Release Day!

Wahoo! Today is the day! I’m so happy to share my second novel with you!

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 Clicky here on the image to go to the publisher’s site.

To continue in the tradition of the first book in this series, A Perfect Dom, I wanted to share some behind the scenes facts about A Perfect Trio with you:

1. A Perfect Trio was originally born from a short story that I posted here on this blog! It was originally titled “Wine Glasses” (read it here), I posted it on September 23, 2013. Almost a year ago! I used the short story originally as the first chapter of a Perfect Trio (Mark and Terry’s parts where original chapters two and three. I condensed all three parts to make them stronger and joined them as the first chapter. I figured it was a book about a Trio, we should meet all 3 of them right away). The evolution of the short story was crucial to me falling in love with Stef. I have to admit, that as the man from Wine Glasses, Stef was very cold. That Stef would not have worked for this story or as part of his trio.

2. Speaking of Stef, his first name is a nod to another great Dom, Stefan Talbot from One to Keep, by Sophie Oak. Action wise he’s more James than Stef, but the men share a past that haunts them and holds them back. I am a huge fan of Sophie’s Nights in Bliss Series and Texas Sirens Series (Her latest installment is available here). I love how, although she writes erotic romance, she always puts her characters and her story first. I also try to do that same with my books. I could (and probably eventually will) read One to Keep a hundred times.

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3. Stef’s home town and his last name are a homage to a real life person, singer songwriter that I love, Roy Gluckman. His vines would often be a welcome distraction while writing (see his complications here and here). Roy (like many names in my books) is also a family name. My Grandmother’s family originally used the last name Roi/Roy before anglicizing the name in the 1920’s to King (English translation of the original French Canadian name). My grandmother (who is pretty much my most favourite person in the world) was officially born a King, but her parents were both born Roi’s (the were cousins…long story). My Grandma still says that her real last name is Roi. And, you may recognize King as being Terry’s last name. So Stef and Terry had a connection before they ever met.

b3eed5c2-46ab-499f-b4d8-3d4d3e0817e5This is my favourite photo of my Grandma.

My Grandpa carried it in his wallet since they day it was taken.

4. Terry and Mark first appeared in A Perfect Dom. Learn more about their introduction here. The lead characters of that novel, Mia and Vincent, make a return in this novel. Terry is very important to Mia and vice versa.  Expect to see them again in my future novels.

jb-cp-aperfectdom-full(1)5. In A Perfect Dom, James said that they had had sex before. Does James have a different idea of sex (counting oral sex, aftercare, etc), or was it just an untrue off the cuff remark he made to shock naive Vincent? My jury’s still out on that, but I wouldn’t put either past James. He’s a complicated man.

james6. I had an anonymous source that helped me with some of the police terminology. I had ten questions I was allowed to ask them and that was it. I also bought a couple of Canadian police textbooks and scoured the web for information on police work. There’s plenty of info out there on bigger topics, but not a lot on the more mundane parts of police work/life. I am indebted to my source. Although I’m sure that I must have gotten a few things about Canadian police work incorrect, the info I gained from my source was invaluable and (I believe) made my book stronger. 

 

7. I use a lot of my friends names in my books. Donna and Dave are coworkers that I see almost every day, and are treasured friends. The name Yannick was that name of a man I had the pleasure of working with last year when I trained in Vaudreuil Quebec (this was right during the time when I was trying to do edits on A Perfect Dom). Yannick is also the name of a popular television actor Yannick Bisson that I love to hate. By the way, the name is roughly pronounced Yawn-nick. Some other names comes from actors, musicians or figures that I admire. Nova was named for my love of rapper Nova Rockafeller. Her song Tres Pound was the first song I listened to to celebrate my first book being accepted by Siren (I may have also pumped it when book number two was picked up). I’m contemplating giving the Warren sisters their own series. Please let me know if that’s something you would be interested in reading. One character that if definitely not names for anyone else is Charlie. I’ve loved that name forever. It is just a coincidence that my cute little nephew who was born April 27 of this year has the same name. I like Charlie a lot too. Maybe she deserves her own book too…

charlie

In my head, this is what I think Charlie looks like.

