“We’re creating a cocoa scientifically,” Becca explained. “We’ll record each ingredient used and the reasons why we picked it, as well as the reasons why we reject the others. We’ll also record our response to each flavor.”
Connor could handle a taste test. After all, he judged the Chili Cook Off each year. “And the audience is supposed to find this entertaining?”
“Hey, be thankful I saved you from boredom and you get to be up here doing the fun part.” She shook her head. “I can only imagine what people do for fun in real cities.”
“You don’t think this is real?” Connor asked.
“I don’t think our community is a fair representation of what the rest of the world is like. And really,” she teased, “would you want a chipped ceramic mug of brown liquid to rank at the top of your memorable life experiences?”
She pulled a tray of spices from her bag and arranged it between them. “Why don’t you taste the plain cocoa first, so we have a starting point?”
Connor dutifully lifted the steaming mug, trying not to be stung that he wouldn’t count as a memorable part of her life.
“Your response should include whether the smell and taste of each ingredient makes your partner feel more romantically inclined,” Pauline added to the group.
He nearly spewed his drink. He was supposed to not only admit, but rate the increase in his attraction to Becca?
“Good, you firmly established us as a zero on the romance scale.” She smacked him on the back. “That’s where I intend to stay. If you start moving up the scale, I will poison you.”
He pressed his lips closed to keep from smirking. It wouldn’t do to let her know her murderous threats made him feel more romantically inclined.
For pictures that inspired me as I wrote Construction Beauty Queen and Love Him or Leave Him, check out the Small Town, Big Dreams series board on Pinterest.