Friday, February 27, 2015
Sorry for the confusion, but next month, Rita is going to be blogging on Fridays. I'm in the midst of a move and today is my last day of Internet until next week. Needless to say, I haven't had time to post a new blog, so you get a rerun here as well as TV. Rita is only going to blog one more month then I'm not sure of the fate of the blog. Don't know if I can keep it going by myself. So...enjoy this scene from Culture Shock, and I'll be back on line as soon as I get service at our new place. I'll be so glad to see no more boxes and bins. :(
This Week from Culture Shock:
Alex stood in front of his locker and changed into his uniform, then checked his gear. He loaded ammunition into his nine millimeter, and fastened the gun in his holster. His thoughts constantly strayed to Cynthia. He couldn't get her off his mind.
"Hey, Alex!" His patrol partner, Mike, interrupted some pleasant thoughts. "I can't help but notice a smile on your face this morning. Usually, you're grumpy as hell on Monday." He dropped his jeans and changed into his own uniform.
Alex finished adjusting his tie and turned. "So, grumpy am I? How come you never mentioned it before?"
"I just figured it was your normal Monday routine, but you shot that theory all to hell. So, tell me…what’s changed?”
Alex closed his locker and started toward the exit. "None of your damn business!"
"Aha! A woman. I knew it!"
“You think you're so smart. What makes you think it's a chick?"
"What else could it be? You got laid didn't you?" He tagged after Alex through the rows of metal cabinets, yapping at his heels like an annoying dog.
Alex snorted. "I wish. It's been so long, I'm not sure I'd remember what to do."
Mike caught up with him at the door and grasped his shoulder. "That’s something you never forget, partner. It's like a bicycle…you just get on and pedal as fast as you can."
The sex talk made Alex uncomfortable only because it brought visions of Cynthia lying beneath him. He shook off the image. "It's no big deal. Besides, I think your time and attention would be better spent focusing on our assignment. We've got to uncover something to lead us to the killer. C'mon, it's time to hit the road and catch the bad guys." He pushed through the door.
After roll call, Alex handed over a sheet of paper to Mike which had addresses they were supposed to check out. He hoped to avoid any further discussion of his personal life and concentrate on their job. His hope was short-lived, when Mike grabbed his arm just outside the meeting room.
"Wait a minute. You aren't going to get out of this so easy. What's her name and where did you meet her?"
Alex shrugged off his grasp, and continued outside to their patrol car. "What does it matter? You don‘t know her."
"Come on, Alex. Spill." Mike followed on his heels, still yapping. "You've been celibate for almost two years ... or is it longer? I'm your partner. I need to know these things." He laughed.
Alex stopped with his hand on the door handle. "Okay, okay. She lives in my apartment building and her name isn't important. Are you satisfied?"
"You lied didn't you? You did it. Was she good?"
Alex opened the car door, but before he got in, he peered over the roof at Mike. “You’re a pig. It's not like that. We've only seen each other a couple of times and she’s a real lady. Just get in the car."
As the passenger, Mike pulled his seat belt forward and inserted the buckle into the latch. "Well, if you didn't get laid, and you're this happy, I don't know if I'll be able to stand you when you do."
Alex fought a smile and, leaving the Bayview Police headquarters, drove across Oakdale, in the direction where the latest victim had been found so he and Mike could go over the crime scene one more time in hopes of finding overlooked clues. The Crime Scene Investigation team made a thorough sweep of the area already, but the Chief wanted to make sure they missed nothing. The pressure from the public over this case weighed on everyone’s shoulders. Alex wasn’t one to leave things to chance so he was fine with a follow-up despite his partner’s complaining.
Alex made a quick right turn into a narrow alleyway and stopped the cruiser directly in front of the yellow police tape that still marked the spot. They'd have to walk to where the victim's body had been discovered.
A sick feeling crept into the pit of Alex's stomach when he stood over the spot where the young woman's lifeless body had been dumped. The chalk outline on the asphalt served as a grim reminder that someone had lost a loved one. He knew what that felt like. His jaw tightened with the growing need to catch the son-of-a-bitch who obviously enjoyed torturing people.
He turned to his partner. "Let's canvass the area one last time. You start at that end of the alley and I'll start at this end."
