Muscle Flex Quotes

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Have you kissed many boys before?" he asked quietly. His question brought my mind back into focus. I raised an eyebrow. "Boys? That's an assumption." Noah laughed, the sound low and husky. "Girls, then?" "No." "Not many girls? Or not many boys?" "Neither," I said. Let him make of that what he would. "How many?" "Why—" "I am taking away that word. You are no longer allowed to use it. How many?" My cheeks flushed, but my voice was steady as I answered. "One." At this, Noah leaned in impossibly closer, the slender muscles in his forearm flexing as he bent his elbow to bring himself nearer to me, almost touching. I was heady with the proximity of him and grew legitimately concerned that my heart might explode. Maybe Noah wasn't asking. Maybe I didn't mind. I closed my eyes and felt Noah's five o' clock graze my jaw, and the faintest whisper of his lips at my ear. "He was doing it wrong.
Michelle Hodkin (The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer (Mara Dyer, #1))
His muscles flexed under his clothes, holding me, leading me. Never letting me stray far.
Becca Fitzpatrick (Silence (Hush, Hush, #3))
My new employer made me get a drug test, so I ripped off my shirt, flexed my muscles, and said, “You suspect me of taking steroids, don’t you?
Jarod Kintz (This Book is Not for Sale)
To be strong does not mean to sprout muscles and flex. It means meeting one's own numinosity without fleeing, actively living with the wild nature in one's own way. It means to be able to learn, to be able to stand what we know. It means to stand and live.
Clarissa Pinkola Estés (Women Who Run With the Wolves)
Why is he still here?" she asked, pointing to Tristan. A muscle flexed in his scruffy jaw. Why did he always have sexy scruff. Did the man not own a razor?
Chelsea Fine (Avow (The Archers of Avalon, #3))
Strength is not in the body, it’s in the mind. It doesn’t lie in flexing your muscles and crushing those who oppose you. It lies in being the last one standing. By any means. At any cost.
Leah Raeder (Black Iris)
With so much effort being poured into church growth, so much press being given to the benefits of faith, and so much flexing of religious muscle in the public square, the poor in spirit have no one but Jesus to call them blessed anymore.
Barbara Brown Taylor (Leaving Church: A Memoir of Faith)
And as for romance? Well, I want that too. I want to fall asleep next to you, 100 times a night, so I can know you 100 times better before we hit the day light. And despite all of this, I also want amnesia so I can relive each kiss with a perfect newness that leaves me smashed in the arms of rapture. I want the sky to fracture under the impossible weight of an apology because I'm sorry. I'm sorry that I want so much. I'm sorry that I'm using "I'm sorry" as a crutch to lean on for so long but if you sing me that song of sweet logic again then I promise to make the effort to stand on my own. There is a reason that our hearts are more like a muscle and less like a bone. I've known so many people who've have grown up flexing in front of mirrors and falling for their own reflection as if that's adequate but that's bullshit. Because we only get now until the time we go and if they've only got time to love themselves then nobody is going to be around to hear the sound of their heartbeat echo. So lady, don't expect an apology when I tell you I'm only held together by a heart that pumps blue, it's the strongest muscle in my body and I'm flexing it for you
Shane L. Koyczan
It may not feel too classy, begging just to eat But you know who does that? Lassie, and she always gets a treat So you wonder what your part is Because you're homeless and depressed But home is where the heart is So your real home's in your chest Everyone's a hero in their own way Everyone's got villains they must face They're not as cool as mine But folks you know it's fine to know your place Everyone's a hero in their own way In their own not-that-heroic way So I thank my girlfriend Penny Yeah, we totally had sex She showed me there's so many different muscles I can flex There's the deltoids of compassion, There's the abs of being kind It's not enough to bash in heads You've got to bash in minds Everyone's a hero in their own way Everyone's got something they can do Get up go out and fly Especially that guy, he smells like poo Everyone's a hero in their own way You and you and mostly me and you I'm poverty's new sheriff And I'm bashing in the slums A hero doesn't care if you're a bunch of scary alcoholic bums Everybody! Everyone's a hero in their own way Everyone can blaze a hero's trail Don't worry if it's hard If you're not a friggin 'tard you will prevail Everyone's a hero in their own way Everyone's a hero in their...
Joss Whedon (Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog: The Book)
Read poetry every day of your life. Poetry is good because it flexes muscles you don’t use often enough. Poetry expands the senses and keeps them in prime condition. It keeps you aware of your nose, your eye, your ear, your tongue, your hand. And, above all, poetry is compacted metaphor or simile. Such metaphors, like Japanese paper flowers, may expand outward into gigantic shapes. Ideas lie everywhere through the poetry books, yet how rarely have I heard short story teachers recommending them for browsing. What poetry? Any poetry that makes your hair stand up along your arms. Don’t force yourself too hard. Take it easy. Over the years you may catch up to, move even with, and pass T. S. Eliot on your way to other pastures. You say you don’t understand Dylan Thomas? Yes, but your ganglion does, and your secret wits, and all your unborn children. Read him, as you can read a horse with your eyes, set free and charging over an endless green meadow on a windy day.
Ray Bradbury (Zen in the Art of Writing: Releasing the Creative Genius Within You)
He leaned in. I felt his breath against my neck, then the press of his mouth against my skin just above the collar, almost a sigh. “Don’t,” I said. I drew back, but he held me tighter. His hand went to the nape of my neck, long fingers twining in my hair, easing my head back. I closed my eyes. “Let me,” he murmured against my throat. His heel hooked around my leg, bringing me closer. I felt the heat of his tongue, the flex of hard muscle beneath bare skin as he guided my hands around his waist. “It isn’t real,” he said. “Let me.” I felt that rush of hunger, the steady, longing beat of desire that neither of us wanted, but that gripped us anyway. We were alone in the world, unique. We were bound together and always would be. And it didn’t matter. I couldn’t forget what he’d done, and I wouldn’t forgive what he was: a murderer. A monster. A man who had tortured my friends and slaughtered the people I’d tried to protect. I shoved away from him. “It’s real enough.
Leigh Bardugo (Ruin and Rising (The Shadow and Bone Trilogy, #3))
There is something about seeing someone from behind, something about the way people walk away, that I've always found unnervingly intimate. Maybe it's because the back of the body isn't on guard the way the front is - the slouch of the shoulders and the flex in the back muscles, that's the most honest you'll ever see a person.
Jessica Knoll (Luckiest Girl Alive)
Please,” I gasped out. He just brushed his lips against my jaw, my neck, my mouth. “Tamlin,” I begged. He palmed my breast, his thumb flicking over my nipple. I cried out, and he buried himself in me with a mighty stroke. For a moment, I was nothing, no one. Then we were fused, two hearts beating as one, and I promised myself it always would be that way as he pulled out a few inches, the muscles of his back flexing beneath my hands, and then slammed back into me. Again and again. I broke and broke against him as he moved, as he murmured my name and told me he loved me. And when that lightning once more filled my veins, my head, when I gasped out his name, his own release found him. I gripped him through each shuddering wave, savoring the weight of him, the feel of his skin, his strength. For a while, only the rasp of our breathing filled the room. I frowned as he withdrew at last—but he didn’t go far. He stretched out on his side, head propped on a fist, and traced idle circles on my stomach, along my breasts.
Sarah J. Maas (A Court of Mist and Fury (A Court of Thorns and Roses, #2))
Everyone wants a strong woman until she actually stands up, flexes her muscles, projects her voice Suddenly, she is too much. She has forgotten her place. You love those women as ideas, fantasies Not as breathing, living humans threatening to be even better than you could ever be.
Ari Eastman
His dark hair is perfectly recklessly up today, those tanned muscles flexing as he extends out his arms and does his little turn. And here I am, my breath caught between my lungs and my lips as he turns around and scans the crowd. As soon as he spots me, his eyes come alive, as alive as I feel when he smiles at me. He holds my gaze while those dimples flash, and I swear he stares at me in a way that makes me feel that I am the only woman here.
Katy Evans (Real (Real, #1))
Honor without power was a useless decoration and power without honor was the simple flexing of muscle
H.J. Brues (Yakuza Pride (The Way of the Yakuza #1))
The heart is a river. The act of writing is the moving water that holds the banks apart, keeps the muscle of words flexing so that the reader can be carried along by this movement. To be given space and the chance to leave one's earthly world. Is there any greater freedom than this?
Helen Humphreys (The Lost Garden)
But even as she told herself that, she remembered the way Cal had looked today with his shirt off while he’d stood on the ladder and scraped the side of Annie’s house. Watching those muscles bunch and flex every time he moved had made her crazy and she’d finally grabbed his shirt, thrown it at him, and delivered a stern lecture on the depletion of the ozone layer and skin cancer.
Susan Elizabeth Phillips (Nobody's Baby But Mine (Chicago Stars, #3))
Damn girl. Is your daddy a thief?" "What?" I'd never actually met my dad. Maybe he was. All I knew was that he'd been mortal. Hopefully, he'd been nothing like these two ass-hats. Ren flexed his nonexistent muscles, smiling. "Well, then who stole those diamonds and put them in your eyes?" "Wow.
Jennifer L. Armentrout (Daimon (Covenant, #0.5))
Martinez and Johanssen floated down the hall toward Docking Port A. “So,” he said, “who would you have eaten first?” She glared at him. “’Cause I think I’d be tastiest,” he continued, flexing his arm. “Look at that. Good solid muscle there.” “You’re not funny.” “I’m free-range, you know. Corn-fed.” She shook her head and accelerated down the hall. “Come on! I thought you liked Mexican!” “Not listening,” she called back.
Andy Weir (The Martian)
Like this?" she whispers, sultriness underlying her voice. She goes slow, and it's pure torture. Though I suppose it's only fair play after what I put her through. I shut my eyes and flex every muscle. "Yes, luv. Bloody hell. Just like that." Heaven.
Wendy Higgins (Sweet Temptation (Sweet, #4))
Cold air rises from the ground as the sun goes down.  The eye-burning clarity of the light intensifies. The southern rim of the sky glows to a deeper blue, to pale violet, to purple, then thins to grey.  Slowly the wind falls, and the still air begins to freeze.  The solid eastern ridge is black; it has a bloom on it like the dust on the skin of a grape.  The west flares briefly.  The long, cold amber of the afterglow casts clear black lunar shadows.  There is an animal mystery in the light that sets upon the fields like a frozen muscle that will flex and wake at sunrise.
J.A. Baker (The Peregrine)
Self-compassion is like a muscle. The more we practice flexing it, especially when life doesn’t go exactly according to plan (a frequent scenario for most of us), the stronger and more resilient our compassion muscle becomes.
Sharon Salzberg (Real Love: The Art of Mindful Connection)
I glanced at Carson, who had promised things would be alright. His gaze was on the floor, and a muscle in his jaw flexed rhythmically but unhelpfully. If he was trying to send me a message, I was out of luck, because I'd never learned Morse Code for Assholes.
Rosemary Clement-Moore (Spirit and Dust (Goodnight Family #2))
Oedipa sat on the earth, ass getting cold, wondering whether, as Driblette had suggested that night from the shower, some version of herself hadn’t vanished with him. Perhaps her mind would go on flexing psychic muscles that no longer existed; would be betrayed and mocked by a phantom self as the amputee is by a phantom limb. Someday she might replace whatever of her had gone away by some prosthetic device, a dress of a certain color, a phrase in a letter, another lover.
Thomas Pynchon (The Crying of Lot 49)
It was a needless precaution, I felt sure, but men always enjoy marching around with weapons and flexing their figurative muscles, and I saw no reason to deny them this harmless exercise.
Elizabeth Peters (The Snake, the Crocodile and the Dog (Amelia Peabody, #7))
Broad shoulders fit snugly under his white shirt, and taut muscles flex in his arm as he grips a tray. He’s not a muscle-bound freak though, thank God. I don’t like that “I have boulders in my biceps” look that a lot of guys seem to favor these days.
Siobhan Davis (Saven Deception (Saven #1))
He got out of bed and pulled on his jeans, fully aware of her audience's appreciative gaze. He felt a little ridiculous about it, but maybe he did it slowly. Maybe he flexed his abs and biceps as he zipped his fly and buttoned his pants. Because really, putting on pants required a lot of muscle.
Helen Hoang (The Kiss Quotient (The Kiss Quotient, #1))
The exercise of deciding where to go next is difficult. Because next most likely means a new forever. It means thinking about where to settle. Where to start over. During the war, their options were fewer, the stakes higher, their mission singular. It was simple, in a way. Keep your chin down, your guard up. Stay one step ahead. Stay alive for one more day. Don't let the enemy win. To think about a long-term plan feels complicated, and burdensome, like flexing an atrophied muscle.
Georgia Hunter (We Were the Lucky Ones)
Oh gosh, it's moving! It's so gross! Can't you just, like, flex your butt or something? Why, yes. Travis clenched his teeth. Why don't I just clench my butt muscles in hopes that it will shock the spider enough to crawl back into the hellhole it came out of?
Rachel Van Dyken (The Bet (The Bet, #1))
Flex that muscle in your heart. The important thing is that it becomes your compass...
Susie Buffett
The frown again. So much contained there in the flex of a few muscles. All of history, it sometimes seemed to me. All of ours, at least.
Roland Merullo (Breakfast with Buddha)
No matter how shitty things are, you can always get a song out of it.
Grant Morrison (Flex Mentallo: Man of Muscle Mystery)
I smelled the clean house and the wood-frame bed. It was all filler. The noise, the sound, they existed just to take up space. My muscles flexed into the emptiness I still called home.
Kevin Powers (The Yellow Birds)
I think we should begin with a little exercise to flex our writing muscles,’ Martha said, speaking very slowly as if she was on prescription drugs but I think it was just her way of trying to communicate with people less intelligent than she thought she was.
Kate Atkinson (Emotionally Weird)
No one can ever use his heart to listen or touch or feel or see or smell. It's just a lump of muscle pumping mechanically inside your ribs. It has no will and no ability to do anything but go on pumping until it gives up and withers away or is choked by some disease. Your spinal cord, on the other hand, feels. The central nervous system pours out from the spinal cord, and with it one feels pain. Pain is the most trustworthy sensation a human being can know because it teaches us what hurts. With the spinal cord, one can hear what will hurt, smell the sting of suffering, taste it, feel it, and see the world with new eyes. I learned a long time ago not to follow my heart, the hunk of meat flexing in the chest. I trust the tube locked up in a column of bone, the tube that shows me what pain is.
Joshua S. Porter (The Spinal Cord Perception)
They don’t get to tell you who I am.” His voice is a rough growl, low and tight. “I do. I tell you and I show you, so you get the truth—not their fabrication of it.” A muscle in his jaw flexes. “Understand?
Lisa Renee Jones (Revealing Us (Inside Out, #3))
I realize again that he’s super naked. His muscled, bare shoulders flex, and I notice they’re covered with more small scars, and his skin has an almost iridescent glow to it. When our eyes meet, I see hunger there. Super naked. And I’m super naked. We’re super naked together.
Ruby Dixon (Fire in His Blood (Fireblood Dragon #1))
He smiled. I was unprepared for my reaction to the most potent weapon Haden had in his arsenal—a real smile, one that reached his eyes. One genuine emotion was enough to unravel my life from the security of everything I’d ever known. For seventeen years, I’d tried to live Father’s way. Each step measured, my words carefully chosen. In his fortress of fears, I grew up—but not strong. I yearned to replace the hole in his heart left by my mother, so my life never belonged to me. My own heart was my weakest muscle, never exercised, never even flexed. Suddenly, I understood that it still miraculously worked. And it was full. So full it felt like rays of sunshine were bursting through my chest, poking out of me in radiant splendor. Haden spellbound me and life changed to Technicolor. In his smile, I felt the bindings that tethered my spirit rip away.
Gwen Hayes (Falling Under (Falling Under, #1))
You’re so calm,” I said out loud. “It’s like you don’t need it.” Need me, I didn’t say. But I could tell by the way his delinquent smile softened that he knew what I meant. Noah moved forward, toward me, next to me then, the slender muscles in his arms flexing with the movement. “I’m not sure you can appreciate how much I want to lay you out before me and make you scream my name.
Michelle Hodkin (The Evolution of Mara Dyer (Mara Dyer, #2))
It must be sheer hell for you to be cursed with such a pretty boy's face," he drawled. "The agony of finding a different woman in your bed every night must wear you thin. I don't know where you get your stamina with this terrible burden you bear." The muscle in Ramsey's jaw flexed, which pleased Brodick considerably. "We know you've had as many women in your bed as I have," Ramsey snapped. "But I meant what I said. There are more important matters to discuss.
Julie Garwood (Ransom (Highlands' Lairds, #2))
Aidan turned the corner and slammed on the brakes when a family of ducks slowly waddled to cross the road to the neighborhood lake. He drummed his fingers on the steering wheel impatiently as his jaw muscle flexed repeatedly. "Show them your badge. Maybe that'll scare them to shake their asses a little faster.
Jaime Reese (A Restored Man (The Men of Halfway House, #3))
No, give me a guy who’s in decent shape, who can hold an interesting conversation any day of the week. Give me a guy who can show me a good time without having to flex his muscles six times a minute, just to make sure they’re still there.
Jasinda Wilder (Alpha (Alpha, #1))
The newly created Darth Vader flexes his Force-muscle as the Emperor's enforcer to maintain order and obedience in a galaxy reeling from civil war and the destruction of the Jedi Order. To the galaxy at large, Jedi Knight Anakin Skywalker - the Chosen One - died on Coruscant during the siege of the Jedi Temple. And, to some extent, the was true - Anakin was dead. But from the site of Anakin Skywalker's last stand - on the molten surface of the planet Mustafa, where he sought to destroy his friend and former master, Obi-Wan Kanobi - a fearsome spectre in black has risen. Once the most powerful Knight ever known to the Jedi order he is not a disciple of the dark side, a lord of the dreaded Sith, and the avenging right hand of the galaxy's ruthless new Emperor. Seduced, deranged and destroyed by the machinations of the Dark Lord Sidious, Anakin Skywalker is dead ... and Darth Vader lives ...
James Luceno
Denying what you are didn't keep people from knowing what you are." "And flaunting it isn't what saved you." Ykka takes a deep breath. The muscles in her jaw flex, relax. "And that would be why I asked you do this, Cutter. But let's move on." So it goes on.
N.K. Jemisin (The Obelisk Gate (The Broken Earth, #2))
Brains will always conquer brawn, in the end. The soldiers can flex their muscles all they want, but the well-thought-out tactics of the generals are what win the war.
Patrick Hall (Blades in the Dark: The Guardians of Siva (The Long Lost Tales of the Dragonlands #1.1))
Link flexed his muscles. To be fair, he did nearly split his t-shirt in half.
Kami Garcia
I'm not stronger than anybody. I mean, physically, I can do three pull-ups, so I'm stronger than some people, but emotionally, I'm the same as anyone else. This strength isn't superhuman. It's the most human thing of all, a muscle we're all born with but need to exercise rarely at best. And lucky for us, it's a tenacious little thing that bounces back from atrophy as soon as you need to flex it.
Nora McInerny Purmort (It's Okay to Laugh (Crying Is Cool Too))
Relationships are like muscle tissue. The more they're engaged, the stronger they become. The ability to build relationships and flex that emotional connection muscle is what makes social so valuable.
