Sunday, May 28, 2017

Sunday Snippet: Hedging Bets

Whew. What a busy week leading up to my son's graduation tonight. Looking forward to watching him accept his diploma and start on the next phase of his journey.

I missed Gotham and hope to catch up after the craziness calms down.

The Flash's finale ended up being pretty good but I'm actually kind of hoping there won't be as much time travel shenanigans in the next season. Honestly, I like the ripple effect from Flashpoint but I'm hoping it's pretty much wrapped up.

Arrow. What a season-ender. I pretty much sat and blinked at the screen for a few seconds in stunned silence. Even seeing how the end would play out, I still ended up being shocked. LOL I really want the hiatus to fly by so I can find out who made it and who didn't.

I got through the first season of Iron Fist. I'm something of a completest and wanted to watch before The Defenders started. I don't know… I kind of like the setup for the next season with Joy and Davos possibly teaming up but I wouldn't mind seeing Madame Gao go down in flames.

I'm really struggling with Doctor Who. I'm looking forward to a new doctor and a new showrunner. I kind of long for the format Davies started and hope the new person goes back to something similar. I'm disappointed in the way everything is either overly convoluted or completely discombobulated. I shouldn't need a set of show notes to get all the nuances, right? Eh… here's hoping the next season is awesome.

And that's it for television. Orphan Black starts in two weeks and I'm excited!

Tonight's post is from Hedging Bets, a novella built around the prompt of having the two main characters get thrown in jail (or the brig) and have to deal with their issues.

Here's the mini-blurb:

Lettie and Thane have issues that are getting in the way of their work and are thrown into separate cells for being insubordinate to a superior officer. Their commander decides they can stay locked up—in the same cell—until they work their crap out or one of them calls for a body bag.

And a sneaky peek…

"If that chip on your shoulder gets any bigger, you'll face-plant on the metal decking."
Lettie Lang paused, turned around, and strode back into the rec room. People parted for her, giving her space to move forward. She stopped when she stood toe-to-toe with Thane Sorenson.
She jammed a finger in his chest. "Your ego is so big I'll have a nice, cushy landing spot." The words were short jabs, scoring a direct hit.
His nostrils flared. "My ego is not out of control… unlike your shit attitude." He planted his hands on his hips, ready to do battle.
Lettie snorted. "If my attitude is crappy, you're the reason. Always." The guy couldn't keep his opinion behind closed lips to save a life.
Thane opened his mouth to respond but the words died in his throat when the XO stormed into the room with a loud bellow. "Enough!"
Lettie bit back a sigh. Great. Another lecture for her and a free pass for Thane.
The executive officer, Marx Jackson, slowly made his way over. "What rank do you two hold?" His gravel-coated voice silenced the room.
"Lieutenant, Sir." Lettie rolled her eyes when she answered in unison with Thane.
Jackson made an obnoxiously rude sound. "You'd never know by the way either of you acts. In fact, you're worse than raw recruits. The military spent a buttload of money to train you as officers—yet neither of you act like you made it through."
His assessment stung. Even if it had a ring of truth to it, except…
Lettie directed her attention to the XO. "With all due respect, Sir. We're not on duty and—"
Jackson cut her off with a growl. "Don't give me that crap, Lieutenant. Duty isn't on a damned schedule." He swung his gaze to Thane. "And you should know that better than anyone."
Thane frowned and an angry glint flashed in his eyes. "Don't drag my dad into this, Sir. It'll only piss Lang off even more."
Lettie rolled her eyes. "Not likely. You do that all by yourself." She didn't have a family name to live up to.
Or one she could abuse the way Sorenson did.
Thane opened his mouth to respond, but Jackson held up a hand.
"And we're right back where we started. I've had more than enough of this." He nodded toward the exit. "No more. Clear out."
Lettie refused to budge. She didn't start the insult flinging and she shouldn't have to leave.
Crossing her arms over her chest, she stayed put. "I'm not leaving." After all, she'd been here first.
Thane mimicked her stance. "And I'm not going anywhere either."
The XO cocked his head to one side. "You're disobeying a direct order?" He eyed each both officers.
Lettie stood her ground. "It would seem so, Sir."
Thane didn't respond, but he didn't leave either.
Jackson shook his head. "Fine. Have it your way." He crossed to the comm panel and lifted the handset. "Security to rec room. Lang and Sorenson need to be escorted to the brig for a ten-day rip for insubordination." Hanging up, he pinned both with a hard stare.
Lettie didn't need another black mark on her jacket but she wouldn't give Thane any ground. The only thing keeping her from asking the XO to reconsider… the fact Thane would have the same charge on his record. Unless his dad stepped in. Lettie didn't think their CO would countermand the XO, but she'd deal with it if he did.
Thane drilled her with his gaze and Lettie let a smirk twist her lips. Served him right for being a huge pain in her ass.

