Saturday, April 30, 2011


A bit of my story Racing To The Altar from the fabulous Ms. Tyler's new book With This Ring, I Thee Bed. This was one of those stories that was equally thrilling and terrifying. Because I really, really, REALLY wanted to get what was in my head on paper correctly. Because if I did it correctly, it would be great! And it took much stroking from my lovely editor to assure me that I had in fact pulled it off. The Raunch Dilettante even agreed in her nifty review.

So, Alison had to stroke and stroke and stroke my ego to assure me. Okay, so she only had to stroke me two times to assure me. After that, I was just milking it because I like it when she um...strokes me.


See you Monday!


Racing to the Altar
Sommer Marsden

I eyed the billboard as my foot mashed on the gas. The thought flittered through my head, cops hide behind big billboard signs like that... But I mashed it anyway. My speed crept from 68 to 74. I was late. I was so fucking late it wasn’t funny. I was racing to the altar. Hell bent for matrimony.

Kelly and Tina and Tracy all awaited me at the church. No doubt pacing the small bridal room where they were to do my makeup and my hair. I could picture Kelly fretting as she ticked off the time in her head. How much time we had and what that time would allow. Up do with accent braids? Chignon? Traditional bun? She would kill me!

I shot past the sign advertising Rock Hard Gym and my stomach bottomed out when I saw the lights, my body tingling the way it does when I ride a roller coaster. The cherry lights atop the cruiser came on in a flash of crimson, and I gnawed my bottom lip.


I pulled to the side of the road.

I didn’t have time for a ticket. There was hair to be done, makeup to be applied, panic to be embraced. I had to go over my vows and make sure the seating arrangements were perfect and check the church to ensure that Uncle Sal was not next to Great Aunt Dot (or they would kill each other). I had too much to do. And at the end of it all, hopefully I would be lawfully married and not insane. Then Jackson and I would run off to Nova Scotia never to return!

Okay, so we were returning. The point was that we had to make it through this stressful, heart pounding wedding and reception before we could escape. And all I really wanted was to be with him. Somewhere quiet. Just me and him and our lips pressed together, making out like horny teenagers the way we did when we weren’t tasting butter cream frosting or picking out dye to make shoes match dresses. I sighed, drumming my fingers on the steering wheel. In my head, I was already pleading my case. Figuring out what I would say to Officer Friendly to get off with only a warning.

“Do you know how fast you were going, Miss?” he asked into my semi-open window. My heart shot up into my throat and my stomach dropped to my feet. I opened my mouth, but he cut me off. “I asked you a question, Miss. Do you know how fast you were going?”

“Too fast?” It was all could think to say.

The good officer laughed. “Obviously, or I wouldn’t be here would I?”

His eyes studied me and I studied him. He’d pulled his aviator sunglasses down to peer at me, his mouth twisted in a wry grin. Bright blue eyes like an autumn sky, lush lips, peppering of dark stubble along his jaw. I thought it would be fairly easy to cut paper with his cheekbones, and I was struck, sitting out here in the bright October sunshine, by how utterly gorgeous he was. Nearly beautiful, to be honest.

“This section of road is zoned for 55 miles per hour, ma’am. You were going over 70. Were you aware?”

“No,” I lied. He put his hand on the door and I rolled my window all the way down. My eyes went to his thickly muscled forearms, and my head felt swimmy. I’m a sucker for thick forearms. But I had a wedding to get to.

“I think you knew, and you were speeding anyway.” He leaned into the window, crowding my space. He had a teardrop shaped birthmark above his left thumb. I inhaled deeply and tried to think.

“I’m sorry?”

“Are you sure? You don’t sound sure.”

This officer, this man, this amazing specimen was nearly leaning headfirst into my window. So close to me and my jangling nerves I swore I could feel the invisible particles of his energy mixing with mine. It was downright dirty was what it was, because my pussy was responding to the heady mixture of fear and excitement and attraction. “Yes, I am absolutely sure that I am sorry,” I said and any idiot could tell I was lying.

“I don’t believe you,” he said. He put his pad in his pocket and ran his finger along the seam of rubber that protected my lowered window. I watched that finger trace and fought the urge to cross my legs. This was crazy. This was silly. I should ask for my ticket and leave. I should make him let me go right this instant. My bridesmaids and others would be foaming at the mouth by now. I. Did. Not. Have. Time. I didn’t have time for this insanity!

“I assure you, sir.”

“You’re lying.”

I felt blush crowd my cheeks. I blew out a sigh, trying not to think about church parking, place settings, snippy caterers and my betrothed’s mother’s insistence that we had some ridiculous disgusting red velvet groom’s cake.

“I don’t lie,” I lied.

Wanderlust part 47 "Do we fuck too much?"

Bleh. Just up a little while ago. The last few hours of sleep were plagued by dreams of people pursuing me and telling he I was a terrible writer. No shit. And I woke up all shaky and freaked out the way I tend to when a dream scares me to a certain level. The man is making me coffee and I'm wondering how I let these things bother me. I guess a better question is, how do I not?

Bottom line is, i can't do anything about the dream but let it pass. So pass it will. Here we go. Wanderlust, ahoy...

part 47
by Sommer Marsden

I floated on it, the pill and the feel of him touching me. I kissed him almost desperately, though my body felt light and untethered.

“Hurt me,” I said in his ear. His fingers delved and dipped into me. His hand moving as he gauged my arousal.


I gasped as my body tightened around his fingers, my hips moved up. Writhing like I was underwater, twisting in a wave. A mermaid caught in her own net of pleasure. His mouth bullied mine, his tongue hot and sweet on my tongue.

“But I want it,” I murmured.

Johnny rested his lips to my ear, his voice no more than an exhalation. “You might want it, but it’s not what you need.”

I did need it, didn’t I? I needed that sharp bite of pain to focus me, to cleanse me, to soothe me. He turned me on my side to face away from him and I thought about struggling but didn’t. When my back was to him, Johnny hooked my leg with his big arm, draping the hinge of my knee over the crook of his arm. His teeth scraped the back of my neck, his chest pressed to my shoulder blades. I could feel his heart beating. He moved me so I opened for him and then he entered me from behind.

I bit my lip. Wanting to beg him to do what I asked, but what he was giving me was too good to shut off. He moved slow. He didn’t talk.

The room was lightening with dawn and I succumbed to his will. He kept his lower arm wrapped around my waist, the other still held my leg. His cock filling me and stretching me. Teeth crimped flesh over my pulse and I felt that flutter and burst of uneasy arousal. The potential for pain pressed to my flesh in the guise of his beloved mouth.

“Right now I want to give you what you need,” he said.

I shook my head, my eyes stinging with tears all the sudden. That stupid pill should have taken care of the irrational tears and the anxiety induced mood swings.

“You deserve to get what you need,” he said.

I shook my head again.

“Yes, you do.” He soothed the spot his teeth had worried with his tongue and I shivered.

I shook my head again but said nothing as he readjusted his hips and thrust in at a different angle. An angle that nudged my G-spot so that a pleasant heaviness filled my limbs, my womb.

“No,” I said.

“Yes, Really,” he countered. “Where were you?”


“Doing what?”

“Making amends.”

“Punishing yourself, I suspect.”

“Maybe some of that,” I laughed. But it was a sad laugh. A tired laugh. The laugh that showed up when the fear did.

“This is what you need, Snowflake. Kindness.”

I opened my mouth to answer and a sob hitched up out of me so unexpectedly my body shook with it. The arm around my waist held me tighter even as he splayed his fingers low so they brushed my mound. Not touching my clit—not yet—but promising it.

When he pulled my top leg up a touch higher, I let him, to help him open me up, get his cock deeper. Johnny levered me forward just a bit, so that I bent at the waist just a enough, and when he did that, I started to come. The friction of it all—the goodness of it all—so fucking unbearable, I couldn’t do anything but let myself fall into it. At the tail end of that orgasm, he slid the arm under me lower and his fingers found me. Rubbing with swift slippery circles so that I came again almost immediately.

He let my leg go, bent me forward a little more and wrapped my hair in his fist, holding me tight, fucking me hard and coming with a satisfied grunt.

“There,” he said, almost conversationally.

Outside a car door slammed, muted back drop noise to our breathing.

“There,” I echoed, wiping the wetness off my face. My chest still ached from all the fucking feelings.

He rolled to his back and pulled me against his chest.

“Do we fuck too much?” I asked him, the shell of my ear resting over his heart so the steady pound filled my tired mind.

“There’s no such thing,” he chuckled. “Not when you—“

I was almost asleep but his sudden silence roused me. “When you what?”

“Nothing, Really. Go to sleep, sweetheart.”

And I was too tired to argue. I was almost under when, with a thick tongue, I blurted, “I took a pill.”


“Was it a pill you were meant to take?” he asked. I could feel he had gone on alert. As if I’d crawled out of this bed to score some illicit drug and had proceeded to OD. It almost made me laugh. But I was too exhausted to laugh and too touched that he even cared. All of me felt numb and calm and drowsy.

“Yeah. They’re mine. I just never ever take them,” I mumbled. “Ever,” I added.

“Why?” He was touching my hair in the dark. It was the most soothing thing I could imagine feeling. His hands in my hair, stroking.

“They make me weaker than I already am,” I confessed. And then I fell all the way under to darkness with Johnny’s fingers tangled in my hair.


Friday, April 29, 2011

random phone shots!

Last night he slid off the back of the sofa--dead asleep--in this position. Then I took a pic. Then another pic. Then this pic...I like to call it EXTREME closeup. :)

This was from our travels a few weeks ago. A sign on a local bar that has been altered to amuse the patrons. Finally remembered to get it off the phone...