Ted Rubin
Black soil flew up in divots; the horses’ heads pounded up and down like pistons, and he felt a sensation of rushing speed no machine could quite match as the great muscles flexed and bunched between his legs. Havel
S.M. Stirling (Dies the Fire (Emberverse, #1))
Coming under others has a power to do what laws and bullets and bombs can never do—namely, bring about transformation in an enemy’s heart. This is the unique “Lamb power” of the kingdom of God, and indeed, this is the power of God Almighty. When God flexes his omnipotent muscle, it doesn’t look like Rambo or the Terminator—it looks like Calvary! And living in this Calvary-like love moment by moment, in all circumstances and in relation to all people, is the sole calling of those who are aligned with the kingdom that Jesus came to bring.
Gregory A. Boyd (The Myth of a Christian Nation: How the Quest for Political Power Is Destroying the Church)
When you're a sportswriter, you learn how to use your imagination and to flex your literary muscle, because it's the same game played over and over again. There's nothing unique or marvelous. It's not an earthquake, or a weird mass murder. It's just the same old game played over and over, and you have to bring out the personalities. You have to drag them kicking and screaming out into the light of day, or you're not a good sportswriter.
Rick Bragg
He was right to fear. Patrick stood in the shadows, possessed by a rage so intense that it took every ounce of his control not to kill the bastard. He'd kissed his woman. Touched her. Held her in his arms. Patrick's fists clenched at his sides. Rage seethed inside him, filling his veins. Building and building until his muscles flexed and burned with the pressure to contain it. He wanted to be discovered. Wanted the excuse to vent his rage. Damn the consequences. After what he'd just witnessed, he'd probably lost what chance he had with her anyway.
Monica McCarty (Highland Outlaw (Campbell Trilogy, #2))
In his books, Dr. Alexander Lowen put into words the anguish I could not describe. He explained how a repressed experience was converted into a physical symptom. Intense sexual energy that had not been resolved or discharged would be forced into muscles, causing chronic muscular tensions. Finally, someone understood my pain…at least that one. Chronic muscular tension may not sound like a big deal but I have lived in a body primed for lifting a car. The muscles never let go. Even when I awaken, they are flexed to the max. It’s called “muscular armoring.
Marilyn Van Derbur (Miss America by Day: Lessons Learned from Ultimate Betrayals and Unconditional Love)
We suffer the threat of breathing in water; we fight the nightmares that would drown us. And just as we feel the deceptive joy of floating, we flex our muscles and learn to kick, propelling ourselves into deeper waters where we can't see the bottom or touch the side. There, in the deep, we stroke. Then, surprising ourselves, saving ourselves, we swim.
Lynne Hugo (Swimming Lessons: A Novel)
The drenched fabric clung to every sculptured line of Ayden’s torso and revealed in detail how his muscles flexed to hold the weight. It was glorious. If you were into that sort of thing. And based how my breath caught at the sight, I was.
A. Kirk (Drop Dead Demons (Divinicus Nex Chronicles, #2))
The way we use our $3000 monthly salary today will reflect exactly how we will use the $300,000 and the $3 million that we are going to have in future. It’s better to start exercising and flexing those giving and charity muscles now than later when it is going to hurt most.
Dr. Lucas D. Shallua (Average to Abundant: How Ordinary People Build Sustainable Wealth and Enjoy the Process)
(...) the small of his back slick with sweat, the surprisingly soft hair brushing my body when he took control. And moved over me. "Stop it", Pritkin grated, his voice somehow cutting through the fog. But he didn't let go. I suppose he was afraid to, because a Pythia or one of her senior initiates could shift without him if there was no contact. But that left us stuck together, and that was becoming really, really- Awesome, my body piped up enthusiastically. "I told you, cut it out!" Pritkin said, sounding pissed. "You first," I snarled, snapping my eyes open to glare at him, because he wasn't exactly helping. Of course, neither did that. He must have been jogging, probably his usual early morning ten-mile warm-up before coming to torture me. At least, I assumed that was why the rock-hard abs were outlined by a damp khaki T-shirt, the thin old sweatpants were clinging in all the right places, and the sleeves of the hoodie had been pushed to his elbows, showing the flexing muscles in his forearms. And then there were those hands and those eyes and that mouth... I shivered again, a full-on shudder this time, and he cursed. But that didn't seem to matter. Because it had come out like a growl, and my body liked that, too. My hips shifted automatically, pressing us together, and I gave a little gasp because it felt so good. And then gasped again when I was abruptly released.
Karen Chance (Tempt the Stars (Cassandra Palmer, #6))
Hmm.” Ellie blatantly brushed her off, rolling her eyes and then skewering them into Braden. “Are you coming to dinner this afternoon?” I watched the muscle in his jaw flex. He definitely wasn’t amused by his sister’s attitude. “Of course.” His eyes travelled back to me. “I’ll see you both there.” “Joss can’t make it. She has stuff to do.” He frowned at me. “It’s just a few hours. Surely you can squeeze us in?” In response, Vicky pressed closer to Braden. “I’d love to have dinner, Braden.” Braden gave her a somewhat patronizing pat on the hand. “Sorry, sweetheart, it’s just family.” Three things happened at once. Ellie choked on her laughter, Vicky reared back like he’d slapped her, and I felt a panic attack coming on.
Samantha Young (On Dublin Street (On Dublin Street, #1))
Whatever. If I don’t get off, then you don’t get off either. You’ll be suffering as much as I will.” He drops my shoe onto the floor and arches his brow at me. “Is that right?” “Yes,” I state with a clipped tone. My other shoe gets tossed over his shoulder, but I don’t care where because all my attention is drawn down to his hands as he works his cock free and begins stroking it. I gasp and reach out for it, my mouth watering at the sight. “Oh, my God. Let me do that.” “No.” He lets his khakis slide down to mid-thigh as he stares at my body, his hand working his glorious cock. I’ve never seen Reese jerk off before, and I’m kicking myself for never requesting that he do it in front of me. This is insanely hot, probably one of the hottest things to witness. His upper body is flexed completely, every muscle bulging out at me, screaming for my hands. And then there’s his cock.
J. Daniels (Sweet Possession (Sweet Addiction, #2))
Look at me,” I say, my voice husky. “Wolf scout.” His chest falls, muscles still flexed. My pulse thumps. I skim his striking but also tensed face, and my hand slides across his broad shoulder and rises slowly up his neck. I hold his jaw; I tighten his hand in my hand, and my lips veer to his ear. “Maximoff Hale, will you marry me?” He flinches, eyes widening and brows knotting with a thousand questions, and even more philosophical queries.
Krista Ritchie (Alphas Like Us (Like Us, #3))
Then his hands were around her waist as he lifted her up. The muscles in his arms flexed as he held her. Wow, didn’t realize the man was so strong, didn’t know— She licked his throat. Screw it. Lora wrapped her legs around his waist. His cock pushed against her, pressing right at the wet entrance to her sex. She arched toward him just as Kenton slammed deep. So deep. She bit her lip to hold back the scream. Skin to skin. Hot. Slick. So full.
Cynthia Eden (Deadly Heat (Deadly, #2))
It’s a good pic,” I say absently. Drew smirks. And I glare. “What? It has artistic merit.” “It’s man candy,” Johnson says. “Look at you, all thoughtfully flexing your muscles. Did you flex your ass too?” “Nothing to flex. That’s just my natural form.” I give him a look. “Jealous?” Rolondo laughs. “Yeah, he is.
Kristen Callihan (The Game Plan (Game On, #3))
I'll tell you what's most important of all. It's this." He flexed those barrel-like biceps, drawing her body flush against a solid wall of muscle and heat. "Not women, not men, but what lies between two people who want each other more than air. You can argue with me all you want, but you can't fight this. I know you feel it." -Bram to Susanna
Tessa Dare (A Night to Surrender (Spindle Cove, #1))
It happens so seldom; I must catch and keep this slender yearning, a rare beetle in a jam-jar trap. But mustering will is not the same as wanting. I lie in the garden and think about all the footsteps between my body on the grass and my pencil-case and notebook on the table in the sun room. All the muscles I have to flex and relax to get myself there.
Sara Baume (A Line Made By Walking)
As I stand at the edge of the pit, searching for his body amongst all the others, I am slightly frightened by the violent clashes. It seems almost savagery, the way they throw themselves into each other. As I continue to watch, unable to look away, drawn in by their angry and troubled release I see him. His body is sweating, his muscles are flexed and his face holds an expression of pain mixed with pleasure. In that moment I realize their is so much I don't know about the man I am falling in love with and my fear of him excites me.
Nicole T. Smith (Scarlett's Will (Magic in the Smoke #1))
…I thought I'd never seen such a miracle as the way the muscles of her thighs and buttocks flexed and relaxed in the grip of her jeans.
T. Coraghessan Boyle (T.C. Boyle Stories)
Mav turned around and slowly pulled his shirt off. Saliva filled my mouth as I watched the snakes shift and dance along his back with every rippling flex of his muscles. “Turn
Sloane Kennedy (Forsaken (The Protectors, #4))
This is what he would look like if he was filling my pussy. The strain of his muscles, flex of his ass, and ram of his cock compose a seductive dance of intensity.
Pam Godwin (Dark Notes)
Why thank you, little lady,' Dan answers, sounding more like John Wayne than me. He flexes his muscles. 'Let me strap on my manly board and show you what I can really do.
Leslea Wahl (The Perfect Blindside)
I don't like being limited. This is my worst nightmare. I want to be able to flex other muscles and see what else I can do.
Issa Rae
Our ballet master reminded us that strength and flexibility are inseparable—for one muscle to flex, another must open; to achieve length and limberness, we have to hold our cores strong.
Edith Eger (The Choice: Embrace the Possible)
You’ve got the Russians and the Americans trying to be best buddies with the Afghan government. Two muscle-flexing superpowers playing tug-of-war, and they shredded this country to pieces.
Nadia Hashimi (Sparks Like Stars)
no other man smells of sex, sin, and sweetness like Sutton Ellis — red-blooded, clean, aroused man, and I’m light-headed from the aroma. He tastes of salt, sweat, soap, and scandal; a luscious mix for which I hunger. His neck, muscles bulging with tension, jawline, slight stubble abrading my tongue, hands, those big, capable hands, flexing in and out on my hips… he’s perfection.
S.E. Hall (Exclusive (Princess Presley Duet, #2; Full Circle, #3))
The exam results came out on the last day of term. Harry, Ron and Hermione had passed every subject. Harry was amazed that he had got through Potions. He had a shrewd suspicion that Dumbledore had stepped in to stop Snape failing him on purpose. Snape's behaviour towards Harry over the past week had been quite alarming. Harry wouldn't have thought it possible that Snape's dislike for him could increase, but it certainly had done. A muscle twitched unpleasantly at the corner of Snape's thin mouth every time he looked at Harry, and he was constantly flexing his fingers, as though itching to place them around Harry's throat.
J.K. Rowling (Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (Harry Potter, #3))
News of the disaster at Little Bighorn reached the Eastern Seaboard shortly after July 4, and not just any ordinary July 4 but the grand celebration of the hundredth anniversary of the founding of the Republic. A country feeling its oats, flexing its muscles, vigorous and rich, cocksure and confident, has seen the impossible happen, the unthinkable become fact. Sitting Bull has spoiled their glorious Centennial, pissed on Custer's golden head, the head of a genuine Civil War hero, the head of someone who has recently been touted as a future President of the United States. Somehow a wedding and a funeral got booked for the same hour in the same church.
Guy Vanderhaeghe (A Good Man)
Almost everything people did throughout history was fuelled by solar energy that was captured by plants and converted into muscle power. Human history was consequently dominated by two main cycles: the growth cycles of plants and the changing cycles of solar energy (day and night, summer and winter). When sunlight was scarce and when wheat fields were still green, humans had little energy. Granaries were empty, tax collectors were idle, soldiers found it difficult to move and fight, and kings tended to keep the peace. When the sun shone brightly and the wheat ripened, peasants harvested the crops and filled the granaries. Tax collectors hurried to take their share. Soldiers flexed their muscles and sharpened their swords. Kings convened councils and planned their next campaigns. Everyone was fuelled by solar energy – captured and packaged in wheat, rice and potatoes.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
He sang like an angel, he was faithful to God and he waited honorably for the wife he believed God chose for him. He made two daughters who shone like mirrors in the direct sun; he blazed his path with a scythe and his broad shoulders, and he was who he chose to be, which is the hardest and bravest thing a man can do. He looked at us, his parents, his sisters, his whole crooked family, and he flexed his jaw muscles, packed up his truck, and drove away.
Haven Kimmel (She Got Up Off the Couch: And Other Heroic Acts from Mooreland, Indiana)
His muscles flexed as he stood, and Rosa couldn’t prevent herself from watching with veiled admiration. He was certainly a very beautiful man. She looked away in embarrassment, worried she might say or do something inappropriate.
Emily Arden (Lover by Moonlight (Deception #1))
Joe and Carter and Kelly were coming out of the woods, finishing up their run as I came back from the garden. They were laughing and shoving each other the way brothers do. I loved all three of them. Except. Except. Joe wore a pair of low-slung shorts. Just the smallest things. And that was it. He was almost as big as I was now. We were eye level, or so close that it didn’t matter, which put him a couple of inches over six feet. There was a sheen of sweat over his torso. A spattering of wet blond hairs curling on his chest that looked to be cut out of granite. The soft definition of muscles on his stomach. A line of sweat that hit his happy trail and soaked into the waistband of his shorts. He turned, saying something back to Carter, and I saw the dimples above his ass. The way his legs flexed and shifted as he hopped from one foot to the other. He pointed wildly at something back in the woods and there was a blue vein that stuck out along his bicep and I wanted to trace with my fingers because when had that happened? And those hands. Those big fucking hands and I— Joe had grown up. And somehow, I hadn’t really seen it until it was on full display. Right in front of me. He
T.J. Klune (Wolfsong (Green Creek, #1))
That the desert was, in its own way, very much alive: a gargantuan sentient being whose shifting colours – one minute soft yellow, the next livid red, here blinding white, there sombre black – were curiously suggestive of changing moods and thought patterns. Its varied shapes and textures – dunes slumping into gravel flats, salt pans rearing into rock hills – likewise gave the unnerving impression that the landscape was moving, bunching and stretching itself, flexing its muscles
Paul Sussman (The Hidden Oasis)
Self-awareness is a muscle, and in order to start creating, we must start flexing it. Because the more aware we are of ourselves, the more comfortable we’ll be in expressing our points of view. What we like and don’t like. What we want to embrace. What we want to shred to pieces with our vengeance!! (Oops.) We need to know and embrace who we are if we want to overcome resistance, criticism, and all the other hurdles that will pop up as we incorporate more creativity into our lives.
Felicia Day (Embrace Your Weird: Face Your Fears and Unleash Creativity)
I poisoned my skin,” Genya said harshly, “my lips. So that every time he touched me—” She shuddered slightly and glanced at David. “Every time he kissed me, he took sickness into his body.” She clenched her fists. “He brought this on himself.” “But the poison would have affected you too,” Nikolai said. “I had to purge it from my skin, then heal the burns the lye would leave. Every single time.” Her fists clenched. “It was well worth it.” Nikolai rubbed a hand over his mouth. "Did he force you?" Genya nodded once. A muscle in Nikolai's jaw ticked.” -//- She held up her hands, warding us off. “I don’t want your pity,” she said ferociously. Her voice was raw, wild. We stood there helplessly. “You don’t understand.” She covered her face with her hands. “None of you do.” “Genya—” David tried. “Don’t you dare,” she said roughly, tears welling up again. “You never looked at me twice before I was like this, before I was broken. Now I’m just something for you to fix.” I was desperate for words to soothe her, but before I could find any, David bunched up his shoulders and said, “I know metal.” “What does that have to do with anything?” Genya cried. David furrowed his brow. “I … I don’t understand half of what goes on around me. I don’t get jokes or sunsets or poetry, but I know metal.” His fingers flexed unconsciously as if he were physically grasping for words. “Beauty was your armor. Fragile stuff, all show. But what’s inside you? That’s steel. It’s brave and unbreakable. And it doesn’t need fixing.
Leigh Bardugo (Ruin and Rising (The Shadow and Bone Trilogy, #3))
Was it possible that he she'd entered his dream now? If so, she couldn't help but wonder what they were doing in there. His fingers flexed, squeezing her backside backside "Clio," he groaned. Something good it would seem. With a low moan, he snaked his arm around her waist, and a small contraction of his muscles drew her close. "Clio." "Yes, Rafe?" Green eyes snapped open. "Clio?" In a heartbeat, he was on the far side of the bed--as close as he could get to the edge of the mattress without falling off.
Tessa Dare (Say Yes to the Marquess (Castles Ever After, #2))
The twenty-first-century successful black woman is brilliant and tenacious and not afraid to flex her intellectual, spiritual, or financial muscles. She has accomplished, earned, and owned more than black women of any other generation in American history.
Sophia Nelson (Black Woman Redefined: Dispelling Myths and Discovering Fulfillment in the Age of Michelle Obama)
The most common occurrence in this world of ours, in these days of stumbling blindly forward, is to come across men and women mature in years and ripe in prosperity, who, at eighteen, were not just beaming beacons of style, but also, and perhaps above all, bold revolutionaries determined to bring down the system supported by their parents and to replace it, at last, with a fraternal paradise, but who are now equally firmly attached to convictions and practices which, having warmed up and flexed their muscles on any of the many available versions of moderate conservatism, become, in time, pure egotism of the most obscene and reactionary kind. Put less respectfully, these men and these women, standing before the mirror of their life, spit every day in the face of what they were with the sputum of what they are.
José Saramago
I had a dream, and I needed to go back and find out for sure if something—someone—was there.” When she glanced up, Violet saw the muscles in his jaw flex. “So?” he asked though clenched teeth. “Did you? Find something, I mean?” Violet’s cheek was getting sore from where her teeth were ripping it apart. “N-no,” she stammered. “I mean, kind of.” “Well, shit, Violet, what’s that’s supposed to mean?” “It means there’s someone locked inside one of those gigantic shipping containers down on the docks. But I couldn’t get inside, so I still don’t know for sure. I mean, not in any way I can prove.” Jay jumped up from his chair. It was more than he could take. “Are you telling me you went down to the shipyards before it was even light out? In the middle of the night? All by yourself?” Violet smiled then. She didn’t mean to, but she couldn’t help herself; she felt the corners of her mouth twitching upward before she could stop them. She was never going to get used to this, his worrying about her. “Yeah,” she challenged, taking a step toward him. “Something like that.” She walked to where he was standing, barely containing his frustration. She didn’t try to hide her grin. She put her palms against his chest and could feel his heart beating wildly. “You think you’re gonna be okay? Do you need to sit down? Do you want me to get you a cup of tea or something?” “Hell, Violet, it’s not funny.
Kimberly Derting (Desires of the Dead (The Body Finder, #2))
Anxiety doesn’t have a memory, remember? So believing she was going to learn from that mistake was just me falling into the trap of avoidance as well. She regretfully stayed home, and the safety she felt was stronger than her regret. The Worry Monster just flexed his muscle that much more.
Sissy Goff (Raising Worry-Free Girls: Helping Your Daughter Feel Braver, Stronger, and Smarter in an Anxious World)
p.46 My tendency for lateness comes from a fear of feeling committed when early...Time is a muscle that seems to randomly flex and relax in a bid to misplace me and many others. I can't rid myself of the sensation that I'm about to fall off the world, as you might fall off the back of a treadmill.
