The Unintended Fiancé: Chapter Two

Hi! Hope you enjoyed Chapter One of Brad and Erin's story yesterday. Here's what follows:

The Unintended Fiancé: Chapter TwoTheUnintendedFiance-200x300

Erin caught a familiar figure out of the corner of her eye and started typing furiously. If she looked super busy, maybe Kevin wouldn’t stop by her desk.

Darn her professionalism. If she hadn’t said it was “absolutely no big deal” when her boss had asked if it would be a problem if she and Kevin worked together, she wouldn’t have had to suffer working with the man—and have him occupying the desk right next to her little corner of the office.

“Morning, Erin,” Kevin said, setting a store-bought cup of coffee on her desk. “Here you go.”

“Thanks, but you can have it,” she said tersely, not taking her eyes off her computer screen.

“But this is the mocha you like.”

“Kevin,” she said in a low voice, not bothering to hide her irritation. “I already told you to stop getting me coffees or fruits or cakes. People are starting to wonder if there’s something going on between us again.”

Kevin smiled. “Would that be so bad?”

She gaped at him in disbelief. “Are you kidding?” After her lunch with him and Paula two weeks ago, she couldn’t believe his comment.

The first few minutes of that lunch had been pleasant enough, but it had quickly turned to one of the most agonising she’d sat through. Kevin and Paula had started bickering. In front of her.

But that hadn’t been the most uncomfortable part. She’d wanted to zip Kevin’s mouth when he’d brought up Paula’s propensity to overreact, and then said that Erin had never shouted at him like a banshee the way Paula always did.

Paula’s friendliness towards her had cooled very quickly after that. And Erin still wanted to throttle Kevin for bringing her name up while in the middle of an argument with his wife.

“Erin,” Kevin said, placing both his hands on her desk to lean closer to her. “What’s wrong with being friends again?”

“Kevin,” she said with gravity. “We’re not best buddies. Ease up.”

“I can’t help it,” he said, staring into her eyes.

She looked up to the heavens, letting out an exasperated breath. What the hell was this guy up to? “It’s making me very uncomfortable, okay? Please stop this.”

“Okay, but can we talk? Have lunch with me today.”

“What for?” she whispered almost furiously.

“Please,” he said, his eyes darting around the office.

That made her glance around as well, and she caught a few of their officemates looking away. Amy, her closest work friend, raised her eyebrows at her in question.

She sighed. Best to have a talk with Kevin elsewhere, she supposed. She didn’t relish the thought of being the centre of office gossip.

“Fine. Lunch, then. At the food court downstairs.”

“I have another place in mind—”

She shook her head stubbornly. “Food court, Kevin. At twelve.”

“Okay,” he conceded.


Erin sat down at a table Kevin had been saving for them in the almost-full food court.

“Looks yummy,” Kevin commented as he checked out the grilled chicken and avocado salad she’d bought. “Start eating while I get mine.”

She did start eating as Kevin went to get his food. Normally she’d wait for her companion to come back, but she was annoyed enough to not want to show him the usual level of consideration.

Kevin didn’t take long. He was back with a burger and smiled at her as he sat back down. “Why are you so short with me, Erin?” he asked softly.

Her brows lifted. “You waltz around the office like we’re more than the best of friends. You’re actions are over the top. Don’t you see that you’re being quite inappropriate? You’re married, and I’m your ex. And you’ve made your wife suspicious of me.”

“Erin,” Kevin said, reaching for her hand.

She instantly pulled it out of his grasp. What the hell was wrong with him? Hadn’t he heard what she’d said?

Kevin sighed. “Haven’t you noticed anything?”


He raised his left hand and wiggled his fingers.

She blinked. He wasn’t wearing a wedding ring.

“I moved out of the house last week.”

“I see,” she said coldly. “What’s that got to do with me?”

“I made a mistake, Erin,” he said, trying to reach for her hand again.

She let out an incredulous laugh.

Kevin sat back on his chair, taking a long, deep breath. “I’m going about this the wrong way, am I not?”

“I’m not remotely interested in getting back together with you, Kevin.”

He smiled patiently. “I know you’re still angry at me. What I did to you was hurtful and callous. I let you down. But what I did—marrying Paula and breaking up with you—was a huge mistake. I was so very wrong.”

She gawked at him, sheer disbelief coursing through her. “Surely, you’re not expecting to pick up where we left off?”

“No. I know I have a lot to do to make up for what I’ve done. All I’m asking at this time is the chance to do that.”

She shook her head. “I’m sorry, Kevin. I don’t want another chance.”


“I saw you in a totally different light after the way you handled your marriage and our break-up. I’m not interested, Kevin. Sorry.”

Kevin nodded his head. “Okay. I’ll wait.”

She frowned. “I said I’m not interested. There’s no point in waiting.”

“I heard what you said. But I know you, Erin. I know how you used to feel about me. That kind of commitment just couldn’t die, even after all this time and what we’ve been through. I know deep inside you still want me—because I still want you.”

Her jaw dropped to the ground.

“You’re very different from Paula,” Kevin continued. “You were loving and supportive. You never yelled when we fought. You didn’t have tantrums. You helped me make good decisions. I want you back, Erin. Let’s work things out.”

She gave him a dirty look. “You’re still married, Kevin. It was only two weeks ago that I had lunch with you and your wife. Shouldn’t you be trying to work things out with Paula rather than propositioning me?”

Kevin exhaled gustily. “Like I said, you’re very different from Paula.”

“So why did you marry her in the first place?”

