Today’s theme is Romance and I have to tell you, romantic is the very LAST thing I’m feeling right about now. Between laundry and other Saturday morning chores and the migraine forming, romance is the least the of my concerns, however…
I think romance means different things to different people. It might be cooking for someone or the chocolates and flowers. For others it might be a partner that cleans the house for you or just sitting with you while you watch a movie. It’s an individual thing. For me, romance is, well, at the moment it would be having everything else (house, kids, food, pets) taken care of for me so I could concentrate and get some work done…lol. But another day when I’m not so frazzled and stressed, romance would be just being together, laughing and talking.
Romance doesn’t have to be expensive or complicated. The best kind of romance to me is simply thinking of or being thought of and letting the person know it…
How about a conversation by firelight, though as you’re trying to figure out how to have both the man sitting opposite you and the career you love? How about truly connecting on a level neither of you fully understands, but know is there…
She sat curled in the corner of the couch, closest to the fire while Carson lay stretched out from the other end, one foot on the floor, one on the cushions with his knee bent. He was relaxed, once again just a gorgeous man, and not the predatory one that looked as though he wanted to devour her. For the moment, that part of him was sated. “There are no polar bears in the interior of Alaska,” she said, running her fingers along the soft suede arm of the couch. “There are some up around the Arctic, but not here where you and your family make your home.” She was trying to understand things about them, trying to connect dots inside her head and sometimes the best way for her to do that was to talk to herself, hear it out loud. She knew Carson knew there were no polar bears in the vicinity and that they were farther north, near the water. It was simply her own need to figure some things out, reason them out.
“No, there aren’t.”
“Why do you live here then? Why don’t you live farther north or even around Hudson Bay in Manitoba, or in other parts of the world where they are?”
“My ancestors believed it would be too interesting for people to see us with our hair color and black eyes being around the bears. Over in Manitoba along the bay is where the research was being done, where the splicing happened. We have only been here for the last fifty or so years. My uncles and father built the town and started the supply line. I was born here, and it’s all my brothers and I have ever known. My family didn’t want other people getting suspicious, seeing any kind of curious resemblance to the bears themselves. They have a habit of…wanting to get close to us.”
“The bears? They sense you are kin?”
“Maybe. I don’t know. We are safe here. We have adapted to the slightly warmer climate, and there is a place up along the edge of the Arctic that the men in my family go once a year for a few weeks. It is sacred. There are a few bears, and we care for them. They aren’t tame but they are of no danger to us. Overall they are endangered and fighting to survive. We must do all we can to protect them.”
That was it! That was exactly how she felt about him. Protective. She must protect him. She couldn’t get it out of her head just how special he was, and that her being his mate was an open invitation to experience that specialness every day for the rest of her life. She’d be a fool not to accept.
“Does anyone ever talk about how you and your brothers look alike?”
“Sometimes. We nod and smile. We don’t confirm or deny. For most, we are just part of the tourism, part of the lore and otherworldliness of Alaska.”
“What can I do? What would I do?” She blurted it out without meaning to. She knew he didn’t have any answers for her, that she would have to come up with them all on her own. Whatever decision she made, had to come from her. He couldn’t make it for her, and she knew he wouldn’t.
“What do you mean?”
“Melanie can live and work in Alaska. She studies whales and is a frequent traveler here and to the Pacific Northwest. I, on the other hand, work in museums, libraries, universities. I travel to Greece, Egypt, Europe and all over the U.S. for my work. I write. I…” Her words trailed off at the last, her mind drifting to what ifs and probables. It was the world she lived in best. Always wondering, always trying to put the puzzles together for others. Her own life was very simple. She worked. She went about her routine. She didn’t deviate outside what was the norm for her. Carson, on the other hand, was way outside the norm for her quiet life and she couldn’t deny that she wanted to deviate with him. A lot.
His eyes zeroed in on her face and she was caught, snared, unable to look away. “What do you write?”
“Papers, articles, research. I freelance from time to time about myths and fairy tales, visit fantasy conventions, sit on panels, offer my expert opinion.” She could write more if she so chose. She could write from Alaska and travel to other places. She could even look into creating a small museum in their little town, myths and legends surrounding polar bears or something. There were incredible possibilities here in the vast reaches of North America.
There was no reason she couldn’t relocate and make this her home base. She was just looking for reasons not to. Change didn’t suit her well, and she didn’t adapt to it easily. Hell, until now she hadn’t been outside Chicago any length of time for at least six months, maybe more. Her introvert personality didn’t allow for it. The last trip she’d taken had been for a month to Greece. A dig had uncovered some new drawings and writings depicting the Gods and Goddesses. While she loved the work, the research, the history, she’d spent most of her time alone in her hotel room. She’d been holed up in her apartment writing and conducting online workshops ever since her return.
She always seemed to need a period of time to collect herself again.
“You couldn’t do that here? I can get you anything you need, give you anything you require for your work.”
He was so earnest in his offer, so willing. He firmly believed in the idea of fate, of them being meant to be. He even said he’d wait for her, that it was ingrained in his kind that once they met their mate, they would wait if need be. How was a girl supposed to say no to that?
“I was just thinking about that. I don’t know. It’s quiet here, and I’m used to the noise of the city. I’ve never lived with anyone, slept with anyone for any length of time. I’m a loner and get lost in my work, ignoring or avoiding others sometimes for days or weeks on end. The urban areas make me feel not so alone. I guess that doesn’t make much sense. I’m a loner, but I like the noise.” She shrugged and fiddled with her fingers in her lap. She was suddenly nervous and unsure of herself and of all the possibilities life with him presented. Of all the things she didn’t do well, putting herself out there, being vulnerable to hurt or pain were at the top of the list. “I don’t know how to be someone’s mate, girlfriend, lover.”
“I don’t either. Know how to be a girlfriend, I mean.”
Shock widened her eyes, and her head snapped up. When she saw the serious look on his face, she laughed. He had a sense of humor. Dry, deadpan, but a sense of humor. She loved it. “Well, no, I don’t imagine you’ve been a girlfriend, and I have to say I’m glad about that.”
“Good.” His grin was fleeting but bright in the firelight. “I’ve never lived with anyone, been a long-term lover. I’ve never been anything like I am meant to be with you.”
“Because it is fate or destiny or brought on by dreams?”
He shrugged. “Yes, in part. One cannot fight it. But there is more, Ruby. You feel it, too. I know you do.”
She did. She just wanted to hear him say it. She pulled her knees up and under her body then crawled across the couch to his lap. He welcomed her with open arms when she straddled his thighs. He was a beast—raw, primal, part animal, all hot and hunky man. “What more is there, Carson?”
His fingers slid under the shirt she wore. “You don’t need me to tell you that.”
“No. I want you to though.”
“Well, there’s this,” he said, fingers gripped and pulled at her nipples, rubbing them, pinching them.
Yes, there was that. “And?” She tried not to squirm.
He bucked under her. “This.” He did it again, and she moaned, grinding herself on the bulge in his pants.
Right again. “Anything else?” Her voice was raspy, her throat dry. Her tongue was even dry, and she couldn’t lick her lips.
“Everything else, Ruby.”
Now, while I go take something for the pain in my head, you should click around to the following blogs for more Romance snippets:
Have a wonderful Saturday!