Wanderlust part 46 "the sweet angel tones of things that brought oblivion"

TGIF, all. I'm supposed to go out today but am not sure if I am going to. Still not feeling up to speed. Still off and a bit weak. I guess I'll see how my coffee settles. Bummer, I was looking forward to today--I guess we shall see. But for now, on with the trip :)...

part 46
by Sommer Marsden

It was just fucking. That’s all it was. Some fun. Some freedom. Loads of sex. I reminded myself of this as I studied the teardrop stain of fluorescent light on the ceiling. There was a crack in the cheap shades that covered our motel room windows and just enough light seeped in from the parking lot to make me antsy.

Have you ever been in love, Aurelia? For real?

I couldn’t shake his words or my reaction inside. Or my denial of my reaction with words. I turned onto my side, watching the rise and fall of Johnny’s chest as he slept. He’d tossed and turned like some haunted man but finally had flung one arm over my hip and had settled.

I listened to him breathe and realized that I could not follow suit. I was having a panic attack. It had been a long, long time since my silent and sinister friend had sidled up to me to spend some time, but here it was. My lips tingled and my ears rang, my chest was full of cotton stuffing and sawdust. And Johnny slept on.

Despite the inside clamor for freedom and air and movement, I took the time to gently tug his arm free me and reposition it. He’d been driving forever, it seemed. And after his question to me and my answer that I had never been in love, he’d seemed to recede into himself. His jaw tight, his fingers clenched on the steering wheel. No doubt remembering his lost loves: wife and son and how this, what we had, was nothing but a soft pale comparison to that.

Sitting on the edge of the bed, I put my head down and tried to regulate my oxygen. I blew out the stale air in my lungs hard, sucked in a drowning woman gulp of air and held it for the count of four. Then I repeated the whole fucking thing until my heart stabilized. Until it stopped doing the floppy fish jitterbug in my chest.

“Fuck,” I breathed.

Johnny murmured and turned. I stood, my legs weak and watery. My stomach echoing the same.

My jeans were on the round table by the window. This horrible hotel room had one king sized bed, one table, two chairs, a dresser and a pull out sofa in the corner. The predominant color seemed to be baby shit yellow.

I snorted at my train of thought and then silenced myself. No time for hysterical laughter, I thought. Get dressed and get out. Move. It would help settle the itchy crawling restlessness that zipped and skittered below the surface of my skin.

Through the taunting crack in the shade I saw the sky purpling. When we’d left the rest stop it had been very late. Very late had bled into very early. And I couldn’t settle.

No sense in unsettling Johnny too.

I grabbed my jacket and my bag and silenced the door with a firm hand when the wind tried to whip it wide. In the parking lot, I shivered against the wind to distract myself from the fact that I was shaking with adrenaline.

My body was betraying me once again with false terror. Triggering a fight or flight response though there was no villain, no danger.

“To pill or not to pill,” I said to myself but pushed my hands in my pockets and started to walk. I had no idea where I was, no idea if it was safe. I did know that I was so full of chaotic energy and false fear that I would be a worthy adversary at the moment.

But there appeared to be no danger. Just a pre-dawn ink stain on the sky and early traffic. I walked.

I walked the side of the road, passing a few houses that looked as if they dated back before the busy road I stood on. They were old, dilapidated and sad in a proud sort of way. The neon beckon of a convenience store lit up my side of the road ahead and I walked against the wind wondering what the fuck I was doing.

I knew as soon as I saw the pay phone bank set outside the double doors. A few people wandered in and out looking stunned to be up so early. I knew how that felt. The pills in my purse called out to me in the sweet angel tones of things that brought oblivion.

I shook my head, passed the first two pay phones—now becoming extinct creatures in the age of cell phones—and finally found the one that worked. The last one.

I picked it up and wiped the receiver with my jacket. Then I wiped it again, pushing away the thought of what kind of germs might be on the dark, hard plastic. Then I set about dialing.

It was answered on the third ring and the words burst out of me.

“I’m sorry,” I blurted.


I could hear the muddy headed confusion in Jackson’s voice.

“Don’t talk,” I said, softly. The wind tried to scoop up my voice and toss it away but I huddled to shelter the receiver. “I want to say I’m sorry. I’m sorry for all the times I ran from you and to someone else. I’m sorry that I can’t love you right. I’m sorry that I have hurt you and god, Jackson, I hope that bitch Gina is fucking you blue.” I laughed wildly and the scurried forward in my never-ending march of stupid words. “Because you deserve it, Jackson. You deserve for someone to dote on you and do you and love you and be whatever it is you want. Someone who isn’t stupid and selfish and scared and angry. Someone who isn’t me.”

I swallowed hard. I did not want to cry. I wanted to get this out.

“Really, baby, are you okay?”

“I’m fine,” I said. “Are you?”

“I—“ He hesitated and I picked at a thread on my coat, waiting. “I am okay. I have…about Gina.”

I laughed again, hearing the crazy edge to it. “It’s fine. Do it. Do her. Have fun, go crazy. Fall in love,” I hissed.

“Really, honey—“

“Stop being nice to me, Jackson!” I yelled.

“I can’t,” he said.

Then I did cry. “You have to.”

“No, I don’t. And if you want to come home…”

“I don’t think that’s going to happen,” I said. “But I had to tell you. I had to say I was sorry. Because I am.”

“I know.”

I hung up before he could be nice to me more. Then I walked into the convenience store, grabbed a soda, fished an anxiety pill out of my makeup case with trembling fingers and swallowed a pill right there at the register. I tried to remember the last time I had stooped to taking one—for that was how I saw it, as a weakness—and I couldn’t recall.

I was half out the door when the guy bumped me and my whole purse went tumbling down. Crap flew everywhere and my soda rolled away, turning to brownish white foam in the bottle.

“Christ, sorry, lady. Look at me making a mess. I guess I’m not awake yet.” His brown eyes were tired and wired and I sympathized.

We stooped there in the doorway, the two of us, gathering a whole slew of papers and hair clips and lipsticks and shoving them back into my bag.

“I’m really sorry.”

“It’s fine,” I said. “It is.”

And it was, because the pill was kicking in. I had remembered the doctor saying that. There’s no shame in it, Aurelia. And this should make you feel better, this particular drug fast acting. Quick to work, quick to leave your system. And you only take it if you need it…not every day.

That was my thing. No chemical crutches for me. My comfort came in different forms.

I walked back to the hotel as the sun started to spread peach and pink blemishes across the mask of the sky. I crawled into bed feeling slower inside. My pulse had calmed, my mind too. I was more balanced—blissfully easy and relaxed.

Johnny rolled to me. “Did you just come in?”

“Yeah. I had…some anxiety. I needed to walk around.”

He gathered me close to him. “You okay, now?”

“I am.”


Then he pushed my thighs wide and his fingers found me. His lips met mine in the dark and that fast, that easy, I was wet. He slid his fingers further, pressed his palm against my clit as his fingers pushed deeper. I clutched at him, kissing him back. Moving against him.


Thursday, April 28, 2011

Wanderlust part 45 "I dig it"

Not feeling very much better today, folks. But a touch so...I'll take it! After the kidlets are off to school, I'm crawling back to bed.

Here we are on part 45. A hair away from 60,000 words. How did that happen? :)


part 45
by Sommer Marsden

Johnny grabbed a leaflet the moment we entered the shelter of the rest stop. “In the year 2009, Miss Aurelia Blake, Iowa harvested 13.4 millions acres of corn, produced 2.43 bushels and had crops of corn valuing 7.77 billion dollars.”

“Seven-seven-seven. An angelic number for more miracles coming your way,” I said without thinking.


“Nothing. My friend Bren. She’s into all that woo-wooo spiritual stuff.”

“7.77 billion dollars,” he reminded me.

“I whistled. Thank you, Mr. Wizard.”

Johnny waved the flyer at me. “That’s science. This is agriculture. So yes, I’d say this is a corn place.”

I shivered. “A cold corn place.”

“It is November. Almost Thanksgiving. And an average temp of 46.6 degrees,” he said. grinning.

Wow. How the fuck had that happened? My first Thanksgiving not sitting primly and stiffly around my father’s gigantic table. Not hob-knobbing and bullshitting with people I barely knew and did not care about. I hadn’t had a good fucking Thanksgiving since my mother passed. And every year, Jackson promised me it would get better. And every year it sucked. And for the last few years, I’d gone ahead and gotten plastered. Why should the punch be the only thing spiked, I figured.

I thought that sharing a bucket of chicken and a bottle of wine with Johnny in a rundown hotel room would kick the shit out of all the more recent Thanksgivings. That I would have fun. Now that was a fucking miracle. “Wow,” I said out loud.

“Temperature or holiday wow?” he asked, putting the rest stop flyer in his back pocket.

“Yes,” I said. And then, “They need new fliers. It’s 2011.”

“Are you kidding me? In this economy?” he snorted.

“They have all that corn money!”

He grabbed me by the front of my shirt, yanked me in and kissed me. The kiss turned hotter and hotter until I wanted to plant my hands on the brick wall and let him take me right then and there. With my palms scraping the brick façade and the Iowa wind blowing against us as we did it. Instead I said, “Soda?”

We perused the shiny bright bank of vending machines and settled on two cold Cokes a bag of Munchos, a bag of pretzels and a package of chocolate candies. I shoved the loot in my purse as we hurriedly used the facilities. No heat in these joints, so peeing was precarious. I met him back by the bank of information handouts. The cold air licked my exposed skin as we hurried back to the Chevy. It was very late.

“Bed down?”

“Sounds good. I’m beat.”

We climbed in and he touched my hair. I felt it tug, heard it crunch a tiny bit. I grinned. “Yep, still there.”

“You dig that?”

“I dig it.”

“Why?” His voice was serious, but he was smiling at me. I was tickling his funny bone.

