Monday, June 24, 2019

Short Story


I've written a bunch of short stories over the years under a pseudo - a lot of romances and even more science fiction, believe it or not. I was looking through my short story file tonight and found this one that got published on a romance-friendly site. I think I got some advertising as compensation.


This one is called The Truth About Cupid. Tell me what you think.

Most people don’t know this, but Valentine’s Day is my only day off.  People don’t fall in love on Valentine’s Day, they’re already in love. That’s the one day of the year I’m not needed.



By the way, my name isn’t Cupid, it’s Leo. I’m responsible for the five-block area around Handley Train Station.



I do some of my best work in the spring. Take April, for instance. Flowers, birds, warm sunshine. There’s something about Spring that makes people willing to fall in love. I’ll have to talk to the season to find out why she’s so special.



Look over there. See them? I’ve been trying since Thanksgiving to get them together.

 

His name is Jack. He’s brilliant, but he doesn’t have a clue how to interact with women. And if he’d take off those glasses, women might actually find him attractive. When Jack lived in Pensacola, Martin my cupid counterpart and relationship rookie, really botched up a job. Tried to get Jack to fall in love with a woman who didn’t love plants. He works for the National Parks Service north of the city, but he lives right next to the train station -- two blocks over. He’s all mine now.



Her name is Betsy. She loves the outdoors and has the most incredible raised garden bed behind her little two-bedroom house. She lives on the other side of the tracks. I have to admit, she is one of my tougher cases. She’s had no experience with real love. Poor thing, not even from her parents.



She doesn’t think there is anyone for her, but this is just another myth Doubt likes to spread.

   

But Betsy knows how to love: her friends, her cat, her garden. Jack is perfect for her.



Only four blocks apart and they haven’t even met each other yet.



Last month, I tried a little gig at the corner grocery store. Just at the moment he grabbed a bunch of parsley, she was supposed to be standing there, waiting her turn for the leafy vegetables. Yes, I called in a favor with Frost to stunt her greens.



Someone pulled a melon from one of those pyramid shaped stacks and, in a flash, the entire aisle was filled with melon bowling balls. Betsy was on her knees by the time Jack turned around to see what had happened. Foiled again. Fate was such a cruel foe, but I’d beaten her before. Did you know her middle name was Fickle? Remind me to tell you sometime about the vet who got cornered down on Pine by a poodle-wielding cosmetologist. I still haven’t gotten those two together.



Another thing you don’t know, if it weren’t for me and Martin and all of the others like us, Fate would win every time. People have an odd way of allowing things that shouldn’t be, to be. Especially in matters of the heart. But that’s why I’m here.



I’ve had good luck at Handley over the last ten years. This time I couldn’t miss.



Jack had decided last week to attend the Home and Garden Show downtown. It wasn’t difficult to slip the idea into Betsy’s mind. He wore is ‘I Live For Weed’ t-shirt and a rough pair of blue jeans. He hadn’t yet put two and two together about his t-shirt; he thought it looked cool. See what I have to work with?



Betsy woke like usual, fed her cat, composted the garden and then headed to the train station. You have no idea how many times they’ve been at this train station at the same time and walked right past each other as if they were ghosts.

  

The ‘Gardeners Do It In The Dirt’ t-shirt was an added bonus. I didn’t even know she had it.



Jack picked up a newspaper. Betsy grabbed a coffee. I cleared the only bench warmed by the rays of the April sun. It would be just the two of them, if all went well.



Jack wandered over and sat at one end. The trees held his attention. He shoved the paper under his arm. He glanced at his watch. Betsy stood for a few minutes by the train station schedule, running her fingers along the departure times. I whispered in her ear and she glanced longingly toward the sun-drenched seating area.

One more little nudge and she headed toward Jack.



I’ll bet you can feel the magnetic pull from where you sit.



Jack glanced up, but quickly looked away, nervously clutching his paper.



