Flash This!

Prompt: Crayons are colorful.

Alex followed Ms. Appleby inside her apartment and frowned. On the outside, dressed in a white silk blouse that clung to her body from the rain and a pair of khaki slacks, she appeared like a woman in control and very organized. She looked downright beautiful, even soaked to the bone. He really needed her to change as much as she wanted to change. The way her clothes clung to her body was not helping to reduce the sudden attraction he felt for her. He never let his emotions control him, or found a potential suspect so enticing.

And he needed to stop that thinking in its tracks. Not only would it be bad to get involved with a woman who could be a murderer, but he could never date someone as messy as her. He liked everything in order and put away. Not like this disaster zone.

Her entire apartment looked like it hadn’t been cleaned in months. From the doorway, he could see the kitchen, living room, and dining room. One large room that was covered with crap in every spot. Her kitchen counters were lined with dishes, even a pizza box that looked like it should’ve been thrown away last week. Her dining room table held papers and what appeared to be art supplies of all varieties: paints, color pencils, crayons. You name it, she had it in stock. Her living room, besides a dingy old couch in the middle, was covered with drop cloths around the entire floor. Speckles of paint littered the cloths. Clearly, that’s where she created her works of art. At least, in her mind. In his, they were the starting point for a killer’s imagination.

“It’s that bad, uh?”

He met her gaze, probably with a look of disgust that he couldn’t hide, and shrugged. “I’d like to say I’ve seen worse.” He looked away, walking toward the dining room table. “Please, change. I’ll wait.”

Shifting a piece of paper around to look at it more clearly, he almost smiled at the beauty of it. A simple drawing of a mountain landscape with the sun setting in the background. The lines were choppy and uneven, considering it looked like it was drawn with crayons, but the colors were beautiful, especially with the way they collided together.

How could a woman paint such brutality, and then this kind of beauty? One filled with death and mayhem. The other with happiness and splendor.

“The Teton Mountains. That picture obviously doesn’t do it justice.”

Almost afraid to turn toward her, he steeled his features as he glanced to his right where she stood. She had changed into a pair of gray sweatpants and a black t-shirt. Both were rather baggy on her, but his mind could still conjure the image from before. Slender body. Delicate curves. Ample breasts. Not good. At all.

“It’s drawn with crayons.” Why the hell did he say that? Any idiot could see that.

“Crayons are colorful. They give you a different sense of a scene than acrylic paints or color pencils or even chalk can.” She fingered the edge of the drawing. “I don’t just paint.”

“Why is this beautiful?”

She pinned a hard glare at him. “Was that a mixture of an insult and a compliment?”

“You paint death, yet color beauty. Why?”

Her eyes turned down. “I’m thankful I still have beauty inside me.”

He couldn’t resist. His hand reached out and tilted her chin so he could look into her eyes. “Why would you think you have no beauty inside of you? You’re certainly beautiful on the outside.”

“I guess you didn’t find everything there is to know about me, did you, Detective?”

Well, that didn’t take a genius to figure out. The question is would she tell him what he was missing?

She jerked away from his touch and headed for the kitchen. “Would you like something to drink?”

“I’d like to know why someone would follow you. Why someone would copy your painting to the T.”

Pulling a water bottle out of the fridge, it looked like her hand shook as she twisted the cap off. “Are you sure someone was following me home?”

“Positive. I know what I’m doing, and I do a damn good job of it.”

“I don’t know. I honestly can’t tell you anything.”

He moved so quickly she almost dropped the water bottle. He grabbed it from her hand before it fell to the floor and set it on the counter behind her. His body boxed her in. “I think you do know. You know something.”

“You should leave.”

“And you should tell me what I missed when I investigated you.”

“I want you to leave.”

His breath hitched. His heart shook with an unfamiliar feeling. His senses reeled from standing so close to her. “I want to kiss you.”

Her hands slapped his chest, then pushed, making him stumble back. “I don’t know what game you’re playing, but it won’t work with me.”

Shit! What the hell just came over him? He had no idea what game he was playing either. This was new territory for him. His gut was finally telling him something.

It said she was innocent. It said he needed to protect her. It said something evil was coming and she was the center of it.

He almost crumbled over in pain from the barrage of emotions hitting his gut.

Air. Some air and some distance was needed. Now.

Pulling his wallet out, he set his business card near the sink, then headed for the front door. His hand gripped the handle hard. “Call me if you remember something I need to know.” His eyes found hers. “But I will be back regardless.”

He left without waiting for her response. Because if he stayed any longer he would give into his impulse and kiss her.

Kiss a potential suspect? He had to clear her name from the list before he did that.

♥♥♥

Eek! I hope you enjoyed this weeks flash fiction:) Oh, and if you didn’t know, One Taste of Crazy is available for pre-order for only $.99! Awesome, right?!?!

Flash Fiction Friday

Prompt: Yeah, an umbrella.

Ginny ate her ice cream as fast as she could, the yummy chocolate deliciousness doing nothing to calm her down. How could she be calm when the nasty detective refused to leave her alone?

Not much had been spoken since he assumed she was threatening him. She may do some idiotic borderline things at times, but she’d never be dumb enough to threaten a detective.

She wished he’d leave already. As she scooped another spoon full of ice cream in her mouth, she returned his unnerving stare. If he insisted on staying, he could at least say something rather than stare at her.

Maybe this was part of his ploy to get her to confess. Ha! He’d be waiting for a very long time because she had nothing to confess. She did not kill that woman, nor had any intention of killing somebody.

Please do not let another person die like one of her paintings.

Her paintings were not for the faint at heart. They were very private pieces. Part of her soul that she needed to cleanse from her body. Maybe some wouldn’t understand, but she didn’t really care. There were things so dark and disturbing inside of her that she needed to get out. Painting was the only way she knew how to do that.

