Hi, everyone, just for the fun of it, here's one of my Serial Flashes, begun for New Year's Day ~
Happy New Year... on another Earth, Part 1- 11
Serial Flash in Two Hundred ~ Sylva and Zeke’s story
Part 1 ~
Sylva stroked on the red lipstick carefully. The shade was deep scarlet and it looked like a swathe of gleaming velvet on her lips. “Who needs collagen injections?” she murmured, then surveyed her festively made-up face. Dusky twilight purple shadowed her eyes, highlighting the blue-green color. A shimmer of pale gold brought out her high cheekbones ~ a magical contrast to the glistening pink-gold powder covering her face, her neck, and artfully ending at her propped-up cleavage, displayed by a heart-shaped tight bodice of midnight satin. “Mirror, mirror, on my bathroom wall, who’s the New Years Party fairest of them all?”
Zeke flashed a cocky half-grin at his appearance in the mirror his mother had given him decades ago. The white-gold scroll work surrounding the tall oval mirror contrasted sharply with his tan leather vest and matching pants, both designed for riding his horse into town and as evening wear for the new year’s celebration. His cream-colored silk shirt clung to the muscles of his chest, won by hard work on his family’s ranch empire. And won by the fistfights he was famous for ending, but never beginning. Tonight, by long-standing tradition, he could claim any available woman as his bride.
Part 2 ~
Sylva flipped a smile at her reflection. Stepping back to see herself more fully, she thrust her hip, accentuating the sassiness of her short satin and tule-layered skirt. “Adorably sexy,” she complimented herself. Okay, her thighs were full unlike the stick figure models that had successfully invaded the fashion world. Her calves were shapely, what used to be considered starlet-sexy...especially since she wore spectacular ankle-strap black heels, along with a pair of old-fashioned seamed hose. Tonight, she would strut her stuff with the best of them. Tomorrow, no more job. She was one more victim of the current economy.
Zeke strapped on his pearl-handled revolver. He’d cleaned and oiled it earlier, then made certain it fired properly, shooting several pennies out of the air. Since they’d become non-legal tender eleven years past, he figured that was a damn good use. Leaning down, he slid a dead-aim derringer, one of his grandfather’s designs, inside his fancified riding boot. Decorated with swirls of gold thread and engraved with the ranch’s crest, his new boots were a show of his hard-won status as the Overseer of their horse operations, from breeding to sales. Yep, it was time to settle on one woman.
Part 3 ~
Sylva beat back the worry that threatened to overwhelm her. Pasting a smile on her face, she tossed her strawberry blonde hair a bit. The long length waved over her bare back while her dangly ruby-imitation earrings swung enchantingly...to her eye. She felt sexy and sultry. Swivelling her head, she looked at her profile from the corner of her eye. She’d pulled the sides of her hair up, banded it, then attached a tiny glittering rose. As if possessed by a spirit, she faced the mirror, whispering, “I wish I may, I wish might, find my true love tonight.”
Zeke plucked his mahogany leather cowboy hat from the bronze curlicue hook, plopping it on his head. From years of practice, since he’d been knee-high to his father, the broad-brimmed hat settled at the perfect rakish angle, and covered most of his bay-colored hair. The curling waves at the nape of his neck and above his ears were touched by a golden sheen from all the time he spent outdoors. He’d had more than one woman, scarce as they were in these parts, run her fingers through the fringes of his hair, as if she sought real gold. He grinned.
Part 4 ~
Sylva grimaced and shook her head at herself, before whirling away from the mirror, and out the bathroom door. Yeah, that would be the day. True love, ha! She’d tried it several times now, with results more dismal than the prospect of not being able to find job. Refusing to think about what possessions she could sell to get by, she lovingly picked up her long velvet cape. Reversible, the hooded cape was a glorious red velvet on one side and a deep midnight black on the other. Who cared if people thought she looked like a witch in it.
