Sunday, March 27, 2016

Sunday Snippet: Zipped Lips

Happy Easter to those who observe and celebrate. We're having some lovely weather in Ohio, which might only last twenty-four hours because—hello!—it's Ohio. LOL I'm still battling the flu… apparently I got the full two-week version. Yay, me.

That said, I did enjoy my week of new shows on television. The Walking Dead followed up the Carol / Maggie excellence with another terrific episode. I'm still not all that excited for Negan to show up, but eh, we'll see what happens when he does.

Gotham took a turn I didn't expect and I'm definitely interested in where things go from here. Nygma is one crafty, creepy dude. The Magicians continues to keep me intrigued. I truly love the dynamic between Penny and Quentin. The Lost Girl finale had me sobbing… again. I'm going to miss that show so much. Bitten twisted the spikes in a little deeper, but I loved the spin with making Rachel the one with powers instead of Rocco. Awesome to see Paige again.

The Flash made a reveal I didn't expect until the end of the season, so kudos for keeping me on my toes. Arrow took a turn I didn't exactly like, but I'm in for the long haul with Oliver and company. Looking forward to a new Legends episode this week.

Agents of SHIELD keeps getting better and better. I'm excited for the Most Wanted spin off. I love those characters.

The finale for Murdoch Mysteries proved excellent. I can't believe they keep coming up with great stuff after almost ten years. Here's to another terrific season whenever it premieres.

And that's the television update for this week.

Tonight's post is from Zipped Lips, a sexy short based on the prompt "Keeping quiet is half the fun".

Here's the mini-blurb:

Details of intimate encounters are spilled during a rousing card game and recent hook-ups are brought to light, but Keavy Smart and Gresham Young have the best secret—trying to keep quiet is half the fun and zipped lips means none of the crew is the wiser.

And a sneaky peek…

Keavy Smart pulled a chair up to the card table and plopped down, waiting for the next hand to start or a round of drinks to be served. The usual suspects were present and accounted for. Mark Bynum acted as dealer and ringleader. Lara Sullivan and Masha Jones flanked either side of him and kept a lively run of dialog going. Willa Upton and Jake Founder held the next two spots at the table. Holding the final place, Gresham Young, rocked back on chair, lifting the front legs from the floor.
He checked his cards before folding. "I'm out." He tossed his hand on the scarred surface of the table.
Mark nodded. "And Young is out. That leaves me and the two beauties." He referred to Lara and Masha, who each flashed him a smirk.
Lara raised the bet and Mark called. Masha won the hand and did her standard happy chair dance, whooping and yipping her victory.
Jake rolled his eyes. "Geez. It sounds like she's having sex." He pushed back, got up, and went to the bar.
Willa snorted. "And how would you know?" She waggled her eyebrows.
Jake returned to the table and poured shots. "Are you kidding? Not like she knows how to be quiet." He slid a glass down to Masha then raised his in a toast.
Masha clicked her tongue against her teeth. "That's not me you're hearing. It's Lara."
Gresham choked and sputtered. Keavy thanked the universe she waited to down hers. She held the shot, waiting to see if anything else came spilling out.
Lara didn't disappoint. "Hey, not my fault. When you've got four hands working you over, they can pretty much hit every. Sensitive. Spot."
Willa's mouth dropped open. "No. Way. Who's the lucky third party?" Her gaze scanned everyone sitting at the table.
Lara huffed out a laugh. "Well, it's not Jake, because he's usually sharing your bunk."
Willa blushed, but shrugged, unable to deny the dig.
Mark raised his hand. "Uh, the lucky dude who gets to double team Lara is me." He leaned in toward Willa. "By the way, you two aren't exactly quiet. Just saying." He downed his shot and poured another one.
Keavy quickly tossed her drink back. She had a feeling she wouldn't escape the conversation unscathed.
Jake jumped back in. "Look, I challenge anyone to keep quiet during sex. In fact, I don't know anyone who can."
Masha quirked a brow. "Oh really? Smart and Young seem to have mastered the whole silent sex thing." She settled back in her seat. "Care to enlighten us?"
Gresham frowned. "That would imply Keavy and I are having sex." He stopped there.
Lara shook her head. "She didn't say that. Maybe neither of you is getting any."
Laughter broke out around the table.
Mark added his two cents. "Or we'll get two good versions of how to keep it down while getting hot and heavy."
Keavy finally broke her silence. "The secret to not making noise is…" She topped off her glass and downed it then waited until all eyes were on her, except for Gresh's. "Going to stay a secret." She grinned when a chorus of groans met her non-answer. "And on that happy note, I'm going to bow out and go find someplace a little less crowded to blow off some steam." Rising, she made a quick exit and headed for the gym.

I'm having a lot of fun with this one. Can't wait to see where it goes.

