Monday, April 06, 2009

Lt. Howard Paxton GuestBlog: A Hunk'a Burnin' Love

CONTEST TODAY!!! One Lucky Commenting Bella wins a copy of Jo Davis' "Under Fire," courtesy of Signet Eclipse!

From Michelle: Each Monday through May 4, a different firefighter from Station Five visits RBTB to get up close and personal with you -- and gives you a chance to score a copy of Jo's wicked fine May 5 release, "Under Fire." Please welcome Jo Davis -- and the hero at the top of everybody's Hottest Hero of 2008 list -- with your warmest, "Lend me a quarter, please!" Bella Buongiorno...
From Jo Davis: So I’m sitting in my favorite restaurant, BJ’s, when in strolls the man of my fantasies. Lieutenant Howard “Six-Pack” Paxton of Fire Station Five. Six feet, six inches of testosterone-laden sex-on-a-stick with huge brown eyes, spiky sable hair bleached blond on the tips…and oh, yeah. Those six-pack abs that could bounce a quarter to the moon.

And he’s here to see me.

Read it and weep, ladies.

He takes a seat and gives me a shy smile, and my heart stutters. What can I say? I love a gentle giant who has no clue how truly sexy he is, and would lay down his life in an instant to rescue another person. I’m a little in awe, sort of nervous. A lot in lust.

Howard sits down and shakes my hand, which is completely engulfed in his big paw.

Howard: Hey, sorry I’m late! Traffic was a killer.
Jo (heart pounding): No problem! It’s good to see you.
Howard: You, too. Say, are Michelle and the Bellas here?
Jo: They are. Want to say hello?
Howard: Hi, Michelle, Bellas! (waving) It’s great to be here visiting with everyone.
Jo: You have quite a fan club, in case you weren’t aware…

Howard (blushing): Aw, shoot. There’s nothing all that special about me. I’m just your average guy tryin’ to make ends meet.

Jo: Now, that’s where you’re wrong. Why don’t you tell everyone what you do in your job
on a daily basis? The sorts of calls you and the guys respond to.
Howard: Well, firefighters answer calls for traffic accidents, medical emergencies, rescues, and fires. Medical emergencies and traffic accidents actually make up 97% of all calls we answer. Thanks to fire prevention programs, fires only make up about 3% of our calls, give or take, despite popular belief.

I’ve got Howard loose now, warming a bit, so I delve into more personal territory.

Jo: On another note, I hear you’re a newlywed. Congratulations!

Howard: Thanks. I married a wonderful lady named Kat. She’s a first grade teacher and as you can imagine, has energy to spare. Not to mention a terrific sense of humor.

Jo: She sounds perfect. (I pause) Not to bring you down, but didn’t you two survive something truly horrible last year? An encounter with a arsonist/murderer?

Howard (sobering): Yeah. Bastard put us through hell, and got what he deserved. I don’t really want to talk about that, if you don’t mind.

Whoops. Obviously, I struck a nerve.

Jo: I’m sorry. Forget I brought it up.

Howard: It’s okay.


The lieutenant relaxes a bit, so I shift the topic to his team.


Jo: That’s amazing. Since each of your teammates will visit RBTB in the following weeks, could you give me the rundown on them? I know you have a fantastic group on A-shift.
Howard: Sure. Our captain is Sean Tanner, and he’s probably the most closed-mouthed of the bunch. He’s been through more than any man should have to endure, so he’s not exactly conversational right now. If you know what I mean. That ought to be an interesting visit.

Jo: I can Imagine. What about the others?

Howard: There’s Eve Marshall, who has a thing for Sean and thinks nobody knows...well, crap, I guess she knows now that we know. Anyway, she’s tough as nails and an asset to the team. Then there’s Julian Salvatore. Everybody has somebody at their workplace who’s a pain in the ass. Julian is ours, and you can quote me.

Jo: You just did it for me! (Howard laughs) Who else?

Howard: There’s Tommy Skyler, the kid of the group. Or so everyone thinks. Despite his Hollywood good looks, there’s more to Tommy than anyone knows. That brings us to our FAO, Zack Knight. FAO stands for fire apparatus operator, which means he drives the big quint. Zack’s dealing with some real heavy duty stuff right now, and I’m not at liberty to say what. Maybe he’ll tell you more when he visits Michelle and the Bellas on May 4.

Jo: No worries. We wouldn’t ask you to break a confidence. We’re looking forward to hanging out with all of the Station Five team, especially Zack. Howard, thanks so much for being here today.

Howard: It’s always my pleasure to make the ladies happy.

Jo: All right, why don’t we open up the floor to Michelle and the Bellas?


Ladies, Howard is here today to dish exclusively on Romance: B(u)y The Book! Bring on your questions and comments for our hunky lieutenant.
***
Encore! Read a 5-Alarm Exclusive Excerpt from "Under Fire" here! Thanks, Jo!
Encore Due! Check out the RBTB Feature Review (FR) of "Under Fire" here.
Encore Tre! Get intimate with Lt. Howard Paxton's story, "Trial by Fire!" FR here.
***
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***
Authors: Wanna be a FOB? Link RBTB from your site/blog and send me your url @ mbuonfiglio@rbthebook.com. I'll link you up on the Friends of Bellas page!

145 comments:

Stacy~ said...

Good morning Jo, QB and Bellas. Well, heelllo there Howard. You are one fine-looking, sexy man, and any woman with eyes would love to take a bite outta you. And since you are a married one at that, I mean that with the utmost sincere respect (I don't care what Michelle tells you). Thanx for telling us about what you do - you are truly a hero - and for sharing a little dirt on your team from Station Five. I know I'm looking forward to meeting them all.

ev said...

It just all depends on where you take the bite from, right?