“Hmm,” I said, cocking my eyes to the roof. “Firstly, I don’t do that for a lot of guys.”

Now his eyebrows went high and if he’d had a hairline, they’d be in danger of kissing it. “That so?”

“It is so,” I admitted. “To me—and don’t laugh—“


“It is more intimate than fucking. Sucking cock is decidedly more up close and personal, in my humble opinion, than having sex.”

“When you say cock, mine gets hard,” he said but nodded. “Go on.”

“So, I can literally count on one hand how many guys I’ve done that for.” I looked at him as I twisted my hair up in a knot and dug a small clip out of my bag with my free hand. I clipped it up, a few stiff tendrils falling around my cheeks. Which I liked. Or dug if you were Johnny. “And I don’t need all my fingers to do that count.”

Not possible but the eyebrows went up again and I had to chuckle. He touched my leg. “Well, I feel honor—“

I held up my hand. “Please, don’t finish that sentence. I didn’t do it as a favor to you, Johnny. I did it because I wanted to. I needed to. Badly. And because I do it so little, I do like that secret little evidence on me. In my hair. Like a mark.”

“Hard,” he said again, putting my hand in his lap over his erection for a moment so I snickered and blushed and snatched my hand back like a school girl.

He flipped the radio on and I clapped wildly when I heard the song.

I’m going back to Cali, Cali, Cali. I’m going back to Cali, Hmm, I don’t think so…

“I take it that you like Ladies Love Cool James?” He turned out into the flashing firefly parade of headlights coming our way. We followed the leader in a long line of demon-red tail lights, crimson lights winking as far as my eye could see. Traffic was sparse but definitely present. No rest for the weary it seemed. There should be a cluster of hotels soon.

“I do. I love him. I love the song. Pretty fucking apropos, no?”

He nodded. “Pretty good.”

“And how he licks his lips…” I sighed.

Johnny rolled his eyes as if this was not the first time he’d heard a woman wax poetic about LL Cool J’s lip licking. Then Johnny turned to me and did it. A slow drag of his plump tongue over his full lips. And my pussy went wet.

“That was pretty good,” I breathed.

“Stay tuned, Snowflake.”

He turned his face back to the road and we were silent for a time, letting the funky beat of the song play out and then out of the blue he turned to me and said. “Have you ever been in love, Aurelia? For real?”

I stared at him, my heart feeling too small. Like it might fall all the way through my body to my feet.

“What do you mean?”

How fucking stupid of a question was that?

“Like your palms sweat and your upper lip feels tingly and your stomach churns so much you can’t tell if it’s good or bad. You’re more concerned for him at times than yourself. You think about him, dream about him, want to touch him randomly. Just to touch him. Like…if he hurts you, you can still forgive him, even if you wouldn’t forgive anyone else in the world. Like there’s not enough air when he’s not around. And sometimes when he is.”

He rattled it all off and my mouth got dryer and dryer and dryer. I thought of Jackson and my affection for him, but how easy it was for me to hurt him repeatedly to give myself solace. The other boyfriends who I promptly turned from when things got too sticky, too intense or they seemed to feel too much for me. Even the one guy—Chad— I was sure I had loved once upon a time at the beginning of college who I simply dumped one day and had never looked back.

He’d told me he loved me. I’d broken up with him and had never taken another of his calls. Woulnd't come to the door when he visited.

Johnny was waiting. I could feel him watching me as I remembered giving up the pain about Fallon--just letting it go. Chalking it up to his pain being expressed. His fear guiding him. I thought about hurting for him when he’d told me about his son. His loss. His rage at himself. I thought about all of it and how when he touched me it was like a fine mesh of electricity settling over my skin— an invisible net. Or how when he looked at me a certain way I wanted to open my mouth and say things I swore I never would.

Or how there never seemed to be enough god damned air when he was around. And even less when he wasn’t. I shook my head, bit my lip and echoed LL, “Nah. I don’t think so.”


Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Wanderlust part 44 "I like it in my hair"

Ugh. Sorry I'm late, kids. I woke this morning at four a.m. sick as a dog. Cold sweats, legs made out of wet spaghetti noodles, the whole nine yards. It's been a loooooong time since the man had to help me from one room to another because I was too weak to walk, but that was the lovely scene this morning before the sun even came up.

I'm awake, the kidlets have fended for themselves, and though I still feel like blech, I do feel better than earlier. Thank god. So I am running very slow, but I am running.

Here we go. Part 44...

part 44
by Sommer Marsden

“What exactly are we looking at?”

“The world’s biggest ball of paint.”

Actually we were looking at a shed. The shed was closed. You needed to get an appointment and we hadn’t so we were looking at the structure that held the world’s biggest ball of paint.

He handed me a picture printed from the internet. I read how it started as a baseball and how all the paint had been applied in layers over time and…

“What the fuck is this for?” I was laughing. Hard. Tears rolled out of my eyes and I felt another swarm of hysterical giggled coming out of me.

Johnny was trying to keep a straight face. And failing. It was reassuring to see him lose control a little—in a good way.

“I just think it’s fitting to us, is all.”

“How?” I yelped. I tossed my head back and laughed at the maroon liner of his old, ugly car. I laughed until I thought my burger might come up. After we left the motel we drove through a burger joint. Three bites of greasy sandwich hadn’t held me and after morning sex like that I had been ravenous.

“Because look!” He pointed to the ball of paint and then the baseball it had started out as. “No matter how much paint he puts on it, no matter how many layers are added, under it all it’s still…”

I waited.

He pressed his lips together, those wolfish blue eyes shining with mirth.

“Yes?”I prompted and then slapped my hand over my mouth when another burble of laughter tried to escape.

“It’s still a goddamn baseball, Really!” he finished, trying to sound gruff.

“Thank you for the lesson, Mr…” I snorted, hung my head.

“Mister what?”

I shook my head—more tears, more laughter, I couldn’t speak.

He grabbed my head in one big hand and gently turned me so I faced him. “Mister what?” he asked softly, grinning.

I tried to shake my head but couldn’t move.

“Mister what?” he asked again.

“Mph-eg-hee.” I mumbled and then snorted some more. I was damn near sick with laughter.


I stared him right in the face and wheezed, “Miyagi.” And then I was gone. Laughing again, tears rolling down the still wet tracks where the others had already been.

He looked into my eyes, face dead fucking serious. I had a moment of doubt, where I thought he was truly hurt. I thought I had truly angered him.

Then Johnny sighed and said, “Wax on. Wax off.”

And we were both done for. Nothing but laughter filled the inside of the car until he put it in gear, flipped the radio on.

You’re the only girl I know, that really loves me so in the midnight hour. In the midnight hour…

I took a breath, letting Wilson Pickett wash over me. Johnny said in my ear, his breath hot, his presence huge, “Say good-bye, Indiana.”

“Good-bye, Indiana!” I yelled.

Good-bye, Fallon, and hurt and worry. Good-bye not good enoughs, and pouting over being set free by my father. Good-bye Aurelia who existed in Indiana…Hello,…

“What’s next?” I asked.

“Illinois,” he said.

Hello, Really who’s waiting in Illinois…

“What’s there?”

“I haven’t a clue. Let’s find out.”


I slept through most of Illinois, damn it. I did not dream of cliff diving or dead mothers with dead boys. I didn’t dream. At all. I woke to that particular siren song that tires on blacktop have. It drilled up into my head, rattling my bones. My head had drifted as I slept and I imagined myself tipping to one side as we flew down the highway. The human equivalent of a dilapidated structure collapsing under its own weight.

My head was resting on Johnny’s side, half on his belly, half along his ribs. I could feel his heartbeat in my head keeping counter-time with the song of the tires. He had one big hand cradling my hip and the other piloting the Chevy.

The radio was turned down way low but I could still hear the latest airwave offering. I’ve been looking so long at these pictures of you. That I almost believe that they’re real…

How old was I that The Cure conjured the same kind of reminiscence that The Platters did for my grandparents? I smiled.

“You awake?” His voice a low rush and rumble of words.

“Now how could you tell?”

“Your body went from super slack to only vaguely slack. You’re very aware, Aurelia. Always on those toes, Snowflake.”

The use of my name and his personal nickname for me back to back felt both right and odd.

“I’m awake. Where the fuck are we?”

“Barreling toward Iowa.”



“Is that a corn place?”

“Think maybe so. Not sure. We’ll hit the rest stop and see what’s going on in good old Iowa when we come upon it.”

Flashes of our morning rolled fast and liquid through my mind. I remembered the sound of his breathing when I’d sucked his blood of my finger. How he’s gathered me to him, intent and unstoppable. His hands on me, his lips on my skin, his mouth on my sex. The way he felt sliding home—so fast and sure and yet so perfectly—and then rocking me to that second orgasm. Those eyes on my face and the smell of shave gel and sex in the air. All of it came flooding back to me to the point where I could taste his kisses.


I let my head slide down his belly, let my ear find a home in his lap. I moved my head just so—oh, I knew what I was doing—and felt his cock spring up hard and eager under my head. That fast. Like breathing.

What a rush that was. To get him hard do fast. It was such a rush that I felt my own wetness pool in my panties. I felt my body flicker and remember just what Johnny Rose could do for it. Could do to it. My fingers worked at his zipper and he laughed—a short startled bark.

“What are you doing, Really?” His hand tangled with mine briefly but it really wasn’t so hard to bat it away. Which meant he wanted it.

I got the zipper down with a tug and with him giving me just an inch of adjustment. He barely moved a hair, but enough that I could peel the metal teeth free of one another and get him in hand. His cock—long, hard, warm. I smelled him. The clean cotton, soap, man scent of him. I inhaled him deeply and then touched the tip of my tongue to the wet tip of his cock. Pressing hard to that slit, already pregnant with a gem of pre-cum.

