Thursday, August 30, 2007

Second Chances - Part 23

I swear something is conspiring against me writing these chapters to this story *banging head on desk* If it's not one thing, it's another, but I won't go into details because then I'd be here all night typing *lol* HOWEVER, I finally got it (after losing it and having to rewrite it). Please excuse any mistakes. It's on its way to my dear friend who helps me keep from making so many grammer errors, but I didn't want you all to suffer any longer. Wouldn't be fair, huh?
So here it is.

Chapter 23

Ryan held his breath as he waited for the door to be answered. Again and again he asked himself what he was doing here? He felt as if he were walking into a lion’s den. The door opened and he was a little relieved to find that it was Charlie who answered. He still wasn’t sure if he was ready to see Zack or not.

“Hayes.” Charlie nodded and opened the door wider.

Ryan hesitated. His stomach wound in a tight knot.

Charlie sighed. “Maria won’t serve you dinner out there.”

Taking a deep breath Ryan took the first step and crossed the threshold.

“Charlie, what’s…Oh, Ryan.” She smiled radiantly at him. “Please come in. Dinner will be ready in five minutes.”

“Thank you.” He returned her infectious smile.

Maria swept out of the room in her graceful manner. Charlie was a lucky man to have a woman like her.

“Have a seat. Would you like some tea? Water? Beer?”

“A beer would be nice.” Ryan walked toward the couch Charlie indicated, however, his eyes kept glancing to the stairs.

“No problem. I’ll get it.” He walked toward the doorway Ryan assumed led to the kitchen.
Ryan looked around the room. The d├ęcor was feminine. It matched Maria’s bubbling personality with its vivid colors and honey oak furniture. Despite the friendly surroundings, Ryan couldn’t relax.

“Hello, Ryan.”

Startled, Ryan’s breath hitched. He stood abruptly, turning toward the front door. He hadn’t even heard it open.

“Zack.” The name came out in a rush of breath. Heat exploded in Ryan’s body remembering how good it felt to be pressed against the man standing in front of him. He fought to maintain control. He wasn’t an adolescent child entering puberty.

They stared at each other, wordless. It took Ryan a few breaths before he found his voice. “You look good.”

Zack’s cheeks flushed at the compliment. Ryan couldn’t stop the smile, enjoying the youthful expression. It was nice to see something other than shadows in his eyes.

“How’s your shoulder?”

Ryan shrugged with his good shoulder. “It’s coming along. No infection, but the Doc said I’d have to go through some rehab before I can get back to work.”

Zack nodded, his eyes leaving Ryan’s gaze. His mouth opened and he was about to say something when Charlie came in, a beer in each hand.

“Hey, Zack. I didn’t hear you come in. Want a beer?” He handed Ryan a beer and held the other out to Zack.

Zack shook his head. “As tempting as that is, I can’t. I promised Dr. Parker I’d stay away from alcohol, sleeping pills, and anything else that may ‘take away the pain’.” He raised his fingers and made invisible quotation marks in the air.

“Dr. Parker?” Ryan asked, then regretted it. It wasn’t my business. “Never mind. I didn’t mean to pry.”

“Dr. Parker is Zack’s therapist.” Charlie supplied, taking a sip of his beer. “She specializes in abusive relationships and helping the victims move on.”

Ryan’s brow rose. “You found one in Alameda?” The town was so small you didn’t need more than two officers on duty at once.

“A complete fluke,” Zack said. “She moved here about six months ago from California. However, she’s a New Mexico native. Grew up over in Roswell.”


“She took Dr. Long’s position when he decided to retire. She’s settled in nicely here. The folks like her well enough.”

“Dinner’s ready,” Maria announced.

Charlie turned and started to the kitchen. “Need any help, honey?” he asked, but Ryan caught the sideways glance at him and Zack as if he didn’t really want to leave them alone.
“This is your last chance to skedaddle. Maria’s not the best of cooks. Her food has been known to cause more stomach problems than food poisoning.”

I chuckled and looked at Zack. “I’m good. Can’t be any worse than my mother’s cooking. She was the world’s worst. If it weren’t for dad finally hiring a cook when we were young, I think we would have starved.”

Zack made a face, but his eyes were laughing. “That’s an exaggeration. Surely someone couldn’t be that bad. Rob was a…” Zack stopped and his expression sobered.

Damn it, Ryan cursed silently. He had to open his big mouth. Instead of letting them dwelling on the unpleasantries, he delved through his mind for a funny story.

“Now my partner, Jerry. He was an awesome cook. However, this one time, when he was trying to make a veggie lasagna I thought I would die.” Ryan gently touched Zack’s shoulder and started herding him to the dinning area while he told him the story. From the corner of his eye Ryan caught sight of Maria and Charlie standing in the kitchen doorway still as a mouse and watching them closely.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

I've been bad

*Sigh* I know, I deserve ten lashes. I've not been keeping up with my blog. I'm still alive and kicking. Make that alive and trying not to tear my hair out *lol* I had hoped that with the start of school last week, I'd have more time ... or at least an easier time to get caught up and keep organized. Pfft, not quite working out that way.

I've been busy writing up requested book proposals (a good thing), real life appointments, unannounced company dropping by, birthdays, and the headaches of inheriting the PTO Treasurer (which I'm sick of looking at numbers). Oh and let's not forget the latest story occupying my thoughts and demanding very strongly to be written (titled: Fallen Angels).

