Monday, April 30, 2012

Monday Madness

Sorry about the late post, was in the hospital from noon yesterday to about two in  the afternoon today with chest pain. No mania today, just a lot of tests and a little i.v. potassium. All is well in Casa Noel now, however, and we will resume our regularly scheduled programming tomorrow. :)

Sunday, April 29, 2012

A Snog from William Neale's final book~~ Hope


“Can I carry him?” Spencer whispered a few minutes later.

“Sure, go ahead. He’ll just be pissed tomorrow when he finds out he slept through it.”

Spencer carefully and gently lifted the sound-asleep boy from the daybed, cradling him in his arms. Like a lightning bolt from the sky he was struck with awe. It was a totally unexpected feeling of love and paternal protection he’d never imagined existed in him. In the flash of a second, he understood every reason why Hunter had adopted this boy. He wanted to hold Ethan in his arms like this and watch him sleep for the rest of the night. He looked so innocent and even angelic; it was the most beautiful sight he had ever seen.

“Uh—Spencer,” Hunter whispered with a knowing smile, “we need to go. The door’s this way,” he pointed as he pushed Ethan’s wheelchair in that direction. Whispering their goodbyes to Harvey and Marge, they quietly returned to the warm yellow light glowing from the cracked-open door of the stone cottage.

Just as Spencer began to ever-so-softly lower Ethan onto his bed, the boy opened his eyes and blinked twice in disbelief. “Oh, just wait till I tell Dad what I dreamed,” he murmured groggily. “My friend Spence tucked me in.”

As his head hit the pillow, Ethan’s eyes closed again but a smile remained on his sleeping face. Knowing there was always a chance that Ethan might never wake, Spencer could no longer contain tears in his eyes. He leaned down and kissed Ethan’s forehead and then looked up to see Hunter watching, standing close, smiling.

“My God, what just happened?” Spencer said a minute later, now returned to the living room sofa where they both sat. He brushed his eyes with the back of his hand.

“That, my friend, is why I get up every day.”

“I’ve never felt anything like that in my life. Never. For just a few minutes I felt like he was my son too. It was like an epiphany. Gosh, I hope that doesn’t offend you.”

“Do you know how many potential boyfriends have run away from here as fast as they could as soon as they found out about Ethan?” He paused, blushing. “Not that you’re a potential boyfriend, of course. I’m saying this badly, but know that I’m pleased and honored you like him so much.”

“Would you like me to be a potential boyfriend?”

“Well—uh—I can’t imagine why someone like you would be interested in just a plain looking, ordinary cello player with a sick kid.”

Spencer scooted closer to Hunter and looked him closely in the eye. “I don’t think I’ve ever seen a more beautiful and extraordinary man than the one I’m looking at right now.”

He gripped Hunter’s neck with one hand and pulled him closer so that their lips touched first tentatively and then with certainty in the emotions Spencer wanted to communicate. And with the connection of their tongues and the dulcet sounds of soft, small moans coming from both their throats, he wrapped his arms around Hunter and pulled him even closer.

Seconds, maybe minutes later, they parted, both breathing heavily. Spencer could feel his erection pressing urgently inside his jeans and he had to force himself to pull away and take a deep breath before things went any further. He felt an attraction for Hunt unlike any he had ever known.

“Wow. Oh wow—I wasn’t expecting that,” Hunter gasped.

“I’m sorry, Hunt. God—I’m so sorry. I don’t know what came over me. That was way out of line and I apologize. I’ll leave right now.”

“No—Jesus—don’t go. I didn’t say I didn’t like it. It’s just—damn—I haven’t been kissed like that in a very long time.”

“You mean you’re okay with it?”

Hunter smiled with a tease in his eye. “Well, maybe to be sure, we should try it again.”

Their second kiss melted into a third, fourth, and fifth until keeping count was entirely a meaningless exercise. Spencer was painfully erect and at some point, he realized Hunter’s hand was gripping his cock through the taut denim fabric of his pants.

“Maybe I really should be going,” he breathed into Hunter’s ear, “before things get out of control.” He couldn’t resist biting lightly on the soft, pink lobe before pulling away.

“Mmmm,” Hunter moaned. “No—please—don’t go.” He lifted up to meet Spencer’s eyes. “Listen—I haven’t asked a man this question in a very long time and that’s the God’s truth…” Hunter glanced away for a brief second to steel his courage. “But would you like to stay the night?”

William's final book, complete with a moving forward by his longtime partner can be found at MLR Press

The original Sunday Snog by Victoria Blisse will 
lead you to a wealth of other talented snoggers.

Go On. Get You Some.

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Saturday on the Run... with Snark

Hey Babies,
I woulda posted this earlier, but I was doing some volunteer work with a local women's outreach program. It's called The Women's Respite Program, and was started about twenty-five years or so ago by this awesome nun named Sister Diane.

Sister Diane had seen a lot of women in the course of her work who were... well, just plain worn to a frazzle, and who had little to no hope of ever having a realio, trulio vacation. These were women living right at the hard edge of poverty, or fighting the big C (cancer) or Grandmothers suddenly back in the saddle and raising their children's children. Sister Diane thought that was a shame, so she decided to do something about it. What she did was create the retreat.

I went to the retreat last summer and it was truly a turning point for me. I found a place of peace in myself that I never knew was there. I found a love for myself and my fellow women that was uplifting and inspiring in a way I'd never experienced before...

I came away from that wanting to give back. So I do. I volunteer on the steering committee for The Women's Respite, and I love being able to do so. It's a gift and a blessing.


Snark time: I am trying to think of something witty and snarktastic to say... and I'm coming up empty... how about you all just go check out Tian and the boys giving an interview to Cedric over at the Immorytal Revolution?

Here's the addy.
Get there now, cause there's free stuff to be had.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Thursday Think Tank: Mirror Image

You know, there are so many days that get away from me, days where I have a zillion things to accomplish, and only get about one or two at most done... or so it seems... but today I decided to flip the script and not look so hard at the should do things, but actually take stock of what I've accomplished. And let me tell you, it's quite a bit. :)

Eh, not too interesting a read today, but hey... If you flip the script, and look at what you actually accomplished today, or this week, or month or year... well, how are you doing? Me? I'm rocking the house.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Wednesday Work in Progress

From The Flight of a Thousand Cranes: An Unedited Excerpt

The bookstore teemed with activity. William stared around the store, barely managing to keep his jaw from visibly dropping open. Same sex couples walked around hand in hand. A man was reading from aloud to what could only be his partner or lover judging from the intimate way they stood pressed against one another. The section they stood in was labeled Erotica. A tendril of fire snaked down from the flower in William’s chest to curl into his groin. He began to move forward, one step at a time, lured by the way the slightly taller man curved into his slightly shorter and far stockier partner.