Excuse my poor paint skills – photo from Dreamscape.com

8. Stef lives in the Marilyn Monroe buildings in Mississauga. They are located roughly 20 minutes away from my home, and about 10 minutes north of Port Credit. These buildings are an architectural marvel. Beyond being super cool, I think they speak a lot about Stef’s character. He’s used to things being ridged and straight, but things are changing… The buildings are officially called the Absolute Towers, but their hour glass shape earned them a nickname inspired by screen legend, Marilyn Monroe.

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Photo from suburbantourist.ca

9. I first learned about Human Trafficking from watching America’s Most Wanted. It was stories like Natasha’s story that inspired Bailey. Human Trafficking is a horror that affects everyone and in all walks of life. If you think that it could never touch your life, think again. Although I myself have not been a victim of trafficking, I do believe that I am a victim of an attempted abduction. This is a hard story for me to tell. About five years ago I was sitting in a hardware store parking lot. I had just had a fight with my husband before leaving to go to the store, and was sitting in my car trying to calm down before going inside. A grey van pulled into the spot beside me and the man inside gestured for me to roll down my window. He told me that something was physically wrong with my car and prompted me to get out to take a look (my car at the time was a cheap little sedan, just the basic model and not worth anything.). I refused to get out and take a look. The man wouldn’t leave though and kept prompting me to get out of my car. There was something very off about him and I rolled up my window and locked my doors. The man in the van only left when he saw a random man come out of the store towards us. Maybe he thought the man was my husband, coming to join me in the car. Regardless the van pulled away quickly and left the parking lot. I never ended up going into the store. The man unnerved me so much I drove straight to my apartment and had my husband meet me in the parking lot. A quick inspection showed there was nothing wrong with my car. So what was the man’s game? Did he want my car? It wasn’t worth anything so I doubt it.  What would have happened to me if I had gotten out of my car? Would have tried to lure me into his van? Did he have a buddy waiting to grab me? All questions that I am glad that I cannot answer. That day has stuck in my mind, and still terrifies me.

10. I am a few chapters into my next book. Tentatively I’m calling it “A Perfect Life”. The lead character will be Lee (Mia’s brother). After being shot and nearly killed, it hit home for Lee that he had never been an active participant in his life – he always did exactly what was expected of him and lived the life that others felt he should. He’s always been the perfect son, the perfect brother, the perfect Dad, Somewhere along the line, he lost who he really was. Now with this new lease on life, Lee  decides it’s far past time to life life to the fullest. He starts by signing up for Membership to Club Perfect and embarks on a journey to sample everything that the BDSM lifestyle has to offer…

I do hope that you enjoy reading A Perfect Trio as much as I enjoyed writing it.

If you have any other questions or comments, please let me know. You can tweet me @jadebelfry or be my friend on facebook

Thank you very much for your support. It really does mean the world to me!

A Perfect Trio, available now from Siren-Bookstrand.

One Day to go!

Tomorrow, return to Club Perfect! 

APTClicky the image or click right here to go to the publisher’s site.

Tomorrow I get to share my second book with you. I love this book just as much as my first and I hope you do too. 

This book mark a bit of a milestone for me. See, I thought anyone with some luck and some time can write one book. If a dozen monkeys can turn out the works of Shakespeare, then surely I can turn out one little book.This second book was about me proving to myself that I could have a voice, and that I could finally realize my dream of being an author. Thank you for helping me get there. 

With A Perfect Dom, I met many people – readers, fellow authors, etc. It has been a great journey for me, one that will continue with A Perfect Trio. Stef, Mark and Terry are characters I feel in love with while having the privileged of telling their story.

Stef is a new face to Club Perfect. I’d like to introduce him to you:

Stefan Roy, or just Stef, is thirty-eight years old. He was born in Petoria South Africa, but moved to Canada twenty-five years ago. Time has only dulled his accent. When he gets angry (or really, really turned on), his accent comes out just as thick as if he was back home again.

