Historical romance author Merry Farmer is celebrating the release of her latest Montana Romance novel, In Your Arms! To celebrate, Merry as provided Leatherbound Reviews readers with a tasty excerpt from In Your Arms as well as a giveaway! Enter to win a $10 Amazon gift card and an e-book copy of In Your Arms. Make sure you COMMENT and FILL OUT the RAFFLECOPTER form BELOW!
Today I would like to welcome two of Cold Springs, Montana’s residents, Miss Lily Singer and Mr. Christian Avery, to the blog.
Lily: (rolls eyes)
Interviewer: It sounds like you’re very serious about your position in Cold Springs, Mr. Avery.
Christian: I am! I’ve lived in Cold Springs for more than ten years now and the lives of the people of Cold Springs are my responsibility.
Lily: They are yours to interfere in, you mean.
Christian: You call it interfering, I call it looking out for them.
Lily: I was under the impression that it was Sheriff Porter’s job to look out for the people of Cold Springs.
Christian: Yes, well, Kent’s a decent guy and all, but he couldn’t look after his own backside if it weren’t right behind him all the time.
Lily: (shakes head)
Interviewer: What is your position in Cold Springs, Miss Singer?
Lily: I teach the sixth grade at Cold Springs’ school.
Christian: And a finer teacher we’ve never had.
Lily: Thank you, Mr. Avery, I can speak for myself.
Christian: Oh, so it’s “Mr. Avery” now?
Lily: I suppose you would rather I call you “Mr. Justice of the Peace”?
Christian: I’d rather you call me “Christian”, although I’d settle for “Sweetheart”.
Lily: “Arrogant Blowhard” it is, then.
Interviewer: So I understand that the two of you didn’t exactly see eye-to-eye when you first met?
Christian: It was a simple misunderstanding, a conflict of interest, if you will.
Lily: Christian was laboring under the misapprehension that the best way to provide the highest quality education for the children of Cold Springs was to separate the Native American children from the rest of their peers.
Christian: I was merely making the point that not all of the citizens of Cold Springs are as progressive as they should be. Even you have to admit, Lily, that things were getting dangerous.
Lily: A few schoolboys starting a fight at recess is hardly a riot. Boys will be boys, which means they occasionally fight.
Christian: These were not small boys.
Lily: Did you fight when you were in school?
Christian: Well…. Um….
Lily: My point exactly.
Interviewer: How did the two of you meet?
Christian: We met when Lily came to Cold Springs to be interviewed for a teaching position at the new school.
Lily: I am a graduate of the Carlisle Indian Industrial School in Carlisle, Pennsylvania, but for the last several years I have been teaching at a school in Chicago.
Interviewer: What made you decide to leave that school to move to Montana?
Lily (pausing for a moment): I do not know much about my heritage. I was taken from my tribe when I was very young. I…I had hoped that by moving to Montana I might discover something about my people…(visibly upset) I’m sorry, I don’t think I can talk about this.
Christian (taking her hand): It’s all right, sweetheart, you don’t have to…(to the interviewer) Lily was far and away the most qualified candidate for the job. The town council was a little hesitant when they learned she was an Indian, but I was convinced she was the right woman for the job.
Interviewer: What convinced you of that?
Christian: Well, her experience, of course. And her eyes. And that stubborn look she has. Her soft hair….
Lily (frowning): Christian.
Christian: The way the light makes her skin look like coffee with cream…..
Lily: Christian, really!
Christian: The way her school teacher dress settles over the curve of her figure….
Lily (jabbing him with elbow): Honestly!
Christian: But her experience, mostly. She’s the best teacher I’ve ever had. I mean, we’ve ever had.
Lily: (shakes head)
Interviewer: I see. And is it true that you caused Miss Singer to lose her job, Mr. Avery?
Christian: Uh…. Well…. You see…. No comment.
Lily: No comment.
Interviewer: One final question. What do you think of the string of robberies that are plaguing Cold Springs? Do you believe the local Indian population is to blame?
Lily: Absolutely not!
Christian: Not at all. I’m sure it’s some fools who don’t have enough brains to rub together to cause a spark.
Interviewer: But it seems as though most of the population of Cold Springs disagrees with you.
Lily: People will believe what they want to believe, particularly when those who look different from them are involved. I am not too proud to say that I am deeply concerned for the wellbeing of the Native American families living nearby.
Christian: If anyone steps out of line, I’ll handle it. This is my town and I will see to it that all of its citizens are safe and happy.
Interviewer: Miss Singer, do you believe him?
Lily: I hate to encourage Mr. Avery’s arrogance, but if anyone in Cold Springs can get to the bottom of these things, it will be him. I only hope a peaceful solution is possible.
Christian: It is and I’ll find it. And then I’ll move heaven and earth to make sure that you, Miss Lily Singer, are the happiest woman in all of Montana.
Lily (crosses arms, arches eyebrow, slight smile): We’ll see.
Interviewer: I wish you the best of luck, Mr. Avery, in solving the robberies and in winning Miss Singer’s heart. Looks like you have your work cut out for you on both accounts.
If you’d like to read more about Lily Singer and Christian Avery and the lives and troubles of the people of Cold Springs, be sure to pick up a copy of In Your Arms by Merry Farmer at your soonest possible convenience.a Rafflecopter giveaway