Home > Waiting for Snow (Sparks in Texas)

Waiting for Snow (Sparks in Texas)
Author: Mari Carr


Chapter One



Adele Sparks glanced at the time on her phone for the third time in less than fifteen minutes. Today had been interminable. She was at the end of a double shift at Sparks Barbeque, the restaurant she ran with her cousins and sister Macie.

Her father, TJ, owned the restaurant and liked to think he was the boss, but given the fact his contributions to the business included sitting around, gossiping with his cronies, and delivering the occasional tray of food when they were absolutely slammed, there was no one in town who would give him credit for even working there.

Macie had been scheduled to work tonight’s shift, but she’d come down with the stomach flu that seemed to be sweeping through Maris, Texas this winter. Adele’s cousin, Tyson, was the local doctor, and he’d mentioned being overwhelmed at the clinic this week, when he stopped by to grab his take-out lunch before rushing back to work.

Given the fact her sister was five months pregnant and still basically a newlywed, Adele was fairly certain Macie’s doting, overprotective husband Hank Cooper—whom everyone in town called Coop—wouldn’t let her out of bed until she was one hundred percent well.

And maybe not even then.

Adele was convinced Macie and Coop’s honeymoon was never going to end. She’d never seen a couple so head over heels in love.

Which most likely meant Adele would be pulling another double shift tomorrow.

Not that it mattered. It wasn’t like she had a damn thing to do.

A couple of weeks earlier, she’d dumped the latest in a very long line of dud boyfriends. Although now that she thought about it, Adele wouldn’t really call Nick or any of the guys who’d preceded him in the last year or so actual boyfriends.

Instead, it felt like one long parade of men who never got past the third date. Nick had been the first to jump the three-date hurdle, lasting all the way to the seventh date, before she was finally forced to admit they weren’t compatible.

He’d made it that long because he had been okay to hang out with, a decent conversationalist with at least some semblance of a sense of humor, and he wasn’t a sloppy kisser, like the guy before him. Not that any of that was particularly high praise, but Nick also happened to come along right after she’d decided that perhaps she had been setting the bar too high as far as potential boyfriends went.

She’d had the perfect boyfriend once, but she’d let him go a year earlier. Which left her to contemplate settling.

After all, it wasn’t like there was a huge pond to fish in around these parts, and given the fact she planned to spend the rest of her life in her beloved hometown of Maris, Adele understood that unless she intended to become a cat lady who lived alone or broaden her horizons and start checking out the local ladies, she needed to make a genuine effort with the guys she was dating.

And with Nick, she’d been hopeful.

Until the seventh date.

On their last date, she’d invited him to spend the night.

The big test.

The ultimate one.

And that, sadly, was when it had become very apparent they weren’t going to go the distance. Nick was—well, the only word she could come up with was—timid. She’d never met a man with less game in the bedroom. Which sucked because he really was a nice guy.

Like her sister and her dad, Adele knew she had a big personality. Apparently, it was genetic. Dad and Macie were born storytellers who never failed to draw a crowd and loud laughs whenever they were on a roll.

Given the intense competition for the limelight, Adele tended to remain on the fringes during those times, one of the crowd laughing rather than telling the jokes. However, when it was just her—without Dad and Macie around—she took over as the loudest, most boisterous in the room.

For some reason, Nick had interpreted her liveliness, her boldness as dominance, obviously expecting it to carry over into the bedroom. When they’d gotten to her room, he’d stood there, waiting for her to make all the moves, all the calls. He wouldn’t even get undressed until she told him to. By the time they were naked, Adele was so turned off by his meek behavior, she’d called a halt to the whole thing and asked him to leave. Neither one of them had even made it to the bed.

She glanced at her phone and sighed. Only five more minutes had passed.

“You okay, Addie?”

“Adele,” she said, correcting Porter Cormack, without thinking about it.

Porter, a local and regular at the restaurant, had been calling her Addie for the better part of a year, though she couldn’t tell if he was doing it simply to get a rise out of her or if it was some twisted term of affection.

Because she didn’t like it.

Or at least, she didn’t think she did.

Lately, she’d noticed that the nickname felt like some sort of subliminal sex trigger. He’d call her Addie with that rich, dark chocolate tone of his, and suddenly her insides were clenching in a way that had nothing to do with disgust and everything to do with arousal.


She really needed to get laid.

That was another reason she’d invited Nick to her bed. Her horniness was off the charts.

Adele and Porter, both born and raised in Maris, had known each other forever and a day. However, because of the age difference—he was fourteen years older than her—they’d never really been friends. The best description of their relationship up until last spring was acquaintances or, as she thought of pretty much everyone who lived in town, neighbors.

Adele wasn’t entirely sure why or how they’d crossed over that acquaintances line to this relationship that she supposed could pass for friendship. All she knew was Porter had asked her to take a spin with him during a barn dance in early April, probably because she’d been about to sit down with Macie when Coop, a widower, had grabbed her sister’s hand and dragged her out to the dance floor.

Rather than leave Adele sitting alone, Porter had held his hand out and asked her for a dance. It had been a slow country tune, her cousin, Ty, belting out a George Strait classic, “I Cross My Heart.”

Adele had danced with no less than half a dozen other guys before Porter that night, but there was something about the way he’d held her in his arms that had made an impression she’d been unable to shake since then.

Unlike the long string of yahoos she’d been wasting her time with lately, Porter was confident, assertive, forthright…a serious alpha male. And, there was no denying that she found all of that incredibly attractive, completely sexy, a total turn-on.

After that spring night, he’d claimed two more dances—just two. One after her sister Macie’s wedding in Las Vegas and then another at her friend Amanda’s wedding reception.

Three dances. Every single one of them lighting her libido up brighter than the Disney World Electric Light Parade.

And damn if it hadn’t fucked up her life since.

Prior to Porter, she’d been looking for someone like Keith, the boyfriend she’d let slip away. Keith had been quiet, intelligent, kind, steady, and reliable with a great job, great family and great body—more Clark Kent than Superman, sexy in a slightly nerdy way.

But lately, she’d noticed it wasn’t Keith’s traits she was seeking out in men. Instead, all those descriptions of Porter were the list she was working off, using it as the measuring tape whenever she went on a date with a new guy.

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