Snippet Saturday – We Are Family

All right now. Surely most of us remember the words to this song, right? C’mon. Sing it in your head.

We are family.

I got all my sisters with me…

Sister Sledge would be proud. 🙂

So, that’s our theme today. Family. What wouldn’t we do for family? Some of us would do anything. Some of us runaway from them. Family should be about love and acceptance and yet sometimes family is the one place where we feel least loved and least accepted. And the drama! Family seems to come steeped in drama…

I love my family. My immediate family. I do include my mom and grandmother and sister and brother in with that. Still, there are those who are not blood related who are just as much family, sometimes more than… Those friends are hard to come by, but once you find one, you should grab hold for dear life.

I would do anything for my family… So would Ruby.

Artic ShiftSnippet:

“Are you really okay with this, Mel? Living up here, working from here? Being married to a shifter? I mean… What did you tell your friends? What are you going to tell Mom and Dad?” Ruby and Melanie sat on the couch in Carson’s living room, the same couch she and he had… The heat crept up again. Damn. She was turning into a regular old slut. Inwardly she smiled. If it meant sex with him wherever and whenever, being a slut was okay with her.

Luckily, Melanie hadn’t been looking at Ruby or there’d have been some explaining for Ruby to do about the color in her cheeks.

“Yes, I am really okay with this. Ruby, it was love at first sight for me when I met James. I can’t explain it and I never fought it. Not like I had with other men. Whereas I always wanted my independence with most of my boyfriends and lovers, one look at James and I wanted him all the time, every moment I was awake. I have to say though, I’m very surprised that you are fighting it with Carson.”

Ruby nodded. “So am I. I’m the believer in the family, and you’re the scientist. Of the two of us, you should be the one having issues, not me.” So then, why did she have issues? They weren’t as prevalent right now as they had been before last night. Something shifted, gave way, opened up during sex with Carson and where before she was concerned with logistics and how it would work, now it didn’t seem as important. Yet, she was clinging to it for all she was worth.

“What exactly is it you have a problem with?”

“Being isolated.”

Melanie nodded. “I understand why that would bother you. I’m used to being off in remote regions sometimes, out in the middle of the ocean others, but you’re used to being surrounded by people, the city, culture. This would seem a little daunting.”

Yes, daunting. Looking out the large floor to ceiling windows of Carson’s living room, the mountains in the distance, the trees surrounding the cabin, the vast sky stretching as far as the eye could see, daunting was a very good word for it.

She was often lost in her own mind, a private person, an introvert, however she was quite at home in a crowded apartment building with people living just on the other side of the walls.

“Is quiet your only issue?”

Melanie’s words brought Ruby’s attention back to their conversation. Was it? Each time she thought about it, she came up with nothing else. Surely there was some other thing keeping her on the fence, something much more substantial than the fact that it was quieter in Alaska than it was in Chicago. “Well, I don’t know Carson all that well. I mean, I’ve known him for what, four days? Or is it five? See I can’t even tell you what day it is. I’m so turned around up here.”

Melanie laughed and hugged her. Ruby clasped her sister tightly, glad to have her solid and strong and familiar there with her. Mel pulled back but held on to Ruby’s hands. “I know. It’s fast. It hits you right between the eyes and doesn’t let go. These men are like magnets and once one of them sets his sights on the woman he is meant to be with, there’s nothing to be done about it. In his mind, the die has been cast and there’s no out. You feel the same pull I did with James, Ruby. You feel the same pull Carson does.”

“His is different than mine.”

“No, Ruby, it’s not. Not really. He feels it in his blood, coursing through him. You feel it in your gut, in your heart. It’s a part of both of you.”

“His is… I don’t know.” Ruby shook her head, failing at finding the right words she was searching her brain for.

“Okay, let me ask it this way. When you first met him, what did you think? What did you feel?”

Hot. Hard. Sexy. “Well, he was naked in my hotel bed.” Melanie laughed and so did Ruby. “I felt safe, no panic, no fear. I thought he was gorgeous, the most beautiful and striking man I’d ever seen.”

“And you trusted him, yes?”

