Friday, 21 September 2018

All or Nothing - Pre-Order Discount




All or Nothing, the first book in the Blowhole Series will be released on September 26th. Until that date, the book will be available for preorder for $.99.

With the launch date is less than a week away, I thought you might want to know a little more about the story. Below you’ll find the blurb as well as an excerpt introducing Hector Kelly.

On September 26 I’ll share an excerpt introducing Amber, so don’t forget to keep an eye on my blog.

Enjoy!

Blurb

If she’s not good enough for all of him, she’d rather have none.

Forty-one-year-old Hector Kelly has lived the BDSM lifestyle all his adult life, but the recent influx of inexperienced and starry-eyed young women has killed its luster for him. When he reluctantly accompanies his best friend to The Dark Cellar during an open night, he is not surprised when he has to rescue a clueless young woman from a predatory Dom. Against his better judgment, he spends the rest of the night showing the gorgeous Amber around the club.

Until she entered The Dark Cellar, twenty-one-year-old Amber Sommerville was convinced BDSM only existed between the covers of her favorite romance novels. As Hector introduces her to this unknown world, everything she sees awakens desires she’s never experienced before.

The attraction between Hector and Amber is as instant as it is undeniable. But with an almost twenty-year age difference between them and Hector’s conviction that Amber is too young both for him and to know whether or not she wants to submit, their developing relationship remains purely vanilla—for the most part. When Amber witnesses Hector in full Dom mode, she recognizes that he’s been holding back and sets him an ultimatum: either he fully commits all of himself to their relationship or she’ll leave. If Hector wants to hang on to the woman who has captured his heart, he’ll have to reassess his preconceived notions.



Excerpt

“Jaysus, man, you could at least pretend you’re enjoying yourself.”

Hector continued to study the crowd in front of him, reacquainting himself with the club he hadn’t visited in a long time, while contemplating how to answer his friend. The Dark Cellar hadn’t changed much. The large space still mostly resembled a luxurious private club. Nothing in the furniture, covered in red and black faux leather, or the layout indicated the true nature of the establishment or its members. If it hadn’t been for the revealing nature of the attire and the provocative behavior of the majority of people surrounding them, it would be easy to conclude this was nothing more or less than an upmarket nightclub.

Hector reluctantly turned away from the crowd he’d been studying and faced his friend. “You knew I didn’t want to come here tonight, Paul. There’s no point complaining about my lack of enthusiasm now.” He tried to keep his voice pleasant. Paul was a good mate and had been for years. Hector didn’t want to upset him but, fuck, if it hadn’t been for Paul pestering him for over a week about coming out, he’d be at home now with a nice glass of wine and a good book. And alone. Hector swallowed the sigh wanting to escape and forced the frown off his face.

“I still don’t get what your problem is.” The bewildered look on Paul’s face emphasized the confusion in his voice. “This is our world, has been for years. Why are you all of a sudden reluctant to immerse yourself?”

Hector lifted his glass to his lips and drank deeply from his whiskey. His second glass. He almost smiled. Two drinks ensured he wouldn’t be allowed to indulge himself, even if he were to change his mind. It wasn’t likely, but it didn’t hurt to make sure he wouldn’t stray beyond being a spectator.

He felt Paul’s scrutiny despite trying to ignore his friend. They’d known each other too long for the man not to be able to read him like a book. Even the ten years Hector had spent in London hadn’t been able to break the bond between them. Paul had visited Hector at least once a year. They’d been to clubs together there. And Hector knew he’d never displayed any reluctance until now, so Paul’s confusion was both reasonable and understandable. Hector just wasn’t sure how to explain to his friend that his enthusiasm for the scene had taken a serious nosedive ever since popular fiction had pulled all sorts of wannabees with unrealistic expectations to the scene. It wasn’t that he had a problem with the nature of the club he found himself in; far from it. This was in his blood, and he’d doubted that could ever change. It was just

He allowed his gaze to roam the large room they were in and frowned when he saw the group of young women enter. A bleeding hen party. That was exactly what he didn’t like. Those girls were here not because they had an interest in BDSM but because they were drunk and wanted to do something outside their comfort zone. They were here to ogle things they didn’t understand, and they’d spend the next few weeks or months giggling about collars, floggers, and people kneeling for others; making fun of what for him and numerous others was a way of life.

