I met two twins, each named Dakota. I nicknamed the older one North, and the younger one I called—you guessed it—Cock Tease.
Jarod Kintz (This is the best book I've ever written, and it still sucks (This isn't really my best book))
And what if you try to kill me? Or worse: to kiss me?
Simona Panova (Nightmarish Sacrifice)
The great thing about true best friends is that when you go MIA for a few months, they inquire but they don’t press. Best friends know the power of infatuation but also how quickly it dissipates. You just have to wait it out. And then afterward, tease them about it for decades.
Mindy Kaling (Why Not Me?)
Wine talks; ask anyone. The oracle at the street corner; the uninvited guest at the wedding feast; the holy fool. It ventriloquizes. It has a million voices. It unleashes the tongue, teasing out secrets you never meant to tell, secrets you never even knew. It shouts, rants, whispers. It speaks of great plans, tragic loves, and terrible betrayals. It screams with laughter. It chuckles softly to itself. It weeps in front of its own reflection. It revives summers long past and memories best forgotten. Every bottle a whiff of other times, other places, everyone...a humble miracle
Who would guess," he teased, "that I'd ever see you on a rooftop with straw in your hair?"
Kit giggled. "Are you saying I've turned into a crow?"
"Not exactly." His eyes were intensely blue with merriment. "I can still see the green feathers if I look hard enough. But they've done their best to make you into a sparrow, haven't they?
Elizabeth George Speare (The Witch of Blackbird Pond)
I can’t help blushing and looking down at my feet. “It was nothing.”
“It was literally everything to me.”
I look up, putting on my best version of Eight’s teasing smile. “In that case, I think I deserve more than a gross hot dog.”
Eight clasps his hands across his chest like I’ve wounded him. “You’re right! I’m a fool to think my life could be traded for a hot dog.” He grabs my hand and gets down on one knee, pressing his forehead to the back of my hand. “My savior, what can I ever do to repay you?
Pittacus Lore (The Fall of Five (Lorien Legacies, #4))
It changes the way you see things and people when you get teased for being yourself, like you’ve got some other choice in the matter.
Mariana Zapata (The Best Thing)
Eric approached the octagonal nurses’ station, and a blonde nurse
looked up from her computer monitor, smiled, and pointed to
examining room D. Everybody recognized the hospital shrinks
from the bright red W on their lanyard IDs. The W stood for
Wright, the wing that contained the locked psych unit, but the
staff teased that W stood for Wackos. He’d heard all the jokes—
How do you tell the psychiatrists from the patients in the hospital?
The patients get better and leave. Eric told the best psychiatrist
jokes, though he never told the ones about psychiatrist’s kids. He
didn’t think those were funny. He lived those.
Lisa Scottoline (Every Fifteen Minutes)
My feet are always cold. I'm a vampire," he said in a teasing voice, almost as if he was trying to chase away Holiday's somberness. "And if I remember correctly, you complained about that last night." He slowed down and slipped his arm around Holiday. "Marrying you doesn't scare me a bit. It's the best thing that could ever happen to me. I'd never run out on you. I'll be the first one to the church.
C.C. Hunter (Chosen at Nightfall (Shadow Falls, #5))
A good rock band is like a great lover. Their rhythms simultaneously jolt and calm you. They know when and where to tease you to make it feel the best, how to draw from you the ultimate pleasure.
Do you ever think of moving back?"
"To Coldwater? Heck, no. England suits me fine. These Brits love my accent. The first time Gavin asked me out it was just to hear me talk. Lucky for him, it's one of the things I do best." All teasing left her eyes. "Too many memories back home. Can't drive down the street without thinking I see Scott in the crowd.
Becca Fitzpatrick (Finale (Hush, Hush, #4))
His voice gentled and his touch became more like a caress. "I love you," he whispered.
"I love your glasses, your clumsiness, your wild hair, even the way you snort when you laugh." He smiled. "I love you in spite of yourself, Rim. Can't you love me in spite of myself?"
I couldn't help it, I smiled.
"You do come with a lot of baggage." I sighed. "You're impossibly good-looking, terrible at math, and you like to drink that swill you call beer." I mock shuddered.
He smiled, but I saw the relief in his eyes.
"Me being good-looking is a bad thing?" he teased.
"You have a lot of options," I said seriously. "I'm not the best one."
"No." He agreed. "You're not."
Geez, he could have said it a little nicer.
"You're the only one."
Oh, well, that was much better.
- Romeo & Rimmel
Cambria Hebert (#Nerd (Hashtag, #1))
My sense of teasing is completely lost on you.", Patrick said, hoisting himself back up. "It's a shame too. Most people tell me my sense of humor is my best quality, only outdone by my otherworldly good looks.
Nicole Williams (Fallen Eden (Eden Trilogy, #2))
You know this girl.
Her hair is neither long nor short nor light nor dark. She parts it precisely in the middle.
She sits precisely in the middle of the classroom, and when she used to ride the school bus, she sat precisely in the middle of that, too.
She joins clubs, but is never the president of them. Sometimes she is the secretary; usually, just a member. When asked, she has been known to paints sets for the school play.
She always has a date to the dance, but is never anyone’s first choice. In point of fact, she’s nobody’s first choice for anything. Her best friend became her best friend when another girl moved away.
She has a group of girls she eats lunch with every day, but God, how they bore her. Sometimes, when she can’t stand it anymore, she eats in the library instead. Truth be told, she prefers books to people, and the librarian always seems happy to see her.
She knows there are other people who have it worse—she isn’t poor or ugly or friendless or teased. Of course, she’s also aware that the reason no one teases is because no one ever notices her.
This isn’t to say she doesn’t have qualities.
She is pretty, maybe, if anyone would bother to look. And she gets good enough grades. And she doesn’t drink and drive. And she says NO to drugs. And she is always where she says she will be. And she calls when she’s going to be late. And she feels a little, just a little, dead inside.
She thinks, You think you know me, but you don’t.
She thinks, None of you has any idea about all the things in my heart.
She thinks, None of you has any idea how really and truly beautiful I am.
She thinks, See me. See me. See me.
Sometimes she thinks she will scream.
Sometimes she imagines sticking her head in an oven.
But she doesn’t.
She just writes it all down in her journal and waits.
She is waiting for someone to see.
Gabrielle Zevin (Love Is Hell)
The best thing about Caleb is not his perfect body, or his half smiles, or his even sexier voice... it's his mannerisms. The teasing, the way he runs his thumbnail across his bottom lip when he's thinking, the way he bites his tongue when he's turned on. The way he makes me look at him when I have an orgasm. He can undress you with one look, make you feel like you're standing naked in front of him.I know from experience, it's a pleasure to be naked in front of Caleb.
Tarryn Fisher (Dirty Red (Love Me with Lies, #2))
Outside, again?” She teased him.
“You know I love it best when you’re wearing nothing but the stars.”
Blake wrapped her in his arms and reclined on the grass. She pat his chest gently, loving the tap back from his heart and his white smile. He looked amazing cloaked in stars, too.
Debra Anastasia (Saving Poughkeepsie (Poughkeepsie Brotherhood, #3))
I… What are you doing " Mircea had run a hand through his waterfall of hair and now he was sliding those beautifully shaped hands down his chest to glide over his nipples. His torso was hairless and perfectly sculpted with toned muscles and a long waist. He followed the lines of his flat stomach to the low-slung border of his only remaining garment. His fingers lingered there sliding along that insubstantial barrier teasingly drawing my eyes to the line of dark hair that started below his navel and disappeared beneath the black silk. It was startling against the pale perfection of his skin and except for the faint pink of his
nipples gave the only color to his upper body.
"Doing dulceaţă " he asked innocently. "I am trying my best to seduce you.
Karen Chance (Touch the Dark (Cassandra Palmer, #1))
It was the best of books, it was the worst of hairbrushes. Read it. Don’t tease your hair with it. —CHARLES DICKENS
Jenny Lawson (Furiously Happy: A Funny Book About Horrible Things)
Straightening, I asked, "What do you believe in?"
"Old love songs, best friends, the collected works of J.R.R.Tolkien, crispy pork egg rolls with just the right amount of grease, the Big Boss and eternity."
"The Big Boss?"
Zachary pointed up, as if to heaven.
Cynthia Leitich Smith (Blessed (Tantalize, #3))
She and Brastias walked off, but as soon as Fearghus released
Annwyl she yelled after them, “We’ll do our best to be good little
Morfyd swung around so fast, fangs showing, that Annwyl
stumbled back and then dodged behind Fearghus.
“My, aren’t we the brave queen, my love.”
“Shut up, mate.
G.A. Aiken (About a Dragon (Dragon Kin, #2))
You’re not using me. You’re mine. You are my own personal goddess. It’s my job to make sure you’re happy. And if I can’t make you happy, I won’t feel right if you’re not taken care of as best as I can. So please, tell me how many people so I can feel right.
C.D. Reiss (Beg Tease Submit (Songs of Submission, #1-3))
The world upsets, disappoints, frustrates and hurts us in countless ways at every turn. It delays us, rejects our creative endeavours, overlooks us for promotions, rewards idiots and smashes our ambitions on its bleak, relentless shores. And almost invariably, we can’t complain about any of it. It’s too difficult to tease out who may really be to blame; and too dangerous to complain even when we know for certain (lest we be fired or laughed at). There is only one person to whom we can expose our catalogue of grievances, one person who can be the recipient of all our accumulated rage at the injustices and imperfections of our lives. It is of course the height of absurdity to blame them. But this is to misunderstand the rules under which love operates. It is because we cannot scream at the forces who are really responsible that we get angry with those we are sure will best tolerate us for blaming them. We take it out on the very nicest, most sympathetic, most loyal people in the vicinity, the ones least likely to have harmed us, but the ones most likely to stick around while we pitilessly rant at them. The accusations we direct at our lovers make no particular sense. We would utter such unfair things to no one else on earth. But our wild charges are a peculiar proof of intimacy and trust, a symptom of love itself – and, in their own way, a perverted manifestation of commitment. Whereas we can say something sensible and polite to any stranger, it is only in the presence of the lover we wholeheartedly believe in that we can dare to be extravagantly and boundlessly unreasonable. A
Alain de Botton (The Course of Love)
Mr. Kadam, something’s been bothering me.”
He teased, “Only one thing?”
I laughed. “For now. I’ve been wondering, did you ever really ask Mr. Davis to come with you to take care of Ren? I mean, what would you have done if he’d said yes and I’d said no?”
“I did ask him, just to keep up appearances, but I also suggested subtly to Mr. Maurizio that it might be in his best interest to persuade Mr. Davis not to go. In fact, I offered him more money if he would insist Mr. Davis stay with the circus. As far as what to do if you had turned us down, I suppose we would have had to make you a better offer and keep trying until we found one you couldn’t refuse.”
“What if I still said no? Would you have kidnapped me?”
Mr. Kadam laughed. “No. If our offer had still been turned down, my next step would have been to tell you the truth and hope you believed me.”
“Whew, that’s a relief.”
“Then I would have kidnapped you.” He chuckled at his joke and turned his attention back to our dinner.
“That’s not very funny, Mr. Kadam.”
“I couldn’t resist. Sorry, Miss Kelsey.
Colleen Houck (Tiger's Curse (The Tiger Saga, #1))
Roo: What’s your definition of popularity?
Hutch: I used to think people were popular because they were good-looking, or nice, or funny, or good at sports.
Roo: Aren’t they?
Hutch: I’d think, if I could just be those things, I’d – you know – have more friends than I do. But in seventh grade, when Jackson and those guys stopped hanging out with me, I tried as hard as I could to get them to like me again. But then . . . (shaking his head as if to clear it) I don’t really wanna talk about it.
Roo: What happened?
Hutch: They just did some ugly stuff to me is all. And really, it was for the best.
Hutch: Because I was cured. I realized the popular people weren’t nice or funny or great-looking. They just had power, and they actually got the power by teasing people or humiliating them – so people bonded to them out of fear.
Hutch: I didn’t want to be a person who could act like that. I didn’t want to ever speak to any person who could act like that.
Hutch: So then I wasn’t trying to be popular anymore.
Roo: Weren’t you lonely?
Hutch: I didn’t say it was fun. (He bites his thumbnail, bonsai dirt and all.) I said it was for the best.
E. Lockhart (Real Live Boyfriends: Yes. Boyfriends, Plural. If My Life Weren't Complicated, I Wouldn't Be Ruby Oliver (Ruby Oliver, #4))
Are you going to hand me over to him?"
"I haven't decided yet," I teased, and he smiled again, erasing his momentary seriousness. "So, where'd you get the suit?"
"Believe it or not, that lovely friend of yours, Willa," Loki said. "She brought me a whole slew of clothes last night. When I asked her why she was being so generous, she said it was out of fear that I would run around naked."
I smiled. "That does sound like something you would do. Why are you wearing all black, though? Didn't you know you were going to a wedding?"
"On the contrary," he said, doing his best to look unhappy. "I'm in mourning over the wedding."
"Oh, because it's too late?" I asked.
"No, Wendy, it's never too late." His voice was light, but his eyes were solemn.
"May I cut in?" the best man asked.
"No, you may not," Loki said. I'd started to move away from him, but he held fast.
"Loki," I said, and my eyes widened.
"I'm still dancing with her," Loki said, turning to look at him. "You can have her when I'm done."
"Loki," I said again, but he was already twirling me away. "You can't do that."
"I just did." He grinned. "Oh, Wendy, don't look so appalled. I'm already the rebel Prince of thine enemy. I can't do much more to tarnish my image."
"You can certainly tarnish mine," I pointed out.
"Never," Loki said, and it was his turn to look appalled. "I'm merely showing them how it's done."
He began spinning me around the dance floor in grand arcs, my gown swirling around me. He was a brilliant dancer, moving with grace and speed. Everyone had stopped to watch us, but I didn't care. This was the way a Princess was supposed to dance on her wedding day.
The song ended, switching to something by Mozart, and he slowed, almost to a stop, but he kept me in his arms.
"Thank you." I smiled. My skin felt flushed from dancing, and I was a little out of breath. "That was a wonderful dance."
"You're welcome," he said, staring intently at me. "You are so beautiful."
"Stop," I said, looking away as my cheeks reddened.
"How can you blush?" Loki asked, laughing gently. "People must tell you how beautiful you are a thousand times a day."
"It's not the same," I said.
"It's not the same?" Loki echoed. "Why? Because you know they don't mean it like I do?"
We did stop dancing them, and neither of us said anything. Garrett came up to us. He smiled, but his eyes didn't appear happy.
"Can I cut in?" Garrett asked.
"Yes," Loki said, shaking off the intensity he'd had a moment ago, and grinned broadly at Garrett. "She's all yours, good sir. Take care of her."
He patted Garrett on the arm once for good measure and gave me a quick smile before heading back over to the refreshment table.
Amanda Hocking (Ascend (Trylle, #3))
All the best swords have names.” “Like Ice,” she said. She looked at the blade in her hand. “Does this have a name? Oh, tell me.” “Can’t you guess?” Jon teased. “Your very favorite thing.” Arya seemed puzzled at first. Then it came to her. She was that quick. They said it together: “Needle!
George R.R. Martin (A Game of Thrones (A Song of Ice and Fire, #1))
Geez, Vi, you didn’t need to break your own leg to get out of going to the dance with Grady Spencer. A simple ‘no’ would have been just fine, I’m sure.”
Apparently no one had noticed that Jay had barely let go of her hand for a second. His thumb was now tracing lazy circles around her palm, and he answered her uncle’s teasing comment without looking away from Violet for even a split second. “She’s not going to the dance with Grady,” he announced, smiling at her mischievously, and for a moment Violet forgot how to breathe. She hoped she never got used to how a simple look from him could turn her into a blithering idiot.
“Really?” her aunt Kat asked, her eyes narrowing as she glanced from Violet to Jay, and then down at their intertwined hands. Clearly she wasn’t going to let the comment pass unnoticed. “Why is that?” she asked in a voice filled with unspoken meaning.
Stephen Ambrose looked at his wife curiously, a little slow to catch on, which was sad, really, considering it was his job to seek out clues and solve mysteries.
Jay answered Kat without missing a beat. “Because she’s going with me.” He winked at violet, whose cheeks had flushed to a brilliant shade of scarlet. She wasn’t entirely sure she was ready for this.
Violet saw her mom and Aunt Kat exchange meaningful glances.
They knew, she realized. And now her uncle did too.
Uncle Stephen gave Jay his best I’m-keeping-my-eye-on-you look, but a quick “Hmm” was the only sound he made.
How much embarrassment could one person possible survive?
There was a moment of awkward silence, made even more uncomfortable by Jay’s refusal to look anywhere but at her. He reached out and brushed his finger along her cheek. Violet almost forgot to care that everyone in the room was looking at them.
Kimberly Derting (The Body Finder (The Body Finder, #1))
Don’t be sorry, Darlin’”, he said in his best cowboy drawl, “for I’m certainly not. It’s not every day a man like me gets to assist such a pretty lady. Any time you need help in or out of a wagon, you just give me a holler” he said in a teasing tone, “I’ll be right there, hoping you’ll fall in my arms again.
Debra Holland (Mail-Order Brides of the West: Bertha: A Montana Sky Series Novel (Mail-Order Brides of the West Series Book 5))
I grabbed her by the waist and swung her around to face me. As I bent, I closed my eyes … and kissed air as she ducked out of my grasp. I opened my eyes to see her dancing backward along the path.
I made a noise in my throat.
“Don’t growl,” she said. “Aren’t you always complaining that you don’t get enough exercise?”
I lunged. She backed away.
I let out another growl and crossed my arms. “Better watch out. I might decide the prize isn’t worth the effort.”
She grinned, blue eyes dancing. “Oh, you know it is. And you know it’s never as sweet as when you have to work for it.”
She wheeled and ran. As I went after her, adrenaline pumped through me, like liquid fire. There was nothing quite like a chase, and one that ended with this reward was the best chase of all.
Kelley Armstrong (Belonging (Darkest Powers, #3.5))
She jumped. "You walk like a cat!"
"I am a cat, sweetheart." He wanted to tease her again, so he let a low growl rumble up from his chest. "See?"
Streaks of vibrant color stained her cheeks once more. But she didn't back down. "Are you planning to move?"
"No." He drew in a deep breath, fighting the urge to nuzzle at her throat. "You smell good. Can I taste you?" It was a half-serious question. "Just a little?"
"Mr. Quinn!" She took a step around him and headed off.
But he'd already caught the tart bite of arousal in her scent. Satisfied, he followed, on his best behavior now. It wouldn't do to scare Annie away. Not when he planned to keep her.
Nalini Singh (The Magical Christmas Cat (Breeds, #12.5; Feline Breeds, #11; Murphy Sisters, #2; Psy-Changeling, #3.5))
The Western hero, subdued by kisses and the mere tease of rope.
Rachel Kramer Bussel (Best Bondage Erotica 2014)
Your grandparents are English?"
"Grandfather is,but Grandmere is French. And my other grandparents are American,of course."
"Wow.You really are a mutt."
St. Clair smiles. "I'm told I take after my English grandfather the most, but it's only because of the accent."
"I don't know.I think of you as more English than anything else.And you don't just sound like it,you look like it,too."
"I do?" He surprised.
I smile. "Yeah,it's that...pasty complexion. I mean it in the best possible way," I add,at his alarmed expression. "Honestly."
"Huh." St. Clair looks at me sideways. "Anyway.Last summer I couldn't bear to face my father, so it was the first time I spent the whole holiday with me mum."
"And how was it? I bet the girls don't tease you about your accent anymore."
He laughs. "No,they don't.But I can't help my height.I'll always be short."
"And I'll always be a freak,just like my dad. Everyone tells me I take after him.He's sort of...neat,like me."
He seems genuinely surprised. "What's wrong with being neat? I wish I were more organized.And,Anna,I've never met your father,but I guarantee you that you're nothing like him."
"How would you know?"
"Well,for one thing,he looks like a Ken doll.And you're beautiful."
I trip and fall down on the sidewalk.
"Are you all right?" His eyes fill with worry.
I look away as he takes my hand and helps me up. "I'm fine.Fine!" I say, brushing the grit from my palms. Oh my God, I AM a freak.
"You've seen the way men look at you,right?" he continues.
"If they're looking, it's because I keep making a fool of myself." I hold up my scraped hands.
"That guy over there is checking you out right now."
"Wha-?" I turn to find a young man with long dark hair staring. "Why is he looking at me?"
"I expect he likes what he sees."
I flush,and he keeps talking. "In Paris, it's common to acknowledge someone attractive.The French don't avert their gaze like other cultures do. Haven't you noticed?"
St. Clair thinks I'm attractive. He called me beautiful.
"Um,no," I say. "I hadn't noticed."
"Well.Open your eyes."
But I stare at the bare tree branches, at the children with balloons, at the Japanese tour group. Anywhere but at him. We've stopped in front of Notre-Dame again.I point at the familiar star and clear my throat. "Wanna make another wish?"
"You go first." He's watching me, puzzled, like he's trying to figure something out. He bites his thumbnail.
This time I can't help it.All day long, I've thought about it.Him.Our secret.
I wish St. Clair would spend the night again.
Stephanie Perkins (Anna and the French Kiss (Anna and the French Kiss, #1))
The mad scientist is going to chase you around with a hypodermic needle, Gregori," she teased.
Gregori lifted an eyebrow, his face an unreadable mask,the pale eyes glittering with more than menace. White teeth flashed,a baring of fangs.
"Maybe not," Gary conceded. "Not the best idea after all."
Savannah was up and moving with hersensuous grace to fit herself beneath Gregori's shoulder. She looked impossibly small next to the big Carpathian, delicate, fragile even. It wasn't so much Gregori's height but the rippling muscles, the thickness of his arms and chest, and the power emanating from him. Her face was turned up toward his, her soft mouth curved with laughter, in no way intimidated by him.
Gregori's arm swept around her and crushed her to him, nearly enveloping her completely. "She thinks I am going to take her on this ridiculous vampire hunt."
"She's right,too,isn't she?" Gary grinned at him.
"Unfortunately," Gregori admitted.
Christine Feehan (Dark Magic (Dark, #4))
The nouveau riche flaunt their wealth, but the old rich scorn such gauche displays. Minor officials prove their status with petty displays of authority, while the truly powerful show their strength through gestures of magnanimity. People of average education show off the studied regularity of their script, but the well educated often scribble illegibly. Mediocre students answer a teacher’s easy questions, but the best students are embarrassed to prove their knowledge of trivial points. Acquaintances show their good intentions by politely ignoring one’s flaws, while close friends show intimacy by teasingly highlighting them. People of moderate ability seek formal credentials to impress employers and society, but the talented often downplay their credentials even if they have bothered to obtain them. A person of average reputation defensively refutes accusations against his character, while a highly respected person finds it demeaning to dignify accusations with a response.
Avinash K. Dixit (The Art of Strategy: A Game Theorist's Guide to Success in Business and Life)
I’m an old man, now. I’ve been alone since my 17th birthday. I’d wanted to marry, have a bunch of kids, and maybe be a grandpa. The big family around the Thanksgiving table, laughing and pouring wine and cracking jokes and harmlessly teasing the missus—I wanted that. I wanted to do something good with my life—something right. I didn’t want what happened to Danny, my best childhood friend, to be the only mark I’d ever make in this world. But I thought it best not to fancy such hopes and dreams: a family, love. I’d been cursed by my best friend, and I thought it right not to inflict that curse on anyone who’d be foolish enough to love me.
J. Tonzelli (The End of Summer: Thirteen Tales of Halloween)
You read her books?”
Loki held up a finger. “Don’t say it. She’s one of the best Elven storytellers, and you should have expected it.”
“She writes love stories!” I teased.
He scoffed. “And why should I not want to be wooed?
Cat Rector (The Goddess of Nothing At All)
Dal … Dal …” Mindlessly, she whispered his name as his kisses deepened and became possessive and deliberate. But slow. Exploring. Teasing. Never quite enough. Kisses that drank desire from her mouth and left her frantic with wanting, wanting, wanting.
Maggie Osborne (The Best Man)
He couldn’t be—
Oh, Lord. He was. He was going to kiss her.
“Wait.” Panicked, Maddie put both hands on his chest, holding him off.
“Your men, my servants … they could be watching us.”
“I’m certain they’re watching us. That’s why we’re going to kiss.”
“But I don’t know how. You know I don’t know how.”
His lips quirked. “I know how.”
Those three little words, spoken in that low, devastating Scottish burr, did absolutely nothing to ease Maddie’s concerns.
Thankfully, she had a reprieve. He pulled back and peered at her hair. He looked like a boy marveling at clockwork, wondering how it all worked. After a few moments, she felt him grasp the pencil holding her chignon.
With one long, slow tug, he eased it loose and cast it aside.
It landed in the loch with a splash.
His fingers sifted through her hair, teasing the locks free of their haphazard knot and arranging them about her shoulders. Tenderly. Like she’d always imagined a lover would. Sparks of sensation danced from her scalp to her toes.
“That was my best drawing pencil,” she said.
“It’s just a pencil.”
“It came from London. I have a limited supply.”
His thumb caressed her cheek. “It almost put out my eye. I’ve a limited supply of those, too. And it’s better this way.”
“But—” Her breath caught. “Oh.”
He bracketed her cheeks with his hands, tilting her face to his.
Her pulse thundered in her ears. She stared at his mouth. A wave of inevitability washed over her.
She whispered, “This is really happening, isn’t it?”
In answer, he pressed his lips to hers.
Tessa Dare (When a Scot Ties the Knot (Castles Ever After, #3))
Besides, there's plenty of time to get a ring. I'd rather spend time with you than flash around a five-carat rock on my finger."
"Five carats?" He clutched at his chest. "I work in the ER; I'm not a brain surgeon."
"Well then, maybe you should introduce me to some of your colleagues---"
She squealed as he made a lunge for her, allowing him to catch her far too easily.
"You have a smart mouth, Ms. Ryland."
"Haven't you heard? Smart mouths make for the best kisses," she said, a moment before proving exactly that.
Nicola Marsh (The Man Ban)
Well, you’ll have to help me pick out the ring at least,” Daddy says.
“Lara Jean has a better eye for that kind of thing,” Margot says serenely. “Besides, I barely know Ms. Rothschild. I haven’t a clue what kind of ring she’d like.”
A shadow crosses over Daddy’s face. It’s the I barely know Ms. Rothschild that put it there.
I rush to put on my best Hermione voice. “You ‘haven’t a clue’?” I tease. “P.S., did you know you’re still American, Gogo? We don’t talk as classy as that in America.”
She laughs; we all do.
Jenny Han (Always and Forever, Lara Jean (To All the Boys I've Loved Before, #3))
I think that was the best cock-sucking I’ve ever had,” he said. The crudity of his words was softened by their teasing tone and that shadowy, piratical smile. His hands moved lower, tracing the shape of David’s backside. “I only wish I could fuck you.” David
Joanna Chambers (Provoked (Enlightenment, #1))
The all-consuming selves we take for granted today are “merely empty receptacles of desire.” Infinitely plastic and decentered, the modern citizen of the republic of consumption lives on slippery terrain, journeying to nowhere in particular. So too, nothing could be more corrosive of the kinds of social sympathy and connectedness that constitute the emotional substructure of collective resistance and rebellion.
Instead, consumer culture cultivates a politics of style and identity focused on the rights and inner psychic freedom of the individual, one not comfortable with an older ethos of social rather than individual liberation. On the contrary, it tends to infantilize, encouraging insatiable cravings for more and more novel forms of a faux self-expression. The individuality it promises is a kind of perpetual tease, nowadays generating, for example, an ever-expanding galaxy of internet apps leaving in their wake a residue of chronic anticipation. Hibernating inside this “material girl” quest for more stuff and self-improvement is a sacramental quest for transcendence, reveries of what might be, a “transubstantiation of goods, using products and gear to create a magical realm in which all is harmony, happiness, and contentment… in which their best and most admirable self will emerge at last.” The privatization of utopia! Still, what else is there?
Steve Fraser (The Age of Acquiescence: The Life and Death of American Resistance to Organized Wealth and Power)
Don’t get all grumpy,” I tease, wrapping my arms around him and leaning close.
He growls and then turns, grabbing me up and squeezing my ass.
“You’re lucky you’re hot,” I say, kissing his lips.
“Yeah, well, I’m cursed that my wife is so damn hot. Can’t keep them off of you.”
“Well, I did wear my best yoga pants,” I say, and shrug.
“I told you your ass looked too good in them.”
“Give me my smile,” I say, and he does as I ask.
He beams at me, giving me that cocky-ass grin with dimples showing. I kiss each one before I kiss his lips, and he grins against me.
Alexa Riley (Hold Tight (For You, #2))
Goodbye,Nick," she said, starting to close the door. "And thank you for stopping by."
He accepted her decision with a slight inclination of his head, and Lauren made herself finish closing the door. She forced herself to walk away on legs that felt like lead, reminding herself at the same time how insane it would be to let him near her. But halfway across the living room she lost the internal battle. Pivoting on her heel, she raced for the door, yanked it open and hurtled straight into Nick's chest. He was lounging with one hand braced high against the doorframe, gazing down at her flushed face with a knowing, satisfied grin.
"Hello,Lauren.I happened to be in the neighborhood and decided to drop by."
"What do you want,Nick?" she sighed, her blue eyes searching his.
Resolutely she started to close the door again, but his hand shot out to stop her. "Do you really want me to go?"
"I told you on Wednesday that what I want has nothing to do with it. What matters is what's best for me, and-"
He interrupted her with a boyish grin. "I promise I'll never wear your clothes,and I won't steal your allowances or your boyfriends either." Lauren couldn't help starting to smile as he finished, "And if you swear never to call me Nicky again, I won't bite you."
She stepped aside and let him in, then took his jacket and hung it in the closet. When she turned, Nick was leaning against the closed front door, his arms crossed over his chest. "On second thought," he grinned, "I take part of that back.I'd love to bite you."
"Pervert!" she returned teasingly, her heart thumping so much with excitement that she hardly knew what she was saying.
"Come here and I'll show you just how perverted I can be," he invited smoothly.
Lauren took a cautious step backward. "Absolutely not.
Judith McNaught (Double Standards)
(Japanese) Buying books and not reading them; letting books pile up on shelves or floors or nightstands.
My parents used to joke about making furniture out of them; instead of being coffee table books, they could be the coffee table. Ditto on nightstands, counters, roofs. When we were kids, my brother and I, teased about always reading, built a wall. Right through the middle of the neighborhood, protected ourselves with fiction and with facts. I loved the encyclopedias best; the weight of them, how my grandmother made me walk with one on my head to practice being a lady. It wasn’t until college that I built a grand stairway out of them; their glossy blue jackets looked like marble in the moonlight. I climbed it, to the top of the wall. Peering over, I found you, on the other side, alone in your bed, asleep. That was the first time you dreamed me. In your dream, you told me not to jump. But to be patient. (We were young then, it would be years before we’d meet) and then this morning, I found you in my bedroom. In your hands, How to Rope and Tie a Steer, a mug of coffee, a piece of slightly burned toast. I took The Sun Also Rises from the wall, made the first window into your heart.
Julia Klatt Singer (Untranslatable)
Best friends don’t sleep with each other’s boyfriends. First rule of best friend club.” “What’s the second rule?” I teased her. She was straight on it though. “Second rule is, if you hate someone, I hate them too. And third rule is, I’ve always got your back. You need me, you call me. I don’t care what time of day it is.
Nina Levine (Storm MC Collection (Storm MC, #1-3, 2.5))
I’ll get some more firewood,” I said, turning away from the fire. “What we have won’t last the night.”
“Best do that, I think,” Kith said. “Wandel and I’ll see about dinner.”
“I thought the woman should do the cooking,” said Wandel, teasing but still half-serious. He hadn’t eaten what I could cook over an open fire.
“We’ll cook,” replied Kith, who had.
Patricia Briggs (The Hob's Bargain)
What are you two doing?” Her uncle’s teasing voice came into the room before he did. But his voice was the second warning that they were no longer alone, since Violet had tasted his presence long before he’d actually stepped into her house. Ever since saving her and Jay at Homecoming, her uncle carried an imprint of his own. The bitter taste of dandelions still smoldered on Violet’s tongue whenever he was near. A taste that Violet had grown to accept. And even, to some degree, to appreciate. “Nothing your parents wouldn’t approve of, I hope,” he added.
Violet flashed Jay a wicked grin. “We were just making out, so if you could make this quick, we’d really appreciate it.”