“I love Johnny Miles’s stuff. I just wish he’d write a whole book.” The taller man snuggled into his partner as he spoke, his eyes drifting over to land on William. William swallowed rapidly, averting his eyes and reaching blindly for the first thing in front of him. A magazine fell into his hand, the name Blueboy blazoned across the front. William flicked it open and nearly swallowed his tongue. Beautiful men stared out from the pages of the magazine, posed in what could only be called provocative ways. The fire in his belly moved lower. He hastily put the magazine back on the shelf and hurried to a safer section of the store.

After poking around for a bit, feeling hopelessly lost, he plucked up the courage to approach one of the clerks and ask for some guidance. With heavily guided assistance, he picked out three likely looking books, the first two of which were Tales of the City by Armistead Maupin, and The Front Runner by Patricia Neil Warren, both romantic and touted by the clerk as must read works of fiction. The third book came about in response to his question as to whether the store had anything uplifting to read about someone with cancer. The clerk looked at him strangely when he asked, but William did not explain. He felt he had bared he soul to strangers as many times today as was possible. Something of what he thought must have shown in his eyes, for the rotund clerk dropped the look and took him, strangely, to the children’s section.

Once there she handed him a book called Sadako and the Thousand Paper Cranes, by Eleanor Coerr. Seeing the little Japanese girl depicted on the cover shook William, but when he tried to hand the book back to the clerk, somehow his fingers refused to release it. He carried the books to the front of the store, and got in line to pay certain he would be able to set the book down before he left, or at least hand it to the clerk and tell them he was not interested.

Finishing up at the checkout counter, William decided to see about getting a coffee. Walking toward the front of the store with a bag in hand containing not one, but two actual gay love stories, William felt easier in his skin. He belonged now, just as surely as the couple he’d seen upon entering the store.

He decided to wait out front for a bit, to see if Jon would come back. It seemed far-fetched… but really what reason could the man have had for promising to come back unless he really meant it? Finding a low wall to sit on, he settled in and deliberated which book to choose. Flipping to the end of The Front Runner showed that one of the main characters died. William dropped the book back into the bag as though it burned his hands.


This weekend was all about life. He had checked the ending of the other novel while he was browsing. It was confusing, but no one seemed to be dead or dying, so he decided that one would do to while away a bit of time. William reached into the bag, but the book that came to his hands was not the intriguing tale of the zany characters residing on Barbary Lane the clerk had told him of. Instead the slim volume detailing the path of a little girl’s hope clung to the tips of his fingers as though determined he should read it right then. A warm breeze blew past, and for just a second William could swear he smelled the warm sage and earth scent of his Nana.

William shrugged. He had nothing better to do and a whole weekend to fill. He opened the book and began to read what the back cover touted as, “Sadako’s inspiring story”. He could use a little inspiration right about now.

A half an hour later, when a heavy shadow fell across his face and the closed book in his lap, William had come up with a perfect plan. He tilted his head back, wondering who could possibly—“Jon!”

His former taxi driver fell back half a step, his face creasing into what William was beginning to think was a characteristic wide white smile. “That’s a fine greeting. I should always have handsome young men calling out to me so enthusiastically. My reputation would be set as the man to be seen with.” As Jon spoke, the corners of his eyes crinkled up until the big man’s eyes seemed to be smiling the very own smiles separate from his mouth.

William jumped to his feet. “Jon, do you know where I can get a tattoo?”

Jon’s brow rippled with surprise. “A tattoo?”

William opened his mouth, words tumbling over one another to escape the confines of his throat. “I read this book and it reminded me of a story my Nana told me a long time ago and I thought I surely don’t have the time to fold a thousand cranes, not even if I had help, and then I remembered I always wanted a tattoo so I thought—”

Jon’s frown fell away, and a chuckle burst out of him. “Hold on, hold on. I think this is going to take a bit of explaining. Why don’t we go get something to eat? You can spend more than a moment to explain what has you so tickled you’re practically dancing with excitement.” Jon paused for a moment, and then continued with some trepidation in his tone. “Please tell me you’re not always like this.”

William took his turn at bursting into surprised laughter. “No, no. I am very quiet usually. I—today has been most unusual. I’d like to eat something. That sounds like a very good idea.” He paused. “I didn’t know if you would come back.”

Jon nodded. “I know. It’s why I hurried.”

William wished fiercely in that moment that his Nana could have met Jon. They would have liked one another, and there was something in Jon… something hurt and sorrowful that William was sure he would not have time to reach, and he wanted very badly to have time to be kind to someone like Jon who had taken the time to see a stranger with what Nana called the Aphrodite Gaze. She told William that if he could look out at the world with the eyes of love, he would never fail to find beauty.

With his back to the street, Jon turned toward the right, and William followed him. “Do you like seafood, William? There’s a place up here that makes soft-shell crab that could tempt a man to sell his mother for.” As he spoke, he placed one of his broad palms on William’s shoulder, giving a gentle squeeze. William eased then, all the places strung tight within him simply loosening. He tilted his head back and back again to look up into Jon’s face. “I’ve never had crab. I like fish though, if that helps.”

Jon’s mouth flapped open and shut with no discernible words coming out. He stopped and turned to fully face William. “Never? There must be a law somewhere. Come on, William. Today is a good day to have your first taste of soft-shell, and I can’t think of a better place to do so than D.C.”

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Tantalizing Tuesday

Just because I can.
More from Changeless: Raw, babies, and right off the press

Chapter Two ~ Starting at the Beginning

Calvin stared out the window of the Greyhound bus as they pulled out of the bus station in Marquette. He was gonna miss the hell out of Sean. The sun broke the horizon over Lake Superior just as the bus swung onto highway 41 though, and the orange glow over the water seemed to be pushing him forward. These last months in Marquette had been… shitty. Cal couldn’t explain why exactly. Just the whole never been no-where, never done nothing had gotten to the point where it just choked him from morning til night. Sometimes he woke up at two or three in the morning just crushed by the inertia of the place.

Cal wasn’t stupid. He knew for some people Marquette was a destination they’d never been to, someplace exciting and new. Not for him. The town was shitload of bars, a college campus that seemed to house the losers of the nation and the only things that made it worthwhile at all were Sean and the breakwall. And the breakwall had a goddamned fence up across the foot of it now because some dumb punk college kid with all his brains in his dick had gotten drunk and gone out there in a storm.

The boy died, and Cal thought that sucked, but he really couldn’t stand living in a place where it was a big fucking deal that they might get a Wal-Mart in a year or five without at least two things to make life bearable, and now he only had one. And after Sean’s parents both died he might only have none.


