Before we begin, I must remind everyone of the Moonlight Mistresses boring rule to please try and keep your responses to a PG13 atmosphere – *eye roll*. However, they haven’t seemed to care about double entendres, so let them fly!
My guests today are, Stephen Collins and Allison Hamstead – please, have a seat on our lovely couch! – from Biloxi, Mississippi. Their tale can be found in One Good Man, a novel creation by Rie McGaha.
*Settling comfortably onto the sofa*
You two make one fine pair! I did a wonderful job pairing you two up if I do say so myself! Then, I just love all of my matches!
Aine: Please, Stephen, tell our readers how you two first met. Was it by your design, or hers?
Stephen: Neither, actually. We met when Allison came to work at the casino as my brother, Jason's assistant.
Aine: Allison, would you say it was love at first sight or did you find him repulsive?
Allison: *chokes* Absolutely not love at first sight, or second sight, or third…well, you get the picture.
Aine: Since chaotic happenstance tends to put characters like yourselves in situations where they must work together or live together for one reason or another, tell us what chaotic happenstance “forced” the two of you to work or live together. How did you both feel about this?
Allison: As Stephen said, I came to work for his brother Jason at The Golden Lady, a floating casino owned by their father. Stephen did everything he could to aggravate and irritate me to the point that I began to plot his demise.
Stephen: *raises brow* I wasn’t trying to aggravate or irritate her. She was simply beautiful inside and out. Unfortunately, she had my number from day one and none of my lines worked on her. I had to wing it after that.
Aine: Stephen, would you say that your relationship developed easily or would you say there was some reluctance?
Stephen: laughs out loud Reluctance? That doesn't even come close to how she made me grovel, crawl, beg…
Aine: How long did it take you to know your true feelings for the other? At what point did you know, “this is the one”?
Allison: *grins wickedly* I'm still not sure.
Stephen: I knew the night we ate pizza together and I undressed her on my bed…
Aine: Stephen, what would you say was your biggest obstacle to overcome before you could settle into a relationship with Allison?
Stephen: Allison was the biggest obstacle. She made me work for every minute I got to spend with her.
Aine: This is for either of you. Would you like to thank anyone – other than me, of course – for getting you two together?
Allison: I think I'd have to say it was our parents. When my mother and his father fell in love it through me for a loop. But after the kidnapping, the trip to Tahiti and of course, my mother getting pregnant, there was no way to get around it anymore. I had to face the fact that Stephen loved me and it was only me who thought being a plus size woman was a problem.
Stephen: I have to thank the redhead wearing the rectal floss, as you called it (looking at Allison). If it wasn't for her hitting on me I would've never seen how jealous Allison really was and that told me she really did love me, in spite of her denials.
Aine: I know our readers have enjoyed learning about you two so far, but I’m getting a little bored, so I’m going to heat things up. Allison, how would you end this sentence, "I wish Stephen would _____?" *leans forward to eagerly hear your response*
Allison: Take me out on the boat and remember the day we spent when he caught me in the galley with the strawberries and whipped cream!
Aine: Stephen, would you prefer to give Allison a bubble bath or a back massage? Why?
Stephen: *winks at Allison* I prefer giving her a massage while she's taking a bubble bath. She has the sexiest legs, and the biggest br—well, she's the sexiest woman I've ever known.
Aine: How many of you remember that old show, The Newlywed Game? Well, these next questions are going to help us play a similar game. Let’s see how well you two know each other. Stephen, what would Allison say is your aphrodisiac? *waggles eyebrows*
Stephen: She is the only aphrodisiac I need.
Aine: Allison, did he correctly guess your answer? How would you have answered that question?
Allison: *laughs* I would've said "being awake"
Stephen: *Shrugs* That too.
Aine: *sits back in his chair* Stephen, what would Allison say is a spot guaranteed to drive you crazy with passion? Is she correct in that assumption?
