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Asheville chocolatier's side job leads to ultimate plot twist as romance novelist

The story of two local lovebirds is even sweeter when you consider the sometimes racy romance novels they have to their credit.

"It's a very feel-good item," Marcy Gallagher, co-owner of Kilwin's Chocolates, Fudge, and Ice Cream in Downtown Asheville, said. "We wanted to bring love and joy to people."

"When they taste a piece of fudge, they'll do the happy dance," she said simulating the dance. "They'll go, 'Oh my God, this is so good!'"

This time of year, confections are one sign of affection, but it's not the only sign.

"Obviously, chocolate can be an aphrodisiac," she said. "Cause it's got ingredients that can, you know, get everything going."

It only seems natural that Marcy's inspired by her surroundings.

"So, sometimes in the oddest places, the ideas will come to us," she said. "Oh, I'm gonna show you our covers."

From "Heart of the Keys" to "The Treasure Seekers," she writes steamy stories that can be personalized.

"It's a romp," she explained, comparing her writing style to Danielle Steele. "You star in your own personalized romance novel."

It's a Fabio-less idea, some might say.

Under the pen name Marcy Thomas, she has five books available on YourNovel.com. Customers answer questions online, and that information ends up in the final product.

"We're up for anything," Marcy said, who acknowledges it's not always family-friendly.

"What kind of vixen are you going out with?" she laughs, sitting at home with her husband, Tom.

Reading an excerpt from "Wild West Love Fest," husband Tom goes deep.

"I spotted this beautiful lady at the side of the road," he read.

"Sexy voice!" Marcy said.

Tom's central to an unexpected plot twist.

"And you're beautiful friend here is the target of my desire," he read.

The western fantasy wasn't written by Marcy, it was actually Tom who took the reins at a difficult time.

"Just came out of left field when I was recovering," he told News 13.

Last fall, Tom had brain surgery for a neurological condition. He was bedridden, but got busy on a book.

"Cause he told me, 'I'm tired of watching daytime TV,'" Marcy recalled.

"She has always been the love of his life," Tom read with that seductive voice. “From back in the days when love was new."

Writing under the name Thomas Marcy, he cranked out "Wild West Love Fest" in four weeks--one more YourNovel.com title in the family.

"It's not fabulous literature,” Tom said. “I don't think anyone has to worry about a Pulitzer here, but it's great fun."

If you don't take yourself too seriously, you might learn that writing isn't necessarily brain surgery. Read between the lines, and you understand why fiction gave them something real to cling to.

"It's just added a little spark to our lives," he said.

With life, love and chocolate, the possibilities are endless.

"It would be so good to meld those ideas," Marcy said.

So, if a romance revolving around chocolate emerges, you read about it here first.

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