Setting her empty bowl on the table, she then scooted her chair back and stood up. “Have a good day, Detective.”

With that, she left. He didn’t follow her, which rather surprised her. He didn’t even say a word of goodbye.

What was the point of sitting there and staring at her for so long if he wasn’t going to stop her from leaving? Was this another ploy? Well, it wasn’t going to work on her. She had nothing to confess. Nothing that would help him with his murder case, anyway.

She waved goodbye to Tommy, who was behind the counter helping a customer, and rushed out of the café as fast as her feet would carry her.

Light drizzles of rain fell on her cheeks, warming her up. The rain always lifted her mood, just as ice cream did. She loved the simple things in life. Rain, to most people, was a dreary mood killer. For her, it just made her feel happy. There was nothing more fun than jumping into a big puddle and creating a huge splash. Or catching raindrops on her tongue. When she was home, curled in a big comfy blanket, listening to the pitter-patter of rain falling down always soothed her. The sound centered her into a sense of peace when most of the time she was a tumble of torrent emotions.

A smile lifted as she started to walk. She needed this, especially since the ice cream didn’t do the trick. As she strolled down the sidewalk, making her way to her apartment a few blocks away, her heart skipped a beat as the rain picked up its pace. Light drops to a steady flow.

Fifteen minutes later, she made it inside her building, almost sad that her walk was over. She even slowed her pace to enjoy as much of it as she could.

The cold air, mixed with her wet clothes, made her skin prickle with goose bumps as she waited for the elevator. Suddenly, a warm hand captured her shoulder. Jumping, she turned to see Detective Brands standing before her. His hand fell away.

“This is harassment. I should report you to your supervisor.”

An umbrella hung by his side, his knuckles white. “Don’t you pay attention to anything?” The frown he wore turned fiercer. “Where the hell is your umbrella? You’re soaked to the bone.”

What about her threat to report him? He was just going to ignore that. Why did he care about the rain? What was his deal?

“An umbrella? Did you not pay attention? Stop harassing me!”

A muscle in his jaw twitched as he lifted his umbrella. “Yeah, an umbrella. It keeps the rain away.”

“I like the rain.”

“And it can be used as a weapon.”

She jerked back. “Excuse me?”

He stepped closer, almost nose to nose with her. “Like I said, you don’t pay attention. You didn’t see the black car following you home.” His hot breath enticed her more than she cared to admit. One little inch separated their lips. “What are you hiding?”

And that simple question broke the spell he had weaved upon her senses. She stepped away. “Nothing. I’d like to change out of my wet clothes. Since you insist on being a pest, let’s go and get this over with.”

She knew he wasn’t about to leave. And honestly, she didn’t want to be alone just yet. She didn’t like him at all, but oddly, he made her feel safe.

He was also right. She hadn’t been paying attention. She had no clue someone followed her home.

Who was it?

And why?

♥♥♥

Flash Fiction Friday

So, little funny story before the flash. I asked my seven year old for a prompt while we were in the kitchen and she said, “Can I have some ice cream, please?” My four year old comes running into the kitchen, “I want some, too!” Umm…*chuckles* I had to calmly tell her that her sister wasn’t really asking for ice cream and she had to wait until after supper for some. We almost had a crisis on our hands. lol

Writing prompt: Can I have some ice cream, please?

Alex leaned back in his chair as he waited for Ms. Appleby to answer his question. He couldn’t tell yet whether she was guilty or not. He had a weird six sense for telling whether a suspect was guilty within seconds of meeting them. From there, he found every possible evidence there was and nailed their ass to the wall.

Some thought he was crazy with his intuition. Others just nodded and went along with him because they knew he was right.

But her. He still couldn’t get a read on her and it was slowly driving him insane.

“Ms. Appleby, please have a seat.” He tried to offer a smile, not a kind one either, but a smile nonetheless. He knew that type of thing calmed people down. The problem was he never liked to smile much. In his line of work, there wasn’t much to be happy about.

With a tremble in each movement, she picked up her chair and sat down, although didn’t scoot her chair closer to the table.

“It’s uncanny, isn’t it? The details. The placement of the body. It looks just exactly as you painted it.”

“I didn’t do that.”

He brushed the picture of the dead woman to the side so her painting showed as well and tapped the photo. “But you painted this.”

Her bright green eyes with a sprinkle of yellow specks gazed at him, almost as if she was trying to peer into his soul. Not that he thought he had much of one. After so many years working in homicide, dealing with death day in and day out, his soul had withered to nothing. He barely felt anything but wanting justice for the victims who needed their voices heard.

His brother had been trying to pull him out of his routine, his quest for justice for so long, that he all but pushed him out of his life. Nobody understood his need to make people pay for their heinous crimes. Nobody.

“Ms. Appleby?”

She shoved her hair behind her ear. “I thought it was a rhetorical statement. You know I painted it.” She leaned closer, but didn’t move her chair, and tapped the photo. “But I didn’t murder this woman.”

“Well, if you didn’t do it, and you don’t know who did it, how did this woman die? How come the crime scene looks exactly like your painting?”

He couldn’t wait to hear this answer. Perhaps he’d finally be able to get a read on her. His gut churned like a rough current in the middle of the ocean. He still couldn’t say either way, whether she was guilty, or even involved, besides being the artist of the painting. Which he hated to admit was quite masterful. The tiny details she painted, the way the color splashed out of the picture. The way the emotion screamed at him. He really hated to admit she had talent.

Before she could answer, the scraggly looking guy from behind the café counter walked up to the table. His eyes glossed to the photos, yet no expression punctured his face. Odd.

“Ginny, you okay? This guy bothering you?”

She smiled, a tentative one, but slightly beautiful. He didn’t like thinking in those terms, but he couldn’t deny the beauty that graced her face when she smiled.

