Sunday Sample - The Short Game

Sunday, May 29, 2016

Garth disappeared into the bathroom and then came back and parked himself on the sofa. When he grabbed the remote and scrolled through the channels, I thought it was business as usual between us.

I was wrong.

He stopped at a football game and turned the volume down before angling himself toward me.

"So, what did you decide?"

"Uh, some finesse would be appreciated right now."

"Don't play with me, Anna-Lise. We know each other too well to beat around the bush."

"Well, I … I dunno Garth."

"You've taken a week to think about it, so what more is there?"

"D'you realize the seriousness of what we're proposing to do?"

"Of course, I do. I haven't thought about anything else since Ayisha and Vance put the thought into my head."

I pulled my legs up on the sofa and faced him. "How? What do they have to do with all this?"
He dragged his fingers through the fluff springing from his scalp. "Well, they're the ones who said we were in the same bad mood, which might mean we had a thing for each other."

"I should have known."

He laced his fingers through mine so our palms touched. "Is the thought so way out there?"
The electronics magazines on the center tables grabbed my attention for a bit, but I shook my head. "I guess not."

Garth squeezed my hand, and I looked at him.

"They only saw what we've known subconsciously for a while, but it's always easier for people looking in from the outside to see exactly what's happening."

"You don't say."

He dragged himself closer, pushed my feet off the seat, and threw his arm around me, squeezing me into a hug. "Stop acting like an asshole. You know exactly what I mean."

I held on to his fingers, savoring the slight rasp of his fingertips.

"What if this doesn't work, G?"

"Cheesecake, you're old enough to know that life doesn't come with any guarantees. We'll take things a step at a time." He applied a little pressure to my shoulder to get me to look at him. "If this works, I'll be happy. If not, we can say we tried."

I wriggled from under his arm and took off my jacket, throwing it on the arm of the sofa. Then I walked away from him, pacing before the television on the other side of the center table. "D'you realize what a big decision this is though, Garth? We have fifteen years of history between us." I stopped and stared at the wall across from me. "What if we lose our friendship?"

"It worked for Kathy and Bryan," he said softly.

"That's them, this is us."

"And we have to work our way through this the best way we can. I don't think we can afford any kind of mistake. After all, six of us will be affected if we do this madness you're suggesting."

I folded my arms across my stomach and kept walking.

"Aren't you here because you thought maybe, somewhere in the back of your mind, this is somehow feasible?" Garth asked.

It didn't make sense lying to him, so while gawking over the table, I nodded.

Using his hands for support, he got to his feet and approached me. When he stood before me, he touched my chin and whispered. "You're thinking too hard. I know this is a big decision, but … " His hands slid down to where mine were still folded and moved them out of the way, then he touched the spot just below my left breast. "Despite everything, doesn't it feel right here?"

I couldn't have shifted my gaze if I tried, so again I nodded.

He blinked and his eyes went hazy.

Just as before, I knew the moment the intention formed in his head to kiss me.

Our lips touched. 

My mouth opened.

Our tongues tangled.

The room faded to nothing.

Garth pulled me to his chest, groaning as he explored my mouth.

My eyelids closed and I savored the joy of kissing him without restrictions.

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  1. You do such a great job of these difficult scenes. Very well done, Joy.

  2. Her concerns are very valid and I love the way it segued into a kiss. Lovely excerpt, Joy. xx


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