Thursday, 25 June 2015

You Choose a Topic...

So, for my next blog I thought it would be fun to invite all of you to choose a topic.
Message me on here, fb or Twitter (links below) with which topic you would like to see me discuss.
I will go with the most popular answer, I promise no cheating.

My Facebook page
Or Twitter

Tuesday, 23 June 2015

I Have a Dream!

Those famous, immortal words of Martin Luther King inspire this blog.
Or how’s about the quote from one of my favourite films, Pretty Woman..?

 Welcome to Hollywood! What's your dream? Everybody comes here; this is Hollywood, land of dreams. Some dreams come true, some don't; but keep on dreamin' - this is Hollywood. Always time to dream, so keep on dreamin'.”

I appreciate I may come across as ‘grumpy author’ in my blogs, and I’m really not.
Today I thought I’d share my dream with you (come and see my fluffy side)…

In my “spare” time (you know when I’m not writing, working in the day job, being a part time step mum etc.) I am a holistic therapist. I genuinely like helping people feel better. I started as a beauty therapist and hated waxing as it was the one thing I did which inflicted pain on others, all in the name of a good cause, but pain nonetheless (I’m shuddering just typing that!). I always enjoyed the gentler treatments such as facials and massages, as I could feel people relax under my fingertips. I gradually added some holistic treatments, and became a Reiki Master.
My dream is to have a farmhouse in the English countryside. I have a vision of this farmhouse; it has a wooden gate with a sweeping gravel driveway. There is a paddock out the front (as I will keep and help horses too). There is an overhang above the front door, not a porch as such, but I stand with my head against a wooden beam sipping from a steaming cup of coffee. There is a ‘granny annexe’ so humans can come to stay. Many of us get swamped by the ‘rat race’ and it can become overwhelming. My farmhouse retreat will offer them the opportunity to hit the pause button. Escape to tranquillity!

You can stay in the self-contained annexe if you choose, or eat dinner with us in the main house (can you smell the chicken casserole with dumplings? Aahh!). My husband and I are great listeners (and counselling trained). In our lounge with a roaring fire, we will sit and listen to your woes until you’re all talked out. Having released yourself of all that emotional baggage you will be ready to heal. You can do physical work around the farm (helping to groom/ride the horses or looking after the crop in the vegetable patch). Immerse yourself in nature as you stroll through the woodland walks on the doorstep. And you can even get some Reiki from yours truly. Then, when you’re ready, you can go back into your world and you’ll have a clearer idea of what you need to do to be where you want to be.
Hmmmm…do you feel refreshed already?

Sadly, being the English countryside this comes with a hefty price tag, so I’m still working my way towards this peaceful, healing dream. So, if there are any philanthropic millionaires reading this please do feel free to get in touch!
I need to be able to pay for the house in full. I will charge for the stay, but those on lower incomes should not be excluded, and can contribute instead by helping out around the farm or e.g. if they’re an artist they can paint a picture for us.

I want to live as self-sufficiently as possible. I respect our planet and would love to minimise my impact on Gaia as much as I can. I hope to be able to install a ‘wind tree’ to generate our electricity (Google it, they’re awesome!), and to live off the fruit and veg in our farm. Despite being allergic to their stings, I also want to have a beehive as our nation’s bees are really having a tough time. Plus then I get some yummy honey!
Of course, having said lifestyle will also hopefully allow a bit more writing time too, so you can enjoy even more TL Clark novels.

Freaky story; a while back that vision of my farmhouse started to become stronger and stronger, until I could almost smell the hay in the fields. So I drew it (very badly; art is regrettably not a talent I possess). A few days after I wondered how much money I would need to achieve my dream so I went onto a property search engine, and low and behold, there was almost the identical image to the one I’d drawn, with horses in the paddock and everything! It was even in the right area! Tragically, I didn’t have £1.2million, and someone else did, so it’s since been sold. But I do believe that when the time is right the house will be there for me to buy.

OK I told you mine, now tell me yours! I’d love to hear what dreams and goals you have please.

Tuesday, 16 June 2015

Rekindled Love - sneaky peaky

OK, so I've not really talked about my own work so far. So today I thought I'd share the first chapter of Rekindled Love with you. It seems to touch something deep within each reader, often bringing out healing tears for a love lost long ago.

Sophie has many ups and downs (a true emotional rollercoaster, as reviewers have commented).  
There's highs as well as lows!

Chapter 1 is below, and starts with Sophie's first love. It reads as a 'young adult' at this stage, but read the rest of the book and you will see how she grows and develops as a person.

If you like this excerpt please do find the book on any eReader (any Amazon site, Kobo, Barnes & Noble, Nook, iBooks etc.) Many of the links can be found via Goodreads...

