Lesbian(4)

2

Lesson Learned Ch. 04

After the sex, what's left?

“Are you sure you should do this again?” Gina asked me over lunch a couple of weeks later. Lia and I had gotten together nearly every night during those two weeks and it was like it used to be. Fantastic sex at night, friendly acquaintances during the day. “Why not?” I took a bite of my burger. “I just thought you . . . I don’t know.” Gina shook her head, then pushed her brown hair...Read On

3

Lesson Learned Ch. 03

A little talk, but more sex.

Thankfully the next day was Sunday, because I couldn’t have functioned at work after the night before. I slept until close to eleven and might have slept later but for Lia’s slipping her hand between my legs and making me come. Waking via orgasm wasn’t a bad way to start the day. It was hard to get into the swing of things after sleeping so late, despite the way I woke up. Breakfast...Read On

4

Lesson Learned Ch. 02

Iris and Lia head back to Iris' place.

A couple of hours later, our little group headed out the door. The club was still open, but we’d had it and a couple of people—Gina’s sister, Annie, for one—had definitely had more than enough to drink. I stood outside, glad for the chance to breathe without bumping into someone as we said our goodbyes. Gina came over while I stood on the sidewalk and took a deep breath of cool air. “I’m...Read On

8

Lesson Learned

Iris meets Lia again. Has Iris learned from the past?

Lessons Learned When I walked into the club for Gina’s bachelorette party, I was too frazzled from work to wonder who else might be there. I’d left the office closer to seven than six, ran home to change into my one appropriate dress, and now I was late. A broken chunk of sidewalk almost made me later, but I managed not to fall. I was sure I looked ridiculous as I stumbled towards the door,...Read On

Love Stories(89)

8

King's Bay Ch. 06

Summer's ending; Diz has to decide.

I pondered everything as I drove out to King's Bay the following morning. Did I really want to stay in California, or was I just overwhelmed with my current freedom, and Callie? Was I just caught up in the novelty in being somewhere different? I kept coming back to the fact that I wasn't sure what I had to return to. I could find a job out here, and Callie was here. Callie . . . I...Read On

5

King's Bay Ch. 05

Diz realizes things are changing.

After that weekend, I went to King's Bay whenever I could. June somehow turned into July without me noticing. I spent as much or more time at Callie's place than I did at Manny's. Manny invited me to various parties and barbeques and get-togethers, but I always begged off. I wanted to be with Callie as much as possible. One day I came down with some kind of virus that made me as sick as...Read On

4

King's Bay Ch. 04

Alone in King's Bay....

We swam. We surfed, we rested on the beach and we swam some more. I'd never seen anyone as at home in the water as Callie. She was one of those people that made you think if mermaids were real, she'd be one. If she'd grown a tail and headed out to the horizon, I wouldn't have been a bit surprised. I noticed after a while that the beach wasn't as crowded as I had expected. That struck me...Read On

7

King's Bay Ch. 03

Things begin to change.

The weekend was over too soon and we headed back to Manny's. I took a couple of days to explore at a more leisurely pace. I walked around to see what there was close by, used my bike to go farther away, and went to another beach or two. As beautiful as the California scenery was, I missed Ithaca. It was all just so different. Different trees, different terrain, even different smells. ...Read On

5

King's Bay Ch. 02

The first day at King's Bay.

We arrived at King's Bay on Saturday morning somewhere between nine and ten. It was the kind of day and place where keeping track of time just made no sense. Why limit your enjoyment, even by noting the time? King's Bay was incredible. I'm no poet, but this place almost made me wish I was. The water was a cool dark blue out to the horizon. There were mountains to the north and the sun...Read On

7

King's Bay Ch. 01

When you need a change, you go to California.

King's Bay I worked like a dog for that company for eight years and what happened? They fired me. Bright side? Nice severance package. So screw it. Instead of diving right back into the overcrowded pool of job hunters, I decided to take it easy for a while. I deserved it; I'd barely taken a day off for the last eight years, so I was going to take that package and use it to fund a...Read On

13

Silver, Blue and Gold Ch 05

Confessions all around.

"Who was she?" Chelsea asked after Molly had gone. "A friend," Jake said shortly. It was all he could do not to run after her. God, how could this have happened? He had no idea what to do. Well, he decided, Molly was gone and probably needed time to calm down. So for now, he would deal with Chelsea. "A good friend?" Chelsea raised an eyebrow. "What did you want to talk about?" Jake...Read On

8

Silver, Blue and Gold Ch 04

Molly and Jake get closer but ....

Now this is the way to watch a movie, Jake thought. He sat on Molly's couch and she was curled up next to him. His arm was around her shoulders, and if he leaned his head down just a little, he could smell the light, airy scent of her shampoo. The lights were dimmed to make it easier to see the screen. He hadn't cared about the movie, he realized. He just didn’t want to stop being...Read On

8

Silver, Blue and Gold Ch 03

Baseball is so romantic.

