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Archive for October, 2016

Teaser Tuesday: “Between Us”

I was going to share another snippet from Guarding the Heart today. But, I just sent Healing the Heart to my beta reader, so it’s closer to being ready to publish. Whereas Guarding the Heart still has another round of edits to go through before it will even be ready to send to my critique partner. So, instead you get some more of Healing the Heart. I’d like to have this out before the end of the year, but that of course depends on when I get it back and how much I need to fix. Warning: There is mention of domestic/child abuse at the beginning of this snippet.

Jared watched Greg leave the clinic with his mother and his heart twisted. He knew what the boy would go home to and anger for his mother rose up. She could get him and her daughter out of their situation. It wasn’t so black and white. She lived daily in fear of her husband but had even more fear about leaving him.

What would it take to get her to accept her husband was an abusive bastard, and they didn’t deserve this? One of her children dying? Being beaten so bad they could never recover? He’d seen too many come through in the same situation. It broke him every time. Just because he’d survived it didn’t mean the rest would be so lucky.

He clenched his fists at his sides and leaned against his desk. That didn’t do anything to push all those feelings, all those memories away. Melanie’s steps approached his office, and he took a deep breath. He couldn’t deal with her now. He had told her to come to his office. He’d done this to himself.

At the knock on the door a moment later, he said, “I left it open for a reason.” Footsteps sounded then a soft click as the door closed. Still he didn’t face her.

“You could have let me know I’d be working under you. Did you have all the staff call you Dr. J, so I wouldn’t know it was you?”

He shook his head. “They’ve always called me that. So do our patients. I didn’t realize it would still matter. It’s been almost six years.” It was childish to not look at her while he spoke, but he wasn’t sure if he could and remain detached. He continued to face the wall. “I figured you’d moved on.” He did finally turn around. “You went right back to him after all.”

He saw the shock in her eyes a moment before she asked. “What are you talking about?”

“You know exactly what. You kept him between us the whole year we were together. He broke your heart and then you went running right back to him as soon as I left.”

Sunday Summary: Picking Up Speed

I mentioned on Wednesday that my progress had kind of been stop and go early on in the week. I wasn’t sure I’d be able to meet all my goals for the week. Then, on Thursday, something seemed to clear for me. I got caught up on my words for my main project then and almost caught up on plotting goals. Then, we had to go up to the high school that night because the boy was singing with his class before the girls’ volleyball game. And we ended up staying to watch the game as well(our team lost;(). Friday I got my words in even sooner and finished up my editing and plotting goals, and I got to a couple of my secondary projects. Saturday morning I was able to finish off those secondary projects and get to all of my side projects in the morning. So I spent the afternoon reading and nearly caught up on my goals there.