Looks wise, he has light brown hair, and could use a haircut. It’s just of the things he’s let go since his divorce. Also, shaving isn’t a daily activity nor a huge priority. That being said, he does love a good suit. Well, without the tie of course or the top buttons of a collar. He really doesn’t need a suit now that he’s not a lawyer any more. That was something else he also gave up after his divorce.

Stef grew up in a very good house hold and always had the best that money had to offer. His upbringing allowed him to become cultured and gave him a love of finer things (like art, architecture, wine, etc). It bought him a university education and a law degree. He originally used that degree to prosecute the bad guys. It was in court that he met his ex-wife Bailey. They wed quickly and impulsively. He thought he could make their differences work. Unfortunately she still carries the physical and emotional scars of human trafficking. Stef didn’t know how to handle her baggage, so he pushed her away by burying himself in building his career.

Now Stef finds work as an independent BDSM trainer. He specialized in couples that have problems in their relationships. He’s known James and Mia for years, but it’s been a long time since he played at Club Perfect or had to squash his 6’1” and 180lb frame into the “Dom uniform” of a tight black T-shirt and leather pants. He never thought he would go back to the club, as he vowed to never take another Sub as his own.

His training is how entire life now. He runs a tight schedule and he doesn’t allow himself down time. He keeps himself detached and does not become involved with his clients.

That’s Stef on paper. Underneath all of the lies he tells himself, he’s dying to be loved. He doesn’t know it yet, but there’s a couple who need his help. They are absolutely perfect for him…

A Perfect Trio, available tomorrow from Siren-Bookstrand

A Perfect Trio – Story Preview

Hello friends,

The release of A Perfect Trio is only days away. I’m so excited to be sharing this story with you!

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You can pre-order it here from Siren directly at a special reduced price. From their site you can download it in all formats once it releases on August 12.

Buy link -> http://www.bookstrand.com/a-perfect-trio

This is my first Menage. Our Doms are Stef and Mark, and their Sub is Terry.

In my first book of the series, A Perfect Dom, we met Terry on the alcove stage, where she was performing a scene with club owner James:

“A spotlight snapped on illuminating the stage and revealing the scene. A woman, a very naked woman, stood centre stage. Her arms were bound with rope and painfully stretched far above her head and hanging from an industrial hook. Like a grotesque ballerina mid-dance, her toes barely touched the floor.”

She goes on to be deliciously tortured by James. This is Vincent’s first look look into the BDSM lifestyle. Vincent’s ex told him that she dumped him because she wanted a more dominant man in the bedroom. James convinced Vincent to visit Club Perfect and to train to be a Dom. Having no prior experience with BDSM, Vincent is appalled by the nature of the scene, and leaves the club vowing never to come back. 

The next day James explain to Vincent more about the Dom/Sub relationship and how his scene with Terry was not abusive.

“You hurt that woman.”

“That woman, Terry, is an experienced Sub. It wasn’t our first time playing together. Before the scene on Saturday, we discussed what we were going to do. Every move I made was carefully negotiated and agreed to.”

“How could anyone want that?” Vincent growled.

“How could she agree to touching, stimulation, advanced punishment? Submissives find pleasure in different things. It’s our job to figure out what they need and give it to them.”

“It’s your job to be a monster? So you use that to justify beating someone?” Vincent worked hard to keep his voice down when he felt like screaming at James.

James sighed. “Vin, I was joking about being a monster. I didn’t beat her and never would. The rules of BDSM are always the same. Safe, sane and consensual. A scene is a well-orchestrated power exchange to bring both parties pleasure. It’s not rape, not abuse, and it’s certainly not a crime. If Terry, my Sub for the night, hadn’t wanted to be there on stage with me, she wouldn’t be. She needs to be dominated. Just like Mia needs it, just like Catherine thinks she needs it. Terry craved that level of pain so I gave it to her.”