Sean’s folk dying was a great big shit sundae. Losing access to the breakwall after that was simply the cherry on top. Cal couldn’t even really be mad at Sean for bailing on their plans—the phone in the pocket of his fleece beeped at him.

“Big dork. You should be sleeping so you have energy when you get to Detroit. :p”

Sean sent the text with a picture attached of him crossing his eyes and sticking both fingers up his nose. Cal laughed.

“Dude. You are soooooooo the bigger dork. Wish you were here man.”

Cal hit send and then wished he could unsend the last sentence. The first one was fine, but the big ole slobbery ‘I miss you, man’ of the last one just reeked of Needy-Neddy-Nerd. He smacked his hand over his face. Guh.

Of course Sean didn’t let him get away with it.

“Nice Neddy moment there, bro. Hahahahahaha. Ur a dork.”

Sean sent five texts in a row then, one right after another. The first was just a close-up picture of Sean, his full lips all puckered up like he was about to lay one on the camera. Cal’s head pounded from the wine they’d drunk the night before and his heart thumped against the inside of his ribcage. In the next one the camera was pulled back far enough to show Sean’s naked chest and his hand pointing to the word ‘my’ written across it. Cal’s heart sped up a little. In the third photo, Cal wasn’t sure what—oh, hell no he didn’t—that was a pic of Sean’s ass.

Cal cracked up loud enough to earn himself a dark look from the bus driver. There were two more messages, and Cal accidentally skipped the fourth one and pulled up number five. A big ole fancy lollipop with rainbow swirls lay centered in the screen. Cal’s eyes grew huge in his face. He looked back down at the pic of the candy, and yep, there was most definitely a minus sign or dashy thing in front of the sucker.

Cal’s fingers flew over the keypad. He didn’t dare open the fourth text in public.

“Holy shit, Sean. Did you just call me a cock-sucker?”



The phone sat silent for nearly a half an hour before it beeped again. Cal very carefully closed it. He wanted to l—he wanted to kick Sean’s ass. What if he’d just opened that without paying attention? There coulda been a kid or something. Cal laid his head back against the seat and drifted as the lake slid by on his left. He fell into the first stages of a doze and then the phone beeped again.

“Sorry, bro. Blake had a nightmare, and then it was time to start his breakfast. He’s getting dressed now for school, so I have a few minutes before I have to go to work. Yeah, totally called you a cock-sucker. Even tho we both know that’s all me, lol.”

Cal’s heart squeezed impossibly small in his chest, a frightened mouse of an organ that couldn’t possible keep up with the ongoing demand for blood his six foot three frame called for. He didn’t know how to take Sean sending him a picture of his cock and ass. His finger hovered over the delete button for a full thirty seconds before he decided to keep the pictures. He’d keep them for purposes of potential future blackmail and proof that Sean was the bigger dork of the two of them.

Cal made it almost to the Mackinac Bridge before he looked at the fourth text. He went to the toilet before he opened his phone and pulled the text up, because really, he needed to take a piss. When Sean’s pic pulled up, Cal had just finished pissing, and he was shaking the last drops of urine from the tip of his dick, and the picture surprised him so much his hand tightened on his dick… and well, that’s all it takes when you’re eighteen and it’s been a while, right? So if he just happened to have a picture of his best friend’s cock staring him in the face and fully plump and hard with a drop of cream pearling up at the slit, and if the thought crossed his mind that Sean’s cream might taste different from his… and if that thought had him hard and aching and then coming all over the wall at the back of the nasty little bus toilet… well, that was normal. Right?


Monday, April 23, 2012

Monday Mania


Switched it up on you there. Because, well, mother nature is acting all nutty on me today, blustering and blowing honest to gosh snow flurries mixed with blech-cold rain squalls and generally mussing the lovely leafy crown of the tree in my yard that holds magic and mystery for me.
Silas (yes, I've named the damn tree. He looked like a Silas to me.) Anywho, he's pretty determined to make it through to summer with as many leaves intact as possible.

Okay, back to regularly scheduled Monday Madness. I am writing. And Editing when I get a chance. And I have a lot of both to do today.

Could someone possibly arrange to send me about twelve extra hours (kid-free) per day? I mean in addition to the normal twenty-four that come standard with life on earth...

Heh. Running off now. I need to get to the working on my WIPs section of the Cave pronto. I have characters threatening to riot over there.

No, really.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Saturday Snark

Sonnet for a Drunken Lout

When the Worlds a bright and shiny place.
When I think on thee, oh Mike's Hard Lemonade,
and count myself lucky to have pineapple to mix with the crap that would otherwise
taste like Strawberryish cough medicine...
Oh so happily I think of thee oh Cosmo God and Dancing Bull Boy,
and my drunkenness, like slapper at the magic closing hour
rises in beauty and in fuckableness...
and I would scorn to change my barstool with f-ing Brad Pitt.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Friday Flashtastic Fiction

An Unedited Excerpt from Changeless:

The vibration in Sean’s pocket tickled. Like unexpected fingers whispering across the top of his thigh, the touch brought him quickly out of the light doze he’d been indulging in at the back of the Greyhound bus currently rolling toward the perfectly imperfect future he’d mistakenly run from for so long. He pulled his touch screen link to his best friend in the whole world from his pants. Seeing the little square smiling face that denoted a new message, he tapped the touch pad and opened up the screen holding his texts. Calvin’s message surprised a laugh out of him.

“I know. I have a raccoon skeleton in a shoebox in my living room. & I'm trying to pawn it off on a 2nd grade teacher...”

His phone beeped, and a new line of text appeared.

“Blake misses you :p”

The early morning sun broke through the clouds, golden shafts of memory falling arrow-like down from heaven. The first one slammed into Sean’s eyes though the travel grimed window his temple rested against. He closed his eyes, a sliver of white-hot fire burning into the space behind his eyes. Words nearly a decade old echoed through the chambers of his heart, ricocheted up along his spine and lodged firmly against the insides of his ear drums. “Jesus, Calvin. The fuck you are. Don’t piss your life away man. Just come with me. Blake’ll be alright. There’s good foster parents out there, dude. You’re too young, and you prolly wouldn’t ever get him anyhow.”

Calvin smiled, a weak, thin line stretching across his mouth. The expression never reached his eyes. They remained wide open seas of sorrow, their normal sage green shade darkened. “It’s okay, Sean. I know you can’t stay. I… I just can’t go now. I—I wouldn’t be me anymore if I just left him like that. He’s only nine, man. And his whole world just died in a fiery fucking explosion. It’s. It just is what it is, right?”

Then Calvin scraped Sean hollow with his next words. His eyes finally lit a little from the inside as he wiped his sweating brow on the sleeve of the two sizes too big charcoal grey suit he wore. “I can’t go, Sean, but you can. I—listen, I had some money saved up, right? For the trip? And since I can’t go, I thought maybe, this way, you could kinda put me in your suitcase and carry me along.”