Mike sighed. "Alex, you know the area has already been gone over with a fine-toothed comb. What do you expect to find?"
"Look for anything that might have a bearing on the case. The perp's eventually going to screw up and leave something to lead us to him."
Mike stomped to the alley's opposite end. Head down, he took measured steps, but his low grumblings echoed off the brick walls.
"Any luck?" Alex called from halfway.
"No." Mike held up his hands. "But I don't know what in the hell I'm supposed to find."
"I‘m not finding anything either. I guess you're right. We may as well give it up, at least for now. We have the addresses of other nearby alleys. The perp seems to like them."
Back in the car, Alex started the engine. He glanced over at Mike. "Thank you for humoring me. At least I feel like we've really done our best."
Mike smiled. "No problem, partner. I might come across as a jerk when you ask me to do certain things, but your devotion is what I like about you. You always give a hundred-and-ten-percent." He read off the next address for Alex.
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Wednesday, February 25, 2015
Lonely Pride—Beneath Southern Skies Book 1
“You didn’t have to put yourself out on my behalf,” she thought to tell him as they walked across the car park.
In a way she knew was deliberately lustful he eyed the curves of her body before he said, “No trouble.” His gaze turned cold as he raked his eyes over her, from her wind-tossed hair to her ankles. They reached an off-road vehicle and he opened the back door, tossed her cases in, then held the passenger door open for her. “I’d do the same for any old friend,” he added as, with slight difficulty, she got in. He didn’t offer her a helping hand and she wouldn’t have accepted it if he had. Once in the driver’s seat, he flicked on the air conditioning, and Sam sat back with a sigh as the cabin filled with cool air.
Tears pricked at the backs of her lids. It took all her willpower to hold them back. He turned to stare at her profile. The last person in the world who would see her cry would be him. How she wished she knew what was going on in his head. Once she would have known--or thought she had.
Once she would have come right out and asked him.
Instead, she asked tautly, “Just how is it the successful town vet can take time out to pick up old friends anyway?” Turning to glance at his weather-creased face she swallowed a sigh when his lips curled tauntingly. Quickly she returned her gaze to the hands twisting in her lap.
“It is Sunday. And even successful vets can take a few hours off some weekends. Especially when they have a partner who can take care of emergencies if they arise.” They’d stopped at traffic lights and he gave her the full intensity of his dark brown stare, causing her to shift in discomfort.
“Oh yes, I almost forgot. The reliable Clare.” The air in the cabin, if possible, became even more strained with tension. “Your partner. How is she these days?” With a fingernail Sam scratched at an imaginary fleck of dust on her skirt. “Mum told me she’d joined your practice. There must be a great deal of work around to need the services of two vets in such a small town.”
“Come off it, Sam! You know as well as I that my practice encompasses a vast area and there’s always more than enough work to keep two vets occupied.” With an uncustomary jerk he changed gears, then shot off so fast she was sent jolting forward into her seatbelt. “And if you’re really interested in Clare, she’s as she’s always been; ambitious and able.”
“Too ambitious by far I should think for such a small town in the back-blocks of Tassie.” Lifting her hair she flicked it back with a careless motion. “Who would have thought she would return to her hometown. The enticements must have been enormous to encourage her to come back to stay.” Why didn’t she shut up? She was treading on dangerous ground. But they both knew; where Clare was concerned she’d never known how to conceal her dislike and disgust.
“Clare keeps her own counsel, as always.” His voice was terse. “Despite what you may think I didn’t ask for her reasons and she hasn’t volunteered the information. I needed a partner and she was in need of a position.” The glance he tossed at her was full of censure and they travelled for a few miles in tension-packed silence.
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Wednesday, February 18, 2015
Does everyone start out married life with rose colored glasses? I'm sure no one expects their marriage to end in divorce. I certainly didn't. Mine was the perfect love, the perfect marriage, I was going to have the perfect life, and it was an absolutely perfect day for a wedding. The sun streamed through the window as I walked down the aisle on my father’s arm. Johnny looked so handsome standing at the altar waiting for me.
Oh, I knew we'd have our ups and downs. I've always been a realist. I know nothing in life is perfect. But we came darn close. At least that’s what I thought. So how did I end up divorced, fifteen years later? If anyone would have told me about the turn my life would take I’d have laughed at them.
