Sunday, September 25, 2011

Sample Sunday - Excerpt from Hollywood Swinging #1

Newlywed author Shontae Nichols Burke is trying to adjust to her life in Hollywood as the wife of actor Devon Burke, one of the film industry’s brightest upcoming stars. She’s left her home and her friends and moved to Los Angeles.

They both have blossoming careers.  She’s attending movie premieres and living a life she only dreamed of.

Unknown to Shontae, someone else also believes Devon Burke is the love of her life. When this disturbed woman insinuates herself into their lives, Shontae learns that all Hollywood drama isn’t scripted and finds herself in a fight for her marriage that’s worthy of the big screen.

Here's the excerpt:

“Bernie sent you a message. Let me grab a Vitamin Water, and I’ll tell you what he said.”

“Bernie? Why?” Her narrowed gaze followed me into the house. “Why would your agent have a message for me?” She asked with her arms folded when I came back out.

“I asked him if he would give you an insider’s crash course on movie premieres.” I held the Vitamin Water bottle in front of my face half expecting her to throw something in my direction like Shari had always done when she got upset. Instead her face softened and the lines between her light brown eyes eased.

“You did? I’m sorry I haven’t wanted to talk about going. The whole thing makes me nauseous.”

“I know. It’s not as bad as you might think. In fact, you’ll probably have a great time.”

She grimaced. “I doubt it. The right dress, right jewelry, right shoes stuff annoys me. The last thing I want to do is embarrass you.”

“What are you talking about? You couldn’t embarrass me.”

She rolled her eyes. “Oh, please! I can hear Cojo now. ‘And here comes that gorgeous Devon Burke and his frumpy wife. What’s her name again? She’s not exactly a Hollywood insider. I think she writes romance novels or something. Oh, my God what in the world is that she’s wearing?’” Shontae joked with unsmiling eyes imagining the outspoken commentator ruining her red carpet debut.

“Cojo won’t be there. And no matter what you wear, no one in his right mind could ever consider you frumpy. Relax, okay?”

“Besides, I hate spending all that money for just one night.”

“Even if I tell you that we’ll be partying at Sid Goldman’s house afterwards?”

A spark flickered in her eyes. “Really?”

“Yup. It should be outrageous.”

“Hmm…so, what did Bernie say?”

I think she was warming up to the idea. A cast party at a director’s home was guaranteed to be a big blowout. “He said to drop by his office tomorrow at one o’clock if you don’t have any plans.”

“I planned to write for a few hours in the morning then visit Barnes & Noble in Studio City. I’m trying to introduce myself to the store managers in the area before my new book is released. I guess I can swing by Bernie’s office on the way back.” She gathered up her papers and tucked the word processor under her arm. “Did you eat anything?”

“I’m not hungry. I grabbed a sandwich from the buffet on set before I went to the gym. When I finished my workout, I wanted to get home and see what you were up to.” My wink let her know what was on my mind.

“If you don’t mind skipping dinner, I wouldn’t mind you joining me in the shower.” She opened the back door, and I followed her into the house.

“You don’t have to ask me twice.”

Shontae kept several bottles of Bath and Body Works shower gel inside the stall and beside the tub. I covered her in a blanket of fragrant bubbles as we showered.  My body instantly went on heightened alert at the scent of her favorite fragrance. As she washed me, her gentle touch stirred my senses. I ended our shower by wrapping her in a towel and carrying her into the bedroom.

We made love in our typical rhythm that always began slow and unrushed yet ended with a breathless combined song of each other’s names. No one needed to tell us how to hold each other. It didn’t matter where the light was or if her hair covered her face. This was the real thing, and I lived for it.

Afterward I turned on the television and scanned the channels for a movie. Shontae laid her head on my chest and cuddled her soft body against mine. Once the credits rolled, her hands began a slow dance over my chest. Her foot ran up and down the inside of my leg, a clear signal that she wasn’t interested in going to sleep.  Of course I’d pay for it when the alarm went off in the morning, but the word no wasn’t in my vocabulary when it came to a little four-legged frolic with my wife.

I don’t care what anyone said, there was nothing better than being married to a woman you loved who loved you back. I’d been with a lot of women in my past, but never anyone who loved me the way she did. Shontae had become my world; but lately I’d been having weird dreams about her. They always hinted of someone or something threatening her. The threat was never clear in my nighttime visions, and I hadn’t shared them with her or anyone else. All I knew was the thought of anything happening to her made me crazy. I would kill to protect her.

She pressed a kiss into my chest, murmured a soft goodnight. After I pulled her closer, I shook the disturbing thoughts from my mind and let the gentle rhythm of her breathing lull me to sleep.

From HOLLYWOOD SWINGING – 99 cents Kindle - & Nook -

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