“I’m fine, Tommy. He’s a detective. He’s just asking a few questions.”

Tommy, who looked like a street bum rather than someone who should be behind the counter serving food to people, nodded. His unruly hair waved around, the scruff on his face giving him a creepy vibe. Something with this guy didn’t sit right with him. Even his clothes, wrinkled from head to toe, didn’t speak highly of him. Why in the world would management let this guy look and dress like this while working?

“If you’re sure.” Tommy glanced at him with a hard glare as if that would scare him. He didn’t respond with anything but to return a hard glare. His head turned back to Ms. Appleby. “Can I get you anything, Ginny?”

“Actually, yes. Can I have some ice cream, please? Chocolate.”

He smiled with a nod and walked away.

“Ice cream?” Alex couldn’t hold the surprise or the slight sarcasm out of his tone.

Wringing her hands, she kept her head down as she answered. “It calms me down.”

“And why are you upset?”

Her eyes whipped to his. Her piercing stare gutted him. “Honestly, Detective, do you have no feelings? Do you think it’s easy to look at a picture of…of an innocent woman murdered? Please put them away!”

He turned away from her stare and gathered the photos, shoving them back into the folder, not because she told him to, but because he couldn’t handle the way her eyes drove straight to the pit of his stomach. He couldn’t describe what it did to him, but it made him uneasy.

“Who said she’s innocent of anything?”

“Regardless of who she was as a person, nobody deserves to be murdered in such a way.”

He pulled the folder closer and glanced at her. He wouldn’t allow her to unnerve him. And he needed to get a read on her. The only way to do that was to push her to the limit.

“You’re hiding something, Ms. Appleby. What is it? Who are you working with? You have some other interesting works of art. When will the next body pop up?”

Her face turned ashen. “You think…you’re wrong, Detective. And if you keep pursuing me as your prime suspect, then yes, another innocent victim may just appear.”

Leaning forward, he watched as the color in her eyes morphed from green with a small sparkle of yellow to a golden halo of brightness. “Was that a threat?”

“Of course not. Just the truth.”

Well, shit. Not only did she further confuse him, he still couldn’t decide if she was guilty.

♥♥♥

Flash Fiction Friday

The prompt this week really made me think. Kudos to my daughter! But when an idea popped into my head, I got really excited. Hope you enjoy this new storyline that’ll probably last a few weeks!

Prompt: I never paint.

The shadows danced around, flickering in and out, up and down. But the nice thing about every dark silhouette that loomed near her, it might’ve wrapped her in sadness, but just as quickly, passed her by as if she were insignificant, worthless.

Worthless.

Now, that’s a word she heard too much in the past. Wasn’t it fitting she’d still think that? Didn’t it make it true?

Another shadow hovered. She blinked once, taking a sip of coffee, then looked up from the book she had been mercifully trying to concentrate on and failing miserably at, to see why the latest shadow didn’t disappear.

The man before her looked foreboding, mysterious, and calculating, all traits she despised. No smile punctured his lips. His brows hung low, little lines wrinkling his forehead as his scowl seemed to deepen. Sharply contoured jaw. Neat, combed black hair. Rigid posture, his hands tightly by his side, a folder tucked in one hand. And his eyes, almost as black as death. Yep. Nothing about his features made her think she was going to enjoy whatever conversation he had in mind.

She turned her head down, deciding that she wouldn’t even indulge him with a simple, “Go away.” He should get the drift.

“Can I sit down?”

Refusing to glance his way, she shook her head no. She wouldn’t even engage him with words back.

A chair scraped against the café’s floor, then the table shook, causing the words to blur before her. Who was she kidding? She hadn’t been concentrating on the words long before he showed up.

Steeling her strength for the interaction she assumed would test her patience, she looked up. The man still glared at her, his hands resting over the folder on top of the table.

Her curiosity got the better of her. She wanted to know what was in the folder. Of course not badly enough that she would ask.

“I said no.”

“You did.” His eyes glossed over her, assessing, weighing, judging.

She hated that feeling. Did he know that? Is that why he looked at her that way?

“I’d like to read in peace. Please leave me alone.”

“Are you Jezabelle Cotton?”

She managed to hide her surprise. Barely. No one called her that anymore. Actually, no one ever called her that. When she first started to paint, she knew she would never be able to use her real name if she ever decided to share her art with the world. That’s the thing. She didn’t find the nerve. How did he know her pseudonym?

“Who are you?”

His hand slid under the table, just as quickly popped up. A bright shiny piece of gold shimmered as he laid it on the table.

A cop.

“Detective Brands.” A tiny corner of his lip curled up. “Let’s skip the games. I know you’re Jezabelle Cotton, the artist. Your real name is Ginny Appleby.”

She closed her book, wrapping her hands together on top of it. “And how can I help you, Detective?”

He picked up the folder, leaving his badge on the table and placed a photo before her.

Bright flashes of color. Red shouting from corner to corner, almost seeping from the paper into the table and right into her hands. Her painting. She named each painting, as if they were her babies. A part of her soul. This particular painting she named “Drenched in Blood”. Oh, yeah. She didn’t paint the pretty pictures with flowers or nature or color splashed over the canvas with happiness.

No. She painted brutality, death, the pain hidden inside of yourself.

This particular painting was of a young woman, draped over the side of a bed, blood dripping to the floor and graced all over her body. Stab wounds from head to toe, sprinkled around like one would dot holes in a rum cake for the rum glaze to enhance the flavor by making sure it hit every corner of the cake.

“This one is quite vivid. The details you managed to capture…” His eyes pierced her with heavy unease. “Do you always paint murders?”

“I never paint…” She tapped the photo, showing not only him, but herself, the picture didn’t affect her. “This isn’t murder. If you can’t look at my paintings and see the real meaning behind it then you’re an idiot.”