Molly had a great time with Maddy and her friends, Ginger and Sharon. She hadn’t had a girls' night of any kind in forever, and they all got along famously. Not a lot of jewelry got made, but they had a blast anyway, and made tentative plans to do it again. “Oh, that was fun,” Molly said with a happy sigh as she helped Maddy clear away the dishes. “I haven’t done anything like that in...Read On

11

Silver, Blue and Gold Ch 02

Jake and Molly get to know each other.

"So, what do you do?" Jake asked as they walked. It was a nice late summer night. The temperature had dropped slightly and the humidity was low. A slight breeze fanned through Molly's hair. "Me?" Molly asked. "I'm, um, I'm a nurse." She managed not to say that it was a choice her family had not supported. It didn’t seem fair to lay that on him when they'd only just met. "No kidding?"...Read On

10

Silver, Blue and Gold Ch 01

Molly bursts into Jake's life.

Silver, Blue & Gold Author's note: This was one of my early stories, when I was still working on writing. Well, I still am, but had more to learn at this point. I hope you like it, even though it's a bit rough around the edges. Jacob Scott stared at his desk. He couldn't believe she was gone. It had been a week and he still couldn't wrap his mind around it. Chelsea had left him. ...Read On

10

Rhythm and the Blue Line Ch 45

Someone has to make the move.

Ryan covered a yawn as she walked into the hotel lobby. The show had gone well and she was beat. Tired enough, she had decided, to head back to her room while the others hung out somewhere. Her fatigue must have shown, since none of them had made more than a token effort to convince her to go with them. She pondered that in the elevator. It was unlike Lara to leave her alone these days....Read On

10

Rhythm and the Blue Line Ch 44

Getting back on track, from a distance.

Brody was bored. He stared up at the ceiling, wondering just how bored he could get. It was the middle of July and no one was around. Mark was gone for the summer, Bax and his family had returned to Boston and Ryan was on tour. Last he'd talked to his parents, they'd suggested he come to Michigan for a while, but he'd said no. There was no reason, he told himself. He was not going to...Read On

8

Rhythm and the Blue Line Ch 43

Try, try again.

"Did you have a good time?" Brody asked. "Yeah, I did. Thanks for taking me." Ryan smiled to cover the awkwardness she felt. It had been a nice evening, despite the undercurrent of tension between her and Brody. They'd been able to ignore it while with Bax's family but there was no hiding from it now. "Not a problem. I mean, Bax invited both of us and I don't mind driving." "Good." ...Read On

6

Rhythm and the Blue Line Ch 42

The tour is coming, and they talkt to their friends.

Lara looked at Ryan over the top of her latté. "You guys fought over a tour again?" "Well, we didn't exactly fight," Ryan said with a rueful smile. "I got out before it became a fight. But there was definitely a difference of opinion." "What happened?" "I already told you. Brody got upset when he realized I would be gone the rest of the summer. Then I got upset and left. I just knew if...Read On

10

Rhythm and the Blue Line Ch 41

Back together, at least for a while.

Brody checked the lasagna while he waited for Ryan. He hoped she hadn't gotten stuck in traffic, although he figured she'd call if something like that happened. It seemed strange that the six weeks were over. The only thing wrong was that he wasn't still playing hockey. Not that he would be even if the team was still in the playoffs. He was improving and would try skating again the next...Read On

9

Rhythm and the Blue Line Ch 40

The playoffs are over, the tour is over -- now what?

Ryan found herself with time on her hands. The sound check was finished for their next show and she'd had lunch. With a few empty hours in front of her, she considered a swim in the hotel's pool. Upon inspection, she rejected the idea. Green water was a nice decorative touch, but not something she wanted to swim in. She hoped Brody would call soon; she'd texted him a while ago but had held off...Read On

7

Rhythm and the Blue Line Ch 39

It's a good thing Bax is there.

After watching Brody suffer his concussion, Ryan could not sleep. She laid in bed and dozed fitfully at best, giving up around seven a.m. She dressed quietly to avoid waking Lara and went for a walk. After close to an hour, she still was not ready to return to the hotel. She found a diner a block away and went in and ordered some coffee. When her phone rang, she grabbed for it. "Hello." ...Read On

9

Rhythm and the Blue Line Ch 38

It's hard not to be there during a crisis.

Game five back in Washington was even more tightly-contested than game four in Montréal. Brody saw the puck sliding to the corner and charged after it. He caught a flash of white out of the corner of his eye, knew he had a step on the defenseman, and sped up as he focused on the puck. A few feet out from the boards he felt something slam into his back and then he crashed into the boards....Read On

7

Rhythm and the Blue Line Ch 37

Hecklers, losses, and playoff beards.

Ryan downed the soda she'd ordered at the bar. They were in Hartford, Connecticut. She felt the stage fright creeping up but ignored it. Once they'd gotten through the first couple of shows, her anxiety had eased a lot, even if it hadn't faded entirely. Word was getting around about the tour as well. Old fans and new were posting to the band's Facebook page which was like free publicity as...Read On

11

Rhythm and the Blue Line Ch 36

On tour and in the playoffs.

