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Nina Barnes thinks Valentine’s Day should be optional.That way single people like her wouldn’t be subjected to kissy Cupids all over the place.There were days when I'd swear one of us was adopted. I griped about the stupidity of the holiday because it makes single people feel defective."He scratched his head, looking genuinely confused. Unfortunately, he fell firmly into the friend- zone category. One day when I'd been sitting at the park reading Harry Potter, just blissing out in the sunshine, he sat down beside me and said he didn't understand why I'd want to read on such a nice day and that he just didn't get the big deal about Harry Potter. If you want to turn the guy down, that's on you." And then my brother walked away from me. We go to the bookstore, ooh and ah over all the books, and then pick out a precious few to buy. Since I didn't know why she was here, I waited for her to start talking."I know we broke up, but my mom bought a Valentine's dress for me, and she expects me to wear it to the dance, whether I have a date or not." Vicky ducked her head. Not like this conversation isn't, but I was hoping we could go as friends? Before I could answer, another car pulled up the driveway. "He headed toward Nina's front door."And why is Nina creeping out her back door like some sort of spy? Nina ducked low, like she didn't want anyone inside to see her through the back window, and then ran over to join us. "Which is why I thought you'd be happier if you had a date."The idiot's heart was in the right place ... "I never asked you to play matchmaker.""Cole is a nice guy. Afterward, we drink frothy coffee concoctions in the cafe while we discuss how book boyfriends are so much easier to deal with than guys in real life. "It's like Grand Central Station around here tonight.""Is that Cole Harris? "I'm going to hide over here for a while, if you two don't mind.""Why are you hiding from Cole? And West doesn’t exactly know how to handle that, since his entire life is a carefully constructed secret.Dating the girl next door could be a ton of fun, but only if Nina never finds out the truth about his home life.Who came up with the idea that a baby in a diaper with a bow and arrow was romantic, anyway? The whole stupid holiday was probably a marketing ploy thought up by florists, so they could sell overpriced flowers to desperate guys who were hoping to get laid.
"Is it me, or does that sound like some sort of horror movie? Therefore, I shouldn't be penalized when the food is screwed up.""That's your logic? My mom pointed at the dishes she'd set on the table.
Going for a casual demeanor, I leaned against the doorframe. "It's okay.""There's something wrong with your dog," West said."She feels the same way about you," I shot back."On that note, I'm leaving."The sound of a car pulling into the driveway had all of us turning to look out the kitchen window.
Unless West's dad had traded in his giant gas- guzzling SUV for a red Prius, someone else had just pulled up the drive to West's house."Should you go see who that is? The way his eyebrows scrunched together told me he knew who it was, and he wasn't happy about it. I walked over and peered out the living room window.
She lives in Southern Illinois with her husband and several furry beasts. Most evenings after work, you can find her sucking down caffeine and writing fire-breathing paranormal adventures or romantic comedies. Subscribe to her newsletter at to be notified about new releases. Like, if you don't have a boyfriend or a girlfriend, the holiday should disappear.
That way, single people like me wouldn't be subjected to frilly hearts and cherubs all over the place.