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Boosting the Signal

Boosting the Signal: Special Interests, by Emma Barry

Today’s Boosting the Signal entry is from another fellow Carina Press author, Emma Barry, author of the contemporary romance Special Interests. As you might guess from the title, this one’s got a romance blooming in one of the most cutthroat places imaginable—Washington, D.C.! Emma’s heroine Amelia Frank has to juggle the stress of a hostage situation and attracting the interest of Parker Bennett, who works for the Senate Majority Leader. Who’s deeply troubled that Amelia’s idealism is putting a dent in his jaded cynicism, as her piece highlights! Countdown to Amelia melting his cold heart in 3… 2…


Special Interests

Special Interests

(The following was retrieved from a trashcan. It was presumably unsent.)


TO: Amelia Frank, Construction Workers of America
FROM: Parker Beckett, Office of the Senate Majority Leader
SUBJECT: Budget Negotiation

In light of the meeting conducted a few minutes ago between CWA members and the Majority Leader’s staff, it is clear distrust and misinformation linger. We will not be throwing labor under the bus in any—still hypothetical—deal with the House. But the negotiation is taking place within a certain framework and political realities must be acknowledged.

And really, Ms. Frank, I think more than a little bit of this is personal. I want to apologize, officially, for rejecting your advances at Tom Tom last week. I am sorry. Further, I didn’t know you were going to be in the meeting today. I wouldn’t have risked poisoning the negotiation with personal feelings.

To be clear, it’s not that I’m not attracted to you. I’ve spent more than a little bit of time thinking about you since we met. But all the reasons that caused you to yell at me in front of the Legislative Director and Chief of Staff today are precisely why I wouldn’t go home with you. I’m a cynic. I don’t have any principles or ideals. I would sell out my grandmother to get a deal done.

Okay, probably not. I’m very fond of my grandmother.

But I’d sell out lots of other people’s grandmothers. I do it every day.

I’m not certain how this town hasn’t rotted you yet, Millie, but I won’t be responsible for doing it. It would be a crime to take the spark out of your smile, to put doubt in your soul, to dim the openness in your eyes—and I just won’t.

(See? I told you I’d been thinking about you. You even have me writing asides in memos. Gah.)

In closing, the Majority Leader’s Office wants to reaffirm its commitment to the working people of the United States and to our shared values. Those principles will guide the continuing negotiations.


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