Jay jumped up from beside her. “She’s kidding,” he blurted out. “We weren’t doing anything.”
Her uncle Stephen stopped where he was and eyed them both carefully. Violet could’ve sworn she felt Jay squirming, even though every single muscle in his body was frozen in place. Violet smiled at her uncle, trying her best to look guilty-as-charged.
Finally he raised his eyebrows, every bit the suspicious police officer. “Your parents asked me to stop by and check on you on my way home. They won’t be back until late. Can I trust the two of you here . . . alone?”
“Of course you can—” Jay started to say.
“Probably not—“ Violet answers at the same time. And then she caught a glimpse of the horror-stricken expression on Jay’s face, and she laughed. “Relax, Uncle Stephen, we’re fine. We were just doing homework.”
Her uncle looked at the pile of discarded books on the table in front of the couch. Not one of them was open. He glanced skeptically at Violet but didn’t say a word.
“We may have gotten a little distracted,” she responded, and again she saw Jay shifting nervously.
After several warnings, and a promise from Violet that she would lock the doors behind him, Uncle Stephen finally left the two of them alone again.
Jay was glaring at Violet when she peeked at him as innocently as she could manage. “Why would you do that to me?”
“Why do you care what he thinks we’re doing?” Violet had been trying to get Jay to admit his new hero worship of her uncle for months, but he was too stubborn—or maybe he honestly didn’t realize it himself—to confess it to her.
“Because, Violet,” he said dangerously, taking a threatening step toward her. But his scolding was ruined by the playful glint in his eyes. “He’s your uncle, and he’s the police chief. Why poke the bear?”
Violet took a step back, away from him, and he matched it, moving toward her. He was stalking her around the coffee table now, and Violet couldn’t help giggling as she retreated.
But it was too late for her to escape. Jay was faster than she was, and his arms captured her before she’d ever had a chance. Not that she’d really tried.
He hauled her back down onto the couch, the two of them falling into the cushions, and this time he pinned her beneath him.
“Stop it!” she shrieked, not meaning a single word. He was the last person in the world she wanted to get away from.
“I don’t know . . .” he answered hesitantly. “I think you deserve to be punished.” His breath was balmy against her cheek, and she found herself leaning toward him rather than away. “Maybe we should do some more homework.”
Homework had been their code word for making out before they’d realized that they hadn’t been fooling anyone.
But Jay was true to his word, especially his code word, and his lips settled over hers. Violet suddenly forgot that she was pretending to break free from his grip. Her frail resolve crumbled. She reached out, wrapping her arms around his neck, and pulled him closer to her.
Jay growled from deep in his throat. “Okay, homework it is.
Kimberly Derting (Desires of the Dead (The Body Finder, #2))
She felt him relax and his voice softened. “Is that what this is all about? You feel like you can’t talk to me anymore? We haven’t changed; we’re still the same people.”
She slipped her hands beneath the front of his shirt, slowly running her fingertips over his chest and back down to his waist. He turned in her arms and smiled, but his grin was filled with mocking suspicion. “Are you trying to distract me, Violet Ambrose?”
“I guess you’re smarter than you look,” she teased as he pushed her backward so that they both fell on her bed.
“And you are not as funny as you think you are.” His mouth hovered over hers, his arms tightening, crushing her against him. Violet giggled and tried to squirm free, but Jay wouldn’t let her. He kissed her throat, his lips teasing her until it wasn’t his grip that made it hard for Violet to breathe.
“Oh, and Violet,” he whispered against her ear, his breath tickling her cheek, “I’m still your best friend. Don’t ever forget it.” His words were fervent and touching.
Violet tried to think of a response that made sense, something appropriate, but all she could manage was: “Please. Don’t stop.”
She didn’t mind begging if it meant getting her way.
Apparently that was enough to satisfy Jay, and he kissed her possessively. Thoroughly. Deeply.
He eased her back until she was lying against the pillows, and she waited for him to stop, to tell her that they’d gone far enough for tonight. But she didn’t want him to. She wanted him to keep going. She wanted him to touch her, to kiss her, to explore her. Her body ached for it. She reached for him, clinging so tightly that her fingers hurt. Everything inside of her hurt.
Jay settled over her, covering her with his body, reacting to her. Violet wrapped her legs around him, pulling his hip closer, telling him with her every movement that she wanted him, that she wanted this. Now.
“Are you sure?” Jay asked into the warm breath between them, barely lifting his mouth from hers.
She nodded, but when she tried to speak, her voice trembled. She hoped he didn’t read it wrong. “Of course I am.” She was nervous and terrified and thrilled all at the same time.
He smiled against her mouth, still kissing her, and she melted into him, unable to stop her heart from thundering.
He reached around for his wallet. “I have a condom.” His voice was rough.
Violet smiled. She’d been waiting for this moment for far too long not to be prepared, but she was happy to hear that he’d been considering it seriously also. “Me too,” she told him, reaching into her nightstand drawer and pulling out a handful of them. “I knew you’d give in.”
He groaned, his lips moving to her neck as he tugged at his shirt and pulled it over his head.
Violet thought he was beautiful. He was right for her; he always had been.
And as he slowly slid her shirt up, his fingertips stroking her bare skin and making goose bumps prickle in the wake of his touch, she wondered why it had taken them so long to get to this place.
Kimberly Derting (Desires of the Dead (The Body Finder, #2))
Not used to be being bested, are you?"
"No," he said bluntly. "Poseidon could outrun your mare, and you know it. But I'm not about to risk galloping over a field I don't know. There could have been rabbit holes."
"Of course.Rabbit holes.I understand."
He frowned,about to defend his actions further, when he noted a twinkle in her gaze. The little minx was taunting him. For some reason, that improved his mood, and he said with a smile, "Sophia, my love, don't tempt a sinner. I am not afraid of you or your horse, and you damn well know it."
"I'm sure you have a reason for not wishing to race," she returned in a demure voice, though her eyes sparkled with laughter. "I am just not certain you have a just cause."
"I have both. The reason for not racing you is the potential harm to the animals; and the just cause is that I wish to keep you alone for as long as possible. And that will be more difficult to do once we reach the house."
Her brows rose, a faint color touching her cheeks. "Oh."
His lips twitched. "That's all you can say now? After all that posturing? You are a tease,my lady."
"I don't consider myself so."
"No woman does, and yet most are.
Karen Hawkins (To Catch a Highlander (MacLean Curse, #3))
And so you were in here, chatting with God?"
Bruce stared at her face, studying her features in minute detail. His voice dropped to a soft, velvety whisper. "I wanted to thank Him for my many blessings."
The burning of her eyes increased. She would not cry like some ninny just because Bruce was happy. He was a devout and wonderful person who always looked to the bright side. Knowing that prompted her to say, "You're such a good man, Bruce."
"I'm a fortunate man, in many, many ways." He made a grand gesture toward the glass blocks. "It's a beautiful, sunny day, and my very own church is almost complete."
"It is shaping up. Everyone will like it."
His thumb moved to her bottom lip with a teasing, gentle touch. "Good friends surround me, and I enjoy good health."
"All things you deserve."
He smiled. "And I've been given the greatest gift of all."
He laughed, tweaked her chin. "You."
He slowly nodded. "God's given me a lot. But best of all, He's given me you." He took her mouth in a long, toe-curling, stomach-tightening kiss, and in a husky rumble: "I'll be thinking Him every day for the rest of my life."
-Bruce and Cyn
Lori Foster (When Bruce Met Cyn... (Visitation, North Carolina, #3))
She slipped her hands beneath the front of his shirt, slowly running her fingertips over his chest and back down to his waist. He turned in her arms and smiled, but his grin was filled with mocking suspicion. “Are you trying to distract me, Violet Ambrose?”
“I guess you’re smarter than you look,” she teased as he pushed her backward so that they both fell on her bed.
“And you are not as funny as you think you are.” His mouth hovered over hers, his arms tightening, crushing her against him. Violet giggled and tried to squirm free, but Jay wouldn’t let her. He kissed her throat, his lips teasing her until it wasn’t his grip that made it hard for Violet to breathe.
“Oh, and Violet, he whispered against her ear, his breath tickling her cheek, “I’m still your best friend. Don’t ever forget it.” His words were fervent and touching.
Kimberly Derting (Desires of the Dead (The Body Finder, #2))
Acts as Historical Fiction The book of Acts has been all but discredited as a work of apologetic historical fiction.1 Nevertheless, its author (traditionally Luke, the author of the Gospel: see Chapter 7, §4) may have derived some of its material or ideas from earlier traditions, written or oral. But the latter would still be extremely unreliable (note, for example, the condition of oral tradition under Papias, as discussed in Chapter 8, §7) and wholly unverifiable (and not only because teasing out what Luke inherited from what Luke chose to compose therefrom is all but impossible for us now). Thus, our best hope is to posit some written sources, even though their reliability would be almost as hard to verify, especially, again, as we don’t have them, so we cannot distinguish what they actually said from what Luke added, left out, or changed.
Richard C. Carrier (On the Historicity of Jesus: Why We Might Have Reason for Doubt)
Late afternoon light filters in through his pale curtains, and it casts the room in a dreamy kind of filter. If I were going to name it, I would call it “summer in the suburbs.” Peter looks beautiful in this light. He looks beautiful in any light, but especially this one. I take a picture of him in my mind, just like this. Any annoyance I felt over him forgetting my yearbook melts away when he snuggles closer to me, rests his head on my chest, and says, “I can feel your heart beating.”
I start playing with his hair, which I know he likes. It’s so soft for a boy. I love the smell of his detergent, his soap, everything.
He looks up at me and traces the bow of my lip. “I like this part the best,” he says. Then he moves up and brushes his lips against mine, teasing me. He bites on my bottom lip playfully. I like all his different kinds of kisses, but maybe this kind best. Then he’s kissing me with urgency, like he is utterly consumed, his hands in my hair, and I think, no, these are the best.
Between kisses he asks me, “How come you only ever want to hook up when we’re at my house?”
“I--I don’t know. I guess I never thought about it before.” It’s true we only ever make out at Peter’s house. It feels weird to be romantic in the same bed I’ve slept in since I was a little girl. But when I’m in Peter’s bed, or in his car, I forget all about that and I’m just lost in the moment.
Jenny Han (Always and Forever, Lara Jean (To All the Boys I've Loved Before, #3))
I need to touch myself,” I plead. Wes lightly bites my bottom lip. “That’s my job, remember?” And then he wraps his fist around me and gives a fast stroke as he plunges deeper inside me. The orgasm catches me by surprise. I thought I’d last longer, at least a dozen strokes, but nope, I’m coming and it’s glorious and my entire world is reduced to him. My best friend. My lover. My…fiancé…oh wow, never thought that word would be such a turn-on, but it totally is. My dick throbs harder, another jet spurting onto my belly at the thought of spending the rest of my life with this man. Wes continues to make love to me, slow and languid, as if he’s savoring every second of this. When he finally comes, it’s not in a hard explosion of bliss, but the gentle rocking of his hips and a soft moan of contentment. Then he collapses on top of me, his lips teasing mine in tender kiss after tender kiss, his hands caressing my pecs and shoulders before stroking through my hair.
Sarina Bowen (Us (Him, #2))
Why are you smiling?” Harvard asked, teasing.
“Because I know something you don’t know,” Aiden teased back.
Harvard raised an eyebrow. “And what is that?”
“You’re really cute,” murmured Aiden, and leaned in.
His lean was arrested when Harvard laughed. “Ha! That’s such a line. These things really work on your guys?”
Overcome by the magnitude of this insult, Aiden snapped, “Invariably!”
Harvard rolled his eyes. “I hate to tell you this, buddy, but I think they’re letting you get away with substandard lines because you’re cute.”
Aiden paused, torn between being deeply offended and ridiculously flattered.
Harvard bit his lip, seeming to think this over.
“I guess if you guys both know you’re just playing around, what you say doesn’t really count,” he offered. “That’s why people call them lines, like the things you say in a play. I know this isn’t real, but…”
Aiden tried to keep his voice soft, to be understanding. “But it’s practice for being real.” His mouth twisted on the name, but he forced it out. “For Neil.”
Harvard winced. Aiden supposed it might feel a little weird, to hear the name of the boy he actually liked, while tangled up with another. For Harvard, who was so good, it might feel close to cheating.
Aiden didn’t want to say the name or hear it or think it. Harvard seemed to be struggling with a thought, and Aiden waited to hear Harvard tell him what he wanted. That was all Aiden wished to know or to do. What Harvard wanted.
Sarah Rees Brennan (Striking Distance (Fence, #1))
What did you think when I first told you about the animals I found?”
He seemed confused. It obviously wasn’t what he’d expected. “Violet, I was seven years old. I thought it was badass. I think I was probably even jealous.”
She made a face at him. “Didn’t you think it was creepy? Or that I was weird?”
“Yeah,” he agreed enthusiastically. “That’s why I was so jealous. I wanted to be the one finding dead bodies. You were like an animal detective or something. You were only weird ‘cause you were a girl.” He grinned. “But I learned to overlook that since you always took me on such cool adventures.”
Violet released a breath, smiling. She knew he was telling the truth, which only made it funnier to hear him saying the words out loud. Of course, what little boy didn’t want to go scavenging through the woods and digging in the dirt?
She tried again. “Did you ever tell anyone? Does your mom know?”
He lifted her hand to his mouth and rubbed her knuckles across his lower lip, his gaze locked with hers. “No,” he promised. “I swore I wouldn’t, not even her. I think she knows something, or at least she thinks you have the worst luck ever, since you found all those dead girls.” He lowered his voice. “She was really worried about you after the shooting last year. You’re like a daughter to her.” He leaned close. “Of course, that makes it kind of creepy when I do things like this.”
He kissed her. It was intimate. Not soft or sweet this time, it was deep and passionate, stealing Violet’s breath. She laid her hand against his chest, savoring the feel of his heartbeat beneath her palm, and then traced her fingertips up to his neck, into his hair.
He pulled her over the console that separated them, dragging her onto his lap. He ran his hands up her back restlessly, drawing her as close as he could.
It was nearly impossible for her to pull herself away. “Wait,” she insisted breathlessly. “Please, wait.” She had her hands braced against his shoulders, struggling more against herself than him.
His glazed eyes teased her. “I thought I was the one who was supposed to say no. I’m the girl, right?”
She sighed heavily, leaning her head against his shoulder and trying to recapture her runaway thoughts. She still wanted to talk. She wanted the other things, too, but she needed to sort through her thoughts first.
“Sorry, it’s just…I have a lot of…” She shrugged against him. His damp T-shirt was warm and practically paper-thin, tempting her to touch him. She ran her finger down the length of his stomach. She knew it wasn’t fair to tease him, but she couldn’t help herself. He was too enticing. “…I have some stuff I need to work through.” It was the best she could do for an explanation.
He caught her hand before she’d reached his waistline, and he held it tightly in his grip. “I’m trying to be patient, Violet, I really am. If there’s something you want to tell me…Well, I just wish you’d trust me.”
“I’ll get there,” she explained. “I’ll figure it all out. I’m just a little confused right now.”
He let out a shaky breath and then he kissed the top of her head, still not releasing her hand. “So, when you do, we’ll pick up where we left off.”
She nodded against him. She thought she would keep talking; she still had so many doubts about what she should, and shouldn’t, be doing.
But instead she just stayed there, curled up on his lap, absorbing him, taking relief from his touch…and strength from his presence.
Kimberly Derting (Desires of the Dead (The Body Finder, #2))
Vulnerability is usually attacked, not with fists but with shaming. Many children learn quickly to cover up any signs of weakness, sensitivity, and fragility, as well as alarm, fear, eagerness, neediness, or even curiosity. Above all, they must never disclose that the teasing has hit its mark. Carl Jung explained that we tend to attack in others what we are most uncomfortable with in ourselves. When vulnerability is the enemy, it is attacked wherever it is perceived, even in a best friend.
Signs of alarm may provoke verbal taunts such as “fraidy cat” or “chicken.” Tears evoke ridicule. Expressions of curiosity can precipitate the rolling of eyes and accusations of being weird or nerdy. Manifestations of tenderness can result in incessant teasing. Revealing that something caused hurt or really caring about something is risky around someone uncomfortable with his vulnerability. In the company of the desensitized, any show of emotional openness is likely to be targeted.
The vulnerability engendered by peer orientation can be overwhelming even when children are not hurting one another. This vulnerability is built into the highly insecure nature of peer-oriented relationships. Vulnerability does not have to do only with what is happening but with what could happen — with the inherent insecurity of attachment. What we have, we can lose, and the greater the value of what we have, the greater the potential loss. We may be able to achieve closeness in a relationship, but we cannot secure it in the sense of holding on to it — not like securing a rope or a boat or a fixed interest-bearing government bond.
One has very little control over what happens in a relationship, whether we will still be wanted and loved tomorrow. Although the possibility of loss is present in any relationship, we parents strive to give our children what they are constitutionally unable to give to one another: a connection that is not based on their pleasing us, making us feel good, or reciprocating in any way. In other words, we offer our children precisely what is missing in peer attachments: unconditional acceptance.
Gabor Maté (Hold On to Your Kids: Why Parents Need to Matter More Than Peers)
Chelsea, of course, was the first one to speak up. “Okay, am I the only one who noticed how gi-mungous Mimi Nichols’s dress makes her ass look? Of course, you can barely notice it since her freakishly giant boobs are practically hanging out the top of it.” Chelsea glanced at Jules and grinned. “No offense, of course,” she offered, raising her eyebrows at Jules’s chest.
Claire giggled, and Jules wrinkled up her face in disgust at Chelsea’s teasing barb. “You’re just jealous,” she retorted, eyeing Chelsea’s chest in return.
“Touche, Jules. Touche!” Chelsea admitted.
Claire wanted so badly to join in on the catty conversation, but she was terrible at finding other people’s flaws . . . at least intentionally. Still, she gave it her best shot. “And what about Jennifer Cummings?” she asked accusingly, trying to mimic one of Chelsea’s cutting looks.
They looked around at one another, wondering what it was that they weren’t getting. Chelsea was the only one brave enough to ask, “What about her, Claire?”
“She does not even look kind of cute!” Claire stated, her face a mask of mock horror.
They all stared at her, not sure what to say.
And then once again, of course, it was Chelsea who broke the stunned silence. “I swear, Claire-bear, I am going to call your mom and tell her you need to start riding the short bus. You really need to start practicing your bitchy comments. What are you gonna do when we’re not here to get your back?”
Claire rolled her eyes, too oblivious to be insulted, which was why she was the perfect friends for Chelsea, who was too insulting to be obvious. “Geez, Chels, I don’t even ride the bus.”
Jules couldn’t help herself; despite her best efforts to hold on to her detached cool, she started laughing. And pretty soon they were all laughing, even Claire, who still didn’t realize what they were laughing at.
“You guys are so mean!” Violet charged accusingly. “Can’t you just have fun and stop picking everyone part?”
Chelsea looked disgusted. “You’ve gone soft, haven’t you? Jay has made you soft!”
Violet rolled her eyes, smiling despite her best efforts. “Whatever. Everyone’s soft compared to you.”
“Ouch!” Chelsea pretended to be wounded. But again, she just couldn’t pull it off.
Kimberly Derting (The Body Finder (The Body Finder, #1))
I had some good friends - really funny ones. My best friend was a guy called Apolo Nsibambi. We shared an office at the Extra Mural Department at Makerere, and then I got a promotion - became Acting Director - and I was his boss! I used to tease him for calling himself “Doctor” - he had a Ph. D. in political science. I mocked him for wearing a tie and carrying a briefcase and being pompous. I went to his wedding. He came to my wedding. And then I completely lost touch with him. I wonder what happened to him.’ ‘Doctor Nsibambi is the Prime Minister of Uganda.
Paul Theroux (Dark Star Safari: Overland from Cairo to Cape Town)
Which story are you going to tell us tonight, Mother?" Tootless asked.
"One that is very close to my heart," Red said. "It's called 'Beautiful and Brilliant Little Blue Riding Hood'."
Just hearing the title made the Lost Boys excitedly clap.
"Is it a good story, Mum? Slightly asked.
"It's the best story you'll ever hear," Red said.
"Does Little Blue die in the end like Cinderella, Snow White, Sleeping Beauty, and Rapunzel?" Curly asked. "I just want to know before I get attached."
"Those were such sad stories," Nibs said, and shook his head. "I can't believe poor Cinderella slipped while running down the stairs at midnight, or that Snow White choked on the poisoned apple, or when Sleeping Beauty awoke, she discovered the spindle had given her a staph infection."
"Poor, poor princesses," the Lost twins sniffled.
"Well, these stories are supposed to teach us valuable lessons," Red said. "Never run down stairs, always chew your food, and see a doctor if your skin is punctured by rusty metal."
"Is there a lesson in the story of 'Beautiful and Brilliant Little Blue Riding Hood'?" Slightly asked.
"You'll have to wait to find out," she teased.
Chris Colfer (Beyond the Kingdoms (The Land of Stories, #4))
The General knew he would probably die, for infantry took pleasure in killing cavalry and he would be the leading horseman in the attack on the bridge, but the General was a soldier and he had long learned that a soldier’s real enemy is the fear of death. Beat that fear and victory was certain, and victory brought glory and fame and medals and money and, best of all, sweetest of all, most glorious and wondrous of all, the modest teasing grin of a short black-haired Emperor who would pat the Dragoon General as though he was a faithful dog, and the thought of that Imperial favour made the General quicken his horse and raise his battered sword.
Bernard Cornwell (Sharpe's Waterloo (Sharpe, #20))
Christ, I’m tired. I need sleep. I need peace. I need for my balls to not be so blue they’re practically purple. As purple as Sarah Von Titebottum’s—
My mind comes to a screeching halt with the unexpected thought. And the image that accompanies it—the odd, blushing lass with her glasses and her books and very tight bottom.
Sarah’s not a contestant on the show, so I’m willing to bet both my indigo balls that there’s not a camera in her room. And, I can’t believe I’m fucking thinking this, but, even better—none of the other girls will know where to find me—including Elizabeth.
I let the cameras noisily track me to the lavatory, but then, like an elite operative of the Secret Intelligence Service, I plaster myself to the wall beneath their range and slide my way out the door.
Less than five minutes later, I’m in my sleeping pants and a white T-shirt, barefoot with my guitar in hand, knocking on Sarah’s bedroom door. I checked the map Vanessa gave me earlier. Her room is on the third floor, in the corner of the east wing, removed from the main part of the castle. The door opens just a crack and dark brown eyes peer out.
“Sanctuary,” I plead.
Her brow crinkles and the door opens just a bit wider. “I beg your pardon?”
“I haven’t slept in almost forty-eight hours. My best friend’s girlfriend is trying to praying-mantis me and the sound of the cameras following me around my room is literally driving me mad. I’m asking you to take me in.”
And she blushes. Great.
“You want to sleep in here? With me?”
I scoff. “No, not with you—just in your room, love.”
I don’t think about how callous the words sound—insulting—until they’re out of my mouth. Could I be any more of a dick?
Thankfully, Sarah doesn’t look offended.
“Why here?” she asks.
“Back in the day, the religious orders used to give sanctuary to anyone who asked. And since you dress like a nun, it seemed like the logical choice.”
I don’t know why I said that. I don’t know what’s wrong with me. Somebody just fucking shoot me and be done with it.
Sarah’s lips tighten, her head tilts, and her eyes take on a dangerous glint.
I think Scooby-Doo put it best when he said, Ruh-roh.
“Let me make sure I’ve got this right—you need my help?”
“You need shelter, protection, sanctuary that only I can give?”
“And you think teasing me about my clothes is a wise strategy?”
I hold up my palms. “I never said I was wise. Exhausted, defenseless, and desperate.”
I pout . . . but in a manly kind of way.
A smile tugs at her lips. And that’s when I know she’s done for. With a sigh, she opens the door wide. “Well, it is your castle. Come in.”
Huh. She’s right—it is my castle. I really need to start remembering that
Emma Chase (Royally Matched (Royally, #2))
He ruffled her hair as he came in, all uncle and no cop about him now. She far preferred her uncle to the chief; he had inherited the sense of humor in the family, while her father got the receding hairline and mad skills with numbers. "Geez, Vi, you didn't need to break your own leg to get out of going to the dance with Grady Spencer. A simple 'no' would have been just fine, I'm sure."
Apparently no one had noticed that Jay had barely let go of her hand for a second. His thumb was now tracing lazy circles around her palm, and he answered her uncle's teasing comment without looking away from Violet for even a split second. "She's not going to the dance with Grady," he announced, smiling at her mischievously, and for a moment Violet forgot how to breathe. She hoped she never got used to how a simple look from him could turn her into a blithering idiot.
"Really?" her aunt Kat asked, her eyes narrowing as she glanced from Violet to Jay, and then down at their intertwined hands. Clearly she wasn't going to let the comment pass unnoticed. "Why is that?" she asked in a voice filled with unspoken meaning.
Stephen Ambrose looked at his wife curiously, a little slow to catch on, which was sad, really, considering it was his job to seek out clues and solve mysteries.
Jay answered Kat without missing a beat. "Because she's going with me." He winked at Violet, whose cheeks had flushed to a brilliant shade of scarlet. She wasn't entirely sure she was ready for this.
Violet saw her mom and Aunt Kat exchange meaningful glances.
They knew, she realized. And now her uncle did too.
Uncle Stephen gave Jay his best I'm-keeping-my-eye-on-you look, but a quick "Hmm" was the only sound he made.
How much embarrassment could one person possibly survive?
There was a moment of awkward silence, made even more uncomfortable by Jay's refusal to look anywhere but at her. He reached out and brushed his finger along her cheek. Violet almost forgot to care that everyone in the room was looking at them.
Her uncle Stephen cleared his throat, and Violet jumped a little.
Kimberly Derting (The Body Finder (The Body Finder, #1))
Anyway,” Beau—clearly eager to change the subject—pointed down the hall, “let’s talk about the color Jethro decided to paint the second bedroom.”
“What’s wrong with green?” Jethro grinned slyly. His poker face had always sucked.
“Nothing is wrong with green, but that’s a very odd shade of green. What was it called again?”
“Sweet pea,” Duane supplied flatly for his twin. “It was called sweet pea and I believe it was labeled as nursery paint.”
“Nursery paint, huh? You have something to tell us, Jethro?” Beau teased, mirroring Jethro’s grin. “No news to share? No big bombshell to drop?”
Jethro glanced at me. “I can’t believe you didn’t tell them yet.”
“Why would I? I’m good at keeping secrets.” I shoved my hands in my pockets, making sure I looked innocent. “And I’m not the one who’s pregnant.”
“I knew it!” Beau attacked Jethro, pulling him into a quick man-hug.
Jethro’s grin widened to as large as I’ve ever seen it. “How could you possibly know?”
Duane clapped Jethro on the back as soon as Beau released him. “Because you’ve always wanted kids, and weren’t one to futz around once you made up your mind.”
“You should have painted it vomit green, to disguise all the baby vomit you’re going to have to deal with,” Beau suggested.
“And shit brown,” Duane added. “Don’t forget about the shit.”
“Y’all are the best.” Jethro placed his hands over his chest. “You warm my heart.”
“Make sure the floor is waterproof.” Beau grabbed a beer and uncapped it.
“Don’t tell me, to catch the vomit and poop?”
“No,” Beau wagged his eyebrows, “because of all the crying you’re going to do when you can’t sleep through the night or make love to your woman anymore.”
“Ah, yes. Infant-interuptus is a real condition. No cure for it either.” Duane nodded and it was a fairly good imitation of my somber nod. In fact, how he sounded was a fairly good imitation of me.
You sound like Cletus.” Drew laughed, obviously catching on.
Duane slid his eyes to mine and gave me a small smile.
I lifted an eyebrow at my brother to disguise the fact that I thought his impression was funny. “Y’all need to lay off. Babies are the best. Think of all the cuddling. This is great news.
Penny Reid (Beard Science (Winston Brothers, #3))
One night, when Violet’s parents had gone out, he teased her about it, whispering against her throat, “I should probably be dating girls my own age now that you’ll be over-the-hill.” Jay was stretched out on Violet’s bed as she curled against him.
Violet laughed, rising to the bait. “Fine,” she challenged, pulling away and leaning up on her elbow. “I’m sure there are plenty of men my own age who would be willing to finish what you’ve started.”
Jay stiffened, and Violet realized that she’d struck a nerve. “What is it?”
He shook his head, and Violet thought he might say, “Nothing,” so when he answered, his words caught her off guard. “Is there someone else, Vi?”
Violet frowned, baffled by the unfamiliar jealousy she saw on his face. She wondered what in the world he meant as she reached down and smoothed a strand of hair from his forehead. “What are you talking about, Jay?”
His eyes met hers. “I saw you with that guy at the movies, Vi. Who was he?”
Violet closed her eyes. She wasn’t ready yet. She didn’t want to tell him about the FBI, about Sara and Rafe or what she’d learned about Mike’s mother. She wondered briefly if he knew about Mike’s mom-if his friend had ever confided in him. But somehow she doubted it. Jay wasn’t like her; he didn’t keep secrets.
“It’s not like that,” she explained, hoping that would be enough.
Jay got up and went to the window, pushing the curtain aside. Every muscle in his body was rigid. “Like what, Vi? What’s going on? Something’s been bothering you lately. Why can’t you tell me?”
He was right. She owed it to him to at least try. “I don’t know how to explain, but I just feel like everything’s changed between us-“
“Of course it’s changed, Violet, what’d you expect?”
Violet tried to ignore the bitterness in his voice, telling herself she had no right to be hurt. “It used to be that I would never keep secrets from you. You were my best friend. But now that we’re dating, it’s just…different. I feel like I have to watc what I say, or you get all worried. Sometimes I just want you to be the old Jay again, so I can talk to you.” Violet crept up behind him, wrapping her arms around his waist and resting her cheek against his back.
Kimberly Derting (Desires of the Dead (The Body Finder, #2))
Ruby learned to live on the streets and to make the best of it. “We never played games,” she said. “I never cared for games anyway. The only game I can remember playing,” she said, “is the game of fighting.” She learned at a young age that her survival was based “on self-preservation . . . When you live like that you always take care of yourself first, because there’s no one else to do it.” Malcolm Byron was a quiet boy, never loud or outspoken in the way Ruby was. “He was always a loner,” she said. Malcolm never teased his little sister and was protective of her. Ruby was the “leader of any gang” she and Malcolm played with. “Despite her quietness,” said Malcolm, “the other children would turn to Ruby when they were hurt, or bullied. She never failed them.
Victoria Wilson (A Life of Barbara Stanwyck: Steel-True 1907-1940)
My brothers woke me when the sun was beginning to set. “What’s the matter with you, Helen?” Castor cried, shaking me by the shoulder. “How can you sleep at a time like this?”
“Are you all right?” Polydeuces put in. “You’re not ill, are you?” He touched my forehead to check for fever.
I brushed his hand away gently. “I’m fine, ‘Ione’. You don’t need to fuss over me just because I’m smart enough to catch some sleep before the feast. I’ll still be awake when the two of you are snoring with your heads on the table.”
“Ha! If not for us, you’d’ve slept right through the feast,” Castor countered.
“I’ll build a temple in your honor to show my thanks,” I said, straight-faced. “Now if you really want to lend a hand, go find a servant to help me get ready. This is a special occasion and I want to look my best.”
“Ooooooh, our little sister wants to look nice, does she?” Polydeuces crooned. “I wonder why?” I saw him wink at Castor and knew I was doomed to be teased to death.
“Don’t you mean, ‘I wonder who?’” Castor replied. He tried to look sly and all-knowing, but his tendency to go cross-eyed ruined the effect. “Do you think it’s Meleager himself?”
“He’s the hero of the day, but I think she’d rather have a brawnier man,” Polydeuces said. “I’ll bet I can guess who. I saw how you looked at him the first night we were here.” He flung his arms around his twin, pitched his voice high, and cried, “Oh, Theseus, you’re sooooooo strong! Make me queen of Athens too!”
“Out!” I shouted, snatching up my nearly empty water jug. My brothers retreated at a run, laughing.
