Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Possible New Story for The Interracial Romance Line

I've been playing around with this story for a while and keep putting it on the back burner to do other projects.  I wanted to post a chapter to see if readers would be interested in me finishing it.  Please tell me what you think of this very rough unedited chapter.  The title will possibly change if I continue writing the story.



“We’re doing this so stop pouting like a two-year old,” Kim said taking the waxed paper from around her sandwich.

Samantha arrived in the break-room first and was eating her lunch by the time Kim joined her. “Kim, I really don’t want go to a club tonight. Can’t you get another girlfriend to go with y’all tonight?”

“No! Besides, it’s all set. This will be fun, Sam. It’s been a year since you called it quits with Jacoby; it’s time to get back in the game.”

“I don’t want to be set-up with a stranger. Blind dates can be fatal in this day and age.”

Kim tossed her long dreadlocks across her shoulder. Taking a bite of her sandwich, she eyed her co-worker and friend. “You’ll be perfectly safe with all of us there. Emily agreed to go on the date but changed her mind at the last minute. She probably has some plants to care for or something. I swear that girl is weird.”

“She isn’t weird, she’s just lives a different lifestyle than us. Anyhow, you give her the opportunity to change her mind. I want the same deal.”

“No deal—you’re going and that final. He works with Collin and he hasn’t had a date in a long time either. Whatever happened to that saying when you fall off a horse you get back on again to ride it?”

Sam sighed heavily, giving in to her current boss. She had been working at the high-end boutique since losing her job and friends with Kim since the first day of elementary school. Kim was a free spirit who loved romance and believed every woman should have that special man in their life. “I really don’t think that’s the way it goes, but I guess it will be okay since it will be a group of us. What was his name again?”

Kim twisted the paper napkin around her finger. “His name evades me at the moment.”

Sam raised her hands off the table astound. “You don’t know the man’s name? Kim, forget it; I’m not going.”

“I know his name, it just slipped my mind.” She reached for her phone. “Let me text Collin and ask him.”

“No, forget it. You told me you met him before.”

“I have. I met him at Collin’s company picnic. C’mon, you know I have a bad memory. That’s why I’m glad we work together. You keep me focused.”

Sam gathered her trash in a neat pile. “This job is only temporary. Once I get my degree, I’m looking for another job in marketing.”

“Yuck, you want another marketing job after getting laid off from the last one; why go that way again? Stay and become a partner with me.”

“I was only an assistant in the marketing department. With a degree in hand, I will obtain job security and hopefully my dream job working for the Indians.”

Kim twitched her lip. “I know. If you get that job, maybe in your travels, you’ll run into Jacoby. What organization is he working for now?”

“Our thirty-minute lunch is too short to talk about him. So, how did you get Collin to go along with this?”

Kim sat up excited. “He does whatever I say for the most part.”

“Be real, Kim, he likes how you reward him, if he goes along with what you say.”

Kim’s iPhone vibrated on the table. “His name is Eric,” she said with a devilish smile.

“What’s with the face? Tell me or I swear I will not show up tonight.”

“Okay. Eric is definitely handsome, but I’m not going to say anything more.”

Sam shrugged her shoulders. “Okay, I can deal with the handsome part for now.”

Kim propped her elbows on the table folding her hands under her chin. “If I remember correctly, he turned a lot of heads at the picnic and a few of them were men,” she laughed.

Sam got up from the table. “Alright, you can stop teasing me; I’m coming tonight. Well, we better get back to the store so Emily can take her break.”

“Won’t you miss this place once you obtain your dream job?”

“As much as I love lingerie, I want to be on the buying end of it, not the selling end. Are you ready?”

She wiggled her shoulders. “After tonight, you will be using a paycheck to purchase sexy numbers to model for Eric.”

“He will have to impress me a lot in order for that to happen.”