  • Write 14000 words(Break on Me will be my new main project) – 14443/14000 words
    • Break on Me – 10197 – He was just too much sometimes. “Do you have any shame?” she asked but could quite keep from laughing.”What would be the point in that? My father tried to fill me with it for who I am. I refuse to swallow any more of it.” *Oh, Erik is so much fun to write. Probably because of that lack of shame.
    • In the Moonlight – 1032 words – I could feel my face heat degree by degree at that. She laughed again, though, and cupped my chin in her hand. “Not a judgment, Nola. I think I like you even better a little dirtied.”
    • Defending the Heart – 1105 words – He thought of what Hector had told him the day before. Maybe apologies would solve some things, but he didn’t think it would be enough to fix this between him and Piers.
    • Toby & Denise – 1096 words – Toby thought his heart skipped a beat as what his brother had just said sunk in. “So, no girlfriend? A boyfriend.”
      Jonas smiled, but it seemed nervous. Toby tipped his chair back and smiled. “Well, I hope I get to meet him, too. Think I should run a check on him?”
      “No!” Jonas cried, and Toby laughed.
    • Brann & Jaya – 1013 words – He felt a nudge to his side and almost dropped his phone. “Enough with the dour looks, brother,” Caitie said, grinning up at him. “It’s my wedding. We’re supposed to be celebrating.” This was also my Stream of Consciousness Saturday post for this week if you want to read more of it.
  • Edit: Guarding the Heart – Scene issues(this will mostly be rearranging things, but may be some more new words, too) – got this done. Added 106 words.
  • Plot: Jess & Terrall – Work through story kit – romance arc – got through the romance arc worksheet as I’d planned. Added 6344 plotting words.
  • Side Projects: Write 2000 words – 1839 words. I’m changing this goal slightly. Going to write 500 each on the two main side projects(Dance with the Devil & Snow White Twist) and another 500 between the smaller ones. I was going to try to submit SWT at the end of this month, but that’s just not going to happen
    • Dance with the Devil – 541 words – Icarus got up and patted my leg. “Let yourself heal up before you go and do something stupid again. We’ll talk about your bike situation when you’re back on your feet.”
    • Snow White Twist – 532 words – “Yes,” Tarian breathed. “Oh, Dark Gods, please, yes.”
    • Patrick & Sarah – 140 words – One night of uninterrupted sleep. That was all she asked for. And for her boys to get along, instead of William insisting his brother stood over him when he woke at night. When it was perfectly clear to her Thomas still laid asleep in his bed. *Or is he actually sleeping?
    • Tavin & Haiwee – 155 words – But, this one, the one who looked so much like a bear lumbering along behind her. He she thought she liked. Though she could not quite decide why that was. Why did the wind blow? It just did. Maybe this had the same reason.
    • Roman – 245 words – He just wasn’t sure he could do this. Everything felt like it was weighing too heavy on him. He just might crack.
    • Dougal & Shae – 226 words – These two definitely fell into that first group. Nothing he could do unless they actually started causing a problem, though. And from what he’d seen so far, his boss wouldn’t take action until it went almost too far. Nothing he could do about that either. All he could do was his job.
  • Listen: The Sapphire Affair(Lauren Blakely) & The Matchmaker’s Playbook(Rachel Van Dyken) – I finished The Sapphire Affair & enjoyed it. Got pissed at The Matchmaker’s Playbook between the “hero”‘s attitude(came across as extremely sexist) and then it seemed they were romanticizing stalking & I was done. I listened to This is Where It ends(Marieke Nijkamp), and wow was this intense & emotional & heartbreaking. I sobbed through the last several chapters. It was also awesome. Then, I listened to Almost Dead(T.R. Ragan) and was disappointed though I’ve liked the rest of the series. Not only did the bad guy get away at the end, but the love interest died. Now, I don’t think it was marketed as Romance, but still. I’m undecided whether I’ll listen to the last book or not.
  • Read: Saint and Scholar(Holley Trent), Chemical Reaction(A.M. Leibowitz), Shallow Graves(Kali Wallace), Rest Stop(Catie Rhodes), Personal Geography(Tamsen Parker), A Perfect Storm(Lori Foster), It’s in His Kiss(Jill Shalvis), Tell Me Again How a Crush Should Feel(Sara Farizan), Signal Boost(Alyssa Cole) & Falling into Bed with a Duke(Lorraine Heath) – I finished Saint and Scholar(liked the first part, but the second half felt like it skimmed over details), Chemical Reaction(enjoyed), Shallow Graves(really enjoyed), Rest Stop(enjoyed), Personal Geography(really enjoyed, though it had a cliffhanger ending), A Perfect Storm(liked), It’s in His Kiss(loved), & Tell Me Again How a Crush Should Feel(really enjoyed). I’m only 13% into Signal Boost but enjoying it so far. I should be able to finish it today and hoping to finish Falling into Bed with a Duke as well, but we’ll see
  • Crochet: Fall Leaves – Just the one I did on Monday. Didn’t get to any more of them.

A lot of blue in there. Hopefully I can keep it up for the next week:

  • Write 14000 words
  • Edit: Guarding the Heart Read through
  • Plot: Jess & Terrall – Story Tookit: through Act 2 Beat sheet
  • Side Projects – Write 1500 words between them
  • Listen: Minutes to Kill(Melinda Leigh)
  • Read: Finish Signal Boost(Alyssa Cole), Falling into Bed with a Duke(Lorraine Heath), 37 Things I Love(Kekla Magoon), The Shadow Queen(CJ Redwine), Fake ID(Lamar Giles), Rock Addiction(Nalini Singh), Frost Station Alpha(Ruby Lionsdrake), The Invisible Entente(Krista Walsh)
  • Knit/Crochet – dish cloths. As I said Wednesday, the pup has taken to digging these out of the laundry and chewing them up, so I need to make more.

WeWriWa: ‘Almost as Quick’

Welcome back to another visit with the Weekend Writing Warriors, the blog hop for anyone who likes to write. I’m still sharing from Dance with the Devil. I may finally be getting close to the end, though I still have quite a bit from what I’m posting to where I am in writing. So, you may still get quite a few more snippets. Today, I’m jumping past some of Hawk & Devil’s argument and coming in toward the end of it.

“I really wish you’d just listen to me.”

“I am listening,” I snapped, turning back to him. “I’m just not likin’ what I hear.” I hated the hurt that flashed through his eyes. But, it was gone almost as quick. Must not have gone that deep then.

“You’ve never much liked what I had to say. Can’t take anything that upsets the balance of your world, can you?”