“It was just the sex. Paula is… wild and passionate and exciting in bed. We had this sizzling sexual chemistry that was undeniable. Unfortunately, she’s too demanding and high maintenance. And when she’s angry, boy, does she blow up. I don’t need that. But you, you’re calm and cool in every situation. You’re always reasonable and rational. With the kind of pressures I need to deal with at work, I realised I need someone like you by my side if I’m to achieve my career dreams.”

Heat crept up Erin’s face. What the hell did he mean by that? That she was boring in bed? That all he’d ever want her for was to advance his career?

“But wouldn’t you miss Paula’s passionate ways in bed?” she said with saccharine sweetness, narrowing her eyes at him.

“Well, better sexual performance can be learned.”

“What do you mean by that?” she asked coldly.

“You have to admit there’s plenty of room for improvement there, Erin. Maybe read some books, or even go to a sex coach—”

“And what makes you think I’d want you back when you never set my body on fire?” she asked, her jaw tight, before standing up and walking away.

What a certified asshole!

She blinked back her tears. Kevin was nothing but an insensitive jerk, but his words had still stung.

Couldn’t he have criticised her in a less humiliating way? As if he hadn’t hurt her enough in the past! And it wasn’t as if he was the hottest man on the planet or an expert lover, either. Far from it. Their sex life had been average because… well, neither of them had bothered putting in a lot of effort on it! It wasn’t just her fault.

Ugh. She still had no idea what had made her stay with that self-centred man for two freaking years.

And there were four more hours to go before she could leave work for the day and stop seeing Kevin’s face.

At least Brad would be at home waiting for her. He should be settling into her apartment right this minute.

Her lips tugged up. She couldn’t wait to see him.


Erin inserted the key into her lock, excited like a little kid opening up a present. It was unexpected, really, this thrill she was feeling. And it made her nervous. Why was she so looking forward to this?

“Erin! Welcome home!”

Her heart skipped. There he was, grinning as he walked to her and kissed her on the cheek.

“Hi! How did the packing go at your house today?” she asked.

“Good. All my stuff, apart from my clothes and personal items that got brought here, are now either in storage, donated to charity, or chucked in the dump. But it was hectic sorting through what needed to go where!”

She chuckled. “What did you expect? You had it all done in one day.”

“Well, one day was all I had. Anyway, come with me. I want to show you what my sister’s old room now looks like.”

She followed Brad to his new room, and she laughed in delighted surprise. The room looked amazing, with the colour scheme of royal blue making this very much Brad’s domain. Even his clothes were hung or folded in a neat, ordered manner in the wardrobe, which was open for her inspection. Whoever had unpacked for Brad had done a marvellous job.

“What happened to the old bed?” she asked, sitting and bouncing herself on the one that now stood proudly against the main wall, covered in luxurious cotton sheets of high thread count, by the feel. Even the old headboard was gone, replaced by a more masculine wooden panelling.

“This is my own bed,” Brad said, sitting next to her. “I had your old one put in storage along with my other stuff because it just looked too girly for me. You don’t mind, do you?”

“No, of course not. This room looks great. How many people were here to stage this today?” she teased.

“What? You don’t think I did it myself?”

“This has the feminine touch,” she said dryly. “Great as you are with commercial interiors, bedrooms are not your forte.”

Brad chuckled. “The people who packed my stuff also unpacked for me here. Turns out they’re great at decorating too.”

“Well, it looks good. But how come the living room still looks the same? I thought you were gonna bring your bigger TV? I was looking forward to that.”

“It’s going to be delivered this Saturday.”

“What do you mean?”

“I wanted the latest model, so I bought a new one.”

She shook her head. “You and your penchant for the latest and the best, Brad.”

He shrugged. “It’s called supporting the great inventors of new technology.”

She smirked. “Is your super-duper coffee machine now in my kitchen?”

“Yup. Couldn’t leave that behind,” he answered, standing up and pulling her along with him.

“You do know that’s all I want from you.”

Brad laughed, putting an arm around her shoulders and steering her to the kitchen. “The Chinese I ordered should be arriving soon. Do you want a drink before dinner?”

“Apart from Lexie, none of my other previous flatmates ever offered me a drink upon coming home. I’m already starting to like you being here.”

“Good! I’ll even make you coffee after we eat. For now, let’s open a bottle of wine.”

She sat on a bar stool and watched Brad move around her kitchen, getting two crystal glasses and retrieving a bottle from the fridge. He’d clearly already made himself familiar with where things were kept. And, frankly, he looked like he belonged in her apartment.

She bit her lip, stopping herself from smiling too widely. There was that thrill again, running through her body.

Brad turned around and placed the glasses on the breakfast nook.

“I was meaning to talk to you about Elsa, my cleaning lady,” he said as he poured the wine. “You wouldn’t mind if she comes regularly to help us, would you?”

She gave him a mock frown. “And there I was, promising Lexie that I wouldn’t let you get away with not doing your share of housework. I should have known you’d get Elsa to do it for you.”

“What I meant was for her to do everything around here,” Brad said, clinking glasses with her before taking a sip. “I want to keep Elsa employed for the same amount of time that she used to come to my place because I don’t want to lose her. She’s fantastic. So reliable and trustworthy. If she starts working for someone else, I might find it hard to get back the hours she currently works for me. She can come here twice a week to clean and cook. She can also buy our groceries, do our laundry, send items to the dry cleaners, change our bed sheets—those kinds of things.”


“If she’s to work the same hours per week, she’ll need to look after you too. This place is much smaller than my house. As it is, she’d have plenty of time on her hands, but I still won’t mind paying her the usual amount.”

Erin pursed her lips. She didn’t mind housework or cooking, but they weren’t her favourite things to do. The thought of having some help with the cleaning was tempting, especially since it was something she’d considered for herself before. It just seemed like such an indulgence that she’d never acted on it. Well, this was her chance.

