Donna Hatch is the author of the best-selling “Rogue Hearts Series,” and a winner of writing awards such as The Golden Quill and the International Digital Award. A hopeless romantic and adventurer at heart, she discovered her writing passion at the tender age of 8 and has been listening to those voices ever since. She has become a sought-after workshop presenter, and also juggles freelance editing, multiple volunteer positions, and most of all, her six children (seven, counting her husband). A native of Arizona who recently transplanted to the Pacific Northwest, she and her husband of over twenty years are living proof that there really is a happily ever after.
A stolen Christmas kiss leaves them bewildered and breathless. A charming rogue-turned-vicar, Will wants to prove that he left his rakish days behind him, but an accidental kiss changes all his plans. His secret could bring them together...or divide them forever.
Holly has two Christmas wishes this year; finally earn her mother's approval by gaining the notice of a handsome earl, and learn the identity of the stranger who gave her a heart-shattering kiss...even if that stranger is the resident Christmas ghost.
“There you are,” a low male voice murmured barely above a whisper.
With a squeak, she jumped.
A soft laugh came in reply and that same low voice said, “Forgive me for startling you.”
She tried to peer into the face of the dark figure nearby but looking at the brightness of the moonlight on the snow outside had all but blinded her. Which guest had come to the conservatory? She was supposed to remain here alone.
A silhouetted male form neared. “You are so lovely.”
Was that Lord Bradbury? Did he truly think her lovely? He’d hardly exchanged two words with her since she and her parents arrived this morning. Who else might have come?
The figure sank into the next seat to her. Before Holly said a word, a warm, gentle, ungloved hand touched her cheek. She froze. A pair of lips pressed against hers. Soft, tender, invigorating, his kiss immobilized her. His lips moved across hers, testing, offering. He tasted faintly of citrus and cinnamon, exotic, and delicious. The heat of his lips lit an answering warmth inside. Oh heavens, she’d never imagined such a sensation! His lips continued to play with hers while a sweet ache formed. With both hands, he cradled her face, and deepened the kiss. An exquisitely delicious sensation carried her closer to an edge she never knew existed. An untouched place in her heart awoke and sang while the hot and cold tingles turned into a foreign longing. Every bone, muscle, and sinew in her body turned to liquid more decadent than the chocolate she liked to drink every morning.
She sighed. A soft male moan came in reply. The kiss ended but his soft lips planted tiny kisses along her cheek, her eyelids, her brow. Holly remained motionless, spellbound by the beauty and power of the kiss. His hands withdrew. She kept her eyes closed another heartbeat, unwilling to release the sensations shooting through her. Who had kissed her? And why?
Surely it was Lord Bradbury. Why else would he have encouraged her to come seeking a ghost? She opened her eyes.
She sat alone.