What’s this?  He started to stand, but I dropped my hand on top of his head and held him there. His paper dropped to the cement, unnoticed. His reaction was unexpected, but it could only mean one thing. He had noticed her before. Sometime’s my job was too easy.



Betsy sat down. I flicked my finger against her garden show ticket and it floated toward Jack. He bent to retrieve it.



He smiled, that first tentative movement of the lips, that said, ‘hey there.’



“Are you going to the show?” he asked. That’s my boy. Didn’t I tell you he was just a little backward with the girls? Brilliant, but simple.



He flicked his hand through his hair and handed her the ticket. Betsy’s fingers grazed his. He shoved his hands into his jean’s pocket as if he’d been burned.



“Yes. I wanted to see the new variety of hybrid broccoli,” she said. Betsy watched him with wide-eyed fascination. There’s someone for everyone.



“I’ve read all about it.”



The train rumbled into the station, screeching to a halt. They headed for the door, bumping as they entered. “After you,” he said.



I held out my hand to block him as he tried to turn away from her. He shrugged his shoulders with puppy-like obedience and followed her. There was only one place where the two of them could sit together and Betsy went for it. Two peas in a pod, I tell you.



Once I got them downtown to the garden show, I spotted Mother Nature -- she’d take her course with these two. I can’t let these opportunities go to waste.



Back at Handley Station, I pulled out my list -- six hundred potential matches to make before my next day off. Next up: the pretty little red-headed baker over on Market Street. It’d be a piece of cake.



Remember, my name is Leo. In case anyone asks.

Thursday, May 30, 2019

Ooh, bestsellers!

It's always good to have a bestseller! And my Kobo readers have been especially good to me this week. Two of my historical erotica romance have popped up on the Number 1 list!

Have you read these books yet? The Darkness in the Marquess of Dane actually hit #1 twice in like 4 days, so that was cool. Two different series represented here: Birds of Paradise and Mad Duchesses.

Mad Duchesses series is complete with four books about widowed duchesses trying to find love. The Birds of Paradise series has one more book, with one chapter complete. This series has been fun, because the primary protags all have varied relationships. Check out the series pages on this blog for more info! Also please not that The Darkness in the Marquess of Dane is one of my most highly rated books, but be prepared, the heat level is pretty high! Ah, who am I kidding, so is One Last Night!!!



Friday, April 26, 2019

Free Title - Imogene

Hi Everyone,

I don't know if you've seen my push for the FREE book Imogene. This is the first in the Imogene Farrell Series - 4 books about the irrepressible heroine of Victorian England. I've always felt this is one of my best series, maybe because Imogene is one of my best heroines. She's true to herself, determined and always looking out for her family.

This FREEBIE is available for a limited time! Hope you enjoy this one and the other books in the series. Jump over to the PAGES section if you want to get more information for all of the books. Also, the series is available in a bundle and that is still cheaper than buying the other 3 books as individuals.



Also available at most other major retails stores.

Wednesday, March 27, 2019

It's Release Day: Not Your Average Earl

A writer's favorite day! Yes, a new release is out today. Check out this cover.



A disturbing letter from India. A child not his own. Leo Bennett is bound to accept the child, as she is legally his. He didn't believe in love at first sight, but Celeste has become his reason for living. And the governess has become a thorn in his side.

Rose Stewart has an unnatural attachment to the child. And she has a valise full of secrets. Like being the duke of Murton's estranged granddaughter. It's not as if she lies, she just omits telling the truth.

Her troubles entangled Leo in a battle of wills, a determination to return her to her rightful place in society and the silent struggle of denied feelings.

I hope you enjoy this book and would love to have a review! Tell me what you think.


Monday, February 25, 2019

Not Your Average Earl Cover Reveal

Yes, it's here! This is Book Three in the Curse of the Weatherby Ball series. This is a non-erotica book - this series is more about families.

RELEASE DATE: 
March 27th! Available for Pre-Order Now!

These series covers are from the Killion Group! Kim also does such great work and super fast too...you know, because I never plan ahead!!!