Esther M. Friesner (Nobody's Princess (Nobody's Princess, #1))
Swan had used them to send Sophie messages. He fished out the tiny velvet pouch and Sophie caught herself clutching her allergy remedy necklace. She still kept the silver moonlark pin that Calla had given her attached to the cord—a reminder of the friend she’d lost, and a symbol of the role she needed to figure out how to play. “Looks like we’re good,” Sandor said, handing her the small boobrie pin—a strange black bird with bright yellow tail feathers. “Can’t imagine that means anything important.” Sophie couldn’t either. Especially since the Black Swan had been annoyingly silent. No notes. No clues. No answers during their brief meetings. Apparently they were “regrouping.” And it was taking forever. At least the Council was doing something—setting up goblin patrols and trying to arrange an ogre Peace Summit. The Black Swan should at least be . . . Actually, Sophie didn’t know what they should be doing. That was the problem with having her friend join the enemy. “There you are!” a familiar voice said behind her. “I was starting to think you’d ditched us.” The deep, crisp accent was instantly recognizable. And yet, the teasing words made Sophie wish she’d turn and find a different boy. Fitz looked as cute as ever in his red Level Five uniform, but his perfect smile didn’t reach his trademark teal eyes. The recent revelations had been a huge blow for all of her friends, but Fitz had taken it the hardest. Both his brother and his best friend had run off with the Neverseen. Alvar’s betrayal had made Fitz wary—made him doubt every memory. But Keefe’s?
Shannon Messenger (Lodestar (Keeper of the Lost Cities, #5))
Yeah, Jules!" Chelsea said in a voice thick with envy. "Go away, you're making the rest of us look bad." She winked at Jule's date wickedly. "I bet you just want to eat her up, don't ya?"
He stared at Chelsea with bewilderment and glanced back at Jules for help.
"Just ignore her," Jules explained over the noise from the sound system. "She doesn't get out much."
Chelsea tried to look hurt by Jule's words, but she couldn't quite pull it off. "I'm just sayin', Jules, he'd better watch his back tonight, or I might be trying to take you away from him." Chelsea loved to play the potentially bi-curious card, even though everyone knew she liked boys far too much to go to bat for the other team.
"Gross!" cried Claire, who wasn't pretending at all. Claire hated it when the conversation deviated too far off her straight and narrow path. The operative word being straight.
"Don't worry, Claire-bear," Chelsea soothed condescendingly. "I'm not going to hook up with Jules." She wrapped her arm around Claire's waist and then said suggestively in he ear, "I'm much more likely to make a move on you."
"Eww!" Claire shrieked, shoving Chelsea away. "Get away from me!"
"Leave her alone, Chels," Jules interrupted. "Or you're gonna make her start her 'It's Adam and Eve not Adam and Steve' speech. And sorry, Claire, but none of us really want to hear that."
Jay pulled Violet close to him as they listened to the familiar, playful bantering. He slid his arm around her waist from behind, and let his lips gently tease her earlobe while no one was paying attention to the two of them. Violet wanted to turn around right there, in his arms, and forget this whole dance thing altogether.
"Hey!" Chelsea's voice interrupted them, and Violet jumped a little, realizing that everyone was staring at them. "Did you hear me?"
Violet leaned forward on her crutches and away from Jay, still feeling bemused by the close and intimate contact. "What?" she asked, trying to focus on what had been said.
"I said, 'I gotta pee.' Let's go to the bathroom," Chelsea repeated as if Violet were some sort of imbecile, incapable of understanding normal human speech.
"Keep it up, Chels, and none of us is gonna want to hook up with you tonight," Violet promised jokingly.
Chelsea grinned at Violet. "I like the way you think, Violet Ambrose. Maybe you'll be the lucky girl I choose.' And then she turned to Jay. "Don't worry, I've got her from here," Chelsea announced. Jules and Claire followed.
Violet laughed and glanced back at him. "I'll only be a few."
Jay gave her a skeptical look that no one else would have even noticed, as he assessed the three girls who would be escorting Violet. And then he finally nodded. "Okay, I'm gonna show these guys my car." He was beaming again. "I'll be right outside, but I won't be long."
Violet did her best to keep up with the trio ahead of her, but it was hard on one high heel and two crutches. Finally she yelled at them exasperatedly, "If you guys don't wait, I'm not going!"
They all three stopped and turned around.
Chelsea tapped her lovely silver shoe impatiently. "Hurry up, Violet, or I swear I'll take you off my list.
Kimberly Derting (The Body Finder (The Body Finder, #1))
There’s a big difference in reaching for the best we can be and in trying to be something we are not and never will be.” “So women can’t do everything men can?” Tina clarified. “I’m afraid not.” A slow grin began to form. “Women can do more.” “Georgie,” Lucious admonished. Laughter bubbled up within her. “Some things are just different, that’s all.” He grabbed her around the waist and pulled her close. “I think, Bettina Landrum, your mama is full of sass from getting that piece of legislation named after her.” “She is?” Tina asked. “She is.” He looked over his brood of girls. “But the truth is, your mama can do anything she sets her mind to.” Georgie gave him a playful push. “Don’t tease, Lucious. They’ll believe you.” “And well they should.” Leaning over, he gave her a kiss flush on the lips.
Deeanne Gist (Love on the Line)
Come inside with me,” he urged, increasing the pressure on her elbow, “and I’ll begin making it up to you.”
Elizabeth let herself be drawn forward a few steps and hesitated. “This is a mistake. Everyone will see us and think we’ve started it all over again-“
“No, they won’t,” he promised. “There’s a rumor spreading like fire in there that I tried to get you in my clutches two years ago, but without a title to tempt you I didn’t have a chance. Since acquiring a title is a holy crusade for most of them, they’ll admire your sense. Now that I have a title, I’m expected to use it to try to succeed where I failed before-as a way of bolstering my wounded male pride.” Reaching up to brush a wisp of hair from her soft cheek, he said, “I’m sorry. It was the best I could do with what I had to work with-we were seen together in compromising circumstances. Since they’d never believe nothing happened, I could only make them think I was in pursuit and you were evading.”
She flinched from his touch but didn’t shove his hand away. “You don’t understand. What’s happening to me in there is no less than I deserve. I knew what the rules were, and I broke them when I stayed with you at the cottage. You didn’t force me to stay. I broke the rules, and-“
“Elizabeth,” he interrupted in a voice edge with harsh remorse, “if you won’t do anything else for me, at least stop exonerating me for that weekend. I can’t bear it. I exerted more force on you than you understand.”
Longing to kiss her, Ian had to be satisfied instead with trying to convince her his plan would work, because he now needed her help to ensure its success. In a teasing voice he said, “I think you’re underrating my gift for strategy and subtlety. Come and dance with me, and I’ll prove to you how easily most of the male minds in there have been manipulated.”
Despite his confidence, moments after they entered the ballroom Ian noticed the increasing coldness of the looks being directed at them, and he knew a moment of real alarm-until he glanced at Elizabeth as he took her in his arms for a waltz and realized the cause of it. “Elizabeth,” he said in a low, urgent voice, gazing down at her bent head, “stop looking meek! Put your nose in the air and cut me dead or flirt with me, but do not on any account look humble, because these people will interpret it as guilt!”
Elizabeth, who had been staring at his shoulder, as she'd done with her other dancing partners, tipped her head back and looked at him in confusion. "What?"
Ian's heart turned over when the chandeliers overhead revealed the wounded look in her glorious green eyes. Realizing logic and lectures weren't going to help her give the performance he badly needed her to give, he tried the tack that had, in Scotland, made her stop crying and begin to laugh: He tried to tease her. Casting about for a subject, he said quickly, "Belhaven is certainly in fine looks tonight-pink satin pantaloons. I asked him for the name of his tailor so that I could order a pair for myself."
Elizabeth looked at him as if he'd taken leave of his senses; then his warning about looking meek hit home, and she began to understand what he wanted her to do. That added to the comic image of Ian's tall, masculine frame in those absurd pink pantaloons enabled her to manage a weak smile. "I have greatly admired those pantaloons myself," she said. "Will you also order a yellow satin coat to complement the look?"
He smiled. "I thought-puce."
"An unusual combination," she averred softly, "but one that I am sure will make you the envy of all who behold you.
Judith McNaught (Almost Heaven (Sequels, #3))
If you want something, ask for it.
Another thing I learned while living with the Ballases was that if you want love or affection, sometimes you’ve just got to ask for it. This is tough for a lot of people. As adults, the fear of rejection or embarrassment often stops the words before you ever utter them. But leaders aren’t afraid to ask for what they want and need. Even if someone shoots you down, you’ve put it out there in the universe. I’d tease Nan or Shirley: “I’m feeling kind of down today, get over here and give me a hug, dammit.” And they did. The people who love you want to come through for you; you just sometimes need to make that easier by saying what you need. It isn’t selfish or bossy or demanding. It’s respecting yourself and your worth. I loved the freedom of not being afraid to just ask for something instead of waiting and being disappointed if it never came. Asking for something is simply the best way to ensure that you eventually get it.
Derek Hough (Taking the Lead: Lessons from a Life in Motion)
Following the seventh, eighth, and ninth grades of middle
school, high school would have been a fresh start. When I got to
Fairfax High I would insist on being called Suzanne. I would
wear my hair feathered or up in a bun. I would have a body that
the boys wanted and the girls envied, but I’d be so nice on top of
it all that they would feel too guilty to do anything but worship
me. I liked to think of myself — having reached a sort of queenly
status — as protecting misfit kids in the cafeteria. When someone
taunted Clive Saunders for walking like a girl, I would deliver
swift vengeance with my foot to the taunter’s less-protected parts.
When the boys teased Phoebe Hart for her sizable breasts, I
would give a speech on why boob jokes weren’t funny. I had to
forget that I too had made lists in the margins of my notebook
when Phoebe walked by: Winnebagos, Hoo-has, Johnny Yellows.
At the end of my reveries, I sat in the back of the car as my father
drove. I was beyond reproach. I would overtake high school in a
matter of days, not years, or, inexplicably, earn an Oscar for Best
Actress during my junior year.
These were my dreams on Earth.
Alice Sebold (The Lovely Bones)
So Dad was a tedious, well-connected workaholic. But the other thing you need to understand is that Mom was a living wet dream. A former Guess model and Miller Lite girl, she was tall, curvy and gorgeous. At thirty-eight, she had somehow managed to remain ageless and maintained her killer body. She’s five-foot-nine with never-ending legs, generous breasts and full hips that scoop dramatically into her slim waist. People who say Barbie’s proportions are unrealistic obviously never met my stepmother. Her face is pretty too, with long eyelashes, sculpted cheekbones and big, blue eyes that tease and smile at the same time. Her long brown hair rests on her shoulders in thick, tousled layers like in one of those Pantene Pro-V commercials.
One memory seared in to my brain from my early teenage years is of Mom parading around the house one evening in nothing but her heels and underwear. I was sitting on the couch in the living room watching TV when a flurry of long limbs and blow-dried hair burst in front of the screen.
“Teddy-bear. Do you know where Silvia left the dry cleaning? I’m running late for dinner with the Blackwells and I can’t find my red cocktail dress.”
Mom stood before me in matching off-white, La Perla bra and panties and Manolo Blahnik stilettos. Some subtle gold hoop earrings hung from her ears and a tiny bit of mascara on her eye lashes highlighted her sparkling, blue eyes. Aside from the missing dress, she was otherwise ready to go.
“I think she left them hanging on the chair next to the other sofa,” I said, trying my best not to gape at Mom’s perfect body.
Mom trotted across the room, her heels tocking on the hard wood floor. I watched her slim, sexy back as she lifted the dry cleaning onto the sofa and then bent over to sort through the garments. My eyes followed her long mane of brown hair down to her heart-shaped ass. Her panties stretched tightly across each cheek as she bent further down.
“Found it!” She cried, springing back upright, causing her 35Cs to bounce up and down from the sudden motion. They were thrusting proudly off her ribcage and bulging out over the fabric of the balconette bra like two titanic eggs. Her supple skin pushed out over the silk edges. And then she was gone as quickly as she had arrived, her long legs striding back down the hallway.
C.R.R. Crawford (Sins from my Stepmother: Forbidden Desires)
His lordship preserved his control over himself with a strong effort. After a moment of inward struggle, he said: ‘Drawing the bustle with a vengeance, weren’t you? No, don’t cry! It might have been worse. But what possessed you, you little simpleton, to throw good money after bad? For I know very well you went a second night to that curst hell! Had you no more sense than to allow yourself to be plucked again? Good God! is gaming in your blood?’
‘Oh, no, no, I am sure it is not, for I was never more uncomfortable in my life! Indeed, I wish I had not gone back, but I did it for the best, Sherry, and truly I thought you would have told me to if I could but have asked you!’
‘Thought I – thought I – ?’ gasped his lordship. ‘Have you gone mad, Hero?’
‘But, Sherry, you told me yourself, when your uncle Prosper had been teasing you, that the only thing to be done was to continue playing, because a run of bad luck could not last for ever, and –’ She broke off, alarmed by the expression on his face. ‘Oh, what have I said?’ she cried.
‘It’s what I have said!’ replied Sherry. ‘No, no, don’t look like that, Kitten! It’s all my curst fault! Only I never dreamed you’d pay the least heed – Lord, I might have known, though! Kitten, don’t listen to me when I talk such nonsense!
Georgette Heyer (Friday's Child)
Wine talks; ask anyone. The oracle at the street corner; the uninvited guest at the wedding feast; the holy fool. It ventriloquizes. It has a million voices. It unleashes the tongue, teasing out secrets you never meant to tell, secrets you never knew. It shouts, rants, whispers. It speaks of great plans, tragic loves and terrible betrayals. It screams with laughter. It chuckles softly to itself. It weeps in front of its own reflection. It revives summers long past and memories best forgotten. Every bottle a whiff of other times, other places, every one- from the commonest Liebfraumilch to the imperious Vueve Clicquot- a humble miracle. Everyday magic, Joe had called it. The transformation of base matter into the stuff of dreams. Layman's alchemy.
Take these six in Jay's cellar, for instance. The Specials. Not wines really meant for keeping, but he kept them all the same. For nostalgia's sake. For a special, yet-to-be-imagined occasion. Six bottles, each with its own small handwritten label and sealed with candle wax. Each had a cord of a different color knotted around its neck; raspberry red, elderflower green, blackberry blue, rose hip yellow, damson black. The last bottle was tied with a brown cord. Specials '75, said the label, the familiar writing faded to the color of old tea.
Joanne Harris (Blackberry Wine)
Do you . . .” I begin, then turn around to make sure Scarlett is really asleep, not just faking it—her chest rises and falls a different way when it’s genuine. Satisfied, I look back to Silas and choose my words carefully. “Do you think I’m a good hunter?”
Silas looks confused. “Of course. You and Lett are the best hunters I—”
“No, not me and Scarlett. Just me,” I say.
Silas slows the car a tad to look at me. “Yes. Yes, of course. You’re—pardon my language—you’re fucking deadly with a knife, Rosie.”
I smile and shake my head, remembering all the times Silas scolded his older brothers for throwing language around in front of my “virgin ears.” It’s sort of satisfying to know that his perspective has changed. “Right,” I say. “I mean, we hunt together. But Scarlett . . . it’s like a part of her soul.”
“Dramatic much?” Silas teases, but he frowns when I don’t laugh.
“You know what I mean. It drives her.”
“But not you?”
“I don’t know. I mean, maybe. It doesn’t matter. I owe Scarlett my life, you know?”
“Yeah, but . . . like I told your sister, that doesn’t mean she’s got you locked in a cage forever. Unless you want to be locked in a cage, I mean. Wait, that sounds weird.” Silas shakes his head and sighs. “I’m forever tripping on words with you, Rosie.”
“I have that effect on people,” I joke, but Silas’s face stays serious as he nods slightly. I grin nervously.
Jackson Pearce (Sisters Red (Fairytale Retellings, #1))
A long time ago Ian had told her he was half in love with her, yet now that they were betrothed he’d never spoken a word of it, had not even pretended. She wasn’t certain of his motives or his feelings; she wasn’t certain of her own, either. All she really knew was that the sight of his hard, handsome face with its chiseled features, and hold amber eyes never failed to make her entire being feel tense and alive. She knew he liked to kis her, and that she very much liked being kissed by him. Added to his other attractions was something else that drew her inexorably to him: From their very first meeting, Elizabeth had sensed that beneath his bland sophistication and rugged virility Ian Thornton had a depth that most people lacked. “It’s so hard to know,” she whispered, “how I ought to feel or what I ought to think. And I have the worst feeling it’s not going to matter what I know or what I think,” she added almost sadly, “because I am going to love him.” She opened her eyes and looked at Alex. “It’s happening, and I cannot stop it. It was happening two years ago, and I couldn’t stop it then, either. So you see,” she added with a sad little smile, “it would be so much nicer for me if you could love him just a little, too.”
Alex reached across the table and took Elizabeth’s hands in hers. “If you love him, then he must be the very best of men. I shall henceforth make it a point to see all his best qualities!” Alex hesitated, and then she hazarded the question: “Elizabeth, does he love you?”
Elizabeth shook her head. “He wants me, he says, and he wants children.”
Alex swallowed embarrassed laughter. “He what?”
“He wants me, and he wants children.”
A funny, knowing smile tugged at Alexandra’s lips. “You didn’t tell me he said the first part. I am much encouraged,” she teased while a rosy blush stole over her cheeks.
“I think I am, too,” Elizabeth admitted, drawing a swift, searching look from Alex.
“Elizabeth, this is scarcely the time to discuss this-in fact,” Alex added, her flush deepening. “I don’t think there is a really good time to discuss it-but has Lucinda explained to you how children are conceived?”
“Yes, of course,” Elizabeth said without hesitation.
“Good, because I would have been the logical one otherwise, and I still remember my reaction when I found out. It was not a pretty sight,” she laughed. “On the other hand, you were always much the wiser girl than I.”
“I don’t think so at all,” Elizabeth said, but she couldn’t imagine what there was, really, to blush about. Children, Lucinda had told her when she’d asked, were conceived when a husband kissed his wife in be. And it hurt the first time. Ian’s kisses were sometimes almost bruising, but they never actually hurt, and she enjoyed them terribly.
As if speaking her feelings aloud to Alexandra had somehow relieved her of the burden of trying to deal with them, Elizabeth was so joyously relaxed that she suspected Ian noticed it at once when the men joined them in the drawing room.
Ian did notice it; in fact, as they sat down to play a game of cards in accordance with Elizabeth’s cheery suggestion, he noticed there was a subtle but distinct softening in the attitudes of both ladies toward him.
Judith McNaught (Almost Heaven (Sequels, #3))
Mindy runs to the DVD player and delicately places the disk in the holder and presses play. “Will you sit in this chair, please, Princess Mindy?” I ask, bowing deeply at the waist.
Mindy giggles as she replies, ”I guess so.”
After Mindy sits down, I take a wide-tooth comb and start gently combing out her tangles.
Mindy starts vibrating with excitement as she blurts, “Mr. Jeff, you’re gonna fix my hair fancy, ain’t you?”
“We’ll see if a certain Princess can hold still long enough for me to finish,” I tease. Immediately, Mindy becomes as still as a stone statue. After a couple of minutes, I have to say, “Mindy, sweetheart, it’s okay to breathe. I just can’t have you bouncing, because I’m afraid it will cause me to pull your hair.”
Mindy slumps down in her chair just slightly. “Okay Mr. Jeff, I was ascared you was gonna stop,” she whispers, her chin quivering.
I adopt a very fake, very over-the-top French accent and say, “Oh no, Monsieur Jeff must complete Princess Mindy’s look to make the Kingdom happy.
Mindy erupts with the first belly laugh I’ve heard all day as she responds, “Okay, I’ll try to be still, but it’s hard ‘cause I have the wiggles real bad.”
I pat her on the shoulder and chuckle as I say, “Just try your best, sweetheart. That’s all anyone can ask.”
Kiera comes screeching around the corner in a blur, plunks her purse on the table, and says breathlessly, “Geez-O-Pete, I can’t believe I’m late for the makeover. I love makeovers.” Kiera digs through her purse and produces two bottles of nail polish and nail kit. “It’s time for your mani/pedi ma’am. Would you prefer Pink Pearl or Frosted Creamsicle?
Mindy raises her hand like a schoolchild and Kiera calls on her like a pupil, “I want Frosted Cream toes please,” Mindy answers.
“Your wish is my command, my dear,” Kiera responds with a grin. For the next few minutes, Mindy gets the spa treatment of her life as I carefully French braid her hair into pigtails. As a special treat, I purchased some ribbons from the gift shop and I’m weaving them into her hair. I tuck a yellow rose behind her ear.
I don my French accent as I declare, “Monsieur Jeffery pronounces Princess Mindy finished and fit to rule the kingdom.”
Kiera hands Mindy a new tube of grape ChapStick from her purse, “Hold on, a true princess never reigns with chapped lips,” she says.
Mindy giggles as she responds, “You’re silly, Miss Kiera. Nobody in my kingdom is going to care if my lips are shiny.”
Kiera’s laugh sounds like wind chimes as she covers her face with her hands as she confesses, “Okay, you busted me. I just like to use it because it tastes yummy.”
“Okay, I want some, please,” Mindy decides. Kiera is putting the last minute touches on her as Mindy is scrambling to stand on Kiera’s thighs so she can get a better look in the mirror. When I reach out to steady her, she grabs my hand in a death grip. I glance down at her. Her eyes are wide and her mouth is opening and closing like a fish. I shoot Kiera a worried glance, but she merely shrugs.
“Holy Sh — !” Mindy stops short when she sees Kiera’s expression. “Mr. Jeff is an angel for reals because he turned me into one. Look at my hair Miss Kiera, there are magic ribbons in it! I’m perfect. I can be anything I want to be.”
Spontaneously, we all join together in a group hug. I kiss the top of her head as I agree, “Yes, Mindy, you are amazing and the sky is the limit for you.
Mary Crawford (Until the Stars Fall from the Sky (Hidden Beauty #1))
Why did you come here tonight?” she asked. “Other than the fact that you’ve finally come to your senses and realize you love me.”
Chuckling, Grey reached up and untied the ribbons that held her mask. The pretty silk fell away to reveal the beautiful face beneath. “I missed you,” he replied honestly. “And you were right-about everything. I’m tired of drifting through life. I want to live again-with you.”
A lone tear trickled down her cheek. “I think that might be the most romantic thing you’ve ever said to me.”
He grinned. “I have more.”
She pressed her fingers to his lips. “I’m tired of talking.” She kissed him, teasing his lips with the ripe curves of hers, sliding her tongue inside to rub against his in a sensual rhythm that had him fisting his hands in her skirts.
By the time they reached Mayfair, Grey’s hair was mussed, Rose’s skirts crushed, and he was harder than an oratory competition for mutes.
“I can’t believe you came,” she told him as the entered the house, arms wrapped around each other. “I’m so proud of you.”
“I wouldn’t have done it without you.”
She shook her head. “You did it for yourself not for me.”
Perhaps that was true, and perhaps it wasn’t. He had no interest in discussing it tonight. “It’s just the beginning,” he promised. “I’m going to go wherever you want to go from now on. Within reason.”
She laughed. “Of course. We can’t have you attending a musicale just to please me, can we?” She gazed up at him. “You know, I think I’m going to want to spend plenty of evenings at home as well. That time I spent out of society had some very soothing moments.”
“Of course,” he agreed, thinking about all the things they could do to one another at home. Alone. “There has to be moderation.”
Upstairs in their bedroom, he undressed her, unbuttoning each tiny button one by one until she sighed in exasperation. “In a hurry?” he teased.
His wife got her revenge, when clad only in her chemise and stockings, she turned those nimble fingers of hers to his cravat, working the knot so slowly he thought he might go mad. She worsened the torment by slowly rubbing her hips against his thigh. His cock was so rigid he could hang clothes on it, and the need to bury himself inside her consumed him.
Still, a skilled lover knows when to have patience-and a man in love knows that his woman’s pleasure comes far, far before his own. So, as ready as he was, Grey was in no hurry to let this night end, not when it might prove to be the best of his new-found life.
Wearing only his trousers, he took Rose’s hand and led her to their bed. He climbed onto the mattress and pulled her down beside him, lying so that they were face-to-face.
Warm fingers came up to gently touch the scar that ran down his face. Odd, but he hadn’t thought of it at all that evening. In fact, he’d almost forgot about it.
“I heard you that night,” he admitted. “When you told me you loved me.”
Her head tilted. “I thought you were asleep.”
“No.” He held her gaze as he raised his own hand to brush the softness of her cheek. “I should have said it then, but I love you too, Rose. So much.”
Her smile was smug. “I know.” She kissed him again. “Make love to me.”
His entire body pulsed. “I intend to, but there’s one thing I have to do first.”
Rose frowned. “What’s that?”
Grey pulled the brand-new copy of Voluptuous from beneath the pillow where he’d hidden it before going to the ball. “There’s a story in here that I want to read to you.
Kathryn Smith (When Seducing a Duke (Victorian Soap Opera, #1))
And yet, I can’t believe it’s been only a month that I’ve known you. I can’t decide whether it’s been the longest month of my life, or the shortest.”
His eyebrows gathered in an exaggerated frown. “I can’t decide which pays me the fainter compliment.”
“Neither,” she teased, linking her arm in his. “To compliment you, I should tell you it has been the best month of my life. And it has.” Truer words, she’d never spoken.
“Oh, nicely managed. My pride is rescued.” Despite his air of nonchalance, his eyes held genuine emotion. They were fully blue today-a rich, azure blue, clear and inviting and endless. Just like the sea.
Sophia laughed at herself. How had she missed the obvious? All this time, she’d been puzzling out the color of his eyes. They were always shifting and changing, from green to blue to gray. And now she knew why. They always reflected the sea.
“Do you know,” he said, “if you keep gazing at me like that much longer, I shall be forced to pack you off belowdecks.”
“Am I truly gazing?” She fluttered her lashes at him. “I am making a trip to the storeroom soon, you know. But mind-this is the last good frock I’ve got.”
“Siren.” He gave her a surreptitious pinch on the hip. “No, it’s the cabin I have in mind for you, and you’re going there alone. You need to rest.” He walked her toward the hatch.
“You won’t come rest with me?”
“If I come with you, neither of us will rest.”
A current of pleasure shot straight to her center. Then a more practical thought intruded. “But what of the noon meal? It won’t make itself.”
At that instant, a flying fish as long as her arm sailed over the rail of the boat and flopped on the deck at their feet.
Gray looked at the thrashing fish, then raised his eyebrows at her. “Somehow I think we’ll manage.
Tessa Dare (Surrender of a Siren (The Wanton Dairymaid Trilogy, #2))
You can have Fitzy feed you the rest of these when I’m gone—otherwise I’m going to puke. Right now, we need to find Krakie a new home.” He grabbed a roll of wide gauze from one of the shelves and wrapped it carefully around her left wrist to form a loose-fitting cuff. Then carefully attached each of the pins. “Is that a K ?” Fitz asked, tilting his head to study the new arrangement. Keefe nodded. “Best letter in the whole alphabet! But don’t worry, Foster, this isn’t like when Dizznee gave you those bracelets.” “What bracelets?” Fitz asked. Keefe had the wisdom to look sheepish. “They were . . . a prototype,” Sophie told Fitz. “Dex has been trying to design a gadget to help me control my enhancing, and he needed something to camouflage what they were, so he used some bracelets he’d bought.” Fitz’s eyebrows shot up. “Cloth bracelets?” She was pretty sure he already knew the answer. But even if he did, she’d promised Dex she wouldn’t tell anyone what had happened between them. “It doesn’t matter,” she said quietly. “They . . . didn’t work.” “In more ways than one,” Keefe said under his breath—but Fitz still must’ve heard him. His eyes narrowed. “How do you know so much about it?” Keefe shrugged. “I’m the reigning president of the Foster Fan Club. It’s my job to know these things. But don’t worry, Fitzy, you’re still the runner-up.” If he’d been standing any closer, Sophie would’ve smacked him. But he was just out of her reach. “I thought you weren’t supposed to be teasing Fitz,” Sophie reminded him instead. “I’m not, but . . . he makes it so easy.” Fitz rolled his eyes. “Sometimes I can’t remember why we’re friends.” “Pretty sure everyone wonders that at some point,” Ro pointed out. Keefe flashed the smuggest of smiles. “It’s because I make everything better.
Shannon Messenger (Flashback (Keeper of the Lost Cities #7))
He unfastened his pants and shrugged off his shirt, baring his beautiful chest, the ripple of his abs, and the soft trail of hair leading below. "I was saving the best for last." He ground his palm over his erection.
"Tease." She couldn't tear her eyes away. "Take it all off."
"You're not in a position to make demands." But he didn't make her wait. Instead he lowered his zipper and pulled out his cock. Thick and hard, he was more than ready for her.
"Do you want this, sweetheart?"
She wasn't complaining about the term of endearment now. "Very much."
He gave a casual shrug that belied the evidence of his desire. "Maybe when I've finished my search."
"What else..." Her voice trailed off when he lay between her legs, slid off her panties, and placed her feet on his shoulders.
"The best things are found in the most secret places." He lowered his head. His tongue did the most wicked things that had her arching and twisting on the bed.
"Jay..." It was a plea. It was a demand.
"That's Mr. Dayal to you." Without warning, he slid two fingers deep inside her, his firm steady strokes making all her nerve endings fire at once. His tongue found her sensitive clit and her inner walls tightened around his fingers. She soared and peaked, her orgasm crashing through her body in a tidal wave of sensation.
Dazed, languid on the bed, she watched him shrug off his trousers and roll on a condom. "Did you find what you were looking for?"
"Not yet." He lifted her legs, spread them wide, opening her for him as he positioned himself between her thighs.
"You're very good at your job." Now that her body was sated, she was generous with her praise.
"And you are a beautiful, sexy temptress who is about to be fucked by a man who wants her so desperately he's willing to do anything to have her.
Sara Desai (The Singles Table (Marriage Game, #3))
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))
In Riverview, we stopped at Larkin’s Drugstore for a cold drink. Leaving the rest of us to scramble out unaided, John offered Hannah his hand. Although I’d just seen her leap out of a tree as fearless as a cat, she let him help her.
At the soda fountain, Hannah took a seat beside John. In her white dress, she was as prim and proper as any lady you ever saw. Quite frankly, I liked her better the other way.
I grabbed the stool on the other side of Hannah and spun around on it a couple of times, hoping to get her to spin with me, but the only person who noticed was Mama. She told me to sit still and behave myself. “You act like you have ants in your pants,” she said, embarrassing me and making Theo laugh.
While I was sitting there scowling at Theo in the mirror, John leaned around Hannah and grinned at me. “To celebrate your recovery, Andrew, I’m treating everyone to a lemon phosphate--everyone, that is, except you.”
He paused dramatically, and Hannah gave him a smile so radiant it gave me heartburn. She was going to marry John someday, I knew that. But while I was here, I wanted her all to myself, just Hannah and me playing marbles in the grove, talking, sharing secrets, climbing trees. She had the rest of her life to spend with stupid John Larkin.
“As the guest of honor,” John went on, “you may pick anything your heart desires.”
Slightly placated by his generosity, I stared at the menu. It was amazing what you could buy for a nickel or a dime in 1910.
“Choose a sundae,” Theo whispered. “It costs the most.”
“How about a root beer float?” Hannah suggested.
“Egg milk chocolate,” Mama said. “It would be good for you, Andrew.”
“Tonic water would be even better,” John said, “or, best of all, a delicious dose of cod-liver oil.”
When Hannah gave him a sharp poke in the ribs, John laughed. “Andrew knows I’m teasing. Come on, what will it be, sir?”
Taking Theo’s advice, I asked for a chocolate sundae.
“Good choice,” John said. “You’d have to go all the way to St. Louis to find better ice cream.
Mary Downing Hahn (Time for Andrew: A Ghost Story)
A tall, well-muscled blond man drew alongside Christian. He inclined his head to them. “Abbot,” he said to Christian in greeting.
Christian seemed pleased to see him. “Falcon. It’s been a long time.”
“Aye. I’m sorry I didn’t get a chance to greet you yester eve when you arrived.”
Christian offered him a lopsided grin. “’Tis well understood. I heard about your escapade with the butcher’s daughter and your near miss with her father’s cleaver.”
Falcon laughed. “Lies all. ’Twas the tanner’s daughter and her father’s ax.”
Christian joined his laughter. “One day, my friend, you will meet the one father who can run faster than you.”
“’Tis why God gave us horses.” He winked at Christian, then tilted his head so that he could see Adara. “’Tis a pleasure to meet you, Queen Adara. I am Lord Quentin of Adelsbury and my sword is ever at your disposal.”
Christian gave him a meaningful stare. “And your sword had best stay sheathed, Falcon, until you’re on the battlefield.”