“You’re going to make me crash the car,” he said.

“This car is a tank. It can take it,” I teased.

I sucked him in deeper. Moving my head so I could take the full length of him. My fingers moving restlessly over his jeans. I slipped my hand between his legs to cup his balls. I wished they were bare. I wished he were bare. I wished we were naked, barreling down this dark highway with me riding on his lap. Him fucking me. I could steer and he could thrust up under me and…

I gasped, feeling my pussy flicker with the runaway dirty thoughts in my head. When I gasped, he groaned and I pushed my mouth down over him again, attacking the soft-skinned shaft with my tongue. Licking that thick vein that ran from the base of his dick up the back. I did it again, loving the feel of lifeblood under my lips.

“Jesus,” he said.

“Just drive,” I said and moved so I had a better angle.

I sucked him deep, grabbing greedy gulps of air through my nose. I sucked and then licked until his hips moved with a tamed kind of frenzy because he was propelling tons of steel down a fast moving road.

I squeezed his balls, sucked, pulled free of him and swirled my tongue around the flared head. I looked up at him and in the passing lights he saw my gaze—met it—and then I slowly sucked him into the humid depths of my mouth again.

“Come for me,” I said. “Please come for me.”

He clenched his jaw and shook his head and said, “Fuck, Really, you don’t have to ask.”

“I want to ask. Come for me,” I said again. And then I confessed. “In my mouth but on my face too and in…”

He looked at me, waiting. One raised eyebrow his only question.

“In my hair,” I whispered. “I like it in my hair.”

And that was the truth. One I had damn well never said aloud. My free hand crept between my legs, under my leggings, working myself—wet and slippery and slick with my admission.

It only took another few wet ministrations to get his breath short and raging. It only took one more deep, long suck to get a groan to burst free of him and when he said “Fuck” again, the warm salty eruption coated my tongue, splashed my cheek and dotted my sleep tousled hair like little jewels.

I came with him, a great gasping orgasm that shook me down to my fine finger bones. And then I sat up, wiped my cheek but proudly wore the evidence of his want of me in bed head crazy hair.

It didn’t matter. We were the only two people there to see.


Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Tie a ribbon 'round

The LTD giveway on goodreads ends Friday! Two signed copies up for grabs :)


I've got so much good music trapped in my head right now...

for Really's road trip...I need to share :) Another favorite. Sam always grabs me by my heart and just squeezes until I cry uncle...


Wanderlust part 43 "some precious thing"

I would like to say good morning but it would be lies. All lies! I was up until 2ish and then had to get up at 6. The man was tossing and turning and tossing and at points it felt like turning the bed damn near OVER. But he has a super big important day at work today, so I didn't say a word. Just laid there and plotted out my next three hundred books because I couldn't sleep.

At about 1:45 or so I had a panic attack. LOL.

Right now I have coffee. Later I might have a damn Ativan. But since I usually have to be hog tied and coerced in order to do that, that's probably me being dramatic :D

Anyway, happy...what day is it? Tuesday. Right. Happy Tuesday. On to part um...43!


part 43
by Sommer Marsden

“So dark brown it is. Damn near black,” I said. My voice clogging up my throat at first. There is something supremely intimate about the sound of metal with the potential for maliciousness sliding over vulnerable skin.

I could feel my pulse between my leg, feel myself growing wetter with each slide of the blade.


“Your hair,” I whispered, giving his scalp another go with my new toy.

“Yep. Almost black. Not quite.”

“Why do you shave it?” I could tell by his stubble that it wasn’t because he was losing it.

His shoulders twitched like he was about to shrug and I gasped. He stilled. “Don’t know. I just do.”

“Is it like…a monastic thing?” I asked.

He laughed softly. “I’ve never thought about it, Really. Everything okay?”

“What do you mean?” I curved my stroke around his ear, holding my breath, praying not to cut him.

“Your heart is pounding a mile a minute. I can feel it all through my back and my own chest,” he said softly. A fat drop of water fell from the faucet with a resounding plop as if accenting his words.

“Yours isn’t exactly creeping, son,” I said, reaching around to press my palm flat to his damp chest.


I smiled. “Stay still, I’m almost done.”

On the final swipe there was a nick. A small drop of blood bloomed from his scalp. A crimson gem that made me feel very lightheaded and very turned on. No idea why. Just, there it was—the blood and the arousal.

“Stay still, I cut you,” I said, my voice a million miles away to my own ears.

I pressed my fingertip to that drop and brushed it away. Then I pushed my finger to his skin to staunch the barely existent flow.

“It’s fine. I do it all the time. More than you.”

I didn’t trust my words. I let the razor fall to the floor and sat there, pressing my finger to his scalp. “Sorry.”

“Really, it’s one little nick. Nicks happen,” he said, laughing.

“I know.”

My belly clenched—my pussy too—my heart followed suit. I lifted my finger and the blood had stopped. He cocked his head back to reassure me and without thinking at all, I pushed my finger to my lips and sucked my fingertip the way I do when I cut myself. He blinked.


I caught myself when it was too late—realized what I had done. Looked away. “It’s done bleeding,” I said, scrambling to stand. But he was on me and blocking me and I could do nothing but move my arms and some of my legs like a bug that had been flipped on its back. Pathetic and weak and once again at the mercy of something bigger.

Johnny moved and let me up. “You just—“

“I know! Be quiet. I didn’t think about it. I just did it. And besides,” I rushed on in a sweeping arc of words, “you said you were clean—didn’t you? I mean you are, right?”

He nodded, still silent as I rushed on, “And it’s just a little blood and I trust you and—“

We both went still on that word. I was telling him, that I trusted him, that much after last night. It was like a punch in the gut to me and from the looks of him, he felt pretty damn similar. But the fact of the matter was…it was true. Every stupid word of it.

I barely made a sound when he grabbed me and hefted me like a light suitcase. Or when he climbed out of the tub splashing water the way a bear will when it snags a fish in a stream. I barely said boo when he stepped past the razor and a little forgotten blob of shaving gel slid off his scalp to hit the floor.

But I did say, “Oh, yes, please, yes,” when he dropped me on the bed, pried my legs wide and put his mouth on me.

He climbed up to hover over me, his big strong legs by my head as he buried his face between my thighs where I was the wettest. Where I was the neediest. His tongue branding me with broad strokes and then small flickers.

I grabbed his leg, trying to get him to swing his leg over me, straddle me. So I could get at him. So I could take him into my mouth and give back just a little of what he was giving me.

Trying to move Johnny was like trying to move a tree. Finally, I caved and grabbed his leg saying, “Move, please, please. Move. Let me.” Like a chant.

He moved. I craned my neck, bowing my body—pelvis up to meet his seeking mouth, my mouth seeking to take his straining cock. I sucked the tip of him in and felt his exhalation on my pussy lips. Hot air rushed out of him and I sucked him in deeper, moving my head up more. His hands had my hips pinned and he licked me with a frenzied kind of laziness. Like he couldn’t do it fast enough. Or slow enough.

My head was spinning with pleasure, the room moved slowly around me and when I came, I came with his cock pressed firmly in my mouth. I did not move to stroke up and down, I simply held the length of him in my mouth, pressing my tongue to his hardness. I came and by body fought his with the force of my orgasm.

I tried to move, I tried to do a proper job of sucking his cock, put he had his body low over mine, not giving me the room I needed. He had me pinned there, until suddenly he didn’t.

Johnny moved fast, always to my amazement. I never got over how a big man like that could move with such ease. We were on the free bed. The bed that was still clean. The bed that was untainted by the night before, if you asked me. And he grabbed a pillow from the pile, murmuring to himself, words I could not hear or make out but seemed important to him.

Johnny said, “Hips up, Really.”

And I obeyed. He shoved the pillow under my ass, pushed my legs high and wide and drove into me. My body still working out the orgasm I has just had. When he filled me with himself it was intense and blissful and kissed that razor’s edge of painful until he was seated deep. His cock in me to the base, his eyes staring at me.

When he started to move, when he started to rock against me, I came again, my mouth open, my eyes wide until he kissed me quiet. One big hand holding my arm down, one big hand holding the crown of my head. As if I were some precious thing.

My mouth let loose a stream of words. I wasn’t sure what I was saying, just that I was saying it and it was sincere. Right there, oh yes, I need it…oh god, don’t stop baby…

I heard it all and then some and the big machine sound of his breathing in my ear as he watched me. His eyes never left, never wavered, never shut. He watched me and when I got close—so close again—he pushed my legs down and together some. The friction changed, the movement changed, it all changed but the pace increased and his pelvic bone banged my tender clit in just the right way and my hands were free and I grabbed his biceps and curled my fingernails to warm flesh and came again.

He watched me, kissed me, buried his face in my neck for the first time. All of him trembling, all of him shuddering as he pushed his hands between the pillow and my flesh. Cupping my bottom, pounding into me. All of him trembled like an oak as it is felled and he came.

“Really,” he said in my ear.

I waited, not breathing, on the verge of tears. Terrified. But this time—this time—he kissed me again, brushed my long bangs free of my eyes. And he didn’t fucking leave. He stayed.


Monday, April 25, 2011

Wanderlust part 42 "Au-fucking-relia"

Good morning. Last day of Spring Break. Booooo! :( Back to getting up at the ass crack of dawn tomorrow. But for today there is today. So, I shall go enjoy :)

Hope everyone had a great time off. And now I commence with coffee...



part 42
by Sommer Marsden


I woke very much alone to an empty room and light streaming through the busted up cheap Roman shades. I blinked hard and fast because I would not cry. I hadn’t earned the nickname Snowflake from being a pussy. It had been due to my coldness. My hardness. My command over my emotions.

