Tag Archives: short stories

Farewell My Love ~ A story written and read for @RBwood’s Word Count Podcast

You can also hear me read this story on: Episode #28 of R.B. Wood’s “The Word Count” podcast.

The prompt for this podcast is One. Two. Three. He caressed each bullet in the palm of his hand before slipping it into its chamber…

*  *  *  *

James stopped typing mid-sentence and glanced across his desk to where she sat. Her sweet scent alerted him to her presence. He knew she’d return this morning to continue their conversation of last night. Mesmerized, he watched her put down her writing tablet and unwrap the long, silk scarf from around her neck. Curled up in her favorite chair by the picture window, knees drawn, her face revealed a woman of timeless beauty and infinite wisdom. Torn between his love for her and his work, he re-read the three nonsensical paragraphs on his computer screen. They were the same words he’d been typing for the past several days.

She wanted out; he couldn’t imagine writing without her.

“How can I go on if you leave me?” he said. “You’ve given me the best five years of my life, helped me through the darkest hours when I thought I would never see light again.”

“Oh stop it, James.” She pursed her lips in a manner that showed her annoyance. “You’re being melodramatic, cliché in fact.”

He wiped his brow and sniffled. “I need you Calli—now—more than ever.”

She took a deep breath and let her shoulders drop, as if to unburden herself from the responsibilities she held. “You don’t need me anymore, James. I’ve been your mistress, your lover, your confidante, but lately, I’ve been nothing but a roadblock. It’s time I move on. You know I’m right, and ….”

James cupped his hands over his ears and squeezed his eyes shut. “La-la-la-la-la-la-la-la-la …” He repeated over and over hoping to drown out Calli’s voice. Surely, she had to understand he couldn’t just let her go. Without her, he would never have written his three best-selling novels.

“James, please, stop being childish. We’ve had an incredible relationship—a true meeting of minds, but it’s time to say good-bye.”

He opened his eyes to see a sunbeam brush Calli’s hair and highlight her face in a colorful prism. She was a goddess, beautiful even when he exasperated her. She was the one who taught him perseverance, listened to him ad nauseam as he cried over missed deadlines and rejection letters. She stuck with him and helped him hammer out hours upon sleepless hours of prose, dialogue, narrative, description, and then one day, her persistence paid off. In exchange, he cast her in a thousand scenes, made love to her, worshipped her, but now … her impatience with him hurt more than anything.

“I can’t say good-bye to you,” he said.

“You must.” Her voice was barely a whisper. “You’ve come to an impasse with your writing, and the only way to move forward is to let me go.”

He pouted and cradled his head in his hands. “Now who’s being cliché?”

Calli released a heavy sigh and slowly rose from her seat. She glided gracefully toward James. When she stood in front of him, she gathered up the skirt of her flowing, purple gown and crouched at his feet, resting her head in his lap.

“You know I love you, James. I always will, but I’ve been around much longer than you have, and it’s not good for us to continue like this. You will grow to hate me when your wellspring of creativity dries up, as it is already beginning to.”

James stroked Calli’s head and unraveled her tightly braided hair. He splayed her long, golden tresses down her back, breathed in her clean and earthy scent that held a hint of roses. He loved her even though he’d felt the past months tinged with boredom and lack of motivation. He wanted to believe the feeling would pass, but it didn’t. Only when confronted by Calli did he realize he was too cowardly to end it himself. Now her permission to do so flooded him with guilt.

“Calli, how can I go on without you?”

“You can, and you will.” She picked herself up and knelt in front of him. “Take this.”

He eyed the revolver she held in her hand. “What? Where did you get this?”

“Never you mind,” she said in her characteristic melodic lilt. You know I’ve lived long enough to have many sources.” She slipped her hand into the folds of her gown and pulled out a handful of metal. “You’ll need these too.”

James stared at the bullets she gently placed in his palm. “Calli … no.”

“You must, my darling. It’s time.”

­James stared into dark, emerald eyes and witnessed centuries of creative inspiration gone by. She was right, after all. He’d have to kill her if he held any hope of ever writing again. Her lips curved in a tiny smile and she closed her eyes, seemingly ready to accept her fate.

His fingers trembled as he caressed each bullet in his palm before slipping them into the gun’s chamber.

“Farewell my love,” he said with tears rolling down his cheeks.

* * *

James awoke in the middle of the night agitated but filled with wild ideas. He jumped out of bed, flipped open his laptop, and pounded away at a fresh, new manuscript.

If you enjoyed this story and would like to read a collection of erotic flash fiction and poetry, pick up my ebook Hot Flash, which includes two non-erotic stories too.

Click on the cover and LOOK INSIDE to read a sample.

Available at Amazon:

US | UK | Canada | Germany | France | Japan | Italy | Spain

No Kindle? No Worries.

There is a Kindle App for just about any electronic device (Click here to get one).

 

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MISTAKEN DOUBLE IDENTITY ~ A story written and read for @RBwood’s Word Count Podcast

You can also hear me read this story on: Episode #27 of R.B. Wood’s “The Word Count” podcast.

The prompt for this podcast is “Mistaken identity at the pub…”

*  *  *  *

Kim initially cast a wide net by chatting with nearly a dozen men who responded to her ad. After just two weeks, the field had narrowed to one. His name was Richard. He offered to send his picture early in the relationship. She preferred not to see it, said it wouldn’t change her mind about him.

After weeks of phone chat and texting, she thought he finally understood. “Looks are unimportant to me,” Kim said. “I like you. Let’s not complicate it with physical appearances until we are ready to meet.”

They connected on every level of likes and dislikes, but more importantly, they shared the same family values. He wanted to have children, maybe two or three. He had no clue what she looked like either, yet his willingness to continue their relationship revealed an important character trait in her eyes—he wasn’t fickle.

“I’d be a good provider,” Richard said in one of his emails. “You wouldn’t need to work, unless of course, you wanted to. I guess I’m old-fashioned that way.”

“I like that you’re old-fashioned,” Kim wrote back. “That’s how it was with my parents, and they were happily married for over fifty years.”

Conversation flowed smoothly between them, an effortless union. Following a three-month courtship, they finally agreed to meet at a pub downtown. Kim had dreamt about walking in to the bar, scanning the crowd and seeing a man in a dark suit, a red rose on his lapel to identify him. He’d spot her too, smile, and know she was the one. She’d saunter over and look into his blue, green, or brown eyes. He’d hold her face in his hands and say, “I’ve waited for you all my life, Kim.”

Yes, that was how she envisioned it would happen, but it never did.

On the eve before they were to meet, Kim received an email from Richard, devoid of a subject line. Had he changed his mind? She opened the email in a panic only to stare at a headshot of a male model’s face—large, brown eyes, an aquiline nose, curvaceous lips, all framed by a strong jaw line and flawless skin. Beneath the photograph were two lines:

“Taken last year in San Diego. I can’t wait to see you, Richard.”

I can’t wait to see you. I can’t wait to see you … The line echoed in Kim’s mind. She had thought Richard was different than other men, that looks were not all that important to him. Obviously, she was mistaken.

She shuffled to the bathroom, her heart heavier with each step. The mirror on the medicine cabinet reflected a thirty-year-old woman whose face was perfectly proportioned. “Women would die to have such beautiful eyes as yours,” her mother had said to her all her life.

Kim grabbed a bottle and several large cotton balls from a nearby shelf. She unscrewed the cap and pressed the absorbent fibers to the opening, soaking the cotton balls in clear liquid. She stared at her perfect blue eyes and swabbed her right cheek, wiping away a layer of foundation and blush. She did the same for the other cheek, aware that tears now blurred her vision as she uncovered the hemangioma. No matter how much make-up she applied, she could not conceal the reddish-purple birthmark that blanketed the left side of her face.

Following a good cry, Kim returned to her computer and fired off a note to Richard.

 * * *

Richard had hoped that by sending his picture to Kim, she’d be even more excited to meet him. His handsome face had always attracted women.

After receiving Kim’s terse rejection, he realized he’d made a big mistake, though he couldn’t understand why she never wanted to hear from him again. He turned off his computer and sat for a moment with his head in his hands. Muscle fatigue plagued his weary body. He pushed himself to his feet and reached for his cane. A bout of polio as a child had left him with an atrophied right leg. As he hobbled to the bedroom, a heavy sigh escaped his lips. He wondered if he’d ever find a woman who would love him, in spite of his imperfection.

If you enjoyed this story and would like to read a collection of erotic flash fiction and poetry, pick up my ebook Hot Flash, which includes two non-erotic stories too.

Click on the cover and LOOK INSIDE to read a sample.

Available at Amazon:

US | UK | Canada | Germany | France | Japan | Italy | Spain

No Kindle? No Worries.

There is a Kindle App for just about any electronic device (Click here to get one).