Brody hung by the blue line, waiting for his defensemen to get to the puck out of the corner. Time slowed as players jabbed at the puck, trying to free it from under skates and sticks. After what seemed like forever, the puck dribbled free and Bax snagged it and started up the ice. Brody followed him and saw Tolya joining the rush. They crossed the red line and Bax dumped the puck down the...Read On

13

Rhythm and the Blue Line Ch 35

Ryan and Brody have a little time together.

Brody opened the door and laughed when Ryan threw her arms around him. "I missed you, too." He hugged her with one arm while closing the door with the other. Ryan looked up at him. "I can't believe we live in the same building and haven't seen each other in almost a week." "Yeah, I know. Crazy." He put his other arm around her and leaned down to kiss her. She laughed against his lips when...Read On

7

Rhythm and the Blue Line Ch 34

Ryan's a little apprehensive.

Ryan ignored her cell phone and focused her attention on sorting through clothes to pack for the tour and clothes to store. "Hey, you going to answer that?" Lara stood in the doorway. "Nope. It's my mom. I know why she's calling and I'm done with being yelled at." "Ah, I see." Lara surveyed Ryan's room for a few minutes before observing, "This place is a mess." Clothes, papers and...Read On

11

Rhythm and the Blue Line Ch 33

More family, more problems.

"Remember this place?" Rick clapped Brody on the shoulder as they entered the bar. "I don't know—wait." Brody looked around. "Is this the place you took me when I turned twenty-one?" Rick grinned. "The very same. Although I remember it as the place where you barfed in the parking lot when we left." "Thanks for bringing that up." "You're not going to do that again, are you?" "No....Read On

9

Rhythm and the Blue Line Ch 32

Sometimes support doesn't come from family.

Ryan had just saved her work log when her phone rang. She answered, hoping it wasn't a last-minute request for anything. She was anxious to finish up and get out; Brody was going to pick her up and they were going to get one last, quiet celebration in before the tour and the playoffs started up. It was her supervisor, but luck was with her—the work was already done. Relieved, she sent the...Read On

25

Rhythm and the Blue Line Ch 31

Getting serious.

March brought a lot of wind and rain, and Ryan felt like she'd walked through it all on her way home from work. She went into her apartment, hoping the quiet would alleviate her headache. It had been a hell of a day, but it was Friday and it was over. She tried to concentrate on that as she went to her room to change. Things were moving along for the band. They'd found a lawyer through...Read On

13

Rhythm and the Blue Line Ch 30

Brody thinks it over.

Brody was quiet as he sat on the team bus the next day for the ride up to New York, still mulling over seeing Ryan the night before. This was one relationship area he had no experience with—the post-breakup phase. In the past, when he'd broken up with someone, they had stayed broken up. There'd been no apologies. Bax dropped into the seat next to him. "Well, you look like a barrel of...Read On

9

Rhythm and the Blue Line Ch 29

Apologies and ice cream.

Brody leaned forward on the bench and glanced up at the clock. Less than three minutes left, and they had a one-goal lead over visiting Toronto. The refs blew the play dead and everyone sat back and took a breath as the broadcast went to one final television time-out. The coach grabbed a whiteboard with rink markings on it and outlined their next play. Brody nodded and climbed over the...Read On

17

Rhythm and the Blue Line Ch 28

After-dinner-math.

The night after meeting Ryan's parents, Brody was playing pool with Drew, Bax, and Tolya at an Arlington sports bar. He took his shot, missed, and stepped back for Drew, and told them about the dinner. "Her dad asks me if I ever played football, because obviously he thinks that's the only sport worth playing." Brody shook his head. "Jesus. So there I am, trying to find a nice to way to say,...Read On

11

Rhythm and the Blue Line Ch 27

Dinner with the parents.

It was almost two weeks later before Ryan could find a night clear of hockey and basketball games, not to mention a time where she had no rehearsal scheduled. As they rode out to Chantilly in his car, and the weather was gray and damp, typical of early February. Brody glanced over at Ryan as she stared out the window and fidgeted, tapping her foot on the floor. "You're not one of those...Read On

14

Rhythm and the Blue Line Ch 26

Sharing the news, good and bad.

Ryan knocked on Brody's door, bursting to tell him about the tour. Word had gotten around, and she'd gotten congratulatory calls from Annette and others, but it wasn't quite the same. She was about to knock again when he opened the door. "Hey, come on in." Brody held the door open for her. "Thanks." Ryan's excitement dropped a few notches. Brody looked and sounded far different than he had...Read On

11

Rhythm and the Blue Line Ch 25

Brody talks to his brother -- the bad news.

The incessant buzz of his alarm clock usually had Brody up right away, but this time it took him a good ten seconds of flailing before he found the button to shut it off. The team had played the night before, eking out an overtime win against Nashville, and he'd almost fallen asleep in his clothes when he'd gotten home. He lay in bed a while longer before opening his eyes. His day had so...Read On

16

Rhythm and the Blue Line Ch 24

Good news, bad news, and parents.