He turned to Paul. His friend deserved an explanation, of course. It wasn’t just that he’d accepted Paul’s invitation to come out tonight and should, therefore, have the decency to at least try and be good company. Since Paul now worked here part-time, both as a supervisor and as part of the security team, it actually made sense to explain his reasoning to him. He just didn’t want to do it here and now. “Can we leave it be, Paul? I really do not want to get into it, especially not while I have to shout to make myself heard.” Hector didn’t even try to relax his facial muscles, unconcerned that his irritation was plain to read for anybody paying attention. If they’d come here on any other night, he would more than likely have been able to lose himself in the habits of a lifetime. He hated these open nights. Why did clubs feel the need to invite the uninitiated? It was a recipe for disaster, and he’d seen it go wrong often enough not to want to be part of it anymore.

“Will you relax? That scowl on your face is enough to scare me off, never mind anybody else.” Impatience had crept into Paul’s voice.

“I’m sorry.” Hector turned and gave Paul his full attention—his friend deserved better from him, no matter how reluctant he might be. “This setup gets on my nerves. I’ve seen it go horrifically wrong in London; I don’t want to see it again.”

“What do you mean? What did you see?”

“A few weeks before I left London, I was in what used to be my favorite club during one of these open nights. A group of girls like those”—Hector nodded toward the girls grouped around the young woman wearing a veil to indicate her upcoming wedding—“walked in, and one of them caught the attention of a visiting Dom. He expected certain things. She’d no idea what she was dealing with. Nobody interfered because nobody realized she was in trouble until it was too late.”

Hector stared at the hen party again as most of the women walked across the club to the bar while one of them, a gorgeous redhead, stood rooted to the spot.

“They asked her afterwards why she hadn’t used her safeword. Only then did it become clear she’d no idea what a safeword was or that she could have used it to end what that man was doing to her.” Hector stopped talking and looked at Paul. Did his friend understand? After he’d witnessed that debacle, Hector had vowed he’d steer clear of the uninitiated. Not visiting clubs on the nights they allowed the vanillas inside was part of that promise to himself. A promise he’d broken tonight.

“Listen, I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to spoil your evening. I’ll go home now. Invite me along again when they have a members-only night. I’m not going to be able to relax tonight.”

Hector saw the disappointment on his friend’s face. He’d no doubt Paul had been looking forward to their first night out since Hector had come back from London. He wished he could fake it, but all his instincts screamed at him to leave. His nerves were on edge, waiting for something to go wrong. The state he was in, he wasn’t good company. Relief flooded him when Paul nodded.

“Fair enough. I’ll call you tomorrow to tell you how misplaced your worries were.”

Hector smiled his first real smile of the evening. He was a lucky man to have a friend like Paul. It was rare to find someone who trusted you completely and allowed you to be yourself. Ten years of living in different countries hadn’t changed that dynamic, and it was a minor miracle.

As Hector walked to the exit, his attention shifted to the beautiful young woman he’d seen earlier. She’d barely moved from the spot where her friends had left her. She looked around and seemed to be drinking in the sights surrounding her. He glanced at her arm and saw the white band circling the slim wrist. At least, this club, unlike the one in London, had the foresight to make the guests distinguishable from the lifestylers.

He was barely aware of slowing down as he allowed his gaze to drink in her beauty. Whoever she was, she looked stunning. Her red hair curled freely around her face and tumbled down her back. The short black dress she wore was tight and emphasized her well-formed breasts and long, slim legs. He was amazed she’d been able to stand there for as long as she had without attracting attention. He tried to figure out what she might be looking at with such a fascinated expression on her face and wasn’t surprised when his gaze came to rest on an almost naked woman kneeling next to a black-clad Dom who caressed his sub’s hair while conducting a conversation with two other men.

He stopped walking while he considered her reaction to the scene. She might be what he considered an innocent, but, unlike most he’d met in the past, she didn’t look shocked or disgusted. He had to give her that. Just for a moment, he played with the thought of approaching her before mentally kicking himself and resuming his journey to the door. He’d already broken one promise to himself by coming here on an open night; he wasn’t about to break another.