Ruby nodded. She had. Immediately and without question. Thinking back on it now, it seemed rather stupid. He was a perfect stranger, the emphasis on the perfect part because he’d never really felt like a stranger. She should have been scared, full of panic, but it wasn’t until sometime later that the absence of those feelings actually dawned on her.

“He’s your own hero, Ruby. Your own Prince Charming. This is your fairy tale, and he’s his own legend, just like the rest of the men in his family. They are living legends.”

“And no one can ever know about them.”

“No,” Melanie shook her head. “No one can ever know about them, at least not what makes them so very special.”

“You still didn’t answer me about mom and dad. What are you gonna tell them? Hell, I don’t even know what to tell them. ‘Hey, Mom, Dad, Mel and I have shacked up with a couple of ice bear shifters’.”

Melanie laughed. “Yeah, I’m not sure the parental units are going to understand, but you know them, they live their own lives in their own little world. The farm has always been everything to them.”

“True.”

“Look, Ruby, I have a confession to make. I didn’t call or answer your calls because…because I needed you to come find me. I needed you to see them for yourself. I needed you to meet Carson.”

“Why?”

“I saw the way he looked at the pictures of you I had. It was the same way James looked at me the day I met him.[SM1] [L2]  It was an all-knowing look, and I knew that you were the one. The way he would go completely still when he heard your voice on my voicemail saying that you were coming to find me. He got this intense look in his eyes. James said it was the animal kicking in, the need for his mate.”

“But bears don’t really have mates. Not for life anyway. The males don’t even stick around.”

“These hybrid bears do. Fiercely loyal and possessive, protective. They were humans first, but the need and animalistic urge to mate… Once it kicks in, it’s there for good. Besides, Carson’s a catch.”

Ruby couldn’t argue with that, but she wanted to know why Melanie thought so. “Why?”

“Oh don’t pretend you don’t know why. Honey, the man can cook.”

end Snippet

Now, speaking of family, I am with mine. Presently, they are all asleep in the hotel room… We’re having a little getaway for the weekend. I have to pick up some packages for Authors After Dark and it’s so close to Charleston, South Carolina that I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to stick around and explore.

While I’m doing that, y’all take some time to read through the following blogs for more snippets:

Megan Hart:Read in bed!
Leah Braemel
Jody Wallace
Eliza Gayle
Mandy M Roth
Mari Carr
McKenna Jeffries
Myla Jackson
Taige Crenshaw
Shiloh Walker
Delilah Devlin
HelenKay Dimon
Lauren Dane
TJ Michaels

~lissa

Working Through The Fog

The other day I made a comment about finally being able to write. Maybe.

I’d gone a day and a half with no scene in my head. Nothing. Not for any book I’ve been working on. See, I’m so focused on the one I’m trying to finish, the one that’s closest to being finished that I can’t clear enough headspace for the others. That’s what its like for me when the ending is near. I want to solely focus, give my individual writing attention to finishing. But every so often, though the end is right there, I can’t see it clearly enough. I can’t hear dialogue. I can’t see surroundings. And the harder I try, the foggier it gets. The more I try to force it, the farther away and harder it becomes.

I don’t want to write useless words that I’ll just have to cut later. And yes, I know the experts say write everyday. No matter if it sucks, write anyway. Well, I don’t always fall into that camp. I don’t want to spend hours on something only to have to scrap just to say, I wrote today. No, I want the right words, even if it means waiting a few days until the vision, the voices, the kick in the ass comes.

I play games with my son, I pin on Pinterest, I cook or bake or reorganize something, I clean and the whole time, I’m thinking, I’m pondering, I’m working inside my head, rearranging thoughts and ideas and then it hits…

This is what happened the other morning while I was reorganizing my cookbook shelves. The scene began to take shape and the longer I worked at the cookbooks, arranging and rearranging, the closer I came to the end of the book.

Finally, it was time to write…

If you’re a writer, how do you get through the fog?

~lissa

Cocked and Loaded Giveaway Winner!

So, we had fun with this hop, yes? I asked you to tell me about your favorite erotic romance book/author and wasn’t really surprised at the answers. Cherise Sinclair and Maya Banks were the name most given… There was a mention or two of Laurann Dohner and Kallypso Masters, even Delilah Devlin and Tara Lain, Shayla Black, but for the most part, it was Cherise and Maya.