“Your warning is well taken into consideration, Abbot, along with your sword skill and horsemanship. Have no fear of me. Your wife is ever safe from my designs. But no woman is safe from my charm.”
Adara couldn’t help teasing the man who seemed of remarkable good spirit and cheer. “However some women might find themselves immune from it, my Lord Falcon.”
“What, ho?” he said with a laugh. “Congratulations, Christian. You have found a woman as intelligent as she is beautiful. Tell me, Your Majesty, have you a sister who is fashioned in your image?”
“Nay, my lord. I fear I am one of a kind.”
He looked sincerely despondent at the news. “’Tis a pity, then. I shall just have to pray for Christian to lay aside his duties and become a monk in earnest.”
Christian snorted at that prospect. “You would have a better chance courting my horse.”
“Then I shall take my charm and work it on a woman who isn’t immune to it. Good day to you both.”
Adara glanced over her shoulder as he fell back into the ranks with the other knights.
“Don’t look at him,” Christian said in a teasing tone. “You’ll only play into his overbloated self-esteem.”
She gave him a meaningful look. “In that regard, he reminds me of someone else I know.”
“Ouch, my lady, you wound me.”
“Never, Christian. I would never wound you.
Kinley MacGregor (Return of the Warrior (Brotherhood of the Sword, #6))
I see the good in you.”
“Don’t harbor illusions about me. In marrying me, you’re going to have to make the best of a bad bargain. You don’t understand the situation you’re in.”
“You’re right.” Beatrix arched in bliss as he massaged the muscles on either side of her spine. “Any woman would pity me, being in this situation.”
“It’s one thing to spend an afternoon in bed with me,” Christopher said darkly. “It’s another to experience day-to-day life with a lunatic.”
“I know all about living with lunatics. I’m a Hathaway.” Beatrix sighed in pleasure as his hands worked the tender places low on her back. Her body felt relaxed and tingly all over, her bruises and aches forgotten. Twisting to glance at him over her shoulder, she saw the austere lines of his face. She had an overwhelming urge to tease him, to make him play. “You missed a place,” she told him.
Levering herself upward, Beatrix turned and crawled to where Christopher knelt on the mattress. He had donned a velvet dressing robe, the front parting to reveal a tantalizing hint of sun-browned flesh. Linking her arms around his neck, she kissed him. “Inside,” she whispered. “That’s where I need soothing.”
A reluctant smile lurked at the corners of his lips. “This balm is too strong for that.”
“No it’s not. It feels lovely. Here, I’ll show you--” She pounced for the tin of balm and coated her fingertips with the stuff. The rich scent of clove oil spiced the air. “Just hold still--”
“The devil I will.” His voice had thickened with amusement, and he reached for her wrist.
Fleet as a ferret, Beatrix twisted to evade him. Rolling once, twice, she dove for the belt of his robe. “You put it all over me,” she accused, giggling. “Coward. Now it’s your turn.”
“Not a chance.” He grabbed her, grappled with her, and she thrilled to the sound of his husky laugh.
Somehow managing to clamber over him, she gasped at the feel of his aroused flesh. She wrestled with him until he flipped her over with ease, pinning her wrists. The robe had become loosened during their tussle, their naked flesh rubbing together.
Sparkling silver eyes stared into blue. Already breathless with laughter, Beatrix became positively lightheaded as she saw the way he was looking at her. Lowering his head, he kissed and licked at her smile as if he could taste it.
Lisa Kleypas (Love in the Afternoon (The Hathaways, #5))
Gentle hands, soft lips, and hot little breaths down my stomach. Pleasure, a thick syrup pouring over my limbs. My cock rose, growing heavy with desire. We were so new together, by all accounts, I should be panting madly, trying to take over. But I was slowly heating wax molding to her will.
Emma palmed me through my briefs, and I grunted. I wanted them off, no barriers between us. As if she heard the silent demand, she kissed my nipple and slowly eased the briefs down. I lifted my butt to help her. My dick slapped against my belly as it was freed. Emma made a noise of appreciation and then wrapped her clever fingers around me.
"Please," I whispered. My body was weak, but my need grew stronger, drowning out everything else. She complied, stroking, her lips on my lower abs, teasing along the V leading to my hips.
"Em..." My plea broke off into a groan as her hot mouth enveloped me. There were no more words. I let her have me, do as she willed, and I was thankful for it.
And it felt so good I could only lie there and take it, try not to thrust into her mouth like an animal. But she pulled free with a lewd pop and gazed up at me.
Panting lightly, I stared back at her, ready to promise her anything, when she kissed my pulsing tip. "Go ahead," she said. "Fuck my mouth."
I almost spilled right there. She sucked me deep once more, and a sound tore out of me that was part pained, part "Oh God, please don't ever stop." The woman was dismantling me in the best of ways.
Waves of heat licked up over my skin as I pumped gently into her mouth, keeping my moves light because I didn't want to hurt her, and because denying myself was outright torture. Apparently, I was into that.
She sucked me like I was dessert----all the while, her hand stroking steady circles on the tight, sensitive skin of my lower abs. It was that touch, the knowledge that she was doing this because she wanted to take care of me, that rushed me straight to the edge.
My trembling hand touched the crown of her head. "Em. Baby, I'm gonna..." I gasped as she did something truly inspired with her tongue. "I'm gonna..."
She pulled free with one last suck and surged up to kiss me, her hand wrapping around my aching dick and stroking it. Panting into her mouth, my kiss frantic and sloppy, I came with a shudder of pleasure. And all the tension, all the pain, dissolved like a sugar cube dropped into hot tea.
Kristen Callihan (Make It Sweet)
His phone dinged again. “This crazy-ass voicemail. It’s all jacked—Wait, when did you call me?”
“Please don’t listen to that,” I blurted.
He grinned. “Okay, now I have to hear it. Was this last night? Were you drunk? Did you drunk-dial me?” he teased. But it was too late, he’d already lifted the phone.
Bile rose in my throat and the room became a thousand degrees hotter. “Please. Don’t.”
“Why? What’s wrong?” He grew quiet and listened. “I don’t hear anything. Wait. You didn’t mean to call, did you? Is that another guy?”
I put my face in my hands. Cade was quiet as he listened. And I prayed for a giant black hole to open and swallow me.
His phone made a soft thump as he tossed it onto the coffee table. The couch moved with him as he settled back.
“You can uncover your face now.” His tone didn’t sound angry but I still couldn’t face him. His hands slid around my wrists and gently tugged, forcing me to lower them.
I swallowed the lump in my throat, annoyed that I didn’t even have my own car to leave.
“Was that your roommate?” he asked.
I nodded, my face still tucked down.
“No, her best friend.”
“So you told your roommate about me?”
I could hear the smile in his voice and looked up.
“I mean, I assume you don’t know a bunch of ‘therapy dog’ guys named Cade, but I could be wrong.”
“You aren’t pissed about what you heard?”
“All I heard were some friends teasing you…about me. They think you want me. Bad.” He grinned.
“And what I said?”
“Were you serious? Because to me you sounded annoyed, maybe even defensive. And considering you stayed home last night and are with me tonight, I don’t think you really planned a, how did you put it? ‘Weekend fuckfest.’ ” He bit back a smile.
“You were never supposed to hear that.” I crossed my arms. “And I expected you to be upset, not tease me about it.”
He grabbed my hand. “C’mon, I’m sorry. Did you want to have a weekend fuckfest? I don’t want to interfere with your plans.” He tugged my hand, urging me to look up. “Look, we can have one. I’m game. Don’t stop on account of me.”
His hand made its way to my arm and he slid me along the leather couch, and tucked me into him. “Quit being all grumpy. I’m RSVPing to your fuckfest. I mean, I’ve never had one, but it seems pretty self-explanatory.”
“You’re an asshole.” And by that I really meant the most perfect fucking guy ever. Who hears something like that and plays it totally cool?
“So, am I also supposed to bend you over a table or something? Because I think your roommate might have mentioned that as well.”
I shoved him back while trying hard not to smile. “I hate you.”
He laughed and scooped me into his lap. “If it makes you feel any better, my roommate knows I have the hots for you too.”
I rolled my eyes
Renita Pizzitola (Just a Little Flirt (Crush, #2))
What do you call an evil leader digging a hole? Darth Spader What do you call Obi Wan eating crunchy toast? Obi Crumb What do call a padawan who likes to play computer games? i'Pad' me What do you call a starship pilot who likes to drink cocoa? Han Coco What starship is always happy to have people aboard? The Millennium Welcome What did Yoda say to Luke while eating dinner? Use the fork Luke. What do you call a Sith who won't fight? A Sithy. Which Star Wars character uses meat for a weapon instead of a Lightsaber? Obi Wan Baloney. What do call a smelly droid? R2DPOO What do call a droid that has wet its pants? C3PEE0 What do you call a Jedi who loves pies? Luke PieWalker? What do call captain Rex when he emailing on a phone? Captain Text What evil leader doesn’t need help reaching? Ladder the Hutt What kind of evil lord will always say goodbye? Darth Later Which rebel will always win the limbo? Han LowLow What do you call R2D2 when he’s older? R2D3 What do you call R2D2 when he’s busting to go to the toilet? R2DLoo What do call Padme’s father? Dadme What’s do you call the Death Star when its wet? The Death Spa What do call R2D2 when he climbs a tree? R2Tree2 What do you say a Jedi adding ketchup to his dinner? Use the sauce Luke. What star wars baddy is most likely to go crazy? Count KooKoo What do call Count Dooku when he’s really sad? Count Boohoo Which Jedi is most likely to trick someone? Luke Liewalker Which evil lord is most likely to be a dad? Dadda the Hutt Which rebel likes to drink through straws? Chew Sucker Which space station can you eat from? The Death bar What do call a moody rebel? Luke Sighwalker What do you call an even older droid R2D4 What do call Darth Vader with lots of scrapes? Dearth Grazer What call an evil lord on eBay? Darth Trader What do call it when an evil lord pays his mum? Darth Paid-her What do call an evil insect Darth Cicada What sith always teases? General Teasers Who's the scariest sith? Count Spooko Which sith always uses his spoon to eat his lunch Count Spoonu What evil lord has lots of people living next door? Darth Neighbour What Jedi always looks well dressed? Luke TieWalker Which evil lord works in a restaurant? Darth waiter What do you call a smelly storm trooper? A storm pooper What do you call Darth Vader digging a hole? Darth Spader What do you C3PO wetting his pants? C3PEE0 What do you call Asoka’s pet frog? Acroaka What do you call a Jedi that loves pies? Luke Piewalker What rebel loves hot drinks? Han Coco What did Leia say to Luke at the dinner table? Use the fork Luke. What do call Obi Wan eating fruit? Obi plum What do you call Obi in a band? Obi Drum What doe Luke take out at night? A Night Sabre What is the favourite cooking pot on Endor? The e Wok
Reily Sievers (The Best Star Wars Joke Book)
I got your flowers. They’re beautiful, thank you.” A gorgeous riot of Gerber daisies and lilies in a rainbow of reds, pinks, yellows and oranges.
“Welcome. Bet Duncan loved sending one of his guys out to pick them up for me.”
She could hear the smile in his voice, imagined the devilish twinkle in his eyes. “Oh, he did. Said it’s probably the first time in the history of WITSEC that a U.S. Marshal delivered flowers to one of their witnesses.”
A low chuckle. “Well, this was a special circumstance, so they helped me out.”
“I loved the card you sent with them the best though.” Proud of you. Give ‘em hell tomorrow. He’d signed it Nathan rather than Nate, which had made her smile. “I had no idea you were romantic,” she continued. “All these interesting things I’m learning about you.” She hadn’t been able to wipe the silly smile off her face after one of the security team members had knocked on her door and handed them to her with a goofy smile and a, “special delivery”.
“Baby, you haven’t seen anything yet. When the trial’s done you’re gonna get all the romance you can handle, and then some.”
“Really?” Now that was something for a girl to look forward to, and it sure as hell did the trick in taking her mind off her worries. “Well I’m all intrigued, because it’s been forever since I was romanced. What do you have in mind? Candlelit dinners? Going to the movies? Long walks? Lazy afternoon picnics?”
“Not gonna give away my hand this early on, but I’ll take those into consideration.”
“And what’s the key to your heart, by the way? I mean, other than the thing I did to you this morning.”
“What thing is that? Refresh my memory,” he said, a teasing note in his voice.
She smiled, enjoying the light banter. It felt good to let her worry about tomorrow go and focus on what she had to look forward to when this was all done. Being with him again, seeing her family, getting back to her life. A life that would hopefully include Nathan in a romantic capacity. “Waking you up with my mouth.”
He gave a low groan. “I loved every second of it. But think simpler.”
Simpler than sex? For a guy like him? “Food, then. I bet you’re a sucker for a home-cooked meal. Am I right?” He chuckled.
“That works too, but it’s still not the key.”
She blinked, her heart squeezing at the conviction behind his answer. “Me?”
“Yeah, just you. And maybe bacon,” he added, a smile in his voice. He was so freaking adorable.
“So you’re saying if I made and served you a BLT, you’d be putty in my hands?” Seemed hard to imagine, but okay.
A masculine rumble filled her ears. “God, yeah.”
She couldn’t help the sappy smile that spread across her face. “Wow, you are easy. And I can definitely arrange that.”
“I can hardly wait. Will you serve it to me naked? Or maybe wearing just a frilly little apron and heels?”
She smothered a laugh, but a clear image of her doing just that popped into her head, serving him the sandwich in that sexy outfit while watching his eyes go all heated. “Depends on how good you are.”
“Oh, baby, I’ll be so good to you, you have no idea.
Kaylea Cross (Avenged (Hostage Rescue Team #5))
What lesson is this?” she choked out.
His wild gaze met hers. “That even a low bastard can be tempted above his station when a lady is as lovely as you.”
“A lady? Not a tomboy?”
“I wish you were a tomboy, sweeting,” he said bitterly. “Then you wouldn’t have viscounts and earls and dukes vying for your favors.”
Was he jealous? Oh, how wonderful if he was! “And Bow Street Runners?” she prodded.
He shot her a dark glance that was apparently supposed to serve as her answer, for he then bent to close his mouth over one linen-draped breast.
Good. Heavens. What deliciousness what this? She shouldn’t allow it. But the man she’d been fascinated with for months was treating her as if he truly found her desirable, and she didn’t want it to stop.
Clutching his head to her, she exulted in the hungry way he sucked her breast through her chemise, turning her knees to water and her blood to stream.
He pleasured her breast with teeth and tongue as his hand found her other breast and teased the nipple to arousal. Her pulse leapt so high she feared she might faint. “Jackson…ohhh, Jackson…I thought you…despised me.”
“Does this feel like I despise you?” he murmured against her breast, then tongued it silkily for good measure.
A sensual tremor swept through her. “No.” But then, she’d been a fool before with men. She wasn’t good at understanding them when it came to this. “If you desired me all along, why didn’t you…say anything before?”
“Like what? ‘My lady, I keep imagining you naked in my bed?’” He slid one hand down to her hip. “I’m not fool enough to risk being shot for impertinence.”
Should she be thrilled or disappointed to hear that he imagined her in his bed? It was more than she’d expected, yet not enough.
She dug her fingers into his shoulder. “How do you know I won’t try shooting you now?”
He nuzzled her breast. “You left your pistol on the breakfast table.”
A strange excitement coursed through her. It made no sense, considering what had happened the last time a man had got her alone and helpless. “Perhaps I have another hidden in this room.”
He lifted his head to gaze steadily into her eyes. “Then I’d best keep you too busy to use it.”
Suddenly he was kissing her again, hard, hungry kisses…each more intoxicating than the last. He filled his hands with her breasts and fondled them shamelessly, distracting her from anything but the taste and feel of him.
A moan escaped her, and he tore his mouth from hers. “You shouldn’t let me touch you this way.”
“Yet I am,” she gasped against his cheek. “And you aren’t stopping, either.”
“Say the word, and I will.” Yet he dragged her skirts up and pressed forward between her legs. “This is mad. We’re both mad.”
“Are we?” she asked, hardly conscious anymore of what she was aying.
Because it felt utterly right to be in his arms, as if she’d waited ages to be there. Her heart had never clamored so for anyone else.
“I don’t generally take advantage of my clients’ sisters,” he rasped as his hands slid to grip her thighs. “It’s unwise.”
“I’m your client, too. Do I look as if I’m complaining?” she whispered and drew his head down to hers.
Sabrina Jeffries (A Lady Never Surrenders (Hellions of Halstead Hall, #5))
What would the ton do without us to feed them scandal broth?”
Grey returned her grin. “The lot of them would starve.”
They chuckled and as the humor faded, Grey tilted his head to look at her. “You look beautiful tonight.”
She flushed, pleasure lighting the dark depths of her eyes. “You don’t have to say such things.”
“I know I don’t, but you are my fiancée and it’s perfectly acceptable for me to voice my thoughts aloud. It’s rather refreshing after keeping them to myself for so long.”
That got her attention. One of her fine, high brows twitched. “How long?”
He grinned. “Since you were old enough for me to think such thoughts without being lecherous.”
They stood no more than six inches apart. Close enough that he could see how amazingly flawless her skin was-not a freckle in sight. Close enough that she could see every twist and knot in his scar-and yet she barely glanced at it. Her gaze was riveted on his. She didn’t care that he was disfigured-at least not on the outside. Not on the inside either, so it seemed.
“I’ve never been a good man,” he confessed-a little more hoarse than he liked-“but I promise to be a faithful husband.” It was the best he could offer, because as much as he would like to be the man she wanted, it wasn’t going to happen.
Her smooth brow puckered. “I haven’t actually consented, you know.”
“Rose, we have to marry.”
“No.” She raised sparkling eyes to his. “I want you to ask me to marry you-not demand it. I don’t care if it has to be done. I want to feel like I have a choice.”
“If you did have a choice, what would it be?” He was on dangerous ground with her, inching into territory better left unexplored for both their sakes.
Rose smiled, and everything was right with the world. “Ask me and find out.”
His hands came up, seemingly of their own volition, to cup her face. She was so delicate, yet so strong. Her entire world had been turned upside down, and yet she faced him with a teasing glint in her eyes and a soft flush of color in her cheeks.
“Rose Danvers, will you do me the extreme honor of becoming my wife?”
Were those tears dampening her eyes? And was it joy or sorrow that put them there?
He knew that they had to marry regardless, but hearing her say those two little words was like someone kicking his heart through his ribs. It hurt, but there was such unfathomable joy that came with it-such terrible happiness that Grey had no idea what to do with it. He’d never felt anything like it before.
Holding her face, he lowered his head and hungrily claimed her mouth with his own. Her lips parted for his tongue as her fingers bit into his arms. A trickle of warm wetness brushed against his thumb. She was crying.
A sharp gasp came from the open door. “What the devil is going on here?”
The kiss and its magic were broken. Rose stepped back, and Grey dropped his hands, but he wasn’t willing to let her go just yet. He placed one arm behind her back, holding her close so that they faced her mother together.
Camilla did not look happy. In fact, she looked like any mother would to walk into a room and find her daughter being molested.
“Mama,” Rose begun. “It’s not what you think.”
“It is exactly what you think,” Grey countered, drawing his friend’s stormy and narrow gaze. “I have asked Rose for her hand in marriage and she has accepted. I regret that you had to find out this way, but I was too overcome with joy to contain my feelings.”
He could feel Rose gaping at him. He didn’t look at her, not because the words were a lie, but because they were all too damnably true.
Kathryn Smith (When Seducing a Duke (Victorian Soap Opera, #1))
The opponent seemed to shift slightly in the seat. His index finger tapped a card, just a couple strokes. There it was the card that ruined his hand. Her hazel eyes release the player across from her to steal a glance registering the emotion of observers around the table then to her best friend. Sophie looks like a Nervous Nelly-she, always worries. She knows the girl will put too much emphasis on a lost hand. The striking man with his lusty brown eyes tries to draw Sophie closer. Now that he has folded and left the game, he is unnecessary, and the seasoned flirt easily escapes his reach. He leaves with a scowl; Sophie turns and issues knowing wink. Ell’s focus is now unfettered, freeing her again to bring down the last player. When she wins this hand, she will smile sweetly, thank the boys for their indulgence, and walk away $700 ahead. The men never suspected her; she’s no high roller. She realizes she and Sophie will have to stay just a bit. Mill around and pay homage to the boy’s egos. The real trick will be leaving this joint alone without one of them trying to tag along. Her opponent is taking his time; he is still undecided as to what card to keep—tap, tap. He may not know, but she has an idea which one he will choose. He attempts to appear nonchalant, but she knows she has him cornered. She makes a quick glance for Mr. Lusty Brown-eyes; he has found a new dame who is much more receptive than Sophie had been. Good, that small problem resolved itself for them. She returns her focuses on the cards once more and notes, her opponent’s eyes have dilated a bit. She has him, but she cannot let the gathering of onlookers know. She wants them to believe this was just a lucky night for a pretty girl. Her mirth finds her eyes as she accepts his bid.
From a back table, there is a ruckus indicating the crowd’s appreciation of a well-played game as it ends. Reggie knew a table was freeing up, and just in time, he did not want to waste this evening on the painted and perfumed blonde dish vying for his attention. He glances the way of the table that slowly broke up. He recognizes most of the players and searches out the winner amongst them. He likes to take on the victor, and through the crowd, he catches a glimpse of his goal, surprised that he had not noticed her before. The women who frequent the back poker rooms in speakeasies all dress to compete – loud colors, low bodices, jewelry which flashes in the low light. This dame faded into the backdrop nicely, wearing a deep gray understated yet flirty gown. The minx deliberately blended into the room filled with dark men’s suits. He chuckles, thinking she is just as unassuming as can be playing the room as she just played those patsies at the table. He bet she had sat down all wide-eyed with some story about how she always wanted to play cards. He imagined she offered up a stake that wouldn’t be large but at the same time, substantial enough. Gauging her demeanor, she would have been bold enough to have the money tucked in her bodice. Those boys would be eager after she teased them by retrieving her stake. He smiled a slow smile; he would not mind watching that himself. He knew gamblers; this one was careful not to call in the hard players, just a couple of marks, which would keep the pit bosses off her. He wants to play her; however, before he can reach his goal, the skirt slips away again, using her gray camouflage to aid her. Hell, it is just as well, Reggie considered she would only serve as a distraction and what he really needs is the mental challenge of the game not the hot release of some dame–good or not.
Off in a corner, the pit boss takes out a worn notepad, his meaty hands deftly use a stub of a pencil to enter the notation. The date and short description of the two broads quickly jotted down for his boss Mr. Deluca. He has seen the pair before, and they are winning too often for it to be accidental or to be healthy.
Caroline Walken (Ell's Double Down (The Willows #1))
Okay,let's do it," Robbie said, slapping his hands together as he stood. He stepped towards me with his arms outstreched and I tripped back. " What? No" " What? Yes," he said. He hit the rewind button and the tape zipped backward. He paused it right as the dance began. " You don't really expect me to ask Tama to dance with me without any practice. Even I'm not that stupid." I was suddenly very aware of my heartbeat. " There's no way I'm dancing with you." " You really know how to stroke a guy's ego," Robbie joked. "Come on. I'm not that repulsive." "You're not repulsive at all, it's just-" " Well, that's good to hear," Robbie said with a teasing smile. He was enjoying this. "it's just that I don't dance," I admitted. Never had. Not once. Not with a guy. I was a dance free-zone. " Well, neither do II mean, except on stage. But i've never danced like this, so we're even" he said. He hit "play". The music started and Robbie pulled me toward him by my wrist. he grabbed my hand, which was sweating, and held it, then put his other hand on my waist. My boobs pressed sgsinst his chest and I flinched, but Robbie didn't seem to notice. He was too busy consulting the TV screen. " Here goes nothing," he said. "Okay, it's a waltz, so one, two, three,,, one, two, three. Looks like a big step on one and two little steps on two and three. Got it?" "Sure." I so didn't have it. " Okay, go." He started to step in a circle, pulling me with him.I staggered along, mortified. " One, two, three. One two, three," he counted under his breath. My foot caught on his ankle. " Oops! Sorry." I was sweating like mad now, wishing I'd taken off my sweater, at least. " I got ya," he said, his grip tightiening on my hand. " K eep going." " One, two, three," I counted, staring down at our feet. He slammed one of his hip into one of the set chairs. " Ow. Dammit!" " Are you okay?"I asked."Yeah. Keep going," he said through his teeth. " One, two, three," I counted. I glanced up at the Tv screen, and the second I took my eyes off our feet, they got hopelessly tangled. I felt that instant swoop of gravity and shouted as we went down. The floor was not soft. " Oof?" " Ow. Okay, ow," Robbie said, grabbing his elbow. " That was not a good bone to fall on." He shook his arm out and I brought my knees up under my chin. " Maybe this wasn't the best idea." "No! No. We cannot give up that easily," Robbie said, standing. He took my hands and hoisted my up. " Maybe we just need to simplify it a little. " Actually i think its the twirl and the dip at the end that are really important," I theorized. It seemed like the most romantic part to me. " Okay, good." Robbie was phsyched by this development. "So maybe instead of going in circles, we just step side to side and do the twirl thing a couple of times. " Sounds like a plan," I said. " Let's do it." Robbie rewound the tape and we started from the beginning of the music. He took my hand again and held it up, then placed his other hand on my waist. This time we simply swayed back and forth. I was just getting used to the motion, when I realized that Robbie was staring at me.Big time." What?" i said, my skin prickling. " Trying to make eye contact," he said. " I hear eye contact while dancing is key." " Where would you hear something like that?" I said. " My grandmother. She's a wise woman," he said. His grandmother. How cute was that? His eyes were completely focused on my face. I tried to stare back into them, but I keep cracking up laughing. And he thought I'd make a good actress. " Wow. You suck at eye contact," he said. "Come on. Give me something to work here." I took a deep breath and steeled myself. It's just Robbie Delano, KJ. You can do this. And so I did. I looked right back into his eyes. And we continued to sway at to the music. His hand around mine. His hand on my waist. Our chests pressed together. I stared into his eyes, and soon i found that laughing was the last thing on my mind. " How's this working for you?
Kieran Scott (Geek Magnet)
On the plate was a tall, glistening slice of lemon meringue pie, vivid yellow and fluffy white. He pulled up a chair opposite me and straddled it backward, eagerly digging his fork into the tremulous tower of meringue. "You know I dream about this slice of pie all week long, right?" he said, taking a big bite.
"And me. You also dream about me," I teased him.
He raised an eyebrow. "Of course I dream about you... giving me this pie."
I rolled my eyes at him, and he grinned, mouth full of pie.
Every Saturday I made two lemon meringue pies and served them to the first lucky handful of customers through the doors of our flagship Tampa location. The last piece of pie I always saved for Rory. I'd modified my mom's now-not-so-secret recipe, adding an element all my own---a lemon drop melted into the lemon-sugar mixture. I wasn't convinced it changed the taste that much, but Rory said it was the best pie he'd ever had. He swore the lemon drop added a touch of kitchen magic, but I knew better. It wasn't magic at all. It was revelation.
Rachel Linden (The Magic of Lemon Drop Pie)
Kieran stilled, his whole body going stiff. “What do you use? Your fingers, or a vibrator?” I slid my forearm across my forehead, my body pounding again. “None of your business,” I forced out, my throat tight. “Can I watch?” He glanced back, his tone teasing but his eyes on fire. “You can use both methods, and then compare them with my cock. See which one gets you off the best.” “Vibrator, easy.” I cleared my throat. “It’s got all the bells and whistles. Men just aren’t equipped to compete.” “I’m not a man.” His voice was deep and rich. “I’m a god.
K.F. Breene (Sin & Magic (Demigod of San Francisco #2))
Holding only the back of her neck, he didn't deepen the embrace, nor did he caress her or flex against her. He simply merged with her and, as he'd suspected, he was immediately overwhelmed.
This is what heaven must be like. The transient concept drifted past, then evaporated.
Sweetly, almost chastely, he discovered her best-kept secrets, using scant pressure and bare coercion. With a feeling approximating joy, he teased and trifled.
Cheryl Holt (Total Surrender)
The nouveau riche flaunt their wealth, but the old rich scorn such gauche displays. Minor officials prove their status with petty displays of authority, while the truly powerful show their strength through gestures of magnanimity. People of average education show off the studied regularity of their script, but the well educated often scribble illegibly. Mediocre students answer a teacher’s easy questions, but the best students are embarrassed to prove their knowledge of trivial points. Acquaintances show their good intentions by politely ignoring one’s flaws, while close friends show intimacy by teasingly highlighting them. People of moderate ability seek formal credentials to impress employers and society, but the talented often downplay their credentials even if they have bothered to obtain them. A person of average reputation defensively refutes accusations against their character, while a highly respected person finds it demeaning to dignify accusations with a response.
Nick Feltovich, Rick Harbaugh, Ted To
You have such amazing abilities. Doesn’t it gall you to spend your days baking loaves of bread?”
“Should it? Is baking bread less worthy than other work?”
“No, but I wouldn’t call it suited to your talents.”
“I’m very good at it,” she said.
“Chava, I’ve no doubt you’re the best baker in the city. But you can do so much more! Why spend all day making bread when you can lift more than a man’s weight, and walk along the bottom of a river?”
“And how would I use these abilities without calling attention to myself? Would you have me at a construction pit, hauling blocks of stone? Or should I license myself as a tugboat?”
“All right, you have a point. But what about seeing other’s fears and desires? That’s a more subtle talent, and might be worth a lot of money.”
“Never,” she said flatly. “I would never take advantage like that.”
“Why not? You’d make an excellent fortune-teller, or even a confidence-woman. I know a dozen shops on the Bowery that would—”
“Absolutely not!” Only then did she see the smile hidden at the corner of his mouth. “You’re teasing me,” she said.
“Of course I’m teasing. You’d make a terrible confidence-woman. You’d warn off all the marks.”
“I’ll take that as a compliment. Besides, I like my job. It suits me.
Helene Wecker (The Golem and the Jinni (The Golem and the Jinni, #1))
I may as well tell you now, darling, that I don't intend to lose you to an old roué like Balthazar Lebeau."
"Well, after all, half the women in London have been in love with him at one time or another," I teased.
"What qualities, might I ask, does he have that I haven't?"
I considered. "You both have dark, good looks and very blue eyes. You both know the right things to say at the right time. You both know just the right way to hold a woman in your arms."
"I see I shall have to keep you away from him in the future. Or perhaps the more dramatic solution would be best? We'll go about things the way Armand and Durant might have—pistols at dawn!"
"Nonsense," I said, recovering my equilibrium. "You'd never get up so early in the morning!"
"To fight for you, I would," he replied.
Ashley Weaver (An Act of Villainy (Amory Ames Mystery #5))
Well, I don't care," she announced. "I just don't care that he isn't offering a reward. In fact, I'm glad I'm much happier here than I was with any of my guardians."
"I would be, too," Blake said wryly, "If Perriwick and Mrs. Mickle treated me this way."
Caroline turned to him with a wicked smile, the urge to tease him too strong to ignore. "Now, now, don't get snippy because your servants like me best."
Blake started to say something, then just laughed.
Julia Quinn (To Catch an Heiress (Agents of the Crown, #1))
Resting her head on her bent arm, she closed her eyes and tried to focus on something else. Like getting the hell out of here.
I’m not going to urinate in my canteen. I have to drink out of that.
She smiled when Jak’ri’s disgruntled voice came to her. She was too tired to block other people’s thoughts. And the Gathendiens all dosed themselves with some herb to keep their minds private. So Jak’ri’s and Ziv’ri’s were the ones she inadvertently found herself immersed in.
For once, she didn’t mind.
I don’t know why that would bother you, his brother responded dryly. After you drank that liquor from Promeii 7, I would think urine would be a vast improvement.
Though they spoke aloud, their thoughts mirrored their words, enabling her to listen in.
Jak’ri laughed. It probably would. That bura was revolting.
Yet you still drank it.
And won the wager.
Ziv’ri made a grumbly sound. I never should’ve wagered my hovercycle.
Best cycle I ever owned, Jak’ri crowed.
His brother grunted. Did you tell Ava about that?
She raised her eyebrows, surprised to hear Ziv’ri mention her.
No. I think I’ll spare her that one.
Why? Don’t want to tarnish your virile image by describing the week afterward that you spent hanging your head in the lav and regurgitating everything you ate?
Jak’ri laughed. I already tarnished my image when I showed her what I look like now.
