Tuesday, May 30, 2006

The Morning After - Rose Middleton

Morning y'all!

Ahhh, the morning after. It conjures all sorts of images, doesn't it? Actually, it probably makes for a great story, too. Today, it comes with the inspiration for this story and an excerpt.

The story Can You Keep A Secret? resulted from real life inspiration. You see, I'm a teacher and I have a boss who loves these kinds of gimmicks. At the time, I'd just moved to the senior campus of our school and was feeling a little lost. Let me tell you, it's a big school! So when Staff Welfare Week - no, no cute little names for real life *sigh* - came along, my secret buddy decided to treat me to a week of indulgent gifts. Every morning started with chocolate. My buddy couldn't go wrong! Naturally, when Welfare Week rolled around this year, I returned the favour. (And if you think Staff Welfare Week is a bad title, well, it used to be called Staff Appreciation Week - or SAP for short!)

Of course, the real life game didn't end up quite like the one between Penny and Jesse. But without the inspiration it provided, I wouldn't have had a romance novel to write, now would I?

Jesse isn't as keen on the whole idea at first, especially when he learns that he has to buy a gift for the anchorman who stole his last girlfriend, but opting out of the Secret Santa exchange after receiving his first gift is suddenly no longer appealing...


Jesse sighed, opened his eyes and read the card.

Can you keep a secret?
I don’t suppose you can
I’m your Secret Santa
Resist my wicked plan!

Jesse’s heart slammed into his ribs, almost knocking him backward. Holy moly! Flattening the card against his chest, he stood up and scanned the office again. With his face heated and his blood racing, he put his eyes back in their sockets and sat down.

Someone must be looking out for him, because he was alone. Heaven forbid anyone catch an eyeful of what he just read. It’d give the old farts a heart attack. Relaxing, he realised it gave him the most delightful image. One that clearly appealed to a certain part of his anatomy.

If that was the letter, he dared not guess what was in the box.

Jesse swallowed. He couldn’t remember the last time anyone had played a sex game with him. Without his permission, his eyes travelled to the silver box. Someone had gone to quite a bit of effort on this. For him. The cynical part of his brain instantly accused Mick. The Man would do just this kind of thing to stir him up.

But then, Mickey D didn’t know about the Santa thing, did he? Jesse had planned to pummel both Mick and Rory with his vitriol about the stupid game over dinner. But now, he wondered if it was stupid at all.

Mr. Happy didn’t think so.

Jesse’s hand shook as he brought the small box up for closer inspection. Nothing extraordinary about it, at least, not on the outside. But it was the possibility of what could be on the inside that had his stomach doing cartwheels.

Carefully, Jesse lifted the lid. He was torn between the urge to squeeze his eyes shut and savour the anticipation licking at his insides, and rip the lid off to get at the prize.

His breath burned in his lungs, reminding him to breathe. Jesse paused, took two quick breaths and continued. When his eyes clapped sight of the gift, he groaned an expletive.

Red lace garter.

Jesse blinked several times, just to make sure he was actually seeing what he thought he was seeing. Holy Mother of God. Suddenly, Christmas in July didn’t seem like such a crazy idea after all.


Blogger Meljprincess said...

Hi Rose. Enjoyed the excerpt. Now I'm singing the Beatles, though. LOL! "Do you want to know a secret?...do you promise not to tell?..."

7:52 AM  
Blogger robynl said...

Mr. Happy is so excited over the red lace garter; this is a great story line.

11:16 AM  
Blogger Jennifer Y. said...

Sounds good!

12:12 PM  
Blogger Kate Willoughby said...

Congrats on the release, Rose! I'm excited to share this Morning After with you! May we both see lots of sales!

12:22 PM  
Blogger JENNA said...

You fit right in, what with all the inspirational pictures...y'all know Rose collects inspiration, right?

12:56 PM  
Blogger Vanessa Hart said...

Rose, what a cute and intriguing premise for your story! I'll need to add Secret to my TBR file.


3:53 PM  
Blogger Laura Rose said...

Hello again and thanks. Kate, I second that! And Jenna's right, I love collecting inspirational pics of heroes. I have a hunk of the week in my sidebar on my blog to prove it, LOL

Meljprincess, when I was writing Secret, the Beatles hits were always running through my head. Drove me a little crazy after a while, hehe

6:18 PM  

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