I'd like to say a big thank you to everybody who has sent me well wishes and to my family and friends who have sent me beautiful flowers and chocolates- hubby had to buy more vases!!
I came out of hospital a couple of weeks ago after having major surgery, so my convalescent period at home has been spent trying to promote my book and obviously writing this blog. Below is an extract when Lucy meets Mike for the very first time let me know what you think.
Siblings and Secrets
“Lovely evening isn’t it?”
Lucy jumped and with her heart beating so fast she swung around to face the voice “who the hell are you?” she screamed “and what are you doing hiding in the bushes?” she stepped back and stood up right to make herself look tall and non afraid. Automatically her self defences had risen and she felt extremely nervous and uneasy…after all a man should know better then to jump out and scare a lady half to death!
“I could ask you the same question but I’m guessing you must be Lucy.”
“Yes, how do you know?” she said sounding almost aggressive.
“Because ma’am, you’re exactly how I imagined…beautiful…anybody can see that…you’ve definitely got the looks of the family” he crooned.
“Who are you? And what are doing in the bushes?” her voice had softened slightly.
“Sorry let me introduce myself” he held out his hand to her which she gingerly accepted and shook it graciously.
“I’m Mike, Michael Coleman, I work for your brother, I’m the head gardener and I’m trying to get this sprinkler to work so it can water this damn grass. It’s set to come on at nine every evening but for some reason it don’t want to work”.
Michael loved working for Boris, he looked after him well. He was an extremely generous boss and allowed him to attend all the parties where he could meet the rich, the famous and the beautiful people and he even gave him his own personal chauffeur. Mike was able to drink and eat exactly what he wanted and go to places that he had only ever dreamed of and the best part was that it was all free. Michael never had to pay for anything and Boris still gave him a very handsome salary.
Mike was tall and lean but very muscly from good, honest hard work. He had thick jet black hair which was styled short at the back and sides and left much longer and very dishevelled on top. He had lots of black stubble, not designer, it was just unshaven. His eyes were dark and had a naughty twinkle. He had thin yet perfectly proportioned lips and dark olive skin that was beginning to weather through working in the sun too long, but that just added to his charm. He wore stone washed jeans that were slightly worn and a bit too big together with a snug fitting white T-shirt that had gone through the wash but hadn’t got all the stains out. His hands were large with the odd callous and stubby fingers with dirty nails. He was a little unkempt in his appearance but he had a dominance about him that made you feel safe and secure. He was rugged and masculine and very good looking and Lucy couldn’t tear her eyes away from him, but at the same time she felt a little unsure of him.
“I bet he’s broken a few girls’ hearts” she found herself thinking.
“I dunno about you but I could murder a beer, do you fancy one? I know a nice little bar it’s just down the road” he said with a naughty twinkle in his eye.
“N…no. I’m sorry. But we only arrived this afternoon and I’m shattered and besides I need a shower” she said and wondered why she had mentioned the shower. She hoped he didn’t think she was dirty or smelly so quickly she added “it’s not that I need a shower it’s just that I could do with freshening up…because I…we’ve been travelling all day and you know what it’s like you get hot and sticky” She felt herself squirming and wished she hadn’t said anything but Mike ignored her humiliation and grinned at her.
“I know exactly what it’s like and a nice cold beer would definitely cool you down.”
“Yes I know but I’m just too tired” she said as a matter of fact “and anyway I don’t even know you” she added. She didn’t want him to think she was easy or anything like that yet in a funny sort of way she wanted to go. She found him compelling and exciting, she wanted to study him and watch him, he was thrilling and sexy and naughty and nice.
“That’s you English, always putting your guard up, come on I’ll walk you back to the house and you can ask me anything you want and I’ll try and answer” he mocked.
Lucy walked just half a pace behind him, indiscreetly she was trying to slow him down as she wanted this walk to take as long as possible but she didn’t really understand why she felt like that. They walked in silence, until suddenly he broke it and prompted her by saying “well you ain’t asked me any questions yet.” But Lucy was shy so she wracked her brains to think of something to say.
“Come on Lucy you must talk, think of something, anything, just say something” she said to herself. “Erm do you get snakes and spiders out here?” she felt a fool why had she asked such a stupid question? Why couldn’t she have asked something about him she didn’t need to know about nature not at this particular time anyway.
“Yeah we get rattle snakes and tarantulas and quite a few others but you don’t have to worry too much about them, they generally stay out of these cultured gardens, not like the deserts where they naturally live. They’re not the problem though…if you don’t like them you can step over them… not like the killer bees” he teased.
“What...Where do they live?” she said sounded slightly worried.
“Up in them trees and that’s why we don’t prune them back…they chase you”. Instantly she found that she had ducked her head and Mike laughed.
“Are they there now?” she asked looking nervously up at the thick foliage. Michael chuckled.
“I’ll protect you…I won’t let them hurt you…anyway it’s not their season…they’re about earlier in the year”. He winked at her which made her blush and then he took her hand as if he was protecting her and she felt that it was the most natural thing in the world to allow him and was so utterly shocked at this feeling, but she also felt strangely comfortable.
