With Mac’s book, Road to Reality rounding the corner and getting ready for release, I thought I would give you a little excerpt from Road to Redemption—Cori and Jack’s story. You can buy the book here on Amazon.
This is from the chapter titled Snowing
“Hang on, I’ve got you,” Jack said, reaching for Cori when she slipped in the snow making her way to his truck.
“Thanks. That was close,” she said, gazing up at him with a smile.
That was close, he thought to himself. All he needed was to have her fall on her face in front of him. That would be real gentlemanly. He tightened his hand around her arm and guided her over.
When they reached his truck he opened the door for her, then watched when her heeled boot slid on the metal step guard as she attempted to pull herself up. No choice, he had to put his hands on her a bit more. Despite the cold, he felt a surge of heat rush to his face when he placed his hands on her hips and easily lifted her up, then turned her so she could sit down. He hoped he wasn’t actually blushing, or even worse—if she noticed it.
“Sorry you got roped into this,” Cori said twenty minutes later.
“No problem,” he replied stiffly. Then winced at his tone of voice, he wasn’t trying to be rude, but rather was trying to block out all thoughts of his hands on her body.
A few more minutes of silence passed. The roads were pretty slippery and Jack was concentrating heavily, trying to make his way to the Northway that would take them back to Albany. At least he had something else going on in his mind besides her body.
“Talk to me,” she stated simply.
He didn’t have an answer to that. Or at least not one she would like. He couldn’t very well say that he didn’t know what to say to her, that she made him nervous, just as she had guessed earlier.
“Please? You are making me nervous,” she confessed.
“Sorry. I’ll slow down.”
“Your driving isn’t making me nervous. It’s the silence,” she clarified.
“I don’t like silence. It makes me nervous.”
“Oh.” Keep your mind on the road, not on her, he reminded himself.
She frowned, tapped her finger on her leg. “Tell me about yourself.”
“Not much to say,” he replied, never taking his eyes off the road.
“Are you an only child?”
“Me, too.” More silence. “How old are you?” she asked a moment later. He shot her a questioning glance. “What? Men don’t normally care if you ask how old they are. Only women.”
He could feel her eyes on him, so he grudgingly answered, “Thirty-three.”
“I’m twenty-eight. In case you wanted to know,” she added with a grin.
He looked over at her in shock.
“Yeah, I know. The size deceives everyone.” She giggled. “You should have seen my friends all groan in college when I joined them for a night out. The whole group got carded with me around.”
“College?” he asked raising an eyebrow.
“Yeah, I went to college. What’s so surprising about that?”
“Nothing. I thought RN was a two-year program.”
She sighed dramatically. “It is. But my parents are teachers and they wanted me to have options later in life. At the time I wanted to do the two-year program, but they talked me into going to college instead. So I ended up with my Bachelor’s in Nursing Sciences.”
He would have to reevaluate that. Nursing school was difficult. He knew that many didn’t make it. But a Bachelor’s in Nursing Sciences was even harder. He would have never thought she would be one to take the difficult road.
“College was a blast, so I’m glad they talked me into it,” she said, intruding on his thoughts. That he could picture. “See, this conversation thing isn’t so hard, is it? Now it’s your turn”
He grunted. She had no clue how hard it was.
She grinned. Not one to give up easily, she asked another question. “So I know you and Ryan went to Duke together and that you didn’t play football. Play any other sports?”
She snorted, and then asked, “Do you ever answer a question with more than one word?”
His lips twitched. “Sometimes.”
“I saw that!” She pointed a finger at him in the cab of the truck. “You almost smiled. I know you can do it, you have to want to.”
His lips twitched some more.
She laughed again. “Almost there, Jack.” He caught her looking at him when his eyes crinkled a bit, but never quite made it all the way.
A few minutes passed with only the sound of the windshield wipers on the window when he finally asked, “Why do you care if I smile?”
“I don’t know. I just do. I like helping people. That’s why I went into nursing. Even if it’s just making them smile,” she said with one of her own. “Don’t you like making people smile?”
“Never thought much about it,” he answered honestly.
“Well, I do. And I like making them laugh. Life is better that way. Isn’t it better to be happy than sad? To have fun doing what you need to do to get through life?” She ground her teeth, when he remained silent.
“I can’t give you what you want,” he stated suddenly. There, it was out in the open. Maybe now he could breath a little, and she would understand.
“How do you know what I want?”
“I’m not looking for a girlfriend,” he continued.
“Who said I was asking?”
Maybe he could shock her. “Or a lover.”
“Me neither,” she replied without batting an eye.
“What do you want from me?” He really needed to know. Maybe she was looking for the same thing he was, something casual.
“How about being your friend?” She grinned. “For now.”
Nope, guess not. “I don’t need another friend.”
“Sure you do. Everyone could use another friend,” she stated and reached over, placing her small hand over his large one on the seat.
He sighed. And let her hold onto his hand.