That was when I saw something stuck to the room’s front door. I wrapped myself in the sheet, realizing that at some point while I was out he’d untied me. The rope was gone, probably coiled in a trash can somewhere like a nylon snake. I swallowed a burble of laughter—as irrational and crazy as it was, it was laughter—because he’d stuck a lip liner scrawled note BE BACK SOON to the door with a maxi pad.

“The only thing he could fine even remotely like tape. Note to self, replace emergency maxi pad with new one.” My voice sounded too big in the small space.

I removed the note and folded it up. I slipped it into my purse. Snowflake or not, I couldn’t throw it out.

I sat on the edge of the bed and ran a shaking hand through my hair. Had that happened? Had he freaked out and brought some woman in and had we—I stared at the bed. Yes. We had.

Part of me loathed him, part of me felt liberated. Another part of me wanted to crawl back in the bed and sleep for days.

Instead, I picked up the beige room phone and started to dial. Long gone were the days of operators on demand, so I did everything the electronic voice told me to do and the phone started to ring.

“Hello?” she sang it out.

“Bren?” I said.

“Au-fucking-relia!” she yelled. “Where in the hillbilly hell are you, sweetheart?”

And I started to laugh. And cry. Bren had that effect on me. All the coiled slippery dark and nasty stuff I had bottled up inside of me came sliding out in a mucky mess just hearing her voice.

Brenda Hartley had been a brand new student the year I was in third grade. Smelling fresh blood, I knocked her down and took her cherry Jolly Rancher candy stick. Brenda—Bren to friends and enemies alike—promptly kicked my ass from one end of the school yard to the other. And then, when I was broken, beaten, humiliated and fully sniffly, she plopped down next to me, brushed her plaid skirt clean, snapped the candy stick in half and handed me mine.

We’d been best friends ever since.

And so in a rush of air and tears and laughter I told Bren the whole damn thing. Including Fallon, including the begrudging orgasm, including the sweetness of shame.

“Wow, girl. You have life by the balls right now. And he has you by the heart strings. You do know that, right?”

I shook my head. “No. It’s not like that.”

“Oh, you might not think it’s like that, but it is.”

“Nope. He’s not…he can’t do that and neither can I.”

She laughed at me, her laughter putting a spotlight on my clever words and easy lies. “Whatever. Are you safe?”


“Would he hurt you?”


“You’re sure?”

I sat there for three heartbeats to make myself listen to my instinct. “Never,” I said, honestly.

“Do you want to come home?” she asked. I heard her light a smoke and wanted to beg her for the millionth time to quit. Ever since my mother, my paranoia over those I loved smoking was so big and bright and crazy.

“Not unless I have to.”

“Good. Well, you know where to find me if you want me. I know you don’t have a phone. Your dad found the car and the phone at the grocery store.”

I smiled and heard a car door slam right outside the doorway.

“Maybe I’ll grab a cheap phone with no plan.”

“Either way, be safe. Call me if you need me.”

“I will,” I whispered. “He’s here, I think. I have to—“

“Fine, fine, go, go. But Really?”


“I told you so.”

“What? You told me what?” I laughed. “I don’t know what you mean, Bre—“

“That’s for later. When you’re telling me you love this guy. I told ya so.”

And she hung up.

The door swung wide and I dropped the heavy receiver onto the base. I wasn’t trying to hide the fact that I’d been on the phone. I simply wanted to see where he’d been.

Johnny looked at me for a moment before looking away. Great, he was pissed. But then I looked again. No. Not pissed. He nearly looked embarrassed.

“Hi,” I said.

Awkward much?

“You’re talking to me,” he said. It was a statement.

“I’m pretty sure I just did.”

I took the pink bag he offered and opened it to a bacon, egg and cheese on an English muffin. It looked greasy and heavy and…”Fucking perfect,” I said and dug in.

I caught him grinning at me and I grinned back.

He looked startled again and I said, “What?”


“Aren’t you eating?”

“I ate in the car.”

I saw the other bag. A plain brown bag and my stomach rolled over. I was exhausted—inside and out—from the Fallon encounter. What dreaded thing lay in that bag, I wondered. I cocked an eyebrow at it and waited. The breakfast sandwich lodging in my throat.

“What’s that?”

“For you.”

“For me? You don’t have another woman in there do you?” It was supposed to be a joke but it came out half wild giggle, half sob.

He frowned at me. I had truly meant for it to be funny, but he looked almost hurt. I felt bad, but then part of me felt vindicated. Good. He should feel bad. What a confusing fucking pit stop this was.

“No. I don’t. it’s for you.”

I held my hand out. “Then give it.”

He looked unsure but handed me the bag, just saying, “Careful.”

Inside was a straight razor. An honest to God straight razor. “Johnny—“

“I got it this morning. I need a shave. I thought you could…” He looked away again.

“My god. You thought I could what? Slit your throat?”

Those blue eyes, eyes that allowed no untruths or even a flicker of discomfort to pass without taking note, pinned me and he said, “That is one option that came to mind.”

Oh. I shook my head. “Don’t be—“

“I’m at your mercy when you have a razor to my head.”

“Where did you get it?” I asked, flicking it open. Beautiful, shiny, dangerous thing.

“A barber in town. I had to pay him nicely for it.”

“And he just sold it to you?” I asked, incredulous. I turned it in the low light of morning and sunlight bounced off the old blade. Old but still effective, I could tell.

“I told him it was important. Sometimes men take each other at their word over the importance of things. I told him it was a woman I needed it for. And that it was…important. And not illegal,” he added.

“I don’t want to slit your throat,” I said softly.

“There is a line,” he said.

“And you crossed it.”

And how many times did you cross it with Jackson? How many times did you kick him in the guts with your actions? Penance, dear, Really. Penance.

His jaw muscle flexed and his body went tight. To someone who did not know him, he appeared perfectly normal and simply alert. To me, he looked fit to hit something. Or someone.

“I know that, Really.”

“But I willingly followed you and leapt over it right after you,” I said. I could pay for my sins by forgiving him his. “So enough. Just don’t—“

He waited.

“Just don’t do it to me again. Don’t prove how much you don’t care by stepping all over my insides,” I said softly. “Please.”

“But I do care. And that’s the problem. I can’t get close to you, Really. I can’t get close to anyone. Not for true.”

I bit my tongue. Now was not the time to argue. I took one more bite of my sandwich, though it had lost its decadent appeal, and put it down on the greasy bag. “How about we shave your head?”

He grinned. “Or cut my throat.”

“I could never do that,” I said. And realized it was true.

He looked unsure but nodded.

“Give me two minutes.” I jumped in and washed all the memory of Fallon and her haunting eyes off of me. I was done with that particular encounter. It was in the vault, locked away, gone.

When he came in, I took his clothes off one piece at a time and he let me. He let me. Then I settled in the motel’s shiny white tub and put the warm water on. Johnny got in front of me, the water level shooting up, and settled back between my open thighs. I put the shaving lotion on his head as he pressed himself back against me. His stubble bit at my bare breasts, his arms rested on my thighs, his hands on my knees. I cradled his head to my chest and said. “Be very still. Don’t move. I like you living and I like having two nipples.”

He laughed, a long, low rumble that made my gut clench and told me everything would be just fine between us. Then he stayed still as I started to shave him.


Sunday, April 24, 2011

It's not candy but...

I have this song stuck in my head. And it is a sweet-sweet sound. The kind of music you'd find on the radio traveling cross-country. Happy Easter. See you tomorrow. :)

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Wanderlust part 41 "he's here with me"

Well...yesterday was an interesting day for comments. I'm damn curious who we all feel about this today, kids. Happy day-before-Easter and as far as the rest of our story and the continuation...I'll see you Monday. I am actually taking tomorrow off. But I will be lurking about today to post folks yays or nays.


part 41
by Sommer Marsden

She did it--took her clothes off--and I looked away. I didn’t want to see her tiny little tight body and her dyed black hair. Or the stupid butterfly tattooed on her hip or her shaved snatch. None of it. But my eyes kept straying back and back and back. Traitors.

“Tell me,” he said, moving toward the bed, “that no part of you. Not a tiny little part wants this and it can all be over.”

I opened my mouth, staring him in the eye. And I shut my mouth. It wasn’t just the fear of him going on without me. It was the fact that I couldn’t seem to say it—because it would be a lie.

“Hate usually means something else. Often love, sometimes envy, jealousy, curiosity. No matter who you hate at the moment.”

She settled between my legs, looking like the cat that ate the canary, staring at me with those feline eyes of hers. She really thought she’d won, didn’t she. Her mouth was open and her breath snaked out, over my belly and lower.

Against my better judgment, I felt a fine flickering spasm in my pussy. Watching him stalk to us. Her in the middle. Me tied down—helpless to his will.

Helpless to his will…

That made my entire body flush hot and a rush of warm fluid escaped me. I wanted to scream and I wanted to rage and I wanted to beg him to just hustle her out the door and we could pretend this didn’t happen and yet…

Part of me wanted this. He was forcing this on me. I was powerless to stop it…right? So I could simply experience it and feel no guilt. A hell of a thing to realize. If I hated it, if it hurt my heart, if I regretted it, I could blame it all on Johnny and his will. I was totally innocent. Or so I could say.

He watched me and I knew that he was reading me perfectly. He was looking into the very core of me and seeing every single selfish thought I’d just had.

“This is what I want. Take it or leave it,” he said, sealing the deal. Giving me the freedom to see what this was like.

Because as much as I hated her, my body was responding to Fallon. My hips wanted to seek her out. My back wanted to bow up to meet her pretty mouth. I had never before in my life wanted to smack someone in the mouth and yet have that same mouth on me. This was a first. It was brutal, confusing, frightening and horrible. It was also an opportunity—right here—to experience something I would never seek out and it would never be my fault.