Also, if you think I'm kinda weird but funny please pop along to my fb page and 'like' my author page.

Are you sitting comfortably? Then I'll begin...

Chapter 1

Hi there. Please let me let you into a little secret; sex later on in life can be far far better than when you’re in your youth! Sure, you may not have the kind of body to show off in a skimpy bikini anymore but you become comfortable with that; you appreciate the true beauty which comes from within and you can stop caring what others think. You can become utterly comfortable in your own body and spirit. Your self-confidence has grown immeasurably from those uncertain teenage years. You’ve been places and learned things. But first, let’s start at the beginning.


In a time long ago, before the internet or mobile phones. In a land where cassette tapes were used to play music…

There lived a sixteen year old girl named Sophie. She’d been dating Joe a whole three months now, and he was eager to take the next step. She was nervous. Strike that; she was terrified of going all the way with Joe. Her ex-boyfriend had told her all about how it hurts when virgins have sex; “there’s blood and everything”! Not that they hadn’t had fun in other ways. They’d done pretty much everything except penetration; she’d chickened out, afraid of the ensuing pain. He got bored and dumped her.

The Summer Holidays were rapidly approaching, and Sophie was nearing the end of her O Level exams. She wiped her nose for the umpteenth time as she was sat in her English Literature ordeal. She cursed the fact again that exams were held mid hayfever season. She was finding it hard to concentrate on the machinations of Shakespeare’s evil sisters three. She had her own troubles to toil with without worrying about what Macbeth was doing. She felt more out damned snot than spot! Spots (her mind continued to wander? ‘Oh, please don’t let me breakout!’ she pleaded in her mind to any passing deity. She had special plans with Joe next week. They had the house all to themselves as both her parents were working. Sophie screwed her eyes shut, partly to relieve the itching and partly to stop her wayward thoughts, before starting to scribble more thoughts on her exam paper.

“Right, time’s up! Pens down!” came the overseeing teacher’s command a few minutes later. Well, that was it! That’s all she could do now. She tried to take a deep breath as the papers were collected. The teacher strode up the aisles of desks in the dank dingy hall, collecting the result of the students’ entire English education, his shoes clicking loudly on the parquet flooring. Sophie let up another silent prayer that she had done enough. She now wished that she’d spent more time studying and refused some of the evenings she’d spent with Joe. Such beautiful evenings; he kissed her so nicely! They’d disappear up to her bedroom and pretend to study, but they ended up kissing more than studying. But this exam was important; she wanted to become a journalist. ‘Ooooaaah, please let me have passed. Please let me have passed!’ she silently pleaded.

As soon as they were all let out of the exam room Sophie rushed to the toilets, and joined the queue. She was crossing her legs by the time she got into a cubicle. Her nerves had gotten to her! She washed her hands and splashed her face with cold water to revive her senses. It helped alleviate her itchy eyes a little too.

As she found her escape into the sunshine a pair of grey eyes glimmered at her. They were accompanied by a crooked smile and dark hair. “Joe!” Sophie half screamed as she ran into his waiting arms. He enveloped her as he bent his head down to kiss her, their tongues tangling in a dance all of their own. He pulled her closer, and she felt his ‘thing’ against her. She went to pull back a little but he held her firmly where she was, and begged for more with his luscious lips. She responded to his demands, and her whole body was aglow. The now familiar tingle sent shivers all down her spine and made her giddy.

“That’s enough of that thank you, Mr Turner!” a passing teacher muttered drily.

“Yes Sir. Sorry Sir!” Joe muttered his apology as the pair broke apart. “Come on, I have a surprise treat for you!” He said as he took Sophie’s hand and led her to the car park. He passed her the spare bike helmet and climbed on board his Honda C50. His parents had bought him the moped as an incentive to do well in his exams. Sophie soon hopped on behind him, and they were whizzing away to freedom, or at least the local cinema. He wasn’t supposed to take pillions yet, but rules were for dweebs! Sophie loved the feeling of speed as the wind rushed past her face; she felt liberated! If she hadn’t been clinging on to Joe so tightly she would have spread her arms out wide to feel the wind more. It was probably a bad idea anyway, but she was feeling exuberated. The confines of the exam hall had been exchanged for the wild abandon of this bike ride. Others mocked the little moped as an “angry wasp” (because of the loud buzzing noise it made) but she loved the whine of the motor as they were whisked along the road. She could feel the vibrations of the engine travel up and through her thighs. She felt alive!

