Summer in Southern Ontario
Hey there! Happy Canadian summer! Now that winter finally seems to have moved off, I hope you’ve all found the opportunity to curl up with a good book, or an old favorite, on one of our many awesome Ontario waterfronts and enjoy the sunshine and warm weather. Myself, I love being near the water. There is something settling and healing about it. Up until recently, we owned a rustic cottage on beautiful Sturgeon Lake in the Kawarthas. It’s where my story came to life and blossomed into my first published novel. Even the ending of my second book would not have come to fruition without the warm breeze, melodic bird songs and the gentle sound of the rolling waves as they came to rest on the shore. Today, on our travels we came across a small lake nestled near a small charming Ontario town. I paused for a moment to enjoy the view and became inspired by its beauty. It’s the kind of place where, as an author, I could unfold my chair on that warm sand, open up my laptop and write. It offers so much more than just sun burnt skin, sandy feet and bug bites. Words flow freely when the soul is settled and the mind is at peace. It’s that calmness that very quickly spurs my creative mind into action, allowing characters and ideas to form into stories to share with all of you. Now that the family cottage has been sold, I’ll spend my time taking little adventures to search out more of Ontario’s little hidden inspiration spots. I’m sure that each new town, each journey, will bring me in touch with interesting characters and inspiring Canadian landscapes to use as the back drops for my upcoming stories. So I’m wondering, what places in Ontario have inspired you?
Excerpt from Intractable Souls Book 1 from the Bound4Ireland series.
Standing in front of the glow of the fire, they warm themselves from the chill of the evening air. When the band resumes playing after their brief break, Ethan and Olivia find themselves alone by the fire. The next tune is a slow, sappy love song and Olivia gets mellow. “I love this song,” she says, closing her eyes.
Ethan snuggles up behind her and sways with her, their bodies fitting perfectly together. Singing along with the music in perfect pitch, he serenades her. His smooth voice is so seductive in her ear that it stirs in her very powerful feelings. Even the thundering sound of her pulse seems distant and insignificant.
She melts into his body for support, feeling like her legs have suddenly become boneless. When the song is over, she feels overheated by the combination of the fire and the flame he’s ignited inside her.
Ethan whispers in her ear, “Both the moon and I are consumed with jealousy tonight, Olivia. I, due to the attention you gave to an undeserving man,”
Olivia frowns, regretting that choice. “And the moon?” she asks, trying to steer away from conversation about Noah.
“The moon, for failing to compete with your beauty.”
Olivia suddenly finds it difficult to breathe. His closeness makes her uneasy. The man has a way of jump-starting her anxiety. She tries to focus on her breathing. Reminding herself that Ethan would never hurt her. Walking away, she tries to hide her sudden onset of vulnerability.
A few feet away, the property boundary is marked with a tree line of tall maples. She leans her back against one of the large trunks, trying to find her balance.
Ethan follows, putting his hand against the trunk just above her head. His body presses against her side making her heartbeat quicker. His incessant stare is daunting, forcing her to look down, trying to avoid it.
Breathing in her perfume, Ethan becomes intoxicated by its sweet, seductive scent. Lifting his free hand, he wraps it around her waist, holding her there. Christ, this woman is so beautiful when she tries to hide the way he affects her.
Ethan presses his mouth against her ear, gently nipping at her lobe. The warmth of his breath against her ear gives her goose bumps. Noticing her reaction, he moves his hand from her side, rubbing up and down her arm trying to warm her. “Are you cold?” The muscles in her stomach tighten and her chest heaves as she inhales quickly.
“No.” She shakes her head.
“What then?” He knows what. He just needs to hear her say it.
She looks up at him through alluring hazel eyes. “You.”
“What about me?” Is it cruel that he needs her to confess it? Tormenting her by making her say it aloud?
Olivia lowers her eyes again and whispers, “I hate you.”
Ethan’s hand stills on her arm. Pressing his forehead to the side of her temple he answers, “I don’t believe that’s true, at all.” He slides his hand to her hip, tugging her closer to him.
Olivia bites at her fingernails nervously, covering her mouth. Her stomach twists in anxious knots as she lays out her feelings. “I hate the way you make me feel,” she concedes.
Ethan inhales a deep breath, letting it breeze out warm and slow against her ear again. Finally, he gets to the truth. Capturing her hand, he pulls it down, away from her mouth. Not feeling the need to control or overpower her in this moment his voice is gentle, “Look at me.”
Trembling with vulnerability, she turns so they’re chest to chest. Raising her eyes, she locks his gaze to hers; green to hazel, the soulful energy of their connection, ineffable.
“How do I make you feel?” His heart is beating with a strange wobble, nervous about her answer.
“Frightened.” She pauses, swallowing hard. Ashamed at her admission, she exhales as she whispers, “Excited.”
Lifting her hand to his mouth, he kisses each of her knuckles one at a time. Closing her eyes, Olivia escapes his stare for just a few moments, gathering her thoughts before speaking again, “You make me feel like I’ve lost control… of my thoughts… my emotions.”
“Is that so bad?” Ethan presses her palm to his chest so she can feel the rhythmic beating of his heart. “You’re not the only one who feels that way. The moment I saw you, my heart beat your name.”
Damn him and his ridiculously romantic side, she’s never going to survive it. Her words are laced with fear. “I need to stay in control.”
“Why?” When she doesn’t answer, his Irish brogue suddenly becomes thick and Irishy. “Sweetheart, you’re no more in control of what’s happening between us than I am. Whatever this is… it has its own destiny. We can merely follow its path.”
“Give in to its force,” she adds, knowing that he’s stating the truth. It’s increasingly hard to fight.
“Yes, bend to its will,” he encourages.
Olivia is adrift in his eyes. Lost in his words. Hopelessly held captive under his spell.
Moving his hands to her hips, Ethan pulls her closer. Her nerves tingle with the anticipation of his next move. Kiss me; just kiss me already.
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