A few meters away from the exit, Hector turned to look at the beautiful redhead one more time. It was ridiculous; she was barely more than a child. She had to be at least twenty-one to have been allowed to enter, but she couldn’t possibly be much older. Much too young for him, even if he hadn’t sworn to stay away from curious vanillas like her.

Hector suppressed a self-deprecating smile and was about to continue his journey to the exit when a masked man in a dark, expensive-looking suit approaching the girl pulled him up short. Without thinking about it, Hector walked toward the pair. Of all the Doms to approach her, it had to be Carlos. He remembered the man, and the memories weren’t good. Carlos had always taken arrogance to a new and previously unseen level. If the mask he was wearing now was any indication, that attitude hadn’t improved over the years. Hector had no doubt, and his blood ran cold; he was about to see his worst fears come true. The girl didn’t stand a chance against this particular Dom. His suspicions were confirmed when he caught most of Carlos’ sentence.

“... told you to kneel. Don’t you know how to behave, girl?”


 Book Details

Release Date: September 26, 2018
Pairing: MF
Length 61k words approx.
Universal pre-order/buy link: mybook.to/AoN
All or Nothing will be available in KU and as a paperback.


Thursday, 6 September 2018

Going Back to My Roots – and The Blowhole

Round about this time five years ago, online friends challenged me to write a book during NaNoWriMo. Fully expecting to crash to a hold after two chapters I started typing and, much to my astonishment, had a completely first draft twenty days into November.

Getting the story published took another fourteen months, but, in February 2015 Little Rainbows was released by Totally Bound Publishing. Even before that happened,  my beta readers informed me that I had to write about Hector and Amber, two secondary characters in Little Rainbows, and specifically, how they ended up together.

It took me a few years but I eventually got there. On September 26, All or Nothing will be released on Amazon. Because this book is technically a prequel to Little Rainbows it can be read as a stand-alone and/or as a first in series.

With this book I’ve come full circle. Not only have I returned to a world I created years ago, I’ve also gone back to an MF pairing. I have to admit that both reunions were joyful.



All or Nothing – Blurb

If she’s not good enough for all of him, she’d rather have none.

Forty-one-year-old Hector Kelly has lived the BDSM lifestyle all his adult life, but the recent influx of inexperienced and starry-eyed young women has killed its luster for him. When he reluctantly accompanies his best friend to The Dark Cellar during an open night, he is not surprised when he has to rescue a clueless young woman from a predatory Dom. Against his better judgment, he spends the rest of the night showing the gorgeous Amber around the club.

Until she entered The Dark Cellar, twenty-one-year-old Amber Sommerville was convinced BDSM only existed between the covers of her favorite romance novels. As Hector introduces her to this unknown world, everything she sees awakens desires she’s never experienced before.

The attraction between Hector and Amber is as instant as it is undeniable. But with an almost twenty-year age difference between them and Hector’s conviction that Amber is too young both for him and to know whether or not she wants to submit, their developing relationship remains purely vanilla—for the most part. When Amber witnesses Hector in full Dom mode, she recognizes that he’s been holding back and sets him an ultimatum: either he fully commits all of himself to their relationship or she’ll leave. If Hector wants to hang on to the woman who has captured his heart, he’ll have to reassess his preconceived notions.

All or Nothing will be available in KU and is currently available for pre-order. It will also be released as a paperback.

Book Details

Release Date: September 26, 2018
Pairing: MF
Length 61k words approx.
Cover Artist: Emmy Ellis @Studionp
Pre-order link: Amazon US | Amazon UK

And, you may want to keep an eye on my website over the next few weeks. I’ll be sharing excerpts and am also planning a giveaway or two.


Sunday, 13 May 2018

Double Dutch Courage – Out Now




If you follow me on Facebook (or Twitter, or MeWe) you may have noticed that I released my new book, Double Dutch Courage, two days ago.

Unlike my previous full-length novels, this book was self-published, which turned out to be both a terrifying and exhilarating experience. And, for the first time I’ve set my story in Amsterdam, the city where I was born and raised. Exciting times indeed. J

Below you’ll find all you might want to know about Double Dutch Courage as well as a new, never before shared, excerpt.