Let’s get down to the winner of Twisted Up or Melting Jane and Unbridled, shall we…? And her name is…

Vanessa The Jeep Diva

I will be in contact Vanessa! Thanks to all who played along and I will be participating next in a BDSM Hop, so stay tuned…

~lissa

Snippet Saturday – Midnight Rider

I’m gonna have to be honest and tell y’all that I have no idea what today’s Snippet theme is about. I’ve listened to the song and… Just haven’t got a clue. So, I’m just going to have to go it on instinct and well, if I’m way off base, then I’m way off base…

Snippet:

The headlights flashed through the front window one minute after midnight. Thor smiled, took a deep breath, and opened the garage door, waiting for Bobby to exit his flashy little car. He found it somewhat funny, the turn of events, how less than a month ago Bobby had been Robert and someone Thor had looked upon with… Well, he wasn’t sure how hed ever really thought about the man. Fascinated, for sure, but he couldn’t say he’d ever been interested in him.

Then again, maybe he had. Subconsciously at least.

To say he’d been surprised when Bobby turned from the cross last weekend and Thor’d seen who he’d been lusting after, who he’d been unable to stop thinking about, would be a gross understatement. Bobby didn’t have the greatest reputation with women and Thor didn’t want to find out or be the first in a long line of men. He’d been unsure about Bobby’s true commitment to this, but at the same time, it was new for both of them, too. Thor wanted it bad enough that he was willing to give it a hundred percent attention and effort. He hoped Bobby wanted it just as bad.

That Thor’s erection hadn’t gone down in six days, no matter how many times he beat off, was testament to the attraction, the lust, the need Bobby inspired in him. It definitely dipped well below the surface.

He’d never been hung up on the closet, coming out or staying in, however when presented with the reality of having to make a choice, of having to make the decision, Thor’d done so in the most public way possible at the time. Since he sent Bobby home last Friday night, he’d wondered if perhaps other men would affect him the same way as Bobby, kind of like being a kid in a candy store. He’d stepped out could freely sample the variety around him. The more he looked at other men, though, the more Bobby’s face filled his mind, the feel of Bobby’s lips under his, the texture of Bobby’s bare ass beneath his hand. Thor didn’t want anyone else.

Bobby got out of his car and clicked a button on the key fob in his hand. A little beeping sound filled the otherwise quiet night as an internal theft alarm set. Thor stood in the doorway between the garage and the kitchen as Bobby walked toward him. He’d dressed in jeans tonight, and as he got closer Thor could see the shirt Bobby wore was a black button down. Black boots thumped on the wooden steps and then, Bobby was eye to eye, chest to chest with Thor.

“Hey.”

Thor smiled at the word, at the tentative softness in Bobby’s voice. “Hey. You’re a minute late. Second thoughts?”

“Traffic light missed a cycle.”

“Yeah? The one around the corner?”

Bobby nodded. “Yeah.”

“You staying?”

“If you’ll have me.”

Thor’s heart kicked in his chest and his cock pressed itself against the wool of his kilt. “Come on in,” he said, happy his voice didn’t betray his caveman desire to push Bobby to the ground.

Bobby preceded him. “Nice house.”

“Thanks,” Thor said as he pushed the button to close the small one car garage. When it was down, he closed the kitchen door behind him.

He lived in an older part of town, having bought an abandoned fixer upper for nothing more than the unpaid taxes at auction. He’d completely remodeled it over the last year and while the outside fit in with the neighborhood, the inside was all him.

Pride filled him as Bobby stepped through the kitchen doorway and let go a low whistle of appreciation. Thor stood against one of the black granite counters and let Bobby look around unhampered.

“Did you do all the work yourself?” Bobby inquired as he moved from one open space to another, pausing every now and then to study something.

The all black galley kitchen gave way to a muted gray living room. Replicas of Scottish swords lined one wall while images of Scottish castle ruins lined another custom black and red frames he’d made.

“I did.”

“I know which end of the hammer to use and how to screw in a light bulb, but that’s about the extent of my home improvement knowledge.”

“I guess it’s not a job requirement in a law firm.”