They settled into the back row of the darkened cinema, snacks in hand. Sophie held out a piece of popcorn which Joe took into his mouth, along with her two fingers. As he sucked his way back up to her fingertips Sophie wriggled in her seat; the sensations the action caused were heady. There was a throbbing between her legs, and flames licked up her middle. As he got to her fingertips he withdrew his mouth completely, so he could just turn his attention to one finger, slowly sucking back down and up. She giggled lightly, as her body was alive with sensations which were a little ticklish but mostly nice. She was hushed by his mouth covering hers. The scent of his overpowering aftershave flooded her nostrils, and her breathing became shallow. Their moist lips were all over each other, their tongues once more colliding. “Mmmm…Sophie,” Joe groaned out in a whisper. His hand awkwardly went to her side of the arm rest, and he groped his way under her mini skirt. She tried to hold her popcorn container in place to hide what he was doing. She felt embarrassed and afraid of being caught, but she wanted him to carry on. She needed to feel his fingers against her. Sure enough, his hand slipped under her panties, and one of his fingers was feeling her moist opening. He slid his finger delectably up and down, making Sophie feel hot all over, making her squirm. He carried on for what felt like an eternity. But suddenly he pulled his hand back, and she felt cold and empty without his contact.

“Are you OK?” Sophie asked, her green eyes wide in concern.

“Ummm…yeah,” was his only reply. And they sat in silence for the rest of the film, just holding hands. Sophie was confused, and worried she’d done something wrong. She felt rejected, but in the quiet cinema, she could hardly say anything, even if she had felt brave enough to ask (which she didn’t). What would she say anyway? All the words in her head felt stupid and na├»ve. She wanted Joe to see her as an adult, not some silly girl who didn’t know what the world was about.

Once the film was over Joe rode them over to his parents’ house. His mum had prepared an ‘end of exams’ feast. His parents had met Sophie several times and were very fond of her, and wanted to include her in this family celebration. She seemed like such a nice sweet girl.

“Aaah, you’re home!” his mum exclaimed as she grabbed him into a hug.

“Mu-uuum!” he protested, struggling free.

“Sorry, Joe. I just can’t believe you’ve both finished your exams. You’re so grown up!” She’d just pulled him into an even tighter hug.

“Mum, please!” Joe was blushing.

Resigning herself to the fact her baby was indeed now all grown up, and too embarrassed to hug his mum any longer, she turned her attentions to Sophie. “So, how did it go?”

“Hard, but OK thanks, Mrs Turner. It was really difficult to concentrate.” Sophie confessed.

“I’m sure you did fine. You’re a very clever girl!”

“Thanks. I hope you’re right.”

“Is dinner ready yet, mum?” Joe interjected sulkily.

“Yes dear. I’m just dishing up. Go take a seat.” And with that she scurried back into the kitchen. The young couple walked into the dining room, where his dad was waiting. He stood up and shook his son’s hand.

“I’m sure you did well, son.” He said with a nod, and sat back down.

‘God, my parents are so embarrassing!’ thought Joe as he took his place around the table. He rushed through dinner as fast as he could. His dad had even cracked open a bottle of Champagne stating, “Well, it is a special occasion,” with a wink.

“We’re going up to my room!” Joe declared as he stood up.

“Keep the door ajar!” warned his father with a growl. Joe just rolled his eyes as he led Sophie upstairs.

“Sorry about them!” he offered when they’d found the sanctuary of his room.

“No. They’re really sweet,” she said gently. Joe just shrugged and plonked himself down on his bed. Sophie took her place next to him.

“Really, how do you think you did?” Sophie asked, worrying about her own forthcoming grades.

“Don’t know. I’ll worry about it later,” he grunted as he lay down, and pulled her down next to him.

“Joooe!” she squealed.

“What?” he asked with a look of utter innocence, before kissing her. “I love you!” he whispered in staggered breaths.

“I love you too Joe!”

“I want you!”

“I want you too.”

“Are you sure?”

“Yes. I really want this.” Her mind was whirring; he did like her after all! Her body was a churning mass of hormones. She’d been thinking about this moment for so long. She was so ready. No, her body was. Was her mind? She felt so confused. She was a good girl. Did this mean she was doing something wrong? So why did it feel so right?

“I’ll come round tomorrow morning then,” he said as he nudged her onto his back, taking her away from her thoughts. Fully clothed he laid on top of her, and began their kiss again. Yes, this felt right. His tongue filled her mouth, and he started rubbing himself against her, revelling in the friction. He couldn’t wait to go further, but honestly didn’t know what to expect. It’s not like he could ask his dad, and he seriously doubted any of his friends had lost their virginity. Not even Tommy who bragged about it (Joe heavily suspected he was lying).  Tommy reckoned he’d ‘had’ his babysitter. “Yeah, she was well up for it,” he gloated. But he was suspiciously sketchy on details. Suddenly, Joe felt like a sleaze. Should he be doing this? He loved Sophie. He didn’t want her to be seen as a conquest. But his body was screaming at him to go all the way. He was a bright lad, but he’d still found the exams hard. After all the stress he was finally out of school and becoming a man. And this is just what men did, right? He had sat back on his bed, as his thoughts cooled his blood. He hadn’t realised he’d closed his eyes until they opened as Sophie called his name softly. Her green eyes were filled with concern as she gazed at him. His head was tilted slightly against the wall.

