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Kiss a Girl in the Rain

Kiss a Girl in the Rain

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Kiss a Girl in the Rain

ratings:
4/5 (5 ratings)
Length:
210 pages
3 hours
Publisher:
Released:
Sep 8, 2014
ISBN:
9780992078010
Format:
Book

Description

In this sexy, humorous contemporary romance, a lost dog brings together a wealthy drifter and a small town doctor and changes all their lives forever.

Evan Chance is a man out to complete the bucket list he made as a kid, starting with ride a motorcycle across America. Caitlyn Sorenson is the sexy country doctor standing in his way. Or is she the dream he’s been searching for?

Evan's Amazing Life List
1. Ride a motorcycle across America
2. Kiss a girl in the rain
3. Swim in every ocean...
When Evan Chance gives up a successful corporate law career to tackle the bucket list he wrote when he was twelve, he has no idea where the road will lead him.
Caitlyn Sorenson is a happily settled small town doctor. When a sexy drifter rolls into town after a motorcycle accident leaves him stranded in Miller's Pond for a few days with the homeliest dog ever, she can smell trouble even as she's drawn to a man who is only passing through town.
But some scorching hot nights and a blooming tenderness mean two people will have to face up to the challenges of love.
From USA Today Bestselling Author Nancy Warren comes the first in an exciting new series of sexy, humorous romances about a family named Chance.

New York Times Bestselling author Lori Foster calls Nancy's writing 'sexy and wonderfully witty.'
Fans of Bella Andre, Kristin Higgins and Susan Mallery will enjoy Kiss a Girl in the Rain.

Publisher:
Released:
Sep 8, 2014
ISBN:
9780992078010
Format:
Book

About the author

USA TODAY bestselling author Nancy Warren lives in the Pacific Northwest where her hobbies include skiing, hiking and snow shoeing. She's an author of more than thirty novels and novellas for Harlequin and has won numerous awards. Visit her website at www.nancywarren.net.

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Kiss a Girl in the Rain - Nancy Warren

Kiss a Girl in the Rain

Take a Chance: Book One

Nancy Warren

www.nancywarren.net

Newsletter

Kiss a Girl in the Rain

Take a Chance: Book One

Copyright © 2014 Nancy Weatherley Warren All rights reserved

Discover other titles by Nancy Warren at http://www.NancyWarren.net

These stories are works of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents are either products of the author’s imagination or used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual events, locales, or persons, living or dead, is entirely coincidental.

This eBook is licensed for your personal enjoyment only. This eBook may not be re-sold or given away to other people. If you would like to share this ebook with another person, please purchase an additional copy for each recipient. If you’re reading this book and did not purchase it, or it was not purchased for your use only, then please purchase your own copy. Thank you for respecting the hard work of this author.

Cover Design by Kim Killion

Acknowledgements

I am so grateful to my wonderful friends and the people I meet in life who so generously share their knowledge. Thank you to the real Evan for sharing his motorcycle, his name and his riding experiences with me. Thanks to my dear friends Bobby and Shannon who read the manuscript in first draft and made excellent suggestions. Thank you to Ken, a recovering lawyer, for the legal info and thanks to Shelley for inspiring me. Thanks to Yvonne for the excellent formatting and to Kim for a fantastic cover.

Nancy

Dedication

This novel is dedicated to the real Evan and Caitlyn. Enjoy the ride!

Chapter One

When Evan Chance read the bucket list he’d penned when he was twelve years old, he caught a glimpse of the man he‘d wanted to be when he grew up. Now, at nearly thirty-five, he knew he was not that man.

Lists were important to Evan. He had master lists of ten-year, five-year and one-year goals, broken down all the way to daily task lists. He kept a catalogue of people he hoped to meet, all corporate movers and shakers or folks who could advance his career. Ruthlessly organized and efficient, he was a top corporate lawyer at a premier firm in Seattle. Seeing his pre-teen scrawl should have made him smile at his young self. Instead, somehow that naive list of unaccomplished dreams pulled at him.