© 2011 All Rights Reserved Four weeks later, on a Friday in the middle of January, Ryan was at work but all of her attention was on Lara. "We got it?" Ryan kept her voice down as she gripped the phone. "Are you sure? Are you serious?" "I know! I know!" Lara all but squeaked. "I'm sure, I'm so sure! I just talked to him and they mean it. Once we calm down, we need to find a lawyer....Read On

13

Rhythm and the Blue Line Ch 23

Brody watches his musician

"They're good, Langer," Bax shouted over the crowd. "Really good." Brody nodded and watched his musician up on stage. She looked fantastic and the band sounded great. He wondered once more if she knew how happy she looked when she was performing. The first song ended and Lara thanked the crowd before they moved on to the next one. Ryan moved over to the keyboards, keeping her guitar on...Read On

10

Rhythm and the Blue Line Ch 22

Almost show time.

Ryan's phone beeped as she and Brody walked to the club. She checked the screen and touched the icon to see Evan's text message. I had to promise to come to dinner with Mom and Dad next week. You owe me. "Smart ass." Ryan shook her head with a smile and put her phone back in her pocket. "Who is?" Brody asked. "Evan. Oh, hey, I guess we're officially official, since you'll be meeting...Read On

14

Rhythm and the Blue Line Ch 21

Time to get cooking.

At the sound check, Ryan found herself more relaxed than she'd ever been preparing for a gig. It almost made her laugh. Jason's absence was liberating, and added weight to the others' argument that perhaps they shouldn't replace him. She still wasn't sure, but had to admit the idea was appealing, especially if it meant reduced stress levels like this. She looked up and saw Trout, who...Read On

6

Rhythm and the Blue Line Ch 20

It must be serious...

Rhythm and the Blue Line Part 6 © 2011 All Rights Reserved The next morning, Ryan stretched and rolled over in her bed, but Brody wasn't there. She blinked awake and frowned, wondering how late it was and why he would have left. So far as she knew, he had nothing going on today. She took a deep breath, smelled food cooking, and smiled. She rolled out of bed and pulled on a pair of...Read On

9

Rhythm and the Blue Line Ch 19

More stress means more stress relief.

Ryan sat at her desk, willing the time to pass. It was Friday and she was itching to get out of the office. She'd been distracted all day, thinking about the gig the following night. Plus, she wanted to see Brody. She hadn't seen him since Sunday and smiled at the memory. They had eventually worked off enough stress that she had slept until after ten in the morning. Brody had been gone...Read On

9

Rhythm and the Blue Line Ch 18

A little bit of stress release

Ryan laughed to herself as she hung up the phone. She did feel a little guilty about conning Brody into bringing her food, but she reminded herself that they had had plans, and he likely would have made dinner anyway. This was a simple matter of timing and location. She sat for a minute with her eyes closed until she heard a knock on the door. With a groan, she dragged herself off the couch...Read On

10

Rhythm and the Blue Line Ch 17

Brody can handle it.

Brody tromped into the dressing room after practice. It had been a good day so far, he thought. He'd talked with his parents and they were coming East for Christmas, along with a couple of his siblings. He hoped Ryan would have a chance to meet them. They hadn't talked much about it yet, but he assumed she'd be spending the day with her family. Still, with his family staying for a few days...Read On

12

Rhythm and the Blue Line Ch 16

Trouble with the band.

Ryan gave herself a mental shake as she got her guitar out. It was Saturday, and in seven days, they'd be headlining at the 9:30 Club. She thought she must be excited; she kept telling herself the butterflies in her stomach meant she was excited. She chatted with Lara and Mitch as they got ready. Nate came in a few minutes later, and Ryan was surprised not to see Jason with him. Mitch...Read On

13

Horses in the City Ch 07

A new Christmas for Luke and Emma

Her puzzlement grew as they walked closer to her apartment. She'd expected that he might call a cab to go to his place after his words about sitting by a tree. Yet he continued walking down the sidewalk, turning onto her street, and saying nothing. Well, if his idea of a tree is a spider plant, then I guess we'll go to my place. Luke opened the door to her building and as they went up...Read On

7

Horses in the City Ch 06

Christmas is coming.

As Christmas approached, Emma found herself ever busier at the diner. One of the waitresses slipped and fractured her leg, and Millie couldn't find anyone to cover, so everyone worked extra hours. Luke was deep in his novel when he wasn't driving the carriage, and their time was limited, although he made a point of walking her home after her shift. It wasn't much, but Luke would come up and...Read On

6

Horses in the City Ch 05

Emma and Luke share their stories.

Emma was too busy to reflect on her day with Luke, although she wanted to. Those kisses, she thought, bore particular reflecting. She smiled at herself. What's gotten into you? Even she knew the answer: Luke. The bulk of the shift flew by as Emma, Millie, and the other two waitresses dealt with the crowd. When things calmed down, one of the other girls begged Millie to go home, and...Read On

11

Rhythm and the Blue Line Ch 15

Ryan's turn to go to a game.