“Okay,” she said. “How much will be my share for Elsa’s pay?”

“Nothing,” Brad said. “I don’t expect you to put in for it since I’m the one who insists on getting her to work here.”

She opened her mouth to argue, but Brad pressed a finger to her lips, shaking his head at her.

She sighed. There was no point arguing about these kinds of things with Brad. She might as well give in graciously. “Okay, thank you. But I’ll pay for our groceries then, if that’s the case.”

“Fine,” Brad conceded unenthusiastically.

“So I get to be spoiled while you’re living with me?” she asked, grinning.

“Well, you’re my girlfriend, aren’t you?” Brad said with a cute lopsided smile. “I’ll have you know that I treat my woman like a queen.”

She laughed, warmth spreading within her with unexpected speed.

Brad’s girlfriend.

That had a nice ring to it.

“So how did you go with the moron today?” Brad asked. “Is he still being a pest?”

She made a face. “He said he wants to get back with me. Apparently, he’s separated from his wife.”

Brad’s expression hardened. “You’re not considering it, are you?”

“No, of course not.”

“Good. You can do much better than him.”

“Yeah,” she answered, the memory of Kevin’s words deflating her.

“What?” Brad asked, noticing her changed expression.

She couldn’t help her blush. Should she tell him? It was a bit embarrassing. But his concerned look made her open her mouth. “I think the reason why Kevin cheated on me and got married to someone else was because he thinks I’m boring in bed. He even suggested I should seek help to improve my… um… sexual performance.”

Brad scowled. “He made you think it was your fault? That man is more than an asshole!”

“I know, but I think there’s some truth to what he said,” she said with a grimace.

Brad effortlessly lifted the stool she was sitting on, shifting it so she was fully facing him, before sitting down in front of her. My, he was really strong. She stared at him as her heart pounded hard in her chest. Damn, sometimes Brad affected her in ways that still surprised her.

“Erin, sex is a two-way thing,” Brad said quietly. “If he thinks that you’re lacking in bed, that must mean he’s not good at lighting your fire.”

“Hey, that’s exactly what I said to him!”

Brad grinned. “Way to go. He’s just justifying himself. You shouldn’t give weight to his words.”

She smiled. Brad really was such a sweet friend. “Thanks. I think you’re right.”

“Good. Now I can report to Lexie that I set you straight on something regarding Kevin. She ordered me to make sure the moron doesn’t mess with you.”

She laughed. “Oh, I do miss living with your sister. But I think you’re a good replacement.”

“So did you tell Mr. Moron you’re now living with your boyfriend?” he asked cheekily.

“Oh! I keep forgetting!”

“Well, you should tell him.”

“Are you free tomorrow night to join us for drinks at the pub?”

“I’ll make time. Can’t wait to see the moron’s face. Should be fun.”

She nodded enthusiastically, already looking forward to it. Not the part where she’d show Kevin she was “taken”, but the part where she’d act as Brad’s girlfriend.

***End of Chapter Two***

Hope you enjoyed the first two chapters of The Unintended Fiancé. It was so important to me to finish this book and share it with you. Hope you're as excited about its release as I am.

Thank you again for all your support. It truly means so much.

Love always,
Miranda xxx

The Unintended Fiancé can be pre-ordered from the following stores:

Amazon US | Other Amazon stores | Apple iBooks | Barnes & Noble | Kobo

It will be available on Google Play, All Romance Ebooks and Smashwords on October 22nd.



The Undercover Playboy: Chapter Two

HI! Hope you enjoyed Chapter One of The Undercover Playboy yesterday. Today, I'm excited to share Chapter Two with you. Enjoy!

TheUndercoverPlayboy-200x300The Undercover Playboy Chapter Two


Cassie kept walking towards the elevators, pretending she hadn’t heard her boss call her name. It was ten past five, and working hours were officially over.

“Cassie!” Randy Silver called out again, trotting to catch her before she got to the lifts.

“Yes, Randy?” she asked, turning to him and not even pretending to smile. She knew what was coming, and she was sick of it.

“Could you stay for another half an hour or so? I have to go to a dinner meeting and Estelle needs someone to check her work when she’s finished.”

“Sorry, Randy. I’ve got plans.”


“It’s after five, Randy.”

“I’ll pay you overtime.”

“Great,” she said a tad sarcastically. “Would you also pay me overtime for all the extra hours I’ve worked in the past few months?”

“Come now, Cassie,” Randy said, his tone cajoling. “You chose to stay back during those times without telling me. They weren’t approved overtime.”

Cassie took a deep breath to arrest the anger bubbling inside her. This guy just didn’t get it. “You know what, Randy? It’s tough that you don’t even appreciate why I stay back. We used to have five people in the accounting team. For a long time now, there’s only three of us because you refuse to replace the two who left. We’re overworked.”

“Cassie, we’ve talked about this before,” Randy said with an apologetic smile. “The company is not doing as well as it used to—”

“I know that, Randy. But that’s not my fault. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I really have to go.”

She turned to leave, past caring about what her boss might be thinking with her gesture. What was he going do? Sack her for not obeying orders? He couldn’t afford to do that and he damn well knew it. Unfortunately, he couldn’t pay her what she was worth in the marketplace, either.

She’d had high hopes for her career when she started working for this kitchen appliance wholesaler four years ago. But when her original boss, Randy’s mother, had handed the reins to her son when she retired due to illness, everything had started to go downhill. Not only had Cassie not been given the financial controller role that Randy’s mother had promised her—that position had gone to Randy’s wife—but Randy had also called a freeze on salary increases and bonuses.

