Monday, December 31, 2012

Aaaand...cue the New Year!

So, it's New Year's Eve.  Except in Australia, where it might already be the brand new year.  *stares besottedly at the time machine that is Australia*  Nevertheless, here it's still the day before, and it's a bit of a tradition for me to lay out some things that I want to accomplish in the next year.  Not resolutions, because I'm shit at personal resolve in many, many arenas, but I like to use positive public pressure to help me get things done, are a few things I'm hoping for in the New Year, insofar as my writing is concerned.

I want to get some self-publishing done.  I've got The Captain coming soon, and I want to learn Photoshop so I can do covers and media myself for future projects.  I am not a technological genius, so this is going to take some effort.  Yay.

I want to keep up with providing good, exciting, continually free content here on my blog and posted to Literotica and places like it.  Free stories are the best way I've found to get new readers, and I only plan to continue offering them up for your edification:)

I have new projects to get off the ground, including a serial novel that I hope pleases people.  It's a continuation of In All Your Ways, kind of.  It's...well, more on that later.

I've got a historical lesbian novel set in 16th century Venice in the works.  No, I haven't written a lot of f/f fiction, well noted, but that can and will change this year.  New things!  New things are coming!


Lastly, it's a personal goal of mine to co-author something this next year.  I don't know what, and I don't know with who, but I do know that it's something I've been wanting to try for a long time.  I got close in the past but things fell through, and honestly I'm just too shy to ask with any ease.  But I'm going to try to get over myself and make something happen.

There's more, but I think this is enough for now.  Anyone else got big plans, personal or professional, for 2013?  Share with me, I love it when we share!  And I wish all of you a very Happy New Year, and remember to check in tomorrow sometime if you're not too hung over, there should be more Paradise.  Eventually.  We're approaching the end of that story...where, oh where, to go next...

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Paradise Post #19


Notes: It’s a white Christmas here *see picture*.  I’ve got family and food and warmth and I feel so lucky.  I hope the rest of you are enjoying a wonderful holiday season, and that this post puts a smile on your face.  Next Tuesday is New Year's Day, and I’ll be posting then too.  Probably before as well.  Have a delightful day, my darlins.


Title: Paradise


Part Nineteen: Signed, Sealed, Delivered
*the view on my front porch this morning*






                Jonah thought it was kind of unfair that Garrett slept like a baby the night before their wedding.

                Not that there was anything to be nervous about.  Jonah reckoned that the big issues had all been dealt with—he hoped to hell they had all been dealt with—and the slate was about as clean as it could get.  Claudia took care of all the details like she promised, Miles made sure he and Robbie and Wyl wouldn’t be called away unless something blew up (his words, not Jonah’s; Jonah didn’t think this family’s history with explosions was funny) and all they had to do was keep Cody occupied while it all got set up.  A trip to the zoo had taken care of most of that time.  The place wasn’t too big, but still had far more animals that Cody was used to seeing, and some interesting hybrids.

                “I thought those were plants,” Cody said, watching with interest as a tigerlily pranced around a transparent greenhouse.

                “It was, originally,” Garrett told him, still holding Cody’s hand.  The kid hadn’t let go of him the whole trip, and Jonah couldn’t blame him.  He kind of wanted to keep a hold on Garrett too, but he didn’t want to make his fiancé feel too claustrophobic, so he hung back and contented himself with bumping shoulders as they made their way from habitat to habitat.

                “There was a span of a few centuries where cloning and genetic manipulation was a popular pastime,” Garrett continued, “and it was pretty easy for amateurs to fool around with whatever genomes they wanted to.  Most of them did things that were pretty harmless, just once-offs as pets or something, but some of them got a little out of control.  One of these people was a botanist, who pioneered what he called ‘mutobotany.’  He decided to take different plants and merge them with animal DNA to make brand new species.”

                Cody frowned.  “But we do that all the time, right?  Scientists change plants and animals so they can help them survive better on new planets.  And they do it for places like that other zoo, Chibi World.  Right?”

                “True, but those scientists have a lot of special training that lets them figure out what the best combination is for each new place, so they won’t all just die or overwhelm the local flora and fauna.  And Chibi World is a closed circuit, those animals don’t get the chance to live in the wild,” Garrett explained.  “This guy didn’t care about that, he just wanted to make new things.  It took him a while, but eventually he crossed all sorts of animals and plants successfully.  He was going to take them around in a big ship as a kind of travelling show, but the police found out what he was doing and raided his home. 

“The botanist, who was a very wealthy man, had enough time to put samples of his experiments, all cryogenically frozen, into capsules and shoot them into space before he was stopped.  He said his work would thrive even if he was locked away.  And it did.  Some of the capsules were found but most of them made it to their destinations, and they hit the ground and the new creatures woke up and headed out into their brand new environments.  And some of them did really well, like this one.”  The three of them watched the tigerlily silently for a moment, taking in the grace of its long central stalk, the leaves that were edged with hard green claw-like nubs and even, as its primary blossom opened as though it were yawning, the long red stamens that drooped out like three lazy tongues.  “There are tigerlilies on ten different planets now, and they’ve eaten a lot of native species into extinction.”

“That’s not good,” Cody said with a frown.  “He wasn’t very responsible, was he?”

