Sisters in white, p.1
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       Sisters in White, p.1

           Melissa Foster
 
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Sisters in White


  Sisters in White

  Snow Sisters, Book Three

  Love in Bloom Series

  Melissa Foster

  “Sisters in White is a steamy romance infused with solid reflections on complex, evolving interpersonal relationships.”

  -- Midwest Book Review

  This is a work of fiction. The events and characters described herein are imaginary and are not intended to refer to specific places or living persons. The opinions expressed in this manuscript are solely the opinions of the author and do not represent the opinions or thoughts of the publisher. The author has represented and warranted full ownership and/or legal right to publish all the materials in this book.

  SISTERS IN WHITE

  All Rights Reserved.

  Copyright © 2013 Melissa Foster

  V3.0 R2.0

  This book may not be reproduced, transmitted, or stored in whole or in part by any means, including graphic, electronic, or mechanical without the express written consent of the publisher except in the case of brief quotations embodied in critical articles and reviews.

  Cover Design: Regina Starace

  WORLD LITERARY PRESS

  PRINTED IN THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

  A Note To Readers

  Sisters in White is the third Snow Sisters book. While it may be read as a stand-alone novel, for even more enjoyment you may want to read the Snow Sisters in series order. In Sisters in White you will begin to meet the Bradens, a family of six hot, wealthy, and lovable siblings. The Bradens will join the Snow sisters in this light, fun, and sexy nine-book series—Love in Bloom—and I hope you fall in love with Danica, Blake, Kaylie, Chaz, the Braden siblings, and all of their friends, just as I have.

  For my Bauer Drive girlfriends. May we always remember pig orgy underwear, condom earrings, It’s not his fault!, and Assawoman Street.

  I miss you every moment of my life.

  PRAISE FOR MELISSA FOSTER

  “Smart, uplifting, and beautifully layered. I couldn’t put it down!”

  -- National bestselling author, Jane Porter (on Sisters in Love)

  "Steamy love scenes, emotionally-charged drama, and a family-driven story, make this the perfect story for any romance reader."

  -- Midwest Book Review (on Sisters in Bloom)

  “HAVE NO SHAME is a powerful testimony to love and the progressive, logical evolution of social consciousness, with an outcome that readers will find engrossing, unexpected, and ultimately eye-opening.”

  -- Midwest Book Review

  "TRACES OF KARA is psychological suspense at its best, weaving a tight-knit plot, unrelenting action, and tense moments that don't let up, and ending in a fiery, unpredictable revelation."

  -- Midwest Book Review

  “[MEGAN’S WAY] A wonderful, warm, and thought-provoking story...a deep and moving book that speaks to men as well as women, and I urge you all to put it on your reading list."

  -- Mensa Bulletin

  “[CHASING AMANDA] Secrets make this tale outstanding.”

  -- Hagerstown Magazine

  “COME BACK TO ME is a hauntingly beautiful love story set against the backdrop of betrayal in a broken world.”

  -- Bestselling Author, Sue Harrison

  Table of Contents

  Title Page

  Chapter One

  Chapter Two

  Chapter Three

  Chapter Four

  Chapter Five

  Chapter Six

  Chapter Seven

  Chapter Eight

  Chapter Nine

  Chapter Ten

  Chapter Eleven

  Chapter Twelve

  Chapter Thirteen

  Chapter Fourteen

  Chapter Fifteen

  Chapter Sixteen

  Chapter Seventeen

  Chapter Eighteen

  Chapter Nineteen

  Chapter Twenty

  Chapter Twenty-One

  Chapter Twenty-Two

  Chapter Twenty-Three

  Chapter Twenty-Four

  Chapter Twenty-Five

  Chapter Twenty-Six

  Chapter Twenty-Seven

  Chapter Twenty-Eight

  Chapter Twenty-Nine

  Chapter Thirty

  Chapter Thirty-One

  Chapter Thirty-Two

  Chapter Thirty-Three

  Chapter Thirty-Four

  Chapter Thirty-Five

  Chapter Thirty-Six

  Chapter Thirty-Seven

  Chapter Thirty-Eight

  Chapter Thirty-Nine

  Chapter Forty

  Chapter One

  “I thought they were going to do a cavity search,” Danica joked as she and her fiancé, Blake Carter, finally passed through security at the Nassau Airport. After six hours on an airplane, she felt like she’d been folded, packed tight, boxed, and shipped. The sooner she stepped out those glass doors and into the sunshine, the better. “Maybe we should go walk around a bit.”