 

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LAST STEPS ~ A story written and read for @RBwood’s Word Count Podcast

You can also hear me read this story on: Episode #26 of R.B. Wood’s “The Word Count” podcast.

The theme for this podcast is “Those last few steps seemed the most difficult I had ever made in my life.”

*  *  *  *

The phone rang just as I was sitting down to eat. With my feet tender and swollen from a recent attack of gout, the only thing I wanted was to elevate my legs on the La-Z-Boy chair and watch the baseball game. On the fifth ring, I swore under my breath and put down my TV tray. Who the hell would let it ring so many times?

“Hello?” I said in a brusque manner, ready to snap if a telemarketer came on the line.

“Tony?” The woman’s voice vibrated in my ear and immediately sent a shiver up my spine.

“Who’s this?”

“It’s Gina … from Vegas.”

Her name bounced around in my head, and I struggled to match a face to it. “Gina … Frank’s wife?”

“Yes, that’s right.”

I overheard a sigh. Was it relief or something else?

“I’m sorry to call you like this,” she said, “but I didn’t know who else to turn to.” A sniffle, another sigh.

“Does Frank know you’re calling me?”

Silence.

“Gina?”

“No,” she said finally, “Frank doesn’t know.”

I wasn’t surprised. I’d had a thing for Gina once—a big thing, but that was a lifetime ago. She left me and married my cousin Frank about fifteen years back, had a few kids, but the family never liked her. She was French, and her real name wasn’t even Gina. It was Ginnette. To appease Frank’s widowed mother who’d only call her “Gina,” she had her name legally changed.

After a couple of years living under her mother-in-law’s roof, she and Frank moved to Vegas and severed all ties with the family. Not long after, I’d heard rumors Frank beat her, that she deserved it. I didn’t care to know the details. It was all family gossip to me. Gina had made her bed.

Now I listened as she told me the story of the last few years of her life with Frank. She begged me to help her, said she’d always trusted me. She wanted to do the right thing by the kids. I couldn’t believe I’d be the only person she could turn to, but she swore she had no one else.

After I hung up the phone, I turned on the television and sat down with my Hungry Man dinner—roast beef, peas, mashed potatoes, and peach cobbler. I stabbed a piece of meat and broke it away from a white fatty film, which had crusted over the gravy. I immediately lost my appetite.

Why me? Couldn’t Gina have called anyone else from the family to do this?

* * * *

I felt no obligation to Gina, but after thinking about her request for a day, I decided to do it. I heard the relief in her voice when I called her back, and at that moment, I knew she really didn’t have anyone else. It upset me somewhat that she’d suffered so long in silence. Maybe a part of me still cared for her, even hoped that after all this was over, I might have a chance with her. Funny how I should be thinking with my dick at a time like this. I had no clue what she looked like anymore, but her voice still tugged at my heart, and her sexy French accent had not completely disappeared.

I arrived in Vegas Friday evening. The flight only worsened my gout. After removing my shoes on the plane, my feet had swollen and were throbbing by the time we landed. Squeezing into a pair of shoes I couldn’t even lace up, I was in agony after I checked into my hotel room off the strip.

Gina had given me directions to where Frank would be the next morning, and the exact time he’d be there. She tried to sound casual about it. “Imagine me asking this favor of you, Tony, after all these years. I never thought it’d come down to this.”

Neither did I.

“Don’t worry,” I said. “It’ll be over soon, and you and the kids can go on with your lives.”

* * * *

I arrived fifteen minutes early in a land of water fountains, palm trees, and immaculate greens. It was dark and overcast, unusual for a Vegas afternoon this time of year. I stood and watched the clouds drift through an empty sky. Quiet like death.

In the distance, I heard the drone of car engines headed my way. I stepped back from the path and leaned against a tree to alleviate the pressure on my right foot. I looked at my watch and saw Frank was right on time, just as Gina had said.

Three cars slowed down and parked by the side of the road twenty feet in front of me. A pause, and then it seemed all the car doors opened at once. I walked slowly toward the first car, one hand in my pocket, the other gripping a curved wooden handle.

To the right of me, I saw Gina exit from the second car followed by three teenagers. A crack of thunder, and the sky opened as she came toward me. I depressed the metal button of my umbrella and shielded her under its canopy.

“Thank you for coming Tony,” she said and leaned in to kiss me on each cheek, as beautiful as the last time I saw her.

“I’m sorry about Frank,” I said.

Gina gave a tiny smile. “He wouldn’t listen, still smoking even as he lay on his deathbed.”

I gave her my umbrella as a man approached and handed me a pair of white gloves. “Put these on,” he said, “and follow me.”

Along with the funeral director and four young, skinny lads who looked like they could use an extra meal, we carried the casket nearly thirty feet to Frank’s final resting place.

Those last steps just about killed me.

If you enjoyed this story and would like to read a collection of erotic flash fiction and poetry, pick up my ebook Hot Flash, which includes two non-erotic Christmas stories too.

Available at Amazon.com and Amazon.UK.

No Kindle? No Worries.

There is a Kindle App for just about any electronic device (Click here to get one). If you own a computer, smart phone, iPad, or iPod touch, then you are able to download my e-books.

* * * *

Click on the cover and LOOK INSIDE to learn more.


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“Doing it With the King”

You can also hear me read this story (complete with sound effects ;) ) on: Episode #25 of R.B. Wood’s “The Word Count” podcast.

The theme for this podcast is A scene between you and your favorite fictional character.”

*  *  *  *

The flickering of amber light turns me on. Perhaps it’s the heat, the crackle of wet wood, or the licking of hard wood. Whatever it is, dancing flames hypnotize me. They also remind me of a film—one about a king. No, I’m not talking about Elvis. I’m referring to a different king from my fantasies. I’ve seen most of the movies. I’m sure you have as well. It started in 1933, a classic starring Fay Wray. Since then, numerous sequels have been made about this beast. My favorite though, remains the panned remake with Jessica Lange. For me, she and the king had the best chemistry.

The last time I watched the movie was back in college. I was dating the pitcher of the varsity baseball team, staying over at his apartment following yet, another disappointing romp in the sack. He held the school record for the fastest pitch. Unfortunately, that translated to the bedroom as well. After pumping me like a wild animal and coming in less than five minutes, he fell asleep. I was left to my own devices.

When he started snoring, I got up, went into the other room, and turned on the television. To my delight, King Kong was playing, and the best part was yet to come.

Aroused and unsatisfied, I foraged in the fridge for a suitable dildo. Aside from a jar of relish, a soggy cucumber, and a skinny carrot, there was nothing I could use. I pulled open several drawers, rifled through them, finally settling on an old-fashioned aluminum ice-cream scoop. I stretched out on the couch naked and fingered myself in anticipation of the big scene.

The room was pitch black save for the light coming from the TV. Blaring horns and the pounding of drums transported me into the jungle. The natives had just abducted Jessica Lange’s character, Dwan. I was wet.

Dwan was drugged and tied up, her wrists secured to an altar. She stood weaving in and out of consciousness. I inserted the scoop handle into my pussy. It wasn’t as thick as I would have liked, but it was certainly hard enough. With one hand, I fucked myself using the utensil. With the other, I grabbed my breasts and squeezed my nipples. I closed my eyes and the beating of drums intensified. The natives were restless.

Kong! Kong! Kong!

I masturbated in time with their chant, savagely thrusting the scoop in and out while they hammered their torches on the ground to summon up their god.

In the distance, a huge beast awakened. He stomped his way toward the light, snapping trees in his path like twigs.

Kong! Kong! Kong!

My hands moved faster. My breathing grew shallow. The chanting suddenly stopped. The chirping of cicadas filled the silence. Dwan sensed something large standing in front of her. She raised her head to see a monstrous gorilla thumping his chest. He let out a barbaric roar; she screamed; and I rammed the scoop into myself as deeply as I could. Unlike the orgasm I faked earlier, this time I erupted—for real. My body convulsed, and I wasn’t sure if I had screamed along with Dwan. In the end, it didn’t matter, the snoring from the bedroom would have drowned me out anyway.

After my passion subsided, I turned off the TV. On my way to the bedroom, I passed the kitchen. As I was about to put the ice-cream scoop in the dishwasher, a whimsical change of heart struck me. I thought to myself—oh,  fuck it. I opened the drawer and tossed the scoop back in.

This story is included in a collection called  HOT FLASH, now available 

Amazon US  ~ Amazon UK


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“Cancer – My Story”

You can also hear me read this story on:

Episode #23 of The Word Count podcast. The theme for this podcast is “Beating the Odds.”

This is a special Word Count Podcast dedicated to Joshua Moore, son of friend and author Maxwell Cynn. Joshua is currently fighting leukemia, and the community of authors, filmmakers, and artists have rallied to raise at least $10,000 to help the family with medical expenses. Numerous people are on board helping with the fundraiser by donating their books, services, and time.
This podcast is an example of R.B. Wood’s generosity in using his excellent show to promote the cause.

