Home > A Billionaire's Holiday Love

A Billionaire's Holiday Love
Author: Posey Parks

CHAPTER ONE

 

 

HOPE


The break I needed wrapped me in its warmth. A Christmas town that gave you all the feels. Well, that’s what I read online. Before I knew it, I bought a cabin that sat on a cute little mountain overlooking the city. Gold string lights draped the long hanging willow tree branches that stood before me. Kids whipped by, dragging their sleighs. Screams of excitement and laughter left their mouths as they slid down the snow-covered slope. A gleeful smile hit my lips. I twisted my boots in the fluffy snow covering the ground, then peeked up at the dark sky. Maybe I should check out one of the shops and enjoy a cup of hot chocolate. Walking through town square, the harsh wind struck my body, sending shivers up my spine. Wrapping my arms around myself, I wondered if the coat I wore would survive a month in Christmasville, Vermont. Anytime I traveled to a town during the winter months, I embraced the snap of cold and the snow. Momma said I was a winter baby born in the south. She was right. Hard to believe my birthday was just around the corner.

My gloved fingers tugged the red pea coat collar tight, in an attempt to block the whistling wind. I marveled at the green garland and big red bows circling the merry-go-round as the kids rode the horses.

Cinnamon sugar whirled under my nostrils. A man served warm chestnuts out of a cart a few feet away. I felt like a kid. My eyes were bigger than my stomach this Sunday evening. Hands stuffed in my pockets, I scurried across the street. Brick store fronts lined either side of the road. The diner nuzzled between the outfitter store and the coffee shop caught my attention.

Sweet potato pie and peppermint dangled in the air the moment I stepped inside. Two glass cases filled with mouthwatering desserts called my name. Big candy apple red booths and chestnut wood tables surrounded me. Would my brown knobby button nose warm in this century?

“Good evening. Welcome to Christmasville diner. Just one?” The red and white uniform and the candy cane pens stuffed in her black bun brought out the festive atmosphere in the restaurant.

“Good evening.” I pointed at her hair.

“I love the pens.”

A smile spread across her red lips. “Thank you.”

“I’d like to sit at the counter.”

“Sure thing.”

I plopped in one of the vacant, shiny red swivel chairs at the counter.

Light holiday music bellowed throughout.

My eyes gravitated to the chalkboard gracing the wall ahead.

Pot roast, mashed potatoes, and gravy. My stomach grumbled. I peeked around. Please tell me no one heard my belly.

“Good evening, my name is Delila. Are you ready to order?” A smile swept across her hickory brown face.

“Yes.” I shrugged out of my coat.”

“Let me get that for you.” A man helped with my coat.

I peeked over my shoulder. “Thank you.”

His green eyes brightened. “Not a problem. I’ll hang it on the hook near the door.”

“How thoughtful.”

My eyes followed him. I scanned his broad shoulders and long legs as he shrugged out of his coat.

Delila cleared her throat. “You’re staring.”

I laughed, turning in my seat. “I was. Just a little. I’ll have a mug of hot chocolate with a peppermint stick and marshmallows and pot roast, mashed potatoes, and gravy, please.”

“Excellent.” Her brown eyes sparkled.

She turned to the customer who sat beside me. “Would you like a minute to decide?”

“No, I know what I want.”

My eyes shot to the right, pouring over his bulging biceps in the navy cashmere sweater. I bet his pecs stood out too. I bit my lower lip. Jesus, he was delicious. His thick thighs filled his black slacks.

You’re not here to land a man. You’re here to enjoy the beautiful Christmas town.

“Pot roast, mashed potatoes, and string beans. I’ll also take a glass of domestic beer on tap.”

Her brown cheeks lifted. “Would you like to try our Christmas beer flavor cinnamon apple?”

His perfect Greek god like bearded face scrounged up like I offended him. “No. Nothing Christmassy.”

“Do you have something against Christmas?” I asked.

Delila and I exchanged glances before turning our attention back to him.

“Yeah. I hate it.”

I threw my head back and laughed. “Says the man sitting in a Christmas diner.”

His fingers slipped through his dark brown hair, shoving the strands off his forehead. “Just because I helped you with your coat doesn’t give you a front-row seat into my life.”

My mouth fell open. “You didn’t have to take up residence beside me. Sit somewhere else,” I growled.

He stared at the chalkboard. “No, I like it right here.”

I rolled my eyes.

He glanced at Delila. “Do you have Canyon beer on tap?”

“No.”

“I don’t want any frills.” He waved his hand in the air.

“Just domestic.”

“Coming right up.” Her long ponytail danced behind her as she sashayed toward the opposite end of the counter.

The guy retrieved his laptop from the brown leather satchel hanging from his chair.

I watched Delila create my cup of goodness and pour the sexy Scrooge guy’s glass of beer.

The man pecked away at the keys as Delila sat our drinks on the counter. I glanced at his hair, cut to precision. The sides were cut low. What was my infatuation with his hair?

My nose wiggled over the peppermint goodness before I brought the scolding hot red mug to my lips. The smooth, rich chocolate warmed my insides. Later tonight, I’d sit in front of the fireplace with another cup of cocoa.

His eyes never left his laptop screen. He grabbed the glass and sipped.

“On a deadline, huh? I know all about that.”

I brought the mug to my lips again, drawing marshmallows into my mouth this time.

He sighed. His narrowed eyes raked over me. “Look, Ms. Christmas. Not everyone’s on vacation. Some of us have to work.”

Slamming my cup on the counter, I pointed at him.

The hard lines on his chiseled face softened for the second time since we met.

He burst into a hysterical fit of laughter.

“What’s funny?”

His dark brown brows crinkled. “I’ll show you.”

He grabbed his cell, snapped a pic of me, then held the phone between us.

My eyebrows shot up. “Oh, my god.” Felt like my face and neck were on fire. I stared at the hot chocolate and white marshmallow mustache in horror.

I franticly searched for a napkin. The dispenser nearby was empty.

Shielding my mouth with my hand, I attempted to reach across him for a napkin.

“Need something?”

“You’re getting a kick out of this. Give me a napkin, jackass.”

His brow arched. “Ms. Christmas has a potty mouth. Ask nicely.”

“Screw this.” I attempted to rise, and he gingerly gripped my arm. My ass met the seat.

“Relax.” He grabbed a napkin, then pushed my hand aside. “I got it.”

He dabbed the soft skin above my top lip. My heart banged in my chest at a rapid speed.

“The cocoa mustache brought character.” He grinned.

I slapped his hand away. “You aren’t funny.”

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