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Authors: D.S. Craver

Yours or Mine

BOOK: Yours or Mine
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YOURS
OR MINE

By

D.
S. Craver

Yours
Or Mine
was previously published under

the
title,
Your Place or Mine
.

Yours or Mine

Copyright
© 2013 by Diane Craver

All
Rights Reserved

Cover
Art by Diane Craver

Yours or Mine
is a work of fiction. Though some actual towns, cities, and locations
may be mentioned, they are used in a fictitious manner and the events
and occurrences were invented in the mind and imagination of the
author. Any similarities of characters or names used within to any
person past, present, or future is coincidental.

All rights
reserved. No part of this book may be used or reproduced in any
manner whatsoever without written permission from the author. Brief
quotations may be embodied in critical articles or reviews.

TABLE OF CONTENTS

Dedication

Acknowledgements

Chapter
One

Chapter
Two

Chapter
Three

Chapter
Four

Chapter
Five

Chapter
Six

Chapter
Seven

About
the Author

Books
by Diane Craver

Visit
Diane online!

5 star Review by Fennel for The Long and Short of It Romance
Reviews.

‘Start as you
mean to go on.’ Is a phrase I often heard during my childhood, but
in Your Place or Mine? Ms. Craver does just that. She starts with an
emotional bombshell for her heroine, Sydney Smith, and just keeps on
going until the end of this short and tightly written short story.

The meeting,
outside a duplex for sale, between Sydney and Blake Smith seems
ordinary enough. After all, I bet this wouldn’t be the first two
potential buyers piggy-backed on the same appointment. Combine that
with immediate physical attraction and both the reader and Sydney are
left wondering whether it is a case of emotional rebound after her
former lover dumps her twenty-four hours before the meeting.

Ms. Craver pits
common sense, caution and family responsibility against feisty
impulsive actions tempered with logic and vulnerability. This
juxtaposition creates plenty of intensity between her characters. Her
sense of place is beautifully depicted as she moves from scene to
scene. The story may be brief, but the wordsmith is awesome.

There are several
secondary characters all create intense reader connections that range
from loving respect to loving aggravation.

It may seems
surprising to describe a story as ‘gentle’ when there are several
spicy bedroom scenes. But that is just what this story is. So, if you
want a quick read to fill in time, or just to curl up in front of the
fire as the colder weather closes in, then this is a book for you.

Snippet from Stephanie Burkhart’s 4 star review about Your Place
or Mine

“Craver's
writing is crisp and spot on. The dialogue is modern and witty. The
plot flows smoothly and keeps the reader cheering for Blake and
Sydney. The writing alludes to a deeper premise – when you meet the
one you're going to spend the rest of your life you just "know.
“The story is sophisticated for readers. Craver's love scenes are
graphic and tasteful. Overall, "Your Place or Mine" is a
nice romantic getaway.”

Dedication

To my
husband, Tom, the love of my life.

Acknowledgements

Thank you to my
friend, Marianne Arkins, for encouraging me to write a novella. I
want to thank two other friends, Cerian Hebert and Autumn Jordon, for
their wonderful suggestions in making this novella the best it could
be.

Chapter One

Focus, Sydney. Don’t
let random thoughts run through your mind. Get a grip.
She
sighed. It wasn’t going to be an easy task when she’d received a
text yesterday from Mark that it was over between them. Immediately,
she’d call him and he had the nerve to say, “Don’t you dare
write about our breakup in your stupid column.”

First of all, she could
write whatever she wanted in her daily column. Okay, he had a point.
Why exploit their past relationship in the newspaper? It might help
her readers to realize she had the same dating problems as they did,
but trashing her old boyfriend might not win her a new guy. Both men
and women read her column about dating. A compromise should be fine.
She could mention that texting wasn’t appropriate in breaking off a
relationship. She wouldn’t use the louse’s name.

How could Mark use the
adjective
stupid
about the advice she bestowed on thousands of
readers daily? Well, maybe not thousands, but surely she had hundreds
of singles reading her column. According to her editor, her advice
seemed to reach a nerve in the singles’ world.

She didn’t get the
guy. Tears rushed to her eyes. What was wrong with her? She’d
recovered in the past when she had breakups. And there had been
several. Sometimes the guy had initiated the breakup, and other
times she’d been the one to call off the relationship. But it
seemed like Mark and she had a lot in common.

She exhaled a deep
breath, trying to calm down. She could go purse shopping to relax.
Opening the closet door, she glanced at her collection of purses
hanging on a rack.
Bad idea.
She didn’t want a new handbag
to represent another broken relationship. This time she wasn’t
going to shop to feel better. Maybe she should follow her own
editorial advice and shake her life up by making a positive change.

What should she do? She
definitely needed to find another place to jog in the morning. She’d
met Mark while jogging in their neighborhood park. Soon they were
running together and dating. After less than two months, Mark was
done with her. It would be too painful to see him each morning, and
she wasn’t about to change her running schedule. If she didn’t
jog first thing in the morning, she’d never do it later.

Before Mark had entered
her life, she’d considered looking at a duplex house that was below
market value. With her inheritance from an uncle, she had enough for
a down payment. She could rent one side to her friend, Anna. It'd be
great to have Anna around, but yet they'd have their separate places.
Anna was due home in a month from Africa, and had wanted to get an
apartment with her. She put a lock of brown hair behind her ear,
wondering if the house was still available.

Her brother had
cautioned her not to wait too long, because at the low listing price
it might not be on the market for long. Moving out of her tiny
apartment would be great and what better time than now, she thought.
Even though the springtime hadn’t proved to be the best season for
Mark to fall in love with her, at least it’d be the ideal time to
move. If the house was still for sale, she’d give the realtor a
call today to schedule a showing for tomorrow.

