Monday, May 16, 2022

Tuesday Tales - Word Prompt "Cheese"

 


Welcome! This week the word prompt is "cheese". We have another episode of "The Kicker's Story", and a meeting between Tyler and Andrew Forge, Principal. Don't forget to visit all the stories this week. Find them HERE

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Tyler threw off the covers and slung his legs over the side. He yawned, scratched his stubbly face and pushed to his feet. A hot shower woke him up. He shaved and put on a long-sleeved navy-blue T-shirt and his best light blue jeans. He needed to look reasonably well put together. His former principal was a stickler for neatness and cleanliness. 

He remembered kids being sent home to change if they were too grungy. And he banned out-of-control facial hair. He checked the thermometer outside the kitchen window. Eighteen degrees. He shrugged on his down jacket and kissed his mother on the cheek. He pocketed the keys to Charlie's car and got behind the wheel.

Dread constricted his stomach. How could he eat when his anxiety level was over the top? What was he so worried about? It's not like Mr. Forge could do anything to him, right? He couldn't get expelled or anything. So what was the big deal? He took a deep breath and let it out slowly. Still, his stomach knotted. He'd always craved approval from Coach Forge and Principal Forge. In high school, he'd worked hard to achieve respect.

Could one stupid game loaded with idiotic mistakes really destroy what he'd worked years to build? It seemed that way. He pulled into the small parking lot and shut off the car. He took another deep breath, swallowed and got out. Muttering to himself the words  he always said while running out on the field to kick, "I've got this." 

He opened the door. There was Andrew Forge, sitting by a frosty window, always drafty. He shuddered. Nervous and then freezing. Not a good combination. 

"Morning, Mr. Forge." Tyler plopped down into the booth seat opposite.

"Morning. Whatcha having this morning?" Mr. Forge asked.

"What did you order?"

"My usual. Vegetable and cheese omelet and sausage."

"Oh. Ok." Tyler didn't need to even glance at the menu on the table.

"Have whatever you want. Build yourself up. I'm assuming you'll be practicing today."

Tyler nodded. Winnie came by, holding a pot of hot coffee. She dropped a menu in front of Ty. "Coffee?" she asked, turning his mug over.

"Thanks. Yeah."

When she finished pouring, she spoke. "Whatcha having?"

"Pancakes and sausage, please."

"How many?"

"Stack. That's three?"

"Right. Coming up." She plucked the menu from the table and scurried away.

"Good choice. Carbs for energy."

Tension gathered in his shoulders. "Okay, Mr. Forge. Can we dispense with all this good manners and stuff? What do you want?"

"I just wanted to talk to you about what went wrong in Las Vegas." Andrew picked up his mug.

"I don't know what went wrong." Tyler added a touch of milk to his coffee.

"I have an idea."



That's all for today. Thanks for stopping by. 

Monday, May 9, 2022

Tuesday Tales - Picture Prompt Week


 



Welcome! This week is picture prompt week. When you read my story, you'll understand why I picked this picture. And, yes, it's another episode of "The Kicker" story. Don't forget to visit the other authors and read their stories. You can find them HERE. Thanks for stopping by!

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"Damn. This car takes forever to heat up."

"I know, I know," Connie said, turning to look out the window. "I need a new car. You guys are a broken record."

Merrily stepped on the gas and the old car leaped into action. Doing ten miles over the speed limit felt like they were flying. She hit the brakes and the car jerked to a halt in front of the house.

"What the Hell?" Connie peered out the window. "Someone is parked in my driveway! The nerve. I'm calling the Sheriff."

Merrily grabbed her arm. "No! Don't."

"Mom. That's not somebody else's car."

"Well it sure ain't mine," Connie replied.

"Actually, it is." Courtney giggled.

"What?"

"Santa made a visit while we were away. And he dropped this car here just for you. 'Cause he knew you needed it," Merrily said.

"Oh, come on. I stopped believing in fairytales a long time ago."

"Go. Take a look."

Connie stepped out. The car, a shiny silver SUV stood proudly in her driveway, looking like it belonged there.

"Sure wish this was mine," she mumbled.

The girls joined her.

"Open the door, Mom," Courtney said.

