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Friday, January 23, 2009

Meet Nikki's Rival

This week I'd like to introduce you to Nikki's rival. Nikki is the heroine in The Best Selling Toy Of The Season, but before I do let encourage you to check back next Friday to see what guest blogger Emma Lai has to say. Emma has a new book coming soon from The Wild Rose Press, and judging from the excerpt I read it's a good one.

And as coincidence would have it, I drew Emma's name out of the hat, so she's the winner of last week's blog contest. Emma, let me know what book you want.

Now about that excerpt... Nikki and Tommy are at his house preparing to go to dinner when...

The pealing of the doorbell interrupted them. “Let me get that,”
Tommy said with a smile. “I’ll be right back.”

Nikki sat down on the sofa to wait, and she heard a feminine
voice in the foyer. “Darling, why haven’t you called me? I haven’t
heard from you since Christmas.”

The woman didn’t wait for an answer. Nikki heard her heels
tapping on the marble in the foyer, and seconds later she entered the
living room with Tommy hot on her heels.

“Oh, you’ve got company.” The woman’s eyes narrowed, and
Nikki saw that her presence did not please the new arrival.

She crossed the room and held out her hand to Nikki. “How do
you do? I’m Cherie Blake, Tommy’s girl friend.”

Girl friend! “It’s nice to meet you Cherie. I’m Nikki Lane.”

Cherie made an assessment of her in moments. “I love your
dress, Nikki. Where ever did you find it?”

Suddenly, the green dress looked cheap and tawdry to Nikki, for
the red dress worn by Cherie Blake obviously cost the earth. Probably
designer, Nikki thought. Nevertheless, Cherie snootily waited for an
answer, and Nikki didn’t have it in her to lie.
“I found it on a sale rack at Super Mart.”

Cherie laughed, and it occurred to Nikki that even though Cherie
obviously didn’t think much of her, she couldn’t believe that Tommy
would date anyone who shopped at Super Mart.

“Oh, you can tell me,” Cherie purred. “Is it a JC Penney or Sears

“That’ll have to be my secret,” Nikki replied.

Cherie attacked on another front. “You’ve chosen a good lawyer
for your legal work, Nikki. They don’t come any better than Tommy.
Why, just the other day his mother and I were bragging on him at the
country club. He handles a lot of important clients, you know. Is he
doing pro bono work for you?”

Nikki, who had no idea what pro bono meant, smiled coolly at
Cherie. “Tommy has been my lawyer for years, but right now I don’t
need the services of an attorney.” She saw Tommy try to hide a smile.

“I’m surprised that I haven’t seen you around Fairfield before,”
Cherie continued, still fishing.

“Yes, that is odd.”

“Are you a member of the country club?”

“I’m afraid not. I don’t have time. If I do get a free minute, I’d
rather go riding than spend time at the country club.”

“Riding in cars?”

“No, horses. I enjoy horseback riding.”

To Nikki’s relief Cherie backed off. She probably saw that
Tommy was enjoying the show. “Well, to each his own, I guess,” she

She turned her back to Nikki, excluding her from the
conversation, and spoke exclusively to Tommy. “I stopped by tonight
to ask you to dinner. Mavis and Henry are in town, and they'd love to
see you.”

“I’m afraid I already have plans for the evening, but do give my
best to them.”

“Yes, I’ll tell them you said hello.” Turning to Nikki, she said, “It
was lovely to meet you.”

“Thank you. I enjoyed meeting you, too.”

Tommy hurriedly jumped up. “I’ll walk you out, Cherie.”

“There’s no need to do that, darling. We can say our goodbyes
right here. Nikki won’t mind.”

It didn’t surprise Nikki when Cherie hugged Tommy and kissed
him lingeringly. “I’ll call you next week, Tommy.”

She sauntered away, and Tommy wiped her lipstick from his
mouth as he dropped onto the sofa beside Nikki and took both of her
hands in his. “She isn’t my girlfriend.”

The Best Selling Toy Of The Season is available at


Emma Lai said...

Ooh! I always love a snooty woman as competition. Nothing makes me happier than seeing them put in their place.

Emma Lai said...

Oh! And I'll take The Welcome Inn.

The Purple Heart was great and I look forward to hosting you on my blog to talk about it.