This is the beginning of Vincent understanding BDSM, but Terry is not easily forgotten from Vincent’s mind. A few days later in a cafe he and Mia, his trainer, have a chance to have an open honest discussion about Terry and James’s scene.

“During the scene James looked like he was hurting Terry.”

She took a sip of her tea and thought about it for a moment. “I guess it could seem that way. She wasn’t hurt, though. It was just the level of kink she needed. Did you notice that he tested the whip on his own hand first to know what amount of strength to use when he whipped her?”

Vincent nodded, remembering. He had seen James do that, but thought that it was just part of the theatrics.

“He’s played with Terry before so he knew what level of intensity she needed to get her hot. He didn’t seriously injure her. I doubt she had a single bruise the next morning.”

“But she was screaming.”

“Have you never made a girl scream in release, Vincent?” Mia teased. “Some girls moan during a scene or during sex, some talk, and some scream. It just depends on the person and the level of stimulation. Do you think that you can understand any of this?”

After Mia puts it in terms that Vincent understands, he agrees to train with her. But that first scene is never far from Vincent’s mind. Later on in the story he sees Terry again and can’t help but remember his first night in the club.

Walking further into the club, Vincent was surprised to see James’s Sub from his first night, Terry, sitting on the lap of a big Latino guy. She looked none the worse for wear and didn’t have any lingering marks from her scene with James. And she looked pretty happy to be with this other man. James had said that they weren’t together. Was she this guy’s Sub? Did James just have her “on loan” for the night to scene?

This is our first introduction to Mark, Terry’s partner. Vincent meets him again later at a police station. Vincent’s ex goes missing and he is convinced by her friends to come with them to file a milling person’s report. Mark is the reporting officer.

“Have a seat.” The officer’s name tag read “Rodriguez.” His posture read Dom, and his face read familiar. Shit. He was the Latino Vincent had seen with Terry at the club, but he was cleaned up and dressed in a uniform. Were Doms and Subs everywhere?

Mark recognizes Vincent from the club. When they have a chance to talk alone, the two Doms quickly become friends.

Rodriguez wordlessly gestured for him to keep following him to an empty office across the hall. Once they were both inside, he closed the door. “Mark.” Rodriguez held out his hand for an introductory shake.

“Vincent.” Vincent gladly shook his hand.

Rodriguez nodded. “Yeah, I remember from when James introduced us at the club. You looked like a deer caught in headlights that night.”

“I think I was a deer caught in headlights.” The men laughed. Vincent liked Rodriguez.

Vincent doesn’t miss an opportunity to ask about Terry.

“You’re with Terry?”

Rodriguez shook his head sadly. “I wish. It takes a strong man to handle someone that broken.”

After he leaves the police station, Vincent embarks on the path to finish training. Along the way he finds that he had very string feelings for his trainer, complicated when Mia is abducted by her former Master. After some heart wrenching struggle, Vincent and Mia go on to have their own happy ending.

But what about Mark and Terry? Don’t they deserve their own happy ending? 

Mark’s haunting worlds stayed with me. He loves terry so much and yet doesn’t know how to fix their relationship. I the beginning of A Perfect Trio, Mark turns to James in desperation. He feels he has one last shot to make a relationship with Terry work.

James recommends that they work with a trainer – a very different trainer from the one Vincent worked with! James recommends Stefan Roy, a trainer who works with couples having problems and is known for fixing the unfixable. Mark is willing to try anything.

James also recommends that when the trainer arrives ti meet them that Mark and Terry do something that they haven’t done in a long time together – a private scene. Reluctantly Mark agrees. Unfortunately he decides to leave Terry in the dark about the real motivation behind performing the scene.

The performance goes badly and Terry fakes her orgasm in order to end the scene. The trainer is disgusted (but that and from some information that James withheld from him), and there is a bit if a commotion…which leads Terry to realize that Mark had another motivation for asking her to scene with him…

Excerpt from: A Perfect Trio

Terry stormed into the house behind him and slammed the door. Mark cringed as the sound echoed throughout the bottom floor. Thank God this house was built well.

