Welcome to this week’s Tuesday Tales, the weekly blog where a select group of writers share a scene from their work in progress with you. This week, our word prompt is HURRY. I’m continuing with The White Dahlia. The story is moving right along at a much quicker pace. Enjoy.
The sooner she got home, the better.
“Beth! … Beth Reynolds! … Detective Sergeant Reynolds, I know you can hear me! What’s your hurry?”
For the second time in as many days, Beth turned her head at the sound of Jack Ogden’s despised voice. He was running toward her. In this heat, he was sweating like a chunky kid chasing an ice cream truck.
“Who’s that?” Al asked.
“That is the infamous Jack Ogden, the pariah who wrote the story about the body yesterday. He looks like crap. No doubt burning the candle at both ends, with too many women, fast food, and booze,” she answered, unable to quash her bitterness.
And if he got close enough, he might smell her latest cologne, knowing damn well she’d discovered another body. But that’s all he would get out of her. The uniformed officer stepped in front of him, blocking his access to her.
“That’s far enough, sir.”
Jack poked his head around the man.
“Beth. Either you speak to me, or I’ll shout out my questions for everyone to hear.”
She turned toward the journalist, knowing that if she didn’t, he would make good on his threat.
“What do you want, Jack? I was about to have dinner but seeing you just turned my stomach.”
He narrowed his eyes. “Are you sure it wasn’t something in there that did that for you? Why are you here? Is it because of the explosion? You aren’t with the bomb squad anymore, so there has to be more to it.”
“No comment,” she ground out through clenched teeth.
“The Commissioner said a van exploded. Would it by any chance be the van the police have been looking for, the dark van seen in the alley on Thursday night?”
How the hell did he know that? They’d kept the search under the radar, and yet slimy here knew all about it. Who’d he speak to?
Jack narrowed his eyes. Her hesitation was all the answer he needed.
“So it is the same van.”
“No comment,” she spit the words at him, barely able to control her fury.
Jack turned from her to Al.
“Detective Foster. The woman who died Thursday night was one of your missing persons, and here you are again this evening. Why is that? Does this have something to do with her? Care to add anything?”
That’s it. Stay safe and don’t forget to check out the other Tuesday Tales
Welcome to the third week of April. Wow! How time flies! Once again this week, I’m waxing nostalgic with the places i want to visit, so I’m taking you back to Hawaii.
Whenever people think of the island state, they see lush foliage, sandy beaches, incredible turquoise blue water, surfers on waves at Waikiki, volcanoes, coconut, pineapple and of course Pearl Harbor
Today, the letter P brings you the Pearl Harbor cocktail, named after the naval base on Oahu.It’s been one of the most popular cocktails in the state since the 1980s. With it’s light, delightful fruity taste, it’s the perfect summer drink. The greenness of the drink depends on how much melon liqueur you us. More it’s greener, more pineapple juice, it’s not.
Well, it’s Sunday again. Another week has come and gone, and for the most part, all it’s brought is sad news. I watched the royal funeral yesterday, and today, I’ve just finished attending church in my nightgown, sitting on the couch, watching the virtual service on YouTube. We’re under a six week Stay-at-Home order, and still Ontario reports another 4250 new Covid 19 infections. Why is this still happening? And now they say we’ll have snow this week. What more can go wrong?
At this time last year, we were horrified by the Coronavirus and the speed with which it was moving around the globe. So many died in that first wave, many more in that second one, and now, the cases and deaths are piling up again. We thought the vaccines would bring us back to normalcy. We were wrong. In time, when enough people have been vaccinated, we’ll see a new normal, but right now, that goal seems so far distant, it appears unreachable and the virus is outpacing the vaccinations.
What have you missed most? I’ve missed all the things I used to take for granted–like lunch dates with friends, shopping in person for everything from bras to underwear, deciding on the spur of the moment to go out for a drink or a meal, attending sports events and watching my grandkids play, going to award ceremonies and graduations, music concerts and plays, and most of all I miss seeing my sons.
I’m lucky enough to see my mother twice a week. She’s in a long-term care facility spared the horrors so many faced. She’s had both shots of her vaccine, and while she’s spent most of her time in her room, she’s been spared from this horrendous disease. I see my daughter weekly, as she does my groceries so that I can avoid possibly getting infected. She, myself, and my husband have had our first doses of the vaccine. We aren’t 100 percent protected, but if we do get sick, maybe it won’t be deadly.
So, on that dismal note, I’ll go and make lunch and then get back to writing this afternoon. Hope you can find a way to enjoy your day.
