Our intention with this section is for readers to see what we are crafting for our next book publication. What follows is a snippet from our next book:
THE ENIGMA DRAGON – BOOK 9
Chapter 3 – Guests can stay too long, they really can
EZ said, “You know this is really unnecessary, Julie. You and Juan have been overprotecting Quip and me since we started our honeymoon. Plus, it’s continuing since our return from Jamaica. At some point you need to stop mothering us so we can live our lives. Yours too. We aren’t your children. Speaking of which, aren’t you anxious to get back to Luxemburg to Juan Jr. and Gracie, let alone your home and business? We’ll be fine here in our flat.”
Quip, growing a little annoyed, asked, “Uh, where is Juan? He isn’t doing an electronic bug sweep on our flat, is he? I have had ICABOD sanitizing this quadrant of the galaxy on our behalf, so can you lighten up a bit? Besides, I don’t want him finding our um…adult play room. It’s been grand and loads of fun, but you guys need to disengage so we can settle into the newlywed thing, here. Got it?”
Juan strolled absentmindedly into the living room, turning a piece of leather gear over and over in his hands, and asked, “Quip, I’m not sure what this device or garment does, or for that matter, who it’s for. I mean, it’s nicely adorned with metal studs and short chains, but can you give me some contextual clues about how….”
Quip snatched it from his hands and quite crossly demanded, “Gimme that! See, this is what I mean.”
Juan then gave some exaggerated winks and nods to Quip to assure him that he was actually in the know about what said item was used for but could now rely on Juan’s discretion. This only served to further inflame Quip.
EZ sensed that Juan and Quip were on a collision course and promptly interjected, “Hey, guys, let’s take this coverage issue up again in the morning, hmmm? We’re kind of tired after the trip, and I don’t want us to come off sounding negative to your generous support. That will give you time to check in at home and time for us to digest what is needed and, of course, what is practical. Would that be alright?”
Julie smiled a knowing smile, nodded her head, and offered, “Yes, of course, darlings. Your point is well taken. Perhaps we have been a little too over protective, and frankly, I would like to do our family thing too. Let’s disengage for now, so we don’t risk any more friction in our relationship.”
Juan chimed in. “Hey, it’s just that we care about you. Plus, it has been our experience that just about the time you let your guard down, thinking everything is okay, that’s when a secondary strike occurs.
“I’d like to propose that I stay engaged here for a while longer, just to be safe. Julie can head home and begin putting the pieces of our family back together. We all need to feel safe, and we are family.”
Quip, a little chastened, nodded and said, “Alright, point taken. There is logic to be scouring for any missed clues before we stick a fork in this episode and call it done.”
Julie queried, “EZ, are you alright with this approach?”
With a tired smile EZ nodded and added, “I’m sure this will all sound better in the morning. Now you two scoot, and we promise to keep a watchful eye open at all times.”
Quip was now trying to hurry Juan and Julie out the door, but EZ put her arm into the crook of Juan’s arm and slightly held him back while Julie and Quip moved ahead of them to the door.
In a low, mischievous and sultry voice, EZ asked, “Juan, do you really not know how the leather garment is used, hmmm?”
Usually Juan was the teaser in most situations, but the sensual undertones of EZ’s question caught him off guard. With something of a stammer he offered, “Uh, well ah, you see…that is to say…it is an unusual…article…that could be multi-purpose…well, I didn’t want to seem like a novice in the uh…you see.”
Suppressing her grin at catching Juan flat footed, she politely offered, “Juan, it is used for a comprehensive workout.”
Juan swallowed hard and, trying to maintain some dignity as the conversation seemed to be sliding into an awkward area of discussion, lamely asked, “Oh, so is the …uh, garment for him or um …you?”
EZ, now grinning like a Cheshire cat, mischievously offered, “Yes, it is. Both parties slide into it with the chains used to…”
Julie, grinning from ear to ear, stepped in to Juan’s rescue. “Honey! Stop dawdling! We said we would go and leave them to their own devices. Besides, whatever you and EZ are discussing I want to hear about it later because you are blushing profusely! Now come on.”
Juan stammered a little more for effect and lamely protested, “But EZ wasn’t finished with her side of the conversation!”
EZ grinned at both of them and innocently offered, “Juan, perhaps another time, hmm?”
After Juan and Julie had gone, EZ turned to Quip and asked, “What exactly is this used for?”
Quip broke out laughing and then finally said, “That, my dear, is the best gag gift I have ever seen. It is a harness for holding the back legs of a sheep while the shearer shores off the wool of the animal. The additional chains are to hold the shearer up but take the load off his back while shearing the sheep.
“I think it will be sometime before he goes poking around another newlywed’s apartment, don’t you?”
They both howled with laughter at their gag and antics with Juan.
Juan reassured, “Sweetheart, just give me a few more days here with EZ and Quip to make sure they are not going to be targeted again. Then, I promise to be on a plane home to you and the kids faster than you can say, Jesus is my wayward uncle. Everything will be fine with me, but I don’t want you to let your guard down.”
Julie responded, “I know, but I feel a little guilty leaving you here going over the last details when I should be here helping.”
Juan gently reminded, “Now don’t forget that the team is all assembled and looking for direction, so it doesn’t make sense for both of us to be here with no one driving the business. And you know how Juan Jr. and Gracie are, if at least one of us is not there to ride herd on them. I mean, think of poor Maude trying to deal with those two growing terrors! We need you home now, and I’ll finish up this business as quickly as I can. I promise.”
Julie frowned at Juan and scolded, “The last time you promised me something similar, we had to hunt for your whereabouts and break you out of jail!”
Juan somewhat indignantly responded, “Hey, it isn’t always my fault! Besides, I need you to also promise not to get into any trouble. It could happen. Right?”
Julie smirked and retorted, “Moi? In trouble? Oh push-tush! I’ll be fine. I don’t go courting trouble like you mister oh I have to crash land a plane in the desert! Oh and my plane is on auto-pilot heading to the ground because of a computer virus!”
Juan reflected for a moment then gently offered, “Honey, thanks for saving my backside so many times. If the tables ever get turned, I will be there hunting for you. I just hope it won’t be like the time you drug me out of that dungeon in China. It would devastate me to see you that worked over. I will come for you whenever you are in trouble, even though I know it will never happen, okay?”
Julie mushed into Juan and after a passionate kiss, she turned to enter the waiting cab. As the cab pulled away, a stray tear got away from her eye before she could trap it.
Note to the reader: Hope you liked the beginning. The story is being worked and will be available soon and be added to the website.