Bobby laughed and shook his head, stopping in the center of the room. He slid his hands into his pockets, his eyes roaming from one corner to next, following the seamless walls up to the ceiling and back down again. “No, it isn’t.”

The living room seating consisted of two black upholstered couches, and black barstools padded in red leather lined the breakfast bar as the only eating area.

“You don’t like the color black at all, do you?”

The question was asked with a smile and the answer given was done with the same light tone. “Fuck you.”

The mood however changed in an instant as the last word left Thor’s mouth. Their eyes connected and in less time than it took for him to draw breath, Thor had Bobby up against nearest wall. “I like a great many things,” Thor whispered, nipping at Bobby’s bottom lip, tugging, sucking it between his teeth, before letting go to slide his tongue inside Bobby’s mouth. It had been too long, six days too long since he’d kissed the man he couldn’t stop thinking about.

Bobby met him stroke for stroke. He slid his hands around Thor’s waist and up his back. The moan he gave Bobby to swallow when Bobby pulled the rubber band from Thor’s hair and gripped the strands in his fists was quickly followed by another. It felt good, so fucking good to be touched, to be wanted, to be with the man against his wall.

Thor pulled away from the kiss and opened his eyes to find Bobby’s bright blue ones focused on him. If he let himself, he could drown in those orbs and he tried to mentally shake himself out of the haze of lust clouding his brain. But, if he were honest, he’d admit he didn’t want to. He wanted Bobby. Had wanted him for the last couple of weeks, probably longer, probably since the first time he’d seen him at the haunted house. It didn’t really matter though. All that did matter was Bobby being in his house, Bobby giving himself to Thor.

“Play first or talk?” Just this once, he’d give Bobby the choice.

“Play.”

“You sure?”

“Yes sir.”

“Damn good answer, boy.” Thor touched the buttons on Bobby’s shirt. “Good shirt?”

“No sir.”

“Damn good answer again,” Thor muttered, lifting both hands to rip the shirt open over Bobby’s chest. Buttons popped and flew across the hardwood floor. Bobby grunted and pulled his bottom lip between his teeth. Thor smiled. “Get naked. I’ll be right back.”

Bobby swallowed. “Here?”

Thor was mesmerized by the movement of Bobby’s Adam’s apple and fought against the urge to tilt his head and take a bite. “Right here. Naked. Now.”

Check out the following authors and their snippets…

Megan Hart:Read in bed!
Leah Braemel
Jody Wallace
Eliza Gayle
Mandy M Roth
Mari Carr
McKenna Jeffries
Myla Jackson
Taige Crenshaw
Shiloh Walker
Delilah Devlin
HelenKay Dimon
Lauren Dane
Shelli Stevens
TJ Michaels

Have a great Saturday, y’all!

~lissa

Snippet Saturday – Reunited

I can’t get the song out of my head now! C’mon, y’all sing along too with Peaches and Herb in your head. If you’re old enough to remember the words, that is…

“Reunited and it feels so good
Reunited ‘cuz we understood
There’s one perfect fit and sugar this one is it
We both are so excited ‘cuz we’re reunited, hey-hey”

Okay well, now, back to present day…lol. Reunited is today’s theme and I have the perfect book for that. But it’s not the kind of sexy snippet you’re probably expecting. See, Buck (Sweet Caroline), Decker (Cracklin’ Rosie) and Cort (Forever In Blue Jeans) have been friends for years, but it’s been a long time since the three of them have been together in the same place… And it’s one of the reasons I love this book.

Snippet:

Cort stood against the deck railing of Buck and Caroline’s house. “Cabins, huh? I thought you just lured me up here to set me up with a woman needing an electrician.”

Buck grinned. “The cabins, for sure. The set-up? I ain’t copping to that.”

“Uh-huh,” Cort said skeptically. He knew them better than they thought he did. “Tell me about your business idea.”

“I want to construct cabins all up and down the mountains. I could see it the second I got up here. Everything is natural and awe inspiring.”

“I can’t argue with that. It is something else. A whole other world surrounded by these trees and all the nature, but aren’t there already a ton of cabins around here?”

“Yeah.”

Cort waited for Buck to elaborate, but when he didn’t… “Then what would make ours special?”

“Green.”

“Green? As in color or eco?”

“Eco.”

