Ben locked the church’s side door and headed back to the nave. All clear in here—except his head. He took a seat on one of the front pews and focused on the crucifix behind the altar. How many times had he told his parishioners to talk to God, to ask for His help when they needed it? Too many to count.
He rarely took his own advice. A farmer’s son turned soldier, now a pastor—the roles that’d made up Ben’s life called for independence, fortitude and leadership, not asking for help. Just last night, though, he had.
He’d sat on the end of his dock, surrounded by the calm he’d craved after active duty. Beautiful landscape, peaceful water, the many incredible sounds of nature. The hell he’d witnessed—no, experienced, firsthand—overseas was a memory. He owned a piece of heaven now. And had nobody to share it with.
One of his favorite things about small-town living—not a lot of people to crowd him. One of his least favorite things about small-town living—not a lot of available women to get close to.
So he’d tilted his head skyward and asked for what he needed. “I’m sure you’ve heard this one more times than any human can count, but please send me a woman. Somebody with a good heart, simple tastes and plenty of spirit. And forgive me for this part, but a pretty smile and a nice pair of breasts sure wouldn’t hurt, either.”
As soon as he’d finished, he’d laughed so hard it had echoed across the water. Asking God to fix him up with a date. As if He didn’t have a million more important prayers to answer.
Ben hadn’t given the impromptu prayer another thought. Until this afternoon, when Lindsay Lawler walked into the church.
A woman from out of town. An expected visitor, yet her presence had thrown him for a loop—because of last night’s crazy request. The dark-haired beauty with the ponytail and pretty smile seemed close with her parents, two brothers and her soon-to-be sister-in-law. She laughed at her brothers’ teasing and gave it back in stride. As for the final item he’d asked for last night…
Ben exhaled long and slowly at the image stored in his mind. Lindsay hadn’t dressed to draw attention, but there was no mistaking the curves her casual clothing covered. And when she’d stood in front of him, her blue-eyed gaze riveted to his face and filled with non-wedding-related interest, he hadn’t been able to help but look at the swell of her breasts. The tempting line of her cleavage, begging to be stroked and teased. By him.
Busy though He must be, God had been paying attention last night. Ask, and it shall be given you.
“Nicely done, Lord,” Ben said, as he rose from the church pew. “And thanks for listening.”
Lindsay could write the book on falling in love—with the wrong guy. From bad boys to a married man, she’s made one bad choice after another, gravitating toward men destined to hurt her. Except at her brother’s wedding. This time, she’s drawn to a good guy—the pastor. Ben is handsome, single, and definitely interested. But with her past mistakes, maybe Ben is too good…
After two tours in the Middle East, Ben returned home needing peace and purpose. He found it as pastor of a laid-back, small-town church. There’s just one thing missing from his life—love. In a community of a couple thousand, his options are limited. Until Lindsay comes to town for a wedding. Sparks fly between them, but she’s skittish. If Ben wants her to stay, he’ll have to convince her that he’s more than a man of God—he’s the right man for her.
by Karla Doyle
Close to Home Series, Book 3
- can be read as a standalone story
- contemporary romance (erotic)
- self-published, expected release date March 19, 2015
- ISBN 9780992152765
- Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/23358838-cherry-on-top
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