Please donate what you can at IndieGoGo: Indies Unite for Joshuaand help us spread the word.

Sincerest thanks,
eden

*  *  *  *

Mine is but one of millions of stories about cancer. It is neither more nor less significant than any other story from a survivor or someone who’s been touched by the disease. I don’t usually share it publicly for a few reasons. Firstly, the word “survivor” carries an undertone of achievement. Metaphorically, it’s as if surviving cancer elevates one to a different status as a human being. I’m not comfortable with that, but it’s clearly my issue. I don’t downplay cancer as a formidable opponent, however, it was never an option for me not to survive. Secondly, cancer does not define me even though it was a large part of my life. Lastly, I am now cancer free and have been for almost twelve years. It’s in the past—and as with most things of my past, I’ve made my peace with it and moved on.

I share my story on a personal basis with those who are going through cancer treatment, and I do it because survivors shared their stories with me when I needed it most. I felt empowered by people who had endured so much—multiple surgeries, chemotherapy, radiation, and countless other treatments and then went on to live their lives fearlessly. For this reason, for Joshua and his family, and in support of R.B. Wood’s special Word Count Podcast, here’s my story.

* * * *

The specialist ignored my request to do a core biopsy. Instead, he did a fine needle aspiration to test for malignancy of the lump I’d found on my breast. It was a test I knew carried a high percentage of inaccuracy. I’d done my homework before I went to see him.

“Look,” he said, annoyed with my questioning him. “I can tell you right now you don’t have cancer. You have no family history of it, you’re Asian, and you’re too young.” His voice was authoritative and dismissive, implying he was doing me a favor by even performing any test. It was obvious to me that I was nothing more to him than a body part to examine. After all, he was the specialist with letters behind his name, and I was just a scared woman who knew my body. Though I considered him a heartless bastard whose practice had long outlasted his compassion, I was relieved when my test results came back showing I didn’t have cancer.

When my lump continued to grow over the next few weeks, I returned to my general practitioner and asked for a referral to a different specialist. I wanted a second opinion.

I got a young female doctor this time. She confirmed that fine needle biopsies carried a high degree of error and recommended I have surgery to remove the lump. Given its aggressive growth, she didn’t want to waste time doing additional tests. I walked out of her office slightly nervous, but relieved that I’d made the decision to have surgery. The thought of a scar didn’t appeal to me, but hell, having a third boob wasn’t going to be any more attractive.

 * * * *

On the day of my surgery, my best friend, Mae, drove me to the hospital early in the morning. Everything went off as scheduled, and after the anesthesia wore off, I was moved to a private waiting room where my girlfriend was waiting. We laughed and chatted about where to go for lunch. I was starving!

The nurse who had prepped me for surgery came in with the doctor carrying some pamphlets—post-surgical care instructions, I thought, but no … they contained information about breast cancer—which I had.

The only thing I remembered hearing was the word “cancer,” and then my girlfriend’s quick intake of breath before she started crying.

It was surreal as I watched the doctor mouthing words “Cancer … metastasis … more surgery … oncology …” and other medical terms I’d never heard of at the time.

Finally, at the end of it, the nurse handed me the pamphlets and asked if I had any questions. Sure I did, I had plenty. But my friend was sobbing, and I couldn’t think straight. The questions would have to wait.

Don’t ever underestimate a hungry woman who’s just been told she has cancer, or her best friend who’s quite reserved until she gets behind the wheel. That day, we hit a hundred in a sixty-kilometer zone, barreling down one of the city’s main arteries in search of comfort food.

“I dare a cop to stop me,” Mae yelled at the top of her lungs. “I’m going to tell him you’ve just been diagnosed with cancer, and I don’t give a shit what he says!”

“No kidding,” I said, “as if he can possibly make my day any worse. I’ve got cancer for fuck’s sake!”

“Yeah, but if I get a ticket, you’re paying for it!” she screamed.

We laughed until we cried.

* * * *

From the day I was misdiagnosed until the end of my treatments, there were countless decisions to make. I can only compare it to climbing an old tree with numerous branches. Reaching the top meant I could grab my health back, but there were limitless, different ways to get there. At times, I was paralyzed for fear of making the wrong decision. In the end, I did what was right for me based on all the options I was aware of. As an active participant in my well being—knowledge gave me power.

My mother always said I hated to lose—she was right. There was no way I was losing my life to cancer.

*  *  *  *

Some final words for Joshua

You may feel the weight of cancer on your shoulders right now, but you have hundreds of thousands, if not millions in your corner to help lighten the load.

Keep fighting, young man. I know you can do it. 


Related post: Cancer ~Fuck. The Hell. Off

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“An Eternal Love”


Happy Valentine’s Day to all who celebrate love, and really … who doesn’t? Here’s my take on what eternal love might look like.

* * * *

The man across the table looked at me with skepticism in his eyes. I had repeated my story three times, but it was obvious he was looking for inconsistencies as he scribbled in his notepad.

“I know you think I’m crazy,” I said, “but I’ve known Emily since we were five, and there’s no other explanation for her disappearance other than what I’ve told you.”

“Miss Martin, what you’re saying is highly unusual, so we have to get the facts straight.”

I sighed—loudly. “I understand, but the story is not going to change no matter how many times I tell it. I’m tired, and I want to go home.”

He looked over at his partner who merely shrugged. I hated the whole “good cop, bad cop” routine they’d been playing for the past two hours. I was losing patience. Emily was my best friend, and I had no reason to lie about what I thought had happened to her, even if it was … highly unusual.

“Miss Martin, we all want to go home, but tell it to me once more. I promise you this will be the last time.”

* * * *

The cryptic note left for Emily’s mom read:

Dearest Mom,
Please don’t worry about me. I am well and happy and wish the same for you.
With all my love, always,
—Emily

Her mother was understandably distraught. She called me immediately after finding the note and said it was uncharacteristic of Emily to be so irresponsible, to vanish without saying a word. She would never leave like this …

Yes, but her mother didn’t know my friend the way I did. To her, Emily was the good girl who had done everything right from day one. As an only child, she had been an “A” student her entire academic life. She had always been there for her mom since her dad died when Emily was just an infant. The pressure to be the perfect daughter was not easy, and Emily had constantly wrestled with her mother’s inability to move on with her own life.

Emily was completing her master’s degree in metaphysics when she disappeared. As long as I had known her, she’d been interested in the idea of parallel universes. I had read some of her papers, and though they struck me as fascinating, my understanding of another dimension was rooted in science fiction, not science. Emily, on the other hand, believed there was something more and was determined to find it.

She hadn’t dated anyone in a long time, so I was naturally intrigued when she confided she had met someone. Over coffee one afternoon, Emily told me about the new man in her life. She described him as having hypnotic eyes, a deep voice, and charisma that had her dreaming about him almost nightly.

“I can’t put my finger on it, but there’s something dark and mysterious about him,” she said.

Ever the cynic, I replied, “Oh, seriously, Em…”

“I know it sounds cliché, but it’s true. He’s not particularly handsome—not in the classical sense anyway, yet somehow I’m drawn to him.”

“And has he noticed you?”

“Not really, no more than any of the other students. His teaching style is not interactive. He stands behind the podium for the entire two-hour lecture, and he barely moves. He just tells us which chapters to read, and occasionally, he reads out the chapters verbatim.”

“He’s probably your type though—you like them a bit strange.”

“Ha! No, he’s not strange—he’s deadly seductive. His voice makes me think of dark chocolate—thick, delicious, and his lips, my god …”

“What does the rest of him look like?”

“… Plus he has this flawless complexion. With the auditorium lights reflecting off his skin, his face is radiant.” She took a gulp of coffee, lost in decadent thought. “Sorry, what was your question?”

I had never seen Emily so taken by a man before. “I asked what the rest of him looks like.”

“Gorgeous. He’s over six feet tall, appears in great shape, and has fierce, dark brown eyes with a hint of crimson.”

“Hmm…the way you describe him can only mean one thing.”

“What?”

“He’s a bloody vampire!”

We both doubled over laughing. It had always been a joke between us to unabashedly label men as fictional characters. Between us, we’d dated a werewolf— hairy dude with the bad teeth; a zombie—guy with the dead eyes who walked with a shuffle; and gladiator man—my last boyfriend who had the rugged looks of Russell Crowe and a temper to go with it.

“Don’t be ridiculous,” Emily said. “How do you get vampire from what I’ve told you?”

“Come on, he’s hypnotizing, can stand for hours without moving, and has a flawless complexion. He must be a vampire!”