  “Don’t you want to wait for your sister?” Blake asked, holding the doors open for Danica to pass through. Her sister, Kaylie, and Kaylie’s fiancé, Chaz, were not far behind. His consideration of Kaylie and his gentlemanlike manners were just two of the many reasons Danica had fallen in love with—and finally agreed to marry—Blake.

  “I guess. Then maybe we can take a walk after we get to the hotel.”

  Blake set their bags down and pulled Danica in close. He lowered his voice to a sexy, sleepy drawl. “If you think I’m gonna let you out of our room any longer than to attend our wedding, you’re wrong.”

  She playfully pushed him away as he made a show of nibbling on her neck.

  A few minutes later, Kaylie breezed through the doors with Chaz, who was weighed down by two enormous suitcases. Her hair blew in the warm breeze like thick, shimmering strands of gold. “That took for-e-ver!” She took a deep breath and drew her arms open wide. “So this is what freedom feels like.”

  “If you call six hours on a plane freedom,” Chaz joked. His blond hair was slightly disheveled, and still, in his ever-present khaki shorts and smart linen shirt, he and Kaylie looked like Ken and Barbie.

  Kaylie shot him a flirty smile.

  “Oh, you mean as in no-children freedom,” he said.

  Kaylie and Chaz had met three years earlier, and Kaylie’s unexpected pregnancy, and the surprise birth of their twins, had kept them running at a frenetic pace ever since. Chaz Crew had proven himself as not only a loving and involved father, but he was the calm to Kaylie’s dramatic storms.

  “I love my babies, but after two years of chasing the twins nonstop, I need this little break. Three whole days before they come with Mom. Three. Whole. Days. And two whole nights. It feels so decadent to be here in the middle of the week.”

  It had taken Kaylie two years after Lexi and Trevor were born to feel like herself again, and as Danica watched her sister’s face light up at the prospect of time alone with her soon-to-be husband, she was glad they’d waited to have the wedding. At first, a double wedding had seemed like a bad idea. Danica had been sure Kaylie would want to be the star of the show, and wasn’t it just as much Danica’s day as Kaylie’s? But Kaylie had proven her wrong time and time again; from choosing flowers to bridesmaid dresses, Kaylie was agreeable, and even deferred to Danica on several occasions. At times, Danica still had trouble processing just how much Kaylie had changed since she’d met Chaz. She was no longer a party girl, but a mature mother of two…who just so happened to have a flair for drama at times.

  “Two whole nights,” Chaz repeated.

  “Now, that’s what I’m talkin’ about.” Blake picked up their bags and hailed a cab.

  Although the others thought he was teasing, Danica saw the gleam in his eye and recognized
the hunger that had yet to abate between them. She felt a flush rush up her neck and ducked into the cab so no one would notice. Each time they made love, it left her wanting more, like a hormone-infused teenager. Or a sex addict, she mused. Lately, in the darkest hours of the night, when Blake lay sleeping beside her ravished and sated body, she found herself wanting more, thinking about new and different things she and Blake might try. Things that, in her pre-Blake years, she’d never have even entertained. But she’d never—ever—say such things out loud. Not even to him. She’d learned that from her parents’ divorce a few years earlier. Danica knew that no matter how much she loved, and how much she trusted, sometimes life kicked you to the curb, and all that love—and all those promises in the dark—could be forgotten just as quickly as they’d slipped from her lips. A partner could walk away at any moment, taking the dirty scenes of their intimate moments with them and sharing them with God knew whom. She wasn’t having cold feet, and she trusted Blake explicitly, but some lessons were engrained too deeply to simply forget.