They had only lived there together a few months. Mia had rented her house to them when she had moved in with Vincent He and Terry had looked at the move as a new opportunity for them. But nothing had changed for them besides their address.

And now if he didn’t get Terry to understand, he may be moving his things out sooner than he had anticipated. He frowned at the thought. “Are you going to be mad at me all night?”

“Yes.” She slammed her purse down on the foyer table and wheeled around to face him. “Who was that guy?” Terry was a Sub, yes, but she was not a pushover. She was angry and needed answers fast.

Mark sighed. Time to come clean. He hadn’t asked her permission so now he had to start asking the love of his life for forgiveness. He took a deep breath. “That was the best trainer in Southern Ontario.”

“Try again, Mark.” Terry angrily shook her head. “The best trainer in Southern Ontario is my friend, Mia, who just retired.” She folded her arms across her chest.

“Well, I guess James didn’t really rank him as a trainer, he just said that he was the best and recommend him for us.”

“James recommended him? The guy who looked angry as hell when I came?”

“When you came? You haven’t had an orgasm with a partner in years.” Mark tried to take her hand, but she shrugged him off. His ill-timed observation hadn’t won him any points in this argument.

“So James thinks that I need a trainer? That’s awful nice of James. I’ve been a Sub for years now. How dare he?”

“It’s not just for you.” Those five words had the ability to stop Terry in her tracks. She turned back to look at him and he could feel his shoulders falling.

There were so many things they should talk about, but never did. He should have told her how he was feeling before going to James. But he was so scared of losing her that he was getting good at keeping all of his pain locked up inside himself.

He could see now how keeping his feelings to himself hadn’t worked. If they had any hope of fixing their relationship, he needed to be honest with the woman he loved more than anything.

“Terry, I know we have problems. Everyone knows we have problems.” They looked at each other as the fight slowly left them both. This fight was just one of many over the years that went nowhere.

“It’s my fault.” She sighed. “Forget what I said before, I was angry. I have blocks, things that I’ve been trying to work through.”

Mark smiled weakly. “It’s okay, I know that I need help, too.” He followed her into the main part of the house. It was the most beautiful place he had ever lived. But he knew that having a perfect home didn’t necessarily translate into the people living inside having a perfect life. Right now their relationship was as far from perfect as possible.

Terry flopped on the couch, as if she had no strength left in her body to stand. Her anger had vanished, leaving a trail of sorrow in its wake. She tried to hold in her tears but it was no use. “I’m sorry.”

“Hey, don’t cry.” Mark joined Terry on the couch and tried his best to kiss away her tears. This night was a bust. The scene had gone terribly, and their trainer had run from them. At least it got them talking.

“I think you’re amazing, Mark, so patient and so good with me.”

“Thank you, babe. I try. You’re the most important person in the world to me.”

“But…”

“You feel it, too.” It wasn’t a question, it was a statement. If Mark had felt like something was off between them, then Terry must feel it, too. Something was missing, and had been for a long time now. What she had said earlier was right, she was an experienced Sub. He was the one who had come to it late. She was in the lifestyle so he had followed her into the scene when they had first reunited after she was freed. It was important to Terry and the lifestyle turned out to be a good fit for him, too. He had found benefits in the type of play and discipline that BDSM dictated.

“I’ve been thinking, maybe we should leave the club.”

“You love it there!”

Terry shrugged. “But I love you more.”

Mark wrapped his arms around her. For more years than he could recall, Terry had been his everything. “You would give up the lifestyle for me?”

“Yes. For us.”

Mark shook his head, stunned. “But that’s nothing something you’ve considered before.”

“That’s true.” Terry shrugged. “But we’ve broken up so many times because of my inability to submit—”

My inability to help you submit.”

“That I’m afraid…”

“That the next time we break up it might be forever?”

Terry nodded. “I don’t want that.”

“Me neither.” Mark out his arm around Terry’s shoulders and pulled her body against hers. He couldn’t bear the thought of losing her for good. Every time they had broken up he had fought his way back here by her side. He had worked hard to prove that she was important to him.