“Whatever. Make sure to wear the sexiest dress you have to show off that curvy little figure.” Sam laughed. “I’ll make sure to pick the sexiest outfit in my Garaminals collection.”

The Meeting
\Sam finished applying her makeup and admired her reflection in the mirror. Damn you look good! I hope this guy appreciates the effort for a one-time date. She backed away from the mirror to survey her outfit. The figure-fitting, short black sleeveless party dress clung to every curve, giving little room to overeat and not cause an unsightly tummy bulge.

Opening a box, she dug out a pair of black pumps and slipped her feet inside. She’d gotten an early start on packing the apartment she called home for nearly four years. Since losing her assistant marketing position at a small Ad agency and Jacoby moving out, her saving had bottomed out and she couldn’t afford the downtown luxury apartment on a boutique store budget. She would soon be moving to a small one-bedroom apartment where the low rent would allow her to eat and live indoors.

Anger crept inside her as she threw a few personal items in a black handbag, reminiscing. Jacoby had always been flirty, but for the majority of their relationship he’d been faithful. The one time he did cheat, she broke off the relationship and all ties with him promising herself it was for good.

Three months after their split, Jacoby arrived at her office with two dozen red long-stem roses, a bended-knee proposal, and dangled the keys to a new apartment he’d rented for the two of them to share. With co-workers watching, she found it hard to deny his pitiful look of remorse and decided to give him another chance.

Despise for Jacoby reflected off her face in the mirror. She exhaled fluffing the natural curls of her medium length brown hair streaked with golden highlights. The final touch was a light spray of perfume and one last attempt to adjust her attitude before leaving the house. Taking the car keys from the dresser, she locked the door dreading the pre-arranged evening.

Entering the elevator, the cellphone chimed the familiar ringtone she’d assigned to Kim. “Hey, Kim, are you calling to cancel the disaster this evening will become?” She faked a chuckle saying it, but prayed it was the reason for the call.

“Funny, Sam. I’m outside your building. Collin and I decided you should ride with us instead of driving by yourself.”

“I’m not far from the Flats and can make it there on my own. I prefer to drive, anyway.”

“Nope, you’re riding with us; this way we know for sure you get home safely and you won’t be able to slip out the back door unnoticed if you decided you don’t like Eric. I’ll see you in a minute.”

With a slow burn brewing in her stomach, Sam exited the elevator to the lobby doors and outside to be greeted by Collin holding open the rear car door. “Wow, you look stunning, Sam.”

She smiled weakly, replying, “Thanks, Collin. I hope this person you are fixing me up with likes it. Since Kim won’t part with any information about him, I don’t know what his taste in women is like.”

“Eric is cool. When he sees you, he’ll be kissing my ass for weeks,” he laughed closing the car door.

Kim twisted her body around in the front seat to talk. “You do look fantastic. I almost didn’t recognize you dressed like that.  Is it new? I don't think I've ever seen you wear it before.”

Sam wiggled her shoulders adjusting the seat belt to rest comfortably between her breasts. “I do have clothes you've never seen. I might have only been an assistant at my last job, but my bosses invited me to events other than picnics. Plus, the pink aprons we wear at the boutique aren’t exactly flattering to our figures.”

“Either way, you look beautiful and Eric is going to drool when he lays eyes on you.”

“Thank you for the compliment. Anyhow, Collin, can you give me a description of this man? Kim is being evasive when I ask questions about him.”

Collin shrugged his shoulders keeping his eyes on the road. ‘He’s tall, got a good job and like you, he’s getting back in the dating game after a bad breakup with his fiancée.”

“So I will be compared to the ex.—wonderful,” she huffed loudly from the backseat of the car.

He eyed her from the rearview mirror. “Nah, I don’t think you will be compared to his ex. You are definitely different.”

Collin dropped the two women off at the front door of the club while he parked the car. Kim commented on Sam’s stiff disposition. “Sam, will you relax. You’re pulled so tight I could bounce rocks off you.”

