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Hi everyone, first of all, Happy Mothers’ Day to ALL Nurturers!

This weekend we’ve been celebrating my books that feature strong MOM figures on my FaceBook Author Page — These books are listed below (with some buy links.

Today’s excerpt is from Within the Law. Of all the Moms I’ve written about my personal favorite is Sylvia Hughes, mom to Tom Hughes (Within the Law) and Aunt/Step-mom to Caitlyn Smythe (His Lucky Charm); Sylvia is fierce, protective and loving of both her children, no matter what age they are, and at the same time she understands they are grown adults with lives of their own (fortunately she has her own love affair with her husband Walter to keep her busy).

This excerpt is the first time that Sylvia is meeting Alli, Tom’s fiancee.

“Calm down sweetheart.” Alli was surprised about how nervous Tom was about his parents coming to visit.

“No. You don’t understand. My mother is going to come in here and look for something wrong. She won’t stop until she finds it.” He was checking all the surfaces for dust even though Alli had spent all of the day before cleaning.

“You are driving yourself crazy.”

“My mother will drive me crazy.”

“I spoke with Caitlyn yesterday. She said your mom isn’t as bad as you make her out to be.”

“Well Cat can say that. She’s a few hundred miles away.” He stopped and looked at Alli. “You two are getting pretty chummy. I don’t know if that means trouble for me?”

“You worry too much.” Alli left the room. He hoped he hadn’t insulted her.

Tom plumped the pillows on the sofa… again. He had to admit, Alli had done a nice job scrubbing the house. He was grateful because she really understood how important it was to him. She had never even grumbled about it. He was using his sleeve to wipe a possible smudge off of a glass panel on the curio cabinet when he heard Alli coming back down the stairs.

“Babe, I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to…” He stood silently when he saw what she was wearing. “Now, that’s really not fair. I’ve got to wear that to work.” And he knew he would never get over the vision of her wearing his uniform shirt and nothing else but a pair of flimsy panties and a delicate diamond engagement ring. The shirt was left unbuttoned.

“Your cousin said you needed to be distracted if you got too nervous.”

“I’m distracted.”

“Good.” She went into his arms. “Now you just need to relax…”

His breath was slow and steady. “I think I know just what I need to relax,” He spread the shirt open and pulled her to him. He bent to kiss her.

They heard the front door open. “Tommy! Come help your father with the suitcases.”

Alli stepped back and pulled the shirt closed. Her eyes were wide. “They’re early!”

“Uh, yeah…” He blew out a big breath. “I’ll be right there ma.” He called back.

“I have to get upstairs.”

“I’ll keep them distracted.” He did his best to compose himself and then he went to greet his mother. He made sure to hug his mom and swing her around so that her back was to the stairs. “Hi ma. You got here early.”

“Your father decided to push on through instead of stopping at a decent hour last night.” She started to look around. “So where is this Alli of yours?”

He saw Alli run up the stairs and he did his best to hide a smirk. “She’s uh, upstairs changing. She’ll be right down.” Tom turned to the door. “Let me go help dad.”

Just a few minutes later, Alli was coming down the stairs dressed neatly in a casual light blue pants suit. She was fully composed. Her hair was combed perfectly. And her smile was indescribable. Tom marveled at how quickly she put herself together.

“Mr. and Mrs. Hughes, I am so glad to meet you. Tom has told me so many nice things about you.”

Sylvia Hughes laughed. “Now I know you’re fibbing child.”

Alli smiled. “He’s also told me nice things.” She stressed the word “also”.

Walter Hughes poked his son in the side. “She’s good.”

“Ma, dad, this is Alli Davis, the woman I plan to marry.” Tom was proud of her.

“There’s a pot of coffee and muffins in the kitchen if you’re hungry.” Alli offered.

“Sounds lovely.” Sylvia led the way. When she stepped into the kitchen, Tom noticed her looking around. “I see you’ve made a few changes…”

Tom groaned inwardly. “Alli is a really good cook ma.” He prepared himself for her onslaught.

She noticed the microwave. “It’s about time you modernized a little Tommy.” Tom almost dropped. He had been prepared for only criticism. Yet, when he thought about it, his parents were both always very supportive of him. Maybe, he thought, he was just being a little paranoid.

It wasn’t until they were seated at the table enjoying their coffee and muffins that Sylvia did start in about their living arrangements.

“Ma, we’re both adults…” This was an age-old argument between them. It would probably be the same argument no matter what age he was.

“You are not married yet. You know how I feel about that. I don’t approve of that under my roof.”

He counted to ten, very quickly, before answering. Tom looked directly at his mother. “Ma, fortunately this is my roof… Remember? I bought this house from you and dad.”

Alli started to say something to Tom when Walter put his hand on hers and shook his head. She stayed quiet. Walter winked at her.

Sylvia glared at her son. “Well, why don’t you just move the wedding date up then? That would solve everything.”

“Ma, we set the date and we are sticking with it. We have been making all of our plans on that date. There are people who will be coming in from out of town. I am not going to make them change their plans. And we are living here together. That’s it. I hope that you can accept that while you are visiting us.”

Sylvia was silent for a long time. Finally she turned to Alli, “For your sake, not his, I hope that when your babies grow up, they are more mindful of your feelings.” She looked like she was ready to pout. “Children should respect their parents. You’ll know what I mean when you have your own.”

Alli gave Tom a desperate look. He looked at her apologetically. She squared her shoulders. “Uh, Mrs. Hughes, Mr. Hughes, we want you to know up front… I can’t have kids.” She braced herself.

“What do you mean you can’t have kids?” His mother frowned.

“There was an accident and… I was left unable to have children.”

“You can’t get pregnant?”

“No ma’am.” Alli bit her lip. Tom reached across to take her hand.

Sylvia looked at her and then Tom. “Well, we want more grandchildren. You had better do something about that. Adopt.”

Hyphema

KINDLE  ~  B&N  ~  SMASHWORDS  ~  APPLE

Hostage Heart

KINDLE  ~  B&N  ~  SMASHWORDS  ~  APPLE

Courage of the Heart

KINDLE  ~  B&N  ~  SMASHWORDS  ~  APPLE

Within the Law

KINDLE  ~  B&N  ~  SMASHWORDS  ~  APPLE

A Chaunce of Riches

KINDLE  ~  B&N  ~  SMASHWORDS  ~  APPLE

Common Bond, Tangled Hearts

KINDLE  ~  B&N  ~  SMASHWORDS  ~  APPLE

 

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