That's it for this week. Catch everyone on the flipside.

ML Skye

Sunday, March 20, 2016

Sunday Snippet: Zero Sum

Well, it's the first day of spring and we're getting snow in Ohio. LOL I'm also down with the flu, so not a fun week.

Another light week in television. The Walking Dead had a terrific Carol / Maggie episode that ended up being one of the best ever.

Gotham's episode took an interesting turn. I'm excited to see what happens with Cobblepot back on the loose. Nygma is sliding into total crazytown and I'm loving it. I have a feeling Hugo is lining up a bunch of pieces and I'm very interesting in where all that goes. My other Monday night shows provided excellent viewing. The Magicians went in a direction I didn't really see coming. Lost Girl amped everything up for the finale and Bitten made me cry. LOL

Agents of SHIELD surprised me and that makes me happy. Looking forward to more and seeing where things go. Murdoch Mysteries had a great episode and the finale looks terrific. Fingers crossed there's not a huge cliffhanger.

My shows should be back this week and I'm ready and waiting.

That's it for TV this week.

Tonight's post is from Zero Sum, a novella based on the prompt "Abandoned. Character or characters either feel left behind or are left behind and have to deal with how everyone else is happier than they are. I didn't quite stick with the actual meaning, but I did keep to the spirit.

Here's the mini-blurb:

Sabrina Delft and Carrick Stafford have a zero sum relationship—whenever one gains something, the other has a corresponding loss. But when they're stranded on an abandoned mining colony and forced to rely on each other, they learn to balance the good with the bad and end up with a total win.

And a sneaky peek…

Sabrina Delft gazed out the canopy of the small supply hopper she occupied with Carrick Stafford. The trip to the anchorage to replenish ammunition, medications, and several new entertainment modules should have been a nice respite from flying patrols and providing protection detail to ore freighters on transport runs. Instead, the five day jaunt turned into an exercise of patience.
Carrick drove her utterly mad. On purpose. Just because he could.
Gah! And she let him. Idiot.
The object of her wrath poked his head around the corner of the cockpit. "Hey, if you're done stargazing, I've got a problem up here." He rolled his eyes and didn't wait for a response.
Stargazing? More like maintaining enough distance to keep from strangling him. Ass hat.
Rising from her spot by the canopy, she trudged to the cockpit. "How is your problem any concern of mine—" The flashing red of the instrument panel cut off her scathing statement. "Shit. What the hell did you do?" Warning lights blinked everywhere but the alert klaxons remained silent.
Carrick growled. "Because it's not just mine. It's ours." He shot her an angry glare. "I muted the klaxons as soon as the board lit up. Thought I could handle it." His hands flew over buttons and switches, but nothing diminished the sea of crimson.
He obviously couldn't handle the situation. At least not alone.
Sabrina slid into the empty seat and quickly did a remote scan. "Argh. It's bad, Carrick. Our main cable linking the computer to everything else is fried. We're going to lose control of the ship if we don't land somewhere." A terrible situation quickly on the way to life-threatening.
If they didn't do an emergency drop-down and find a way to fix the ship, they'd drift in space until the life support system shut down, if they didn't die from lack of supplies first. The ration supply for the final two and half days could stretch, but not far.
They didn't have a lot of options. "I'll see if there's any place we can land." She stood up and pulled the star charts down, flipping through panels until she found the right quadrant.
Carrick shook his head. "Are you serious? We can't land the ship. We'll never get it back in the atmosphere." He continued shutting off as much as he could and the panel finally dimmed to a dull scarlet.
She angled her head around. "We can't stay up here. We're lucky we've got minimal control. If we don't land, we can't survive." She traced their journey from the anchorage to their current location with her finger. "We set down, hope the emergency beacon works, and assess the damage." She tapped the star chart. "If we're lucky, we can get close to this mining colony. It's been out of service for several years, but we might find supplies to make repairs." Turning, she met his gaze. "It's our best option. Can you maneuver the ship, or do I need to take over?" She hoped the challenge would quell any argument.
Carrick snorted. "I can get us there. Just mark the damned coordinates." He set his jaw and focused on the helm.

Always fun to put characters at odds into a situation where they have to work together. Can't wait to see where Carrick and Sabrina end up.

That's it for this week. Catch everyone on the flipside.

ML Skye

Sunday, March 13, 2016

Sunday Snippet: Zen State

Whew. Had a super-busy week running all over the place with my teenagers. Glad it's over.

Another light television week, which worked out well, considering the whole crazytown express thing. The Walking Dead turned in a fine outing, but I'm still kind of dreading the whole Neegan thing. Here's hoping I'm projecting for nothing.