Word count: 63k approx
Cover images: Dan Skinner & Stephen Cassidy
Cover design: Stephen Cassidy

Blurb

Ronan Collins has spent most of his life in Dublin hiding who he really is. Coming out would hurt his mother, and Ronan isn’t going to be the second gay man to do that. When he receives news the father he has never known has died, leaving him both a house and a business in Amsterdam, he jumps on the opportunity to get to know the man who fathered him and to discover what he’s been denying himself for years.

Lucas Brandt thought he had it all when Paul Kelly offered him a job and rooms to live in. With Paul deceased he fears he may be about to lose both. He didn’t even know Paul had a son, and now this stranger is on his way from Dublin to pull the rug out from under Lucas’s feet.

The two men don’t expect to like each other, never mind feel attraction. With numerous reasons why hooking up would be a bad idea, why does giving in feel so much better? And is Ronan’s back story really as he’s always imagined it to be?

Sudden changes require great bravery. Can both men find the courage to be true to themselves and each other?


Excerpt

Lucas checked how late it was for the sixth time in the space of twenty minutes. He hated waiting. He detested it more now than he’d ever done before. The next hour, day, week — he’d no idea how long it would take — would decide his immediate future. Everything was up in the air. All he knew for sure was that his life was no longer in his own hands. Some stranger was about to arrive and, depending on what that man decided, Lucas’s existence could change beyond recognition. If it wasn’t for the horrific reality of it he could have been persuaded it was some cruel April Fool’s Day stunt.
He picked up his mobile again and cursed when he saw no more than four minutes had passed since the last time he’d done so. He pushed his phone into his pocket, hoping that keeping it out of sight would make it easier to stop checking the screen every few minutes. He needed to keep busy. It would be at least another hour before his visitor would arrive. Except that he couldn’t think of the man — Ronan Collins — in those terms, of course. As soon as the Irishman walked through the door, Lucas would be reduced to the status of a, more than likely, unwanted guest.
He went to the kitchen and poured himself a cup of coffee. No! I’m not a visitor here either. Paul named me in his will, he gave me part of his business. This Ronan will need my cooperation almost as much as I’ll depend on him.
Carrying the coffee with him, he made his way to his bright and spacious studio. He stopped on the threshold and studied the room in detail for the first time since he’d furnished it almost three years ago.
This is mine! Everything from the clean lines, to the white walls, and the bright splashes of color had been his idea, his design and his execution. Paul had allowed him to get on with it, not putting any restrictions or expectations on him.
‘You do exactly what you want, lad. These will be your rooms and if you bring clients to your studio it should show them what your style is, give them an idea of what to expect if they work with you.’ A lump formed in his throat and he lowered himself into his comfy chair. He missed Paul, and the big hole in his life didn’t appear to be shrinking. Three weeks had passed since the cremation and he hadn’t even come close to getting used to the idea that the man who’d been so much more than his mentor for the past three years was no longer around.
Blowing on his still too-hot-to-drink coffee, he surrendered to the memories surging through his mind. He’d been so lucky. He’d met Paul when he was in his last year of college. Paul had been a guest lecturer and had given a month’s worth of lessons. Even now, almost four years later, Lucas couldn’t believe that Paul had been so impressed with his ideas that he’d offered him not only a job but also a place to stay once he’d discovered Lucas’s predicament. Lucas had moved in and started working two weeks after he’d received his diploma.
He stared at the mug in his hands as the loneliness that had been his constant companion ever since Paul died, tried to engulf him again. The house wasn’t the same without Paul in it. It was too big for him on his own. At least once a day he’d find himself halfway up the stairs before remembering that nobody awaited him in the rooms at the top. No more shared coffee breaks, no more discussions of designs and clients, no more…
He forced himself to not get trapped in that particular vortex of painful thoughts again. It hurt too much. There were moments he feared he would drown in the loneliness, when he had to talk out loud to himself to break the silence surrounding him. He missed Paul. He hadn’t realized how used to his company he’d become until he was no longer around. Forty-nine was too young for anyone to die. Lucas still had so much to learn, so many unanswered questions, and now he’d never know.
I can’t believe he never told me he had a son.               