Just what is Hawk telling him that he doesn’t like? Where is the argument headed? Anyone else think these two should just kiss and get it over with already?(Ha, this is a thing I think whenever two characters are constantly arguing).

I posted the final chapter of Come Back Down on Wattpad Friday. So, you can head over there and read that if you’d like.

Stream of Consciousness Saturday: Screen

Today’s Stream of Consciousness Saturday prompt is “screen” to use any way we want. I only have one more secondary project on my list to get done; one that’s been plotted for a while but I still haven’t started writing. At least the beginning of it takes place during the same time as Closing Time, which I just finished the first draft for.

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Brann Magaldi leaned against the wall, watching. His sister was a little busy right now, dancing circles around her new husband, but he was sure she’d be over soon enough to tell him to stop brooding. he wasn’t, not really. Just not in the desire to be in the middle of all this. He slipped his phone out and glanced at the screen. He’d resisted the urge to do that most of the night. No work tonight. That was the order their mother had given both him and his older brother. It wasn’t like either of them were on duty or even on call.

But, this case. It was driving him mad. It wasn’t even his case. He knew what his captain would tell him. He wasn’t a detective; it wasn’t his place to try to solve the crimes. But, the victims seemed to keep piling up. None of them saw their attacker. All of them woke up missing money, one had even had his boots stolen. None of them would be considered innocent by most people, but that didn’t change anything for Brann. He still wanted to stop whoever was going after them.

He felt a nudge to his side and almost dropped his phone. “Enough with the dour looks, brother,” Caitie said, grinning up at him. “It’s my wedding. We’re supposed to be celebrating.”

He put his phone away and tried to put away everything else as well, smiling at her. “I know, and you look beautiful. Radiant, even.”

Her grin widened then she tugged on his hand. “Come on. Dance. Enjoy the party. It’s the best gift you could give me.”

He cupped her cheek and kissed her forehead. “I’d give you whatever you deserve, sweet Caitie. But, you know you’d hate every minute of it if someone tried to pamper you.”

She laughed at that. “You do know me well, Brann. How about just one dance?”

“You don’t want me to dance with you. I’ll just step all over your feet.”

That brought out another laugh. “I think my feet are immune by now. I have been dancing with Mark. They may have erected a shield around themselves now.”

Brann let out a loud laugh at that. Mark might be a lot of things, strong brave, honorable, but graceful wasn’t among them. Especially around Caitie. “I think I’ll go get a drink instead of tormenting your feet some more.”

He left her with a kiss on the cheek and headed over to the bar in the corner of the room. it looked pretty slow there right now, only one other person waiting for a drink. His brother stood behind the bar, saying something to the bartender working with him. Brann knew Caitie had not asked Gio to work the wedding. She’d wanted a couple of his bartenders to work, since the one they’d hired had fallen through at the last minute. she’d been surprised when he showed up to work with just one other bartender, who had gotten set up while Gio was at the wedding itself.

It was always hard to figure out what Gio was thinking, and why he did things the way he did.

Now, though, from the way the other bartender flushed and looked quickly away from Gio, Brann could figure why he’d chosen this one to come with him. Just a flirtation, Brann told himself. Gio was like that, flirted with pretty much everyone. But, he thought he saw something in his brother’s eyes as he looked at the bartender. it made him a little uneasy. They all knew about the man’s past, what he’d done to someone they all considered close to family. But none of them had told Gio. It didn’t have any effect on how he did his job, but the way they interacted now worried Brann. What if he ended up hurting Gio, too?

A cheer going up from a nearby table drew his attention away from the bar. Mark and Caitie now stood in front of a table filled with people in dress uniforms. Almost all of them firefighters. At the other end, a couple were in different uniforms. Marine dress blues. Must be some of Mark’s old friends from his days in the Corps. But, it was the firefighters cheering now as Caitie straightened from the dip Mark had her in and leapt up to wrap her legs around his waist and continue the kiss he’d started. Brann started to turn away, he did not need to see his sister with her tongue down her husband’s throat or the way his hands–yeah, not even letting his thoughts go there.

But, someone else at the table caught his eye. Her black hair fell straight down her back. She wasn’t in a uniform, either, but a glimmering silver dress that seemed to hug around her. Her light brown skin seemed to glow against it. His breath caught as he stared at her. he had to get control of himself. She was sitting between two of the firefighters, and was most likely with one of them. He would never be the one to try to break up a relationship. Now matter how much he was instantly attracted to a woman.

It had never happened that fast before, though. But, he still told himself he could ignore it. So, he turned back to the bar and headed toward his brother. Who was laughing at something the other bartender must have said. Gio’s flirtations might make him uneasy, but he could deal with that more than lusting for a woman he couldn’t have.