Well, we’re arrived at the end of the second full week of blogs and I’m enjoying myself immensely! When I started my series, Cocktails for You, I wondered where I would get my inspiration, but this blog theme has been a godsend.
So what does the letter O have for us today? How about an Oasis? Think of those hot summer days in our future where we’re rushing around like rats in a maze–especially if we’re caught in socially distant line after line. Picture salvation in the distance. Do you see the palm trees? feel the cool ocean breeze? There it is. The Oasis. Doesn’t it look good? Doesn’t it look refreshiong?
Make It Your Own.
1 oz Curacao 2 oz Gin Soda Water Ice cubes Lemon Wedges and mint leaves,
Fill a tall glass with ice cubes or crushed ice.
Add Blue Curacao and gin.
Top with soda water. Stir and garnish.
There it is. Simple, quick and easy. Hope you have a wonderful weekend. I’ll see you back here on Monday!
Here we are back again. How is spring treating you? Ours has been surprisingly and unusually warm. I hope this is a sign of of a nice summer to come, but then again, Mother Nature hasn’t been exactly kind to humanity lately.
Many of the cocktails I’ve shown you so far remind you of places far away, some I’ve visited, others I would love to. Today’s cocktail for the letter N comes from my bucket list. The Negroni is the quintessential Italian cocktail. It’s been called a ‘man’s cocktail’ but i know a few women who would argue with that.
I’ve had one in an Italian restaurant and it’s delicious.
Make it Your Own
1 orange 1 ½ ounces gin 1 ½ ounces sweet vermouth 1 ½ ounces Campari Sparkling water, for topping
Using a vegetable peeler, remove a few rinds from the outside of the orange and reserve.
Take one of the orange rinds and pinch it between two fingers to release some of the essential oils. Rub the inside of a rocks glass with the orange the orange rind to scent the glass.
Fill the rocks glass with ice. Pour the gin, sweet vermouth and Campari over the ice. Using a long cocktail spoon, stir the ingredients until glass feels well chilled. Top with sparkling water.
Welcome back to Cocktails A to Z, my theme for the 2021 challenge blog. Today, we’re going to wax nostalgic as I think back to the days when I could travel.
I love cruises, but I don’t like airplanes and airports. A few years ago, we got the best of both when we simply took a bus to New York City and boarded our cruise ship. The bonus came with an overnight stay in Manhattan. One year, we saw a New York Rangers’ game. Another we visited the Top of the Rock. And of course each time, we spent a few hours in Time Square.
How many people can say they had their picture taken with Batman?
Today’s cocktail brought to you by the letter M is the Manhattan, named after the island of Manhattan itself. If you haven’t been to New York, I highly recommend it. There is so much to see and do. I’ve been five times now, and there are still many wonderful things i want to see. In my fifth Cocktails for You book, Make Mine a Manhattan, my heroine visits the city, searching for inspiration for her newest novel. This book will be available in September.
The Manhattan can be served straight up or on ice. I prefer mine ‘on the rocks’ as they say
Fill a whiskey tumbler with ice.
Add all the ingredients and stir.
Garnish with maraschino cherries
Serve as is or strained into a cocktail glass.
Here are the book description for Make Mine a Manhattan
What’s an author to do when she’s hopelessly stuck, thanks to writer’s block?
With only eight weeks left to finish her newest novel, bestselling author Sydney Sanders, aka Robin Langford, is stuck. On an impulse, the thirty-five-year old introvert decides to take her agent’s advice and shift gears, but instead of going on a short vacation, she’s going to immerse herself in her story by assuming her heroine’s identity and going to Manhattan to live out the plot. What could possibly go wrong?
As Savanna Long, she boards the train, expecting a quiet ride and time to refresh her muse for the chore ahead, but a lot can happen during the thirty-eight hour trip, especially with her imagination and the drop-dead gorgeous passenger in the next car.
What starts out as a research project takes an unexpected turn when she falls head over heels in love. Suddenly, her reality is better than anything she could ever imagine—and she can imagine a lot—but there’s a glitch. How will her handsome hero feel when he discovers the woman in his bed isn’t the person he thinks she is? Will the fledgling romance fizzle out, or will she have the bestseller she wants and the man she loves?
Here is the opening scene.
“Please, Mom, can’t you just let it go?” I begged, regretting my decision to stop in for a cold drink after my morning run. “You asked and I said no, and I mean it. I’m not interested. Nyet, nada, nein, non.”
The most annoying thing about wearing a mask to protect myself and others from COVID-19 was the inability to see someone’s lower facial expressions, but the eyes never lied. From the storm clouds in my mother’s gray ones, I knew she was angry with me, but I was just as mad at her—well, maybe not at her exactly—but I was frustrated, and this scheme of hers was just one more complication I didn’t need. At the moment, I was hot and sweaty. I just wanted my iced capp and then a shower.