“What’s wrong Joe?” her voice was so quiet.

“Nothing.” He didn’t know how to tell her his worries. They made him sound like a wimp.

“You pulled away from me in the cinema, and you just did it again.” Where did she find the guts to ask that??

“Sorry, Soph. It’s not you, it’s me,” he said lamely.

“Oh.” Ummm…where could she go with that? She didn’t quite believe him. “You’re sure I didn’t do something wrong?” Was it the Champagne making her a blabbermouth?

“Of course not. Sophie, don’t think that. You’re perfect. I’m just not sure I am.” The last was said so quietly Sophie didn’t think she was supposed to hear it. She cuddled up to him.

“You’re perfect for me! You’ve made the last few months the best of my life, Joe. I’ve never felt this way about anybody before. It’s like I was asleep and you woke me up.” His answer was another toe curling kiss. The air had got really cloudy between them, so they turned on his computer and played ‘Frogger’. They began to relax with each other again, but all too soon it was time for Sophie to leave. Joe’s mum drove her home, but he was there, holding her hand on the backseat.

“Thanks Mrs Turner!” Sophie said politely as she got out of the car. Joe got out with her and walked her up to her front door. Sophie was fumbling in her schoolbag for her keys. Once she’d found them Joe planted a hand on her face and kissed her timidly, hidden by the shadows of her porch. “I’ll see you tomorrow then!” He was trembling as much as she was at the prospect. He tore himself away and back to the confines of his mum’s car. They waited until Sophie had safely let herself in. Joe’s mum drove off with a heavy heart; it was so sad her parents clearly weren’t home yet. This was such a special day, and someone should be there for her! It was part of the reason she’d invited the girl to dinner; she couldn’t bear the thought of this lovely girl being on her own.

It was late and Sophie went straight up to her room, and recorded the events of the day in her precious diary. She wished there was someone she could talk to about tomorrow. She wasn’t quite sure what she should do. Her mum would kill her if she knew what she was thinking of doing, and her friends were no help; they were all as clueless as she was. She’d bought some magazines, and found some basic advice in those, but she was still scared. She lay down in her bed thinking about tomorrow. She was going to lose her cherry! ‘Oh please don’t let it hurt as badly as they say!’ she whimpered inwardly. Joe had been really patient with her. Her previous boyfriend had dumped her pretty quickly when he realised she wasn’t ever going to give it up to him. But Joe wasn’t like him; he was sweet and gentle and kind. He was her true love, she knew it! And she wanted to do it with him. She thought. Maybe. Oh! She was so confused! She clung on to her teddy bear. Why was she growing up? It was so much simpler when she was a kid! Presuming she got the right grades she was going to college in September. She was grown up now. She could make decisions for herself. But what if her friends found out, and she got labelled a tart?  The shame would follow her through college.

She was still awake when she heard the front door click open. Her parents had finally returned home after their ‘function’. Her father ran his own business, and apparently it meant it was really important to socialise. Her dad clattered around downstairs as her mum tottered upstairs. She was silhouetted by the light from the landing as she stood in the doorway to Sophie’s room. “Are you still awake Pumpkin?” she asked in a slurred whisper. Sophie kept her eyes closed and hoped her mum would believe she was asleep. It worked! Her mum gave a wistful smile as she turned and left again. Sophie just couldn’t face talking to her mum right now. She loved her, but her mum would sense something was wrong, and she simply couldn’t talk to her mum about boys. No, she’d just be brave and face the challenge of tomorrow on her own!

Sophie woke up late the next morning, with the sun pouring in through the flimsy fabric of her bedroom curtains. Her parents were both out at work already, so she slowly got up, pulled on some clothes and meandered down to the kitchen and poured herself some cereal. She splashed milk everywhere when she tried to pour it into her bowl; her hands were shaking badly. The last thing she thought of last night was the same as the first thing she thought of as she woke up; sex with Joe! Today was the day! Suddenly she didn’t feel quite so hungry. Some butterflies seemed to be flying around her stomach. She sat at the breakfast bar stirring her cereal around in circles, looking into the waves of milk for some divine intervention; some sort of definite answer in the mini whirlpool she created.