He bent down, reached under the entryway table and picked up a bag from the Cricket store. When he straightened, his lashes dusted the tops of his cheeks and he bit down on one corner of his bottom lip. Sean’s stomach had clenched at the sight of Calvin’s slightly crooked and oh so white teeth pressing into the plump pinkness of that piece of flesh. In the present, Sean shifted in his bus seat, canting his hips toward the steely concealment of the outer wall of the bus, pushing his face hard against the still cool window. He lifted his head away from the window and then let it bounce lightly against the glass once, twice, and a final time. His seat partner glanced over at him, smiling in the excruciatingly polite manner which only people crammed into uncomfortably close quarters for far too many hours seem capable of pulling off.

“It’s a good phone. Top of the line, the girl said, and the plan is pretty cheap. I—the camera’s real good too, and I already put my numbers in there…” Calvin’s voice trickled down the years between that moment and now, and Sean fought down a desire to leap from the damn bus and push it faster into the future. “I know you don’t have a phone, and this one has good coverage. Um, at least in the states. If you’re gonna go outside the U.S., I dunno. I guess—”

Sean lifted his hand, placing the palm against the soft movement of Calvin’s lips. “I want you to come with me.” He held his hand there while he spoke, drinking in the contrast of his dark brown skin against Calvin’s honey gold late summer tan. His eyes had burned then, exactly the same as they were burning now.

The phone beeped again.

“O.o Sean? Still there?”


He hadn’t been there for eight damn years, and he didn’t know if he even knew the way back any more. But…

“Tell Blakely I’ll be there for his ceremony. Damn brat. H8 to cut U short but coming up on a tunnel~prolly lose signal”

Sean cupped the battered casing of the old phone in his hand. Running his fingers along the side, he traced over the long gouge Jason had carved in the side of it the one time he threw the phone against the wall of their apartment and then kicked it with his work boots on. Jason had hated the phone once he figured out how attached to it Sean was.


“Ur coming 2 the graduation?!? :D Really?”

Sean’s chest hurt. He closed his eyes for a moment, concentrating on the difficult proposition of pulling oxygen into his suddenly tiny lungs. He opened them again at the touch of a small, warm hand on his arm. “Are you okay?”

The woman’s eyebrows pulled together in a tight frown above her hazel eyes. Sean smiled wanly at her. He cleared his throat. “Yeah. Just… sometimes going back home hurts, yeah?”

She blinked at him for a moment, her expression unchanging. Then a small smile crept around the corners of her mouth, and her hand patted up and down on his arm. “Yes, sometimes home can be a very painful place to be. And sometimes, young man, we get lucky, and it turns out the hurt was nothing more than growing pains.”

Sean sat in silence, opening and closing his mouth as he worked through what she’d just said. Before he could work out precisely what she was implying, she picked her ereader back up, flicked it on, and tumbled headlong back into whatever imaginary world had held her mind in thrall before she surfaced long enough to drop those cryptic words on him.


“Going in2 doctor’s office. Txt me l8tr.”

Later he’d be back in Marquette, figuring out how to get from the bus station to the house he hoped Calvin still lived in. He tapped in a quick answering text even as he murmured to Calvin aloud.


“Okay. I’ll see you then, Cal.” Sean whispered the words to his phone. The screen timed out, and his wall-paper application flashed up. Calvin smiled off the screen at him, the incredible green of his eyes glowing in the afternoon light of his own backyard as he gazed at the guy taking the picture with a softly worshipful look. Sean couldn’t help hoping the guy was long gone. He couldn’t help it, but that didn’t stop him feeling like a complete shit for wishing any sort of sorrow into Calvin’s life. His fingers traced the contour of Calvin’s face, and he breathed out a shaky breath. “Soon.”

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Thursday Hawtness Thang

Breaking Edition... this just in.
Smack-your-mama hawt-tastic new cover by the incomparable Vicktor Alexander.
The story will still be free... but with the lick-a-licious new cover, I may have to download a new copy for myself... and I wrote the darn thing.

Thursday's Think Tank: A.J. Jarrett--Setting the World On Fire

Hey all, today at the Cave we're welcoming the wonderful AJ Jarrett. AJ's got a new book coming out, and wanted to pop by to tell us a bit about it. Along the way she shares a bit about what sets her on fire...


As a writer, babies, as a writer! 
*shakes head at the lasciviousness of the thoughts clearly displayed on the faces of my readers* 

Welcome, then without further ado, the talented AJ Jarrett.


As an author I like to write about what I know. Be it location or people. All my books, so far. take place in Kansas City, Missouri and the surrounding area. This is where I grew up and I feel I can describe the area with accuracy. I’m a very literal person and I like things to be as accurate as possible. And putting my characters in the K.C. area makes me feel comfortable--as if the story is more realistic. At least it is to me.
Now when it comes to my characters I’m guilty of instilling them with a lot of my own personality and quirks. Friends and family who have known me for years always comment how it sounds just like me or how the phrase is something I’d say. Well I contribute that to who do you know better than yourself? So for me it’s easy to have one character (be it a main or supporting one) to have characteristics similar to mine. I also think the dialogue between the characters is an important part of the story, and therefore I want what they to say to be as realistic sounding as possible. When you read my books my characters have a tendency to cuss a lot because quite frankly I cuss a lot. So I’ll write the dialogue as if I was speaking the words myself to that person.

I’m going to get all girly here but I use my husband’s characteristics a lot to. He’s a standup guy that is always looking ahead to better our life together. He puts me first always. So with my characters I always want one who is level headed and thinking toward the future and one who flies by the seat of his pants ready and willing to try anything. The characters in Set Me On Fire are just like my husband and I with the only difference is they're both men. Nate is older and wants to keep the man he loves safe. He’s the thinker of the two. Where Kelly knows what he wants, wants it now and there is no changing his mind. Both Nate and Kelly are stubborn people but when you come into any relationship that is what happens. You have to learn to grow and change together and accept each other’s faults because being in love and loving is a never ending journey but so worth the trip!

Thanks Cherie for letting me stop by and bend you alls ear for a while. I’m excited for Set Me On Fire’s release and as you can see I really love the characters of Nate and Kelly. I hope others will fall in love with them too!

Kelly Lynch wanted to become a firefighter to help people, but with his accident prone nature his boss, Nate Anderson, thinks he’s an utter fool. Kelly never planned to fall for Nate but now that he has, he realizes loving is easy; understanding and compromise are hard.

Nate has been attracted to Kelly since his first day at the station house. Watching the younger man day in and day out is frustrating. Kelly’s latest stunt almost got him killed and Nate fears losing the man of his dreams.

