Oh my goodness, readers, do you ever have one of those days where you have a million things to do and you get literally zero accomplished? That was my day yesterday, so here we are on Saturday having our Fall Into Romance interview because yesterday was just not happening. But I'm so excited to have author Tamie Dearen with us today to share her favorite scene from Restoring Romance. I've had the privilege of reading this one and it is such a fun story!
First, let's learn a little about Tamie. Tamie Dearen lives in Texas with her very romantic husband—the inspiration for her romance heroes. They have two beautiful daughters, both of whom are happily married, and they’ve been blessed with two awesome grandsons. A dentist in private practice for thirty years, Tamie plays a variety of musical instruments and spends every available spare minute writing books.
Sounds fun and busy! As I said earlier, I really loved reading Restoring Romance and one of my favorite scenes is the one Tamie is sharing with us today. Of it, she said, "Adam spies a new girl in town—one who’s very attractive—at the pet adoption tent, with a cat in her arms. Adam, who is terribly allergic to cats, rushes over to intervene, taking with him a humongous mutt dog to offer as a substitute."
Curious to know more about Restoring Romance?
She’s a big city chef who likes cats. He’s a small town mayor who restores antiques. But even with feline allergies at play, true love is nothing to sneeze at.
When Ash Hendrix moves into her aunt’s historic home in Romance, Oregon, she’s ready to bring New York City style to the sleepy little town. But her dream of remodeling the old home into a stylish restaurant is cut short when the mayor interferes. Her opposite in every way, the infuriating Adam is the last man she could ever be attracted to. So why can’t she stop thinking about him?
Mayor Adam Walker can’t believe the cute blond he met at the festival is the woman who’s trying to destroy his family’s legacy. Initially intent on shutting down her plans, he’s shocked to find himself wanting to fulfill them, instead. But she doesn’t trust him. And why would she, with her traumatic past and his earlier antagonism?
Can these two opposites find happily-ever-after? Not without a little help from their friends and family… and a can of pink paint.
“You’re not planning to adopt that cat, are you?” Adam asked.
“As a matter of fact, I am. Why shouldn’t I?” She lifted her chin, somehow managing to look down her nose at him while he towered over her. It was so adorable, he couldn’t help smiling.
“You might want to consider other options… better options… A dog, perhaps?” Adam swept his arm back in a grand gesture toward Kujo. “Perhaps this cute guy—he could be a companion and provide protection from… from criminals.”
Her plump kissable lips made a surprised O. “Is there a lot of crime, here?”
“Mmm… not usually, but you never know. Just to be on the safe side, you should consider getting a watch dog.”
Kujo let out a deep woof that rattled Adam’s ribcage, and the cat shrieked, struggling in the girl’s arms. She edged away a few steps.
“I think I need protection from that monster, not by him. Anyway, I’m happy with my choice.”
“Why would you want a cat when you could have a dog? Dogs are so much better.”
“I like cats.” Her eyes narrowed to angry blue slits.
Adam knew he wasn’t making a good first impression, but he figured he could make up for it later. After he prevented this disastrous adoption. Desperate times—desperate measures.
“But a dog loves you, while a cat merely tolerates your existence as a slave.”
“Dogs slobber on your clothes and chew up your shoes.”
“Cats scratch your furniture and spit up hairballs.”
“Dogs lick their private parts and then lick your mouth.”
Hmmm… she had a point. What else could he say to convince her? “I didn’t want to tell you, but this is the last chance for Kujo. He has to find a home today, or they’ll put him down tomorrow.”
He regretted his hasty words the instant tears puddled in her round eyes. Her lip trembled as she stuttered, “I… I still can’t…”
“Adam Walker! Why are you lying to Ash about Kujo?” Erin Walker appeared out of nowhere, waving a finger in his face, and he stepped back in the wake of her fury. Kujo added another deafening bark and the cat howled. Her finger moved down to poke against his chest. “You know good and well Brent would never put an animal down. That’s the whole point of the Finding Forever Animal Rescue.”
“I was only teasing.” He lifted his palms in supplication.
“Ash, I apologize for my brother-in-law’s behavior. There’s no excuse for him.” Erin scowled, her hands on her hips, and Ash matched her angry expression.
“It was just a joke, Erin. Give me a break. I’ll make it up to you.”
Erin crossed her arms as an evil smile slid onto her face.
Oh no! What have I done?
Erin whispered something in Ash’s ear, something that made her press her lips together, as if she were trying not to laugh.
“I suppose, we might be persuaded to forgive you…” Erin opened her eyes wide and blinked rapidly, adopting an innocent tone. “Yes, I think we could forgive you if you adopted Kujo. After all, he’s been looking for a home for a long time.”
“Wait a minute, Erin…”
“Why wouldn’t you adopt Kujo?” Ash stepped closer, glaring up at him, the cat still in her arms. “Weren’t you telling me what a good idea it would be to adopt him. Why not do it yourself?”
Adam let out a violent sneeze.
“Bless you.” Erin and Ash said in unison.
“I don’t need a dog.” He rubbed his itchy eyes on his sleeve. “And besides, who could afford to feed this guy. He weighs more than me.”
Erin made a tsking noise. “You should have thought of that before you got Kujo’s hopes up.”
His sister-in-law was a python, and Adam was her helpless prey. The coils squeezed around his neck. He couldn’t speak.
Erin strode away, calling over her shoulder, “I’ll go get the adoption papers.”
I hope you enjoyed this scene as much as I did. I was torn between feeling sorry for Adam and laughing because he got just what he deserved. Have you ever played a joke that backfired on you?
Just under three weeks until release day! We're excited to share this fun set with you!
Jessica L. Elliott
Author, artist, mom and super-genius