His mom never should have sent him his list of dreamy-eyed ideals along with the birthday card she’d hand made with pressed flowers and a reminder to come home for the weekend to celebrate his milestone birthday.

Thirty-five.

Evan strode across the marble lobby leading to his law firm’s offices like a man in a hurry. In fact, he had ten minutes to spare before his next client meeting. A lot of people might use those minutes to grab a coffee, chat with a colleague or relax. Evan used his elevator ride to read a priority email; the time spent walking from the elevator to his office to consider his client’s question. By the time he hit his office, he was task-ready and sat down at his computer to email back his advice.

Even as he worked, in the back of his mind he realized that his big birthday was almost here and he wasn’t anywhere near where he’d planned to be when he was a pre-teen. Okay, he was a millionaire, but that was exactly the sort of lame goal a twelve-year-old would consider important.

But lists were important to Evan. And the fact that his mother, Daphne, had sent him that old one, as though it were a thing to be prized, bothered him.

Not that a hint of his thoughts showed on his face when he walked into The Rainier Room, one of the smaller meeting rooms. Half a dozen worried-looking executives were settling themselves around a mahogany conference table while Martha, Evan’s assistant, poured coffees and sparkling waters. Evan introduced himself and shook hands all around.

These five men and one woman were here seeking legal ways to raid their company’s pension plan. He had utter contempt for the naked greed of the president and vice presidents sitting in front of him in their hand-made suits and year round suntans hoping they could bail their asses out of the financial jam their fat paychecks and ludicrous bonuses had got them into. However, nothing on his face would give away his personal feelings. He was too good for that.

When the meeting ended, it was six o’clock. He returned to his office, typed up his own notes, then he stared out his office window at the other lighted high rises in Seattle’s financial district where he lived most of his life. In the distance he could see the harbor that led to the rest of the world. He pulled out the list. It was a bucket list made before that term even existed.

EVAN’S AMAZING LIFE LIST

Make a million dollars before age 30.

Ride a motorcycle across the country

Kiss a girl in the rain

Run a marathon

Learn Spanish

Have sex with a woman!

Learn to play an instrument

Travel to India

Fly a plane

Scuba dive a ship wreck

Swim in every ocean

Swim with dolphins

Hike the Grand Canyon

Leave the world a better place than I found it

As if.

He picked up his phone and called his parents’ number. His mother answered. Well, hello darling, she cried when he’d identified himself. He’d learned early that when there are eleven kids in the family, you have to identify yourself on the phone or risk insane time-wasting conversations. In the background he could hear rhythmic thudding that made his heart pretty much sink. What’s that noise, Mom?

Your father’s remodeling the kitchen.

Again?

Well, we had a little problem with termites from the last renovation.

As usual, he was filled with affection and irritation in equal measure. How many times when he was growing up had they been without the most basic necessities, like running water, because their dad was ‘renovating’. Which pretty much meant grabbing a sledgehammer and bashing down walls or cabinets or bathroom fixtures. Then standing in the midst of dust and destruction trying to figure out what to do next. Jack Chance was a man of strange visions and few handy man skills. But that never stopped him.

Please tell me there will be a working kitchen this weekend?

Of course there will.

An almighty crash sounded from the other end of the phone.

Mom? He wondered if he should call 9-1-1.

It’s nothing, Evan. I guess that cabinet wasn’t attached to the wall after all. Don’t worry, the kitchen will be back together when you come for your birthday weekend.

I’m bringing Tessa with me, he said.

Great. We finally get to meet her. Then she squeaked. No. Jack. The electric – oh, dear. Evan, I’ve got to go.

Wait. Why did you send me that stupid list of kid dreams?

Because you should do some of those things, she said. Love you. See you Friday. And then she was gone. He suspected his birthday dinner would be raw food. Eaten by candlelight.

Because you should do some of those things…

For one second he felt the pull of temptation. Then his mind presented him with a mental view of his schedule, crammed for the next six months. He was a top producer for his firm, clients relied on him. He couldn’t go running off because of a collection of dreams he had when he was a boy.