“No, he wasn’t.”

“What was his name?”

“George Harmony Caractacus-Ledger.” 

Cody looked up in surprise.  “He was related to you?”

“A distance cousin, yes.  He died about five hundred years ago, but he did accomplish his life’s goal.  His hybrids have thrived.”

“Wow.  Your family is so weird.”

“They’re your family now too, kiddo, keep that in mind,” Garrett teased him as they headed for another exhibit.

By the time they returned to the mansion Cody was exhausted and Jonah wasn’t far behind.  They put him to bed, cleaned up and lay down together, and Garrett snuggled close instantly.  “Did you have a nice afternoon?” he asked quietly as the bed’s temperature adjusted to their preferences.

“Real nice,” Jonah replied.  “You’ve got family everywhere, don’t you darlin’?”

“Oh, you’ve no idea,” Garrett said, rolling his eyes.  “We’ve got our claws into nearly every major disaster or triumph since the Federation began.  The Caractacus clan is infamous.  But no letting it get to you.”  He poked Jonah’s chest.  “It’s not important.  There are so many of us that no one really cares what most of us do as long as the central line stays intact, which means I never hear from my grandmother, which is a wonderful thing.”

“Still, it’s a hell of a family legacy,” Jonah couldn’t help but point out.  “You really sure you want to take my name?”  It was something they’d argued about, a little, but Garrett had been adamant.

“Technically we’re hyphenating,” he said carelessly.  “The ‘Caractacus’ will still be on all the legal documents, but it’s going to be silent.  Besides, Garrett Caractacus-Helms is such a terrible mouthful, and I’d never do that to Cody.  Garrett Helms is better.”

“And you’re sure Miles doesn’t mind?”

“Are you kidding?  He would have changed his own name if he thought he could get away with it.  Dad was the bane of every poor private in the marines, they spent hours practicing how to say his last name if he happened to walk by.  Everyone who fucked it up thought for sure he was going to have them cleaning out antique latrines or digging ditches by hand just for the hell of it, but he ignored it all for the most part.  The smart ones just called him ‘sir.’”  Garrett kissed Jonah’s chest.  “Stop worrying, everything will be fine.  Go to sleep, baby.”

Garrett had followed his own advice easy enough and Jonah had tried to do the same, but it was no use.  He was getting married tomorrow.  Married.  Married.  Most people never even bothered with it these days, they’d enter into short-term contracts with someone else or do a civil union that gave them Federation status without ceremony, but marriage was considered old-fashioned, something only the quaintest or most serious lovers undertook.  Marriage was a lot more common among naturals, who’s shorter life spans gave their actions a sense of gravity that most folk didn’t have, but here he was.  Getting married.  Blending everything about their lives.  All of the crazy Caractacuses, all the brilliant ones, all the leaders and all the outlaws, Jonah was forging a connection to them through Garrett, his own crazy, brilliant man.  And who was he?  There was no registry that held his name, no lineage he could point to with pride.  Drifters were almost entirely their own folk, and not much for record keeping. 

Jonah slept fitfully, his mind spinning from place to person, from the past to the future.  Not out of nervousness, just out of…consideration.  And when morning finally came around he was exhausted, while Garrett jumped out of bed like he was Cody’s age, all smiles.  “Come on, we have to get ready!”


“When you’re coherent enough to articulate an actual argument, I’ll listen to you.  Until then, up!”  Garrett whipped all the covers off the bed, leaving Jonah bare to the crisp morning air.  “Up up up!”

It was going to be one of those mornings.

His mind wandered all through breakfast, just fruit and coffee for himself, and listened to Cody play with Renee and Miles joke with Garrett and Claudia organize things in the background.  This was his new normal.  Not just for the duration of this trip either; they’d be back, regularly, thanks to Jack.  This was a real family, doing things together.  This was his life now.

“Hey.”  Jonah looked up from his coffee into Garrett’s slightly concerned face.  “Are you okay?”

“Yeah,” Jonah smiled.  “I’m good, darlin’.”

“Good.”  Garrett kissed him sweetly, then stood up.  “I’m going to go get dressed.”

“Can I watch?”

“You can help if you want,” Garrett offered with a grin, but in the end Jonah left him alone for it.  He wanted it to be a surprise.

His own clothes were elegant but comfortable, a dark navy three-piece suit that made him feel like he was stepping out of an earlier time, but with all the amenities of modern fabrics.  It adjusted automatically to his size, and the tie blended its own color to match the suit and his shirt.  He shaved, tied his hair back—he’d offered to have it cut and Garrett had very firmly declined—and figured he was about as ready as he was going to get.  He went to grab Cody, who had his own new suit that he was trying very hard not to fuss with, and the two of them headed outside.

                The wedding ceremony was held in the mansion’s small garden, a tidy maze of flagstone walkways and flower beds, dotted with occasional trees and bushes and, because this was Claudia’s house, a tiny vineyard.  A natural grotto formed between some of the vines and a stone archway, and the vines were laces with pale blue flowers, their tiny buds barely blooming yet.  Squarely underneath the arch was a holographic projector, where Jezria would be broadcast to officiate.  There was even a lectern to go in front of her, a real one so that they could lay the paperwork out.