The next night, Ryan was sitting with her guitar, deep into a song when she heard Lara come in. "So, how's it going with the boyfriend?" Ryan looked up to see her friend leaning against the wall, a gleam in her eyes. "It's going fine, thanks." Ryan went back to her song and hid a grin, knowing the neutral response would drive Lara crazy. "Oh, come on. There must be more than that." ...Read On

10

Rhythm and the Blue Line Ch 14

Brody's friend questions his motives.

Three days later, on a game-free Tuesday night, Brody whistled as he flipped a zucchini pancake over. Mark eyed the contents of the pan warily. "What is that?" "A zucchini pancake with angel hair pasta and a few other things. It's like a frittata." Brody sprinkled some salt and pepper on it, flipped it again. "How the hell do you come up with stuff like that?" "Saw it in a...Read On

6

Horses in the City Ch 04

Emma tells Luke her story.

The next day, Luke arrived early at the stable and began hitching up the horses. He'd done it so often that he was able to let his thoughts wander, and they wandered to Emma. What would she say, he wondered. What would he tell her about himself? He'd been distracted ever since he'd proposed they talk, and hadn't slept well. Writing had been an exercise in futility. None of it had been helped...Read On

13

Rhythm and the Blue Line Ch 13

Ryan finally tells someone about Brody.

A week later, Ryan was on the UMD campus. She walked over to the statue of the diamondback terrapin, symbol of the school's teams, and rubbed its head. The week had been hectic, including a tense dinner with her parents, and it felt like it was the first time in days she'd even been able to take a deep breath. "So, let's see." She patted the terrapin's head again. "In the last week, I've...Read On

3

Horses in the City Ch 03

Emma has to face her past.

A week later, the diner was busy and one of the other waitresses was sick, so Emma came in early to help. She hadn't minded; since her day with Luke, she'd been in a wonderful mood. They'd gone out for a little while before her shift today, and he'd kissed her before saying good-bye. A light, curious kiss that had made her feel dizzy with delight. Even the piano in her apartment didn't seem...Read On

6

Horses in the City Ch 02

Emma takes a chance.

"What'd you tell him?" Millie jerked her head in Sol's direction. "Looked like he might jump over the table for that salt." Emma reached for the coffee carafe. "I told him you put extra salt in the hash browns." "Good one!" Millie laughed, almost a cackle, and patted Emma's arm. "And he believed you!" Emma shrugged. "This time, anyway." "And did I see you smile over there?" Millie...Read On

10

Horses in the City Ch 01

Luke wonders about Emma.

Horses in the City © 2010 All rights reserved Prologue "Emma, what are you talking about?" Lila Hutchins stared at her sister, unable to comprehend what she'd just heard. They were at a Christmas party but Lila barely registered the lights, the decorations, or the songs. Emma's words had blocked everything else out. "Just what I said, Lila. I don't think it will work with the two of...Read On

13

Rhythm and the Blue Line Ch 12

Negotiations pay off.

Brody debated what they might do now that the gig was over. It was fall, so a lot of places closed early. On the other hand, the weather was still decent, so he suggested they go to Old Town Alexandria. Ryan agreed, and he waited while she changed, musing over what Mark, Hilary and even Bax had been saying for the last few days. True, he wouldn't mind being more than friends with Ryan....Read On

12

Rhythm and the Blue Line Ch 11

Showtime!

Brody waited for Mark and Hilary near the Foggy Bottom-GWU Metro station. He was looking forward to the show and seeing Ryan perform. When he thought about growing up, he always remembered music in the background. Classical, rock, blues, even some punk—his parents had played a little bit of everything, and he and his siblings had all added their contributions as they'd grown up. He'd tried...Read On

10

Rhythm and the Blue Line Ch 10

Pre-show jitters.

Saturday morning Brody woke up and groaned as his leg throbbed. He'd gone down to block a shot in the game against Philly, caught the puck above his knee, and it still hurt. Given that, he'd talked with the coach and trainer and decided to skip the day's optional skate. He stayed in bed a little longer, but sleep wouldn't return, and so he got up, making his way to the shower with a...Read On

14

Rhythm and the Blue Line Ch 09

A little flak from their friends.

Brody drummed his fingers on his knee and bounced his leg as he sat on the team bus. They'd be on their way to Philly soon and few things got the Capitals pumped like a game against the Flyers, even though it was the teams' first meeting of the season, in mid-November. Baxter dropped into the seat beside him. "Jesus, do you never sit still?" "Just a little extra energy, that's all."...Read On

13

Rhythm and the Blue Line Ch 08

Family -- there ought to be a law.

After going over a new song with Lara in the morning and grabbing an early lunch at the mall, Ryan made her way over to Crystal City to pick up a Zipcar. Working with Lara had kept her from dwelling on the party, but riding out to Chantilly in the little compact, she couldn't avoid it. It's really sad when you think about faking sick to miss your own brother's birthday party. She popped in...Read On

11

Rhythm and the Blue Line Ch 07

Lara advocates for Brody.