Oh, I’m Erica Morris. I was Mrs. Erica Morris until recently. Now I’m divorced and left to raise two kids. Johnny, my husband left me for a younger woman. Not a new story, I know, but that doesn't make it hurt less. To top it all off, he cut himself off from our kids and left me to be the bearer of bad news. To make matters worse, he refuses to pay child support. Not that he can’t afford it. Believe me, he could well afford it, and then some. But he left us penniless? I need to back up a bit. I remember calling the meeting of other single mothers to order.
“Okay ladies,” I looked at the women gathered around me. Lisa Daly, who encouraged me to start this group, was here and Nicole Brown. Poor thing never went out while she was married. Oh, and Louise Conners, I still couldn't believe her husband ran off with his receptionist, and now they were going through a nasty divorce. Not sure why that surprised more than the others. It shouldn't. There was quite a turn out. Half the women I didn't know.
I brought my attention back to the meeting. “First order of business, a name for our group, any ideas?”
“Deadbeat Dads Anonymous,” someone called out.
“Wives of Deadbeat Dads,” someone else yelled. “Or Women Against Deadbeat Dads.”
“Better yet, how about Mothers Against Deadbeat Dads. MADD!” Lisa Daly shouted.
I laughed. I couldn't help it. There certainly wasn't a shortage of names. “We’re mad for sure but that sounds too much like Mothers Against Drunk Drivers.”
“ADD,” someone else yelled. Against Deadbeat Dads.”
Nicole Brown’s hand went up. “Nicole, what’s your idea?”
“How about Wives Enraged at Deadbeat Dads. W.E.D.D.?” Nicole’s voice barely reached above a whisper.
Poor Nicole. Her ex-husband had knocked her self confidence so low. I was surprised to even see her here. I met her at a school function. Nicole’s daughter, Cindy, was in the same class as my Josh. I had heard through the grapevine that Bob, Nicole’s ex, had run off with a stripper. Talk about humiliating. I shivered at the thought.
- Deadbeat Dads is available from Amazon
Sunday, February 15, 2015
Gwenn, was on her way to the doctor and mentioned her intention with Dad. He simply said, "you don't need one." When she questioned him, he asked her if she knew what ultrasounds were used for in his line of work. Of course, she didn't, and he told her companies used ultrasound in huge doses to break down corrison in jet engines and steel containers, among many other things. He asked her to imagine what even a small dose could do to a small, forming brain. At higher power levels, ultrasound is useful of changing the chemical properties of substances.
She didn't take his advice and had an ultra-sound. Her third child was born with a distinctly different and withdrawn personality. Since I have an autistic grandson and his parents have tried all types of things: gluten free diet, epsom salt baths, deleting different things from his diet, etc, and nothing has worked, I'm still curious why Autism is on the rise and no one seems to have an explanation. I don't believe the condition is even prevalent in countries where they do not have ultrasonic technologies.
The moral of this story is that my dad forecast that in 30 years (which it has been), there would be tons of children with something wrong with them, and no one would know how it happened or why? You may find women who had ultra sounds and perfectly healthy children, but can anyone tell me they know of a woman with an Autistic child who DIDN'T have an ultrasound...or in some cases, many of them?
My sisters and I are all in our sixties. None of us remember children who had the symptoms of autism and ultra sounds weren't done during my child bearing years. I thought this was very interesting and I wanted to share. It never hurts to make people think...and when you figure how often ultrasounds are done these days, could there be a coorelation?
Let me know your thoughts.
Here's the link to a video you can watch about how ultrasound cleans metal: www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZlDCNE0ISgA
Friday, February 13, 2015
THIS WEEK FROM CULTURE SHOCK:
Note: Despite faulty wiring and an interruption to their dinner, Cynthia and Alex had an enjoyable time. Someone was watching. Have you figured out who?
Note: Despite faulty wiring and an interruption to their dinner, Cynthia and Alex had an enjoyable time. Someone was watching. Have you figured out who?
Lurking in the shadows had become his habit. He ducked around the corner and waited for the man she called Alex, to unlock his door and slip inside. He grew tired hanging around outside her apartment, straining to hear their conversation and hoping no one saw him. They'd had quite a time tonight, the two of them. He'd heard enough to know that he'd have to make his move soon. She was just too charming for her own good.
