This week's #MWTease is from Siren Publishing,
Cafe in the Park (A SirenBookstrand top 30 bestseller)
When Emily joins a dating agency, she never expects to meet someone like Chris. Everything she ever hoped for in a man, he’s special in more ways than one. Their intense attraction to each other is fueled by their shared loneliness. Will Emily find out his shocking secret when someone from his past comes back to haunt him?
How can love blossom, when someone is trying to tear them apart?
Chris hadn’t been with a woman for a very long time. His loneliness was crippling.
He talked with Art about his crushing need for love, for a woman in his life. His friend Art joked about dating agencies. Chris took it seriously.
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Chris stood by the duck pond for a few moments after he’d watched Emily walk off. She was pretty, and he liked the way she moved. His interest sparked by the sight of her, a pang of sorrow that he’d not approached her bit at him, and yet he felt vulnerable even in the dense shade of the trees at this end of the pond. The collar of his jacket was turned up, and his sunglasses were black frames with black lenses. The cuffs of his charcoal colored shirtsleeves came down over the backs of his hands, and he wore black leather boots under his dark denim jeans. A hot summer meant he needed to take extra care.
He stepped out of the shade for a few seconds to see Emily go around the corner at the end of the block. He checked no one was looking at him and accelerated into an incredible speed, reaching the sanctuary of his parked car across the street in seconds. He was inside behind the special glass of his windscreen when a wave of need overtook him and he covered his face with his hands. Long ago, he’d still been able to shed tears, now the weight of sadness bowed his head, and although he would like the luxury of tears to soothe the pain, he couldn’t shed them. Chris allowed himself the moment of grief and then started his car. He pulled out into the traffic and drove back to his palatial home in the hills.
His garage was integral and he drove straight into it. The house was built against a rock and partly within it. Chris enjoyed the cool air as he went into his favorite living quarters. Once in the vast room, he took off his jacket and boots and rolled up his sleeves. In one corner of the room stood his old leather sofa next to an array of lush plants, and in front of it, a water feature, sunk into the floor. Big colored fish swam in there among specially imported water plants. His favorite had big pink waxen flowers. He went to the kitchen down the hall for a glass of water and then padded back to his sanctuary. Chris sipped at his drink as he sat to watch the fish swim.
He’d started reading the personal column three years ago. He belonged to four different online dating agencies, every year joining a new one in his quest for someone to light up his lonely existence. This year, by chance, he’d joined the same one as Emily. It immediately matched him with her. Naturally, he had some random picture for his photograph. He’d acquired it from an online advertisement for software. The photo was nothing like him, but he couldn’t upload his real image. Not that he considered himself hideous. His instinct was not to post it.
Chris was astonished when he read that this new match wanted a man who could cry. It must be the same woman advertising in the magazine personal column he read and on the date matching website. Of course, he couldn’t cry now, but he wanted to, not only that, he desperately wanted to love and receive love. He’d spent so long without a lover he thought he might soon go mad with need. Chris was so old he’d forgotten his real age. He had so many memories, they crowded in on him, jostling for space in his brain until he blanked them out, determined to live each day as it came.
Copyright Elodie Parkes 2015 Siren Publishing
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