Connie did. She spied a key sitting on the driver's seat. "What the?"

"It's from us, Mom," Courtney said.

"Yeah. You needed it. So we bought it."

"Outright, Mom. No payments. It's yours. Hank at the Ford Dealership took this car in a trade-in."

"You bought this?"

"Yep. We got a really good price."

Connie laughed.

"Get in. Turn it on. It's got a lot of stuff. Safety stuff," Courtney said.

Connie fingered the key, then put her hand over her eyes. "You two. You're just incredible," she mumbled.

Merrily hugged her mother. "Come on, Mom. Give us a ride."

Connie wiped her cheeks with her fingers and smiled. 

Tuesday, May 3, 2022

Tuesday Tales - Chin

 


Welcome! This week, we're writing to the word prompt "chin". We have another episode of "The Kicker". Don't forget to visit the other authors and read their great stories. You can find them HERE


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"Come on, Romeo," Uncle Charlie said, chuckling. "Time to go home." he fished the car keys from his pocket. Tyler followed them. Maybe coming home for Christmas wasn't such a bad idea.

When they got home, his mother yawned. "I’m going up to bed."

"Oh, wait. Ma. Ma?"

"What?"

"Please get me no later than eight tomorrow."

"Okay. Why?"

"Meeting Mr. Forge for breakfast tomorrow."

"Derek Forge?"

"No. Andrew Forge."

She nodded. "Bless those men. They still believe in you."

"At least someone does," Tyler muttered.

Charlie reached for his nephew's arm. "Now you wait a minute. Your mother and I have never stopped believing in you. Maybe we don't have an idea what happened to make you crash and burn, but you're still ours. And we know you'll straighten out and be okay."

"'Night, Tyler," Marge Bentley kissed her son on the cheek, cupped her brother's chin and headed up the stairs.

Emotion choked Tyler. Uncle Charlie caught him by surprise. He never expected support. Now he needed to figure out how to justify their belief in him.


****

 

   As the Christmas celebration wound down, excitement grew inside Courtney. Merrily whispered in her ear.

"Did the guy make the delivery?"

Barely able to contain her excitement, Courtney nodded.

"Then what are we waiting for?" Merrily gathered their belongings and shoved them in two bags. She fingered the necklace.

"Don't you dare put that in a bag! You'll lose it." Courtney took one bag and thrust the other at her sister before she turned to her mother. "Come on, Mom. Let's go."

"But Charlie was just telling me a story."

Merrily too her mother's arm. "He can come over later and finish it. Let's go."

Connie Adams shrugged. "Sorry. Please Charlie, do come over later for a nightcap."

The man nodded and backed away.

"What's so important you have to drag me away from Charlie?"

"You'll see," Courtney said, opening the firehouse door. 

The young women ushered their mother into the passenger seat.

"Hey! Wait! It's my car, I'll drive." Connie protested.

"Not tonight," Merrily said, slipping behind the wheel. Courtney opened the trunk and stuffed the packages in. The car was warming up when she slid into the backseat.


Monday, April 18, 2022

TUESDAY TALES - WORD PROMPT "LAZY"

 




Howdy! This week's excerpt is again from "The Kicker's Story". Soooo, who is Tyler interested in, Courtney or her sister? You decide. Thanks for stopping by. Don't forget to visit the other great authors. Find them HERE


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"You look great, Courtney."

"Thanks. So do you. Let's cut through the polite garbage. Didn't we always hate the phoniness?"

He nodded. She still had him pegged.

She eased her attractive butt into a chair and face him. "Okay. So. Why did you give my sister that necklace?"

"Who says I gave her anything?" He had to thank Coach for teaching all about denial. Never admit you committed an infraction in any sport. Uncle Charlies taught him to respond to a question you didn't want to answer with a question. He silently thanked his mentors for their guidance.

"Come on, Tyler. Charlie gave you away."

"Did he say it was from me?"

"Didn't have to. He blushed red as a rose when he looked at the wrapping."

"That wouldn't stand up in court."

"What are you now, an attorney?"

"Why are you asking me?"

"When a total stranger gives my sister a diamond necklace, I want to know why."

"I'm not exactly a total stranger, am I?"

Courtney shook her head slowly. "There you go again. Avoiding the question."