Stephen: In the jacuzzi
Allison: *cracks up* I think she means a spot on your body or on mine
Aine: *readjusts his position in the chair* It’s time to cool things off just a tad. Allison, as far as you know, what is Stephen’s idea of a perfect date?
Allison: *blushes* He likes for me to dress up in really sexy clothes and let him pick me up in a bar, then we go to a hotel where he's already had fresh fruit and champagne waiting for us. He strips me down to my garter belt and stilettos, then dips the fruit in champagne and traces it over my body, licking up the juices as he goes.
Aine: Stephen, is she correct? If not, what is your idea of a perfect date?
Stephen: *adjusts himself and clears throat* Huh? What was the question?
Aine: Stephen, your turn in the hot seat. What is Allison’s idea of a perfect date?
Stephen: The same, except when I'm done with the fruit, she likes to drizzle chocolate all over me, then lick it off
Aine: Allison, is he correct? If not, what is your idea of a perfect date?
Allison: *smiles and toes the cuff of Stephen's slacks* Oh yeah.
Aine: In your adventures, journeys or travels, have the two of you had the chance to have the “perfect date,” or the closest you could get to one? Where did you go and what did you do?
Stephen: The trip to Tahiti when our parents got married, and we spent the day skinny-dipping in that grotto drinking champagne…
Allison: …and eating jerk chicken and fruit, and rubbing oil all over each other.
Aine: I want to switch gears just a bit. March has close connections to Ireland, and as many of us acknowledge, Ireland is steeped in myths and mysticism, as are many Native American tribal beliefs. Stephen, Allison Do you believe in this type of mysticism? Have you had any experiences that helped you develop these beliefs?
Allison: Not personally but I know people who believe in that kind of stuff.
Stephen: My father was born in Ireland and he's full of blarney, does that count?
Aine: Allison, Stephen Do you believe in fate and destiny or are most things just a happenstance of coincidence? Why do you feel the way you do?
Allison: If you had asked me that when I lived in Chicago, I would've told you it was all happenstance. Now, after everything that has happened, I definitely believe in destiny. Stephen and I were meant to be together and everything that happened before were just steps that brought me to him.
Stephen: *nodding* I absolutely agree.
Aine: Allison, Stephen, Where do you see yourselves in 5 years?
Allison: Hopefully with two or three kids running around.
Stephen: My father has finally retired and that leaves me running the casino but with my brother and his wife, and of course, Allison helping me I see clear sailing, huge profits, and one or two kids running around.
Aine: I’m sorry folks, but that’s all the time we have for today. Thanks to Stephen and Allison for joining us today and giving us some great answers. We hope you’ll check out their story, One Good Man.
To learn more about their author, Rie McGaha visit: http://www.riemcgaha.com
Allison Hamstead thought it was love, finally, after all the years alone, someone loved her in spite of the fact she was fat! Not that her size had ever kept her from being successful, but it had kept her far from personal relationships. She’d heard all of the fat jokes ever told, all of the things people in her office said behind her back, and she didn’t miss not having a boyfriend, or dates every weekend. Did she? But now she was in love and she couldn’t wait to introduce him to her best friend, Sarah. And what a mistake that had turned out to be! It wasn’t long before the love of her life and her best friend were living together and Allison was humiliated.
Starting over is never easy, but Allison is determined to do so and moves far from Chicago to the warm waters of Biloxi, Mississippi where she accepts a position at one of the floating casinos. For the first time in her life, Allison feels like she’s truly at home. She loves her job, she loves her boss, who is like a father to her, and she loves being a part of all the excitement going on around her. Except for one little thing…
Her boss’s eldest son, Stephen, is probably the most handsome, gorgeous, and sexy man she’s ever laid eyes on…and he knows it! And for some reason he acts interested in her. Then her mother comes to visit and winds up dating her boss. Her accounts start showing large amounts of money missing. And her ex shows up unannounced and says he wants her back. Can anything else possibly go wrong?
