Tag Archives: #KrisCalvert

Accidental Witch, Episode 6

Episode Six

By Kris Calvert

 

 

Theirs was the VIP table—the only VIP. This made Mary walk a little taller through the crowd of enthusiastic onlookers. It seemed everyone wanted to know who Stirling Drake had brought to the gala as his arm candy. It occurred to Mary as they made their way through the sea of people, just as many women were eyeing her as the men.

Sterling leaned into her as they approached the highly appointed table dressed in red roses, candles, and exquisite linens. “You’ve attracted some attention but don’t be self-conscious. They’re merely jealous of your beauty,” he whispered.

The glow of his compliment showed on her flushed cheeks, and she couldn’t contain her smile.

The flower arrangements were bigger at their special table; there were more candles and a more attentive staff. Mary felt like the belle of the ball—a ball that she herself had planned.

An invisible spotlight seemed to shine on them, and she wasn’t mad about it—not one little bit. Tonight it seemed as though everyone wanted to be the woman on the arm of Sterling Drake. Mary was happy she was the lucky girl.

Sterling held the chair for his date, eyeing her perfect ass as she slid it into the red chair.

“It all came together beautifully,” she whispered to herself as she surveyed the room, noting all of her hard work and plans had been executed impeccably for the event.

Sterling took the seat beside her, leaning into her shoulder to steal a kiss from her exposed skin. He wanted everyone in the room to know Mary belonged to him. She greeted his advance with an inviting sigh.

“This is too much. It really is,” she said, looking into his dark eyes.

“Too much?” he asked with a flirtatious laugh. “Nothing is ever too much, my dear. Not for us. Not tonight. Not any night. Now,” he said bringing his voice down. “Let me pour you another glass of Cristal and discuss the Pastry Bitch.”

Mary brought the fresh glass of champagne to her lips but paused to giggle at his statement.

“I don’t want to spoil this beautiful evening. Besides, she’s not worth it.”

Sterling looked into Mary’s eyes. “Your lips are saying one thing, but the sparkle in your eyes tells me something completely different.”

“Really?” she asked with a hint of sarcasm.

Stirling placed two fingers on his full lips before transferring them to Mary’s. “The lips will lie,” he whispered. “The eyes, never.”

Mary couldn’t help but squirm in her seat. The man was turning her on and turning her inside out at the same time.

“So,” her voice cracked in hesitation. “Pray tell, what are my eyes telling you?”

“That they seek something.”

Mary swallowed hard, the party around them faded into white noise that merely filled in the gaps of her now focused mind. She did seek something. The man sitting in front of her. Stirling Drake. Instead, she begged the question, “And what is that?”

“If you prick us, do we not bleed? If you us tickle us, do we not laugh? If you poison us, do we not die? And if you wrong us, shall we not…” Stirling paused in his Shakespearian quote for effect. “Revenge?”

“You think I want revenge?” she asked.

He didn’t say a word but nodded only once. Once was all that was needed.

“So what if I am?”

“So what if we do something about it?”

Mary took a long pause. Her mother had always taught her not to seek revenge, always saying, If you’re looking for revenge, you’ll surely find it. Just be sure to dig two graves. One for the victim and one for yourself.

Still the thought nagged at her. Maybe her eyes were telling the truth. “What could we do?”

Stirling cleared a space on the table in front of them, pulling an antique silver pen from jacket of his tuxedo.

Using the cocktail napkin from under Mary’s Cristal, he drew a star and circled it—the ink blood red. He then handed the pen to Mary.

“As I say the words, you say the words. As you write the words, you say the words.”

Mary cocked her head in confusion. “I don’t understand.”

“As I say the words, you say the words. As you write the words, you say the words,” he repeated. “Spoken to intention, intention to word.”

She poised the pen to the napkin, the red ink immediately spreading from the fountain pen with only a touch.

“Come Evil. Evil Come.”

Mary said the words as she wrote them on the flimsy paper napkin. “Come Evil. Evil Come.”

“Do my bidding to the one.”

Again, Mary wrote the words as she repeated them.

