I should have several exciting tidbits to share soon. But for now, a snippet for Teaser Tuesday dedicated to all my Purgie Peeps. I love you guys!!! From Subtle Fire, the WIP that is not really a WIP… (YA Djinn urban fantasy)
When Aubrie scurries off down the hall after ordering poor Heath to ferry me to class like I’m some directionally-challenged idiot, I want to disappear in a cloud of subtle fire, or slip into the In-Between. Not that I can give in to that desire. Never knew where Evil Ex might be lurking.
I groan silently and slam the locker door with more force than intended. My fingers tighten around the folder in my hands and I make myself turn. No use putting it off any longer. Time to face the music.
Heath’s eyes crinkle slightly when we come face to face; but, surprisingly, I detect neither fear nor distaste. Instead, he leans against the nearest locker and his lips curve into a smile that has my pulse picking up speed. I have to blink a few times to make sure my eyes aren’t playing tricks on me. I’d totally gone psycho on him the other day. Don’t tell me he actually bought that whole low blood sugar thing!
My cheeks heat up and I clutch the folder to my chest. “Ah, yeah. A lot. Listen, about the other day…”
I blink again. Holy…he actually had bought it! “Ah, something like that. I just wanted to apologize for getting so weird on you. It wasn’t anything you did. I just found out my ex-boyfriend–my very evil ex-boyfriend–moved to this area, too, so…”
His lips twitch and some emotion I can’t name passes through his eyes. “Evil? Isn’t that a little extreme?”
“Ha. If only you knew him.” I shudder at the image that provokes. “On second thought, let’s hope that never happens.”
He clears his throat and pushes away from the locker, gaze wandering around the crowded hallway. “We better get going or we’ll be late.”
Awkward silence settles around us as we dodge the hyperactive mortals darting this way and that. I can’t tell if he really is mad about my weekend meltdown or if something else is wrong. Normally I would have no trouble finding something to chatter on about, but for some reason my mouth opens and closes a half-dozen times and yet, divine inspiration does not strike. Just when I’ve decided he does in fact hate me, we step into the Fine Arts wing and his hand closes on my bare arm. Heat flares where his skin touches mine and I can only follow meekly as he tugs me toward an empty alcove on the far side of the hall. His eyes glow with sudden intensity and he licks his lips, sending my heartbeat into overdrive. Dear God, what is it about this mortal boy that draws me so?
“I meant what I said the other day.”
Butterflies stampede through my stomach and I can’t tear my eyes off of his mouth. It takes me a minute to process his words. “What…you said?”
“Yeah, about the musical. So, are you gonna?”
He gives me another one of those irresistible grins. “Did the whacky blood sugar make you forget our entire conversation?”
I fail miserably at holding back another blush, which only makes his grin grow bigger, and I sift through my memory in a frantic bid to figure out what the heck he’s talking about. Oh, wait…”You mean the musical?”
“Hmm, you think?”
“Okay, okay. I’m telling you, though, I don’t know anything about acting.”
“Something tells me you’ll be a natural actress. Just like you’re a natural beauty.”
Oh hell. Just when I start to get control of the Five Alarm Blaze in my cheeks, he goes and says something like that. From another guy–someone sleazy like Sadiq, for instance–it would have come off as either cheesy or calculated, but coming from Heath, it just seems sincere.
“You sure I can’t just work on the set like Aubrie?”
He shakes his head. “No way. Now she really can’t act. But she’s tried already, so she’s off the hook.” The warning bell makes him pause for a moment. “So it’s settled. Meet me at your locker after class and we can run lines.”
I don’t have to pretend to be confused. “Wait, is this a musical I’m trying out for, or some sort of sport?”
His lips do that little crinkling thing again but he manages not to laugh in my face. Barely. “Lines as in from the musical. I’ve got a copy of the script, and an hour of free time after school. You in?”
Wow. He actually wanted to spend a whole hour alone with me? After the complete freak-out I’d had the last time we’d been alone? Double wow.
“Sure. Okay. See you after class.”
I turn to glide elegantly into the choir room a mere dozen feet away–and immediately trip over my own feet. And then stumble through the doorway seconds later, alternately flushing and sighing as that sexy chuckle echoes behind me. My life as a Djinn…Phenomenal cosmic power, complete and total klutz.