Heather Gray

Flawed...but loved anyway.

header photo

Wordy Wednesday

Hi Everyone!

Welcome to Wordy Wednesday!  Share an excerpt fewer than 500 words from your family friendly book in the comments below.  Be sure to include the title and one buy link.  Then go spread the word about this post so even more people will find it.

Happy reading (and writing)!!


An Informal Christmas - Click to Buy

“Is he still here?” Why waste time on good mornings?

Suzie tilted her head in the direction of the hallway, which meant the man in question was either packing their storeroom to within an inch of its life or waiting in her little cubicle of an office. “Mr. York, I need a word.” She spat the words out loudly enough to be heard no matter where he lurked.

A hand snaked out and grabbed her arm as she passed Suzie’s desk.

Rylie peered down into the older woman’s eyes.

“Go easy on him. He means well, and he doesn’t look so good. Do you know yet why he’s donating?” Suzie’s uplifted eyebrow said it all.

Rylie released a sigh and studied the light fixtures in the ceiling.Father, I’m in a rotten mood. Please temper my tongue and fill me with kindness and patience for adults today, as well as for kids.

Sleep had chosen not to visit her last night, and if the dark circles in the mirror that morning hadn’t given it away, her foul disposition ought to. The parents of one of her patients had suffered a complete meltdown the night before. They’d even used the D-word. Divorce. A nurse had texted to tell her. The couple’s six-year-old daughter, after witnessing the whole thing, became so distressed that sedation had been ordered.

The Child Life budget didn’t allow for overnight workers, and since there was rarely ever a need, it was usually a nonissue. After all, the kids were supposed to be asleep. The nurses were fantastic and handled whatever came up during the night. This, unfortunately, was different. A fight like that wouldn’t be forgotten by morning, not by the young girl who had witnessed it.

Rylie shook her head. An attitude adjustment was in order. She was angry at the parents for fighting and frustrated she hadn’t been present to intervene. To the mom and dad, it was a disagreement — nothing more, nothing less. To their daughter, though, who’d been given far too much to deal with in her short life, it was one more thing piled on top of the plate of wretchedness she’d been served.

Suzie released her arm but wasn’t ready to let her go yet. “I’ve known you a long time, Rylie, and I’ve never seen you to take a dislike to someone the way you have this guy. I’ve also never known you to be ungrateful about a single donation to the children of this hospital. What gives?”

The words were a sledgehammer to her middle. In through the nose, out through the mouth. Rylie focused on breathing to alleviate the pain.

Suzie was right.

Rylie was out of control, and she knew it. She’d been heading down that particular slippery slope for a while but thought she’d managed to hide it from everyone.

She didn’t reply to Suzie’s question. How could she? She wasn’t entirely sure she knew the answer. Rylie had a job to do, though, and she would do it. If she was lucky, she’d be able to pull it off with a measure of grace, too. With another deep breath, she stepped away from Suzie’s desk and around the barrier into her cubicle.

Go Back

I loved An Informal Christmas! I thought Rachel Jones and Wendy May Andrews were new authors to me, but then I found that I was already following them on Amazon.and on FaceBook. Their books sound good and I look forward to reading them. Thank you for Wordy Wednesdays!!

The Reluctant Debutante - a sweet, regency romance
~ Are the possibilities worth the price? ~
Available at Amazon. Free on KU.


“Who is that ravishing creature entering the devil’s lair?” Bryghton Alcott, the fifth Duke of Wychwood, asked his friend, his gaze arrested by the slender figure climbing the stairs to a midsize townhouse as they rode past.

Turning in his saddle to gape at the young woman, Lord Lynster grinned, thrilled to know something his powerful friend did not. He turned back to face the duke. “You don’t know who that is?”

“Would I be asking you if I knew?” Bryghton said, with a wry twist to his lips.
His left eyebrow tilted at a somewhat haughty angle, the young baron finally answered with a touch of dramatic flair, “That, my good fellow, is the devil’s niece, Lady Victoria Bartley.”

