I’ve got that weird buzz in my head and a happy/scared twist in the gut that is hopefully not the beginnings of a virus.
My symptoms are status post submission of Ardent Fire to another publisher. This is also the first time I actually pitched something and having a positive outcome to that was gratifying, too. So, to celebrate the six more typos that I found after I broke my fine-tooth comb, here’s a snippet from the untitled sequel:
December 1475, Medici Florence, The Snail, Tavern and Inn
Bells tolled across the city of Florence to declare the hour before dawn, muted by the shuttered windows of the rented room above the tavern and the crackle of the dying fire in the hearth. Morello had pushed himself up to prop against the headboard a few moments before and now sat with sketching book in hand. Gazing on his sleeping lover, his hand moved to capture the dreaming Benedetto in the sparse firelight. Morello’s heart beat fast with quiet joy as the charcoal scratched across the paper. He barely had to glance down for he knew this face, could trace its outlines with a blindfold on.
Eventually he had to stop, before the dawn revealed them. Morello put his hand to Benedetto’s head and rubbed gently until lapis blue eyes opened, at first sharp with irritation and then softening with love.
“I was dreaming of you.” Benedetto sat up, the coverlet falling from his naked torso. “Ah!” He snuggled back down under the covers and shoved himself closer to Morello. “It’s cold in here!”
“It’s snowing.” Morello set the sketch aside.
“Hurray!” Benedetto leapt from the bed and hopped naked to the window. He shivered and rubbed his hands up and down his arms. “Oh, you liar, it is not!”
“I got your lazy bones out of bed,” Morello laughed, grabbed his lover around the waist as he made to dive back in the bed, and stood. “It’s time to go to work, love. And it will be snowing soon by the look of those clouds.”
“No, just more rain,” Benedetto sighed. He turned into Morello’s arms, pushed chest and hips against Morello’s with a smile. “You warm me. I think we might have time for—”
Benedetto kissed him with warm lips that tasted of cherries and sweet red wine they’d drunk only a few hours before. He stroked his cold hand down Morello’s warm belly.