Lara Prior-Palmer (Rough Magic: Riding the World's Loneliest Horse Race)
Daniel's wings were concealed, but he must have sensed her eyeing the place where they unfurled from his shoulders. "When everything is in order, we'll fly wherever we have to go to stop Lucifer. Until then it's better to stay low to the ground." "Okay," Luce said. "Race you to the other side?" Her breath frosted the air. "You know I'd beat you." "True." He slipped an arm around her waist, warming her. "Maybe we'd better take the boat, then. Protect my famous pride." She watched him unmoor a small metal rowboat from a boat slip. The soft light on the water made her think back to the day they'd raced across the secret lake at Sword & Cross. His skin had glistened as they had pulled themselves up to the flat rock in the center to catch their breath, then had lain on the sun-warmed stone, letting the day's heat dry their bodies. She'd barely known Daniel then-she hadn't known he was an angel-and already she'd been dangerously in love with him. "We used to swim together in my lifetime in Tahiti, didn't we?" she asked, surprised to remember another time she'd seen Daniel's hair glisten with water. Daniel stared at her and she knew how much it meant to him finally to be able to share some of his memories of their past. He looked so moved that Luce thought he might cry. Instead he kissed her forehead tenderly and said, "You beat me all those times, too, Lulu." They didn't talk much as Daniel rowed. It was enough for Luce to watch the way his muscles strained and flexed each time he dragged back, hearing the oars dip into and out of the cold water, breathing in the brine of the ocean.
Lauren Kate (Rapture (Fallen, #4))
There is something about seeing someone from behind, something about the way people walk away, that I’ve always found unnervingly intimate. Maybe it’s because the back of the body isn’t on guard the way the front is—the slouch of the shoulders and the flex in the back muscles, that’s the most honest you’ll ever see a person.
Jessica Knoll (Luckiest Girl Alive)
All great shows, she told me when I was little (and still learning to flex the tiny muscles in my esophagus), depend on the most ordinary objects. We can be a weary, cynical lot—we grow old and see only what suits us, and what is marvelous can often pass us by. A kitchen knife. A bulb of glass. A human body. That something so common should be so surprising—why, we forget it. We take it for granted. We assume that our sight is reliable, that our deeds are straightforward, that our words have one meaning. But life is uncommon and strange; it is full of intricacies and odd, confounding turns. So onstage we remind them just how extraordinary the ordinary can be. This, she said, is the tiger in the grass. It’s the wonder that hides in plain sight, the secret life that flourishes just beyond the screen. For you are not showing them a hoax or a trick, just a new way of seeing what’s already in front of them. This, she told me, is your mark on the world. This is the story that you tell.
Leslie Parry (Church of Marvels)
Someone once said hell was other people. They were right. Specifically, hell was watching other people swan around an ice rink, drinking hot chocolate and making googly eyes at each other like they were in the middle of a goddamn Hallmark movie. It wasn’t even Christmas season, for fuck’s sake. It was worse. It was Valentine’s Day. A muscle flexed in my jaw as Bridget’s laughter floated over, joined by Steffan’s deeper laugh, and the urge to murder someone—someone male with blond hair and a name that began with S—intensified. What was so fucking hilarious, anyway? I couldn’t imagine anything being that funny, least of all something Steffan the Saint said.
Ana Huang (Twisted Games (Twisted, #2))
She saw Bran step through the heavy gate. A big smile spread across her face at the sight of him. Unable to stop herself she drank in the way his broad shoulders stretched out his long-sleeved shirt and the way his thick thigh muscles flexed and strained under his cargo pants. The male was walking, talking sex and he was all hers.
Katie Reus (Beyond the Darkness (Darkness, #3))
We were sitting side by side, with our legs swinging on the wall of the tower, and the Clouds™ were all turning pink in front of us. We could see all these miles of filet mignon from where we were sitting, and some places where the genetic coding had gone wrong and there, in the middle of the beef, the tissue had formed a horn or an eye or a heart blinking up at the sunset, which was this brag red, and which hit on all these miles of muscle and made it flex and quiver, with all these shudders running across the top of it, and birds were flying over, crying kind of sad, maybe looking for garbage, and the whole thing, with the beef and the birds and the sky, it glowed like there was a light inside it, which it was time to show us now.
M.T. Anderson (Feed)
When I’m given a role, the first thing I do is read the play over and over again. I scour the script and write down everything the character says about himself and everything that everyone else says about him. I immerse myself in my character and imagine what it might be like to be that person. When I played Cassio in Othello I imagined what it would be like to be a lieutenant in the Venetian navy in 1604. I sat down with Ewan McGregor and Chiwetel Ejiofor and together we decided that Othello, Iago and Cassio had soldiery in their bones. I took from the script that Cassio was talented and ambitious, with no emotional or physical guard - and that’s how I played the part. For me, acting is about recreating the circumstances that would make me feel how my character is feeling. In the dressing room, I practise recreating those circumstances in my head and I try to not get in the way of myself. For example, in act two of Othello, when Cassio is manipulated to fight Roderigo and loses his rank, some nights I would burst into tears; other nights I wouldn’t but I would still feel the same emotion, night after night. Just as in life, the way we respond to catastrophe or death will be different every time because the process is unconscious. By comparison, in Chekhov’s Ivanov I played the young doctor, Lvov. Lvov was described as “a prig and a bigot … uprightness in boots … tiresome … completely sincere”. His emotions were locked away. I worked around the key phrase: “Forgive me, I’m going to tell you plainly.” I practised speaking gravely and sincerely without emotion and I actually noticed how that carried over into my personal life: when I played the open-hearted Cassio, I felt really free; when I played the pent-up Lvov, I felt a real need to release myself from the shackles of that character. It’s exhilarating to act out the emotions of a character - it’s a bit like being a child again. You flex the same muscles that you did when you pretended to be a cowboy or a policeman: acting is a grown-up version of that with more subtlety and detail. You’re responding with real emotions to imaginary situations. When I’m in a production I never have a day when I haven’t laughed, cried or screamed. There are times when I wake up stiff from emotional exhaustion. Film is a much more intimate and thoughtful medium than theatre because of the proximity of the camera. The camera can read your thoughts. On stage, if you have a moment of vulnerability you can hide it from the other actors; on film, the camera will see you feel that emotion and try to suppress it. Similarly, if you’re pretending to feel something that isn’t there, it won’t be believable.
Tom Hiddleston
I’d never seen a guy in a kilt before but I had to admit I really liked it. My gaze traveled up his bare calves and over his back. His muscles flexed as he bent to arrange the twigs and limbs for the fire. The kilt covered his legs at one moment, then revealed them anew as he stood up…I suddenly remembered the saying that Scots don’t wear anything under their kilts and pushed back a crazy impulse to see for myself.
Cyndi Tefft (Between (Between, #1))
Instinct, memory, something, had her taking a step toward him. She slipped on a mossy rock and floundered. He clasped his hands around her upper arms but instead of helping her gain her feet, he drew her closer so she braced her hands against his chest. Her fingers flexed briefly in the hard muscle beneath the crisp chest hair and every womanly sense in her came alive, everything she’d forgotten, everything she’d pushed aside.
M.J. Fredrick (Three Days, Two Nights)
Consequently, [Terayama Shuuji] often played the buffoon to his more serious colleagues, as he did in a July, 1970, dialogue with Mishima Yukio . . . At one point, [Terayama] laughingly suggested to the very earnest Mishima that Tenjou Sajiki might sponsor a one-man show in which Mishima would demonstrate his famous ability to flex his carefully sculpted upper-body muscles. Mishima refused to be angered by this obvious lack of respect.
Carol Fisher Sorgenfrei (Unspeakable Acts: The Avant-Garde Theatre of Terayama Shuji and Postwar Japan)
The basic process of climbing a mountain was therapeutic, almost cathartic. There was the simple act of walking into the woods and away from the world. Then there was the climb itself, where the body worked: muscles flexed and released, lungs rose and fell, the heart beat. It was as if the complications in my life were breaking down and the only thing I cared about was the next place I'd put my foot or finding something to hold to pull myself up. After all that work to get to the summit came that views from the top. The failed Catholic in me saw it as a spiritual journey, much like the ones any holy man had made in leaving behind society. Christ, Buddha, Muhammad - they all did it, and they came back with clarity. For me the climb was my confession, working out the troubles of my past. Sitting on top was communion. On each hike I allowed myself to be pulled apart and then put back together again.
Tom Ryan
my fingers penetrated your bushy hair, pulled it up in tufts, squeezed the tension out of your head, to your quiet, grateful groans. I untied the Gordian knots in your shoulders with juniper oil, pummelled your back with my fists, knuckle each vertebrae down to your coccyx, knead your hard buttocks, rub oil into your legs, bathe your tired feet, squeeze them until your tingles shoot up my arm, I chew each toe in turn until it is softened, bite into your soles like a joint of pork, you cannot help but giggle, sir, I turn you over, with my palms, rotate your temples, trace the curves on your face, touching yet not, three fingers inside your mouth, let you suckle, baby, from belly to breast, I massage your chest in concentric circles, pinch your nipples, nibble gently, set my belly-dancer tongue on to them, take your hands, my love, tie them above your head, with your belt, I sit astride my steed, take the reins, my flexible muscles holding you in, flexing like strong fists, tighten and release, teasing you, taming you, your eyes are shut, you have died and gone to Olympus, smiling, I slap it off, so hard my hand hurts, your eyes shoot open like a dead man dying, I slap you again, you feign amusement, your eyes suggest so this is slap and tickle? I take your riding crop, fold it, lash your chest. ‘Take that!’ I hiss. ‘How dare you humour me. Who’s the boss now?
Bernardine Evaristo (The Emperor's Babe)
She turned her head and rubbed her cheek against the surprisingly velvety feel of his inner arm, the muscle tensing even more against her face when she pressed a kiss to his skin. In response, she felt him flex inside her. “Caroline.” She’d always hated her name. It was too old-fashioned, too hokey and very grandma-ish. But when Liam said it like that, she actually liked it. He made her name, he made her, feel like the sexiest, most beautiful woman on earth.
Kay Stockham (The Sheriff's Daughter (North Star, Montana #3))
Yeah, yeah, cum inside me, fucking fill my hole!” Ty started really flexing his ass muscles, milking my dick. He reached behind me and gripped my ass, pulling me closer to him. I pumped a few more times, then my body went rigid as my cock shot one long rope of cum inside his ass. I quaked over and over as more cum erupted from my balls, splashing his guts. “Ahhh, arrggg… fuuuck!” I shivered as I finished my orgasm. It was intense and my cock was still hard inside him afterwards.
Nicholas Bella (House of Theoden: Season Two Complete Boxset (The New Haven Series))
In the security community, this letter is known by all as a “get-out-of-jail-free card.” Pen testers tend to be very conscientious about making sure they always have a copy of the letter with them when they’re on or anywhere near the premises of the client company, in case they get stopped by a security guard who decides to flex some muscle and impress the higher-ups with his gumshoe instincts, or challenged by a conscientious employee who spots something suspicious and has enough gumption to confront the pen tester.
Kevin D. Mitnick (The Art of Intrusion: The Real Stories Behind the Exploits of Hackers, Intruders and Deceivers)
Lying awake, listening to the nocturnal sounds of machines and murmurings, I composed my list of physical desires: to feel the ground under my feet, to have the muscles in my legs flex, to feel the weight of the rest of my body, to put one foot in front of the other. I tried to block out the fact that I still couldn’t even place my feet on the floor, that they would not do the things I wanted them to. They just fell down, like two tiny sandbags tumbling out of a wheelbarrow. It was as if they had lost all connection to me.
Rikke Schmidt Kjærgaard (The Blink of an Eye: A Memoir of Dying—and Learning How to Live Again)
We lunged for each other at the same time and collided, crazy with need and starving for a taste. Warnings and alarms wailed in my mind, but I shut them down. Screw it. I wanted him. He found my mouth. The thrust of his tongue against mine made my head spin. He tasted like heaven. I kissed him back, nipping, licking, melting against him. It felt so good . . . His lips traced a fiery line from my mouth to the corner of my jaw and down my neck. My whole body sang in warm liquid triumph. His voice was a ragged whisper in my ear. “Only if you want to . . . Say no, and I’ll stop.” “No,” I whispered to see if he would do it. Curran pulled back. His eyes were pure need, raw and barely under control. He swallowed. “Okay.” It was the most erotic thing I had ever seen. I reached for him and slid my hand up his chest, feeling the taut muscle. He caught my hand and kissed my palm gently. Heated, tightly controlled want shone in his eyes. I pulled my fingers free, pushed from the wall, and kissed his throat just under the jaw. This was bliss. There was no hope for me. He growled, closing his eyes. “What are you doing?” “Pulling on Death’s whiskers,” I murmured, letting my tongue play over his skin, rough with stubble. He smelled divine, clean and male. My hands slid up his biceps. His muscles tensed under the light pressure of my fingers. He was trying very, very hard to stand still and I almost laughed. All those times when he’d called me “baby” . . . Revenge was sweet. “Is that a yes or a no?” he asked. I slid against him and nipped his bottom lip. “I’ll take it as a yes.” The steel muscles of his arms flexed under my hands. He grabbed me, hoisted me up onto him, and kissed me, thrusting into my mouth with his tongue in a hot, slick rhythm, greedy and eager. I threw my arms around his neck. His right hand grasped my hair, his left cupped my butt and pushed me closer against him, his erection a hard, hot length across my lap. Finally— “Let me in,” Derek growled at the door. Go away. The guard said something. Curran’s hand found my breast and caressed the nipple, sending an electric shock through my skin, threatening to melt me . . . “Yes,” Derek snarled. “I’m a member of the damn team. Ask them.” “Curran,” I whispered. “Curran!” He snarled and kept going. The door swung open. I hit him on the back of the neck. He submerged. Help. I’ve drowned the Beast Lord.
Ilona Andrews (Magic Strikes (Kate Daniels, #3))
But she was as wiry as any boy, and it had caused quite an uproar when Tessina first flexed her arm and a little muscle popped up, hard as a walnut, while us boys could hardly produce anything. But she never looked like a boy. A mass of curls, the color of August straw, made a halo around her head, tight and springy, as if a goldsmith had put them there. Her skin was pale like the flesh of hazelnuts, dusted with little freckles, except when she stayed too long in the summer sun and it burned. Like a peach, her arms were covered in fine golden down, which also clung, fainter than faint, to her upper lip.
Philip Kazan (Appetite)
His hands go to my waist—my waist! And they feel so right. I like this closeness. Maybe I like it too much. A guy has never been this close to me. Never. And I can’t believe it’s happening, even if it is to keep from being arrested. My heart beats frantically. Isaiah is hot and scary and hot. Why on earth would a guy like him want to be anywhere near a girl like me? It’s the adrenaline rush. That’s what it is. I like how he feels because I’m still experiencing the adrenaline rush from Isaiah’s NASCAR driving skills. His arm shifts, and I love how that movement causes his muscles to flex. Stop it, Rachel. It’s not real. Focus.
Katie McGarry (Crash into You (Pushing the Limits, #3))
You are a thoughtless person with no consideration for the feelings of others. Your best quality is someday you’re gonna die. If you were a planet in the solar system among millions of beautiful heavenly bodies, you’d still choose to revolve around yourself. If every day was Christmas, you’d give yourself 366 gifts, two on your birthday. If you thought about looking into your soul to become a better person, you’d change your mind because there’s no mirror attached and you couldn’t admire your face or flexed muscles. If rulers could measure a man’s character, you’d be a centimeter. And if you ever again decide to call me a name, next time try Liz.
K.L. Brady (Worst Impressions)
Scott still stares at Sid, then turns to Alice and hands her the Scotch. “We’re going to go see Joanie today,” he says. Alice grins. “And Chachi?” she asks. Sid bursts out laughing and Scott turns back to him, then places a hand on his shoulder, which makes me fear for his life. “You be quiet, son,” Scott says. “I could kill you with this hand. This hand has been places.” I shake my head and look at both Sid and Alex. Scott lifts his hand off Sid’s shoulder and turns again to his wife. “No, Alice. Our Joanie. Our daughter. We’re going to give her anything she wants.” He glares at me. “Think about what she would want, Alice. We’re going to get it for her and bring it to her. Bring it right to her bed.” “Joanie and Chachi,” Alice chants. “Joanie and Chachi!” “Shut up, Alice!” Scott yells. Alice looks at Scott as though he just said “Cheese.” She clasps her hands together and smiles, staying in the pose for a few seconds. He looks at her face and squints. “Sorry, old gal,” he says. “You go ahead and say whatever you want.” “It was funny,” Sid says. “All I was doing was laughing. She has a good sense of humor. That’s all. Maybe she knows she’s being funny. I think she does.” “I’m going to hit you,” Scott says. His arms hang alongside him, the muscles flexed, veins big like milk-shake straws. I know he’s going to hit Sid because that’s what he does. I’ve seen him hit Barry. I, too, have been hit by Scott after I beat him and his buddies at a game of poker. His hands are in fists, and I can see his knobby old-man knuckles, the many liver spots almost joining to become one big discoloration, like a burn. Then he pops his fist up toward Sid, a movement like a snake rearing its head and lunging forth. I see Sid start to bring his arm up to block his face, but then he brings it down and clutches his thigh. It’s almost as if he decided not to protect himself. The end result is a punch in his right eye, a screaming older daughter, a frightened younger daughter, a father trying to calm many people at once, and a mother-in-law cheering wildly as though we have all done something truly amazing.
Kaui Hart Hemmings (The Descendants)
I know what the problem is.” Curran pulled his shoulders back and flexed, warming up a little. I stole a glance. He had decided to fight in jeans and an old black T-shirt, from which he’d torn the sleeves. Probably his workout shirt. His biceps were carved, the muscle defined and built by countless exertions, neither too bulky nor too lean. Perfect. Kissing him might make me guilty of catastrophically bad judgment, but at least nobody could fault my taste. The trick was not to kiss him again. Once could be an accident; twice was trouble. “You said something?” I arched an eyebrow at him. Nonchalance—best camouflage for drooling. Both the werebison and the swordsman looked ready to charge: the muscles of their legs tense, leaning forward slightly on their toes. They seemed to be terribly sure that we would stay in one place and wait for them. Curran was looking at their legs, too. They must be expecting a distraction from the lamia. She sat cocooned in magic, holding on with both hands as it strained on its leash. “I said, I know why you’re afraid to fight with me.” “And why is that?” If he flexed again, I’d have to implement emergency measures. Maybe I could kick some sand at him or something. Hard to look hot brushing sand out of your eyes. “You want me.” Oh boy. “You can’t resist my subtle charm, so you’re afraid you’re going to make a spectacle out of yourself.” “You know what? Don’t talk to me.
Ilona Andrews (Magic Strikes (Kate Daniels, #3))
Emma settled herself sideways on his lap and pulled his arms around her. “You’re strong, Cliff.” She held out an arm, flexed her biceps in an exaggerated show of muscle, and arched a brow. “I’m strong, too.” His expression lightened. “Yes, you are.” “Together, we can do anything. We can fight this. We can beat this. Even though you may think it’s futile, we have to give Melanie and the other doctors more time.” She pressed a tender kiss to his lips. “I know it’s hard, honey, and that things may get worse. But I’ll be here to help you through it. All of it.” She kissed him again. “I’m not going anywhere.” Those eyes of his brightened further as he dipped his head and claimed her lips in a longer, deeper kiss.