“Darkness Darkness hear my plea.”

“Mark the words, I commandeth thee.”

When Mary was finished writing all that Stirling had dictated, he took the small paper napkin from her hand and held it to the flame of one of the many candles that lit the table.

In a puff of fire and ash, it disappeared.

She watched in amazement, nearly oblivious to the fact that Sterling now held her hand inside his. Lifting her delicate hand to his mouth, he brushed her knuckles with his soft lips. “It is done, my beautiful Mary. It is done.”

 

 

 

Ranger’s Reprieve, episode 8

By Kris Calvert

 

Adorkable? Jess had no idea what was wrong with him. He wasn’t the kind of guy who tried to impress women with cute pick up lines. Frankly, before he’d lost his hand and his confidence, there’d never been a need for them. He’d always beamed with confidence—the kind of light emitted by men who weren’t afraid of anything on the outside, including a beautiful woman. But since he’d been home, his confidence had been replaced with anger and a cockiness that only reared its ugly head when he felt pitied. But Lindsey had shown him she didn’t pity him. She treated him like the man he wanted to be again, and he found himself in new and dangerous territory—spending time with a woman who made him feel whole. A woman who could destroy him all over again if he allowed her into his new and closely guarded life and heart.

“Did you just call me adorkable?”

“What? No.” Jess fumbled the words, stepping out of the tangled web of dog leashes and away from the scene. He needed to catch his breath. A breath that wasn’t filled with the vanilla scent wafting from her red locks.

Lindsey dropped her chin, hiding the blush on her cheeks. “Oh. Sorry.”

“You’re the dog trainer. Can’t you do something about these two?” Jess did his best not to look Lindsey in the face. If he caught her glace just once, he didn’t know if he could stay away from her.

The weeks of pretending he didn’t care for the beautiful redhead, beyond Java’s training, were wearing thin on his stubborn constitution. More importantly, she was the first woman he’d even thought of in a sexual way since coming home. Countless nights he’d pulled a self-imposed sentry duty, watching through the blinds for a glimpse of Lindsey in her Princess Leia shirt before getting pissed at himself for lurking. He was better than that, and he knew it. Still, he couldn’t help himself. He was drawn to her like a fly to sweet honey.

“Java is in your charge, Jess. Why don’t you control her?”

All Jess could think was, I can barely control myself around you. How can I be expected to control the damn dog?

Lindsey went to the floor, solving the leash puzzle that quickly unraveled in her hands, as Java left Shelby yapping in Lindsey’s arms only to sit at Jess’ feet without command.

“Maybe this wasn’t such a good idea.” Jess said, the words giving his now obedient mutt’s ears a loving twist. “I’m not ready for…”

Lindsey walked the four steps it took to meet Jess head on and stared at him without pretense. “You’re not ready? Or the dog’s not ready?”

Jess pulled the vanilla-filled air into his lungs, exhaling in a slow, deliberate breath. He was trying to calm his nerves, but mostly he was weighing his options. “Look, I’ve done my best from the moment I met you not to…”

Lindsey moved a step closer. “Not to what?”

Jess hung his hand on his hip, shifting his weight in his well fitting jeans, and looked around the room like a man who’d accidentally stumbled into the feminine hygiene aisle at the grocery store. He was lost, filled with panic, and looking for a way out.

“Why can’t you just acknowledge what we’ve both known since the night I stepped foot on your front porch in nothing but a Star Wars t-shirt?”

Jess’ eyes uncontrollably darted back to Lindsey.

“What? You think just because I was embarrassed when I noticed your arm that I didn’t see you looking? It’s true. I was checking you out. But you were checking me out too and have been every day since that night. At least I have the balls to admit it. Listen Jess, you want to act like there’s something wrong with you, but the only thing wrong with you is that you think there’s something wrong with you.” Lindsey’s voice reached a high pitch as she rammed her point home. “And there isn’t. You might think you’re not a whole person—a whole man, but I’ve seen your arm. It doesn’t scare me, Jess. It doesn’t,” she repeated. “Because even though you left part of your body on the battlefield, your soul is intact. And that’s the most beautiful part about you.”