He glanced back once and saw the woman put her hand on one of the men’s arms. He jerked his gaze back around.

He could really use that drink after all.

Fiction Friday: Come Back Down – Chapter 10

We’ve come to the final chapter of Come Back Down, and I don’t have Dance with the Devil finished yet. I might have the first draft done by the end of this month, not sure though. Then, I’ll still have to revise it before I start putting it up. So, it probably won’t be until next year before I start posting it to Wattpad(maybe December if I get lucky). For now, here’s the beginning of the end:

We didn’t have to wait long for it all to go down. Less than a week later the buzzing started. Smoke and Wraith came riding in to tell us the word from town. The cops hit the Ivory Crows’ clubhouse early in the morning. They’d come back from a job and were caught with the drugs, money, and weapons that had been taken. In the ensuing scuffle, one of the officers had been wounded, but he’d been listed as in good condition. Almost all of the Crows had been taken in, but a few were said to have slipped away. One of those being one of the sergeant-at-arms from what Wraith heard.

That fact didn’t put me at ease. If it had been a member, we might not have anything to worry about. With it being an officer in the club, someone who had influence and got things done, they might be able to gather resources to come after the Riders.

“Stop worrying about it,” Icarus told me two days after they’d first gotten the news. “There isn’t anything we can do about it until something happens.”

“Don’t you think it will be too late by then?” I asked him.

“We won’t go after them, Birdie. That’s not how this club functions, and you know that.”

“What if they get you, or Trace, before you have a chance to be ready for them. Dad-” My voice cracked, and he came to me, wrapping his arms around me.

“I’ll do everything possible to make sure nothing happens. To any of us. You have to know that.”

I did, but it didn’t stop me from being scared. I think he knew that. Trace did, too, since I think he felt the same way as me. The club thought we were inseparable before, but now we barely left each other’s sides. He was relaxing about touching and being touched as well. Either it was the massive amount of touching we were doing, with our clothes still on unfortunately, or his sessions with Raven were finally helping.

I didn’t care. He was healing and opening up for me more.

Chief wanted to keep patrols up, so two Riders went out together every night, riding through town and the surrounding area at three hour intervals. It was to keep us safe, to give us time to get prepared before something went down. I didn’t complain, even when Trace had to leave my arms, to go on his rounds.

He should be back by now. He’d gone out with Smoke, so I wasn’t too worried about something happening. Smoke would take care of him. I wasn’t feeling good about everything that was going on. It had gone too well for us. Nothing did that for long before the bottom fell out.

What’s going to happen now? Has something happened with Trace? Or will he make it back? You can read on to find out. And I hope you’ll come back when I start posting Dance with the Devil.

Writing Wednesday: Stop and Go Week

The week started out pretty good. Got my main writing goal in, as well as plotting, and even some on a couple secondary projects and one of my side projects. It was a good day even with the kids home from school. Yesterday, on the other hand, I’m not quite sure what happened. Bounced between plotting and working on Break on Me. I hadn’t plugged in the Surface the night before, and that’s what I’ve been working on Break on Me on, but I’m working on all the new stuff on the laptop so I can go back to using Scrivener. So, while the Surface charged, I worked on plotting. And when I got back to writing, the words just weren’t coming. By lunchtime, I didn’t have any desire to write, just wasn’t feeling it. I probably could have pushed through and maybe I would have broken through the block. But, I didn’t. Instead I sat and read for the rest of the day. So, yesterday’s word count was pretty low. Today’s hasn’t been much better yet, but I don’t plan to take the whole afternoon off again.

I did finish Closing Time last week, as I mentioned on Sunday. So, Break on Me has moved up into my main project slot. So, I’ll be sharing from that for now. I’ve shared a few snippets of it before, but I don’t remember exactly what the last one was. I have 18 lines(16(for the year)-10(for the month)+12(for the day)) of mostly dialogue between Erik and Gabriel, talking about Lora.

“So,” Erik drew the word out slowly, “you have a beautiful woman in your bed, and you’re out here freaking out about something that probably hasn’t even happened. Do I have that right?”

Gabriel clenched his fingers in his hair, until he felt it pull against his scalp. “Trust me, it isn’t anything I haven’t told myself.”

“Stop that,” Erik said, sliding his hand under Gabriel’s and prying his fingers out of his hair. “Your hair’s too nice to pull it all out before your thirtieth birthday.”

Gabriel let out a laugh, but he dropped his hand. “I don’t know what my problem is. I’ve wanted Lora so long, even when she was too young for me. I promised Aaron I wouldn’t let anyone hurt her, so what am I doing?”

