I'm getting used to the brace being on and off, as I wean myself off. The wrist is still a bit tender, but I'm even typing with both hands now. So much quicker.
I'm sharing another snippet from the 2nd Alex O'Hara mystery novel, The Case of the Fabulous Fiancé. Alex is a P.I. in the small Lake Michigan resort town near Grand Rapids.
I've skipped ahead a bit from last time. Some changes were made to the original.
“Did you really think I would fall into your arms? I’m not some bimbo you can jump into bed with and then say ‘I’ll be right back’. Right back doesn't mean not a single word for over two frelling months.”
I’d just binge-watched Farscape, so frelling was my word of choice when I really wanted to say the other F-word.
Every muscle in his body tightened. The effect was fascinating and a little scary. His lips, which had been soft only moments ago, thinned. His face became all sharp edges.
“What do you mean not a single word?” he asked in a too-soft voice. Like I said, a little scary.
And now a bit more:
I gave an exasperated sigh. “I mean just that. Not one word. We’re about to make love, you get a phone call, say you need to go out for a minute, then you disappear. Don’t you think I was worried sick about you? Not knowing if you’d been killed or injured or God knows what. I didn’t know where you’d gone or why. Didn’t you care that I’d be beside myself not knowing what happened to you?”
Well, shoot. I hadn’t wanted him to know all that. Really, I was worried for only a week. Or maybe it was two. Couldn’t have been longer. I’m not a glutton for punishment.
Nick ran his hand around the back of his neck. “Son of a bitch.”
“Thanks. That was so kind. If you’ll excuse me, I have work to do.” I pulled my chair up to the desk, crowding him and bumping his knee. I almost apologized.
“I wasn’t referring to you, sweetheart. I—”
“Okay, buster, let’s get something straight.” I was getting up a full head of steam, as Pop used to say. Nick had given no explanation for his absence, no apology. I felt like a dope for revealing my fears. “I am not your sweetheart, Nick Palzetti. Never was, never will be.”
He pulled out my chair then, propping his hands on the arms, he leaned in. “Yes, you were, are, and always will be.”
The conviction in his voice gave me pause. I wanted to believe him. That had to be my emotional side. But my logical side made me wary. What if I—
“My son-of-a-bitching boss was supposed to call you.”
I was torn, but my logical side prevailed. “And why would your boss call me?” A likely story. Blame someone else for not doing the job yourself. “Didn’t you have time?” I smiled sugary-sweet.
“I think we have what’s called a breakdown in communication.”
“Really? How convenient.” Then I remembered my faulty communication equipment before Pete came . . . and guilt reared its ugly head.
She’s at it again. Alex O’Hara just can’t say no to a new investigation. What do a 45-year-old boyfriend, a deadbeat dad, and a teenage runaway have in common? All new cases. With no receptionist, phone and internet problems, and her own boyfriend in the wind, Alex has no idea how she’ll manage. But the question for the past three months is why did Nick disappear. Is this the end of O’Hara & Palzetti?