Anne Greene shares how her hero and heroine meet in her latest Historical Romance Novella, Daredevils. Comment or answer the question at the end of the post to enter the drawing for Anne’s award winning Scottish Historical, Masquerade Marriage. Deadline: August 5th, 11:59 central time. Here’s Anne:
Excerpt from Daredevils by Anne Greene:
Rand planted the wrench on the engine casing, held out his hand, and then immediately withdrew the greasy thing. He reached for the rag in his rear pocket and wiped both palms until the grease vanished. Then he extended his hand again. “Hello, I’m Matthew Randolph Maitland, Jr. And you are?”
She was stunning. But she had to be one of those frivolous flappers because she wore the wrong clothes for the breezy, sunny beach. Her shoes sank almost ankle deep in the blowing sand, and she had to clutch her knees to hold that shining dress down. When the hem fringes blew, the dress shimmered.
Beneath that crazy, red cap, blonde hair fluttered around the most agreeable face he’d ever laid eyes on. He swallowed. Those surprised big eyes, the color of a gray mist, could haunt his dreams. If he hadn’t been holding her hand, warm and soft against his callouses, he’d think she was an apparition.
“I’m Gloria Richards. Good to meet you.”
The throaty voice sent shivers down his spine. “What can I do for you?” He glanced at the shiny black automobile parked on the road. “Auto trouble?” His hand moved to the wrench.
His heart missed a couple beats.
“No. I came to talk with you.”
“Yeah?” She belonged at a coming-out party in a fancy country club where she’d be surrounded by men sporting white tails and carnations in their buttonholes. He pulled in a deep breath. The pungent fumes of gasoline brought him down to earth, and made his aching head pound. He knew her kind. He’d met his belly full of spoiled debutantes. But this one had something winsome about her.
“I’m Annie Maitland’s friend.”
“Annie? Curt’s wife?” Rand scratched his head. “Oh, yeah. You’re the Richards girl. I’ve heard of you.” What had he heard? Didn’t pay much attention to girl talk. Something about her being an orphan, bobbing her hair, and wearing cosmetics … though that clear skin didn’t look made-up. But what did he know?
“Could we go somewhere to talk?” She waved a graceful hand, then quickly swiped both palms down across her flying skirt.
“Sorry, but I’ve got a lot of work before the show tomorrow.” Did she think he could stop everything and take her across the inlet to the Blue Crab? “What’s on your mind?”
She was a bright thing and looked to have plenty of energy and pizzazz. But his words deflated the aura of radiance around her. He clenched his jaw. Blast his flat wallet. He wasn’t a cad. If she needed to talk, he’d take her somewhere cool and comfortable … if he could.
She glanced up and down the beach, empty except for the sleeping houses that announced the outskirts of Kitty Hawk, and then nodded toward the Model T. “We could sit in the auto.”
Umm…that wasn’t going to happen. Not in a Tin Lizzie. Judging by the weakness in his knees he’d fall under her spell the minute he sat on the plush seat next to her. “I’m busy.” He half-turned away and caught the scent of something sweet hovering around her. “Just tell me what you want.” His voice had turned husky. He cleared his throat. “I’ve got work to do.”
She took a step closer and frowned. “Please, this is hard enough without you making it more difficult.”
Once again that throaty voice riveted him. With a voice like that she had to be a song bird. With her looks she’d pack ‘em in at Sam’s Speakeasy. He pushed a heavy hand though his hair. Hard for her? What did she know? How many times did a man look up from a bad job and discover a beautiful woman standing behind him? He shoved his hands into his pockets. She had spirit. He admired a woman with backbone, even if she was one of those new-fangled flappers. “Okay, shoot.”
A small frown wrinkled her forehead. “Since you’ve heard of me, you know I’m a wing walker.”
His shoulders stiffened. Whoa! Impossible! This sprite of a girl! “I don’t believe you,” he spouted before he clamped his lips. He dug his hands out of his pockets, picked up the wrench, turned to the plane, and pretended to tighten a nut on his wing. This had to be a joke. He’d only been back in town one day and already the guys were setting him up. Another one of their practical jokes.
“You heard Buzz Greenwood took a nosedive?”
He nodded, keeping his eyes on the engine. Looking at her rattled his brains.
“He was my pilot. Silver Lining was our plane.”
He jerked his head up.
She blinked those gray, misty eyes against sparkling tears.
He tightened his grip around the wrench to keep from patting her on the shoulder. He turned back to tighten his wing nut, swabbed off a few drops of excess grease and then swiveled back toward her. “The guys are carrying this prank too far.” He’d rub their faces in their joke. “What are you, some kind of actress?” He winked.
“Actress?” She heaved an exasperated-sounding sigh.
Those misty, gray eyes had turned as hard as ice picks.
“No. I’m a wing walker. The best wing walker on the east coast. If you hadn’t just blown in for the Nags Head Barnstorm, you’d have heard of me.” A definite jaw line angled her soft face.
She wanted to walk his wing?
She yanked off her smart hat and raised the soft thing as if she intended to hit him with it. Blonde curls glowed in the sunlight. Her dress flapped higher. She swatted the fringe down.
She wanted to walk his wing!
About Anne: My home is in the quaint antiquing town of McKinney, Texas, just a few miles north of Dallas. My dear husband is a retired Colonel, Army Special Forces. My little brown and white Shih Tzu, Lily Valentine, shares my writing space, curled at my feet. I have four beautiful, talented children, and eight grandchildren who keep me running.
I’ve traveled in every location of each book I’ve written, and each book is a book of my heart. Besides my first love, writing, I enjoy travel, art, sports, reading, sailing, snorkeling, movies, and way too many other things to mention. Life is good. Jesus said, “I am come that you might have life and that you might have it more abundantly.” Whether writing contemporary or historical, my books celebrate the abundant life Jesus gives.
About the novella – Daredevils:
What happens in the roaring twenties when a daredevil barnstormer falls in love with a wing-walking flapper threatened by dangerous men who will exploit her?
Orphan and wing-walker Gloria needs a job when her boss dies in a barnstorming accident. With no other jobs available, she sweet-talks Rand into letting her walk his wing. Flying Ace Rand fights wartime injuries that hamper his flying even as he works to gain the world-record for solo flight across the Atlantic. He bucks his wealthy dad’s plans for him to settle down, join the company, and marry a socialite.
Rand falls in love with the courageous, fun-loving, daring Gloria. But Orphan Gloria’s experienced too many men who promise love and marriage and instead take advantage of her being alone in the world.
Will Gloria turn her back on fame to wed a man addicted to danger?
Question for Readers: Do you like to fly or does it make you nervous? Are you frequent flyer?
Come back August 1st for Annette M. Irby!