USA Today Bestselling Author
I’m finally free from the constraints of my large family.
I have a great job at the most amazing resort.
I’m finding myself and I’m learning so much from the other employees.
I’ve never known about this lifestyle before, but I think I’m Little.
And the man who has come to work on the basement might be my Daddy.
But his lifestyle is so different from mine. I could never fit into his world.
I’ve retired from pro football and run a philanthropy in Seattle.
My sneaky friend has asked me to do some construction at Blossom Ridge.
He knows I have a soft spot for broken souls.
It’s been a long time since I’ve had a Little of my own.
My heart seizes when I meet her. I already know she’s mine.
I just have to convince her she’s become my world.
Brea never really had a childhood, her parents had her helping with her siblings as soon as she was able. Now at the age of twenty-four she has her first job at Stella’s Café. It’s Stella who recommends her to Leah and Craig for the position of head housekeeper at Blossom Ridge. For Brea this is a huge move, it will give her the freedom she’s never had. There’s no way she can turn this opportunity down.
Niko is a retired football player and longtime friend of Foster’s. He’s come to Blossom Ridge to help with work on the basement. He starts falling for Brea the minute he sees her putting more towels by the pool.
Their first real interaction is at dinner that night.
This is a favorite scene.
Leah assigns me to a seat next to Niko. I’m not surprised. After all, we are the two unattached people at this dinner. But I’m nervous. What if Niko wants to engage me in conversation? I’m about to run out of words. I’ll surely verbally trip over myself and look foolish.
It’s Niko who pulls out my chair and pushes it in as I sit. “Can I get you a drink?” he asks.
I nod and mutter, “Thank you.” I’m not used to being served. I’ve never been served. Ever? It’s possible. It’s strange.
“Water? Tea? Milk?”
I tip my head back to meet his gaze. “Water, please.”
“Do you prefer a glass or a sippy cup?”
My entire body responds to his question. I’m trembling now. “A glass is fine, sir,” I murmur.
He nods and heads for the island. It’s hard for me to focus on the rest of the room. Most of the Littles are seated, and their Daddies— we don’t have any Mommies here this week— are preparing them drinks.
I’m not a Little of course. I mean I don’t think I am. But every Little in the room is handed a sippy cup, including Leah and Amy. Most of them have been served milk. I feel kind of strange when Niko sets a glass of water before me, which is silly since I’d feel a lot weirder if he gave me a sippy cup.
All the men are still standing. They grab bowls and lean over the table to fill them with stew. I’m used to being the odd man— or woman I suppose— out at the Ridge. I’m female and I don’t have a Daddy. Foster and Craig go out of their way to make sure I have what I need, but they’re careful not to treat me like a Little.
I suddenly worry that Niko feels forced to take care of me simply by virtue of being a man while I’m clearly without a partner. The thought makes my stomach hurt. I don’t want him to feel obligated. I’m not a charity case.
“You don’t have to serve me,” I point out as he sets a bowl in front of me.
He winks. “Humor me, Little one. I may be a bit rusty as a Daddy, but I would never let a Little girl serve herself even if she weren’t mine.”
My mouth opens. I need to tell him I’m not a Little. But the moment passes as he puts a slice of bread in front of me and adds a pat of butter to my plate.
I can’t relax until he finally sits next to me, his own food now also in front of him. “Go ahead, kitten. Eat.”
My heart. I think it stops. Kitten?
“What?” he asks, his brow furrowed. “You don’t like that nickname?”
I can’t help but smile. “I like it,” I murmur. “Why kitten?”
He taps my nose. “Your little button nose, I guess. And the way you’re so quiet and kind of bashful. Like a kitten. Seems fitting. Yeah?”
My cheeks heat as my smile grows.
Niko reaches for my ponytail and strokes his fingers through it before giving it a playful tug. “I once had a kitten almost the same auburn color as your hair too. Though I’m not sure his fur was as soft as your pretty locks.” He strokes it again and then releases it and leans back. “Sorry. I’m being too familiar. We hardly know each other.”