Dianne Duvall (Cliff's Descent (Immortal Guardians, #11))
We learn to flex our faith muscles through practice. Since faith without works is dead, then what if we, through practicing together, put feet on our faith and built into our lives the habit of trust? What if our faith quickened and rose to life with the habit of practice? When the anxiety pounds and we want to retreat, we practice stepping out, and forging ahead anyway. When life overwhelms and the way is dark, we refrain from lighting our own candles to practice relying on our God instead.[1] When the child seems lost and our own strength isn’t enough, we trust God is faithful and He will do it.[2] When things look hopeless in the land of famine, we practice picking up the oil jar and pouring that last bit out anyway.
Arabah Joy (Trust Without Borders: A 40-Day Devotional Journey to Deepen, Strengthen, and Stretch Your Faith in God)
As they entered his suite, David closed the door and pulled Allie into his arms, parting her lips with a kiss. “Did you think about me today?” he asked, touching his nose to hers. “Because I thought about you.” ​“Yes,” Allie replied, her breath shallow. “I thought about you.” His proximity was a form of intoxication: Her skin felt flushed, her legs wobbly, her faculties diffused. She grasped his arms, her fingers flexing around the hard muscles hidden beneath his shirt. ​David caressed her neck, then dropped his lips to the pulse point, feeling it flutter. “Alexandra, am I affecting you?” he asked, holding her chin and looking into her eyes. ​“Yes.” She dropped her gaze. ​“Tell me what you want.” ​“You. I want you.
Tina Wright (Heaven in the Dark)
I slid my thigh between her warm ones. Damp heat ground into my muscle as she clamped down and rolled her hips with a small helpless groan. "That feel good, honey?" She was mostly shadows, and I itched to turn on a lamp so I could see her properly. But that would mean stopping, and I wasn't willing to let her go. I relied on touch, running my fingers along her arm, up to her neck, where sweat dewed on her skin. "You like riding my thigh?" "Yes. Yes." That word again. Best word ever. Her lips tickled mine as she panted, her sweet sex working in a little circle. I cupped her cheek and ate at her mouth as she took her pleasure. I'd been wanting to give it to her for so long. So fucking long. Her hands found my chest and slid down, mapping their way along my torso. It was nothing in the scheme of things, but that simple exploration, the way she whimpered and gasped into my mouth, sent licks of heat over my skin. When her slim hand reached my cock and squeezed me through the barrier of my boxers, a groan tore from me. I shuddered, so close to coming from a furtive grope in the dark it would almost be funny if I weren't so worked up. "Take it out," I rasped, flexing my thigh, knowing she'd feel it. I needed her hand on my bare skin. "Please." Deftly she stole beneath the waistband and wrapped her fingers around my needy dick, giving it a firm tug. Then I was the one whimpering and gasping, fucking into the clasp of her hand because it felt so good. Sweet relief, hot pleasure.
Kristen Callihan (Make It Sweet)
It bounded from the line of trees directly ahead. This was his first real sight of the spirit and the breath stuck in his throat. Its black fur rippled as muscles bunched, flexed and powered the sleek animal towards him. Front legs reached forward, claws extended to dig into the soft ground as its body compressed. Back arching upwards as the rear legs caught up with the front and gathered their strength, propelling the cat forward again. The panther ate up the ground between the forest and Zhou. As it closed, he could see the yellow iris surrounding the deep, black, circular pupil. Either side of its snout, whiskers sprouted, sensing the movement of air, and its mouth parted to reveal two, long, sharp canine teeth rising from its bottom jaw.
G.R. Matthews (The Blue Mountain (The Forbidden List, #2))
What were you doing spying on me?” she asked bluntly as she flounced down on a bench to inspect her charred skirts. The lean, hard muscles of his thighs flexed beneath the tight-fitting breeches as he half sat, half leaned on a high stool nearby. “I grew bored with viewing the ladies who meander about the markets, and I came to see if the sights were better here at the mayor’s cottage.” The corners of his lips twitched with amusement, and his eyes gleamed into hers as he added, “I am happy to report, they are!” Erienne got to her feet in a huff. “Have you nothing better to do than go about ogling the women?” “I suppose I could find something else to occupy me,” he replied easily, “but I can’t think of anything that’s nearly as enjoyable, except, of course, being in a lady’s company.” -Erienne & Christopher
Kathleen E. Woodiwiss (A Rose in Winter)
God saw Hansen tighten his chokehold on Day and he could see his lover fighting to breathe. Day’s ears and neck were bright red. His lips were turning a darker color as his body was deprived of oxygen. Hansen pressed the barrel in deeper and yelled. “Two minutes and fifteen seconds before I get to zero and I provide the great state of Georgia the luxury of one less narc.” God’s mind exploded at the thought of not having Day in a world he lived in. He looked into his partner’s glistening eyes and saw he was turning blue and possibly getting ready to faint. Day was still looking at him, looking into God’s green eyes. No, no, no! He’s saying good-bye. God closed his eyes and released a loud, gut-wrenching growl cutting off the SWAT leader’s negotiations. “Godfrey, get yourself under control,” his captain said while grabbing for him. God jerked himself away from the hold and stepped forward, his angry eyes boring into Hansen’s dark ones. Hansen stared at him as if God was crazy. Little did he know God was at that moment. “Godfrey, get back here and stand down. That’s an order, Detective!” his captain barked. God’s large hands clenched at his sides fighting not to pull out his weapons. He ground his teeth together so hard his jaw ached. “Do you have any idea of the shit storm you’re about to bring down on your life,” God spoke with a menacing snarl while his large frame shook with fury. “In your arms you hold the only thing in this world that means anything to me. The man that you are pointing a gun at is my only purpose for living. You are threating to kill the only person in this world that gives a fuck about me.” God took two more steps forward and was vaguely aware of the complete silence surrounding him. Hansen’s finger hovered shakily over the trigger as he took two large steps back with Day still tight against his chest. God growled again and he saw a shade of fear ghost over Hansen’s sweaty face. “If you kill that man, I swear on everything that is holy, I will track you to the ends of the earth, killing and destroying any and everything you hold dear. I will take everything from you and leave you alive to suffer through it. I will bestow upon you the same misery that you have given to me.” Hansen shook his head and inched closer to the door behind him. “Stay back,” he yelled again but this time the demand lacked the courage and venom he exhibited before. “You kill that man, and you’ll have no idea of the monster you will create. Have you ever met a man with no heart…no conscience…no soul…no purpose?” God rumbled, his voice at least twelve octaves lower than the already deep baritone. God yanked his Desert Eagle from his holster in a flash and cocked the hammer back chambering the first round. Hansen stumbled back again, his eyes gone wide with fear. God’s entire body instinctually flexed every muscle in his body and it felt like the large vein in his neck might rupture. His body burned like he had a sweltering fever and he knew his wrath had him a brilliant shade of red. “I’m asking you a goddamn question, Hansen! No soul! No conscience! I’m asking you have you ever met the devil!” God’s thunderous voice practically rattled the glass in the hanger. “If you kill the man I love, you better make your peace with God, because I’m gonna meet your soul in hell.” His voice boomed.
A.E. Via
Society’s structure exists to maintain the power and wealth of a few privileged persons. A person must resist society’s attempts to bully him or her into living a diminished life of a conformist. I must be wary that my defining character is neither effaced nor compromised and rebuff men of weaker temperament attempting to repress my uninhibited joy for life. I need to demonstrate the inventive spirit of an opportunistic doer. I will allow myself to run wild in the eyes of the world of watchers and establish a lifestyle that allows the physical body room to flex its fibrous muscles. I shall live in a manner that enables the mind the opportunity to construct a secure shelter that encourages mental and spiritual exploration. I aspire to establish a workable balance between retreating to my private cave to seek solace and striking meaningful engagements with the larger world.
Kilroy J. Oldster (Dead Toad Scrolls)
Socrates is flying. No, he is soaring. The wings behind him beat in a calming rhythm while the cool air rushes past. His wings are all that matter, snapping at the rushing wind like the sails of some great sea vessel, the feathery appendages all he is and all he will ever want to be. His back muscles flex with the effort that takes him high above the ground. He feels the effort, of course, but sweeping into the sky does not require much of one. The sensation is pleasurable, even exhilarating. With flight there is freedom beyond description, an ecstasy bordering on sexual. He has only one destination, and that is to soar higher, to no longer be a prisoner of the earth. Here destinations seem irrelevant, the world below small. Flying exceeds every pleasure he knows. In the immense forever of blue sky, all that matters is flight and his ability to climb higher. Up and up and up...
Kenneth C. Goldman (Of A Feather)
Did you ever notice how very fickle males are?” she asked the horse. “And how very foolish females are about them?” she added, aware of how inexplicably deflated she felt. She realized as well that she was being completely irrational-she had not intended to come here, had not wanted him to be waiting, and now she felt almost like crying because he wasn’t! Giving the ribbons of her bonnet an impatient jerk, she untied them. Pulling the bonnet off, she pushed the back door of the cottage open, stepped inside-and froze in shock! Standing at the opposite side of the small room, his back to her, was Ian Thornton. His dark head was slightly bent as he gazed at the cheery little fire crackling in the fireplace, his hands shoved into the back waistband of his gray riding breeches, his booted foot upon the grate. He’d taken off his jacket, and beneath his soft lawn shirt his muscles flexed as he withdrew his right hand and shoved it through the side of his hair. Elizabeth’s gaze took in the sheer male beauty of his wide, masculine shoulders, his broad back and narrow waist. Something in the somber way he was standing-added to the fact that he’d waited more than two hours for her-made her doubt her earlier conviction that he hadn’t truly cared whether she came or not. And that was before she glanced sideways and saw the table. Her heart turned over when she saw the trouble he’d taken: A cream linen tablecloth covered with crude china, obviously borrowed from Charise’s house. In the center of the table a candle was lit, and a half-empty bottle of wine stood beside a platter of cold meat and cheese. In all her life Elizabeth had never known that a man could actually arrange a luncheon and set a table. Women did that. Women and servants. Not men who were so handsome they made one’s pulse race. It seemed she’d been standing there for several minutes, not mere seconds, when he stiffened suddenly, as if sensing her presence. He turned, and his harsh face softened with a wry smile: “You aren’t very punctual.” “I didn’t intend to come,” Elizabeth admitted, fighting to recover her balance and ignore the tug of his eyes and voice. “I got caught in the rain on my way to the village.” “You’re wet.” “I know.” “Come over by the fire.” When she continued to watch him warily, he took his foot off the grate and walked over to her. Elizabeth stood rooted to the floor, while all of Lucinda’s dark warnings about being alone with a man rushed through her mind. “What do you want?” she asked him breathlessly, feeling dwarfed by his towering height. “Your jacket.” “No-I think I’d like to keep it on.” “Off,” he insisted quietly. “It’s wet.” “Now see here!” she burst out backing toward the open door, clutching the edges of her jacket. “Elizabeth,” he said with reassuring calm, “I gave you my word you’d be safe if you came today.” Elizabeth briefly closed her eyes and nodded, “I know. I also know I shouldn’t be here. I really ought to leave. I should, shouldn’t I?” Opening her eyes again, she looked beseechingly into his-the seduced asking the seducer for advice. “Under the circumstances, I don’t think I’m the one you ought to ask.
Judith McNaught (Almost Heaven (Sequels, #3))
Phoebe entered the room and stopped with a head-to-toe quiver, like an arrow striking a target, at the sight of a half-naked West Ravenel. He was facing away from her, standing barefoot at an old-fashioned washstand as he blotted his neck and chest with a length of toweling. The robe had been tossed to a chair, leaving him dressed only in a pair of trousers that rode dangerously low on his hips. Henry had always seemed so much smaller without his clothes, vulnerable without the protection of civilized layers. But this man, all rippling muscle and bronzed skin and coiled energy, appeared twice as large. The room scarcely seemed able to contain him. He was big-boned and lean, his back flexing as he lifted a goblet of water and drank thirstily. Phoebe's helpless gaze followed the long groove of his spine down to his hips. The loose edge of a pair of fawn-colored trousers, untethered by braces, dipped low enough to reveal a shocking absence of undergarments. How could a gentleman go without wearing drawers? It was the most indecent thing she'd ever seen. The inside of her head was scalded by her own thoughts.
Lisa Kleypas (Devil's Daughter (The Ravenels, #5))
Ben stands just behind me, and we begin to wedge out a fresh piece of clay. I try my best to concentrate, to ignore the fact that my heart is beating at five times its normal speed. I watch his arms as he kneads the clay—almost a little too hard—and as the muscles in his forearms flex. “That’s good,” I say, in an effort to stay focused. I dip a sponge into a bowl of water and squeeze the droplets down over his hands to keep things moist. After several minutes, Ben lets me take the lead. I place my palms over the clay mound and close my eyes. Meanwhile, Ben’s chest grazes my shoulders, and his clay-soaked fingers stroke the length of my arms. “You’re doing great,” he whispers in my ear. We continue to sculpt for another hour, working the mound down into a flattened surface—until we have a total of four tiles. And until I can no longer hold myself back. I turn around to face him. “Camelia?” He squints slightly. I bite my lip, wishing that he could read my mind, and that he would kiss me until my lips ache. “What are you thinking?” I ask, slipping my hand inside the waistband of his jeans and pulling him closer.
Laurie Faria Stolarz (Deadly Little Games (Touch, #3))
Lillian felt her pulse begin to thunder, her breath mingling in rapid puffs with his. She remembered the hard planes of his body brushing lightly over hers as they had made love, the consummate fit between them, the sliding flex of muscle and sinew beneath her hands. Her skin tingled with the memory of his touch, and the clever explorations of his mouth and fingers that had reduced her to shivering need. No wonder he was so cool and cerebral during the day— he saved all his sensuality for bedtime. Stirred by his closeness, she caught at his wrists. There was still much they had to discuss… issues too important for either of them to ignore. “Marcus,” she said breathlessly, “don’t. Not just now. It only muddles things further, and—” “For me it makes everything clear.” His hands slid to either side of her face, cradling her cheeks with yearning gentleness. His eyes were so much darker than her own, with only the faintest glimmer of deepest amber to betray that they were not black but brown. “Kiss me,” he whispered, and his mouth found hers, catching at her top lip and then the lower, in nuzzling half-open caresses that sent rich quivers of response all the way down to her toes.
Lisa Kleypas (It Happened One Autumn (Wallflowers, #2))
Males of all species are made for wooing females, and females typically choose among their suitors. If you take a closer look, you can observe such behavior all around you. The beautiful bird chirping outside your window. It’s a mating call. That pretty little bird is trying to attract a potential mate, so that it can propagate its genes. Why does the peacock have such beautiful feathers? It is to attract a healthy female. He as well is trying to propagate his genes. Even we humans, are not much different from the rest of the animal kingdom when it comes to attracting potential mates. When women dress up for their night out at the club, they are doing so to look attractive. This is a subconscious evolutionary desire to attract as many potential mates as possible.... While women tend to grab attention with their looks, men on the other hand, tend to attract as many potential females as possible, by showing off their resources. When a man shows off with his fancy car, expensive gold watch and suit, or flexes his muscles and brags about how many credit cards he owns, he’s doing so to make himself desirable by healthy women, in order to propagate his genes. It is all in the pursuit of reproduction.
Abhijit Naskar (What is Mind?)
There was also a package wrapped in pale blue paper and tied with a matching ribbon. Picking up a small folded note that had been tucked under the ribbon, Beatrix read: A gift for your wedding night, darling Bea. This gown was made by the most fashionable modiste in London. It is rather different from the ones you usually wear, but it will be very pleasing to a bridegroom. Trust me about this. -Poppy Holding the nightgown up, Beatrix saw that it was made of black gossamer and fastened with tiny jet buttons. Since the only nightgowns she had ever worn had been of modest white cambric or muslin, this was rather shocking. However, if it was what husbands liked... After removing her corset and her other underpinnings, Beatrix drew the gown over her head and let a slither over her body in a cool, silky drift. The thin fabric draped closely over her shoulders and torso and buttoned at the waist before flowing to the ground in transparent panels. A side slit went up to her hip, exposing her leg when she moved. And her back was shockingly exposed, the gown dipping low against her spine. Pulling the pins and combs from her hair, she dropped them into the muslin bag in the trunk. Tentatively she emerged from behind the screen. Christopher had just finished pouring two glasses of champagne. He turned toward her and froze, except for his gaze, which traveled over her in a burning sweep. "My God," he muttered, and drained his champagne. Setting the empty glass aside, he gripped the other as if he were afraid it might slip through his fingers. "Do you like my nightgown?" Beatrix asked. Christopher nodded, not taking his gaze from her. "Where's the rest of it?" "This was all I could find." Unable to resist teasing him, Beatrix twisted and tried to see the back view. "I wonder if I put it on backward..." "Let me see." As she turned to reveal the naked line of her back, Christopher drew in a harsh breath. Although Beatrix heard him mumble a curse, she didn't take offense, deducing that Poppy had been right about the nightgown. And when he drained the second glass of champagne, forgetting that it was hers, Beatrix sternly repressed a grin. She went to the bed and climbed onto the mattress, relishing the billowy softness of its quilts and linens. Reclining on her side, she made no attempt to cover her exposed leg as the gossamer fabric fell open to her hip. Christopher came to her, stripping off his shirt along the way. The sight of him, all that flexing muscle and sun-glazed skin, was breathtaking. He was a beautiful man, a scarred Apollo, a dream lover. And he was hers.
Lisa Kleypas (Love in the Afternoon (The Hathaways, #5))
He admired the vintage ambiance, as well as Lara's backside as they headed down the center aisle. She was graceful, curvy; her hips hypnotized. The gentle sway of distracted him, and he walked into the corner of the soda fountain counter. The edge jabbed his hip. Painfully. Embarrassingly. Fortunately, Lara hadn't noticed. She'd lowered herself onto a red leather stool and picked up a laminated menu. He rubbed his hip and dropped down beside her. The stools were close together, and Lara and he seemed almost attached in the small space. The slightest shift of their bodies and their thighs brushed. He stretched, reaching for a menu just as she withdrew a napkin from the metal holder. It was a moment neither of them could've expected or predicted. Yet one that would be imprinted in time. Forever. Her shorter legs parted and his knee pushed in. Way in. Connecting with her crotch. She was jarred forward. Gasping. Her arms flayed. She clutched his thigh with one hand and saved herself from falling off the stool. Her fingertips inched near his zipper. So very close. An innocent reflex pressed her legs together, which only rooted him deeper into her. Her softness held him. Sensually snug. His thigh muscles flexed, bunched. His stomach knotted. Awareness heated his body, and he stiffened. Her blazer parted, and he saw that her nipples were puckered beneath her white silk blouse. Responsive feminine points.