“I’m sorry. I’m not feeling this the way you are. This Eric person could be looking for a one-night stand to sooth his broken heart; that is not going to be me.”

Kim posted a hand on her narrow hip. “I’m hurt, Sam. I would never do that to you. Jacoby really did a number on your head. He’s living with another woman and you’re willing to be unhappy for the rest of your life. Girl, take back your life. Show him he didn’t break you.”

“I’m not stopping my life because of that. I don’t know if I’m ready to deal with the liars, cheats and imposters who call themselves men.”

“That’s why we chose Eric. He’s dealing with the same thing. His girlfriend cheated on him a week before the wedding. You can sympathize with him about that.”

Sam nodded. “I see the connection. We can commiserate together.”

“You have a choice, Sam. Instead of commiserating together, try having a little fun tonight. The music is great, you look beautiful; girl, make Eric forget Sybil once and for all.”

Rolling her eyes, Sam laughed. “Her name is Sybil? Is he sure he wants to mess with her.”

Collin jogged up to where they were standing. “Eric is going to be a few minutes late. We’ll get a table and he can find us when he arrives.”


The three sat together chatting and waiting for Eric. He appeared to be a no-show as the first hour and thirty minutes passed with Collin receiving no word about his whereabouts. Sam checked her watch and stretched. “Ya know, I think I’m going to grab a cab and go home,” she said pulling the phone from her purse. “I don’t want the both of you babysitting me when you could be enjoying the night.”

Kim placed her hand over the top of the phone to prevent her from dialing. “It’s only been an hour. If he doesn’t arrive in the next fifteen minutes, we’ll leave. Tomorrow I’ll have Collin beat his ass at work tomorrow!”

“That won’t be necessary. I’m sorry I’m late; an appointment held me longer than I expected.” He set directly across the table from Sam. Extending his large hand with an apologetic greeting, he said, “I’m Eric Severide. Please forgive me for making you wait.”

Sam’s eyes drifted in the direction of the deep baritone voice coming from across the table. Her throat dried instantly not allowing her to talk after eyeing the tall muscular white man, wearing a dark blue suit jacket left open to reveal a white crisp button down shirt underneath. The first few buttons of the shirt were undone revealing a Herringbone chain circling around a sexy thick neck. The table hid the rest of his features from her view. She reached her hand across the table to shake his. “I’m Samantha Charleston. Most people call me Sam.”

He smiled sitting back in the chair and crossing one-leg over the other. “It’s finally nice to meet you, Sam. Collin has been talking about you for days.”

His piercing stare caused a shiver to close around her spine. “I wish I could say the same, Eric. Kim has been very closed-mouthed about you.”

Kim scooted her chair away from the table dragging Collin to his feet. “Excuse us, but this is our song and I want to dance.”

Collin tugged his arm away. “Not now, Kim. I want to talk to Eric about something.” She narrowed her brow causing him to stand immediately. “What do you know; I changed my mind and do want to dance. You two get acquainted but not too acquainted,” he joked as Kim dragged him away from the table.

Left dealing with an awkward situation, Sam fiddled with her glass. Taking a sip of the colorful drink she looked up to catch him looking again. Nervously she sat the glass on the table clearing her throat. “How long have you known Collin and Kim?”

He motioned for a waitress who was passing the table. “What are you drinking?”

“Long Island Ice Tea, but I’m good,” she stuttered.

He noticed her drink had hardly been touched but ordered her another anyway. “Bring the lady another drink, and I’ll have a shot of tequila and a Heineken,” he politely said giving the scantly-dressed waitress a wink. He returned his attention to Sam. “To answer your question, I’ve known Collin for few years and met Kim through him not too long ago. I understand you work at Kim’s boutique.”

She nodded. “Yes but only temporarily. I’m done with college next year. Once I get my degree in marketing, I hope to land a job with the Cleveland Indians or some other major league team.”