Not a wise move. Even Shek’ra wouldn’t want you if she could see you now. You’re far too scrawny to attract a female.
Low masculine laughter accompanied the siblings’ teasing.
What does she look like? Ziv’ri asked.
Yes. All you’ve told me is she looks Lasaran.
A moment passed, and Ava found herself holding her breath as she awaited his answer.
She’s beautiful, Jak’ri said, something like affection tingeing his voice.
Warmth filled her.
Small and delicate like the Lasaran princess.
She was actually three inches taller than Ami. But Jak’ri had been a head taller than her or more, so she supposed anyone a foot shorter would seem small and delicate to him.
She isn’t built like our women, he continued. Her shoulders aren’t as broad. And her chest and back aren’t as muscled.
What about her breasts?
You don’t need to know about her breasts, Jak’ri chastised him. But they’re perfect, plump and round.
She didn’t think he said that last part out loud, thankfully.
Ava glanced down at her modest bosom. She’d always considered her breasts small by society’s standards. Certainly nothing that would stop traffic. But it seemed as though they were actually larger than most Purveli women’s.
And Jak’ri liked them, judging by the way his thoughts drifted to memories of her lacy bra cupping her breasts while they swam and played together in the ocean.
You’re thinking about her breasts now, aren’t you? Ziv’ri asked.
She grinned. Yes, he is, she answered telepathically.
Oh ho! Ziv’ri crowed on a laugh. You’ve made my brother blush, Ava. I haven’t seen his face this red since Mother caught him—
Do not finish that sentence! Jak’ri ordered.
Dianne Duvall (The Purveli (Aldebarian Alliance, #3))
I’m not scared of anything,” he says through gritted teeth, but he’s still holding me, still clenching, refusing to let go. In fact, his face is closer to me than it ever was. Almost close enough … to kiss. I know he wants to. I can see it in the way his lips part when mine do, how his eyes keep zooming in on every inch of my skin as though he wants to lick it. “Remember how much fun we had?” I murmur, teasing him with a hum. The same noise I make when I come. Hard. “Oh … I remember all right,” he says, his voice strenuous. As if he’s trying his best to maintain his composure. I lean in, pressing my body against his. “I’m yours if you want … now … whenever … in whatever way you want,” I whisper into his ear.
Clarissa Wild (Hotel O)
Yard Apes!" yelled Ramona, her name for the sort of boys who always got the best balls, who were always first on the playground, and who chased their soccer balls through other people's hopscotch games.
Beverly Cleary (Ramona Quimby, Age 8 (Ramona, #6))
Those who could only hear the teasing got the lowest (best) scores, suggesting that there was something about voice—the way it’s expressed or the way we process it—that triggers empathy in a way that seeing facial expressions (a more typical measure of empathic accuracy) doesn’t. In other experiments, the researchers found that people who had a conversation in a dark room were better at guessing each other’s mental state, and people who listened to others talk in a dark room were better at it than those who could see the people they were listening to.
Kaitlin Ugolik Phillips (The Future of Feeling: Building Empathy in a Tech-Obsessed World)
When he turned back at the door, she was holding it again, trying it for balance. “I almost forgot,” he told her. “All the best swords have names.” “Like Ice,” she said. She looked at the blade in her hand. “Does this have a name? Oh, tell me.” “Can’t you guess?” Jon teased. “Your very favorite thing.” Arya seemed puzzled at first. Then it came to her. She was that quick. They said it together: “Needle!” The memory of her laughter warmed him on the long ride north.
George R.R. Martin (A Game of Thrones (A Song of Ice and Fire, #1))
You thought your best bet was to find a fan and date her? What if I’d been psychotic?”
“Then I wouldn’t still be here.”
“Oh, you would be. Tied up in my basement.”
He laughed and pressed a kiss against my eyelid that made my stomach go all fluttery. “But my therapist warned me to go slowly and to date like it was 1955.”
I opened my eyes to give him a pointed, teasing look. “You’ve totally failed. We haven’t been to a single sock hop or drive-in, and we haven’t shared even one milk shake.
Sariah Wilson (#Starstruck (#Lovestruck, #1))
oh. Hey, I almost forget. Ash came by earlier.” Her whole body tensed. “He did?” “And he’s still here.” “He is not.” Tami’s expression begged him to be teasing. “Sure, he is. I stashed him in our third best hiding place.” Tami’s expression wavered a while, then settled on bewilderment. “You put the man I love in the haymow?” “He went along with it.
Forthright . (Tamiko and the Two Janitors (Amaranthine Saga #3))
First: make sure you know with whom you are dealing. The tactics in this situation are determined by where your customer stands in the organization. Are you dealing directly with a decision maker? A pure “D” on the DiSC profile? If so, give her the information she asks for. If you are dealing with a person in the middle of a large organization, you have a much tougher task. The trick is to tease him, showing just enough to demonstrate that you are the best company for the job without giving away valuable information. You can say anything to a client, you can show all kinds of examples of how you have solved your other clients’ problems, and you can demonstrate your sterling reputation by trotting out a list of the important companies that have been your customers—but you must never, ever hand over a written proposal full of specific solutions to their problems. Never give the mid-level buyer anything he can pass on to others. Once he has that, you’re toast. Bob tells us that we should provide specific solutions only after a commitment. A real, solid, irrevocable decision to proceed. A purchase order or a deposit. Get them hooked, and then give them everything they ask for and more. Over-deliver. Bathe them with your love. Show them that choosing your company was the best decision they ever made, and make sure that this is true. Then you can ask for a letter of recommendation and referrals. These are what will get you past the next mid-level buyer.
Paul Downs (Boss Life: Surviving My Own Small Business)
going to make the best of it. I knew it was time for a little adventure, the kind that works best when you haven’t got any annoying fiancés in tow. Standing up, I casually
Celia Styles (TEASE: An MMF Romance)
You can’t do a cartwheel? I mean, can you even ride a bike, Harper?” she teased. I handed Ella a mirror. “Finished.” I grabbed my bag and pulled out some of my favorite makeup. “And to answer your question, Tori…sometimes.
Yesenia Vargas (#BestFriendsForever Series #1-3)
The best time for your dreams to come true is when you’re wide awake.
Melanie Shawn (Teasing Destiny (Wishing Well, Texas, #1))
Life leads us into its spaces slowly. We’re not sure what awaits us next. We set out to explore it, moving circumspectly, with a sense of anticipation then suddenly it opens up and teases us with its transparency.
I’m in no doubts.” Jim seemed to mock himself with a rueful grin, and pushed up to his feet. “If we’re going out, I’d best organize some clothes.” Ryan looked him up and down with sultry eyes, half-naked as he was. “Don’t dress on my account.” “On yours? No. But I think we may get thrown out of the best restaurant in Scarborough if I don’t put something on.” Jim winked at him, teasing, beguiling, and stepped out of the room.
Mel Keegan (The Deceivers)
Yeah Yeah Yeah. I'm not mr frown, petunia. Just...
Oh they're the best tease ever! Do you go to school for that?
It's the most beautiful thing I ever did see. Everything about it, oh. my. god.
I'm so full of that thing. Gone crazy over it. Turned to whimper.
It's got a bark to die for. That thing is a lure.
Oh, you'll get used to it, they say. I hope so!
If I could wrestle with its head, I'm sure I'd be booming by now.
That thing is my money.
I can't stand running a year+ long marathon for a maybe. My only hope is in the markets. Win big or lose all. Or you know.
I'm looking for a pen.
I hope not, either. I guess we’ll find out, won’t we?” He turned his head to flash a glance that was almost teasing at her. Nearly a quarter of his face was cleared of brash, and he was starting to look different. Not quite so brutish. “If you don’t work around here, you don’t eat,” Susannah said, and turned back into the house. When she returned a few minutes later, she was carrying a pair of gray hose she had just finished knitting and one of her father’s shirts. The shirt was sure to be hopelessly too small for him, but it was the best she could do for the moment. Certainly it was better than having him go around bare-chested. What was left of his own shirt was fit for nothing but the ragbag, once it was clean. “When you’ve finished, you may put these on. I don’t know how things are done in England, but around here we’re careful of our modesty. I expect you to keep yourself decently covered in future.” “I’ve finished.” Connelly turned away from the washstand, a towel to his face as he wiped away the soap. “And speaking of modesty, given the fact that you’ve already seen me in the altogether—it was you who bathed me, wasn’t it?—I don’t see that it matters.” “Caring for an unclothed sick man is a very different matter from being constantly confronted with an unclothed healthy one, especially in a household that consists mostly of young ladies. I’ve my sisters to think of.” “Ah, the three twittering birds from the auction. I remember.” He finished with the towel as he spoke and tossed it in the general direction of the nightshirt. About to inform him that the pile of laundry waiting to be washed was the other way and that he might add towel and nightshirt to it, Susannah never got the words out. Her attention
Karen Robards (Nobody's Angel)
As we step out into the unseasonably warm December afternoon, I focus on Chase’s comforting presence. His footfalls, his breathing, the swing of his arms. Having his warm body close to mine is like the ultimate tease. Because he makes me so happy, happier than I’ve ever been, even after something like Kyle.
Emma St. Clair (Falling for Your Best Friend (Love Clichés, #4))
What’s wrong, Bluebell?” he asked, using both hands to play now.
“I met this guy and I just wonder if he’ll be okay with me, you know, touching you and going to the opera and stuff?”
“We are friends and your possessive boyfriend will need to accept how you are not his pet.”
My gaze met Tyson’s and I’d be damned if he wasn’t jealous. While I shouldn’t have smiled, my mouth reacted quicker than my brain.
“Yes, you and I have been friends for a very long time,” I said, still grinning despite my best ef-forts to stop.
Sensing I was teasing him, Tyson lifted a dark brow and smirked. “You are no one’s possession.
Angela Horn (Blue Sacrifice (Blue Davison, #1))
How was your day?" Adam asked.
"Long, very, very long."
"You didn't have fun with Junior?"
"Yea I had the best time changing his diapers," Patrice replied teasingly....
"How was your day?" Patrice asked hoping she would never wake up from this dream. She wanted to prolong it.
"Same as yours long, but I didn't have to change diapers, " he replied smiling.
Daria White (My What if Christmas Wish)
You better not bother the Chickcharnies while you're out here. Best to stay on their good side." The moonlight cast shadows on his face, but it was easy to see his teasing grin.
She raised her eyebrows. "The Chickcharnies?"
He pointed up into the palms and distant pines. "They're kind of like birds. They live up in the treetops --only on Andros Island and nowhere else in the world."
Cyn scanned the darkness among the high branches. "What do you mean 'kind of like birds'?"
He shrugged one shoulder. "Like owls. But they have three fingers, three toes, and they hang from the trees by their tails. You can spot their red eyes when they catch the light."
Cyn clenched her teeth and squinted up into the trees, scanning for a pair of red eyes aimed her way. "They sound a little creepy."
"If you see one, and you show it respect," Trent said, "you'll have good luck for the rest of your life."
Cyn could use some good luck, for sure. She concentrated harder on finding those red eyes. None in sight, she furrowed her brow and set her gaze on Trent. "What do they do if you bother them?"
His grin widened into that stop-your-heart smile that Cyn was finding harder to resist. "They turn your head around backward."
"It's probably really painful," Trent said.
Cyn swatted his arm, coming up against tight muscle. "You made that up."
"Not really. It's island lore. People think the Chickcharnies descended from a big flightless owl they've found in fossils."
"Have you ever seen one?" she asked skeptically.
"Not yet. But you never know if one's around. I'd like to keep my head on straight, so I don't tease about them."....
Suddenly a huge screeching bird swooped down out of the trees, flew several feet over their heads, and veered up into a nearby copse of palms.
Cyn yelped and ducked low. Trent pulled her close, tucking her against his chest. "Holy crap!" she said, "That was one pissed-off Chickcharnie. Hold on to your head.
Tracy March (The Marriage Match (Suddenly Smitten, #3))
Who you going to call when it looks like you’re really going to have to survive the zombie apocalypse?
I knew exactly who to call. ‘Ted, you know how you complained that I had a zombie apocalypse and didn’t invite you?’
‘Consider yourself invited.’
He gave a small chuckle, the way some men will do when you say something sexy.
‘You’re excited. After what we saw in the hospital and the basement you’re excited about this,’ I said.
‘Yeah, I am.’
‘There’s something wrong with you, you do know that, right?’ I said, and laughed.
‘Yeah, I do know.’
‘Bring your flamethrower.’
He gave that excited sex chuckle again. ‘For real, you’re not just teasing this time?’
‘Zombie reports from all over the area and it’s still daylight. It’s just going to get worse after dark.’
He gave that low, deep laugh again. ‘You say the best things.’
‘Conversations like this is one of the reasons people think we’re doing each other.’
‘Maybe,’ he said.
‘Someone on your end of the phone said something you didn’t like about us, or me, and you’re rubbing their face in it.’
‘Would I do that?’ The words were innocent; the tone was not. Someone must have done something that truly pissed him off for him to play into it like this, because he knew it hurt my reputation worse than his.
‘Get here as soon as you can, and let me know which of the guys with you pissed you off and I’ll help you play with him, between killing zombies.’
‘You sweet-talking thing, you,’ he said.
That made me laugh. We hung up with both of us laughing. There were so many reasons that Edward and I were friends.
Laurell K. Hamilton (Affliction (Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter, #22))
You do throw the best parties.’ It was Edward in his most cheerful Ted voice walking across the grass toward us. He had two SWAT officers with him, too.
‘If you didn’t bring your flamethrower, I’m going to be disappointed,’ I said, smiling.
‘It’s in the car, Anita; you know I never tease unless I’m planning to come across.’
I smiled at him and gave a small eye flick behind him. He made the smallest eye-slide to the side Paris was standing on, which meant Paris was the guy who had been giving Edward enough grief about our supposed love affair that he’d begun to play with him.
‘I know you’re always good for anything you promise, Ted.’ I put a smile to go with the teasing tone.
Laurell K. Hamilton (Affliction (Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter, #22))
Within minutes, the other angels followed the sound of the collapsed tunnel and found Mikael’s location. They were able to dislodge enough of the rock and pull his broken body from the rubble. He had been severely crushed. Gabriel held him. “I can bring him back to the surface to heal.” Raphael said, “That leaves five. We can split up and try to surround the mole. He can’t hide here forever.” They heard the sound of a howl. “Dire wolves,” said Uriel. “We can’t chase him here forever.” Dire wolves were vicious, fanged black hounds of hell almost as tall as a man. Raphael said, “He must have bred them down here. There could be dozens.” “Or hundreds,” said Uriel. The angels could kill dozens of the wolves. But hundreds was another matter altogether. Several of them had almost been overwhelmed by a hundred dire wolves in the days of the giant King Arba, while rescuing Abraham and Sarah from the clutches of the Anakim in Kiriath-arba. They were rescued by a hundred archers. But they didn’t have a hundred archers down in this dungeon of dread darkness. “Take Mikael to safety,” said Uriel. “The rest of you draw the wolves back up to the surface.” They looked at Uriel with fear. Gabriel said, “No, Uriel. We can do this together.” Uriel grasped the leather harness of the special weapon strapped to his back. “I must do this alone.” They all knew what it meant. Uriel had the most sensitive senses. He was the best tracker of all of them. Gabriel protested more, “I will not let you.” “You have no choice.” They heard the sound of wolves getting closer. “And I have no time to quibble with you, Gabriel. Leave — all of you. Draw them after you.” Gabriel teared up. What Uriel was going to do was akin to suicide for humans. Raphael said, “He’s right.” They agreed silently. Gabriel went and grasped his friend in a bear hug that he didn’t seem to want to let go. “My brother.” “Stop your pouting, Gabriel. It’s only until the judgment.” Gabriel pulled away with an angry look in his face. It softened, and he said with a smirk, “You will finally outdo me, little friend.” Uriel gave him a dirty look. Little friend. There was still time to tease. “I outdid you a long time ago,” said Uriel with a grin. Gabriel added, “But there is still Armageddon. You don’t know what I might be capable of.” Uriel said, “Go. We’ll have all eternity to debate that.” They turned to leave. But their delay had lost them time. The underworld dire wolves were upon them. Fifty glowing eyes locked on them, approaching slowly, ready to pounce. There was only enough room to fight against one or two wolves at a time through the narrow passages. Gabriel stood at the back, carrying the broken form of Mikael, who was starting to heal, but not able to fight yet. The other four approached the wolves in single file.
Brian Godawa (Jesus Triumphant (Chronicles of the Nephilim, #8))
Mikael, the largest and best groomed of the three, was the guardian prince of Israel, and tended to be protective of his ward. He offered a wineskin to Jesus, who took it and gulped with gratitude. After a moment of silence, Jesus wiped his beard of the wine and said, “You need a better sense of humor, Gabriel.” Gabriel pouted with frustration at being ganged up on. Uriel, his perpetual nemesis was one thing. But being teased by the Master was quite another. Jesus said, “And Uriel, you had better deliver on that bread you promised.” Uriel smiled again and held out a loaf of Mary’s best bread. “Baked two hours ago by your mother.” Jesus grabbed it. Mikael said, “Remember, do not eat too quickly. It is bad for your digestion after fasting.” “Thank you for your ministering spirits,” said Jesus, and took a big hungry bite out of the loaf. Uriel muttered, “Your mother should open a bakery. Can I have a bite?” Mikael was not so lighthearted. He knew that the challenge had been declared. The road to war had begun.
Brian Godawa (Jesus Triumphant (Chronicles of the Nephilim, #8))
A beast he might be, but he would always keep her safe. That much she knew beyond doubt. If not for her own sanity, then to at least protect his own life. He was her beast, and never had she been more grateful for it. Devyl hesitated at Mara’s embrace. At the warmth of her breath on his skin as she clung to him. Never once had she touched him so intimately. She sank her hand into his hair and fisted it there to hold him as if he were sacred. As if she were desperate to keep him close. “Thank you,” she breathed against his ear, causing chills to rise up along his arms and back. And other things to rise he was best to not think upon. He gave her a bashful grin. “You’ve got to quit falling into such messes, my lady. One day I might not find you and then what would happen to us?” She laughed nervously. “Perhaps you should teach me to use a sword, then?” He arched a brow at her teasing tone and knew better than what she suggested. “A Deruvian swordmaiden?” “Why not? You’re a Druid warrior.” She had a point. It would be no more unlikely or out of character than his own past. “Perhaps I shall teach you, then.
Sherrilyn Kenyon (Deadmen Walking (Deadman's Cross #1))
Shouldn’t he admit his feelings?” Maude called out to him. “What?” Matt asked. “The song,” she reminded him. “If he’s feeling so confused, I guess the best thing to do is admit them to the object of his affection,” Maude suggested innocently. “What if he’s afraid of rejection?” Matt asked gazing fondly at Maude who was presently making a brave attempt at skating backwards. He was surprised to feel the smallest hint of self-doubt. Maude was nothing like the other girls he’d dated, and she was completely immune to his charm. It probably didn’t help that he preferred teasing her than actually admitting his feelings for her. “I
Anna Adams (A French Girl in New York (The French Girl, #1))
Where were you planning on heading next, then, if not Australia?” Fiona asked.
“Oh, I’ll just toss a dart at the map like I usually do,” Kerry said, as blithely as she could.
Fiona eyed her closely, as if checking her sincerity. “Well, whenever you do head back out--wherever and with whomever that might be--we’ll make sure Gus hires someone to help him with the pub. So, you know, don’t let that part affect your decision making or anything.”
“‘Wherever or with whomever’?” Kerry repeated with a roll of her eyes.
Fiona beamed sweetly again. “Just saying.”
“All kidding aside, I’m not the settling down type, Fi.” At the flash of real sadness Kerry saw flicker through her too-optimistic-for-her-own-good sister, she made a show of sliding Fiona’s arm out from where it had been looped through hers and dropping it as if she was suddenly contagious. “Don’t go trying to spread all your bride cooties on me,” she teased, hoping to shift them back to their more comfortable pattern of affectionately swapping insults, and far, far away from delving in to the fears and worries that were truly the reason behind her defensive attitude.
Kerry knew her family and extended family--hell, everyone in the Cove--only wanted what was best for her, wanted her to be happy. She just wanted the space and time to figure out what, exactly, that was going to be, all by herself. “Some of us aren’t meant for home and hearth. For white picket fences. Or silly cattle dogs and stone fire pits.”
It was only when Fiona’s gaze sharpened again that she realized she’d said that last part out loud. A knowing smile played at the corners of Fiona’s mouth and her eyes sparked right back to matchmaker life.
“Don’t,” Kerry warned.
“Whatever do you mean?” Fiona said with false innocence. “I hear what you’re saying. And I believe you. At least, I believe you believe you.
Donna Kauffman (Starfish Moon (Brides of Blueberry Cove, #3))
What made you come back?” Kitty jerked at his sudden question. She sputtered for a moment then laughed. “What made me come back? What do you mean?” He shrugged with one shoulder, never moving his gaze away from her. “At Eliza’s and Thomas’s wedding last year you were convinced that returning to Boston and living with your aunt was the best course to take. But it appears you have changed your mind. So, what made you come back?” “Is that why you followed me? To ask me that?” Her face burned, but she feigned composure and looked at him with as much ease as she could marshal. “Boston is too dangerous, you know that.” “’Tis true, I am well aware of what Boston and its residents suffer. But I cannot believe that was the only reason you returned.” Training her mouth to reveal nothing more than a slight grin, she strained to keep her pulse quiet. She stepped toward the fire, resting her hand atop the chair, acting more casual than she felt. “If there were any other reason, do you think that I would share such information with you? Surely, Nathaniel, I cannot share all my secrets.” “Secrets? Well, now I am curious.” Kitty rubbed the lace on her gloves and emitted a warm, genuine laugh that eased the strain in her voice. She offered an impish smile. “I came back for several reasons, if you must know. As I mentioned, ‘twas for matters of safety that Henry Donaldson insisted I return as well as—” “Donaldson?” Kitty peered over her shoulder, hiding the grin that surged at the undeniable question in Nathaniel’s eyes. Could he be... nay, not possible. She kept her focus. “Aye, Henry Donaldson. You remember him, do you not?” “Aye, of course. I just... I just hadn’t known he was still... around. He was always a good friend and I admire him, despite his poor choice of allegiances.” Nathaniel’s interested expression stayed lifted, but the light in his eyes went flat. “Are you... have you been seeing much of him of late?” “I have,” she said. “He’s a close friend and I admire him very much.” Nathaniel’s expression didn’t change, but his Adam’s apple bobbed and he cleared his throat. “I see.” She once again toyed with the fabric of her gloves, unsure what else to do with her hands. Quickly focusing on the subject of their conversation, she stared back into the fire. “Henry said it was too dangerous for me to stay despite my protestations. With Father gone and Eliza here—and since our home was destroyed that December… well, my home is here now.” The scent of smoke wafting from the fireplace in front of her snatched the horrid vision from its hiding place in her mind. Instantly she witnessed anew the roaring flames that devoured her treasured childhood home, taking with it all her cherished memories and replacing them with ash. She turned to Nathaniel, his face drawn as if he too relived the tragedy. The bond they’d shared that night had forged a friendship that could never be shaken. Nathaniel stepped forward, the look of tenderness so rich in his eyes it wound around her shoulders like a warm cloak. “I can well understand that, Kitty. Donaldson was right in advising you to return.” Then, as if the heaviness were too much, he shrugged and sighed with added gaiety to his tone. “Well, I will admit that Sandwich didn’t feel the same with you gone, that’s for certain.” She tipped her head with a smirk. “You pined for my return?” “With the pains of an anguished soul.” “Lying is a sin, Nathaniel,” she teased. Nathaniel laughed, his broad smile exposing his straight teeth. “All right, if you want the truth I pined more for your cooking, and more specifically for your carrot pudding. Are you satisfied?” “I knew it.
Amber Lynn Perry (So True a Love (Daughters of His Kingdom #2))
Ben ducked beneath the arbor and paused by the fishpond when a memory crept upon him like a shadow. This was the spot where Alice had first read to him from her manuscript. He could still hear her voice, as if it had somehow been captured by the leaves around them and was being played back now, just for him, like a gramophone recording.
"I've had a brilliant idea," he heard her say, so young and innocent, so full of joy. "I've been working on it all morning and I don't like to boast, but I'm quite sure it's going to be my best yet."
"Is it?" Ben had said with a smile. He'd been teasing, but Alice had been far too excited to notice. She'd leapt on with telling him about her idea, the plot, the characters, the twist, and the intensity of her focus- her passion- changed her face completely, bringing an animated beauty to her features. He hadn't noticed she was beautiful until she spoke to him of her stories. Her cheeks flushed and her eyes shone with intelligence. And she was 'very' clever. It took a certain kind of clever to figure out a puzzle- to look ahead and see through all the possible scenarios, to be so strategic. Ben didn't have that kind of brain.
In the beginning he'd simply enjoyed her enthusiasm, the indulgence of being told a story while he worked, the chance to bat ideas back and forth, which was so much like play. She made him feel young, he supposed; her youthful preoccupation with her work, with the very moment they were in, was intoxicating. It made his adult worries disappear.
Kate Morton (The Lake House)
Pausing for a breath, he uses his hand to keep Patrick right up at the edge before shoving Patrick’s cock back in his mouth, lapping at the leaking head and sucking deep into his throat. Patrick growls, his deep voice vibrating in the back of Will’s head like an urgent, needy buzz, and humps his mouth in frustration. “Stop teasing.” Will hums and taps Patrick’s squeezing hole in rhythm to his slurps. He’s happy with Patrick’s cock in his mouth, but the low hum that starts in his veins, an emptiness he recognizes as his blood sugar dropping, means he needs to have dinner soon. So he stops teasing and reaches for the open bottle of juice on the coffee table. He takes a few swigs, and then starts sucking just the way Patrick likes best: pulling his entire shaft in, then sliding up with a long, wet drag before diving down again. “Puddin’-pop,” Patrick grits out. “Yeah, yeah—like that.” A spurt of liquid hits his tongue, and Will pulls back to lick at the slit. Patrick’s cock thrums against his palm, rigid and throbbing. “Tastes good,” Will murmurs and then swoops down again. “Ungh,” Patrick grunts, tugging Will’s hair. “Get me off.” Will hollows his cheeks, sucks back up, and uses his hand to jerk the base of Patrick’s cock as he works. “Yes, yeah.” Patrick arches his hips up and his stomach tenses as he clenches Will’s hair in his fists. “Suck it.” Will slurps hard and steady while Patrick whispers filthy things and struggles to get there or hold back, thighs clenching and stomach quivering. “Gonna come,” Patrick groans. Will gets ready to swallow, and Patrick’s thighs jump and his asshole pulses against Will’s finger. “Fuck!” Patrick curls up, his hips bucking, and his cock shoves deep into Will’s throat. Choking, tangy spurts of come fill Will’s mouth, but he swallows all of it down while Patrick shakes and curses, tugging hard against Will’s hair. “Stop, stop,” Patrick whines, holding Will down on his dick despite his words. “Too much. Stop.” Will lets Patrick’s cock twitch in his mouth until Patrick loosens his grip, and then he pulls off with a wet, sweet slurp. Patrick falls back to the sofa, panting and rolling his head limply back and forth. Sweat shines on his forehead and in the notch at the base of his neck. He’s trembling all over, and Will beams up at him, his own cock throbbing against the placket of his jeans. “Good?” “A+ cock sucking,” Patrick whimpers. “Wins all the awards.” “I know.” “Mmm.” Will
Leta Blake (Will & Patrick Meet the Mob (Wake Up Married, #5))
ON HER WAY home from the restaurant, Rylann’s cell phone rang. For a moment, as she dug around in her purse to find it, she wondered if it would be Kyle, calling her about the Scene and Heard column. She could practically hear his low, teasing voice already. Just calling to check up on my favorite brunette bombshell, counselor. Thought I’d see if you’d be up for round four tonight.
Rylann finally found her phone.
Oh. Just her mother.
“Mom…hi,” she answered.
“Looks like I was right to warn you about that Kyle Rhodes.”
Rylann stopped at a four-way intersection, immediately on high alert. How could her mother, down in Florida, possibly know anything? So she played it cool. “Not sure what you mean, Mom.”
“I was just reading the Trib online,” Helen said. “The Twitter Terrorist made the Scene and Heard column again.”
“You read Scene and Heard?” Rylann asked.
“Sure. How else am I supposed to keep up with all the local gossip while we’re down here for the winter?”
And by winter, she meant early May. “I haven’t seen this morning’s column,” Rylann said. And technically, that was true—she’d only heard it. “I was busy this morning, then went to lunch with Rae. I’m just walking home now.”
“Apparently, he was spotted at some hot new nightclub. Leaving with a mysterious brunette bombshell in a red dress. Probably some skank he met that night.”
Then her mother changed the subject, cheerfully moving on. “Anyway, what’s new with you, sweetie? Did you do anything exciting last night?”
Yes. Kyle Rhodes. “Um, nothing special. Rae and I went out for a few drinks.” Rylann figured it was best to gloss over the rest of the details, seeing how her mother had just called her a skank.
Julie James (About That Night (FBI/US Attorney, #3))
Well, I know you don’t want to talk about it anymore, but I signed you up for that computer match thingy.”
Why is it that so many people over the age of sixty refer to everything on the Internet as some sort of “computer thing”?
Helen was trying to contain her laughter. “Laura, do you mean Match.com?”
My father was groaning audibly now.
“Yes, that’s it. Charles helped me put up her profile.”
“Oh my god, Mother. Are you kidding me?”
Helen jumped out of her seat and started running toward the computer in my dad’s home office, which was right off the dining room.
“Get out of there, Helen,” my dad yelled, but she ignored him.
I chased after her, but she stuck her arm out, blocking me from the monitor. “No, I have to see it!” she shouted.
“Stop it, girls,” my mother chided.
“Move, bitch.” We were very mature for our age.
“This is the best day of my life. Your mommy made a Match profile for you!”
“Actually, Chuck made it,” my mother yelled from across the hall.
Helen typed my name in quickly. My prom picture from nine years ago popped up on the screen. My brother had cropped Steve Dilbeck out of the photo the best he could, but you could still see Steve’s arms wrapped around my purple chiffon–clad waist. “You’re joking. You’re fucking joking.”
“Language, Charlotte!” my dad yelled.
“Mom,” I cried, “he used my prom photo! What is wrong with him?” I still had braces at eighteen. I had to wear them for seven years because my orthodontist said I had the worst teeth he had ever seen. You know how sharks have rows of teeth? Yeah, that was me. I blame my mother and the extended breastfeeding for that one, too. My brother, Chuck the Fuck, used to tease me, saying it was leftovers of the dead Siamese twin I had absorbed in utero. My brother’s an ass, so it’s pretty awesome that he set up this handy dating profile for me. In case you hadn’t noticed, our names are Charlotte and Charles. Just more parental torture. Would it be dramatic to call that child abuse?
Underneath my prom photo, I read the profile details while Helen laughed so hard she couldn’t breath.
My name is Charlotte and I am an average twenty-seven year-old. If you looked up the word mediocre in the dictionary you would see a picture of me—more recent than this nine-year-old photo, of course, because at least back then I hadn’t inked my face like an imbecile.
Did I forget to mention that I have a tiny star tattooed under my left eye? Yes, I’d been drunk at the time. It was a momentary lapse of judgment. It would actually be cute if it was a little bigger, but it’s so small that most people think it’s a piece of food or a freckle. I cover it up with makeup.
I like junk food and watching reality TV. My best friend and I like to drink Champagne because it makes us feel sophisticated, then we like to have a farting contest afterward. I’ve had twelve boyfriends in the last five years so I’m looking for a lifer. It’s not a coincidence that I used the same term as the one for prisoners ineligible for parole.
“Chuck the Fuck,” Helen squeaked through giggles.
I turned and glared at her. “He still doesn’t know that you watched him jerk off like a pedophile when he was fourteen.”
“He’s only three years younger than us.”
“Four. And I will tell him. I’ll unleash Chuck the Fuck on you if you don’t quit.”
My breasts are small and my butt is big and I have a moderately hairy upper lip. I also don’t floss, clean my retainer, or use mouthwash with any regularity.
“God, my brother is so obsessed with oral hygiene!”
“That’s what stood out to you? He said you have a mustache.” Helen grinned.
“Girls, get out of there and come clear the table,” my dad yelled.
“What do you think the password is?”
“Try ‘Fatbutt,’ ” I said.
“Yep, that worked. Okay, I’ll change your profile while you clear the table.
