Welsh girl trying to find her way in the world. All round Blogger with a passion for Fictional Characters.

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A Winter's Wish Come True by Lynsey James

Blurb: Being pregnant with her ex-boyfriend’s baby is the last thing on Cleo Jones’s Christmas wish list. Scott might have been the man of her dreams once upon a time, but things change and now Cleo faces a future as a single mum… Or does she?

Scott won’t let Cleo go through this alone; whatever their differences he’s vowed to be there, from antenatal classes to night feeds and nappy changing. The two agree to bring up their baby as friends – but as Cleo’s bump grows, so do their feelings for each other.

Cleo can’t be sure if it’s her heart of her hormones urging her to give Scott a second chance – but getting back together could be the best Christmas present of all!

Life is a funny thing, isn’t it?
Some days, it carries on as normal: you go to work, do what you have to do, then come home and put your feet up with your favourite box set.
And some days, you put on a red jumpsuit and throw yourself out of a plane.
Today is definitely one of the latter days for me. I crouch near the edge of the plane, an instructor strapped to my back, and try not to think about how the next few seconds are going to play out. As the nerves begin to take hold, I glance up at my best friend Emma, who’s standing opposite me. She looks almost as scared as I feel, but flashes me a thumbs up nonetheless.
‘Ready?’ she yells, struggling to be heard over the plane’s ear-splitting engines.
‘As I’ll ever be!’ I reply, nodding my head.
Emma’s instructor announces that they’ll be going first, which only succeeds in making me feel even more terrified. Going first means getting it over with, whereas I’ll have a few more seconds to panic before launching myself out of a plan at 12,000 feet. As Emma shuffles to the edge, preparing to do her jump, I resist the urge to close my eyes. This is supposed to be a fun, exhilarating experience, but now I’m regretting ever having written it on my bucket list.
Emma tumbles away, her whooping and cheering quickly swallowed up by the brisk morning air. Acid rises in my throat; I feel like I’m going to be sick.
‘Are you OK?’ Tommy, my instructor, leans forward to ask the question in my ear. ‘Honestly, there’s nothing to be afraid of. I’ve done hundreds of these jumps and nothing’s ever gone wrong. Well, apart from that one time where I nearly forgot to put my parachute on, but just ignore that.’
I crane my neck round to look at him, feeling my heart drop to my shoes. ‘That’s not really doing wonders for my confidence, Tommy …’
He shakes his head and chuckles. ‘I’m only joking! Are you ready to go?’
‘Not really,’ I admit with a weak smile. ‘In fact, I’m bloody terrified!’
Tommy gently nudges me closer to the edge and my stomach does a series of somersaults. I can’t imagine throwing myself out into oblivion, not knowing where I’ll land. Why I ever picked this to add to my bucket list is anybody’s guess.
‘Perfect time to do it, then!’ 
I look back just in time to see him grin before we’re out of the plane and amongst the clouds.
As terrified as I was before the jump, the feeling of actually doing it is incomparable. There’s a small moment where I float through the sky with Tommy strapped to my back, before we prepare to make our descent. I feel utterly euphoric and terrified in equal measure; I’ve never enjoyed not being in control, but there’s something unique about being amongst the clouds.
Elation spreads through my body as we come to land. For as much as I enjoyed the sky diving experience, there’s nothing that quite beats being on terra firma. Tommy separates us and helps me out of the ridiculously huge jumpsuit.
‘Thanks for that!’ I say, slipping my helmet off and flashing him a smile. ‘That was … amazing.’
I notice his cheeks pink up and he looks at the ground for a moment before his gaze returns to me.
‘Oh, it was nothing,’ he replies. ‘I do loads of these every week … not usually with someone as pretty as you though.’
The blush on his face deepens to scarlet and he rubs the back of his neck as he awkwardly avoids my gaze. I’m not sure where to look myself; my mouth opens and closes as I try to think of the right thing to say.
‘Um … I … Thanks, I guess!’
Very smooth, Cleo.
Tommy smiles, showing off his pearly white teeth. ‘I don’t suppose you’d fancy going for a drink after this? There’s a nice little pub just down the road. Invite your mate too, if you like.’
It’s my turn to blush, as I feel a crimson heat sweep over my cheeks. I run a hand through my hair, which has become a tangled mess thanks to the sky dive, and look up at him. 
‘Tommy, I’d love to but … I have a boyfriend. Sorry.’
He nods and I see his smile falter a little. ‘Of course you do. I should’ve known really. He’s a lucky guy, whoever he is.’
He does an awkward little wave and heads off towards the air base. I make my way over to Emma, who’s now been divested of her jumpsuit and untangled from her equally cute sky diving instructor.
‘You and Tommy looked cosy,’ she says with a wink and nudge. 
I shrug and avoid her gaze as best I can. ‘He asked me out for a drink, but I said no. Told him I have a boyfriend.’
I don’t have to look at her to know her bright smile has faded. The sigh of disappointment is all the confirmation I need.
‘But you don’t,’ she says gently. ‘Not anymore. It’s been a year since Scott left, Cleo. Going out with someone else might be good for you.’
I take a deep breath to keep my emotions in check, hiding them behind a reassuring smile. ‘I’m fine as I am, OK? I don’t need another guy in my life.’
My best friend doesn’t look convinced and fixes me with a knowing stare. ‘Don’t close yourself off completely to the idea. It might not have worked out with Scott, but that doesn’t mean someone else can’t sweep you off your feet.’
I nod and pretend to agree with her as we head back towards the air base. Somewhere deep inside me, an all-too-familiar dull ache makes itself known once again. The ache that’s been here for the last year, since the man I thought was the love of my life walked away for the very last time.

Author bio: Lynsey James was born in Fife in 1991 and has been telling people how to spell her name ever since. She's an incurable bookworm who loves nothing more than getting lost in a good story with memorable characters. She started writing when she was really young and credits her lovely Grandad- and possibly a bump on the head from a Mr Frosty machine- with her love of telling stories. She used to write her own episodes of Friends and act them out in front of her family (in fact she's sure she put Ross and Rachel together first!)

A careers adviser at school once told Lynsey writing wasn’t a “good option” and for a few years, she believed her. She tried a little bit of everything, including make-up artistry, teaching and doing admin for a chocolate fountain company. The free chocolate was brilliant. When Lynsey left my job a couple of years ago, she started writing full-time while she looked for another one. As soon as she started working on her story, Lynsey fell in love and decided to finally pursue her dream. She haven’t looked back since.

When Lynsey's not writing, eating cake or drinking tea, she's daydreaming about the day Dylan O’Brien FINALLY realises they're meant to be together. It’ll happen one day…

The giveaway is for 3 eCopies of A Winter's Wish Come True. 


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