KG Fletcher is the author of the contemporary romance novel, The Nearness of You released in October, 2017. She has also penned romantic suspense novels, Love Song released in April, 2017 and Unexpected released in December, 2016. She is an active member of RWA and the Georgia Romance Writers Association. She was a singer/songwriter in Nashville, TN and a recipient of the “Airplay International Award” for “Best New Artist” showcasing original songs at The Bluebird Café. She earned her BFA in theater at Valdosta State College and has traveled the world professionally as a singer/actress. She currently gets to play rock star as a backup singer in the National Tour, “Remember When Rock Was Young – the Elton John Tribute.” (www.almosteltonjohn.com)
KG lives in Atlanta, GA with her husband Ladd and their three gorgeous sons. She is a hopeless romantic continuing her work on her original cabaret act called, “The Novel Romantic – an unexpected evening of sweet & spicy love” to help promote her romance novels.
The Nearness of You
By KG Fletcher
ISBN: 978-1-945910-33-3 (ebook)
Lounge singer, Lauren Rose lived her comfortable life in Atlanta always dreaming of making it in show biz. When she unexpectedly meets British male super-model, David Randle at a gig at the posh St. Regis Hotel, she is swept away by his striking good looks and lilting cadence.
In town for his sister Catherine’s nuptials to NASCAR driver, Brian Brady, David invites Lauren to the wedding on a whim. The two instantly bond over music, fashion and family. They continue their new relationship in New York City when David invites Lauren to see him in action at a high profile fashion shoot for his debut fragrance, “Drive.”
Sparks fly when his assistant, Sabrina Watson is none too happy that his new girlfriend has interrupted his grueling, fast-paced schedule. She becomes fixated on separating the happy couple who are falling in love.
Traversing the East Coast and Europe with the paparazzi in hot pursuit, David and Lauren navigate the precarious path of fame, fashion and fate.
Her wildest dreams were coming true. Would she ever truly believe that his desire was to be near her – always?
“Excuse me, miss.”
Looking up with a smile, ready to accommodate another song request, she was taken aback, her breath catching in her chest. The man was tall, dark, and handsome and he looked very familiar. She started to panic, trying to place him in the shadowy light.
“I didn’t mean to startle you. I wanted to ask… that last song you just sang. It sounded so familiar. Who is the artist?”
The molecules in her brain shifted, and she was suddenly aware of who was standing before her. In an effort not to faint or start screaming, she placed her hand on her heaving chest and tried to breathe again, all the while his steady gaze penetrating her entire being. She swallowed hard, trying to get some moisture back into her throat so she could respond, but it felt as if her entire mouth had been force-fed a bucket of sand. The gorgeous man was holding a martini glass and looking like he had just stepped out of a high-class advertisement, his designer clothing obvious.
“Umm… that song was….” She cleared her throat. “It’s a Richard Rodgers, umm, song.” She eyed his drink and without thinking, took it out of his hands. “Do you mind?” She didn’t wait for his response, anxious to send moisture onto her hot tongue. She threw the drink back in one gulp before choking on the alcohol that burned going down her throat. “Oh my god! What was that?” she asked, her face scowling.
He gently took the empty glass back from her, his index finger brushing her hand slightly. “Well, that was my gin martini. May I get you something more to your liking?” He tried not to smile but his blue eyes tinged with humor and gave him away.
Lauren held the back of her hand to her mouth and stared. “I know who you are,” she whispered, wide eyed. “You’re the super…” He interrupted her quickly by abruptly grabbing her by the elbow.
“Let me buy you a drink.” He started to lead her to the mahogany bar where her friend Tim was bartending.
“Hey Lauren. How’s it going?” Tim asked as he wiped down the polished wood in front of them. Could he tell that she was coming undone being in the presence of one of the most stunning, sought after male models on the planet? She recalled a recent trip to New York with some of her girlfriends. They had stood in the middle of Times Square taking several pictures of this man’s famous image plastered on a giant billboard, his gorgeous, half-naked body on display for all the world to see, wearing designer underwear. She started to swoon thinking about it.
“Good, Tim,” she replied a little too quickly, her voice three octaves higher than normal. She glanced at the illustrious man who was standing mere inches from her, not sure if she would be able to continue a conversation. Her entire body felt like it was buzzing and she thought she might hyperventilate. She sank onto the leather barstool, hoping it wasn’t obvious that she was coming undone.
“Sparkling water for you?” Tim asked knowingly. Lauren never drank while she performed, a lesson she’d learned many years ago when she had made the mistake of going to happy hour with friends before a show. She couldn’t remember the lyrics that night because of one too many shots of tequila. She was lucky the manager hadn’t fired her.
“Yes, please,” she squeaked.
“And for you, sir?”
He leaned his strong arm against the back of her bar stool and reached for a cashew in a crystal bowl, his bulging bicep almost grazing her breast. “I should like another gin martini, Tim. Hendricks please, with a cucumber garnish.” His British cadence was sophisticated and debonair, accentuating his high-class image.
Tim placed a green tinted bottle of sparkling water in front of Lauren and proceeded to mix the martini. She tried to open her drink with her trembling hands, but the cap wouldn’t budge.
“Allow me, Lauren,” he said, taking it from her, the “L” of her name sounding beautiful with his lilting articulation. He effortlessly turned the cap just once and handed it back to her, his chiseled features dangerously close to her lips. She offered a polite smile before taking a sip and almost choked when he started to speak, palming her back with his hand.
“Feeling any better?”
She licked her lips and placed the bottle back on the bar. “Yes, thank you.” She felt her cheeks flush, surprised when he leaned in and whispered into her ear.
“It’s nice to meet you, Lauren. You have a lovely voice.”
His warm breath made her insides tingle. She inhaled deeply before answering. “Thank you. It’s nice to meet you too… you have a lovely… face.” She forced herself not to roll her eyes after the words came out of her mouth, pursing her lips. What a stupid thing to say.
Lauren & David’s Playlist
The story of Lauren and David was heavily influenced by music from days gone by. These are a few of my favorite versions I hope you might check out – several of these songs are also featured in my cabaret act, “The Novel Romantic – an unexpected evening of sweet and spicy love.” (www.kgfletcherauthor.com/cabaret.html)
Where or When – Harry Connick, Jr.
The Nearness of You – Norah Jones
If I Were a Bell – from the musical, Guys & Dolls
Claire de Lune – Debussy
Fly Me to the Moon – Tony Bennett
Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy – The Andrew Sisters
The Way You Look Tonight – Frank Sinatra
Stand By Me – Ben E. King
At Last – Etta James
Don’t Rain on My Parade – Barbara Streisand
Sleepwalk – The Brian Setzer Orchestra
New York-New York – Frank Sinatra
Find KG online:
Cabaret Act: www.kgfletcherauthor.com/cabaret.html