“It’s not as if Mayor Loucks asks you for favors every day,” Mom continued with another volley in an argument I was determined she would never win.
“For the last time, Mom, I refuse to go out with every eligible Tom, Dick, or Harry someone throws in my path,” I stated, my teeth gritted so tightly, they ached. “Besides. We’re still supposed to be staying socially distant. I’m perfectly content in my own bubble. I like my life here as it is, without a lot of fanfare. Shakespeare and I are just fine.”
Mom harrumphed as she finished putting the final touches on my iced cappuccino. The good thing about having a parent who owned a coffee shop was the free drinks, the bad thing was the unsolicited advice.
“I don’t understand why you’re being so obstinate and selfish,” she continued. “The pandemic is winding down, and this is just one little dinner—a barbecue, for heaven’s sake. You’ll be outside. The man is in Flowerfield to look over the old Dog Mountain ski area. If he agrees to invest in it, it’ll be a shot in the arm for the town, and Lord knows, we can use it. Franklin assures me the man has had his Coronavirus vaccine and has a negative test. You can’t get any safer than that these days, and you know it. Besides, Lacey says he’s gorgeous, cultured, and filthy rich. You aren’t getting any younger and quality husband material isn’t easy to find around here. I would think you would be happy to take one for the town.”
“Take one for the town? Just what are you suggesting, Mother? I’m perfectly happy without a prick between my legs or anywhere else,” I hissed through clenched teeth.
“Sydney Robin Langford, you watch your mouth. I didn’t raise you to speak like that and you know it. That is most definitely not what I meant. There are decent folks in here who want to enjoy a quiet cup of coffee without listening to your foul language. The way you’re behaving these days, I swear you’ve become anti-social. Maybe you should see Doctor Edwards. You could’ve started premature menopause.”
I exhaled forcefully. I couldn’t say prick, but my mother, in the same quiet tone a five-year-old uses to whisper, could inform the town that her thirty-three year old daughter was menopausal.
“Mom, I’m sorry, but I don’t have time to play nice-nice with some rich carpetbagger who’ll probably walk away from the deal anyway.”
“You’re too busy? I doubt that. You’re the only person I know who actually enjoyed all those months of quarantine. If I hadn’t insisted you come to dinner last night, you would’ve brushed off your sister and your nephew as well as your dad and me. So tell me, Miss Too-Good-to-Do-The-Town-A-Simple-Favor, what is it that you’re working on? And don’t say school work because you started summer vacation last week.”
“I’m … I’m working on a special course—something online,” I stammered, the half-lie slipping out of my mouth.
“You’re always working on something online. The governor says that the kids will be going back to in-classroom learning this fall, so you can quit trying to develop those—what did you call them? Oh yes—innovative and exciting online lessons.” Her eyes narrowed. “I was reading about screen time dependency. Are you addicted to video games? Good Lord, don’t tell me you’rewatching porn or chatting with some stranger who could well be a serial killer.”
“Mother! I don’t know where you get your ideas, but no!”
I shook my head, rolled my eyes, and reached for my cappuccino. And here I thought I was the one with the wild imagination. It was perfectly acceptable to send me on a blind date with a stranger who had money and might invest it in the town, but if I were to meet anyone online, he would be the next Jeffrey Dahmer.
“Forget it. You wouldn’t understand. You never have.” I stepped back. “I have to get home and feed Shakespeare.”
My mother turned and glared at me.
“You treat that cat better than you treat the members of your own family. Fine. I’ll call Franklin and make some excuse, but you’ll regret not helping out when the town needed you. If Stargazer Enterprise does reopen the mountain, having a close personal relationship with the CEO would be quite advantageous.”
Would she never give up? On the defensive now, I harrumphed.
“Since when does a blind date barbecue I have no intention of attending morph into a close personal relationship? Forget it, Mom. I’m not the sacrificial virgin ready to be tossed into the volcano to save the town. Unless you agree not to harp on this again, I’m not coming back for lunch with Callie and Mickey.”
The bell rang announcing the arrival of another customer.
Thank you, Lord.
“Fine,” Mom agreed, but her tone made it clear she wasn’t happy about it. “Maybe he doesn’t need a date per se. There will be plenty of single women there. I’ll see you at one thirty sharp.”
She frowned, her mask moving up her face almost obliterating her eyes.
I sighed, knowing full well that this wouldn’t be the end of it, but if I didn’t make lunch, I wouldn’t survive the lecture that was sure to follow.
