Trial Run by:
Genres: Romance, Comedy, Adult
Release Date: October 31, 2014
“Trust me, he says. You’ll be safe with me, he says.”
Amelie Watts is sick and tired of being treated like a child. She might be willowy and delicate, but she has strength of the kind that doesn’t show on the outside. Plus, she learned all she needed to know so she could cope on her own. Now, if only her big brother would finally release her inheritance! She would fly to the Bahamas and kiss the backwater she grew up in goodbye.
Jason Watts is fed up with picking up the pieces of his little sister’s life. If only she would grow up already and learn to live life without stabilizers! Her latest idea is insane, and bound to be her most enormous failure to date. But how to make her understand?
Enter Rob Tyson, incorrigible bachelor and Jason’s best friend. For a laugh, they make a bet. Two people, a hastily acquired boat, and a tropical paradise. What could possibly go wrong?
From the cut scenes:
Trial Run Excerpt
Monday morning started with a bang. Amelie didn’t even get to open up her laptop before the problems began.
One of the contractors couldn’t proceed with the construction because the timber they had expected to be delivered over the weekend hadn’t arrived. Belinda ran off to sort it out, but in the meantime the team took an ad-hoc decision to take a day off work and spend it hiking instead.
Then Pete, the chef, discovered a fault with the gas supply. Belinda called for a technician, but until he arrived, they were advised to evacuate the building.
Great! The investor was expected at ten. Amelie could almost feel her blood pressure rise. What was she going to do? Sit and chat to him in her car?
Amelie unlocked her vehicle and plopped down on the back seat, so she could have more space. She gestured for Belinda to join her, but the woman was rushing down the track, cell phone stuck to her ear.
There was nothing for it. All she could do was wait. Amelie leaned back, rolling her shoulders to relax them, and then allowed her hands to drift to her expanding stomach and stroke it gently. The visit to the doctors, Friday morning, had been uneventful, other than the fact that she had been advised to get a scan in Montpelier, at the Gifford. They had all the right equipment, and would be able to provide her with a due date, and a picture to take home.
Amelie had felt inexplicably impatient since then. She couldn’t wait to have a photo of her baby – her and Rob’s baby – however grainy it might be, to hold in her hands. It was probably an unhealthy thought, but she felt she needed the confirmation that her time with Rob hadn’t been just a dream, a simple fantasy, the product of her unrequited infatuation.
Belinda came back into view at that point, sitting in the passenger seat of a black Ford truck. It had a logo painted on the side, but Amelie couldn’t quite make out the writing. The gas man had arrived quickly! Belinda hopped down as soon as the driver parked the truck, and sprinted over to Amelie’s car. Amelie got out, to make communication easier.
“You wouldn’t believe it,” Belinda panted, “but the guy from K9 Trekking is here now.” She pointed at the truck. Amelie stared at the driver, who was leaning into the cab, his back to them.
“Can you tell him to come back tomorrow? It won’t be long until the investor is due to arrive.”
“I know. I did tell him. He says it won’t take long. He has to be somewhere else for the rest of the week. I thought I could keep our investor talking if he arrives before you get through with this guy.”
Amelie nodded. “Okay. I’ll interview him right here, I guess. What’s his name?”
“Rob Tyson,” she heard a male voice right behind her.
She spun on her feet, one hand flying to her mouth as if to smother a scream, uselessly. There could be no scream. Amelie had completely lost her voice. She doubted she could utter a simple squeak right then.
Rob handed Belinda a folder. “You will find all the documents you require in here. Thanks again for coming down the track to direct me to the right spot. Without your help, I may have ended up in New Hampshire.” He flashed her a devastating smile which made him look like the porn star he was, Amelie thought bitterly. He had the right airs and appearance, even down to the aviator sunglasses.
“Nonsense,” Belinda fluttered and blushed, accepting his folder. “You were on the right track.” Her phone rang and she excused herself.
Amelie scowled at her retreating figure. Traitor. Then she stared straight at him. Rob lifted his sunglasses to the top of his head, making her insides squirm and her groin heavy with a long-forgotten ache. She probably should check her chin for signs of drooling.
“I don’t have time for games. Why are you here?” she asked as soon as she regained her composure.
“I’m here to apply for the job you advertised.”
“I have no need of clowns or porn stars on my site.”
He flinched. “Ouch. That was low.” Amelie kept her lips pressed together. The man had some nerve to show up unannounced and expect a friendly welcome. “I am here for the position of Mountain Guide. You advertised – or I guess your PA did – and I applied, as I feel I am ideally qualified for the position. This is the way things go… usually.”
Amelie took a deep breath and leaned her back against the car. If he really was here for the job, that meant he wasn’t working on porn films, right? Was he really as qualified as he professed to be? Then again, she wasn’t sure she could concentrate on her work, day after day, trying to avoid Rob at every turn. Even when he looked as handsome as he did at the moment. Especially if he looked as yummy as that. Maybe she could pick a hole in his qualifications.
“I’m not sure what you think you can do, but my guess is that your skills won’t help you here.”
“Why don’t you tell me what you expect your Mountain Guides to do?”
Amelie floundered. She had only briefly touched on a job description with Belinda. The interviews weren’t scheduled until tomorrow, so she hadn’t expected to be grilled over this so soon. Recovering rapidly, she spoke, keeping her expression calm and stern.
“I intend to make the most of this site, so every type of activity one can partake in as a holidaymaker on a mountain such as this one, you would be expected to handle.”