Loved your story Howard. I am looking forward to spying, I mean, getting to know the rest of the fire house.

So, since the other house was no longer conducive to living there, did you buy a new one with a hot tub too?

Howard "Six-Pack" Paxton said...

Good Mornin' ladies, Michelle, Bellas! It's great to be here.

Aw, thank you, Stacy. I don't know about "sexy", but Kat seems to put up with me and I'm grateful. :) As for my job, I'm just doing what I love.

Hello, Ev. Now you *know* that house had to have a hot tub!

Kati said...

w00t! Hi Howard. I have to tell you that I read your story, flipped the book over and read it again. It was that good.

Tell me, your group seems to have such a deep and abiding respect for women. Where does yours come from?

Also, you should know, we Bellas love us some men who appreciate a woman with curves. You seem to have that in spades. That's not so much a question, as a compliment!

Thanks for joining us today!

Michelle Buonfiglio said...

Buongiorno, Bellas, and a very special buongiorno to you, Howard. Yes, ok, dammit, I'm blushing! So what of it, cheeky Bellas? Don't pay any attention to them, Howard. I'm only blushing because having you and Jo here is a career milestone, not because I'm reverting to schoolgirl behavior and feeling self-conscious around a really big, sexy guy who could easily lift a girl of any size against any stable object capable of withstanding sustained and vigorous pounding.

oh. ahem. Did I just write that out loud? well, then.

we're very pleased to have you. And, I, of course, wish you and Kat best wishes and congratulations on your recent nuptuals. Despite my bitterness. Which I'm nearly over.

I'm wondering, Lt. I know you guys at FS5 are close, but I also know you like to give each other the what for. Can you tell us about any pranks anybody's played on anybody else? Or any long-standing jokes? Who's the major jokester in the bunch? And who's the easiest to get a rise out of?

Oh, and thanks so much for visiting with us.

Oh, and, yeah, sheesh. Sorry, Jo. I was a little distracted. Welcome! Thanks very much for visiting and for bringing Howard with you today. Do a lot of the FS5 guys hang out at BJs? What's the specialty of the house?

Howard "Six-Pack" Paxton said...

Hi Kati,

Thanks so much. I'm glad you enjoyed my story.

To your question, firefighters are family-oriented folks, by and large. There seems to be some universal truth there that we're nurturers, and I guess that's true. That goes for how we treat women also. The job we do requires people who are strong in mind and body, who can work as a team. I think that quality naturally spills to personal relationships. In my opinion.

Howard "Six-Pack" Paxton said...

Hello, Michelle!
Thanks for having me here. You're already making me blush--I'm glad the ladies can't see. :)

Without a doubt, our prankster is Julian Salvatore. The guy makes me crazy. Though some of the stuff he's done is pretty funny. Like the time he tied Eve's tampons together and dangled them from the rearview mirror of the quint like fuzzy dice! That was pretty inspired, even if Zack was pissed. Ha!

But Jules can't take what he dishes out, and some days I'm really glad I'm not a violent guy...

Suzanne Welsh said...

Good morning, Michelle and the Bellas! Hey Jo...great weekend, huh?

Howard! Give a girl a hug?

How is married life with dear Kat? As great as getting to know her? Please tell her hello for me! I'd ask you to give the guys each a hug, but that would probably weird them out a bit. hehehe

Since the ugly business with the stalker/killer last year, anything odd going on down at the station?

Jo Davis said...

Good Morning Michelle, Bellas, Howard, and all of our other visitors!

Michelle, yes, it is very easy to get distracted around these guys, isn't it? :) I'm so glad to be here.

The S5 guys love BJ's and so does my group of writer friends I hang with, the Foxes. BJ's is a local restuarant/bar with to-die-for Chicago style pizza and other goodies, not to mention fabulous drinks including their own brands of micro-brew. Yum. Add a bunch of hot firemen to the scene and you've got a sensory experience to remember. :)

Jo Davis said...

Hey Suz! (waving madly at my dear friend, critique partner, and Romance Bandit)

Yes, it was a great weekend-- Suz and I had a writer's conference, Dreamin' in Dallas, where I was one of the speakers. Tons of fun, info, and good friends!

Glad you're here!

Howard "Six-Pack" Paxton said...

Hey, Suz!

I've always got a hug for you, darlin'. Kat doesn't mind--she knows where her man will be at the end of the day. :) She's good, and I'll tell her hello.

Zack is acting pretty weird, but I know why and I can't tell. He'd be upset with me if I did. Let's just say he's dealing with some heavy stuff right now...

amy*skf said...

Jo writes: "The S5 guys love BJs..."
I'm sitting across the room from Michelle right now, giggling, and we were wondering if the station 5 guys would love BJs with us...wait, Michelle is saying something to me--

Oh, that's right BJs is the restaurant

Oooooh.

Howard, I'd just like to reiterate what a pleasure it was to first make your aquaintance and to do so now again...and how much I admire Kat. And congratulations on the wedding.

Michelle Buonfiglio said...

Oh, wow, Howard. Um, sheez. Didn't mean to make you all hot and blushy. Maybe I could just lick, I mean, blot that fine sheen of abashed sweat from your brow. No? OK. Well, here's a kleenex. Yeah. Well. So, this thing that's up with Zack has us all a little worried, ya know? He seems so stressed. And we're all thinking he could use a little something to relieve the tension. But I can't seem to come up with anything that might help. Maybe you'd have a suggestion, or one of the Bellas could come up with something...

Suzanne Welsh said...

Mmmmmmmm....lovely to be hugged by a big strapping man made of solid muscle...oh wait, let me wipe the drool from your shirt!

As for Zack, he did seem a little distracted the last time I saw y'all over at BJ's. (By the way, Jo, why am I so not there with you?)