The company had headed southwards from the changes Randy had made. Now he was making everyone suffer for his incompetence. Worse, Randy wouldn’t listen to anyone’s suggestions and chose to continue along the path of destruction. It was such a huge shame that the company Cassie used to love wouldn’t survive another year if Randy stayed at the helm.

“Okay, I’ll see you tomorrow, then,” Randy said with resignation. “Don’t forget we have a meeting first thing in the morning to go through the monthly reports.”

The elevator doors opened with a ping and Cassie stepped inside with barely a glance back at her boss. It would be the seventh month that Randy had been asking her to do things that his financial controller wife should be doing. His wife clearly wasn’t anywhere near as skilled in that position as Cassie, but Randy refused to acknowledge that.

Well, she’d played the martyr for far too long. Even her best friends had constantly told her she was being unreasonably loyal towards a company who no longer recognised her worth.

Except that she didn’t have another job to go to yet. As soon as she did, she’d hand in the resignation letter that she’d already drafted.

She’d been on tenterhooks all day waiting for calls from two companies. She’d been to a second round of interviews with those two firms and she felt certain she’d done well enough to still be under consideration.

Her phone buzzed as she stepped off the elevator. She pulled it out of her handbag, her heart hammering as she recognised the number.

“Hello, this is Cassandra,” she answered in a professional tone, crossing her fingers.

“Hello, Cassandra, this is Susan Sanchez from Tellman Galleries. Did I catch you at a bad time?”

“No, Susan. I’m free to talk.”

“Good. I’m ringing to see if you can come in at nine tomorrow morning? Bronwyn Tellman wants to have a chat with you.”

“Yes, I can make that time. I’ll be there.”

“Great. We’ll see you then. Bye for now.”

“Thank you, Susan.”

Cassie couldn’t help the face-splitting grin that spread to her face. That was a good sign. A meeting with the commercial art gallery’s owner had to mean she was among two or three shortlisted candidates.

Randy wouldn’t be happy that she wouldn’t be there for their meeting tomorrow. She didn’t care. He really should be talking to his wife anyway. Cassie wasn’t the financial controller, after all.

Well, that phone call from a potential new employer had certainly lifted her spirits. She’d be in a much better mood for tonight’s dinner with Natasha at that newly renovated restaurant close to their apartment. Pity Carter wouldn’t be joining them tonight, like he usually did on Thursdays. But he’d said he was busy with a big work project and wouldn’t see them for a few weeks.

She exhaled a swoon-like breath as a picture of Carter flashed in her mind. Yeah, okay, she did have a little crush on him. But she didn’t have time to date…

What a load of crap, Cassie.

She shook her head as she remembered Erin saying at Lexie’s party that she didn’t know why Cassie was lying to herself.

Well, Cassie did know why. She hadn’t had much luck in the dating game. None of her previous relationships had gone past the getting-to-know-you stage. Somehow, she couldn’t make a guy want her enough.

Each of her past three boyfriends had dumped her with heartbreaking honesty. Their words had all been different, but their reason had been the same: their feelings for her hadn’t been strong enough to want to continue with the relationship.

Each time, she’d been devastated.

Sure, she knew it was just a matter of finding the right guy—that there was someone out there for her. But, frankly, it was an exhausting exercise looking for Mr. Right. She’d rather concentrate on her career and finish her MBA first. Those were far easier to achieve… and disappointments in those areas were less hurtful.

As for her crush on Carter, she was happy to keep it to herself. All she had to do was look at him to know that she’d just be asking for heartache if she allowed her feelings to grow. He was too good-looking. Someone like her would have a hard time keeping him. So why bother?


Cassie stared at a large abstract painting of vivid, earthy colours hanging on a feature wall in the boardroom of Tellman Galleries. It was mesmerising, just like the other pieces of art that were displayed in the room.

It would be wonderful if she could get a job in this place. To come to work every day and be surrounded by so many incredible items would be inspiring. She didn’t have an iota of artistic talent, but she had great appreciation for art.

Tellman Galleries was still a small company, but it had grown in leaps and bounds in the two years since it had opened. From what she’d been able to Google, and from the information given to her by Susan Sanchez—the gallery’s very pretty human resources manager who’d interviewed her twice before—both artists and art lovers from around Australia had embraced the gallery and were lining up to do business with it.

“Good morning, Cassandra.”

Startled, Cassie turned around. She hadn’t heard anyone come in.

A beautiful, dark-haired, smartly dressed woman, probably in her early thirties, was closing the boardroom door and smiling at her. “I’m Bronwyn Tellman,” the woman said, approaching her with an outstretched arm.

Cassie hid her surprise. She wasn’t expecting the gallery’s owner to be this young. “Good morning, Ms. Tellman. I’m very pleased to meet you,” she said, taking the proffered hand for a shake.

“Call me Bronwyn,” the owner said, indicating for her to take a seat.

“And call me Cassie, please,” she said with a shy smile. “The artwork you have displayed here is fantastic.”

“Thank you. The artists we work with are very talented. And they tell us that they’ve sold more pieces since being exhibited here in this gallery than in any other places.”

“That’s impressive,” Cassie said.

“Yes. Most of them are up-and-coming artists. I believe in giving the right people the exposure they deserve. That’s why I wanted to meet you, Cassie.”

Cassie sat up straighter, ready for whatever tough questions Bronwyn wanted to throw at her.

“You applied for the financial controller position,” Bronwyn said, linking her fingers together on the table as she looked at Cassie. “According to your résumé, you’ve never held this position before.”