Erik let out a snort, that held pretty much everything Gabriel knew he felt for the man in it. “That was a pretty stupid promise for him to have you make. He had to have known how you felt about her.”

“I never told him.”

Another snort. “I don’t think you would have had to. If you looked at her back then like you do now, he would have known it. What were his actual words, ‘don’t let anyone touch my sister, even you, you dirty bastard.’?”

Gabriel couldn’t help it, he laughed at that. It had been a spot-on impersonation of Aaron, even if he’d never called Gabriel that. “You know he didn’t. Aaron didn’t believe I was bisexual. He didn’t understand. Even when I’d explain it to him, he couldn’t wrap his head around it. He thought I was just hiding. He wouldn’t have thought I’d actually be attracted to her.”

“Then, he really was an idiot.”

Let’s just say, Erik already didn’t have a high opinion of Aaron. And he has more to say about what he thinks of this promise.

On to my progress for the week.

Plotting:

Making progress on the story toolkit for Jess & Terrall’s story.

Writing:

I’ve added 5261 words between 3 projects.

Break on Me – 3521 words

“I figured you’d already gone to work,” Gabriel said.

“Slept in. I’ve gotta get going. Gotta make the rent.”

“Asshole,” Gabriel muttered, but his lips twitched. He caught Lora glancing up at him and told her, “I don’t make him pay rent, and he knows it.”

In the Moonlight – 1032 words

“No,” Yasmin said. “No, buts. You’re all grown up now, Nola. Your mother has no control. Only you should. Not a parent, or sibling, or hell, even whatever partner you choose. You ever don’t want me to touch you, just tell me, and I promise I won’t. I’ll respect whatever lines you establish, even if they change at a moment’s notice.”

Defending the Heart – 708 words

And maybe he was just fooling himself. Even being around Xavier for that short amount of time the night before had left him twisted up in knots.

Editing:

Moved scenes around a bit. No changes to word count. Also, still looking for a couple beta readers for Healing the Heart if anyone’s interested in giving some feedback.

Side Projects:

Worked on Dance with the Devil. Added 541 words.

Except for Hawk. He’d been avoiding me since I’d first woken up. Sure, I saw him around the clubhouse from time to time, but he hardly spoke to me. I thought back to what Icarus had told me. Was I really hurting him that much? Didn’t he know he’d be better off without me anyway?

Reading:

I listened to The Sapphire Affair(Lauren Blakely) and enjoyed it. Then I started The Matchmaker’s Playbook and despised the “hero’s” attitude and had to stop listening. Started This is Where It Ends(Marieke Nijkamp) and oh, wow, this was so good. I sobbed while listening to the last few chapters.

I read Shallow Graves(Kali Wallace) and really enjoyed this. Also read Rest Stop(Catie Rhodes) which I liked and Personal Geography(Tamsen Parker), which I also enjoyed, though it ended on a bit of a cliffhanger, so I’ve got to pick up the next book soon. I started A Perfect Storm(Lori Foster) and I’m only 58 pages into it.

Crafting:

Finished one of the Fall leaves. Was planning to do a few in different colors, but haven’t made it that far yet. I also want to crochet a few different dish cloths since the puppy keeps chewing them up(chewed a hole right through the laundry bag even)

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Sunday Summary: Good First Week

It’s been a pretty good first week of the month. I actually made it through all my writing goals, even finished the first draft of Closing Time. I seem to be settling into a decent routine for me, though I’m still fine-tuning it. I’m a little behind on the reading front, but hoping I’ll have time today to catch up some there.

Mr. Destructive Puppy...or what happens when you chew up your blanket

Mr. Destructive Puppy…or what happens when you chew up your blanket

Last night was our volunteer fire department’s annual gun raffle. This is one of the big fundraisers for the department. It’s the first time I’ve worked it. Was rather nervous, because you know…people. But, I sat at a table and helped sell tickets for the Chinese auction. It wasn’t too bad, though got a little boring when it slowed down on into the night. And there were a lot of people there, and sound bounces off the walls in the fire department’s social hall, so I was a little on edge. But, the Explorer post watched the kids for those who were working, so we didn’t even have to worry about a babysitter. Didn’t get home until after 10, but I was awake by 2:30 for some unknown reason and couldn’t get back to sleep. So, it’s not even 6 a.m. and I’ve already read some blog posts, figured out my goals for the next week, and started this blog post.

