We all remember someone special. Someone we’ll always think of as the one that got away.
Memories can either enrich our lives –or ruin it. For my hero and heroine in Picture This, reliving the night they met makes everyone else pale in comparison. For both, the night also touched off a downhill streak.
But then they meet again. Will the second time around be better than the first?
Even stories can go through cycles. This year, the rights for Picture This reverted to me. One of four of my stories that finaled in the 2011 EPIC Awards, the novella had garnered some great reviews, such as: “The author grabs you from the first chapter and takes you on a great ride” and “It mixes a little humor and romance together into a snappy and readable package that will leave the reader with a smile as well as a renewed belief in happily ever after” and “The heroine is intelligent and resilient. The hero is sexy and charming. And the political background made for an exciting source of external conflict.”
But some thought the hero a puzzle because the story only included the heroine’s POV.
Well, Ben is a mystery no more. He was more than ready to step out of the shadows and tell his side. I love it when that happens. :) So, the second time around, Picture This is expanded and hopefully improved!
Here’s an excerpt:
Not Sydney’s finest idea, to spend another evening with Ben. Thank goodness he ran away from her. Again.
Probably all her babbling about her skin, thick or otherwise. If he’d questioned it, she’d blame dehydration. Just thinking of it, her skin warmed in embarrassment. The night’s chill wouldn’t be a problem. If she continued her babbling, she could keep herself warm all night.
Still, she hoped he didn’t think of her as thick-skinned. Because she immersed herself in her work, she could give that appearance without meaning to.
For the benefit of a middle-aged couple walking toward the door, she pulled out her cell phone and pretended to answer a call. When they were out of earshot, she asked, “See anything?”
“Ben?” she whispered.
The shutter clicked several times, and branches swayed.
“What’s going on?” Must be something, if he’s taking photos.
“Shh. Hold on.” Another succession of clicks. After a moment, the branches opened out as he made his way through.
He brushed the front of his shirt. “I got a few…”
A stocky man in a white overshirt walked from the back of the restaurant carrying a garbage bag. “Hey – what’re you doing?”
In a whoosh, Sydney was in Ben’s arms. His warm, soft lips on hers sent an explosion of light through her brain, and its rumblings reverberated through her. A whimper escaped as she slid her arms tight around his waist and held on. With a moan, his hands slid low on her back, and his hips ground against hers. Her breaths came hard as she met his thrusting tongue with her own.
“Get a room,” the man muttered. The back door slammed shut.
The urgency left them, but neither let go. She relaxed into him, relishing the feel of his lips, the touch she’d missed for more than a year. She wanted to remember this. It wasn’t likely to happen again.
She opened her eyes. He held his closed. He looked so relaxed, so content.
All the tension had left her body, as if she’d had a long massage coupled with electroshock therapy. Kissing someone her own height had distinct advantages. This kiss was especially nice.
Her lips slid from his. “That was close.”
His face inches from hers; he moved his hands higher on her back. “Very.”
She held back a smile. “I think he’s gone.”
He let out a long breath. “Sydney…” His words trailed as he appeared to struggle with what he wanted to say.
Still holding her, his eyes widened as two figures stepped from the walkway into the parking lot. His muscles tightened. “There goes the mayor.”
Sydney suddenly hated the mayor.
I’d love to give away an ebook of Picture This! Just leave a comment on this post and I’ll select a winner tomorrow night. Be sure to leave your email address so I can contact you should you win.