A Warm Rainy Day in Tokyo
Publication date: March 31st 2022
Genres: New Adult, Romance
Bella Bell lives a perfectly ordinary life with a perfectly ordinary office job in suburban California, where she longs to break free from her perfect sister’s shadow. So when Little Bear Café chooses her to train its new franchisee in Tokyo for the summer, she jumps at the chance.
But even a dream come true can get complicated. From the moment she steps on the plane, she annoys her pompous, handsome seatmate, insults her apartment manager, and gets caught up in her new neighbors’ drama. And everywhere she turns, she keeps running into the arrogant stranger from her flight—and she can’t seem to get him out of her head.
Ryo Yamada is at the top of his game: a high-powered job, no shortage of potential girlfriends. But his life is turned upside down when his family asks him to return to Tokyo for good because of his sister’s failing health. And now he finds himself avoiding his childhood friend whose feelings he doesn’t return. And bumping into the irritating, pretty redhead from his flight—who may not be so bad after all. The last thing he expects is to fall in love.
As the new café opening and the end of Bella’s time in Tokyo draw near, Bella and Ryo grow close—until they discover their circumstances may tear them apart. Can they find their way back to each other for good?
“Bella, Bella,” The gorgeous stranger whispered.
I let out a quiet sigh because I loved the way he called my name. His voice was gentle, like rustling leaves on a breezy night. With a smile, I tipped my head toward him. The moon hid behind a thin cloud, but its light was enough for me to see his chiseled jaw, long nose, and full, sexy lips.
“I love your baby blue eyes, Bella Bell,” he whispered again, lowering his face to mine. “Do you love me?”
“Yes,” I whispered back, my heart thundering in my chest as his hazel eyes looked straight at me. Oh my, he is going to kiss me? Yes … yes … Wait, maybe I have to be bolder. Swallowing, I placed my hands on his muscular hips.
“Bella,” he said, caressing my red hair before his hand stopped on the back of my neck and pulled me closer.
I closed my eyes, waiting for his warm kiss to touch mine, but nothing came. Clenching my jaw, I cupped his face with my hands and coaxed it toward me. Oddly, instead of kissing me, he called out, “Bella! Bella! Bella!” At the same moment, I heard loud sounds, like someone banging on the door. What the …
As much as I wanted to ignore the annoying interruption, I opened my eyes to find that the handsome, chiseled-jaw guy had disappeared, and my hands clenched my pillow a few inches in front of my face. It wasn’t real … but who dared to disturb my dream? I couldn’t moan for too long because the banging became louder, followed by my mom’s irritated voice. “Bella, how many times do I have to wake you up?”
Ugh, couldn’t Mom have woken me up a bit later, at least after I got my kiss? I groaned.
Jumping out of my bed, I opened the door to see my mom glaring at me. She was wearing a blue blazer and pencil skirt, ready for work at a local library as the senior librarian. In her late fifties, she looked great. She had fair skin and no wrinkles, and was a bit heavy at almost five feet tall. Her new hairstyle, short with blonde highlights made her look younger. I could see a flicker of jealousy in my dad’s eyes whenever a man glanced at her in awe. How I wished I had inherited her fair skin and would look like her when I was older. However, my older sister got our mom’s looks and I looked more like our dad. But thanks to the height from my dad, I was three inches taller than my mom.
A whiff of jasmine from her perfume hit my nose like the fresh air of spring. But my mom’s eyes and expression were far from gentle: They were more like a brewing storm.
“Bellalina Elizabeth Bell.” Her voice was loud and high when she called my full name—which she did whenever she was super upset. “You aren’t a kid anymore. You are almost twenty-two, for God’s sake. Why can’t you wake up on your own? I can’t believe that I have to wake you up like this in the morning,” she scoffed, and turned her body toward the kitchen. “Wipe your drool and brush your hair before going out.”
The corner of my mouth was damp as I wiped it with the back of my hand. As I followed my mom down to the kitchen, I tied my shoulder-length hair back with the hairband that was always around my wrist.
“That’s your fault,” I grumbled, and sat on the tall chair at the kitchen island where she’d already put a half gallon of orange juice, a box of cereal, breakfast sausages, six boiled eggs, and a pile of toast, jam, and butter. “I found an effective way to wake up without your help, but you complain about that.”
My mom almost rolled her bright blue eyes at me, but she restrained herself. “You set five different alarm clocks to wake you up every day. Five alarms, Bella. You refused to use your phone alarms and bought five metal twin-bell alarm clocks instead. And those are loud enough to wake up the whole neighborhood.”
“But that’s effective,” I protested, helping myself to a glass of orange juice. “You know I’m not a morning person. Then when I found a way that works, you don’t like it.”
“Those damn alarm clocks can wake up the whole neighborhood,” she said slowly as if I didn’t comprehend her words the first time. I widened my eyes, and my mom sighed.
She opened her mouth to say something but was interrupted by Mel’s entrance. Mel was willowy, five-ten with tan skin and freckles on her nose.
Kana Wu, an autodidact author, has loved writing since her childhood. She used to work as an analyst and later an accountant before deciding to be a writer in 2018.
Her debut novel, No Romance Allowed, was published in October 2019, and it received two awards as Finalist in the 2020 International Book Awards and Reader’s Favorite Awards. It was also a winner in the Romance category for the 2020 TCK Publishing Readers’ Choice Awards Contest.
She lives in Southern California with her husband and her two rescued Jindo dogs.
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