Posted on 06/30/15
Just a little appetizer to get your palette started…
– – – – –
We danced a long moment, studying each other, assessing. His hand didn’t move and my grip didn’t let up. I never played Stratego as a kid but I wondered if this was what it felt like.
“What about that kiss?” I finally said.
“That?” His gaze dropped to my mouth, and his eyes took on a gleam that might’ve scared me if it didn’t set my estrogen on fire. “That was for me.”
It was nothing short of a miracle that I didn’t shiver right there in his arms while Bob Seger crooned at us from the other side of the room.
I looked away. I needed the respite. I would’ve walked away if I could. Hell, if I could, I would’ve gone for a run. It always helped settle my nerves and gave me time to get my head back on straight, but here? Here in front of him, I had to think on the fly. That wasn’t my forte, whereas playing soccer required him to deke and run, to kick and pass and think four steps ahead of the opponent. I might’ve felt like I was being played if my body didn’t enjoy the contact so much.
But hell, I’d been on my own for a few years now, busy up the wazoo with no time to play, and here at hand was the opportunity to relax and enjoy the attention. Maybe he wasn’t my type but Mark had been my type and look where that got me. Besides, I wasn’t looking for forever. Just like the song said, we had tonight.
I smiled and met his eyes again. “Did you like it?”
His expression flared hot for a moment. “Yes,” he said. Adrenaline surged in my system.
I cocked my head to one side, daring him. “Are you certain? Maybe you should try again, just to make sure.”
He laughed so hard, I felt it echo against my rib cage. “That’s a cheesy move, Ace, even for you.” I knew he was laughing with me, not at me, and the sound was rich and deep. It branched out inside me, heating me from my core to the tips of my extremities. My pussy went tight but I just smiled.
“Yeah, well, how else does a woman ask a man to kiss her in this day and age?”
Smile still on his lips, he shook his head. “Why would she have to ask? A woman like you can take what she wants.”
“True,” I said though inside I was shivering. “But why make it easy on you?”
He growled from deep in his chest, wolf-like, then crushed his lips to mine.
Posted on 04/24/15
Posted on 04/15/15
“Indulge My Fantasy”
“Did you need some liquid courage?” he said. “Relax. I don’t bite.” A moment of silence fell between us while my fantasies all popped like water balloons. “Ask me anything. Whatever you’ve ever wanted to know about me. Anything. I promise I’ll answer honestly.”
I shook my head. “There’s nothing–_”
He shifted, sitting a little closer. He took my hand, pressing my palm to his before covering it with his other hand. Heat spread up my arm like fire through dry leaves. I credited the wine and fought the urge to pull back. “C’mon. I’m a celebrity. I hate the word but there it is. Everybody wants something from me. Tell me what you want.”
This time I did try to tug out of his grip. “I don’t want anything from you. I rescued you, remember?”
Nothing between us but the crackle of the fire and the whisper of snowflakes dancing on the roof overhead. “You’re right, you did. So you want my gratitude?”
My attempt at retreat was weak at best. “I told you, I don’t—”
He moved closer, his voice soft and low, snaking underneath me, around me, into me. “I told you, Grace. Everyone wants something. You want me to say thank you.” My mouth opened but nothing came out. His eyes drifted to my lips. Every nerve ending in my body jumped to life, but it was too late. He was too close. The smell of cookies was replaced with the aroma of cabernet, my new favorite wine. “Thank you.” Before I could protest again, his lips brushed against mine, soft yet firm, strong yet tender.
My eyes drifted shut, my entire body falling headlong into the feel of him.
Posted on 04/5/15
It all started over a beer with a girlfriend.
We were single ladies (at the time) tipping one back and discussing the virtues of hot men. I confessed that a certain handsome actor was keeping me up at night but instead of seeing him as the hero in my next story, I saw him as my hero in my story. She said, “So write that.”
Four weeks later, “Indulge My Fantasy” was complete, so titled because really, it was my fantasy and I was indulging myself. I wasn’t sure if I was thrilled or appalled but it was the steamiest, most fun thing I’d ever written. Surely there was a market for this? A voice in my head said, “If you can’t laugh in bed, you’re doing it all wrong.”
March 26th. Golden Heart / Rita nomination call day. I opened my computer at 7 a.m. No emails. Checked my phone; no calls. Checked my internet; it was, indeed, working. Well, hell. Might as well make some breakfast while I can still keep food down, right?
Eight-thirty; the first Erotic category finalist is posted. How many finalists will there be? No idea. To be a finalist you have to make a scoring cut. One point under the cut and it’s “better luck next year.”
Nine o’clock: nothing yet, but rumors were that the calls would start at 9 CST. I still had another hour. Clean up from breakfast, play with some yarn, try to keep breathing.
Ten o’clock: nothing. To calm my nerves, I popped “Frequency” in my computer’s DVD player. Jim Caviezel is the model for the hero in my current WIP so it was research, and it kept me from thinking too much.
Eleven: I’ve checked email a few times between scenes. Still nothing. Heart sinking. Maybe my critique group was wrong and it wasn’t good enough. Contests are crapshoots. If the judge got a speeding ticket that morning, or didn’t like blonde heroines, or her ex’s name was the same as the hero’s, it could spell doom for an otherwise wonderful manuscript. That’s just the nature of the beast. Suck it up and move on. I started making spinach quiche because I couldn’t sit in front of the computer anymore, watching other people’s names appear on the finalist list and mine was nowhere to be seen.
Noon: Calls would’ve started two hours ago, maybe sooner. My hopes are fading.
12:30: I have a parent/teacher conference at my son’s school at 1:45. Time to go get makeup on. The least I can do is fake the appearance of being normal, even while my heart is on the sole of my shoes. Maybe next year. But I hit F5 a few more times, just to be sure.
12:45. Push myself out of the computer chair . I’m going to run short on time to get ready for conferences and I’m 99% out of hope. But I take the phone with me, just in case.
Halfway up the stairs, the phone in my hand rings. A 904 area code? I don’t know where that is.
OMG. I don’t know WHO this is, but I know WHAT this is. At least, I hope so. This would be a really rotten time for a telemarketer to call. Hands shaking, I hit “accept” on the third try. “Hello?”
I’m told “Indulge My Fantasy” is a Golden Heart finalist. I said, “I’m sorry, can you give me just a minute? I need to sit down.” My knees were useless at that point and I was standing on the stairs. If there’s a worst time to die, this may be it.
I still had to go to the school conference but I managed to appear sane and sentient. I still sometimes break out in a silly, sappy grin at random for no reason anyone but me knows. I also check the RWA website twice daily, just to be certain they didn’t realize their mistake and wipe my name off the list. Yes, I’m still a finalist.
I can’t wait for you to read about Grace and Aaron. They were a lot of fun to write and they took me on a wonderful journey, but it’s not over yet. In fact, it’s only just begun…