Just as Sophie finally managed to spoon some now very soggy cereal into her rather dry mouth the doorbell rang. Her heart raced, but her stomach did somersaults. There was a strange buzzing from the top of her head down to the tips of her toes; it made her feel jittery. She ran for the door, but pulled up short just before she got there. She straightened her skirt and smoothed her chestnut hair, and checked her reflection in the hall mirror. Outside, Joe was shifting his weight from foot to foot. He couldn’t quite recall how he’d managed to ride over here; it was all a bit of a blur. His sole intention was to get to Sophie, and he’d thought of nothing else. His blood was coursing through his veins like a flash flood, engulfing everything in its wake. After what felt like an eternity, Sophie opened the door. She looked so beautiful!

“Hi!” he said bashfully, suddenly self-conscious.

“Hi!” Sophie replied breathily.

Joe stepped in through the door as Sophie closed it behind him. They stood there, dumbstruck, neither quite sure what to do next, a void between them. A gulf filled only with wariness and lust, which acted like an opposing force.

“Ummm…do you want anything to eat?” Sophie asked vaguely.

“No. No thanks. I just ate breakfast.”

“Oh, of course!” she half giggled back, mortified at her stupidity.

With no other ideas of what to do, Joe stepped close to Sophie and snogged her. His hands wandered over her body as they kissed, finally finding her boobs to grope. The familiar flames licked through their bodies, every synapse firing up with heat. Sophie’s body was humming with excitement. She felt one of Joe’s hands slip from her breast and down to her hemline, and up to find the edge of her knickers, and then oh, there he was! His finger was touching her special place again. She liked it when he did that; it filled her with all sorts of weird and wonderful sensations. She was the first to back away (and wiped her slobbery mouth with her sleeve), but only to lead him upstairs to her bedroom. As soon as they were in her room Joe pulled off his leather jacket and dumped it on the floor. He pulled off his T-Shirt, revealing his slim athletic body. He played for the local football team, and it showed. Sophie admired the view, and thought he was very muscly and the hottest boy in school. She didn’t really understand what he saw in her; she felt plain and blended into the background where people seldom noticed her. He tugged at her top to encourage her to take hers off too. She fumbled with the buttons on her blouse. He tried to help her, but his fingers had turned to butter too. She finally got free, and Joe was mesmerised by the sight of her boobs in her bra. He moved closer again and kissed her. Their bare bodies came into contact, heightening the sensations even more.  She felt so good next to him; skin on skin!

“I love you!” he told her.

“I love you too!”

He started taking off his jeans, so she followed suit and discarded her skirt. Too self-conscious to reveal all, Joe nodded towards the bed. Sophie laid down, her heart trying to break out of her ribcage. He lowered himself on top of her and restarted their kiss. As that kiss got deeper he started rubbing himself against her.

“I want you!” he confessed.

“OK,” she said nervously. Oh my God! This was it; it was happening! Joe stood up so he could remove his pants. Sophie couldn’t help it; she giggled as she saw his erection bobbing at her.

“What?” he asked defensively, worried about his body and how she viewed it.

“Sorry. Nothing. It’s just it’s right there!”

“You can touch it!”

Sophie bit her lip as she gingerly reached out her hand to grab hold of his penis.

“Oh!” she gasped. “It’s hard!”

“Yeah. Stroke it. Like this!” And he took her hand, and guided it gently up and down his shaft, making her giggle more.

“It feels kinda smooth but not!” she said in wonder.

“Mm…mmm…!” Wow; it felt even better when someone else did this to him!

“Did you bring some johnnies?” she asked anxiously. He walked clumsily over to his jeans and pulled out a silver packet. He ripped off the wrapper. Eww that felt slimy! ‘Right; how are you supposed to work these things?’ he wondered. He’d read the instructions but hadn’t had a practice run. Only now did the thought occur to him he could have done. He managed to roll it on though, whilst Sophie removed her panties and slid underneath her bed covers. Their gazes locked. ‘This is it; no going back now!’ they both thought. Joe slid under the covers and kissed Sophie some more, needing the comfort of her contact. She appreciated it too; his mouth felt right, she knew how to kiss. This was good. This was normal. Everything was just fine. Joe rolled on top of her. She could feel the condom, slippery against her thigh. She opened her legs to let him settle in between them.

“Are you OK?” he asked.

“Yeah,” she whispered. She raised her knees, just like the pictures she’d seen. Her body felt as stiff as a board. Tension and excitement combined in every fibre of her being.

“You sure?” he checked.

Sophie took a deep breath before she could reply with her whispered, “yes!”

Taking a deep breath himself Joe surged forward, trying to aim for her hole, but missed. He tried again with the same result. He reached down with a hand the next time, and guided himself in. He pushed in just a little bit, checking he wasn’t hurting Sophie. She felt really tight, and he thought it must hurt.