Jess took a deep breath. “So, you weren’t wearing panties that night?”

“Out of all of that,” she said, waving her arm in a complete circle, “the only thing you heard was no panties?”

“I’m a man who hasn’t been with a woman in a really long time. I couldn’t help but hear no panties. So…really? No panties?”

Lindsey dropped her shoulders and took another step forward. “I never wear panties,” she whispered.

“Fuck it,” Jess muttered. “I can’t do this.”

Taking the nape of her long neck into his strong hand, Jess pulled Lindsey into his body, pressing his forehead into hers. Swallowing hard, he stroked the back of her head, gripping her long red hair in his capable fist. Resisting his urge to back her into the couch and kiss her—among other things—into tomorrow, he held his ground and made his confession. “I’m not very good at this…anymore.”

Lindsey blinked deliberately and without another thought, dropped her arm to her side, grasping his new hand in hers.

“Don’t.” It was all Jess could think to say. No one outside of his physical therapist had ever touched his prosthetic hand.

Bringing it to rest on the waistband of her tight jeans, she left him there, placing both of her hands on his rugged face. “Don’t say don’t to me.” She whispered the words and shook her head.

“Fine,” Jess replied, feeling his newfound confidence and neglected manhood growing by leaps and bounds. “How do you feel about, yes?”

“Depends on the question.”

Running his tongue across his dry lips, Jess closed his eyes and made the first real decision with consequences since coming off the battlefield.

“May I kiss you? I need to ask because once I start, I’m not stopping.”

“I thought you’d never ask.”

“Is that a yes?”

“Yes.”

 

The End!

 

 

 

 

 

Days Of Auld Lang Syne, Episode 7

By Kris Calvert

 

Shawn could feel her warm body shudder in his arms, and he knew it wasn’t because she was chilly. Snow began to fall right on cue as if he’d ordered the white stuff from the heavens himself, and he stared into her eyes and thought of nothing but kissing her.

“Well, this is what awkward looks like,” she said looking everywhere but his face.

“No.” Shawn pulled on her hands begging her to catch his gaze. “Awkward would be having you in an embrace like this,” he said, pulling her so close their hips collided. “And your ex-boyfriend, grandmother, or priest happened to catch me.”

Her breath quickened, the clouds of warm air giving away her excitement. “Catch you…what?”

“C’mon,” he said, pulling her along the pathway and quelling his urge to engulf her red lips. “I want to show you something.”

They walked in the gentle quiet the blanket of snow provided, as he weaved the two of them hand in hand through the lower part of the park. Content in their silence, Shawn lived on the intermittent squeezes she gave his fingers each time he ran his thumb across her knuckles.

When they made the turn into the Shakespeare Garden, Shawn turned to take both of her hands as he walked backwards. “I know a bank whereon the wild thyme blows, where oxlips and the nodding violet grows,” he said. “Quite over-canopied with lush woodbine, with sweet musk-roses and with eglantine.”

“Why are you quoting A Midsummer’s Night’s Dream?” Joanne narrowed her eyes and gave him the kind of suspicious smile that said she didn’t know where he was headed with his reference, but she was willing to play along.

“Don’t you like Bill?”

“Bill?”

“Shakespeare. I might be an architect, but I believe in art—art in structure, art in performance, and most certainly art in words.”

“Words?”

Shawn let go of one hand to beckon Joanne into him. Looking to her feet, she reluctantly agreed to follow and rolled her eyes, nervous as to where he was taking her and the conversation.

“Well, just like you choose your words carefully in your video blog, which by the way I loved the post about scarves. I think you’re absolutely correct. They are fashion statements and not just something to throw around your neck in the winter.”

She dropped his hands, crossing her arms in front of her chest. “Now you’re just mocking me.”

“I’m not,” he exclaimed. “I think you’re right. Form and function.”

Unmoving in her stance, Shawn knew he had only a moment to put the magic back in the moment.

