You may remember this story from Whispers when it was out with Bridget Midway and Yvette Hines’ stories as well. This one has also been expanded and will be out later in 2017.
Sage Addison climbed from the idling taxi and waited while the driver placed her bags on a cart beside a baggage porter. He looked sharp in his red, grey, and black colors. She sighed and glanced down at her boots, they’d sunk into the snow, which fell faster than the plows or shovels could keep up. The actual walkway up to the building was salted but where she stood wasn’t under any covering.
She tipped the man who’d brought her here, safely, from the airport and followed the one hauling her luggage inside the place she’d be calling home for the next two weeks. The Village Resort. A perfect blend of rustic and modern, she could already see the appeal it had. She was anxious to check in and go to her room so she could go hit the slopes.
Pausing at the desk, she smiled at the man behind the counter in what she was quickly coming to see as staff colors around here. Red, black, and grey. This man wore a grey shirt, covered by a red jacket and she had noticed his black pants when he walked up.
“Welcome to Village Resort,” he said with an easy smile.
“Thank you.” She gave him the necessary information and waited while he confirmed her registration.
Once she signed in, she followed the porter who led her to her room. He placed her bags down as she looked around. Damn! Okay, this was nice.
“Where’s the lift to go up the mountain?” she asked, knowing it had to be near, based on the cables she saw on her arrival.
“Guests at the Village Resort have access to an exclusive line. You just enter through the lobby to get there.”
Double damn! That’s what I am talking about. She smiled her thanks and tipped him before swiftly unpacking. She stared longingly at the king-sized bed knowing it would feel like heaven compared to the one-inch foam mattress she’d been sleeping on. Instead of indulging herself, she pushed through the doors leading to the balcony and stared up at the snow blanketing the mountain. The crisp Colorado air made her smile and sigh with contentment.
This will be a good Christmas. Although she’d miss her family, she just couldn’t take one more holiday where she got the third degree about her lack of dating men, no husband, or kids. The endless setups and crocodile tears from her parents who just “wanted grandkids before they were too old to enjoy them.”
So one afternoon sitting in the main ranger station for her district—before they went out to their remote station—she had been talking with a friend who, in her opinion, spent way too much time on the internet. Jason Guestrap had told her about an ad he’d seen for a single’s only thing offered in Colorado for over the holidays. So she’d signed up to go, just wanting a holiday where it was fun and possibly a vacation fling.
So, she was here for two weeks. To enjoy a week before the single’s thing started and then a week of it. After which she had to get back and work, so some of the others could have time off during the holidays as well. Wind whipped around her and she closed her eyes in pure bliss as it flowed over her exposed skin along with the falling flakes, making her feel alive.
Time to hit the slopes. She’d check more out about the single’s gathering and what it offered later. Right now, something else was on her mind. She reentered her room and changed into one of her ski outfits.
A spring in her step, she made her way down to the line for the gondola and rode it up with her skis beside her. Following the signs, she made her way to the black diamond slope. She’d go for a double black diamond run later after she got back into it and tested out the mountain, its powder, and whatnot.
Three runs later, she was exhausted and trudged back to the resort. As she neared the entrance, she stared at the people spilling from taxis and personal vehicles. A large black suburban with racks on top—holding skis and boards—pulled up and four doors opened simultaneously.
Four men stepped free at the same time and her breath caught. Hot damn! As if it came from a movie where the vehicle pulls up and on cue all the handsome men step free and the surrounding women swoon. If this was what would be showing up for the singles thing, perhaps she’d not hide from most of the activities but actually participate. Actively.
All of them were tall and fit. All in jeans and boots with jackets on shielding them from the weather. One black man who reminded her a bit of Shemar Moore, one who looked Native American to her. The other two were white. Each one of them was gorgeous all the way around
She wasn’t the only one who’d noticed them either. Many women were giving them an extremely thorough perusal. The man who’d been on the driver’s side rear walked around the back and paused at the end, staring at her.
Her belly clenched and flipped around. Dear Lord he was fine. His faded medium blue jeans hugged well-muscled legs, even with his dark brown leather jacket she could see—and appreciate—the width of his shoulders and lean waist.
His face was angles and chiseled making him ruggedly handsome. There was nothing pretty on him. His hair was black with a false disheveled look; destructured effect, layering on the sides and she assumed nape, with longer spiked strands on top.
Goodness, she wanted to touch it. He had tanned skin and from this distance, she couldn’t tell the shade of his eyes. She wished she were closer. One of the men with him said something and he replied while still staring at her. Hell, it could be he was staring at someone past her, she didn’t know. A slight grin turned up one corner of his mouth as he walked to where the other three waited for him.
Shaking off her feeling, she headed inside, craving a warm shower and some food. Still, as she went on her way it wasn’t easy not to turn her head for a final look. Whatever women nabbed those men were going to be some lucky ones.
“Hell, for all I know they’re not even here for the singles thing. It is a week early after all. They could be couples, or married.”
She stripped and walked naked into the lavish bathroom. Some of the feel maybe rustic around this resort but the bathroom wasn’t one of them. She turned the water on and stepped beneath the streaming lines with a groan of relief. Good pressure and she rested her hands along the sandstone and green hue of the tiles lining the shower allowing it to work out her kinks.
Finished, she stepped from the steamy shower and wrapped in a large robe. Reaching for her oil, she sat on the ottoman at the foot of the large bed. Popping the top, she began smoothing it on her skin. This was a specific blend one she’d had a friend make for her.
Once that was done, she went to the clothes she’d laid out and ran a critical eye over them. No, she wasn’t vain but those four men were making her rethink the desire to snag a man. Well, not rethink, just push up the timetable a bit. Why wait for the singles thing? Especially if she could have one now.
After her skin dried, absorbing all the oil, she dressed, refusing to change her attire and slipped on some shoes as she pocketed her keycard and some money. Then she left the room and headed downstairs to find some food.
Striding through the lobby, she took in the lovely décor. Hands in her pockets, she headed through the doors and outside into the night. Starview was really a pretty place. She could see some definite bonuses here. Tucking some hair behind her ear, she left to do some exploring and get some food. Her stomach was not happy since it was still on the other time zone. It wanted some nourishment.
She returned, full and content. In the lobby, she paused and walked over to a section where they had a breakdown of the Single’s-only gathering. Her gaze ran over all the offered things to do. Dog sledding. Now that sounded interesting. Maybe one day she’d try that. Ice skating she’d do. There was also a listing of the mixers and things the hotel was throwing to get the singles together.
A burst of laughter escaped her and she shook her head. What the hell was she doing?
“Something amusing?” A deep voice said from her left.
She turned and stared at the man next to her. Oh dear Lord. It was one of the hottie’s from earlier who’d gotten out of the suburban. Not just one of, but the one who’d stopped and stared at her. Up this close, she saw his eyes were a stunning pale green. Very intense surrounded by his darker coloring. On his chin, he had a small scar, like Harrison Ford had. It added to the masculinity he portrayed.
Damn he was fine. Firm bow shaped lips, strong chin. Oh…her mind could go on and on. She refused to look any lower because she knew she’d be transfixed on his groin. Instead, she smiled.