Eric leaned over folding his arms across the table. “Are you a baseball fan?”

“I love baseball. My boy—my ex-boyfriend played for the Indians. He retired after receiving a career-ending injury.”

The waitress returned placing the drinks on the table causing him to move. “I see, is that why you’re no longer together?”

She shook her head. “His injury is not the reason we aren’t together any longer. Enough about me, tell me about you?”

He took down the shot of tequila following it with a long swig of beer. “I don’t know why Collin thought we would hit it off. I’m a construction worker. My job is to build and develop overpriced structures for the rich and sometimes famous to dwell.”

She grinned. “That’s great. If I get a job with the Indians’ I will make sure to keep you in mind if I want a house built one day.”

“Why are we talking business? This is supposed to be a date and I’m sure Collin and Kim are somewhere watching in the crowd.”

Sam nodded. “I know Kim; she’s definitely somewhere watching and aiming Cupid’s arrow directly at my butt.”

“That was funny, but the woman is a hopeless romantic.” He stood up from the table. “Should we give them a reason to gawk?”

“What do you have in mind?”

“How about a dance since the music has slowed more to my liking.”

“Okay, sure,” she answered taking his hand.

The dance floor had cleared some, but remained crowded with couples dancing to the soft tones of Brian McKnight. Sam wasn’t sure how much distance to place between them. Although he was good looking, he was a stranger and slow dancing with a stranger violated her comfort zone.

Going with her natural instinct, she placed an elbow’s distance between them. If she had to classify it, they were dancing together like two middle school pre-teens at a junior dance with chaperone's keeping a strict eye on them.

Eric whispered in her ear. “Am I making you uncomfortable? You seem a little stiff.” He placed his arm around her waist drawing her closer to his body until her head was touching his shoulder.

He was definitely tall and smelled deliciously fresh. The light cologne wasn’t offensive but pleasant to her senses. She’d never been on an actual date with a white man, and the only white males she interacted with, were former co-workers and the few in her study group.

She inhaled deeply to relax the tenseness gripping her body. The feel of his lips next to her ear returned the shivers. “I’m not uncomfortable. I haven’t been dancing in a long time. I’m a little rusty and don’t want to step on your toes.”

“Don’t worry about my toes; I doubt you would do any harm if you did step on them.” He moved her way to twirl her in a slow spin. The dress showed off her sexy legs and thighs and the high-heels put her at a height where he could look into her eyes. He pulled her back against him. “I hope I’m not being too forward by saying you look absolutely gorgeous.”

Heat rose from her neck to warm her cheeks. “I never take an honest compliment as offensive.”

“You have a sense of humor—I like that. You will learn I never give out compliments that aren’t warranted.”

“Is that right? I admit I’m a quick study, but one night isn’t enough to learn a lot about you.”

“Who says this is will be the only date? Did my tardiness, ruin any chances of a second date?”

The song ended and they returned to the table. She sat down in her seat and instead of him returning to his original seat, he sat next to her placing his arm around the back of her chair. “Are you going to answer me?”

“It won’t be held against you, but we’ve had minor conversation and one dance; how do you know you want a second date?”

“I’m a man that doesn’t let barriers stop me. If I see something I like, I go after it. So far, I like what I see.”

She took a big sip of her drink after his comment. The sting from the various liquors hit the back of her throat making her want to gag. “Well geez, you don’t hold anything back, do you?”

He shrugged his shoulders. “When you hold back you lose chances at opportunities.”

“Oh okay, I’m an opportunity. Eric, I can be a complicated person. A lot of men can’t deal with that.”

With him sitting extremely close, she could see his features more clearly. The dark lighting of the club couldn’t hide the grayish-blue of his eyes or the light scruffy beard lining his face. His prominent nose and sexy lips fit his face perfectly. The thin mustache rested evenly on his upper lip. When he smiled to reply to her remark, his teeth were straight and white.

