An excerpt from Holidays, Inc.

(c) 2020, All rights reserved

“May I help you?” Her voice cracked.

“I’m not sure.” He swiveled his head, scanning the entire room. Scrubbing a hand over his face, he stuffed his hands in his jeans pockets and shrugged. “I must have wandered into the wrong building.”

“Oh, of course.” She stopped tapping and lifted the corner of her mouth in an approximation of a friendly smile and relaxed her shoulders. With her lifetime experience of constantly meeting new people at auditions and on sets, she should be used to the basic conventions of polite introduction. Six months of interacting with the same faces, however, she’d grown rusty. “I’d be glad to guide you to the right building but…” She pursed her lips. Why was he so familiar? His eyes glinted like chrome and triggered some recognition past her memory’s reach. Did she know him? “Since you’re here, do you mind helping me?”

He stood taller and puffed out his chest. “Do you need me to move something?”

She scanned the muscles straining under the basic T-shirt. He probably purchased a multi-pack on a grocery run, yet the cotton hugged like a custom fit highlighting a trim figure. As she met his gaze, she spotted the fine lines around his eyes. He was definitely a few years older than her, but not by much.

Her chin trembled. “No, no, heavy lifting.” She smoothed a stray tendril behind her ear, brushing her fingers against her warm cheeks.

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