That was the last time I saw Emily. After that, we continued to exchange e-mails and phone calls, and she told me about her escalating crush on her professor. He’d invaded her thoughts so thoroughly that she awakened nightly with wet dreams, her body trembling and flushed. She even found evidence of small marks on her breasts and around her neck, which she referred to as love bites. Although this alarmed me, Emily just laughed it off, saying she couldn’t wait to go to bed every night.

I was envious hearing about the passion in her dreams! It was better than any sex I’d experienced in a long time with a real man.

We made tentative plans to get together for dinner. Emily promised she had some exciting news to share and even hinted she wanted me to meet her professor. I gathered their relationship had moved beyond her dreams. Thrilled and excited for her, I was looking forward to our dinner to find out more. When I called to confirm our date on the morning we were supposed to meet and couldn’t get a hold of her, I was concerned, but not all that worried. I sent a follow-up e-mail but received no response. It was only when Emily’s mother called a few days later that I first suspected something was wrong.

* * * *

Numb from exhaustion after the four-hour interrogation, I kicked off my shoes upon entering my apartment and threw my coat on a chair. The emotional turmoil of the past week had completely stressed me out. Emily’s mother had no idea her daughter had been seeing someone, and I was beginning to wonder about it myself. It wasn’t as if I had actually met the man. I didn’t even know his name and had nothing concrete to offer the police about him.

I brewed a cup of tea and prepared to watch the news before going to bed. I don’t recall when I fell asleep, but I awoke with a start to realize I was still on the couch with the television blaring, and my cup of tea knocked over on the coffee table.

“Shit,” I whispered, running to the kitchen to grab a dish towel.

As I pushed aside the pile of magazines to wipe the table dry, I saw an envelope peeking out beneath my latest issue of Vogue. I had not noticed it before and pulled it out. It was addressed to me in a handwriting I knew well. My heart raced as I opened it and read the note.

Dearest Amy,

You are the only person who’s ever understood my desire to know more than just what this life has to offer.
You were right about the professor. With him, I have found everlasting life … and love. Please understand I have chosen to be with him. He is the one.

Your friend forever, love,
—Emily

The bittersweet pang of loss swept over me. Emily was gone. She had found the portal to eternal love.

This story is included in a collection called  HOT FLASH, now available 

Amazon US  ~ Amazon UK 

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“On the Heels of Submission”

You can also hear me read this story on:

Episode #22 of The Word Count podcast.

The prompt was “I washed the blood from my hands…”

*  *  *  *

I could tell what he wanted the moment he sat next to me. He showed me what he had in his duffel bag and invited me to his place. He was aggressive, which was ironic. I had to follow through, or I might not get another chance. The six beers, three glasses of wine, and two Tequila chasers made me brave. My ex always said to me, “Never mix your fruits with your grains. You can’t handle it.” He should know. He’d experienced more than his share of my violent outbursts.

* * *

Goddamn it, what the hell was I thinking? I couldn’t even recall how I got here. Thoughts tumbled around in my head like clothes in a dryer. I was in the dingy bathroom of his apartment, staring at my ruddy complexion in the mirror. My eyes were puffy and bloodshot, my mouth dry like I’d been sucking on a tennis ball. I spit out a blob of brownish phlegm, turned on the water, and watched the thick mucous swirl down the drain. With my chest heaving, I managed to gulp two handfuls of water.

“Hey, are you almost done?” he yelled. He was already in the bedroom, and the only thing separating us was the flimsy lock on the bathroom door.

“Yeah … just give me a minute.” I left the water running to mask the sound of my coughing. I spit once more and took several deep breaths before I unlocked the door.

He was on the floor, naked, save for the dog collar around his neck and the leash in his mouth.  My first instinct was to bolt, but it’d be pretty difficult to run with swollen feet inside five-inch heels.

He crawled over to me on all fours, and dropped the leash at my feet. “I’ve been a bad dog. I couldn’t wait for you and had an accident.” He whimpered and rubbed his face along the side of my leather pants. Sure enough, there was a puddle in the corner of the room. I suppressed my gag reflex and again thought of running.

“You are a bad dog.” Did those words really come out of my mouth?

Proceeding to the bed, I sat down awkwardly as a wave of nausea hit. He followed behind me, panting like a lovesick puppy. I crossed my legs and extended one in front of him. “Lick my shoe. Now!” I demanded.

Relieved with my quick recovery, I waited for my stomach to settle, but my discomfort only increased. His flabby body spilled out in front of me in full view. I, on the other hand, was stuffed like a sausage into my corset unable to escape. Listening to this fat slob slurp my stiletto and suck on my heel made me sick. I just wanted to get it over with and vomit.

“Bring me your whip,” I said.

He stopped tonguing my shoe and crawled over to his duffel bag. Using his teeth, he unzipped it and burrowed his head inside like a truffle pig.

With my heart hammering inside my chest, I quietly removed both shoes and gripped one in my sweaty hands. As I neared him, he craned his neck and saw me just before I stabbed the heel into his eye with all my strength. His body stiffened, and he let out a high-pitch yelp. He scrambled to his knees, frantically grabbing at the embedded shoe in his face. From the opposite side of the room, I watched as he twirled around like a wind-up toy and then slumped forward until his head hit the floor.

Inside the bathroom, I washed the blood from my hands, scrubbing my skin raw. Next, I knelt over the toilet bowl and vomited, immediately feeling better. After a few moments, I got up and braced myself against the sink. There was half a bottle of mouthwash in the medicine cabinet, and I used it up. When I  saw my reflection in the mirror, I frowned and wondered who the stranger was staring back at me.

This story is included in a collection called  HOT FLASH, now available 

Amazon US  ~ Amazon UK


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“An Adult Christmas Fairy Tale”

Once upon a time, there were three sisters who lived among the rolling hills of a faraway land. The Bradford sisters were, in fact, identical triplets. They caused quite the stir when they entered the world twenty-five years ago one wintry night. The town had never seen such beautiful babies and to have three at once! Their birth was declared a miracle as the last one was born just as the clock struck twelve on Christmas Eve.

Elizabeth, the eldest and considered the brightest was a tenured professor at the university teaching Economics. Catherine, the middle child, was blessed with great sex appeal. Although all the girls had long flaxen hair, pale blue eyes, and beautiful, shapely bodies, Catherine was the runway model, and she could charm the pants off any man—literally. Finally, there was Alexandra, or Alex, as she preferred to be called. She was the youngest, and though accomplished in her own right, she couldn’t be more different than her sisters. Her dad called her his “free spirited” daughter.

Alex was infinitely creative and always open to trying new things. In her late teens, she played guitar in a band and became good enough to perform at respected venues, but she soon tired of the scene and left the band on the eve of their debut tour. Next, she took up photography and excelled at it. Her landscapes were featured in National Geographic with a sold-out show in Paris. When other galleries came calling, she suddenly decided she’d had it with taking pictures and sold all her camera equipment. Her latest venture was baking, and she quickly became successful at it. Her “delectable edibles,” as she called them were sold to local businesses, and she had difficulty keeping up with the demand. She had started baking purely on a whim (like everything else she did), and now her kitchen resembled a baking factory.

* * * *

“Honestly, Alex, why don’t you open up your own shop?” Catherine said, as she sat on the couch wrapping presents. She and Elizabeth had come by to exchange gifts and to pick up Alex en route their parents’ house for Christmas Eve dinner.

“I like baking in my own kitchen. Besides, I don’t want to become a storeowner. I sell to shops and restaurants, and that’s fine for now.” Alex carefully stacked colorful cupcakes, brownies, and cookies on a giant crystal platter, creating a pyramid shape. Next she set the platter atop cellophane, wrapped the arrangement, and finally secured it with a bright red bow at the top.

“That looks amazing,” Elizabeth said. “You know Bill is going to die when he sees those brownies!” Bill was her fiancé and had quite the sweet tooth—it showed.

“I’ve made boxes for each of you to take home,” Alex said, “so tell Bill to hold back tonight! This is just enough for everyone who’s going to be there for dinner.”

And what a dinner it would be. Each year it seemed there were more and more guests. Between her immediate family and their cousins’ families, her parents also invited some of their friends and neighbors. That was the wonderful thing about where they lived (in this faraway land), nobody ever had to spend Christmas alone.

Alex finished packing more of her goodies into tins as her sisters gathered bags of presents and piled them by the door.

“We’re going to load up the car,” Catherine said, slipping on her boots. “Good thing Larry has a big truck!

“Ha! You’ve always loved men with big trucks,” Alex said.

“Well … he has a brother with a truck too if you’re interested.” And with that, Catherine swung open the front door and a cold gust blasted her in the face. She grabbed two parcels in each hand and headed outside.

“Hurry up, Alex!” Elizabeth yelled while balancing the dessert platter in her hands. “It’s starting to snow.”