Smiling, she realized a
bigger place would have more room for her purses.

* * *

After Sydney slammed
her car door, she walked quickly to the man standing in the driveway,
noticing a pale blue shirt covering broad shoulders. He had the
bluest eyes she’d ever seen. The female realtor must have sent
someone in her place to show the duplex, but she certainly didn’t
mind. With his movie-star looks, he must sell tons of houses, she
thought. “Hello, I was expecting Karen Patrick but glad you’re
here. I’m looking forward to seeing the house.” Or try to, she
thought. It might be a bit hard to take her eyes off this hunky
realtor to view the house’s features.

He frowned. “I’m
here to see it, too, as a prospective buyer. There must a mix-up.”

She raised her
eyebrows, surprised that he wasn’t showing her the house. “My
appointment’s at two o’clock. Could you have the wrong day? I
doubt Karen would schedule us for the same time.”

“I had one at four
o’clock but left a message for Mrs. Patrick to see if I could move
it up to an earlier time. When I didn’t hear back from her, I
called the office. The receptionist said my name was written down for
two o’clock.”

“Well, I guess she’s
showing it to us together which seems unusual.” She shrugged. “But
I don’t mind.” The brightly colored flowers by the porch got her
attention. “I like what they planted. It’s beautiful.”

He nodded. “The
duplex has great road appeal. It seems like a normal house on the
outside.”

She turned at the sound
of a car. “Looks like our realtor’s here.”

Mrs. Patrick quickly
parked and stepped out of her car. She wore a beige suit. While
watching the realtor, Sydney thought how the realtor looked older
than the photo on her house listings. Her phone voice had sounded
young when she’d said to call her Karen.

Karen smiled as she
walked toward them. “Hello. I’m sorry I’m a little late. A
closing took longer than I expected.”

He said, “We were
just admiring the landscaping.”

“Actually, the
parents have a landscaping business.” Karen extended her hand to
Sydney first and said, “It’s nice meeting you, Mrs. Smith. And
you, too, Mr. Smith.”

What was going on? Why
did Karen think they were a couple? She stared at the realtor. “We
aren’t married.”

“Oh, I’m sorry. I
assumed you were married.” Karen gave them both a puzzled glance.
“You two don’t look anything alike to be brother and sister. Did
you have different fathers? Or mothers?”

He shook his head. “We
aren’t related. Is that why you scheduled us the same time? You
thought we were married or related.”

“Aren’t you Blake
Smith?” Karen asked, and then turned to Sydney without waiting for
an answer. “And you must be Sydney Smith.”

Sydney loved it. How
many people got to see a house with a great looking guy? “Hey, it
makes sense. We both have the same last name so the receptionist
assumed we were a couple. And you can call me Sydney.”

Karen said, “Well,
this is a first. The receptionist said the husband called to check on
the time.”

He raked his hand
through brown hair. “I left a voice mail for you that I wanted to
move up the time, but I’m guessing you didn’t get it.”

“I didn’t.” She
opened the lock box on the doorknob and gave a nervous laugh. “Well,
let’s go see the house.”

Sydney followed Karen
with Blake Smith right behind her.
Geez, I hope I look okay from
the back and don’t have anything sticking to my butt.
Once she
went out on a date, a sticker price stuck to her ass. How it got
there, she never knew. Okay, this wasn’t a date but going out with
Blake sometime might be a lot of fun. And she could use a good time
after being dumped by Mark. Her self-esteem needed a boost.

“I'll show you the
parents' side. The grandmother's babysitting on the daughter's side
while she's at work. The layout is identical in both. Let’s start
in the kitchen,” Karen said as they left the foyer.

Sydney glanced at the
appliances. “I like that the refrigerator, stove and other stuff
are all in white. And it’s a cozy room with the breakfast nook.”

“It’s a charming
kitchen and by the way, the countertops are granite.” Karen said.

Blake smiled. “I have
a son who likes to eat, so this might be his favorite room.”

Shit. He’s married
or has been.
A family man, but hey, she liked children. “How
old is he?”

“Carter’s seven
years old.”

“My nephew’s the
same age. I’m planning on having him and his sister visit when I
get a bigger place.”

“This is a wonderful
house. The parents built it as a duplex so the daughter and her
children could live on one side.” Karen opened a door to the
pantry. “Isn’t this roomy? You can store all your son’s
favorite snacks in here.”

Oh, Sydney saw where
this was going. The realtor assumed the single woman might not be as
motivated to buy the duplex as the guy with a son. She could
eliminate the wife from the picture because he hadn’t mentioned
her. Plus a wife would want to see the house herself. “I could use
the pantry. I’d like to buy items in bulk and save money.”

“You certainly could
have a well-stocked kitchen.” Karen pointed to the area beyond the
kitchen. “I love the open floor plan. Isn’t the fireplace
beautiful? On cold winter nights all you have to do is hit the switch
for your gas fire…easier than burning wood.”

Blake gave her a
mischievous look. “I bet you wanted to chop your own wood for the
fireplace.”

Sydney laughed. “I
might have swiped some wood from my brother’s stack.”

Karen walked into the
great room and waved her hand at a closed door. “They put an
adjoining door here to make it more family friendly for their
daughter and her children. But you can keep it locked.”

She shrugged. “The
adjoining door is fine with me. If I buy I'm going to rent half of
the duplex to my friend, Anna. The rent money will help pay my
mortgage payment.”

BOOK: Yours or Mine
12.67Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

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