Early Spring

The official season change is still two weeks away, but as I write this, it’s 74 degrees here according to my hubby’s weather station. Far from normal in our part of Pennsylvania this time of year, and it doesn’t bode well for me getting a decent snowstorm this year, so I guess I have to resign myself to an early spring. Hopefully that doesn’t also mean summer will be early, because that would really suck. It’s hot and humid here long enough normally, so the less we have of that, the better. But I guess if we’re getting spring early, that means I can start on garden clean-up earlier this year.

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I made a huge vat of chili yesterday for hubs, and today, I have the crockpot on, filled with a vegetable curry for me. We’re heading into two busy weeks at the day-job, and I know there are going to be a couple of days this week when having dinner ready to reheat will be a huge help. I may throw stuff in the bread machine mid-week, too, so we have something fresh and yummy to go with the leftovers but won’t hog up time I won’t have.

Since I know the week is going to be busy, I need to get in my writing time today, so I have a quick snippet for you from the Freeing Medusa.

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When she woke at lunchtime, she felt so much better. She rolled onto her back, stretching cautiously. No more cramps.

Thank the Gods.

“Ah, you’re up.” Hunter’s footsteps sounded on the floor, startling her.

“Hi.” Her voice was rusty, she realized, pushing herself upright.

“Take it easy.” His weight made the side of the bed sink lower.

“I’m feeling better.” She tugged the blindfold up, blinking quickly in the bright midday light.

Hunter looked good. Just as good as he’d looked Friday night, she realized. His dark hair was mussed, as if he’d been dragging his fingers through it, and his bright blue eyes looked relieved.

He’d be glad to be rid of her.

Katharine swallowed, setting the blindfold on the night stand beside the bed.

“I’m glad to hear it.” He pushed a strand of hair away from her cheek. “You’re still pale.”

She shrugged, averting her gaze from his watchful eyes.

“You want to hit the shower? I have lunch downstairs.”

She blushed, thinking of her last shower…and his assistance. “Sure.” Then she could get the heck out of here.

He startled her by leaning close and brushing a kiss on her mouth. “Then we can talk about what we’re going to do next.”

Her gaze flew back to his, and her mouth dropped open. “‘We‘ don’t need to do anything,” she started.

Hunter put his fingers over her mouth. “Don’t. I don’t want to argue with you before we get lunch.”

She swallowed, but kept her mouth shut. She could tell him later that his temporary guardianship was over. She waited while he held her gaze for a long moment, resisting the urge to tell him now.

Finally, he nodded once and got to his feet. “I’ll have lunch ready when you come down.” He touched her cheek with one fingertip, then turned to leave the room.

Katharine shut her eyes for a second, then threw the blankets back. All through her shower, she kept replaying last night. Then their short conversation just now. He’d understand once she told him her cousins and their husbands would be her best bet for safety.

She dressed quickly after dragging a comb through her tangled hair. She wanted to gather her things together, but all she could find were her bathroom tote and her carry-on. She frowned, wondering what he’d done with her other things.

Downstairs. He must have left the other bag and her box downstairs.

She stuffed her things into the carry-on and the bathroom tote and carried them down with her, leaving them on the landing at the bottom of the steps. The living room was empty, so she turned back the hallway to the kitchen that she’d glimpsed last weekend.

Hunter was putting some chips in a bowl when she stepped into the room, and he smiled as he turned toward her. “Sit down.” He gestured to the table, where she saw he’d already set plates with sandwiches, as well as small deli containers of cole slaw and potato salad.

Swallowing, Katharine sat, stomach fluttering nervously.

“Don’t wait for me.” He set the chips on the table.

She picked up her sandwich and found tuna salad. Despite her anxiety, she realized she was starving. By the time he set a plate of fruit on the table and sat, she’d eaten half her sandwich.

Hunter smiled at her.

She swallowed the bite of tuna salad in her mouth. “Thank you.”

He shook his head and picked up half of his sandwich.

“I mean it. I really do appreciate what you’ve done for me.” She set the sandwich down. “I don’t want you to think I’m ungrateful. I know that Harvester would have killed me if you hadn’t gotten there at just the right time.” She tried to remember every point she needed to argue, everything that had occurred to her during her shower.

“Katharine.”

She lifted her gaze to his.

“Eat your lunch. We’ll figure out our next step after we’re done.” He smiled again.

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This book is the first thing on my publishing list for the year. I’m still working out editing, but once that’s settled, then I can start making concrete plans, like dates and showing you the gorgeous cover I’ve been holding onto.

So…what sort of start to the new month are you having? Weird weather where you are, too? Are you making the best of it? I’d love to hear from you!

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