‘Hare’-Raising Adventure… (Speakeasy #156)

Crouched by the gate...
Crouched by the gate…

Her heartbeat thudded in her eardrums. “I swear, I heard a noise,” she whispered.

“You’ve become too uptight for this business, Meredith.”

She scrunched her face into a frown, but he couldn’t see it, as he scanned the yard with his back pressed to hers. That in itself distracted her senses and threw off her game. “And you’re just so smooth.”

His back stiffened. “Shhh. Footsteps.”

Tension transferred from his spine to hers. In that moment, they mimicked two young hares, rump to rump like duelling pistols, crouched by the gate. They ducked their heads to avoid the illumination from the backyard patio lights.

The crunch of footfall on gravel grew fainter and they both exhaled and gulped in a deep breath of air. The daytime case of the yard told them the gravel began about ten feet away from the grassy lawn by the gate, so they knew how close they came to discovery.

“Surely I can do this. It’s just we haven’t done it since…”

“Since?”

“It’s just been a few years, okay?”

“You still want me,” he said.

“Stop it, Roger.”

“You ready to make your move?”

“Excuse me?”

“The house. You’re supposed to disable the cameras.”

“Oh. Uh… yeah.” Thankful for the cloak of darkness, Meredith felt her cheeks flame. The combination of adrenaline and lust made concentration nearly impossible. She and Roger had carried out heists dozens of times before they got married a decade ago. That was supposed to be the beginning of forever and ever. Their vows included staying on the right side of the law. He began a security consulting company, and she worked as a home builder’s office manager. The normalcy drained passion from their lives, leaving divorce their only option. They’d been separated for nearly a year now, neither willing to pull the trigger. The fact he could still kindle passion within her came as a surprise, and made her second-guess their separation.

“Well?” Roger gave her a nudge.

“I’m scared. The guard’s alert. What if I get caught?”

He didn’t answer right away. “You’re the best. Don’t let other stuff get in the way.”

“There’s so much more at stake…”

“Don’t go there, Meredith.”

She couldn’t help it. Their daughter, Lydia, slept under the watch of a trusted babysitter. Jail never frightened Meredith, but fear of failure paralyzed her now.

“You’ve done this many times before,” Roger whispered.

“I know.”

He sighed. “You’re still not moving.”

She relaxed into him. “I can’t.”

He turned to embrace her and kissed her neck.

She tilted her head, leaving herself vulnerable.

“I still love you,” Roger whispered, his lips brushing her ear.

“Give me a reason to love you…”

His lips covered hers with a greedy kiss reminiscent of their early days. She didn’t fight it, but gave in as her nails clawed his back. He guided her to the ground.  The moist grass soaking through her clothes didn’t deter her at all. She tugged at his shirt as his hands found their way under hers.

“Boss?”

They squinted against the blinding flashlight beam.

Roger released Meredith and they both sat up. “Oh, uh… yeah. Great work, Quin. The Harringtons will be pleased to know the security plan we devised for them cannot be penetrated.”

Quinton Hall raised a skeptical eyebrow. “That’s not all you can’t break through.” His overt stare rested on Meredith’s disheveled blouse.

She blushed again. “I’ll see you at home, babe. Happy anniversary,” she whispered in his ear, giving his lobe a gentle nibble. She avoided Quinton’s judgmental leer as she pulled herself up, and then over, the six-foot-tall block wall.

“We do need to adjust the lighting so this back corner by the gate isn’t shadowed,” Roger said, ignoring his employee’s observation and his wife’s invitation for him to come back home. “We should also suggest a dog.”

“They already have a dog.”

“Security shouldn’t fit in a purse,” Roger said, remembering the nearly-deaf black teacup poodle from the consultation meeting.

Meredith leaned on the other side of the wall, shivers soothed by rubbing her palms over the backs of her arms. She couldn’t determine if her chills originated from the cool cinder blocks, the timbre of his voice, or the buzz of their near-reconciliation.

She broke into a jog toward her car parked several blocks away. A smile played on her lips as she imagined him crawling through her bedroom window later.