"Jason was a piece of work, wasn't he?" Lara shook her head as she drove them home. "He was." Ryan paused, trying to get a sense of Lara's mood. "No worse than usual, I guess, but he does get under my skin. I think he does it on purpose." "Yeah. God." Lara smacked the steering wheel. "'Too bad you didn't get an earlier date?' Next time he can plan the damn gigs. I don’t see him offering...Read On

12

Rhythm and the Blue Line Ch 06

Talking to friends.

A few days later, Brody huffed out a breath as he dropped onto the bench in the dressing room. He grabbed some Gatorade and gulped it down, exchanging high-fives with his teammates as they filed past. "Good job." Chuck Baxter clapped him on the shoulder as he dropped to the bench next to him. "Now we just have to do it all again next game." "No problem." Brody grinned. "Give me ten minutes."...Read On

13

Rhythm and the Blue Line Ch 05

Brody makes dinner.

© 2011 All Rights Reserved A week later, Ryan was pleased to be in a soft cast. Her ankle hurt far less and she was off her crutches, but she couldn't wait to be done with the whole damn thing. At least, she thought as she came in from work, she wasn't thinking about how it had happened every time she walked more than a block. Just a few more days , she reminded herself as she stared...Read On

12

Rhythm and the Blue Line Ch 04

A song and a proposal.

Rhythm and the Blue Line Ch 04 © 2011 All rights reserved Brody stared at the screen. " This is what you watch when you're upset?" "I warned you." Ryan reached into the bag of chips. "You're the one who wanted to make the bet." "You are . . . different," Brody said. "I mean, most girls I know, they'd be sniffling through The Notebook or something. Eating a gallon of ice cream and...Read On

12

Rhythm and the Blue Line Ch 03

Ryan and Brody get some sushi.

Rhythm and the Blue Line Ch 03 © 2011 All rights reserved "Hi, Mom," Ryan said. "Hi, sweetie. How are you? I've been worried about you. Maybe you should come home while you heal up." "I'm fine, Mom. Really, I'm fine. I promise." Ryan stared at the ceiling. "The insurance is covering it. I can come off the crutches this week, and they'll give me a soft cast for a week or so." "I...Read On

16

Rhythm and the Blue Line Ch 02

Brody lends a helping hand.

Rhythm and the Blue Line Ch 02 © 2011 All rights reserved "So, Mark, what's the story with Ryan?" Brody asked a couple of days later. They sat in the dressing room, lacing up their skates before practice. "What?" Mark looked up. "What story?" Brody shrugged. "She seeing anybody?" Mark narrowed his eyes. "I don't know. Why?" "Just curious." "I don't think she's your type." ...Read On

19

Rhythm and the Blue Line Ch 01

A hockey player meets a musician.

© 2011 All rights reserved "I gotta go, man," said Mark. "I told Hilary I'd meet her." "Right." Brody grinned. "You're just mad because I was kicking your ass at Madden." Mark rolled his eyes. "Yeah, that's it. I'm so pissed about losing that I'm using my girlfriend as an excuse. Jesus, Brody." Brody snickered. "You have been whipped since she moved in with you." "Just get out."...Read On

28

Pretending Ch. 09

No more pretending

Pretending Ch. 09 © 2009 All Right Reserved Connie let the water run down on her from the shower head after she'd finished. The hot water felt wonderful after such a long day. She turned off the water, wrapped her hair in one towel and grabbed another for her body. While she'd been in there, she'd gone back over what Emily had said. Her sister was right. She needed to tell him, and tell...Read On

9

Pretending Ch. 08

Connie tells Emily what's going on.

Pretending Ch. 08 © 2009 All rights reserved Emily proved prophetic. Despite Simon's grandiose claims, John had wiped out both him and Edward in a few short hands. He was more than happy to see Emily and Connie return. Lydia came in a few moments later, and headed into the kitchen to make coffee and tea to go with their pumpkin pie. Overstuffed from dinner, there had been...Read On

15

Pretending Ch. 07

Home for Thankgiving.

Pretending Ch 07 © 2009 All Rights Reserved "Connie!" Emily shouted at her sister happily while sitting on the front porch. Connie grinned as she stretched. She hadn't seen Emily in months. She got a shock, though, when Emily stood up—Emily was pregnant! "Em!" She ran over to hug her sister. They embraced, then Connie stepped back, looking at Emily's slightly rounded figure. "When...Read On

12

Pretending Ch. 06

Trying to sort out just what happened.

Pretending Ch. 02 © 2009 All Rights Reserved Sunlight peeked through the blinds and prodded Connie awake. She took a moment to orient herself. I don’t have piles of books on top of my computer , she thought. Then she remembered where she was and turned her head. Simon lay behind her, his hand on her waist, sleeping like a log. Her first instinct was to jump out of the bed, but...Read On

12

Pretending Ch. 05

Comfort begins to lead to more.

Pretending Ch. 05 © 2009 All Rights Reserved "Rachel! Rachel, look out!" Connie was shouting and pointing, but nothing was coming out. The SUV loomed larger and larger as it approached from behind. Connie had seen it in the side mirror and watched in horror as it grew and grew, until the grille filled the little glass. Objects in the mirror are closer than they appear , she thought...Read On

13

Pretending Ch. 04

The line blurs a little more.