                When Claudia had said simple she meant it.  There was no formal entrance, no additional ceremony.  Robbie and Wyl met Jonah and Cody on the veranda just above the garden and walked with them down to the grotto.  Jezria was already there, in holograph form, wavering slightly in the dappled afternoon light.

                “Excellent, we’re halfway there,” she said as he approached.  She was wearing a long blue dress with gold trim that looked simultaneously official and fashionable.  “Naturally Garrett is late.  He would be late to his own funeral.”

                Cody instantly frowned, and Jonah spoke up fast to ease the moment.  “Thanks for doing this.  I know you’re a busy woman.”

                “And a sleepy one,” she added, “it’s still dark out over here.  You’re lucky the last tsunami passed us by, or the connection might not have gone through.  Ah, there he is!”

                Jonah turned around and saw Garrett, flanked by Miles and Claudia, and his brain promptly went offline.  When Garrett wanted to get dolled up he went all the way, and clearly he thought this was an occasion for it.  His suit was a single long piece, strategically split and lifted along the hips and shoulders to give the appearance of formal lines.  It was the color of the ocean on Pandora, dark green foam at the high collar drifting into blues and grays as it drained down to his feet.  He had dusted subtle hints of silver along the sharp lines of his face, and his hair pulled forward to frame his face with soft, perfectly sculpted curls.  He didn’t even look real until he smiled.

                “Holy shit.”

                “Daddy!”  Cody bapped him on the arm.  “That’s a bad word.”

                “That good?  Really?”  Garrett preened theatrically.  “How gratifying.”

                “Now that the bride is here,” Jezria said dryly, “let’s commence.  Miles, you have the documents?”

                “Here.”  Miles put a thin piece of digitized paper and a pen down on the lectern.

                “Perfect.”  Jezria folded her hands together and looked at them.  “Gentlemen, on the surface this is very simple.  Once you sign this piece of paper, you will be joined in the eyes of Federation law.  That’s the easy part.  A marriage, however, is a partnership.  It’s a committed bond between two people, a symbol of their relationship that cleaves them together when the trials of their lives would cleave them apart.  It is a demonstration of the strength of your love for each other, and a reminder that you have chosen a more serious path than most.  Marriage, in the end, is about two people becoming one.  Do you have anything to say to each other on the subject?”

                Ah right, the vows section.  Jonah looked at Garrett.  He had said everything he needed to say over these last few days, but he had to make sure Garrett knew.  “No matter what happens to us, or how we change, you’re the one I want.  Nothin’ about life is easy, but you make my life so much better just by being in it.”  He reached out and took Garrett’s hands in his.  “I love you.  I always will.”

                Garrett’s grip on his tightened.  “I didn’t even know I was looking for you when I found you—both of you,” he added, smiling at Cody.  “And now I can’t imagine life without you.  I’m sometimes reckless and often stubborn and I know I’ll make mistakes, but I also know you’ll never hold them against me.  I can only strive to be as good to you as you always are to me, and I will.  I love you.  You make my family complete.”

                “Well said,” Jezria applauded.  “Have you decided to exchange tokens, or should we get down to the signing?”

                Rings were incredibly old-fashioned; tattoos had been far more popular for centuries, but this was a Drifter tradition that Jonah didn’t mind carrying with him.  He held out his hand to Cody, who looked momentarily nervous.  “Um…”  He glanced back at Wyl.  “I think I…”

                “Here.”  Wyl passed him the ring and Cody passed it to Jonah, who turned back to Garrett.  It was a simple band of heavy white gold, with their initials engraved on the inside.  He took Garrett’s left hand and slid the ring onto his third finger, like Drifters did when they got serious, and then kissed his knuckles.

                Garrett’s casual aplomb had vanished.  His eyes were shining and he looked like he was on the verge of having to sniffle, but he held it back long enough to take the ring his father was holding out to him, this one of red gold, and put it on Jonah’s hand.  One tear finally escaped, and Jonah heard Wyl snicker.

                “I knew it!  I win.”

                “Try to be gracious,” Robbie muttered.  Garrett glared at both of them.

                “You were betting on whether I’d cry?”

                “More like when,” Miles said, looking more than a little smug. 

                “I hate you all.”

                “Before this devolves into name calling,” Jezria interjected, “why don’t we finish things up?  Both of you need to sign the marriage license.”  She stepped back as far as the projector would allow her image to go.

                Garrett stepped around the lectern, took up the pen and signed his name with a flourish.  He passed the pen on to Jonah, and he put his name on the line just below Garrett’s.  Their new, combined last name sprung up below that, and Garrett grinned.

                “Just call me Garrett Helms.”

                Oh hell, it was real.  It was all real, it had really happened, Garrett was his.  They shared a name.  They shared everything now.  It was…

                Jonah reached out and pulled Garrett into a crushing embrace, kissing him too hard, too possessively but Garrett just melted into it, letting Jonah lead.  People were speaking, laughing, Jezria was trying to direct but none of it mattered.  It was done.  Garrett was his.

                He felt Cody tug on the back of his jacket and broke the kiss to let their son into their hug, but ignored the rest of it for now.  In a minute Jonah would make room in his heart for everyone else, but right now, it was completely full of the two people he held in his arms.  He had what he wanted.  He had everything he wanted.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Paradise Post #18

Notes: A tasty little chapter to tide you over until Christmas Day, when there will be much rejoicing.  Yeah, next Tuesday is Christmas, but I’m not going to let that mess with my schedule:)  Happy Tuesday, my darlings.


