You know what else it is? It’s race day. Nascar Nationwide Series racing. I’ll be headed to Charlotte Motor Speedway here in a little bit to cheer on the No. 54 of Kyle Busch. I’ll have my Monster Energy and I’ll be screaming like a nut case. So, before I go, I’ll leave you a little snippet from Trouble In The Making…
”Hi,” she said around a yawn. ”I… Is that…? Do I smell…?” Liz sat up and sniffed. ”Pancakes?” Her eyes scanned the room until they found the brown paper sack that contained overflowing Styrofoam containers. ”Oh my God.” She pointed, then looked at Johnny. ”Are those from…?”
Johnny inclined his head. ”Yeah.”
”But how did you get them here? That restaurant is in San Marco and we’re in St. Augustine.”
”I’m famous,” he said with a straight face and a shrug. He used his fame for many things and most of them had been self-serving in the past, but this, for her, it was one of the most selfless things he’d used it for.
”And you bought me pancakes using your fame?”
”I did.” He got up, stalked slowly to the end of the bed, took Liz’s face in his hands and kissed her. Gentle at first, his calloused, guitar-playing hands caressed her smooth skin, then sifted through her sleep tangled hair to hold her lips to his and deepen the kiss. She moved to wrap her arms around him and he stepped back, laughing at her confused pout. He tapped her on the end of the nose and reached around for the boxes of breakfast. Or rather, lunch now.
He sat on the side of the bed, pulled the first container from the bag and opened it. Her eyes widened when she got a peek inside. Four buttermilk pancakes filled with blackberries were topped with blackberry compote and two plastic-capped cups of maple syrup rested on the side.
”I can’t believe you did this for me.”
”Not just for you, sweetheart. I was a little hungry myself. You’re not the only one who worked up an appetite. You are, however, the only one who took a little snooze.” He punctuated his statements by dipping his finger into the blackberry compote and painting her lips with it. She parted them and took his finger on her tongue, licking the sticky, fruity syrup off. She followed that move with the one of licking the same sticky, fruity syrup off her lips after he removed his finger.
She was teasing him. She was wrapped in the hotel room’s duvet, her body well sexed, her eyes still slightly dreamy, though more now so from the gesture of having had her favorite pancakes delivered from an hour away and still moderately warm at that, and she was teasing him. With her tongue. By licking her lips.
”You’re a naughty girl, Liz. You deserve to be punished.”
”No. No I don’t.”
Johnny chuckled and unwrapped his silverware. The second call he’d made had been to the front desk to let them know he’d need two sets of utensils sent up and set outside the room. Sure enough, it had been sitting on a tray beside the door when he walked the delivery guy back out the door. He handed hers over. ”You do. You’re being a tease. You deliberately teased me with the way you licked your lips and sucked on my finger. Oh yes, darling, you do deserve to be punished.”
”What about the way you teased me? Or… What about the way you used your fame for pancakes. Is this part of your wooing plan? Pancakes? With blackberries?”
The banter. He’d missed it. They were always, above all things, very good friends and something, some part of that, got lost in the translation of growing up and moving on. He wouldn’t trade her friendship for anything, but he wanted more.
”I can’t believe you bought pancakes for us.”
Johnny looked over at her. ”We’ve got to eat, baby.”
”That’s not the point.”
”I know.” And he did. She’d been married just as he had. They’d talked about it over the years and how both had fallen apart. Sparks started and died out. Life moved on. A forkful of pancakes were halfway to Liz’s mouth when she started sniffing at the air. “I smell bacon.”
Johnny laughed and guided the mess on her fork into her mouth before it made a huge mess on the bed and on her. “Good Lord, woman.”
“Are you hiding it?” she asked after she swallowed the bite of pancakes.
“Why would I hide it? You’d sell me out for coffee and bacon. I’d have to be stupid to hide either from you.”
“You’re right, I would. So hand it over.” All Johnny did was smile at her and cut into his own pancakes. Just as he took a bite, she poked him. “Hey.”
“You have definitely not mellowed with age.”
Liz grinned, her teeth purple from the blackberries. Johnny should have been put off by the sight, but he wasn’t. He was charmed and turned on by it. “Are you surprised?”
He produced a wax paper package of bacon from the bag. ”Not in the least,” he replied and offered her the bacon she’d so delicately asked for.
Of course, now I want pancakes. Don’t y’all want pancakes? Damn. So, while I head out for breakfast before heading to the track, you should take a gander at the snippets from the following authors and their blogs…