Cassie nodded, expecting that question even though Susan Sanchez had already asked her the same thing in a previous interview. “My official title in my current job is Senior Accountant. However, I’ve been doing a controller’s work for almost a year. I’m certain I have the necessary skills and qualifications you need for this job. I was actually earmarked for the financial controller position, but there was a restructure in our company after the previous owner retired. While being a controller for a bigger company might be outside my level of expertise, I believe I’m suitable for a growing firm such as Tellman Galleries.”

“When do you finish your MBA?”

“In about four months.”

“I spoke to Mrs. Silver, your previous boss,” Bronwyn said.

Cassie held her breath. She’d put Randy’s mother as one of her referees. Considering that Cassie had been clashing with Randy recently, she hoped that Mrs. Silver only had nice words to say about her.

“She said that you were the one person she relied on the most in the company,” Bronwyn said. “She assured me you’re more than capable of doing the financial controller job.”

Cassie exhaled slowly, relief flooding her.

“More importantly, she said you’re loyal,” Bronwyn said. “She spoke very highly of you and gave me an indication why you now want to leave your current employment. But I want to hear the reasons from you.”

Cassie smiled. “When Mrs. Silver was there, I was very happy. But she’s retired and her son has taken over the business. The promotion and salary increase I was promised by Mrs. Silver before she left have not come to fruition even though I’m now doing higher-level work. And I do a lot of overtime that I’m not getting paid for. So I thought it was finally time for me to find another company where my contributions are reasonably rewarded.”

“And if I offer you this, Cassie,” Bronwyn said, pushing a sheet of paper towards her, “could I expect your loyalty and hard work?”

Cassie’s heart hammered as she took the document and started reading through a formal job offer. Her breath hitched as her gaze landed on the line that said Salary. Yes! She’d been hoping for this amount, even though she’d expected a lesser figure due to her lack of experience in the position. It was more than fair. Way more than fair.

She couldn’t help but continue on reading what was included in the package: bonuses, inclusion to invitation-only art events, opportunity to travel with the director to conferences around the world, and a company car.

Overseas travel and a company car!

Wow. Just… wow.

She put the paper down on the table as her hand started shaking. “This—” She heard the squeakiness in her voice and paused to swallow her excitement and nerves. “This is great, Bronwyn,” she continued in a more measured tone. “You can count on me to do my best every single working day.”

Bronwyn smiled widely. “Well, Cassie, congratulations. The job is yours if you want it. I’ll let you take the paperwork home so you can read through the offer thoroughly. Once you sign it and return it, it will be official.”

“Thank you so much, Bronwyn,” she said, letting a bit of her excitement show. “I’ll read through it today, and if I don’t have any questions, I’ll sign and return it before I head home this evening.”

“I take it you can start in two weeks?”

Cassie nodded. “If I hand in my resignation this afternoon, yes, I can start in two weeks.”

“Great! I’m looking forward to working with you, Cassie,” Bronwyn said, gesturing for a handshake.

“Me, too. Thank you so much, Bronwyn,” she said, grasping her new boss’s hand gratefully.

Cassie left the gallery, her feet barely touching the ground. She couldn’t believe it had finally happened. She’d landed her dream job—with a remuneration package much more than she’d hoped to get!

She couldn’t wait to tell someone the good news. She called her parents, then wondered which of her best friends she’d call first. On a playful whim, she went to her list of recently called numbers, closed her eyes and tapped. Her phone started to ring… Jade. Perfect. She grinned as she waited for her best friend to answer.

“Hey, Cass.”

“Hi, Jade,” she greeted, then told Jade everything.

“Oh my God! Congratulations, honey! That is so exciting!”

“Thank you. I’m so happy I could do cartwheels on the street.”

“We should have dinner with everyone to celebrate,” Jade said. “How about tomorrow night? I’ll organise it.”

“Oh, thanks! I’ll also invite Tash, so let me know where we’ll be going.”

“Are you going to ask Carter too?”

“Carter’s super busy for a few weeks so he won’t be able to join us,” she said, hearing the disappointment in her voice.

Jade chuckled. “Missing him, huh?”

She felt her cheeks burn. “No…”

“It’s me you’re talking to, Cassie,” Jade said with censure.

She inhaled deeply. “Okay, yes,” she answered, then proceeded to tell Jade about her horny dream.

“Oh my God. You obviously want the man, Cass.”

“It’s only a physical thing because of that damned dream. You know I’m not looking for a relationship, especially now when I have a new, challenging job to focus on. And you know Carter. He’s not in any hurry to go exclusive with anyone. But how do I stop myself from… you know… craving for him?”

“Proposition him for a one-night stand and get him out of your system,” Jade teased.

“Hm. Maybe I will,” she teased back.

“What? Did I hear you right?” Jade asked in surprise.

She laughed. “Well, I’m on such a high right now that I think I could pull off asking him for one hot night. Carter’s the type who wouldn’t bat an eyelid from that. I only hope that he’ll say yes.”

“Wow,” Jade said with wonder. “Whatever have you been eating, Cassandra Stephens?”

Carter. In my dreams.

Oh, Lord. She did have to do something about this. It was distracting her way too much. Maybe sleeping with Carter was the answer.

***End of Chapter Two***

That's all for now! Hope you're as excited about the release of this book as I am 🙂

You can pre-order The Undercover Playboy right now from the following stores:

Amazon US | Other Amazon Stores | Apple iBooksBarnes & Noble | Kobo

Links to Google Play, All Romance Ebooks and Smashwords will be available on July 14th.

And to celebrate the upcoming release of The Undercover Playboy, The Unwilling Executive is on sale for a limited time!