Title: Paradise


Part Eighteen: Rapid Response





The first thing Cody did when he saw Garrett at breakfast was give him a huge hug.  Garrett was warm again, not cold like the last few times Cody had held him, and that was reassuring.  The second thing Cody did was push Garrett away from himself as hard as he could.

Garrett bent a little at the waist with a grunt as he stepped back, but he didn’t say anything.  Cody’s dad was far more surprised, and immediately upset with him.


“You aren’t supposed to get sick!” Cody yelled at Garrett, interrupting his dad.  He knew he was going to get in trouble for this, but he needed to say it.  It wasn’t right.  He had been worried for days and days, practically forever, and it hurt.  “Nobody’s supposed to get sick except for me!  You’re supposed to be okay!”


“No, it’s okay.”  Garrett waved Jonah off.  “You’re right,” he said.  He knelt down on the ground in front of Cody, still a few feet away.  “I’m sorry about that.  I didn’t take care of myself the way I should have.  It wasn’t very responsible of me, and I hate that I made you and your dad worry so much.”  He smiled a little, not an “I think this is funny” smile but an “I get it” kind of smile, special for just the two of them.  He held out a hand toward Cody and Cody wavered a little, wanting to go to Garrett but not wanting to give up his upset quite so fast.

“I can’t promise never to get sick again, just like you can’t promise never to get sick.  But we don’t do it on purpose, either.  Neither of us wants to hurt anyone who loves us, right?”  Cody nodded slowly.  “And I promise to do everything I can to stay healthy.  I promise, sweetheart.”



Well, fine then.  That had to be enough for Cody, and he didn’t really want to be apart from Garrett any longer.  Cody took his hand and let Garrett pull him into another hug, this one a little more gentle.  His daddy’s hand came down to rest on his hair and this was right, this was the way it was supposed to be.  They were supposed to be together and fine, and now they actually were.  It was perfect.

“What did we say about expressin’ our emotions with violence?” Daddy asked dryly.  Darn it.  Moment over.

“That is isn’t the right way to solve things,” Cody muttered into Garrett’s shoulder.  He pulled back just far enough to check his daddy’s posture out of the corner of his eye.  “But sometimes it is.”

He didn’t look convinced.  “You really gonna try to argue with me about this, bucko?”

“No, Daddy.”

“But maybe it can wait until after breakfast?” Garrett offered, letting go of the hug and standing up, but keeping a hand on Cody’s shoulder.  “In fact, there’s a lot to do after breakfast.  Like school work, for one.”

“Oh, right.  Good thinking.”

“What?”  Cody watched a look pass between his fathers and felt his happiness sink a little.  Were they going to work together like this all the time?  “But I’ve already done it all,” Cody said.

“Everything except for the biology project, kiddo.”

Cody frowned.  “I thought I didn’t have to do that because I got stung.”

“That’s the awful thing about personal responsibility,” Garrett said, and he didn’t look all that happy either, so that made Cody feel a little bit better.  “Just because we get taken out of the game for a while doesn’t mean we don’t have to do the work.  I’ve got a lot to make up too.”

“No you don’t.”  The three of them looked over at Miles, who stood in the kitchen door.  Cody liked Miles, but he liked him even better now than he was on Cody’s side.  “Most of the point of this visit was to get the two of you married, and that hasn’t happened yet.  Frankly, I think it’s in the best interest of everyone that we make it happen as quickly as possible, given our record of success so far.”

Garrett frowned.  “I thought there was still a lot to do to get ready.  Colors and linens—”

“All done.  You’ll look wonderful in blue.”

“The cake, the food—”

“There’s going to be a small one of every flavor Cody approved of, and I remember that you enjoy lemon chiffon, so that will be in there even though Cody didn’t care for it.  The meal is poached tramblefish with an herb-infused…”  He turned around and looked at Claudia, who walked in holding Renee and poured herself a cup of bissap juice.  “What is it?”

“Herb-infused vegetable parfait,” Claudia said.  “With a careole remoulade.  You’re going to love it!” 

“The guest list, then…”

“Just us, plus Robbie and Wyl.  It was always going to be a small family affair,” Claudia smiled.  “And Jezria’s marrying you over the com.  She already okayed the additional time off, too, so no one has to worry about lost work or school projects.  Just this once.”

“Wow.”  Garrett sounded a little dazed.  “And when are we doing this?”

“Tomorrow morning.  That will give you all today to enjoy each other’s company before the ceremony tomorrow, and then you two can leave for your honeymoon while Cody spends some quality time with us.”

Cody held Garrett’s hand tighter.  “I don’t want them to go away,” he said.

“They aren’t going far.”  Claudia bent over and kissed Cody’s forehead.  Renee giggled in Cody’s ear.  “And Wyl might have said something about going on a tank ride…”

“Really?”  Cody had been asking to ride in a tank forever, and Robbie kept saying he couldn’t approve it, but apparently he had anyway.  “A real tank?”

“We don’t have any fake tanks,” Miles assured him.

“That’s so…that’s so cool!”