My Monday lineup continues to impress. I hope Syfy continues to keep that day of the week filled with awesome shows. I can't always count on the network to make the best decisions. LOL

Tuesday's Teen Wolf finale didn't disappoint. I can honestly say I'm quite happy with how everything turned out. Theo received a just fate and, as usual, Scott's side had all the bases covered. I was a little disappointed I didn't get to see how things turned out for Parrish. I have my own personal head canon for his future. Agents of SHIELD returned and not a bad effort.

Legends of Tomorrow is still putting on a good show. I have a few, small quibbles with some aspects of the development, but I'll save those for my fandom blog where spoilers are discussed openly.

Murdoch Mysteries ended up being pretty great. I love how the show, even after being on for almost ten years, still finds new ground to cover. Seriously, can't ask for more than that in a long-running favorite.

And that's it for TV this week.

Tonight's post is from Zen State, a sexy short story that got its start with the prompt "One character finds the other self-pleasuring". Bonus points for name moaning. Seriously? How could I resist that one?

Here's the mini-blurb:

Rue Chambers and Blaise Watkinson have secret fantasies about each other all the time, but don't act on them. At least not until both are trying to achieve a zen state by self-pleasuring and end up in the same place at the same time.

And a sneaky peek…

"And that wraps up the morning briefing." Blaise Watkinson, the CAG, glanced up, his gaze scanning the room, landing briefly on each pilot before he spoke again. "Dismissed."
Rue Chambers had it bad. If a single word uttered by the CAG could induce a shivery fissure of desire. The voice always got her. The raspy, rough quality never failed to zing all her hot spots. Morning briefings were all the more torturous because Rue hated the early AM hour and she always left with inappropriate thoughts blazing through her mind.
Rising, she started for the exit, fully intent upon hitting the hangar deck to pick up a shift in maintenance. The chief could always use an extra pair of hands and she could use the physical labor to work off some of the keyed up tension.
"Chambers. A moment please." Blaise called from somewhere behind her.
Rue paused and turned, intending to meet him halfway. But he surprised her by being less than ten feet away. She drew in a shaky breath, trying to calm her racing pulse. He didn't need to know how attractive she found him. Not like they could hookup. His higher rank meant she needed to keep a safe, minimum distance and stop indulging her baser instincts. Frat regs notwithstanding, Blaise had a reputation for sticking to protocol.
Rue met his gaze. "Sir?" Her feet itched to beat a hasty retreat.
Blaise propped a shoulder on the bulkhead. "You were late to the briefing this morning. Care to tell me why?" An eyebrow quirked in question.
Shit. She'd hoped he missed her sliding in after he'd started. And no way could she admit the reason why. Sorry, Sir. I took advantage of an empty bunkroom to self-pleasure, hoping it would take the edge off my attraction for you. First, her quick masturbatory session failed to have the desired effect. Second, Blaise would probably slap her with a reprimand for conduct unbecoming. So, no, she didn't care to tell him why.
But she had to say something. "I'm sorry, Sir. I slept through reverie, had trouble sleeping last night." The words stuttered off her tongue, her usual skill with stretching the truth totally escaping her.
Blaise narrowed his eyes, probably recognizing the lie. He studied her, saying nothing, for several long moments. Long enough, she finally had to glance down or wilt under the perusal. When she looked back up, he'd tilted his head to one side, a contemplative gleam in his eyes.
He straightened and shoved away from the bulkhead. "Are we going to have a problem with insomnia?" His gaze pinned her to the spot.
She shook her head, scrambling for a response. "Uh, no, Sir. No more caffeine after five PM for me." Her attempt at humor must have worked because he cracked a smile.
With a nod, he swept his arm forward, indicating she should precede him out into the corridor. "I'll expect to see you on time tomorrow then." He strode ahead then glanced over his shoulder. "You're on dog watch, right?" He referred to the hours between 1600 and 2000.
Rue inclined her chin. "Yes. I'll be sure to hit my rack as soon as I get off shift and grab some chow." She'd be ready for a semi-early night.
Blaise held her gaze a moment then faced forward again. "As long as you're on time tomorrow, Chambers." He made a left at the junction of the corridor and disappeared from her line of vision.
Rue heaved a relieved sigh. She'd skated free and clear on that potential minefield.
Now she had to make sure she absolutely made it to the morning briefing bright and early.

I'm seriously hoping to find the time to finish this one up. So much fun to write.

And that's it for this week. Catch everyone on the flipside.

ML Skye

Sunday, March 6, 2016

Sunday Snippet: Yellow Fang

Okay, not exactly a super strong week of viewing pleasure, but pretty good for the shows that were on.

The Walking Dead is amping up the tension and the group is going to take on Neegan. I hope the hype is worth it. He's apparently a BFD in the comics so I'm reserving judgment. I'd rather he not gobble up screen time from my fave characters.