Unwilling 99c promo1

Much love,
Miranda xxx

The Unwilling Executive: Chapter One

Just a few more days to go before March 17th, the official release date of The Unwilling Executive (Captured by Love Book 1). And it's time to share Chapter One with you!

Without further ado, here it is!

TheUnwillingExecutive-200x300The Unwilling Executive Chapter One

Jade Tully exhaled her frustration as she checked her watch for the umpteenth time. It was thirty-five minutes past the scheduled start of her meeting with a guy called Lucas Renner, and he still hadn’t turned up.

She drummed her fingers on the wooden table of the busy café in the middle of Sydney’s bustling business district while surveying the patrons. Perhaps Lucas was already here, waiting?

No. She was the only one sitting by herself.

Unfortunately, she didn’t even know what Lucas looked like. She was relying on her new boss’s assurance that Lucas would get the message of where she was sitting and the colour of the top she was wearing.

“Can I take this for you?” a wait staff asked, indicating her empty mug.

“Yes, thank you,” she answered. “And I’ll have another latté, please. Decaf, this time.”


Jade didn’t want another drink, but the establishment was full and she felt guilty hogging a table when there were people waiting for a seat. She grabbed her phone and dialled the direct line for Thomas Bilton.

“Jade,” her employer answered.

“Hello, Mr. Bilton. I just want you to know I’m still waiting for Mr. Renner. He hasn’t turned up yet.”

“Hang on a minute. Let me check if he’s left a message.”

A few seconds later, Thomas was back on the line.

“There are no messages, Jade. Please keep waiting. He must be held up somewhere.”

“Okay, sir.”

“Jade, remember it’s of utmost importance that you get him to read the letter and get his answer. And as I’ve said before, don’t worry if he gets annoyed. He’ll be reacting to the message, not to you. Okay?”

“Yes, sir,” she answered, her curiosity spiking once again.

Thomas hadn’t told her anything about this errand, except to say that it was a private but extremely important matter. So she didn’t press for more information. Anyway, how hard could it be to get someone to read a letter and get an answer?

She took out a sealed envelope from her handbag and inspected it again. Not even the recipient’s name was on it.

It was all very strange, and she couldn’t help but think that this extraordinary task demonstrated Thomas Bilton’s eccentric tendencies that Lexie Mead, one of her best friends, had told her about.

Lexie worked in the marketing department at Bilton Machineries and had witnessed some of the odd demands Thomas had made to their team. Evidently though, Thomas had always known what he was doing. After all, the man had single-handedly built a construction machinery company in Australia that now had branches in several countries.

Who knew, maybe Thomas and Lucas Renner were partners in a top-secret project, and they didn’t trust email technology for delivering important documents.

Jade rolled her eyes at herself. Gosh, she was so bored with waiting that she was coming up with ridiculous ideas. In all probability, this assignment might be her boss’s way of testing to see if she was indeed the best person to be his new PA.

Lexie had nominated her for the position when Thomas’ long-serving employee had retired last week. Aided by a glowing reference from her old boss, Jade was the last person standing after a gruelling selection process.

The job offer came at the right time. Jade was still in shock from her previous employer selling the company to an overseas buyer, who’d subsequently closed the Australian branch. Heaven knew she needed a good salary to help her older brother Jerry and his wife with their financial needs. Their baby boy had just had open-heart surgery to fix a congenital birth defect and was in for years of medical care. Even though Jerry didn’t like taking money from Jade, it wasn’t a matter of choice.

But Jade wasn’t guaranteed to keep this new job. She was on the usual three-month probationary period, and Thomas had made it clear that if she didn’t perform to expectations, she’d be replaced immediately.

So it bothered her that Lucas Renner still hadn’t turned up. Damn it. Another important task waited for her in the office—one she was supposed to finish before she went home for the day. It was taking her longer than expected to complete because she was still learning the system.

A commotion outside drew her attention. Someone must have knocked down a lady, who was now gathering what looked like pamphlets from the ground—chasing after some that were being blown by the breeze. Passers-by helped, and a tall, dark-haired man caught Jade’s eye.

He was good-looking. Extremely.

The guy turned his back to her as he stooped down to pick up a loose sheet. While he was wearing a business shirt, she could already picture a hard and muscular body underneath his clothes. He was pure male from the way he moved.

Jade rested her chin on her hands and continued to watch, enjoying her unexpected reaction to the stranger. It had been such a long time since someone attracted her enough to make her want to gape.

A gust of wind blew the paper he was trying to retrieve, causing Mr. Hot to face her way again.

Suddenly, he glanced up and caught her staring at him through the window.

Jade’s eyes widened before she found herself hastily averting her gaze up towards the ceiling, as if something there had captured her attention.

She almost laughed out loud when she realised what she’d done. Wow, she couldn’t remember the last time she’d behaved like that from being caught ogling.

A wait staff delivered her second latté. She smiled her thanks before looking out the window again. But Mr. Hot was nowhere to be seen.

Ah, damn. Why couldn’t she have smiled at him? She wasn’t shy around men.

She smirked. No she wasn’t usually shy unless the guy was really attractive—as in incredibly. Then she got flustered—an irritating reaction she’d been trying to change. But it hadn’t been easy making improvements in that area when she hardly stumbled across such men. She guessed she had ‘high standards’ when it came to who could make her blush.

Well, considering her luck with men, Mr. Hot was probably already taken anyway.


Jade’s heart fluttered as she glanced up. Mr. Hot wasn’t outside because he was inside.

“Hi,” she responded.

“Jade Tully?”

Her jaw dropped. “Yes.”

“I apologise for being so late. I’m Lucas Renner.”

What? She’d expected to meet with a man close to her boss’s age of sixty-four. But the hunk in front of her seemed no older than thirty—about five years older than her, if she wasn’t mistaken.

