G’day and Happy Thursday!
Hopefully, you’ll recall that at the beginning of July I released my first short story. (Please, for heaven’s sake tell me you recall, otherwise I’m just gonna forfeit my whole creative existence.) It was a look at an interlude between friends, and an examination of what can happen when a passionate flame burns between the two of them, so brightly, that the only thing left to do is to answer the seductive call of it and do the unthinkable (thanks, Alicia Keys for that one).
What began as a fun short story from a male character in my head who just wouldn’t leave me alone, has now fleshed out into Episode 2 in what is going to be an ongoing Celestial Summer Romance Series with these characters and a few more. I’m already working on Episodes 3 and 4 and I can’t wait to share them. But for now, take a look at Episode 2!
If you like what you read, take a minute to read the whole thing on Amazon. It’s free on Kindle Unlimited and $0.99 for everyone else, which, if I must say so myself, is a pretty awesome price! Also, take a second to leave a review too if you loved it 🙂 I hope you love it, cuz I REALLY enjoyed writing this one. I have a few other projects in the works too, but more on those in the next few days. Keep an eye out for new things here!
Wishing you Romance and Whimsy
Mars Vs. Venus
When Diana and Julian ventured to the beach, they were just two people wondering how far they could go. Jupiter and Venus were flirting in the skies, fueling their passion. But now that it’s over and they’ve been to the edge and back…what do they do? What happens when they are Diana and Julian again, and they have to live with the consequences of indulging in each other? Everyone knows that Men are from Mars and women are from Venus, but can Mars and Venus find a way to communicate, or will they forever be worlds apart?
It is commonly acknowledged that men are from Mars and women are from Venus. Somehow men don’t understand women, and women can’t figure out their male counterparts. Women do things that don’t seem to make sense to men. Men usually exacerbate the situation by saying and doing things that dismiss whatever women originally felt about their current issues. What’s worse, is that most of the time, women can’t find a way to make men empathize with and comprehend their deep emotions and thoughts. Diana reflected on the issue as a whole as she laid on her bed, with her face up toward the ceiling, her eyes closed against the bright glare of the ceiling light in her room.
Her hand rested low on her stomach, her shirt hitched up just above her belly button. She didn’t think she fell into the category of one of those women who was so difficult to understand that it felt like she came from another planet. She was straightforward and logical. Her thoughts and her actions often going hand in hand in a way that made it easy for her to relate to both genders. Especially males. At least, that’s who she used to be. Now she was laying in bed, her hand poised at the waistband of her shorts, daydreaming about her best friend. More than just daydreaming about him, she was daydreaming about sex with her best friend.
Who was she kidding? She was starting to believe she was exactly like one of those women who was confusing enough to drive a man crazy. She’d slept with her best friend. Okay, well they didn’t sleep but it didn’t matter because she couldn’t get him out of her head and now, she didn’t know what to do about it. Their toeing the line between friends and lovers was nothing new. They flirted with each other, kept each other company on lonely holidays, and even helped out if one or the other was in need of a little extra comfort. But never, had they ever, taken it all the way. Now that she had been there, Diana didn’t know how she was going to go back to the way things were before. More importantly, did she even want to?
She had almost convinced herself that it was time they had a serious conversation about what they were to one another, and where they would finally draw the line of what they allowed within this friends-with-benefits umbrella. Her mind was a traitor though and instead of thinking of all of the implications and horrible consequences that sleeping with one’s best friend could have, she thought about how much she’d like nothing more than to do it again. And again.
Finally, she had collapsed back on her bed, her hand falling to where it now lay on her stomach. Diana knew she should call Julian. But really, all she wanted to do was return to the way things were. They had an easy going connection. No drama, no stress, no strings. Any other time, if she were feeling fiery and her sexual appetite flared, she would have texted him and they would have sent messages back and forth until it led to a steamy session that would have left them both more relaxed and sated once they were done. Now, she felt the pressure to be responsible. On one hand, she couldn’t just text him and pretend like last week hadn’t happened. On the other hand, she just wanted to know that he was still going to be the same Julian he always was. And as far as friends-with-benefits went, he was definitely the kind of eye candy that made women look, everywhere he went. And if Diana was being honest with herself, she wanted to keep her benefits. All of them. She was a woman divided. No wonder men couldn’t understand women. Diana could hardly understand herself. Rolling her eyes at herself, all she knew was that she should call him. What she would talk about when they finally got on the phone, she hadn’t worked out yet. But all sides of her were, at least, in complete agreement that she should call. Without opening her eyes, she fumbled along the comforter of her bed until she found her phone.