“I’ll be out in a minute, just tidying up.” Alex grabbed a dish towel and wiped the flour-caked counter. She was happy Elizabeth had Bill, and Catherine had … well, she always had several men on the go.  “Larry with the big truck” would be another in a long line of men who had graced their family Christmas table, and unlikely to be the last. Alex, on the other hand, never brought a date. She didn’t need it with the pressure of the holidays, especially when her family worried that she never made time for anyone in her life. Alex preferred creative conquests and baking had been the biggest challenge yet. She’d been waiting three years (a long time for her to be doing the same thing) to receive affirmation that it was what she was meant to do with her life. She was beginning to wonder if she’d ever get a sign. Tonight was another chance to find out.

Setting aside any pessimistic thoughts, she gave one final look toward the kitchen before stepping out into the cold.

* * * *

Alex opened the door to her house and dropped the bags of gifts she had received. The dinner was a huge success, as usual, with enough food to feed a small village. Her mom even sent her home with leftover turkey to make sandwiches. She was just happy to be home now and looked forward to getting out of her dress. As she walked by the kitchen toward her bedroom, the sweet smell of cinnamon filled her nostrils.

Alex stopped in her tracks and gasped. The mug she had left next to the pot of apple cider had been moved, and the plate of cookies on the counter was now bare, save for a few crumbs. She ran to her desk and flipped open her laptop, signing into her e-mail. With bated breath, she read the note she’d been wishing for.

Dear Alexandra,

Thank you for inviting me into your home. The past couple of years have been extremely busy traveling the world for the children, so my apologies for not visiting sooner.

After hearing all the wonderful things about your baking, I knew I had to make a special trip. The cookies were as you described—exquisite, and the cider really hit the spot!

I appreciate your continued belief in me at a time when so few believe anymore. You have a true gift to see the world through a child’s eyes, and I hope you never lose that wonderment for all that life has to offer.

Your friend,
K. Kringle

From that day forward … Alex baked happily ever after.

~ The End ~

*A special message for my readers*

No matter what you believe in at this time of year, I wish you peace, health, and happiness. All my very best to you and those you love this holiday season,
eden 

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“I’m Not Mad, I’m Hysterical”

You can also hear me read this story on: Episode #19 of The Word Count podcast.

The prompt was “The only difference between a madman and me is that I’m not mad.”

* * * *

“Did you know that you can sell guns on any street corner in Alabama, but it’s against the law to sell sex toys?”

He pursed his lips, showing his disapproval. “And how do you know so much about the subject, Lena?”

“I read. Just because I don’t have letters after my name doesn’t mean I’m ill-informed.”

“No, no, of course not. You’re an intelligent woman, Lena.”

“Don’t patronize me, you narrow-minded hypocrite.”

“Lena, there’s no need to be combative. I’m just trying to help you.”

I glared at the man sitting in front of me—a boy, really. He was probably no more than thirty but had the wisdom of a ten year old. At the insistence of my god-fearing husband, I’d been coerced to seek medical help. I was even prescribed drugs for my little problem, though I didn’t take them, of course.

“Yes doc, in Alabama, you can shoot your guns at will so long as you’re of legal age. Just don’t shoot your sperm into a vinyl blow-up doll.”

His expression changed, though unsuccessfully masking his contempt. “Really, Lena, must you speak in such lewd terms?”

“Your puritanical way of thinking is ridiculous and maddening.”

“And why does that make you mad, Lena?”

This guy was something else, so incredibly innocent that I could bait him with a piece of snot. “First of all, doc, don’t call me by my name. You haven’t earned the right, and you’re not going to endear yourself to me by doing so. Secondly, the term madness is open for interpretation. I’ve been called many things: insane; crazy; even hysterical, which in itself is quite ironic.”

Ironic indeed. My problem was that I had urges—often, and I didn’t mind satisfying them. The issue was my dear husband didn’t think it was normal for me to have such an active libido, and he was shelling out big bucks to have me “cured.” He certainly didn’t approve of my using vibrators, or as he called them, my “marital aids.” In Victorian times, I would’ve been brought into an office not unlike this one, only I’d be manually masturbated by the doctor as a remedy for my anxiety or depression. Now, I just had to sit in front of this shrink and talk about it.

“You don’t like me very much, do you?” he asked.

Wow, the dim bulb flickered. “I don’t like what you represent, doc. Do you think you’re going to cure me of my desire? If you do, you’re the one who’s mad.”

“Lena … sorry—look, I know you’re not happy about coming to see me, and you’re only doing it to appease your husband, but you have a legitimate problem.” He paused to wipe his upper lip with a handkerchief. “My apologies, it’s quite warm in here today. I—”

“Cut the bullshit, doc. It’s no warmer than usual for a Tennessee summer day. You have some nerve telling me I have a problem. I think I turn you on, don’t I?”

His face went ashen and he began stuttering incoherently.

I offered a coy smile. I’d known from day one what his weakness was. From the stark appearance in his office, lack of family photos, and no wedding band, it wasn’t difficult to guess that he was unmarried and likely a virgin. The fact that he would counsel me on becoming a righteous woman was laughable, and now I’d confirmed what I had suspected all along—he had a Mommy complex.

“Doc,” I said calmly, now almost feeling sorry for him, “you need to pull yourself together. It’s not very professional of you to have your tongue hanging out.”

“Mrs. Robinson! I don’t think I can see you anymore.” He got up, walked over to his desk, and shuffled papers. “I’m going to recommend another doctor immediately.” Scribbling on a notepad, he thrust a piece of paper in my face—all the while, avoiding eye contact.

I looked at the note. It was the name of another doctor. Getting up slowly from my seat, I stood shoulder-to-shoulder with this young, small-framed man. “You know doc … I was just beginning to like you.”

“Please leave,” he said, his eyes looking toward the door.

I picked up my purse and left his office. Once outside, I crumpled the piece of paper he’d given me and threw it in the garbage. Another shrink conquered—my dear husband will surely be mad.

* * * *

This story is included in a collection called  HOT FLASH, now available 

Amazon US  ~ Amazon UK

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“Better Her, Than Me”

You can also hear me read this story on:

Episode #16 of The Word Count podcast.

The prompt was “Your character suspects his/her husband is having an affair and decides to spy on him. What she/he discovers is not what he/she was expecting…” (I completely forgot about the “spying part” in this prompt, but the rest is there!).

*  *  *  *

The nightmare of the past seventy-two hours began when I received a phone call from San José, Costa Rica. The man speaking English with a Spanish accent asked for Mrs. Collins, and I knew something had happened to Mike. All I heard was: accident; hospital; and please come as soon as possible.

I had not heard from Mike in almost two weeks. He had been in Cahuita, a small city on the Caribbean coast of Costa Rica. He’d been living there for the past eight months, supervising the building of a bed and breakfast —a new venture and our second chance.

We had been married ten years, were childless, and life in the big city of Chicago had become stale. Mike and I had honeymooned in Costa Rica, and he had fallen in love with it. An indiscretion with his assistant had created a rift in our marriage about two years ago. In an effort to recapture the romance, he begged my forgiveness and convinced me to return to Costa Rica. It seemed to work. That’s when he got the idea to move there permanently. It was a tough sell initially, but I had to ask myself what was I afraid of?

Aside from my mother, a small network of close friends, and a teaching job that was no longer fulfilling, I really didn’t have much to tie me to the city anymore. At thirty-eight, it was time to take a leap of faith.

When the phone rang, I was in the middle of packing. The house had been sold, and the plan was to stay with my mother until the guesthouse in Cahuita was ready. It was left to me to settle everything in the city—not an easy task, but in the end, I had to believe my marriage was worth it.

* * * *

Now, I was on a plane to San José with a hospital address scribbled on a post-it note, a suitcase of clothes hastily thrown together, and a host of unanswered questions regarding Mike’s condition. Were it not for the sweet old lady beside me whose head kept hitting my shoulder as she nodded off, I probably would have burst into tears.

What could have happened to Mike? Was it an accident at the construction site? How badly hurt was he?

* * * *

I threw a twenty dollar bill at the cabbie and his eyes lit up.

“Senora, no tengo cambio,” he said, looking like he had just won the lottery.

“Keep the change,” I told him in Spanish. Three months of conversational Spanish was proving handy, but when I entered the hospital and was bombarded by all the signage, I didn’t know which way to turn.

A young woman approached me in a white dress with a silver nametag over her heart. It read “Maria” and her position was “Customer Service.” She directed me to the elevators and even pushed the button to the third floor where Mike was located.

Following a brief conversation with the lady at the information desk, I took a seat in the waiting room. The modern look of the hospital gave me hope that Mike was receiving good care. From what I had read about the facility, it was one of the best in Central America.

No more than five minutes later, a thirty-something man came up to me and introduced himself as Dr. Filip Ramirez.