Howard "Six-Pack" Paxton said...

Hi, Amy. It's great to meetcha again. Thanks for the wedding wishes. I'm one lucky guy!

Michelle, if I was a free man, you'd be welcome to handle my sweat any way you like, darlin'. I might be happily married, but I'm not dead!

Yeah, poor Zack. He's burnin' the candle at both ends. I think he needs a woman, but I'm not sure he'd know what to do with one. And I mean that in the nicest way--he's sorta inexperienced.

Howard "Six-Pack" Paxton said...

Drool on me anytime, Suz baby. :)

Michelle Buonfiglio said...

Jo! I. Just. Can't believe that Amyskf would drag the tone of our blog down in that way. I'm, well, shocked, I tell you. Shocked. Referring to BJ's as if you intend your reference in relation to Howard as some kind of a double entendre. Not hardly.

[shaking head at the ridiculouslness of Jo possibly making a reference to anything overtly sexual.]

gosh, amy, this is a family-frindly blog, ya know?

Jo Davis said...

Rats, I KNEW I'd get busted for sneaking off to BJ's with Six-Pack without Suz! Sorry, girlfriend. But it was nice having him, ehem, all to myself!

At least you and I have our trip to Station Five to look forward to on April 28... :)

amy*skf said...

Howard, could you talk a little about the training you had to go through to become a firefighter?

And how'd you get those abs?

Buffie said...

Hey Jo! Thanks for bringing Howard over to hang out with us. You know I am really looking forward to Zack's book.

Howard!!! Smooches to you darling! I am still nursing my broken heart over your marriage (though I am happy for you, I guess). Guess the other guys in the station can help distract me from the loss of you. *wink wink*

Yes, I think Zack needs a little tension relief! He needs to throw those glasses to the side and let that wild man that is hiding inside of him out to play.

Jo Davis said...

Michelle,
Suz and I have BOTH enjoyed BJ's will ALL FIVE S5 hotties... tee hee! The restaurant, of course!

Moi? Make a sexual reference? I'm as pure as the driven snow, with my halo perched perfectly atop my innocent head... Not. :D

Jo Davis said...

Hi Buffie! Glad you came out to play. :) I too am nursing a bit of angst over our hunky Howie tying the knot, but...sigh. And yes, Zack needs some TLC, fast! We'll just have to bring him out of his shell, release the Beast...

Michelle Buonfiglio said...

Hiya, Suzanne!!! So glad to have you here!!! You know, I'm thinking of renting out BJs for a Bella get together. Would it make a nice meeting place? I mean, do you think they'd be entertained of an evening?

Jo, those Dallas women are fabulous! I loved everyone I was fortunate enough to meet when RWA was in Dallas in 07; very welcoming. How nice that you presented "(clap clap clap clap) deep in the heart of Texas!"

Suzanne Welsh said...

Mmmmmmmmmm Howard, I'd drool more and over various parts of you if I didn't think Kat would dismember me one piece at a time!! Sigh...

And Jo...please don't tease me with the BJ's with all five...oh yeah, wait that was lunch, er...uh spicey spring rolls, er...I think I need to go write now!

Michelle Buonfiglio said...

You said it, Buffie! I must say, I got a little sidetracked by your Zack description there for a few moments. sigh. Thanks for that. :)

Suzanne Welsh said...

Hey Michelle! Actually, the Bellas would LOVE BJ's Brewery! Especially on a Friday night. It's sort of "meet market" then. Lots of male bodies and testosterone! It's a sports bar and grill. And you have to try the southwest spring rolls for appetizers!

Michelle Buonfiglio said...

Suz!!! Not you, too! I'm appalled at the direction this conversation is taking! Just the merest suggestion of testosterone and suddenly everyone's going sex crazy! how did RBTB come to this!?!?

Oh, my. This just wasn't part of my vision. [shaking head in abject despair]

Howard "Six-Pack" Paxton said...

Amy, becoming a firefighter isn't easy. Besides the classwork and tests, which most candidates do well on, there's the physical agility side. Very tough. We have to be able to lift a person's deadweight if need be--while carrying 50 pounds of bulky equipment and battling our way out of whatever situation we're in. That's why many females can't pass the test to become firefighters. (A whole touchy subject with many female candidates who want the rules changed for women-- but let me ask you this: Which person do you want carrying you or your loved one out of the fire? Me? Or the one who couldn't pass the regular test?) Our Eve passed with flying colors, though.

Hmm, my abs gave me my nickname. I get comments about that, but most don't know that I work out at night when I can't sleep. Or that used to be the case--now that I have sweet Kat to curl up against and keep the nightmares away, I'm a new man. I still work out, though.

Karen Kelley said...

Yum, what a way to start the mornin'! I'm so ready to start writing now LOL

Howard "Six-Pack" Paxton said...

Hey there, Buffie! Great to see you again. Fear not-- I might be off the market, but we've got more than enough guys to keep your motor runnin'. :)

Howard "Six-Pack" Paxton said...

Hey, Karen darlin'! Howz it going? Are you inspired now? We boys do what we can... :)

Howard "Six-Pack" Paxton said...

Alas, Suz, if you did more than drool on me, my wife would repeat the fishing pole incident, I'm afraid! She can be scary when she's taking her man in hand-- Ehem. So to speak.

Jo Davis said...

Michelle,
Yep, Dallas boasts the best RWA chapters anywhere, in my humble opinion! You won't find a more welcoming group of authors who are dedicated to their profession and to mentoring unpublished authors. My chapter, the Dallas Area Romance Authors, is in a class by itself.

I enjoy speaking, too, and meeting new people. :)

amy*skf said...

Yeah, I understand it can be a touchy subject, but I do think people have to be logical about it--I don't care if they're male or female as long as they can carry me out...