“Really?” the duke asked, incredulity now echoed in his voice. “How did I not know that the devil had a niece? Surely this information could be used to my advantage.”

“I have no idea how you could have researched your enemy so thoroughly and yet not know that he is living in his niece’s house. I never thought to mention it since it seemed to be a matter of common knowledge. Of course, the lady was a child when the devil inherited her father’s title, so I suppose you took no note of her existence.”

Alcott’s face held a far-away expression for a few moments before his gaze sharpened on his friend’s face. “You said the devil is living in her house. What do you mean?”

“The earl only inherited what was entailed. The previous earl doted on his only child and left everything that was unentailed to his daughter, including the London townhouse we just rode past. The new earl, the young lady’s uncle, is her guardian until she gains control of her own fortune. As such, he and his family live with Lady Victoria when they are in Town. She lives with them in her former home when they are in the country.” Alfred, Lord Lynster, “Fred” to his friends, looked at Bryghton with a touch of anxiety, unsure of how his friend would use this information to his advantage. “The young woman faced much tragedy at a tender age, losing both her parents in that terrible carriage accident that made the devil the earl.”

“Yes, and no doubt she could use a friend, being stuck in the same house with Bartley and his family as she is,” concurred the duke, his handsome face darkened by a sinister cast.

Available now:

~ Happy reading :-) ~

A Sister’s Quandary by Rachel Jones Amazon:

Excerpt from Chapter One:
Sophie Harris hit end on her cell phone, her eyes wide with disbelief. “Jim says he’s sorry, but can’t go through with it. I guess I’m back to square one.” Her gaze settled on her grandmother and then passed to her boyfriend.
The gray-haired woman with short, tight curls placed her wrinkled hand on Sophie’s arm. “There’s always Brooke.”
“I’d consider dying before accepting a kidney from my sister!” She jerked away from her grandmother and landed with a plop on the worn leather sofa that had occupied the same space since the day she and her twin had come to live with their grandparents forever ago.
“I can’t believe Jim gave in to his wife. You were counting on him.”
Her boyfriend joined her on the sofa. He stroked Sophie’s hair and kissed her temple. His touch had a calming effect, and her body relaxed.
“We’ll figure something out. If it comes down to it, you’ll go on the waitlist,” Ben said.
“Please, Sophie, don’t discount your sister. We know she’s a match. She won’t let you down.”
“I can’t believe we’re having this conversation. Brooke walked out on us eight years ago—with my fiancé. Besides, what makes you think she’d be a donor for me? She’s selfish.”
“That’s not fair, Sophie,” Nana said. “Brooke has matured. She had it rough for a while until she found Kent. And now her life is hard again. Widowed and raising her daughter alone. Doing the best she can to raise Lindsey without family support. Sounds to me like she needs you as much as you need her.”
Ben pulled his ringing cell phone from his pocket and checked the caller ID. “Excuse me. It’s work.” He stood and slipped into the dining room.
Nana moved from her chair to sit beside Sophie. She patted her hand. “Honey, when are you going to forgive Brooke for making a foolish girl’s mistake? If karma is a real thing, she’s more than paid for hurting you. What’s it going to take to get you girls together again? Like the family you should be.”
“I don’t know, Nana.”
“She offered her kidney when we found out you needed a transplant. She’ll offer again since your donor backed out. Why won’t you let her do this for you?”
“Maybe she’s not doing it for the right reason. Maybe she thinks if I take her kidney, we’ll be even. And then she can come home to Smyrna.”

“Would that be a bad thing, her coming back? Don’t you want to know your niece? I’d love to squeeze and hug my great-granddaughter. She’s five, and all I’ve done is talk to her on the phone.”
“I’m sorry, Nana. I just don’t want her here. Even if I considered giving us a chance, it would start out long distance by phone or text.”
“Would I be too far off the mark if I said you don’t want her here because of Ben?”