Moving into Joanne, he refrained from touching her but matched her posture, crisscrossing his arms over his chest. “This is my point exactly. Words matter. It’s why one needs to choose them carefully. If you don’t,” he said, leaning his forehead into hers. “Someone might get the wrong impression.”

She broke into a smile. Shawn knew he’d finally tapped into the unspoken feelings he always believed were hidden just the below the surface of their friendship.

“Come here,” he said, pulling her farther into the garden. “I’ll prove it.”

“Prove what? she asked, taking his hand once more while he pulled her along begrudgingly by the arm.

He stopped them both in front of a twenty-foot granite bench that curled inward at each side. Placing his hand in the small of her back, he ushered her to the right hand side of the bench, setting her snuggly against the curve.

“It’s cold,” she said as he walked away.

“It’s worth it,” he replied. “Something remarkable is about to happen.”

Walking to the opposite end, Shawn sat and winced. She was correct. The granite was freezing.

“So?” she asked.

Shawn gave her a sly smile, turned his back, and began to whisper as softly as he could into the frigid granite. “Welcome to the whispering bench, Jojo.”

She didn’t have to say a word. The look on Joanne’s face told him everything he needed to know.

“What is this?” she whispered, turning into the bench herself.

“This is the whispering bench. Here, you can only tell the truest truths ever known.”

“What kind of truths?” she whispered into the bench.

Her words were loud and clear in Shawn’s ears.

“The kind of truths you keep to yourself deep in your heart. And remember, words matter.”

Shawn and Joanne sat in silence for only a moment.

She wasn’t sure if it was the buzz in her head or the butterflies in her stomach that spurred her bravery, but she opened her mouth and exactly what she was thinking came out. “I’ve always thought you were handsome.”

At first, she was stunned at her words but then she took a deep breath, deciding to buy into the only truths rule of the whispering bench. That and the fact that she didn’t have to look him in the face when she said it.

“I’ve always thought you were beautiful.”

“What?” Joanne said at full volume.

Shawn laughed soft and low as he turned around to gaze upon her flushed face. Circling his finger, he silently asking her to turn around again. Shawn leaned into the cold granite and whispered what he’d longed to say for years. “Jojo, I’ve always loved you.”
 

 

Exes and Ohhs: A Thanksgiving Romance

Episode Four

By Kris Calvert

Sugar couldn’t contain her smile as the father of her little girl walked his finely tuned tight ass out the door. She’d convinced herself she didn’t care for him over the years, but deep in her soul she knew it was merely a self-preservation tactic. Only a fool would continue to pine for a man who clearly didn’t want to be with her, and Sugar told herself every day that she wasn’t that kind of fool.

She’d worked hard to pull herself up by her bootstraps, to be a good mother, the kind of mother Sophie deserved. The smile faded from Sugar’s face as Jax’s heavy presence faded from the bustling room.

“What the hell was that?” Honey asked, coming to her side.

“What do you mean?” Sugar nervously wiped her hands on her apron and immediately turned to Beau, looking for Table Three’s barnyard strangler breakfast special.

“What do you mean, what do you mean?” Honey repeated. “You’re being an ass.”

I’m being an ass?” Sugar asked as she picked up her order and walked it to the table, avoiding a rush of patrons moving in and out by spinning on her heels to stay ahead of the chaos. “Please dear sister, enlighten me.”

“I don’t think you’re an ass,” Frank interjected. “But I think you have a nice one.”

Sugar took a deep breath and faced the overzealous would-be suitor. “Get out of my face before I junk-punch you so hard, your man business will go from dangling between your legs to hanging from your badge. Do we understand each other Officer Millhouse?”

A roar of applause erupted from the female patrons while Frank’s fellow officers bowed their heads in embarrassment. Sugar, too mad to notice anything but the ringing in her own ears, stormed from the front of the diner to the back of the kitchen.

“Shit-fire, Shug,” Beau said, following his cousin into the storeroom. “You know I care about you, but you just can’t go around shaming police officers in the restaurant.”

“He deserved it and you know it.”

