Stories are funny things. It would be easy to assume that the author is in control of what his or her characters do, but that isn’t always the case. Lol, this last week has seen me struggle to force my characters down a road they didn’t want to go to no avail; they wanted things to be a certain way and, dammit, they wouldn’t let me put down words until that happened.
Seriously, book characters be SO needy. 😛
Apologies for doing another Sunday snippet, no real excuse for this one except for the constant wrangling of characters. Heh, you think you know where your story’s going, then things like plot and junk blow up in your face. (Seriously, sometimes I envy people who can outline because that must be SO nice to know what’s happening next – me, I like [for the most part, some things are written in stone] to find out what happens along the way just as if I’m reading the book myself)
ANYWAY. On with this week’s post! I’m wrapping up the first part of Saint, which looks like it’ll clock in somewhere around 45k words. Does this mean I’ll be releasing this as a serial? No idea, I’m putting off decisions like that until I’m further through the story. I promise that, as soon as I know for sure how and when this puppy will be published, you’ll be the first to know. Now, on with the new snippet!! 😀
(*As always, this is an excerpt of a rough draft, so there may be mistakes and/or parts that don’t make it into the final publication. Still, I hope you enjoy!*)
“The entertainment’s going well, I see.”
His low voice wasn’t far from my ear, and I took a shaky breath. Damn the man, and damn my reaction to him. Damian flustered me, made my nerves go on edge every time he was around.
I shot him a look and was surprised to see that, whereas every other red-blooded male in the room was watching the dancer, Damian’s eyes were on me. I flushed, heat tingling across my skin as I turned back to survey the room. “They seem to be enjoying themselves.”
“Nicely done, Catherine.”
The compliment took me aback, and I looked back at him, my eyes narrowing. I’d been prepared to defend everything I’d done that day, account for every expense and have to fight for my job. He didn’t seem to care about the businessmen or entertainment, however; I was all he was watching, and it was a heady mixture of heat and trepidation.
A warm hand was laid on my waist, and I flinched, instinctively shying away. My nerves jangled together more as Damian followed my retreat, but didn’t do anything more than keep his hand just above my hip. “Um,” I ventured, my voice little more than a whisper, “sir…?”
His fingers twitched at the sir, and I looked up to see him above me. For a scary moment, I thought he was going to kiss me – scary, because I realized I wanted him to.
Then with a sigh, he stepped away, pulling his hand away from my side. I almost protested that movement but managed to keep my lips together.
“I suppose I should introduce myself,” he murmured, and I shivered as his breath warmed the tip of my ear.
I needed to get a grip on myself, this was getting ridiculous.
He started to pass me when something caught my attention. I snagged his arm, stopping him, and could feel his bemused stare as I turned him around to face me. “Your tie’s on crooked,” I murmured, tugging at it briefly and refusing to meet his eyes.
“By all means.”
My hand spasmed for a moment of uncertainty, then I went to work, loosening the knot around his neck and wrestling the thin fabric into place. Damian stared down at me as I fussed with the silk piece of cloth. It was much nicer than anything I’d played with before. Probably cost more than what I used to make in a year.
“Where did a modern girl like you learn how to tie a tie?”
“Hush.” A smile twitched at the corner of my mouth. “You wouldn’t believe it anyway.”
I glanced up at him, then back down, flustered all over again. My hands were going all wonky again, and with a sigh I focused on the task at hand. “My sophomore college roommate was gender fluid,” I said after a moment, finally getting the tie to work. “She liked to wear ties a lot, and taught me how to tie them when I asked.”
He was silent as I pushed the knot up to his neck, spreading the tie out across the front of his shirt. I could feel the heat from his body, and it was too much. “You can tuck it in how you like it,” I said, stepping away quickly to hide my feelings.
Damian tucked it inside his coat, and I glanced up to see him still watching me. “You’re an interesting lady,” he said, a small smile playing at the corners of his lips as I flushed yet again. He seemed to want to say more, but shook his head. “Business first, pleasure later I’m afraid.”
My head shot up at his words, confused, but he was already turning in toward the restaurant. I watch him walk in and introduce himself one by one to the various gentlemen, wondering what he’d meant and trying to stop my suddenly racing heart.