I was naked, bound, coerced, forced. Not my will. Johnny’s.

She chose that moment to put her lips to my pussy, her hot tongue to my clit and I hissed with the pressure, the heat and the pleasure.

The bed groaned and Johnny found his spot behind her. I hated her all over again, because she would be getting fucked by him. A sharp stab of relief worked through me when I heard the foil packet and smelled the tang of rubber as he rolled on a condom. He moved her like a doll. No niceties, no muttered words, no Snowflakes or endearments.

Good. She didn’t deserve it.

Pretty, nasty Fallon slid her wet rigid tongue into my cunt and I arched up under her. Johnny’s eyes locked on mine as surely as his fingers locked on her hips and he started to move—banging into her as she ate me. Every thrust, drove her against me. It was as if he were trying to get at me despite her being in his way. He drove into her, his jaw tight.

But his eyes never left me—like she wasn’t even there. His movements forced her forward, his thrusts moved her mouth to my clit. She sucked and she cooed and she battered her lashes at me, but it was the oddest sensation. He was fucking me through her and Fallon—poor Fallon—was no more than a sex doll.

He sealed it when he reached over her—past her—and grasped my thighs for a moment and squeezed. She sucked, her tongue demanding an orgasm from me. Her mouth coercing me to give up the juiciest of releases and I did. Because it was big blue serious eyes I was gazing into. It was a rugged boxer’s face I was studying. Broad shoulders and straining muscles and a wildly beating pulse at his throat.

“Johnny,” I said as I came. For him to hear. For her to hear. He could do all he wanted to make his point and it would still be his name I said when I came. His name I cried out and his name that ricocheted around in my tired, fucked up mind.

“Fuck,” he muttered and slammed home once more. Using her. She came a split second after me, he a split second after her, and when all was quiet on the motel front, he smacked her ass in a business like way and said. “Get lost, Fallon.”

Her eyes flashed—brilliant with anger and what looked like hurt.

For a split second I felt sorry for her. And then I didn’t. “Didn’t he tell you?” I asked her. “He’s here with me.”

By the time he had her out the door, I had lost my fragile hold on my emotions. The moment the door shut and I heard the snap of the condom coming off, I started to shake. A sob slipped out of me and it was the lonely horrible sound of some dying creature.

“Really,” he said and came to me.

There was a subtle flash of regret and my heart surged at it. Good! Let him feel bad, small, petty, cruel. Maybe not due to a third party, but due to his choice. He had chosen her to hurt me and he could deny it—fuck—I could deny it to myself and yet it was the truth. His malicious intent was to drive a wedge between us. After what had happened in the closet. It was all because big, bad Johnny was scared.

He dropped to the bed and molded his big body to mine. He started to untie me and I sobbed, “Don’t, don’t, don’t—“

He looked uncertain but didn’t untie me. If he untied me I would consciously have to not touch him. I would willingly have to push him away. And I wanted to push him away at the moment—hell, I wanted to punch him and hit him and rail at him. If he kept me tied, I could let him hold me. I could not push him away. It would allow me to save face. It would protect my pride.

Because I really needed him to hold me even though at the moment I thought he was the biggest shit walking. He had done it, he had proven his point and yet—

“I know what you’re doing,” I said.

He went rigid against me and his breathing stopped for a moment. I looked up at him and was so fucking embarrassed by how wet my face was with tears. And yet, I couldn’t not look at him when I said this.

“And no matter what you do,” I said through gritted teeth, “you can’t convince me that you’re not a good man.”

He frowned at me and turned his face away.

I wanted a shower. I wanted a shower in acid. I wanted a blow torch or a Brillo pad. I wanted to scrub my skin until I bled and yet by body still hummed with the orgasm and the experience and yes—the shame of it. There was an odd and unexpected sweetness to that shame.

And my heart still flexed a little at remembering his face looking over her shoulder at me. How his eyes never left me. How she had barely been there. How I had been the only one in that bed with him when you came right down to the parts of the night that mattered.


And this time in my dream, when I fell into that ocean of water and staggering bright light a huge and monstrous sea creature rose up to meet me. He was huge—with big arms and intense blue eyes and a scar on his face, marring his wet skin. He caught me up in his strong hold and crushed me to him. The breath left me and his massive body penetrated mine, worked mine and nudged me just right, plucking and stroking and moving until I was blissfully—frighteningly—full and pleasured and then he was dragging me under. Down into the wetness. Down into the depths. In the dark where nothing lived and no light penetrated. Where all that existed was us. Him and I.

Friday, April 22, 2011


I've been excerpted and read by [at]Netfux (find her on Twitter as well as [at]kingofvagina). Neato doesn't cover it. So have a listen at some Learning To Drown...

Wanderlust part 40 "A lemming plunging to its death"

Ugh. I slept and slept and hit snooze like ten times. Okay, not hit snooze. I reset my phone for 15 min intervals about ten times. SOMEONE kept me up v. late doing the allergy snore watoosie. And his name starts with M and ends with --an and rhymes with Dan but is not Dan!

So here we go, part 40. I might not be back until Monday. It all depends on this possible sinus infection and Easter weekend! We shall see.

Plus, I have a lot of food to cook. I think I'm making 1/2 the brunch we are to attend. Tada!

Happy Easter/Spring weekend!


part 40
by Sommer Marsden

And then a stillness as he realized not only the word, but the tone. There was something in his utterance. Affection at the least, possibly more, and I felt him stiffen up with something akin to anger.


“Hold still and let me untie you,” he said gruffly, cutting me off.


His hands came down on the silk tie, big fingers that should not be nimble working the knot with ease. “Don’t,” he said.

“We both…” But I cut myself off then. We both what? Heard it? Felt it? Knew it?

Knew what?

And what if the word and the tone had been a mistake.

He stepped back and I dropped my arms, rubbing my shoulders and then rotating them to loosen up the tension and get rid of the after-bites of pain.

“Shower’s free,” he said.


A swift and black anger flowed through me. What the fuck? I hadn’t done or said anything I regretted. Why was I being punished? Because that was sure as shit what if felt like. A punishment. And not the good kind that had the promise of an orgasm at the end.

“I’ll be back later.” He was stepping into jeans. No underwear. Just jeans over skin and a button down blue shirt. He dropped to the bed to pull on his boots and I noticed again—with an insane and damn near domesticated thought—that his scalp needed to be shaved again.

“What did I do?” I asked, surprising even myself. This kind of situation would, in the past, normally lead to shouting and yelling and bullying. On my part, mind you.


“Why are you leaving?”

“I need to.”

“Don’t.” Great wings of fear beat in my chest. My hand was shaking, I saw it like it wasn’t my own. I moved to him but he held up a hand.

“Don’t, Really. I need to take a time out.”

A child’s term. I shook my head.

“Please, don’t,” I whispered. Surprising myself yet again. Weakness was a no-no. Asking for a kindness, unacceptable.

He stood and kissed me briefly. A drive-by show of affection. His jaw was tight with anger or some other emotion. “I’ll be back.”


“I’ll be back. I swear.”

And then he was gone. My throat felt so tight, drawing air seemed a feat. I stood there, the echo of the door snicking shut seemed to rattle around in my brain. The door was shut but I stared, holding my breath, willing it to open back up. Willing him to come back in, say he was wrong…sorry…joking. Any or all of them.

The door stayed shut.

“Right,” I said to the empty room. The beds were covered in ugly blue comforters this time. The pressed board furniture a cheap chestnut color. “Right,” I said again and heard the high hysterical quality to it. It scared me and it pissed me off.

I turned to the bathroom on feet I could not feel. I turned the hot water on—only the hot water—and I stood in the scorching spray until my skin turned red and I had to bite my lip against the pain.

Then I crawled into bed wrapped only in a towel. My hair was soaked and I didn’t care. I left the lights on and flicked on the TV. No picture. Sound but just a black and gray and white flickering mélange of non-images. I could call Fallon at the front desk…

“Cunt,” I said and turned it off.

I hit the button on the clock radio and Bad Company crooned to me. Darling…if I live without you…I live without love…

When I dreamed it was of running my fingers over a long sharp blade. My skin split and bright light flooded out of me. Bright like strong sunlight bouncing off of water. A million diamond points of light glaring at me. And when the light stopped, I jumped from a cliff, dropping to the water and into the light. A lemming plunging to its death. And at the bottom, in the water and the light bobbed my mother, in her bright skirt with her big smile. She was smoking a cigarette and holding the hand of a little boy. A little boy with red sneakers and Johnny’s grin.

I was falling and I simply didn’t care. And even in the dream, that scared me to death…


Someone was messing with me. My wrists were being tugged, my hair pushed back. Sometime during my dream, I had started to cry and I could hear myself. Great wracking sobs that hurt my heart to hear, but exhaustion had kept me under and only vaguely aware. Aware of the noises I made and tears rolling back off my cheeks and into my hair.

My hair was still wet.

“Snowflake, put your arm out.”

I did it, recognizing his voice, feeling a brief shard of gratefulness that he’d kept his word and come back.

“What time is it?” I murmured.

There was a tightness on my skin and I tried to rouse myself fully to see what the bloody hell was going on.

“Just past four in the morning,” said a female voice.

I opened my eyes, my gut cramping with an oily and sudden fear. Fallon.

“What he fuck are you doing here?” I asked. I searched wildly for Johnny and found him by the front door. He looked grim. That did not bode well for me. For us. Hell, for someone.

“I came to play.”

“Go away.”

“I was invited. “

I glared at Johnny.

“It’s up to you, “he said.

“No,” I answered.

He grinned at me but there was no real humor in it. “You didn’t let me finish, Really.”