Renee Carlino (Wish You Were Here)
Why don’t you have a girlfriend, Matt?” I ask. And I really want to know, because it’s unfathomable to me that he’s single. He’s handsome, and he’s so kind. He shakes a finger at me. “There’s a story there,” he says. I settle into the sofa a little deeper and turn so that my feet are pointed toward him, my legs extended. My toes almost touch his thigh. But then he lifts my feet and slides under them, scooting closer to me. “I was in love with a girl. For a long time.” “What happened to her?” I ask. He starts to tickle across my toes, and then his fingertips drag down the top of my foot. It’s a gentle sweep, and it feels so good that I don’t want him to stop. His fingers play absently as he starts to talk. “When I got the diagnosis,” he says, “she couldn’t deal with it.” “Cancer?” I ask. He nods. His fingers drag up and down my shin, and he slides around to stroke the back of my knee. I don’t stop him when his hand slides beneath my skirt, although I do tense up. He smiles when he finds the top of my thigh-highs, and he unclips the little fastener that attaches them to my garters. He repeats the action on the other side, his hands teasing the sensitive skin of my inner thigh as he frees the stocking and rolls it down. He pulls it all the way over my foot, and does the same with the other side. I am suddenly really glad I shaved my legs this morning. I wiggle my toes at him, and he starts to stroke me again. I don’t ever want him to stop. “This okay?” he asks. But he’s not looking at my face. He’s looking at my legs. “Yeah,” I breathe. “Keep talking. You got diagnosed…” “I got diagnosed, and the prognosis wasn’t good. I went through chemo and got a little better. But then I needed a second round. Things didn’t look good, and we were flat broke. I couldn’t work at the tattoo parlor anymore because my immune system was too weak, so I had no money coming in. I was poor and sick, and she didn’t love me enough to walk the path with me.” He shrugs, but I can tell he’s serious. “She cheated with my best friend.” He shrugs again. “And that’s the end of that sad story.” “You still love her?” I ask. I don’t breathe, waiting for his answer. He shakes his head and looks up. “I did love her for a long time. And I haven’t been looking for a relationship. I haven’t dated anyone since her. But I’m not in love with her anymore. I know that now.” “Why now?” I ask. He looks directly into my eyes and says, “Because I met you, and I feel really hopeful that you’ll want to go after something real with me. I know we just met and all, but I was serious about making you fall in love with me.” He laughs. “Then you hit me in the nose tonight, and I knew it was meant to be.” “What?” I have no idea what he’s talking about. “When my brother Logan met Emily, she punched him in the face. And when Pete and Reagan first started dating, she hit him in the nose.” He reaches up and touches his nose gently. “So, when you hit me tonight, I just knew it was meant to be.” He grins. “I hope you feel the same way, because I really want to see where this thing is going to go.” “So the women your brothers fell in love with, they committed bodily harm to them and that’s how you guys knew it was real?” “We kind of have a rule. If a woman punches you in the face, you have to marry her.” He laughs. “I didn’t punch you.” “Same difference,” he says. “That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.
Tammy Falkner (Maybe Matt's Miracle (The Reed Brothers, #4))
Why are you here?” I ask. He shrugs. “I thought you might want some company.” His gaze searches mine, and it’s so intense that I have to break away. “I figured you’d be too worried about your nuts to come around me again,” I tease. Laughter seems to be the best way to get around this man’s poignant pauses. “You let me worry about my nuts.” He laughs and looks down. “Well, you can worry about them, too, but I take full responsibility for their safety.” I laugh. He’s really pretty funny. “We can both worry about your nuts,” I say with a smile.
Tammy Falkner (Calmly, Carefully, Completely (The Reed Brothers, #3))
Things have been really interesting in your little bar,” Mel said. “A little tense and steamy.” He laughed. “Think someone should take Luke aside and warn him about this place?” “I thought you’d finally learned your lesson,” she teased him. “You’ve been in the business of almost every romantic relationship in this town….” “Yeah, but this one’s different. The second Shelby saw him, it was a target lock on. She wants him. Can you see the struggle on his face? He’s getting lines.” “Yeah, what’s that about?” Mel asked. “She’s adorable. You’d think he’d be thrilled.” “Well, the first night he met her he said he took one look at her and thought he was going to be arrested. He might be having a little trouble with her age.” “Phooey,” Mel said. “There’s quite a nice difference in our ages.” She grabbed his thigh. “I’m catching up with you, however.” “Then there’s the general,” Jack said. “Kind of intimidating…” “Oh, Walt’s a pussycat,” she said. “And I think he likes Luke. They have the army in common.” “Luke’s either going to give in or explode,” Jack said. “How do you know he hasn’t? Given in.” “Have you taken a good look at him? At his posture, his eyes? Believe me, he’d be a lot looser. He hasn’t unloaded in a long time.” “Jack!” she said. “And the funny thing is, Shelby’s downright serene,” Jack said, completely ignoring his wife’s scold. “She’s a very unusual woman.” “What do you mean?” “Have you looked at yourself in the mirror when it’s been a long time for us?” he asked. “It’s all over your face when you need to be taken care of.” He grinned at her. “It is not!” she said, giving him a whack on the arm. But she laughed at him, and secretly knew he was right. She also knew why Shelby didn’t look that way. Shelby, virginal, hadn’t been satisfied by a man yet; she didn’t ache with longing for her lover. “It’s hardly ever been a long time for us,” she pointed out. “Which is how I like it,” he said. “Then take the general,” he said. “Talk about a satisfied man…” “You can’t possibly know that. Walt neither looks nor acts any differently than he ever did,” she insisted. “The general looks like a beautiful woman moved in next door and he’s doing his best to be a good neighbor. He’s got a twinkle in his eye and a very sly grin.” Mel turned toward him and narrowed her eyes. “Do you really think you know what facial expressions correspond exactly to a man’s getting laid?” “I do,” he said with a smile. “In fact, I consider myself something of an expert.” She
Robyn Carr (Temptation Ridge)
You weren't just teasing me, were you?" "About what?" "About your having wanted to do this for nearly two years?" She paused, her fingertips still against his lips, and gazed into his eyes. "No, I wasn't just teasing you. I once told you that I've always loved you, Charles. But I would never, ever have acted on that. Not with you betrothed to Juliet." "And how do you feel about me now that I am a free man?" "I still love you. Of course." "Would you marry me if I asked you?" "I . . . I don't know, Charles. You were born to something I will never know, can never be. I'm afraid that I could never fit into your world. That you would, eventually, come to resent me." "Juliet was not of my world either. Do you think I would have resented her?" "Yes, but for different reasons." "Well then, do you think that Gareth will come to resent her?" "I don't know," she said honestly. And then, in a little voice: "Are you asking me to marry you?" "I . . . I am asking myself if I am ready to ask you to marry me. Does that make sense, Amy? With all my heart, I want you as my wife, as my lifelong companion, as my best friend forevermore — but I am so afraid, after all that has happened to me, that I will let you down. That I am not worthy of you. You think you don't deserve me, because of the differences in our backgrounds. Well, I don't think I deserve you, because I'm but a mere shell of the man I once was, and you are entitled to far more than that." "Charles —" "No, please. Hear me out. When I feel confident in my abilities again, when I am once again the man I was before that fateful day in April, then . . . then, Amy, I will feel worthy of you. Then I will ask you to be my wife, and by God, you had better accept." She shook her head and gazed at him with a mixture of love, frustration, and affection. "Oh, Charles." "What?" "You're doing it again. Being the perfectionist, all or nothing." "I know." He grinned. "But you're doing it again, too." "Doing what?" "Belittling yourself." He
Danelle Harmon (The Beloved One (The De Montforte Brothers, #2))
Such a woeful face!" he teased, adjusting the overcoat. "Cheer up, lest they all think you do not want me!" "It's not that, Lord Gareth." "Then what is it?" "It doesn't matter. Come, let's just get on with it." Let's just get on with it. Her air of resigned defeat alarmed and hurt him. What was wrong? Did she find him wanting? Was she angry with him, thinking he was marrying her only to get back at Lucien? Or was she — please God, no — comparing him to Charles and finding him lacking? After all, that's what everyone else had always done. As he offered his elbow, she stayed him with gentle pressure on his arm. "But then again, maybe the reverend's right, Lord Gareth," she said slowly, for his ears alone. "I'm just a colonial nobody, and you can do much better than me." "I'm not even going to honor that remark with an answer," he said with false brightness. Bloody hell. Is it Charles? "And furthermore, I think it's time we dispense with the 'Lord Gareth' and 'Miss Paige' bit, don't you? After all, we shall soon be married." "Marriage is not a union in which to enter lightly —" "I can assure you, my sweet, we are not entering it lightly. You need a husband. Charlotte needs a father. And I —" he grinned and dramatically clapped a hand to his chest before executing a little bow — "am in a position to help you both. One cannot get any more serious than that, eh?" "This isn't funny, Lord Gareth." "It's not so very terrible, either." "I don't think this is quite what Charles had in mind when he bade me to come to England —" "Look Juliet, Charles is dead. Whatever he had in mind no longer matters. You and I are alive, and we must seek the best solution to your — and Charlotte's — predicament." He lifted her chin with his finger and smiled down into her troubled eyes. "Now, let's see some joy on that pretty face of yours. I don't want my friends to think you're miserable about marrying me." Juliet
Danelle Harmon (The Wild One (The de Montforte Brothers, #1))
sounded like another language entirely. I felt relieved, momentarily, to be a relatively worldly Lubavitcher, even if I didn’t entirely fit in with the Crown Heights crowd. — Much to my disappointment, Miri was rarely to be seen. Most days she left the apartment around ten in a giddy rush and returned in the early evening with armloads of shopping bags, only to leave again for dinner with her friends. But one morning, when Leah was otherwise engaged, I was finally recruited for shomeres service. We were going to Ratfolvi’s, in Flatbush, to pick up the sheitel that Miri would be required to wear as a married woman. Pulling up to a residential building, we let ourselves into Mrs. Ratfolvi’s wig shop/apartment and sat down in the reception area, where four or five women were chatting away on a damask sofa and chairs. While we waited our turn, I examined the rows of wigs on display: there were various shades of brunette, blonde, and ginger; short, teased bouffants and glamorous, shoulder-length falls; wigs encased in rollers and wigs that were fully styled, needing nothing more than a final shpritz of hair spray. They were set upon Styrofoam heads complete with turned-up noses, high cheekbones, and luscious lips that looked like they could come alive at any moment. I longed to get my hands on a brush and a pair of scissors so that I could create my own visions of tonsorial loveliness. I did this from time to time to my dolls, to my mother’s great irritation, and here was a whole wall of victims. When Miri’s name was called, she plunked herself into the salon chair and pulled the silk scarf off her ponytail. I stood as close as I could without getting in the way. From conversations that I’d overheard between my mother and her sisters, I knew that Mrs. Ratfolvi was considered “the best,” and I was eager to watch her at work. The “rat” in her name had led me to expect someone old and unattractive, but she was actually a nicely put-together middle-aged woman. The receptionist brought over a plastic case about the size of a chubby toddler. In one expert motion, Mrs. Ratfolvi clicked it open, withdrew the fully styled wig on its Styrofoam head
Chaya Deitsch (Here and There: Leaving Hasidism, Keeping My Family)
It’s wonderful to see you falling in love at last, Caleb. I was beginning to think I’d never dance at your wedding.” Caleb went to the porch swing and sat down beside her, taking her hand in his and giving her knuckles a brief kiss. He didn’t know if he was in love, but he wasn’t about to spoil Gertrude’s delight. “If I can’t have you,” he teased, “I’ll have to settle.” “She’ll still be giving you trouble when you’re ninety, you know. Lily’s exactly what you need, Caleb. She’ll try your patience many a time, but she’ll also bring out the best that’s in you. And she’ll give you fine, handsome children.” Caleb allowed himself to imagine Lily bearing him a child and felt his groin tighten. “Are you suggesting that I court her?” he asked in a light voice, to cover the sweet despair he felt. “I know what John told you,” Gertrude answered, “and to a great degree I think he’s right. Lily’s the kind of person that’s got to be challenged; she doesn’t believe that anything worthwhile comes easily.” Caleb got up and walked to the porch railing again, bracing his hands on the whitewashed wood, searching the distance for Lily, but there was no sign of her. “I think she may drive me crazy before too long,” he said. Gertrude laughed, and the swing hinges creaked. She came and patted him gently on the back. “That’s a sure sign she’s the right one,” she said.
Linda Lael Miller (Lily and the Major (Orphan Train, #1))
Can you forgive me? Men are complete idiots when a woman cries.” He gave her the smile he’d reserved for old ladies in the jury box. She nibbled on her lower lip, looking pensive and wary. The bluebird in his grandma’s cuckoo clock sprang from its door and chirped, breaking the silence. Maddie jumped, pressing her hand to her chest as though trying to keep her heart from jumping out. As the clock struck, he cursed himself for making her uncomfortable. How could he have made such a tactical error? From what he’d discerned, she might as well be a virgin. He’d simply forgotten himself. Lost in her charm and good-girl complex, he’d said the first teasing thing that sprang to mind. And since he was a guy, it had been sexual. He took two cautious steps toward her, hoping she wouldn’t bolt upstairs. “That wasn’t the best thing to say when I’m trying to get you out of your clothes.” Auburn brows drew together in what he could only suspect was disapproval. He shook his head. What the hell was wrong with him? This wasn’t the time to mention seeing her naked. Shit, it was like he had no experience with women. She still said nothing, just stared at him with those uncanny green eyes. And damn if it wasn’t making him a bit unsettled. It had been so long since he’d been anything but cool and detached, even before his troubles in Chicago. The knowledge caused a stirring of unease. “I swear, I didn’t mean it.” He was starting to sound like a sixteen-year-old apologizing for trying to get to second base. Quietly, she toyed with the fabric of her dress, picking at one of the sparkly beads. At a loss for how to make the situation right, he offered the one thing he wanted to avoid, but was guaranteed to put her at ease. “Do you want me to call my neighbor, Gracie, to come help you out of your dress? She eats shit like this up, so you’ll make her day.” Maddie shifted on the balls of her feet. He narrowed his eyes. No matter how hard he peered at her, she remained a mystery. He sweetened the offer. “She’s a baker, so I bet she even has some cupcakes or cookies lying around.” Maddie placed her hand on her stomach. Why wouldn’t she speak? He raked a hand through his hair. “Princess, take pity on me here. I can’t begin to guess what you’re thinking. Did I scare you away forever?” She blinked, her face clearing as though she’d suddenly come out of a trance. “I’m sorry. Other than being an emotional basket case, I’m fine.” This
Jennifer Dawson (Take a Chance on Me (Something New, #1))
So I’m guessing that’s why you looked pissed off when I came in?” “Yeah, I knew he was still in there, but I didn’t know where and I didn’t want him to see you. I’m sorry, I know that’s immature, but he’s not my favorite person in the world.” “Babe, I’m surprised you let him even become a member. I would have escorted him out as soon as I’d seen him.” I smiled at Liam as he took another bite of baby food. “The thought crossed my mind.” He laughed softly, “Are you going to talk to him?” I leaned back into the chair as I got another scoop of pureed carrots, “I don’t know. If that night at the party wouldn’t have happened, I would in a heartbeat. But he changed things, I don’t think we can go back to being friends you know?” I shook my head, “God I still feel so stupid for not seeing it sooner.” He smirked at me, “You were the only person who didn’t get it. Even with Bree constantly saying something to you, you were so sure she was wrong.” “He was my best friend! He treated me like every other guy in Sir’s unit.” “Oh okay,” he scoffed, “‘my Blaze, my girl, I couldn’t just let you go to California without me’.” “Brandon Taylor … were you jealous of Carter?” “Me? Jealous? Of my girl running away from me to throw herself in some random guy’s arms? Not even close.” “Hmm,” I fed Liam another scoop of nastiness, “I seem to remember yelling at him and telling him to leave before running into your arms and kissing you.” He smiled wide, “I don’t remember that at all, you may need to remind me how that went.” His eyes had a wicked gleam in them as I leaned over Liam and stopped less than an inch away from his lips, “Brandon.” I whispered low and sultry. “Yeah?” He moved closer and I backed up a fraction of an inch. I smiled when he growled and lightly brushed my mouth over his lips before sitting down, “Well if you don’t remember it, I guess it never happened.” I said cheerfully and went back to feeding our son. “Tease.” “Oh yes, that’s me … the tease.” I winked and sat up for a chaste kiss. “And
Molly McAdams (Taking Chances (Taking Chances, #1))
By the side of her bed there was a card, embossed with the Queen’s cypher, giving the times of meals and table placements as well as a note saying how the various guests would be conveyed to the racecourse, either in open carriages or black Daimler saloons. Even though her family had rubbed shoulders with the royal family for years, Sarah was understandably nervous. She arrived promptly in the Green Drawing Room for pre-lunch drinks and then found herself seated next to Prince Andrew, who was on leave from his Royal Navy flying duties.
They discovered an instant rapport. He teased her by trying to feed her chocolate profiteroles. She refused, playfully punching his shoulder and claiming one of her interminable diets as an excuse. “There are always humble beginnings; it’s got to start somewhere”, said Andrew at their engagement interview eight months later. While Diana has been billed as the matchmaker in this royal romance, the truth is that she never noticed the romantic spark between her brother-in-law and one of her best friends.
Andrew Morton (Diana: Her True Story in Her Own Words)
I don’t care if you have a big mansion with all the comforts! I am Mom, and I know what is best! You can have her back when she is all better! I know that you miss her and you want nothing more than to hover over her…but that is my job. You just settle yourself, mister, and do what you do best and I will do what I do best! I have done a good job of it for thirty-two years!” I sat up, biting my lip when she grew silent, obviously listening to him. I wished I could hear the rough and lovely voice on the other end. “And she loves you too, Liam…she is safe here…and I will tell her you called. If she is up to it I will even let her call you,” she teased. “If you will behave yourself and not get her worked up! She’s in healing mode now. No…I am not bringing her there! You want to see her…you bring your little tush here. Oh, you don’t like that idea? Well then, you will just have to be patient! The doctor said she needs to rest for a few days. The wound is fine…but after the shock she went through she doesn’t need added stress…so stop your pushing!” I covered my mouth to stifle my laugh. My mom had never been afraid of anyone…not even powerful billionaires! She laughed at something he said now. “I really like you, you know that? I’m glad she has you!” She was silent for another moment. “I will make sure she is awake in an hour to receive the package Stewart brings over,” she promised. ”Take care!
Sarah Brocious (More Than Scars)
She jerks on a pair of jeans and lifts her hair into a messy ponytail. Damn, she’s pretty. She picks up her bra, turns her back to me, and hides her arms in the shirt, adjusting the bra beneath the fabric. Within seconds, she’s ready to go. She slides on her boots and nods. “Ready?” she asks. “What? You look like you’ve never seen a woman get dressed quickly.” “I’ve never woken up with a woman,” I say. She stops moving and stares at me. “So, no, I’ve never watched one get dressed to start the day.” It’s usually a quick shrug into clothing after I kick someone out of my bed. Correction—after I make her come and then kick her out of my bed. But one day soon, I hope to watch her get dressed without holding the shirt over the best parts. “It seems really intimate, and I’ve never paid attention to anyone getting dressed after getting out of my bed.” I shrug. “I like it.” “I’m your first,” she teases, her face going soft. I nod, unable to speak past the lump in my throat. “You’re my first,” I say, walking toward her. She thinks I’m going to squeeze her into a hug, and she leans into me. But I jerk her into the crook of my arm and give her a noogie instead. “That’s for messing with me,” I growl.
Tammy Falkner (Tall, Tatted and Tempting (The Reed Brothers, #1))
A sudden insight teased him. What if she didn’t want to leave? What if she was just angry with him and acting impulsively? He left Rand to kneel at her feet. She eyed him suspiciously. He hated that he’d given her cause to look at him that way. “I will ask ye this but once. Do ye wish to forsake our bond and my offered protection? Do ye truly wish to return to your life of providing for yourself and working and raising your bairn alone? I would have ye stay here with me, and I would care for you your whole life. I would treat your bairn as my own. I have means, and I am a good man, though I ken I havena given ye cause to believe it. “Stay with me, Malina. Let me prove to you the man I am. I wouldna expect your love, and I dinna expect you to share my bed. But I wish ye to stay and be my wife. I wish to be your husband. Will you release me from the vow I made to help ye return home?” He made himself stop blathering and waited for her answer, drowning in the emerald pools of her eyes. Closing his hands around hers, around the box, he found some solace in the fact that she didn’t pull away. She appraised him with liquid eyes. Could that be tenderness he glimpsed? But it was gone too soon, replaced with suspicion. Och, he’d been so dishonest with her she likely would never be able to trust him. Mayhap it was for the best she was leaving. If she couldn’t trust him, he’d nay be able to make her happy. At last, she shook her head. “I suspect you’re a good man, even though you lied to me. I see goodness in you, and honor. Any woman would be lucky to have you as her husband.” His heart lifted with hope. “Any woman from your time,” she added gently. “I don’t belong here. I need to go back to my time. My being here is a mistake. This is all a huge mistake.” His heart crumbled as he released her hands and pulled the heavy velvet pouch from his sporran. “Then, take this. ’Tis my wedding gift to you. If I canna be with you to keep my marriage vows, I pray this will clear my name before the Lord.” She took the pouch and looked inside. Her eyes grew wide. “It’s gold. I can’t take this.” She tried to push it back into his hands, but he refused it. “You must. ’Tis the best I can do for you, Malina mine. I hope ye will remember me well when you use it. I hope this will provide for you and your bairn for many years.” Not giving her a chance to reject his gift as she’d rejected him, he rose and blew out the lantern. He led Rand from the stables, and said, “Come, Malina. ’Tis time to send you home.
Jessi Gage (Wishing for a Highlander (Highland Wishes Book 1))
Let's have a bet, then. If I'm right, you kiss me," he says.
"And if I'm right?"
It's like taking candy from a baby. Mr. Macho Guy's ego is about to be taken down a notch, and I'm all too happy to be the one to do it. "If I win you take me and the class project seriously," I tell him. "No teasing me, no making ridiculous comments."
"Deal. I'd feel terrible if I didn't tell you I have a photographic memory."
"Alex, I'd feel terrible if I didn't tell you I copied the info straight from the book." I look at the research I'd done, then flip open to the corresponding page in my chem book. "Without looking, what does it need to be cooled at?" I ask.
Alex is a guy who thrives on challenges. But this time the tough guy is going to lose. He closes his own book and stares at me, his jaw set. "Twenty degrees. And it needs to be dissolved at one hundred degrees, not seventy," he answers confidently.
I scan the page, then my notes. Then back at the page again. I can't be wrong. Which page did I- "Oh, yeah. One hundred degrees." I look up at him in complete shock. "You're right."
"You gonna kiss me now, or later?"
"Right now," I say, which I can tell shocks him because his hands go still. At home, my life is dictated by my mom and dad. At school, it's different. I need to keep it that way, because if I have no control in every aspect of my life I might as well be a mannequin.
"Really?" he asks.
"Yeah." I take one of his hands in mine. I'd never be this bold if we had an audience, and am thankful for the privacy of the nonfiction titles surrounding us. His breathing slows as I sit up on my knees and lean into him. I'm ignoring the fact that his fingers are long and rough and that I've never actually touched him before. I'm nervous. I shouldn't be, though. I'm the one in control this time.
I can feel him restraining himself. He's letting me make the move, which is a good thing. I'm afraid of what this boy would do if he let loose.
I place his hand against my cheek so it cups my face and I hear him groan. I want to smile because his reaction proves I have the power.
He's unmoving as our eyes meet.
Time stops again.
Then I turn my head into his hand and kiss the inside of his palm.
"There, I kissed you," I say, giving him back his hand and ending the game.
Mr. Latino with the big ego got bested by a ditzy, blond bimbo.
Simone Elkeles (Perfect Chemistry (Perfect Chemistry, #1))
I read a poem today that reminded me of you.” He gave her another sideways glance, as if confessing something naughty. “Would you like to hear it?” Her knees quivered beneath her skirts. Perhaps he did feel something for her. Perhaps he is now going to declare himself! “Yes, I would.” “Your chaperone is watching us from the parapets. It would be better for me to recite it more privately.” With gentle force, he guided her behind a tall hedge. Lydia’s belly fluttered as Deveril took both her hands. His hair gleamed like an angel’s wing. Would he tell her he couldn’t let her go, that they didn’t have to go to London? That instead they could remain here…together? “She walks in beauty, like the night,” he whispered. “Of cloudless climes and starry skies; And all that’s best of dark and bright Meet in her aspect and her eyes; Thus mellowed to that tender light Which heaven to gaudy day denies.” Vincent’s eyes were like a turbulent sea in a moonlit storm. He gazed at her as though she was something precious. Lydia sighed as his long fingers removed a pin from her hair. “One shade the more, one ray the less, Had half impaired the nameless grace Which waves in every raven tress,” Her breath caught as he twirled a lock of her hair. “Or softly lightens o’er her face; Where thoughts serenely sweet express, How pure, how dear their dwelling-place.” His hand crept up to caress her cheek, his intent gaze never wavering. “And on that cheek, and o’er that brow, So soft, so calm, yet eloquent, The smiles that win, the tints that glow,” His lips curved in a sensual smile as he concluded. “But tell of days in goodness spent, A mind at peace with all below, A heart whose love is innocent!” For an eternity, they stared as if peering into each other’s souls. His fingers slid past her cheek and threaded once more through her hair, sending the remaining pins scattering into the grass. “Lydia,” he whispered. Then his lips were on hers, warm, silken, teasing.
Brooklyn Ann (One Bite Per Night (Scandals with Bite, #2))
I read a poem today that reminded me of you.” He gave her another sideways glance, as if confessing something naughty. “Would you like to hear it?” Her knees quivered beneath her skirts. Perhaps he did feel something for her. Perhaps he is now going to declare himself! “Yes, I would.” “Your chaperone is watching us from the parapets. It would be better for me to recite it more privately.” With gentle force, he guided her behind a tall hedge. Lydia’s belly fluttered as Deveril took both her hands. His hair gleamed like an angel’s wing. Would he tell her he couldn’t let her go, that they didn’t have to go to London? That instead they could remain here…together? “She walks in beauty, like the night,” he whispered. “Of cloudless climes and starry skies; And all that’s best of dark and bright Meet in her aspect and her eyes; Thus mellowed to that tender light Which heaven to gaudy day denies.” Vincent’s eyes were like a turbulent sea in a moonlit storm. He gazed at her as though she was something precious. Lydia sighed as his long fingers removed a pin from her hair. “One shade the more, one ray the less, Had half impaired the nameless grace Which waves in every raven tress,” Her breath caught as he twirled a lock of her hair. “Or softly lightens o’er her face; Where thoughts serenely sweet express, How pure, how dear their dwelling-place.” His hand crept up to caress her cheek, his intent gaze never wavering. “And on that cheek, and o’er that brow, So soft, so calm, yet eloquent, The smiles that win, the tints that glow,” His lips curved in a sensual smile as he concluded. “But tell of days in goodness spent, A mind at peace with all below, A heart whose love is innocent!” For an eternity, they stared as if peering into each other’s souls. His fingers slid past her cheek and threaded once more through her hair, sending the remaining pins scattering into the grass. “Lydia,” he whispered. Then his lips were on hers, warm, silken, teasing. Her limbs melted. Intoxicating heat unfurled low in her body. Lydia reached up to pull him closer, to demand more. Vincent pulled back before she could grasp him. He took a deep, shuddering breath. “And that is your most important lesson in courtship, Lydia. Never allow a man to get you off alone, especially if he desires to recite poetry, and particularly Lord Byron’s verses.” A strangled gasp caught in her throat at his duplicity. It had all been part of the game! “You…you…” He held up a hand. “Now slap me with your fan in retaliation for taking such liberties.” Reeling in outrage, she fumbled in the pockets of her cloak for the ineffectual weapon. Vincent shrugged, undaunted at her ire. “That is why you should keep your fan at the ready.” Seizing the bundle of cloth-covered sticks, she smacked him soundly on the arm, much harder than Miss Hobson had instructed. “You are lucky I did not have my gun,” she hissed. How could he? To
Brooklyn Ann (One Bite Per Night (Scandals with Bite, #2))
There is a knock at the door and Mom answers it. “Hi, Joe, how are you doing?” “Terrific, I hope you have enough room in your refrigerator for this big bird! The Blisses send their best wishes.” Joe, a very thin wiry man, came close to stumbling over the threshold as he juggled the big, cold, slippery bird through the living room ‘round to our kitchen and into the refrigerator. “Thanks Joe, Happy Thanksgiving to you and all your family. Can you stay for a cup of coffee and some warm cookies?” “No thanks, I’m pressed for time and have a few more stops to make. I’ll see you at Christmas time.” We always saw Joe Lynch every Thanksgiving and Christmas making his rounds with the gift Turkeys from the Blisses. One year we saw him in the grocery store and he asked my Mom, “How many pounds should the bird be this year?” Whether Thanksgiving or Christmas, the gift birds were always appreciated and would always be stuffed with Grandma’s secret recipe dressing passed down from her family in Argentina. One of the secret ingredients is Gulden’s mustard. It just wouldn’t be the holidays without that heavenly aroma teasing our senses for hours.
Carol Ann P. Cote (Downstairs ~ Upstairs: The Seamstress, The Butler, The "Nomad Diplomats" and Me -- A Dual Memoir)
Above all, he kept it an internal conflict, not a conflict between him and her.… And if she or anyone else comments on her quietness or hesitancy, Jim’s prompt reply is, ‘That’s just your style. Other people have different styles. But this is yours. You like to take your time and be sure.’ Jim also knows that part of her style is befriending anyone whom others tease, doing careful work, noticing everything going on in the family, and being the best soccer strategist in her league.”
One of the best things you can do for an introverted child is to work with him on his reaction to novelty. Remember that introverts react not only to new people, but also to new places and events. So don’t mistake your child’s caution in new situations for an inability to relate to others. He’s recoiling from novelty or overstimulation, not from human contact. As we saw in the last chapter, introversion-extroversion levels are not correlated with either agreeableness or the enjoyment of intimacy. Introverts are just as likely as the next kid to seek others’ company, though often in smaller doses.
The key is to expose your child gradually to new situations and people—taking care to respect his limits, even when they seem extreme. This produces more-confident kids than either overprotection or pushing too hard. Let him know that his feelings are normal and natural, but also that there’s nothing to be afraid of: “I know it can feel funny to play with someone you’ve never met, but I bet that boy would love to play trucks with you if you asked him.” Go at your child’s pace; don’t rush him. If he’s young, make the initial introductions with the other little boy if you have to. And stick around in the background—or, when he’s really little, with a gentle, supportive hand on his back—for as long as he seems to benefit from your presence. When he takes social risks, let him know you admire his efforts: “I saw you go up to those new kids yesterday. I know that can be difficult, and I’m proud of you.
The sun starts to sink lower over the ocean, and Zach somehow magics up a fire from driftwood and kindling.
And then he brings out the marshmallows.
Not a bag of mass-produced, uniform white cylinders of sugar. But two not-quite-square, hand-made, artisanal marshmallows.
I look up at him. “Are you kidding me right now?”
The right side of his mouth kicks up in a smirk that says I gave him exactly the reaction he was looking for. “Nope,” he says. “I asked the baker and she made these special for us. After all, I did promise you.”
He grabs a forked stick and roasts them for us. When they’re perfectly golden brown and sagging off the stick, he slides it onto a graham cracker, and adds a square of chocolate.
I put the entire thing in my mouth.
“Ohmigod!” I murmur. “This is amazing!”
“Transcendent?” he teases.
“Absolutely.” I agree, licking some of the sugar off my fingers.
He grabs my wrist and the next thing I know, he’s licking the sugar off my fingers.
Oh God, and now I’m thinking of last night and what else he licked. As I watch, his eyes get intense; he’s thinking the same.
“We can’t have sex on the beach,” I say breathlessly. “Too sandy.”
“You have a one-track mind, don’t you?” he teases. “I only brought you here for the sunset.”
Aaaand now I feel like an idiot. “Right,” I cough, blushing. “Well, thank you.”
“But …” He adds, his mouth curving into that sexy smile that kills me. “That doesn’t mean we can’t … kiss.” His hand comes up to push a stray lock of hair behind my ear.