Her fears that this might be the end for them gutted him, but he couldn’t say that he hadn’t worried about the same thing. It was that feeling that had motivated him to share their problems with James. Maybe he had gone about it the wrong way, but he was desperate.

“I’m sorry I went to James without talking it over with you first.”

“It’s okay, I understand now.”

He pressed a kiss to her forehead, grateful for her forgiveness. She closed her eyes briefly and then smiled. He knew that she loved him. No matter what issues they had, he never doubted her feelings for him. That was one of the only certainties in his life.

“Thank you, I needed that.” Terry patted his hand and stood up. They both had regrets they would live with for the rest of their lives.

A Perfect Trio – Releases August 12 – http://www.bookstrand.com/a-perfect-trio

June Photo Caption Challange

Hello Friends!

Every month authors Lori King hosts a flash fiction event inviting writers to put their spin on a photo of her choosing. The pieces can be any style, any subject matter. The only limit is that the pieces can only be 350 words.

This is a direct link to the event on her website:
http://lorikingbooks.wordpress.com/2014/06/30/picture-capture-flash-fiction-event-12-authors-1-photo-4200-words-of-sexy-magic/

Please check out the work of the other authors. I love seeing what diverse pieces that they are inspired to create. This is my second month, and I’m really enjoying being a part if it. Thanks again to Lori King!

Please enjoy my June piece:

juneSean cried out as the nails dug into his flesh. It felt like his skin was splitting, and yet there wasn’t a scratch on him. This was all just part of her illusion. Georgia was a powerful mentalist. Sean was too, but he was new and untrained. He was practically defenseless against her attack.

One word and this all would end. But if he gave in, they were all doomed.

Sean would give anything to just be an ordinary college student again. He used to sleep too late, play his guitar and eat too much pizza.  He had been in love with the same girl since middle school. That part of his life seemed so far away now.

Since the Great Storm three months ago, his life had been pretty strange.

“Remember she’s not really here.” Sharlene urged, keeping him focused on reality.

Sharlene’s life had changed that night too. Depending on how you looked at it, the Gift was either a blessing or a curse.

Sean and Sharlene had decided to use the Gift for good.

Georgia hadn’t.

Sharlene could change the perception of time. She could speed it up or slow it down, which came in handy during a test or when sneaking in after curfew. Otherwise her power was pretty harmless.

Sean was able to manipulate people’s emotions. It was a powerful ability, and one that had placed him on Georgia’s radar. If she could combine his ability with her own, she would have the power to force innocent people into committing crimes.

Georgia was a master of mental violence. Having her invade his mind was the most painful thing Sean had ever experienced. His control was slipping and he could feel himself start to give in. He couldn’t let that happen. He just needed to hold on a little longer. It would take every bit of his strength and maybe even his sanity.

Time slowed around him as Sharlene focused all of her energy on him. For a moment he had relief from the pain. He opened his eyes in surprise. “Keep going, you’re saving me.”

Available now for pre-sale: A Perfect Trio

jb-cp-aperfecttrioOrder here: http://www.bookstrand.com/a-perfect-trio

PRE-ORDER!

AVAILABLE: Tuesday, August 12th

This title is offered at a 15% discount. Offer ends midnight CST, August 19th.

[Siren Ménage Amour: Erotic Consensual BDSM Ménage a Trois Romance, M/F/M, whipping, cropping, sex toys, HEA]

Stef is a BDSM trainer who specializes in couples having problems with their relationship. His work has become an obsession, helping to distract him from the problems in his own life. When his old friend James, the owner of Club Perfect, calls in a favor, Stef can’t refuse.

James asks him to work with one couple only for the next eight weeks. Terry and Mark are high school sweethearts who have had trouble reconnecting since Terry was rescued from a Human Trafficking Ring. This training could make or break their relationship, and it could be Stef’s greatest challenge yet.

