I've just typed THE END on Listen, and I must admit I got super emotional as I finished. It's now going through editing, and I can't wait for you to meet Nick and Elliot – one of my favorite couples I've written so far…
Not Nick Horner.
I walked so fast it was as if my feet had wings, ending up in the teacher’s parking lot while still in full of meltdown-avoidance mode. I couldn’t think, scrambled to find my keys, dropping them to the ground, and desperate to get the hell away from here.
Shit. No. Leave me alone. I don’t want anything to do with you.
Yeah right. I’d demanded a donation, and while the center needed it badly, I couldn’t think about spending time in Nick’s company again. I’d have to find some other way of raising funding that didn’t involve being with the only man who rattled me. Hell, it had taken me a long while to stop the flush of anger and added shame when I thought about what happened. I’d kissed him back, and I hadn’t even known why we’d been kissing, but sucked face so hard I’d tasted blood, and I craved a gentler kiss, and even now I recalled when he did soften the kiss and I’d been so close to wanting much more.
Fuck his dark hair with the premature gray at the temples, and his perfect smile, and his green-hazel eyes, and the way he argued with me with intelligence and then anger. Then when he lost his shit with me, and then…
…the bathroom incident happened.
Not even twenty thousand dollars was worth it. Hell, I’d ensured I didn’t have Caleb in my class by bribing the admin office with cakes, because the thought of having to interact with Hannah and Caleb’s dad after what had happened—after I’d kissed him back when what he’d actually needed was professionalism tinged with compassion.
“Elliot! Wait up!” Nick yelled my name again, but it wasn’t the doppler effect that meant his voice was nearer, it was the fact he was getting closer. I finally got the key in the lock but didn’t turn it, because what in God’s name was I doing trying to leave when he was bearing down on me. What if I kiss him, what if do or say something that makes me lose my head again? It was bad enough I’d recorded all his documentaries and spent too much time watching every single one more than once, but to talk to him face-to-face was a step too far. Inhaling one last frantic breath, I schooled my features into indifference, then turned to face him. He jogged across the parking lot, his suit jacket flapping—every inch the sexy celebrity who turned my brain to mush and my legs to jelly and made me cross lines I shouldn’t have been anywhere near.
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He only wanted to make the best home for his new daughter; he never meant to fall in love with the man who might steal her away.
Nick and his husband had always wanted a big family, but when cancer took Danny six years ago, Nick was left a single dad of three. He never considered his broken heart would heal enough to add to his family, but as soon as he meets Teegan he knows he wants to adopt the little girl. Born profoundly deaf, Teegan has been rejected twice already in the adoption process and hasn't found her forever home. Nick wants to be her hero—her dad—and create a world that is safe and happy for her. He knows he wants to make her life perfect—he doesn't know how to go about it or understand the best thing to do for his family, and he needs help. Enter Elliot, and Nick finds himself falling for the frustrating, sexy, inspiring, and caring teacher who can make things right.
Elliot is wary of helping the man who appears more interested in public opinion than the needs of his own family. But, learning that Nick, wealthy and entitled, is now adopting a deaf child, Elliot knows this is a step too far and strides into battle. As the child of deaf adults, Elliot knows he is the best person to advocate for little Teegan and, if needed, he is determined to intervene and halt the adoption. Nothing and no one will get in Elliot's way when it falls on him to protect Teegan.
This single dad story features a widower struggling to make things right, a teacher battling for a child's wellbeing, an adorable toddler, three loving siblings, a home with a view of the ocean, and families standing behind them both.More info →