I nod because resistance is futile. The best I can do is make light of it so he can’t see the emotion coursing through me. “I’m pretty sure it’s the law that when you drink wine and eat artisanal marshmallows on the beach, you have to kiss.” I wave vaguely toward where we left the car. “I saw it on the sign by the parking lot.”
“Well, if it’s a law,” he grins. A second later, his lips find mine.
He tastes like wine and sugar, and pure Zach. I sigh in pleasure. This picnic, the marshmallows—everything—just might be the most romantic thing anyone’s ever done for me.
But that perfect sunset? We totally miss it.
After all, there are better things to do.
Lila Monroe (How to Choose a Guy in 10 Days (Chick Flick Club, #1))
Ah, there is pâté on the inside!"
I see! By wrapping the exterior with thin slices of beef...
... he was able to make his presentation look like a cartoony leg of meat.
The meat wrapped around the exterior is marinated strips of beef! Their richly fragrant scent yet light and almost fruity juices pack a knockout wallop! Directly underneath them is a layer of bacon slices! Not only do they serve to hold the pâté firmly in place...
The impact of all that powerful protein in one bite reverberates through my entire body!"
"By the way, for the base of my marinade...
... I used Yakiniku Sauce Even store-bought Yakiniku Sauce has a great balance of soy sauce, mirin, garlic and ginger. It makes a good, solid base for the marinade!
I took that and adjusted it with some honey, grated onion and freshly squeezed orange juice so it would pair better with the pâté... before asking Nakiri to taste test it to ensure it came together properly."
"The pâté in the middle is the most spectacular part of all! Full-bodied yet delicate, it matches beautifully with the aromatic layer of meat. Each bite sparks an explosion of powerful flavor in the mouth!"
Using a base of chicken liver, he added chicken breast and cream along with carrots and Shimeji mushrooms. But what really stands out is the preparation of each individual ingredient!
Confit. Grill. Braiser. Suer. Each piece was prepared in the way best suited to its strengths...
... teasing out its natural sweetness and ratcheting up the dish's overall goodness!
Yuto Tsukuda (食戟のソーマ 30 [Shokugeki no Souma 30] (Food Wars: Shokugeki no Soma, #30))
This is ours to deal with. The four of us.” “How?” Elizabeth asked, but William knew from her tone that she agreed. For all her scholarly gravity, his sister also liked to have her own way. “By doing what we each do best,” said Minuette. “Elizabeth with her correspondence and knowledge of every political faction in England; William with his ability to go anywhere and ask anything he wishes and expect an answer; Dominic with his new post in Lord Rochford’s employ and his talent to make anyone nervous enough to babble simply by staring at them.” “And what do you do best?” William teased. “Minuette is the foil,” Elizabeth said, sounding as though she were quoting. “The lighthearted, merrymaking girl who sees far more than most give her credit for.
Laura Andersen (The Boleyn King (Anne Boleyn Trilogy, #1))
you can make the best of your situation, and still appreciate that there may be better things out there to come.” “That
Missy Johnson (Tease (Tease, #1))
Aaron lifted me up onto his hips and I knew we weren’t staying.
“We just got here,” I murmured against his cheek.
“Don’t you think Judd and Coop will take their women home to celebrate?”
Glancing around, I noticed Tawny high fiving Judd who looked pretty proud about his revenge on Mac. Nearby, Farah was squeezing Cooper’s flexed muscles. None of them were planning to stay at the bar.
“Are you okay, Bailey?” I asked as Aaron started for the door.
“Sure, I’ll just hang out and pretend Vaughn is charming. It’ll be good practice for the next loser I date.”
A grinning Vaughn patted the spot next to him in a booth. As the blonds got comfy, Aaron carried me to the Harley and sat me on the seat.
“You saved me from mean words,” I teased as he felt me up in the spot Mac thought I needed help.
“No one messes with my girl.”
“Mighty sperm and powerful fists. Plus, you can cook and paint and write poems and a million other qualities. I’ve hit pay dirt.”
“I need to get you home,” he said and I sensed the ride would be uncomfortable for him. As I wrapped my arms around his waist, he started the Harley.
“Raven bought headphones, so we can fuck really loud and she won’t be bothered.”
“The best houseguest ever,” Aaron said over his shoulder.
As we sped away, I noticed Judd chasing a laughing Tawny to the parking lot. Cooper strutted out with Farah clinging to him. Everyone was happy except for a naked Mac tied to a tree in what I assumed was the club’s version of a time out.
Bijou Hunter (Damaged and the Cobra (Damaged, #3))
What's so amusing?" he inquired, eyeing her curiously. "I don't believe this. I'm lying in bed with a near stranger, calmly chatting after making love. You are a wicked and potent temptation. You should be ashamed of yourself for demoralizing me. This is the most illogical and incredible thing I've ever done." He chuckled. "Count me in. I'm just as astonished and confused. I'm glad I met you first. You'd best be on your guard, woman; I'll probably shoot the first cowpoke who looks at you sideways." "How could I possibly notice him when my eyes are for you alone?" she quipped, caressing his smooth jawline. "Just make sure you remember that while I'm gone. I wouldn't want to challenge some new sweetheart the moment I return." "Aren't you mighty possessive for a man who has no claim on me?" she teased, snuggling up to him, savoring his words and new mood. Lynx shifted to remove a cross of pounded Spanish silver from his neck. He slipped it over her head and vowed, "That says you're mine."
-Lynx & Calinda
Janelle Taylor (First Love Wild Love)
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Reason #1: Downtime Aids Insights Consider the following excerpt from a 2006 paper that appeared in the journal Science: The scientific literature has emphasized the benefits of conscious deliberation in decision making for hundreds of years… The question addressed here is whether this view is justified. We hypothesize that it is not. Lurking in this bland statement is a bold claim. The authors of this study, led by the Dutch psychologist Ap Dijksterhuis, set out to prove that some decisions are better left to your unconscious mind to untangle. In other words, to actively try to work through these decisions will lead to a worse outcome than loading up the relevant information and then moving on to something else while letting the subconscious layers of your mind mull things over. Dijksterhuis’s team isolated this effect by giving subjects the information needed for a complex decision regarding a car purchase. Half the subjects were told to think through the information and then make the best decision. The other half were distracted by easy puzzles after they read the information, and were then put on the spot to make a decision without having had time to consciously deliberate. The distracted group ended up performing better. Observations from experiments such as this one led Dijksterhuis and his collaborators to introduce unconscious thought theory (UTT)—an attempt to understand the different roles conscious and unconscious deliberation play in decision making. At a high level, this theory proposes that for decisions that require the application of strict rules, the conscious mind must be involved. For example, if you need to do a math calculation, only your conscious mind is able to follow the precise arithmetic rules needed for correctness. On the other hand, for decisions that involve large amounts of information and multiple vague, and perhaps even conflicting, constraints, your unconscious mind is well suited to tackle the issue. UTT hypothesizes that this is due to the fact that these regions of your brain have more neuronal bandwidth available, allowing them to move around more information and sift through more potential solutions than your conscious centers of thinking. Your conscious mind, according to this theory, is like a home computer on which you can run carefully written programs that return correct answers to limited problems, whereas your unconscious mind is like Google’s vast data centers, in which statistical algorithms sift through terabytes of unstructured information, teasing out surprising useful solutions to difficult questions. The implication of this line of research is that providing your conscious brain time to rest enables your unconscious mind to take a shift sorting through your most complex professional challenges. A shutdown habit, therefore, is not necessarily reducing the amount of time you’re engaged in productive work, but is instead diversifying the type of work you deploy.
Cal Newport (Deep Work: Rules for Focused Success in a Distracted World)
The best thing about Caleb is not his perfect body, or his half-smiles, or his even sexier voice…it’s his mannerisms. The teasing, the way he runs his thumbnail across his bottom lip when he’s thinking, the way he bites his tongue when he’s turned on. The way he makes me look at him when I have an orgasm. He can undress you with one look, make you feel like you’re standing naked in front of him. I know from experience, it’s a pleasure to be naked in front of Caleb.
Tarryn Fisher (Dirty Red (Love Me with Lies, #2))
Maya’s point is that Hayley, Nicole, and Serena shared common characteristics, which probably means they’re the same type, and it has something to do with singing and swimming.”
“And being pretty,” Hayley said.
“That’s not a superpower,” Sam muttered.
Hayley turned to her. “No? How many times have you gotten into movies for free because you’re a tough warrior chick?”
“What about me?” Corey said. “What’s my superpower?”
“Oh, come on. I’m good at a lot of stuff. Right?”
“You’re cute,” Hayley said. “Well, cute enough.”
“Fun to be around,” I offered.
“So I’m…a clown?”
“At least you’re a cute clown,” Hayley said. “Not a scary one.”
“You’re a good fighter,” Daniel said.
“And you’re a good drinker,” Hayley added. “You can hold your liquor better than anyone I know.”
“Uh-huh,” Corey said. “So Maya will grow up to be an amazing healer who can change into a killer cat. Daniel and Sam will roam the country hunting criminals and demons. Hayley and Nicole will divide their time between recording platinum albums and winning gold medals in swimming. And me? I’ll be the cute, funny guy sitting at the bar, hoping for a good brawl to break out.”
“In other words, exactly where you were already headed,” Hayley said.
We all laughed at that, even Corey. We had to. For now, this was the best way to deal with it. Tease. Poke fun. As if we were comparing Halloween costumes. Look, I’m a superhero. Yeah? Well, so am I.
“I’m sure you have powers,” I said. “You’re just a late bloomer.”
Kelley Armstrong (The Calling (Darkness Rising, #2))
How's being in love with your middle brother's girlfriend going?
Mike Gayle (The Importance of Being a Bachelor)
Alma said, "They seem to be greatly amused with something in there."
"Me, probably," said Beaton. "I seem to amuse everybody to-night."
"Don't you always?"
"I always amuse you, I'm afraid, Alma."
She looked at him as if she were going to snub him openly for using her name; but apparently she decided to do it covertly. "You didn't at first. I really used to believe you could be serious, once."
"Couldn't you believe it again? Now?"
"Not when you put on that wind-harp stop."
"Wetmore has been talking to you about me. He would sacrifice his best friend to a phrase. He spends his time making them."
"He's made some very pretty ones about you."
"Like the one you just quoted?"
"No, not exactly. He admires you ever so much. He says" She stopped, teasingly.
"He says you could be almost anything you wished, if you didn't wish to be everything."
"That sounds more like the school of Wetmore. That's what you say, Alma. Well, if there were something you wished me to be, I could be it."
"We might adapt Kingsley: 'Be good, sweet man, and let who will be clever.'" He could not help laughing. She went on: "I always thought that was the most patronizing and exasperating thing ever addressed to a human girl; and we've had to stand a good deal in our time. I should like to have it applied to the other 'sect' a while. As if any girl that was a girl would be good if she had the remotest chance of being clever."
"Then you wouldn't wish me to be good?" Beaton asked.
"Not if you were a girl."
"You want to shock me. Well, I suppose I deserve it. But if I were one-tenth part as good as you are, Alma, I should have a lighter heart than I have now. I know that I'm fickle, but I'm not false, as you think I am."
"Who said I thought you were false?"
"No one," said Beaton. "It isn't necessary, when you look it—live it."
"Oh, dear! I didn't know I devoted my whole time to the subject."
"I know I'm despicable. I could tell you something—the history of this day, even—that would make you despise me." Beaton had in mind his purchase of the overcoat, which Alma was getting in so effectively, with the money he ought to have sent his father. "But," he went on, darkly, with a sense that what he was that moment suffering for his selfishness must somehow be a kind of atonement, which would finally leave him to the guiltless enjoyment of the overcoat, "you wouldn't believe the depths of baseness I could descend to."
"I would try," said Alma, rapidly shading the collar, "if you'd give me some hint."
Beaton had a sudden wish to pour out his remorse to her, but he was afraid of her laughing at him. He said to himself that this was a very wholesome fear, and that if he could always have her at hand he should not make a fool of himself so often. A man conceives of such an office as the very noblest for a woman; he worships her for it if he is magnanimous. But Beaton was silent, and Alma put back her head for the right distance on her sketch. "Mr. Fulkerson thinks you are the sublimest of human beings for advising him to get Colonel Woodburn to interview Mr. Dryfoos about Lindau. What have you ever done with your Judas?"
"I haven't done anything with it. Nadel thought he would take hold of it at one time, but he dropped it again. After all, I don't suppose it could be popularized. Fulkerson wanted to offer it as a premium to subscribers for 'Every Other Week,' but I sat down on that.
William Dean Howells (A Hazard of new Fortunes)
Continuity How can you create an open loop that keeps them looking forward to your next email? The postscript or P.S. is the best place to tease your
Meera Kothand (The Blog Startup: Proven Strategies to Launch Smart and Exponentially Grow Your Audience, Brand, and Income without Losing Your Sanity or Crying Bucketloads of Tears)
Toby took a deep breath and let it out. “Look, Holly Sue, I know a short cut to your house. It’s a whole heap nearer than the way you’ve been going. Want me to show you to it this afternoon?”
“Show me to it?” She laughed again. “Goodness me, Toby, how you talk.”
Toby frowned. “You know what I meant.”
“I know, but I have to tease you to make you talk. Besides, you look so cute when your face gets red.”
“Cute?” he snorted. “Dang.”
“All right, Big Britches.” She threw her chin up. “I’ll find the short cut by myself.”
Toby wondered what made girls so contrary, but he still wanted to walk her home. “Tell you what,” he said with a grin, “the best way to find it for yourself is to tag along behind me and when your path turns off from mine, I’ll point with my right hind leg.
Robinson Barnwell (Head Into the Wind)
The league match ended in a tense 1-1 draw, which kept Barcelona eight points clear at the top. Lionel scored a penalty and then with ten minutes to go, Cristiano scored a penalty. Messi 1 Ronaldo 1. ‘Anything you do, Ronaldo does too!’ Andrés said with a big smile on his face. Lionel’s teammates loved to tease him about his Ballon d’Or rival. They needed their star to be at his very best. In the Copa del Rey final, Lionel was desperate to be the matchwinner. He tried dropping deep, he tried moving out to the wing but nothing worked. Wherever he went, he was surrounded by defenders. Then in extra time, Cristiano scored to give Real the victory. Messi 1 Ronaldo 2. Lionel was furious. He always hated losing but losing against Ronaldo and Real Madrid was the worst feeling ever. ‘What are we going to do?’ he asked his teammates. ‘We have to win the Champions League semi-final now!
Matt Oldfield (Messi (Ultimate Football Heroes) - Collect Them All!)
Periods are the best friends in a girl's life!
You know why?
Because they don't leave her alone for five days and night!
They start as she grows up from a baby to a girl,
They give her pain but cleanse her from inside,
Just like the besties who tease you but always do what's right!
Then why are we ashamed to talk about them?
Deeksha Tripathi (I am in Love With Myself)
Cradling her in his arms, Arik enjoyed the moment. A moment that went on for a while until he felt compelled to ask, “Are you okay?”
She stirred against him. Her head tilted far enough for him to see the lazy smile she shot him. “Better than okay.”
She wiggled in his arms, and he let her down, hiding his smug satisfaction as she wavered on wobbly legs, a smugness that faded when she said, “That sure beats waking up to Frosted Flakes and milk.”
Did she really compare him to— “Processed cereal?” He shuddered. “Don’t tell me you eat that stuff.”
“All the time. I like it. It’s fast and easy. Who doesn’t like a bowl of sugar to perk them up in the morning?”
“Not me. A lion needs real food.”
“Lion? Someone’s got a messed-up opinion of himself,” she teased, not realizing his verbal gaffe. “Although I’ll admit you do kind of remind me of an animal with some of the noises you make.”
If she only knew those noises were just the tip of his furry, perfectly tufted tail.
“So sue me for being a man who expresses himself vocally when aroused. But I warn you, sue me at your own peril. I have the best lawyer in town on retainer.”
“If you ask me, your money would be better spent with a psychiatrist for your ego problem.”
“Admit it, my supreme confidence is sexy.”
“No, it’s disturbing, but lucky for you, your butt is awesome.
Eve Langlais (When an Alpha Purrs (A Lion's Pride, #1))
Madlon’s voice broke into his musings. “It’s kind of funny, but I just happened to notice that all the trail horses are males—”
Her husband’s laughter cut off the rest of the question, but Ward had gotten the gist of it. “Shame on you, Pug, for checking out other guys’ equipment!”
Madlon blushed at her husband’s teasing. “I noticed, that’s all. It stuck out.”
Her husband whooped again.
Ward fought a grin. “You’re right, our trail horses are geldings. We’ve found the rides go better with single sex horses, especially as we often have novice riders. Mares are great. They’re actually harder workers—”
“Of course they are. That applies to females of all species,” Madlon said.
“True. But when a mare goes into heat she sometimes gets a little tetchy and even gelded horses get distracted—” And just like that, an image of Tess and her huge dark eyes, saucy ponytail, and exquisite curves popped into his mind. He had no doubt she would do her best to clock—or geld—him if he were foolish enough to ask if she was in heat.
Laura Moore (Once Tempted (Silver Creek, #1))
Methuselah swung the pear-shaped mace down toward the skull of his adversary, a fifteen-year old girl named Edna. She raised her shield and blocked it effectively, then parried with her own mace. He barked, “Excellent, runt!” Methuselah was a strapping twenty-year old handsome young man. His unusual blue eyes often drew the teasing of his companions, saying that he was a Bene ha Elohim, or more likely a product of their union with the daughters of men. It was not true, but he played along with it because he liked standing out from the crowd. He was a fiery lad with a passion for arguing, not the best of traits for an apkallu in training, since their order was marked by restraint and listening. But Methuselah hungered for knowledge, and loved to study and learn about everything.
Brian Godawa (Enoch Primordial (Chronicles of the Nephilim #2))
I’ve told you before, Alera--Andrius lives on in you. I see him in you every day.”
I smiled, tipping my head in acceptance of the compliment.
“And in you--” she said, once more turning to Narian, tapping a finger against her lips in thought “--I see Cannan.”
She was lightly cajoling him, exactly as a parent would do. I couldn’t imagine what was going on in his mind, but he was no longer eager to leave, his eyes never once flicking toward me or the door.
“What do you mean?” he asked.
“Cannan is strong and decisive. He seems unemotional, untouchable, but underneath he has more heart than most men taken together. And he could so easily have buried that compassion. In some ways, he would have hurt less throughout the years had he done so, but he would be half the man he is today.”
I was remembering things Baelic had told me, vague things about Cannan and their father. I had never considered that my mother would have knowledge on the subject, although I should have surmised it. She had grown up in the nobility with the men of her generation, and Cannan had been one of Crown Prince Andrius’s best friends.
Seeing the curiosity on Narian’s face, she went on, “It was no secret that Baron Burvaul--Cannan’s father--was a tyrant. In their family, everyone wore smiles for fear of what Burvaul might do if they did not, and everything stayed behind closed doors--except for bruises and broken bones, the vast majority of which were bestowed on Cannan. At that time, of course, Cannan could not fight his father, and so he fought the world instead.
“But when he was eighteen and was sent into the field of war, he changed. He gained perspective. And when Andrius died and Cannan was called back to become Sergeant at Arms, and later Captain of the Guard, he was more powerful than his father, in position and character. He never abused that power, but his victory lay in the fact that Burvaul could not bear the reversal of control. He lived the rest of his life in fear of his own son, who never punished him.
“I see that personality in you, Narian. Just like Cannan, you will never become the man who controlled you.”
“He didn’t control me,” Narian abruptly said.
“He didn’t in the end, did he?” she agreed, taking a sip of her tea. “Of course, the real question is about your mother. What was she like?”
“You know my mother,” Narian replied, his expression strange. I’d never seen him this way before--he seemed younger, less defensive. He was hesitant, but not guarded like he had been upon entering the room. It was almost as if he wanted to open up to her.
“I mean the woman who raised you. Your Cokyrian mother.”
Narian was shaking his head, despite the change I had detected in him. “I didn’t have a mother in Cokyri.”
“You’re far too well-mannered not to have had a mother growing up.” Her blue eyes were twinkling, unthreatening. Again, she was teasing him, and although I expected him to simply sidestep her a third time, he did not.
“To the extent I had a mother, she was the High Priestess.”
I looked incredulously back and forth between the two of them, for in half an hour, my mother had enticed Narian to divulge as much to her as I had gleaned in two years. Though I was now bursting to speak, I refrained, and she pressed him further.
Cayla Kluver (Sacrifice (Legacy, #3))
The heavenly principalities and powers cannot touch you. But the earthly humans over which we rule can.” Though they had no authority to touch Yahweh’s anointed, they might do so through their human vessels. Jesus trembled with the weight of responsibility that now overwhelmed him. But the pain was lessened when he heard the familiar sound of his favorite angel echo in his mind. Jesus, be strong and courageous. “Jesus, be strong and courageous.” It wasn’t in his mind, it was being spoken to him from behind. “Sound familiar?” Jesus turned. He looked up into the smiling face of Uriel the smallest of three angels now standing before him. Uriel finished his thought, “The words you spoke to Joshua at the threshold of the Promised Land. Funny how it all comes full circle.” Gabriel, the second angel, and Uriel’s constant bickering companion, responded, “Uriel, I think your humor is once again in incredibly poor taste considering his suffering. Where is your compassion?” “Nonsense,” said Uriel. “Jesus has done it. Victory is a cause for celebration, not sadness. He made it forty days without food, which is more than I can say for you, chubby.” Uriel patted Gabriel’s stomach. Gabriel moved away annoyed at the jab. Sure, he was heavier than the lightweight Uriel, but he certainly didn’t see himself as “chubby.” Mikael, the largest and best groomed of the three, was the guardian prince of Israel, and tended to be protective of his ward. He offered a wineskin to Jesus, who took it and gulped with gratitude. After a moment of silence, Jesus wiped his beard of the wine and said, “You need a better sense of humor, Gabriel.” Gabriel pouted with frustration at being ganged up on. Uriel, his perpetual nemesis was one thing. But being teased by the Master was quite another. Jesus said, “And Uriel, you had better deliver on that bread you promised.” Uriel smiled again and held out a loaf of Mary’s best bread. “Baked two hours ago by your mother.” Jesus grabbed it. Mikael said, “Remember, do not eat too quickly. It is bad for your digestion after fasting.” “Thank you for your ministering spirits,” said Jesus, and took a big hungry bite out of the loaf. Uriel muttered, “Your mother should open a bakery. Can I have a bite?” Mikael was not so lighthearted. He knew that the challenge had been declared. The road to war had begun.
Brian Godawa (Jesus Triumphant (Chronicles of the Nephilim, #8))
You know, I could have carried you,” I said softly. Denna pressed the back of her hand to her forehead. “Another seven words, I swoon.” She fanned herself with her other hand. “What should a woman do?” “Love me.” I had intended to say it in my best flippant tone. Teasing. Making a joke of it. But I made the mistake of looking into her eyes as I spoke. They distracted me, and when the words left my mouth, they ended up sounding nothing at all the way I had intended.
Patrick Rothfuss (The Wise Man's Fear (The Kingkiller Chronicle, #2))
Jack and Caleb stood in the driveway, the cars’ engines revving, and talked about their new toys.
The lights from the porch spilled down to them. Jenna stood, leaning against the post, watching, enjoying seeing their bond and appreciation of the cars. “Boys with toys.” She smiled from the top step. “You guys look happy.”
“What’s not to be happy about? These are the coolest cars ever,” Caleb said with the exuberance of a teen with his very own custom hot rod.
“You owe me a ride, Jack.”
“Honey, I aim to give you the ride of your life as soon as this one goes home to his wife.” Jack gave her a wicked grin and closed the hood of his car. Jenna laughed and smiled. “You have a one-track mind.”
When was the last time she felt this light?
“Honey, my mind hasn’t been off you since I saw you in the diner.”
“I got the hint. I’m going.” Caleb closed the hood of his car, still purring like a really big kitten.
He walked over to Jenna as she came down the porch steps to the gravel drive. He wrapped his arms around her, careful of her healing back, and she wrapped hers around him. So easy to do now that she’d opened herself to him, the whole family.
He bent and whispered into her ear, “Thank you. Thank you for what you gave to my wife, my children, and me. I’ll never be able to repay you. If you ever need me, I’ll be there for you, no matter what. You can count on me. You’re an angel, an absolute angel.”
“Get your hands off my woman. You have one of your own at home.” Jack watched his brother-in-law with Jenna. They’d created a close bond, the same as with his sister. She didn’t shy away from him when he embraced her; instead she held him and drew on his strength. Caleb would be like a big brother to her. He would protect her.
Caleb drew Jenna away just enough to look into her eyes. He put his hand to her cheek, his other arm still wrapped around her. “Thank you.”
“You’re welcome, Caleb. You’re a good man.”
“You make me want to be a better one.”
“I just want you and your family to have a happy life.”
“We will, thanks in part to you and Jack. You’re part of that family now, too. Don’t ever forget that.”
“Don’t thank me. You’re a wonderful person. The best I’ve ever met.” He kissed her cheek and released her, turning back toward Jack.
“I already punched you for kissing my sister. I guess I have to punch you for kissing her now, too,” Jack teased. Caleb didn’t rise to the bait. “You hurt her, and I’ll be the one throwing the punches.” He smiled back at Jack, then walked over and gave him a big bear hug. “Thanks for what you did for me, Summer, and the kids. It means everything to us. I’ll see you tomorrow.” He smacked Jack on the back before getting into his car. Caleb revved the engine, beamed them an excited smile, and took off like a rocket toward home.
“You going to hurt me, Jack?”
“Not if I can help it. I’ll spend the rest of my life and yours trying to make you happy. How’s that sound?”
“Like heaven. Take me for a ride.”
-Jenna, Caleb, & Jack
Jennifer Ryan (Saved by the Rancher (The Hunted, #1))
He snapped back to the present, once again utterly distracted by the woman before him. “We should head back. I’ve got things to do.”
“Things? Ooh. That sounds utterly decadent. What kind of things are you planning? I’m very partial to nipple play just so you know.”
The bag with its leftover treats provided a shield to hide the tenting of his trousers, but nothing could quell the heat in his blood.
Why did she do things on purpose to tease him?
Why are we not taking her up on her offer?
Why wouldn’t his liger go take a fucking nap like other bloody felines?
A glower didn’t deter her from linking her arm through his as they left.
A tight-lipped countenance didn’t stem her adorable chattering as they walked.
A firm leash on his emotions didn’t prevent the spurt of pleasure at her touch.
A denial of their involvement didn’t stop his growl of jealousy when some yuppies they passed on the sidewalk swiveled to give her a second look.
Were the teeth he bared necessary?
Was the sigh as he entered the lobby and a dozen lionesses went “ooh” avoidable?
Nor could he avoid the snickers that followed Luna singing, “Bow-chica-wow-wow,” especially since Meena joined in and began the impromptu dance that involved a lot of hip shaking and breast jiggling.
Throw her over our shoulder and take her to our room. We must claim her before another does.
What happened to his usually staid and laid back inner feline?
The right woman happened.
But what was right for his wild side wasn’t what the more serious man side wanted.
She is chaos.
Yes. And wondrous for it.
She is physically perfect.
And tempting him to take a bite.
She’ll never let you have a moment of peace.
His life would have purpose.
She would love me with the passion and embrace of a hurricane.
But could he survive the storm? Or should he try and outrun it?
She would catch us. She is strong. A true huntress.
Possible life-changing inner conversations were best conducted out of sight, especially since it made him less mindful of his surroundings allowing his cousin Luna to sidle alongside and mutter, “I see the look in your eye.”
“The one that sees something yummy it wants to eat.”
Was he truly that obvious? “I’m not hungry. I just had breakfast.”
Luna elbowed him as she snickered. “Way to pretend ignorance. I know that you know what I know is happening.”
“Say that fast five times.”
She did. Luna wasn’t just quick on her feet.
“So when are you claiming her?” the nosy woman asked.
“Never.” He ignored his feline collapsing in a heap.
“Leo. I am shocked at you. Aren’t you the one who advocates honesty?”
“Only if it won’t cause irreparable harm. Then even giant white lies are allowed. Anything to hold back the insidious forces of chaos.
Eve Langlais (When an Omega Snaps (A Lion's Pride, #3))
Black roads have nothing to tell, they are embarrassing day by day, yet they smell awesome after the chaste heavy rainfall, even in the abject condition.
Black roads burn madly in the detrimental sunlight during the whole day, yet welcome the God of sun everyday.
Black roads always offer us a cool, bright strange place to introspect ourselves, to walk on it's burned skin everyday, yet it teaches us a new lesson everyday.
Don't disparagement the roads for its daily serving to us, as
Black roads are hard, still lenient to offer us a leisure walk on it.
How are black roads feel much helpless while providing a loneliest path to a strange girl.
Who says, there were no evidence. The falter black roads were the only evidence of the sight, when a girl raped or teased.
These strange roads feeble each and everyday after watching this disheartened, excruciating act. They want a perfect strange road, on which everyone can walk independently, without thinking about the passing immortal time and the culprit people.
"No worries in life, is simply a perfect destination for us"
~Sometimes, non living things teach us the best lessons.
The words of black roads~
"I always take the help of those poor human being to prove my sacredness in front on the whole world. I don't want a heavy dauntless rain to remove the blood stains and scars of tears, instead i need the drizzle to wash the dust of love spread by everyone carelessly. I am pity helpless, yet great than this artificial human being who are creating a road full of violence"
"The stains of the blood and the scars of the deadliest tears burns on my black skin everyday"
© Deepak Gupta
Deepak Gupta (Inspiring Life: Motivational Quotes That Can Change Your Life)
Swearing through his teeth, Ryan closed the distance between them and enveloped Jamie in a tight hug. “I don’t hate you, you prat,” he said, burying his nose into Jamie’s hair. “Don’t you ever think that.”
“I’m sorry,” Jamie whispered. “I fucked up. I didn’t mean to—it just happened.”
Ryan pulled back a little to look him in the eye. “Don’t you dare blame yourself for loving someone.” He forced out a teasing smile. “No one can blame you for your excellent taste.”
A ghost of a smile touched Jamie’s lips, but his eye-roll was half-hearted at best. His eyes were still shiny, his face very pale. The knowledge that he was the one who had put that look on Jamie’s face made him sick to his stomach.
Setting his jaw, Ryan cradled Jamie’s face in his hands. “Listen,” he said, holding Jamie’s gaze intently. “I promise you I’ll do whatever it takes to fix this. If you want to, I’ll find you the best boyfriend in the world. Someone you can fall in love and be happy with. How does that sound, mmm?”
The smile Jamie gave him was a little shaky. Ryan told himself it was better than nothing.
“You don’t have to do anything,” Jamie said. “I didn’t tell you that because I expected you to do something.” Jamie smiled brighter. “It’s not your fault I’m an idiot. I’ll be fine—”
“Stop it,” Ryan said. “Don’t pretend it’s okay.”
“It’s not okay,” Jamie said. He smiled at Ryan, a little brokenly, as if he had no clue what that smile was doing to him. “It’s not. But I’m not the first or the last person in the world to love someone I can’t have. I’m not sure what I expected when I decided to tell you. But I didn’t expect anything from you. I know you don’t love me that way. I know you love her, that you’re happy with her.” Jamie’s eyes were a little too bright. “Nothing has to change. Just…just don’t expect me to be your best man when you marry her, okay? I can’t do it, not even for you.”
Ryan felt like the ground moved beneath his feet. He could only watch Jamie lie once again that he would be fine, force out another smile and leave. Ryan stood, unmoving, an acid churning deep in the pit of his stomach, and he fought the impulse to retch and break something.
Later that night, he didn’t make love to Hannah. He fucked her, hard and rough, pouring out all his frustration and anger, Jamie’s shaky, forced smile before his eyes. When she came, moaning and shuddering around him, he pulled out, rolled out of the bed, and went to the bathroom.
He stared at his naked body in the mirror, at his heaving chest and hard dick. He thought of all those times he had unthinkingly, unknowingly hurt Jamie, flaunting how happy he was with Hannah.
Of all those times he told Jamie that he loved Hannah. Of all those times he kissed Hannah in front of him. Of all those bright smiles Jamie gave him afterward.
Ryan slammed his fist in the mirror.
