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Getting Her Groom

Getting Her Groom

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Angela fell hard for Alex from the start, and though the feeling is mutual, he doesn’t want to date a college girl.  When her senior project and the community center it will help support are put in jeopardy, though, he agrees to help. Can they make things work despite their 12-year age difference?

Main Tropes

  • Age Gap
  • Different Social Classes
  • Cinnamon Roll Hero
  • She Falls First
  • Romantic Suspense
  • Afraid to Commit


A career on Broadway is the only thing Angela wants more than she wants Alex.

Despite her best efforts over the summer, he doesn’t seem the least interested, so she’s focused on finishing up her senior project—a musical she and a friend created whose proceeds will benefit a local community center. Hopefully the performances will allow it to keep its doors open until the next big grant comes through.

Alex has been fascinated by the much-younger woman, but twelve years age difference is too much for him to overlook. Still, he can’t say no when her pianist for the show is injured and she asks him to fill in. When someone does their best to sabotage the show, Alex steps up to help figure out what is going on. Can they catch the person responsible and save the community center? And if they do, will their relationship be able to survive the separation when she moves to New York City to pursue a career in the theater?

Intro into Chapter One

Professor Abernathy finished his discussion of Elizabethan theater and checked his watch. “One last item before you all clear out. Don’t forget that your senior project proposals are due in the next ten days. You’ll want to put your best foot forward, so don’t procrastinate the paperwork to the last moment. Also, we have an announcement that will be going out in an email to the entire department tomorrow, but I’m going to tell you now.” He paused to make sure every eye was on his five-foot-two frame.

Angela’s stomach grumbled as she watched the thirty-something professor. He was excited about whatever it was, so it must be interesting.

He finally answered, “Someone from the community has offered a five-thousand-dollar prize to the top writer-slash-director.”

The room started to buzz with excitement as the students talked about everything they could do with that much cash. Angela was right there with them. The senior projects had always competed for the top award which gave them a credit for their portfolio. Even though she had put off her script writing class until this semester she had been dabbling with script ideas for a full year in anticipation.

This extra incentive ramped up the competition, and Angela was totally excited. How nice would it be to be able to support herself when she finished college and moved to New York City to start her career in theater? Not that five thousand would go very far in New York, but if she was careful and picked up a temporary job somewhere she should at least be able to make it for a couple of months without having to go begging to her older sister, Jonquil.

Beth’s arm rose among the hubbub. “Is this in addition to having our shows put on by the department next year, then?”

“Yes. Everything else will stay the same, this is a bonus.” He stuffed his papers in his folder as he spoke. “If that doesn’t motivate you all to greatness, I don’t know what will.”

Beth’s smile turned predatory. She had always acted like she was the best and brightest. No doubt she was already planning how to spend the money.

Angela wasn’t going to let Beth walk away with it though.

After exiting class a moment later, Angela held her text book close and considered what she could do to up the ante on her show. Was there a twist to the plot that would make it more impressive?

She stepped into the cold Chicago wind. There were a couple of hours until rehearsals—just enough time to eat an early dinner and re-evaluate her script.

Hattie came up to her on the sidewalk, wearing her cookie-monster knit beanie cap. “Did you hear about the prizes they’re offering for the senior project this year?”

“Prizes, as in multiple?” Wind blew Angela’s short, dark hair in front of her eyes and she brushed it back wishing, not for the first time, that she hadn’t cut it to her chin the previous spring. “I know they added a cash prize to the drama students. Did they add one to musicians too?”

“Yeah, five thousand dollars for the best body of compositions. Seriously, I’m practically salivating. I just need a project worthy of the win.”

Angela bumped Hattie’s shoulder with hers. “I’m sure you’ll come up with something. I love your songs.” They had been fast friends since their first semester. Three years later, they were preparing to graduate in the spring.

“I need a really big collection. Something around a central theme.”

“We’ll have to brainstorm for both of our projects,” Angela said. “Want to hear about the changes I’m making to my script?”
“Have you finished writing it yet?”