“Like I stated before, I go after what I want. Can you deal with that?”

Sam didn’t answer but let a breath escape between her lips. “Huh, wonder where Kim and Collin are.”

“They must have taken off.”

“They are my ride home; they’d better not have left me.”

He put his hand over hers covering it completely. “Sam, don’t worry, you’re safe with me. I’m a little hungry; would you join me for a late dinner?”

She moved her hand from under his. “Eric, I’m not trying to be impolite. It has been a long time since I’ve dated. You seem like a very nice man, but you also hear a lot of horror stories that happen to women that wander off with men they don’t know.”

“I get it. I’m a stranger and you aren’t comfortable being alone with me. I totally understand your cautiousness.”

“I don’t want what I said to be taken the wrong way. I’m not saying you’re a masher or anything like that.”

“How can I take it the wrong way? If my fiancée had been cautious like you, I might be married. Instead she met a guy and the next thing I know, they’re sleeping together and I’m stuck paying thousands of dollars for a lavish wedding I didn’t want to begin with.”

“Wow; that had to hurt big time.”

“Yeah my ego and wallet was bruised for a while. It would have helped had she she’d done it a month before the wedding; I could have canceled the caterer instead of paying for a meal I never got to taste.”

“How long ago did it happen?” She asked. The effects of the alcohol eased her nerves and loosened her tongue.

“Two years ago.” He shook his head. “I see why women are pissed to the point of murder when men leave them standing at the altar. I had to return all the gifts, cancel all the plans, and explain why a wedding with over three hundred guests invited, didn’t happen. Never again,” he said drinking more of the warm beer.

She looked at him raising her eyebrow. “Wait, you said you’re a man that goes after what he wants. What if you meet another woman and fall in love; you won’t want marriage with her?”

“Nope, we can shack up or live separately but, I will not do the marriage thing. I can love a woman and not have the paper that legally binds us together.”

“How will she know you truly love her if you aren’t willing to take the matrimonial plunge?”

“Good point. I guess my next love will have to have my way of thinking when it comes to marriage.”

“Eric, I thought I was complicated but you got me beat by a mile,” she chuckled.

“How do you figure?”

“Well for starters, your heart was broken, but you really aren’t ready to give up on love. You want to find a partner for life, but you don’t want marriage. Honey, I think you are just confused. I bet if the right woman came along, all that jabber would fall apart like wet cardboard.”

“Ms. Charlston, you seem to have me pegged. I thought one night wouldn’t be enough to do that?”

“I guess men are easier to decode than I thought.”

“I bet I can decode you too. I’ve learned a few things about you.”

“What have you learned about me?” She asked giving his a sassy look.

“Your man left you a year ago. You still refer to him as your boyfriend even though it came out as a slip of the tongue. And, in a year since your split, you haven’t dated which proves you aren’t over him.”

Her eyes narrowed. Picking up her glass, she held it up. “We are commiserating and that does not make good company. Why don’t we toast to starting this conversation over?”

“I’m all for that,” he said clinking his nearly empty beer bottle against hers. “I want to toast to a new friendship, also.”

“Of course; I’m always open to a new friendship,” she said draining the last of the liquid in the glass.

“Okay, friend, let’s go grab a greasy cheeseburger.”

Sam felt relieved when Kim and Collin returned to the table. Eric had gained a few notches on her comfort meter, but not enough for her to go off alone with him. She frowned as Kim sat down. “Where have you been? I thought you abandoned me.”

Kim nudged Sam’s shoulder. “We wouldn’t have done that, but you’re in good hands with Eric.”

Eric winked. “I tried to tell her that. Anyway, I suggested a late dinner and she isn’t comfortable going with me alone; you guys want to grab a bite to eat?” Collin dug his keys from the pocket of his pants. “I’m ready.”


  1. Anonymous5/10/2013

    When will this be available?

  2. It won't be ready for a while. I will keep posted on how the book is coming along.


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