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Monday, October 27, 2014

Flashback - Young Rafe


Rafe was a source of ongoing fascination to his fellow students at Princeton. They envied many things about him. They agreed he was probably a genius, winning awards and carrying an A average, seemingly without even having to try. He was an outstanding athlete, no doubt about that, setting records in both baseball and football. And, handsome? Well, handsome was an understatement. It might describe his lean body and the lazily graceful way he moved. The black hair that curled around his collar, one lock invariably falling onto his forehead. The high cheekbones and unrevealing black eyes and the rare gleaming smile but it didn’t include the air of sensuous magnetism that was an elemental part of his persona.

On the other hand, Rafe didn’t drink, smoke or do drugs He didn’t confide in anyone. He never came to any of their parties and no one was ever invited to his room. Did he ever get lonely, they wondered? They thought there was no one on campus who he considered a friend. He picked up lots of girls in his ice blue Corvette but sex wasn’t the same as fellowship and wasn’t fellowship a big part of what college life was all about?

One evening, one of the Witherspoon residents, Kirk Stephens, came to his room.

“I’m here to ask a favor,” he said nervously when Rafe opened the door. “Can I come in?”

Rafe opened the door wider and motioned for Kirk to enter. He took the chair by the desk, one booted foot casually crossed over his knee, while Kirk sat on the bed.

Kirk noticed there were no posters on the walls, no dirty clothes on the floor, the desk was neat and the bed was made. In other words, it was nothing like a typical dorm room.

“What’s the favor?”

“Well, some of the other guys on the team bet me $50 that I couldn’t get you to answer a personal question about yourself.”

Rafe looked at him curiously. “Like what?”

“Like anything! Have you ever been in love? What makes you anxious?  Do you have a best friend?”

“Why does anyone care?”

“Jesus, Rafe, don’t you realize what a mystery man you are? Even the sportswriters call you “the enigmatic Rafe Vincennes” because you won’t give them interviews even though the rest of us would crawl on our hands and knees to be featured on the sports page. You joke around with us at practice but you never hang out after. You have women falling all over you but you never go out with the same one twice. It drives us all nuts trying to figure you out!”

Rafe’s impassive dark gaze fastened on Kirk, then his white smile drifted across his face.

“I’ve never been in love. I don’t have a best friend. I don’t get anxious.”

He stood up and that was it. The interview was over. All Kirk’s mates agreed: he didn’t earn the $50.  


Thursday, October 09, 2014

New Book - Speed, Sex and Retribution - 8th in the Rafe Vincennes series


Oh, my goodness, I am glad to finally get this one published! I was in the middle of it during my Mom's last illness (Alzheimer's) and finally, her death. Taking care of my sweet, courageous little mother as she disappeared into dementia was a time when creativity was in rather short supply. I would plink around on the book for a while but my brain seemed to be working in a kind of creaking first gear. Mom called me constantly and then didn't remember what she wanted me for, so that even finishing a paragraph started to seem overwhelming. I'm not whining. I'd do it many times over for the woman who was my rock for the first 50 years of my life.

It's just that as the book dragged on, it started to feel that I'd been working on it forever. I was grateful it was a Rafe book because Rafe is my best writing companion. I know him so well, I didn't have to think about what he'd do in any situation, I just knew.

After Mom's died, it took me a while to get back in the groove. I made changes to the house to put my own stamp on it. I gave away over 1,000 dolls and 200 teapots and replaced them with a few pieces of art I loved. There were Mom's financial affairs to be taken care of. And grieving to be done.

After months, I was finally able to give Speed, Sex and Retribution my full attention again but I was eager to finish this book and to start over with something fresh and new. Bless Rafe's heart, he came through for me as he always does.

In this volume, Rafe still races in NASCAR but his father begins a new venture at the other end of the garage property with the building of the Vincennes Stud Farm, where he hopes the stallions, Swift Reckoning and Rolling Fog, father foals as successful in thoroughbred racing as Vincennes Team Racing has been in NASCAR.

Rhiannon is still making movies and the Vincennes kids are growing up. Rafe still follows his wayward ways and his siblings still call on him to be the family Enforcer, thanks to his lethal skill set.

Speed, Sex and Retribution has been published now. It is available at Amazon and Smashwords

My work in progress is about three boys who grew up in a family of Irish Travelers, a fascinating subset of American life.

Wednesday, October 01, 2014

Ah, A Naked Jamie...The Outlander

Well, we finally got to see a naked Jamie (and Claire too, if anyone cares). After weeks of arousal, we finally had satisfaction. I loved it because it was so real. Although there was an obvious attraction between Claire and Jamie, they had to hurriedly get married to make Claire a Scot to keep her from the evil Black Jack Randall. Naturally, they were both nervous, especially knowing  the other ribald Highlanders were waiting in the Inn below so they would be prepared to swear that
 the marriage had been consummated.

Jamie talked and talked, telling her tales of his life and family. Claire drank and drank until gradually, they began to feel more relaxed. When they finally did the deed, it being Jamie's first time, it was about what you'd expect. Wham Bam, Thank you, Ma'am - so that when he asked her if she liked it, she was sort of like, "well, um, it was okay." He was disappointed but not surprised because his fellows Highlanders had warned him that most women didn't care for sex.

The second time, Claire took matters into her own hands, so to speak, and I suppose, Jamie was feeling slightly less urgent, the first rush of lust having been depleted. She taught him that women can, in fact, be the assertive partner at times. And when she performed oral sex on him, it was obvious he thought he'd died and gone to heaven.

By the third time, they were comfortable with one another and they simply enjoyed what was growing between them, a friendship as well as a sexual partnership.

Anyway, it was not the usual masterful male and ditzy female scenario, thank God.

And then there was one more episode and it was over for six freaking months!

I haven't watched a television series for so long, I hardly remember what it used to be like but it doesn't seem as if you only got to see six shows before a six month hiatus.

Now, Jamie will be hanging in a window with a gun while Black Jack holds Claire with a knife to her breast.....for half a year and fans will all be suffering from Outlander withdrawal.

Some things I've learned from the Outlander.

- Kilts are oh so sexy.

- Anything said with a Scottish burr sounds more charming (this is true of an Irish brogue as well)

- Thank heavens, bum rolls for women went out of style.

- Scotland has some of the most gorgeous scenery of anywhere in the world.

- The casting was outstanding for this series and Sam Heughn is the perfect Jamie Fraser. (I worried about this before the show started. If Jamie hadn't been right, that would have been the end for me.)

So now, I'm re-reading the Outlander series to stay in touch during the program's sabbatical.