I'm having fun with this one. The thin line between love and hate is fun to make all blurry.

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

ML Skye

Sunday, May 21, 2017

Sunday Snippet: Healing the Wound

Wow. Next week my second kidlet graduates from high school. I'm excited for him, yet I'm also wistful for the toddler with an overly large head—it's a family thing and he completely grew into the large noggin—that used to lob blocks and legos across the kiddie gate to get my attention. Next week's post might be an emotional one.

Anyway… on to the week's TV fare. Gotham kept things nice and interesting. I love the twisty-twist with Selena and Bruce. I'm also enjoying Ivy with Oswald. She's a nice foil to his manic craziness, maybe even better than Ngyma. I do have to wonder if Jim or someone else will ever find the knife Mario tried to kill Leigh with. Honestly, her anger with him is the only thing that kind of pulls me out of the show, even though it's justified and makes complete sense.

The Flash needs a rewatch. I didn't catch all of the episode and came in late. I'm looking forward to the resolution and hope things pay off in a big way.

Arrow delivered, as usual. Even with the over the top and almost unbelievable things Chase seems to manipulate, I have no doubt the showdown on Lian Yu will be worth it. Have to admit seeing Merlyn kind of surprised me, only a little because his name was mentioned. LOL I'm really not sure how I feel about Arrow's move to Thursdays next season. I'll hold off judgment for now. But it's one more day I have to wait for new episodes and that doesn't make me happy.

Not excited about waiting until fall for new episodes of The Last Ship. It's my summer must watch show and now it's not going to be on in the summer. Bleh.

Still looking forward to the Friday night block on Syfy at the end of June. If this gets changed, be prepared for an epic rant. With Orphan Black airing its final season in June also, the month looks to be terrific.

That's it for television this week. Tonight's post is from Healing the Wound, a novella that started with a fan fiction community prompt of describing a scene ten seconds after the main character walks away (in a certain episode) they come back, which they didn't do in the show. I love what if scenarios and got pinged with an original idea for it.

Here's the mini-blurb:

Jenna Creed loses the love of her life and blames Thorp Waggoner. She needs to stop living in the past and Thorp wants to be the man she moves forward with, which means Jenna has a very big problem.

And a sneaky peek…

"Creed, Waggoner, Handler. You're up for battle simulations. Get your asses to the training room and suit up."
Jenna Creed cringed when the booming voice filled the room. The commanding instructor, Jones McTeish, didn't have low volume. He had earth-shaking loud and bleed from the ears loud.
She got up and promptly bumped into Mick Handler. He'd landed on McTeish's shit list for missing curfew the other night. No doubt, Mick planned to get himself off the top spot by jumping make haste for the training.
Mick flashed a quick smile. "Sorry, Creed, duty calls." He hot-footed it out of the classroom.
Thorp Waggoner took his time getting up, a sly smirk curving his lips. "He'd jump through flaming hoops if he thought it would help." He fell into step beside Jenna.
She chuckled. "Yeah, he would. But McTeish has Mick's number." Sliding her gaze sideways, she studied Thorp a moment. "How did you not get busted for being out after last bell?"
His slight shrug confirmed her suspicion that Mick hadn't been out alone.
Thorp waited until they exited the classroom before answering. "Sometimes it pays to have friends or, in my case, family with high rank."
His remark kicked the flirty vibe down a notch. And served as a reminder. Thorp Waggoner had places to go and a ladder to climb. Once their training finished, she'd no longer be in his orbit.
She shot him a quick glance. "I can't imagine where you and Handler would've gone together." The men didn't get along all that well.
Thorp snorted. "We weren't together. I was coming back from a…" He paused, his voice trailing off.
Jenna filled in the blank. "Date?" Thorp's reputation for hooking up started the first week of training.
His curved in a sheepish smile. "Yeah, go with that." He stopped outside the men's changing area. "Things went a little longer than anticipated." He shrugged again.
Jenna did her best not to imagine why things went longer than expected. She also failed miserably. Thorp epitomized her ultimate fantasy, so, yeah, her brain totally went there.
The pointed clearing of his throat dragged her out of the steamy movie playing in her head.
She flicked a quick glance in his direction. "So… you're in the clear but Handler's on a shit platter? Hardly seems fair."
Thorp leaned in and spoke softly. "I know. Which is why Handler hasn't been expelled. The watchman couldn't very well write him up when he let me slide. I was happy to point the facts on the ground out to him." He straightened and wore a smug smile.
Jenna's lips twitched. "I'll bet Handler loved that." The rivalry between the two made for excellent entertainment.
Most of the time.
Thorp turned to enter the changing area. "Not really, but considering we've only got four weeks of training left, he's seething quietly." He nodded toward the room next door. "Better get suited up. I'm gonna need some backup in there." A rumbling chuckle came from his chest.
Jenna shook her head and darted into the women's area. Playing mediator between Mick and Thorp didn't rate all that high on her list of fun things to do. But she'd deal, and maybe even look good if they went after each other.
If nothing else, she'd get in a good workout with two hot guys.