Alessandra Hazard (Just a Bit Confusing (Straight Guys #5))
Anna, did you just indirectly admit to liking me?” She drew in a swift breath and saw from his expression that while he was teasing, he was also… fishing. “Of course I like you. I like you entirely too well, and it is badly done of you to make me admit it.” “Well, let’s go from bad to worse, then, and you can tell me precisely why you like me.” “You are serious?” “I am. If you want, I will return the favor, though we have only several hours, and my list might take much longer than that.” He is flirting with me, Anna thought, incredulous. In his high-handed, serious way, the Earl of Westhaven had just paid her a flirtatious compliment. A lightness spread out from her middle, something of warmth and humor and guilty pleasure in it. “All right.” Anna nodded briskly. “I like that you are shy and honorable in the ways that count. I like that you are kind to Morgan, and to your animals, and old Nanny Fran. You are as patient with His Grace as a human can be, and you adore your brother. You are fierce, too, though, and can be decisive when needs must. You are also, I think, a romantic, and this is no mean feat for a man who spends half his days with commercial documents. Mostly, I like that you are good; you look after those who depend on you, you have gratitude for your blessings, and you don’t think enough of yourself.” Beside her, the earl was again silent. “Shall I go on?” Anna asked, feeling a sudden awkwardness. “You could not possibly pay me any greater series of compliments than you just have,” he said. “The man you describe is a paragon, a fellow I’d very much like to meet.” “See?” Anna nudged him with her shoulder. “You do not think enough of yourself. But I can also tell you the parts of you that irritate me—if that will make you feel better?” “I irritate you?” The earl’s eyebrows rose. “This should be interesting. You gave me the good news first, fortifying me for more burdensome truths, so let fly.” “You are proud,” Anna began, her tone thoughtful. “You don’t think your papa can manage anything correctly, and you won’t ask your brothers nor mother nor sisters even, for help with things directly affecting them. I wonder, in fact, if you have anybody you would call a friend.” “Ouch. A very definite ouch, Anna. Go on.” “You have forgotten how to play,” Anna said, “how to frolic, though I cannot fault you for a lack of appreciation for what’s around you. You appreciate; you just don’t seem to… indulge yourself.” “I see. And in what should I indulge myself?” “That is for you to determine,” she replied. “Marzipan has gone over well, I think, and sweets in general. You have indulged your love of music by having Val underfoot. As to what else brings you pleasure, you would be the best judge of that.” The earl turned down a shady lane lined with towering oaks and an understory of rhododendrons in vigorous bloom. “It was you,” he said. “Before Val moved in, I thought it was a neighbor playing the piano late in the evenings, but it was you. Were you playing for me?” Anna glanced off to the park beyond the trees and nodded.
Grace Burrowes (The Heir (Duke's Obsession, #1; Windham, #1))
I was blowing my best friend. It was so surreal. It was what I’d dreamed about for so long, and the fantasy was nothing compared to the reality of it. “Fuck, yeah.” Canning’s hips began to rock as I took him in my mouth again. I licked the crown of his cock, teasing, savoring, then taking him deep again. I didn’t dare peer up at him. I was too afraid to look him in the eye—afraid he’d be able to see on my face how much I wanted him. “Jesus, Wes, you’re way too good at this.
Sarina Bowen (Him (Him, #1))
Let’s have a bet, then. If I’m right, you kiss me,” he says.
“And if I’m right?”
It’s like taking candy from a baby. Mr. Macho Guy’s ego is about to be taken down a notch, and I’m all too happy to be the one to do it. “If I win you take me and the class project seriously,” I tell him. “No teasing me, no making ridiculous comments.”
“Deal. I’d feel terrible if I didn’t tell you I have a photographic memory.”
“Alex, I’d feel terrible if I didn’t tell you I copied the info straight from the book.” I look at the research I’d done, then flip open to the corresponding page in my chem book. “Without looking, what does it need to be cooled at?” I ask.
Alex is a guy who thrives on challenges. But this time the tough guy is going to lose. He closes his own book and stares at me, his jaw set. “Twenty degrees. And it needs to be dissolved at one hundred degrees, not seventy,” he answers confidently.
I scan the page, then my notes. Then back at the page again. I can’t be wrong. Which page did I--“Oh, yeah. One hundred degrees.” I look up at him in complete shock. “You’re right.”
“You gonna kiss me now, or later?”
“Right now,” I say, which I can tell shocks him because his hands go still. At home, my life is dictated by my mom and dad. At school, it’s different. I need to keep it that way, because if I have no control in every aspect of my life I might as well be a mannequin.
“Really?” he asks.
“Yeah.” I take one of his hands in mine. I’d never be this bold if we had an audience, and am thankful for the privacy of the nonfiction titles surrounding us. His breathing slows as I sit up on my knees and lean into him. I’m ignoring the fact that his fingers are long and rough and that I’ve never actually touched him before. I’m nervous. I shouldn’t be, though. I’m the one in control this time.
I can feel him restraining himself. He’s letting me make the move, which is a good thing. I’m afraid of what this boy would do if he let loose.
I place his hand against my cheek so it cups my face and I hear him groan. I want to smile because his reaction proves I have the power.
He’s unmoving as our eyes meet.
Time stops again.
Then I turn my head into his hand and kiss the inside of his palm.
“There, I kissed you,” I say, giving him back his hand and ending the game.
Mr. Latino with the big ego got bested by a ditzy, blond bimbo.
Simone Elkeles (Perfect Chemistry (Perfect Chemistry, #1))
I need actual X-Ultra vests, not schematics and spec sheets.”
“More than one?”
“A statistically significant sample would be best. Like a hundred.”
“Why so many?”
Her eyes widened. “Let me make sure I have this straight. You want to blow holes in one hundred bulletproof army vests.”
“Where do you plan to do that?”
He looked at her.
“I’ll ask Norm,” Kenzie said.
“If it’s not too much trouble. What if he tells you no?”
Kenzie shook her head. “He’s ex-army.”
“Should have known. He never shaved again,” Linc said.
“Shut up. He’s a ZZ Top fan. Be glad he won’t mind. He might ask you not to be too conspicuous about it. There’s a smaller range off to the side. You haven’t seen it.”
“If he has the right targets, I can pay him,” Linc offered.
“You should see what’s in the basement. Everything from paper thugs to wooden dummies. I’ll borrow a gun from Norm. I want to get this done and over with.”
Kenzie was military all the way, but he hadn’t noticed her having much interest in hardware. “Mind telling me why you’re so gung-ho?”
“Because sooner or later I’m going to be the one to tell Christine that Frank Branigan died. And I don’t want her to think I had a chance to help find out why and did zip.”
“Okay. I understand. But I’m the one who has to get the vests. You can’t do that. They know who you are.”
She conceded the point with a nod.
“How are you going to get in?” she wanted to know.
“Right through the front gate.”
Kenzie shot him a curious look. “Let me guess. You aren’t going to explain how you’re going to do that because you would have to reveal your secret identity.”
He chuckled at her reply. “You’re not that far off.”
“Thought so,” she said with satisfaction.
“And,” he went on, sobering, “there is one more thing I have to do.”
“Let’s hear it.”
“Mike Warren and I noticed that a lot of lines are starting to converge on SKC. While I’m inside, I want to take video.”
“More like who. As in everyone I can get on microcam.”
“How micro is it?”
“About as big as a button.” He rose and stretched, rubbing his back. “Which is good. I may not be able to carry anything ever again.”
“Tough workout?” she teased.
“Let’s just say I had more fun watching yours.
Janet Dailey (Honor (Bannon Brothers, #2))
My lord.” St. Just stopped just inside the door and bowed to the older man. “I didn’t mean to impose, but came to fetch the mare and thought I’d—” “Here they come!” St. Just looked up to see a half-dozen very young ladies trotting up the hallway in a giggling, laughing cloud of skirts and smiles. “Another guest, girls! This is Lord Rosecroft. Make your curtsies and then line up.” The ladies assembled with an alacrity that would have done St. Just’s recruits in Spain proud. “All right, Rosecroft, best be about it. They get bold if you make ’em wait.” St. Just looked askance at his host, who was grinning like a fiend. “It’s the kissing bough,” Vim Charpentier said as he emerged from the hallway, a tumbler in his hand. “You have to kiss them each and every one, or they’ll pout. And, Rosecroft, they’ve been collecting kisses all afternoon between trips to the punch bowl, so you’d be well advised to acquit yourself to the best of your ability. They will compare notes all year. So far, I believe I’m your competition.” He took a sip of his drink, eyeing his cousins balefully. “I’ve charged headlong into French infantry,” St. Just said, smiling at the ladies, “praying I might survive to enjoy just such a gauntlet as this.” He went down the line, leaving a wake of blushes, kissing each cheek until he got to a little girl so small he had to hunker down to kiss her. “What’s your name, sweetheart?” “Cynthia Weeze Simmons.” “The prettiest has been saved for last.” He kissed a delicate cheek and rose. “Any more? I was cavalry, you know, legendary for our charm and stamina.” This was said to tease the young ladies, but they all looked at their grandfather without breaking ranks. “Once with you lot is enough,” the old man barked. “Shoo.” They departed amid more giggles. Sindal looked disgruntled. “You made that look easy.” “I have daughters, and I’m half Irish. It was easy, also fun.
Grace Burrowes (Lady Sophie's Christmas Wish (The Duke's Daughters, #1; Windham, #4))
had been adorably tipsy, having swiped his glass of thoroughly spiked punch, and he’d enjoyed the effects of the alcohol on her demeanor. Enjoyed her passionate, artless, determined kisses much more—and much longer—than he should have. She’d been a cheerful, even mischievous girl, dear and sweet and easy to tease. With her brother Bart’s death, something had changed and not for the better. When Deene had made some courtesy calls after selling his commission, he’d found Eve Windham to be punctiliously proper, stiff, and even chilly toward him, though Bart had more than intimated that the lady had her reasons. She wasn’t chilly now. She was utterly undone. It pleased him not at all to see it. He had, though, been pleased to find himself accosted in the coat closet out at Morelands over the holidays. The old Eve had been there in that kiss—wicked, sweet, playful, but also all grown-up in the best places. “Eve,
Grace Burrowes (Lady Eve's Indiscretion (The Duke's Daughters, #4; Windham, #7))
I know what I am. I left the better part of my sanity on battlefields all over France and Spain. I am a bastard, regardless of whose bastard, and I will fare best if I maintain a mundane little existence here in the most isolated reaches of society, where I can stink of horses and spend most of my day outdoors. I have setbacks, as you call them. I never know when a sound or a word or a memory will rise up and shoot me out of my saddle. Sometimes I drink too much, and often I want to drink too much. But I am human, Emmie. I will not shackle myself to a woman who feels only pity and gratitude and affectionate tolerance for me. I won’t.” “So what do you want of me?” Emmie asked, bewildered. He gave a bitter snort of laughter. “A fairy tale. I wanted a goddamned fairy tale, where you love me and we have Winnie here with us and more children, and they tear all over the property on their ponies and the table is noisy with laughter and teasing and the house always smells wonderful because you are my wife and the genie in our kitchen. On the bad nights, you are there for me to love and to love me, and the bad nights gradually don’t come so often. I want—” “What?” Emmie asked, her throat constricting with pain. “Devlin, what?” “Just that,” he said tiredly. “I want that small, mundane, bucolic existence. A wife, children, love, and a shared life here at Rosecroft. That is my idea of what makes peace meaningful. It can’t be built on pity or convenience or simple affection, Em. Not with me. I’ll run you off in less than two years, but we’ll have a child by then, so you’ll stay, and next thing, we’ll have separate bedrooms, and the brandy decanter will seldom stay full for long. I won’t live that way, and I won’t let it happen to you or our children either.” Another
Grace Burrowes (The Soldier (Duke's Obsession, #2; Windham, #2))
Like it or not, appearance counts, especially in the workplace. Dressing appropriately and professionally is a minimum requirement when applying for a job. Do whatever you can do to make a favorable impression. Dressing appropriately is a way to say that you care about the interview, that it is important to you, and that you take it seriously. It also says you will make an effort to behave professionally once you are with the company. Keep in mind that you are owed nothing when you go on an interview. But behaving professionally by following appropriate business etiquette will nearly always gain you the courtesy of professional treatment in return.
The following ideas will help you be prepared to make the best impression possible. In previous exercises, you have examined your self-image. Now, look at yourself and get feedback from others on your overall appearance. Not only must you look neat and well groomed for a job interview, but your overall image should be appropriate to the job, the company, and the industry you are hoping to enter. You can determine the appropriate image by observing the appearance and attitude of those currently in the area you are looking into. But even where casual attire is appropriate for those already in the workplace, clean, pressed clothes and a neat appearance will be appreciated. One young photographer I know of inquired about the style of dress at the newspaper he was interviewing with; informed that most people wore casual clothes, he chose to do the same. At the interview, the editor gently teased him about wearing jeans (she herself was in khaki pants and a sports shirt). “I guess your suit is at the cleaners,” she said, chuckling. But her point was made. Making the effort shows that you take the interview seriously.
Second, you should carry yourself as though you are confident and self-assured. Use self-help techniques such as internal coaching to tell yourself you can do it. Focus on your past successes, and hold your body as if you were unstoppable. Breathe deeply, with an abundance of self-confidence. Your goal is to convey an image of being comfortable with yourself in order to make the other person feel comfortable with you.
Jonathan Berent (Beyond Shyness: How to Conquer Social Anxieties)
joke around—nothing serious—as I work to get my leg back to where it was. Two weeks later, I’m in an ankle-to-hip leg brace and hobbling around on crutches. The brace can’t come off for another six weeks, so my parents lend me their townhouse in New York City and Lucien hires me an assistant to help me out around the house. Some guy named Trevor. He’s okay, but I don’t give him much to do. I want to regain my independence as fast as I can and get back out there for Planet X. Yuri, my editor, is griping that he needs me back and I’m more than happy to oblige. But I still need to recuperate, and I’m bored as hell cooped up in the townhouse. Some buddies of mine from PX stop by and we head out to a brunch place on Amsterdam Street my assistant sometimes orders from. Deacon, Logan, Polly, Jonesy and I take a table in Annabelle’s Bistro, and settle in for a good two hours, running our waitress ragged. She’s a cute little brunette doing her best to stay cheerful for us while we give her a hard time with endless coffee refills, loud laughter, swearing, and general obnoxiousness. Her nametag says Charlotte, and Deacon calls her “Sweet Charlotte” and ogles and teases her, sometimes inappropriately. She has pretty eyes, I muse, but otherwise pay her no mind. I have my leg up on a chair in the corner, leaning back, as if I haven’t a care in the world. And I don’t. I’m going to make a full recovery and pick up my life right where I left off. Finally, a manager with a severe hairdo and too much makeup, politely, yet pointedly, inquires if there’s anything else we need, and we take the hint. We gather our shit and Deacon picks up the tab. We file out, through the maze of tables, and I’m last, hobbling slowly on crutches. I’m halfway out when I realize I left my Yankees baseball cap on the table. I return to get it and find the waitress staring at the check with tears in her eyes. She snaps the black leather book shut when she sees me and hurriedly turns away. “Forget something?” she asks with false cheer and a shaky smile. “My hat,” I say. She’s short and I’m tall. I tower over her. “Did Deacon leave a shitty tip? He does that.” “Oh no, no, I mean…it’s fine,” she says, turning away to wipe her eyes. “I’m so sorry. I just…um, kind of a rough month. You know how it is.” She glances me up and down in my expensive jeans and designer shirt. “Or maybe you don’t.” The waitress realizes what she said, and another round of apologies bursts out of her as she begins stacking our dirty dishes. “Oh my god, I’m so sorry. Really. I have this bad habit…blurting. I don’t know why I said that. Anyway, um…” I laugh, and fish into my back pocket for my wallet. “Don’t worry about it. And take this. For your trouble.” I offer her forty dollars and her eyes widen. Up close, her eyes are even prettier—large and luminous, but sad too. A blush turns her skin scarlet “Oh, no, I couldn’t. No, please. It’s fine, really.” She bustles even faster now, not looking at me. I shrug and drop the twenties on the table. “I hope your month improves.” She stops and stares at the money, at war with herself. “Okay. Thank you,” she says finally, her voice cracking. She takes the money and stuffs it into her apron. I feel sorta bad, poor girl. “Have a nice day, Charlotte,” I say, and start to hobble away. She calls after me, “I hope your leg gets better soon.” That was big of her, considering what ginormous bastards we’d been to her all morning. Or maybe she’s just doing her job. I wave a hand to her without looking back, and leave Annabelle’s. Time heals me. I go back to work. To Planet X. To the world and all its thrills and beauty. I don’t go back to my parents’ townhouse; hell I’m hardly in NYC anymore. I don’t go back to Annabelle’s and I never see—or think about—that cute waitress with the sad eyes ever again. “Fucking hell,” I whisper as the machine reads the last line of
Emma Scott (Endless Possibility (Rush, #1.5))
Give me your trust, said the Aes Sedai.?On my shoulders I support the sky.?Trust me to know and to do what is best,?And I will take care of the rest.?But trust is the color of a dark seed growing.?Trust is the color of a heart’s blood flowing.?Trust is the color of a soul’s last breath.?Trust is the color of death. “Aes Sedai?” a plump young woman said contemptuously to his question. She was pretty, and he might have tried for a bit of kiss and cuddle in different circumstances. “Halima’s just Delana Sedai’s secretary. Always teasing the men, she is. Like a child with a new toy; teasing just to see if she can. She’d be in hot water to her neck ten times over if Delana didn’t protect her.” Give me your trust, said the queen on her throne,?for I must bear the burden all alone.?Trust me to lead and to judge and to rule,?and no man will think you a fool.?But trust is the sound of the gravedog’s bark.?Trust is the sound of betrayal in the dark.?Trust is the sound of a soul’s last breath.?Trust is the sound of death. Maybe he had been mistaken.
You sure you’re not hurt? I tackled you pretty hard.” Lincoln touched her arm. “I’m fine.” But she’d be sore tomorrow. “I suppose I owe you a debt of gratitude.” “You make it sound so painful.” His blue eyes teased her. “Every time I’m sure I want nothing to do with you, you do something nice and almost convince me otherwise.” “Almost?” She didn’t answer. Kindness oozed from Lincoln, but he had taken their farm. Did he expect her to forget that? “Can you ask the cab to stop here?” “But we’re nearly three blocks away.” “Getting out now is for the best. I can’t risk being seen with you escorting me home.” He informed the driver, and she adjusted her hat. “Any more glass shards?” Gripping her chin between his thumb and forefinger, he tilted her head to one side and then the other. “You look perfect.” He brushed over the scratch with the pad of his thumb. “Except for this.” The cab stopped, and Lincoln helped her out. “I’d feel better walking you all the way home.” She held up her hand. “Thank you for the offer, but you can’t.” She dipped her head in a brief nod and began to walk away. “Hannah,” Lincoln called, “if you need anything, anything at all—” “Thanks, but I won’t.” She flipped up her hand without turning around. “Don’t worry about me. I’ll be fine.
Lorna Seilstad (When Love Calls (The Gregory Sisters, #1))
Isn’t she wonderful?” Oliver’s voice held the same fatuous tone it had when he’d declared himself in love with Miss Smyth, the post’s newest laundress. Though he knew the answer to the question, Ethan couldn’t help teasing Oliver. “Isn’t who wonderful?” Oliver’s eyes widened, as if the answer should be apparent. “Miss Harding. Abigail. She’s the most wonderful woman I’ve ever met.” Ethan wouldn’t disagree with that assessment, even though he could not imagine Abigail as Mrs. Oliver Seton. “You think she’s wonderful even though she refused you?” “She’ll change her mind. I know she will. I tell you, Ethan, she’s the woman for me, even if she’s not as beautiful as her sister.” Ethan blinked in surprise. “You think Charlotte’s prettier than Abigail?” Oliver nodded. “Any man with eyes can see that, but Jeffrey spotted her first. Lucky man. Abigail’s next best.” The thought of Abigail as second best made Ethan clench his fists. Charlotte had a head filled with air. She would never have tried to help him out of the doldrums as Abigail had done, for she would not have even known he had sunk into the mire. Second best? Hah! “You’re crazy, Oliver. Anyone can see that Abigail’s twice the woman Charlotte is. I’m not denying that Charlotte is pretty, but Abigail is in a class of her own.” Oliver’s eyes narrowed as he regarded Ethan. “It sounds like you’re interested in her yourself.” Ridiculous. The thought was absurd. “Of course I’m not. I’m only pointing out the facts.” “I’m warning you, Ethan. You may outrank me, but you’d better not be setting your sights on Miss Harding, because I aim to marry her.” Without waiting for a reply, Oliver stalked away.
Amanda Cabot (Summer of Promise (Westward Winds, #1))
Why are clowns so creepy?”
“You’re afraid of clowns?”
“I didn’t say that. I just said they’re creepy.”
Miranda watched him, amused. The best defense was an even better offense.
“You’re staring,” Gage mumbled.
“I can’t help it.”
“Why? Do I have a messy face, too?”
“No.” Miranda couldn’t resist. “You have dimples.”
He squirmed self-consciously. “I guess.”
“I bet you get teased a lot.”
“Is there some relevant point to this?”
Miranda did her best to keep a straight face. “Just that they’re so cute.”
“Are you blushing?”
Richie Tankersley Cusick (Walk of the Spirits (Walk, #1))
Why are clowns so creepy?”
“You’re afraid of clowns?”
“I didn’t say that. I just said they’re creepy.”
Miranda watched him, amused. The best defense was an even better offense.
“You’re staring,” Gage mumbled.
“I can’t help it.”
“Why? Do I have a messy face, too?”
“No.” Miranda couldn’t resist. “You have dimples.”
He squirmed self-consciously. “I guess.”
“I bet you get teased a lot.”
“Is there some relevant point to this?”
Miranda did her best to keep a straight face. “Just that they’re so cute.”
“Are you blushing?”
Oh, Gage, you have no idea…if Marge and Joanie were here right now, they’d jump all over you.
Still flustered, Gage signaled the waitress. But it was someone else who walked over instead.
“Private conversation?” Etienne greeted them.
“No,” Gage answered, a little too quickly.
“I was just telling him about his…” Miranda began, but Gage looked so trapped, she didn’t have the heart to bring Etienne into it. “Just telling him about--”
“We were talking about the gallery,” Gage broke in. “That building she was wondering about.”
Etienne glanced purposefully from Gage to Miranda and back again. “I don’t know, from where I was standing over there, you were looking a little embarrassed.”
“The opera house. I was telling her what I found out.”
“Okay, if you say so.”
“And I said okay. I believe you. You gonna eat the rest of those fries?”
Gage slid his plate across the table as Etienne slid in beside Miranda. Etienne shot her a secret wink.
“It’s not the thing with the dimples again, is it?” he asked innocently. “I don’t know what it is with girls, the way y’all love his--”
“Why are you here?” Gage asked. Getting to his feet, he pointed toward the restrooms. “I’ll be right back. You can leave the tip.”
“I was going to anyway.
Richie Tankersley Cusick (Walk of the Spirits (Walk, #1))
How is your lady love faring in all this?”
His expression shifted, betraying the smile of one happily besotted despite the circumstances. “I think she is as stunned as everyone else, but she is a very strong, capable woman.”
I couldn’t resist the urge to tease a little. “Strong and capable? Flattering descriptions, but hardly warm enough to merit the soft look in your eyes.”
“She isn’t a serpent, who wears her passions like jewelry and dances barefoot in the morning,” Gerard answered. “She is an avian lady, serene and composed even when she is upset. Strong, and capable.” More softly, he added, “She guards her heart and soul tightly unless she is around those she most trusts…so every little glimpse she allows me is like the silver moon rising over the sea.”
“A’le-Ahnleh,” I responded with newfound respect. “My best wishes to you both.
Amelia Atwater-Rhodes (Snakecharm (The Kiesha'ra, #2))
Here comes the best part,” I say, realizing that I’ve spoken aloud the words I always tease Haddie for when she announces them at the bridge of the song. The lyrics come and I sing along as the words wash over me, moving me as they always do, bringing goose bumps to my flesh. “There you are, sitting in the garden, clutching my coffee, calling me sugar. You called me sugar.”
“I don’t get it,” Colton says, “Why is that the best part?”
“Because it’s the moment she realizes that he loves her,” I muse, a soft smile on my face.
Cats. The original source of the, er, taint is a wee bit obscure. Twas either brought back by a Crusader or from some ancient Celtic bride, a priestess in the old religion, a shape-shifter.” He shrugged. “Despite what I am, I find that a wee bit difficult to imagine. But, there it is. The Callans appear to have done what ye plan to do—bred it out. There are tales from the old, misty past that hint at some difficulties because of this trait, but the Callans began to be verra particular in their mates. Their family lines are kept meticulously complete right to the most distant of cousins. Intermarriage, no matter how rich the prize, is strictly forbidden for fear that this trait will blossom in its full glory again and pull them all back into danger.” “So, they have bred it out then?” Cathal could understand why Bridget might hide this fact about her clan, but still felt hurt and angry that she would hide it from him. “Most of it. There lingers a hint, though. In the coloring, for example. Twas the medallion that set me on the right path. It reminded me of a tale I had once been told. I found that and soon tracked down the rest. It also explains a lot of things such as how your wife hisses and scratches, how she can run as she does.” “How she purrs,” Cathal whispered. “Does she? How intriguing.” Jankyn met Cathal’s scowl with a sweet smile. “The way she seems to sense danger, her keen eyesight, especially in the dark, and that certain grace she has. All Callan women are rumored to be small, lovely, graceful, passionate, and fertile. Verra, verra fertile. Your wee wife comes from a verra big family.” “Do ye recall the first night she was here? The way she acted when she first awoke?” Jankyn nodded. “Verra like a cat.” “Aye, but for one fleeting moment there was something in her face, something verra catlike.” “Why didnae ye say so?” “I thought it a trick of the light. Now I think not. It also means it might be impossible to breed out all our MacNachton traits. The Callans havenae fully succeeded, have they?” “Would that be such a bad thing? I can think of a few that would only serve us weel and would only raise envy, nay fear.” “True. I suspicion some of the things in the Callan bloodline do the same. The more I think on it, the more I curse myself as a blind fool. Aye, some of what Bridget does could just be considered, weel, a female’s ways. But nay all of them. Certainly nay the way she fought Edmee. I was but stunned when Edmee tossed me aside. Couldnae move, but I could see how Bridget leapt at Edmee. She used those cursed long nails of hers on Edmee and it took Edmee a few moments to get a firm grasp on Bridget. I can now see that the way Bridget moved to try to stay out of Edmee’s grasp was verra like a cat. Then Edmee threw Bridget and, somehow, e’en as she was flying through the air, she curled that wee body of hers into a ball. That and the heather saved her.” “Aye. Raibeart and I were close enough to see that. Raibeart still mutters about it. That and the fact that your wee wife made sure to take a few large hanks of Edmee’s hair with her when she was thrown. Of course, a cat is said to land on its feet. For one wee minute, I truly thought she was about to perform that wondrous feat, but then she curled up into the ball. I wonder why.” “Mayhap when I have finished bellowing at her, I will ask her that question.” He smiled faintly when Jankyn laughed. “So, ye will keep her?” “Aye. E’en when I feared ye were about to tell me she had MacNachton blood, something that would near ruin all my grand plans, I meant to keep her.” He sighed, finished off his wine, then rose to refill his goblet. “I had best send for her, confront her with this, and hear what she has to say for herself.” “No need. I believe I hear the patter of wee paws approaching.” Cathal gave Jankyn a disgusted look as he retook his seat. “I would be wary of teasing her too much. Dinnae forget those nails.” “Cathal?
Hannah Howell (The Eternal Highlander (McNachton Vampires, #1))
This is Joss’s place,” he sighed, running one hand through his hair in a distracted gesture. “He built it into what it is now, not me.” Lily began to massage the knotted muscles in his shoulders, carefully avoiding his rapidly healing wound. “You were born here, Caleb. This land—or half of it, at least—is your birthright.” “I want to go back, to build something with my own hands, something that’s yours and mine. Our homestead seems like the best place to start.” Lily was so happy that she rose up on her knees and flung her arms around Caleb’s neck from behind. “I do love you, Major Halliday!” He laughed. “Damn it, woman, you’re choking me.” Playfully Lily bit the back of his neck. “I don’t care!” Caleb whirled on her, flinging her down onto the mattress. “Don’t you?” he teased, and he began to tickle her ribs through her lightweight nightgown, causing her to writhe and shout with laughter.
Linda Lael Miller (Lily and the Major (Orphan Train, #1))
She was sitting out a dance when Caleb took her hand, pulled her into the shadowy alcove off the ballroom, and presented her with a worn velvet box. “This belonged to my mother,” he said quietly. Holding her breath, Lily lifted the lid. Inside was a delicate silver filigree necklace accented with a snowfall of diamonds. “Oh, Caleb.” Caleb took the splendid creation from its box and moved behind Lily to put it around her neck and fix the clasp. He bent and kissed the place where the two ends of the chain met. “Someday our son will give this to his wife.” Lily turned to look up into Caleb’s eyes. If she had ever doubted his love for her, those feelings were behind her for all time. No man would have given such a cherished heirloom to a woman if he didn’t care about her deeply. “It was the best thing that ever happened to me, meeting you,” she said. She smiled, remembering that day in the hotel dining room in Tylerville when the soldiers had been teasing her and she’d dropped her tray. “Though I must admit I didn’t think so at the time.” Caleb put his hand under her chin and gently lifted her face for a light, brief kiss. “I knew the instant I saw you,” he confessed when his lips had left hers, “that I wanted to be with you forever. I just didn’t have sense enough to see that you were made to be a wife, not a mistress.” Lily was full of quiet joy. All that was needed to make her happiness complete was some word of her sisters. “While you’re dancing with all these admirers of yours,” Caleb went on, with a wicked light glittering in his eyes as he nodded toward the contingent of handsome young men gathered in the ballroom, “I want you to remember whose bed you sleep in.” Lily
Linda Lael Miller (Lily and the Major (Orphan Train, #1))
Well, there’s that one thing that kind of goes with I’m in love with you,” he continued. “If you want to get married, I’m game.” “I don’t know…” “And if you don’t want to, it’s okay. As long as I have your naked body up against mine on a very frequent basis, I’ll get along. I’m leaving the whole issue completely up to you, Muriel.” “Why, Walt?” He shrugged. “I don’t have a problem with marriage. I liked it, it worked for me. No boogeymen or curses as far as I’m concerned. Whatever you decide you want to do, either way I’m claiming you. Don’t try to wiggle out of it. It’s a done deal.” “I don’t want to get out of it. I like you.” “You love me,” he corrected. “Passionately. Desperately. Insatiably.” “I do,” she laughed. “You make me feel twenty-one,” he said. “Honest to God. And when the fabulous sex simmers down a little, you’re the best friend I’ve had in a long time. Muriel, you’re not a convenience. I’d walk across a mile of cut glass in my bare feet to hold your hand and talk to you for one hour. You’re everything to me.” She sighed deeply and her eyes glistened a little. “I’d better go before I give up the only Oscar of my lifetime by playing house with you.” “Tell me I’m everything to you, too,” he said. “Damned if you aren’t,” she said. “Now kiss me in a way that will hold me for a couple of weeks.” “Kind of took you by surprise, didn’t I?” he teased. “Admit it, you didn’t think this would turn out to be so much, did you?” “Walt, the second I saw you blush when you asked if I was married, I knew. And I wanted you. Right then. Right there. Sweaty and naked on the trail.” That made his smile huge. “You didn’t let on.” “I hadn’t wanted something like that in a long, long time,” she said, smiling. Then she rose on her toes and planted a big sloppy one on his lips, holding him close. “I adore you,” she whispered against his lips. “I’ll count the seconds until you’re back.” *
Robyn Carr (Paradise Valley)
Speaking of feelings, there’s so much intense teasing between you and your brothers, Jep. Do feelings ever get hurt?
Jep: I love my brothers and would do anything for them. I know they feel the same about me. Alan has always been there for me with a nonjudgmental attitude, a listening ear, and wise advice. Jase is such a good teacher about wildlife, and he’s the best speaker in our family. He studies, prepares, and he’s always able to look at the funny side of life. I really respect his knowledge. I’ve always thought Willie is the coolest guy in the world. I’ve loved and looked up to him from the first moment I can remember. I’d tag along with him more than anybody else, and he took the time to teach me basketball and baseball. I copied him in just about everything, and I know sometimes it got on his nerves. I was so much younger than my brothers that I really didn’t start stuff, but I sure didn’t mind going to tell on them. They’d get spanked, and I wouldn’t.
Jep Robertson (The Good, the Bad, and the Grace of God: What Honesty and Pain Taught Us About Faith, Family, and Forgiveness)