She leaned back in her chair, too tired, too strung out from her harrowing emotions to care that she insulted him.

He opened the folder once again and placed another photo over the first one.

She scrambled away from the table so fast, her chair toppled over. Her legs barely kept her standing, but she dug deep for strength she knew would shatter any second.

He tapped the photo. “This looks like murder to me. Nothing but a crime. A crime I will solve.”

Staring at the exact replica of her painting she created six months ago, a tear slid out.

Someone stole her work.

Someone made her painting come alive more than she ever could.

Someone actually killed a real woman and copied her painting to the T, right down to the blood trailing down the side of the bed, her arm hanging loosely to the floor, her fingers dipping into her own blood.

“Tell me, Ms. Appleby. Did you do this yourself, or do you have a partner?”

♥♥♥

Flash Fiction Time!

I am loving this storyline, especially since it’s something I’ve never tried to write before. I’ve been doing this one longer than I realized, though. Since April. Wow! I think this will be the last week of this story, unless you all holler at me and insist I keep it going. lol. Who knows? Maybe Bo and Isabella will get their own book in the future. Hope you enjoy how this ends!

Prompt: I love crazy.

Hands in his hair, he pulled hard. Nothing made sense. Not her visions. Not what happened today. Not what happened three years ago. Just call it a cluster.

Blowing out a deep breath, he stood up from the couch. He needed to check on her. She’d been sleeping all day ever since they came to her house. It was nearing midnight. There’s no way he’d be able to sleep until she woke up and he knew she was okay.

Inching the bedroom door open, he paused for a moment to take in her beauty. Her beautiful blonde hair lay gracefully on the pillow, her body curled into the blankets with one leg peeking out. One soft, silky leg just waiting for him to caress.

Ugh! Not the time for that nonsense. Oh, but he wanted to make the time. He wanted her just as badly as he did three years ago. Like the idiot he was, he turned away from her. Like the jerk he was, he made her think earlier today that it was her fault they broke up.

Taking his time, he tiptoed to the bed and gently sat on the edge. His hand ached to touch her. Just one little touch. But he refrained. He held himself in check.

He loved her so much it hurt to think about it. These past three years, he had perfected the art of not thinking about her. All it took was one simple phone call from her to make all those turbulent feelings come rushing back in.

He loved her now. He loved her back then. In his crazy ass way, he told her today he had always loved her. The disbelief on her face shouldn’t have surprised him. He never said the words before today. Apparently, his actions back then weren’t very clear about it either. Of course not. Expressing his feelings wasn’t something he excelled at. But she was here now. Back in his life. He wouldn’t make the same mistakes twice.

She started to stir, twisting her body towards him. A soft, warm hand landed on his thigh. It was enough to make his body go wild. Lowering his mouth, he brushed a tender kiss across her forehead.

How much would she hate him if he slid under the covers with her? He needed to get some sleep. She could be out for the count until morning. Two visions in one day took a huge toll on her.

Before he could back away, put some space between them, she whispered, “What time is it?”

“Midnight.”

She jerked and tried to sit up, but he pushed lightly on her shoulders. “You need the rest.”

“That feels real.”

He gave her a perplexed look. “What does?”

Her eyes glided to his hand that still rested on her shoulder, his thumb softly rubbing it. “You’re real.”

A chuckle escaped. “Of course I am.”

“I thought earlier, maybe I was…”

He knew what she was saying. The things he said confused her more than he realized. If only he would’ve professed his love back then, instead of assuming she’d figure it out. Truth was his love for her still scared him. His feet ached to run, while at the same time, climb into bed with her. His emotions tumbled around like a rough current in the middle of the ocean.

“I’m real. I’m here. I’m not leaving.” He felt a little more anchored to the ground expressing that. “Go back to sleep.”

“Those people…”

“We’ll talk more in the morning. There’s nothing we can do about it now.”

Her eyes grew round with shock. “Meaning, what?”

“Shit.” He couldn’t hide the grimace. “I didn’t mean to say it like that.”

She tried to sit up again, but he impeded her movements. “What happened?”

He hated the misery, the pain in her eyes. Brushing his lips to hers, he hoped that would erase a small trace of it away. “A bomb went off earlier this evening. We don’t know how many people are injured or dead, but it took out at least ten homes in a residential neighborhood on the west side of town.”

Tears glistened in her eyes as her body tensed. “And my second vision…”

“No word yet of any victims.”

“What’s going on, Bo? My visions have never failed me before. Why now?” She turned her head away as the tears came flooding out.

Wrapping her in his arms, he held her tightly. “You didn’t fail. It’s not your fault. You have to believe that.”

“Just like I was supposed to believe you loved me.” Each word came out with a sob. “I just need this all to be a horrible nightmare. None of it can be real.”

His breath hitched as a sharp pain hit his heart. “Even me?” He relaxed his grip, yet didn’t move away from her. “I suck at this relationship stuff, but I never wanted you to leave. I admit I pushed you away back then even though I loved you. I still do. It scares the hell out of me.”

For the longest time, she was silent, crying into his arms. He said nothing more as his hands wove up and down her back, soothing her as best as he could. Her tears eventually calmed. Nothing but silence filled the room. She must’ve fallen asleep.

“Am I going crazy?” Her whispered words echoed around the room. “I have to be going crazy. Everything that’s happened…what you said…I am crazy.”

She still didn’t believe him. What did he expect? He was never this open with her when they first started dating. Maybe she really did believe this was all a horrible nightmare.

“I love crazy.” He brushed a kiss against her neck. “I love you.”

She lifted her head, her eyes shining brightly into his. “You really do? You’re really real?”

“I’m as real as it gets. Forewarning you, though. I’m probably gonna act like an idiot and screw up in every way I possibly can. Call me crazy, too.”