Pretending Ch. 04 © 2009 All Rights Reserved Neither of them mentioned the kiss after that. They did agree to Simon's idea of going on dates and acting like a "real" couple. Connie found she couldn't keep her guard up all the time. More than once she realized she had forgotten the "pretend" part of the whole thing, and she gave up on trying to keep a mental buffer. She rationalized...Read On

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Pretending Ch. 03

Connie has an idea, and Simon agrees.

Pretending Ch. 03 © 2009 All Rights Reserved Dinner and a movie did wonders for both Connie and Simon. Connie felt much better that she'd told him, and Simon was relieved to find he hadn't done anything to offend or scare her. The weekend was too cold to do much, although they did get out for groceries. Simon teased her and said she should cook for the next week to make up for him having...Read On

12

Pretending Ch. 02

Simon won't let her avoid him anymore.

Pretending Ch. 2 © 2009 All Rights Reserved Simon was frustrated over the next few days. Connie went to lengths to avoid him, although since they lived together, she couldn't avoid him all the time. After three days, frustration turned to a strange sort of admiration. It was impressive how she managed to see him for the barest minimum of time every day. She left early, came home late,...Read On

16

Pretending Ch. 01

Connie and Simon are best friends.

Pretending Chapter 1 © 2009 All rights reserved "Simon, would you get that?" Connie called from her bedroom after she heard the knock on the door. Her date was probably here and she wasn't quite ready. "No problem," came the reply. She turned back to the mirror and decided this was the best she could do. Her black hair was swept back into a braid, and she wore dangly...Read On

14

Nothing Gets Through Ch. 13

The game is winding down.

Nothing Gets Through Ch. 13 © 2009 All rights reserved I will not cry, Lani told herself. I will not. She wiped at any tears that dared escape her eyes. So Dom blamed her, just like Jason did. Well, she'd had it. Let them blame her. It wasn't her fault the defense had faltered tonight and allowed a season-high number of shots, any more than it was her fault that Jason had been hit...Read On

11

Nothing Gets Through Ch. 12

Another apology is in order.

Nothing Gets Through Ch. 12 © 2009 All rights reserved "Hey." Lani looked up from her laptop, blinking as her eyes adjusted from the LCD display to the real world. She focused on Dom standing in front of her. "Hi." Her mouth went suddenly dry. "Mind if I sit?" Dom gestured at the empty chair. She shook her head. Dom sat and studied her. She was still beautiful, but she looked tired and...Read On

13

Nothing Gets Through Ch. 11

Just how serious are things between Dom and Lani?

Nothing Gets Through Ch. 11 © 2009 All rights reserved "So how was it?" Dee asked. Lani sighed. "Great, so long as Jason and I weren’t in the same room." "Are you serious?" Dee asked. She shook her head as she cut up some cheese. The game would start soon, and she and Lani were prepping their snacks. The ice cream would stay in the freezer until it was necessary. Somehow, it was...Read On

12

Nothing Gets Through Ch. 10

Dom realizes how close Lani's letting him get.

Nothing Gets Through Ch. 10 © 2009 All Rights Reserved Lani curled up on the couch as she waited for Dom to come back with the wine. It was five days before Christmas, and the team's schedule was going to get hectic. Lani was flying back to Hawaii the next day, and so they had decided to have a small Christmas celebration early. It was a good idea, Lani decided. By trading gifts early,...Read On

14

Nothing Gets Through Ch. 09

Time for an apology

Nothing Gets Through Ch. 09 © 2009 All rights reserved "Lani, it wasn't your fault," Dee told her. They were in the makeshift break room at the office. Their non-profit was doing well, but hadn't risen to the level of organizations like the Make a Wish foundation, so the break room had been carved out from a former storage area. "I know, Dee," Lani said as she sipped her water. "I...Read On

13

Nothing Gets Through Ch. 08

A surprise doesn't go over so well.

Nothing Gets Through Ch. 08 © 2009 All rights reserved Lani sat at her desk, eyes half-glazed as she scrolled through the table on the monitor. The numbers were stupor-inducing and she thought how handy an intravenous caffeine drip would be. As the numbers moved up and off the screen, her thoughts wandered to Dom. Why hasn't he called? she wondered, then chided herself, Why haven't...Read On

10

Nothing Gets Through Ch. 07

Dom debates a phone call

Nothing Gets Through Ch. 07 © 2009 All Rights Reserved "Oh, wow," said Dee, throwing her head back on the sofa. "That was great. I'm so glad they won." Lani grinned. It was Monday night and Dee had invited her over to watch the first game of the road trip. They'd won, four to two. Even over the television, they could see Dom's frustration. He had been screened on the first goal, but...Read On

8

Nothing Gets Through Ch. 06

Dom and Lani the day after.