We don’t know each other at all. Not even a tiny bit. We met ten minutes ago, and yet both times he touched me sparks went through my system as if he’d shocked me. It’s irrational, but I wish he was still stroking my hair. “It’s okay,” I inform him. “I’ve never had a kitten. I’ve never had any pet.”
I have no idea why I share this information. I’ve never thought much about it, but I bet it would be nice if I had a kitten. I wouldn’t feel as lonely if I had something to pet, a cat who would crawl up into my lap. An animal who would look at me like I hang the moon, reliant on me.
“Ah. Well, you’ve been missing out. Pets are great.” He winks.
I flush. It’s odd having him pay so much attention to me.
He finally turns toward his meal and takes a bite of the stew, moaning around it. “That’s amazing.”
As I lift my own fork, wondering how I’m going to chew and swallow with him so close to me, his hand suddenly wraps around my wrist over the bowl. “Be careful. Blow on it. It’s very hot.”
I flush deeper. So many things about this situation are jarring. First of all, no one has ever cared if I got burned by food. Second of all, I’ve never once had hot food before arriving here, so I wouldn’t know what it might feel like to burn my mouth. Thirdly, Niko’s huge hand is still gripping my arm. Not unwanted. His palm is so large it nearly spans from my wrist to my elbow. His hands are rough from years of hard work. Since he’s come here to help Foster finish part of the basement, I assume he’s a carpenter.
The most shocking thing is that I like his touch. It’s warm and caring and I don’t want him to let go. That’s absurd of course, and even though his fingers linger longer than necessary, he does eventually release me.
I glance back at him, swallowing back my nerves.
He winces. “Sorry again. I’m overstepping. Way overstepping. Something about you brings out the dormant Daddy in me. I can’t help myself. I hope I’m not making you feel uncomfortable.”
Oddly he’s not. He’s making me wonder about myself though.
“You are Little, right?” he asks.
I release my fork, afraid I might drop it if I don’t. “Uh, I don’t think so. I don’t know.” That’s as true as it gets. I’ve watched and learned for the last three weeks, but that doesn’t make me Little.
Niko’s fingers come to my cheek next. “Okay.” He smiles warmly. “As long as I’m not upsetting you, that’s all that matters.” He winks.
“You’re not, sir.”
“Good.” He points at my food. “I don’t think it will burn you anymore.”
I hesitate, afraid I will seriously dribble the stew down the front of me if I try to eat. Eventually, I manage to lift the fork again and take a bite. I moan around the flavor.
Niko chuckles, a deep belly laugh that brings goosebumps to my skin. “It’s good, isn’t it?”
I nod, still chewing, not wanting to talk with my mouth full.
I’m relieved when Craig speaks from across the table, interrupting us. We’ve been in a bubble over here as if no one else exists. “What did you think of the unfinished rooms in the basement, Niko?” Craig asks.
Becca Jameson. Finding Peace (Kindle Locations 263-269). Becca Jameson Publishing.
While Brea may not know if she’s a little, she definitely has set off the Daddy in Niko.
Niko is very intuitive, and it takes no time at all to figure out some of the issues Brea is having. From not sleeping to her not having a clue about a lot of the real world because of her upbringing.
I love the gradual way these two come together, even with the issue of his actual residence being in Seattle proper.
While I’m not usually a fan of this BDSM dynamic, the way Becca writes these characters draws me in every single time.
5 Contented Purrs for Becca!
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Becca Jameson is a USA Today bestselling author of over 100 books. She is most well-known for her Wolf Masters Series, her Fight Club series, and her Club Zodiac series. She currently lives in Houston, Texas, with her husband and Goldendoodle. Two grown kids pop in every once in a while too! She is loving this journey and has dabbled in a variety of genres, including paranormal, sports romance, military, and BDSM.
A total night owl, Becca writes late at night, sequestering herself in her office with a glass of red wine and a bar of dark chocolate, her fingers flying across the keyboard as her characters weave their own stories.
During the day–which never starts before ten in the morning!–she can be found jogging, running errands, or reading in her favorite hammock chair!
…where Alphas dominate…