Last year, Valentines Day was they day I started writing my Georgian romance. I wrote the scene as part of another blog hop where writers were challenged to write a first kiss. At the time I had a cow, a barn, and a couple of shy characters who were a little unsure about each other. A novella slowly grew around the scene, and about nine months later, I self-published my first story, Snowflakes & Beeswax!
This Valentines Day I'm participating in another Valentines Day blog hop, this one hosted by the charming Sky Warren. There are more than 150 authors participating in the event. Each time you leave a comment on one of the participating blogs, you increase the odds of winning a Kindle Snowflakes & Beeswax. I'll announce the winner on this blog on Monday, February 17th.
While there are several scenes in Snowflake that I like, but the first kiss in a cow stall remains my favorite. I hope you like it as much as I do.
She swallowed, desperate to ease the dryness in her throat. She shifted her weight from one foot to the other and pressed her palms to her jumpy stomach. “Aye.”
She shifted backwards until a support beam pressed into her spine. Clover’s earthy scent clung to his fingers as he reached over and stroked Madelyn’s cheek.
Madelyn licked her dry lips. She gestured blindly at Clover who watched the pair of them, her expression one of pure bovine patience. “I can finish the milking … and the rest of the chores while you prepare to return to London.”
Oliver placed his brow against hers and chuckled. “I don’t want to.”
“Oh, then what do you-” His mouth covered hers, swallowing her words and wiping her mind of thought.
The world turned upside down. The kiss might have lasted the length of a heartbeat or half a lifetime she wasn’t sure, and she didn’t care.
Oliver ended it. His hands cupped her elbows and he straightened, pulling away slowly and stared down at her. Questions and emotions danced in the mossy green depths of his own eyes but Madelyn couldn’t begin to sort them.
One kiss changed everything.
When his lips touched hers, things shifted. The farm and her bees were no longer her first priority. He was. She’d do anything to make sure he was happy.
She loved Oliver.
The realization exploded in her mind, making her heart beat a delighted tattoo against her ribs even as her knees threatened to buckle and cold sweat raced down her back.
She squeezed her eyes shut and struggled to sort through the tangle of emotions.
She didn't want to love him. That much she was sure of. Falling in love complicated things and all she wanted, the only thing she'd ever wanted was to have a simple life. She didn't know much about Oliver, a realization that caused her mouth to go dry, but she suspected that his life was anything but simple.
The idea of having to live in London, a city full of more people than she could fully comprehend, had black spots growing in front of her eyes. She thought she might faint.
Even if a miracle did happen and she was suddenly able to live in London and deal with the constant presence of people in her life, they still couldn't share a future together. He worked for the queen, she was the daughter of a gypsy. No matter what she did, people always expected the worse. She would never be accepted and eventually Oliver would share her burden.
Oliver didn’t deserve the scandal of falling for the daughter of a gypsy. No one did.
Oliver lifted a hand and stroked her cheek. “I’ve wanted to kiss you for so long, ever since I first saw you.”
She needed to let him go, send him back to London. The sooner, the better.
Oblivious to the turn her thoughts had taken, Oliver slid an arm around her waist. “I know it wasn’t proper,” he murmured even as he pulled her against his side, “or smart, but nothing I’ve done so far has been. If anyone knew I was here without a chaperone your reputation would be in tatters. For any worry I’ve caused you in those regards, I humbly apologize.”
His words caught her off guard. His closeness made coherent thought impossible. She was caught between a strong urge to run and the equally strong desire to wed her body to his.
“You have nothing to apologize for.”
He looked at her sharply. “You don’t regret what just happened.”
Madelyn blushed. “It was wonderful.”