Through training they make some progress, but soon the three begin having problems keeping their professional and private relationships separate. Could the answer to their problems be a ménage? 

Suddenly the Traffickers kidnap Terry again. Stef and Mark must work together to free the woman they love. Only once she is safe can they truly become A Perfect Trio.

A Siren Erotic Romance

May Photo Caption Event

Hello Friends!

It’s been a little but since we last talked. Sorry about that! I’ve been stuck in my writing cave, but I will have some important news for you on my next book very shortly.

Until then, I wanted to share with you a new short piece I created for the May Photo Capture Event. In the month since I wrote it, I’ve been tossing around the idea of using it as the start of a new series. Please let me know what you think!

So what is this event? Every month authors Lori King hosts a flash fiction event inviting writers to put their spin on a photo of her choosing. The pieces can be any style, any subject matter. The only limit is that the pieces can only be 350 words.

This is a direct link to the event on her website:
http://lorikingbooks.wordpress.com/2014/05/31/may-picture-capture/
Please check out the work of the other authors. I love seeing what diverse pieces that they are inspired to create. This is my second month, and I’m really enjoying being a part if it. Thanks again to Lori King!

Please enjoy my May piece:

May's Photo
May’s Inspiration Photo

 

Her foot made a hollow sound as it tapped down on the white tiles of the subway floor. She was impatient today. She was supposed to be waiting for the train to work and not specifically waiting for him. Lately it had become increasingly difficult for her to differentiate between the two.

The train would come soon enough. The sparse four minute ride together would be over far too quickly  and then she’d be forced to back to her real life. Not that her life was bad – quite the opposite actually. She had a good family, great friends and a well paying job that she didn’t mind. But her life was missing that little something extra that made a woman excited to get out of bed in the morning. Although if her fantasies were reality, she’d never want to leave her bed or the sexy man in it.

She frowned as she straightened her scarf. A woman of her age shouldn’t be having girlish fantasies about a man she had never spoken to before. Her curse was people watching. It was a habit she couldn’t break. A month ago he had walked onto her train.  Since then the best part of her Monday to Friday was spending her entire ride covertly observing him.

She looked up just as he rushed onto the platform. His hair dark hair was a little askew, and although he wore his usual pressed dress pants and crisp white shirt, something was definitely off.

When their eyes met, he strode towards her with purpose. She gasped as his leather back loafers rushed towards her.

She felt his arm grasp her elbow and wrench her to her feet. Kate turned to him shocked. “Walk.” He ordered as he rushed her down the platform towards the exit. She tripped over her own feet as she hurried attempted to comply.

She pulled away as soon as they were up the stairs and outside of the terminal. “Do you mind telling me what’s going on?”

He frowned and reached for her arm again. “There’s a bomb on the subway, Kate.”

The Reunion (short read)

The Reunion

It had been a long time since he went to a party like this. He hated these things. He had accepted this invitation only because he knew she’d be there. Yet he second guessed himself all the way from the curb to the door. At the last minute he decided to stick with his plan.

Walking into the party, he was welcomed by the host. He hadn’t seen the guy in ten years and yet he was talking to him as best friends. He drowned out the host and concentrated on scanning the room. 

He didn’t see her…yet. He was disappointed for a brief second and then pushed past it. She could be late…hell, she was usually was late to these kind of things. But she would be there, she wouldn’t dare miss this opportunity to walk down memory lane. Plus, she had dared him to come, and he never backed down on a dare.

He walked away while the host was still talking and didn’t give a shit. He hadn’t seen the man in ten years and it would probably be ten more years before he saw him again. He walked across the room to the makeshift bar and helped himself to a drink. He usually avoided alcohol, but tonight seemed as good an occasion as any to indulge. Plus, it steadied his nerves. Just because he never backed down on a dare didn’t mean he wasn’t nervous about what was at stake.

The music was so loud, the bass shook glasses on the bar. He cursed himself when his glass shook in his hand. There were too many people they knew here from high school, she had been friends with them, but he hadn’t. There was a reason why he had avoided these people for the since graduation. God help them if one of these creeps actually tried to talk to him.