“Is it in?” she asked.

“Not fully,” he admitted.

“Oh, OK!” This wasn’t at all how it went in the naughty books she’d managed to read in the library (under her text books so nobody would see).

Joe pushed a little more, and then there was a burning pain.

“Owww!” Sophie squealed.

“Sophie, I’m so sorry. Do you want me to stop?” Concern was written all over his face.

“No. I’ll be fine.”

He carried on slowly, unsure of how this was going. He thought she’d be screaming his name, not crying out in pain. He felt inadequate. But then Sophie’s body relaxed under him, and she was smiling at him. OK, maybe this wasn’t so bad. He carried on with a bit more confidence now. Sophie began to whimper gentle moans.

“OK?” he checked, but she just smiled, so she carried on. He pushed himself in and out of her. This was way better than he had imagined! She felt so good, this felt so good, sex was…

“Aaaaah!” he groaned as he came, and collapsed his weight down.

“Joe! Could you move please? You’re squishing me!” Sophie pleaded soon afterwards.

“Shit! Sorry Soph!” he apologised as he rolled off. “Hang on, I’ll be straight back!” he said as he scurried away to the bathroom. He removed the condom and tied a knot in it before wrapping it in a tissue and flushing it down the toilet, like Tommy said you were supposed to. He strode back to the bedroom where Sophie was still under the covers. He pulled his pants back on and went to lie beside her.

“Was that OK?” he asked her.

“Yeah. Yeah, it was good,” she smiled. She was so pleased with herself. She’d just had sex! So that was what all the fuss was about. It was nice! They both lay there together a while, trying to regain their breath and thoughts. They both felt a little shell shocked at what they’d just done. All sorts of thoughts and feelings were whirling around inside them. They could find no words to describe how they were feeling, so they maintained a stunned silence.

Eventually, Joe suggested they went to get a drink, so they shyly got dressed and headed back down to the kitchen. Feeling refreshed by some orange juice they started to relax a bit, and soon returned to their normal selves. They went into the sitting room and collapsed onto the sofa and listened to music. They kissed and cuddled the rest of the day away, free from the interruption of adults.

“Hi Pumpkin!” Sophie’s mum called out as she got home that afternoon.

“Hi mum! We’re in here!”

“We? Oh! Sorry, hi Joe. I didn’t know you’d be here today,” she said awkwardly as she walked into the room.

“Hi Mrs Grigson. Sorry. I was just about to leave.”

“No, don’t be silly. You’re welcome to stay to tea. It’s only burgers, chips & beans I’m afraid.”

“That sounds really good, if you don’t mind.”

“I’ll have it ready in a jiffy.” And off she dashed to the kitchen to start cooking the promised dinner. Sophie was blushing.

“Do you think she knew?”

“No, don’t be daft! It’s not like you have a tattoo!”

“I suppose you’re right.”

“Hey, relax Soph!” he said rubbing her arm affectionately. He gave her a quick peck on the lips, which brought a smile back to her face.

Joe stayed and chatted to Sophie and her mum for a while after dinner and left just as her dad came home.

“Hi Mr Grigson, bye Mr Grigson,” Joe chimed as he waltzed out the door.

“Bye Joe!” he responded, slightly befuddled at the boy’s quick exit.

Sophie sprinted out after her boyfriend to give him a final kiss and cuddle.

“Thanks for today Joe.”

“My pleasure,” he said with his cheeky grin. “Is it OK for me to come back tomorrow?”

“You bet!” And with that he was gone. She felt suddenly alone and cold without his loving arms around her. Her parents were talking in hushed voices as she went back inside.

“I’m tired and going straight up to bed. Goodnight.”

“Oh! Alright love, night night,” her mum said. “You OK?”
“Yeah. Just tired,” she confirmed, and headed upstairs to her bedroom. She brushed her teeth and pulled on her nightie and snuggled into the sheets that had witnessed the loss of her virginity. She wriggled and smiled as she thought about that. She felt grown up all of a sudden. She laid in bed daydreaming for ages. She really did love Joe; he was so wonderful!

Joe rang the doorbell bright and early the next morning, eager to see his girlfriend. Sophie was a lot more ready for her visitor today. She’d had a great night’s sleep filled with happy dreams, and was walking on her own happy cloud today. She opened the door and immediately found herself in a wonderful hug. Joe pecked her on the lips before uttering his, “Good morning, Soph!”

“Good morning, lover,” she cooed, unable to stop grinning.

The happy pair wandered into the sitting room.

“So, what do you want to do today,” Sophie asked coyly.

