Whirlwind Romance

A rush of emotion dropped a veil over all but the tiny world of the two people in seats 11A and 11B, in a jet plane floating somewhere over the Atlantic, in a still moment in time.

Friday, November 11, 2016

The Breakup: Is There Hope for Claire and Gideon?


Who to trust? The policeman, the handsome Senator, or the secret agent? Claire must decide and soon, before the murderer strikes again.

Claire Wilding is a newly minted docent for the George Washington National Masonic Memorial and a recent widow. On her first day she meets the handsome, if mysterious Gideon Bliss, newly minted U. S. Senator. They do not hit it off.

Thrown together due to the unexpected appearance of a corpse in the Memorial, any possibility of romance is thwarted by assorted villains and intrusive friends and relatives.

The Mason's Mark: Love and Death in the Tower (an Old Town Romance)
Wild Rose Press, May 6,2016 (Crimson Rose imprint)
Mystery/Cozy Mystery, Romantic suspense
ebook 79,000 words; print 322 pp.
M/F;  3 flames

Blurb:
In both the best and worst first day at work ever, docent Claire Wilding meets the man of her dreams, but her carefully rehearsed guided tour of the George Washington National Masonic Memorial collapses when she discovers a body and is drawn into a dark world of black ops and Italian renegade masons, of secret cabals and hidden treasure. Also cloaked in mystery is handsome Gideon Bliss, a George Washington expert who haunts the Memorial, his manner evasive. What is his secret? Claire fears she'll fall in love with him only to learn he's a thief or even a murderer. Juggling two eccentric mothers, an inquisitive sister, and an increasingly smitten detective, Claire must find answers to a complex web of intrigue, including who to trust and who to love.

Gideon's car, a McLaren

This excerpt indicates how close to hopeless seems their future.

Excerpt (PG): The Breakup
She heard not a peep from Gideon for the next three days, a welcome respite because it gave her time to think. The meddling of the mothers aside, the issue lay between Dorcas and Gideon. It didn’t matter that Dorcas had left Gideon—Claire still felt like the other woman, and it didn’t sit well with her Southern upbringing. Another skirmish with Wonder Woman would be the death of her. By the time Gideon called, she’d made up her mind. “Hi, sorry I haven’t been in touch. I—”
“I understand. You’re dealing with…family matters.”
“No,” he said slowly. “Actually, the Senate will be back from recess this week. They had a pro forma session Friday and being the lowest life form on the seniority pole, I had to preside.” He paused. “I sent the papers to Dorcas. She hasn’t responded.”
Claire didn’t want to get sucked into the soap opera. Bite the bullet. Take the bull by the horns. The horns of a dilemma? No, that’s not right. Take my medicine—take his medicine. Oh dear, I wish I were better at these idioms. “Gideon, I…I think you should clear this matter up before we see each other again.”
The phone went dead. Hmm, he took that surprisingly well. She resisted the urge to cry and went into the kitchen. When she came out carrying a glass filled with ice and a bottle of vodka, she found Gideon sitting on the packing crate. His eyebrows bristled. Claire didn’t think she’d ever seen eyebrows actually bristle. It made him look like an angry centipede.
“Claire, you can’t dump me over the phone. I forbid it.”
She poured a large tot into her glass. “I see.”
He stood and paced, not an easy thing to do in a room the size of a refrigerator box. Watching him, it occurred to Claire that she should decorate her house in the Shaker style—have all the furniture hang on pegs, up and out of the way of large trampling feet. She forced herself to focus on the words spilling out of the side of his mouth. “I never hid my predicament from you. It’s unfair to let me fall head over heels for you and then suddenly go all ethical on me.” He stopped and peered down at her. His face drooped. “Claire, I need you to help me through this.”
Her heart tried to claw its way out of her body and rush to him. She deliberately folded her arms across her chest. To muster her resolve, she pictured herself burning at the stake, the crowd chanting, “The other woman must die.” When she finally spoke, her tone was hard. “You’re a grown man, Gideon Bliss. You have to clean up your own messes. I begin to wonder if your mother may have spoiled you just a teensy bit.”
His cheekbones went rigid and his eyes narrowed, firing bullets of angry red light at her. “That was unnecessary, Claire. And unjust. But you’re right—this is my mess.” And with that he twirled, bumped his shin hard on the hall stool, and charged out the front door, leaving it open. That went even better than the phone call. This time she did not resist the urge, and burst into tears.
 
Claire's house
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