Can you ever really go back?

--------> KISSED SERIES <--------

From the bestselling author of The Kissed Series comes the highly anticipated fourth installment, French Kissed by the Billionaire.

She knows his location, but not his identity.

Sharle, short for Sharlene, has read and studied romance books for years and has come up with a fool proof plan to meet her charming prince.

Without a doubt, she knows that her true love won’t be found in the produce section of the grocery store, or the corner coffee shop. The strong handsome man that will sweep her off her feet can only be found in the romantic city of love…Paris, France.

Once in the magical city, reality slams fantasy on its ass right in the middle of a vineyard in the French countryside.  Now she's wondering if she's lived between the pages of her books until the lines blurred between fact and fiction.

Sharle never saw it coming and it all started with…that kiss.

DISCLAIMER: Take every preconceived notion you’ve ever had about romance stories and toss them out the window. At least while Sharle is around.

 

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EXCLUSIVE EXCERPT

Chapter 1

Raphe Callier clamped his lips together, swallowing his laughter. For the past twenty minutes, he’d been enjoying the beautiful sunny day at his favorite sidewalk café, being entertained overhearing a young woman’s feeble attempts to communicate with the waiter in French. He grinned when the woman asked the waiter for a slab of lard to paint on his tie. American, if he had to guess, by her brutal killing of the French language. He took another sip of his tea, broke off a buttery piece of croissant, and popped it in his mouth, delighting in the flaky goodness melting on his tongue.

“Non. Non. Non,” the woman remarked.

Raphe grinned; evidently, the waiter had returned without the slab of lard. He coughed to contain a chuckle as he eavesdropped on their heated debate.

“Madame, please. I speak English. Just tell me what you want,” the disgruntled waiter pleaded.

“Non, en français,” the woman insisted they speak in French.

At least she got that right, even if her pronunciation was horrific. Raphe checked the time, and regretted he needed to leave to get back to the Grand Palais, where Callier Winery was being showcased in the main exhibit hall. As the vineyard owner, he didn’t have to be there, but he found connecting with the distributors on a personal level beneficial to building relationships.

He glanced at the woman on his way out. Her back was turned to him. Sadly, all he could see was a green t-shirt covering a shapely back. Her brown hair was pulled into a messy bun on top of her head, which was bent over a reading tablet, oblivious to her surroundings. A young American student, he assumed.

Raphe stopped a waiter, “Please take a croissant and butter to the lady at the table behind where I was sitting.” He handed off a few bills. “Here, this should cover it.”

His phone rang as he was getting on his Ducati. A wide grin appeared on his face at the name that popped onto the screen. “Hello, ma ravissante sœur. How are you feeling today?”

“I may be your lovely sister but I feel like a beached whale, and Marc said I had fat ankles!” Callie screeched into the phone.

Raphe sucked on his bottom lip to keep from laughing. Laughing was a tactical error, he’d learned during the third month of his sister Callie’s pregnancy with twins. He heard his brother-in-law Marc in the background. “I only said you needed to rest more because it looked like your feet were swelling.”

“That may have been what you meant to say, but I heard fat.” She didn’t bother to move the phone away from her mouth when she bellowed. Raphe winced at the sharp pain in his ear.

“Callie, is there a reason you called?” She sniffled, and Raphe cringed.

“Do…do I need a reason to call my…my…brother?” she asked tearfully.

Raphe heard the phone rustle, a door closed, then Marc came on the line. “What did you say, asshat? She’s crying!”

Again, he tried to keep the amusement from his voice. “I did nothing more than ask the reason for the call.”

Lowering his voice, Marc said, “The doctor said it would be at least three more weeks. You know how miserable Callie’s been. The thought of three more weeks with a belly full of babies was more than she could handle. Even Aunt Amélie packed her bag to the escape to the coast.”

“Ahhh, Petite Doucette,” Raphe said sympathetically.

“There’s nothing little about her, but if you tell her I said that, remember—I know where you sleep.”

Raphe face split in a grin. “My lips are sealed. Shall I bring her favorite chocolat home?”

“It couldn’t hurt,” Marc whispered before he ended the call.