A warm smile graced her face. “I think I can handle that. I love you, too, Bo.” She snuggled closer. “What about my visions? We have to stop this madman.”

He kissed the top of her head. “We will, sweetheart. Together, we will.”

♥♥♥

A dose of love…flash fiction!

One thing I’ve come to love is writing flash fiction. Not only does it help to get the creativity flowing, in case I’m struggling with that, but it helps to keep me writing. Sometimes I just don’t feel like writing, or I’m too busy doing something else concerning my books. Writing flash fiction makes me keep up with writing. I like that little push, that motivator to keep me going. In case you didn’t know where I always got my prompt from to write the flashes, I started writing flash fiction with the lovely group Love Indie Romance. I’ve had tons of fun joining them with weekly flashes, but I’m going to be changing it up some.

Last weekend was Mother’s Day. And what a beautiful day it was. My kids made that day so special for me, although, they make each day pretty special in some way. My oldest daughter (she’s seven) made me a special book filled with things she loved about me and a few other wonderful words. The one thing that really stuck out and filled my heart with so much love was some things she said about my writing. She knows I write. (I am on my computer a lot. lol) But what she said really made me see how proud she is of me. I thought it would be really fun to have her help me with my prompts. When I asked her if she’d give me a short sentence so I could write a story with it, the smile she gave me was so precious. *heart beats madly with love*

So, I’ll be enlisting the help of my daughters (Because I imagine my four year would love to help as well. *wink*) for my weekly prompts. I like them to know what I do, how I do it, and that this is my job. A job I love doing every single day. And when she gets just as excited to help me out, I know it’s going to be so much fun!

Here on out, my flashes will be on Friday’s. As you can see from my little quote above, it’ll be: A dose of love…Flash Fiction Friday. Because you know me, I love the love and you’ll always get a happy ending with me…even in my flashes!

Here’s the first prompt she provided. She surprised me with a hard one right off the bat. Love it!

Prompt: Sadness is sad.

Isabella tried to walk as steadily as she could into her house. She didn’t need Bo’s arms around her anymore. That certainly didn’t mean she would be opposed to it. It just wasn’t a good idea.

Since they left the precinct, Bo’s insistence on driving her home, not much had been said. They talked about both of her visions, unable to gain any further information from them. She never had visions this close together. Her body was draining. Sleep sounded like the best idea. If only Bo wasn’t following her inside.

Sitting gingerly on the couch, she rested her head against the cushion. She wanted to close her eyes, but there was no way she could while Bo was in her house. Time to have a conversation she didn’t want to have. She really needed to close her eyes. Instead, she chanced a quick glance to him, where he stood not far from her.

“What did you want to talk about?”

“Nothing right now.” Without warning, he stepped closer and scooped her into his arms.

“What are you doing?” She almost hated how wonderful it felt to be in his arms as he headed for her bedroom. It’s not like this would last.

“You’re exhausted. You can barely keep your eyes open. Have you ever had two visions so close together?” He gently laid her on the bed.

She swore she could see the love shining within the depths of his eyes. Impossible.

His hand grazed her cheek delicately. “Isabella?”

“No. Everything…it’s never happened before.

His hand swept across her cheek again. Softly. Slowly. “Sadness is sad.” His eyes pierced her with a look she couldn’t describe.

“What?” He had to stop looking at her like that. It unnerved her. “You’re confusing me, Bo.”

“I don’t like it when you look sad. I want…I need some happiness in my life.”

She tucked the covers around her, avoiding eye contact. Every time she met his gaze, she saw a new emotion she didn’t think ever existed between them. His words were making no sense. One thing she could always count on with Bo was his honesty. She felt like he was talking in circles and avoiding the truth.

“Your life seems just fine.”

She had no choice but to look into his eyes when he grabbed her cheeks and forced her to. They glittered with an intense emotion that would’ve knocked her on her ass if she hadn’t been lying down.

“Nothing’s been fine since you left. You think you have it all figured out. You thought back then you knew what I was feeling. What I was thinking. You never had a clue. Still don’t. For a psychic, you suck at reading me.”

Tiny tremors combed her body. A mixture of terror and pleasure. “I don’t read minds.”

His lips slammed down onto hers. His tongue dove in, her welcoming it with ease. She missed this. Missed him. She had no idea what he was talking about, considering she couldn’t read minds at all, but she’d take what he was offering right now.

Just as quickly, he pulled away, their heavy breathing the only sounds. He looked pissed, yet the desire glimmered in his eyes as well.

“Do you ever listen to me?”

“I am. I always did.”

He leaned closer. She prayed his lips would connect with hers once again. “You never did. If you ever listened, for even a moment, you would’ve never left.”

“Stop talking in riddles.” His face turned hard as granite. She knew she was just asking for him to blow up. Talking things out wasn’t her forte. He might have a slight point that she didn’t listen well. Walking away was always an easier solution. But he was wrong. She never heard anything back then that would’ve had her sticking around. Her ears were wide open waiting for him to stop her and he never did. So his words right now were clear as mud. As fast as his anger imploded on his face, it disappeared. Like a kite losing its string high in the sky.

“Rest. You need it. Then we’ll talk.” His lips closed the distance. A soft sigh floated out. “To make it as clearly as I can, I’ve always loved you.  But my love never seemed to be enough for you.”

He stood up quickly without waiting for a response and walked out, closing the door.

Well, that was the last thing she ever expected to hear. His words were still confusing the hell out of her. Maybe she was still out of it. Maybe she didn’t really hear him say what she always wanted to hear from him. That had to be it. She was hallucinating. The lack of energy was creating things that weren’t real.

Was Bo even real? Did she really leave the house, leave the bed from her first vision? Was she still stuck in a horrible vision?

He couldn’t love her. She would’ve never walked away from his love.