Men were all alike. Selfish. Self-centered. Condescending. Arrogant. And they were cheaters, to boot! Allison Hamstead thought as she stormed around the room, wishing she had something to break. But everything in the room that would break, she’d bought herself, and she wasn’t about to destroy her own things. If Wesley Smothers had left any of his stuff there, she’d certainly be breaking it now, although it would be much more satisfying to break Wesley Smothers’ leg, arm or, preferably, his neck.
Six months wasted on that cheating pig. Six months of paying the rent and the electric bill. Six months of cooking for him, doing his laundry, and being his fool while he slept with her best friend! And just like that, he’d come home from work one day and told her he didn’t think this arrangement was working for him. Arrangement. He’d called her an arrangement! Oh, she’d like to show him an arrangement or two! And to think, she’d actually been considering marrying him. That was it, the final straw. She hoped a bus would hit him. No, she hoped a bus would hit him and Sarah, both. How could she have been so stupid? So naïve? Such a trusting fool?
She had worked with Sarah for two years, and they’d been good friends. Losing Sarah’s friendship was worse than loosing Wesley, since she hadn’t really loved him. Wesley paid so much attention to her, that she had acted like a foolish schoolgirl. Sending him notes with hearts dotting the "i's" and writing Mrs. Sarah Smothers on her notepad while at work – how lame could she be! Not many men looked at her twice, and especially not men who looked like Wesley. They looked at women like Sarah. Obviously! How could she have been such an idiot? How was it possible that a relatively intelligent woman could believe such a pig like Wesley?
Looking in the mirror, she made note of her assets. Even if her face was round, she wasn’t ugly. Maybe a little soft around the middle, but at least she wasn’t slinky thin like Sarah. Besides, she was on a diet—again, for the millionth time in her life, of course, but still, size sixteen wasn’tthat big for her height. She was five foot eight inches tall after all, and hadn’t worn a size six since she was six. How many women really were a size six anyway? From the women she knew, not many were really that skinny. Sure, some were model-thin, but there were a lot of women her age that were much bigger than a size six. And hadn’t rounded, curvy women been sought after at one time or another in history? How she wished she had lived then; she would’ve been a superstar.
Sighing at the reflection in the mirror, she turned sideways and looked at her body. She’d always had a weight problem. She’d weighed over ten pounds when she was born. Fate had been against her from the beginning, and she never really had a chance to be thin. Growing up with a size four mother hadn’t helped. Her mother hadn’t meant to be unkind when Allison was younger, but the fact that her mother was a size three didn’t help. Allison knew her mother hadn’t meant to be unkind, she just didn’t understand what it was like to have a weight problem. She restricted her daughter’s meals, tried to bribe her with clothing, with money, with everything she could think of, and Allison had just continued to get bigger and bigger. Not even the hypnotist, psychologist or fat farm helped.
Allison knew she was a disappointment to her mother, but the more Mom worried over Allison’s weight, the more Allison seemed to eat. High school had been sheer torture and Allison begged to be home-schooled, but her mother worked two jobs and couldn’t take on Allison’s education personally. Allison got bigger and bigger over the four years she suffered through high school. The popular girls in gym class laughed at her, and she was constantly late for science class, because she hid out until all the other girls had showered and dressed so she didn’t have to undress in front of them.
Allison wasn’t invited to the prom, and she didn’t get invited to any of the parties the other kids enjoyed. High school was a very lonely time, and her only friend had been a girl with buckteeth and glasses with the opposite problem Allison had. Gloria was so thin, her knees were knobby, and her legs and arms seemed too long for the rest of her body. So on prom night, Allison and Gloria laid on Gloria’s bed eating ice cream, cookies, candy, and an assortment of other junk food, while trying to pretend they didn’t care. But all the junk food in the world couldn’t fill the emptiness Allison felt deep inside.