Wednesday, December 5, 2012

A Christmas to Remember - vignette by Lacy Williams

A Christmas to Remember - by Lacy Williams

This vignette/scene takes place between chapter twenty-one and twenty-two of COUNTERFEIT COWBOY (December 2012 from Love Inspired Historical). Enjoy!

December 24, 1891

Pete had lived in Boston his whole life—twelve years—except for part of a year he’d spent in Wyoming with his adopted older brother, Jesse. But he’d never seen a Boston Christmas like this.
He pulled at the choking necktie Jesse’s fiancée, Erin O’Grady had insisted he wear. Beneath the jacket and starched shirt, he was sweating. Or maybe it was because of all of the highfalutin people in sparkly outfits that kept staring at him.
Probably wondering how he’d ended up here in this fancy, sparkly, stuffy ballroom. Kind of the same way he did most days. He’d never expected to find a family again. Even if it wasn’t a conventional family, he was proud to be Jesse’s brother. And Jesse’s fiancée was the daughter of a Boston shipping magnate… and had asked them both to attend this fancy-schmancy Christmas party at her parents’ home.
“Doing all right?” asked a kind voice, and he turned to see Erin in a dark blue ballgown, with her black hair swept up behind her head. He was a little surprised Jesse had let her out of his sight looking so nice.
“I’m fine.”
She brushed her fingers across his brow, probably swiping at that one lock of hair that always flopped down where it wasn’t supposed to be. “There are some other children in the parlor if you want to go back there…”
He knew. He’d been in there earlier, but some of the other children had snubbed him, talking in whispers as if he couldn’t hear what they said about him.
“I’m okay,” he told her, looking back at the crowd of people chatting and mingling. “It’s only another hour until we can leave.” Jesse had given his word. And as long as Pete kept his coat and tie on, Jesse had promised to let him sneak a treat from the sock hung beneath the windowsill in the small apartment they shared.
Erin’s forehead wrinkled. Was she worried he would slip back into old habits—namely pickpocketing from the fine partygoers—and that’s why she’d suggested he return to the kids’ parlor?
Before he could get good and offended, Jesse approached and stole a quick kiss from her. Erin flushed prettily.
“My father is waving me over,” she said on an apologetic sigh. “Excuse me.”
When she left, Jesse remained at Pete’s side. They both watched the crowd. It made Pete feel a little better that his adoptive brother didn’t seem to fit in with the rich partygoers either.
“You okay?” Jesse asked.
“Yep. Fine, just fine. Why’s ever’body so worried about me?”
Pete caught Jesse’s raised brow from the corner of his eye. He crossed his arms over his chest. “Sorry,” he muttered.
“I know this kind of party isn’t what either of us wants to be doing tonight.” Jesse shifted his feet, tugging at his tie the same way Pete had been doing moments ago. The action reminded Pete of the ways they were the same.
“If Erin said anything to offend you—”
“She didn’t,” Pete interrupted. Feeling a little like a heel now. Erin was the kindest person he knew—she even put up with her awful father—and she wouldn’t have thought the worst of Pete.
“She just cares about you. We both do. She’s actually asked me how I’m doing about six times already tonight.”
Pete nodded, grinning. After being on his own for close to two years, being cared for took a little getting used to. But he wouldn’t trade Jesse or Erin for anything—they were family now.
This Christmas would be much better than the last one.

I hope you enjoyed this glimpse into the life of these characters. Here's the blurb for COUNTERFEIT COWBOY:

A con man with a conscience…
From the moment Jesse Baker collides with Erin O’Grady on a Boston train platform, he faces a dilemma. For once, Jesse doesn’t want to lie about who and what he is. Yet if she learns he’s a con artist, not a cowboy—and the urchin with him is certainly not his brother—she’ll never give him a chance.
Erin suspects there’s more to the enigmatic cowboy than meets the eye. But the sheltered socialite is certain his deep compassion is real. On the long Christmastime train ride to Wyoming, hearts and courage are tested and true motives revealed. And the journey than began in a charade may end with redemption—and a very real love.

By day, Lacy Williams is a stay-at-home mom battling dirty diapers and dog-hair dust-bunnies. By night, she is a novelist with two books nominated for RT Book Reviews Reviewers’ Choice Awards (2011 & 2012). Her current projects include more books for Harlequin’s Love Inspired Historical line (cowboys!) and a screenplay.







4 comments:

Debby Giusti said...

Lovely, Lacy!

Thanks for giving us a glimpse into A COUNTERFEIT COWBOY!

Christine Johnson said...

Sounds fun, Lacy! I enjoyed the excerpt.

Sandra Orchard said...

Really enjoyed it, Lacy! And a screenplay?! Cool! I'd like to hear more about that, too. :)

Jenny Blake said...

you makeing me want to read this next but I still have about 3 I have to read first. (but if we dont tell anyone maybe just maybe I could read this next.)