Monday, June 14, 2010

Chapter 5

“Soooo Patrick,” Max began finally breaking the silence that had lasted long enough for the three men to get back to Sidney’s home, put away what was left of the food, grab a six pack and head out onto his deck. Max had his feet up on one of the other deck chairs while Kris seemed to be content to stare out over the dark lake. Sidney was picking at the label on his Moosehead and sulking.

“You know how hard it is for me to find someone normal, a girl that isn’t into the whole fame game,” Sidney explained quietly. Not that he thought he had to explain that to either of his friends. They had both fallen victim to gold diggers of their own and learned the lesson the hard way. For his part, Sidney had avoided relationships altogether, for years, refusing to get more serious than a few dates. The one or two times he had begun to trust someone, his life ended up on Photobucket or Tumblr for the entire world to see.

“D’accord, mon ami, nous le comprends, mais…if she doesn’t know who you are, why lie?” Sidney glanced over at Kris who he hadn’t thought was listening to the conversation and watched while his dark haired friend grabbed a chair, turned it backwards and straddled it, leaning on the back of it, his chin resting on the back of his arms while he waited for a reply.

“But I don’t know, not for sure,” Sidney pointed out, peeling away part of the label and reaching out to drop it into the citronella candle, watching as it sizzled and disappeared in a plume of multi-coloured smoke. “Sometimes, the good ones, they let you believe they don’t know,” he added thoughtfully, thinking of a certain blonde haired gymnast who hadn’t seemed to care about who he was until she’d bedded him and then she’d splashed it across facebook as if it were the news of the world.

“So when do you plan on telling her the truth?” Max asked, taking a long gulp of the amber liquid, tipping it so that even the very last drop in the bottle wouldn’t be wasted before holding it up to the light, just to be sure and then he reached for another from the cooler. “After you’ve slept with her? Before you ask her to marry you?” he added, finally turning his attention to Sid who stared back at him as if he’d just spoken in Swahili.

“I…I’m not saying I even want…well, yeah I want to sleep with her…yeah of course. I mean you saw her, right?” he looked at both of his friends in turn and they both nodded their agreement. She was definitely bangable. “But I don’t want to have a relationship,” he added, shuddering as if the entire idea of tying oneself down to another human being was repulsive in the extreme.

“Oui, because you are the king of the one night stands mon ami,” Tanger snorted, and he and Max clinked bottles and laughed at his expense while Sidney sat and simmered in silence because it wasn’t something he could argue over. He wasn’t that guy. He wasn’t like Max or Chris or Jordy, he couldn’t just do the whole wham bam skip out in the middle of the night thing. He had too much respect for women to be the guy that snuck out in the early hours of the morning leaving behind a bogus phone number. Maybe it had had something to do with growing up in a small town like this, knowing that every move you made was going to be seen and talked about. Or maybe it was just that everything he’d done since he was about ten had been talked about, discussed, analyzed to death and it had just been too much of a risk to include women in that mix. Either way, meaningless sex wasn’t in his repertoire.

“I didn’t say one night. I said I wanted to sleep with her…have fun, over the summer and then I’ll go my way and she’ll go hers’. No harm no foul.” It sounded like a solid plan when he said it to himself but the way both Kris and Max looked at each other and immediately began to snort derisively, he was willing to guess they didn’t think that possible either.

“You don’t do casual mon capitaine,” Tanger chuckled, grabbing each bottle off of the table and staring into them as if there was some chance they would have miraculously began to refill themselves.

“And that picnic didn’t look casual either,” Max pointed out, his eyebrow raised as if he was daring Sid to argue the point.

“Is there some rule that says you can’t enjoy the company of a woman, wine her and dine her before you have sex?” he asked and watched as Kris and Max turned to one another with amused looks on their faces. “What? What have I done wrong now?”

“Is the rule written down? Je ne sais pas, but I know if all I plan to do is take a girl to bed, I’m not spending more than a few drinks worth of money sur la fille, comprends?” Tanger gave Sid that look from beneath the brim of his hat that said he was right and Sid was wrong but life didn’t work that way.

“If it was only a one night stand, oui, c’est vrai, but that’s not what Sid’s after, is it, mon ami?” Max interjected, which wasn’t exactly coming to his defense. In fact, it made Sid squirm on his chair.

“It’s casual, whatever,” he mumbled, getting up from his chair, sending it tumbling behind him as he reached for the bottles on the table, grabbing them up in his hands. “I’m going to bed. Try not to piss off my neighbors.” With that he turned and went into the house, knowing full well that he was leaving them to talk about him behind his back. ‘Let them’ he thought to himself as he slammed the door shut behind him and stomped into the kitchen, dropping the beer bottles into the recycling bin before dragging off his sweater and balling it angrily in his hands. Their advice had never amounted to much anyway.

Reaching into the tub, Sid turned the water on full and let it run over the back of his hand. What he probably needed was a cold shower but that would keep him up and he already had a bad feeling that the events of this evening were going to haunt him. So instead, he made sure the water was scalding hot before he unbuckled his belt and dropped his jeans to the floor.

He wanted to wash off her touch. He wanted his skin to stop tingling where hers’ had brushed his, where she’d touched him either deliberately or inadvertently. He turned his face up into the hot spray and closed his eyes.

Was he being too eager? Doing too much? It seemed like she wanted him as much as he did, or had all the food sharing and all of the talk about skinny dipping been nothing more than an instrument meant to drive him crazy?

Sid’s fists hit the cold tile with enough force to break open the skin on his knuckles.