Will Nate’s demanding ways cause the embers of their love to die out? Or will Kelly prove he has what it takes to be with Nate, at work and in the bedroom?

Story Excerpt
"God, I swear if you get me out of this mess I promise to listen and follow orders for the rest of my life, or at least make the effort to try," Kelly prayed aloud as he crawled, belly down, across the dirty floor. He was doing his best to see through the smoke-filled room but still couldn't find where he'd entered.
Kelly scooted a little more, using touch more than sight to navigate his way through the smoky haze and chunks of debris. He had separated from the team of men he'd come into the burning building with. A choice he now regretted immensely.
He had made a stupid move, but he could have sworn he'd heard someone cry out for help. A completely bonehead move to run off without telling anyone. One of the first things they taught you when you became a firefighter, never leave your team, or at least partner with someone else, but never go off on your own.
But no, he thought he knew better and wanted to be the hero and save the poor individual stuck in this fire pit. Now he was starting to wonder if he'd just imagined he heard the cry for help.
"I'm so fucked." Kelly rested his helmet-covered head on the ground and then proceeded to bang his head on the hard floor. It was useless, he was trapped.
Kelly sat up at the sound of someone yelling his name. What direction had the voice come from? He couldn't tell. The sound was so faint compared to all the hissing and crackling noises of the fire in full blaze all around him.
"God damn it, Lynch, where are you?"
He heard the shout again, only louder. Kelly felt his way around the floor until he came face to face with a boot. He started to look up when large, glove-covered hands grabbed the back of his jacket.
"What do you think you were doing, you dumb shit? You're lucky we noticed you missing."
Kelly could tell by the size of the man dragging him out of the entryway that it was Luke Parsons, one of the biggest guys in the house. He may be a big beefy guy, but he was super nice, and Kelly couldn't have been more grateful Luke found him and not the lieutenant of their station house.
"I'm sorry but I thought I heard someone call out for help." Kelly grabbed at Parsons' hand, still attached to Kelly's jacket, dragging him along. "Please, Luke, I know I heard someone," he pleaded as he tried to pull himself free of Luke's hold.
The fire raged through an abandoned building in the East Bottoms of downtown Kansas City. While the only people in this building were more than likely homeless, they were still people who needed to be saved.
"Are you sure, kid?" Kelly nodded enthusiastically. "Okay then let's see what we can find. We don't have much time; this building is going up faster than a hay bale."
As Kelly followed Luke back into the room, the sound of a faint cry grabbed both their attention. Luke pushed Kelly behind him as he made his way toward the small whimpering sounds. As they got closer, Kelly saw the slight frame of a man huddled in the corner. Luke bent down and snatched the man up in his arms.
Luke looked to Kelly. "Lead the way. Follow the way we just came and you'll see the crew in the hallway."
Kelly navigated through the smoke and falling ceiling tiles toward the exit. As he reached the doorway the hall was empty. He turned back to Luke. "They're not here." Panic started to eat away at his composure.
"Shit," Luke shouted. "Here, kid, take my radio and let the guys know we're coming out with another man in tow. They need to have paramedics ready for this guy."
"You know the way out?" Luke nodded as Kelly took the offered radio and lifted his face shield. "This is Lynch and Parsons. We got a survivor and we're coming out."
"Copy that, son. Make your way out fast. We just got the order to clear the building and let it burn. Move your asses now."
He looked back to Luke. "You get that?"
"Yep. Head out the door and the stairs are on the right. We need to go up one flight then a little ways down we’ll come to a set of double doors and that will take us outside." Kelly watched as Luke hefted the man higher on his shoulder. “Start moving.”
Kelly nodded his understanding and made his way toward freedom. Times like this he questioned why he wanted to be a firefighter. No one in his family was one, so it wasn't about carrying on a legacy or some shit.
As he pushed the door open with his shoulder, he was greeted by sunlight streaking through the smoky clouds rolling off the burning building. He looked back toward Luke, the man he was carrying appeared passed out over his shoulder. That was why Kelly had chosen this profession. He wanted to make a difference. Have a job he could be proud of.
"Over here."
Kelly and Luke walked right over to the ambulance and deposited the man with the paramedics. They then made their way over to the engine where the rest of the crew stood watching the fire burn. Kelly flipped up his face mask and removed his helmet. Then he took off his jacket, tucked the heavy material under his arm, and stared up at the building. If Luke hadn't found him, Kelly would be one crispy critter right about now.
"What the fuck were you thinking?"
Someone grabbed Kelly by the shoulders and threw him up against the side of the truck, causing him to bump the back of his head hard against the metal door. When his vision cleared he saw Nate Anderson, lieutenant of station house sixteen, standing right in front of him with the attitude Kelly had hoped to avoid.
"Hey, Nate, back the fuck up." Luke pushed himself between him and Nate. "If it wasn't for Kelly, that man over there would be dead."
Nate took a step back and looked toward the ambulance where the man was being triaged. Kelly could see the vein pulsing at Nate's temple. He wasn't happy and Kelly knew he would be hearing all about that unhappiness later.
Nate looked back at him over Luke's shoulder. "You and I will talk about this back at the station house." Nate pointed a finger at him and then walked away.
He was so screwed. Every time he made a mistake Nate made sure to tell him how and why he screwed up. Granted, it was Nate's job to go over the mistakes they made so they could learn from their errors, but his lectures were becoming a broken record. Kelly wasn't looking forward to this discussion.