Zeke swung the fringed buckskin jacket off the garment post, and slid into it. It fit his frame perfectly. He’d made certain of that by having it tailored in town, despite his family’s protest and ribbing over his extravagance, as they called it. But hell to the four winds, Brennon outfitted the other young bucks and the ranch gentlemen. All of whom partook of sophisticated entertainments in town, other than Sophie’s Sin Saloon. What did he care if others thought he was too dandified? His quick aim with a fist or gun meant most would keep their comments to themselves.
Part 5 ~
Sylva tucked her evening bag beneath her arm, then carefully locked the door to her apartment. Barely adequate, it was all she could afford. Maybe it was time, to leave the windy city, Chicago. Corruption grew like a weed everyday. And, if she had to be tormented one more time by the garlic-on-steroids cooking smells that seeped into every crack of the building, and saturated her clothing, along with the constant fog of cigarette smoke, she was going to scream bloody murder. Her only humorous consolation...garlic kept the vampires away. But, not the real bloodsuckers lurking around every corner.
Zeke enthusiastically trotted down the private stairway that led to his section of the rambling ranch house, one hand perched on the butt of his pistol. The construction of a grand new wing was almost constant. Currently his sister and her new husband had decided to make the ranch their permanent home, and were overseeing the latest plans. His boots hit the expensive sierra-colored granite floor of the entryway, clicking loudly. His mother had finagled it out of his father, using her seductive wiles toward the end of their shouting-rambunctious negotiations. Glimpsing his father in the side hall, he halted.
Part 6 ~
Sylva halted at the top of the stoop, enchanted. The crescent moon hung in the sunset sky like an enormous lemon slice, only cast in gold. Smiling, she hugged her cloak closer against the windy chill. Sweeping down the short flight of steps, she clicked toward her small car, watching out for the vein-like cracks in the sidewalk. As she stepped off the worn-down curb to cross the street, her ankle wobbled from a pebble beneath her shoe. With a talented balancing act she righted herself, but not in time to avoid the speeding black SUV wheeling around the corner.
Zeke wheeled toward his father, who winked broadly, and grinned. Saluting with his hat, Zeke continued out the door. The crescent moon shone above the tangerine-pink horizon while the planet of love, Venus, blazed brightly. Inside the shelter next to the hitching rail, he saddled and bridled Smoky, one of his favorite riding stallions. Making certain the soft lariat was secure, he swung astride, appreciating the familiar creak of leather. Smoky stretched into a fast walk, then a long trot, eager for a gallop. Without cue the stallion settled into a ground-eating lope. In an hour they would hit town.
Part 7 ~
Sylva froze in terror, the scream in her throat failing to pass her lips. Desperately, as time slowed around her, she looked for a way to escape becoming a bloody broken *okay,sexily-dressed* pancake. The headlights glared like devil’s eyes. The grill suddenly reminded her of a dragon’s face. When a blast of light struck her, then formed into a mirror-bright circle, Sylva dived toward it, not knowing what else to do. The first thing she noticed ~ she’d landed on her butt in a shallow mud puddle. Then she noticed, the air smelled heavenly despite the drift of fresh horse manure.
Zeke reined Smoky down to a slow trot at the edge of town. With excitement charging through him like a bull, he scanned both sides of Main Street, looking for the rowdiest celebration. A woman wanting marriage would be making herself available there tonight. He hadn’t confided in anyone. No, he’d cherished the notion he’d have his pick of fillies without the two local women who chased after him, scaring any newcomer away. As a shooting star appeared, he halted Smoky, taking in the celestial beauty and making his wish for a woman he could love with his whole heart.
Part 8 ~
Sylva glanced back and forth, completely bewildered. Illumined buildings that were no more than three stories, looked as if they’d been the victims of an all out war between an old west movie town and the elongated elegance of art nouveau. Not only that, horses adorned by silver-laden saddles stood at hitching posts while some manner of flying automobiles were parked on rooftops. Where in the freaking hell was she? Swivelling her head in slow motion, she nursed the hope she’d wake up at any moment. Even the music sounded like a strange mix of honky tonk and a waltz.