Kate Angell (The Bakeshop at Pumpkin and Spice (Moonbright, Maine #2))
Patience's breath caught. Her lids fell. Wordlessly, she lifted her face, offering her lips. He took them, took her- as their lips fused, Patience felt his hands slide lower, deliberately tracing the ripe hemispheres of her bottom. He filled his hands, then kneaded- heat spread, prickling over her skin, leaving it fevered. Cupping her firm flesh, he molded her to him, easing her deeper into the V of his braced thighs. She felt the evidence of his desire, felt the hard, heavy, throbbing reality pressed against her soft belly. He held her there, senses fully awake, fully aware, for one achingly intense instant, then his tongue slowly surged, thrusting deep into the softness of her mouth. Patience would have gasped, but she couldn't. The evocative caress, his unhurried possession of her mouth, sent heat rolling through her. It pooled, hot and heavy, in her loins. As the kiss drew her in, drew her deeper, a heady languor spread, weighting her limbs, slowing her senses. But not muting them. She was achingly aware. Aware of the hardness that surrounded her, of the steely flex of hard muscle about her. Of her tightly furled nipples pressed hard to the wall of his chest; of the softness of her thighs held intimately against him. Of the relentless, driving passion he ruthlessly held back. That last was a temptation, but one so potently, preeminently dangerous not even she dared prod it. Not yet. There were other things she'd yet to learn.
Stephanie Laurens (A Rake's Vow (Cynster, #2))
humans have dozens of additional adaptations in our muscles and bones for endurance running whose traces first appear in fossils of H. erectus. Most of these features allow us to use our legs like giant springs to jump efficiently from one leg to another in a manner totally different from walking, which uses the legs like pendulums. As figure 7 shows, when your foot hits the ground during a run, your hips, knees, and ankles flex during the first half of stance, causing your center of mass to drop, thus stretching many of the muscles and tendons in your legs.43 When these tissues stretch, they store up elastic energy, which they release while recoiling during the second half of stance, helping you jump into the air. In fact, a running human’s legs store and release energy so efficiently that running is only about 30 to 50 percent more costly than walking in the endurance-speed range. What’s more, these springs are so effective that they make the cost of human endurance running (but not sprinting) independent of speed: it costs the same number of calories to run five miles at a pace of either 7 or 10 minutes per mile, a phenomenon many people find counterintuitive.44 Since running uses the legs like springs, some of our most important adaptations for running are literally springs. One key spring is the dome-shaped arch of the foot, which develops from the way ligaments and muscles bind together the foot’s bones as children start to walk and run. As discussed
Daniel E. Lieberman (The Story of the Human Body: Evolution, Health and Disease)
Closing the door, she turned back to him, taking in the long, muscled length of him on the bed, staring at her. Waiting for her. Perfection. He was perfect, and she was bare before him, bathed in candlelight. She was instantly embarrassed- somehow more embarrassed than she had been that night in his office, when she'd touched herself under his careful guidance. At least then she'd been wearing a corset. Stockings. Tonight, she wore nothing. She was all flaws, each one highlighted by his perfection. He watched her for a long moment before extending one muscled arm, palm up, an irresistible invitation. She went to him without hesitation, and he rolled to his back, pulling her over his lovely, lean chest, staring up at her intently. She covered her breasts in a wave of nerves and trepidation. "When you look at me like that... it's too much." He did not look away. "How do I look at you?" "I don't know what it is... but I feel as though you can see into me. As though, if you could, you would consume me." "It's want, love. Desire like nothing I've never experienced. I'm fairly shaking with it. Come here." The demand was impossible to resist, carrying with it the promise of pleasure beyond her dreams. She went. When she was close enough to touch, he lifted one hand, stroking his fingers along hers where they hid her breasts from view. "I tremble with need for you, Pippa. Please, love, let me see you." The request was raw and wretched, and she couldn't deny him, slowly moving her hands to settle them on his chest, fingers splayed wide across the crisp auburn hair that dusted his skin. She was distracted by that hair, the play of it over muscle- the way it narrowed to a lovely dark line across his flat stomach. He lay still as she touched him, his muscles firm and perfect. "You're so beautiful," she whispered, fingers stroking down his arms to his wrists. His gaze narrowed on her. "I am happy you approve, my lady." She smiled. "Oh I do, my lord. You are a remarkable specimen." White teeth flashed again as she gained her courage, retracing her touch, over his forearms, marveling in the feel of him, reciting from memory, "flexor digitorium superficialis, flexor capri radialis..." along his upper arms, "biceps brachii, tricipitis brachii..." over his shoulders, loving the way his muscles tensed and flexed beneath her touch, "deltoideus..." and down his chest, "subscapularis... pectoralis major..." She stilled, brushing her fingers over the curve of that muscle, the landscape of him... the valleys of his body. He sucked in a breath as her fingers ran over the flat discs of his nipples, arching up to her touch, and she stilled, reveling in her power. He enjoyed her touch. He wanted it. She repeated the stroke, this time with her thumbs. He hissed his pleasure, one wide hand falling to the inside of her knee, sending a river of heat through her. "Don't stop now, love. This is the most effective seduction I've ever experienced.
Sarah MacLean (One Good Earl Deserves a Lover (The Rules of Scoundrels, #2))
The history of another country, one Americans don’t much like comparing themselves with, illustrates the grave dangers of yoking political ideology to dubious science. In the 1930s under Joseph Stalin, the quack “scientist” Trofim Lysenko, who promoted himself through party newspapers rather than rigorous experiments, rose to prominence and took control of Soviet biological, medical, and agricultural research for several decades. Lysenko used his power to prosecute an ideologically driven crusade against the theory of genetics, which he denounced as a bourgeois affront to socialism. In short, his political presuppositions led him to embrace bogus scientific claims. In the purges that followed, many of Lysenko’s scientist critics lost their jobs and suffered imprisonment and even execution. By 1948 Lysenko had convinced Stalin to ban the study of genetics. Soviet science suffered immeasurable damage from the machinations of Lysenko and his henchmen, and the term “Lysenkoism” has since come to signify the suppression of, or refusal to acknowledge, science for ideological reasons. In a democracy like our own, Lysenkoism is unlikely to take such a menacing, totalitarian form. Nevertheless, the threat we face from conservative abuse of science—to informed policymaking, to democratic discourse, and to knowledge itself—is palpably real. And as the modern Right and the Bush administration flex their muscles and continue to battle against reliable, mainstream conclusions and sources of information, this threat is growing.
Chris C. Mooney (The Republican War on Science)
To be fair, if we had married then, who knows what would have become of us? I doubt I would have liked your running about the country as a spy, leaving me alone for weeks at a time. And I daresay you would have had trouble concentrating on your work for worrying about me.” His grateful smile showed that he appreciated her attempt to mitigate his betrayal. “Of course, later you could have…well…come after me. Once you established your business. While I was still un-betrothed. Why didn’t you?” “I don’t suppose you would accept rampant idiocy as a reason?” “I would…if I really thought it were the reason.” When he stiffened, she added archly, “You aren’t generally an idiot. Daft and a tad overbearing, yes, but not an idiot.” A sigh escaped him. He leaned past her to pull the curtain open just enough so he could keep an eye on the street. When it looked as if he might not answer, she added, “Tristan thinks you didn’t come after me because you were afraid that I couldn’t love you.” He cast her a startled glance. “You told Tristan the truth about us?” She winced. “And Lisette and Max. Sorry. Tristan sort of…forced it out of me.” “Well, that explains why Max and Lisette were willing to bring you here in the midst of such a crucial investigation. They’ve been pressing me for a long time to give you another chance. Because they thought you betrayed me.” Grabbing her hands, he gazed down at them with a haunted look. “And I suppose there’s some truth to my brother’s words. But I also didn’t come after you because that would have been a tacit admission that I’d made a mistake. That in so doing, I’d ruined our lives. I was afraid if I admitted I’d been wrong, then it had all been for nothing. I’d sacrificed my happiness--your happiness--for nothing.” “Oh, Dom,” she whispered and squeezed his hands. “A part of me also thought if I didn’t approach you at all, there was still a chance we could be together again. But if I asked and you said no--or worse yet, said that you no longer cared about me--it would be over for good. As long as I didn’t ask, there was always hope. And hope is what kept me going.” A muscle flexed in his jaw. “Until you got engaged. That quashed my hope. It was what I’d told myself I wanted for you. Because it proved that I’d been right to put you aside.” He lifted his gaze to hers. “Unfortunately, being right was cold comfort when it meant I’d lost you for good. By the time you came to me that day at Rathmoor Park, I was in a very dark state. I was resigning myself to a lifetime of loneliness, of wanting you and not having you.” “You would have let me marry Edwin?” she said incredulously. “Even though you still loved me?” “You were still going to marry him, weren’t you?” he countered. “Knowing that you still loved me.” “True.” She attempted a smile. “I would have done it just to bedevil you.” “No doubt,” he said dryly. “But it would have been a mistake, and I’d have been miserable.” He pressed a kiss to their joined hands. “Then I suppose we should really thank Nancy for her shenanigans. Or else we’d still be separate and miserable.
Sabrina Jeffries (If the Viscount Falls (The Duke's Men, #4))
Oedipa spent the next several days in and out of libraries and earnest discussions with Emory Bortz and Genghis Cohen. She feared a little for their security in view of what was happening to everyone else she knew. The day after reading Blobb's Peregrinations she, with Bortz, Grace, and the graduate students, attended Randolph Driblette's burial, listened to a younger brother's helpless, stricken eulogy, watched the mother, spectral in afternoon smog, cry, and came back at night to sit on the grave and drink Napa Valley muscatel, which Driblette in his time had put away barrels of. There was no moon, smog covered the stars, all black as a Tristero rider. Oedipa sat on the earth, ass getting cold, wondering whether, as Driblette had suggested that night from the shower, some version of herself hadn't vanished with him. Perhaps her mind would go on flexing psychic muscles that no longer existed; would be betrayed and mocked by a phantom self as the amputee is by a phantom limb. Someday she might replace whatever of her had gone away by some prosthetic device, a dress of a certain color, a phrase in a ' letter, another lover. She tried to reach out, to whatever coded tenacity of protein might improbably have held on six feet below, still resisting decay-any stubborn quiescence perhaps gathering itself for some last burst, some last scramble up through earth, just-glimmering, holding together with its final strength a transient, winged shape, needing to settle at once in the warm host, or dissipate forever into the dark. If you come to me, prayed Oedipa, bring your memories of the last night. Or if you have to keep down your payload, the last five minutes-that may be enough. But so I'll know if your walk into the sea had anything to do with Tristero. If they got rid of you for the reason they got rid of Hilarius and Mucho and Metzger-maybe because they thought I no longer needed you. They were wrong. I needed you. Only bring me that memory, and you can live with me for whatever time I've got. She remembered his head, floating in the shower, saying, you could fall in love with me. But could she have saved him? She looked over at the girl who'd given her the news of his death. Had they been in love? Did she know why Driblette had put in those two extra lines that night? Had he even known why? No one could begin to trace it. A hundred hangups, permuted, combined-sex, money, illness, despair with the history of his time and place, who knew. Changing the script had no clearer motive than his suicide. There was the same whimsy to both. Perhaps-she felt briefly penetrated, as if the bright winged thing had actually made it to the sanctuary of her heart-perhaps, springing from the same slick labyrinth, adding those two lines had even, in a way never to be explained, served him as a rehearsal for his night's walk away into that vast sink of the primal blood the Pacific. She waited for the winged brightness to announce its safe arrival. But there was silence. Driblette, she called. The signal echoing down twisted miles of brain circuitry. Driblette! But as with Maxwell's Demon, so now. Either she could not communicate, or he did not exist.
Thomas Pynchon (The Crying of Lot 49)
When the attendant at Britz Rentals of Australia whipped around in our prepaid-in-full honeymoon car, my eyes grew wide and I knew we were in trouble. It was an SUV, yes, and a Toyota Land Cruiser at that--just as Marlboro Man had ordered. It was white and clean and very shiny. And painted in huge bright orange and royal blue lettering across the hood, the roof, all four doors, and the tailgate of the vehicle, were scrawled the enormous words: BRITZ RENTALS OF AUSTRALIA. I could see Marlboro Man’s jaw muscles flex as he beheld his worst nightmare playing out in front of his eyes. He could hardly even bear to gaze upon such an attention-grabbing abomination, let alone conceive of driving it all over an entire continent. Unfortunately, our last-minute attempts to trade to another vehicle proved to be futile; even if Britz hadn’t been completely booked that week, it wouldn’t have mattered anyway. Every single car in their fleet was smeared with the exact same orange and blue promotional graffiti. Having no other transportational alternative, we set off on our drive, a black cloud of conspicuousness and, in Marlboro Man’s case, dread following us everywhere we went. Being an attention-seeking middle child, I didn’t really mind it much. But for Marlboro Man, this was more than his makeup was programmed to handle. As far as he was concerned, we were the Griswolds, and the Land Cruiser was our Family Truckster. It was a pox on what might have been the perfect honeymoon. Except for my inner ear disturbance. And the vomiting. And the slightly marsupial undertone to the hamburgers.
Ree Drummond (The Pioneer Woman: Black Heels to Tractor Wheels)
Why not say that the meaning and purpose of the sexual powers is pleasure? Certainly sex is pleasurable, but there is nothing distinctive about that. In various ways and degrees, the exercise of every voluntary power is pleasurable. It is pleasurable to eat, pleasurable to breath, even pleasurable to flex the muscles of the leg. The problem is that eating is pleasurable even if I am eating too much, breathing is pleasurable even if I am sniffing glue, flexing the muscles of the leg is pleasurable even if I am kicking the dog. For a criterion of when it is good to enjoy each pleasure, one must look beyond the fact that it is a pleasure. Consider an analogy between sex and eating. The purpose of eating is to take in nutrition, but eating is pleasurable, so suppose that we were to say that the purpose of eating is pleasure, too. Then it would seem that any way of eating that gives pleasure is good, whether it is suitable for nutrition or not. Certain ancient Romans are said to have thought this way. To prolong the pleasure of their feasts, they purged between courses. I hope it is not difficult to recognize that such behavior is disordered. The more general point I am trying to make is that although we find pleasure in exercising our sexual powers, pleasure is not their purpose; it only provides a motive for using these powers, and a dangerous one, too, which may at times conflict with their true purposes and steer us wrong. Besides, to think of pleasure as the purpose of intercourse is to treat our bodies merely as tools for sending agreeable sensations to our minds. They are of inestimably greater dignity than that, for they are part of what we are.
J. Budziszewski (On the Meaning of Sex)
A slow smile curved his lips. “Lillian, I’ve wanted you every moment since I first held you in my arms. And it has nothing to do with your damned perfume. However”— he inhaled the scent one last time before replacing the tiny stopper—“ I do know what the secret ingredient is.” Lillian stared at him with wide eyes. “You do not!” “I do,” he said smugly. “What a know-all,” Lillian exclaimed with laughing annoyance. “Perhaps you’re guessing at it, but I assure you that if I can’t figure out what it is, you certainly couldn’t—” “I know conclusively what it is,” he informed her. “Tell me, then.” “No. I think I’ll let you discover it on your own.” “Tell me!” She pounced on him eagerly, thumping him hard on the chest with her fists. Most men would have been driven back by the solid blows, but he only laughed and held his ground. “Westcliff, if you don’t tell me this instant, I’ll—” “Torture me? Sorry, that won’t work. I’m too accustomed to it by now.” Lifting her with shocking ease, he tossed her onto the bed like a sack of potatoes. Before she could move an inch, he was on top of her, purring and laughing as she wrestled him with all her might. “I’ll make you give in!” She hooked a leg around his and shoved hard at his left shoulder. The childhood years of fighting with her boisterous brothers had taught her a few tricks. However, Marcus countered every move easily, his body a mass of steely, flexing muscles. He was very agile, and surprisingly heavy. “You’re no challenge at all,” he teased, allowing her to roll atop him briefly. As she sought to pin him, he twisted and levered himself over her once more. “Don’t say that’s your best effort?” “Cocky bastard,” Lillian muttered, renewing her efforts. “I could win… if I didn’t have a gown on…” “Your wish may yet be granted,” he replied, smiling down at her.
Lisa Kleypas (It Happened One Autumn (Wallflowers, #2))
Mag Rogan and I stood on the edge of a cliff. Below us, the ground plunged so far down that it was as if the planet itself had ended at our feet. The wind tugged at my hair. He was wearing those dark pants again and nothing else. The hard muscle corded his torso, fueled by an overpowering, almost savage strength. Not the mindless brutality of a common thug or the cruel power of an animal, but an intelligent, stubborn, human strength. It was everywhere: in the set of his broad shoulders, in the turn of his head on a muscular neck, in the tilt of his square jaw. He turned to me and his whole body tightened, the muscles flexing and hardening, his hands ready to grip and crush, his eyes alert, missing nothing, and blazing with the brilliant electric blue of magic. I could picture him getting his sword and walking alone onto the drawbridge to defend his castle against a horde of invaders with that exact look on his face. He was terrifying, and I wanted to run my hands down that chest and feel the hard ridges of his abs. I was some special kind of idiot. Magic roiled about him, ferocious and alive, a pet monster with vicious teeth. He moved toward me, bringing it with him. “Tell me about Adam Pierce.” I reached over and put my hand on his chest. His skin was burning hot. The muscle tensed under my fingers. An eager electric shiver ran through me. I wanted to lean against that chest and kiss the underside of that jaw, tasting his sweat on my tongue. I wanted him to like it. “What happened to the boy?” I asked. “The one who destroyed a city in Mexico? Is he still inside?” “Nevada!” My mother’s voice cut through my dreams like a knife. I sat straight up in my bed. Okay. I was either way more messed up inside, or Mad Rogan was a strong projector and could shoot images straight into my mind. Either way was bad. What happened to the boy . . . I needed to have my head examined.
