Blue Moon Series 1
Blue Moon Over Bliss Lake
by Cate Masters
Home for the holidays…
Sierra O’Brien and Carter Grove have a lot of history—and regrets between them. Their high school romance didn’t survive after he went away to college. Despite tremendous business success, Carter never found another woman like Sierra and has two failed marriages to prove it. Sierra’s luck wasn’t much better, but after being widowed, she heads back to Bliss to plan her future. The last thing either expected was to run into each other or to reconnect to the magic that once drew them together.
Can Sierra and Carter make it work this time or are they doomed to repeat the past and let the same mistakes drive them apart? In Bliss, the inexplicable is an everyday occurrence, and anything is possible—especially during a blue moon.
Blue Moon Over Bliss Lake
Blue Moon Series 1
Contemporary holiday novella
About 40,000 words
Enjoy the following excerpt for BLUE MOON OVER BLISS LAKE:
Ensconced in soft down, Sierra floated down from her dreams, the one place she always found safety. Her body acknowledged the bed, the sunshine stinging her eyes drawing her back toward reality. Reluctantly, she pried open one then blinked both open. After a moment of confusion, she knew where she was: home. In Bliss.
Dreams of Carter had helped make the night blissful, too. While she rose and puttered around, making the bed, a vivid image of him stayed in her mind. How the heck had a decade improved his looks? Carter 2.0. Oh yeah, he’d love that, with all his cutting-edge technological developments, he’d become one of Steve Jobs’ main competitors. Unlike Jobs, Carter’s sharp, professional appearance lent an unapproachable air, the expensive suit he’d worn the day before cut so well to his figure it looked tailor-made. It probably was. The soft fabric had surprised her. So had the taut muscles beneath the suit. Carter kept himself in shape. He had everything in life he could possibly need. A pang of regret sliced through her.
Or did he? She headed to the bathroom and twisted the faucet knob. Steam began to fill the small bathroom as she stepped inside the shower. It hadn’t escaped her notice when Forbes listed him in its Top 40 Under 40. She’d been happy for his success, but something about those media photos grabbed her attention, and she lingered over them. His smile appeared too rehearsed, empty of happiness. Sometimes pictures showed a woman clinging to him, her embrace cloying and possessive rather than loving.
Toweling off, she tried to remember his current wife’s name. It escaped her; he’d married at least twice. A bitter chuckle escaped and she wiped the mirror free of steam a little harder than necessary. And you thought you were the love of his life. Obviously, he didn’t have one—he had many.
She frowned at her hazy reflection. After reading another article she’d run across online in some pretentious magazine like Architectural Digest, she’d questioned whether she ever really knew the man. His wife—Barbara, maybe?—had had their initials monogrammed on everything throughout their McMansion. A beautiful place, but cold. Overbearing. Nothing like the boy she’d once loved.
You’re not exactly the same girl either. Gaunt face, pale skin, and dark circles beneath her eyes. Not for long. Carter had made his mark on the world and she intended to do the same. Much smaller than his, of course, but she didn’t need to conquer the universe. A state or two might be nice, though.
“Oh, Carter.” He’d left his mark on her, too. Ten years melted away when she’d seen him the day before, the two minutes leaving a vivid impression. Throughout the night, in the haze of sleep, memories of the two years they’d shared filled her with sublime happiness. How bright the future had appeared then.
She straightened. It will be. A little late, but starting over would give her the opportunity to make it better this time.
Oh wait…this was supposed to be an author interview but its seems like Carter and Sierra decided to interview each other. Enjoy! 🙂
1. Cotton or Silk?
Carter: Nothing beats silk boxers.
Sierra: Your underwear is nicer than mine! They’re a little outdated.
Carter: *winks* We have to take you shopping.
Sierra: For a night out, a glass of wine.
Carter: Wine or beer. But I bought a bottle of champagne for us to celebrate the new year, because it’s going to be the best one yet.
3. Describe Sierra for me, Carter?
*beams at her* In a word, perfect. She’s smart, beautiful, and goes out of her way to help people. Off the charts sexy, too.
4. Describe Carter for me, Sierra?
Sexy? *laughs* I can’t begin to compete with his level of sexiness. You should see him, he’s ripped! There’s something about his eyes that’s always gotten to me, they’re so dark with those thick lashes women always wish we were born with. And I know him so well. It’s hard to describe, but he’s the perfect combination of exciting and comfortable, you know? I can be myself with him and know he’ll accept me no matter what.
5. Sports fan or just tolerate it?
Carter: *winces and laughs* It’s more a social thing for me, a way to connect with Dad and my brother Craig. I put so many hours into my business, I haven’t made time for much fun. *takes Sierra’s hand in his* That’s about to change.
Sierra: *smiles at him* Good, then you can come with me to the local games. I love supporting the school teams.
6. What do you absolute love about each other?
Carter: I can’t get away with anything with Sierra. She knows what I’m going to say and do before I even do. She even has this thing she does, where she runs through scenarios in her head to figure it out. So adorable. So the simple answer is, she keeps me grounded. And makes it all worthwhile.
Sierra: He keeps surprising me in all the best ways. When we used to date, he’d be pretty predictable. Don’t get me wrong, I love that I can depend on him for anything. But now, he’s putting more thought into making every moment count. It’s wonderful.
7. Okay, without giving away anything, what really happened back in high school?
Carter: *grins* High school was the best time of my life.
Sierra: For me, too. I wish we’d known then how precious it was. Everything fell apart when Carter went to college.
Carter: *nods* I thought I had to make a success of my business first to be worthy of her. Now I know I had it backwards, that I should have held onto her, and put the business second.
8. Between the two of you, there are 3 marriages and of course, yall’s history together. What makes you think that you will work this time?
Sierra: We have some catching up to do, but you’re right about our history. Carter has changed since then, but I know what kind of man he is inside—caring, thoughtful…*laughs* and persistent.
Carter: I had to be persistent so you’d believe I was here to stay. I’ve made so many thoughtless mistakes about the most important part of my life, and now it’s time to focus more on what means the most to me—Sierra.
9. If money were no object, where would you like to live?
Carter: *shrugs* I can afford to live anywhere, but there’s nowhere like Bliss. I can’t wait to get settled there again.
Sierra: Bliss is unique, for sure. I’d love to travel the world, but I’d always come home to Bliss.
10. What’s next for you?
Carter: What isn’t? I have a new life to start.
Sierra: Exactly. We’re both starting over from scratch. But whatever the future brings, I can’t wait.
Carter: It’s going to be great.
Cate Masters has made beautiful central Pennsylvania her home, but she’ll always be a Jersey girl at heart. When not spending time with her dear hubby, she can be found in her lair, concocting a magical brew of contemporary, historical, and fantasy/paranormal stories with her cat Chairman Maiow and dog Lily as company. Look for her at http://catemasters.blogspot.com and in strange nooks and far-flung corners of the web.