I like the possibilities with this story. It's been fun writing the interactions.

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

ML Skye

Sunday, May 14, 2017

Sunday Snippet: Haven't We Met Like This Before

Happy Mother's Day to all the moms out there. It's a beautiful day in Ohio and I hope to enjoy the weather for a while.

Another terrific week in television. Gotham keeps working the crazy and I'm loving it. The blending of three or more plot threads is terrific and I hope we continue seeing a nice mix of all.

I missed most of The Flash. See crazy month starting for me last post. But, I'll catch up before Tuesday's new episode.

Arrow delivered another great episode. I love having Thea back even if it might only be for a little while. I'm not sure what's going on with Rene, but it'll be interesting to see how that plays out. Something tells me Chase might have something to do with why he didn't show up. I'm truly hoping the final showdown ends up being between Oliver and Talia with a little Nyssa thrown in.

Riverdale's season finale rocked! The first arc is finished and the second one opened with a serious bang. I'm honestly excited to see what the hell happens next. It'll be a major wrench in the Arch / Ronnie duo if her dad had anything to do with Fred's shooting. And something tells me that's a big possibility. Then again, I won't be surprised if that's a red herring and Mayor McCoy is actually the one behind the violence. Or maybe even Hermione. I'll have to wait not-so-patiently to find out. LOL

Last Sunday's Talking with Chris Hardwick turned out to be an excellent show. I'm a Charlie Hunnam fan and having him on for the entire hour was terrific. I love Chris's laid back style a lot.

Finally got caught up on Murdoch Mysteries and, wow, what a season finale. Definitely hope the show is renewed for an eleventh season.

That's it for television this week. Tonight's post is from Haven't We Met Like This Before, a novella that has one of my favorite tropes… siblings!

Here's the mini-blurb:

Reese meets Hallie, his brother's flight school roommate, when he bails her out of hack. Seven years later, they meet under similar circumstances on his father's ship.

And a sneaky peek…

"Geez, the things I do for duty and honor. And the stupid roommate code."
Hallie Todd crouched behind the bushes on the perimeter of the quad. Her stealth mission completed, she only had to make it across the campus yard and take the back trail to her dorm. Not the first time she snuck out after curfew, but tonight's reason had to be the lamest one ever.
Taking a breath, she crept from her hiding place and dashed across the lush green lawn then ducked around the corner of Hemmings Hall. Almost home. She stayed close to the wall, making her way to the end of the building.
Just about there.
Easing away from the cover of the shadows, she navigated between Learner and Abbott Halls. The trail she needed, the one least likely to be patrolled, loomed ahead.
She grinned when she stepped onto the gravel-covered path. Another sneaky trip accomplished.
"Halt! Who goes there?" The voice called out a brief moment before the spotlight revealed her position.
Hallie bit back a groan but dropped the bag she held and put her hands up. "Cadet Todd, final year." Her no-fail route should have been clear.
Dammit, dammit, dammit.
Then again, security patrols increased during finals week.
The guard made his way over to her. "Cadet Todd, you're out after curfew. You know what that means." He shouldered his rifle and planted his hands on his hips.
Hallie sighed. "Yes, sir. A trip to hack." She followed the lance corporal through the quad. "Do I get to make a call?"
The man snorted. "Of course. If you can make bail and waive the fine, you'll be free to go." He trudged up the steps to the security center.
Oh, she'd make bail all right. After all, the reason she'd made an after curfew run tonight? His stupid ass craving for fudgy brownie cakes. Alec had better haul ass to the bank and pay her fine.
Or… she would find a way to kill him while he slept.

Hallie and Alec's hijinks are the stuff legends are made from. Hallie and Reese are much slower burning and have the potential to create a galactic love story that's all theirs.