Ilona Andrews (Burn for Me (Hidden Legacy, #1))
last sixteen years Aidan’s detected a shift among spirits. He doesn’t know what it means yet, but he’s certain there’s a pattern.” “What kind of pattern?” “Dark spirits and demons are growing stronger.” I bet Nolan could have helped figure out the pattern. I can only imagine how different all of this would be if he had been here with me since the beginning, performing research for Aidan, trying just as hard as Aidan to find answers. Maybe he would have even found some. “Can you sense the demon?” he asks. I nod. Lucio stops dead in his tracks. Despite the flames growing ever higher around us, Lucio and I feel a cool breeze coming from down the road. Lucio starts walking in the direction of the chill, and I follow, placing my feet in the dusty footprints his steps leave behind. Even though he’s not much taller than I am, his feet are bigger than mine, and I feel like a little kid every time I place one of my sneakers in the spot where his dust-covered boot was seconds before. Lucio’s wearing shorts, and instead of looking at where we’re going, I’m watching the muscles in his calves flex and release with each step. He certainly looks strong enough to confront a demon. When he stops, I practically crash into him. “In there,” Lucio whispers, nodding in the direction of a squat stucco building on our left. It’s so small that it can’t possibly have more than one room. An icy breeze blows its splintered wooden door open, bringing a wall of smoke along with it, despite the fact that it’s the only building in sight that isn’t actually on fire. The door bangs against the tiny building with a loud crash as goose bumps rise on my sweaty skin. “Why did the demon choose this town?” I ask. “These people are completely helpless.” “Exactly,” Lucio says. “The same way we gather strength from helping spirits move on, a demon gathers strength from destroying spirits.” Despite the breeze coming from the darkness just a few steps away, I don’t think I’ve ever felt so hot. Somewhere inside
Paige McKenzie (The Awakening of Sunshine Girl (The Haunting of Sunshine Girl, #2))
if consumption by the one billion people in the developed countries declined, it is certainly nowhere close to doing so where the other six billion of us are concerned. If the rest of the world bought cars and trucks at the same per capita rate as in the United States, the world’s population of cars and trucks would be 5.5 billion. The production of global warming pollution and the consumption of oil would increase dramatically over and above today’s unsustainable levels. With the increasing population and rising living standards in developing countries, the pressure on resource constraints will continue, even as robosourcing and outsourcing reduce macroeconomic demand in developed countries. Around the same time that The Limits to Growth was published, peak oil production was passed in the United States. Years earlier, a respected geologist named M. King Hubbert collected voluminous data on oil production in the United States and calculated that an immutable peak would be reached shortly after 1970. Although his predictions were widely dismissed, peak production did occur exactly when he predicted it would. Exploration, drilling, and recovery technologies have since advanced significantly and U.S. oil production may soon edge back slightly above the 1970 peak, but the new supplies are far more expensive. The balance of geopolitical power shifted slightly after the 1970 milestone. Less than a year after peak oil production in the U.S., the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) began to flex its muscles, and two years later, in the fall of 1973, the Arab members of OPEC implemented the first oil embargo. Since those tumultuous years when peak oil was reached in the United States, energy consumption worldwide has doubled, and the growth rates in China and other emerging markets portend further significant increases. Although the use of coal is declining in the U.S., and coal-fired generating plants are being phased out in many other developed countries as well, China’s coal imports have already increased 60-fold over the past decade—and will double again by 2015. The burning of coal in much of the rest of the developing world has also continued to increase significantly. According to the International Energy Agency, developing and emerging markets will account for all of the net global increase in both coal and oil consumption through the next two decades. The prediction of global peak oil is fraught with
Al Gore (The Future: Six Drivers of Global Change)
I’ve only an hour,” Colin said as he attached the safety tip to his foil. “I have an appointment this afternoon.” “No matter,” Benedict replied, lunging forward a few times to loosen up the muscles in his leg. He hadn’t fenced in some time; the sword felt good in his hand. He drew back and touched the tip to the floor, letting the blade bend slightly. “It won’t take more than an hour to best you.” Colin rolled his eyes before he drew down his mask. Benedict walked to the center of the room. “Are you ready?” “Not quite,” Colin replied, following him. Benedict lunged again. “I said I wasn’t ready!” Colin hollered as he jumped out of the way. “You’re too slow,” Benedict snapped. Colin cursed under his breath, then added a louder, “Bloody hell,” for good measure. “What’s gotten into you?” “Nothing,” Benedict nearly snarled. “Why would you say so?” Colin took a step backward until they were a suitable distance apart to start the match. “Oh, I don’t know,” he intoned, sarcasm evident. “I suppose it could be because you nearly took my head off.” “I’ve a tip on my blade.” “And you were slashing like you were using a sabre,” Colin shot back. Benedict gave a hard smile. “It’s more fun that way.” “Not for my neck.” Colin passed his sword from hand to hand as he flexed and stretched his fingers. He paused and frowned. “You sure you have a foil there?” Benedict scowled. “For the love of God, Colin, I would never use a real weapon.” “Just making sure,” Colin muttered, touching his neck lightly. “Are you ready?” Benedict nodded and bent his knees. “Regular rules,” Colin said, assuming a fencer’s crouch. “No slashing.” Benedict gave him a curt nod. “En garde!” Both men raised their right arms, twisting their wrists until their palms were up, foils gripped in their fingers. “Is that new?” Colin suddenly asked, eyeing the handle of Benedict’s foil with interest. Benedict cursed at the loss of his concentration. “Yes, it’s new,” he bit off. “I prefer an Italian grip.” Colin stepped back, completely losing his fencing posture as he looked at his own foil, with a less elaborate French grip. “Might I borrow it some time? I wouldn’t mind seeing if—” “Yes!” Benedict snapped, barely resisting the urge to advance and lunge that very second. “Will you get back en garde?” Colin gave him a lopsided smile, and Benedict just knew that he had asked about his grip simply to annoy him. “As you wish,” Colin murmured, assuming position again.
Julia Quinn (An Offer From a Gentleman (Bridgertons, #3))
A tearing agony went through Lillian’s right thigh, and she would have stumbled to the ground had it not been for the support of his arm around her back. “Oh, damn it,” she said shakily, clutching at her thigh. A twisting spasm in her thigh muscle caused her to groan through her clenched teeth. “Damn, damn—” “What is it?” St. Vincent asked, swiftly lowering her to the path. “A leg cramp?” “Yes…” Pale and shaking, Lillian caught at her leg, while her face contorted with agony. “Oh God, it hurts!” He bent over her, frowning with concern. His quiet voice was threaded with urgency. “Miss Bowman…would it be possible for you to temporarily ignore everything you’ve heard about my reputation? Just long enough for me to help you?” Squinting at his face, Lillian saw nothing but an honest desire to relieve her pain, and she nodded. “Good girl,” he murmured, and gathered her writhing body into a half-sitting position. He talked swiftly to distract her, while his hand slipped beneath her skirts with gentle expertise. “It will take just a moment. I hope to God that no one happens along to see this—it looks more than a bit incriminating. And it’s doubtful that they would accept the traditional but somewhat overused leg-cramp excuse—” “I don’t care,” she gasped. “Just make it go away.” She felt St. Vincent’s hand slide lightly up her leg, the warmth of his skin sinking through the thin fabric of her knickers as he searched for the knotting, twitching muscle. “Here we are. Hold your breath, darling.” Obeying, Lillian felt him roll his palm strongly over the muscle. She nearly yelped at the burst of searing fire in her leg, and then suddenly it eased, leaving her weak with relief. Relaxing back against his arm, Lillian let out a long breath. “Thank you. That’s much better.” A faint smile crossed his lips as he deftly tugged her skirts back over her legs. “My pleasure.” “That never happened to me before,” she murmured, flexing her leg cautiously. “No doubt it was a repercussion from your exploit in the sidesaddle. You must have strained a muscle.” “Yes, I did.” Color burnished her cheeks as she forced herself to admit, “I’m not used to jumping on sidesaddle— I’ve only done it astride.” His smile widened slowly. “How interesting,” he murmured. “Clearly my experiences with American girls have been entirely too limited. I didn’t realize you were so delightfully colorful.” “I’m more colorful than most,” she told him sheepishly, and he grinned. -Lillian & Sebastian St. Vincent
Lisa Kleypas (It Happened One Autumn (Wallflowers, #2))
When an ovulating woman offers herself to you, she's the choicest morsel on the planet. Her nipples are already sharp, her labia already swollen, her spine already undulating. Her skin is damp and she pants. If you touch the center of her forehead with your thumb she isn't thinking about her head—she isn't thinking at all, she's imagining, believing, willing your hand to lift and turn and curve, cup the back of her head. She's living in a reality where the hand will have no choice but to slide down that soft, flexing muscle valley of the spine to the flare of strong hips, where the other hand joins the first to hold both hip bones, immobilize them against the side of the counter, so that you can touch the base of her throat gently with your lips and she will whimper and writhe and let the muscles in her legs go, but she won't fall, because you have her. She'll be feeling this as though it's already happening, knowing absolutely that it will, because every cell is alive and crying out, Fill me, love me, cherish me, be tender, but, oh God, be sure. She wants you to want her. And when her pupils expand like that, as though you have dropped black ink into a saucer of cool blue water, and her head tips just a little, as though she's gone blind or has had a terrible shock or maybe just too much to drink, to her she is crying in a great voice, Fuck me, right here, right now against the kitchen counter, because I want you wrist-deep inside me. I hunger, I burn, I need. It doesn't matter if you are tired, or unsure, if your stomach is hard with dread at not being forgiven. If you allow yourself one moment's distraction—a microsecond's break in eye contact, a slight shift in weight—she knows, and that knowledge is a punch in the gut. She will back up a step and search your face, and she'll feel embarrassed—a fool or a whore—at offering so blatantly what you're not interested in, and her fine sense of being queen of the world will shiver and break like a glass shield hit by a mace, and fall around her in dust. Oh, it will still sparkle, because sex is magic, but she will be standing there naked, and you will be a monster, and the next time she feels her womb quiver and clench she'll hesitate, which will confuse you, even on a day when there is no dread, no uncertainty, and that singing sureness between you will dissolve and very slowly begin to sicken and die. The body knows. I listened to the deep message—but carefully, because at some point the deep message also must be a conscious message. Active, not just passive, agreement. I took her hand and guided the wok back down to the gas burner. Yes, her body still said, yes. I turned off the gas, but slowly, and now she reached for me.
Nicola Griffith (Always (Aud Torvingen #3))
It doesn’t feel right. Not now.” “But you’re the same, Jemma. You haven’t changed. This is what you want, remember?” “See, that’s where you’re wrong. I have changed. And”--I shake my head--“I don’t even know what I want anymore.” He opens his mouth as if he’s about to say something, but closes it just as quickly. A muscle in his haw flexes as he eyes me sharply, his brow furrowed. “I thought you were stronger than this,” he says at last. “Braver.” I start to protest, but he cuts me off. “When I get home, I’m going to e-mail you these video files. I don’t know anything about making films, but if you need any help, well…” He shrugs. “You know my number.” With that, he turns and walks away. I leap to the ground. “Ryder, wait!” He stops and turns to face me. “Yeah?” “I…about Patrick. And then…you and me. I feel awful about it. Things were so crazy during the storm, like it wasn’t real life or something.” I take a deep, gulping breath, my cheeks burning now. “I don’t want you think that I’m, you know, some kind of--” “Just stop right there.” He holds out one hand. “I don’t think anything like that, okay? It was…” He trails off, shaking his head. “Shit, Jemma. I’m not going to lie to you. It was nice. I’m glad I kissed you. I’m pretty sure I’ve been wanting to for…well, a long time now.” “You did a pretty good job hiding it, that’s for sure.” “It’s just that…well, I’ve had to listen to seventeen years’ worth of how you’re the perfect girl for me. And goddamn, Jem. My mom already controls enough in my life. What food I eat. What clothes I wear. Hell, even my underwear. You wouldn’t believe the fight she put up a few years back when I wanted to switch to boxer briefs instead of regular boxers.” I swallow hard, remembering the sight of him wearing the underwear in question. Yeah, I’m glad he won that particular battle. “Anyway, if my parents want it for me, it must be wrong. So I convinced myself that you were wrong for me. You had to be.” His gaze sweeps across my face, and I swear I feel it linger on my lips. “No matter what I felt every single time I looked at you.” Oh my God. I did the exact same thing--thinking he had to be wrong for me just because Mama insisted we were a perfect match. Now I don’t know what to think. What to feel. What’s real and what’s a trying-to-prove-something fabrication. But Ryder…he gets it. He’s lived it too. I let out a sigh. “Can you imagine how different things would be if our families hated each other? If they were feuding like the First Methodists and the Cavalry Baptists?” “I bet it’d be a whole lot less complicated, to tell you the truth. Heck, we probably would’ve already run off together or something by now.” “Probably so,” I say, a smile tugging at my lips.
Kristi Cook (Magnolia (Magnolia Branch, #1))
Jackaby was still engrossed in his examination when I came back inside. “Books. Books. Just books,” he was muttering. Jenny was hovering by the window. I joined her. “How did you manage it, by the way?” I asked. “All those Bibles, all across town? It is a remarkable feat.” “It looks more impressive than it is,” she said, still not meeting my eyes. “I borrowed Jackaby’s special satchel, the one that holds anything. The whole pile took just one trip. The real trick was keeping myself solid all the way home. That’s the bit I’m really proud of—” She turned to face me. “Oh, Abigail, it was amazing. People saw me!” “People saw you?” “I was in disguise, of course. I wore my long coat and gloves, and I had that floppy white hat on, so they didn’t see much, but still—people saw me and they didn’t gasp or make a scene. Someone even mumbled Good day to me as I was crossing the footbridge! It was exhilarating! I have never been so excited to have somebody see me—actually see me—and not care at all!” She glanced at Jackaby. “Although you would think I would be used to it by now.” “Jenny, that is absolutely amazing!” I said. “It is, isn’t it?” she said wistfully. “Just a little bit, at least? Oh, Abigail, I’m exhausted, I’m not ashamed to tell you. I had planned on setting my spoils out in nice triumphant rows when I got back, but it was all I could do to hold myself intact by then. Solidity is sort of like flexing a muscle, except the muscle is in your mind, and your mind is really just an abstract concept. I was basically flexing my entire body into existence the whole way home. But did it merit so much as a Good job, Jenny from that infuriating man?” Jackaby surfaced from his perusal and looked up at last. His cloud gray eyes found focus on Jenny. From his expression, I couldn’t tell if he had been following our conversation or not. “Completely unexceptional,” he said. “Nothing at all in this batch. We will need to scrutinize them more closely, of course, just to be sure. Oh, and Miss Cavanaugh . . .” She raised an eyebrow skeptically. “You performed . . . quite adequately,” he said, “despite expectations.” Jenny opened her mouth to reply, but then closed it again. Her face fluttered through a series of potential reactions. Finally she just threw up her hands and vanished from sight with a muffled whuph of air closing into the space where she suddenly wasn’t. “What in heaven’s name was all that?” said Jackaby. “Exquisite frustration, I believe, sir.” “Ah. Right.” He slumped into the desk chair and began to fidget absently with the spine of one of the Bibles. “Miss Cavanaugh is a singular and exceptional spirit, you know.” “Only a suggestion, sir, but that is precisely the sort of thing you might consider saying when she is still present and corporeal.
William Ritter (The Dire King (Jackaby, #4))
A whimper escaped her as he slid low between her thighs, his head bending to the swollen place he had been tormenting with his fingers. He put his mouth on her, licking along the delicate, salty strait, spreading her with his thumbs. She tried to sit bolt-upright, but fell back against the pillows as he found what he wanted, his tongue strong and wet. She was spread beneath him like a pagan sacrifice, illuminated by the daylight that now flooded the room. Merripen worshipped her with hot, glassy licks, savoring the taste of her pleasured flesh. Moaning, she closed her legs around his head, and he turned deliberately to nibble and lick at one pale inner thigh, then the other. Feasting on her. Wanting everything. Win curled her fingers desperately in his hair, lost to shame as she guided him back, her body arching, please, more, more, now...and she groaned as he fastened his mouth over her with a fast, flicking rhythm. Pleasure seized her, wrenching an astonished cry from her, holding her stiff and paralyzed for excruciating seconds. Every movement and measure and pulse of the universe had distilled to the compelling, slippery heat, riveted there on that crucial place, and then it all released, the feeling and tension shattering exquisitely, and she was racked with hard, blissful shudders. Win relaxed helplessly as the spasms faded. She was filled with glowing weariness, a sense of peace too pervasive to allow movement. Merripen let go of her just long enough to undress completely. Naked and aroused, he came back to her. He gathered her up with brute, masculine need, settling over her. She lifted her arms to him with a drowsy murmur. His back was tough and sleek beneath her fingers, the muscles twitching eagerly at her touch. His head descended, his shaven cheek rasping against hers. She met his power with utter surrender, flexing her knees and tilting her hips to cradle him. He pushed gently at first. The innocent flesh resisted, smarting at the intrusion. He thrust more strongly and Win caught her breath at the burning pain of his entrance. Too much of him, too hard, too deep. She writhed in reaction, and he buried himself heavily and pinned her down, gasping for her to be still, telling her to wait, he wouldn't move, it would be better. They both stilled, breathing hard. "Should I stop?" Merripen whispered raggedly, his face taut. Even now in this flash point of need, he was concerned for her. Understanding what it had cost him to ask, how much he needed her, Win was overwhelmed with love. "Don't even think of stopping now," she whispered back. Reaching down his lean flanks, she stroked him in shy encouragement. He groaned and began to move, his entire body trembling as he pressed within her. Although every thrust caused a sharp burn where they were joined, Win tried to pull him even deeper. The feeling of having him inside her went far beyond the pain or pleasure. It was necessary.
Lisa Kleypas (Seduce Me at Sunrise (The Hathaways, #2))
Stop!” she called out. To a one, the crewmen froze. A dozen heads swiveled to face her. Sophia swallowed and turned to Mr. Grayson. “What about me? I’m also a virgin voyager.” His lips quirked as his gaze swept her from head to toe and then back up partway. “Are you truly?” “Yes. And I haven’t a coin to my name. Do you plan to dunk and shave me, too?” “Now there’s an idea.” His grin widened. “Perhaps. But first, you must submit to an interrogation.” A lump formed in Sophia’s throat, impossible to speak around. Mr. Grayson raised that sonorous baritone to a carrying pitch. “What’s your name then, miss?” When Sophia merely firmed her chin and glared at him, he warned dramatically, “Truth or eels.” Bang. Excited whispers crackled through the assembly of sailors. Davy was completely forgotten, dropped to the deck with a dull thud. Even the wind held its breath in anticipation, and Sophia gave a slight jump when a sail smacked limp against the mast. Though her heart pounded an erratic rhythm of distress, she willed her voice to remain even. “I’ve no intention of submitting myself to any interrogation, by god or man.” She lifted her chin and arched an eyebrow. “And I’m not impressed by your staff.” She paused several seconds, waiting for the crew’s boisterous laughter to ebb. Mr. Grayson pinned her with his bold, unyielding gaze. “You dare to speak to me that way? I’m Triton.” With each word, he stepped closer. “King of the Sea. A god among men.” Now they stood just paces apart. Hunger gleamed in his eyes. “And I demand a sacrifice.” Her hand remained pressed against her throat, and Sophia nervously picked at the neckline of her frock. This close, he was all bronzed skin stretched tight over muscle and sinew. Iridescent drops of seawater paved glistening trails down his chest, snagging on the margins of that horrific scar, just barely visible beneath his toga. “A sacrifice?” Her voice was weak. Her knees were weaker. “A sacrifice.” He flipped the trident around, his biceps flexing as he extended the blunt end toward her, hooking it under her arm. He lifted the mop handle, pulling her hand from her throat and raising her wrist for his inspection. Sophia might have yanked her arm away at any moment, but she was as breathless with anticipation as every other soul on deck. She’d become an observer of her own scene, helpless to alter the drama unfolding, on the edge of her seat to see how it would play out. He studied her arm. “An unusually fine specimen of female,” he said casually. “Young. Fair. Unblemished.” Then he withdrew the stick, and Sophia’s hand dropped to her side. “But unsatisfactory.” She felt a sharp twinge of pride. Unsatisfactory? Those words echoed in her mind again. I don’t want you. “Unsatisfactory. Too scrawny by far.” He looked around at the crew, sweeping his makeshift trident in a wide arc. “I demand a sacrifice with meat on her bones. I demand…” Sophia gasped as the mop handle clattered to a rest at her feet. Mr. Grayson gave her a sly wink, bracing his hands on his hips in a posture of divine arrogance. “I demand a goat.