Okay, I'd prefer a strapping male, but only for future fantasy refences.

Jo Davis said...

Suz,
Sorry for teasing you with BJ's. (now I have Amy's image in my head! lol.) Anyway, all this talk of their great food is making me hungry. Especially for those awesome southwest spring rolls...

Tracy Garrett said...

Good morning, Lietenant! It's a pleasure to meet you. (Jo, you rat! All the times we hung out at BJ's together and you never invited the boys. How could you do that to your CPs?)

Uh, Howard, why did you become a firefighter?

Tract G.

Michelle Buonfiglio said...

Hi, Karen! You ain't kidding! Following that line of reasoning, any day now, we should be hearing about Kat Paxton publishing new romances and winning multiple RITAs.

Michelle Buonfiglio said...

See, Tracy? It's always the sweet ones who have that side to em that always surprises us. Glad you've joined us here. :) I guess we have to give Jo props for dragging along the FS5 boys for our delectation over the next weeks, no?[i add grudgingly]

amy*skf said...

Buffie, I got a little sidetracked by your icon...

Suzanne--southwest spring rolls? That sounds heavenly--maybe not with coffee, but still great.

Jo, I've heard tell of the mythical Dallas area RWA chapters--is it Texas size hospitatlity?

Jo Davis said...

Hi Tracy! (wonderful western historical author, fabulous critique partner, and very close friend!)

Sorry about the BJ's thing...I guess I'll have to keep a list now of my friends and Bellas who want to line up for BJ's with the boys... he he. See what happens when you all get me started?

Jo Davis said...

Amy,
you bet! We do everything bigger, and more hospitable, in Texas! :)

They're a seriously a great group of ladies and gentlemen.

Howard "Six-Pack" Paxton said...

Hi Tracy!
Where have you been hiding, sweet thing? I hear you have a bad cold...anytime you need medical attention, you can call on us! :)

I became a firefighter by following my dad's example. He's our fire chief and the best man I've ever known. I always wanted to be like him--he's *my* hero.

Buffie said...

Amy -- glad you like my avatar. Actually, I call it my MANATAR ;-) He has inspired quite a few comments in the blog world.

Howard -- I know there are plenty of guys at the station to keep my motor running. I just hope they are up (punt DEFINITELY intended) for the challenge cause this motor likes to run full speed ahead!!!

Suz and Jo -- now you have added food to this mix!! How I love me some yummy food on a yummy guy!!!

Suzanne Welsh said...

Hey Tracy!!! Waving madly from cold Dallas....geesh, did someone turn the air conditioning on HIGH down here this morning?

We'll have to be sure to hit BJ's the next time you're in town. (And we missed you this weekend!)

Buffie said...

Holy %#$&!!! I just read the excerpt from UNDER FIRE. OH MY GAWD!!!!!!!!!! Jo, you have definitely turned up the heat in Zack's book. That is exactly the beast I though was hiding deep inside him. Can't wait to read this one!!!!

Jana J. Hanson said...

I just loved Trial By Fire and cannot wait to read Under Fire!

Howard "Six-Pack" Paxton said...

Buffie, the boys are UP for just about anything... they aim to please. :)

Jo Davis said...

Suz,
Yeah, what is up with this stupid cold weather in Texas, in April?? I haven't even planted flowers yet 'cause I don't want my poor babies snapped off! Humph. :(

amy*skf said...

Buffie, that's what I'm talkin' about.

It's my fave excerpt of all time--ALL TIME.

Tracie, sorry you're not feeling well.

Jo Davis said...

Buffie,
Oh yeah, baby! (to make like Austin Powers--he he) You know, even my copy editor (the guy who proofs for mistakes before the book goes off to be typeset) LOVED that scene. :D It certainly raised *my* temp, I confess!

Yes, our Zack definitely has an untapped wild side...just wait 'til you read what's in store for him...

Suzanne Welsh said...

hehehe, Buffie...that isn't the only good scene in UNDER FIRE! And while Howard's story will melt your panties, Zack's makes you just want to gobble him up....literally!

Winking at Jo and Howard.

Jo Davis said...

Hi Jana!
Thanks so much for stopping by! I'm so glad you enjoyed TBF. I can't wait for May 5th either! :)

amy*skf said...

Stace, Ev and Katie--I forgot to say hello. I got all verlempt with the BJ's thing--you know me.

Right in the Guttah.

I know we were all ga-ga over Howard's story and can't wait for Zack's. Kati, I love it that you finished it and then immediately read it again.

Buffie said...

Suz -- I'm all for gobbling him up!

Now I am soooo curious about Julian's book. Have you finished that one yet Jo? Or is it the one you are working on now? He sure needs a woman who will bring him to his knees ;)

Kay Thomas said...

Hi Jo

What a lovely way to start the day! It’s great to meet Howard. I certainly enjoyed his story in TRIAL BY FIRE and I can’t wait to read Zack’s in May.

Where are you going to be signing this spring? I can’t wait to get my hands on UNDER FIRE!

Jo Davis said...

Buffie,
I turned in Julian's story in December, which will be out this coming Dec.1. :) It's done and he's got a heroine who isn't going to give in easily to his charm...she's determined not to be a notch on the playboy's bedpost!

Now I'm working on book 4...

Michelle Buonfiglio said...

sigh. What suz said.

Jo Davis said...

Hey Kay!
Thanks for coming by! You guys, Kay writes awesome, page-turning romantic for Harlequin Intrigue. Her new book, Bulletproof Texas, is on sale now. :)

Anyway, I'm glad you enjoyed Howard's story. I'm counting the seconds until May 5!

I'll have a launch signing Under Fire on Saturday, May 9, 2-4 pm at the Barnes and Noble in Firewheel Town Center, in Garland Tx. Hope to see lots of folks there!

