Hello! It`s time for Tuesday Tales again. This week I`ll be sharing an excerpt from my WIP (Work In Progress) Pink Pucks and Power Plays, an M/F sports romance, starring my sassy curvaceous society page reporter, Viviana Land, and defenseman for the Philadelphia Wildcats professional hockey team, Alain Lessard.
In today`s excerpt we reach the end of the book. Viviana is back at the ice rink, incognito in standard trench-coat and D&G shades, to watch the Busy Bees getting a trophy at the end of the season. Then someone shows up and . . . well, you`ll have to read along to see what happens.
This week our word prompt is ‘Long’. Since this is a rough draft there may be some mistakes. I do apologize for any boo-boo you may find.
Please do check out the other wonderful writers after you`re done reading by clicking on the Tuesday Tales link at the bottom. Thanks for stopping in!
Six long weeks had passed since Alain and I had broken up. I glanced up from my iPad, wondering what I could say in my most recent blog post. Blogging was the only writing I was doing now. That wasn`t necessarily by choice, either. Needless to say my backing out of and then deleting my article did not endear me to my EIC. When I flatly refused to let one nugget of personal information pass my lips I was canned. Now I worked the four to midnight shift slinging cocktails at Randy`s Rest, a shit-hole club with a shitty owner and equally shitty clientele.
I hated it but it paid some of the bills. I was quickly using up my retirement fund but if I starved before I hit sixty-five that nest egg was pretty redundant. I glanced at the tiny clock on my tablet and groaned. I had eagerly agreed to coming in a few hours early to give another girl some time off to celebrate her daughter`s birthday. I know, I`m so nice it`s nauseating. Twelve hours of men sliding their hands under my ridiculously short skirt or trying to squeeze a boob. Yippee. Personally I`m amazed I haven`t killed one of the drunken slobs yet. Just because they see breasts all pushed into a bustier they assume it`s grab and grope time. Men are pigs.
“I hope that is not a blanket statement.”
His voice ran over my senses like hundred year old brandy. I rocketed to my feet guiltily, my tablet hidden behind my back. Alain was leaning nonchalantly on my pillar looking as delicious as he ever had. His hair was tousled and his shoulders wide. Waist lean and legs powerful and long, the man robbed me of speech and made my heart flutter dangerously. I hurried to grab my purse from the bench where I had been seated.
“I`m just going,” I mumbled, making my eyes leave him. He was casual in jeans and a dark grey ‘These are my shoes!’ tee with ice skates prominently featured.
“You don`t have to go,” he said. I looked up from shoving my tablet into my purse. I think I blinked. I know my eyes grew dry before I replied with the stunningly literate ‘Oh. Okay.’ “I know you have been here for many weeks,” the man informed me, hands in pockets and shoulder on cement.
“I didn`t think you`d notice me back here.”
“I would notice you no matter where you tried to hide, Viviana.”
I coughed lightly, willing the light breakfast of fruit and coffee to not come back up my throat. I couldn`t allow myself to hear something in his tone that wasn`t there, because there was no way in hell he had just purred at me like he used to.
“The girls did well, considering,” I said and tried to smile while sliding my massive purse over my right shoulder. Alain ran his eyes over me from toes to layered bangs before he nodded.
“They have heart and drive; they will do well with much practice. What is that thing?” he had opened my trenchcoat, exposing my gaudy uniform. I wanted to curl up under a bleacher and die. Instead I smiled widely and popped out a hip, making my coat open wider.
“This is my new work wear.”
“I hear you are selling drinks. I think your new work wear is too short and too much of your boobs are rolling out.”
I gaped at him, my hip sliding back slowly. “Where did you hear about that?”
At this the man smiled and I wondered if I should sit down. Why the hell was he up here chatting about jobs and hockey and acting possessive about my boobs? I was more than confused. I was scared because something like hope was blinking to life in my desiccated heart.
“Your aunt found me after a practice. It was at night, and you were working at that cheap bar. It is below you, Viviana, such a place.”
“It pays the rent,” I threw out to hide my shame at my situation. “I am very sorry about my family accosting you.”
He shook his head, sending a black curl tumbling over his left eye to caress his scarred brow. I sat down before I did something out of line like push that wayward curl from his eyebrow. Alain left his post and sat down beside me. My pulse tripled as his scent enveloped me. Is it possible to grow wet from a man`s elbow brushing yours?
“Do not be apologizing. She was very . . . honest with me about you.”
I then buried my face in my palm. “If she told you about that time I was ten I am still sticking to my story that it was Violet who painted the living room windows.”
His laughter was like balm to my soul. “No, no, she did not tell me of childhood things. She told me about now things. How you told your newspaper that you would not tell them what you knew about me, and so were fired. She told me that you worked at that place and made little money but had men pawing you. She told me that you cried for many weeks when we broke up.”
“Did she tell you she was a spy?” I asked weakly.
“No, but she was very proud of her hat. I have never seen a beaver sitting in such a position on a person`s head, and I am from Quebec where men sometimes wear moose antlers and nothing else.”
“Dear God,” I moaned into my palm. “Dare I ask what else she said to you?”
“She said that she thought I was being cruel not to give you a second chance, since you love me so very much. Is this true, Viviana, do you love me so much that you give up a job that is so important?” he asked, his hand settling on my bare thigh making me start. I nodded. He absorbed my reply slowly before he spoke again. “So, I think for many days about what she says. I find out that I miss you still very much and that I cannot stop thinking of you. Maybe I am mean, Veikko says.”
“Veikko said you were mean?”
Alain shrugged a shoulder, his warm, rough fingers on my thigh felt glorious. “He said that you make contrition with quitting and not writing about our love on your blog, which I read since it begins. You are very funny, Viviana. I miss your fun in my life.”
“I miss being fun in your life,” I whispered. His head was down and tipped towards me. My heartbeat was loud in my ears. “I never meant to hurt you. It was just an assignment when it started. Then I fell in love with you.”
“Yes, I know. I did the same. I think it would be good for us to maybe try again? I am hoping to do so, if you will quit the cocktail place. I know of a job that is opening in the Wildcats` main office for a promotional person to write things for papers and magazines and, well, do whatever the people in the PR office do.”
“Like press releases?” I asked, my whole being now glowing with hope. Alain shrugged and smiled sheepishly.
“I do not know. I am only a puck pusher, yes? You would have to move to Philly though, to take the job. I know a place where you can stay until you find an apartment, if you think you might like to try once more, with me? Est-ce que possible?”
Copyright 2013 ©by V.L. Locey
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I hope you enjoyed meeting Viviana and Alain. I`ve recently submitted this manuscript to a publisher, so hopefully I`ll have some good news to pass along about the Wildcats and their lady loves soon. But now we need a new story to share and hopefully entice you with every Tuesday.
I like to shake things up for my Tuesday Tales excerpts, and switch between my M/F romances and my M/M romances. Next week I`ll begin sharing snippets from my retelling of the classic Greek legend of Orion, Love of the Hunter, which is being released this October by Torquere Press.
See you next week when we first meet the young god of the sun, Apollo.