“I’ll be here.”
Turning abruptly, I collided with the mountain behind me, splashing my iced capp all over both of us, the ice cubes settling on his loafers.
A collective gasp filled the room, and I was suddenly aware of the dozens of gazes fixed on me. There was Frank, the town mechanic and Sylvia who ran the dry cleaners. Was that Mayor Loucks? Wouldn’t he be happy to discover he’d avoided setting his big buyer up with the Queen of Bad Luck?
“Oh my God,” Mom cried. “What have you done? Don’t you ever watch what you’re doing?”
What I’m doing?
Speechless, I gaped at the huge, wet spot spreading across the man’s tan shirt and khaki pants, scarcely noticing the fact that my white cotton t-shirt was almost as wet. Tilting my head up, I stared at the face hidden behind his mask, mirrored sunglasses, and the brim of his Panama hat. When had I ever seen a man with such broad shoulders? Despite my mask, the aroma of his aftershave tickled my nose, and I sneezed.
Heat filled my cheeks. No doubt the top half of my face was as red as a ripe tomato, and considering I had carrot-colored hair, currently pulled up into a messy bun on the top of my head, it wouldn’t be a good look on me. I peered at the mess I’d made, suddenly aware of the fact that my tightened nipples were poking out of my wet shirt.
Mortification mixed with indignation, and my brain clicked into gear. I set the empty cup on the table beside me and tried to cover my wet chest with my arms.
The stranger just stood there, looking down on me.
Not known for my patience and diplomacy, I lashed out at him in a tone worthy of Katerina in The Taming of the Shrew.
“I’m so sorry. I didn’t know you were there. Of course, if you hadn’t been standing right on my ass, we might’ve avoided the collision. Or don’t you know what six feet away means?”
He hissed in a sharp breath but didn’t speak, no doubt because he knew I was right.
Mom raced around the counter with a damp cloth and a pile of napkins.
“Don’t just stand there, do something.”
Gritting my teeth, I grabbed the damp cloth from her and started dabbing at the coffee on my t-shirt.
“Not you, for heaven’s sake,” Mom barked.
So much for motherly love and compassion!
Turning, I began rubbing at the stain on the man shirt and pants, praying it wouldn’t stain. My new t-shirt probably would, and that annoyed me more, causing me to rub harder.
I stopped dead, my heart pounding out a primitive beat, my lungs refusing to function.
While the stranger had to be at least six foot six, I was barely five feet tall. Most of the coffee stain was on his crotch, a fact my addled brain had ignored. My hand was essentially massaging that area of his anatomy, and I could feel something cylindrical growing hard under my hand.
I jumped away as if I’d been tazered. The old, Is that a flashlight in your pocket or are you happy to see me? joke ripped through my mind, and I smothered a giggle.
“Robin, you’re just making it worse,” my mother said, handing the man the pile of napkins. “Perhaps you would like to step into the washroom, sir?”
The man grunted and reached for the napkins. I couldn’t help noticing his hands. Whoever I’d collided with had the hands of a pianist, with long tapered fingers. What would it be like to have hands like that caress my body?
Mother of God! What is wrong with me?
As soon as he moved away, I rushed out the door, jogging the three blocks home faster than I’d ever run them before, grateful that at seven in the morning, the street was all but deserted.
The minute I stepped inside the house, I collapsed into the chair, a sudden fit of giggles taking my breath away. I laughed until my sides ached. In my mind’s eye, I pictured the scene and dissolved into giggles again.
Of course Mom would place the blame for this squarely on me … the wayward daughter who never did anything right.
Shakespeare wandered into the living room and meowed a welcome.
“It served him right,” I began explaining the incident to my companion. “Had he been the requisite six feet away, he would’ve escaped his fate, and I would now be finishing my iced cappuccino.”
Welcome to another day in this year’s challenge. I’ve enjoyed your comments and posts from others attempting the challenge this year. Here’s hoping you’re all healthy and as happy as can be given the way things are.
Going to do something a little different this morning. Remember the good old days? As Doc would say, “Marty stay away from 2020-2021!”
I’ve been a fan of Michael J Fox from his earliest television days, but my favorite movies of his are the Back to the Future ones, and The American President. He has battled adversity and is one of our Canadian shining lights.
So what do Michael J. Fox and Johnny B. Goode have to do with today and the letter L? Well, today’s cocktail is called Lady Be Good. It seemed like a natural! I love white creme de menthe.
Make it Your Own
2 oz Brandy 1/2 oz White Creme de Menthe 1/2 oz Sweet Vermouth
In a mixing glass filled with ice, stir all ingredients. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass.