Jo Davis said...

Make that "romantic suspense" from Kay!

Brain fart...

Michelle Buonfiglio said...

Howard, Kat has such a way with kids. This is the question most quintessentially in bad taste to ask newlyweds -- or anyone for that matter -- but are you planning a family in the future!? you'd make the most wonderful parents!

And, as far as givin a little skinny on the boys at FS5 -- and the Bellas are sick of hearing me on this one -- any dirt on Skylar? I'm intrigued...

Michelle Buonfiglio said...

Jo, you coming Chi-town way? I'll get you some Chicago-style Chicago-style pizza... (and I hear tell they gots them some hawt firefighter types in these here parts, too). :)

Michelle Buonfiglio said...

Welcome, Jana! You're gonna love you some "Under Fire!"

Oh, Kay, Kay, kay. I just can't begin to tell you how great Zack's story is. I know you'll love it every bit as much as Howard's for reason's all its own. :) Or all his own. You know what I mean. :)

Tracy Garrett said...

Howard, you make me want to stay sick just so you and the boys will drop by. How about I start a pot of coffee instead?

Michelle, didn't you know? Jo has a mean streak. Keeps all these delectable men all to herself, locked up in her office all day, with nothing to do but... Ahem! Never mind.

Amy, thanks for the sympathy! Good drugs are making a difference, thank heavens.

As for BJ's with coffee? You've got to try their Pizookie - deep dish chocolate chunk cookie served hot with vanilla ice cream. Yummy! And perfect for any time of day.

Tracy G.

Jo Davis said...

Oooh, Michelle--
I've been looking for a reason/excuse to get to Chicago and that might've put me over the edge!

I hear it's a fun, fabulous city and I'm itchin' to go!

Howard "Six-Pack" Paxton said...

Michelle,
Kat and I are trying real hard (practice makes perfect!) to start a family. Thanks to a childhood trauma and illness, I have a medical issue we're trying to overcome that's preventing things from happening as soon as we'd like. Fingers crossed. That's sweet of you to say we'd make great parents. I know Kat will!

Tommy Skyler is our youngest team member. Sort of a young Brad Pitt with Hollywood good looks and a sunny personality to go with it. He's got some growing up to do (he needs a serious "dude-ectomy" performed on his vocab) but the guy has potential. Oh, and he's a former college football star. Don't know what happened there to interrupt his dreams of pro ball, but I'm sure there's a story...

Tracy Garrett said...

Chicago pizza? I haven't had Giordano's Stuffed Spinach pizza in years! I'll go with you, Jo. Thelma and Louise will have nothing on us, girl. lol

Tracy G.

Howard "Six-Pack" Paxton said...

Forgot to mention Tommy can't cook worth crap. We're workin' on that, though...

Michelle Buonfiglio said...

Love to do some 'splorin' w/you, Jo. Oh, and can't wait for Julian to visit. The non sequitor there is that Chi-style pizza makes me think 'Italian' which makes me think Julian (cause he's half, right? You found him just for me, right? right?)

Jo Davis said...

You bet, CP! Chicago here we come! We'll get Michelle to show us the sights and munch on real Chicago-style pizza. Dang, I'm hungry! I'm always up for new adventures. :)

Michelle, you *know* I found Jules just for you. Our half-Italian, hot-blooded lover can't wait to flirt with you and the Bellas. The man is a menace and should come with a warning label. :)

Laurie D. said...

You know, it's snowing where I am this morning and I'm afraid of getting snowed in all alone - I might need a big, hunky firefighter to render aid. Or maybe just render me limp and satisfied . . .

Thanks for being here, Howard, it's been great getting to know you better - lucky Kat. I'm anxious to get to know Zack and the others too!

amy*skf said...

Hey Howard, the fact that Tommy can't cook made me wonder if the station house would be willing to give up any of its recipes?

Howard "Six-Pack" Paxton said...

Hi Laurie,
I can handle the medical aid, but the single ones will have to render you limp and satisfied. Lordy, you ladies do tempt a married man!

Kidding, sweetie. (grinning at my Kat)

Howard "Six-Pack" Paxton said...

Amy, that's a great idea. A S5 recipe book... hmm. I'll have to get with Jo and give that one some serious thought!

amy*skf said...

Laurie, I like the way you think and fantasize

Jody F. said...

Thanks for letting us now what an average day is like for you. It sounds very exciting. I do have to ask though, during your illustrious career, have you ever had to wear the Smokey the Bear suit? Just curious.

Howard "Six-Pack" Paxton said...

Hello Jody,

Our day can be exciting, but there are also slow days. And sometimes we get strange calls, too.

Now, Smokey the Bear...that takes me back some! Nah, these days it's Sparky the Fire Dog or some such character, depending on what city you're in. And yeah, we all have to suffer in the smelly suit for the elementary school kids when we visit for the fire prevention lessons. But the kids love it and even better, our program saves lives. Ya gotta do whatcha gotta do...

flchen1 said...

Wow, very nice to meet you, Howard, and looking forward to getting to know the rest of the gang better, too! Thanks for providing the intros!

Howard "Six-Pack" Paxton said...

Glad to meetcha, Fichen1. The boys are looking forward to meeting you all, believe me. :) Thanks for stopping by!

Michelle Buonfiglio said...

ooo, good question, Jody! Very civic minded of you, asking about the bear suit, rather than just picturing time with Howard onthe bear-skin rug (faux, of course) in front of the fireplace.

Tracy, you and Jo are welcome anytime!

Hiya, Laurie!!! Gawd, you're a better woman than I! Those guys would show at my place and I'd end up limp, but only because I'd pass out cold from hyper stimulation before they even got out of their gear.

