Linda Wood Rondeau

Snark & Sensibility

AND THEN BLOOMS LOVE
Friday, June 28, 2019 by SALLY JO PITTS

PLEASE WELCOME

SALLY JO PITTS

TO

FLASH FICTION FRIDAY

                                                               

EXCERPT FROM: AND THEN BLOOMS LOVE

 the first in the Hamilton Harbor Legacy series where the sleepy town in northwest Florida is waking up to find revived businesses, restored homes, new friendships and budding romances.

Chapter one, Florist Emme Matthews is short on finances after opening her new florist shop and has just learned that her refrigerated floral case needs repair…

“Emme? Pam Boswick here.”

The late morning call stirred Emme’s adrenaline. “Pam, hello.” She pressed her finger to her

ear to shut out the clatter created by the refrigeration repairman. 

“I heard you took over The Flower Cottage in Hamilton Harbor.”

“You heard right.”

Richie tugged at her shirt and pointed to his alphabet phone, needing a battery.

“That shop has a good reputation. You should do well there.”

She glanced at her drooping flowers and the repairman prostrated in the bottom of the cooler.

“I hope so.”

“I have a job smack dab between you and Tallahassee. My usual florist in the area is booked,

so, I thought of you.”

Emme’s heartrate did a two-step. In college, she’d worked with the popular event planner on

occasion. A job with her might cover the cooler repair. Richie nudged his toy in front of her.

“The order is for a special dinner, March sixth, being hosted at the Davenport’s Colonnades.”

Emme halted her search in the junk drawer for a double A battery. The cooler cackled.

Enthusiasm drained and puddled at her feet. Colonnades was the one place she never intended

to step foot again. It would be too painful.

“I … uh … I’m afraid I have a conflict that evening.”

“Oh? Too bad. I looked forward to working with you again. Let me know if anything

changes.”

“I will. Please keep me in mind for future jobs.”

The call ended. Richie tugged her arm. She spotted a double A, and with trembling fingers

snapped the battery into the toy phone.

The repairman rested his rear on his heels and gave his verdict. “I got ‘er runnin’, but from

the look of it, you’re gonna need a new fan motor and gaskets. Probably run you three hundred,

give ‘r take, and I’ll have to order the parts.”

A weak whistle escaped Emme’s lips. Her cooler was essential. “Please, order what you

need.” 

With the repairman barely out of the parking lot, heavy footsteps reverberated on the wooden

decking leading to the back door. The tall form of Izzie Ketterling, Emme’s floral assistant,

entered the room mouth first. “I hope that repairman came here for flowers.”

“Afraid not.” Emme let out a shaky breath. “The cooler needs three hundred dollars’ worth of

TLC.”

Richie rushed to Izzie, who knelt to greet him. “Yikes. We could all use a little TLC. Give

Auntie Izzie a hug.”

“Cool boots,” Richie said, wrapping his pudgy arms around her.

Izzie smoothed Richie’s hair and tied a bandana at his neck. “Now you’re ready to ride the

range with your stuffed animals.”

“Thanks Auntie.” Richie hurried back to the children’s corner. Izzie wasn’t the boy’s real

aunt, but Emme loved the sense of family she offered him.

“What’s up with the boots and bandanas?” 

Izzie wore a red kerchief tied at her neck, a peasant blouse, a mid-calf A-line skirt, and silver

cowboy boot earrings.

“I was in a Western sort of mood today.”

Emme gave her a bemused smile. Friends at church called them yin-yang opposites. Izzie’s

short, black, stand-at-attention hair, dark eyes and white blue-toned complexion contrasted

with Emme’s long, honey-blonde hair, blue eyes and fair pink-toned skin. Izzie added her

inventive skills to what she wore, while Emme focused her creativity on floral design.

“Well, cowgirl, you need to mount up and make hospital and funeral home deliveries.”

Emme hesitated and added, “I had to turn down an order.”

“Turn down?” Izzie straightened her posture. In boots, she topped Emme’s five-foot-five by

a good six inches. “Have you lost your senses? Who called?”

Emme stood, hoping the action would help give credence to her quick decision. “Pam

Boswick.”

“As in highly-sought-after-event-planner Pam Boswick?” Izzie’s voice cranked up an octave.

Emme nodded and jabbed a plastic cardholder pick into the funeral spray. “The job was for

the Davenport Plantation.”

“That’s it?” Izzie’s words popped like heat hitting a kernel of corn. “So what if it’s flowers

for El Creepo and his mother. You should jump at the chance.”                                                                               

“Jump? Jump at the chance to be humiliated by the Davenports again? You’ve got to be

kidding.” Emme slumped onto her stool.

“No. You must be kidding.” Her “you” came out like the poke of an index finger to the chest.

“It’s your chance to shine and show Clifton what he gave up.” Izzie swept her arm in an

overhead circle. “We can lasso and brand ‘em with Flower Cottage finesse before they know

what hit ‘em.”

Emme rolled her eyes. “Where do you come up with this stuff? This isn’t a rodeo. The

assignment is a dinner— a special dinner party at Colonnades. Mrs. Davenport would never

stand for me having the job.”

“You don’t know that for sure.”

“I do.” Pressing the palms of her hands on the worktable, Emme pushed herself up. There

was little chance Mrs. Davenport’s “not good enough for my son” rating had changed. “I       r             won’t risk the shop’s reputation by looking bad in front of Pam.”

“What about the little matter of your expenses?”

“I’ve got some savings left.”

“And next month, then what?”

The florist cooler fan belched a metallic clinking noise, bringing Emme and Izzie to silence.

The rattle turned to a jingle, then to a rhythmic hum.

Emme started to breathe again. Izzie spoke the truth. She couldn’t afford to turn down jobs,

not if she expected to pay her bills and provide for Richie.

But getting involved with the Davenports had nearly destroyed her once—twice might finish

her off.

ABOUT AND THEN BLOOMS LOVE

What happens if a wedding florist discovers she’s married to the groom?

             She is determined to forget him…

               He loved her from the first day he saw her …

               A discovery threatens to change things …

     https://www.amazon.com/s?k=And+Then+Blooms+Love&ref=nb_sb_noss_2

ABOUT SALLY JO PITTS

Sally Jo Pitts writes what she likes to read—faith-based stories of romance with an unusual twist. She grew up in central Florida and now lives in the Panhandle with her investigator husband and feisty schnauzer.  She graduated from Florida State University, taught home economics and served as a high school guidance counselor. Currently, she is a private investigator in her husband’s agency and writes between cases. More about Sally Jo and things she investigates can be found at www.sallyjopitts.com.

 

Share This Blog:


Previous Posts

WORD PLAY MYSTERIES
JULIE COSGROVE
10/15/2021

JOLLY ANGEL CHRISTMAS
Linda Wood Rondeau
10/5/2021

A LIFE REDEEMED
OLIVIA RAE
10/1/2021

DARIA'S DUKE
LINDA SHENTON MATCHETT
9/24/2021

FINDING THAT TENDER SPOT
CAROLE BROWN
9/17/2021

MAKING UP TIME
VALERIE BANFIELD
9/3/2021

MAKING UP TIME
VALERIE BANFIELD
9/3/2021

THE WEATHER GIRLS
JENNIFER LYNN CARY
8/27/2021

THE GIRL in the CARDBOARD BOX
JANE DALY
8/13/2021

JUSTICE AT DAWN
VALERIE MASSEY GOREE
8/6/2021

SUMMER COVER-UP
SALLY JO PITTS
7/30/2021

HEAVIER THAN BROKEN HEARTS
LEE ANN BETTS
7/23/2021

LOVE FOUND IN CRANBERRY COVE
JUNE FOSTER
7/9/2021

THE JOHNSON KNIGHTS
ROBERT QUATTLEBAUM
7/4/2021

HIS GIFT
JOAN C. BENSON
7/2/2021

THIRD AND MAIN:BEFORE AND AFTER
LINDA WOOD RONDEAU
6/29/2021

FLOWERS FROM AFGHANISTAN
SUZY PARISH
6/25/2021

ALWAYS A WEDDING PLANNER
LEE ANN BETTS
6/18/2021

THE MARITIME CURE
MICHELLE S. LOWE
6/11/2021

ON SUGAR HILL
ANE MULLIGAN
6/4/2021

WOUNDED SOLDIERS: THE PEACEFUL VALLEY ANTHOLOGY
J. CAROL NEMETH
5/28/2021

BEING ETHEL IN A WORLD THAT LOVES LUCY
Michele Olson
5/21/2021

LIVING WATER
ALLISON WELLS
5/14/2021

PAPER WOLF
CHRISSY M DENNIS
5/7/2021

SURRENDERING HEARTS SERIES
Julie Arduini
4/30/2021

BENT TREE BRIDE
Denise Weimer
4/23/2021

A SONG FOR HER ENEMIES
SHERRI STEWART
4/20/2021

HANNAH A GOLD RUSH BRIDE
LINDA SHENTON MATCHETT
4/16/2021

NOTHING NEW UNDER THE SUN
TERRI WANGARD
4/9/2021

PUPPY CIAO
ANNETTE OHARE
4/2/2021

SPRING BETRAYAL
SALLY JO PITTS
3/26/2021

ANCHOR MY HEART
SARA BETH WILLIAMS
3/19/2021

DEEP END OF THE LAKE
CAROL GRACE STRATTON
3/12/2021

DREAMS REKINDLED
AMANDA CABOT
3/5/2021

ANCHOR MY HEART
SARA BETH WILLIAMS
2/26/2021

SONG OF SUGAR SANDS
DEBRA COLEMAN JETER
2/19/2021

A CHANGE OF SCENERY
DAVALYN SPENCER
2/12/2021

SECOND HELPINGS
LINDA WOOD RONDEAU
2/5/2021

THE INN AT CRANBERRY COVE
JUNE FOSTER
1/29/2021

WRITING HOME
AMY ANGUISH
1/22/2021

THE PAST EVER PRESENT
DEBRA COLEMAN JETER
1/15/2021

LITTLE GREY CELLS
LEEANN BETTS
1/8/2021

MY GIGI'S HOUSE
MEREDITH SAGE KENDALL
1/1/2021

THE GAME IS AFOOT
LEEANN BETTS
12/25/2020

THE MISTLETOE CONTRACT
JENNIFER CHASTAIN
12/18/2020

Northern Protector
Laurie Wood
12/11/2020

UNTIL THEN
GAIL KITTLESON
12/5/2020

SNOWBOUND IN WINTERBERRY FALLS
ANN BRODEUR
11/27/2020

CHRISTMAS WITH THE ENEMY
MARY VEE
11/20/2020

A PINK LADY THANKSGIVING/A STORY BEHIND THE STORY
DONNA SCHLACTER
11/13/2020

TOGETHER FOR GOOD
PENEPOLE POWELL
11/6/2020

FORTUNE'S FALL
KATHERINE BARGER
10/30/2020

SECOND HELPINGS
LINDA WOOD RONDEAU
10/23/2020

SPRINKLED WITH SABOTAGE
ALLISON PEARL
10/16/2020