Now, for my progress on my goals for the week:

  • Write: 14000 words – 14215/14000 words. Finished Closing Time and started Toby & Denise’s story(though a lot of what I have was written between a Story a Day piece & a Stream of Consciousness Saturday post(yesterday’s actually). I did have to add a bit to the first one and adjust a couple things in the second. I’m counting all the words, though.
    • Closing Time – 9553 words – Cam glanced over at Gio, but he only said, “Whatever you want. I’m beside you regardless.”
    • Break on Me – 1067 words – He hated this. Hated that sometimes there was nothing else that helped. But, he knew that once his mind started racing, there was no slowing it down again on his own. Lora had helped earlier and still that had only been a stopgap measure. He needed to put the brakes on this before it went out of control.
    • In the Moonlight – 1032 words – Her head fell back, and she let out a loud, full laugh. A tingle went over my skin at the sound of it, and I couldn’t stop the smile that spread over my face.
    • Defending the Heart – 1078 words -Piers opened his mouth to say he didn’t hate Xavier, but he was already walking back across the yard. Really swaggering or sauntering would be better words. And it didn’t really help the situation in his jeans. But, he continued to watch as Xavier approached the dance floor.
    • Toby & Denise – 1485 words – His brother stuck his tongue out, and Toby caught him in a quick headlock. But, it was hard to hold it when he was laughing nearly as much as the teenager. *loved writing Toby with his younger siblings.
  • Edit: Guarding the Heart – Timeline issues – worked through these. Added 120 words. Also, still looking for beta readers for Healing the Heart if anyone’s interested.
  • Plot: Toby & Denise – finish outline – got this finished on Monday.
  • Brainstorm: Jess & Terrall – brainstormed & started working through the Story Toolkit for it.
  • Side Projects: Add 3000 words – 2757/3000 words. Going to adjust this back down to 2000. It just feels like too much with everything else. And pretty sure I won’t finish the Snow White Twist in time to submit it. Even if I finish writing it by the end of the month, I won’t have time to revise. I may wait and submit it next year.
    • Dance with the Devil – 934 words – I couldn’t help it. I smiled a little at that one. Icarus’ return smile was soft. “I don’t know exactly what made you take off like that, but I’d hoped after all this time you’d trust us. And that you wouldn’t still be so reckless with your own life. Do you really think it’s worth so little?”
    • Snow White Twist – 1018 words – She stared at him, and he only chuckled again. “I might need glasses,” he said, tapping the ones resting on the bridge of his nose, “but I can still see. Go to her. She was worried for you.”
    • Patrick & Sarah – 224 words – She just sniffed and turned away. “The town would be better off without all three of them. So would you, young man. You may want to keep that in mind.” *old busybody, though she could be right about one of them(if you’ve read Stained Snow, you’ll probably know who)
    • Tavin & Haiwee – 148 words. I seem to have lost words I know I wrote a couple weeks ago. Had to rewrite, but it wasn’t quite the same. – She took off after asking the question, though not as quickly as before. Almost as if she was holding herself back for him. He shook his head then picked up his pace. “Had family. Back in Scotland. Brother’s still there. I came over after our parents died.”   *Didn’t even realize Tavin had a brother until I wrote this.
    • Roman – 288 words – “I got called in. I’d say this is more important. I’m not fragile, Roman.”Maybe not, but he was. *aw, Roman. Your wife is stronger than you give her credit for.
    • Dougal & Shae – 145 words – He loved the stubborn old bastard, but he couldn’t work for the man. And he really didn’t want to have to go crawling back, saying he’d failed just as his father had predicted. *Oh, Dougal, I totally get mixed feelings about fathers.
  • Listen: Wrong Question, Right Answer(Elle Casey) and Shadow of a Doubt(Tiffany Snow) – I finished Wrong Question, Right Answer(liked it okay, but it felt kind of disconnected to me) then re-listened to Six of Crows to get ready for reading the sequel(3rd listen & still all the same flails over it). Just finished listening to Shadow of a Doubt this morning(liked this one better than the first, though I almost stopped listening early on b/c I got irritated with the attitude of the “hero”, but it got better)
  • Read: Finish Sudden Death(Allison Brennan), Right of First Refusal(Dahlia Adler), The Blade’s Memory(Lindsay Buroker), Saint and Scholar(Holley Trent), Chemical Reaction(A.M. Leibowitz), Shallow Graves(Kali Wallace), Rest Stop(Catie Rhodes), & Crooked Kingdom(Leigh Bardugo) – I finished Sudden Death(slow to get into it, but enjoyed it. Added her other books to my list to find at the used book store – particularly the older ones), Right of First Refusal(I really enjoyed this one and have the next in the series on the list to read this month, too), The Blade’s Memory(I love all Lindsay’s book, but this one felt a lot slower to me), & Crooked Kingdom(I skipped ahead of my list & so glad. I’m destroyed & giddy & wishing this was a trilogy instead of a duology so I could spend more time with these characters. So, obviously I LOVED this one). I started Saint and Scholar this morning and hope to finish it and Chemical Reaction today, and the others will move to next week’s list.
  • Knit: Unleashed Hat – Finished this a little bit ago. wp-1476018812837.jpg

A lot of blue, a little bit of green, and some red. Not bad overall. Hopefully I can keep that up or do better next week.