She closed her eyes. Blackness descended immediately.

♥♥♥

Flash fiction time!

Prompt: Watch him die

His crazy laugh sent shivers running down her spine.

“Watch him die.”

Her mouth opened to scream, but no sound came out. She stared in horror as the man pressed the knife to Bo’s throat, making a sweeping motion.

“Isabella!”

She jerked upright, immediately falling back into the warmth of Bo’s arms. Her body ached everywhere, from the deep pounding in her head to the aggravating tingles in her toes. Some aches were from pain, and some were from the desire swamping her body as Bo’s arms became tighter around her. He held her as if she would slip away to the bottom of the ocean. She felt like she was sinking to the bottom, no air in sight.

“You need to stay awake. Stop going in and out. I can’t take it anymore.”

Leaning her head back, at a very awkward angle, she peered into his eyes. The concern shining within the depths had her trembling with disbelief. He didn’t care about her. Why was he pretending now? Why was she sitting with her back against his chest on the ground outside the precinct? Why did it have to feel so nice?

“What are you talking about?”

His eyes bulged, as if he couldn’t believe she asked such a question. “You had a vision. Do you have any idea how long we’ve been sitting outside here? Do you have any idea how—” His lips pressed into a thin line. “Are you okay? You gonna stay with me?”

Stay with me. If only he meant that in a totally different way. In a way that would make her heart soar.

“How long have I been out?” She tried to sit up and move away from him, but his arms were still impenetrable. “I’m okay now. You can let go.”

His grip strengthened, his hands flush against her stomach, sending delicious tingles straight to her core. “I’m not ready to let you go.” His warm breath, so close to her ear, brought memories forward that she wished she could forget, especially right in this moment. “What was the vision?”

She wanted to forget it. Forget everything she saw.

“Isabella…”

Closing her eyes, she savored the way her name left his mouth so softly, so erotically.

“Talk to me. You were out for an hour. And for the last thirty minutes, you’ve been in and out of consciousness. You scared the shit out of me.” He squeezed gently, a kiss hitting the side of her face. “What did you see?”

“A man had a knife to your throat. I was across the room, helpless, watching as he threatened you, threatened me. He killed you right before my eyes.”

He tensed. “Did you recognize him?”

“No. I couldn’t see his face clearly. I don’t why I keep seeing us, yet it wasn’t us. The victims were Stacey and John. Why can’t I see anything to help identify who this man is?”

“Are you saying it’s the same guy from the other vision? The bomber?”

She nodded. “I could feel his evil.” She turned as best as she could, burying her face into his chest, soaking up the comfort he was offering. She didn’t care if it wouldn’t last, she just needed to grab as much as she could from him before he shoved her away once again.

“I’m taking you home. Then we’ll figure this out.”

“I can take myself home. I’m okay.”

His arms were already tight against her, but they tightened even more at her words. “You’re far from okay.” He pressed a kiss to her head. “And we have a lot to talk about. Starting with us.”

“There is no us. There hasn’t been for years.”

“Yeah, that’s the problem. I have something I need to tell you.”

Like that, she wished she could disappear, continue the descent down to the bottom of the ocean. What could he possibly want to tell her? Did she really want to know?

“I’m not leaving your side, so don’t even think about arguing with me. Let’s go.”

The way he said it, she had no choice but to listen. He sounded like he actually cared about her. Or was she setting herself up for more heartache?

♥♥♥

 

 

Flash this, baby!

Prompt: If you only knew

His steps slowed as he reached the hallway that would lead him back to the break room. A place he didn’t need to go to. He still had his cold coffee sitting on his desk.

Call him a coward. Or an asshole. Both descriptions fit him perfectly.

What was he doing? Why was he walking away, yet again?

Blowing out a frustrated breath, he turned around. She still sat at his desk, her head hanging down. He did that to her. He put the sadness there.

Why didn’t she storm out already? The second he walked away, he figured she would’ve, too. What did it mean that she was still sitting there?

Sinking into his chair, he grabbed his cold cup of coffee to help refrain from grabbing for her.

“I would never shoot you.”

Her head shot up.

“I don’t know why you think I would, but I would never do that.”

Her brows puckered, as if in contemplation.

“Walk me through the entire vision like we…” Used to do. He couldn’t even finish that sentence for some reason. The pain and sorrow in her eyes tore at his heart. “That’s if you’re up to it.”

“I am.” With that, she broke the vision down piece by piece.

Sometimes working through her visions helped to unveil the part they needed to solve a crime or find their perp or to save a victim. And sometimes it did nothing but further aggravate her that her vision was basically useless. Like, now. She couldn’t provide anything to point a finger at the victims or the bomber or even the area it would take place. It made him nervous.

Because her visions were never wrong.

“We’ll figure it out.”

“How? I’ve given nothing to help you whatsoever.”

He ached to reach out and touch her. To comfort her. “Because we have no choice. We can’t let innocent people get hurt. Something will come to you. I’ll try on my end as well.” He wasn’t sure where to start to locate Todd and Liana, but he wouldn’t leave it all on her shoulders to solve this.

She stood up. “If something else comes to mind, I’ll call you.”

“I’ll walk you out.” He scooted his chair back and stood up as well.

“That’s not necessary.”

“I insist.”

She threw him a puzzled look. He thought she was about to argue with him when she abruptly turned and started walking. He followed closely behind, longing to grasp her hand. To walk side by side. How would she react if he did it? Pull away? Pull him closer?

Less than a minute later, she stopped in front of her car. Turning towards him, she stumbled back. Not much space lingered between them. He didn’t mean to startle her, but he couldn’t seem to stop when she did. He was barely a breath away. The ache to close the distance was so strong he didn’t know how much longer he could control it.

“Isabella…”

“Can you move back, please?”