He folded the list once, neatly so the edges all matched and put a clean fold down the middle. Then, precisely, he turned it again and folded the paper once more. He slipped the paper into his wallet. He had no idea why.

His door opened after the briefest of knocks. He glanced up, not surprised to find Tessa walk in. His secretary only let two people past her desk without alerting him first. Tessa was one of them.

How did it go? she asked coming toward him.

He made a face. I’ve never shared a room with so much naked greed before. You could smell it, like B.O.

Tessa was one of the newer partners in the law firm of Willoughby, Tyson and Grundemeyer and his girlfriend. She settled her hip on the edge of his desk, something she’d never do if his door wasn’t closed, giving him a nice view of her excellent legs.

And you’ll help them get what they want. Because you are that good.

Probably. And screw the employees who’ve worked their asses off and paid into the pension fund all these years believing they’d be rewarded at the end.

Tessa reached out and straightened the collar on his shirt. We don’t make the law, Evan. We work within it.

Manipulate it.

For a moment she looked surprised by his sarcasm. Then she smiled. You must be tired. You’re in a mood.

He gripped her hand. Sorry. Are you sure you’re up to this weekend?

Of course. I’m so looking forward to meeting your family at last.

I know they feel the same.

He was the one with reservations. Nothing could prepare a sophisticated woman, an only child, who’d grown up in Manhattan’s Upper West Side for a family dinner chez Chance. His parents were old hippies who lived in an old house in the Oregon countryside that they’d added onto, ineptly, as their family grew. And grew.

He was about to try and prepare Tessa for the weekend ahead when another brief knock sounded.

Tessa was off his desk and standing when the firm’s managing partner Clayton Willoughby walked in. Clay was the other person who never had to be announced before he entered Evan’s office.

Ah, Tessa, how nice to see you. I was going to invite our boy here for an early birthday drink. You’re most welcome to join us.

Evan knew that Tessa would sacrifice a chunk of her trust fund to share a chummy drink with Clayton Willoughby. But she was much too adept to take him up on an offer he’d clearly made out of politeness.

Thank you so much, she said, showing her even white teeth, but I’ve got some work to finish up.

Next time, Clay said.

Of course.

She didn’t linger and within minutes Evan and Clay walked over to Clayton’s club and found a quiet corner where a couple of maroon leather club chairs huddled in the lounge. The Port Club had served the affluent and influential gentlemen of Seattle for a hundred years. Recently, they’d had to allow women to join, but the club was the epicenter of the old boys’ network. The lounge they sat in still allowed smoking.

A waiter wearing black tails arrived with the single malt scotch Clayton favored without being asked. As Clay took out one of the cigars his doctor had forbidden, he said, This scotch is almost as old as you are. Happy birthday, Evan.

Thank you.

They sipped and savored. Big plans for the weekend?

I’m going home to visit family.

Clayton puffed his cheeks out as he got his hand-rolled Cuban going.

Take a look at what my mother sent me. Evan pulled out his wallet and removed the list he’d drawn up, knowing Clay would get a kick out of it. If Jack Chance was Evan’s biological father, Clayton Willoughby was his father in all things business and law. He liked to say that in Evan he saw a younger version of himself. Of course, the man was heavily overweight from all the years of working, the business lunches, and the fine wines and brandies he so enjoyed. He called the current and much younger Mrs. Willoughby, My third and final wife, though Evan wouldn’t bet next year’s bonus on the marriage lasting.

I wrote it when I was twelve, he said offering the lined school book paper with the scrawled items.

Clay took the list, perused it and grinned. You had no idea what you were capable of, he said handing it back.

But I haven’t done most of those things.

Of course you haven’t. Any fool can learn to play the ukulele or swim around with dolphins, but you’re a partner in one of the most prestigious law firms in the country. You know we’re grooming you for great things. He didn’t say that he hoped Evan would one day stand in his shoes as the managing partner of the firm, but it was understood.