“Mrs. Collins, thank you for coming so quickly. I know it could not have been easy.”

His English was surprisingly good. “Doctor, what can you tell me? Is Mike all right?”

“He’s suffered a…devastating injury. We had to operate to stop the bleeding.”

“What happened? Is he going to be okay?”

“Mrs. Collins. This is an unusual case. Your husband is going to need your support over the next few months.”

“Doctor, for god’s sake. What happened to him?” My anxiety must’ve been palpable.

“Mrs. Collins,” he said, “I promised your husband that I’d let him tell you the story. You may go see him.”

I followed the doctor through several corridors before entering a large room. As I walked in, I saw Mike sitting up in bed. A sheet covered the lower half of his body, and he appeared deeply tanned. I ran over and wrapped my arms around him, tears streaming down my face with relief.

“Mike, I’m so glad you’re okay.”

I nodded my thanks to the doctor as he quietly left the room.

“Abby, Abby…” Mike cried. “Oh my god Abby, I’m so sorry.”

I slowly pulled away from his embrace. “What are you sorry about, what happened? Was there an accident at the site?”

“Abby, promise you’ll forgive me. I’ve been such a fool, I never meant to hurt you.  I…”

Mike had an expression of terror, which I’d never seen before. It both scared and confused me. I held his face in my hands and kissed him gently on the lips to calm him down. “Forgive you for what? Mike, you’re not making any sense. Where did they operate on you?”

I followed his gaze as he looked toward his legs. Gently, I pulled down the sheet and saw he was heavily bandaged around his groin.

“Mike?” I turned to see him welling up with tears. “How did this happen?” Was it a shark attack, some freak industrial accident, or…?

The realization slowly began to sink in, but I refused to believe it.

“Abby—” Mike pleaded.

“How bad is it?”

“It’s gone, Abby … It’s gone.”

“How the fuck did this happen?” I didn’t want to hear the answer, but I couldn’t contain the rage that now threatened to overwhelm me. “Tell me right now or I’m walking out of here.”

“Abby, she meant nothing to me. I swear it.”

The color drained from his face as the blood rushed to mine. Taking a deep breath, I released all the tension I’d been holding in. The past seventy-two hours had come down to this – my husband had been having an affair—again, and now, he no longer had a dick.

“How long, Mike?”

“Abby, does it matter?”

“How long has this been going on?”

“Six months.” He wiped his face with the back of his hand.

I cringed. “Six months meant a lot for her to do this to you.”

“She was a psycho, she—”

“Enough!” I said. “How dare you try to blame her for what you’ve done.”

“Abby, Abby, I’ll make it up to you, I swear. I love you.”

I never expected to feel so much anger, yet, in my mind, there was a quiet resolve, a detachment that gave me strength.

“Just answer me one question, Mike.”

“Anything, babe, anything.”

“Where’s your penis now?”

He hesitated before responding, “In the ocean, she threw it in the ocean.”

I bit my lower lip, not knowing whether to laugh or cry. In the end, all I could say was, “Better her, than me.”

* * * *

This story is included in a collection called  HOT FLASH, now available 

Amazon US  ~ Amazon UK

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“A Man of Wealth and Taste”

You can also hear me read this story on: Episode #14 of The Word Count podcast.

The prompt was “Interaction with a character of your creation with a famous fictional character.”

*  *  *  *

Sheila sat on her couch holding The Economist in one hand and a glass of red wine in the other. It was the first night in weeks she didn’t have to do something for school. It felt good, and she smiled as she took another sip of wine, not paying attention to the article she was reading.

Soon, she’d be graduating with her Ph.D. She liked the sound of it—Dr. Sheila Michaels, full-time professor at Johns Hopkins University, Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences. Yes, she liked the sound of it very much.

A buzz from her cell phone snapped her out of her daydream. She reached for the phone on the coffee table and saw the incoming text. It read: “Got a doctor 4 u. I know u like them smart. 11 PM. Big bucks.”

The message was from her friend, Jennifer, whom Sheila had met when she was teaching a different type of course that had nothing to do with psychiatry. As much as she didn’t feel like going out tonight, she knew what “big bucks” meant. It was code for “the guy’s loaded.” Sheila knew it was business, and she was nothing, if not professional. Besides, a couple of hours of her time could buy her that Italian leather couch she had been thinking about.

Sheila texted Jennifer back and got all the details. She had ninety minutes to shower, dress and catch a cab to the other side of town, where her mystery doctor would be  waiting. As usual, Jennifer didn’t have much to go on. The men were referred by other clients they had seen previously, and their elite group of escorts was a covert operation. They were single, professional women who catered only to the wealthiest of men. They didn’t advertise; they didn’t need to. Jennifer knew exactly what Sheila liked in her men—older, intelligent, no intercourse.

Sheila was strictly oral sex. She had mastered the skill, loved giving it, loved receiving it, and for a short time had even taught a course in it. That’s where she first met Jennifer, one of five students who had signed up for her class “The Art of Oral Enjoyment.”  They had an immediate connection with one another because they were both in their early thirties, single, and very attractive. Over coffee after class one day, Jennifer confided that she owned a high-end escort service. She was taking Sheila’s course because she noticed a growing trend with her clients. They were getting older, and they were less interested in intercourse, opting instead to be satisfied in other ways. As open-minded as she was, Sheila was floored upon hearing what Jennifer did for a living. She was even more shocked when she found out how much money she earned doing it.

Between her teaching assistant post at the university, and the infrequent classes she taught at the sex boutique, Sheila managed to pay her bills, but that was about it. Luxury items were out of the question while her student loans remained outstanding. She was a pragmatist and frugal with her money even though she had very expensive taste. Somehow, Jennifer must have sensed her financial situation and brought it up when they went out for a drink one night.

“Come on Sheila, you’re a natural,” she had said. “You’re sexy, you’re smart, and you’d be an asset to my team. I’ve been looking for someone with your skills. Some men just want to talk with a woman and get a blowjob, you know?”

That conversation happened six months ago. Since then, Sheila had made enough money as an escort to pay off her loans and put a downpayment on a new house. It was business, she convinced herself. She offered a service that men wanted and were willing to pay for. She never intended to continue doing it after clearing her debts, but the easy money was hard to walk away from. Sheila rationalized to herself that once she got into a relationship, then she would, of course, quit. Not surprisingly, she had not found anyone as interesting as the men she met on the job.

* * * *

Sheila stepped out of the cab and found herself in front of a large historic house in Fells Point, one of Baltimore’s most affluent areas located on the waterfront. The old English manor had to be worth upwards of a million dollars. Sheila knew this because she had been looking for homes in this neighborhood only months earlier, though none that were in this price range.

Her heels clicked against the cobblestone as she made her way up the front walkway. Before she even got a chance to knock, the door swung open. She hesitated for a moment but walked inside and peered behind the door to see a man standing there.

“Why, hello Debra,” he said, motioning her inside.

She smiled at him with her eyes. “Hello, doctor.” Sheila always felt a tinge of uneasiness at first, and had almost forgotten the assumed name she was going by.

She admired the impressive décor of the house as he led her into the living room. The classic European furnishings revealed a man with impeccable taste. From the Queen Anne  chairs to the richly colored porcelain lamps, the room had an elegance rivaled only by its owner.

He was a handsome man about 5’10”, somewhere between fifty to fifty-five years old, and appeared to be in good shape. Maroon-colored eyes were complimented by a full head of hair with a widow’s peak, and his most prominent feature were his straight rows of small, white teeth.

“Your perfume,” he said, “floral, spicy, it’s L’Air du Temps.”

Sheila’s eyes widened, duly impressed. “I actually didn’t apply perfume before I came, but that’s correct.”

The doctor closed his eyes and took a deep breath. “Yes, the perfume is masked only by the Evian skin cream you have on.”

“You have an amazing sense of smell, doctor. Do you mind if I ask you what kind of medicine you practice?”

“Psychiatry,” he said. His voice, unwavering.

Sheila liked men who exuded confidence, but this man was unlike anyone she had ever met. Over Bach’s “Goldberg Variations”, they ate foie gras and drank Sauternes, a full-bodied, white wine. Though Sheila did not usually drink white, she found its sweetness went well with the goose liver.  She was intoxicated by the doctor’s intense and deliberate mannerisms as he spoke eloquently about opera and places he had traveled to. She felt so comfortable with him that she nearly blurted out that she too, was a psychiatrist, but it wasn’t prudent to reveal anything too personal about herself.

They had been talking for sometime when Sheila discreetly glanced at her watch. The doctor had paid for two hours of her time, and though she was enjoying the conversation, she knew that was not all he wanted.

“Should we go to your bedroom?” she asked him.

“You’re very frank, Debra. I think it would be quite something to know you in private life.”

Sheila thought that was an odd thing to say, however, she didn’t dwell on it.