  • Write 14000 words(Break on Me will be my new main project)
  • Edit: Guarding the Heart – Scene issues(this will mostly be rearranging things, but may be some more new words, too)
  • Plot: Jess & Terrall – Work through story kit – romance arc
  • Side Projects: Write 2000 words
  • Listen: The Sapphire Affair(Lauren Blakely) & The Matchmaker’s Playbook(Rachel Van Dyken)
  • Read: Saint and Scholar(Holley Trent), Chemical Reaction(A.M. Leibowitz), Shallow Graves(Kali Wallace), Rest Stop(Catie Rhodes), Personal Geography(Tamsen Parker), A Perfect Storm(Lori Foster), It’s in His Kiss(Jill Shalvis), Tell Me Again How a Crush Should Feel(Sara Farizan), Signal Boost(Alyssa Cole) & Falling into Bed with a Duke(Lorraine Heath)
  • Crochet: Fall Leaves

WeWriWa: “What I Am”

Back for another visit with the Weekend Writing Warriors, the blog hop for anyone who likes to write. I’m still sharing from Dance with the Devil, which I did end up adding a good bit to this week. But, for right now, I’m picking up where I left off last week, with Devil and Hawk having a conversation about the fight Devil got into. I skipped a couple lines, but Hawk asked Devil how the other guys provoked him, and he was trying to avoid talking about it.

But, I knew he wouldn’t leave until he got what he came for. “They badmouthed you,” I mumbled.

“What was that?”

I finally spun toward him then regretted it as pain slashed through my ribs. “I said they badmouthed you. They called you…names, said awful things about you. I couldn’t take it.”

“Damon,” he said, his voice soft, “you can’t let that get to you. I know what I am. Whatever they said, it doesn’t matter.”

Just what did they say that riled Devil up so much? Where is this discussion going to go? Stick around, and I should have more of it next week.

I also put Chapter 9 of Come Back Down up on Wattpad yesterday, so you can read that if you’d like. You’ll even see a little bit of the history between Hawk and Devil in that one.

