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Here's the scoop... (as some of you already know.) To celebrate the March release of the third book in The Chameleon Chronicles, I'm sharing a deleted scene from EVIE EVER AFTER and giving away one of my author’s copies of this book, every Tuesday in February! That’s one deleted scene and one free book each week for a month! Please note these deleted scenes are unedited. I wrote them and then cut them from the story for various reasons. The fun thing about these deleted scenes is that they’ll give you an idea of my process. They’re not polished. It’s true seat-of-the-pants writing.
For the past two weeks I shared a scene that I wrote as the opening for EVIE EVER AFTER and then ditched. This week I thought I'd SHAKE THINGS UP and share a deleted scene from the middle of this book. This scene ended up inspiring a much shorter version. Though sexy, this version didn't fit the bill. It was fun though, so I'm excited to share it with you. So as not to offend anyone, I bleeped one of Arch's more colorful curse words. For those who don't know, Arch is Scottish. Oh, and there's a section that I had made a note to embellish and never did (since I didn't use the scene). I left that in so you could see how my mind somehow skips around.
Set up: Evie is in Arch's apartment waiting for him to return with dinner and to prep her on the upcoming con...
DELETED SCENE #3
I talked a good game, but I could do better. I knew from past experience that my entire demeanor would change once I was fully in character. That required the appropriate costume, hair, and makeup. I instantly saw a way to combine business and pleasure.
I raided my suitcase and located my bobbed wig and cosmetics bag. Flashing on that doctored head shot, I transformed myself into a sultry brunette with kohl-lined eyes and blood red lips. I couldn’t do anything about my blue irises, but I could dress the part, starting with my, or rather Portia’s, under garments. Specifically the racy black lace bra and panties Nic had talked me into buying when she was trying to urge me out of my post-divorce funk. Next came a pair of shiny black stiletto pumps. That’s as far as I got before I heard the front door open and shut.
“Baby, I’m home.”
“Coming!” Soon, with any luck.
Feeling nervous and naughty, I slinked out of the bedroom in my sultry, flirty lingerie. “Evie’s not here, but Portia is and she’s going to show you the stars. Are you . . .” I froze in my pointy heeled tracks.
“Jeez, Louise, Evie,” said Jayne.
Tabasco blinked. “Wow.”
Arms full of shopping bags, Arch tried to smother a smile. “Shite.”
Considering I was wearing a thong, I couldn’t turn and run. Plus, I’d frozen in mortification. I imagined my cheeks flamed as bright as my lipstick. “Wasn’t expecting company.”
Jayne averted her eyes first, grabbed a bag from Arch. “We’ll take the food in the kitchen.” She nudged Tabasco.
“Good idea, babe.” Stifling a grin, he relieved Arch of the other bags. “This way,” he said to Jayne and led her away.
Arch started toward me. “I’m sorry.”
I backed quickly into the bedroom. He shut the door behind us and I winged a pillow at him. “Stop smiling!”
“I cannae help it.” He dragged a hand through his hair, drinking his fill as I kicked off the stilettos. “Christ, you look f***able.”
“Don’t say that!” I yanked off the wig and finger-combed my hair. “Why are they here?”
“Jayne was with Tabasco when he showed me the Big Store, yeah? She doesnae know specifics, but she’s going to help us with a smoke and mirror aspect of the sting. Instead of briefing her tomorrow, I thought we’d discuss it over dinner. She said you fought this morning. Said she felt bad and wanted to make amends. I . . . Can I help you with that, lass?”
My fingers trembled as I tried to unhook the barely there bra. “No.”
“You could have called.”
“I did. You didnae answer. Did you forget to charge your cell?”
“No, I didn’t forget to charge my cell!” Why did everyone always ask me that? Never mind that it was true. “I dropped it!”
“Never mind.” I was too flustered just now to relay the storm incident.
“I called my landline, too.”
“I was probably in the shower. Okay. So you tried to call.”
“I told you we’d be working fast, love. I didnae think you’d mind Tabasco and Jayne helping us to prep over dinner. I didnae know—”
“Yeah, yeah.” I swapped the sexy lingerie for cotton underwear.
“I’m embarrassed. I don’t dress up like that all the time, you know.”
“I know.” He moved in and interrupted my frenzied dressing long enough to give me a hug.
“That’s what makes it so sexy, yeah?”
“Yeah, well. The moment’s sort of ruined.”
He smiled against my forehead. “Do you want me to ask them to leave?”
“No. I’ve lived through worse.” The topless incident in the Caribbean for one. I nudged him away and stepped into a pair of jeans and a fresh t-shirt. “We’ve got work to do. Let’s go.”
(EMBELLISH LATER: DINNER TALK… PREP TALK ABOUT THE CON….JAYNE AND TABASCO LEAVE)
I let out a weary breath. “I thought they’d never leave.”
Arch dipped his hand into his pocket and pulled out my black lace thong. He winked. “Okay, lass. Let’s try this again.”
“You’re kidding, right? What about going over my profile? My website should be up by now. Shouldn’t we—”
“You mean Portia’s website,” he said with an ornery grin. “Dark and mysterious calls for black lace, you know?
“Like you could concentrate on work with me in a black bra and thong.”
“Dinnae forget the wig.”
My hooha tingled in response to the challenge. “You are so dead.”
“Bring it on, Sunshine.”
That's it for Deleted Scene #3! Now, on to the giveaway. Just give me a shout out here and you’re automatically entered to win a copy of EVIE EVER AFTER. The winner will be randomly picked and announced next Tuesday . . . just before the fourth deleted scene and giveaway. Thanks for celebrating with me (and Evie)!