Anger sparked in Tyler's chest. Typical Courtney. Evading her was like evading an octopus with a hundred tentacles. She had always been too smart to fall for his tricks. In high school, he'd loved that about her. But not now.

"I am admitting nothing. And if I was the one, frankly, Courtney, it's none of your business. Now it's time to go. So please excuse me." Tyler zipped up his coat and picked up the shopping bag.

"This isn't over. I'll be by to see you. Or, hey, why don't you stop over? Mom's been after me to invite you to dinner."

Tyler stopped. Courtney knew where to hit him. Her mother was a great cook and he'd never turned down an invitation to dine there.

"Maybe she'll make corned beef and cabbage?"

His mouth was such a traitor! It salivated. "Okay. You know I could never turn down an offer for dinner. Your mom still such a good cook?"

Courtney winked. "Knew I'd get you. Yeah, she is. Give me your number." Courtney whipped out her phone and added Ty's. "I'll call you." She shot him a warm smile. "It really is great to see you." She leaned over and gave him a quick kiss on the cheek. "You've aged well."

 He watched her return to her family. Damn, she still had that sexy little wiggle she perfected by senior year of high school. His lips stretched into a lazy smile. 


#freelovestory  #freefiction  #sportsromance  #iceskatingromance  #christmasromance

Tuesday, April 5, 2022

TUESDAY TALES - "CAREFUL" WORD PROMPT

 

    

    Welcome! This week we have another episode of the kicker's story. The word prompt is "careful". Any form of the word is acceptable. Don't forget to visit all the author's blogs and read their stories. You can find them HERE. Thanks for stopping by. 


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Tyler noticed the Forges across the room. He checked his watch. They'd been there an hour, maybe he could escape before Coach and his brother wandered over. 

He simply couldn't face them. Not now, not on Christmas Day. He gathered up the dirty paper plates, used napkins and other trash. Before he could escape to the garbage can, Andrew Forge appeared behind him.

"Before you leave, Tyler. We need to talk."

"But it's Christmas Day?"

Andrew stroked his smooth chin, looked down at the ground, then raised his eyes. "True. I don't want to spoil the holiday for your mother and uncle."

Ty let out a breath.

"How about tomorrow? Meet me at Java the Hut at nine. Is that late enough? I don't want you to miss any beauty sleep."

"Nine. I'll be there. Thanks."

Andrew Forge slapped him on the shoulder and ambled back to his brother's table. 

Tyler turned away and packed up his stuff. Maybe men didn't shrivel up when they got older. Look at Andrew Forge and Uncle Charlie? Both tomcatting some woman – and at their age! Tyler shrugged.  Maybe his life wasn't totally over yet, despite Brittany.

"Ready, Ma?"

"I just want to thank Flint and Marty. I'll be right back."

Tyler eased his coat over his shoulders. Thank God it was time to leave. No one had bothered him about getting fired-yet. And he'd carefully avoided talking to anyone in the Adams family, until a familiar voice came up behind him.

"Hi, Ty. Avoiding me?"

Hair on the back of his neck stood up. He pasted a sick smile on his face and turned.

"Oh, hi, Courtney." 


Tuesday, March 29, 2022

Tuesday Tales - Leaf

 


Howdy do! Welcome! This week we have more of the kicker's story using the word prompt "leaf". Don't forget to visit all the authors. Find their stories HERE.  Comments are always welcome. Thanks for stopping by. 

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"Tyler! Did you give that to Merrily Adams?" Uncle Charlie's tone was anything but friendly.

"Yep." Tyler cut a piece of ham and stabbed it with his fork.

"Is that real?" His mother asked, her eyebrows drawn together.

"Yep."

The sharp intake of his mother's breath drew Tyler's gaze. "How could you give away something so expensive? It must have cost a fortune."

Arrogance drained from the kicker as he realized how his mother scraped by, counting every penny. It must has seem so frivolous, so wasteful to her. Sure, she could have done a dozen more sensible things with two grand. Shame filled him.

"Please tell me you didn't buy it for Merrily's Secret Santa." His mother's stare bored into him.

"No, no, Ma. I didn't."

"You must have bought it for a young lady. I'm guessing," Charlie said.