“Of course he did, but the decent officers help to keep the riffraff out of here. If you keep them all away, I can guaran-damn-tee we’ll get robbed.”

Sugar stopped her incessant pacing long enough to offer an apology. “I’m sorry, Beau,” she said as tears of frustration and shock from seeing Jax began to pool in her eyes. “I just…”

“I know,” he said, pulling her in for a hug.

“You smell like onions and peppers,” Sugar said as she laughed through the tears that now flowed freely.

“If you’d stop pushing the Mexican omelet, I wouldn’t smell like this.”

Honey stuck her head into the storeroom and let out a sigh, letting them both know there wasn’t time for a breakdown—at least not during the breakfast rush. “Guys, the grill is about to catch on fire, the dining room is a hot mess, I’ve got one pissed off officer paying for his breakfast and…”

“And what?” Sugar asked, wiping the tears from her cheeks.

“And one Marine standing in the parking lot—waiting.”

“What?” Sugar asked.

“Dry your tears, sister.”

“Are you kidding me? What’s he waiting for?”

Honey stared into the teary eyes of her sister, knowing the many nights she’d cried herself to sleep, and said one word. “You.”

 


 

Episode Five

By Anne Lange

Jax leaned against his old, held-together-with-rusty-wire-and-duct-tape pick-up truck. The last time he’d driven this poor girl was the afternoon he’d told Sugar about his orders to ship out. Then he’d held her while she cried and pounded his chest with her small, curled up fists. When she’d calmed, they’d driven down to the lake and made love until dawn.

That memory of laying her in the tall grass next to the softly rippling water, stripping her work uniform from her luscious body amongst a spray of wild flowers surrounding them, had kept him sane for the last three years.

He’d spent hours that night memorizing every inch of her with his hands, his mouth, and his tongue, scared shitless he’d never have the opportunity to touch or lick her sweet flesh or kiss her lips again. Thankful for the curtain of privacy the flora provided, he’d indulged in every wicked desire he could imagine.

As the sun began its ascent, he’d finally pushed his aching cock into her trembling body; then he’d simply held her close, inhaled the faint fragrance of her shampoo, fighting against his need to find release and wanting to prolong the inevitable for as long as he could. Knowing that when at last they looked into each other’s eyes as he moaned through his orgasm, and tears slipped down her cheeks, that this might be their last time together.

“What are you still doing here?” she asked as she crossed the parking lot, slowly making her way toward him.

All he could picture was her beautiful ass snug in the palm of his hands, her long lean legs wrapped around his hips, and those succulent brown nipples… Fuck, he could still remember their taste. His mouth watered.

Trying to act nonchalant, his sweaty palms fisted inside the pockets of his jeans, he glanced around them. A minivan pulled in and found a spot closer to the back of the lot. A teenage couple came out of the restaurant and ambled over to their bikes they’d left leaning against the old oak tree.

“Like I told the nice officer inside,” he replied, “our ending hasn’t been written yet.” He looked down at her, willing her to hop into his arms and kiss him with reckless abandon.

Just like she used to.

Before he left.

A strange light lit up her eyes, but she shuffled her feet, dropping her gaze to the pavement.

“Tell me about Sophie,” he said.

Her head jerked upright and her dark eyes narrowed. She hesitated a moment too long before she gave a weak shrug. “Nothing to tell.” She jabbed a toe into a crack in the asphalt.

“Aw, come on, Sugar, every mama likes to talk about their kids. And I haven’t been around in three long years.” Three achingly long—where he’d thought of her every one of those damn days—years. “I’d think you’d want to show her off.”

“Um…”

“Why Sophie?”

Surprise widened her eyes. She licked her lips. “I liked the name.”

He dragged his gaze away from her mouth and back up to see her reaction. “That was our name, Sugar. We’d picked that out long ago.”

She looked over to the family spilling out of the van, over to the young couple walking their bikes side-by-side down the street, but she wouldn’t land on him for a second.

“Got a picture of her?”

She swallowed heavily. And blinked rapidly. His heart raced, but all the sound and activity around him seemed to slow to an agonizing pace and become thunder in his ears. Her reluctance to say a word was as good as yanking out a photo album.

