Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Read and Excerpt From Night Travelers by Marilyn Gardiner


Barnes & Noble
Wings ePress

Four generations of women live together, each with her own problems, learning how to cope with her own issues while providing support for the others.

Elizabeth is the glue that holds the family together: her elderly mother suffering from dementia, her two grown daughters, one with a marriage in crisis and another who plans artificial Insemination, and two grandchildren resentful of their parents’ separation. Elizabeth’s own second-time-around romance is in jeopardy while she helps everyone else dealing with serious issues. Is she strong enough to be helpful to everyone else and put her own love aside?


A gentle breeze from the lake wafted over them, smelling of a pleasant combination of fish and honeysuckle. Elizabeth touched her tongue to the melting ice cream cone she held and relaxed against the back of the car seat. Frogs croaked their evening songs, and Elizabeth swore she could identify Ferdinand, Andy’s special frog. Overhead, stars hung heavy in the sky and reflected in the water so clearly she said, “I think I could wade out and pick a star right from the lake.”
Sam tossed the last of his cone out the window and into the lake. “Bedtime treat for the fish, and if I’m too sticky to kiss, you’ll just have to get over it.” He leaned forward, one hand on the back of her seat and the other tilting her chin back toward himself.
Elizabeth had the fleeting thought that this was the moment she could draw back. If she didn’t want what would follow, now was the time. Her lips tipped upward in a tiny smile as she lifted her face to his. Damn the torpedoes. Somebody said that, it didn’t matter who, and she leaned into his arms.
He slanted his lips across hers as one hand crept around her waist to pull her
closer, and then crept up to her breast. “Oh hell!” he groaned and leaned back.
“You’ve frozen me. My right nipple is frostbitten!”
She’d forgotten the cone she still held in her left hand. Crushed between them, the ice cream was mashed and quickly turned to liquid. Elizabeth laughed. “Look at us.” Actually the cold felt good on her hot skin, but they were an incredible mess. “Worse than toddlers.”
Sam used two hands to pull his shirt away from his chest. He was wet to his waist. He broke into a chuckle. “You aren’t any better.”
Elizabeth already knew she was covered in the icy stuff. She was wet through to her bra and even the legs of her Capri pants were cold. She laughed so hard she couldn’t catch her breath. The last of her smashed cone followed Sam’s out the window. “What are we going to tell the children?”
He reached for her again. “Who cares? Come here.”
Blood sang through her veins. An almost forgotten need rose within her, demanding attention. Sam ran his fingers through her hair and tipped her head back even farther. His lips on her neck nibbled and teased and then traveled up her jaw to her mouth with a gentleness that made her suddenly weak.
This was the sweetness they’d had as teenagers. Moline hardly counted, they’d been so eager, and neither one had been free, but this…this…. Anxiety slipped away. Worries dimmed. The world shrunk to the space within his arms. This was Sam.
His hands slid over her, crept again beneath her blouse. Hard palms but a soft and tender touch. Sweet. So very, very sweet.
He drew his mouth far enough away to say, “This position is going to give me a hernia. The back seat would work better.”
It did.

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