Diana realized she was holding her breath while the phone rang. She blew out a breath through pursed lips and forced herself to take even breaths that had her watching her chest as it rose and fell. She bit the corner of her lip as images flashed through her mind.
The interior of a car shrouded in shadows. Diana craned her neck to the side as lips pressed along the sensitive skin there. She gasped, a seductive fire flaring in her veins. Her fingers raked through his hair. Short strands tickling her palm. His hands caressed silky skin…lower….lower…
“Hey.” Julian’s voice made Diana jump and she shook her head a little to clear the thoughts rolling through it. She exhaled a shaky, tremulous, breath before she chuckled a little to cover the sounds of her nervousness.
“Hey.” Her voice sounded as unsteady as she felt and now that she finally made the call, she realized that she was at a loss for words. She fought back a frustrated groan while she thought of what to say next. She couldn’t stop the memories that taunted her, so she decided to go with it. She swallowed, and pressed a hand flat on her stomach. “What are you doing?” Her voice was breathy and low. She hoped he got the hint.
“Packing.” His short response was only softened by the lightness in his voice. Diana’s hand stilled where it was. The fire in her cooled instantly as her brows furrowed.
“What? Where are you going?” Diana tried and failed to keep the disappointment from her voice. She could hear him moving in the background.
“I gotta go home for a bit. Mini family reunion.” There was a pause as he moved, she could hear rustling in the background before he sighed and was quiet again. He was probably sitting down, now that he was on the phone with her.
Diana shook her head at the fond thought and the corners of her mouth tweaked up in a bit of a sad smile. She had to say something. She was the one that called him after all.
“Oh.” Her voice even sounded lame in her own ears. She wasn’t supposed to sound so forlorn about it. She was supposed to be able to keep her cool demeanor. It wasn’t like they were a thing. She could hear him chuckling, a breathy laugh that soothed her growing anxiety.
“Don’t ‘oh’ me. Don’t worry Dee, I’ll only be gone a couple days. I’ll be back Tuesday morning.” She knew he was smiling. He had that ability to smile at literally anything. Everything. Diana on the other hand, always felt like her sensitive emotions got the best of her at least thirty-thousand times a day. So much for cool and unaffected.
“When do you leave?” Diana tried to sound nonchalant. She tried to sound as though this were the easiest conversation in the world. She felt like Julian just got back into town. He was out of town for work, and then their schedules had been busy. Both of them. For once it seemed like Diana’s life was starting to rev up, and Julian was always busy. It was something she was used to with her best friend. And then…the beach happened. Diana had a habit of remembering things as though they were chapters in one of her favorite books. That chapter was titled The Beach. What had started out as something as innocent as star gazing turned into an interlude that Diana would never forget. She couldn’t forget it. That was part of the problem. She had been having intense flashbacks about it for the past two weeks. It wouldn’t have been the first time they crossed that line between friends and other. Far from it. There were times when they were so other that it seemed like a vital aspect of their friendship. But something felt different about the beach. It felt almost as though…they could have been something. Diana didn’t quite know what they were, but it felt like they were something.
Instead of dwelling on it until her mind plagued her with thoughts that forced her to finally have the conversation that she wasn’t sure she could have, she called Julian. Hoping at least to get some small amount of relief from the vivid memories that assaulted her on an almost hourly basis.
Diana pressed back into him. Feeling him fill her. Stretch her. Until all she knew was him. He surrounded her. She could smell his scent on her. She could hear him in her ear, whispering dirty things to her that urged her toward her release…
Diana shuddered hard as she was gripped by another wave of images and she pressed a hand to her head to clear out some of the sexual energy that seemed to engulf her in a constant haze of need.
“So yeah, I think I should be straight.” Julian finished his sentence and Diana thought she heard him moving again, but she couldn’t be sure. Crap. She missed all of what he said.
“Sorry, my phone did something weird. What?” She bit down on her lip determined to concentrate on the man, and not just what he did to her.
