After the death of his wife, Nick Valenti is raising his twins on his own. It’s no surprise when his son, Quinn, gets a part in the holiday show, but Nick is amazed when he shows up at the parent meeting and finds his old high school friend is now his son’s music teacher.
Emmett James is full of passion and energy, and Nick is captivated by him. Volunteering to help with sets gives Nick the opportunity to get to know the man Emmett has become. Sparks fly, flirting ensues, and Nick wants nothing more than to see where the attraction between them goes.
With Christmas in the air, and holiday music helping them along, will Nick and Emmett find a romance that can last?
I beamed proudly. “Yeah, I know. Right now he wants to be a veterinarian who sings on the weekends. We’ll see. He’s ten.”
Emmett chuckled. “That’s a great ambition.”
“It is.” I nodded, and silence fell between us again. It was my turn to change the subject. “Okay, point me to the signup sheet. I’m good for building sets. I’ll even donate the materials.”
The look on Emmett’s face was pure delight. As though I just told him he could have a pony for Christmas. “Holy shit, are you serious?”
I nodded again, loving that I could make him so happy. “I own a remodeling business. Building is what I do. Winter is our slow time, really. We only have two projects going, and they aren’t that big. I might be able to talk to a couple of the guys on the crew and see if I can get them to volunteer as well. We could have the sets built in a weekend.”
Emmett’s expression could only be described as rapturous. “I love you,” he breathed out.
The words did something funny to my insides. I hadn’t looked much beyond a hook up or two since my wife died. Too busy taking care of the kids and starting a business. But those words from his lips had me reconsidering. He was beautiful and passionate, and absolutely turned my key.
Before I could wonder whether or not dating my kids’ teacher was against the rules or not, Emmett’s expression turned scandalized and he clapped a hand over his mouth.
“Oh God. I’m sorry. That was inappropriate.”
“It’s fine,” I assured him.
But he was still babbling. “I usually have to beg, borrow, and steal to get materials. And even then it’s subpar. And I have to do most of the work myself, and I’m okay at it, but not great. The sets look fine but having a real professional with professional materials --”
“Em,” I interrupted, unintentionally shortening his name like we used to in high school. “It’s fine. Really. And I’m happy to help.”
“Okay, good.” He still seemed flustered, but he took a deep breath and soldiered on. “Well, it’s very appreciated. Just put your name and number down here, and I’ll contact you to find out when you’re available. We’ll coordinate with any other volunteers.”
I did as he asked, but I couldn’t help sneaking glances at him out of the corner of my eye. As I bent over the table to write, he definitely gave me a once over. I couldn’t quite tell, but I thought I saw appreciation there as well. And it wasn’t for my building skills.
Definitely a step in the right direction.
I straightened and acted like I hadn’t notice him checking me out. He still looked a little flushed and flustered, but I liked it, so I didn’t bring attention to it. I didn’t want to make him uncomfortable.
“Thanks again. Really,” he said fervently.
“No problem. It’s my pleasure.” My voice made the statement sound a little provocative, and Emmett definitely noticed. I hadn’t done it on purpose, but I wasn’t sorry. I liked seeing his reactions to me.
“Okay. So, um, yeah. I’ll call you.”