You know, H and Jo, cookbooks always make great fundraisers. You guys could write the book to raise money to get skylar some cookin lessons. Or buy him a ticket to the Chicago area. I'd be happy to teach him my greatest culinary skills. Ok, so my mad skills do involve ordering take-out, but I'd do my best to entertain young Tommy while we waited for the cute delivery guy from the pizza place...

PJ said...

Hi Jo and Howard!

I rushed home from a weekend out of town so I wouldn't miss your visit. Howard, it's so nice to see you again. Congrats to you and Kat! She's a total sweetheart and you two are perfect for each other. I especially admire her patience with all of us as we stand around and drool over her guy. Now, don't blush. You have to know by now that you and the rest of the men at FS 5 are definitely drool-worthy specimens of manly perfection.

I know that the residents in your district depend on you to keep them safe but is there any chance that some of you might be able to sneak away for a little R&R in DC this summer?

There was a bit of chill in the air this morning but, boy howdy, after reading about Zack's shower I won't have to worry about being cold for the rest of the day! I can't wait to get my hands on him...um...his book. Yeah, that's what I meant. His book. Right.

Michelle Buonfiglio said...

good to see ya, flchen!

stace, we absolutely know that while you might make nice to Howard, you totally do not roll with the married guys. You're all about the young unweds. Just keep your hands off skylar. he's mine -- I mean, very young and in need of protection from wicked older women who might take advantage of him.

ev, never forgot that hot tub scene, didja!?

We all second you on the kudos for Howard's knowing how to treat a lady right, kates. :) And, as I aspire to one day actually *be* a curvy woman -- you know what I mean -- I admire howard's diggin that, too.

Howard "Six-Pack" Paxton said...

Hello, PJ! Great to see you again. You ladies are stroking my ego here--if I don't watch it, Kat will have to put me in my place. (But that idea has possibilites...)

Maybe I'll turn up in DC, you never know...

Now that scene with Zack. (clears throat, red-faced) That's WAY more info than I ever wanted to know about my good buddy. That poor guy needs romantic CPR. Fast.

Michelle Buonfiglio said...

oh, of course, peej, we knew *exactly* what you meant...:) And you're right; Kat must be pretty confident in herself to be able to get used to how many women -- not us, of course, cause we're way too classy -- make fools of themselves over her man. Walk softly and carry a big fishin pole -- I think that's Kat's motto.

Michelle Buonfiglio said...

Romantic cpr, Howard? I think every Bella's rushing to dig out her Girl Scout manual as we speak, trying to remember how long she can clamp lips over Zack's before her cpr attempts might be considered unprofessional.

Um, one does have to straddle one's patient to perform mouth to mouth, no? Oh, Zack...

Michelle Buonfiglio said...

btw ,pj, thanks for making your visit here w/ Jo and Howard an important part of your day. :)

Suzanne Welsh said...

Hmmm, romantic CPR? Well, well, well, guess who just passed her CRP recertification last week? MOI!

Uh, Howard, what was Zack's phone number again?

LuAnn said...

It certainly is fun hearing from a "real" firefighter!

Howard "Six-Pack" Paxton said...

Michelle and Suz, you ladies are giving me visuals about Zack that make me shudder.

Jo, on the other hand, is just as bad as you guys!

Howard "Six-Pack" Paxton said...

Hi LuAnn,
Glad you stopped by to join the fun. :)

David B. said...

Howard, you don't know me but I hang around here every so often and have been the only guy for as long as I've been coming. So it's nice to have another guy to chat with. Glad you're giving the bellas some time. Just one thing though...keep your shirt on. Got that?

Good talking with you, buddy!

MPG

scottsgal said...

My hubby and I were set up by a mutual friend. The first picture he sent me was of him in his FF uniform leaning against an engine. I never looked back :-)

Can't wait to read this one as I have quite an affinity for FF's.

msboatgal at aol.com

amy*skf said...

Flchen, hey you. Good to see you here.

PJ--I've re-read that scene so many times...and I keep finding new things...okay, I don't find new things I just like reading it.

Sorry it's TMI for you Howard, but knowing you might be blushing because of it makes me very happy.

Michelle Buonfiglio said...

there you go braggin again, scottsgal! :) Great to see you.

Wow, what a coincidence, Jo, cause the imagery makes me shudder, too...

Ah, MPG, see what happens when we let more than one guy hang out here? All of a sudden the testosterone starts flyin. ew. That didn't really come out the way I meant it.

You know we love you MPG.

Howard "Six-Pack" Paxton said...

Hey David,
I can see why you'd want to hang here with the ladies...how come more guys haven't learned your secret? I know *I'm* havin' a good time.

Good to meet ya.

amy*skf said...

Ooooh, Scottsgal--huge sigh--that's all I've got to say.

Hi David! Howard, don't listen to him--he's such a kidder.

Jo Davis said...

Hi David! Great to see you here.

Scottsgal, what a great story! I can totally understand why at that point, your search for the perfect man was SO over! :D

Michelle, I'm with you. Zack's scene might freak out our Six-Pack, but me? I'm shivering over here for the best of reasons. Mmm, sweet.

PJ said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
PJ said...

LOL@Amy! I'm right there with you! It was so thoughtful of Jo to share Zack's excerpt with Michelle so she could share it with us back in March. It's the gift that keeps on giving. I've been showering with him (well, you know what I mean) for 29 days now and I must say, I've never known showers to be quite so invigorating! :)

robynl said...

Howard, thanks for dishing with us today; you are my hero and many others hero. How interesting to hear that fires only make up app. 3% of your job.

Nice to know a bit about the other 'fellas' beforehand. Thanks.

Jane said...

Welcome Jo and Howard,
I'm looking forward to the release of "Under Fire" and catch up with the gang at Station Five. I'm so excited that we'll finally learn about Zack's past and see him in action.