“Yeah yeah, tell it to Wyl and Robbie,” Garrett said mildly.  “But just once, so it doesn’t go to his head.  So.  Everything is all ready to go.”

“Sure is.”  Claudia kissed Garrett too, also on the forehead.  “You’re welcome, dear.”


“How are you guys going to spend the day?” Claudia asked, handing Renee over to Miles.  The baby bumped a wide, open-mouthed smooch to her daddy’s cheek, leaving a thin line of drool behind.  Cody made a yuck face, but Miles just smiled.  “Because if you’re going to be around here, you could help me tie up the whimsy flowers that I’m going to weave through the decorative arch for tomorrow—”

“Actually, you know what, we haven’t seen the zoo yet,” Garrett said quickly.  Cody pumped his free fist with triumph and jumped up and down, but just once, because he knew how to be discreet.  “I think maybe we’ll go after breakfast…guys?”

“Definitely,” Daddy agreed.

Cody had never been to a zoo before.  “What kind of animals will they have there?”

“Lions and tigers and bears, oh my!” Garrett told him with a grin.  Cody frowned. 

“What does that even mean?”

“It’s a very, very old movie quote, I’ll explain it on the way to the zoo.”

“You guys eat first,” Miles said.  “I’ll let Thérèse know she’s going with you.”

Garrett’s face fell.  “Oh come on, do we have to take Thérèse?  What about Corporal Kelly?”

“He’s on patrol.  I’ll get her, you guys get ready to go.”

“I like Thérèse,” Cody offered, looking up at his dads.  “She’s nice.”

“Nice!  She’s nice, he says.”  Garrett rolled his eyes.  Jonah shepherded the two of them to the table, where Claudia was laying out the breakfast she’d held back for them.  It was Cody’s favorite, pancakes in the shape of fish.  “Of course you think she’s nice.”

“She is,” Cody insisted, grabbing up a fish.  It was puffy and flaky, and as soon as he bit down creamy red filling squished out into his mouth.  He looked up at his dads and grinned wide.  They both grimaced at him.


Monday, December 17, 2012

New Release Today!

This is the final little post, we'll be back to normal programming tomorrow, darlins...

I have a new release today!  It's a novella called The Solstice Gift--you can find it here: Solstice Gift at Total E-Bound publishing.  It's the story of a changeling doing his best to survive in the Unseelie Court.  Would you like to know more?  Well read on:)

How long can a human survive in the treacherous court of the winter fae, when even his allies are fighting for their lives? Dis is a changeling, a human stolen away from his own world as a child by the vicious winter fae. He's survived to adulthood through a combination of luck and careful oversight by his only ally, a fairy lord named Marten, but his success might have finally reached its end. It's the winter solstice, and Oberon's court is preparing for a hunt with a history of bloodshed, one that requires Dis to be an unwilling participant. Even if Dis lives through that, he's being watched by the king of the fae himself, and no one can save him if Oberon has marked him for sacrifice.

This is one of four novellas following the same general theme--Oberon's Court--being released today on Total E-Bound's website.  They all have the same cover, but they're all very different. 

I hope that the interested people enjoy mine!  Tomorrow I'll post the next part for Pandora, so look out for it, guys.  Take it easy on this extremely windy Monday.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Cinders Posted To Literotica

Okay, shorty post number 2!

I cleaned up and posted Cinders as one long story to Literotica, and it went up today.  If you enjoyed it and want to read it again, if you like to vote or leave comments, or maybe if you missed it when I posted it here and want to check it out for the first time, you can find it here:

What's Cinders about?  Hum, well, I wanted to twist up a fairytale and redo it in my own way, so I took Cinderella,

made her into a Chinese American boy, put him on the streets of San Francisco,

gave him a terrible backstory and a boyfriend, then magically swept him off to fifteenth century France (or thereabouts)
and made him slave for his wicked stepmother and stepsisters in an oddly cartoonish/Cubist/nightmarish world, with only the help of a mouse for a sidekick and, eventually, his very fabulous fairy godmother,

and then he finally figures out how to get to the ball and break the spell holding him in the fairytale by the stroke of midnight, and returns home to San Fran and his worried lover.  There's even a missing shoe worked in there.
So!  Something to think about on this lovely Sunday.  Have a great end to your weekend, darlins:)

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Goodreads M/M Romance Awards

Hi guys!

This is the first in a series of small posts that all have to do with things I was hoping would happen at the same time, but didn't.  Stupid Literotica waiting queue.  Anyway!

Voting is finally open for the Goodreads M/M Romance Group's member choice awards.  I don't think you have to be a member to vote, but I could be wrong.  My novel Changing Worlds is nominated in two categories: Best World Created and Best Sci-Fi/Futuristic/Post Apocalyptic, and a short story of mine called Having A Ball is in the anthology Animal Magentism, which is a nominee in the same category.  I would love your support!  Here's the link:

Let's see...I'm running a very easy contest on Monday for my new release that comes out that same day, so remember to visit me then.  And more Paradise is coming, so look for that soon as well.  And...jeez, didn't I say this would be a small post?  Woman, rein yourself in!

Happy Saturday:)

And oh, PS-what did I go and see this morning?