Garnish with a cherry and and serve.
Now, this seems like a very promising book title. Looking forward to letting the creative juices flow!
Come back tomorrow for a peek at what you’ll get from the letter M.
Oh Happy Day! Hubby gets his first Covid vaccine shot this morning. I got mine back in February. No issues, no problems, but at my age, a little peace of mind.
Today’s Cocktail comes from the letter K. While I wouldn’t recommend this as a breakfast drink,I can see enjoying one after lunch or dinner. Our cocktail today is Kentucky Tea. For those who prefer, it could be Kentucky Coffee. I suppose like many when I think of drinks born in the Southern US, I immediately think of Mint Julips or Jack Daniels, straight up or with coke.
Make It Your Own
Both of these drinks are based on infamous Kentucky Bourbon. You can choose your poison in today’s Two for the price of one deal.
2.5 oz. Coffee
1.25 oz Bourbon
Brown Sugar (to taste)
Creamer (to taste)
Pour coffee into a mug. My choice would be a glass one.
Add brown sugar to taste
Add creamer to taste I would go with whipped cream.
0,5 oz of Kentucky bourbon
0.5 oz of red vermouth
Brewed Earl Gray or other blend of tea (strong)
sugar to taste
lemon to taste
milk not recommended.
In a tea cup, add the bourbon and vermouth
Fill the rest of the cup with strong tea.
Add sugar and/ or lemon to taste
Caution! Adding milk could cause the drink to curdle.
Welcome to another Tuesday Tale. This week we have a picture prompt, which limits the scene to 300 words. I’m continuing with The White Dahlia.
“I wonder how long it’ll take Mitch to identify the girl in the back of the van?”
Beth looked at him. “I don’t know. It’ll depend on what she can get from the body. Al, I don’t think it’ll be Rebecca. She hadn’t been missing long enough, not if getting children is part of this as I suspect, and I don’t think it would be Sylvia—not once he had Rachel. He would’ve … disposed of her sooner. I’m sorry.”
He nodded, trying to empty his mind of all the imagined indignities performed on his former wife.
“Here we are,” Beth said, pointing to a small café, half of its outdoor tables full. “Inside or out?”
“Let’s go in just in case the sky decides to open up again.”
“Yeah. We can get a cab back if it does.”
Al pushed open the door and stepped inside the small coffee shop. The red lacquered tables and chairs gave the place a bright friendly feel, but it was the aroma that mattered most. The smell of rich, fresh coffee mingling with the sweet smells of pastry made his mouth water.
Beth chose a table near the windows.
“What’ll you have?
“I’ll have a chai latte with a dash of cream and a chocolate croissant.”
She handed him a five. He was going to refuse, but the look on her face convinced him this wasn’t an argument he would win.
A few minutes later he returned with two of the croissants, a red cup for her and a black one for himself. He placed her change on the table beside her cup.
“So,” he asked before taking a mouthful of coffee and savoring it. “Good stuff. Are we still on for dinner?”
Beth nodded. “Unless Chad says otherwise, we should be good.”
That’s it. Stay safe and don’t forget to check out the other Tuesday Tales
Welcome back. I hope you all had a wonderful weekend–well, as wonderful as it can be considering the circumstances. With the warmer weather and sunshine, hubby and I went for a Sunday drive, being carful not to stop anywhere where there were people. When we came home, we settled in lawn chairs and enjoyed a couple of driveway beers–yes, beers is right since we don’t drink the same brand. Funny thing, he usually finishes his case before I do. We sit in the driveway because the grass is still too wet to go into the yard.
Today’s cocktail is brought to you by the letter J. The Japanese Slipper is also called the Grinch Cocktail because of it’s lovely green color. In Japanese, the word midori means green. My son and his family were fortunate enough to visit Japan before the pandemic and were treated to many wonderful Japanese experiences, including the chance to dress up in beautiful silk kimonos. While everyone thinks of the historic tea ceremony and saki, the Japanese slipper has a lot to offer, too.
Make It Your Own
The cocktails’ festive green almost neon appearance makes it ideally suited to the Christmas season, and the color does resemble that of the infamous Grinch, but this drink is far more sweet like Cindy Loo Hoo than sour like the Grinch.
2 oz. (60ml) Midori (melon liqueur)
2 oz. (60ml) Cointreau (orange liqueur
2 oz. (60ml) lemon juice
Fill a glass with ice
Add melon liqueur, cointreau, and lemon juice.
Strain mix into martini glass
Garnish with a lemon wheel and maraschino cherry dropped inside the glass.
I have everything to make this all ready to go. All I’m waiting for is a warm summer day.