Early Reviews

“Trust me, with writing like this you won’t want to miss a phenomenal story!” – OJ He Say

“One of the things I really liked about this book was its setting. Amsterdam and the Netherlands become almost a character in the book. I loved reading about the cultural items throughout the book: the travel, the food, the holidays, etc. It was like I was actually there touring the country with Ronan and Lucas. I've read a lot of books set in other countries that could be anywhere. Ms. Stone made the location a part of her book!Eric McDermott

“I enjoyed this smooth-moving story of discovery, redemption, and restoration so much I hardly know where to begin. […] Romance novels are usually so predictable. Everyone seems to follow the same script to attract and titillate the reader. This is where Ms. Stone steps away from the pack. Her characters are delightfully unpredictable. The surprises are artfully dispersed throughout the story, using charm, humor, and emotion in such a way as to enhance your reading pleasure.” – Sharon

“This was such a lovely story. Sweet, fun, and charming. Low on sex, but high on feelings.  […]This book is for everyone who loves a well-written story with great characters, who loves a laugh and sweetness without being sappy.” - Tanja





Monday, 19 February 2018

A Month of Firsts or With a Lot of Help From My Friends


Two days ago I uploaded my new Valentine’s Day story to Amazon. This is my first foray into self-publishing, but publishing the book was also the last in a long line of firsts. To say I’ve been on a very steep learning curve for the past three weeks would be the understatement of the century, and if it hadn’t been for the people I’ll mention below, Valentine’s Love would never have seen the light of day.

Adira, Tanja, Dermot, Elin, Paul, and Lily are not only worth their weight in gold when it comes to their beta reading powers, they also proved to be speed readers extraordinaire. Sally Hopkinson managed to pull off what I deemed impossible when she edited the full story over the course of a few days. And without Theo Fenraven my book wouldn’t have had its gorgeous cover.

Let’s just say that there’s nothing like trying to get my own story ready for publication to make me appreciate all the work my publishers have done for me in the past. If I ever wondered why I had to split my royalties, I know fully understand.

I’m immensely grateful for and in awe of the patience displayed by Isobel Starling, K.C. Wells, Posy Roberts and Brigham Vaughn. They helped me with formatting the Word document, creating an Instafreebie account, setting up a newsletter, and publishing the book on Amazon without ever losing their patience or telling me how very useless I am when it comes to all matters IT.

If I needed proof that the writing/reading community I’m part of is a very supportive and loving place, my journey to producing this book provided it in spades. I can’t begin to express how incredibly grateful I am for all the help and hand-holding I received.

As for the book: It will always hold a special place in my heart. Not only is it the first title I self-published, it is also the story that proved once and for all that I’m a very lucky writer to have found so many invaluable friends.


Blurb

Ty O’Malley loves Spoilt for Choice, his gift shop. He enjoys nothing more than helping his customers find the perfect present. The only exception is Valentine’s Day. Ever since his partner left him, three years previously, Ty hasn’t been able to enjoy the love-themed holiday, and goes out of his way to avoid dealing with it. This year will be no different — until his assistant interferes.

When Ben Cronin walks into his premises, looking for presents for a man he doesn’t know but has been admiring from afar, Ty can’t deny Ben is everything he would look for in a man — if he happened to be looking, which he isn’t. Besides, Ben has obviously set his sights on someone else.

As Ty instructs Ben in the art of finding the perfect gift, the two men grow closer. But there are only four weeks until Valentine’s Day. After February fourteenth, Ty will probably never see Ben again … Or will he?


Valentine’s Love can be found on Amazon for $.99/£.99/€.99 or through KU.



Saturday, 10 February 2018

Valentine's Love - An M/M Romance Valentines Giveaway

Valentine’s Love



Yes, it’s that time of year again where we get to celebrate love (even more than we do every other day of the year).

In order to bring new love to your E-reader, eighteen authors, including yours truly, got together to organise a Valentine’s Day MM Giveaway. All of us have created new stories for the occasion, and there’s a nice variety of sub-genres so everybody should be able to find at least a few books to their taste. The participating authors are: Isobel Starling, Jackie Keswick, Irene Preston & Liv Rancourt, Dale Cameron Lowry, Chris McHart, Frank W. Butterfield, Alina Popescu, A.M. Arthur, Sue Brown, Tanya Chris, Teodora Kostova, April Kelley, C.L. Mustafic, B.L. Morticia, Bronwyn Heeley, Lillian Francis, Kate Pavelle, and Leona Windwalker. 

