A man who makes food like this… has got to be great in bed.
Sarah: I’ve landed the job of a lifetime: to write a profile about the Heartthrob Chef himself, Byron Ainsworth. Too bad he’s a slime ball in person. No, the real hero on the set of Decadent Desserts is Ethan, Byron’s deliciously cuddly sous-chef, and I’m making it my mission to spend my time at the studio mostly with him. Let’s call it background research.
As I enjoy more of Ethan’s company and my article begins to take shape, I realize two things: I need to tell Ethan how I feel about him before it’s too late. And something feels wrong about Byron. I just don’t know what it is yet.
Ethan: The moment Sarah walked onto the set, she didn’t just steal a piece of my heart, she took the whole thing. But she’s not here for me, she’s here to interview Byron. I might be the better chef behind closed doors, but he’s the star of the show, whereas I’m a nobody.
Still, Sarah’s presence infects me like a sickness. She leaves me obsessed and full of yearning, but I know she deserves so much better than me. Every minute spent with her sucks me deeper into delight and despair, and yet I continue to seek her out. Maybe, just maybe, I can use my talents in the kitchen to woo her? Because if I let her slip away, I know I’ll regret it forever.
Recipe for Passion is a steamy body-positive romance featuring an adorable teddy bear of a plus-sized hero and a strong-minded heroine who loves him exactly for who he is.
Google Play: https://bit.ly/3dtckFV
“What is it?” His voice is low, almost like a whisper, but with a rawness to it which I haven’t heard in him before.
“Some flour on your cheek, there,” I say, dabbing at his face with the corner of the towel.
He mimics what I’ve just done and wipes it off with the back of his hand. Then he seeks out my eyes with his again. “Gone?”
I’m lost for words. How close I am to the man I’ve obsessed about since our first meeting. And I’ve been trying so hard to keep things professional between us. This is my first solo assignment, after all. The first time Tom has even let me out of the office and into the field. What would he say if he found out I’m dangerously close to seducing the guy I’m supposed to be interviewing? Worse still, I’m actually meant to be interviewing his boss. Instead, here I am drooling over Ethan and spending additional time with him, because I can’t stomach the idea of going back and talking to Byron like I’m supposed to.
Objectively I’m failing at my job, but my heart is telling me that I’m on the right track. That this is where the real story is.
“Yeah, gone,” I whisper.
“Well, we’re nearly there,” he says, glancing down at my lips for a moment. We are. Nearly exactly where I want to be.
I wish he’d do more than just look. As if he heard that thought, he takes the towel from me and drapes it around my shoulders. His gesture melts my heart and warms my cheeks. If I’m not careful, I’ll lose myself in the moment. It would be so easy to follow my instincts and kiss him right now. But what if he’s not into it? Or worse still, what if he is, but for the wrong reasons?
I know how I feel; what I want.
If I’m going to do anything like that, I want to make it clear I’m not in this for a one night stand. My heart can’t afford to put itself in a vulnerable position like that. If I’m going to give up my credibility as a journalist, I’ll only do it for something meaningful. Something real. But I don’t have the courage to follow through on that impulse.
And so I take a deep breath and sit down in my seat again and peer out of the windshield. The clean glass facade of the Premier Inn gleams like a shining beacon up ahead in the first rays of sun trying to break through the clouds. He wasn’t wrong. We are almost there. Unfortunately.
“Before we call it a night, did you have any more questions for me?” he asks.
It’s an excuse; we both know it. After everything we discussed already while he was cooking for me back at the studio, I couldn’t possibly have missed anything. But I’m grateful for the opening.
“So many. And I wanted to thank you for helping with my car and the ride back. Why don’t you join me for dinner? My treat.” I don’t know why I say that. I’m not even hungry.
“I couldn’t possibly,” he says, while keeping his eyes fixated on my lips.
“No?” I breathe.
“It’ll be my treat.”
“We’ll see about that when the time comes,” I say.
He smiles and slowly raises his hand, bringing it closer to my face. I dare not stir; I don’t even dare to breathe until he touches me. His fingertips brush past my forehead and push some errant wet strands of hair behind my ear. Then, his eyes lock onto mine again, and I lose myself.
I can’t think. I can hardly breathe.
“May I?” he asks.
“Yes,” I whisper, though I don’t even know what he’s asking me. Does it matter?
Anything he wants. Right at this moment, it’s a yes from me. Anything.
“I don’t know if I’m on the right track here, but I like you, Sarah.”
Squeee! I can feel my eyes widen, and my heart speed up, as my cheeks warm and turn an even deeper shade of red. But I just can’t move or look away.
“And after the time we spent yesterday evening and earlier… I wonder if perhaps that’s something…”
“Yes,” I whisper again.
He smiles again and I could just cry. Happy tears, of course. Not that I actually am crying; that would be embarrassing.
“This is so unprofessional,” I blurt out.
He pulls away and leans back in his seat. “You’re right, it is.”
“No, Ethan!” I place my hand on his knee, and am shocked at how intensely my body reacts to such a simple gesture. My palm is hot and cold all at once. Still, I don’t want to let him go.
He turns to me again.
“I like you too. I just wasn’t sure—” I stammer.
“You’re here on assignment. I understand,” he says.
“But knowing that you feel the same, I don’t see why we can’t make an exception.”
“Just this once?” he asks.
The innocence in his eyes makes me smile again.
“Hopefully more than once,” I say.
ABOUT L. MOONE:
Realistic characters, pure emotions, true passion. Everything I write is about the characters: how they interact, what’s going on in their heads, how the passionate relationship develops and affects them. I don’t believe in keeping things hidden, or dressing them up just for show. Some of my characters are potty-mouths, most of them are less than perfect (yes, even physically). I aim to write a happy ending for all of them, without keeping anything behind closed doors.