Laughing at his sister’s outlandish behavior, Raphe pulled on his helmet and zipped through the street of Paris with a smile on his face. A year ago, his life had been dramatically different. Then he’d found his twin sister, Callie, after being separated since birth, and a joy like he’d never known had entered his life. She filled a void that he’d always felt.

Up until last year, he’d lived mostly in his Paris home, which was close to his work at Callier Wines corporate offices, and only visited his vineyards as needed through the year. But since he’d found Callie, he’d flipped his schedule to work mostly from Château Callier, and only came into the city as needed. Callie and Marc had moved into the Callier family home while their own home was being built. Raphe hoped that once the babies were born, he could talk Marc into working in the family business. Marc could decide to simply enjoy his family, though He certainly didn’t need to work since selling his share of the lingerie company he and Mason, his partner, had created. Raphe had found his own priorities had changed, too. He was rediscovering his love of working with the grapes and getting his hands dirty. Yes, Callie had been good for him.

Raphe hadn’t been back at the Grand Palais long when he heard a woman’s high-pitched squeal, then a shattering crash, followed by an angry voice he had no trouble placing. He wondered what the woman from the café had done now? He ran toward the commotion and stopped in his tracks, blinked, and then sucked his lower lip between his teeth to keep from laughing at the absurd sight before him.

A man lay cowering on the floor, surrounded by the remains of a once-beautiful ice sculpture, of swans if he remembered correctly, and the silver trays they’d been residing on, while a vision of ire stood over him. Her hands were on her hips, one sneaker-covered foot planted in front of the other in a boxer’s stance. She appeared ready to do battle with the male population of France. She had to be a head shorter and probably fifty kilos lighter than the man, but she totally made up for it in presentation while giving him a good dressing down.

“…and why did you think it was okay to pinch my ass! It’s not! Ne pincez pas le cul d'un vérin. Is that clear enough for you?”

Confusion at being told not to pinch the ass of a jack filled the man’s eyes as he warily looked up at the little warrior. When she held out her hand offering to help the man up, Raphe chuckled when he flinched. “Go on, take it.”

Anxiously the man looked around for help, then slowly reached up, taking her hand. After helping him up, she dusted him off and straightened his tie. “There now. Next time, ask before you take such liberties with a woman’s behind.” She smiled sweetly up into his face. “Okay?”

“Oui m'dame. Yes. Thank you.”

She watched the man scurry away and then her eyes ran over the mess on the floor. Everyone that had been standing around watching the spectacle suddenly disappeared. Her eyes landed on his, and he finally got his first look at her. She was taller than he’d first thought, probably five-foot-six or seven, with curves. Luscious curves. Which he found tempting. She’d taken her hair down, and it fell around her shoulders and halfway down her back in cascading chocolate-brown curls. She was stunning.

Raphe saw a spark of interest in her eyes, which he found promising, at least until she spoke. She pointed directly at him. “Hey, you. Go get a broom and dust pan. Ummm. Mettez votre cochon dans un sac de saleté.”

Raphe’s mouth fell open, because she’d just asked him to put his pig in a dirt bag. To his recollection, he didn’t own a pig. Instead of debating the matter, he motioned for a venue worker to take care of the mess on the floor.

A disappointing look came over her face. “Too good to clean up a little mess, I see. You better hope your boss doesn’t find out. Now if you will excuse me.”

“Wait!” Raphe called out. She turned, then he shocked himself by asking, “May I take you out for a drink?”

Again, he saw a flash of interest in her eyes, but she shook her head, “I don’t know you. You may be a perfectly acceptable human being, but I don’t go places with strangers.”

Raphe grinned. He wondered if she realized she was probably in a country of nothing but strangers. “I completely understand. You are wise to be cautious. However, I can assure you that you’ll be perfectly safe.”

“Said the spider to the fly,” she mumbled.

Concerned he’d gotten the translation wrong he paused, repeating her words. “Said…” his voice drifted off when he realized what she’d meant, he grinned, threw his head back and laughed. When he opened his eyes, all he saw was her retreating back. Before he could stop her to find out her name, she’d already been swallowed by the crowd. Raphe had no idea what intrigued him about her, but getting to know her would have been…nice. Especially with those curves.

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