You can find all titles included here: Valentine Giveaway Clicking on the covers will take you to the relevant Instafreebie giveaway pages.

For the curious, here’s the information on my story.


Blurb

Ty O’Malley loves Spoilt for Choice, his gift shop. He enjoys nothing more than helping his customers find the perfect present. The only exception is Valentine’s Day. Ever since his partner left him, three years previously, Ty hasn’t been able to enjoy the love-themed holiday, and goes out of his way to avoid dealing with it. This year will be no different — until his assistant interferes.

When Ben Cronin walks into his premises, looking for presents for a man he doesn’t know but has been admiring from afar, Ty can’t deny Ben is everything he would look for in a man — if he happened to be looking, which he isn’t. Besides, Ben has obviously set his sights on someone else.

As Ty instructs Ben in the art of finding the perfect gift, the two men grow closer. But there are only four weeks until Valentine’s Day. After February fourteenth, Ty will probably never see Ben again … Or will he?


This giveaway and my participation in it wouldn't have happened if it hadn't been for the enthusiasm, patience, and fabulous organisational skills of Isobel Starling, who also has a wonderful sounding story included in the giveaway. 

Happy reading! And, Happy Valentine’s Day!




Monday, 5 February 2018

Monday Flash Fics - The Reality of Love


The Reality of Love

I watch as the ropes drop from the helicopter hovering high above my hide-out, unsure how I feel about the fact that my journey has come to an end.

I wonder about the fact that they’ve lowered two lines. What if he hasn’t come alone? I don’t want to pursue that line of thought. It’s out of my hands now anyway. I made my move and left him with a choice. His decision will be the answer to all the questions I wasn’t brave enough to ask.

I squint at the tiny shapes, slowly making their way down. One of them is obviously human. Whether or not it’s him I can’t tell. I don’t know what’s attached to the other line though. If it’s also a person he or she has no idea what they’re doing and I fear for what might happen when they reach the ground without straightening up.

As they descend, the little chip implanted in the back of my neck, starts to tingle, providing me with the answer to one of my questions. The human coming down is almost certainly him. He’s found me. Did he come to extract his revenge or... I refuse to finish the thought as my mind flashes back to our last encounter.


“My need for you has nothing to do with the fact that I own you.” Darius, my Master sounded almost angry.

“Maybe not,” I replied. “But you can’t deny the bond between us is artificial; only established and maintained by the chips.”

“I refuse to believe that.”

I didn’t want to believe it either. I wanted him to yearn for me the way I longed for him because of real feelings, not an electronically generated emotion, created by the technology that’s supposed to keep Masters happy and slaves obedient. But I knew better than to get my hopes up. I had no doubt that only proximity kept us bound together. As soon as the distance between us was bigger than the chips’ range, any such feelings would evaporate.

“You’re wrong. You have to be.” The combination of hope and desperation in his voice decided me. When he left me alone, I fled. Not the smartest decision I’d ever made, considering that running from my Master is punishable by death, but I couldn’t take the conflicted emotions we were exchanging any longer.


The person and the object disappear from view, swallowed by the forest. I close my eyes as common sense reasserts itself, killing any hopeful fantasies I might entertain. It won’t be him; chances are he’s already replaced me and has given my electronic tag to a hunter. My punishment would arrive soon.

I close my eyes and try to prepare myself for what’s to come. I don’t want to die, but can’t help feeling it has to be better than the lie I’ve been forced to live for the four years since I was sent to his house. I understand why the Rulers decided that it was better, more peaceful, to have Masters and slaves love each other. And maybe it works for others. For me it has been hell. Knowing our feelings are artificial hurts more than I can bear.

I recognise the sound instantly. No two engines sound exactly the same and I’ve been a passenger on that one often enough to identify this machine instantly. He brought his bike? I try to figure out what this development means, coming up with nothing.

“Sam?”

I bite back the sigh wanting to escape. “Yes, Master.”

“No!” For the first time in years his voice holds the authority I would expect from a Master. “My name is Darius.”

My mind reels, but before I try to establish what this development means I need the answer to one, very important, question. “You came looking for me. Why?”

