Sweet & Scary Flash Fiction Blog Hop:

sweet-and-scary

Here’s mine, called “A Lifetime Away from You,” and it’s a clip from a story which needs an overhaul. It’s always been a favorite scene of mine. Hope you also like it!


“A Lifetime Away from You” by M. LeAnne Phoenix

 

Kaiyu remembered hearing the shōji slide shut as he sat up in bed, a slow smile stretching across his lips as his nose caught the scent of breakfast and tea. His eyes turned to the disarray of the bed and surrounding room, and he bit his lower lip as he remembered the heat of the night. We made love all night. All night was I inside him… I will teach him how to take me, too! He slipped from underneath the coverlets, reaching for his pyjama bottoms and robe. The bamboo cool beneath his feet, he ran his fingers through his hair and stretched, listening for a much beloved voice.

Glancing down at the mat next to the door, he saw only his boots. Rasmus’ were conspicuously missing. Lifting his gaze to the landscape, his brow furrowed as he scanned the trees for any sign of his pale lover. “Where did you go?” he asked the wind. “Where would you go?”

A shout from the main house jerked his head around, and he rushed to the edge of the verandah to see Takeshi running hard in the direction of the glade. Kaiyu called out through mindspeak, Captain, what is it?

The answer came immediately. Your tiger is cornered. I go to help him. He is blind, Kaiyu-san!

Slamming his feet into his boots, Kaiyu took off running, following Rasmus’ scent to the glade, returned to its icy beauty… though now, it was stained with crimson, and he could not tell on sight what was blood and what was blossoms. A trail of blood led out of the glade, and he followed it, finding the struggle had moved to the forest just beyond Nakamura clan borders. He heard the sounds of fighting as he neared, Takeshi joining him, his eyes concerned. I smell blood. I smell a lot of blood. Someone is hurt.

Kaiyu’s eyes flashed. You better hope it isn’t Rasmus or there will be hell to pay.

Takeshi nodded. From both of us.

They emerged to find Rasmus standing on shaky legs, his arms up to protect his injured face, opposite a creature from forbidden Nakamura family lore. It stood tall, taller than Kaiyu, bearing undeniable leonine features, hollow eyes, and claws stained red with Rasmus’ blood. Kaiyu noticed Rasmus’ head did not face his opponent, though his body did. He responded to the creature’s vicious attack with deadly force, repeatedly slamming a hidden makeshift weapon down into its eyes, growling, “An eye for an eye, fucking bastard!”

Kaiyu blinked, realizing what his lover used for a weapon: the broken wire frames of his glasses. Ras is blind. He hurried to catch Rasmus when he stumbled back from the body of the Child of the Sun. Rasmus startled, going on the defensive, but Kaiyu shushed him, “Shhhhh… Ras, it’s me, it’s Kaiyu—” His voice died in his throat when his love turned his face to his.

“Kaiyu?” His hands, covered in blood, reached up to feel his face. “It’s dead, isn’t it? I killed it?”

“Oh, Rasmus…” Kaiyu looked over at Takeshi, who nodded at him from the creature’s side. “Yeah, you killed it. We gotta get you looked at—“

“An optometrist is kinda out of the question. Don’t think they have a prescription to fix this—” Rasmus gave a dry laugh, hissing when Kaiyu lifted him into his arms, alerting him to other wounds not so visible. It’s hard to see through all the blood. How the hell did Rasmus—barely three months of training—best a Child of the Sun? I don’t know many samurai able to do what he did, and he did it blind! He glanced over at Takeshi, saying aloud, “You will be all right?”

“I will take care of the body, dispose of it properly so its soul will return to the good King of Cats, then I will follow. Get him to the daimyō, musuko. He will know what to do. Perhaps he can restore him.”

Kaiyu nodded, whirling and fixing his mind on his father. He staggered as his icy surroundings faded and the clean lines of his father’s verandah came into view. Relief flooded Kaiyu when Nakamura Ryuichi wrapped his arms around him, asking, “What is it? What happened to Rasmus-san?”

Kaiyu sank down to the floor. “He defeated a Child of the Sun, Oto-san. It took his eyes and I don’t know where he isn’t bleeding from! Chichi—I-I don’t know what—”

Nakamura Ryuichi pressed a kiss to his son’s temple as he knelt beside them. “I will teach you this. Hold him, he is losing consciousness and you must calm him.”

