Charmed, I’m Sure is the second novel in the Devil You Know series (Sympathy for the Devil is Book 1), but Charmed is also a standalone holiday romance that can be read and enjoyed on its own. It comes out on Wednesday, December 11th, so that means it’s time for a little sneak peek!
As I stood to one side, watching as people slow-danced to “Moon River,” his voice came at my ear.
“We should dance.”
I turned to look at him, glad I hadn’t jumped. He did seem to be very good at sneaking up on me…or maybe it was simply that I tended to get lost in the clouds at the worst possible times.
“That again?” I asked, making sure I sounded amused and not irritated. “I’m working, Allan. The Blankenships aren’t paying me to dance.”
For a moment, he didn’t reply, only stood there as he appeared to survey the crowd before us, from those actually out on the dance floor to the people who seemed content to remain in their seats and nibble on the remnants of their wedding cake as they sipped champagne.
Then he said, “As far as I can tell, your work here is done. The ceremony is over, the food and the cake have been served, and it seems as if this group is better-behaved than the one at the Lowell wedding, so I doubt you’ll have to arm-wrestle any drunks. Why not have a dance?”
Since everything he’d said was only the truth, I didn’t have many arguments I could offer. However, I did have one very good objection. “That may well be,” I admitted, “but you’re still my client, Allan. It’s just not…proper.”
“‘Proper’?” he repeated, that amused glint back in his eyes. “What is this, the Victorian age? Anyway, it’s not like you’re my attorney or my doctor or something. You’re planning a party for me. That’s all.”
Was he belittling my work? I stared up at him for a second, trying to decide whether I should be offended. He was right, though. While I thought I provided an important service for people, it wasn’t quite the same thing as performing open-heart surgery or representing someone in a divorce case.
“Still,” I said, drawing out the word to show my reluctance.
I retreated to the only protest I had left. “I don’t know how to dance.”
One dark brown eyebrow lifted. “Belinda, they’re slow dancing, not doing the tango.”
“I — ”
He took my hand, his fingers warm and strong against mine. “Just one dance. If the Blankenships have a problem with it, they can talk to me.”
Probably if I’d dug my heels in, he would have let go. I didn’t know him well, but I could already tell he wasn’t the sort of man to ever force the issue. No, it was more that he could tell my reluctance was feigned, wasn’t something I actually felt. Even the touch of his fingers against my skin was enough to make my heartbeat speed up and my cheeks feel flushed. I reacted to him way too easily…and that was the whole problem.
It’s the last wedding of the year, I told myself. What’s the harm?
Only, I knew what the harm could be. It could be me allowing him into my life in small, incremental ways, opening myself up for the inevitable disappointment that had to follow. And yet….
And yet, I wanted to know what it felt like to have his arms around me. Just one dance, in a very public place. It should be safe enough.
Charmed, I’m Sure releases on Wednesday, December 11, but you can pre-order it now at the following stores: