Kelly’s Charm is the first novella in my Seasons of Charm collection. It’s been so fun to re-visit the characters from Love Finds You in Charm, Ohio. If you read or watched Love Finds You in Charm, you already are familiar with Kelly Bennett, so today I want to introduce you to Jason Thompson.
One of my favorite things to do when writing a new character is to do a character interview. Here are a few of Jason’s answers:
Favorite Color? Blue
Favorite Movie? Anything with John Wayne
Biggest Regret? Not finishing college
Cat Person or Dog Person? Dog
Car or Truck? Truck. . .but now that I live in New York I don’t drive much
Childhood dream? To be an astronaut
City or Country? I live in the city, but am a country boy at heart
You can get to know Jason better by reading Kelly’s Charm. Up next in the collection will be Summer Full of Charm, which releases later this month!
Here’s a snippet of Kelly’s Charm! Enjoy!
Kelly Bennett kicked the flat tire on her red sports car. What a day for a flat. The deserted road between Sugarcreek and Charm may as well have been in Timbuktu. For what seemed like the millionth time this week, Kelly wondered what she was still doing in tiny Charm, Ohio.
She’d moved here two years earlier, fleeing a bad relationship and searching for a place to call home. Her Aunt Irene’s inn, right in the heart of Charm, had offered both a job and a home. And the friendship she’d formed with Amish-born Emma Miller, now Weaver, had cemented her place in Charm.
But lately, Kelly had been wondering if she was truly living in Charm or just continuing to hide there. The sleepy Amish town was full of friendly faces and delicious food, but Kelly couldn’t help but wonder if becoming a permanent resident of Charm had been a mistake.
And today, faced with a flat tire, no help in sight, and a cell phone with no signal. . .she wished she was anywhere but Charm.
A black SUV approached and Kelly breathed a sigh of relief. The driver pulled the vehicle behind Kelly’s car. A guy about her age got out of the drivers’ side. “Need some help?” he asked.
She took a step back. He was classically handsome in a tall and dark kind of way. His brown hair served as a great contrast to piercing blue eyes.
“Need some help?” he repeated, slower this time.
Kelly felt the heat rise up her face. Over the past two years, she’d barely noticed any guys, much less gawked openly at any. “I have a flat.” She held up her phone. “And no signal.”
“Sounds like a problem to me.” He grinned and revealed teeth that were likely the pride of his dentist back home.
Kelly nodded. “I’m about a mile from my destination.” She knelt down to get a closer look at the tire. “I don’t see a nail or anything.” She looked up at him. “Could it just be a slow leak?”
“It could.” He motioned toward his SUV. “I have a can of Fix-A-Flat that should buy you enough time to get it repaired by a professional.”
She stood up. “That would be great. Thanks.”
He stuck out his hand. “I’m Jason Thompson.”
“Kelly Bennett.” She smiled. “Thanks for stopping.”
“What kind of gentleman would I be if I left a lady stranded on the side of the road?” he asked. “Hold tight while I grab my Fix-A-Flat.”
Kelly brushed a speck of dirt from her skinny jeans. She was glad she’d taken a little extra time getting ready today. Her favorite red sweater, dark jeans and tall black boots always made her feel good. She’d chosen the outfit specifically today because it would be one of the last times she could wear the sweater until the fall. She loved spring and summer, but for some reason fall and winter clothes were more her style.
“What brings you here?” Jason asked once he returned. “This is literally in the middle of nowhere. In fact, I’ve only seen horse and buggies for about the past five miles.”
She giggled. “I live here.”
He widened his eyes. “Really? You strike me as a city girl through and through.”
“It’s been an adjustment.” She hated to admit just how much of one. “But Charm is a wonderful place to live and work.”
Jason knelt down and pressed the can’s nozzle to the air valve. “Looks like you may have lucked out here. I’m betting you’re right and this is just a slow leak you didn’t notice until now.” He finished with the can and stood up. “You should be all set now though.”
“I can’t thank you enough.” She opened the car door. “Let me repay you for your services.”
He laughed. “No need. I’ll tell you what, though. I’m going to be in the area for a week. Would you maybe have dinner or something with me while I’m here?” He smiled. “Dining alone all the time makes me lonely.”
Kelly was taken aback. Dinner? She hadn’t expected that. “I don’t know about that.” She was shocked by how tempted she was by his offer. She couldn’t believe she was even considering it. He was a virtual stranger.
“Come on. I’m a nice guy, I promise.”
Wasn’t that what all serial killers said? Not to mention a couple of ex-boyfriends Kelly was still trying to forget. “Thanks for the offer. And for the Fix-A-Flat.” She smiled. “But I don’t think I should.” She opened her car door and got inside.
“Suit yourself.” Jason closed the door for her.
She started the car and rolled the window down. “Thanks. Do you know the way to get where you’re going?” she asked. The least she could do was offer some directions.
“I sure do.” He thanked her and told her goodbye.
Kelly sat still for a moment. She should’ve said yes.
She could just add that ‘no’ to her list of regrets. A list that seemed to be growing out of control.