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Monday, July 27, 2015

Guest Post with Author Christine Warner

Christine Warner is living her dream in Michigan along with her husband, three children, one laptop and a much loved assortment of furry friends.

Besides laughing and a good round of humor, she enjoys spending time with her family, cooking, reading, writing but no arithmitic. A confessed people watcher, she finds inspiration for her stories in everyday activities. She loves to read and write about strong heroes and determined, sometimes sassy, heroines.

A girl gone wild, at least where social media is concerned, she enjoys meeting other avid readers and writers on facebook, twitter and her website.

I love hearing “meet” stories. How other couples, well, went from one to two. I’ve heard some touching ones that have melted my heart, funny ones that made me laugh so hard I cried, and others that told the story of a bit of indifference at first meeting and took years to cultivate, starting with a single moment in time where a spark was lit and an attraction born.

I love them all!

Today I wanted to share my “meet” story because I think it has a touch of uniqueness that always makes me smile.

One of my good friends was going through some rough times with her husband. They’d split up, but had decided to get back together. So, her husband’s co-worker and good friend—let’s call him Ken—decided to rent a limo and go bar hopping to celebrate. Of course my friend didn’t want an odd number so she asked if she could bring a friend along.

Do you see where this is leading? Lol

Right away Ken was concerned that this wouldn’t be tagged a date. My friend assured him that it wouldn’t be. It would just be more fun rounded off to an even number. So, he agreed. The more the merrier, right?

Right away she called me and asked if I wanted to head downtown in a limo and hit all the hot spots. Of course I said yes, but after I found out a few more details, I made sure she knew that this wasn’t a date. I’d just broken up with a guy not long before and I really wasn’t interested in starting something new. I wanted to have some fun, not anything serious. So, of course she assured me that the word “date” wouldn’t be mentioned. After I breathed a sigh of relief, I agreed.

Do you think my friend was being sneaky? Lol

So, long story short—or at least as short as I can make it—the two not-interested-in-a-date-types hit it off. We laughed and talked all night—and had a few too many drinks I’m sure.

At one of the bars we were having such a good time that the bartender asked what the occasion was. I instantly told him it was double engagement party. Can you say “one to many”? lol Why I even blurted that out I have no idea, I guess I was just being a shit. Anyway, after I said that, Ken asked what it would take for me to really marry him.

Yes, I know, this was the first night.

I told him the only way I’d marry him was if he proposed with a karat. Heck, why not right? It’s not like he was serious so I might as well go for it. Plus, karat diamond engagement rings run in my family. Lol

Fast forward two weeks—or it might have been three—and Ken and I are dating up a storm and having a great time. He picked me up from work to take me to lunch at Pizza Hut. At the time I was slightly addicted to their personal pan pizzas. YUM! And lo and behold he pulls out a gift for me.

He’d had a chunk of gold molded into a carrot—yes, as in the vegetable not the diamond weight. (Don’t you love his play on words with that one?) I absolutely loved it, and fell even harder than I already had. Talk about romance. To me, that was romance at its finest.

A month after I met Ken we moved in together. Four months after we met we eloped—yep two crazy kids. Lol Eight months after we met we found out we were having a baby. And ten months after we met we bought our first house.

That’s a lot happening in one year.

I’m proud to report that twenty-six years later we’re still together. There have been ups, downs, and all arounds, but somehow we’ve made it work. I’d have to say our ability to laugh has carried us through a lot.

And just think—it all started with a limo ride that wasn’t a date, a few laughs, one to many, and an extraordinary gift of a necklace.

How about you? What’s your meet story?

What’s a little engagement between friends?

Omar Esterly is married to his job. But when Omar sets his sights on a potential, family-oriented client, his confirmed bachelorhood becomes a problem. Fortunately, his friend and employee, Devi Boss, has the perfect plan…

Okay, so it wasn't exactly Devi's plan to become her friend's fake fiancĂ©e. Lies aren't her style. However, Omar offers her a big, beautiful raise—enough to track down the missing father she's never known—and Devi reluctantly agrees to the whole engagement hoax…

This was supposed to be a no-strings-attached win-win for both Devi and Omar, but when they cross the line between friendship and…well, something more, Devi realizes she’s made a huge mistake that just might cost her both job and friend—falling for her fiancĂ©.

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“You’re game for anything, right?”

Devi compressed her lips and studied Omar through a narrow gaze, taking in the way his overly bright eyes concentrated on her face as if memorizing every pore. Her gaze traveled south to the non-existent rise and fall of his chest and how he pushed his suit jacket aside as he placed his hands low on his hips. He’d stopped breathing while he waited for her reply. That made her more nervous than anything. “Normally I am game for anything, but considering the man asking the question, I’m a little nervous.” She licked her lips.

Omar shook his head, swallowing her hands in the warmth of his. “No. This is a great idea. I can’t believe I didn’t see it before.”

“I’ll hold back on saying I’m glad I could help until I know what you’ve got pinging around your brain.” She tried to pull free of his grip, but he only grasped her fingers tighter. Her inner voice told her whatever plan he’d cooked up included her and she wouldn’t be thrilled with the role.

“Bartow wants a family-first firm. He wants a planner who is married, blah, blah blah.” He dismissed his unfinished words with the thrust of his chin.

Devi nodded, her mouth going dry. Was he planning to hire a wife, or about to propose?

“I might not be married, but what if I were engaged?”

She didn’t want to jump to conclusions about the proposal so she pasted on a tight smile. “Do you have a serious girlfriend hidden away I don’t know about?” The thought unsettled her, but she pushed aside the heaviness in her gut. Omar and relationships mixed like fire and ice. Not that women didn’t find him attractive and vice versa, but his true love would always be work. Most sane women wanted something more than a workaholic commitment-phobe.

He shook his head a bit too vigorously. “No. No.” His grip tightened, and she flexed her fingers so he’d loosen his hold. “Hear me out before you shoot me down.”

“I’m more curious than ever.” Again, she threw sand over that niggling feeling in her belly. She never jumped to conclusions. Living by the seat of your pants didn’t allow it, but…

Why start now? She rolled her shoulders in an effort to relax. Omar pulled her off to the side and out of the crowd moving past them on the sidewalk. His hands shook with excitement, and he swallowed hard before clearing his throat. Always calm and collected, his buildup unsettled Devi, and she tugged one hand from his grip and pressed it against the gurgle growing in her stomach.

“How about we announce our engagement? I could pull in some favors and have it in the press Monday morning. That’d still give Bartow enough time to invite us to the meet and greet. And—”

“Whoa, whoa, whoa.” Devi’s stomach did a nosedive, and she yanked her other hand from his death grip and stepped back. She twisted one of the bangle bracelets on her wrist. “Our engagement? First off, I didn’t even know we were dating. And second, I am not going to help you get ahead by lying.”