“Damn, Buck.” Cort whistled low. “You realize how expensive that would be? Not only for us but for the buyers?” Buck sat forward, an earnest look on his face and in his eyes. Cort knew that look well and braced himself.

“Look, we’ve all done a little eco building over the last few years. We all have some contacts in different areas. We can all learn, get the certification, but I think it would be our unique niche. Especially if we can make it more affordable. The cabins might be a little smaller, but I know we can make this work. I’ve put a lot of thought into it. I’ve made a lot of phone calls. There aren’t many green cabins up here yet. I think it’s a good time to do this.”

Cort couldn’t argue with that. The three of them could get any certification they needed and Buck was right, between them, they had all the contact names and numbers. He also couldn’t deny how often he’d thought of working alongside his friends. Maybe he–

“Have y’all seen the blue haze of the mountains in the distance?” Caroline spoke up from her seat on the arm of Buck’s chair.

The way Buck looked up at her when she said anything, the way he was always touching her, whether it be her hair or her back or just her arm, Cort had never seen his friend look happier, more content. Same way Decker was with Rosie. His friends had each found “the one”, and while he would never have admitted to believing in her for himself, he knew she existed, had in fact existed for the last five years.

“No.” Cort shook his head.

“Well, they’re called the Blue Ridge Mountains for a reason. The haze comes from the trees, from a chemical they emit into the atmosphere. It mixes with other chemicals in the air and creates a haze, moisture to protect the leaves from the sun. It’s one of the most beautiful sites I’ve ever seen.”

“It sure is. There are some mornings Rosie drags me out of bed just to look out over the mountains.”

Cort laughed. “You’re so whipped.”

“Not as whipped as she is.” Decker winked as he said it and grinned from ear to ear.

“Okay, okay.” Cort held up his hands in surrender. “TMI, man, TMI. Back to this business idea. Equal shares?”

Buck laughed and nodded. “Equal shares.”

“And you’re both certain you want to get into this?”

“I am.”

“Me too.”

Cort looked from one to the other of his two best friends in the world. He knew they wouldn’t steer him in a direction that was wrong or unstable, even though at the present time the construction industry was a bit on the unstable side. But the eco-boom going on would provide some interesting challenges, experiences, and income. He wasn’t one to shy away from the challenges, and it wasn’t as though he had a permanent address right then. He tried not to think of Blue, of her address and how it could likely be his too, of how things had been left when Neil arrived and gave Cort an excuse to leave.

Before arriving in Blue Ridge, he’d have said he didn’t care to settle down anymore. He was happy roaming, not being any one place for too long. On the surface, anyway. Deep down he wanted what he’d always wanted: the wife, the white picket fence, the kids, and pets. He wanted the summer evenings on the front porch and the Christmases complete with decorations and lights and midnight assemblies of toys.

He pulled himself from those thoughts and refocused on the conversation at hand. It was iffy that Blue would even have him for a lover now, much less as more. “How hands-on would we be?”

Buck slid back in his seat and wrapped his arm around Caroline. “I figure at least one of us would have to travel to each site pretty regular, and I want to do the actual building on-site. I don’t want to manufacture something and have it shipped in. I want to build on-site. I want to use as much of the natural materials of the land as possible. I know we’ll need to hire a few people, but for the most part, I want us to do the work. It’ll help keep some of the costs down and we’ll be able to keep an eye on everything from the ground up.”

“How much funding do you think it’s going to take outside of what we each contribute?”

Buck smirked. “More than I want to think about. My father will pony up some as an investment, and a few of his guys will be available to us as workers.”

“We always talked about going into business together. Now that Decker and I are in the same area, we’d hoped you’d consider joining us.”

“Yeah, man. It’s time, I think. We’re settling down, or at least Buck and I are settling down. I think it’s something we all would like and like Buck, I don’t think there’s a better place to do something like this.”

He couldn’t argue with either friend. “I assume you have figures and a business plan.” Cort was the more cautious of the three of them. Always wanting to know everything up front. Always needing to know where the exits were. It had served him well, but it also kept him from experiencing a lot of the spontaneous fun in life. Decker and Buck were forever telling him to lighten up, to just have fun, to just live in the moment without having to know all the details before making a decision.