Kaiyu kissed Rasmus’ forehead, whispering, “Stay with me, Ras. Stay with me, stay with me forever—”

His father placed his hands together over Rasmus’ prone body, intoning a low note, drawing them apart, fingers splayed as energy stretched and grew like glowing gossamer between his hands until he’d created a web large enough to encompass his lover’s head and neck. Dropping it over Rasmus’ face, he started again, making one next large enough for his torso, one for each leg, and one for each arm. The tone changed to a lower note as he clapped his hands together, yanking them apart to slam them onto the web, sending a blast of energy bright enough to cause Kaiyu to squint as he felt it pulsing through Rasmus’ body. He couldn’t see what the light did to his lover, but he knew his father would do nothing to hurt Rasmus. As the light dissipated, so did the web, drawing back into Nakamura Ryuichi’s hands. The blood gone, still the clothing remained destroyed, and when Kaiyu cupped Rasmus’ cheek, it roused him, causing him to blink as he smiled sleepily, covering his hand with his lithe one. “I went back for my glasses—”

“Do you have a spare pair, Rasmus-san?” Nakamura Ryuichi interjected. “If so, you will need to rely on it since you used your others as a weapon. Quite ingenious, I must say, musuko-chan.”

The amber orbs widened as they met Kaiyu’s wet jade. “A weapon? Whaaat?” He rubbed his eyes as he remembered. “Oh, wait… I did. I used them—” Rasmus pushed his face into Kaiyu’s chest, shuddering. “I don’t want to remember that… that creature. It looked like something out of a horror movie.”

“They are extremely rare. There were only seven recorded on the planet,” Nakamura Ryuichi divulged. “It is unlikely you need worry about seeing another. Do you hurt anywhere or did I restore you completely, Rasmus-san?”

Kaiyu helped his lover sit up, watching closely as Rasmus stretched, checking himself over before he answered, “Everything seems okay. I don’t feel any more pain, things are just a little blurry—a lot blurry, actually.”

“Ranma-kun, take him to your chambers. I will send food and tea to you. Takeshi, please accompany them.” Nakamura Ryuichi pressed a tender kiss to Rasmus’ hair. “I will come to check on you shortly. I must report this incident before I come to see you. We must all be alert; it has been long since a Child of the Sun has been sighted.”

FINIS… for now. 🙂

Rainbow Snippets #17

NASA Vela Supernova Remnant

 

Snippet today comes from my main WIP, the second book in the Covenant series, AETERNUM. It’s from the current chapter, and here’s the set up. Two words: bachelor party. However, the party was not planned by one of David’s and Jonathan’s close friends, but by Autumn Varner, a new friend David’s made through a coffee shop. A good friend he made through her, is Kai Hoedemaeker, a model working in New York.

Without further adieu, here is the snippet, and it’s likely to be a bit longer than 6, since so many of the sentences are short.

“First of all, I’m letting you know you’re going to be bored stiff. The place we’re going does not cater to us.” Kai flipped through both David’s and Jonathan’s side of the closet before finally settling on a black A-shirt and a red flannel shirt. “Where are the trousers?”

“On the shelf above the tees.” David pointed them out. “We both wear the same size, so mine and his are all mixed up.”

Kai looked through until he found a ragtag pair. “These. Put them on. I do your makeup when you are dressed.”

David grinned, cocking his head to one side. “Will you do my makeup on Saturday?”

Kai smiled wickedly. “I think you never ask! Of course, I will be happy to oblige.”

In no time, David sat backwards in the desk chair, eyes closed as Kai deftly applied eyeliner and shadow, mascara and lip liner. A hint of color and David’s shiny glitter gloss, Kai’s hands went to David’s hair, using a bit of gel and pomade to give life to his curls. When he finished, he grabbed his camera from his bag and took a couple of photos. “For posterity’s sake… and for Jonathan. Little preview for what I do for Saturday.” Kai blushed. “And because I think you are beautiful always, but here, little nervous… little aggravated… positively stunning.”

Hope you like!

Rainbow Snippets #16

rainbow-wallpaper-18

 

Snippet today is a littttttle late (apologies!), but it comes from a WIP called Without Your Sunlight, and again features Salazar Moone. Here goes!