Tessa Dare (Surrender of a Siren (The Wanton Dairymaid Trilogy, #2))
Come on, lovey, open up. These buckets is heavy.” The plea accompanied another tapping. “Patience, Molly.” Christopher paused for a brief moment, gathering the towel about him again. Then his muscles flexed, and if she had found the breath, Erienne would have shrieked as he lifted her and dumped her onto the bed. She half raised with her mouth open to hotly voice her objection to whatever he had in mind, but he flung the bedcovers over her head, squelching comment. “Lie still.” His whisper bore a tone of command that could prompt immediate obedience from even the most reluctant. Erienne froze, and with a smile Christopher reached across to turn down the other side of the bed to make it seem as if he had just left it. Frantic visions involving her possible fate flew through Erienne’s mind. She considered the horrible humiliation she would suffer if she were discovered in the man’s bed. Her fears burgeoned, her rage peaked, and she threw back the covers, intending to escape the trap he laid for her. In the next brief second she caught her breath sharply and snatched the covers back over her head again, for the sight of him standing stark naked beside the chair where his clothes were draped was too much for her virgin eyes to bear. It had been no more than a glimpse, but the vision of his tall, tanned, wide-shouldered form bathed in the pinkish light of the rising sun was forever branded in her brain. Christopher chuckled softly as Erienne curled into the bed and finally obeyed his warning. He slipped on his breeches, secured them, and moved across the room to unlock the door. Molly knew her trade and her competition, and the village of Mawbry suited her well, since there was an absolute lack of the latter. When Christopher opened the portal, she was through it in a trice and shrugging out of the yoke that bore the pails. Pressing herself tightly against the male form, she rubbed her fingers through the hair on his chest and fluttered her lashes. “Oh, lovey, ye are a wondrous sight for any girl to behold.” “I’ve already told you, Molly. I have no need of yer services,” Christopher stated bluntly. “I only want the water.” “Ah, come now, lovey,” she crooned. “I knows ye’ve been away ter sea and needs a li’l tussle in bed. Why, with such a man as yerself, I’d be more’n willin’ ter give ye all ye need without a hint o’ a coin.” Christopher swept his hand toward the mentioned furnishing, drawing the maid’s eyes to it. “I already have all I desire. Now be along with you.” Molly’s dark eyes widened in surprise as she turned to stare at the bed. Unable to mistake the curvaceous form hidden beneath the quilt, she straightened indignantly and with a swish of her skirts was gone from the room, slamming the door behind her. Erienne waited, not daring to come out from beneath the covering until Christopher tapped her on the shoulder. “ ’Tis safe now. You can come out.” “Are you dressed?” she asked cautiously, her voice muffled beneath the covers. Christopher chuckled. “I’ve got my breeches on, if that’s what you’re worried about." -Molly, Christopher, & Erienne
Kathleen E. Woodiwiss (A Rose in Winter)
Tell me what happened.” “He was here,” I said, hoarse. “He lit the can on fire and took the extinguisher nearby. I ran to the back to get the other and he pushed one of the shelves over on me.” The muscles in Holt’s jaw clenched and flexed beneath the stubble that lined his face. “Do you ever shave?” I wondered out loud. He smiled and rubbed at the gruffness. “I just trim it.” I nodded. “Do you like it?” he asked. Once again, I touched him, brazenly running my hand along his jaw. It was soft and rough at the same time—the perfect balance. “Yeah, I do.” “Good to know,” he said, taking my hand, linking our fingers together, and then his face grew serious again. “Obviously, I avoided the shelf.” “Did you get a look at his face?” I cringed at the hopefulness in his voice. “No,” I admitted. “I tried, but he kicked me.” His eyes went murderous. Maybe I shouldn’t have said that. “He. Kicked. You,” he ground out, making each word into a pointed sentence. This time I kept my mouth shut. “Where?” he demanded. I wasn’t going to reply, but his eyes narrowed and I knew he would eventually make me tell him. I was going to have to tell the cops anyway. Weariness floated over me at the thought of enduring yet another one of their hours-long interrogations. I lifted my wrist, the bandage just dangling from the area now, not covering or protecting a thing. The waves of hatred that rolled off him made me sincerely glad that all that emotion wasn’t directed at me. He stared at my delicately injured skin (some of it had gotten torn in the struggle and was slick with some sort of puss… Eww, gross), and I kind of thought the top of his head might explode. I was going to reassure him that I was okay, but the police rushed inside, followed closely behind by a medic with a first aid kit. “She needs medical attention,” Holt barked, authority ringing through his tone. The medic hurried to comply, slamming down his kit and springing it open. Holt dropped his hand onto the man’s shoulder and squeezed. “Bryant, I don’t even want to see a flick of pain cross her face when you touch her.” Bryant looked at me and swallowed thickly. “Yes, Chief.” “Chief?” I said, looking up at Holt. “I’ll be right back,” he said to me in a much gentler tone and then moved away. Bryant was fumbling with his supplies, Holt’s words clearly making him nervous. “Relax.” I tried to soothe him. “He’s just on edge about what happened. I’m fine. I promise to smile the whole time you fix me up.” “But it’s going to hurt,” he blurted apologetically. “Yeah, I know. Just do it. I’ll be fine.” That seemed to calm him a little, and he got to work. It did hurt. Incredibly. I felt Holt’s stare and I glanced up, giving him a fake smile. He rolled his eyes and turned back to one of the officers. “Hey,” I said to the medic. “Why did you call him chief?” He gave me a quizzical look. “Arkain’s the Wilmington Fire Chief.” My eyes jerked back to Holt where he stood talking to the police force and the firefighters that responded to the call. His firefighters. “I didn’t realize,” I murmured. Bryant nodded. “I guess I can understand that. He’s a humble guy. Doesn’t like to throw his position around.” I made a sound of agreement as he applied something to my wrist that made my entire body jerk. I bit down on my lip to keep from crying out. “I’m sorry!” he said a little too loudly. Holt stiffened and he turned, looking at me over his shoulder. I blinked back the tears that flooded my eyes and waved at him with my free hand. He said a few more words to the men standing around him and then he left them, coming to stand over poor Bryant. I never realized how intimidating he was when he wanted to be.
Cambria Hebert (Torch (Take It Off, #1))
My own life and consciousness straddles the trans communities and the lesbian, gay, and bi communities. I can feel the muscle we could flex if we could fight back together against all forms of discrimination, bigotry, and bashing. And I wanted each person in this room - cross-dresser and partner alike - to feel the potential strength of that coalition. And so as I began to speak, unity was the most important issue on my mind. The room grew quiet. Food service workers slipped out of the kitchen to listen. No ice clinked in glasses; no forks clanked on plates. As I talked about the connections between our lives, virtually the only sound was of soft sobs as some partners cried quietly into their napkins or on each other's shoulders.
Leslie Feinberg (Trans Liberation: Beyond Pink or Blue)
We leave the Haul Road behind and enter a landscape that opens itself to us. Valleys dance beneath the autumn sunlight, and the ground holds firm and solid underfoot. The tussocks that plagued us for weeks have finally given way to bare, lichen-covered slopes. My muscles lengthen and flex with each stride. I have begun to understand what it means to live in constant motion. Like caribou. Like water. Like geese on their long annual migrations.
Caroline Van Hemert (The Sun Is a Compass: A 4,000-Mile Journey into the Alaskan Wilds)
He grunted and flexed his core muscles as hard as he could, working in unison with his APEX as it squeezed his extremities in an effort to keep blood in his head, where it would be useful.
J.R. Robertson (The Terran Menace (Terran Menace, #1))
She smiled, but it was a disturbing, hard flexing of bane and muscle.
Nicola Griffith (Hild (The Hild Sequence, #1))
steps that you need to follow: Reversing assumptions: Earlier, you did the exercise of reversing the assumption. In that exercise, after writing down the opposite statement. You asked yourself, “Why might it be true?” and “How can I make these ideas happen”? When you answer these questions, you find new frames. How many new frames did you find earlier? Please list them down. Now do the same exercise one more time. Try to find a few more new frames. What is your total now? Changing your questions: Like above, earlier at the end of the chapter, “Change Your Frame, Change Your Game”, you did the exercise of finding new frames by changing your question. How many new frames did you find earlier? Please list them down. Now do the same exercise one more time. Here you can use the technique of “wearing different hats” to your advantage. Try to find a few more new frames. The more the hats of different people you wear, the more frames you can discover. What is your total now? Random Words Technique: In this chapter, by using the random word “bicycle”, we created 11 frames, and after connecting the diverse dots from different frames, we created 5 more frames. So, with one random word, we could generate 16 frames. By following the same technique, how many random words would you need to create One hundred frames? You can use as many random words as you can to generate the maximum number of frames. Adding dots to the frames: As seen in this chapter, it is easy to add dots (ideas) to reach the magic figure of one hundred once you have enough frames. Allow your mind to wander: You have understood how our subconscious mind feeds us with ideas. At any point in time, you feel that the task has become too daunting for you, allow your mind to wander. When it comes back, it will bring a few golden nuggets (more frames) for you. Flex your ideas muscle: You have built strong ideas muscle by doing so many exercises after every chapter. It’s time to demand more from it. Sleep on your challenge: After a night’s sleep, your subconscious mind will not let you stop at one hundred ideas. It will keep on bringing you more and more. Always keep your notepad and pen ready.
Miliind Harrdas (Ideas on Demand: A crash course on creativity. Bust creativity blocks, 10x your ideas, and become an idea machine. (10x Impact))
I watched the muscles in Nico’s arms flex, and my eyes moved across his body and back up to his face. A burning need swept through my body, desire like nothing I’d ever experienced in my life. He was the most beautiful man I’d ever laid eyes on in my life. A voice in my head started murmuring a single word. As he drew closer, the voice rose in volume, first a whisper, then a shout, then an earth-shattering scream, all inside my skull. Mine.
Roxie Ray (The Alpha's Fated Encounter (Fated to Royalty, #1))
Theo tied off the top of a full garbage bag and then lifted it out of the container without any visible effort. Although the play of his muscles didn’t fascinate Grace as much as if Hugh had been the one flexing, she couldn’t help but watch. A balled-up paper towel hit her on the side of the head, bouncing off harmlessly. Grace turned narrowed eyes on Hugh. “That better have been clean.” “It was. Mostly. Now stop drooling over Theo and pay attention to me.
Katie Ruggle (On the Chase (Rocky Mountain K9 Unit, #2))
The man was seriously sexy. His shirtsleeves hugged the solid muscles of his biceps, and his forearms flexed and corded as he pounded nails into the wall and hung her pictures. She wasn’t normally this affected by a man. Heck, she was around men all the time, but none of them had her heart pounding like a jackhammer in her chest or her libido on DEFCON 1 alert every time she was within a foot of them.
Jennie Marts (Every Bit a Cowboy (Creedence Horse Rescue #5))
I sighed looking at them. They had all stripped off and were just wearing shorts. Muscles were flexing and glistening as they moved around getting everything ready. My wolf gave a little whine. The girls fell about laughing as I slapped a hand over my mouth.
Alyss couldn’t see him as they descended in tandem, and Ea Nir appreciated small fortunes. His arms were mottling to blue again with the flexing and stretching of rounded human muscles right above his face. Anatomy peeked into and out of view with her steps on the grips—places Ea Nir had entered this woman. Entered? More like invaded. Reamed. Established a mining colony. Unbelievable.
Octavia Hyde (Host (We Are Nepenthe #2))
Lionblaze padded through the thorn tunnel into the camp and stood flexing his aching muscles. “That was a great training session,” he meowed to Blossomfall as she emerged behind him. “You certainly caught me with that backward leap and twist.” “Yeah, will you show me how to do it?” Foxleap asked as he followed Blossomfall. The young she-cat’s eyes glowed at her Clanmates’ praise and she gave her chest fur a couple of embarrassed licks. “It’s not that hard,” she murmured. “I’m sorry if I hurt you, Lionblaze.” “I’ll be fine.” Lionblaze gave her a friendly flick over her ear with the tip of his tail. “I should have been a bit quicker.” Cinderheart padded up, her eyes glimmering with amusement as her gaze traveled over Lionblaze’s ruffled pelt. “You look like you’ve been pulled through the thorn barrier backward,” she mewed. “I feel like it, too,” Lionblaze replied. “Blossomfall and Foxleap didn’t give me a chance to catch my breath. They’re turning into great fighters.
Erin Hunter (The Forgotten Warrior (Warriors: Omen of the Stars #5))
From where she stood, she could see the white of his shirt, the gray of his waistcoat, the black slash of his brows. She could measure the width of his shoulders and the muscles of his arms as he wrote. His wrists were thick and solid. His hands looked bigger than her head. She wondered if she might disgrace herself by swooning. Good God. The man was twice a normal human’s size. He was wider than Mr. Duff and much, much more muscular. His forearms, dusted liberally with hair the same black as the close-shorn strands upon his head, bulged and flexed and rippled in fascinating fashion.
Elisa Braden (Anything but a Gentleman (Rescued from Ruin, #7))
Through the novel coronavirus hoax, which literally was inspired by a novel, the owners of the world have flexed their muscles and the whole planet has reacted. - On the Novel Inspired Virus
Lamine Pearlheart (Awakening)
God says we shouldn’t take advantage of the fatherless (Exodus 22:22) and that true religion looks after the fatherless (James 1:27). It’s time for the church to flex some real muscle on behalf of the weak and the needy.
Paul Coughlin (No More Christian Nice Guy: When Being Nice--Instead of Good--Hurts Men, Women, and Children)
The Hardys gave their order and slid onto the seat across from him. Frank flipped up the cover of Chet’s magazine and saw that it was Muscle Man. A weight lifter with bulging arms and torso decorated the cover. “Wow! You really are going in for physical culture!” Frank chuckled. “And he-man food,” Chet said, as the Hardys milkshakes were served. “That stuff you’ve got is for sissies. From now on, I’m sticking to ground beefsteak, milk, raw fruits, and leafy vegetables. No more candy.” He paused to flex a bicep and compare it to a photograph in the magazine.
Franklin W. Dixon (A Figure in Hiding (Hardy Boys, #16))
Read poetry every day of your life. Poetry is good because it flexes muscles you don’t use often enough. Poetry expands the senses and keeps them in prime condition.
Ray Bradbury (Zen in the Art of Writing)
Leo was just outside the door, and he was shirtless. His arm flexed against the sleek white top of his dresser as he stared into the open drawer. He was clearly searching for a shirt, as his devil suit had mysteriously vanished. And she just went ahead and stared at his arms, chest, shoulders and back, because that's what she wanted to do--- especially after the last glass of wine she'd had. She'd seen him shirtless once before, on their hike, so the sight of him shouldn't have felt so new, but it was like seeing him for the first time all over again. She let her gaze linger over how the muscles between his shoulder blades emphasized his strong back, and the tricep that flexed as he straightened his arm. A small, parched noise escaped her lips, and he looked up. She coughed, trying to cover the sound. Leo turned. "You're supposed to be in pajamas." You're not supposed to look this fucking good. "The problem is the dress. Not built for food or unzipping. I was wondering if you could, um..." She turned and motioned toward her back, where the zipper was. When Leo stepped forward, his bare torso briefly brushed against her back. His skin was warm in contrast to the cool air, and goose bumps erupted across her arms in response. She hoped he wouldn't notice her body's reaction to being so close to him. At least he couldn't see that her gaze was fixed straight ahead, on the pesky bed nearby... His fingers grasped the top of the zipper, and he pulled on it just enough that she stumbled back and against his chest. She muttered an apology under her breath as he slowly lowered the zipper down her back. His knuckle grazed the track of her spine, and his hand stopped at the bottom, just above her ass. She wondered if his eyes were roaming over her exposed skin. And he didn't move his fingers from the zipper right away, which made her feel like he wanted the back of his knuckle to stay exactly where it was. Neither of them moved. She was afraid that if she did, she'd break the fantasy of Leo, examining her--- of him potentially wanting more of her. Eventually he leaned down, and the shadow of his beard scraped against her ear as he said, "All done.
Erin La Rosa (For Butter or Worse)
I reach out and grab the hem of Benny's T-shirt between two fingers, then turn and pull him along behind me as I look for someplace more private. I walk with purpose, as if I have a spot picked out already, which I totally don't. But when I come upon an unoccupied pantry, I pull Benny in after me. Closing the door, I turn to face him. And find his face reeeal close to mine. The corners of his mouth are starting to tick up in a smile in spite of his efforts to hide it. "Hey there." I swallow the heady feeling I get at the sound of his voice this close, low and rumbly. There are only a couple of inches between our chests, no more than that between our faces, which are almost level. This would certainly be easier in, say, an open field. I press my back flat against the door and clear my throat. "My cardigan. Give it back." "I enjoyed our conversation on Saturday," he continues in that smooth bass as if I haven't said anything. "What kind of kidnapper leaves a note identifying themselves as the kidnapper, anyway? What are you playing at?" I bite out with a frustration that is quickly fleeing my body. Benny's eyes flit down to the floor almost sheepishly. "I don't enjoy what brought on our talk at the cookout, or hearing what you go through. But I was honored that you told me, and I like talking to you. I'd listen to you talk like that every day if you let me." His words almost stop my breath, despite the weirdness of this situation he's facilitated and the way we're having two totally different conversations. I shake my head and squeeze my eyes shut, but they pop back open when I feel something brush past my hair. Benny stares at me intently, and I register that he's put one palm flat against the door beside my head. He leans in closer, and I try my damnedest not to notice all the muscles in that arm flexing so close to me, but holy biceps, Batman, and oh my, how much closer can he get before he--- "Reese," he breathes, and I feel the word brush against my lips even though they still haven't made contact with his. I don't think I'm breathing at all.
Kaitlyn Hill (Love from Scratch)
In my experience, people who have to flex their muscles to advertise their strength are the weakest of us all.
Helen Harper (Dark Whispers (Firebrand, #5))
In the afternoon, it was Second Officer Lightoller’s turn to answer questions, the first of nearly two thousand he would be asked by this committee and the British inquiry that followed. Throughout his testimony, Lightoller acquitted himself well and skillfully steered criticism away from Captain Smith and the White Star Line even while he considered the American inquiry to be “nothing but a complete farce.” The second officer came to have particular contempt for Senator Smith, whose ignorance of nautical matters led to him being ridiculed by the English press as “Watertight Smith” for asking whether the watertight compartments were meant to shelter passengers. The London Globe called Smith “a gentleman from the wilds of Michigan” who felt it necessary “to be as insolent as possible to Englishmen.” British resentment toward America’s waxing power was captured by the poet Wilfrid Scawen Blunt, who wrote in his diary that if anyone had to drown it was best that it be American millionaires. To the English elites, the U.S. inquiry seemed to be yet another example of American muscle flexing. But a Labor parliamentarian, George Barnes, noted more dispassionately that “it may be humiliating to some to have an [American] inquiry into the loss of a British ship but … the average person realizes that Americans get to work very quickly, and the average person, I think, is rather glad it is so.
Hugh Brewster (Gilded Lives, Fatal Voyage: The Titanic's First-Class Passengers and Their World)
You’re pretty hot too Axel. If you weren’t brother material or so damn feminine I would definitely hump your leg,” laughs Ava pointing at him. “Quit saying I’m feminine you witch!” shouts Axel with a big grin. “Dude, you are so totally a dudette. You manscape like a motha. You have fake boobies. You moisturize everything. Total chic,” Ava says smugly.” “Axel jumps to his feet and starts flexing his muscles, changing up his body builder poses. He turns his back to us, flexs his ass at Ava, and says over his shoulder, “You wish you had this ass! It’s tight! No jiggle in this wiggle!” “Your ass would be a cum dumpster in prison, Nancy,” laughs Ava. She’s laughing at Axel so hard I’m afraid she’s going to topple off the stool. I step closer and keep her steady. “I could kick anyone’s ass that tried touching my goodies,” retorts Axel. “You’d get twat punched!
Lola Wright (Gunner (The Devil's Angels MC #1))
If we want our children to be broadly competent readers, thinkers, and problem solvers, they must have a rich, broad store of background knowledge to call upon, enabling them to flex those mental muscles.