Clay was right. Evan had a life he ought to be thrilled about. What the hell was wrong with him?

Chapter Two

It’s so good to have you home, honey, his mom said, reaching over and squeezing his hand. As the family sat around the big dining table – made from timber milled on the property – he was comforted to know that even though lanterns and candles adorned the table, they were for atmosphere. The electricity was working, the food was cooked. The kitchen, while missing a few cupboards and with a chunk of ceiling mysteriously absent, was functioning.

It’s good to be here, he replied, realizing it was. His mom was still a pretty woman, even though her blond hair had a lot of silver tangled in it, her eyes were the same happy blue, her slightly crooked smile as sweet.

Daphne had made his favorite meal of childhood. Ham and scalloped potatoes with peas. There were home made buns, and chard from the garden as well as a millet casserole for the vegetarians present. For dessert he bet his mother had baked a chocolate slab cake from scratch and decorated it with thick, gooey icing and edible flowers from the garden. That cake had always been his favorite part of his birthday celebrations.

Only six of his sibs were present. In a family of eleven grown children, only weddings and funerals were guaranteed to get everybody in one place at one time.

He felt guiltily aware that too often he was one of the absent ones.

Are you a vegetarian? Jack asked Tessa, as he stood in front of the baked ham wielding his carving knife like an inept executioner.

No. But only one thin sli—

Jack hacked a big hank of pink ham and plopped it on one of the blue plates Daphne had potted and glazed herself. He then passed the plate to Daphne who scooped a guest-sized portion of scalloped potatoes onto the plate before handing it to his sister Iris who added the chard and the peas, and finally passed the loaded plate to their guest.

Thank you, Tessa said faintly. To Evan, she muttered, I can’t eat all this. Tessa found the portions at Nobu too large.

Don’t worry, I’ll finish what you can’t eat, he murmured back.

While the serving continued, Daphne said, I know it can be overwhelming remembering who everyone is in our family. I’ve put out nametags to help you. And we’ll all go around the table and say a little about ourselves. Saves tedious introductions. I’m Daphne Chance. I make pottery, keep chickens and I play piano.

Jack Chance, her husband said. "I’m fifty-nine years old and I look around at this amazing family and my beautiful wife, and I don’t know how I got so

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5 ratings / 2 Reviews
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  • (4/5)
    Evan Chance has just turned 35, and his life has just blown up around him.

    He was a successful lawyer in Oregon, being mentored by the managing partner who expected Evan would eventually succeed him, and engaged to beautiful, smart, ambitious fellow attorney Tessa. Then his mother sent him the "life goals list" he wrote when he was twelve, his mentor died suddenly, and he discovered how nakedly ambitious Tessa really was.

    He decided he couldn't get out of there fast enough. He takes a sabbatical, gets his motorcycle out of his parents' garage in rural Oregon, and heads out to accomplish item one on his list: motorcycle across the country.

    Evan isn't out of Oregon when he hits a dog, and asks the local police chief, who happens to be passing by, where to find the local vet. The police chief indulges a misguided sense of humor, and Evan meets Caitlyn Sorenson, the local doctor.

    Caitlyn is staying put. Evan is only staying until the damage to his bike is repaired. And he definitely doesn't intend to keep the stray dog he hit. Definitely not. He's going to find the poor dog's owner.

    But Evan is stuck until his bike is fixed, and he's a social guy who makes connections.

    I like Evan and Caitlyn, and many of her neighbors. It's a small, close-knit town where her grandfather was the previous doctor. If it seems her parents may not have been quite so likable, well, we don't have to meet them. And as Evan meets people, and puts up posters trying to find the owner of the dog he hit, people keep calling him offering him everything he might need, if he came to his senses and decided to stay.

    I enjoyed getting to know Caitlyn, Evan, and the town.

    Recommended for a pleasant, fun romance.

    I received a free electronic copy of this book from the author, and am reviewing it voluntarily.
  • (5/5)
    I thoroughly enjoyed this and IMO Nancy Warren is a very underrated romance author. Recommended.
    Rating: 9/10