He stares at me for a few moments, a smile tugging at his lips. “Because I love you.”

“But I was too far away.” I’d made sure of that, studying how big the chip’s range was and travelling well beyond that distance.

“Did your feelings change?”

Such a simple question, and yet I never asked it. Only now do I fully realise that the miles between us failed to lessen my love for him too.

“But how?”

He shrugs. “Who cares?” He pulls me to his chest and I surrender. “Maybe one day we’ll figure it out,” he continues. “But even if we don’t. These feelings are real, whether they’re supposed to be or not. And you —" He plants a kiss on my lips. “You belong with me.”

He said “with” and not “to”. My last doubts evaporate. “I do.”

****

760 words
I’m not sure where this flash came from. Except that it’s loosely related to a longer story I’ve been playing with for over a year now. Maybe it’s time to open that document again?

More stories, inspired by the same image, can be found in the Monday Flash Fics group on Facebook. Since I’ve already read a few of them, I can safely say they’re well worth a few minutes of your time. Enjoy!


Monday, 22 January 2018

Monday Flash Fics: In the Dark



In the Dark

The door had been left unlocked, just as I they’d told me it would be. The hallway behind it was narrow and dark. Squinting my eyes, I searched in vain for a light switch. I suppressed a curse; I hated being in the dark.

Moving slowly, I made my way to the staircase I could vaguely make out in front of me, and carefully climbed towards the top floor. My orders had been clear and I’d followed them to a T. This was the last part of my journey, even if I wasn’t entirely sure what I would encounter at the end of it. I knew what I hoped to find though.

It was even darker, when I reached the top, but I could see there was only one door on the small landing. Disturbingly, no light shone from the gap between the door and the threshold, but I knew what I had to do, so I knocked. Once.

“Enter.”

The voice was deep, somewhat hoarse, and not completely unfamiliar. My heartbeat, already accelerated after the climb, picked up more speed as I grabbed the handle and pushed it down.

If possible, the interior of the room was more devoid of light than the hall and staircase had been, and I hesitated.

“What are you waiting for? Was there any part of your instructions you didn’t understand?” The voice came from somewhere straight ahead of me. “Come in and close the door.”

Still I waited, wondering whether whatever might come next would be worth the risk.

“Now!”

I couldn’t ignore the command in that voice and obeyed.

“That’s more like it.” His voice — because I was now sure it belonged to a man — had lost some of the aggressive note it had held before.

“Tell me about your journey here.”

I swallowed. I didn’t want to talk about what I’d experienced as a long walk of shame. But I’d come that far, giving up then would have been stupid.

“It was horrific,” I confessed. “People pointed at me, laughed and jeered.” My mouth was dry, and I swallowed hard before continuing. “Little kids followed me, shouting insults, asking me what I was supposed to be, and …”

“And what?” He sounded almost kind now.

“A little girl, about four years old, burst out crying. She asked her mother why Little Red Riding Hood had a beard.”

“But you came anyway. You didn’t turn around and go back.”

It wasn’t a question so I didn’t react.

“I’m proud of you.” Affection had slipped into his voice.

Suddenly a light came on and I blinked, momentarily blinded. Then I saw him, sitting in a big armchair, dressed all in black with his long hair flowing to his broad shoulders, and his smile almost feral.

“Thank you, Master Wolf.”

“Well done, Red. Now come here.” He pointed to the floor space next to his feet.

I closed this distance, knelt, and relished the moment when he pulled me close, until my head rested against his knee.

“Now you’re mine.”

My heart soared. After hoping he would notice me for over six months, he’d at last accepted me.

“And for me,” he continued, “you’ll learn to love making a show of yourself. Before too long you’ll cherish the dark. For me you’ll overcome all your fears and boundaries.”


He was right.

Today he brought me to the promenade and took this photo. He made me wear a coat this time. I didn’t want to put it on. Because I couldn’t be prouder of being Little Red for my Master Wolf. 

****

*sighs* 610 words. 

I wasn't going to write a story for this picture and then I not only changed my mind, but also went way over the 500 word target. Just as well the Monday Flash Fics group members don't take that rule too seriously. 

Talking about the group, more stories based on this image can be found here: Flash Enjoy!