June 23, 2007

UNWRITTEN ROMANCE by Jenna Bayley-Burke

Unwritten Romance
UNWRITTEN ROMANCE by Jenna Bayley-Burke
Sweetheart Rosette
from The Wild Rose Press

Given a second chance at life, Mindy Thomas swallows her fear and decides to tell her boss how she feels about him. Except Jared Salazar misunderstands, thinking she's after a promotion. Mindy uses the interview to ensure Jared understands she wants him, not the position.

excerpt ::


The single word echoed through the receiver, and her soul bubbled over with excitement. The last three days seemed to last a lifetime. Every hour stretched on in slow motion since she’d found a pebble-like growth underneath her arm, endured the biopsy, and waited.


The clinical voice on the phone explained medical technicalities about the type of cyst they’d found, but Mindy Thomas barely paid attention. She’d spent every second of the past three days thinking about what she would do, how she would live, if only she received this reprieve.

The world buzzed around her tiny cubicle at Salazar Advertising. Monitors hummed, keyboards clicked, the coffeepot gurgled, and conversations went on in hushed tones. Couldn’t anyone feel her joy? How could an emotion that strong not be noticed?

After scheduling a follow-up appointment, Mindy set the phone on its base, her hand trembling slightly. Excited, relieved, and completely terrified. Now she had the chance to live the life she’d stayed awake at night planning. She swiveled in her office chair, turning to see the closed doors of the corner office. Could she dare to do all she’d dreamed?

Jared Salazar emerged from his office with easy self-confidence. So powerful and free, Jared belonged to no one. But then, he did own Salazar Advertising.

Mindy had been inexplicably drawn to the dark-haired man from the moment she saw him at the new employee orientation. She wasn’t the only one. Every woman in the company eyed him with thinly veiled interest, to which he always seemed oblivious. Or maybe he was just smart enough to ignore it.

Excitement thrummed through her veins, propelling her to stand and follow him into the elevator. He might think her crazy, but she’d risk it. This new Mindy, the one who would steer the boat and not just enjoy the ride, wanted to know if Jared Salazar could live up to her imagination.

"You don’t know me," Mindy began once the doors closed, leaving them alone in the elevator.

"Sure I do. Mindy from Client Relations, right?" Jared’s hazel eyes sparkled with a magic more potent than the fear running through her veins.

"Right." She smoothed sweaty palms against her skirt. "This may sound strange, but I can’t let another day go by without saying something. I’d love to get to know you better."

His eyes, a kaleidoscopic collection of browns and greens, narrowed, then softened. "The door to my office is always open to employees, Mindy. You know that."

Her stomach dipped and she prayed the flip-flopping had something to do with the descending elevator. She couldn’t lose her nerve now. Mindy took a deep breath and plunged in headfirst. "I know this is out of the blue, but I was hoping we could get together, outside of work."

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