  “Oh no. I’m talking about sleep, my friend.” Kaylie linked her arm through Chaz’s as they climbed into the cab. “My man needs to rest.”

  After Chaz had taken over full ownership of the Indie Film Festival his father had started, he’d planned on taking the business to a whole new level. He’d been working night and day to ensure that he would never be desperate for sponsors again, and he’d succeeded. The bags under his eyes, and his slow pace, revealed the stress of working twelve-hour days and then coming home to late nights with the toddlers.

  Danica and Kaylie both gasped as they entered the elaborately decorated hotel. The incredibly high ceilings, and the widely sculpted, artistically weathered pillars, were highlighted by salmon-colored granite floors speckled with flecks of black, white, and gold, dramatically reflecting the crystal of the chandeliers.

  Kaylie took Danica’s hand. “Oh my God. This belongs to Blake’s cousin?”

  “Yeah. Treat Braden,” Danica said in a breathy voice. “This is too much.”

  Blake put his hand on the small of her back. “He was happy to comp us the venue. It’s his wedding gift to us.”

  “He must be loaded,” Kaylie said.

  “Kaylie!” Maybe Kaylie hasn’t changed that much after all.

  Kaylie smiled, and covered her mouth with her hand. “Oops. Sorry.”

  Blake took it in stride. “He is loaded. His entire family is well off, but you’d never know it. All five brothers, and his sister, too. But they’re good people. Very humble, generous to a fault.”

  “And from what Blake told me, each one is more handsome than the next, and yet they’re all single. Even Savannah, their sister.”

  Kaylie furrowed her brow. “Are they all gay? I mean, women must flock to them, and guys to her.”

  Blake shook his head as he checked in at the registration desk.

  “They’re not gay; trust me, they all play the field. A lot,” he said as they headed to their separate rooms, agreeing to meet for a quick bite once they were settled in.

  Danica brought her wedding checklist to the café to go over it one last time.

  “Everyone arrives Friday. Sally and Max are bringing our dresses with them; the flowers and food are all set, and Treat has reserved an entire island for the ceremony. Oh, and of course a boat, too, to get to the island.” Danica let out a relieved sigh, wondering what she might have forgotten. She still couldn’t believe that they were really getting married. She grabbed Blake’s hand, and when he turned his green eyes toward her, the yellow specks that had always intrigued her were dancing in the light.

  He put his other hand on her cheek and said, “Yes, we’re really doing this.”

  He’d been reminding her every chance he got that she would soon be his wife. Danica found it funny. He’d been the player when they’d met, not her, and yet he was the one afraid she’d leave him at the altar. “Yes, we are,” she assured him.

  “Oh, please. Get a room.” Kaylie set the menu down as the waitress arrived and took their orders.

  The waitress’s pearl-white teeth contrasted against her deeply tanned skin, and colorful beads were weaved through tiny braids in her long dark hair. Danica expected some sort of island accent, but when the summer beauty spoke, she was as American as apple pie. “I’ll be y’all’s waitress today. What can I get ya?”

  They ordered tropical drinks, salads, and sandwiches, and Danica watched Kaylie survey the young waitress as she sauntered away, her hourglass figure expertly defined beneath the long, tight skirt and slinky tank top. She waited for Kaylie’s snarky remark.

  Kaylie moved her chair closer to Chaz and said, “Wow, she is gorgeous. If that’s what the tropical sun does to a girl, then I’m never leaving.”

  “Who are you and what have you done with my sister?” Danica was only half joking.

  Kaylie swatted the air. “I’m old now, sis. I’m almost thirty, with two kids to boot.”

  “If that’s old, then what does it say about me?” Danica asked.

  “You’re right. At almost thirty-two, you are old. I’m still a spring chicken.”

  The waitress brought their drinks and meals, and Blake raised his glass. “To two marriages. May they last forever.” They all clinked glasses.

