Saturday, October 15, 2011

Snippet Saturday--Workplace

It's Snippet Saturday time. I'm sorry to say life got crazy and I missed the last two Saturdays. Crazy how, you say? Well, for one we found out that my mom is now CANCER FREE! Great news, huh?
Also, I'm on a tight deadline and not nearly done with my book. So, that has me busy, busy, busy. :)

The theme this time around is 'workplace'. I chose a scene from Tempting Grace. I love the all relationships in this story. It's the last of my Vaughn series and this couple is special to me because of that. I hope you enjoy this scene!

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It was all Jackson could do not to laugh as he watched Grace stalk out of Merrick’s office. He’d gotten to her, and she was running scared. It was only a matter of time now. He’d been lusting after the little blonde imp from the moment he’d spotted her at one of Merrick’s family’s cookouts. He’d tried the subtle approach, but that had gotten him exactly nowhere. She’d shot him down like a clay pigeon. The more he’d gotten to know her, the more he’d come to realize that Grace used sarcasm to keep people at arm’s length. Especially him. She was damned good at holding him off. Jackson was getting desperate. If he didn’t get her to submit soon, he’d explode.

“Quit thinking about her.”

Merrick’s voice dragged him back to reality. “I wasn’t,” Jackson lied.

Merrick rolled his eyes and sat back in his chair. “What the hell is it with you two? I can’t figure it. It’s as if you like fighting with her.”

“The truth?”

“No, I’d rather you lied to me,” Merrick ground out. “Yes, I want the truth.”

“Just remember, you asked,” he warned. “Fighting with Grace is like foreplay. It turns us both on. She wants me as much as I want her. She just can’t seem to let her guard down long enough to let me in. I’ve yet to figure out why.” He leaned forward in the chair and said, “Maybe you can help me with that one.”

Merrick shook his head. “You are aware that I’m not only her cousin, but your boss, right?”

Jackson recognized Merrick in overprotective mode. But Jackson had no intention of staying away from Grace, now or ever. “Is this the part where you warn me away?”

“Grace is my employee, and I protect my employees. You’re in dangerous territory, flirting with her. Sexual harassment isn’t something I take lightly, Jackson.”

Jackson went rigid. “Did she say I sexually harassed her?”

“That’s not the point. The point is I protect what’s mine.”

“I would never hurt Grace.”

“But you are making her uncomfortable, and I can’t have that. Either back off or I’ll move her to a different position.”

Merrick had just tossed down the gauntlet. If Jackson pushed the issue he could lose Grace and probably his job, not to mention his friendship with Merrick. Still, he wasn’t about to make a promise he knew damn well he couldn’t keep. Jackson rubbed his jaw and decided to lay it all on the line.

“This isn’t a game to me. I care about your cousin. You can fire me, pull Grace under your wing or whatever, but I won’t stop pursuing her until she tells me to stop.”

Merrick slammed his fist on the desk. “What the hell is up with you? I’ve never seen you act like this. You’ve never dated an employee. Why Grace?”

Jackson had wondered that himself. “She’s the most annoying woman I’ve ever met. She tells me to go to hell and I get a fucking hard-on. She threatens to maim me and I start drooling. Damned if I can figure it out. But until I do, I won’t let up. She wants me, she’s just fighting it. I scare her.” Jackson rubbed his jaw and thought for a second. “No, that’s not right. I think the idea of being with me scares her.”

“Grace doesn’t scare easily,” Merrick mused. “But you’re right. She’s been watching you like a caged lioness. If you aren’t careful, she’ll have you for lunch. Grace can be damned mean when cornered.”

It was now or never. Time to make a deal with the devil. “I have a solution. One that will please everyone.”

Merrick drummed his fingers on the desk for several seconds before saying, “I’m listening.”

“The Interop Convention in Vegas is coming up,” Jackson stated, referring to the nation’s biggest information technology convention. Businesses from all over the world attended to view new cutting-edge technologies. It was May, and the convention was a week away. “I want to take Grace with me when I go. If she’s still resisting my irresistible charms after that, I’ll back off.”

“You and Grace in Las Vegas for a week? You think I’ll agree to this?”

“I think you want Grace to be happy. I think you want harmony back in your office. Let me take Grace to Vegas. Not the whole week. Three days, that’s all I’m asking, and I promise you’ll have both.”

Merrick got out of the chair and paced. Jackson was almost afraid he was going to fire his ass right then. He had every right too. Jackson was surprised when Merrick said, “If Grace wants to go, I won’t stop her. But it’s her choice, not yours. You won’t force her because you’re her boss. Understood?”

Jackson said a silent prayer that Grace wouldn’t fight him on this one. “Understood.”

Merrick came around the desk and leaned against the edge. “One more thing.”

Jackson stood, sensing a battle coming. “Yeah?”

“Grace is like a sister to me, to Blade and Lacey too. I’d be very careful with her if I were you.”

He nodded. “I know how close you all are, but this is between Grace and me.”

Merrick crossed his arms over his chest. “Grace is all grown up now. Chloe says she can take care of herself, but that doesn’t mean I won’t kick your ass if you make her cry. Remember that while you’re trying to sweet talk her into going to Sin City with you.”

Jackson laughed. “Hold off on buying the tar and feathers until after I get back, will ya? I wouldn’t want you to waste your money.”

Merrick shook his head. “You have to get her to agree to the trip first. I’m not so convinced you’ve got what it takes.”

“We’ll see.”

“Yeah, we will.”
And be sure to check out these other authors' workplace snippets!
Anne Rainey
Jody Wallace
Eliza Gayle
Mari Carr
McKenna Jeffries
Mandy M Roth
Myla Jackson
Taige Crenshaw
Vivian Arend
Alison Kent
HelenKay Dimon
Shelli Stevens
Lauren Dane
Lacey Savage
TJ Michaels
Shiloh Walker

A Little Bit Naughty--out now!

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