Nothing Gets Through Ch. 06 © 2009 All Rights Reserved Lani woke up and blinked. It was so quiet. That was a blessing; Cherie must have either worn herself out or gone somewhere else. It took a minute to realize it was quiet because she wasn't in her bedroom. She turned her head at the sound of rustling sheets and smiled when she saw Dom still sleeping. He looked a little younger,...Read On

9

Nothing Gets Through Ch. 05

Back at Dom's place...

Nothing Gets Through Ch. 05 © 2010 All rights reserved Dom had a quiet, neat apartment. There was very little decoration, and a bare minimum of furniture. That was all Lani got to observe before Dom took her coat, removed his own, and then pulled her into another searing kiss. He couldn’t remember at what point on the ride to his place he'd discovered he'd wanted her so much. After...Read On

7

Nothing Gets Through Ch. 04

He talks her into spending more time together.

Nothing Gets Through Ch. 04 © 2010 All Rights Reserved They stayed at the restaurant a while longer, then split up to go home. Karl, obviously infatuated with Deanne, offered to see her home. Dee didn't hesitate to accept. "Looks like it's you and me, kid," Dom said to Lani as he helped her on with her coat. They stepped outside and Lani shivered at the cold. The wind was still light,...Read On

9

Nothing Gets Through Ch. 03

Getting together after the game.

Lani and Dee walked into the arena with about ten minutes to spare before the game started. "Wow, this place is huge!" Dee took in the all the seats with wide eyes. "They must fit a million people in here." "Oh, probably around eighteen thousand," Lani said as they walked through the portal. "I hope there's not a fire or anything," Deanne muttered. Lani laughed and her friend...Read On

8

Nothing Gets Through Ch. 02

Run up to game time.

"Don't touch me," Dom heard the woman say. Her voice was cold and matched the dark ice of her eyes. "I think you'd better do as she says," Dom suggested as he approached. His voice was calm and belied his anger. "Who the hell are you?" the man snarled, his eyes still on Lani. Karl tapped him on the shoulder from the other side and he spun around. "We're friends of hers." Karl smiled...Read On

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Nothing Gets Through Ch. 01

A hockey player goes into a coffee shop...

Nothing Gets Through Ch 1 © 2009 All rights reserved. Thonk. Pahk. Clack. Dom moved smoothly from shot to shot, deflecting pucks with his blocker pad, his glove, his leg pads, his stick—whatever was in the right place. He ignored the ones that got through. He just gritted his teeth and tried harder to stop the rest. The bars of his facemask disappeared, and his teammates were...Read On

4

Who Cares What I Wear? Ch. 02

Emily thinks about Ben on New Year's Eve.

(C) 2010 All rights reserved When the doorbell rang, Emily hurried over to open the door and smiled at Neil. "Hi. Come on in." "Thanks." He stepped inside and Emily closed the door. "I'm almost ready. Just need the shoes and earrings." "Typical woman," Neil joked and Emily rolled her eyes. "Seems to me we waited on you more than once when you couldn't find your lucky shirt and we...Read On

5

Who Cares What I Wear? Ch. 01

Emily thinks about Ben on New Year's Eve.

Who Cares What I Wear? © 2010 All Rights Reserved "Come on, Em. You should come to the party. Everyone's going to be there, and they miss you." Emily Pearson closed her eyes and tightened her grip on the phone. "I don't know, Sharon. I'm really not in a party mood." "Em, I know you miss him. I know it's been hard. But you can't hide forever." "I'm not, I just…I just don't know if I...Read On

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Lost in the Woods Ch. 02

The woods are lovely, dark and deep.

Lost in the Woods Ch. 2 © 2011 All Rights Reserved Willow woke the next morning and was disoriented by the blue-gray ceiling. Then Ivy snored and Willow looked over at her friend, wrapped in her sleeping bag, and remembered. The park. Earth Day. Lost in the woods. No, she hadn't been lost, she corrected herself. She'd been less than a hundred feet away from a dozen people and could...Read On

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Lost in the Woods Ch. 01

The woods are lovely, dark and deep.

Lost in the Woods Ch. 1 © 2011 All Rights Reserved "Hey, everybody! I want to tell you about a volunteer opportunity before we get started." Willow Oakton gave a mental roll of the eyes before turning her attention to the speaker. Holly Stone was hosting the book club this month, and so she had the floor. Whenever Holly had a "volunteer opportunity" to discuss, it tended to result...Read On

Straight Sex(2)

8

Morning Sun

He needed a break from the commotion.

The morning sun came through the windows as Cody Elliott stepped through the door. He closed the door behind him, locked it, and dropped his bag on the floor. He'd sit soon, but he had to check first. With soft steps, he walked up the stairs and down the hall. The floor creaked and he stopped, but heard nothing and continued on. He opened the bedroom door, leaned against the doorjamb,...Read On

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Island Encounter

He just needed a little direction.

Island Encounter © 2010 All Rights Reserved Now this is the life , he thought. John took one last dip in the clear warm water and then shrugged his way out of the ocean, heading towards his chair. The sand was soft, white and not quite hot enough to burn. He gave himself a quick rub with the towel, then stretched out on the chaise lounge and let the sun's warmth wash over his body. ...Read On