“Well, I thought we’d go for a jog, then do some gardening…” Her playful slap on his arm stopped any more sarcastic comments being issued. “Or we could…” he stopped to plant another kiss on her pert pink pout, “…just…stay…here…and…kiss…” he kissed her in between each word, and his eyes became hooded with lust.

“That’s a nice thought,” she replied before deepening his kiss. Heat soared through her entire body, her breath quickened, her palms became sweaty and her heart was beating nine-to-the-dozen. Her eyes had closed the deeper they went into their kiss, and her hands were raking through his dark hair. His body nudged hers until she was lying back on the sofa, one knee bent to accommodate him. As she laid back she gazed up into his shimmering grey eyes; they were amazing, and reflected other colours that were around him, making them sometimes look more blue or green. But now all she could see was his hunger, and she wriggled as she realised he was hungry for her. As he started rubbing against her, regaining their snog she realised she would be happy to lie there in his arms forever. She breathed in deeply through her nose, and caught a spicy, woody smell that intoxicated her further. She loved how Joe made her feel; special, as though there was nobody else in the world. She knew she couldn’t love anyone else like she loved him. He was the one! Coming out of her reverie, she realised Joe had scooched up and was removing her knickers.

“Here?” she asked, slightly shocked. But he just nodded with a wink. He removed his jeans and readied himself for her, before slowly sinking back down on top of her, nestling between her legs. She moved her leg outwards a little more, so he could find his way into her, where she needed him, where he could stop this burning feeling, quenching her flames with his love. Their kisses continued as he pushed in and out, finding his rhythm. Feeling brave, Sophie moved her hands down to his buttocks and pulled him in more, enjoying each and every moment. They were frantic; two souls reaching out for each other. The more he pushed the more she wanted. She started to rock her hips to his beat. Her hair was sticking to her face as they carried on their marathon, their goal almost within their grasp. Sophie was gulping for air, she could feel her inner self climbing higher and higher. Their bodies merged more and more, faster and faster. Then suddenly starbursts were in her head, and Sophie felt like she was falling into a million pieces. She whimpered as she did.

“Are you OK?” Joe asked, not sure why she cried out.

“Yeees,” was all she could manage. A few movements later and Joe too was finding his release, groaning in pleasure, screwing up his beautiful eyes as he found what heaven was like. When he came back down to Earth he opened his eyes and stared down at the beautiful girl under him, and all he could see was love shining back. They were both so happy! He couldn’t stop the boyish chuckle that escaped him, which made Sophie giggle back. He gave her a final kiss before standing up.

“That was amazing!” she exclaimed. She confessed to herself it was loads better than the day before.

Unfortunately, Joe had to go home at lunchtime as his mum had organised something for them to do that afternoon. He tore himself away from Sophie with the deepest regret. He just wanted more of her! But go he must, so he sulked out of the front door.

Sophie was still smiling to herself in front of the TV in the sitting room when her mum came home that afternoon. The look on her mum’s face immediately wiped the smile from her face though; she looked so serious! Sophie began to panic that maybe her mum had found out about her and Joe ‘doing it’, and that she was about to get told off. Her mum went and sat next to her on the sofa, and held Sophie’s hand.

“We need to talk, Pumpkin,” her mum began.

“Sure,” Sophie said, but butterflies were swarming in her tummy.

“I’m glad you’re alone. I meant to do this as soon as your exams were over.” This sounded bad! Her mum continued, “You know how daddy’s business has been struggling?” Sophie could merely nod in horror. “Well, a friend of his moved up to North last year, and says there’s more opportunities for daddy’s business to grow up there.”

“Up North?” Sophie asked incredulously.

“Newcastle is a busy city, and well, they need people like daddy there.”

“Newcastle?” Sophie almost yelled. Her heart was in her throat.

“We’re moving, Poppet.”

“We’re moving to Newcastle? When?”

“In two weeks.”

“Two weeks? What the hell? Mum, why didn’t you tell me? How could you do this to me? And what about college? Does anyone care about what I want?” Tears were pooling in her eyes, and there was a lump in Sophie’s throat.

“I’m sorry, darling. We didn’t want you to worry whilst you were doing your exams. It was important for you to concentrate on those.”

“But what about Joe?”

“What about Joe? How am I going to keep seeing him?” Her tears were starting to fall down her cheeks now.

“Darling; Joe’s just a phase. You’ll see. It’s just puppy love. You’re too young to understand at the moment, but it’s not the real thing. You’ll find someone else. You’ll see.”

“But I don’t want to meet anyone else, I want Joe! Mum I love him!” Her tears were falling in earnest.

“You just think you do,” her mum tried to say reassuringly whilst stroking her daughter’s hair.

