Bellon
Rockin’ Book Reviews
Krysten Lindsay Hager author
Laurisa White Reyes, Author
J.E. Grace
B. Kristin McMichael
Helen Smith
S.A. Larsen
Simple Wyrdings
Auggie @ auggietalk
Author Kim Cresswell
JeanBookNerd
Glistering: B’s Blog
Author Erin Richards
Jennifer Faye, sweet romance author
Coupons and Freebies Mom
My Life. One Story at a Time.
Author D.E. Haggerty
Wishful Endings
Kimber Shook

Giveaway Details

$250 in Paypal Cash or a $250 Amazon.com eGift Card

Ends 6/20/18

Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use money sent via Paypal or gift codes via Amazon.com. Winning Entry will be verified prior…

View original post 110 more words

“He was supposed to love us not treat us like we were nothing.”

Felicia Denise, Author

Free, a Novella 3D coverSynopsis

Lenore “Lennie” Porter’s life had not gone as she planned.

The marriage she put her heart and soul into failed.

The man she sacrificed so much for abandoned her.

But Lennie refused to be broken. She pushed on, running a successful business and raising her three sons alone.

Through health scares and severe family dysfunction and trauma which forever changed their lives, the Porter family clung to each other to keep from sinking into the darkness.

With her marriage over long ago and her adult sons living their own lives, Lenore Porter decides to sell the cold fortress she worked so hard to make a warm, loving home.

A short, final inspection of her former home turns into a confrontation with ghosts from the past, and decisions and events Lennie felt she’d dealt with and moved on from.

Free, a Novella is a short, clean read recounting one woman’s…

View original post 32 more words

Search For Maylee, #free (May 15 – 18)

Last day for this deal!

Didi Oviatt

I love everything about this time of year! The colors, the smells, the warmth. There is just something about new life and growth that comes with spring. I light of the spirit of spring, as well as a (somewhat belated) Mothers Day celebration, I’ve decided to do a spur of the moment spring promotion!

I’m so excited to offer my latest book Search For Maylee as my gift to you! From today May 15th through Friday May 18th the kindle version is downloadable for free on Amazon!  Click this link to claim your gift! Happy spring, and happy reading!

Description:

Since Maylee was abducted from her high school the very month of graduation, her Aunt Autumn has never lost hope in finding her. It’s been three years. Autumn has finally reached inside herself and found the courage to track down an old lead. She moves across the country to find…

View original post 74 more words

“Entropy: A Novel” by Joshua Edward Smith

Nesie's Place

Cover

Entropy: A Novel

by Joshua Edward Smith

Genre: Literary/Contemporary/Romance

Kindle Unlimited

Lisa is adrift—searching for connection on social media to compensate for the absence of love and attention in her marriage. But when a dominant married man entices her to become his online submissive, Lisa’s world starts to collapse around her. Could giving up all control be the secret to finding the serenity she longs to have? Cerebral and erotic, Entropy explores the murky depths of an online affair and how upheaval of the status quo reverberates through a woman’s life and sense of self.

Amazon KU

 

View original post

Author Interview Featuring Didi Oviatt

Touch My Spine Book Reviews

I am so glad that today I get to feature one of my all time favorite authors and friend, Didi Oviatt! Not only is she super talented, she is also kind, inspiring and has a free-spirit that you can’t help but to love!💖 From my beginningdays as being a book blogger, Didi was one of the few people who made me instantly feel at home and after reading two of her books and reading her blog and magazine, I was in awe because of the way she had with words. I hope that when I finish my novel that I am able to become atleast half of the author Didi is!😀 So enough of my babbles. about my innoncent girl crush on Didi Let’s get to the Q&As with her and yours truly!💖🎊🎉

Didi with her latest novel, Search for Maylee

Will you please tell us a little…

View original post 1,617 more words

#excerpt #coldcase #justataste Search For Maylee

Didi Oviatt

Paranoia was common for Autumn. A constant nagging fear weighed in her chest at all times, she was forever burdened by this. It had taken a full year to convince herself to sell all of her belongings and take this giant leap. She had to be strong, and she had to leave California, for Maylee. With caution in each step, Autumn slowly made her way up to the condo. She peeked into each window, then tilted an ever listening ear toward the crack in the door.

“Oh, for hell’s sake Autumn, you’re such a weirdo! You’re going to pack up all of your shit and take off on some ‘save the world trek’, and you can’t even walk into your own house without panicking!”

The voice was shrill and mocking. It belonged to Candace, Maylee’s mother. Autumn exhaled and walked inside. The sight of her sister leaning against the bar…

View original post 1,230 more words

#Review “Scavenger (Dark Day Isle, The Ultimate Kink Resort Book 2)” by A.C. Melody

Nesie's Place

cover

5/5 Stars!

Day 2 at Dark Day Isle hits the ground running!

Felix and Tessa are still working out the dynamics of their D/s relationship which means drama time!

First, they must deal with what Tessa overheard in the conversation between Felix and Louis. She has serious doubts and reservations, and I can’t blame her. No one wants to be second best or a replacement… period! Doesn’t matter the lifestyle or relationship.

Felix went a long way to assuage her doubts, but not far enough for me. The man protesteth a bit too much for me which can only mean…he’s hiding something!

Don’t worry, I still love you, Felix!

Tessa’s a bit off balance but holding her own. I like that her internal thoughts are never too far from what she actually says. Same goes for Felix.

These two have to build a foundation of trust within the six remaining…

View original post 423 more words

#ReleaseBlitz “Scavenger (Dark Day Isle, The Ultimate Kink Resort Book 2)” by A.C. Melody

Nesie's Place

coverblurb

It’s day two of the exclusive getaway on Dark Day Isle, and Felix’s smoldering lust isn’t the only thing to greet Tessa come morning. A list of challenges awaits her; finding the courage to confront her Master, devious tests of kink designed to push her limits and an unpleasant punishment that effects more than just their temporary dynamic.

Afternoon events provide insight on the getaway’s purpose and leads them deeper into the resort’s naughty, fetish-catering amenities. Tessa and Felix’s individual struggles are interspersed with visiting friends, unexpected triggers and a meeting of competitive spirits during the evening’s activity.

When Tessa’s true feelings about the cage are revealed, so is one of Felix’s well-guarded secrets that leaves her stunned. Now, Master expects to learn something from her in return and Tessa dreads what he might deem an even exchange for a truth he never wanted her to know.

Scavenger teaser

AMAZON US  …

View original post 179 more words