“I leave in about five hours. I need to give myself time to get to the airport. But I was saying, if I leave soon, I should be straight.”
Diana nodded even though Julian couldn’t see her and she imagined him in his apartment. She could see him sitting on one edge of his couch, running a hand through his hair, and wondering what on earth to put in the bag that sat open beside him. She stifled a laugh at the thought.
“What’s so funny?” He could detect the changes in her mood almost as well as she could detect every one of his. Diana hung her head in defeat. She was such a stalker.
“Nothing. I was just thinking that you’re probably sitting around looking at an empty carry on bag wondering what to put in it.” Diana knew he could hear the smile in her voice. It was so big, her cheeks were starting to hurt. She didn’t know how he’d be able to miss the smile in her voice. She wanted to berate herself for being such a sap, but she couldn’t concentrate because he was laughing and it sounded just like the feel of warm sun across her skin.
“How’d you know? Got any ideas for what to pack for a three day family reunion? I feel like you know my family better than I do.” There it was. When he said it like that, it was no wonder men thought women were crazy. Hope and a silly giddy feeling bloomed in the pit of Diana’s stomach at Julian’s words, and her chest swelled a little with pride. Maybe this phone call wasn’t wasted after all. Two friends were probably something more if one knew the other one’s family better than they did. Right? Diana blinked, momentarily confused by her own thoughts before she pushed them out of the way and got back to the conversation she was having in real time.
“Um…something nice?” Diana tried to sound casual, even though her mind was racing through just about every outfit she could ever remember seeing him in. Of course she had ideas for what he could wear. She had the memory of an elephant, and at the moment he held her fascination, which meant she found that it was incredibly easy to keep track of all of the things that made her stupid heart skip a beat when she was near him. His wardrobe, although casual, was among those things.
When she heard nothing but silence from his end, she decided to try for something else and give him a real suggestion. “Okay, casual is best. But you knew that. Otherwise you’re just gonna feel like you’re family and your clothes are stressing you out. But take one nice option. You know how they love to randomly go to dinners and receptions.” Diana rattled off the short list of ideas and hoped that she didn’t make her sound too much like his own personal groupie.
“You’re amazing.” His voice was laced with wonder, adding a tender note to it. Diana squeezed her eyes shut against the compliment and finally sat up in bed. A wide grin stretched across her face and she wanted to ask him what he meant by his last comment but she couldn’t seem to form words at the moment. She never imagined that she’d be one of those women, but it seemed it was one more tick on a long list of things that she seemed to have no control over these days. “How do you keep track of all this stuff? Can I just take you with me?” Turns out Diana didn’t need to ask him to elaborate on anything. He did it himself. And turned her into a puddle of mush in the process.
“Sorry, I wish, but no. Now, pack before you make yourself late.” Diana was impressed by how even her voice sounded while she talked to him considering how she felt on the inside. Butterflies were beating wildly in her stomach, her heart was thumping erratically against her rib cage and there was a suspicious lump in her throat that she just couldn’t seem to swallow. And somehow, through all of that, she had to admit that she felt wonderful. She clutched her hand over her stomach, trying to stop it from doing those little flips every time she thought of Julian.
“Yes, mistress.” His playful tone warmed her, while something hidden beneath his words made her breath catch. He acted docile now, but she knew how he got when he was in charge.
“Say it out loud,” he commanded fiercely lining himself up with Diana’s slick, wet entrance. He waited with one infuriating eyebrow raised. His eyes never left hers, challenging her. Diana growled, her frustration mounting…
“Whoa, what was that?” The surprise in Julian’s voice snapped her back to their conversation.
“What?” Diana tried to clear the fog from her brain. She really needed to pay more attention to this conversation instead of getting carried away with the flashbacks.
“Did you just growl? You okay?” He was full of concern and all Diana could do was sigh. Clearly there was no getting a grip on her emotions…or her libido.
“Yeah, I’m fine.” She should have just left it at that. “I was thinking about the beach.” She clamped her hand over her mouth. Her body had just mutinied. What the hell was that?! That was not planned. That was not supposed to come out. Not like that at least. Her eyes slipped closed in humiliation. He was silent for a moment and Diana could only hold her breath and wait.
“And?” His voice curved upward. One word. That was it? What was she supposed to do with that one word?