“Seeing how tardy I’ve been, I can understand why you’re reluctant to shake my hand,” Mr. Hot said, his tone apologetic and teasing at the same time. It was kind of cute.

“Hi, Mr. Renner,” she said, rousing her addled brain and going for the handshake while her face burned. Ugh. Did she have to blush?

“Please call me Lucas,” he said as he sat on the chair opposite her. “I’m really sorry for making you wait. I was at another meeting that took much longer than expected. I didn’t have your contact details so I couldn’t update you. But thanks so much for waiting.”

“No problem,” she responded, her earlier annoyance dissipating. His excuse was understandable, she guessed.

A wait staff approached and offered Lucas a menu.

“What else would you like, Jade?” he asked.

“Oh, I’m fine, thanks.”

“Are you sure? I made you wait for so long that I owe you at least a cake or coffee. Please have another one with me,” Lucas said, smiling.

Her lips curved up in response. “Maybe I’ll have sparkling mineral water then.”

“Just that?”

“Yes, thanks.”

“Don’t you want something sweet to go with it?” Lucas asked, cocking his head to the side.

Was it her imagination or did Lucas’ tone drop a tad? And was that a flirtatious look he was giving her?

“Just that,” she said, taking a deep breath.

Lucas gave his order to the waitress, then leaned on the table, a charming smile still on his face.

“So, Jade, you’re here to interview me about my work?” Lucas said.

Jade’s eyebrows shot up in surprise. “Uh, no. I’m here to hand you this letter.”

Lucas frowned as he took the envelope from her. “Are these the interview questions?”

“I don’t know, actually. I was just told to give it to you and ask you to read it.” She fidgeted in her seat, getting uncomfortable. What the hell was this about?

Lucas tore the envelope open and pulled out a sheet of paper.

In a second, his friendly countenance disappeared, replaced by a glare of displeasure.



Lucas stared at the signature line of the printed letter. Scrawled in black ink were three unmistakable words: Your father, Thomas.

Heat rose to his face and he didn’t bother hiding his scowl.

“This is from Thomas Bilton,” he said accusingly to the brunette in front of him.

“Yes,” Jade said with a hint of apprehension. “I’m his new PA.”

“I don’t appreciate being conned like this,” he rasped, slitting his eyes.

“Conned? I don’t understand,” she said, her eyes rounding.

He crumpled the sheet and put it in his pocket. “Did you type the letter?” he grunted as he took a couple of bills from his wallet and dropped them on the table.

“No. Mr. Bilton must have typed it himself,” Jade answered, sounding nervous. “I don’t know anything about it. He just told me to come here and hand it to you.”

He inhaled deeply, scrutinising Jade. She held his gaze, looking bewildered… and damned attractive. It was a pity she worked for Thomas Bilton.

“I wouldn’t have turned up if I knew this was Bilton’s doing,” he said, standing up. “I don’t mean to be rude, but I’m leaving now.”

“Wait, Lucas, please,” Jade said, rising to her feet. “Could you please just read it? I’m supposed to relay your answer back to Mr. Bilton.”

He snorted.

“Please, Lucas,” she said quietly. “He told me it’s imperative that you read it.”

Something in Jade’s tone made Lucas pause, and he found himself pulling the letter out and smoothing it. Admittedly, this whole business of a beautiful woman hand-delivering him a letter made him curious as to its contents.

He read it and his lips twisted. The old man was good. He penned quite a moving piece—if Lucas didn’t know any better. But he did. Thomas Bilton was simply trying to manipulate him to protect his reputation.

He shoved the paper back in his pocket. “You said you don’t know what this is all about?”

Jade shook her head.

“So if your boss tells you to jump off a cliff, you’d do it without any question?”

Jade’s face reddened. “Of course not. I didn’t ask questions because he said it was a private matter.”

“So you’re the kind of person who doesn’t care if your job requires you to lie, as long as you get paid good money for it.” Why he felt the need to goad the truth out of her, he didn’t know.

Jade lifted her chin up in defiance. “I’m sorry, but I never lied to you. I was simply following instructions to meet you.”

They glared at each other, and Lucas felt his anger start to evaporate. Jade’s expression seemed honest enough. And hell, her captivating face was distracting him. Those long lashes that framed her beautiful hazel eyes didn’t seem embellished by mascara. And her lips—full and sexy, and—

“I need your answer, Lucas,” Jade said.

The bitter taste came rushing back in his mouth. “My answer is no. And if the circumstances were different, I would have said it was a pleasure meeting you, Jade Tully.”

Then he walked off.


Lucas entered the Bondi car service centre owned by his close friend, Connor Reid. He walked to the state-of-the-art service area at the back and found Connor there, checking a computer monitor that gave the condition of one of his client’s vehicles.

“Hey, bro,” Connor said. “How was your meeting with Jade what’s-her-name?”

“She was a fake,” he said flatly.

“What do you mean?”

“She wasn’t there to interview me for an article. She’s Thomas Bilton’s PA.”

Connor stared at him before pressing a button on the screen. Then Connor led him to his office.

Lucas started for the sofa in Connor’s big room, but changed his mind and sat on a chair by the desk.

“What’s wrong with the couch?” Connor asked.

“Please,” he said with snicker. “I’m not going to sit where you and your wife have sex when no one’s around.”

“Hey, it’s been treated with a stain-resistant thing. And Amanda changes the blanket all the time.”

“Amanda was here last night while you worked overtime, wasn’t she?”

Connor just grinned at him and sat on his chair behind the desk.