“And if I don’t?”

“What is this, Bo? What are you trying to do?” The pain he saw inside earlier evaporated right before his eyes. Now, anger stood in its place. “Always playing games. You never change.”

“What game am I playing?”

“I asked you to back up. Why do you insist on standing so close to me? To walk me to my car? Like you suddenly care about me.”

If you only knew. He couldn’t say that. He couldn’t say how he really felt about her. Even as badly as he wanted the words to escape, he couldn’t do it.

Perhaps he could show her, though.

His hand slid around her waist, pulling her flush against him as his mouth crashed down upon hers. She barely resisted as her arms wound around his neck. Tightening his embrace, he pushed her up against the car, wishing they weren’t in a public parking lot. Wishing he could truly show her how much he loved her.

The kiss went from frenzied to tender as his hands slid up her body and grasped her cheeks. Pulling away, he whispered against her lips, “I’ve never once played games with you.”

“What’s happening here then?”

“What always happens between us. I lo—” He froze in horror as her body went limp in his arms.

Shit! A vision.

♥♥♥

Oh, and good news! I finally re-released Sunset Darkening. *claps excitedly* Same great story, just edited some unnecessary stuff out. 🙂

Lucas Dalton just wants to move on—do his job. He wants to focus on finding the man who killed three women and nearly took his sister’s life. It remains difficult with all the reporters flooding his door, especially from Elle Conners, investigative reporter. She’s looking for an exclusive interview, something Lucas and his sister have never provided. He surely isn’t going to start now. It doesn’t matter how gorgeous or tempting she is.

When a new murder rocks his small town, he assumes the killer has come back for more. Until the dots start connecting to Elle, the one woman he can’t seem to get out of his mind. He discovers why she needed that exclusive so badly, to rebuild her life from an attack two years ago. Now she needs him for so much more—to keep her safe. He’ll not only catch this new killer, but try to win her heart.

Flash time!

Oh my! I’m so sorry I’m so late this week with my flash. I always like to try to post on Monday, but alas, family stuff popped up and as much as I love my writing, my family is always first. But I know you all understand that:) The house is finally back to normal and I have some flash fiction for you! Yay! I hope you like how this story line is going. I’m kinda really loving it:) Might have to try a psychic book in the future.

Prompt: Walk the line

“Dude was drunk as a skunk. I’m all like, walk the line. He’s all like, I love that song. Needless to say…”

Bo nodded as if he cared what Derek had to say about his arrest he had to handle last night, when really, his mind wouldn’t leave the thought he was about to see Isabella again. Three years. Every day that passed since he last saw her had been like a dagger to his heart. He wasn’t sure he’d be able to handle seeing her again. The temptation to pull her into his arms and beg forgiveness kept swimming through his veins. Like she’d ever forgive him.

He was the one who ended the relationship. He was the one who walked away as if she meant nothing. That was the furthest thing from the truth. She had been his everything. It scared the hell out of him. It scared him so much he turned away from her. What an idiot.

Now she was coming back to him—because of a vision. Not because she missed him. Loved him, maybe.

Love was never exchanged between them, but he knew she did. He saw it every time she looked at him. Every time she spoke. The words always teetered on the tip of his tongue. And every single time he stopped himself. Pathetic. He didn’t deserve her, especially now, acting like a coward.

“…blew a .20. Can you believe that shit?”

He stood up and slapped Derek on the back playfully. “Sounds like a doozy, man. I gotta get back to work.”

Grabbing his coffee, now cold, that he decided to grab after she called, he walked back to his desk. Glancing at the clock, he figured he had another five to ten minutes before she showed up. He knew her well. If she said she had a vision, she’d want to get to right away. Especially if she called him after so long. She could’ve called anyone, but she called him. Why? What did it mean?

None of it mattered. The way he spoke to her on the phone ensured that.

On the dot, like he assumed, she walked into the precinct ten minutes later, heading straight for his desk. Her stance was rigid, her hands clasped tightly to her purse as she stopped in front of him. No smile graced her face. No happiness. None of the eager anticipation to see him as she always displayed in her eyes when they were together. Just indifference. It pissed him off.

“Have a seat.”

“Nice to see you, too.” She sat down a bit haughtily as her words were. Something he deserved. He wasn’t afraid to admit that.

Seeing her was painful. He certainly couldn’t say that. Her beauty, as always, wrapped around him and squeezed the life right out of him. Her silky blonde hair was up in a tight ponytail, not one piece out of place. Her face was devoid of makeup, as usual. She never needed any of that crap as some women liked to cake on. Her beauty was natural, and he loved every part of her. Her clothes were sweet and simple. A shirt and a pair of jeans with white plain sandals on her feet. The only thing that really stood out was the dark circles rimming her eyes. He knew just from that tiny detail the vision had been bad.

And he didn’t want to think about that. He witnessed her having a vision a few times, and every time it killed him to watch. Thinking about it was just as difficult.

“What was it about?” Right down to business. The faster they solved this, the faster he could get her back out of his life before he caved and groveled before her feet.

She took a deep breath, then went to explain about a happily married couple, Todd and Liana, a bomb, and the hard choice they had to make. None of it sounded good. At all.

“Got an address?”

“I couldn’t see any of that.”

“A last name?”

“Or that.”

“An inkling about the bomber?”

“Nope.”

That was unlike her. Her visions weren’t always spot-on and accurate and filled with every single detail, but they normally helped with at least a small lead.

“So, what do you have for me?”

Sighing, her hands turned pasty white as she gripped her purse a little harder in her lap. “Not much. It was…it took a lot out of me. I was out for hours.”

“Hours?” He leaned forward, aching to reach out to her. “Has that ever happened before?” He was dreading her answer. Because if she said no, he didn’t know what to think.

“No.”

Just like that, a punch to the gut.