Salazar blinked, realizing why this Mar looked so like Sirius, “Are you… Wings of Zephyros, you are—”

“So he didn’t embellish it when he said you knew my name.” She smirked, confirming her identity, “Yes, I am Sothis, daughter of Sirius, and Heir of the Bearer.”

“Sothis… stars, you were none but an infant—now you must be—”

“Past my first millennia?” She snorted, clipping, “And you are the one Mar in the universe that can make my father lose his mind.”

Rainbow Snippets #15

NASA Cygnus Loop

My snippet today comes from a flash fiction I submitted to the QSF anthology, and it was rejected, so I’ll use it for something else. It’s called “Falling Into You” and I hope you like it! It’s from Sirius’ memory.

Quick Note: Mars are a human-like species not of this world, but they have power over creation. They worship the wind and they can transform into owls. They can cross into our world, but most choose not to do so. In this case, Salazar chose to cross over… and hopefully, soon, I will tell you why! 🙂

The tawny feathers of his cloak rippled as Sirius stalked through the Hall of Pillars in the Temple of Zephyros. His gaze locked on Salazar, communing at an altar fashioned in the shape of an owl in flight, the pure white feathers of his cloak spread around him. Head bowed, the tousled raven waves of his hair cascaded over his shoulders. Sirius whirled to a stop behind his love, his expressive face pale, generous mouth forming a thin double line.

“Why?”

The superb Mar faced him, violet eyes wide, “How can you ask me that, Sirius?”

Rainbow Snippets #14

NASA Veil Nebula

I am so late for this (and I apologize!)… but here’s my last minute addition! 😦 Please forgive me!

My snippet is from AETERNUM, the next book in the Covenant Series. It’s Christmastime 1993 (two days before Christmas), and David and Jonathan have adjourned to the Wolffs home. They’ve been making candy with their moms and little brothers all afternoon, and David’s just spent a little time with his stepfather in the living room with the tree. Jonah (stepdad) had his car broken into, so he’s replaced David’s Walkman and CD, and David is listening to his reclaimed music when Jonathan happens upon him.

David blushed, ducking his head to hide behind the curtain of gold hair as he grimaced, asking, “Was I singing very loud?”

Jonathan pressed a kiss to his lips, answering, “Not loud enough for me to hear that beautiful voice of yours, no, but loud enough for me to know you were singing Born to Be My Baby, and babe, I gotta say that I really was born to be your man.”

David giggled, blushing as he agreed, “Yeah, I know, and I love that.”

“I could get my guitar and we could sing together—”

“I don’t know…”

Jonathan lifted David’s chin with one finger, his face open and his expressive eyes wide and clear as he pleaded, “Baby, I have wanted to sing with you again since Halloween. Please… my guitar or the machine, you choose, but allow me one song?”

Rainbow Snippets #13

cropped-aurora-in-alaska.jpg

 

My snippet today is from Bescreen’d in Night again. 🙂 This time, it’s from the beginning. It’s sweet, and it gives hope… and a sentence-ish over the six.

“Tonight, we tied ourselves together in the oldest way possible.” David’s hands fell to Jonathan’s chest, he leaning in to hold Jonathan’s gaze captive, amber to blue, as he pressed a kiss to Jonathan’s lips. “Tonight, in my mind—”

“I became your husband and you became mine?” Jonathan finished, quirking an amused eyebrow.

Tears of joy sparkled in David’s eyes, his smile shining like a sun as he answered, “Yes!”

“Babe…” I love you so much. “I’m going to marry you someday, I promise you. One day, I will give you Shea.”

Rainbow Snippets #12

cropped-nasa-ori-and-the-orion-nebula.jpg

 

Hey, I’m back… crazy RL work is a bit of a pain in me arse, but yeah. So my snippet today comes from a little short story I’ve been working hard on in-between trying to sleep and trying to pay bills. Please be aware, the story has not seen the eyes of an editor at all. The working title is Bescreen’d in Night, and it’s a short story that rounds up the end Halley’s Comet… and it was meant to be writ, but never happened for whatever reason.

Like Halley’s Comet, it’s written from Jonathan Shea’s POV, and it takes place directly after David goes missing. I kind of bent the rules, considering my poems don’t have any real punctuation. I counted the three sentences before and the three sentences after to make my six.