Cynthia opened her eyes and thoughts of the previous night flooded her mind. Her mouth curled into a smile thinking of Alex, and she hugged herself beneath the covers. The faint aroma of his aftershave lingered on her hands, so she knew the evening hadn’t been just a dream.
Rays of sunlight filtered through a separation in the curtains. Cynthia pulled an arm from beneath the blanket and swatted the dust motes dancing along the beam of light. She couldn’t wile away time in bed all day with her thoughts lingering on time spent with Alex, so she threw off the covers and stood. Her body‘s impression remained in the sagging mattress, but for some reason, she found nothing to complain about. Instead, she wanted to dance with glee. A little voice inside niggled her that maybe he hadn’t shared the same feelings.
She shook her head with vigor. “I’ll not feel any negativity today,” she proclaimed, and grabbed her robe from the foot of the bed. She pulled on the chenille garment and meandered into the kitchen. While filling the pot with water and measuring out the grounds, she kept focus on the end table where the telephone sat. Every minute that ticked by without hearing his voice was torture. She rolled her eyes at feeling so invested in someone after such a short time. Was she being an idiot?
While waiting for her morning brew to finish, she washed, dried, and put away the leftover dinner dishes. She poured herself a cup of coffee and moved into the living area. Even the dingy furniture held more appeal this morning, and Alex's seductive aftershave lingered more heavily around the dilapidated sofa. She sat on the same cushion where she had sat last night and pretended he still sat next to her. "Girl," she chided herself, feeling like a foolish schoolgirl, "you are one sick puppy. Get a grip and drink your coffee! Maybe the caffeine will shock you back to reality."
She sipped from the hot liquid and slopped a little on her lap when the ringing phone startled her. She ignored the burning sensation in her hurry to answer.
“Hello." Her heart race while she blotted the soggy spot on her robe and massaged the sting on her thigh.
“Good morning. This is Alex. Hope I didn't wake you." His sexy voice raised goose bumps on her arms.
Cynthia's heart skipped a beat. "Oh, Hi Alex! No, you didn't wake me." She tried to suppress the excitement in her voice. "I've been up for a while. I was just sitting here having my morning coffee." She stopped short of adding she was thinking about him and praying he‘d call. Curling her legs up beneath her robe, she waited through a lengthy pause.
"I called to thank you again for last night. I had a great time."
"Me, too. It was probably the best Saturday night I've spent in quite a while." So ask me out already, she agonized internally. Please, Please, Please.
"And to think our date all started with an exciting trip to the trash dumpster." He laughed and she forced a chuckle to avoid being rude. Was he calling to ask her out or just talk about garbage cans? She thrummed her fingers on the coffee table while leaning her arms on her knees.
"Yeah! Did I remember to thank you for the personalized tour?" Cynthia forced herself to say something to end the silence.
"Not a problem. Always happy to help."
Funny, they hadn't had a communication problem the previous evening, so why did they both suddenly become tongue-tied? She struggled to think of something unrelated to trash to keep the conversation going. She had to. If he called to ask her out, she sure didn’t want him to lose his nerve?
"So, what are you doing up so early on a Sunday morning?" She wasn't about to let him hang up.
"Couldn't sleep. I can't quit thinking about the case I'm working right now, trying to piece it all together. Seems I always wake up early when I don't have to. Ticks me off! During the week, I have to drag myself out of bed, and here it is the weekend and I'm up with the sun."
Her curiosity piqued. "Are you by chance working on the case involving the missing women?"
"Yep, that's the one that keeps me up late and wakes me up early. What gets you out of bed?" Clearly, he wasn't going to discuss any details with her. Maybe that was a good thing. She didn't really want to hear anything that was bound to feed her fear.
"Oh, I've always been an early riser. It's the afternoons I dread. I tend to run out of steam around two-thirty. Gee, we make a great team. I can keep you awake in the morning and you can keep me from dozing in the afternoon." She rolled her eyes. He probably thought she was trying to hook him.
His laughter danced across the phone lines, and she imagined the twinkle in his eyes. "Are you offering to come over every morning and throw me in the shower?"
A image of his unclothed body flashed through her mind, and warmth climbed her neck. She swallowed hard at such out-of-character thoughts. "Only if..." She stammered, "you come by my office every afternoon and bring me strong coffee."
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