It was supposed to be a sexy one-time indulgence. Two rivals in the self-help world coming together for an evening of fun. But Miranda Reed soon realized she was pregnant and was horrified at having to confront her baby's father. Though irresistible, Zach was the last person she wanted to see again...or was he?
A traditionalist, Zach Jameson insisted on marrying Miranda. And the more time he spent with the fiery writer, the more he really wanted her in his life...permanently. No longer did he care about keeping his image intact. They could live in sin and have a posse of love children, for all he cared--just as long as he could call her his....
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July 31, 2007
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Excerpt from Accidentally Expecting by Michelle Celmer
Married to a bully? Have you had enough? Emotional abuse leaves no bruises, breaks no bones, still the damage runs deep. Think it's impossible to prove? Think again. A tape recorder or hidden camera can be a girl's bestfriend.
--excerpt from The Modern Woman's Guideto Divorce (and the joys of staying single)
She was going to seduce him.
Miranda Reed sat in the shadows at the back of the hotel lounge, sipping her apple martini, eyes on her prey. He sat alone at the bar, his attention on the football game, unaware that he was being watched. His suit jacket lay draped on the bar stool beside him, and he'd rolled the sleeves of his shirt and loosened his tie. Even in this casual, relaxed state he stood out from the other businessmen. Everything about him was slightly and subtly exaggerated.
At six-two, Zackary Jameson stood a hair taller than most men, with a physique toned to perfection, dressed in a suit and shirt that were obviously tailor-made to accentuate every one of his assets. She was especially impressed by the "asset" resting on the bar stool.
She did so appreciate a man with a nice rear end.
He somehow managed a perpetual tan, without ever looking leathery or sun baked, and any signs of age on his face made him look more distinguished than old. His short dark hair had that sexy, mussed look, as if he'd just run his hands through it wet, but in reality probably took hours in front of a mirror to perfect. His mouth was wide, his smile warm and genuine, and his teeth just white and straight enough. Caps, she was guessing. No one had teeth that perfect naturally.
He carried himself with casual authority, an ease and male grace that made people stop and watch.
She'd never met a man who radiated such confidence, who was more comfortable in his own skin.
Too bad he was an over opinionated male chauvinist pig whose ideologies fell out of fashion with covered wagons and hoop skirts.
When asked to do the radio show with the renowned relationship guru, a man who had built an empire around the principles of traditional family values, her publicist assured her the promotion for the book she cowrote, The Modern Woman's Guideto Divorce (and the joys of staying single), would be invaluable.
He'd argued so logically and twisted her words so skillfully that by the end of the show her message had been lost and she'd come out looking like a radical feminist man hater.
She couldn't forget the way he'd watched her with those piercing blue eyes, eyes deep enough to swim in, with not a hint of the superiority and satisfaction he must have been feeling for discrediting her. In fact, as she'd become angrier and more aggressive, he'd stayed calm and reasonable, the drivel he preached pouring out of him, smothering her every point like hot fudge over cold vanilla ice cream.
Call it petty and uncivilized, but she was in the mood for some good old-fashioned revenge. Even if she would be the only one who knew.
She was going to put his high ideals to the test and see if he really believed all that garbage he spouted about marriage and family. Specifically, his views on intimacy. The slightly updated version of no sex before marriage. The idea that a man and a woman should be committed, preferably with plans of marriage, before consummating a relationship.
They would just see about that.
Miranda watched as the waitress delivered the drink she had ordered him, saw the look of curiosity on his face. The waitress pointed in her direction, and when he turned, she pasted on an alluring smile and waggled her fingers at him. One of those heartstopping grins curled the corners of his mouth when he recognized her.
He tossed a few bills on the waitress's tray--a man like him would of course be a generous tipper--grabbed his jacket and drink and headed to her table, his eyes never leaving her face. She'd worn her hair down and let it fall in silky waves over her shoulders, its dark color bringing out the green in her eyes. It was a little unnerving the way he stared with such intensity, as if the world around them no longer existed. As he drew closer she even felt a little breathless, as if he'd sucked all the air from the room and there was none left for her.
This night could definitely prove to be satisfying, in more ways than one.
"Mr. Jameson," she said as he stopped beside the table.
"Ms. Reed," he replied, with an affable tip of his head. He had the voice of a radio DJ--deep and mesmerizing. A voice that held captive auditoriums full of his loyal supporters for hours on end. "May I join you?"