I tried to sit up but while I slept they’d bound my wrists. There was no headboard and I yanked, thinking it should be easy to get free. Fallon leveled a nasty smile at me and said, “It runs under the mattress, doll. And it’s utility rope. My little offering for the party.”

God, I hated her.

“Finish,” I said to him.

“She stays, we play and then she leaves.” He said that part to her. She frowned but nodded. “Or I can leave you here to rent a car and I go on without you.”

This was all because he’d felt something. This was all because of earlier. I licked my lips trying to say that to him without actually saying that to him.

“Don’t try to change my mind,” he said to me. “Yes or no, Really.”

“I hate her,” I said, acting like she wasn’t there. Because to me she wasn’t. And she dam near shouldn’t be.

“I know. But that will make it better. Different. Interesting.”

“I don’t’ believe you.”

“Take it or o leave it.”

So it was up to me. My decision. Play with Fallon in the mix and then get her gone. Or watch him walk out. All because he said my name. All because somewhere in him he felt something for me beyond fuck buddy and car partner.

I stared into her eyes—brown flecked with an amber color. Feral eyes. Dangerous eyes. I nodded once and she trailed a fingernail down my bare belly. My stupid towel had long since fallen away. My hair was damp and twisted around my face. Fallon took the end and brushed it over my nipple like a paintbrush.

“I know you hate me,” she said, “but God damn am I going to love getting you to say my name.”

Johnny unbuckled his belt and said to her, “Take your clothes off.”


Thursday, April 21, 2011

Cheater Pants Revisited: Wanderlust part 38 "the weirdest man ever" & Wanderlust part 39 "bondage psychotherapy"

Yeah, yeah, I'm cheating. So sue me...Morning, all


part 39
by Sommer Marsden

“How long do you think it will take us to get there?”

“A good traveler has no fixed plans, and is not intent on arriving.”

“Is that the world according to Johnny Turner Rose?”

“Please,” he said and waved a hand at me, “no middle names.”

I laughed. “Sorry.”

“And it was Lao Tzu who said that.”

“You are the weirdest man ever.”

“Thank you.”

I was starving and he had headed toward the restaurants and motels the roadside signs had promised. The silk tie was still draped over his thigh and it made me wet every time I glanced at it. By the time we were alone, I’d be so slippery he’d damn near fall into me.

The Chevy barreled down a black top road with freshly painted yellow slashes in the center. On either side, open fields and on the right our headlights threw a dilapidated barn into the spotlight. It seemed to seemed to belong to no one at all. I couldn’t see a farmhouse no matter how hard I looked. The stark lonely blankness of the whole tableau felt almost welcoming. Peaceful.

We ate at a place called Jolene’s. Not really a diner, more of a hole in the wall bar that happened to serve food. What I would call a honky tonk. Country music played on the juke box and our waitress wore a shirt so tight I could see the indentation of her navel.

I ate ribs and corn and cole slaw, Johnny got a steak. I was starving but didn’t eat. Ravenous but the food did nothing for me. I drank a Pabst Blue Ribbon (on tap, no less) and picked at my ribs.

“I thought you were hungry.” He popped his last fry in his mouth and studied me. I felt naked under that gaze of his.

“I am.”

“You're not eating.”

I shrugged.

“You tired?” He finished off his beer and waved a finger at our server.

She came right to him, like a well trained puppy. He seemed to have that effect on folks. Women, especially.

“Yes and no. I feel wired. Like in college when we’d do uppers and then drink. That buzzed, twitchy kind of thing.”

“Oh, a dark and illegal past.”

“Yeah, I’m a rebel.”

He put money down and caught me staring.

“What?” His big hand plucked mine from the table and he squeezed my fingers. “You surprised I have money?”

I smiled and said, “Yes and no?”

“There must be an echo in here.”

“I just…you were a waiter. A roofer. A candlestick maker?”

“I do odd jobs. I have low overhead.” His face went serious, almost cruel. “No family to take care of. It’s easy to sock some of it away.”

“Fair enough.”

“You ready to go?”

I nodded again. I could feel the watch in my pocket, the round outline pressing against my skin through my jeans. “Yep.”

“Melancholy?” he asked.

It startled me. I don’t know why. It was the exact emotion I was feeling and hadn’t been able to pin point. “Yeah. Creepy much?”

He grinned at me. “It’s a gift. Plus, I recognize it. We’re old friends, melancholy and myself.”

I followed him out, feeling our waitresses eyes on him and her disappointment o see him go. I also felt a stab of jealousy at her attentions.

Our motel tonight was a one level, ugly rose-colored stucco building with a neon sign out front that said VACA--Y.

“You ready for vacay?” he asked, putting the car in park.

He grabbed our bags and I followed him up to the door. His boots crunching over the gravel that lined the walkway.

“Sure thing.” Ready to get naked. Ready to get fucked. Ready to sleep under the watchful eye of Johnny. We pushed into the dimly lit lobby.

Fallon. That was her name according to the gold tag she wore. And she stared me down from behind her too-black bangs. Her gaze on Johnny was much more welcoming. Flirtatious. Slutty.

“Just one?” she asked.

Even though the bitch could see me.

He suppressed a grin and somehow that annoyed me more than her dumb ass question. “Two,” he said.

“Fill this out,” she said, pushing a paper toward him. “Mr. and Mrs…?”

“We’re not married,” I snapped. I did my best not to feel any anger or jealousy. A woman like this—a girl, really—could smell it a mile away. And they liked it.

“Oh,” she said, her voice going up at the end of the word.

Johnny pushed the paper back, dropped some bills on the counter. “Is that enough or a night?”

“You’re due some change,” she said and turned to get it, putting way more sway in her step than she needed to. Displaying a small ass in tight skinny jeans—jet black of course.

I gritted my teeth and tried not to blush, but I felt the heat rising to my cheeks anyway.

Johnny saw me and his arm snaked around my neck as he pulled me to him. Pressing his lips to my ear, he said, “I’m going to fuck you until you weep when I get you in that room.”

And then I was blushing for an entirely different reason. And I couldn’t help but give her an eat-shit-and-die glance when we left. If only I had know.


There was no headboard. Odd, but true. He tugged me to the open closet.

“Put your arms up, sweetheart,” he whispered in my ear and I did. He’d stripped me bare and I stood there in nothing but my earrings. Johnny tied my arms to the metal rod in the barren space. He leaned and kissed me almost chastely. Then he said, “Be right back. I’m going to take a shower.”

“I…what?” I blinked at him, feeling slow and stupid. Was he fucking serious?

“I’m going to take a shower. And then I’ll be back.” He said. He wasn’t smiling, but fuck me hard, his eyes were.

“You’re going to leave me here?”

“Think of it as meditation.”

“Are you insane?”

He shrugged, his big shoulders moving casually. “Maybe.”

“Don’t’ leave me here,” I said. I was going to cry. Which was completely fucking asinine. He wasn’t leaving the state, just the room, but still…Invisible cracks of black fear and red anger opened all over me. My skin stung with the force of my emotion.

“I’ll be back.”


“Aurelia,” he said sternly and leveled a finger at me.

I shut up. Will wonders never cease. I shut up, but my vision had already doubled and then trebled with tears by the time he was out of my line of sight.

I waited until the water cut on to let the sob rip loose of me. It came barreling from me like some invisible creature. I shivered, hanging there, crying, my hair in my face, feeling like a fool. A wet-between-the-legs for him idiot. One who would be waiting right here for him when he came back.

part 39
by Sommer Marsden

And come back he did. Naked, rubbing his head stubble with yet another cheap white towel. His cock was hard, jutting out from a thatch of dark pubic hair. Small beads of water remained on his skin and I envied them. I wanted to lick them off of him or feel them destroyed between us when he pressed his body to mine.

“See what it did to me knowing you were hanging out here waiting for me.” He moved in close, his erection pressing to my hip as he traced the silk tie that bound me to the metal bar. “How do you feel?”



“Because you left me out here.”

“But I was right there.”

“I know.”

“Why were you scared?”

Now I felt angry. What the fuck was this. Bondage psychotherapy?

I shook my head, felt my lips press together and my eyes narrow. I had not been in a good mood since Fallon and now I was pissed.

“Why, Really?” He prodded.

“I don’t know.”

He turned me. I didn’t have much choice but to go, tied up to that eye-level clothing rod. I turned and he delivered one hard smack to my ass. The sound was deafening in the silent room. We hadn’t even flipped the TV on.

I was determined not to make a sound.


“I don’t know,” I lied.

Smack, smack, smack. Heat bloomed in my skin and in my pussy. My body revved up and readied itself for him, recalling the car. The punishment he’d delivered. And the pleasure.

“I think you do.” He pressed his mouth to my ear, his stubble biting the back of my neck. His arm snaked around my waist as he pulled me back to him. My back pressed to his chest, his belly, his hard cock. My eyes slammed shut, my mouth went dry.

God, I wanted him.

“I don’t know,” I sighed. It was nothing more than a puff of air. Barely a sound.

Four more smacks and I could feel the redness, feel my pulse beating in my skin.

“All you have to do is tell me.”

My cunt grew tight, urging me to tell the truth. I bit my tongue, remembered the greedy look of the girl in the lobby. She wanted him. Wanted what I felt should be mine, even though the object of my coveting had made it clear he was a free agent. Didn’t do monogamy well, he’d said.

That’s what made it so hard to admit to him.

“Tell me.”

“You make me feel—“ I bit my tongue. Shook my he had. My hair hung in my face and I hid behind it willingly.

“Come on, Really, talk to daddy.”

An ugly laugh burst out of me. “Daddy is the last name you want to invoke,” I growled.

“Tell daddy what’s the matter.”

He was baiting me.

“Fuck off.”