THE SLEUTH'S SURPRISE SPECIAL ONCORE POST
KIMBERLY ROSE JOHNSON
10/11/2020

SAVING GRACE
AMY R. ANGUISH
10/2/2020

DEADLY CONNECTION: SMALL TOWN GUARDIANS BOOK THREE
JENNIFER PIERCE
9/25/2020

MY HEART WEEPS
Pamela S. Thibodeaux
9/11/2020

THE SLEUTH'S SURPRISE
KIMBERLY ROSE JOHNSON
9/4/2020

HIS GIFT
JOAN C. BENSON
8/28/2020

THE AMISH MENORAH AND OTHER STORIES
PATRICK E. CRAIG
8/21/2020

THE HEART OF COURAGE
LYNNE BASHAM TAGAWA
8/14/2020

MURDER AT MADISON SQUARE GARDEN
LINDA SHENTON MATCHETT
8/7/2020

DARK MOTIVES
ZANNE MARIE DYER
7/31/2020

THE STORY BEHIND DEN-A MODERN-DAY DANIEL
HOPE BOLINGER
7/24/2020

REMODELING: AN AUTHOR'S STORY
SHANNAN TAYLOR VANATTER
7/10/2020

RISK MANAGEMENT
LEEANN BETTS
7/3/2020

COOKING UP A MYSTERY
GAIL PALLOTTA
6/26/2020

THE WIDOW & THE WAR CORRESPONDENT
LINDA SHENTON MATCHETT
6/19/2020

YOU'RE BRILLIANT
JULIE ARDUINI
6/12/2020

THE GREEN DRESS
LIZ TOLSMA
6/5/2020

PURSUIT
JOHN OWENS
5/22/2020

KATE
DONNA SCHLACTER
5/15/2020

WHERE THE ROAD BENDS IN OUTBACK AUSTRALIA
DAVID RAWLINGS
5/8/2020

DEVYN'S DILEMMA
SUSAN G. MATHIS
5/1/2020

LEAF ME ALONE
JULIE B. COSGROVE
4/24/2020

JUSTICE FOR ELIZABETH
MARY VEE
4/17/2020

WHEN HEARTS ENTWINE
BONNIE ENGSTROM
4/10/2020

ROLL BACK THE CLOUDS
TERRI WANGARD
4/3/2020

RIVEN
H.L. WEGLEY
3/27/2020

RED LETTER DAY
PAT JEANNE DAVIS
3/21/2020

THE LOST COAST
PATRICK E. CRAIG
3/20/2020

THE CABIN
ERIN UNGER
3/13/2020

OUT OF THE EMBERS
AMANDA CABOT
2/28/2020

HER SHINING EYES
JEANETTE MORRIS
2/21/2020

THE STORY BEHIND OFF THE GROUND
CATHERINE RICHMOND
2/14/2020

ACTS OF MALICE
NIKE CHILLEMI
2/7/2020

THE CLOCK IS TICKING
TRACY WAINWRIGHT
1/31/2020

UNDER GROUND
LINDA SHENTON MATCHETT
1/24/2020

AN UNEXPECTED FAMILY
JUNE FOSTER
1/17/2020

WHEN VALLEYS BLOOM AGAIN
PAT JEANNE DAVIS
1/10/2020

MISSING DEPOSITS
LEEANN BETTS
1/3/2020

IN AN INSTANT
TRACY WAINWRIGHT
12/27/2019

THE PURPOSE REVEALED
JULIE COSGROVE
12/25/2019

IMPERFECT SNOWFLAKES
T.E. BRADFORD
12/20/2019

THREE FRENCH HENS
LINORE BURKARD
12/13/2019

RESTORING CHRISTMAS
JULIE ARDUINI
12/6/2019

SARA'S SURPRISE
SUSAN G. MATHIS
12/4/2019

MY GOOD SON
DONNA DeLORETTA BREANNAN
11/29/2019

FOREVER LATELY
LINORE BURKARD
11/22/2019

THE TICKET
DEBRA COLEMAN JETER
11/15/2019

MISSING PIECES
LINSEY BRACKETT
11/8/2019

CONFLICT AVOIDANCE
SUSAN G. MATHIAS
11/1/2019

PRACTICALLY MARRIED
KARIN BEERY
10/30/2019

CASSANDRA AND THE COWBOY
JANINE MICK WILLS
10/25/2019

UNWRAPPING HOPE
SANDRA ARDOIN
10/18/2019

FOOTPRINTS ON HER HEART
ANGELA BREIDENBACH
10/11/2019

"Indian Attack"
Lynne Tagawa
10/4/2019

Dreams Deferred
JUNE FOSTER
9/27/2019

A NEW YORK YANKEE ON STINKING CREEK