Adult Excerpt
The younger man leaned forward to nibble at his ear. Goosebumps ran over his arms making the hair stand up. Warm moist heat tickled his ear when Kelly spoke. "It's not teasing when you plan on making good on the offer."
He pulled back to look at Kelly. "Why don't we eat before our pizza gets cold? Then take a walk along the water and just talk." Nate removed Kelly's hand from his crotch and placed it on the table. All the sexual promises for later were fine and dandy but he wanted to make it clear he desired more than just a quick roll in the hay.
"Okay." Kelly turned away but not before Nate saw the scrunched-up look of confusion on his face.
They ate in silence. When they finished they picked up their trash and threw it in the garbage can. The sun set and the sky darkened to twilight. As they made their way toward the trail, Nate grabbed Kelly's hand and held it loosely as they walked the river's edge. He felt Kelly jump at the contact. Nate ran his thumb over Kelly's knuckles to soothe him. He wanted to get to know Kelly on a more intimate level so Kelly would see him as more than his boss and more than an easy lay.
"So, Kelly, tell me why you wanted to be a firefighter?" Nate thought it best to start off with the easy questions first.
"Good question. I guess you could say I stumbled upon it when I was in college. I didn't know what I wanted to do with my life." Kelly continued walking but kept his gaze lowered to the cement path they were walking on.
"One afternoon as I left the library and headed back to my dorm, there was this huge crowd standing around outside my building. As I got closer I saw the dorm next to mine was on fire. Then I heard the sirens of the fire engines." Kelly stopped walking to look him in the eye. "I stood out there and watched as they saved some of the students trapped inside then got the fire under control. Watching the firemen work together as a team had to be one the most amazing things I had ever seen."
A look of wonderment crossed the younger man's face and Nate had to grin. He knew the feeling of utter awe at watching and wanting to be the one helping save the people in the building. And then the need to be the one to put out the fire tearing the building apart. Yeah, he knew the feeling all too well. Fighting fires ran in his blood. All the men on his father's side of the family had been firefighters and now he and his brother carried on the family tradition.
"Well that and all the gorgeous firemen standing around. Hot as hell."
The thought of Kelly thinking any other man or men were attractive left a bitter taste in his mouth. He went to pull Kelly closer but the man dropped his hand and took off running down the trail.
"I know that look. You so want to ream my ass right now," Kelly yelled over his shoulder as he ran. "You're going to have to catch me first."
Nate dug his heels in and started running all out. His little firefighter liked to play with fire. Well this was one time an all-consuming fire was just fine. What he felt for Kelly burned him alive on the inside and he wanted to set Kelly ablaze with the same need.
Kelly's shorter legs carried him faster than Nate thought possible but before long he caught up to him. In one quick move he grabbed Kelly around the waist and took him off his feet. He swung him around until they faced each other. Kelly breathed hard from exertion and laughing. The gleam in his eyes and the sweat running down his temple from his hair crushed any of Nate's thoughts of going slow.
Nate wrapped his arms around Kelly's waist. Pulled together chest to chest Nate lowered his mouth and bit at the supple bottom lip of Kelly's mouth. Kelly moaned so loudly he scared a few birds out of a nearby tree.
Without thinking Nate ran his hands down Kelly's back until he grabbed the firm globes of his ass. He picked Kelly up off his feet and walked him backwards off the trail to give them the privacy to be intimate without fear of being interrupted. Kelly's fingers dug into his shoulders as he pushed him up against a tree.
Nate lowered Kelly's feet back to the ground and smashed their lips together. Kelly parted his lips when Nate forced his tongue against the crease, coaxing and prodding until Kelly's tongue came out to play.
Kelly gave as well as he got but Nate wanted total control. He lowered his hands to the waist at the back of Kelly's shorts. The shorts were baggy enough to allow him to slide one hand down the back. He pushed past Kelly's boxers and cupped his bare ass cheek with his hand. The skin was slightly sweaty from the humid heat and their hard run a few minutes earlier. Nate wanted to lick and taste the salty skin until the younger man begged to be fucked.
The kiss went on and on, not rushed or forced. The more Nate rubbed at the hard, muscled ass, the more Kelly relaxed. Seeing his opportunity, he pulled at Kelly's cheeks until his hole was exposed to Nate's questing digit. He gently caressed the tiny pucker, feeling the rippled skin twitch against his finger.
Kelly pulled away to look up at him. "Do it."

BUY LINKS For AJ's Stuff

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Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Work in Progress Wednesday

I really just have a moment, because I have less than three hours before the kidlet arrives home from school, and I need about ten hours of writing time between now and then.


Anybody got a spare time-turner? Or a clone or three? No? Eh, then I guess I'll just have to make do with lil' ole me and what my fingers can pump out in the next few hours.

I can give you a small sniplet of what is going on in the cave right now though. Yes, yes, the writing cave.

Right, so this is a sneaky peaky into The Enslavement of Luez, the second book in the Akanti series. It's unedited raw first draft stuff and so don't expect it to look a thing like this when it's all polished and purty and sporting (I hope) another amazing Reese Dante cover. Heh.

An Unedited Excerpt of T.E.O.L.: The Enslavement of Luez

Shael drew in a deep breath. Three more rotations in the deep black, and after that and he'd be done in the Nakanti Marine Service. His duty would be done and he could start looking for a Lawful Betrothed. By the Light, his very own betrothed, asked proper and when he was sure and no mistakes about it. His heart pounded against the walls of his chest.

Not like his mother. No, none of that slave to betrothed muck for him. Not on your life. He'd never give his heart away like that, just hand it over to someone who could walk away and never look back. He was no fool. He took precautions and used prophylactics so he'd be not be getting some slave girl pregnant. Elevating her to permanent freedom as his Temporary Honored Betrothed, only to have her state at the end of the trial year that she was not happy and wanted freedom.

Not him.
Not ever.

Shae'el pulled the tattered still-vids from his pocket, grateful that Cary'sn had sent one every week since purchasing the pleasure slave he'd been threatening Shae'el with for years. There were seven of the stil-vids in total and in every one the same small man was the focal point. Honey colored curls and violet... blessed Light his favorite color... violet eyes. The petite man also had the prettiest pink lips Shae'el had seen in... well, in a very long time. 

He'd never seen eyes and lips that lit a fire in his groin and known they were his to do with as he would. A full body shiver shook Shae'el. Thankfully he stood alone in the lift, so no one had witnessed his momentary lapse of control. He ran a finger across the mouth in the photo on top. Sweet Light, in days that mouth would be his to take, his to kiss, his to push his throbbing cock between as the little man knelt and took everything Shae'el chose to give him. Best of all, the man belonged to Shae'el now. Luez was his to keep for just as damn long as Shae'el wanted. 

He'd not have to sell this one when he returned to duty, because after this he would only have two more short tours and the council couldn't say a damn thing to him. Bloody interferring council drove him mad, telling a bloke how he could run his  life. That it was 'an act of cruelty' to retain ownership of a pleasure slave...
if your job took you off-planet for more than six months of the year. Ruling that such an arrangement didn't give the pleasure slaves a fair chance to bond and be satisfied.

Bloody council.

A fair chance to get  pregnant was what they really meant. And because some complete arse was on the council 750 some years ago, the law didn't discern between the sexes.


Shae'el was done with having to accept rulings from those bloody idiots. It was not like they were still trying to repopulate the planet--The plague was defeated, for the most part, over 800 years ago. The odd virus mutation cropped up every now and again. No one died though. Not unless they were very old or very young. Or frail...

Like Da.
Da with his strong back, and his keen golden eyes. Da, with his silent weakness of the lungs which waited 46 years to show itself. Then the virus mutated one last time, bonded with a simple cold and Da's lungs couldn't fight like they were supposed to.

Plaguing dammed cold that wouldn't go away until it took Da with it.