Lucas shook his head good-naturedly. There had been a time, when he and Connor had worked for the same Formula One team as mechanics, that the two of them had competed for the title Mr. Fuck King—a label jokingly given to Connor by their workmates because of Connor’s popularity with women from different parts of the globe. Now the title was all Lucas’, but it had lost its lustre. He’d only wanted it for the fun of stripping it away from Connor, anyway.

A picture of Jade Tully popped into his head. Unfortunately, it came with the remembrance of whom she worked for.

“So this Jade woman was sent by Thomas to talk to you?” Connor asked.

“Yup. She made me read this letter where Thomas pleaded for me to talk about the possibility of being part of Bilton Machineries. He said he’s getting old and wants to make sure that the company continues to be owned and operated by his own flesh and blood. And since I’m his sole heir…” He couldn’t help but say the last word with a good dose of sarcasm.

“And you still don’t want to have anything to do with the company? Or him?” Connor asked gently.

“Come on, bro. You know the whole story. Why would he want me to run his company?”

“Hey, you’re the one responsible for making your mother’s flower shop a success because you made sure she has efficient systems for online ordering and fast delivery. Sure, there’s a difference between a flower shop and a billion-dollar company, but—”

“That’s not what I mean, Connor,” he interrupted. “This is all a joke. Thomas never acknowledged me as his son, much less his heir, until recently. He’s up to something.”

“Okay, fine,” Connor said, raising his arms in surrender. “So did you tell off that Jade woman for lying?”

Lucas sighed, Jade Tully’s apprehensive but beautiful face appearing in his mind. “I don’t blame her. I’m sure she was just following Thomas’ orders. She’s new, so she must be desperate to keep her job.”

“You have to admit she was effective,” Connor commented. “How many times did the other PA try to get you to talk to Thomas, or read the emails and letters she sent for him?”

“Yeah,” Lucas said, wondering if he’d ever cross paths with Jade Tully again.

###End of Chapter One###

Stay tuned for Chapter Two! It'll be hitting your inbox soon 🙂 .

Enjoy your day/night!

Lots of love,
Miranda xxx


AT LAST: Cover, Teasers and Pre-Order Links



Just a month to go before January 6, the day At Last (Time for Love, Book 5) is released! I'm just as excited about this release day as I am with Christmas and New Year's Eve 😀 .

But one month is still a long way away, so here are some teasers from the book for you. Don't worry. I'll still be posting chapters one and two before release date, but that won't be until later 😉 . For now, I thought you might want to enjoy the following:

These teasers contain adult material. It is intended for readers 18 years of age or older.


“Your brothers have a nickname for you. Mr. Commitment-Phobic. I know.”


He got up. He’d have a shower, then he’d find her. It would be best if she knew immediately. Then he’d have plenty of time to convince her that although it wasn’t fun having her privacy and security threatened, she didn’t have to worry. He’d make sure she was safe.

His heart jumped strongly enough that he frowned. What was that reaction about?
Ignore it, Greg. It’s just about you dying to sleep with Gemma—and you can’t.
He pressed his lips in a thin line. She was proving to be his biggest frustration.


Greg couldn’t believe what was happening. Gemma was in bed. With him.

“God, Gem, you feel so good,” he groaned as Gemma closed her hand around his hardness and tugged. Impatiently, he sneaked his hand inside her panties. Ahh, she was soaking. And she was driving him crazy.

To his delight, Gemma pushed down her underwear and slung a leg around him.

“You want me now, baby?” he asked hoarsely.

“Yes, please,” she gasped.

With an excited grunt, he took off his jeans, which were wrapped around his ankles, thinking that in a few seconds he’d finally be inside her. Even then, he still couldn’t wait until he was sliding his rock-hard erection in and out of her delicious wetness.

Then the fire alarm sounded.

What the hell?

He looked around in confusion, and found himself alone in his bed.

“Ah, fuck!” he groaned, burying his face in his hands. Why did his phone have to ring just when he was in the best part of his dream? Damn it!

Muttering more expletives, he grabbed the offending device from his bedside table, ready to blast the ear off of whoever had interrupted his erotic dream of Gemma.

It was Chris, the head of their security team.

He sighed. He’d been waiting for this call.


That's all for now 🙂

You may already have noticed that pre-order links are already up on some stores for Greg and Gemma's love story. (And if you've already ordered your copy, thank you! Mwah!)

At Last is on a special pre-order price of only USD $2.99. If you buy from Google Play, All Romance Ebooks or Smashwords where pre-order for this book is not currently available, don't worry. I'll keep the price of USD $2.99 for two days after release date before putting it up to its regular price of USD $3.99 to give you time to get it at the discounted price.

Here are the pre-order links:

Amazon US | Other Amazon Stores | Apple | Barnes & Noble | Kobo

I'll be back with more soon! Hope you're enjoying your preparations for the holidays 🙂

Much love,
Miranda xxx


I Have New Book Covers!

I'm very excited to share these with you.

I've recently got new covers made for both the Lifestyle by Design and Secret Dreams series and they're now done. Keri Knutson of did a great job, and I'm thrilled with them.

Here they are!

Will To Love final 200x300 HeartRobber final 200x300 RayofLove final 200x300


SecretWords 200x300 SecretDesigns 200x300 SecretMoves 200x300 SecretTastes 200x300

They're now uploaded to the various stores (although some are slower to update than others).

I'd love to know what you think, so leave me a comment if you feel like it. 🙂

By the way, if you haven't read Will To Love yet, it's still free. Click here to find links to the various stores.

That's all for now. Just wanted to share the new covers. Oh! And to say my new romance novel (Rebecca's love story) is coming along well. Will tell you more about that later.


Miranda xxx