UPDATE: The winner is…ButtonsMom2003!
I’m Payton Harlie, and I’m so excited to be one of the authors in First Response: A Boys Behaving Badly Anthology. “Fire in the Storm” is the first short story I’ve written, the first story I’ve ever submitted anywhere, and the first story of mine to be published. Thank you, Delilah Devlin, for including me in this anthology with such a marvelous group of authors. I could not have asked for a better first time.
Older characters have been my inspiration. When I began writing I decided to explore characters that were at a different point in their lives than the majority of romance stories I was reading. I wanted to create vibrant, active characters who are over forty and falling in love either for the first time or all over again.
When I saw the call for First Response, a divorced firefighter character that had been lurking in the back of my mind stepped up and insisted I write him a happy ending. That character turned out to be Kevin Trask who you’ll meet in “Fire in the Storm.” I suspect he got a bit more than he expected when Kandi Reynolds, a retired Marine who is used to taking care of herself, arrived.
Read on to meet Kevin from “Fire in the Storm.” Find the entire story in First Response: A Boys Behaving Badly Anthology releasing on June 30th!
Excerpt from “Fire in the Storm”
An unexpected hurricane can’t put out the fire between a female ex-Marine and a handsome firefighter when they’re stranded on an isolated island
Narrowing my eyes, I say, “Let me show you how this is done.”
Her cheek turns a pretty pink as I move in closer then brush my finger along her arm. My own skin warms in response.
I pause as I gently stroke her wrist. “Let me nuke us some food. You like Italian? We’ll split a bottle of wine or two and forget about the storm.”
“You don’t have to do that.” She looks up from the spot where my thumb meets her skin.
“A slow learner, aren’t you? I’m asking you out on a date. Say yes.”
She points to her clothes. “I don’t have anything nice to wear.”
I lift her hand and replace my thumb with my lips. “You’re at the beach. Smelling like my shampoo. Wearing my clothes. Trust me. You look incredible. And I have the only food in town.” I lower my voice. “Now, say yes.” Brushing a stray hair off her face, I linger along her cheek and repeat, “Say yes.”
Her eyes flutter shut. “Yes.”
For a chance to win a $5 Amazon gift card, answer me this:
If you were stranded on a deserted island, who would you want to be there with you?