It had been just Shae'el and his Da for so long. No brothers. Not one. Not a single cousin twice or three times removed, and Da so heart-sore after Lianne (the slave girl who gave birth to Shae'el) left he never even looked at another female. 

Then simply Da gone during Shae'el's first rotation in the deep black. Lung-sickness hitting so fast and hard he'd not even gotten to say goodbye. By the time they got the news of the illness out to his ship Da had been gone already. Shae'el made it home for the funeral. He signed all the paperwork that said he'd take up his duties as Jarl, and that he'd rule in the district that was his father's only a day before.

Cary'sn helped him get the council to listen that time, to allow him to finish out his term of service with the Marines. The silver-eyed man never explained how, he just made it happen. Shae'el had he'd been allowed to stay until his current NMS obligation was honoured, and he never forgot how much that meant. It was the only thing that held him together.

A blessing.

A gift from the Light.

Because back then? Shae'el didn't give a plaguing damn about the people, or the district, in fact he didn't give a single plague-ridden damn about anything. All he wanted involved getting as far from the place that had taken his father. The same place his mother had run from, leaving him at one year old with just his Da.


So, Cary'sn put papers in front of him, and even now Shae'el still just signed every plague-ridden scrap of paper. Exactly as he'd done with every single one pushed in front of him the day he buried his Da. 

He trusted Cary'sn, relied on him and Cary'sn never let him down. The brooding man kept Shae'el from signing anything he'd regret later. He fed Shae'el and dressed him and had done since Shae'el's earliest memories. Good old Cary'sn.

Not a servant really, not when he'd served in the N.M.S. as a boy side by side with Shae'el's father. They both joined the same year, Cary'sn a boy of eight, and Shae'el's Da a young man of twenty something. He served his obligatory four year term and when Shae'el's father left to take up his training as Jarl, Cary'sn left with him.

Da had driven his own parents crazy by insisting on joining as an enlisted man. Come to think of it, Cary'sn never called him anything but the Sergeant. Just as he always called Shae'el  Captain. He was only thirteen years older than Shae'el. Cary'sn was the closest thing Shae'el had to family since that awful day.

Shae'el floundered then at nineteen. 

Thank the Light Cary'sn understood somehow, understood the Jarldom was too much, the two of them rattling around in the huge old house his father had left him, just them and a passel of servants...

By the Light as soon as he was released from active duty he was going to fill the old house with sons.  Sons he'd be there to raise. He'd had a full med-exam done, right down to his DNA to make sure he wouldn't pass on weak lungs or the damn plague virus and he got back a go-go-go green light from the medics. 

With his enlistment drawing to a close, he'd be able to be there with them. His sons. Sons who would have one another when his time among the living came to an end. Sons who'd have two parents. Shae'el wasn't going to allow some slave-girl to parent his child. No child of his would have a mother who had the option to simply run off when they were only a year old.

He ran his finger across the image again, and then slipped it into his breast pocket just as the heavy tilatthian steel doors of the lift slid open on the bridge. 

It would be good to be home.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Tuesday Triumph: Getting in the Groove

Today has been a good day. In the groove, you know? Only Tuesday and my flash piece for this week's Silver Shorts is already over a thousand words long, and I'm getting good info from the characters for my current wip... I'm even hopeful that if they keep chatting it up like this, I'll be able to start typing faster.

O.o Cause that would help. Like a lot, lol.

Righty-O, then, back to work, me.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Manic Monday: The Short and Sweet of It

Up til 4am slept til 6am, back to bed at7 and up again at 9ish. If I seem a wee bit punch-drunk, blame the lack o'sleep and lower than average caffeine level in my bloodstream.

No, really.

Seriously though, things are looking shiny over here at the cave. I've got a brand spanking new (no silly babies, it doesn't have actual spanking in it...) banner in the works, and I also have a full plate of activities planned for the upcoming week.

I'm pleased to be able to announce that I finished my LiAW story yesterday, and am awaiting the final set of edits to come back so I can put the final polish on the story. :)

*grinning madly*

Also, have three dark horses running like mad to the finish line... er, that would be three stories that are nearing completion. Will keep y'all posted on what is going to be released first.

I know there's more... but seriously, I have to get back to work. No, really. And get more writing done so I have more stories out there to entertain you. :)

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Am Sick and Am Writing

Sorry for the Lame-O lack of posting... been sick again, and been writing like mad. Trying to finish up LiAW piece for GR M/M group event. Will be back online in normal capacity.

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Work in Progress Wednsday: Shhhhhhhhh...

Still working on my LiAW story, Incongruent Angel.
I can't spill the beans yet, but I'll let you in on the song running through my head as I write.

It's a story of loss, lingering guilt, and redeeming love. And along with two sexy rockers hot for each other, there's a hugely pregnant and hormonal sister, puppies given as apologies, love poems written by a dead man and ...oh, yeah, a happy ending. Stay tuned.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Tuesday Teaser: A touch of Inspiration...NSFW

Today's Teaser goes up a bit late... sorry, babies, been a hellaciously busy day. Heh. Just like I love it. So, here's a little tease of a story inspired by a picture from the incomparable Dr. Porne, and of course, the original Invisible GayLord Ninja, Vicktor Alexander. Thanks guys.

How I Became A GayLord Ninja

Being gay in America, even if you’re white and from a nice middle-class family is not what I’d call a picnic. This is especially true when you don’t really have all the goods to fill your…picnic basket to perfection, if you know what I mean. Well, I’m here to tell you that you don’t have to burn the basket and leave the goods scattered around for the bears in order for your picnic to become the social event of the season. Nope. All you have to do is get yourself over to the Purple Fantasy Den, and listen to the wise sayings of the man that runs the sweet little den of iniquity, and let him school you in the ways of the GayLords.
My journey with him began in the summer months of my twenty-third year. I’d finally given up hoping to gain a few more inches anywhere. I mean, it was bad enough that I was kinda short at a measly 5’7”. What was worse than being vertically challenged had to do with the pene chiquito I rocked between my thighs. In plain English, I have a little dick. When I say little, I don’t mean seven inches or even six. On a good day, when I have lots of fluid in my body, and whatever is inspiring me is especially er, inspirational I top out at five inches.
I’d just lost yet another potential Mr. Right when he got a gander at my goodie basket, and I was feeling lower than low. At home alone on a Friday, the clock just barely ticking over into the nine o’clock zone… and me with my laptop open on my nightstand ready to spend another evening wanking to the visions of collegiate beauty Corbin Fisher put together with such flair time and again.
That’s when it happened. I clicked on a link that popped up at the side of my tumblr page, and suddenly I was gasping with laughter. Who was this man who pulled me straight—well, not straight, but definitely right out of my funky mood? There was another link to something he called The Purple Fantasy Den. I clicked, and stumbled into the zen center of my soul.
He posted snips of stories, bits and bobbles of wisdom wrapped up in hot sex and heartwarming moments of connection. I skipped over to the page where he talked about being who he was… and I was hooked right through the gills. That’s when my world stood still. He posted a snip of a story about a man(?)womm(?)… a person named Michael who had breasts and a dick… and who liked himself that way. And whose partner liked him that way.
If a guy like Michael could find love and acceptance, even if it was just in fiction, then there had to be hope for me. Someone could love me. Even with a five inch cock.
I decided I would learn to use my cock, lips, teeth and tongue like a ninja. I would be a gay ninja of scorching sex. Once I finished the excerpt. I went to an online bookstore, bought everything the author had written, and went on to buy everything I could lay hands on about how to pleasure a man.
Then I started to study in earnest.