Maybe the boys were right. Maybe he was taking this too seriously. He would stay away from her for a few days and then he wouldn’t look so pathetic and needy. After all, he didn’t need her. If he wanted to get laid all he’d have to do is drive down to Halifax with the boys and go to a bar, any bar, and he could have his pick of girls. They’d know who he was of course but if all he wanted was sex, did that matter?

Sid turned off the water and reached blindly for a towel. As he dragged it over his head, rubbing his still short, dark hair dry, he told himself firmly that he didn’t need her or anyone else and that it wasn’t just about the boys teasing him. He had more control than that. He had come home to fish and relax so that was what he was going to do. Fish, relax and not think about the dark haired beauty at the other end of the lake.

Failing that, he knew it wouldn’t take much arm twisting to get Tanger and Max to join him on a flight to Atlantic City, or even all the way down to Barbados, if it came to that, which it wouldn’t, he promised himself as he ran the towel roughly over his now cooked and somewhat tender skin.

“Ahhh fuck,” he hissed as he imagined her hands running up his legs, softer, gentler than the towel and his body reacted accordingly. “Maybe a trip to Atlantic City isn’t such a bad fucking idea,” he growled, folding the towel and shoving it back onto the towel rack before scooping his clothes off of the floor and padding silently to his room where he knew he was going to spend the night tossing and turning.


Tabby sat on the bench by the bay window and stared across the dark lake, her knees pulled up to her chin, one of her grandmother’s old hand sewn quilts wrapped around her. Not because she was cold but because she felt like she needed holding onto. She’d known that she might feel the need for a hug or two while she was here, but she’d thought that would be because of all the memories in the walls surrounding her. As it turned out, the specters in the old house seemed to be friendlier than she had anticipated and she hadn’t really felt alone since she’d got here. Not until tonight. Tonight she felt lonelier than she’d felt in years.

She’d always had a knack for surrounding herself with people. Not that she needed to be with anyone, but it was somehow more comforting to know that her friends were either a text or a block away. She knew she could text her friends now, it wasn’t nearly as late on the other side of the country as it was here, but she also knew they’d be out at a pub or a club having a good time and didn’t need to hear her complaining about something that she told herself was trivial anyway. He wasn’t important. He was just some cute guy whose biceps and triceps and god help her, that god damn amazing gluteus maximus of his were, at most, a pleasant distraction. She’d just let him take up too much of her time. It’s not like there weren’t things he had to do around here.

There were her grandmother’s books to pack away, for instance, she told herself, glancing over at the bookshelves across the dark room filled with first editions and old, dusty copies of Wuthering Heights and Mansfield Park. She’d take some of them home, the rest she planned to put on e-bay.

And that was another thing she needed to do. Now that the phones were being hooked up in the morning, she needed to get online and get in touch with Harlequin and send them an email with the pictures she’d taken of the canvas. If they liked it they’d send a courier for it and she’d be putting a few hundred in her bank account, which she was going to need if she was going to get some clothes that wouldn’t make her stand out like a sore thumb around town and that she didn’t mind getting a little dirty. Now she understood why gramps had spent so much time in overalls.

See,’ she told herself with a secretive little smile, ‘you can think about something other than him’. She just needed to keep busy, and there was plenty to do.

You’re not here to chase boys’, she reminded herself firmly, ‘no matter how long his eyelashes are or how soft his lips look’. Tabbi’s fingertips pressed against her bottom lip. It was as if all she had to do was close her eyes and she could conjure him up, like a poltergeist that could actually press his lips to hers and leave her shivering in his wake.

She’d just have to keep herself busy and if he asked, she would just have to explain that she had things to do and it wasn’t as if it was a lie. Besides, she told herself as she got to her feet and crawled onto the small, single bed with the lumpy mattress, if she was really that lonely she could always get a cat. At least with a cat, his friends wouldn’t show up and ruin her night.

Maybe that had been a lucky escape though’, she told herself as she stared up at the ceiling. If his juvenile, annoying little friends hadn’t shown up maybe they would have gotten carried away and maybe she would have done something she’d regret in the morning. ‘Doubtful’, she mused, grinning to herself. There was something about the electricity that passed between them every time they so much as brushed against one another that told her that even if all that came of it was a one night stand, it would probably be a one night stand that would remain unsurpassed for the rest of her life.

A little shudder went through her entire body and Tabby bit down on her bottom lip to silence a whimper. ‘It doesn’t matter if it would be that good’, she told herself, screwing her eyes shut against the vision of his muscular shoulders and smooth chest moving above her. It would just complicate things. She had to clean up and fix up the house, put it up on the market and get the hell out of dodge before it turned cold and this and every other place on the Eastern Seaboard got lost in the fog and the rain.

No, no boys’, she told herself again and turned over on her side and reached for an old teddy bear she’d found in a box earlier that day.

“Just you and me teddy,” she sighed as she began, silently, to count sheep; sheep with gold and green eyes and soft, pink pouty lips.


  1. OHHH lord! cant they just sleep together to get it over with....pls put us out of our misery to and you better not let talbot and tanger ruin that next

    Great job! i cant wait for the next one ...
    ohhhh and Thank you so much for writing this! YAY

  2. They seriously do need to just sleep with each other!

  3. No. He needs to work for it. =P

  4. good job...max and tanger r no HELP!!!!

  5. Do you think Harlequin checks to make sure their covers aren't a really good likeness of someone famous?
    I love the sexual tension! I think having Max and Kris there will put a damper on things for a while.

  6. actually quite a few of the cover "men" are at the very least professional models and actresses and for their Nascar series they do use the drivers as models so I hope you don't think it's too far fetched a

  7. I think you're a very good writer and I love your work! Great job and great chapter. L.O.V.E. it!.

    - Maria.

  8. They need to talk to each other... Ah I cant wait to see where this is going! they would be perfect for each other!!! On to the next!