Wednesday, February 17, 2021

The Kiss, WEP blog hop

It's February, and that means love is in the air and on your lips. Write, Edit, Publish has an inspiring blog hop challenge this year. The Kiss. Inspired by the artwork of  Gustav Klimt’s, entitled the same, The Kiss. My thanks go out to Denise Covey, the original creator of Write, Edit, Publish, and to the other host, Laura, Renee, Nila, and Olga. All gifted and talented writers. The good news is, you still have time to post something for the challenge. From poems to photos, stories true or fiction, share your talents with all of us. 

To read what others have written for this challenge, go here

Now for my story and more exciting news below that. Enjoy.

The Kiss

Jessica put the garlic bread into the oven, the spaghetti sauce was simmering, the cheese ready to grate, the noodles in the pot after going through the press, and the salad already on the table. The kitchen was a complete mess, but it was worth it, Todd was coming over.

            The door ringer chimed. She went to the speaker and pressed down.


            “Hi,” Todd said.

            “I’m on the third floor.” She pressed the buzzer to let him enter. She grabbed the mask from the table below the speaker and turned, surveying the table. Her dinnerware was out flatware, glasses, and napkins.

            A knock at the door. She put on the mask and opened it. Todd gave her a bow, stood again, and held out the wine and some flowers. She could tell by the crinkles around his eyes that he was smiling despite the mask he wore.

            “Come in.” She took the flowers.

            “Thanks. How was the drive?” She led the way to the kitchen to retrieve the corkscrew and he followed.

            “Uneventful.” He glanced at the kitchen. “Smells wonderful.” Then, he uncorked the Merlot, while she filled a vase with water. They both returned to her small table and he poured the wine while Jessica put the flowers on a side table.

            “Happy Anniversary,” Todd said handing her the glass of wine.

            They separated,  standing six feet apart, lowered their mask and took a sip.

            “Five weeks ago, you stumbled into my life,” she said.

            He grinned. “Literally, I almost knocked you down when you turned with your coffee in hand.”

            She laughed. “Then that old woman scolded us for not being six feet apart. And me, with my mask down sipping my coffee.”

            “Here’s to coffee.” He raised the wine glass again. They took a sip.

            Jessica went into the kitchen, drained the noodles, and put them in the sauce. Pulling the garlic bread out she used a spatula to put them in a basket. Todd took both from her and went to the table. He sat while she grated parmesan cheese over the sauce.

            “It pays to fall in love with an Italian,” he said.

            She laughed. “No Italian is named O’Leary. I just like to cook.”

            “No, you and your red hair are Irish?” He grinned.

            They ate and he told her all about his new job as a computer programmer. “There’s a greater need,” he continued. “With so many working from home on their computers these days custom software is required.”

            She nodded. “Things are getting better.”

            “Yeah.” He wiped his mouth with the napkin. “This was delicious.”

“Glad you like it.”

She stood and cleared the table but didn’t do the dishes. He leaned on the kitchen door frame watching as she put the remnants of their meal in the trash.

“Did you get your second vaccine shot.”

Jessica paused to look at him. “Yeah, yesterday.”

“That’s a relief. I’ve worried about you these last few months with your patients all COVID positive.”

She nodded and put the plate in the sink then grabbed the towel to wipe her hands.

“I got my second one today.”

Jessica’s eyes got a little bigger. “Really?”

“You know what that means don’t you?” He stood straight away from the wall.

“Neither of us will die.”

“That, and…” He took the three steps between them, grabbed her, and pulled her against his body and then…the very thing she’d longed for all this time. The kiss!

Her arms slid around his strong shoulders. He pulled back only to kiss her again.

Jessica had been kissed many times in the past. But never had she experienced the electric rush that spread along every nerve from Todd’s kiss.

He pulled away from her and she looked up into his handsome face. Brown hair touched his forehead and he pushed it back with one hand.

“I have something else for you,” Todd said.


He reached in his pocket and pulled out a ring box. Opening it he showed her a diamond ring.

“It’s not as big as I want but I’ll get you another on our fifth anniversary.”

“It is our fifth anniversary.”

“I mean, let’s get hitched.” He grinned.

She slugged his arm. “So romantic.”

“Will you?”

“Of course.”


The next morning Jessica glared at the messy kitchen while in her bathrobe. She put the coffee on and started doing dishes. Todd joined her, dressed with wet hair from his shower. She handed him the first clean dish and he dried it.

            “Where does it go?”

            “Right there.” She pointed.

            “I want to marry you right now.”

            She smiled. “Tempting, but no. I have a big family. We have to wait for everyone to get their vaccine. No reason you can’t move in, though.”

            “My place is bigger.”

            “I can walk to work from here.”

            “I’ll give notice, put my stuff in storage, take about a month or so.”

            She stopped washing, turned, and went to him. “I need a kiss.”

            He put the towel down and pulled her close. The pressure of his mouth wanted her to return to bed.