“I’m good at math, Sugar. And you were never a woman to sleep around.”

“Jax, please. Don’t do this.” She turned pleading eyes up to him. Her bottom lip trembled.

“Hey, Sugar, is he bothering you?” That asshole officer, the one who thought he had a claim on Sugar, strutted over and paused much too close to Sugar for Jax’s comfort.

But Jax didn’t even acknowledge him. He glared at Sugar, doing his best now to reign in his temper.

“I want to meet my daughter, Sugar.”

 

Episode Six

By Caroline Lee

She hadn’t said anything to his demand; just turned and walked back into the diner. It had taken every ounce of self-control—control that the Marines had taught him—not to follow her. Especially when the cop started to puff up. He started talking shit again, as if he were already dating Sugar or something, and Jax climbed into his rusty pick-up truck to turn over the engine. The guttural roar drowned out the cop’s angry words when the man got too close to the window.

The dude was still standing there in the parking lot like he owned the town when Jax pulled out.

The drive around the lake was always pretty this time of year. He didn’t want to go back to his parents’ house—not now when he had so much to think about. Mom would want to know why he was so distracted and not eating a third piece of pecan pie, and every other place in town was too crowded. But the lake, now—the lake was his special place. Where Dad had taught him and Darren to fish when they were kids, and where he’d taken his prom date to neck after the dance. But sitting there on the levy, with the reflection of the maples turning the water brilliant reds and yellows, Jax knew he’d always associate this place with her. She was the last one here with him, and as far as he was concerned, the most special.

Sugar Pie Dennison had a daughter. He pulled his hands from his jeans’ pockets and ran them across his starting-to-grow-out-again hair. A daughter. That fine-looking woman, who’d snagged him with her humor, her balls, her ingenuity and her loyalty, had gone through a pregnancy, birth, and raising a kid while he was on the other side of the world. She hadn’t been alone—there were more Dennisons around these parts than there were Brandons—but he hadn’t been here with her, and that was rough.

Not that she’d needed him. She’d made it real clear four years back that they were equals, and she could do anything that he could, and didn’t need him swooping into her life to take care of her. But partners supported each other, and it hurt to think that she’d gone through such a life change—it couldn’t have been easy—without him.

Hurt almost as much as thinking that he was the cause. Was Sophie his kid? Lord knew that he and Sugar had talked about kids, about maybe getting married and settling down in one of the white-picket-fenced craftsman homes along Main Street. But then he’d been deployed, and he knew that it was going to be a long time before he got home again, if at all. So many of his buddies hadn’t made it back, or had made it back in pieces, or had refused to go back. But he was lucky; he had the chance to see his family in time for Thanksgiving.

And maybe find a new family.

He started along the path that circled the lake, glad for his Dad’s old “My Son Is A Marine” sweatshirt. It’d been three long years since he’d seen maples this color, or felt the cool nip of an autumn breeze, or smelled this hint of wood smoke. Three long years since he’d held a woman’s dark hand, or thought of the future.

Jax inhaled, liking the way the cold air hit his lungs hard. Sugar had a daughter, and she might be his. He needed to know, to know if he had a future here with her. With them.

One thing’s for certain, they’d be at the Lion’s Club parade on Thursday morning. The whole damn town went, and no mother would deny that to her little one. Sugar and Sophie would be there, and what if the girl didn’t look like him? What if he wasn’t her father? Would it matter? He still wanted Sugar—had wanted her for years—and maybe he was ready to be a daddy.

A hawk circling overhead cried, and Jax sighed. He needed to know, needed to meet Sophie, but wasn’t sure it would change anything. Thanksgiving was only a few days away, and Mrs. Dennison was the best cook in town. But that didn’t mean that he couldn’t invite her daughter—and granddaughter—over for some of Mom’s pie Thursday evening. The parade, the turkey, the pie, the tree-lighting… Yeah, he was lucky to be home in time to celebrate.

And if he played his cards right, he might have more to be thankful for than he could’ve guessed.