Fortuity, an all-new inspirational and moving standalone contemporary romance from Wall Street Journal bestselling author Jewel E. Ann, is available now!
Forty-something Gracelyn Glock is living the dream.
No retirement plan.
And since her self-imposed man-ban—no need to shave above her knees.
After a tragic accident, Gracelyn inherits her ten-year-old nephew. She signs a lease on a San Diego beach house and learns their neighbors for the summer are a sexy anatomy professor and his young daughter.
Professor Nathaniel Hunt has spent the last decade being a single dad . . . and not having sex.
So when he discovers Gracelyn has a peculiar outdoor stripping ritual, a million inappropriate thoughts fill his responsible mind.
When kisses are stolen, man-bans are broken, and summer comes to an end, will hearts stay in one piece and hope stay alive? Or will saying goodbye destroy everything?
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“What took you two so long? Don’t worry, we saved you some cake.” Mr. Hans smiles from his recliner with Hunter on the sofa, her thumbs dancing along her phone screen. Gabe will get along well with her.
My steps falter when I hear Nate’s voice from the kitchen.
Mr. Hans winks at me. “I invited Nate for cake too.”
I nod slowly. “I see. Whose birthday is it?”
“Life is a celebration. Cake needs no excuse.”
So much for having some time to digest what Nate said to me and my flirty reaction to his kiss comment. I put on a neutral face and drag my timid ass into the kitchen.
“Cake, Gracelyn?” Nate glances up from the counter, a knife in one hand and a plate in his other hand.
“Mmm … yes, Gracelyn. You want cake.” Morgan rolls her eyes back in her head as she slowly chews a bite, standing next to Nate.
How am I supposed to look at him when I saw him barely an hour ago and he said he wanted to kiss me, and I returned the desire without the actual kiss? I guess we’re going to be two people who want to kiss but know that it will never happen.
“Thank you.” I take the cake, giving Nate a two-second glance. It’s all I can give him without completely self-combusting into a pile of ashes.
“Mr. Hans … this is so good.” Morgan traipses out of the kitchen.
“It is good. I haven’t had cake in a long time.” I slowly lick the frosting from the fork.
Nate glances at the floor, eyes narrowed, and hunches down. After a few seconds, I move around to his side of the island.
“Did you drop something?”
Hunched like a baseball catcher, gaze still to the floor, he crooks a finger at me.
I set my plate on the counter. “Did you lose a contact lens?” I squat next to him behind the counter.
He lifts his gaze to meet my squinted eyes. The corner of his mouth bends just as his hand slides behind my head and his lips press to mine.
What the hell?
My lungs freeze while my heart pauses and my mind explodes. There’s no tongue to this kiss, just hungry lips. It knocks me off balance, and I fall to my knees, resting my hands on his shoulders.
Nate pulls back half an inch, letting his lips hover next to mine, the warmth of his breath covering my stunned mouth. “I’m not even sorry.” He shrugs.
My mouth opens as if it wants to speak, but I have no idea what to say.
Nate bolts up, leaving me on my knees. “Yes?”
“Can Hunter use—” Morgan’s eyes narrow at me, my head barely peeking over the counter. “Gracelyn, what are you doing?”
“I’m …” I give her a tight smile.
Nate says, “Picking up a few crumbs.”
At the same time, I say, “Tying your dad’s shoe.”
His explanation is much better.
Morgan laughs. “Um … okay. You’re both acting weird.”
I climb to my feet.
“Can Hunter use what?” Nate asks.
“Your bike so we can go for a bike ride.”
“Are you going to stay around here?”
Morgan nods. “Pinky swear. We won’t go too far.”
“I’ll need to put the seat down for her.”
“Yes! Thanks, Dad. I’ll go tell her.” Morgan runs out of the kitchen.
Nate covers the cake with plastic wrap and nods to my plate with the half-eaten piece of cake. “Are you going to finish that?”
Cake. He wants to talk about the cake?
My head inches side to side.
“Too good to let it go to waste.” He picks up the plate and finishes my cake.
YOU KISSED ME!
“By the way …” His gaze remains on the plate as he scoops up the last bite. “Morgan knows I know how to tie my own shoes.”
Jewel is a free-spirited romance junkie with a quirky sense of humor.
With 10 years of flossing lectures under her belt, she took early retirement from her dental hygiene career to stay home with her three awesome boys and manage the family business.
After her best friend of nearly 30 years suggested a few books from the Contemporary Romance genre, Jewel was hooked. Devouring two and three books a week but still craving more, she decided to practice sustainable reading, AKA writing.
When she’s not donning her cape and saving the planet one tree at a time, she enjoys yoga with friends, good food with family, rock climbing with her kids, watching How I Met Your Mother reruns, and of course…heart-wrenching, tear-jerking, panty-scorching novels.
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