Mommy Loves the Principal by Shanae Johnson

He’s the hometown hero. She’s the girl that went astray. Can they find a place where they’ll both belong… together? Read FREE in Kindle Unlimited!

Kylee Bauer’s high school classmates voted her most likely to succeed, not knowing that she would skip town with a bad boy, get hitched, and get pregnant—not necessarily in that order. Now she’s back and desperate for a second chance to get things right, all while ensuring her daughter makes better choices the first time around.

Ron Kidd loved growing up in his small Virginia hometown so much that he never thought to leave it behind. Now he’s landed his dream role as principal of the same elementary school he attended as a boy. Some of the more seasoned staff, however, aren’t sure he’s up to the job and will do whatever it takes to make his days harder.

When his old crush returns home as a single mom with a troubled kid in tow, Ron is sure he can help… even though he must swallow his feelings for Kylee to avoid losing his already shaky position as school principal. Unfortunately for him, this mini-matchmaker isn’t willing to give up on securing a happily ever after for her mom.

Will Ron be willing to risk it all in the name of love? And what will Kylee do when her past comes calling? Will love be just out of reach? Find out in this fun, funny, and heartwarming tale of just how far one little girl will go to bring these two grown-ups together. Order your copy of MOMMY LOVES THE PRINCIPAL, and start reading today!

“This was adorable. There were some really great scenes where I laughed hard….You will fall in love with the characters. The plot was wonderful and so easy to read.” ~ Amazon Reviewer

AMAZON

Read an Excerpt:

Molly Romano kicked the back of her Hush Puppies against the leg of the swivel chair. She’d chosen to sit in the grown-up chairs at the Principal’s desk rather than at the small table with the bright orange and red chairs that had the cutouts in the back. She’d never understood why elementary school chairs had the cutouts in the backs? Did teachers think kids needed the ventilation at their backs and bottoms?

From her perch, she looked around the inner sanctum of the leader of her newest school. It was her fourth school in six years. That is if you count kindergarten. This would be her third principal’s office visit in that time.

On the walls were, of course, pictures of the man in charge surrounded by kids. Like all the other pictures on the other principals’ walls, this one was dressed in a clean white shirt. He had graying hair, but a young face. A very young face. Just looking at his face, Molly would’ve guessed this man was her mom’s age.

Another difference that this principal had over the other two was the kids around him. They were actually grinning, not smiling as though they were being forced. The kids looked like they were having a good time. A few of them were looking up at the principal as though they even liked him.

On the desk was also a gold placard that proudly displayed the words Principal. There was an emphasis on the end of the word as PAL in red, capital letters. Molly supposed it was to indicate that the man wanted to be friends with the kids.

There was also a picture of the same man dressed as Santa. Molly was old enough to know that Santa didn’t exist. Her father had told her so when she was five despite her mother’s protests. He did tell her that reindeer were real but didn’t fly. Rabbits didn’t lay eggs. There was also no Tooth Fairy. 

He’d promised there were no monsters in her closet. But she wasn’t so sure about that one. She was sure there hadn’t been any in her old home which had been an apartment. On the other side of the closet had been her parents’ bedroom. She’d heard them arguing loud enough to scare away any potential closet monsters.

She now lived in an old house with two levels and a big backyard. She wasn’t sure what was on the other side of her new closet. It was quiet in her grandparents’ old house. All so very quiet.

Molly hated it.

A knock sounded on the other side of the door. Molly wondered if she should say come in? But there was no need. The door swung open and in the frame stood the man that was in the picture frames.

“Good afternoon, Molly.”

His smile was big and bright. Molly was instantly suspicious. Instead of greeting him the way she was taught by her mother -with manners- she stared mutely; the way she’d observed her father do.

“My name is Principal Kidd.” 

He stuck out his hand. She was already in enough trouble, she decided to show she did have some manners. She shook his hand. But lightly, and not firmly like her grandpa had taught her.

“I hear you’ve been causing a bit of mischief in your class,” Principal Kidd said as he took his seat.

Molly shrugged. “It was just a joke.”

“Mrs. Steen didn’t think so. She didn’t think glitter on the whiteboard eraser was a laughing matter.”

“I still say that it could’ve been a fairy come to brighten her dull lesson.” 

And that tall tale would’ve stuck. But the whole class had told on her. Every single head had turned to her, many fingers pointed, her name came out of the mouth of each kid in the classroom. What kind of kids didn’t appreciate a joke played on the teacher? Especially a lemon-pinched mouth, something-smells-bad nosed, beady-eyes-peering-over glasses teacher like Mrs. Steen.