“You mean I have to finish it? Not just keep tweaking the first half?” Angela pulled a face. She was struggling with getting through the second half. She bought the book Save the Cat, but hadn’t had time to read it. Hopefully it would help her get on track again. Despite her excitement about the project when she started, something just wasn’t working.

“I don’t know if you can improve the premise of the story. I love the idea of fairytales in a dystopian society. It makes my mind swirl with images.”

Angela stopped in the middle of the sidewalk and someone nearly plowed into her, swearing as he veered around her. “Wait. I have a scathingly brilliant idea.”

Hattie snorted at Angela’s wording. “I really should stop bringing over old movies.”

“Hey, there’s nothing wrong with old movies.” Angela had thoroughly enjoyed Where Angels Go Trouble Follows. That Marvel Ann had kept things interesting. “What if we collaborate? What could be better than your silly, spirited music put to words and fit into my script? It’s kind of a goofy dystopian and could use a little music to keep the tone right.”

Hattie stared for a moment, and then a grin split her face. “It’s perfect. When can we start?”

“I’ll send you what I’ve written so far on the script tonight. Then you can start looking at ideas. I’m totally open to dropping parts of the dialog if you have an idea for a song. I wonder if we could get one of the dancers to do choreography for their project too.” Angela’s mind was whirling with ideas.

“There’s also set design majors who need to design something and work on sets for projects. I bet we could get Mike to work on ours.” She smiled and wiggled her eyebrows. “He’s got a crush on me.”

“Are you ever going to give him a break and go out with him?”

“I’m just so time-challenged.”

“Yet you can find time to do a score for a musical and watch movies with me.” Angela shot her a knowing look.

Hattie shrugged and started walking again. “I’ve been thinking about asking him for coffee.”

Angela rolled her eyes. “That’s something, anyway. Then maybe he’ll have the guts to make it a real date.”

“I don’t see you going out with anyone lately.” Hattie gave her a hard stare.

“It’s only been a couple of weeks since I went out last. And that was a disaster. Seriously, boys our age are so lame.” Alex Checketts’ face flashed into her mind and she pushed it away. She would love to pursue something with him, but he didn’t seem interested. Darn it. Even though it had been three months since she had last seen him, Angela hadn’t been able to get him off her mind. “Let me get through the semester and then I’ll look around for another date.”

“Lame. So lame. Alright. I need to go work on the closing song for tonight. It’s kicking my butt and we’re getting close to performances.”

“Tell me about it. I’m still working on getting the lyrics right for scene four. I need to eat something first. See you in a couple hours.”

They said goodbye and parted ways, Angela headed for the cafeteria while Hattie veered left toward the music building. If there were more time, Angela knew Hattie would go to The Center instead. She could almost always access the piano in one of the back rooms of the community center her Aunt Pebbles ran. Getting into the practice rooms on campus was a little more challenging.

Her mind started to turn as her thoughts veered back to her script. Now she wasn’t going to be able to focus on the other assignment for class. Instead she would end up making notes of great places for songs in her script. Hattie would surely agree on locations where the songs would work best.

Angela had done some lyric writing just for fun, but not much. She could help out on that end of things, if Hattie needed feedback. They probably ought to put together some kind of contract for the two of them since they were collaborating. Just to be smart. If it did well, they might want to try selling it to theater companies.

You might as well dream big, right?

She pulled out her cell phone and shot her brother Mark a text message. Got a contract question for you. Do you have time to work on something with me in the next week?

She didn’t hear back from him for almost ten minutes.

How long are we talking?

Angela considered, but really didn’t know. I need to write up something between me and Hattie for a musical we’re collaborating on. I’m doing the script, she’s doing music.

Maybe this weekend. Send me a prototype and I’ll tweak it for you.

Thanks, you’re the best. Angela grinned. There were definite perks to having a brother who was almost through law school.

She couldn’t wait to sit at a desk and start re-envisioning her project!

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