  Chaz took a drink, then asked, “What time does your father get in?”

  Kaylie groaned.

  “Play nice, Kaylie,” Danica said. Kaylie hadn’t seen their father since right after she graduated from college, when she’d found out about his long-term affair and he’d moved away and married his mistress. “He, Madeline, and Lacy get in today around six.”

  “Madeline is coming, too?” Kaylie asked with a long sigh.

  Of course, Kaylie already knew their father’s wife was coming. Danica shook her head at her sister’s penchant for drama.

  “Please tell me why he’s coming on Wednesday when our wedding isn’t until Sunday,” Kaylie said. “I’ll need more of these, please.” Kaylie sucked down her drink and held up the glass, indicating to the waitress that she wanted a refill.

  “Slow down, girl. You should at least be coherent when he arrives,” Danica said. “He wants time with us, and he knows we’ll be busy the day of the wedding. I told you all of this, and you agreed.”

  “I didn’t agree,” Kaylie said with a vehement shake of her head. “You just didn’t listen to me when I said it would ruin my week. And that girl is coming, too. At least I don’t have to be nice to her,” Kaylie said.

  Blake and Danica exchanged a worried glance. They’d anticipated how Kaylie might react to meeting their half sister, Lacy—their father’s love child—who was born just a few years after Kaylie, while their parents were still married.

  When the twins were born, Kaylie had refused to call her father. Danica had taken it upon herself to give him the news about his grandchildren, and through her father, she’d made contact with Lacy. Although Danica had yet to meet her in person, they’d been exchanging emails, phone calls, and even a few handwritten letters over the past year and a half. Kaylie had been livid at her for weeks about contacting their father, so Danica decided to keep her relationship with Lacy a secret…just until Kaylie settled down. And by her reaction, it appeared that the subject of their father was still an open wound.

  “Kaylie, I let you make most of the decisions, and you won on the dress decision. You were worried about Chelsea and Camille forgetting the dresses, or something happening to them, and practically demanded that Max be in charge.”

  “She’s Chaz’s work wife. She gets everything done perfectly,” Kaylie said with a wave of her hand.

  “Work wife? Whatever. Listen, whether you like it or not, Lacy is our blood relative,” Danica said carefully.

  Kaylie pointed at Danica. “Half. If even that. I mean, how do we know she’s really his? We don’t know this Madeline woman. Maybe she’s a slut. I mean, she has to be to break up a marriage, right?”

  Chaz had heard this from
Kaylie dozens of times. He pushed back from the table. “Do you mind if I go lie down for a bit? I’m beat.”

  Kaylie touched his thigh. “Do you want me to come with you?”

  “No, babe. I’m fine. I’m just gonna rest a bit so that I’m awake when your family arrives.”

  So, Chaz has learned the art of escape.

  They kissed, and Kaylie turned back to Danica and Blake. “Sorry. He’s been working a lot.”

  Danica had given up her therapy license almost three years earlier, when she’d realized her feelings for her new client—Blake—were not therapist-client appropriate. Even now, so many years later, she still could not ignore the therapist’s voice inside her head. Danica tried to hold back the worry that nipped at her nerves, but as she watched Kaylie suck down another drink, the words tumbled out.

  “Kaylie, is something wrong between you and Chaz?”

  “What? No, of course not. Why?”

  Danica shrugged, trying to downplay her concern. “He just seemed to take off awfully fast when we started talking about Dad.”

  Kaylie rolled her eyes.

  There’s the old Kaylie.

  “He thinks I’m being childish about the girl.”

  Danica saw the pleading in her eyes; Support me. Tell me I’m right. She’d decided, after almost turning down Blake’s proposal because of her sister’s relationship drama, that she would play things straight from then on. She was done putting her own feelings aside in order to save Kaylie’s from being hurt. Danica was sticking to her guns and allowing her true feelings to be known; she was determined to no longer placate Kaylie’s needy side—too much. Her relationship with Lacy, however, was excluded from that straightforward deal. That subject had to be handled with kid gloves.

 
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