At the same time, this was a big damn decision and a lot of damn money. Not that he didn’t have more than enough to put into this new venture, and they wouldn’t steer him wrong, but he needed to see all the facts and projections.

Buck nodded. “Yes, I have everything you need to look at.”

“Good. I’ll do that and get you an answer in a few days. When are you looking to get this underway?”

“I want to have everything in place by the time the ground thaws in the spring.”

“All right. That will give me enough time to finish up a few projects I’d committed to for the next few months.”

“You got more than Blue’s place to do?” Buck asked, taking a swallow of tea.

The move prompted Cort to pick up his own glass of tea. It was the best sweet iced tea he’d ever had. While he was a boy from out West, he had developed quite a taste for the Southern elixir. “Yeah. There’s a townhouse in Charleston, and in the fall, I need to head out to Texas for a job that was put on hold a while back. The guy thinks he’ll have the money to finish it up before winter.”

“If it would help, I can work on Blue’s place.”

“I’m the electrician.”

“I can do some.”

Cort grinned. “Yeah, but I can do it all. Besides, you’re not the expert on historical homes.”

Decker shielded his eyes. “Okay, you two. Put the dicks away. I don’t really care to see you compare whose is bigger.”

Caroline grinned. “You might not, but I wouldn’t mind seeing.”

“Like hell.” Buck held up his hands in surrender. “I give. You’re right, but if she needs any general work…”

“Yeah yeah. I can do that too, remember?” Buck had a lover he was head over heels for, but that didn’t mean Cort was going to give the other man any reason to spend an inordinate amount of time with Blue.

Good God, he was jealous. There was nothing to be jealous about, but damn… What the hell other explanation was there?

“I haven’t been out to the plantation yet, but Rosie said it really is beautiful.”

“It is. It’s been well taken care of, and it’ll be great as a bed and breakfast.”

“It’s not open to the public right now, though, is it?”

“No, I don’t think so. I think she’s concentrating on the renovations. It’ll need work after the electrical is done. Looks like electric light was added back in the forties, but the last work that was done was around the sixties or seventies.”

“So you’re rewiring the whole house?”

“Yeah. I’m going to hire some local guys, maybe from down in Atlanta to come and help me out. No way I can do it all myself. I need to go through the place, make some calls, and write up an estimate. It won’t be cheap, but she’ll get exactly what she wants.”

Buck nodded. “I’ve made a few contacts just over the Tennessee border. There are some local guys who grew up around these areas that might be willing to lend a hand.”

“You think there’s some that are skilled enough?”

“Won’t know until we start asking around. Might be good to train some of the young guys around here. A lot of them could stay, and the more that stay, the more work that’s needed.”

“Rosie said there’s a lot of tourism around this time of year and into the fall,” Decker added.

“Yeah. Busy times up here. Could draw more people if there were more places for them to stay. Not to mention, it could bring in a whole different type of clientele.”

“You’re really getting into this small-town thing, aren’t you?”

“I am. I never thought I’d like a town this small, but Caroline was right. It kind of grows on you.”

“And you?” Cort turned his gaze on Decker who looked him square in the eye. “You’ve always traveled everywhere, just like me. You’re okay here? You like it?”

“Yeah, man. I do. It’s time to stop roaming.” Cort wasn’t ready to admit he agreed. He only nodded and finished off his glass of tea.

“We’ve got time to see how it all shakes out. For now, though, I’m hitting the hay.”

Decker snorted. “That’s not all you’re gonna be hittin’.”

Buck grinned. “Nope. Y’all can show yourselves off Caroline’s porch.”

Cort and Decker watched as Caroline slid off the arm of Buck’s chair, saw the look in the man’s eyes when she went inside. Buck followed her through the glass doors and locked them firmly behind himself. “Well, I guess that’s our cue.”

end Snippet

Make sure you visit the following blogs for more Reunited snippets:

Megan Hart:Read in bed!
Leah Braemel
Jody Wallace
Eliza Gayle
Mandy M Roth
Mari Carr
McKenna Jeffries
Myla Jackson
Taige Crenshaw
Shiloh Walker
Delilah Devlin
HelenKay Dimon
Lauren Dane
Shelli Stevens

Have a great Saturday!

~lissa