Oh, yes, she hoped he’d do the window again- for old times’ sake.

~~~-~~~-~~~-~~~-~~~-~~~-~~~-~~~-~~~-~~~-~~~-~~~-~~~-~~~-~~~-~~~-~~~-~~~-~~~-~~~-

speakeasy-newThis is my response to Speakeasy’s weekly prompt, which is to write a response in 750 words or less (mine is 749) with (1) “Two young hares, rump to rump like duelling pistols, crouched by the gate.” used anywhere in the story, and (2) some reference to the media prompt, the song Glory Box, by Portishead.  For this, I made two references to lines in the song:  “…the beginning of forever and ever” and “give me a reason to love you.”

The challenge is open to anyone, so if you’re intrigued, click the badge at left to check out the guidelines!

Thanks to all who read beyond the lame title (I swear I could hear the chorus of groans.)  This is racier than what I normally write, but I guess the hare prompt lead me down the fast lane.  Hares… fast… get it?  Ooh, more groans!  Seriously, though, I feel this supports marriage in not-too-graphic detail, however, if this offended any readers, I apologize.

Thanks so much for reading!

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54 thoughts on “‘Hare’-Raising Adventure… (Speakeasy #156)

  1. Carol Ann Hoel April 7, 2014 / 11:44 AM

    This story was full of surprises. Ha! Blessings to you, Janna…

  2. nrhatch April 7, 2014 / 12:12 PM

    Nice twist at the end, Janna. But if they were there to “test the security system” and Meredith knew that it was “legit” . . . why would she have been worried about going to jail?

    And what was Meredith there for?
    Seems like Roger and Quin could have handled it on their own.

    • jannatwrites April 7, 2014 / 12:24 PM

      I think I need to reword that a little… I ran into a word count issue and had let it go, but her concern is more of failing… she had a perfect run (as far as thieving goes!) This was a case of ‘extreme role-playing’ and she agreed to it at his suggestion (his idea to celebrate their anniversary.) Quin, however, didn’t know about the sneak attack… that would’ve defeated the purposes of testing security 🙂 Thanks for the feedback, Nancy! I’ll look at this again later…

      • nrhatch April 7, 2014 / 6:19 PM

        Those pesky word counts! Your explanation meshes well with what I had conjectured, but the story might benefit from a bit more polishing.

        • jannatwrites April 7, 2014 / 7:14 PM

          I appreciate you taking time to share your reaction, Nancy! I think I made a couple changes that did help.

        • nrhatch April 7, 2014 / 8:08 PM

          Now that I have a bit more “back story” it reads great. BTW: Loved how you worked in the prompts AND pointed to a “happy ending.”

        • jannatwrites April 7, 2014 / 9:00 PM

          Haha, a happy ending 🙂

  3. Sean April 7, 2014 / 12:15 PM

    That is some nice looking grass. I appreciate the time you take giving us a good story. This kept me engaged until the end. Was not sure where the hare rump to rump was going but figured it had a purpose. It is a pleasure to read your writings. Take care and enjoy the weather and the soon to be smell of pine.

    • jannatwrites April 7, 2014 / 12:28 PM

      Yeah, it’s obviously not in Arizona 🙂 I took this photo when I visited NOLA a couple years ago…. they know how to do green there! I had to use the hare/rump sentence and this was my possibly poor attempt to use a difficult prompt. Thanks for reading, Sean!

  4. atrm61 April 7, 2014 / 12:18 PM

    Another fantastic story by you Janna!Loved how you fitted the prompt seamlessly-so creative! Loved the suspense,the build-up,the hot passion bubbling underneath and then the climax and that naughty end,leaving the reader wanting to know more ;-)Superb and Kudos!!

    • jannatwrites April 7, 2014 / 12:31 PM

      Oh, thanks, Atreyee… I wasn’t sure about this one at all! (Alien Aura came up with a very difficult prompt sentence… my first reaction was, “What???!!” 🙂

