by R L Davis Hays 2017
“Tori, honey? Could you come in here when you get a sec?”
My mom’s voice sounded strained and I had just walked in the door. What could it be so soon? The bittersweet smoke lingering in the air screamed to me of the presence of Derek, her cigarette-toting man-thing. By God, he had the worst taste in smokes.
I used to love the smell of my grandfather’s pipe, stuffed with the butt-ends of his cheap cigars, a sweet hickory scent that infused my grandparent’s log cabin with the trappings of comfort and acceptance. Not the same as Derek’s at all.
Clutching my backpack, I hurried to my room, briefly catching the sight of dark hair on curled toes peeking out of two Birkenstocks that had seen better days. Through the door to our living room, I could see his pajama clad legs as he…
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“Kirk Stanton Jansen. Very distinguished.”
“Actually, it’s Kirkland. That was my father’s mother’s maiden name. I’m just a whole genealogy line instead of a person. I feel like I should be hyphenated.”
“That sounds incredibly painful.”
“Right up there with getting a cock ring.”
© 2017 Dellani Oakes
As soon as he was done, she pointed languidly at his cheek and asked, “Those scars on your face. Where’d you get them?”
“Why?” he asked, noticing a different tone in her voice.
“They’re sexy looking,” she added playfully.
He sobered a bit, raised one sharp eyebrow, and said with a clever cock of the head, “A massive reaverbear slashed me with its two long claws right before I chopped its head off.”
“Really?” Her eyes were wide.
He couldn’t conceal his smile, confessing the lie in his eyes.
“Com’on! Really?” Rachel pushed his shoulder, a bit harder than she had intended.
They both laughed.
“No,” he admitted.
“Seriously then, where’d you get ‘em?”
“I can’t tell you.” He resisted, then added with a wicked grin. “Then I’d have to kill you.”
Rachel shoved him with a fumbling slap on his chest. “Hot! Got any others?”
“Nope,” he laughed, suddenly…
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High school locker rooms. Every kid’s favorite place. The arena to expose our physical flaws to our worst critics like exposing our jugular to a vampire.
I may not be the tallest girl in my class, but I’m gangling enough to pass as a teenage boy if I wanted. All shoulders and elbows. Stupid pseudo-ectomorph body type. My breasts popped out in seventh grade, but quickly gave up the fight against gravity. Now they are just two medium ski slopes dangling above a small paunch of “baby fat” that refuses to go away no matter how many sit-ups my coaches tell me to do. I don’t want a six-pack; I just want to be able to button my jeans without lying flat on my bed.
If having attention being called to my body’s disproportions during (not one, but two) gym classes each weekday and giggled about by my…
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Jordan, Chase and Marissa are in Jordan’s basement when Brian arrives. It’s evident that there is tension between Chase and Marissa. In fact, Chase manages to hurt her feelings, making her cry. She runs out and Jordan goes to calm her, leaving the boys alone.
Brian punched him. It wasn’t a light, friendly punch that they sometimes exchanged. It was a hard fisted slam, knocking Chase’s breath from his lungs. Brian grabbed his shirt front, pulling him over. Less than an inch from his face, Brian growled at his friend. It was the most terrifying noise Chase had ever heard Brian make. It was base, primal, pure fury.
“Get over yourself, Chase,” Brian rumbled, his anger barely contained. The windows rattled, the floor shook. Curios on the shelves tipped over. “This is nothing, this stupid shit you’re dealing with. I don’t talk about everything that’s going on with me, but…
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SARCASM IS A COMIC TOOL USED IN LITERATURE. MY BOOKS ARE FULL OF SARCASTIC BITING WITT —THIS IS A SKILL LAURA EMPLOYS REGULARLY WHEN DEALING WITH PEOPLE SHE DOESN’T LIKE –SPECIFICAL STELLA STADYLMEYER!
AS SEEN IN DEAD MEN DON’T SWING AND LEFT FOR DEAD STELLA IS A GREAT FOIL FOR LAURA.
FROM DEAD MEN DON’T SWING
“Ya know Stella, you’re usually an astute woman but right now you are down to two brain cells and they are limping. I am only going to say this once so listen closely! You can shove your eulogy! I don’t know the guy. The other tenants aren’t being forthcoming with details except for stuff I refuse to put in a tribute to the dead man. I also don’t have the time for this crap and it’s not my job.”
LEFT FOR DEAD–PETE IS DEALING WITH THUGS WANTING THEIR MONEY OR ELSE
Pete managed to…
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