Pictures of the human anatomy hung on the wall as they made their way upstairs to the bedroom.  Inside the dimly-lit room, there were more drawings.  “These are incredible, doctor.” She advanced farther into the room to stare at a charcoal sketching of the female genitalia. “Who’s the artist?”

“I am,” he said, moving up close behind her.

Sheila could feel his warm breath against the back of her neck. “Such accurate representation, doctor. You draw with the precision of a surgeon’s hand, the details are amazing.” She appreciated the perfection of every fold, every crease, and the fine placement of each pubic hair.   Turning around to face the doctor, she found it difficult to read his expression in the dark room. It was at that moment she felt something hard press against her leg. She looked down to see the bottle in his hand.

“More white wine, doctor?”

“No, red this time.”

“Oh?” Sheila took a step back and slowly began to undress.

“Yes,” he said, “I prefer to eat my women with a nice Chianti.”

* * * *

This story is included in a collection called  HOT FLASH, now available 

Amazon US  ~ Amazon UK

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“On the Prowl”

This post is part of the Fellow Writers Blog Hop, which takes place on the 2nd Tuesday of the month.

Please hop to the other sites and discover how different writers interpret the same subject.  The link is located at the end of my story.

This month’s prompt is “Flash Me,” a call to write a piece of flash fiction.

Warning: Adult themes and language.

Enjoy, and stay sexy,

Eden

*  *  *  *

My god, she is gorgeous, a perfectly-shaped 5’4” beauty baring her arms in an orange tank top. She wears jean shorts that fall just above the crack of her ass, and with each step she takes, a delicious vision of her naked body flashes through my mind.  I mean, she isn’t wearing more than four pieces of clothing, and that includes her pair of sandals (I’ll count that as two)! Her auburn hair is shoulder length with a hint of waviness, likely from the humid July heat, and the way she glances sideways to the right and then to the left, looking both coy and seductive revs my hormones into high gear.  I follow her, maintaining a respectable distance.

A very large woman is trying to squeeze by on my left. She clicks her tongue at me as if I’m purposely blocking her way and then bangs into me, continuing on without apologizing. Bitch. I’m tempted to say it aloud, but I don’t need to get into an altercation, not with orange tank top less than twenty feet away.

I manage to put a few items into my basket—celery, a bag of carrots, and a cucumber. It’s not much, but we are just beginning. I love the way she moves—slow—deliberate—and I’m enjoying every minute of it. If she’s like most women, she’ll be going through the entire store anyway. That used to drive me crazy when buying groceries with my ex. She’d walk up and down each aisle regardless if she needed anything from it. She even went through the pet food section. She didn’t own a pet! I can still remember her words as she tried to sell her ridiculous logic to me.

Ex:  “I go through every aisle ‘cuz I don’t know what I might need until I see it.”

Me:  “Ever consider making a list?”

Ex:  “Yes, but sometimes they move things around.”

Me:  “Like when they put the butter on the same shelf as the dog food?”

We lasted five months, too long in my estimation.

Orange tank top is taking a long time getting her salad stuff. She’s buying that red lettuce and picking from the assorted greens as well.  Now, she’s moving into the fruit department. I’ve added bananas and a pineapple into my basket. I’m not even a big fan of fruit, but I think it makes me look good, particularly the pineapple. She, on the other hand, must love fruit. She’s picking out bags of mangos, plums, cartons of blueberries and strawberries, and a strange yellow thing shaped like a giant pear. I suppose that could be my “in” with her. I could say something like: “That’s an unusual piece of fruit, what do you call it?” That’s not too forward and doesn’t sound completely idiotic. Maybe a better line might me “I noticed those strawberries in your cart, perhaps you need some whipped cream to go with them.” Shit, I need to stop thinking with my dick for one second. She’s picking up the pace now, have to pay attention, off to the meats!

It’s really busy in this section, so it’s easy to observe her without being obvious. Judging from her slim build, I’d guess she only eats chicken—no, wait, an even better guess would be turkey. I watch her as she bypasses the poultry. Well, I completely misread that one. She’s heading straight for the red meat, throws in three large trays of ground beef, and in what appears as an afterthought, a few T-bones as well. I think I’m in love! If there’s one thing that really turns me on, it’s a woman who knows how to eat.

We’re moving on to condiments now. She’s leaning over her cart. Her forearms are folded over the handlebar, pushing her breasts forward. She’s taking her time, swaying her hips as she moves alongside the shelf of jams. Great, compact ass! She picks up a jar of apricot jam, reads the ingredients, and puts it back on the shelf. She does this four more times before finally deciding on one. I don’t know what the difference between one jam and another could be. There, that’s another line I could use, “I noticed you looking at the jams. Do you recommend any one in particular?” That’s kind of innocent. Then she’d probably look in my basket, notice my pineapple, and we could have a conversation about fruit.

A woman and her child are in front of me, and the kid’s sitting in the cart screaming and throwing things out of it. She’s trying to discipline him. Yeah, good luck with that, lady. The little shit has just dropped a container of raspberries on the floor, and the fruit has spilled across the aisle. What a mess. I quickly tiptoe around the minefield of berries trying to find Miss Sexy Shorts. I’ve lost sight of her. She must have turned the corner already.

Toiletries row—where is she? I can’t believe she’s skipped this one. It’s full of shampoos and other crap that women just love to look at. I hop over to the next aisle and find her standing by the cereals. She’s probably going to read ingredients again. I’m guessing she wants something low in sugar and high in fiber. I think I must watch too much T.V. because I can’t believe I know that about cereal. She’s throws a box of Honeycomb into her cart. Hmm. Maybe she has a kid, though she looks too young for that, and I don’t see a wedding band. Maybe she just likes Honeycomb.

I suddenly realize I haven’t put anything in my basket since the pineapple. I  grab the first box of cereal I see—Grape-Nuts. I’ve never even heard of it before. The picture on the box shows a bowl filled with granules that look like bird feed. There are no grapes and no nuts. Who thinks of these names? I spy a box of Cheerios just ahead and quickly replace the Grape-Nuts on the shelf.

Jean shorts is now in the cold section. On a scorcher like today, being near refrigeration has its advantages. She opens the door to the ice cream and a fog of frigid air escapes. Reaching in to grab a couple of tubs of Cherry Garcia, I notice she has the most incredible nipples I’ve ever seen. They jut out from under her tight top at least an inch. Fuck. I love that she’s not wearing a bra, and nothing turns me on more than long, hard nipples on a woman. I immediately feel my cock stiffen and tug at my crotch to adjust myself. That’s when I notice her looking in my direction. She smiles at me with her eyes, acknowledging my existence.  I feel like an idiot as I try to hide that I’m semi-erect. I smile back, and then from nowhere the words fly out of my mouth, “Hi, may I ask you a question?”

I walk toward her, hoping she doesn’t notice the bulge in my pants.

She has beautiful full lips, and I keep my eyes fixed on her face, averting my gaze from the nipples that I so desperately want to see up close.

“Hi,” she says. Her voice is sweet, and I feel relieved that she’s not intimidated by talking to a stranger.

“I couldn’t help but notice that unusual fruit you have in your cart. What is it?”

“You mean this?” She picks up the giant pear. “It’s a pomelo. Have you never tried it?”

“No. I’ve never even heard of it. How do you eat it?” This is turning into wonderful foreplay conversation.

“Well, it’s a citrus fruit, similar to a grapefruit but with a thicker skin. The meat inside is much firmer and not as juicy.”

“It sounds exotic, where’s it from?”

“Hmm, I’m not sure.”  She’s really thinking about it and not just trying to give me the brush-off. “I think it’s somewhere in Asia.”

“Yes, they have good fruit in Asia.” Lame, very lame, I can’t believe I said that. “I prefer pineapple myself.”

“I see you bought one,” she says, eyeing my basket. “Do you know you can get it cut here?”

“Really?” I have no idea since I’ve never bought a pineapple before in my life.

“Yes, it’s a whole lot easier than doing it yourself.”

“Thanks, I’ll check into it.”

I feel more comfortable now. She’s so easy to talk to. We’ve been standing still for a while when she starts pushing her cart again. I walk alongside her, chatting her up some more.

“You must be having a party. You’re certainly buying a lot of meat.” Good change of topic. I feel proud of myself for this line.

“Yes, my annual Girls-Only B-B-Q.”

“Oh? How interesting.” I feign enthusiasm. I can’t believe I’ve been following around a lesbian for the last half hour. I could sure pick ‘em. “There are no men at all?”

“Nope.”

“Why’s that, if you don’t mind my asking.” I don’t even care if I sound too nosy.

“Well, once a year, I invite all my female friends for a get-together—no boyfriends, no husbands, no kids. It’s just a fun day for the girls.” She pauses and looks at me with a serious expression. “We’re not a bunch of male bashers if that’s what you’re thinking.”

