The Threshold is a paranormal romance that would have an R rating if it were on the movie rating system.
However, this sample is PG13 for lust and language.
This is a blog hop from http://sweetsatsample.wordpress.com/2011/07/26/sweet-saturday-samples-07302011/. There are about 40+ authors with links to their works, so if you're here, welcome! I hope you take the time to read and to follow! Please let me know what you think in the comments so I'll be sure to come by your blog as well.
He stepped up on the porch cautiously, remembering which splintered gray floorboard would groan. His skin tingled, still anticipating the sting of the switch slapped across the back of his neck when he'd forgotten once. The snap! still rang in his ears.
All because he'd set Blue off to barking and "woke up the whole dang-burn nay-bor-hood!"
He reached out and fit one finger in the metal handle, swung the door wide. Back then, his whole fist wrapped around the small piece of hardware.
If he could lift his arm to reach for it.
His nostrils prickled, waiting for the smell of Grandpa's 'medecine' to sear their insides with fumes that shot straight to his brain. But the only thing he smelled was the close musty odor of mothballs in the Alabama September. The bungalow was an oven, baking the godawful smell into the walls and the floorboards.
His lunch from Rosie's Cafe earlier rose in his throat against the stink, threatening to defy gravity and his gastrointestinal fortitude.
Dust motes danced in the light of the sunbeam that shot from the kitchen window. He focused on those so he wouldn't have to see the stain, but -- too late. It jumped up at him like a living thing, taunting....
Remember that now boy! Grandpa's rage still bounced off the walls, thick and loud in his ears. Don't you fergit now, boy-ah!
He clenched his jaw, his fists. Anything to keep the lunch down, the memories at bay.
India's voice singsonged from far away, pulling him up, breaking his trance like a voice above lakewater. "I'm so glad you made it." She leaned on the 'so,' as if she had to seem extra sincere to convine him she menat what she said.
Franklin surfaced and fixed his gaze on the woman standing in the kitchen's doorframe. This couldn't be - that gangly girl with the long hair he'd hidden tree frogs in years ago? He remembered bruising her with his braces in a disastrous first kiss.
All grown up into One.Fine.Specimen. of Woman.
Woo-Mann! The old verbal wolf whistle he and the other nerds who had no hope of ever approaching the young and the ripe who walked past them in the Corinth High School halls.
"Franklin, you okay?" India cocked her head to the side and wrinkled her nose at him. "Why're you standing there looking at me like that?"
India had not been a recipient of the Woo-Mann fan club back then. She'd been too gangly, all long skinny legs and arms. Even her face and hair were long and skinny. Her wideset eyes - brown and almond shaped, with a slight tilt at her temples - and her easy smile had been her only good features.
But now, fourteen years later, India's stick figure had filled out. The skinny legs were gone now, tapering down to delicate ankles wrapped in some kind of crazy ballerina looking shoe -- hell, he had no idea what it was, but he liked it. The slight tilt to her almond shaped eyes tilted even more now. But she had the same smile he remembered.
She looked like some exotic, otherworldly princess who didn't belong in this state, let alone his grandparents' dilapidated shack.
"Like ... what?" he squeaked. Damn!
Heat flushed over his neck. He was red - he knew it.
"Like a dog's just fun ten miles on a hot summer day," India placed her finely wrought, ringless left hand on her equally fine hip. Franklin's own hand itched.
"Come on. There's lots ot do before the sun goes down. Power's shut off, you know."
She mad a graceful pirouette and stepped into the empty kitchen, giving him a good view of her curves that made him follow her like said dog.
And that was the when and where that Franklin G. Turnbull knew the truth of his life's purpose.
He would have - he had to have - India Berrywhite for his very own.
India sat on his grandmother's high bed in the back bedroom, one leg tucked under her, with the other dangling off the edge. "Your grandmother was so glamourous."
Franklin forced his eyes up. She had great legs -- long and slender. They reminded him of the does and fawns that grazed over on the edge of the pasture, how they'd spring and gallop so gracefully back into the woods when they sensed danger. Pretty much whenever his grandpa walked out of the house, since he took it upon himself to teach Franklin how to shoot a gun and hunt for his food.
India held a heavy necklace of beads and crystals against her throat. She preened for him, smiling. A teardrop of a pearl dipped below her neckline, just at the shadow of her cleavage.
"I'd love to wear something like this. To have a place to go to where everybody wore pretty things like this...," she trailed off, replacing the necklace back into the box on the bed before her.
Franklin cleared his throat, trying to think of where his gramma had actually worn such gaudy stuff. Church was the only place to go to back here in the sticks. That or the superstore in town, but even Gramma didn't dress up to go buy bacon.
But back when he was ten, he'd thought the rhinestones and pearls were glamorous too. Now they just looked gaudy.
And India's glowing skin, so smooth and soft, was perfect without jewelry. He wanted to taste the dip at the base of her throat. He was jealous of the pearl that had laid briefly between her breasts.
But the pleasure he saw on her face as she pawed through the box pushed the words out of his mouth.
India laughed at the unexpected blurt. "What? We're here to go through your grandpa's things, see what to send to the donation box and what you want to keep."
"Take the jewelry. If it makes you happy, take it all." The mattress dipped with his weight as he sat down next to her. "Just --"
He bit it back. They were here to clear the house, after all. The realtor was supposed to be here in the morning, and there was still ancient junk to be thrown away.
"Just what?" India didn't look up, continued to sort through the necklaces and earrings.
The doe image sprang to mind again... India's long, unadorned neck. Those hyperalert, wide brown eyes. The tiniest crunch of a blade of grass, and she'd vanish again, racing back into the woods as fast and as far as her legs could run.
He couldn't risk that again.
"Just... if it makes you happy, then take it. Take it all and wear it. Promise me."
India looked up at him then, and he saw she didn't have scared doe eyes.They weren't even brown. They were now a true blue, with silver flecks.
He could've sworn...
But they seared him with truths she knew. Truths neither one of them would say aloud, but they shared between them. They were as real as the box of jewelry that sat between them.
"I can't promise you anything Franklin. You know that."
copyright2011Pamela V. Mason all rights reserved