Web Blog of Connie Vines, author or multi-genre fiction. Awards: H.O.L.T. Medallion (Honoring Outstanding Literary Talent), Orange Rose, Award of Excellence--Contemporary Romance; Independent eBook Award, Dream Realm Award. National Book Award and Frankfurt Book Award, nominee--YA Historical Fiction. Blog includes guest bloggers and snippets of WIP.
This week from Culture Shock: Note: Cynthia has gotten up the nerve to invite her handsome neighbor for dinner. Now, the old tenament in which they live is interferring with their getting to know one another. Of course, there is still danger lurking around...
what happened?" Alex asked.
wanted to swear but restrained herself. "It's that darn breaker. The old
fuse boxes were replaced, but nothing has been done about the ancient wiring.
The breaker switch trips every time I plug in one extra thing. I have no idea
how this building passed the code restrictions. Sometimes I actually see sparks
fly when I vacuum."
melodious laughter filled the darkened room. "Maybe you should slow
poked him in the arm. "Very funny. I'm talking danger here, and you're
making jokes." Despite the man-eating couch and the faulty wiring, the
evening was still going far better than she'd hoped. She felt like she'd known
Alex for ages.
you know where the breaker box is?" he asked.
in the same place as the one in your apartment."
Guess I should have figured that out. Do you have a flashlight?"
the kitchen drawer. I always keep fresh batteries there. It only took three or
four times for me to learn they're a necessity at The Cairns."
felt around for the coffee table and set her cup down. Rising, she groped her
way into the kitchen to find the flashlight. She fumbled in the drawer where
she remembered last putting it, and finally, her fingers closed around its
familiar long handle.
on switch wouldn't budge, but maybe Alex’s strong fingers could make the darn
thing work. She turned and started back to the couch and ran smack into him.
The flashlight fell to the floor with a thud. "Yikes," she yelled.
"I thought you were still over there."
guess I should have stayed." He chuckled.
dropped to her knees and began feeling around in the darkness.
Her head collided with his. "What are you doing down here?"
trying to be helpful."
warm breath fanned across her face as she rubbed the point of impact on her
forehead. "Thanks, I guess."
I found it," Alex yelled.
Now, if we can make it to the fuse box without any further incidents, that
would be nice." She hoped her voice carried her smile through the
Cynthia held the light, Alex fumbled with the breakers inside the musty closet.
Finally, after flipping each of them to find the thrown one, the electricity
surged to life. Alex raised his arms toward heaven. "And the Lord said,
'Let there be light'."
You're pretty handy to have around. I’ve done it myself before, but I'm glad
you were here."
you should apply for the apartment superintendent's position. God knows we need
a good replacement." She picked a safe topic but her mind fantasized about
another scenario. Maybe staying in the dark would have been more satisfying.
Would it be so wrong if they shared a kiss so soon? She snapped back to
reality, hearing her mother’s voice caution Cynthia about being a brazen woman.
A first date is way too early for romance.
held up a hand in protest to her suggestion. "Nooo! Not me. This building
could become a lifetime commitment, and I'm not planning on staying here until
I die." He returned to the couch, sat and downed the last of his coffee.
her disappointment, Cynthia put away the flashlight. "Would you like
another cup? I'm sure what you just drank was disgustingly cold."
thanks. I'm fine."
joined him on the couch. Tucking one leg beneath her, she leaned closer.
"Talking about the super and his job…do you find him as non-responsive as
nodded. "I think he's a lazy, no-good shirker. It's easier to fix things
myself then have to keep calling him. He's no better than the one who used to
I didn't know the other one, but this guy has only been in my apartment once
since I moved here, and that's enough for me. He gives me the creeps. He has
those beady little eyes and looks like he hasn't bathed in weeks. I just keep
my fingers crossed that nothing else breaks." She eyed her door.“Of course, I’m still waiting for him to come
fix my deadbolt.” Available on Amazon