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

ML Skye

Sunday, May 7, 2017

Sunday Snippet: Hard Call

May 7, 2017

Well, a crazy month begins for me this week. For whatever reason, May is always insane. Awards ceremonies, musical concerts, and, this year, a graduation. I'm just now starting to feel the feels about my middle kidlet ending his high school journey and getting ready to embark on his trip through adulthood. I should be more in the camp of two down, one to go and I'll get there… probably the day after we get the party out of the way. LOL

Television this week ended up being terrific. Gotham had a great episode with a few twists I didn't foresee. I'm still on the fence with the whole owl society thing, but I'm leaning toward liking where things are going.

The Flash ended up surprising me with the reveal of Savitar. I thought maybe Ronnie or Jay would end up being behind the suit, or possibly Thawne in some roundabout way. Looking forward to seeing how the rest of the episodes play out.

Arrow's episode reminded me again why I love this show so much. It's been a little uneven this season but the show always pulls everything together in ways I don't expect. I can't wait for Wednesday to get here for the next installment!

Riverdale's reveals paid off in a big way. At least for me. I have several items on my wish list for the finale and some saved back for the next season. I'm excited for the possibilities with Cheryl and where she'll go, seeing how the dynamic plays out in the Cooper household, and what happens with everyone caught in the potential crossfire. What I'm not overly excited about? Hiram Lodge. Seriously. I kind of don't care a fig about that dude, especially if he's all oily and smarmy and goes out of his way to be a dick. We'll see. I'm watching closely, CW. Don't muck this up.

My summer shows should be returning soon and I'm looking forward to watching my favorites. Hopefully, I'll be able to catch up on some of the mainstream fare I missed also.

And that's it for television this week. Tonight's post is from Hard Call, a novella that started with a prompt of writing a grief sex scene that doesn’t involve losing a relative. I actually love building the tension and details surrounding intense moments so I thoroughly enjoyed thinking up scenarios for this one.

Here's the mini-blurb:

Wiccam Kidder commands a space cruiser and wears the mantle of command with reluctance. When he makes a hard call and orders Valor Glynne to what may be a certain death, he wants to give up the burden and walk away. But Valor returns and Wic is faced with knowing she'll follow wherever he leads.

And a sneaky peek…

Valor Glynne strode through the corridors of the Hathaway, a single destination in mind. She nodded to a few familiar faces. Even with a huge military, she inevitably bumped into crew she'd served with before or people that came up through the ranks at the same time.
Making her way to the end of the causeway, she stopped outside command quarters, glancing inside. "Anybody home?" The shuffle of papers and scrape of a chair greeted her before the voice did.
"Valor… come to keep me on my toes?" He popped out from his recessed alcove that functioned as a study. "Because I know all your tricks."
She laughed. He should. Wiccam Kidder grew up military, the same as she did. They learned from the same playbook. The only difference? Her dad died in the line of duty and Wic's went on to command a flagship. Valor never tired hearing about their exploits.
She grabbed hold of Wic and hauled him in for a hug. Not exactly SOP between a commanding officer and their subordinate, but Wic wrapped his arms around her anyway. They didn't stand on ceremony, not when they were off duty.
Valor eased away, getting a good, long look at her new CO. "You're looking good for someone wearing the burden of command." Her lips twitched when he rolled his eyes.
Wic shot back. "Easy job until you came aboard." His mouth curved in a sexy smile.
The one she'd missed for almost a year.
Valor couldn't resist, she notched her chin up and cupped the back of his head. "You know I always make things interesting." Proving her point, she meshed their lips together and slipped her tongue over his lower one.
Wic responded, taking the embrace from teasing to steamy. His hands skimmed along her sides, reaching around to grasp her ass. Valor swallowed back a moan, wishing they weren't on a ship in the middle of a war. She had a long list of ways she wanted to rock his world.
Vic pulled back, his movement abrupt. "Dammit, Valor. That shouldn't have happened." He put some distance between them. "You know we can't act on this thing between us. Not when there's a war to fight." His words lacked the heat of anger but held a tinge of regret.
Valor shrugged. "Seems to me it's the best time to act. We might not have an opportunity later." Because they might be dead.
They'd had the discussion before he took command. No guarantees for a long and fruitful life when enemy fire got thrown into the mix. Wic refused to build a future on shaky ground.
He cocked an eyebrow. "I'm not down with the no tomorrow concept."
In other words, they'd get their shot. Sometime.
Valor flashed a grin. "Yeah, yeah. But I had to try." She always would.
Wic chuckled. "You wouldn't be you if you didn't." He flung an arm around her shoulder. "Get settled in and be ready for the morning briefing at 0800."

I hope this all comes together the way I want it to. I love moral dilemma conflicts and Wic's got so much history with Valor not to mention the hope for a future the tension almost writes itself.

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

ML Skye