"I did. I don't want to talk about it."

"You never told me you were seeing anyone," His mother put down her fork. "What happened to her?"

Charlie put his hand on Connie's arm. "I can guess. Left you after you got fired?"

Tyler hung his head, avoiding his mother's gaze. "How'd you guess?"

"I've been out with a few women in my time," Charlie said.

"Oh, Ty! I didn't know." His mother's concern was almost worse than her anger.

"I'm all right. Okay. Yeah. She took off before I finished cleaning out my locker."

"That bitch!" Connie's lips joined in a thin line.

"Ma!" Tyler's eyes widened.

"My sentiments exactly," Charlie said. "You probably dodged a bullet. Better not to be married to this trash. No alimony."

"Exactly, Uncle Charlie. Exactly." Even if he figured this as another failure of his, they didn't see it that way. Relief flooded Tyler.

"Her loss!" his mother sniffed. "More ham, son?" She reached for his plate.

"Thanks, Ma."

Connie smiled. "She's no more than a fall leaf in the wind, Son."

Christmas was turning out better than he'd expected. While his mother refilled his plate, he watched Merrily. He smiled to himself. At least he'd made someone's Christmas happy. That stupid necklace. Sure caused a stir. He chuckled. Who'd have guessed? He watched Merrily talk with her family and munch on a brownie, pretending she wasn't sneaking peeks of him. But he saw and it pleased him. Damn, at least he did something right.


Tuesday, March 22, 2022

TUESDAY TALES - WORD PROMPT "NAIL"

 


Welcome! We have another episode of "The Kicker" today. Remember to read all the wonderful stories. You'll find them HERE. Thanks for stopping by. 


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Charlie nodded. "Oh, it's real all right. It's real." He shook his head. "Foolish." 

Merrily looked over at Tyler, who immediately looked away. "I get it." She nodded. Was he the guy at the lake, watching her? Her gaze ran up and down his physique. Yep. Sure looked like the guy. But why would he do that? 

"Tyler, huh?" It only took one more look to realize this guy wasn't going to admit anything. Anyone else would be clamoring to take credit for such an exquisite gift. But not Tyler Bentley. Why? And why give it to her? He barely knew her.

Intrigued, she made up her mind to find out why. What did the diamond heart mean? Surely he couldn't have bought it for her, he barely knew her. And he didn't know she'd be here. With a sharp intake of breath, she got it.

"What's wrong?" Courtney asked.

"Nothing."

Clear as ice. He must have bought it for someone else. Someone who wouldn't want it now, or maybe didn't even know about the necklace. Someone he didn't want to give it to. Maybe an ex-girlfriend who died? Or ran off with a linebacker? Merrily chuckled to herself. This necklace was meant as a token of love to someone who either wasn’t around to get it or didn't want it.

Sneaking another peek at him, she sensed warmth spread through her chest. Maybe he'd been dumped just like she had. Her heart squeezed. Tyler Bentley. Who would have thought it, right? Tyler Bentley, pro football player, tossed out like an empty pizza box? Couldn't be.

Still, why would he put an expensive piece of jewelry up as a Secret Santa gift? Did he mean it for her? Was he trying to tell her something? The heat in her chest rose to her cheeks. Damn. He must have been the guy watching her skate at the lake. Did he have a crush on her or something? No way. No way. She shook her head.

"Come on, come on. Give it to me. You gotta wear this. It's too beautiful to stay in the box." Courtney eased the necklace around her sister's neck.

"It's almost obscene," Connie said to Charlie.

"It's the givers prerogative. He can give it to whoever he wants," Charlie said.

"How do you know it's a 'he'? Maybe it's some old lady who doesn't have daughters and wanted to pass along this beautiful necklace she got from her husband? Hmm, Charlie?" Merrily narrowed her eyes and stared at him.

Charlie's colored got redder. "Connie, more eggnog?" He took her cup and hightailed it to the drink table. Then she knew she'd nailed it.

Merrily laughed.

"What have you been up to, Merrily Adams? Why is that young man giving you such a..such an intimate gift?" Connie put her hands on her hips.

"I have no idea, Mom. But I'm going to find out." She fingered the pendant.