I do apologize. I haven't forgotten about Second Chances. The chapter will be finished sometime today and I plan to have it up sometime tomorrow.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

4.5 Stars from Ecataromance!

I'm very pleased with Journey to the Dark Side's first review.
Ecataromance gave it 4.5 stars!

"Journey to the Dark Side is a steamy story that truly seems plausible. I liked that Jared did not have to enter this tight-knot community as if he were actually a part of it. Instead, he goes in with a knowledgeable guide and acts true to his character…an Alpha trying to be submissive. It definitely made Journey to the Dark Side more interesting, not to mention the sizzling chemistry between the two characters is explosive. I really enjoyed this shot, hot tale!" ~ Trang

Read the entire review here

Monday, August 13, 2007

Second Chances - Part 22

I know I've neglected this blog for about a week now and I'm sorry. Between edits, my twins' birtday and other non-writing related things, it's kept me from the net longer than I wanted. But now I'm catching up, along with having the next installation to Second Chances. Sorry about the wait.

Chapter 22

Ryan hesitated when a knock sounded at his door. The last person who knocked had left extremely upset. That was the day before. However, he had to admit he was craving some human interaction. He just wasn’t sure if he wanted the kind that stood on the other side. He opened the door anyway.


Ryan sighed, leaning on the door. He didn’t have the patience for a lecture. “What do you want Mulligan?”

Charlie glanced around. “Can I come in?”

Ryan shrugged his one good shoulder. “I’m sure you’ll just keep bugging me if I don’t.” He stepped out of the way to let his visitor enter. His gaze narrowed on Charlie. He so didn’t want a lecture.

Charlie looked around, as if delaying the purpose of his visit.

“How’s Zack?” Ryan couldn’t prevent the question from being voiced. He’d worried all evening for the other man though he knew it best to just forget Zack all together.

“He was pretty upset. Last night he let Maria talk him into seeing a therapist. That’s improvement.”

Ryan nodded, leaning against the counter. He forced himself not to fidget, outwardly showing leisure casualness, while his insides were a tight, churning knot. He watched Charlie shift his weight from foot to foot. There was more.

“Just spit it out. Why did you come here?”

Charlie rubbed at the back of his neck and let out a long exhale. “Zack, Maria, and I sat down last night. Got a lot of things off our chests.” He met Ryan’s eyes for the first time since stepping into the apartment. “First, I have to say thank you for calling yesterday. We knew Zack was in a bad way, we just didn’t know how to break through to him. Whatever you two talked about…” he paused, his lips forming a thin line. Ryan had to wonder what exactly Zack told him happened between them.

“Well, it was like unlocking a flood gate. He opened up to us for the first time since this all went down.”

“Good. He’ll need good friends and steady support as he gets through his trauma.” Lord knows he’d not had it…until Jerry.

Charlie nodded, almost distractedly. “You were another subject we broached with Zack.”
Ryan froze, his body stiffened. “And?”

“I personally think you and Zack need to stay as far away from each other as possible.”

So did Ryan, but on its own accord a protest started, only to be interrupted.

“But I was outnumbered. Christ, for some reason Zack wants…” Charlie ran his hand through his hair. Was it agitation? Anger? Hopelessness? “Hell, he actually feels like he should get to know you. Something about a connection. An understanding. He didn’t really make sense to me, but Maria agreed with him.”

This completely shocked Ryan. After what had happened yesterday, the kiss, the fear he’d invoked in Zack. Surely, the last thing he wanted was to be anywhere near him.

“So Maria wants you to come to dinner next week.”

“Dinner? Look Mulligan, I don’t know about this. After all that’s happened, I’m not sure if this is such a good idea.”

“Tell me about it,” Charlie murmured. “But they were both insistent. Zack starts seeing the therapist tomorrow. He’ll have a few sessions in before you come over and you should be feeling better.” He nodded to his wounded shoulder.

Ryan shook his head. “I don’t know.” The feel of Zack’s body against his had haunted his sleep. The taste of the other man had haunted his wake. He needed distance, not dates.

“Take some time and think about it. Maria decided on next Thursday. Seven o’clock. That leaves you a little over a week.” Charlie turned and started for the door.


Charlie opened the door, but stopped, looking over his shoulder.

“You’re really against this, aren’t you?”

His eyes closed as if in pain, his brows drawing together. “Yeah, I am.” He turned and left, leaving Ryan confused, yet a little excited at the prospect of seeing Zack again.

Saturday, August 04, 2007

Weekend fun

Well, I found out yesterday that my granddaughters are coming for the weekend. And I'm very excited. Of course a 4 year old and nearly 2 year old will keep me hopping more than my twin sons EVER did *lol* So my posting will probably be nonexistant this weekend. I'm just hoping for some time to get the next chapter of Second Chances done. But we'll see how it goes.

Myspace Graphics - Great Weekend

Thursday, August 02, 2007

Naughty or Nice Contest winners!

I know I posted this yesterday, but apparently Blogger wigged out on me and it's nowhere to be found :( So, here it is again.

Thanks to all who participated in my Naughty or Nice Contest.

Winner of my Naughty bundle - Deb Frischkorn
Winner of my Nice bundle - Amy Toohey
Winner of bonus prize ($20 GC) - Mina Gerhart

Congratulations to all the winners. I'll be sending each an email.

Have a wonderful day!