Good news and Bad news

Guess whose computer decided to stop working? That’s right! We are pretty sure that it’s an issue with the fan, so I’ll be taking it in at some point this week to get a replacement. I am not completely without gadgets due to this, and thank goodness for that, I say, but it does mean that publication of my next story will have to wait until I have access to Office and my cover art files again.

Now, before anyone goes wailing into the street to mourn this turn of events, I am going to see if I can figure out how to copy and paste an excerpt (written in the cloud). If I can pull this off, this entry will get a whole lot longer! Hold onto your hats, friends!

Here is an unedited excerpt from my next novella, Discipline. Enjoy!

***

At the appointed hour, Caroline knelt at the front door of her home. The air was rich with the smell of the steaks she had marinated and then pan-fried– crisped fat and seared rosemary against the deep tone of red wine. It was cool in the hallway and she felt chilled, with goosebumps running along her arms, tightening her nipples, but she
didn’t hug herself for warmth. Her eyes were fixed on the door’s window. Through the thin white cotton curtains, she watched for signs of Joshua’s arrival.
Just as Max’s favorite grandfather clock rang the hour, she saw the pale blur of a car pulling up to the curb. A man emerged and she knew it for him. On her knees, she stepped forward to turn the knob and open the door for him.
She dreaded the thought of a neighbor glancing towards her house and seeing her this way.
She cherished the thought of being seen this way.
Joshua walked briskly up the path, his briefcase in hand and his suit jacket buttoned neatly. His smile was small and perfect.
Caroline shuffled backwards to give him room to enter, grateful for the colorful rug that protected her knees from the hardwood floor.
He closed the door himself. Neither of them had said a word yet; with his arrival, her instinct led her to keep her chin down and her eyes lowered. She could see his polished shoes, turning back in her direction, see the briefcase as he set it beside the door, hear the whisper of his jacket as he unbuttoned it and slipped it from his shoulders. After he had draped it over the briefcase, he rested his hand on her hair like a holy man bestowing a blessing.
“Dinner smells wonderful.”
Caroline shivered with pleasure. “I hope it tastes the same. May I stand, Sir?”
He hooked two fingers under his tie and loosened it.
“No, I don’t think so,” he said, glancing down the hall. “I think you should give me a tour on hands and knees. I like seeing you this way.”
There was nothing for her to do but obey. Even age and experience couldn’t keep Caroline from blushing at the thought of his eyes on her rump as she crawled down the hall. She could picture the view he was enjoying– the plump swell of her cheeks, the small and tender lips peeping out from between her thighs, veiled in crinkly curls. It mortified and thrilled her, both at the same time.
Joshua followed slowly, nodding as she named each room they entered but seeming to prefer looking at her. Each room was given only a cursory glance– living room, office, craft room. kitchen. It wasn’t until she led him into the dining room that he spoke again.
By then, Caroline had forgotten the coolness in the air. It felt as if her hot blush had crawled from her face to warm and color her entire body.
“This won’t do, Caroline,” Joshua told her.
She looked around with alarm. What had she forgotten? The table was set, his at the head and hers to his right. Dinner sat steaming on the table runner, ready to be served. She’d opened a bottle of Shiraz and placed it before his setting, to breathe. All seemed to be in order.
“You may stand up and take your plate and cutlery back to the kitchen. You won’t be needing them.”
A quick glance up at the young man showed that he was smiling patiently down at her. Content to wait but clearly expecting her obedience.
Caroline moved shakily to her feet, thoughts swirling, and moved to do as she had been bid. Either he didn’t intend for her to eat, or…
Damn, he’s a natural.

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