Forty-two years ago, I fell in love. Many of you know that I met my love on a blind date. The first time he called, we talked for over an hour. That was how easy and comfortable he felt. It turned out we lived in the same apartment complex, his building kitty-corner from mine. If not for our well-meaning friends, we never would have met. He worked odd hours at a steel mill while I was a teacher with regular hours. We met in June, got engaged in August, and married on Thanksgiving Day. Yep, the actual day. Just like my mother and her mother. And my daughter. She and I made a pact that my granddaughter would NOT follow that tradition.
I didn’t think I would ever love anyone as strongly as I loved my Hubs. I was wrong. Two years later, along came our daughter and I fell in love with her. A year after that, our son arrived. Another love fest. Okay, that was it. I was blessed three times over.
Seven years ago, another little girl stole my heart. From the first time my granddaughter snuggled in, I was lost. Three years after that, a little boy made me fall in love again. How could I not? Those two precious children love me unconditionally. There’s a saying that if I knew how much fun grandchildren could be, I’d have had them first. How true that is.
The grandkiddies are here this morning. They stayed overnight so their parents could have “date night.” Hubs and I moved closer to them just for this. Our daughter tries so hard not to take advantage of us that we almost have to beg so the kiddies can come over. In turn, the kiddies frequently plead with their parents to let them stay overnight here. I love it!
I thought things couldn’t be any better. Then our son and daughter-in-law gave us more good news. In May, another little girl will arrive and I just know I’m going to fall in love again.
The heart is amazing. It just keeps expanding, allowing us to love more than we thought possible. While it’s usually just Hubs and me, we’ve fallen into the routine of two people who have been together for a long time. Our mornings usually start with “How did you sleep?” and end with “I hope you get a good night’s sleep.” Real romantic, huh? Yet in between we still find things to talk about.
Falling in love is exciting and wondrous. Staying in love is even better. As I usually say in the acknowledgements at the end of my books, I’m so glad our friends fixed us up on that blind date.
Lasting love is why I write romance. I want my characters to find that happy-ever-after, even though some of them go into relationships with a happy-for-now attitude. They don’t think they’ll ever find everlasting love. That’s the situation in THE CASE OF THE BYGONE BROTHER. Alex O’Hara is so busy she doesn’t have time to fall in love, have children, and live happily ever after. Since this is a mystery, not a romance, that’s okay. Of course, she’s had a mad crush on Nick Palzetti ever since high school. Nick didn’t show interest in her then and he doesn’t now. Bummer.
PI Alex O’Hara finally gets a case that will give her bottom line a much needed boost. She might even be able to change her diet from ramen noodles to prime rib. All she has to do is track down a man who’s been missing for over ten years. Piece of cake . . . until an old flame arrives and a mugger roughs her up with orders to back off.
I whacked my head on the display shelf.
Well, what would you do if you were lying across the top of a four-drawer lateral file cabinet, and your arm—yardstick attached—was wedged between the wall and the cabinet, trying to retrieve the license renewal application that if you mangled, crushed or couldn’t get would mean the end of your business, and the ex-love-of-your-life stood in the doorway looking at your butt?
The shelf shook on its braces from contact with my head. Never mind that the encounter didn’t do much for the aforementioned body part. The Fair Haven Chamber of Commerce awards rattled, and signed Detroit Tigers baseballs pelted my head, shoulders, and the back of my thigh. I dropped the yardstick and swore.
“I thought you promised your mother you wouldn’t swear anymore.” He would remind me of that vow.
“Relapse,” I muttered as I looked over my shoulder.
In that loose-limbed, cocky manner I once thought scary, sexy, and so cool, Nick Palzetti stood in the doorway to the spare office. He even dressed the same in a black leather jacket, black knit shirt, and jeans that molded his hips. Lordy, he could still make my mouth go dry.
As I wiggled back and sideways across the long cabinet, I felt my skirt ride up. Of all days to wear a skirt. With my foot, I searched for the desk chair I’d climbed to get on top of the cabinet. I’d kicked off my high heels before standing on the chair, probably the only smart thing I’d done so far.
“Red panties, you naughty girl.”
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