And it was awesome!  Very visually exciting, funny in places, and with more detail than I'd expected, although since there are going to be 3 movies I suppose I shouldn't be surprised.  Anyway.  So good.  A lovely way to spend 3 hours of my life.  I can't say that about all the movies I go to see.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Paradise Post #17


Notes: Well.  I did promise you descriptive prose, and *ahem* here it is.  This is a very R-rated chapter, guys and gals.  Just saying.  So!  EnjoyJ


Title: Paradise


Part Seventeen:  Side Effects






In the early days of its development, Regen was something of a mixed blessing.  It could heal horrific wounds and bring people back from the brink of death, but if someone was wholly submerged in it, instead of being given the small injections that staved off aging, the process did more than heal their physical wounds.  It went in and completely rewrote genomes, perfected imperfections, and made the body in its liquid embrace the equivalent of a blank slate.  Soldiers would go into it dying and come out of it like flesh dolls of themselves, with no memories and no physical abilities beyond the most basic of functions.  It turned back the clock, literally, and turned the grown back into children.

After being sued almost into oblivion, TerraPharm, the company responsible for the technology, had gone back to the drawing board and come up with ways to protect the brain and preserve memories and motor functions.  A doctor skilled enough in using it could design a Regen treatment that dulled the psychological pain of a traumatic event while keeping the memory of the event itself.  In the mansion’s infirmary, a place designed to treat any trauma a soldier might have to contend with, the doctors were artists with Regen. 

So, Garrett was allowed to retain his memory of the traumatic event that precipitated his landing on his back in a pool of gel, while not really feeling the emotions that had gone with it.  The process had been extra tricky, given that he was in for a biochemical treatment in the first place, but the doctors managed.  That was what gave Garrett the ability to wake up slowly and calmly, quietly assessing his surroundings, instead of bolting off the bed he was on and running around in a panic, which had definitely been a possibility a little while ago.

The bed was familiar.  Comfortable.  The infirmary did its best, but there were too many technological worries in a medical bed to make it truly comfortable to lie on.  This one was nice, and it smelled like warmth and Jonah.  Jonah…wasn’t there something Garrett was supposed to tell him?

He let his mind mull it over as he gradually took stock of his senses.  Warm, soft bed, although his cheek was pressed against something that felt a little harder.  There was a heavy weight across his middle, and something was rhythmically fluffing his hair.  The weight moved, and Garrett finally identified it.  Arm.  He smiled and snuggled closer to the owner of the arm, because it had to be Jonah, and that was good.  He loved being held by Jonah.  It was kind of a surprise, but…wait…why should his fiancé holding him ever be surprising?

Because you freaked out and broke his ex’s arm in two places, after spying on him and going off your meds, the asshole part of his consciousness said.  Nice going, genius.

Shut up, bitch, Garrett retorted, but he had made a good point.  Or two.

“I can tell you’re awake now,” Jonah murmured.  He sounded drowsy.

“Shh, I’m not ready to wake up,” Garrett replied.  He had the beginnings of butterflies in his stomach, so he figured he should take advantage of his medically-induced calm while he could.

“Can’t be sleepy.  You’ve been out for almost three days.”

“I can be sleepy if I want to,” Garrett told him.  “That way I can avoid facing the music for a little longer.”

“Where’s that sayin’ even come from?” Jonah asked.  “Doesn’t make any sense.”

“I don’t know.  We should look it up.”

“Later.”  Jonah kissed his bare forehead, and Garrett sighed and turned his face further into Jonah’s shoulder.

“I probably don’t deserve that.”

“Oh, you probably do,” Jonah mused.  “I think you probably deserve a lot more, but you’re not gonna get any of it until we talk this out.”

“You sound tired.  We can wait until you’re awake and alert.”

Jonah chuckled.  “I don’t think so, darlin’.  The more time you lie there and stew, the worse it’s gonna get.  And I don’t fancy chasin’ your ass all over this compound in order to have words with you, so.  Let’s talk.”

Oh, glorious.  “Where do you want to start?” Garrett asked, starting to pull away, but Jonah put his head right back where it had been.

“Let’s start with why you let your meds slip.  It’s not that hard to get ‘em, right?  You just use the gauntlet.”

“Right.”  Garrett smiled, but it felt a little brittle.  “Here’s the thing.  Back on Pandora, I use the gauntlet about once a week.  When I’m in a stable situation that I’m accustomed to, my symptoms are far less acute.  I’ve actually been using less and less medication since moving in with you and Cody.”

“That’s good, isn’t it?”

“It’s good,” Garrett agreed, “but then our situation changed.  We came here, and the protocol is for me to check every day while away from home, but once we landed my regular routine went to hell, and as the stresses built, so did my need for the stabilizers.  When I missed a day and got a double dose the next day, the enhanced effect sent my confidence level skyrocketing, which made it easier to allow myself to miss the next day, and the next.  I had so much work to do, and I was worried about you and Cody fitting in and, well, all sorts of things.  It just got worse after you met with Kilroy.  When I finally realized how far I was from all right, I knew I’d have to go under to get things set straight, but I still needed to be there for you.”  Garrett swallowed hard.  “So I put it off again.”

“And was this before or after you bugged me?”