Sophie jumped up and yelled, “Don’t tell me what I feel! I love him, and I don’t want to leave him! We’ve had sex and everything; it’s real! I hate you!” With that she stormed upstairs, slammed her bedroom door and threw herself onto her bed and cried. Her sobs wracked her whole body; she was consumed with her grief and gave herself up to it completely. She screamed and yelled between sobs, and curled up in a ball. She cried until she thought she could cry no more, and could barely draw breath. Her mum finally came and tapped on her door. It had taken her a while to recover from the shock of Sophie’s revelation. Her little girl wasn’t so little any more, and she’d completely underestimated the depth of feeling her daughter had for that boy. She went and sat next to Sophie on her bed, and cuddled her up into her arms, kissing the top of her head.

“Shhhh, Poppet, shhh…” she soothed. “It will be fine. I promise. Your first love is always the hardest, but you’ll get over it. You will. In a month or so you’ll be wondering what you ever saw in him, and will be on the arm of someone else. Please trust me.”

Thursday, 4 June 2015

Where is Love?

I seem to have an Oliver (Twist) fixation at present! I shared the “Who Will Buy” YouTube link on Twitter the other day, and here I am now singing “Wheeeeere is love? Does it fall from skies above?” Have I got you ear worming yet? Yes? Good! It’s a nice song for this blog post.

So, I read Lynn Warford’s “Mutual Love and Respect: Necessities for a Happy Marriage”. It’s an interesting book. Lynn shares his many bad and one excellent relationship experiences as a cautionary tale to others. But as I read his rather stoic take on love it set me to thinking. Lynn had a definite idea of which boxes would be ticked to alert him to the fact he was in love. I am not here to judge this approach. We all have our own ideas of love.

My teenage self fell madly in love a few times. As an adult I look back on these times and question if indeed it was love. I feel compelled to defend the teenager and confirm yes, it was. But it was a very different kind of love.

So the question I’m really asking is what is love. Is one form of love better than any other? Well no, of course not. They’re just different.

I’ve had several people review (and give private feedback) on my book Rekindled Love. Most of the readers confess to shedding tears somewhere along their way through this novel. Why? I think it’s because it reaches a very innocent love we felt many years ago, that we hold dear and will treasure always. It was a love driven by hormonal lust. It was all consuming and infatuated. It was as if we were engulfed in its flames. But for most of us those flames burn too fast and too bright, and sadly fizzle out and the relationship must come to an end.

As we journey through life we experience many things. These experiences change and shape us as a person. This in turn changes our perspective of life.

Confession; I have been married before. Was I in love with my first husband? Emphatically yes! I will never regret that marriage (although I may regret how it turned out). It was totally right for me at that time. I was in my late teens when I met him. Over the course of the following eleven years I changed massively. My confidence levels grew, my opinions and outlook received a major readjustment. At the same time this was happening my husband was also changing, but in a different direction. We simply grew apart, and we reached a point that we were no longer compatible. So, I ask again – was this love? Absolutely, but sadly it just wasn’t sustainable.

Do we marry too young? The bridal industry seems to target the early twenty somethings. These young people are barely out of college/university. They’re just starting to step out into the big wide world. Of course we still feel deeply in love at that age, and it is no less than any other. And it’s great to have a loving hand to cling onto as we take those scary steps into adult life. Some relationships are made stronger by the fact they’ve faced these new challenges together. Some don’t.

Society dictates marriage is for life, but in today’s environment, with so many pressures and expectations is this realistic? We seem to have growing expectations (oh dear; more Dickens!); we expect to own our own home, to have nice things, to go on foreign holidays, and to live happily ever after. Hmmm…do we need to manage our expectations or our concept of marriage? It’s certainly food for thought!

My second husband and I are still happily married (and long may it continue). Having learned some valuable lessons on my life path I had a better understanding of what I did/not need as I entered this relationship. And my husband is an absolute superstar; he not only allows but actively encourages my personal growth and he’s my soulmate. We understand and connect with each other on a deeper soul level. Our love is greater and richer because of all that has gone before.

Getting back to my original question – where is love? And where does it come from? Does it fall from skies above (as our friend Oliver would have it)? My holistic friends have a rather lovely take on this; we are all sparks of Divine Love. I don’t want to apply any one religion to this thought; that’s just too much for debate for my little blog to cope with. I like the word ‘Divine’ – one can apply any deity to it, so please feel free to do so as you feel fit.

We are all created with this Divine Love, it is inherent within us. We don’t have to go looking for it, it’s already here. Isn’t that lovely?

My novels all look at love from a different angle. There are as many ways to love as there are stars in the sky. The important thing is just to remember that love exists. Love is the most powerful force in the universe. Every thought and every action you have should come from a place of love.

For today’s conclusion I would just like us all to get together in a massive eHug please.

I love you all!

Love & light,