Stream of Consciousness Saturday: Coin

Today’s prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is “coin”. I skipped last week’s post because we left early for the town’s Homecoming parade, which both of my kids ended up being in. My boy got to walk with Daddy with both of them in fire gear, and the girl rode in a hay wagon for the fire department. And the town had a sort of “fall fest” after the parade. So, we were gone most of the day. But, I’m coming back this week. Once again, the prompt had a line of dialogue popping into my head. this seems to be what happens most often.

~~~~~~~~~~

“Maybe you two should flip a coin for it.”

Toby glanced over at his mother. Her lips were pressed together, but from the way they kept twitching, he thought it was to suppress a laugh, and not because she was upset with his siblings. His own lips quirked up at that. This was the mother he sometimes wished he’d had when he was growing up, one that was actually involved instead of off finding another fix and sometimes forgetting she had a son.

He pushed those dark thoughts away. Not the time for them. Mom was different now, and if his childhood had been different, he might not be the person he was now. Not that he always thought that would be a bad thing.

“I could take both of them. It wouldn’t really be a problem. It’s not like I have a patrol car and one of them would have to sit in the back.” He saw his sister’s eyes go wide at that. He nearly laughed at that. Arcelia was a sweet girl and had probably never even thought about sitting in the back of a police car. Well before he was her age, he’d done just that several times. Back then, he certainly never thought he’d drive one.

Not going back there. He knew better than to let thoughts of his past crowd his mind. He was different now, like his mother. They’d both come out better than they’d been.

Arcelia took a step back. “Jonas can go this time,” she said. “I have some homework to get done for Monday still.”

Her twin brother wrinkled his nose at that. “You’re going to spend your Saturday doing homework? Really, Cel? I didn’t even think you were that pathetic.”

“Jonas Edward Pedera,” his mother chastised. “You don’t talk to your sister like that.”

Hearing his brother’s middle name always sent a pang through his chest. Edward, who’d always been more of a father to Toby than he’d needed to be. He could have been like his buddy Carlos’ stepfather and shut him out because of the things he’d done. Instead, he’d drawn him in, adopted him, and been everything a real father should be. He’d helped draw Toby back out of that darkness.

And he still missed him so much some days.

Toby smiled at Arcelia. “That’s fine,” he said. “We can go somewhere tomorrow, since you’ll be finished with your homework while Jonas has to cram all his into a few hours.”

His brother stuck his tongue out, and Toby caught him in a quick headlock. But, it was hard to hold it when he was laughing nearly as much as the teenager. “Go get your shoes,” he said, pushing the boy away from him. “I told Carlos we’d be there by noon. Going to be pushing it.”

Both of the kids headed out of the kitchen, Jonas to grab his shoes, and Arcelia up to her room. When they were alone, Toby’s mother turned to him. “They both love you so much. You know that, right?”

He nodded, but his throat felt too tight to respond. His mother seemed to sense this and just pushed up on her toes to kiss his forehead. “Edward would be so proud of you, of the man you’ve become.”

Toby knew he never would have been able to do it without the other man. And he just hoped he’d never let him down, never return to the screw-up he’d been when the man had first met him. He was determined to leave something better behind.

Jonas came running back into the room, pushing those murky thoughts away. “That was quick. You must really be craving some of Carlos’ cooking.”

“Actually I think he has a crush on one of the waitresses there,” their mom said.

“Mom,” Jonas said, drawing the word out into several syllables.

She laughed and kissed his forehead, like she’d done with Toby. “Have fun. Be good. Listen to your brother.”

“Yeah, yeah, I know,” he said, but his cheeks were still dark from their mom’s revelation.

Toby remembered what it was like to be sixteen and have a crush. His hadn’t had any possibility of happening though. So, he just squeezed the boy’s shoulder and headed for the door. “I’ll have him back in time for dinner.”

“You’re welcome to stay for it, too, Tobias.”

“Thanks, mama. I might just do that.” It would be better than being alone in his apartment with his own thoughts. He’d been spending too much time there lately, and it didn’t make things look any brighter.

Fiction Friday: Come Back Down – Chapter 9

Good week over here. Finished the first draft of one of my projects. It was supposed to be a novella, but these characters had other ideas apparently. It’s a little under 60k so still a little on the short side for a novel for me, but definitely longer than a novella.

I’ve put the next chapter of Come Back Down up on Wattpad. I only have one more left after this. Then, it’ll be on to Dance with the Devil. I haven’t finished writing that, though, so it’ll be a little bit before I start posting it. For now, here’s the start of Chapter 9:

 

“I can’t believe that boy’s a cop. And he had us all fooled.”

“Doesn’t put him in the right, Bull, just because he carries a badge. Or make him a good guy.”

I looked back and forth between Icarus and Bull. They’d been just as shocked about Brad as we were. I still wasn’t sure what to make of it.

“He could be lying,” Trace said. “It looked legit, but I’m sure there are people who are good enough to forge that.”

Icarus glanced over at Chief. “You’ve still got contacts at the department, right? Could you find out for sure?”

“I doubt any are high up enough to be able to tell me anything. I think we should believe the boy. It does add up a bit more.”

“What I don’t understand,” I said, “is if this was always a job, why did he get so worked up when he found out about Trace and me? Why’d he bring Hawk into it?”

“Those answers are both easy,” Icarus said. “To the first one; pure and simple jealousy. He had to push you away for the job he needed to do. Doesn’t mean he didn’t still care. But, you don’t want someone who uses jealousy as an excuse to hurt others.” He glanced quickly to Trace, who tightened his arm around my waist. “As for the second, it doesn’t matter if he is a cop, he’s still an asshole with firm opinions.”

“What do we do now?” I looked straight at Icarus. The captain and sergeant were equal positions, but Bull had a tendency to defer to Dad’s opinion anyway. So, I started there. “He basically said we should stand down, or we might get caught in the middle of things. I don’t know if we should trust him.”

“We bring it before the club,” Icarus said. “Like we do anything that affects us as a club. None of us wanted war, but it looked like it was heading that way. If we can avoid it, I know which way my vote will go.”

Bull nodded in agreement. “It’s the way it’s done, Birdie, you know that. What the club decides is what we do. We’ll talk and argue the points, but once it’s done, it’s done with.”

“Yeah, I know.” I worried about that. Even if Icarus and Bull were all for stepping back and letting someone else, even the police, handle things, it didn’t mean other members, particularly some of the younger ones like Devil and Arrow, would feel the same. If enough of them did, the rest wouldn’t have a choice but to see it through. I glanced at Trace. He’d obviously come to the same conclusion as he worried his bottom lip.

“We’ll all have to fight?” he asked.

How will the vote go? Will they have to fight? You can read the rest here and find out how it goes.

Also, if you missed it, I posted Tuesday about looking for beta readers for a different project. I’m still looking for a couple if you’re interested.

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