            “I’ll never get tired of your kisses. They’re the best,” she said when he pulled back.

            Todd ran his hand in her brilliant red hair and gave her the kiss again.

Word count 887

What did you think? Let me know. 

In other news, I have a website.  Take a peek. The monster is called symberveen. 

And, my short story, Loren's Choice is included in Sci/fi & Fantasy's new Anthology, The Depths of Love, available as soon as Sunday, Feb. 21, 2021. Paperback: $12.99, e-book: Amazon Prime free and $3.95 after that expires. Here's the link: The Depths of Love.

Plus, I updated and re-released my first book in the series, The Chronicles of Gil-Lael, The Treasures of Carmelidrium. Book 1. Will be everywhere and soon in paperback! Links aren't live yet.

Coming this year is:

The Beginning of a Legend, A Gillael Book, this summer.

The Riise of Lord Sinon, Book 2 in The Chronicles of Gil-Lael, this autumn.

The Emperor of the Moon and Stars, Book 3 in The Chronicles of Gil-Lael, winter 2022.

All currently with my editor or soon will be. 

You might say, I've been working hard. 


If you'd like to join my Facebook page, here's the link.


Jemi Fraser said...

Love it! Great job of incorporating the real world into a lovely story. And congrats on your news - exciting!!

N. R. Williams said...

Thank you, Jemi.

Olga Godim said...

A sweet love story.

Yolanda Renée said...

It's nice to see that love still happens no matter the obstacles. Definitely fit today, the season, and the prompt. Well done!

Steph W. said...

I was just thinking to myself the other day how awful it must be to be single and wanting to date over this past year. Looks like love found a way!

Denise Covey said...

Hi Nancy. So lovely to read a 'masked' story. Very sweet. You have been busy and looks like you're going to be busy for some time. Congrats! Love your new website.

N. R. Williams said...

Thank you, Olga, Yolanda, Step, and Denise.
Glad you liked my story.

Sanhita Mukherjee said...

OMG. It is so YA type romantic, positive, hopeful and full of promises.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Nancy - a lovely read ... and long may they have happiness. Congratulations on the website and your story telling there - all the best - Hilary

N. R. Williams said...

Thank you, Sanhita and Hilary. So glad you enjoyed my story.

Edix said...

Interesting story. Great news about the analogy.

Nilanjana Bose said...

Love in the time of covid - perfect pandemic valentine story.

Congrats on the website and the new release. Best wishes always for their success.

Bernadette said...

Ah, love during the time of covid. Such a cute story :)

N. R. Williams said...

Thank you, Edix, Nila, and Bernadette.
I'm glad you enjoyed the story and I appreciate the mention of the anthology and website.

cleemckenzie said...

I imagine there are a lot of couples going through this experience. Let's hope the vaccine does what it promises and those kisses are safe as well as satisfying. Thanks for your story this month.

Jemima Pett said...

Well, I got vaxed yesterday, so maybe there's some love waiting for me somewhere! It takes a while for the immunity to develop though, and you can still get it, just not so badly....
Lovely story, and full of hope - which we definitely need :)

N. R. Williams said...

Thank you, Clee and Jaminma for coming by and reading my little story. Glad you enjoyed it.

L.G. Keltner said...

This was so romantic! Covid has definitely had an impact on fledgling romantic relationships. I'm glad they got their kiss. Reading about the food also made me hungry. Well done!

N. R. Williams said...

Bon Appetite Laura. Glad you enjoyed the story.

Rebecca M. Douglass said...

Love in the time of plague! He's a fast worker :) And yeah, they need to wait 2 more weeks for full immunity, but aside from that, I was glad to see they got to kiss!

Anstice Brown said...

It's nice to see a sweet love story set in these uncertain times. The lack of physical contact is difficult for many, I think. I am looking forward to finally being able to hug my friends and family again when everyone is vaccinated. Great story.

N. R. Williams said...

Thank you, Rebecca and Anstice. I'm glad you enjoyed my story. And full immunity is good. Probably should have included that.

Toi Thomas said...

I love that your entry is relevant to the current times. I can't imagine being single right now. I miss seeing people's smiles. Can't imagine holding back kisses. Congrats on your publication and plans to publish. Wish you all the best.

N. R. Williams said...

Thank you Toi. I appreciate what you said.

Susan B.Rouchard said...

Great Job Nancy. So homely and naturally rendered. Congratulations on your new releases. Take care and Happy spring writing.
SusanB. Rouchard.

Kalpana said...

A romantic story relevant to the times. How they must have waited for their first kiss. I love how you built up the atmosphere. Congratulations on the news.

Ornery Owl of Naughty Netherworld Press and Readers Roost said...

A lovely modern romance. I appreciated your visit and comment at Naughty Netherworld Press.

N. R. Williams said...

Thank you, Susan, Kalpana, and Naughty.

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