CAROL MCCLAIN
9/20/2019

JOY AFTER NOON
DEBRA COLEMAN JETER
9/13/2019

Match Made in Heaven: A Novella
JULIE ARDUINI
9/6/2019

THE MASTER'S PLAN
STEPHANY TULLIS
8/30/2019

SONG OF SUGAR SANDS
DEBRA COLEMAN JETER
8/23/2019

LOVE'S ALLEGIANCE
LINDA SHENTON MATCHETT
8/16/2019

WRITING THE PAST: THE DUST BOWL
CLEO LAMPOS
8/9/2019

THE STREET SINGER
KATHLEEN NEELY
8/2/2019

JANUS JOURNALS
H. L. WEGLEY
7/26/2019

WHERE I WAS PLANTED
HEATHER NORMAN SMITH
7/19/2019

TO THE RESCUE A SHORT STORY
PAT JEANNE DAVIS
7/12/2019

THE LEAST OF THESE
KATHLEEN NEELY
7/10/2019

SUMMER PLANS AND OTHER DISASTERS
KARIN BEERY
7/5/2019

AND THEN BLOOMS LOVE
SALLY JO PITTS
6/28/2019

IN THE MONEY
Leeann Betts
6/26/2019

AMMO (An Original Shorty Story)
JENNIFER HALLMARK
6/21/2019

POWER UP
JESSIE MATTIS
6/14/2019

THE PINK BONNET
LIZ TOLSMA
6/7/2019

KATELYN'S CHOICE
SUSAN G. MATHIAS
5/31/2019

HOSEA'S HEART
LINDA WOOD RONDEAU
5/24/2019

FAITH AND HOPE
AMY R. ANGUISH
5/17/2019

FALLEN LEAF
JULIE COSGROVE
5/10/2019

GRACE & LAVENDER
HEATHER NORMAN SMITH
5/3/2019

JULIA
VICKIE MCDONOUGH
4/26/2019

AS FAR AWAY AS POSSIBLE
BARRY NAPIER
4/22/2019

KATELYN'S CHOICE
SUSAN G. MATHIAS
4/19/2019

When Valleys Bloom Again
Pat Jeanne Davis
4/12/2019

You Asked for It
STEVE STROBBLE
4/10/2019

One Door Between Us
Tom Donnan
4/5/2019

BURIED MOUNTAIN SECRETS
TERRI REED
3/29/2019

CAPTURE ME
SHERRY KYLE
3/22/2019

UNDER PRAIRIE SKIES
CYNTHIA ROEMER
3/15/2019

A Tender Hope
Amanda Cabot
3/8/2019

PARHELION
LISA LICKEL
3/1/2019

CAROLINA GRACE
REGINA MERRICK
2/22/2019

A LOVE MOST WORTHY
SANDRA ARDOIN
2/16/2019

YOU'RE AMAZING
JULIE ARDUINI
2/8/2019

LOVE'S RESCUE
LINDA SHENTON MATCHETT
2/1/2019

COURTING DANGER
NIKE CHILLEMI
1/25/2019

JOHN ALDEN ... A SHORT STORY
LYNNE BASHAM TAGAWA
1/18/2019

THE OTHER NEIGHBOR
Gail Sattler
1/11/2019

NO TURNING BACK
H. L. Wegley
1/4/2019

ALLEY'S PERFECT ANGEL
LINDA WOOD RONDEAU
12/28/2018

A SILVER MEDALLION
James Callan
12/21/2018

THE AMISH MIDWIFE'S SECRET
Rachel Good
12/14/2018

CHRISTMAS WITH THE ENEMY
Mary Vee
12/7/2018

RETURN TO WALHALLA
LAURA HODGES POOLE
11/30/2018

HOMELESS FOR THE HOLIDAYS
PeggySue Wells and Marsha Wright
11/16/2018

HAIR CALAMITIES AND HOT CASH
GAIL PALLOTTA
11/9/2018

MEET ME IN GALVESTON
ANDREA BOESHAAR
10/26/2018

HARVEST OF BLESSINGS
JUNE FOSTER
10/19/2018

MEET JENNIFER SLATTERY
Jennifer Slattery
10/5/2018

He Passes By
Linda Wood Rondeau
6/15/2018

Bryan's Homecoming
Linda Wood Rondeau
6/8/2018

EMERGENCE
Linda Wood Rondeau
6/1/2018

Antiquainted Man
LINDA WOOD RONDEAU
5/11/2018

SOMETHING NEW
LINDA WOOD RONDEAU
5/4/2018