Zeke fingered his lariat as he urged Smoky forward. From what he could tell, the Diamond Flame had the most action. The piano-tinkly, fiddle-swinging music streamed toward him and the most expensive air cars packed the rooftop. A glint of light caught his eye. Instantly he focused on the center of Main Street, one hand ready to draw his pistol. He blinked, blinked again, an attempt to clear his vision, though it was as clear as a hunting hoot owl. The woman sat in middle of the street as if she’d fallen. Probably those strange ankle-breaking shoes were to blame.
Part 9 ~
Sylva stared at the slow approach of a man on horseback. The luminous glare of lights spilling into the darkness revealed his chiseled lean features beneath the cocky set of his cowboy hat. Had she somehow been transported to a movie set? When he lifted a rope, then began twirling it above his head in ever-widening circles, she glanced all around looking for a calf, or an escaped horse ~ all while the theme from Rawhide played in her head. She wondered if she was in any danger. Should she stay put, or get up quick as she could, and run?
Zeke ran his gaze up the woman’s shapely legs covered by saloon dancer hose. The full swell of her hips were revealed by her flipped up skirt. Never more grateful for a pool of light, he stared at the daring display of her bosom, plump creamy mounds that begged for his hands, his lips, his face buried between them. She wasn’t shy about showing them. He surely liked that. As his cock sprang to life and demanded to be unholstered, he lifted his lariat, swinging it above his head. Rapidly flicking his glance around, he saw no competitors for her.
Part 10 ~
Sylva fastened her gaze on the whirling rope, a whoosh of sound cutting through the air. Maybe he was a champion roper with a skill that good. As she began to rise, her hand sank deeper in the mud. “No,” she moaned. The cowboy’s horse stopped in front of her, not thirty feet away. Realizing she showed too much, Sylva smoothed her skirt down with her other hand. Now what? If she tried to get up, she would be even muddier. Sighing with resignation, she twisted...suddenly she felt the rope settle around her shoulders, bite into her bare skin.
Zeke kept his lariat smooth and easy, aiming his gaze toward her face. He wanted to see her beautiful features more clearly, and glimpse her eyes on him before he claimed her as his bride. Unless she wore another man’s mark. But what man let his woman out by herself on this night? The more he saw of her, even as she flattened her stiff skirt, the more he blazed like a stallion for her. She had the most adorable curves he’d ever witnessed on a woman. With focused ease, Zeke sailed the loop toward her, certain of his capture.
Part 11 ~
Sylva didn’t move for a few moments, paralyzed with shock. Outrage flared through her, quick as a wildfire, and she screamed. The instant she reached up to remove the rope it tightened enough to stop her. “What the hell do you think you’re doing?” She used her fiercest *don’t mess with me* voice. Whipping around, she saw him swing a leg over the saddle horn, then dismount in one unbelievable motion, all while keeping the rope taut. “And where the hell am I?” Good Lord, his lean defined muscles looked like living bands of steel as he moved toward her.
Zeke felt his belly somersault with pure celebration as he kept her lassoed. She was far more than he’d expected, even with her loud rude talk. Damn, she’d be a little scratching wildcat in their marital relations with that *come get me* attitude. Lifting one corner of his mouth in a grin, he approached. He’d had women all soft and willing. He’d had ‘em ferocious for what he could deliver. He liked both. He wanted both. He was surely fond of her spirit, even if it meant throwing her over his lap and tanning her bottom to teach her lesson.
TO BE CONTINUED...
PART 12 - 59 ~ Kougar Kisses blog or on the Liquid Silver forum in full.
HAPPY YEAR OF TWO ~
May your most romantic dreams come true...
Savanna Kougar ~ Run on the Wild Side of Romance