E.D. Hirsch Jr. (What Your Second Grader Needs to Know (Revised and Updated): Fundamentals of a Good Second-Grade Education (The Core Knowledge Series))
I can help with Mari. Help with food. I’m strong.” I lift an arm, flex a muscle, and pat my bicep. “Strong.” R’jaal’s lips twitch as if he’s doing his best not to laugh. K’thar just looks proudly at me.
Ruby Dixon (Lauren's Barbarian (Icehome, #1))
Gurgeh glanced at the man on stage. The lights were bright, sunlight spectraed. The slightly plump, pale-skinned male had several enormous, multicolored bruises—like huge prints—on his body. Those on his back and chest were largest, and showed Azadian faces. The mixture of blacks, blues, purples, greens, yellows and reds combined to form portraits of uncanny accuracy and subtlety, which the flexings of the man’s muscles seemed to make live, exactly as though those faces took on new expressions with each moment. Gurgeh looked, and felt his breath draw in.
Iain M. Banks (The Player of Games (Culture, #2))
I can think of many things I’d like to do to you. All night and all day.” Julian grinned, and with the light from the fire dancing on the side of his face, he looked like a little demon who’d somehow entered into the human world to seduce Evan. With the waistcoat taken off, Julian pushed his hands under Evan’s shirt and trailed his fingertips over his stomach, then up his chest, swirling them through the short body hair that stuck to the damp linen. “What kind of things?” Evan flexed his muscles and straightened up as Julian peeled the soaked shirt off him. “Deliciously dirty things. Whatever you wish, and whatever you allow.
K.A. Merikan (The Black Sheep and The Rotten Apple)
The so-called Hygiene Hypothesis, first voiced by Strachan, is that our immune system needs a certain amount of bacteria on which to flex its muscles. Deprived of it, the white cells that are designed to fight bacteria, called Th1 lymphocytes, fail to develop, and the other white cells, Th2 lymphocytes—those designed to make antibodies to defend the body against microbial dangers as well as to produce allergic reaction—will take over.
Katherine Ashenburg (Clean: An Unsanitised History of Washing)
This system makes a feedback loop between muscles, adrenaline, the thalamus of the brain, the anus and the larynx. Swelling the body and using the larynx to howl (muscle-flexing and noise) makes up the usual Domination signal among birds, reptiles, mammals and politicians. Study the speeches of Hitler and Ronald Reagan for further details, or just watch two ducks disputing territory in a pond.
Robert Anton Wilson (Quantum Psychology: How Brain Software Programs You and Your World)
When I looked up, a muscle flexed in Hawke’s jaw.
Jennifer L. Armentrout (From Blood and Ash (Blood and Ash, #1))
In early 1952, alarmed at the continued and rapidly increasing exodus of professionals and skilled workers from East Germany, Moscow flexed its muscles. Although initially pleased that this brain drain benefited the Soviet vision of the GDR by the departure to the West of potential opposition, it became obvious that this tap couldn’t be left open much longer.
Iain MacGregor (Checkpoint Charlie: The Cold War, the Berlin Wall and the Most Dangerous Place on Earth)
They faced each other naked. Anticipation played between them, a sexual tease. "Sit or stand?" he asked. "I'll straddle you." He positioned the chair, and sat. She slipped onto his lap, as if she was meant to sit there. Breast to chest. Thigh to thigh. Sex to sex. Every part of their bodies sought its counterpart. Arousal brought his mouth down on hers, and he kissed her with a thoroughness and intensity that stole all breath and thought. His tongue thrust between her lips, tasted and seduced. She kissed him back, giving, taking, craving him. He touched her, all over. Her shoulders and breasts. He circled her nipple, then her navel with his forefinger. Sensations overtook her. She squirmed, dug her nails into his shoulder. Her breath bathed his neck, his chest. More kissing. More touching. More moans. He embraced her and drank in her soft sighs. She fanned out her fingers, ran them up and down his back, feeling the flex and flow of his muscles. The man was built. Her legs tightened around him. He felt good wedged between her thighs. Primal intimacy. Hot, heavy, their breathing came together. As did their bodies. He cupped her bottom, angled her to accept him. She was wet, slick, when he entered her. They caught their reflection in the mirror. His penetration, the role of his hips, the rocking of their bodies, their building climax. Their raw need. Triple sexual. Time went away and she began to unravel. Her orgasm stretched to the breaking point. She moaned. Stiffened. Shattered. He came a second after her. His release of breath was rough, rushed. His expression going from pain to pleasure.
Kate Angell (The Cottage on Pumpkin and Vine)
Among Morgan’s many “loads” at the time was a scheme to create a huge international shipping syndicate that could stabilize trade and yield huge returns from the lucrative transatlantic routes. By June of 1902 he had purchased Britain’s prestigious White Star Line for $32 million and combined it with other shipping acquisitions to form a trust called the International Mercantile Marine. In 1904 Morgan installed White Star Line’s largest shareholder, forty-one-year-old J. Bruce Ismay, son of the line’s late founder, as president of the IMM. The second-largest shareholder was Lord William J. Pirrie, the chairman of Harland and Wolff, the Belfast shipbuilders responsible for the construction of White Star’s ships. Pirrie had been the chief negotiator with Morgan’s men and was placed on the board of the new trust. The British government had acceded to Morgan’s flexing of American financial muscle in the acquisition of White Star but had also provided loans and subsidies to the rival Cunard Line for the building of the world’s largest, fastest liners, Lusitania and Mauretania—with the proviso that they be available for wartime service. By the summer of 1907, the Lusitania had made its record-breaking maiden voyage, and Pirrie and Ismay soon hatched White Star’s response. They would use Morgan’s money to build three of the world’s biggest and most luxurious liners. Within a year Harland and Wolff had drawn up plans for two giant ships, and by mid-December the keel plate for the first liner, the Olympic, had been laid. On March 31, 1909, the same was done for a sister ship, to be called Titanic. A third, named Britannic, was to be built later.
Hugh Brewster (Gilded Lives, Fatal Voyage: The Titanic's First-Class Passengers and Their World)
All thought flew from my mind when he pulled the shirt from over his head, revealing the elegant sweep of his back, the hard-packed muscles rippling under smooth skin. Arms, chiseled like a god's, reached down and... "Oh, sweet baby Jesus," I murmured fervently. He pushed his jeans off and bared an ass that was, frankly, spectacular. Those tight globes flexed as he kicked the jeans away with one long leg. Turn away. Get out of here. I shouldn't look. I coveted my privacy, and I was blatantly watching Lucian strip naked. He deserved his privacy too. But I couldn't blink. I couldn't move. He was...glorious. My fingers gripped the railing, holding on tight. The light of the pool gave his skin an unworldly greenish cast. He rolled his shoulders...unf...and then dove in. The water rippled outward in his wake. I actually shivered with lust as I tracked him along the bottom of the pool, a pale arrow of flesh darting through the turquoise glow. Silently, he surfaced on the far side of the pool, then neatly turned to do laps. Perfect form. Long strong arms. Clean, steady strokes. Édith Piaf kept singing as Lucian set a steady but brutal pace. He went at it lap after lap. I grew fairly dizzy with rude thoughts about his stamina. The night was cool, but my flesh was hot. God, that water looked so good. I could practically feel it running over my fevered skin.
Kristen Callihan (Make It Sweet)
His muscles flexed as he moved the notebook from his lap to the nightstand and resettled onto his back. “I’m waiting, Juliet,” he murmured, hands tucked behind his head. He resembled a dark angel, his gaze devious and his lips inviting.
Lexi C. Foss (Chastely Bitten (Blood Alliance, #1))
I mean, you beat me here, even though you were carrying Erica. And you had to get down off the hotel first.” “I had my grappling hook at the hotel,” Cyrus explained. “I dropped down the far side while you were taking your skates off. And then I beat you here because, well”—he flexed an arm, displaying his bulging muscles—“I’m in much better shape than you are.” I sighed. “I’ve been hearing that a lot lately.
Stuart Gibbs (Spy Ski School (Spy School Book 4))
Boundary keeping requires flexing very different muscles and can be exhausting over the months and years, but can still be less exhausting than arguing, defending, and sparring with a narcissistic person.
Ramani S. Durvasula ("Don't You Know Who I Am?": How to Stay Sane in an Era of Narcissism, Entitlement, and Incivility)
Her muscles flexed as she cinched the rope and dragged the end over to a wide steel post in the center of the prow, which had two bars jutting from either side and a large loop in the center. “How else did you think we were going to get a structure this massive to sail upriver?” she asked as she tied the end of the rope through the loop with an incredibly complicated knot.
Shannon Messenger (Nightfall (Keeper of the Lost Cities, #6))
Is sisu a mental power or muscle that you flex? Where does it come from? Is it a cultural construct, part of a country brand, or a slogan? Or, as I suspect, a sort of mind and body attitude that anyone, anywhere, can tap into? In my quest to wrap my head around the term, I initially apply it liberally to cover a quality that I notice a great many Finns seem to share: a hardy, active, outdoors-in-any-weather, do-it-yourself approach to life. Even when it comes to domestic chores, such as house or window cleaning, which many people could easily afford to pay someone to do, it seems instead to be a source of personal pride and satisfaction to take on the task oneself. I observe that this DIY approach also includes trying to fix things before rushing out to buy new ones and taking on home renovations instead of contracting them out. Doing instead of buying.
Katja Pantzar (The Finnish Way: Finding Courage, Wellness, and Happiness Through the Power of Sisu)
Are you looking for a truck wash company offering unparalleled services? Or are you simply looking for a truck wash company whose track record is outstanding? Then Marshal Truck Wash is all you need. We have flexed muscles and dug deep into the market to bring you some of the greatest truck wash services such as acidizing, detailing, offering parts on the site. More Details: Address: 12271 Melinda Lane NE, Aurora, Oregon, 97002 Phone: (503) 678-5440 Website: Email: Google My Business:
Marshal Sunshine Inc
Advanced concepts: You are only an “object” when you are rigid. For most of this chapter, we have assumed people are big solid objects, but anyone who has ever watched a toddler using “noodle legs” in the grocery store while refusing to stand up knows the human body is also capable of behaving like a pile of wet spaghetti. At any moment you can decide if you would like to be one large object or a bunch of little, loosely connected objects, just by flexing or relaxing your muscles. To test this, hold your hand out in front of you with your arm and your body completely flexed and rigid. Have a friend put his palm up against yours and push you as hard as he can. Chances are you will end up stumbling back a few feet or lying on the floor, depending on how strong your friend is. Now have him push you again, but this time let your arm go flaccid. No matter how hard he pushes, your body will not move. From time to time a white belt judo student will try to use his strength to his advantage and “stiff-arm” his opponents. This can be an effective tactic to use against other white belts because they cannot get in close enough to try one of their throws, but to an experienced judoka, stiff arms are a gift, complete with wrapping paper and a bow. A rigid frame gives your opponent access to your center of mass from anywhere on your body, so he can throw you without ever stepping in. Hiza garuma, or the “knee wheel,” is a great throw to use, but there are many effective options available. The same concept applies to striking arts. When you are rigid, your body will be strong and your strikes will have your weight behind them, but you will also burn energy quickly, and you will give your opponent the ability to control you by manipulating your limbs. When you are loose, what happens far away from your center of mass stays far away from your center of mass.
Jason Thalken (Fight Like a Physicist: The Incredible Science Behind Martial Arts (Martial Science))
Who are you talking to?” Mammoth stretches, and every muscle in his body flexes underneath his ink-stained skin. He winces when he moves his arm, and the reality of the gunshot slams back into him.
Chelle Bliss (Ignite (Men of Inked: Heatwave #5))
Bring me the food!” Mom said. “I can cook it all.” She flexed her muscles.
Pixel Ate (The Accidental Minecraft Family: Book 3: (An Unofficial Minecraft Book))
Who are we taking?” Ed straightens, catching the cork in his palm. “Why can’t we all go together?” “Because it’s not junior prom,” Chris says. “We can’t just go solo?” “I mean, you could,” Chris says, “but this is gonna be a big deal with dancing and coupley stuff. Go solo and be the loner, go in a group and we’re the table of dudes—and Mills—sitting there awkwardly. We should get dates.” Reid rolls his dice and begins counting out his turn. “I call Millie.” “You call me?” “Whoa, whoa.” Derailed from his initial argument, Chris turns to Reid with a frown. “If we’re just going to pair up, why’d you pick her?” Reid shrugs and gives a vague nod in my direction. “She looks better in a ball gown.” Ed seems genuinely insulted. “You have obviously never seen me in one.” “I took you to the Deans’ Banquet last year,” Chris reminds Reid. “We had an awesome time.” His turn completed, Reid drops the dice onto the center of the board and picks up his drink. “We did. I’m just being fair and going with someone else this time.” Ed smacks Chris’s shoulder. “I’m more Reid’s type. Remember that cute bartender he liked? The one with the curly hair?” He makes a show of pointing to his head and the mass of auburn curls there. “Tell me we wouldn’t look great together.” “I can beat that.” Alex brings up a foot to rest on the table and rolls up the hem of his jeans, flexing his calf muscle. “Reid is a leg man. Just look at these stems. I could spin you all around that dance floor.” Reid watches each of them, bemused. “I mean, technically speaking, Millie is my type. Being female and whatnot.” “Is it weird to anyone that this roomful of straight men is fighting over Reid and not me?” I ask. Chris, Alex, and Ed seem to give this fair consideration before answering “No” in unison. I lift my glass of wine and take a deep swallow. “Okay, then.” Finally, Reid stands, carrying his empty glass into the kitchen. “Millie, you need anything?” “Other than tips on how to develop an alluring female presence?” I ask. “I’m good. Thanks.
Christina Lauren (My Favorite Half-Night Stand)
a willingness to be vulnerable will always breed strength. And I'm not talking the kind of flex-yer-muscles, "let's go do some deadlifts bro" kind of strength. I mean an inner strength. A strength only you can see. One built through the simple joy of managing to keep the pedals turning, even when the road ahead is steep and you're always gasping for breath.
Anna McNuff
That wasn't it. It didn't occur to you to flex your muscles and take over, to show me you could handle things for me. Just like it didn't dent your ego that I knew what I had to do and how to do it. You don't have to flex your muscles because you know they're there. And so do I." "Maybe I just like watching you flex yours." She got up just to crawl into his lap, curl there. "All my life I've made certain to hook myself up with weak men. All show, no substance." With her head on his shoulder she could finally rest. "Now look what I've done
Nora Roberts (The Villa)
Ah… yes." Slightly dazed, she let Tyler draw her out the door, toward the elevator. Inside, she let out the breath she hadn't been aware of holding. "I'd like to point something out." "Go ahead." He punched lobby level, leaned back. "I didn't interrupt, or ask any questions. I wasn't compelled to flex my muscles," she continued as Tyler's mouth twitched. "Or prove to you I could handle things. I just want to mention all that." "Got it. You've got your areas of expertise and I've got mine." He slipped an arm around her shoulders. "Now let's go home.
Nora Roberts (The Villa)
air." Jack scowled. His practice had really paid off—his whole face bunched up like a muscle-man's fist. Rocky and Bosco pushed up to standing. Rocky's brawny shoulders flexed like two
Bruce Hale (Trouble Is My Beeswax: A Chet Gecko Mystery)
Just look at the architecture," Dr Hartmann explained. Blueprint your feet, and you'll find a marvel that engineers have been trying to match for centuries. Your foot's centerpiece is the arch, the greastest weight-bearing design ever created. The beauty of any arch is the way it gets stronger under stress. The harder you push down, the tighter its parts mesh. No stonemason worth his trowel would ever stick a support under an arch; push up from underneath, and you weaken the whole structure. Buttressing the foot's arch from all sides is a high-tensile web of twenty-six bones, thirty-three joints, twelve rubbery tendons, and eighteen muscles, all stretching and flexing like an earthquake resistant suspension bridge.
Christopher McDougall
Strict Time There's a hand on a wire that leads to my mouth I can hear you knocking but I'm not coming out Don't want to be a puppet or a ventriloquist 'Cause there's no ventilation on a critical list Fingers creeping up my spine are not mine to resist Strict time Chorus: Toughen up, toughen up Keep your lip buttoned up Strict time Oh the muscles flex and the fingers curl And a cold sweat breaks out on the sweater girl Strict time Oh he's all hands, don't touch that dial The courting cold wars weekend witch trial Strict time All the boys are straight laced and the girls are frigid The talk is two-faced and the rules are rigid 'cause it's strict time Strict time You talk in hushed tones, I talk in lush tones Try to look Italian through the musical Valium Strict time Thinking of grand larceny Smoking the everlasting cigarette of chastity Cute assistants staying alive More like a hand job than the hand jive Strict time
Elvis Costello
This water is greatly valued,” Kassandra said. “Event today, we bring ewers of it to the temples for blessings.” She looked at him again, a bit anxiously, he thought, but as before the impression was swiftly gone. Bending, she cupped her palm, caught sparkling drops of water and drank. The liquid slipped down her throat, cool, clear and incredibly pure. She drank a little more and felt the tension easing from her body, little by little, almost imperceptibly at first, but gathering in strength with each passing moment. “Why don’t you try it?” she suggested and stood aside so that he could do so. As Royce bent to catch the water in his hand, Kassandra almost reached out to stop him but drew back at the last moment. He was a strong man, it would still be his voice. The water was merely…encouragement. From time immemorial, Akoran husbands and wives had enjoyed a goblet of the water taken from the buried temple on their wedding night. Years later, old couples basking in the sun would remember it fondly and share secret looks of tender passion. Of course, it was also possible that the water did nothing and all was mere legend. She wanted to believe that, for it eased her conscience, but the heat seeping through her made her uncertain. She stared at Royce as he drank, watching the ripple of the water ease down his throat. He was such a beautiful man, so perfectly formed in body and mind. The memory of him on the field at the Games, on horseback wearing only a kilt, his powerful muscles flexing as he threw the javelin, haunted her dreams. Ever since then, she had been living in a nightmare. Atreus…the danger to Akora…her own death the price to save both family and home…all seemed to close around her until she could scarcely breathe. Until the moment when she emerged from her desperate, futile quest for vision to see in Royce’s beloved face the future for which she yearned with all her heart. A future that in all likelihood was impossible. That being the case, was it so terribly wrong to steal a little happiness in the fleeting present?
Josie Litton (Kingdom Of Moonlight (Akora, #2))
intended to be more inclusive than the one run by his predecessor, Nuri al-Maliki, whose sectarian policies led to disaffection by Sunnis and contributed to the rapid advances by IS. The new government includes members of Iraq’s Sunni and Kurdish minorities. Although he flexed the White House’s executive muscle over IS, Mr Obama went limp on his promise to take executive action on immigration reform. He said he would do nothing until after November’s mid-term
He lowered his arm and started unbuttoning his shirt. “I don’t think so, bella. I think I’ll end up exactly where I need to be.” The shirt came off and his tan muscles flexed as he threw the shirt on the sofa next to her. She backed away as if the garment itself could be her undoing. “What the hell are you doing?” she asked, unable to keep her eyes off him. The tattoo covering his right bicep trailed its way across his shoulder, onto his chest and down his right side. “Getting to work,” he replied and walked towards her.
Mila Rossi (Under Construction)
Creativity is a muscle, and when we flex the muscle of our imagination, we find inspiration.
Inbar Shahar (30 Days of Relaxation: Fun Meditations for a Stress Free Life (Relaxation Meditation))