The manuscript is with my editor now and a release date will be coming soon!

For the quick of eye, you'll notice this is book three (when in reality it is the second in the series to be released.) Sorry, I'm having a hard time with the second book getting done and have had the cover done for about two years!!! Sometimes a story's characters aren't ready to reveal themselves.

Anyhow, Leo Bennett is just an awesome guy.



Friday, February 15, 2019

Coming Soon: Not Your Average Earl

Coming Soon:

Book Two, in the Curse of the Weatherby Ball.

Not Your Average Earl


A disturbing letter from India. A child not his own. Leo Bennett is bound to accept the child, as she is legally his. He didn't believe in love at first sight, but Celeste has become his reason for living. And the governess has become a thorn in his side. 

Rose Stewart has an unnatural attachment to the child. And she has a valise full of secrets. Like being the duke of Murton's estranged granddaughter. It's not as if she lies, she just omits telling the truth.

Her troubles entangled Leo in a battle of wills, a determination to return her to her rightful place in society and the silent struggle of denied feelings.

Cover Reveal Coming Soon

Just a reminder, this series is an emotional, sexy read (but not erotica).

Monday, April 30, 2018

A new scene from Book 7 in the Wicked Affairs series


A little wicked scene from Book 7 of my next Wicked Affairs book - unnamed at this point! And a little throwback, too. Tell me what you think.

They say bad things happened in threes and London was rife with talk of the newest bad things to have happened.


The most tragic, of course, had been the shocking death of Louis Ederline, the old and perverted marquess, who owned more primitive erotic art than ought to have ever been made in the first place. He left behind an innocent young wife some speculated had never been deflowered by her ancient husband or at least deflowered in the traditional sense.


The second bad thing had befallen the favorite horse, Maid of Cadiz, in a race at Newmarket. Not only had the thoroughbred lost, she had lost spectacularly. And to an upstart at that. The winning horse was owned by the Earl of Archer, Charles Standifer, running a horse he had owned less than six months and with eighteen to one odds. His wife, Alizabet, had thrown herself into her husband’s arms after, to the shock of all.


The third bad thing was bound to happen sooner or later. Lady Lindley bore her bad luck stoically. Her long-time lover, Trenton James, the current Earl of Dahlingford, had ended their one-year arrangement amid rampant speculation and accusations. For over a week, the Tattler had been full of on dits regarding lying, cheating and certain other insinuations one could hardly countenance. Though if it was to be believed, Dahlingford was the man to do it.


Unless one lived in London during the Season. Then anything was possible.


Rather than believe her grand fete would be ruined by death, debt and debaucheries, the Duchess of Pelham thought it might be a rather spectacular evening.


She saw her husband Randall VanLandingham across the room and shot him her best smile. As he always did, he smiled back, one brow cocked and one hand braced against his hip. Other things happened in threes also.


As she made her way across the ballroom, trying to get to her husband, she congratulated herself. This was her first crush at the renovated Grosvenor Square mansion. Wall-to-wall aristocrats, titillating scandal and the best of everything.


“You look happy,” Randall said, sliding his hand about her waist and ignoring the friends beside him.


She stood to her toes and whispered, “Do you remember that naughty suggestion you had some months ago about a third person with whom to share our bed?”


“Yes?” His brow hitched a bit higher.


“I’ve found the perfect person for us.”


“Does this willing woman have a name?” He was cautious with his question.


“Jet black, wavy hair. Startlingly blue eyes. Sound familiar?”


“If she is in this room, I see three or four possibilities.”


“He is.”


“He!” Randall’s forehead creased.


“Trenton James. I think he would be perfect. Don’t you agree?”


“My darling wife, I will need to be as dead as Ederline before I allow that to happen.”


She leaned against him, pressing her breast to his arm. “Oh, are you sure? He could tempt the most virtuous woman to sin. Why not me?”


Randall laughed. “Because you have me. And I am enough man to overcome any of my wife’s wicked temptations.”