There will always be that one. That one that you fell for. That one that you gave your heart and your soul to. That one who breaks your heart. That one you still long for. Today's March Madness author Michele Kimbrough, shares such a love with us. Check out her excerpt and don't forget to comment to be entered into the giveaway.
WILDFLOWER OVERVIEW: She falls in love with him hard and fast. But when she learns who he really is, will their love survive?
She promised herself months ago that she’d delete his number once and for all, yet she hadn’t. She clicked on his name as it illuminated her screen – Peter Mayweather – and hovered her thumb over the “delete” button. It was as if by deleting his number, she would delete everything he once meant to her – all the memories, all the good times, all of the possibilities that still lingered in her heart. Even the picture she associated with his contact information made her heart flutter. She knew she wasn’t ready to completely erase him from her life, but it was time.
Just as she was about to press ‘delete’, her phone buzzed again. Not checking the caller ID, she immediately answered, somehow hoping it’d be him — Peter. But it wasn’t. It was her sponsor asking where she was. She was running late for her AA meeting, and traffic wasn’t being kind to her. She maneuvered around the evening rush hour traffic, turning down side streets and manipulating her way through a few residential communities. Proud of her driving savvy, Iris whipped her car into the small parking space in front of the cleaners. She grabbed her clothes out of the back seat and rushed into the building.
She dropped the bundle of clothes on the counter, grabbed her ticket, and pushed through the glass door. The hot breeze hit her in the face, blowing loose a few strands of her messy ponytail. She ran to the car and noticed her suit that she wore for interviews laying on the seat. Ugh! She grabbed it and began her trek back into the cleaners when she saw him. She did an about-face on her heels to head back to her car, hoping he wouldn’t see her — not like this. Fate would have it that she’d run into Peter when she looked her worst.
She stopped in her tracks, straightened her posture, and turned to face him. She feigned a big smile, her eyebrows raised nearly to her hairline.
“Peter! Wow,” she said, trying not to make eye contact.
He spread his arms out and wide, but Iris was hesitant. She didn’t want to walk into his embrace. It had been a long six months trying to get over him. But before she could extend her hand instead, he scooped her up into a hug. She hoped Peter wouldn’t see through her nonchalant façade as time stretched between them. His voice was still soothing to her ears. His touch, still warm and gentle. When he kissed her forehead, his full lips were as soft as she remembered.
“It’s so good to see you. You’re looking good,” he said, flashing his killer smile. She tried not to notice how good he smelled or his brown eyes gazing down at her. But she did.
“I’m just dropping off my clothes...”
“Oh, I see you still use Mee. He’s great, isn’t he?”
“Yeah.” Her eyes roved his body from head to toe during the uncomfortable silence. He was dressed impeccably, as always. He wore the suit she’d bought him when he made the pitch for a new corporate acquisition. He won. He was a winner anyway — a beast in the board room. The suit was only frosting, making his arrogant intelligence more palatable for a group of people who believed he thought too much of himself. And he did. His father wanted him to get commissioned in the military, the Air Force specifically, but his strategic mind was designed for business.
She took a deep breath and continued, “Well, I should get this to Mee,” lifting her arm that the suit was draped over.
“It’s good to see you, Iris.”
She nodded, and before she could stop the words from rolling off of her tongue, she said, “It’s good to see you, too.”
She backed away then walked towards the door. Peter ran to open it for her. He watched her walk in, admiring the snug fit of her cutoff shorts around her tight behind — courtesy of her spinning class. He waved at Mee, who returned the gesture. When Iris looked back at Peter, he waved at her, too.
Was that a ring on his finger? Was he still wearing his wedding ring? She smiled at the thought of it. Maybe he wasn’t over her after all. Maybe he was as miserable as she. Maybe?
When the door closed, he walked away after taking a moment to look back at Iris, who was staring in astonishment.
She rushed through the door, but he was already out of sight. Was it truly over between them? After all, what divorced man still wore his wedding ring?
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Michele Kimbrough lives in Chicago (but cheers for the Green Bay Packers). She’s an Air Force veteran and formerly a nonprofit corporate executive. She describes herself as a work in progress, and counts coffee and red wine as the best discoveries of all times.
Michele writes stories because she loves peeling back the layers of messy truths that come with living life. Her characters are flawed and encounter challenges that either grow them or destroy them. Her passion is writing and she’s written freelance articles and contributed to various blogs.
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