Since she’d been here the last two weeks, not a single person had missed a homework assignment. Every hand went up when the teacher asked a question. Molly was sure she was in the Upside Down version of schools and Mrs. Steen was a Demogorgon sucking the spirit out of these kids.

But the principal didn’t try to abduct her into another realm. He leaned back in his own adult-sized swivel chair and chuckled softly. It wasn’t a monstrous, big belly laugh. He didn’t flash sharp teeth. It was almost a giggle, like when she and her mother used to have tickle wars.

“Mrs. Steen said that the other day you erased the numbers on her ruler?”

“We were talking about world leaders. I was trying to participate in the lesson with a utilitarian ruler.”

Now the principal threw back his head and outright laughed. It surprised Molly. It had been so long since she’d heard an adult laugh, especially a man. Her father was always frowning, or upset, or just plain angry.

“You’re a smart kid, Molly. You have a great imagination.”

Molly couldn’t figure this guy out? “So, you’re not going to suspend me? Or give me after school detention?”

The gray-haired man with the young man’s face tilted his head like Tweety Bird. “Why would I do that?”

“Because what I did was… wrong.”

Mr. Kidd nodded. 

Uh oh. Was this it? Had she slipped and fallen into his trap? Was he now going to tell her that she was doing what she did for attention? She’d watched a couple of episodes of the Dr. Phil show with her grandma. This was some of that reversal psychology.

“I’ve read your file,” he said. “Before coming to Barton Elementary, you’ve been to three different schools in the past six years.”

“My family moved around a lot.”

“But you’ve always received high marks in your academics…and a lot of notes about your behavior.”

Mr. Kidd lifted his brow at her. But he didn’t roll his eyes like the last two principals did. Or like her father did when she tried to talk to him but he was too busy, always too busy. 

Mr. Kidd didn’t look too busy at all. He didn’t frown or look upset, or angry. He was still smiling at her. 

It reminded her of how her mom smiled. In fact, his laugh had also reminded Molly of her mom. It had been so long since she’d heard her mom laugh.

“I think you’re a special kid,” Mr. Kidd was saying. “In fact, you’re my favorite kind of kid; smarts and imagination. I think you can fit in here if you give us a chance.”

Molly felt something twitch in her chest. She gazed up at the principal and the sincerity in his gaze. He wasn’t playing any tricks. He meant it. Maybe he wasn’t like the rest? Maybe she could give him a chance?

“I will have to call your parents.”

And now she wanted to revoke that chance. Her shoulders slumped at the thought of her mother receiving yet another call from a school. “It’s just my mom.”

“I’m guessing by your tone, she won’t think the fairy eraser was funny?”

“She would’ve thought so. Before the divorce. Now she’s always so serious.”

Instead of reaching for the phone, Principal Kidd leaned forward. “My parents are divorced too. They got divorced when I was your age.”

Molly spied a picture at the corner of the principal’s desk. In it was a picture of an even younger version of the man, still with gray hair. He wore a square cap on his head and was dressed in a dark cape. Likely his graduation. He was standing between two smiling adults.

“Yup, that’s them. Oh, they get along. They just weren’t right for each other. They’re both happily remarried to other people.”

Molly knew her dad was seeing other women. He’d started while he and her mom were still married. Maybe that’s why they got divorced? Molly wasn’t sure. But her dad did seem happier now. The few times she’d seen him since the divorce.

Her mom hadn’t dated any other man at all. Maybe her mom should start to date? Then maybe she’d laugh again. 

Just like the principal laughed…

Molly looked up at Principal Kidd. He didn’t have a ring on his left hand. She hadn’t seen any pictures of him with women his own age. Just pictures of him with his parents and with kids.

“What’s your mom’s name?” he asked. “Oh, I’ve got it here. Kylee…”

“Kylee Romano,” Molly finished for him. “But she’s going by her original name, her maiden name.”

“Kylee Bauer? Your mom is Kylee Bauer?”

“Yes. Do you know her?”

Her mom had grown up in the small town of Saint Judith’s in Northern Virginia. Molly had never visited before now. Her grandparents would always come to visit wherever they were living at that moment in time. Molly and her mom were living in Grandma and Grandpa’s old house now that they’d retired and moved to Florida.

“Yeah,” said Principal Kidd. “Yeah, I know Kylee Bauer.” His eyes got that gooey faraway look like a Looney Tunes cartoon character when they fell in love. 

Wait? So, Principal Kidd knew her mom. And he got the lovey-dovey look just at hearing her name. And he wasn’t married. 

A plan began to form in Molly’s brain. One that would require a bit of imagination and probably some fairy sparkles if it were to work.