I got five for that one. And they were hard. Strung together like surges of heat lightning during a late summer storm. My body thrummed, my eyes prickled with tears.

“Why did you get upset?”

“Because you make me feel safe, you ass!” I roared.

And he laughed. There was that laugh again.

But his thick finger delved into my pussy from behind. I was so hot and tight and swollen that one measly finger caused me to moan. Caused my body to clutch up around him.

“Was that so hard?”

“Yes,” I said and that was the truth.

“How do you feel?”


He added a second finger.

“How would you feel if your father was looking for you?”

“Pissed,” I breathed. Another finger joined the fray and he was thrusting, curling, pounding into me with those fingers. Invading my body with his hand and my soul with his questions.

“How do you feel that he’s not looking for you?”

“Pissed,” I sobbed.

“Do you detect a theme, Really?”

I nodded. Exhausted by this stupid exercise in Aurelia Blake.

Johnny held my hips and tilted them toward him. He stepped right up behind me, kicking my ankles apart a bit. I tilted my ass up for him. I hung there limply, letting the weight of my body hurt my shoulder sockets and not caring.

He slid into me with a groan. A man sinking into a hot bath, a comfortable chair…a willing woman. He started to move, both thrusting to me and pulling me to him. He filled me utterly, his lips pressed to the back of my neck as he fucked me.

I made nonsense sounds. I shook my head and tried to hold on but he read me well and reached around me, stroking my clit. I gave up my orgasm easily. It slipped out of me as fluidly as my breath.

It didn’t take much longer for him. Johnny came with a single grunt and a single word. “Really.”


*click the brooch to purchase...

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Buckle Down...

I'm a free read at The Erotic Woman this week. Brand new story, Buckle Down, for your reading pleasure.

I really loved this story. So glad to see it live :)

p.s. speaking of bad do I want that buckle? Super bad, that's how!!

One of the nicest reviews I've ever received...

And I get to be a Recommended Read :)

A five star review and RR read status from Lea at Blackraven Reviews. But beyond all that niceness, it's the review itself I found touching. It's rare to really feel like a reviewer completely "got" your book. Humans, by nature, process things differently. So when I feel a reader/reviewer really, really got where I was going with a always makes me grateful :)

To read the review go here.


Wanderlust part 37 "Ego Check"

I slept in! Shh. Don't tell the man. Okay, so he knows. He knows all. He's the god of my little world. But a benevolent one. He'd say, "you should have slept longer" but I felt guilty. So here I sit, coffee in hand, kidlets still out in dreamland, posting about Johnny Rose and ego checks. Check, check, testing one, two, three...

part 37
by Sommer Marsden

It was past five and we’d been on the road for going on seven hours. The bright lights of the toll booth made me squint and I continued to worry the watch in my fingers like worry beads. I was still dealing with the huge ego check of being dismissed so easily from my father’s life. On the radio Michael Hutchence sang in his honeyed tones, making me feel like a teenager again—and just as fucking confused. I had already been wondering what it would feel like to open the Chevy’s door and just fall free to the blacktop that rushed by us when he’d started crooning to me from the speakers:

Suicide blonde is the color of her hair…

The irony of him singing to me about such things was not lost on yours truly.

We crossed over into Indiana and finally, Johnny leveled those otherworldly blue eyes at me. “You never gonna speak to me again, Snowflake?”

“I’m speaking to you,” I said, stupidly. You’d have to be an idiot not to notice that I wasn’t. It didn’t feel good to do the silent treatment when you knew how childish it was. It also didn’t feel good to be called out for pouting.

But I couldn’t seem to help myself. I didn’t want to talk to him. I knew he didn’t get it, but I fucking could not swallow down the bitter taste of his laughter and amusement.

“Yeah, you’ve been a fucking chatterbox for the last three hundred miles. Oh, stop! Stop talking already,” he said in mock distress. “You’ll talk my ear off with your…word.”

I smiled. Fuck him. I did. What was it about this big scarred up odd-job boy that made all of my defenses fall away like water-soaked spun sugar dissolving in the rain. I shook my head and looked away.

Johnny piloted the car into the rest stop that almost always followed a toll booth. “I have to hit the head. And you might want to powder your my nose.”

“Have you seen me put any makeup at all on?” I countered.

“Figure of speech, sweetheart. Would you prefer I say go pee? Or take a pi—“

“Okay, okay!” I said, throwing my hands up. I popped my door and he laughed.

“Cock and pussy and fuck don’t bother you, but piss does?” He grinned.

I stuck my tongue out. Might as well go all the way with the childish behavior.

“It’s just crude.”

I passed by him and he caught me. Pinned me to the pitted ugly paintwork on his Chevy and kissed me. “Sometimes crude can be good. Remember that.”

I kissed him back. I would forsake my feelings for a kiss, I found out. I kissed him almost angrily and when he let me go, I swallowed hard and said, “I’ll try and remember that.”

“You do that. Now go and make use of the facilities. We need to find a room and food and then I plan to get you naked.”

“What if I’m still mad?”

“So? What if you are?” he asked, his face dead serious. And then he sauntered off to the left of the concrete block building. The façade of it squat and ugly and white as a ghost in the failing fall light.


There was a moon coming on. A harvest moon. No snow, no rain, the wind had a bite and when Johnny threw the headlights on the building in front of us lit up like the sun. The air was bluish purple and I shivered, loving the chill.

“Let me tell you a story, Snowflake,” he said, merging back onto the highway.

“Ooh, story time,” I said. There was still a bit of bitchy-bite in my voice. I rubbed the watch and tapped my foot and wished I didn’t sound so petty.


I waited. Said nothing.

He sighed and I had a split second to think that maybe—just maybe—what he was about to reveal to me was difficult for him. Then he started talking, his voice a freight train rumble over the radio he’d turned down to nothing but a melodic murmur.

“I don’t’ normally tell anyone this. Fuck, I don’t know why I’m telling you this, but I can tell that me laughing at your…upset…pissed you off.”

I still said nothing, but suddenly I felt two feet tall.

“And for whatever crazy reason, I don’t like it when you’re pissed off. Or sad. Or angry. Or any of that greeting card bullshit.”

I tried not to smile.

“Don’t get cocky,” he warned.

I wrestled my facial expression back into submission, presenting him with nothing but an expectant façade.

“When I was a kid there was a broken arm. Just like in your past.”

My face went hot. I felt anxiety crawl under my skin. I already didn’t like what was coming and I didn’t know what it was. But I did. Some part of me did and my chest ached.

“But the arm belonged to me and the breaker was my mamma. There were also several broken fingers and once, a broken collar bone.”

I blew out a sigh and said “Jesus”

“Yeah, he did nothing to help me,” Johnny said, and cracked a smile. “Seems that I was—to my mother—the full reason my father left her. Didn’t matter that she was a drunk. Or that more than once he caught her hooking to get money for her booze and her card games at the bar.”

How mangled was this man inside? I felt damn near pristine to hear him talk. And yet, he dealt with all the bullshit of life way better than me. Maybe it was practice…

“Part of me thinks maybe the old man didn’t think I was his.” He snorted, reached past me and popped the glove box. He withdrew a cigarette and lit it. He dropped the pack in my lap as in invitation to join him. I ran my fingers over the cellophane and heard it complain, but I didn’t light up.

“You know, he might have been right. Who knows who I belonged to. But none of that matters, because to my mother, in here—“ he tapped his temple with a big finger and squinted against the smoke. “To her, where it mattered, he was the love of her fucked up life and I had driven him away. So I had to pay.”

I shook my head, considered the cigarettes but put them back in the glove box and waited for him to go on.

We passed a stretch of jersey walls and abandoned construction and I heard the sing of air and black top under and around the Chevy’s wheels. The streetlights were like miniature moons overhead and in front of us traffic zipped and wiggled because we had officially passed rush hour it seemed.

“So I paid for him leaving her. I paid and I paid and I paid. And when I turned fourteen, I figured I’d paid enough.”

“I bet.” It was whisper coming out of me like a breath.

“And I left. I packed a bag. I stole her money, I took some food, a few things I could sell and I fucking left.”

I found myself nodding. Christ, of course he had. Of course he’d left. Of course!

“And she didn’t look for me,” he said.

I took a breath. And there it was. The reason. The root. The laughter.

“And it was the sweetest fucking feeling in the world. Being out there, no one looking. Just out there and away and not paying for someone else’s sins for the first time in a long time.”

I put my face to the cool glass because I felt suddenly warm and ashamed. I hadn’t know, but still—

“And that is why I laughed. But I think we’re opposite, you and I. To me, the dismissal was the greatest gift. And all you want is for someone to seek you out.”

I nodded, my face brushing the window. I couldn’t talk.

“Well, I’m looking for you. I think there’s more to you, so I’m not hunting you down, but I am with you. And I’m still looking. Still searching for the real Aurelia. Someone is seeking you out, Really.”

I swallowed convulsively even though I could already feel how wet my face was. I reached into my purse at my feet and handed him the tie. “Here,” I said.

“What’s this?”

“I bought it for you,” I said. Softly.

“Wow. Why?”

I shrugged. “I wanted to.”

“But you were pissed at me.”

I shrugged again. Hell, I couldn’t explain it if that’s what he wanted.

“Thanks, kid.” He leaned across fast and kissed me. The Chevy swerved a little and I yelped. “Don’t worry. It’s fine.”

It’s fine. It’s okay. It will be alright…Stupid but his promises of rightness always worked with me.

I smiled. It felt odd on my face at that moment, but good, too.

“A real gentlemanly thing, this is,” he said, draping it across his thigh and studying the signs for lodging along the side of the road. “You know what this means?”


“I have to do something decidedly ungentlemanly with it.”

I found myself swallowing hard again. It was becoming a habit.