When this COVID plague first hit, I didn’t own a single mask. And then, of course, they were nearly impossible to find. But now, everyone is making them. They’re all over Etsy, one of my fellow UCLA alumni is offering them to Bruins at a discount, they’re available in Scottish tartans, your favorite sports teams, superheroes, cartoons, and so many more. And let’s not forget the ordinary medical disposables which are once again available. The picture above is my current collection, although of course I have more on order, because at the beginning, we couldn’t be sure when the ordered masks would arrive.
Here you have me outside the Red Cross donation center, where I gave blood this week. The mask is stylish, though you’ll notice I’m not bothering to blow dry/style my hair. It needs a cut, though I’m not willing to risk anyone’s life to make that happen. No one sees it except me and my niece who stops by every week to make sure I’m still alive and functioning.
To answer the question…yep, I’m still very much alive and writing every night. XAVIER’s story is coming along very nicely, and just for kicks, I’m posting a snippet for your reading pleasure. Note that this is from the unedited manuscript, and may read differently in the final version. This snippet is protected by copyright, and is not to be copied, recopied, shared, or transmitted in any way.
Layla studied him over her wine glass. It wasn’t a hardship. He was so damn pretty. Shit. She set aside the wine. When she was reduced to ogling Xavier over her glass, she’d had enough. “Even if he’s not a powerful vampire,” she said. “He’s still a sorcerer. And the vampirism bestows an extra dose of charisma, too.”
“Oh my God. Don’t do that,” she pleaded silently. That grin raised him from damn pretty to fucking devastating.
“Rest easy, Laylita. I’m in no danger of being charmed by Sakal.”
She blushed, damn it. “I didn’t mean that. I just meant, he’s not helpless and we shouldn’t act as though he is.” She arched her back again, digging her knuckles into the muscle.
“I know,” he said lightly. He walked around his desk until he was behind her. “And you’re right.” His hands brushed hers away as he began massaging her lower back.
She swallowed a groan of sheer pleasure as his strong fingers dug into places she couldn’t reach, the heat of him seeping into bone and muscle.
“Better?” he murmured.
Layla couldn’t talk, afraid of what she’d say. So she just nodded and hoped he couldn’t hear the thumping of her heart or the way her lungs clutched as if she’d forgotten how to breathe. He moved closer, until his warm breath stirred the wisps of hair on the back of her neck, where it had pulled loose from her braid. “Xavier,” she whispered, pleading. Though she wasn’t certain what for.
“Layla,” he whispered back, as his lips touched her neck.
She wanted to tell him to stop. To shove him away and leave. Just leave. But her body wouldn’t cooperate. She stood there, heart slamming against her ribs while every inch of her body begged for more. More of his touch, his voice. More of a body she’d dreamed of for ten years, wondering what if.
And since we’re still (mostly) stuck at home, the giveaway continues! Winners for the last two weeks have been randomly select, notified, and have received their Amazon gift cards. If you haven’t already registered, you can still join in for future drawings. You only need to send your name in once. I’m drawing from the same pool of entries every week. Here are the rules:
How to enter…
1. Send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with HOME 1 on the subject line.
2. Return email address MUST BE A VALID EMAIL ADDRESS.
3. Include your first and last name in the body of the email.
4. I WILL SELECT A WINNER EVERY SATURDAY AT 12:00 MIDNIGHT PST. All entries received by that time will be eligible for the drawing. One (1) winner will be selected EACH WEEK at random from among the entries received by the deadline.
REMEMBER: YOU ONLY NEED TO ENTER ONCE TO BE ELIGIBLE FOR THE WEEKLY GIVEAWAY. PLEASE DON’T SEND ME A WEEKLY EMAIL!!!
5. The winner will be notified by return email. She/he will then have five (5) days to respond, after which a new winner will be chosen.
6. One (1) entry per person. ALL duplicate entries will be deleted (and yes, I’ve already had a few. You may think you’re slick, but they’re easy to spot. 😁 )
7. The weekly prize will be an Amazon e-gift card. The amount will vary randomly every week. Even I won’t know what it will be until it happens.
And with that, I’m back to work.
Stay safe. Protect yourself and others…wear a mask.