Oh, so he knows about that.  Shit.  “After,” Garrett admitted.  “I was having some problems by the time I bugged you, but mostly I was just…worried.  And a little jealous.  I made Robbie help me.”

“Oh, I’ve already had a long talk with that guy,” Jonah said sarcastically.  “He doesn’t apologize easy, does he?  And jealous?  What in the world did I do to make you jealous?”

Garrett shrugged awkwardly.  “Nothing.  Jealousy is an irrational emotion, or haven’t you heard?  I thought maybe you would reconsider, maybe you missed aspects from your old life that I couldn’t give to you.”

“For fuck’s sake,” Jonah sighed.  “Darlin’.  If anyone in this relationship has reason to be insecure, it’s me.  I’m the one that’s an uneducated former smuggler with a natural kid and emotional baggage a goddamn mile long.  You’re smart, you’ve got more degrees than I can count and a pedigree that goes back to the founding of the Federation.  You’ve given up almost all the benefit of that to live on a fringe colony makin’ a fifth of what you could on other planets, with none of the entertainment I know you love, for me and Cody.  I know we’ve had this talk before but I don’t think it’s sunk in for us yet.”  He tilted Garrett’s chin up and looked him in the eyes.  “I’m crazy as hell in love with you, and I’m so goddamn grateful that you’re mine that I barely know how to face it.”

“Oh,” Garrett said, feeling his body start to respond to Jonah’s tone and close proximity and not minding that one bit.  “Good.  Me too.”

“That bein’ said,” Jonah continued, “if you ever put a slimdisc on me again, you and I are gonna have a hell of a lot more words to say than a simple apology.”  He was dead serious.  “You need to trust me for this to work.  We have to trust each other.  Otherwise it’ll all fall apart.  I’m not gonna do wrong by you, but you have to be up front with me.  I want to know when you’re worried or sick or jealous or fallin’ apart, because when you hide it from me it makes me think you don’t trust me to help you or explain.  I know you were already off the meds when you made the call, but you still knew it wasn’t right.”

Garrett didn’t look away, even though he really wanted to.  “I knew it,” he said.  “I’m sorry for doing it.  I was going to tell you.”

“I know.”

“What happened with Jack?”

Jonah smiled, suddenly so easy and bright that it was a little shocking.  “He’s not goin’ after Cody any more.  We’ve agreed to consider visitations, though.  Cody wasn’t against it and Jack seems to really want it.”

Well, at least the first half of all that information was welcome.  “Are you sure that’s a good idea?” Garrett asked doubtfully.

“No, but there’s time to figure it out.  I’m not gonna let the man screw up Cody, and neither will you.”

“Exactly, we can screw him up far more efficiently all by ourselves.”

“Cynic,” Jonah accused, nuzzling into the soft hair of Garrett’s temple.  His erection surged to life at the simple touch, and Garrett groaned.  Coming out of a major Regen treatment temporarily gave him the libido of a teenage boy.  “Ah, the doc warned me about that,” Jonah said, and he sounded like he was trying not to laugh.  “Said I should be gentle with you for a while ‘cause you’re bound to be sensitive.”

“I’m not sensitive, I’m horny,” Garrett informed Jonah loftily while trying to rub against his hip.  “There’s a difference.”

“Yeah?”  Jonah reached down between them and palmed Garrett’s cock, and even through the lightweight scrubs he was wearing, it was enough to make Garrett hiss and clench his teeth.  “Seems like both to me.”

“Lucky me,” Garrett snarked.  “Or really, lucky you, because while I might be on a hair trigger I can come and come and come, and everything should be nice and,” he squirmed a little, “tight.”

“Thought you were sleepy,” Jonah teased, but his expression was getting hungry.

“That was before.  This is now.  Try to keep up, sweetheart.”

“How long,” Jonah asked, rubbing Garrett’s throbbing cock, “do you think it would take me to get you off?”

“The first time? Maybe five seconds,” Garrett gasped.  “Let’s find out.”

“Let’s.”  Jonah moved in for a kiss as he pulled Garrett’s pants down his thighs, then gripped his length and stroked him.  Jonah had big hands, calloused in just the right places, and even though his palm was dry Garrett was leaking enough to compensate, to make what should have been too much friction a delicious pull and glide, and then Jonah brought his palm up to the head and rolled it around in a circle, and that—

Fuuuuck.  Garrett moaned into his lover’s mouth and brought one leg up to rock Jonah’s body against his as he came.  Well.  So that might not have even been five seconds, but it was so good he had to let it happen.  Jonah pulled back from the kiss with a grin and rubbed his tacky, wet hand off on the sheets.  “You’re a quick shot, baby.”

“I warned you,” Garrett replied loftily, still riding the endorphins.  “But I think I could last for longer, if you want to go again.”

“You think you can?”

Garrett smiled.  “I’ve been through this before.  I’m probably going to stay hard for hours.”

Jonah pushed Garrett over onto his back and shimmied down his body.  Jonah was in a pair of sleep shorts and nothing else, and Garrett enjoyed having so much naked skin pressed so close to him.  He kicked his pants the rest of the way off and made space for Jonah between his legs.  “You have someone to help you through it last time?” Jonah asked, his voice a little throaty as he leaned in and licked the head of Garrett’s cock.  Garrett shivered.

“Just me and my toys,” Garrett replied.  “It was a quarantine situation.”

