Years back, not long after my first few works were contracted and published, flash fiction was all the rage. Everyone was doing it. There were blog hops dedicated to it, some of which I organized. There were contests built around it. It was fun. It was a way to keep the creative juices flowing. And, it was a way to give readers a little taste of one’s writing between releases. I was going to make Saturday Shorts a regular thing before the end of last year, but the busyness of life got in the way. I hope to revisit this notion more often in the new year. Today, I give you one of the pieces I posted long ago and far away during one of those flash fiction blog hops. I believe the image used for inspiration was of a female spy type holding a weapon. I’ve revised it a bit and added a few more words to give it a more solid resolve. Enjoy!
“God, how I’ve missed you,” Zayne breathed across Phaedra’s throat.
“I’ve missed you, too,” she whispered, pulling his earlobe between her teeth and nipping.
After nine months of hiding out in insurgent camps, nothing felt better to Zayne than sinking into the heated, pliable flesh of the woman he wanted so badly to call wife, but who kept refusing his proposals. His head understood her apprehension at marrying a guy whom the CIA was unaware of and the FBI turned a blind eye to. The guy that spent half his life in the field, picking off the worst of the bad guys in exchange for untraceable funds.
“I love you, Zayne,” Phaedra said, shoving his shirt down his arms and sinking to her knees in front of him, her eyes wide.
Some hours later, still lying on his belly, Zayne ran his hand across the mattress to find the space beside him cold and bereft. He opened his eyes to confirm what he already knew. She was gone. She’d left. Again.
“Don’t move, baby. I don’t want to miss,” Phaedra murmured with a hitch in her voice. She straddled him and the cold, hard metal of a pistol pressed into the back of his skull, chilling him to the bone, even as the warmth radiating from her body spread up his back.
“You? You must be kidding, Phaedra. You? You’re the operative I’ve been hunting?” Zayne closed his eyes and blew out a breath, the weight of the situation pressing down on him.
“Yes, Zayne. I’m the Velvet Hammer.”
“Why now?” Zayne asked.
“Because I love you.”
In an instant the muzzle of the gun lifted and she fired into the pillow on the other side of the bed leaving his ears ringing and cotton filament rising in a white cloud of fluff. Before it fully registered that Zayne had let his feelings interfere with his job and that had nearly cost him his life or the fact that she’d spared him, Phaedra had draped her body across his, laying the gun on the mattress.
“Because I love you,” she whispered over his throat, pulling herself up and off him to stand.
Zayne eased over to his back and found her tugging on her clothes. “Now what?” he asked, pushing to sit.
“You can take me in,” she said zipping her jeans and sliding her right foot into one of her clogs. “Or, you can let me go.”
“What if I don’t like those choices?”
Phaedra’s gaze darted to the abandoned pistol and her forehead wrinkled. “Those are the only choices.”
“No. Those aren’t the only choices,” Zayne said, standing and reaching out to take her hand. Sweat had beaded along his brow when he realized the other option was so obvious. It also involved admitting something he’d never admitted to anyone, even during his groveling attempts at proposals of marriage. “I love you, too. We can walk away from all this together.”
“I just had a gun to your head, Zayne,” she said, pulling a face and staring at him. “Have you lost your mind?”
“No. Only my heart. Promise me you won’t do that again and I’ll walk away from all this with you right now. Today. Say yes.”
Phaedra flung herself at him, wrapping her arms and legs around him, clinging to his frame. “Yes, Zayne. Yes. Yes. Yes.”