They continued to walk in the direction of the house with Michael doing most of the talking and Lucy being unusually quiet, just nodding in agreement and occasionally giggling at his feeble jokes, when suddenly they were interrupted. The sound of an old fashioned phone bell filled the air and Mike instantly fumbled in his pockets.
“Excuse me while I answer this” he said letting go of Lucy’s hand. He smiled at her as he walked backwards onto the neatly mown lawn and retrieved his phone and pressed the answer button.
“Hello” Lucy heard him say and then he turned his back on her and softened his voice.
Lucy stood still and patiently waited, she pretended to admire the bright orange lily like flowers of the crocosmia and then after a few moments he came back to her.
“Sorry about that, just a bit of business” he said putting his strong arm around her tiny shoulders and leading her forward to rejoin their walk.
He still had his arm around her and she was giggling like a naughty school girl when they approached the patio just past the pool. Boris was sitting at the oak table with a large whiskey and ice in his hand he was busy talking to another man, who also had an equally large whiskey in his hand and as Lucy and Mike approached, the two men fell quiet and Boris looked up in a slightly disapproving manner and in a curt way he said “I see you’ve met Mike.” Lucy felt more than embarrassed and quickly wriggled free from his arm and then started rambling discursively.
“Oh yeah…yes. He was fixing the sprinkler and I was walking and then I walked past him and then he offered to walk me back because I was frightened. I was scared of the snakes and the tarantulas…oh and the killer bees. They live in the trees”.
“That figures” Boris quipped under his breath and then added in a voice that they could both hear.
“Well you don’t have to be worried…we don’t get them here and anyway it’s the wrong time of the year.” Lucy looked at him suspiciously she could have sworn he had a sneer in his voice but then she couldn’t imagine why, perhaps her and Mike had interrupted something important.
“Got one of those for me?” Mike said pointing at the whiskey and winking at Lucy, who blushed and immediately looked away.
“You know where the glasses are” Boris snapped and with an afterthought he softened his tone and said.
“Do you want one Lucy?” but instead of looking at his sister when he spoke he glared at Mike. Lucy nodded and thanked him and than sat down next to the other man.
“Hi we haven’t been introduced, I’m Dan. I work for your brother…security.” Lucy smiled and shook his hand and then suddenly realized this was the same smartly dressed man as at the airport.
“We were just discussing about taking you and Bill shopping tomorrow, but you know what it’s like…we can’t be too careful not in this day and age.” Lucy nodded as if she understood but she didn’t really know what it was like, however she did understand enough about celebrities and their minders.
Dan was tall and slim and very smartly dressed, he wore dark suit trousers with a white short sleeved, immaculately laundered shirt. He wasn’t wearing a tie now and he had his jacket hanging neatly on the back of his chair. Dan had fair hair it was neatly styled with gel to hold it in place, he was clean shaven with deep blue, kindly looking eyes. He was a man you took an instant liking too, he looked warm natured and considerate, he looked like a man you knew you could trust.
“Excuse me” he said as he reached across Lucy to get his drink and as he did she could smell an expensive aftershave and noticed he had a plain gold band on his wedding finger.
“I thought as much, I bet his wife arranges all his clothes for him and sees him off with his sandwiches and a peck on the cheek. She probably stands at the front door wearing her apron and waving and blowing kisses until he’s out of sight” she thought with a surprised resentment and then shook herself to bring her back to normality and wondered why she had felt this pang of envy.
“I was trying to coax Lucy in coming for a beer with me…what do you think…do you fancy it?” Mike asked Boris. And without any hesitation Boris quickly shut him off.
“No Lucy must be shattered and we’ve got to arrange things for tomorrow” and then he added in a rather sarcastic way.
“If you want another drink you’ll have to go by yourself…you’ll soon meet someone else you can talk to.” Michael ignored his sarcasm and looked at Dan as if to ask him, but Dan shook his head and said “sorry mate” and than cocked his head as if to dismiss him and carried on talking to Boris. Mike knew he was being ignored and sat for a while and Lucy found herself feeling rather sorry for him and a little embarrassed of her brother’s behaviour. She was just on the point of changing her mind and telling him that she would go for a drink when Mike downed his whiskey and slammed the empty glass on the table and stood up.
“Alright. I get the message. I’m off” he said and then as if on purpose to tease Boris he looked over to Lucy and winked at her and then purred.
“I’ll see… yooou later”.
“Yes and er thanks…for the walk I mean” she stumbled. Smiling, he walked off, back past the pool and into the evening and Lucy watched him disappear into the night and said “he seems like a nice bloke.”
“Not really, but he does do a good job” Boris answered nonchalantly.
“Don’t be horrible, what’s wrong with him?” she was annoyed with Boris’ bad manners.
“Nothing he’s okay, just watch yourself with him. He’s a bit of a ladies man that’s all”. Lucy didn’t bother to retort she had guessed as much and anyway he was probably out of her league, but nevertheless she still felt very attracted to him.
More to come.............................