“Have to tell me about it sometime.”  Jonah licked again, and Garrett lost track of what he was going to reply as his fiancé started to use his mouth on him, licking a slow line up the length of his cock before dipping down over the head and swirling around his tongue in a circle.

“Gaah—ungh.”  Jonah hummed approvingly at Garrett’s incoherence, and Garrett shut his eyes and tried to ride out the first, sharpest sensations.  He was doing okay, he really was, he could handle the swirly thing and the way Jonah’s throat relaxed to let him in so deep, and he could hold out against the warm, wet pressure and the way the strands of Jonah’s hair tickled when they fell across his abdomen and thighs, but then Jonah pushed a slick finger into Garrett’s incredibly tight ass and touched his prostate, and it happened so fast that he had no time to react, no time to give any warning at all, he just thrust his hips forward and came into Jonah’s mouth.  Jonah drank it all down, and then waited patiently for Garrett to get his voice back.

“You—uhm—you should fuck me,” Garrett panted.  The finger was still inside of him, moving gently.  “It’ll feel amazing, I swear.”

“I want to, but I think you’re still too tight for that, darlin’.  Gonna need some prep first.”

Garrett was mostly blissed out during the manhandling, and by the time he was really aware that he was on his stomach with the bed adjusted to lift his hips, his legs spread obscenely wide, Jonah’s tongue was already tracing a circle around his hole.  “Yesss,” he hissed, and his fingers clutched the sheets convulsively when Jonah started to press his tongue inside.

Despite having come twice, Garrett was still hard.  It actually ached a little, in a good way, and his ass was gradually opening up to Jonah’s patient attention.  He moaned and pressed back against that thick, flexible muscle, trying to relax and let Jonah inside.  Garrett loved this, he loved being touched so intimately.  It was one of the few things that he’d never found a toy to be able to adequately replicate.  Simple fucking was easy enough to mimic, but having his lover’s mouth so close to him, having his tongue going someplace so utterly personal, that was special.  He let Jonah work him open, sometimes substituting his fingers for his tongue, and reveled in it. 

“I love it when you’re in me,” Garrett said as he began to get close again.  “I don’t care what part you use, I want all of them, I want your tongue and your fingers and your dick, I want your whole hand in me.”  Jonah’s fingers jerked against his prostate and Garrett groaned.  “You’ve never done that, have you?” he breathed.

“No,” Jonah said, and his voice was gravelly with need.

“It’s so good.  There’s nothing like it, and you’d love it, you’d be looking at it and wondering how I could possibly take you like that, and your hand would be so warm and everything so soft and I’d be going crazy and you’d feel it, every movement I made, inside and out.”  Garrett was warming to the idea.  “I want you to do that.  I want it now.”

“No time right now,” Jonah ground out, and then he was stretched out against Garrett’s back, holding his hips at the right angle as he quickly slid inside of Garrett.  He’d lubed himself up at some point, clever man, so it was an easy enough glide after all the preparation, and Garrett sighed with satisfaction and reached down for his cock.

“No, baby.”  Jonah caught his hands and pressed them flat to the bed.  “No touching.  You don’t need it, you’re just gonna come from my cock inside of you.”  He rolled his hips and any objections Garrett might have had melted away with the pleasure of the motion.  Pleasure…it seemed like a pallid word for something that felt so fucking good.

Jonah leaned on him heavily, working in and out of Garrett’t tight channel in a slow, deep rhythm.  Garrett tried to rub against the bed but Jonah’s weight was too much, he had almost no room to shift and so after a few minutes he stopped trying, and just relaxed into the fuck.

“That’s it, baby.”  Jonah started to speed up, his breath coming unevenly.  “Hell, you’re so fuckin’ tight, even with…Garrett, god…”  His thrusts grew shorter and sharper, bumping against Garrett’s prostate with every new penetration, and Garrett felt it start, felt the base of his spine start to tighten as his ass began to clench, felt his back arch and his fingers dig into the pillow as his third orgasm, slower and more deliberate than the other two, took control of his body.  He didn’t know what kind of sound he was making, he just knew it was loud and filled his head.  His dick felt unbearably hard, and with the very next thrust, with the tiny rubbing movement it gave him against the sheets, he was done.  He came, and it felt like a wave of fire rushing over his body, fast to flicker to life and slow to burn out.  Garrett pumped his load onto the bed, slicking up his stomach, and just as he started to come down Jonah thrust in one more time and stayed in, as deep as he could go, groaning loudly, almost mournfully, as he orgasmed.  “Fuckfuckfuck…Garrett, darlin’…”

Jonah stayed inside of him for as long as he could before slipping free.  “That was amazin’,” he said, rolling Garrett over into his arms.  “How did you—oh, baby.”  The look of astonishment on his face was quite frankly amusing. “You’ve gotta be kiddin’ me.”

“Nope,” Garrett purred smugly, rubbing his erection against Jonah’s belly.  “What can I say, it’s good to be me right now!”

“Well, give me a minute and I’ll help you out with that.”

“Oh sweetheart, you relax.  Enjoy the show,” Garrett said as he reached down and finally took himself in hand.  If he took his time, Jonah would probably be ready to go again if he needed more.  Garrett rather hoped that he did.