“I have a certificate in Lifeline Skills – real, not imaginary!” he stressed, his eyes not releasing hers. “I spent a long time working with rescue teams in Washington State, both as a full team member and on a voluntary basis. Also horse-mounted searches. Recently, I qualified in swift-water rescue. It’s all in the folder I’ve given your PA.”
“Belinda. Her name is Belinda.”
“Belinda,” Rob repeated. “I have a strict training schedule, and am taking part in volunteer rescue and trekking expeditions in my time off. I can provide references, and I am able to start right away. I have no family, and I am quite comfortable living rough.” He gestured at the half-finished cabins around them.
Amelie’s eyebrows shot up. She could believe that one. And if anything, Rob had indeed proven that he was able to look after other people in unusual and hostile environments. He just wasn’t great at looking after himself.
“I’ll need a full medical before I can consider you application further,” she said, her gaze dropping to his booted feet and back up again.
“No problem. I can go down to White Rive right now, if necessary.”
“I thought you said you had somewhere to be.”
“I needed you to see me.”
“Still a liar, then. Not much has changed.”
“I deserve that, but I can explain if you’ll only give me a minute.”
“You’ve already had far more of my attention than you deserve.”
Rob stretched a hand toward her, but Amelie moved out of range, looking for an easy escape. Luckily, right then, Belinda rushed over to her, holding her cell phone a short distance away from her face – she obviously still had someone on the line.
“I’ve got the doctors on the phone,” she said. “They’ve had a cancellation this afternoon. They say if you go now, they can fit you in at their Twin River practice, so you won’t have to drive all the way into Montpelier.”
“Is this for a scan?” Rob asked from beside Amelie. Belinda nodded. “Then tell them she’ll be there.”
“Hey! Wait a minute!” Amelie began, but Belinda had already turned her back to them and was speaking rapidly into the phone.
“I’ll take you. I’m going there anyway. Apparently, I need a certificate for my employer.”
Amelie turned on him. “Potential employer. I haven’t said yes yet.”
“Your car or mine?”
“And I can’t go now. I’m about to have a very important meeting, if you must know.”
“Your health is more important than any meeting,” Rob countered, marching her gently yet deliberately toward his truck. He held the passenger door open for her.
Amelie got in before her brain caught up with her actions. Then she tried to open the door and get out, but Rob was leaning against it. Not wanting to create further entertainment for the workers still on site, she leaned back in her chair. Satisfied that she had decided to stay in, Rob walked around and got in.
“I really am expecting –”
“I promise you, if we meet this guy you are so keen to meet, I will turn the truck around and bring you right back.”
Amelie sighed, but reached for the seat belt and strapped herself in.
Rob drove carefully over the uneven ground, until the tires hit the main link road.
“How did you know it was a guy?”
“You said ‘the guy’ I am so keen to meet. How did you know it was a guy?”
Rob’s glance shifted sideways and then he stared straight ahead again. “Belinda told me.”
He sighed, then checked his rear view mirror. “I know him.”
“Better,” Amelie conceded, “but that’s not all. What are you not telling me?” She checked the clock display. It was almost ten thirty.
“He’s late, isn’t he?” Rob asked.
“How do you know?”
“Ahh. You’re gonna find out sooner or later, so I may as well…” He looked at her for a long moment, then said, “I’m really surprised you haven’t worked it out yet. Though, of course, I’d hoped you wouldn’t.”
Amelie exhaled loudly, her staggered mind finally making connections she had unconsciously stopped herself from making. K9… Persistent mutt… Doggie… Oh, God, that couldn’t be. Rob was the investor? She’d taken Rob’s money to build her dream? And not even a loan! He had funded the entire project.
“I’ll pay you back every cent. With interest.”
“I don’t want the money back. It’s yours. I believe in this business. It has massive potential for success.”
“I don’t want your money.”
“You would have used yours if you could.”
“Yes, but you know full well I wasn’t going to keep begging Jason to release my inheritance. As soon as I turn twenty-five, it will revert to me anyway, and then I can give your investment back to you.”
“I said I didn’t want it back. I’m all right. I might get a job soon.” He smiled and winked at her.
Amelie was still too uncomfortable in his proximity to smile. She attacked instead. “So that’s what you want in return. A job. It feels like blackmail to me.”
“No. I have no intention to blackmail you into anything. I am qualified for the job, and if you stopped trying to push me away for a minute, you’d be able to see it objectively, too. Besides,” he eyed her baby bump, “I reckon I’d like to be around for a while.”
She looked down, too. It was his right as a father, to be part of his child’s life. But where did that leave her?
“Why didn’t you want to give me a chance?”
It was a while before she could answer. “I’d had enough of lies.”
“Amelie, I was in love with you. I am in –”
“Stop it! A man who is in love with a woman doesn’t plan to stab her in the back. Doesn’t play games with her life.”
“That was before I got to know you.”
“I don’t care. You had your chance, Rob Tyson. And you blew it.”
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Ella Medler is a U.K. author and editor who lives in a corner of Heaven, on the south-west coast of Ireland, overlooking the Atlantic. She writes fiction in many genres – some after her own tastes, and some to make her readers happy. Sometimes, those two happen to coincide. Whatever the genre, her books are action-driven, and well-developed characters are her forte.
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As an editor, Ella Medler has the tendency to nit-pick on plot issues while ignoring the type of rule that doesn’t allow for a sentence to be finished in a preposition. If you want to win her over, make sure your books are action-packed, your characters real, and you bring chocolate.
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