Why wasn’t she here yet? He didn’t have much time here before he had to get back. It had been hard to make an excuse stick to buy him this evening out. That was another reason why he hated being around these people that knew him. Too many witnesses and too many people that could talk.

Hopefully this gamble – this girl – will be worth it.  

He looked around the room at smug smiling faces around him. He would assume that to them (and probably to their host ), his reason for being here was clear. Perhaps even the exact reason for his invite. It had been a long time since he humbled himself so much to…care. He liked being the guy no one could read and no one could anticipate. And yet here he was, making himself vulnerable.

If it didn’t work out then later tonight, back in his apartment, he knew he’d be kicking himself for coming. He’d end up looking like some joke  — a loser who gave some old flame a second thought… But, what if his plan worked and he didn’t go home alone? That was the big question. He was risking his reputation to find out the answer.

He had taken extra care in dressing tonight. He hoped that he looked good. Either she would like what she saw or she wouldn’t. The passing years hadn’t been particularly kind on him, but he was still able, on a good night, to talk a lady in a bar into giving her his number.

But he didn’t want just any woman. Not anymore. Ever since she had called him out of the blue, he knew that he wanted her back. Letting her get away was his one regret. At the time it had seemed implausible that they would ever fall in love. They were two strong, but separate personalities. The only thing in common they had ever had was the desire and ability to get each other off. They had found that out one night years ago, both drunk and alone. Their tryst had carried on for some time. Until he had told her that he wasn’t interested in more from her.

He had lied then, and was about to tell a bigger lie to her now to get her back. He didn’t feel great about it, but it had to be done. He needed to taste her again.  

Then from across the room…her laugh…unmistakable. Fuck. He hated the way his body reacted. He tried to calm his raging blood. He calmly breathed in and out all the while he drank in the sound of her voice.He couldn’t let her see how much she moved him.

This was the exact moment he was waiting for, preparing for. Nothing else mattered to him besides the next ten minutes. The next ten minutes could change everything.

He turned slowly and put on a smile. Slowly, trying not to appear over-eager, he walked towards the sound of her. As he got closer, he finally saw her. The wisp of golden hair, the grey sweater, the delicate legs crossed at the knee. She was beautiful, she was amazing. He was motivated now more than ever.

She sat on a sofa surrounded by a horde of well wishers. Her friends hung on her every word. She was the center of attention and she loved it! and she loved it. Her confidence, her control. The way she played the crowd was a thing of wonder. Like the people around her now, she had him fully captivated. Always had. She was the thought he sometimes woke up to in the middle of the night. To say that he missed her wouldn’t quite be true because she was never his to have. Perhaps it would be more accurate to say that he fully longed for her. The softness of her hair, the way her skin smelt. She was beautiful to him, sure but that wasn’t the only thing that made her attractive to him. It was the way her lips curled up when she found something really funny and the cute sound she makes when she sneezes. All these qualities sound silly in part but together…well together, they make her.

God, he loved her. He had let her walk away before but not now.

How would he do it? Would he walk right up to her and announce his feelings? Should he instead ask her to walk with him out to the garden for some privacy? Once he told her of his affection, how would she react? Would she crush him by turning him down, or by some miracle, accept his advances.

He mentally rolled his eyes at himself. God, talk about some love sick teenager. You’re older than that now and you’re better than some romantic fantasy. He took a deep breath. He had to remember what kind of man he was now. She was confident and in control? He would be too. He would make the crowd and she herself fall on his every word. He could do it. He would do whatever he needed to do in order to become the perfect man for her. 

He slipped into the booth beside her. She was so enthusiastic about the story she was telling that she didn’t notice immediately that he had joined them. He waited a second more before he traced the palm of his hand against her leg. 

She stopped her story mid-sentence.

He didn’t take his hand away.

Slowly she turned to him.  “I was wondering if you’d dare to show up or not.”

He smiled. “I wouldn’t have missed this reunion for the world.”