Pulling the moleskin journal out of his back pocket, Jonathan hiccupped and grabbed the pen from the inside pocket of his coat. Bending over the journal as he opened it, he scribed the song exploding in his head. He knew the Bowie influences would be obvious, but he made a mental note to put it only in his journal.

Night bleeds into day
I am spun out of orbit
Day blazes into night
It’s been so long
Well, it’s been so long

My eyes scan the stars
Cold on earth and broken too
The stars blaze bright for me
It’s been so long
Well, it’s been so long

Forty-two days I waited
Forty-two nights I died
Forty-two days I froze
Forty-two nights I lied

And it’s been so long
You’ve been gone so long
I’m so afraid of losing you

Stuffing the pen in the journal, Jonathan shoved it back into the pocket as he heard someone on the ladder. Scooting over into the corner, he wrapped his arms around his shins and pushed his face into his knees. The tears were so close he wasn’t certain he could keep them back much longer, but the time ticked by relentlessly and still they had no lead on David.

Rainbow Snippets #11

HUBBLE Westerlund 2

 

My Snippet today is from Pale Jewel again, this time from part of the rewritten beginning. Once again, it’s my obsession with Hephaistion Amyntoros raising its head. Hope you like!

“You were there, man! You were there, but you did nothing!” Jensen balled his fist, his jeweled eyes glittering as he raised it, but Hephaistion caught it and spun him about before it could land a blow.

Arms wrapped tight around Jensen, Hephaistion pressed a kiss to the man’s shoulder. “I slept through Alexander’s death, Jen, but I mourned his passing and the pain was so very keen. When I panicked and made you after Ptolemy, the fear of losing you was just as keen as my pain had been with Alexander.” His voice remained calm, though his heart felt as though Jensen’s hand squeezed it without mercy, “And when you need me, I will be around.”

Rainbow Snippets #10

NASA Cygnus Loop

So for this week, I’m taking from my new WIP Pale Jewel. The scene itself is a memory Phai is thinking of, taking place when he took his lover, Jen, to follow up on a lead. Hope you like!

And… admittedly, I went a few sentences over the six limit, but I couldn’t bring myself to break up the “end” of the scene. Please forgive!

—-

Before them in a cavern of its own, sat the house of marble, the top of which held a frieze depicting the charge of Gaugamela, the painting still very much intact. Hephaistion, wearing a billowing black chlamys, rode alongside Alexander, his chlamys crimson as it snapped in the wind. Swords at the ready, cavalry close behind, Hephaistion remembered that unique charge, and as his upper left arm itched, he remembered the spear that had sliced through it. Hugging his arms, his gaze travelled to the half-open door, to the discoloration on the bottom right hand side.

A noise jerked him out of thought and he licked his lips as he turned to find Jensen knelt beside him, tears streaming down his face. Hephaistion pocketed Jensen’s phone and took the torch from him to lodge it upright in the soft earth next to them. Hitting his knees before his man, Hephaistion wrapped around Jensen and pulled Jensen’s wet face to his shoulder. “It was a long time ago—”

“The handprint—it comes from inside—” Jensen broke off, pushing his face into Hephaistion’s neck as his arms tightened around Hephaistion. “I mean—I believed you, you know I did—I’ve seen you come back to me.”

Rainbow Snippets #9

Rainbow Heart

 

Okay! Here’s my snippet this week! In honor of moms, I’ve chosen a snippet from my short story that never quite made it to the anthology I wished to submit to, but hopefully, I’ll find a home for it… here’s Through Her Sunken Dream, written to help bring awareness to mental illness, in specific for me, severe depression. Hope you like!

—-

“Are you ready?”

Tara lifted her gaze to the door, seeing her mother standing there in a pretty blue dress bearing a floral pattern in lavender and pink. Her airy white sweater matched the handbag she carried in her left hand. Tara nodded, pushing her red hair over her shoulders, whispering, “Mom?”

Rebecca Webster crossed the room to cup Tara’s chin, her words quiet, “You are beautiful. You are a wonderful woman, you are my daughter, and I am so proud of you. Nothing will ever change that, Tara Diane; your dad and I couldn’t be prouder of you.”