Gotham returned with a terrific episode. I'm quite curious to see where they're going to end up taking Gordon. But I like that his squeaky clean armor is getting tarnished. The Magicians continues to intrigue me but I'm also wondering where things are going. There seems to be something of an overlying arc yet I can't quite figure out what it is. As always, Lost Girl and Bitten make me happy. I can't stress enough how much I'll miss both when they're gone.

Agent Carter ended with a terrific bang. I'll sadly miss the show if it doesn't return. That said, what a great two season arc.

Legends of Tomorrow surprised me again. I missed the first fifteen minutes but got caught up quickly. Looking forward to this week's episode.

Teen Wolf is coming together for the big battle. Looking forward to seeing how it ends. I also caught up on Murdoch Mysteries and have to say, I love this show so much. And that's it for this week's update.

Tonight's post is from Yellow Fang, a novella that came from another prompt. Loss, a character loses something dear to them. The sages loved this one.

Here's the mini-blurb:

Yancy the Yellow is Palmer Gump's only childhood friend—a stuffed toy from her dad. Missing and presumed killed in action, an auction is held for Palmer's personal items. When she returns, she gets everything back… except for Yancy, which leaves her feeling a little lost and unsettled, until it finds its way back to her via Dannon Bennett.

And a sneaky peek…

Palmer Gump rifled through her storage box, digging way down to the bottom until her fingers brushed against the soft fur of Yancy, the yellow-fanged wolverine her dad, Peter, had given her so long ago. Grabbing the worn, plush animal, she removed him and shoved the container aside. Smoothing her fingers over the wiry, synthetic mane, she smiled.
How many rough moments, bad times, and terrible days had Yancy seen her through?
Too many to count.
The fact her dad never gave her anything after Yancy definitely played into why she loved the stuffed toy so much. Then again, dads couldn't give their daughters gifts from beyond the grave. He left for his final mission the night he'd given Palmer Yancy, the story he'd told her etched permanently in her mind.

"Palmer, my girl, there's gonna come a day when some handsome, young lad will try to make you his princess. And I may not be around to give my approval." He reached into his pocket and withdrew the small wolverine. "You know my unit is called the howling wolverines, right?"
Palmer nodded. The scary animal represented what her dad and his platoon could do in action.
Peter took her hand and placed the miniature version in her palm. "Well, this is Yancy and he's our mascot. He'll always be here, even if I'm not. And he'll keep you safe, no matter what. And any man who's worthy of you will receive Yancy's approval." He gave her a wink. "Think of him as acting in my stead if I'm not around, okay?"
Palmer nodded, but didn't completely understand.
Her dad leaned in and whispered. "Anyone who wants to be your prince will have to love the wolf, too." He gave her hand a squeeze then tucked her into bed. "I have to roll out later tonight and it might be a while before I get back home." His fingers brushed her bangs out of her face. "But you know I love you more than anything, don't you?"
Palmer smiled and nodded, letting out a big yawn. "I know, daddy. I love you, too." She cuddled her gift, her most favorite new toy ever. "Good night."

Her dad had kissed her cheek and paused in the doorway before turning out the light. Palmer remembered the look on his face, a wistful mix of love and sadness. Two months later, when the chaplain had come to deliver the news of her father's death, Palmer ran to get Yancy and didn't let the last connection to her dad out of her sight for weeks. The wolverine went everywhere with her, traveling from base to base after her mom married another military man. Then Yancy came along to each and every post Palmer had been assigned to.
Now he provided a measure of comfort and calm when she needed each the most. The shuffle of feet drew her attention and she tucked Yancy under her pillow then braced for an argument. Sure enough, Dannon Bennett strolled through the door and braced his shoulders against the wall before crossing his arms over his well-defined chest.
He met and held her gaze, his blue eyes serious and solemn. "You're not ready, Palmer." His glance darted downward. "If it were anything but solo recon, I wouldn't be so concerned. But it's solo recon, Palmer."
His lack of confidence stung more than it should. Dannon spoke up when he didn't agree with decisions and he definitely didn't think their CO made the right call. But Palmer paid attention during her training. She might be a novice at solitary operations, but she wouldn't shirt her duty.
She squared her shoulders and stood. "You're wrong, Dannon. The colonel thinks I'm ready and I am." Backing away, she closed her locker and grabbed her rucksack. "I'm mission operational and I leave at dusk." Dannon's lack of faith be damned.
Brushing past him, she left quarters and strode toward the ready room. He didn't make a move to follow and she actually thanked the universe. If he said anything else negative, she might have to punch him in the face. Just because they shared a bed more often than not didn't give him the right to hold her back.
She'd do her recon, come home, and then they could hash out the difference of opinion. Right now, she had a job to do.

I've put something of a twist on the loss angle and I love how it's all working out. Long way to go on this one, but the brainstorming / outline is complete. Just need time to sit and finish.

That's it for this week. Catch everyone on the flipside.

ML Skye