Home and Garden assistant manager Evie Strand has painstakingly embroidered a set of seven thongs as a gag gift for her best friend—only she brought the wrong box to the store Christmas party, and now Adam Grant from Automotive is holding them up for everyone to see: Kiss my..., Tight Fit—could things get any worse? Adam may seem like a total rake, but he can tell Evie’s deeply embarrassed and he resolves to make it up to her. Who knew where a simple dinner date would lead?
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Mortified, Evie Strand looked on in horror at the office Christmas party careening out of control. Her fellow employees stared at her in amazement. Some snickered. Some couldn’t remain silent.
“What a hoot,” Leslie whispered from the seat next to her. “You put old Adam in his place.”
Evie shook her head and swallowed hard, willing herself to be anywhere but in this room. Adam Grant’s dark eyes snapped, mocking her. Did he really think she’d given him that package on purpose? It was meant for Christie, her closest friend. That package wasn’t even supposed to come to the office party. Christie didn’t work for the store.
How could she be such an idiot? She’d wrapped so many Christmas presents late last night. It had never occurred to her that the two packages looked so similar on the outside.
To her dismay, she’d drawn Adam Grant’s name for the annual gift exchange. She hadn’t given it much thought once she’d decided to give him a tie.
Evie blinked as he rummaged through his gift. “No,” she muttered softly, when he held up a second thong. This one, like the last, had hand-stitched lettering.
She should know. She’d painstakingly hand-lettered seven thongs for Christie. They were supposed to be a joke. She doubted Christie would actually wear any of them, but they’d each gone out of their way during the past six seasons to surprise each other with something that was outlandishly sexy. She had to admit she might’ve gone over the top this year.
Adam held high the pink Tuesday thong. He could hardly read it aloud for breaking up with laughter. “Tuesday: Wish you were…?” The question mark below the lettering left little room for confusion about the intent—it would nestle comfortably over the wearer’s mound.
More hoots and hollers followed. The powder blue Monday thong had been more shocking, probably because it was the first one Adam had held up, or maybe because it said “Don’t Dribble” across the front.
Evie pushed her chair back from the long banquet table where she sat with her fellow Grafton Department Store employees. Leslie grabbed her wrist. “Don’t let him get the best of you. Mistakes happen. At least half the people here think you did this on purpose to get the rake’s goat. If you leave, they’ll know you screwed up.”
Evie gulped and nodded at her department manager. She drew in a deep breath. “All right.”
She glanced back at Adam in time to seem him holding up the yellow Wednesday thong: “Kiss My…” with a broken arrow pointing suggestively toward the backside.
Adam shook his head at her. She thought she might’ve caught a flicker of sympathy in his eyes. “Interesting thought,” he mused. “I didn’t know you cared. I think I’ll look at the rest of these later.”
Stay with us this week as we post more excerpts, Adriana guest blogs and we wind it up all up with one of our famous Interviews!