“Oh no! I wasn’t thinking that at all.” Yes, I was, I most certainly was.

“I hope you’re not trying to snag an invite ‘cuz you’re not getting one. Nothing against you personally, but you’re the wrong sex!”

I laugh. “That’s the nicest invitation I am not getting.” She has such a playful way with words. Her smile practically invites me to kiss her, and those bedroom eyes …

“Yes, my boyfriend jokes about me being a sexist when I kick him out of the house for the day. He’s really…”

I don’t hear much after that. I knew it was too good to be true. For a moment, it felt like we were flirting, and maybe we were. She has a boyfriend, damn it. I didn’t expect that, or maybe I just didn’t want to think about it.

“Hey, are you all right?” she asks as I’ve suddenly become quiet.

“Yeah, I’m good. That’s nice of your boyfriend to let all those women come by without him there.”

“Yes, he’s cool that way. It gives him a chance to be out with the boys.” She reaches into the front pocket of her shorts, and I follow the movement of her hand, look her up and down, sighing to myself at the sight of her nipples. “Oh, I’m late,” she says as she checks the time on her cell phone. “I must run. It’s been good talking to you.”

“Yeah, you too.” I try not to sound too deflated. “Have a great time at your party.”

“Thanks.” A smile, a look, and then she is gone.

I watch her leave. Just like that, she’s out of my life, fantasy over. I add a can of frozen orange juice and a carton of milk to my basket before making my way to the cash, heading straight for the Express 1-8 items line.

“Hi there. Did you find everything you needed?”

I look up to see the young, attractive cashier who is scanning my cucumber.

“Hi,” I say and notice she has great lips, no lipstick. I love that.

“Is that all for today?”

“Yes.” I gaze at her ample cleavage and read her name tag. “Lola. What a great name.”

“Why thank you, it’s Spanish.” She offers up a shy smile.

“Well, hello Lola, my name’s Robert.”

*  *  *  *

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Filed under Short Stories & Poetry, Writing Joint Ventures

“Slave to Love”

You can also hear me read this story on:  Episode #12 of The Word Count podcast.  The prompt was: “Pick a line from your favorite song…”

*  *  *  *

After seeing my acupuncturist for almost four months now, he told me he wouldn’t be able to help me anymore. I felt betrayed, and I let him know it.

“What the hell do you mean, doc, are you saying I’m incurable?”  I winced as I sat up on the table, my skin still pulsating from the needles he’d just removed from my back.

“No, Jason, ” he said, “but if I could get rid of your pain, I would have done it by now.”

“Damn it, you were my last hope. I’m too young to feel this lousy for the rest of my life.”

He looked at me with sympathetic eyes, and then hesitated before he spoke. “Well…there is someone I think who might be able to help you.”

And that was my introduction to Serena. Dr. Zhang swore me to secrecy because hers was an underground practice. She didn’t have a license to perform her type of healing, and she only saw patients by referral from a few select sources. Dr. Zhang was one of them. He confided he had gone to see her for his own back problems. Scribbling her e-mail address on his business card, he hastily handed it to me, but would provide no further details. All he said was “See her. If anyone can help you, she can.” At the time, I thought—a goddamn witch doctor?

My sciatica had been flaring up for the past few years, but this was the worst it had ever been.  Working in construction didn’t help. This latest episode happened as I was getting out of bed one morning, and a sharp pain shot up my leg as I set foot on the floor. It was so torturous I fell back into bed and couldn’t even move for the next hour. Dr. Zhang, through his skill with needles, restored my mobility, however, the pain continued. I wasn’t able to return to work. I couldn’t even bend down to tie my shoes without feeling a burning sensation up my spine. I was over six feet tall, 210 lbs., strong as an ox, but this condition had brought me to my knees.

As far as sex was concerned, it was non-existent. I tried masturbating just to relieve the pressure but almost passed out when I came—the pain was unbearable. Thankfully, I had broken it off with Wendy before this latest incident. She wouldn’t have taken kindly to me lying in bed all day, even if it was under doctor’s orders. She was a minx, that one, and she loved it when I gave it to her from behind. Too bad sex was the only thing we had in common. The thought of it made my cock throb, but the image of bending her over didn’t even arouse me now. All I could think was: What if I could never have sex again?

*  *  *  *

I paid the equivalent of six months salary for twelve weekly sessions with Serena, the maximum number of times she would see any one client. Those were her conditions, and they were non-negotiable. She said if she couldn’t cure me in that time, then she couldn’t cure me, and there were no refunds. Truth be told, I was cured after only eight sessions. I had been free from pain for weeks now, and had decided to keep the remaining appointments—not because of the money, but because of her. She’s the most beautiful woman I’ve ever met. Prior to seeing her, I was in agonizing pain. Now, I’m weakened, but by the most incredible pleasure.

*  *  *  *

I arrive for my last appointment with Serena and tell her how grateful I am for all that she’s done. A selfish part of me wants to beg her to continue seeing me, but I can’t do that to her. It breaks her rules, and she is, after all, a healer. I follow her to the room where she tells me to undress. “Please remove all your clothes and make yourself comfortable,” she says. “Lie on your stomach with your arms by your side, and I’ll be right back.”

The room is warm and dark, lit only by a small candle in the corner. She’s had the same song playing in all our sessions – “Slave to Love” by Bryan Ferry—a seductive melody with passionate lyrics I now know by heart. I was surprised to hear this song as most therapists play new-age music with the sounds of rain, wind, and birds. The ambience here could not be more different. It wasn’t about nature. It was about a sensual and physical experience beyond anything I had ever known.

Her massage table resembles a double bed except that it sits very low to the ground. It’s firmly padded with high-density foam, and there’s no separate headrest. Instead, there is an opening in the mattress for my head, making it much more comfortable to lie face down.

I don’t realize she has entered the room until she is standing at the foot of the bed, twisting a cap off a bottle. The scent of sweet almond oil fills the air. She climbs on the bed and straddles my ankles. Pouring the lubricant into her palm, she warms it by rubbing her hands together and applies it to the back of my calves. She repeats this several times, moving further up my body until she has coated me in the fragrant oil.

I brace myself for the moment when she lays her naked body on top of mine, and then, I completely surrender.  She is light, probably no more than a hundred and ten pounds. The touch of her body immediately causes blood to rush to my loins. I’m self-conscious for a moment, but as with previous visits, she reassures me with her words, whispered close to my ear, “Allow yourself to feel aroused. It’s all part of the healing, and it will pass.”

She remains on top of my body without moving for what seems like hours, but I know it’s only minutes. I sense her warm breath at the base of my neck, and I feel her hard nipples pressing into my back.  Her prominent mound is placed right in the nook above my buttocks. She holds on to my shoulders and begins writhing her small frame against mine.

Sliding up and down my back, she uses her body as her instrument to stimulate all the sensitive areas. She knows where to apply pressure and where to be gentle. Her body undulates against mine like a wave—gliding over my lower back and then washing up my spine in a soothing and sensual release.

Before I realize it, an hour has passed, and as she promised, my arousal has passed as well. The music continues to play, and I finally understand the line in the song that says: “… To need a woman, you’ve got to know, how the strong get weak, and the rich get poor …”

* * * *

This story is included in a collection called  HOT FLASH, now available 

Amazon US  ~ Amazon UK

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Filed under Short Stories & Poetry

Announcements – What’s New?

A good friend of mine said to me recently that she’d like to read more of my writing on my blog. She felt I had devoted much of my site for promotion of other authors, and though she understood the reason for it, she thought my own creative writing was lacking representation.

I have great respect for this friend, who is a writer herself, so I have taken her advice and added another category to my blog entitled: Short Stories. As you may or may not know, it can be exhausting to write about sex on a regular basis. Even though erotica is what I write for a living, I’m always exploring new avenues to increase my own learning. To do this, it’s both enjoyable, but more importantly, it’s necessary to write other things. Recently, I read one of my short stories on a podcast but did not include it in my blog. For the benefit of those who did not listen to it, I will be posting the story later today.

Because I do write erotica, I’ll forewarn you that my short stories will contain themes that are ADULTS ONLY.  I hope you enjoy them and encourage you to provide your uncensored opinions about my work. Your comments, whether good or bad, are the best way for me to improve as a writer, and I always look forward to hearing from readers.

REMINDER

My book, Fall into Winter, was nominated by The Romance Reviews in the category of: Best Anthology-Erotic Romance.

The winner is chosen based on # of votes, so if you’re so inclined and would like to vote for me – I’d greatly appreciate it!

To do so, GO HERE. I’m in the very first category listed. You will need to create an account with The Romance Reviews if you don’t have one already.

Many thanks in advance! Voting closes March 31st.

Stay sexy,

Eden

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Filed under Important Announcements