Maxx Reynolds needs help.
His shop, house, and life are all in a state of disarray.
In desperation, he turns to the internet to hire a new employee,
thinking it will make his life easier
What he expects is a fellow named Charly.
What he gets is a quirky, sassy, red-head named
Charlynn who runs circles around him.
And she’s all woman.
He can’t stand her.
He can’t keep his hands off her either.
On Monday, I carried a sandwich into the garage, setting it on the workbench. It had been a hectic morning, and I’d barely had time to talk to Maxx at all. At one point he’d received a call that he’d walked outside to take, and when he came back, his glower was deeper than usual. I knew better than to ask him about it, though. Instead, I stayed busy.
Maxx was talking to a customer as I went by. He was busy with his hands as he worked on a nice-looking Yamaha. But he glanced up, and I offered him a smile. “Your lunch, boss man, whenever you’re hungry.”
He nodded his attention on the man he was talking to. The man chuckled. “Wow—she’s good. You get lunch?”
Maxx made a low noise, and the customer stepped forward, his hand outstretched. “Cam.”
I shook his hand. “Charly.”
“Pleasure.” He indicated Maxx. “You’re far cuter than this lug. You smile too.”
I had to laugh. “It’s part of the service now.”
“What else is included?” Cam teased.
“I want those numbers this afternoon, Charly,” Maxx snapped. “Stop flirting and get to work.”
Cam threw back his head in amusement. “I hope you get paid well for putting up with the attitude.”
“I think Maxx considers that one of the perks.”
Cam chuckled and looked at Maxx. “I like this one.”
Maxx snorted. Like a real blow the air through your nose and huff at the same time sort of snort. He glared at Cam. “Hands off my staff. I have a firm no mixing business with pleasure policy. Charly can’t date my customers.”
I managed to hide my surprise at his words. He had never mentioned anything of the sort. And I highly doubted Cam was looking for a date. His tone was teasing and friendly but not personal. He didn’t look remotely interested in me. His next words confirmed that.
Cam frowned. “My wife will be happy to hear that, Maxx. Relax. I was just being nice.” He eyed him. “You might want to try it.”
“I’m plenty nice.”
I had to turn and walk away to stop my laughter. Cam spoke again. “Back to the event. You have to go, Maxx.”
“I can’t. I’m booked solid.”
“Can’t you put it off?”
“No. I can’t just close the garage, Cam.”
“It’s an amazing opportunity.”
My steps faltered. What opportunity?
“I guess it’s one I will simply have to say no to.”
Cam huffed and called my name. “Charly!”
“Can you reschedule your boss here so he can be gone for a while?”
I met Maxx’s expression. It was filled with warning, intense and dark. Telling me not to speak.
I decided to push back a little. I was tired of being quiet. “I can check.”
Cam smirked and crossed his arms. “Great.”
NYT/WSJ/USAT international bestselling author Melanie Moreland lives a happy and content life in a quiet area of Ontario with her beloved husband of thirty-plus years and their rescue cat, Amber. Nothing means more to her than her friends and family, and she cherishes every moment spent with them.
While seriously addicted to coffee, and highly challenged with all things computer-related and technical, she relishes baking, cooking, and trying new recipes for people to sample. She loves to throw dinner parties, and also enjoys traveling, here and abroad, but finds coming home is always the best part of any trip.
Melanie loves stories, especially paired with a good wine, and enjoys skydiving (free falling over a fleck of dust) extreme snowboarding (falling down stairs) and piloting her own helicopter (tripping over her own feet.) She’s learned happily ever afters, even bumpy ones, are all in how you tell the story.
Melanie is represented by Flavia Viotti at Bookcase Literary Agency. For any questions regarding subsidiary or translation rights please contact her at email@example.com