Howard "Six-Pack" Paxton said...

Hello Robyn,
You're very welcome--I'm having a great time. Thanks for stopping by.

Yep, thanks to those fire prevention programs in elementary schools--God bless the smelly fire dog suit--fire prevention awareness keeps actual calls to fires at a minimum. We want fires stopped before they start. But in the even they start, we encourage families to have a plan of escape in case of fire and to practice it together. The little ones are great about making their parents do that and it saves lives.

Maureen said...

I have not had the pleasure of reading Jo Davis' firefighter stories. I have to check them out.

Jo Davis said...

Hi Jane! I hope you enjoy Zack's story. He does have some dangerous problems to deal with...

Maureen, hello! I hope you give them a shot and fall in love with the boys. :)

Thanks for joining the fun, ladies!

Jessa Slade said...

Whoo, these guys give sexy new meaning to "stop, drop and roll." Thanks for the introduction.

Tracy Garrett said...

I was always taught "stop, drop and roll" was meant to put out fires. With these guys, I don't think that's going to happen. :D

Tracy G.

Jo Davis said...

Hi Jessa,
LoL, I haven't heard the "stop, drop, and roll" phrase used in that way, but you're right! :)

Thanks for stopping by!

Addison Fox said...

Jo & Howard-

Thanks for spending the day with us! Howard - I'm so happy to hear that you and Kat are settling happily into married life - you've earned it!

Enjoy your drinks at BJ's with Jo and please pass on a message to Zack for me....tell him I just can't wait to curl up and spend some time with him on May 5th. :-)

Addison

Jo Davis said...

Hey, Addison! (my good friend and fabulous new NAL author)

We're so glad you popped in to say hello! You should join us at BJ's and lift a toast.

I know Zack is looking forward to May 5 as well. :)

Michelle Buonfiglio said...

Yeah, by May 5, I'm wonderin whether our boy Zack's gonna have the strength to lift much of anything; the boy's done gon be worn. And I mean that in the best of ways.

's'all's I'm sayin.

Cheri2628 said...

Hi, Jo! I read Michelle's review of UNDER FIRE, and wow! I wish I had the book in my hot little hands so I could start reading it right this minute! ;-)

Congrats on this new release. This firefighter series sounds awesome. You can't do much better that hunky firefighters for your heroes.

Michelle Buonfiglio said...

Again, Jessa and Tracy, you seem to want to lower the tone of this blog to the purely sexual. This day is just one shock after another. Is there something I've done to encourage this kind of shameless behavior? Howard, I have no idea where these wantons got the idea they could come to my blog and talk so, well, naughty. It's shocking, I tell you, shocking.

Jo Davis said...

Hi Cheri!
Thanks so much! The wait won't be long now--hope you enjoy Zack's story. :)

Hear, hear about firefighters--they make the best heroes ever.

Tracy Garrett said...

"I have no idea where these wantons got the idea they could come to my blog and talk so, well, naughty."

This from the woman who chose, from all the scenes in Under Fire, the shower scene. Uh-huh. Shocked. Right. ;-)

Tracy G.

orannia said...

Good morning QB & Bellas! And welcome Jo & Howard!

Hmmm. I've yet to read your story HOward - things take a little while to work there way down to this neck of the woods (read other side of the world :) If I may, what's the camaraderie like between you and the rest of the team? I'm guessing it needs to be good to work in such dangerous environments as you do?

Jo - all the best for the release!

amy*skf said...

Michelle, I'm shAWked!

Oh, no I'm not.

Everyone is making me laugh so much--what a fun day.

PJ--right back at ya.

Jessa, now I will always have a twinkle in my eye whenever I hear: Stop, drop, and roll

And I can only hope it's a firefighter saying it.

Jo Davis said...

Hi Orannia!
Dare I guess that you're an Aussie? Trial by Fire is available in stores over there! :)

Thanks for the good wishes and for joining the party.

Jo Davis said...

Yep, Tracy, Michelle is a naughty, naughty girl. Fits right in with us! :)

Howard "Six-Pack" Paxton said...

Orannia,
We have a good working relationship on our team, and we're close. But that means we sometimes fight or have our arguments, just like family. When we get a call, though, all negative stuff has to be shoved aside. Lives depend on us being 100% focused.

That said, we usually get along great. Great to meet you!

Michelle Buonfiglio said...

hmmm...you know, Jo, the more I think about it, the more I think Tommy Skylar might need a more, em, how to put it, mature woman to reign him in a little, to help him reach his full, how shall we say, potential.

Sure, one might say I'm obsessing a bit about him. I prefer to call it intrigued. In a 'motherly, older woman sort of way...

Michelle Buonfiglio said...

um, that would be rein. Although it is good to be Queen.

Jo Davis said...

Oh, yes, Michelle! Tommy does need to be taken firmly in hand! :o) His lady, while much the same in years, is older at heart for a couple of very good reasons. Tommy's going to have his work cut out for him to win her!

It's natural to be really curious about the firefighter we don't know much about at this point... :)

Leslie said...

After going on a field trip to the fire station with my son's 2nd grade class I've developed a love for books with firefighters as the heroes.

Big thanks to Jo and Howard for the wonderful interview. :)

Diana Cosby said...

Good afternoon Jo, Howard, Michelle and Bellas! Jo, loved the interview! The things we do for our characters. :)

It was my pleasure to meet you at Dreamin' In Dallas. I wish you every success! *Hugs*

Diana
www.dianacosby.com

Jo Davis said...

Hi Leslie!
I took a field trip to our local fire station when I was in first grade, and I recall being in awe--though on a different level, being a kid. :) Thanks so much for stopping by!

Jo Davis said...

