Today we are seeking input. The following is the start of a possible novella. It has been sitting on a back burner, and perhaps has been burnt beyond recognition then again, perhaps it has scented the air with its spicy fragrance, and now demands to be consumed... By who? You, the reader, of course! In reality, we are feuding over whether or not the book should be completed or not. Zi thinks we shouldn't. Ang thinks we should?
Only since the story is still only a germ of an idea, we simply continue to debate. The main problem is we struggle with the idea of a heroine having an affair outside her marriage, even though it is something that had happened in the character's past. Would that trouble readers?
According to the Journal of Couple and Relationship Therapy, there are about fifty percent of married women and sixty percent of married men who are or will have an extramarital affair. Since the two groups are not necessarily having an affair with members of the other group, it means that the current statistics suggest that someone is having an affair in nearly eighty percent of all marriages.
At the same time, ninety percent of people polled believe that infidelity is wrong. Sooo, who is having the affairs? We thought, perhaps, characters in books and movies?
What do you think? Should we or should we not write the following story:
The autumn day spilled around her with harbor winds and fluttering leaves, but she couldn’t get past the despair lingering within like a bitter aftertaste. She stared at the ruffled water and the empty boat docks of the Inner Harbor. It had been six months since the affair ended, but she still missed him, still yearned for his touch, for the bits and pieces he returned to her soul, to the kisses that led to scorched senses on the other side of resistance. It hadn’t been just lust, but a love more intense than solar flares and a connection that bled into flesh. But it was one-sided. She knew that from the first, and had accepted it.
Drawn despite infinite reservations, she offered her heart, her body, her very soul, even as she desperately tried to remain detached. He had shattered that detachment without deliberate intention, just as he had shattered her heart without trying. She still couldn’t answer the question if it was better to have experienced the depth and expansion of sensuous, dangerous love that defied convention in every sense of the meaning, or would it have been better to have never known such ecstasy, to live life oblivious to the realization that one could touch the sun and survive.
He would come today, as he came every other Friday, and they’d have lunch at their favorite haunt, indulging in dessert that offered little temperance to the passion she pretended no longer existed. She’d offer her smile and she’d laugh, and they’d be friends on the distant shore of an affair that had nearly destroyed her world.
On this six-month anniversary of loss, she allowed herself to indulge in memories. Her twin sons had fled the nest, not for college, college ended a year before, but for jobs across the country. She found herself empty of all that made her feel real. It wasn’t that she didn’t love her husband, she did, but his cold demeanor and final years of avoiding the bedroom, left her hungry not just for sexual intimacy but warmth and closeness. Still, they were settled, together, comfortable and compatible in most ways. No one knew the truth behind the perfect couple façade, and they would be shocked that someone of her apparent intelligence had remained in the marriage.
Society just didn’t understand that life wasn’t black and white but held infinite hues of gray with an occasional splash of color that made it bearable. Damon was that color in her world for a sampling of time. Would she have accepted that proffered cup of Chi-tea if she had known what she knew now? Would she have smiled at the stranger in astonishment that he had known her favorite drink? Or would she have offered a cold shoulder and a dour expression. She didn’t know, for one look into those stunning, gray eyes and come-hither grin and she became lost. It was that instant and that final.
She remembered the moment as if it were happening now, rather than so long ago. “I noticed you get one of these nearly every time I’m here,” he had said, taking the seat opposite her without even asking permission. “Thought I save you the trouble of standing in line.”
She stood there, jaw sagging, eyes wide, the mouse in her trying to seek a tongue. “I…ummm…”
“Thank you is the appropriate response,” he said in a way that reeked of confidence rather than arrogance.
“Thank you,” she managed and reached into her purse.
“On me,” he said, stilling her hand with a two-finger touch.
She hadn’t meant to gasp aloud, but she hadn’t expected the instantaneous heat.
Where did that come from, she thought. Where did he come from? Had he been watching her? Should she be frightened? She ate lunch alone at the library cafeteria at least three times a week after a morning spent in a pre-school art room. She was suddenly very self-conscious of her tousled hair and stained bib overalls. She wondered if she smelled like crayons and paint?
“I’m not a stalker,” he said, his gaze seeming to absorb her. “But I pass through this area once a week, stop for lunch and can’t help noticing you.”
“It’s the paint,” she said, trying to explain away being noticed. After all, a mouse wasn’t usually noticed. “I teach art at a pre-school. I guess I shouldn’t be seen in public like this.”
“It’s the smile,” he said. “You smile at everyone. You’ve smiled at me every week for the last two months.”
Her cheeks spotted crimson orbs. She had, but never thought he noticed. Besides, it was just her way of braving acute shyness and pretending people didn’t scare the spit out of her. So, she’d smile rather than speak, rather than ask a co-worker to lunch with her, rather than experience chit-chat, rather than risk rejection....
Storyline: A woman finding confidence and strength during the midst of an affair, the aftermath of the affair and the finding of new love.
The story includes the interactions of relationships and past haunts that had shaped her personality… along with the handling of her husband’s passing and finding love once more, in the shocking arena of the BDSM lifestyle.
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Angelica Hart and Zi ~ Vixen Bright and Zachary Zane
www.champagnebooks.com - www.carnalpassions.com - angelicahartandzi.com