Monday, April 2, 2012

Manic Monday: ON the GO

Feeling rather like the white rabbit today. You know, the fellow from Alice in Wonderland who is always running around with his pocket-watch out and a stressed look on his furry little face? Well, I'm not that furry, but sure could use ten or twenty of me today to get all the things I'm doing done.


I've RL errands to run, two stories to put the finishing touches to, and a kazill-billion other odds and ends to accomplish. Gods it makes me do a little happy dance. I love to be busy doing things that I love.
Hope that you are all having a good day... and if not, declare a do-over and start again from right where you are. It will happen. No, really. Get you some good day right outta your back pocket and spread it all over your sky.

Then color yourself happy and get a move on. Cause something wonderful is waiting right around the corner. It might look bad, but with the right attitude? I'll bet you can find the silver lining.
Go on. Get you some.
Ta for now.
Must run.
Things to do, and Oi! I'm late.
*rushes out of the Cave, pocket-watch in hand*

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Sunday Snog: From The Flight of a Thousand Cranes


William was dying.

That single thought brought him more ease than all the pills and potions foisted on him by well intentioned medical staff. Still, the small, shy smile that had won the hearts of lovers past did not wreath his face.

William no longer smiled. Living became tiresome when one’s body ceased all attempts to follow the dictates of one’s mind. He wished his lips could still turn slightly up at both corners. Alas, any attempt at a pleasing expression would now create a melted wax-work mask of horror where the unresponsive side of his face refused to listen to the impulses sent by his will.

Only Phillip saw William’s smiles as beautiful now.

Quick, precise steps rapped against the tile of his floor.

Pull cords rattled.

Fabric rustled.

William closed his eyes against the sudden sting of early morning light.

The same light steps tap-tapped from the window to his bedside.

“Good morning Mr. Tottori. How are you today, sugar?”

William blinked up at Julie.

Julie worked on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays.

She was the only aide that William truly liked.

Sometimes, he thought, if he could have raised a daughter with Phillip, she might have grown to be like Julie.

William grunted.

“Oood oaning, uulie.”

William farted.

Julie pressed a hand against his shoulder.

“Can you hang on for a little bit, sugar? Sandy’s got the lift, and I can’t get you on the toilet without it.”

William blinked at her.

He could try.

Julie smiled, warmth spreading across her face and up into her eyes.

She was short, like William, and when she helped him into his chair, or onto the toilet, she took care to not bang him against the armrests of the chair or the handrails in the bathroom.

“eeiie rye uulie.”

She squeezed his shoulder, just once, and then bustled out the door.

William farted again.

He waited, and tried to hold his bowels.

Julie came back twenty minutes later, flushed, her mouth pinched into a tight line as she entered the door. William turned his face away, but not quickly enough. Comprehension flashed across Julie’s face as she took in the tear tracks across his face.

“Oh, damn that Sandy. I’m sorry William.”

With deft hands, Julie turned William, stripped his soiled diaper off, and cleaned him off. She didn’t speak again until he was clean, dry, and had a fresh diaper on.

Julie called them his underpants.

William called them humiliating.

“Oh, William, the laundry girl was just out in the hallway. Do you want me to see if she has Phillip’s shirt clean for you?”

Bless her.

It helped to wear Phillip’s things.

“eeess easse uulie.”

Julie bounced out the door, returning moments later with a broad smile. She slid his bad arm into its sleeve first, then ran her hand lightly across the back of his shoulder as she held the other sleeve down for William to put his arm through.

“Look, William. She even fixed the tear in the shoulder. Remind me to bake some extra cookies for her this weekend, will you?”

William blinked at Julie, twice.

She giggled, propping a hand on one hip.

“I am not one of your fancy boys, Mr. Tottori. Those eyelashes have no power over me.”

William made a noise like a dying donkey.

Julie laughed harder, sliding the fleece covered strap to the Sara lift behind William’s back.

William lifted his good arm to make things easier.

“Thank you William.”

“eeelommm uulie.”

Julie stuck her head out the door to the hallway, hollering in a most unladylike way. William’s mother would have been appalled.

“Oi! Tanisha! Girl, get down here and run the lift for me.”

William’s mouth turned down at both corners.

He sniffed loudly.

Julie cast a glance over her shoulder, rolling her eyes.

“Hush, William. She’s the only one around right now. And she doesn’t smell that bad.”

Tanisha plodded into the room.

Julie pulled William’s chair close to the bed, smoothing her hand over the seat cushion.

The lift whirred.

William hung on with his good hand.

Julie held onto the belt she’d snugged around his hips, holding his bad arm and guiding him down into the chair. The second the chair was firmly under his bottom she called out.

“Thanks, T. He’s in, I got it from here. Why don’t you go take first break and I’ll help feed?”

Tanisha mumbled her thanks and left as ploddingly as she’d come.

William snorted.

Julie gave him a look.

“Be nice William. She hasn’t been feeling well lately.”

William looked down silently.

“Don’t be like that William. She’s really not so bad.”

Julie shrugged.

“At least she helps when I ask her to.”

William looked back up.

He winked his good eye at Julie.

She smiled.

“That’s my guy. You wanna eat in the dining room, or is Phillip joining you?”

Julie met William’s eyes, waiting for an answer.

“Illiuuh wooorrhhing.”

She nodded briskly, the leaned forward to brush a kiss along the paper thin skin at the edge of William’s temple.

“Well then, if he’s working, let’s get you down to the dining room before Mrs. Jenkins steals your spoons again.”

William snorted. As far as he was concerned Mathilde was welcome to the damn built-up spoons.


Find loads more Snogging Goodness at the Home of the Original Sunday Snog: 

Six Sentence Sunday: From The Faery Tree

“Yes. It has to be completed now, or—”
My throat clamped shut on the words. Thomas’s voice scraped out of his throat.
“Or I’ll die, right?’
My fangs dropped.
“Or we’ll both die.”

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