Hi Diana!
Yep, the things we do-- isn't that the truth? But it's so much fun. :D

It was great seeing you in Dallas! Much success on your new releases!

Jen said...

Hi Jo. I loved Howard's story and I'm anxiously awaiting both Zack's and Julian's story. You mentioned you are working on book 4. Can you tell us who book 4 is about?

Jen

Jo Davis said...

Hi Jen,
I'm so glad you loved Howard's story! I hope you love the other ones as well.

Book 4 is Tommy Skyler's story, tentatively titled LINE OF FIRE. He's the youngest on the team, and a former college football star. Despite his sunny nature outwardly, he's still getting over a personal family tragedy. His heroine is dealing with issues as well, so it will be quite a ride to see how these two find their way. :)

thanks for joining in!

MarthaE said...

Hello Jo and Howard (and Michelle too)! Thanks for sharing today... sorry I was working and couldn't get out to play until now! Sounds like things can get "hot" where you guys work AND play!! I'll have to start reading about you and your team. Who doesn't love a few hunky heros!

Jo Davis said...

Hi Martha!
Great of you to stop in and say hello! I hear you about work. But it's cool when we're free and get to play!

Howard "Six-Pack" Paxton said...

Hello Leslie, Diane, Jen, and Martha!

Sorry so slow...just ate dinner and now I'm catching up. Thanks for the welocome, ladies. I've enjoyed myself immensely here today. 'Course, I'm surrounded by gorgeous women, so what's not to love? :)

Stacy~ said...

Whew, did I miss out or what? Howard, I'm glad to see you're still standing after all these ladies have had their hands all over you...the hussies. You just come on over here and I'll keep you safe. Mostly.

And if you and any of the other firefighters want to make a trip here to Chicago, y'all can stay with me. See, I even know some southern lingo, and you guys can tell me all about southern...comfort. Better yet, you can show me. Michelle has already graciously offered to show Jo around town - ain't she sweet? Just ain't she?

Stacy~ said...

Hello Amy! Great seeing you yesterday. Hey Kati, Ev, Buffie, PJ, LaurieD - I hope I didn't miss anyone.

So Howard, you and Zack are friends. What kind of woman appeals to him? Obviously a take-charge kinda woman, one who's not afraid to stand up...against a wall with him all over her...er I mean stand up to him when he's being all guy-stupid and showing him who's boss. I can do that. No really. Again, don't listen to Michelle.

Or MPG. He's just afraid you'll catch cold taking your shirt off here in chilly Chicago (so concerned, our Dave) but you boys are made out of stronger stuff. Look at all of you - hard as rocks ;)

Howard "Six-Pack" Paxton said...

What a kind offer, Stacy-- the protection and the tour around Chicago. :) Alas, my sweetie would neuter me for even thinking it...

Howard "Six-Pack" Paxton said...

I'm not sure what kind of woman appeals to ole Zack-- he's chaste as a nun! Well, not for long, apparently, but you know what I'm sayin'...

Caffey said...

Hi Jo! Hi Howard!! I just read all the way through and wow, I can't think of any other questions to ask except how much to you work out a day Howard? LOL

Jo so can't wait for the new one, YES!!!!

Howard "Six-Pack" Paxton said...

Hi Caffey,
You want my routine, huh? I work out an hour or so a day, lifting weights, mostly, but I run on the treadmill, too. Want to stay in shape for my lady. :)

Jo Davis said...

Caffey,
So great of you to pop in! I'm glad you enjoyed Howard's story and I hope you love Zack's just as much. :)

Everyone, thanks so much for today! Howard and I feel so very welome--you all are the best! I'll pop in tomorrow and answer any other comments/posts!

Good night!

Kris said...

I really enjoyed Howard's story. Can't wait to read the rest of your firefighters' stories.

amy*skf said...

Yeah, Leslie I go to as many fire station open houses as possible.

"Come on honey, don't you want to see the fire trucks?"

My 10 year old looks at me and says, "But Mo-om, we've already seen 10 this year."

Our fire station really just has one open house a year--but I go to it by golly. It's important.

Anonymous said...

hi all lots of comments
congrats on teh books
love firemans

kh

and rescue me starts this week iroinc

Michelle Buonfiglio said...

Buona sera, Bellas! You know, I was so afraid we might fall all over ourselves and get a little foolish over Howard. But I think we've done an admirable job of keeping our dignity -- if not all of our virtues -- intact.

Stacy, you're such a giver. And, you'll note, I didn't offer up the tour, just to show the way to the food. I know that shocks you, especially after amyskf and I kidnapped you yesterday, inviting you for breakfast, and keeping you for an 8-hour gossip fest. Imagine if we have Jo and friends along? I'm not sure our convos could get any raunchier, but I think Jo might ratchet things up a couple notches (all in a very respectable way, of course).

You're gonna love those stories, Kris. Glad you stopped in.

Hi, Caffey! Nice to see you. I'm so glad we've all reined in the urge to make jokes about Howard's workout regime including "push ups."

Michelle Buonfiglio said...

gawd, anny, I'm dyin for the new season of RM, and have committed myself to watching it in its entirety. love DL.

Virginia said...

I have not read any of Jo Davis firefighter series but it sounds wonderful. I would love to read it.

orannia said...

HI Jo,

Umm...close :) Head west slightly - I'm a New Zealander :) Not sure if Trial by Fire has made it here...I may have to 'suggest' it to my library *grin*

Jo Davis said...

Hi Kris! Thank you so much. I hope you enjoy Zack's story as well. :)

Hi Anonymous! Thanks for the congrats. Firemen are definitely inspiring for me. :)

Hello Virginia! I hope you give the series a shot, and that you enjoy the stories. Happy Reading! :)

Hey Orannia! Well, I was a tad off. :) Do let me know if you find it there--I love hearing where my books are found!