“I had to tell you, though. I’m sorry it’s not more helpful.” She averted her eyes. “There’s one more thing.”

Tiny little goose bumps flushed his skin. He was absolutely certain he didn’t want to hear this part.

“What’s that?”

Turning her head, her eyes gazed into his, almost as if she could see straight into his soul. “I saw the victims, felt the torture, except…I saw them as if they were us. Me with a bomb strapped to my chest and you with the decision whether to shoot. I know how you would’ve handled the situation.”

His anger was swift, his hands balling into fists as he leaned closer to her. “Oh, yeah? And what the hell would’ve I done?

“Shoot me, of course.”

She said it so calmly, so believable, that he knew then, she’d never forgive him for walking away. Even if he tried to plead his case that he always loved her, since almost the moment he met her, she’d never believe him. She honestly thought he’d shoot her to save others. As horrible as it was to think, let alone say, he didn’t think he’d ever kill her to save others. He loved her too much to do that.

“Guess there’s not much else we have to say to each other. Call me if you remember anything else.”

With that, he stood up and walked away from his desk before he did something stupid like tell her he loved her.

♥♥♥

Flash time!

Prompt: The bad boy you just can’t forget

The pain slowly receded. She still couldn’t move. Couldn’t function. Could barely even think.

A bomb. A madman. Two victims grappling with a decision.

Blinking once, then twice, her bedroom came into focus. Wiggling her fingers, the pain dwindled down to nothing. Sitting up, holding a hand to her head, she glanced at the clock on her nightstand.

10:03 AM

“Shit!”

She went to bed, as she normally did, at ten o’clock last night. Her alarm was set for 7:30 AM, the same time she woke up every day. Her vision was so bad, one of the worst, it took her a moment to realize her alarm was still beeping. Swiping it silent, she clutched her phone as the vision played over again in her mind.

Bo.

She hadn’t thought of him in years. Now he was in one of her visions. The strangest part, it felt as if they were the victims. It wasn’t true, of course. The victims were Todd and Liana. Happily married with no kids. They just purchased a new house, slowly fixing it up and saving money for a honeymoon they hadn’t taken yet.

She never had a vision with herself as one of the victims. Sure, she felt the pain as if it was her own. She hated that part. It always knocked her out at least ten minutes. This time it knocked her out for hours. That never happened before. That’s what scared her the most. What did it mean? Could she prevent this from happening?

Liana’s pain had been immense. She felt the bullet hit. The jerking of her body as she fell to the ground. She also felt the explosion. The heat. The flames.

It was all so confusing.

The bomber said if Todd killed her, he’d disarm the bomb. Todd definitely pulled the trigger. The bomb went off.

Maybe Todd shot her in the chest, triggering the bomb. Maybe the bomber lied. Maybe Todd was a second too late.

She didn’t know. She couldn’t see that part clearly. Or maybe she had. Things were still a bit fuzzy.

Standing slowly, just in case her body hadn’t recovered as well as she thought, she debated what to do first.

Take a shower and grab a cup of coffee?

Or call Bo?

She really wanted to take a shower, wash all the horror away. Not that it ever diminished, but she liked to pretend it worked.

Bo needed to know. He needed to know what was going to happen today. Stop it. Prevent it. If he would even talk to her, that is.

Three long years. In all that time, she never thought of him. She couldn’t. It hurt every time she did. He had been the one for her. The minute he shook her hand and introduced himself as Detective Bo Chapman, her heart was his. That never happened to her before. Fighting the attraction at first took all her strength, especially since he didn’t believe in psychics. He had looked at her with distrust until a vision of a missing four year old girl hit her. She found the little girl before the sicko that kidnapped her had killed her. From there, everything changed between them. She let her resistance crumble. It turned into a whirlwind romance. Or more like great sex—on his part at least. Every time she gave herself to him, she had given her all. Everything she had. Then, just like that, he tossed her aside as if she meant nothing.

She should’ve known he would never last in her life. He had that bad boy, player persona written all over him from the moment they met. None of it mattered. As soon as he warmed up to her, he had turned all his charms on her. She sank immediately, letting him take her away into the deep abyss. Honestly, she still hadn’t resurfaced.

The bad boy you just can’t forget.

But she did. She wiped him clear from her memory the same day they parted ways. She never thought of him once.

Until last night. When he appeared in her vision.

Why did that happen? Why would she see the victims as her and Bo when it wasn’t true? What did it mean?

Nothing good, that’s for sure.

Settling for at least one of the two things she really wanted, she waited for the coffee to finish, her fingers fiddling with her phone.

Just call him.

What would he say? Would he even listen to her? Would he just hang up?

Their parting didn’t go well. No screaming took part, but the tension had been thick, the anger, the hurt mixed in.

Maybe it was all on her side. Now that she thought about it, nothing but indifference showed on his part. He never loved her like she loved him. That was the problem from the beginning. She loved him with everything she had, and she was nothing more than a warm body.

Her hand shook as the phone rang in her ear.

“Hello?”

His voice was soft and sultry, just as she remembered. The question in his tone almost had her hanging up. He didn’t remember her.

“Who is this?”

Oh, right. She didn’t identify herself yet.

“Hi, Bo. It’s—”

“Isabella…” His voice cracked. “What do you want?”

You. “I had a vision. It was a bad one.”

She heard a soft sigh, the sound slapping her in the face. He didn’t want to hear about her vision. He didn’t want to hear from her at all. Well, too bad. She couldn’t let innocent people die.

“How bad?”

“Bad enough to make me call you.” Regret sucked the life out of her as soon as those words slipped out.

“I’m at the precinct.” Still nothing but indifference. Then, nothing but silence.

He hung up on her. At least she knew how this was going to play out. He was still calling all the shots. And she was letting him.

♥♥♥