Today is my 33rd wedding anniversary. I’m off work from the day job but my husband is working. So, before we go out to celebrate, I’m spending time with Dillon James from author JM Stewart’s novel The Playboy’s Baby.

Since Dillon is really nothing more than a figment of JM’s imagination, she’s going to help Dillon answer my interview questions. Because really, who knows Dillon better than JM?

So, Dillon, where were you born?

Hastings, Montana

And, where do you live now? What do you do for a living?

Still live in Hastings. It’s where my family is and family’s important to me. What do I do for a living? I own a bar/nightclub. Though my pop wishes I worked in his restaurant, like the rest of the family. My club is more my style and it’s doing rather well, thank you very much. The place is jumping every night. On the weekends, it’s packed. I brought life to this tiny little town. 😉

What’s going on in your life right now?

My best friend’s big sister walks into my nightclub by herself on a Friday night, that’s what. Frankly, I was surprised as hell to see her. Never mind that she hasn’t been back to town since she left it eight years ago. She wouldn’t have come on her own. You see, Emma’s straight laced. She’s smart, graduated the top of her class, and she did it while helping her sick mother take care of her little sister. I have to tell you, though, she was a sight for sore eyes. Man, I used to have the biggest crush on her. The last time I saw her, I got to hold her in my arms, and seeing her again just brings it all back.

But I’m not the same person and she’s come with bad news. Her baby sister, my best friend, has died in a motorcycle accident. A cold, rainy night, slippery roads and a careless damn driver. Sounds just like something Janey would do. I’m devastated. Janey’s been avoiding and now I’ll never get another chance to patch up the hole in our relationship. But Emma isn’t done with me. She has more news. I have a six month old daughter her sister had planned to keep to herself out of some misguided notion of protecting me. I’d throttle her if I could. Leave it to Emma to do the right thing.

Wow. Sounds like a real mess. Is there a special person in your life–or someone you want in your life?

Emma Stanton. She’s half my size, and she isn’t afraid of anything, least of all me. She isn’t afraid to stand up to me or get in my face and tell me what she thinks. And she does it, because she’s got principles and she isn’t afraid to stand behind them. She isn’t afraid to do what’s right, even at her own expense. She doesn’t think she’s beautiful, though, and I am determined to show her otherwise.

How did you meet?

Emma and I met when we were kids. Her little sister is my best friend. We met when I was in second grade and we’ve been inseparable ever since. Emma was always the protective big sister and man, she hated my guts. *laughs* Her sister loved getting into trouble and Em was always positive I was the one leading her into it.

So, what’s keeping you two apart?

I don’t do relationships anymore. One rotten apple too many spoils the whole bunch, you know? I’ve been burned one time too many. Right now, all I really want is to be there for my daughter. Emma also keeps herself at a distance. I think she sees our relationship as wrong, because my best friend is her little sister. But there’s something else there, I think. It’s the way she looks at me, sometimes, like there’s a hesitation in the depths of her eyes. Not that it matters. As much as I’d love to see where our relationship would lead, Emma deserves better than a fling and that’s all I’m capable of right now.

Maybe you should let her decide. But if you don’t see the relationship working out, how would you like to see things resolved?

In an ideal world? I’d like to have met her somewhere else, some other time and place. I wish she’d have come home sooner, before my last relationship colored my view on all of them. Hell, sometimes I wish I’d had the courage to tell her years ago how I felt about her. Maybe we’d have ended up different places.

So, why not tell her now? What obstacles are standing in your way?

Besides, the above? My daughter. I’ve missed out on six months of her life and her mother is dead. I think on some level, she knows it, too. She deserves my focus. Between her and keeping my club afloat, my life just doesn’t have room for love.

There’s always room for love. So, isn’t there a happily ever after in your future?

Man, I sure hope so. Emma’s a wonderful woman. Soft hearted and kind, looks out for everybody but herself. She’s the kind of woman a man settles down with. She’s teaching me how to take care of my daughter, and the more time I spend with her, the more she feels like family. And the more I want to make her a permanent part of my world.

Sounds to me like your heart already wants what your head says you can’t have. But that’s a conclusion you’ll have to come to on your own. Are there any last comments before I turn this interview over to Joanne?

Thanks for letting me share my girls with you.

Any time. Joanne (JM) writes wonderful characters I enjoy spending time with.

Author bio:

J.M. Stewart writes sweet and heartwarming contemporary romance with a touch of passion. She’s a wife, a mother, a spiritualist, and lover of puppies, and happily addicted to coffee and chocolate. She lives in the Great Rainy Northwest with her husband of sixteen years and their two sons. She’s a hopeless romantic who believe everybody should have their happily-ever-after and has been devouring romance novels for as long as she can remember. Writing them has become her passion.

Book blurb:

They can’t forget the past, but is it enough to create a future?

When an accident leaves her guardian to her six-month-old niece, Emma Stanton must return to her small hometown of Hastings, Montana to find the one man she’s spent the last eight years trying to forget. She and Dillon had grown up together–he was her sister’s best friend. But that hadn’t stopped him from sharing a kiss with Emma that had followed her through the years. Now, not only must she break the news of her sister’s tragic death to Dillon, but she must risk the only family she has left and tell him he’s the baby’s father.

Wealthy nightclub owner Dillon James has been used for his name and money one too many times, so when he comes face-to-face with Emma Stanton and her gorgeous lips, he’s determined to keep things light. All he wants is to be the father his daughter needs, to make up for not being there for her and her mother. But spending time with Emma, as she shows him the ropes of caring for his daughter, is wearing down his defenses. Perhaps it’s time he took a chance on love.

If only he can convince Emma to take a chance on him…

Short 1  page excerpt:

“I had a bad experience once.” She felt like a fool, a child, but prayed he’d understand. Fear stuck in her chest, refused to let her breathe, and she couldn’t stop shaking.

He studied her, his dark eyes moving over her face, and then his jaw tightened. “Somebody hurt you once.”

When she nodded, embarrassment heated her face.

Regret and torment filled his eyes and he stroked her cheek with the back of his fingers. “God, I hate that thought. Do you want to stop?”

“No. No. I want this. I want you.” She wanted fear to stop dictating her life, to experience passion. She wanted it with him. “I trust you. I feel safe with you. I just…I need to go slow.”

Understanding dawned in his eyes. His expression softened. “I’m going too fast and it scares you.”

She hated admitting it. Hated it still had that effect on her, but nodded nonetheless. “I’m nervous.”

“Come on.” He took her hand, pulling her behind him into the living room. Once there, he took a seat on the sofa and patted his lap. “Sit with me.”

She climbed onto his lap, sitting sideways on his knees, and he wrapped his arms loosely around her waist. His arousal pressed into her bottom, hard against his zipper, but he didn’t otherwise move, didn’t demand anything more. Rather, he stared into her eyes, for so deep and so long she lost herself in the infinite depths.

Finally, he lifted a hand and cupped her cheek. “You’re in control of this. When you’re comfortable with me again and you want more, you let me know. If you don’t…” He shrugged a shoulder. “We’ll just sit here and I’ll get to hold you for awhile. Okay?”

Author links, webpages, fan pages, and book trailers:

Website Blog Twitter Facebook

FYI: If you enjoy these fun character interviews, Joanne is interviewing Gerard Delaroche from my latest release Embrace the Darkness coming out June 21 over on her blog. So check it out if you have time.