A Historical Christmas Eve Part 1 - Carrie Lofty
This year has been a blast! In addition to HIS VERY OWN GIRL, my three Christie Family romances are available now from Pocket. FLAWLESS kicked it off with a tale of an estranged couple's search for love. The 99¢ tie-in novella, "A LITTLE MORE SCANDAL" follows two aspiring lovers to London. And the Scottish-set second novel, STARLIGHT, was an RT BookReviews 4½ Star Top Pick. "Richly nuanced characters and a superbly realized Victorian setting come together brilliantly." ~ The Chicago Tribune
I've also launched a co-written pseudonym, Katie Porter, with my long-time friend and critique partner, Lorelie Brown. RT BookReviews said of our "Vegas Top Guns" series of contemporary erotic romances from Samhain: "This racy, raunchy, hella good read…will move Fifty Shades of Grey to the children's section of the bookstore."
Happy holidays to you from the shores of Lake Michigan. My family, my cats, and the nice men who plow the snow at our condo wish you the best for 2013--and so do I!
Places to find Carrie:
Joe Weber returned to the United States after having served as a paratrooper. He dropped into Normandy and the Netherlands, and barely survived a brutal winter in camped in Belgium just outside the German border. Letters from the complicated, unconventional woman he loved kept him strong. Lulu Davies emigrated from England months after the war's conclusion to be reunited with her husband. Here I present their first Christmas Eve together, as well as a glimpse into their future together.
Home for Christmas
by Carrie Lofty
by Carrie Lofty
New York City, 1945
“So,” Joe said slowly. “Miami?”
Lulu watched her husband’s face as he took his familiar, methodical time processing information. He was still as handsome as the day they’d met by chance. That long ago afternoon when he’d been the first medic on the scene of her plane crash was dreamlike now. The details had been blunted, rounded, like a stone in a stream.
He remained a traditional man. His love meant he worried for her safety, just as she’d worried during his long deployment in the European Theater of Operations. From the D-Day landing to the injury that had taken Joe off the front lines, Lulu had worried years off her life.
She bloody well hoped that wasn’t true. She had too many beautiful years yet to spend with the man she adored.
“Miami,” she repeated, still watching his expression.
Joe tightened the arm he held around her shoulders. They were both dressed for bed. It could’ve been any ordinary night, but it was Christmas Eve. They’d decorated a two-foot baby evergreen with pieces of lace and ribbon borrowed from her wardrobe. The scent of pine filled the air. The war was over, but many holiday niceties were still rationed, or hadn’t been cleared to be manufactured for civilian use. That five candles illuminated the room was an extravagance she would’ve thought impossible only twelve months earlier.
Twelve months earlier, Joe and the 507th Parachute Infantry Regiment had been surrounded by German forces in the Bois Jacques forest in Belgium. She’d been alone in a single-person dorm at an airbase outside of London, rereading his letters and petting the engagement ring she had yet to officially accept. The choice had been impossible: marry him and give up flying, or follow her passion and lose him forever.
Now she wore the engagement ring, as well as the wedding band he’d slipped on her finger during their first night as reunited lovers. No, as husband and wife.
“Lulu, I went to boot camp in Georgia. It’s… Well, it’s hot for one thing. You and that sweet English complexion would sizzle.”
She grinned and stretched up to kiss his neck. He was strong, robust, so powerfully masculine that she couldn’t get her fill of his resilient flesh and spicy scent. The lingering perfume of his shaving soap made his skin irresistible. “I’m not a fan of that aspect either. A little New York City chill has more appeal. But Pan Am trains its pilots in Miami.”
Lulu pulled away to look into his expressive moss-green eyes, always so thoughtful. She could practically see the conflict tumbling within his mind. “It’s the start we need,” she said. “The salary is generous, even if I were a man. For a woman… It’s unimaginable.”
She waited, practically holding her breath, guessing and second-guessing his decision. During the first days of their courtship, she’d wondered about his tendency toward quiet deliberation. Was he a mite…dim? But no.
Joe Weber was one of the smartest men she’d ever known. He only needed time to adjust to change. Lulu could relate. She’d been Stateside for just over a month. Sometimes she never thought she’d adjust to the differences.
The fact that she was curled against his side on a small sofa in their tiny flat made adjusting a sweet prospect. They were safe, they were happy, they were together. Little else mattered.
“It’s a lot to think about,” he said quietly.
Disappointed pinched behind her breastbone, but she knew it would be this way. In fact, a hasty decision might have left her unmoored. She’d come to depend on his patient calm. He balanced her as nothing and no one else ever had.
A little more time.
Joe pulled her across his lap, surprising Lulu so greatly that she squeaked. He cupper her face with his large palms, so that his fingers wound back into her unbound hair. She’d have rolled it in pin curls, but it was Christmas Eve. They didn’t plan on leaving their flat all day. Lying abed for hours, exchanging the few presents they’d been able to afford, and sharing a roast for supper—untold luxuries.
Smiling, Lulu snuggled against his big body and pulled her knees up close. She wasn’t a short woman, and she considered herself about as independent as could be, but she adored feeling small and protected when he held her.
Joe swept his free hand from her neck to her stomach, passing his fingertips between her breasts. Even dulled by the nightgown’s thin flannel, his touch was powerful. Electric.
He grinned, so sweet and sexy. “Do I get to open one present the night before Christmas?”
Lulu swatted him on the shoulder. “That was rubbish! Don’t say that ever again.”
“If I give you a present first,” he said, nuzzling her neck, where the evening scruff on his chin and cheeks made her exhale with pleasure. “Would you forgive me?”
She slid three buttons free on his pajama shirt. The muscles she stroked underneath the wool made them both moan softly. Then they laughed. That they could mingle sex and giddiness into the same moment was an intimacy she’d never thought to expect.
“You know I’m greedy,” she said. “Every night…”
“Sometimes during the day…”
“Okay, okay. Your present.” He shifted on the sofa, untangling their arms so he could stand. “I must appease you before you start abusing me again.”
“You bring it on yourself.”
With casual, masculine grace, he padded on bare feet across their small, furnished flat. It was on the eighth floor of a public works building in Manhattan. One day they might have money enough for furniture of their own. With Joe’s GI Bill, they might be able to buy a house of their own.
To check out the rest of this story, please head over to
After war took the lives of Lulu Davies's parents and her fiancé, she promised herself she would guard her heart carefully and concentrate on her great love--flying the biggest and best airplanes as a British civilian pilot.
Brawny, quiet American medic Joe Weber signed up with the paratroopers to escape his checkered past. The first test of his medical skill takes place when he rushes to the scene of a plane crash. He's stunned to come face-to-face with a spirited, dark-haired beauty.
Their flirtation breaks all of Lulu's rules, but dance by dance, she falls in love with this honest, vulnerable man on the run from his demons. Only time and hope will prove whether they can overcome their pasts, survive the war, and forge a beautiful life in peace-time.
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**Don't forget to head over to Not Another Romance Blog to check out part 2 of Carrie's story.
Good Luck and Happy Holidays =)