      The end will have to be up to you (the reader’s) imagination…I don’t write that kind of fiction 😛 haha….

      • atrm61 April 7, 2014 / 10:51 PM

        Yes,it is a tough one for sure but I loved where you took it-lots of twists and turns 😉 Btw, my reaction is still struck there,lol! Oh yes,the end in my book is totally x-rated,ha!ha!

        • jannatwrites April 7, 2014 / 11:26 PM

          Haha, you crack me up, Atreyee! Thank goodness I don’t have to write your imagination then…. I think I might blush shades of red never before seen 🙂

  5. Eric Alagan April 7, 2014 / 9:10 PM

    What a lovely story – hope he does steal into her bedroom. In every profession, practice makes perfect. I’m sure they’re both perfectionists 🙂

    • jannatwrites April 7, 2014 / 10:11 PM

      Haha, they very well may need more practice, Eric! Thanks for stopping by to read this one.

  6. tedstrutz April 8, 2014 / 5:19 AM

    Well, there were no groans for the story… super readable… kind of a Mr. & Mrs. Smith vibe. Clever line… Security shouldn’t fit in a purse. I liked the last line, JannaT… she knows where her head is at.

    • tedstrutz April 8, 2014 / 5:22 AM

      p.s. I read it that they were actually there to rob the house.

      • jannatwrites April 8, 2014 / 7:44 AM

        That’s kind of the role they were playing, Ted. I didn’t want to give away the role play until they had been discovered….

    • jannatwrites April 8, 2014 / 7:42 AM

      Thanks for reading, Ted! I tried to keep the ‘groans’ out of the story so I’m glad that part worked 🙂 Thanks so much for reading and sharing a line you liked!

  7. ranu802 April 8, 2014 / 5:50 AM

    Your story is wonderful.

  8. stankmeaner April 8, 2014 / 6:27 AM

    I am a sucker for bad puns, so I quite enjoyed your silly title 🙂 I think that you authentically captured the romantic byplay between two people still in love who are having a hard time meeting in the middle, and Quinton can suck a bag of lemons. Loved this.

    • jannatwrites April 8, 2014 / 7:46 AM

      It seems people either love puns or hate them… glad you are on the ‘like’ side, Stankmeaner! Your comment about Quinton cracked me up… that sounds like a good idea 🙂

    • jannatwrites April 8, 2014 / 9:45 PM

      Thanks for reading, JG! I appreciate it 🙂

  9. Debbie April 8, 2014 / 12:12 PM

    My favorite line here was, “Security shouldn’t fit in a purse.” Very clever — and very true! Well written story, Janna.

    • jannatwrites April 8, 2014 / 9:47 PM

      Thanks, Debbie! The little dogs think they have the bite to back up their bark, though 🙂

  10. annbennett April 8, 2014 / 4:22 PM

    This was a good read and a great use of the prompt. I just could not get past that music video and thought I wonder what one of the people who post at Trifecta did. You did great! I am so impressed.

    • jannatwrites April 8, 2014 / 9:50 PM

      Thanks for reading, Ann! It helped me to watch the video with lyrics so I could draw inspiration from the words rather than images.

  11. Kathy Combs (@Kathy29156) April 8, 2014 / 4:30 PM

    Wow, they almost got down to business right then and there. Wasn’t expecting that. Loved that they needed a bigger dog because truly one of those itty bitty ones that fit in a purse can’t do a whole lot of damage. A great story with a few surprises. ♥

    • jannatwrites April 8, 2014 / 9:52 PM

      Haha, good thing they were interrupted because I don’t think I could write that kind of scene, Kathy! I’m glad you found some surprises in the story 🙂

  12. diannegray April 8, 2014 / 7:29 PM

    No offense taken whatsoever, Janna. This is was wonderful, tense and very moreish! 😀

    • jannatwrites April 8, 2014 / 9:52 PM

      I’m glad it didn’t offend you, Dianne! I appreciate you taking time to read it 🙂

  13. tinsenpup April 9, 2014 / 7:03 AM

    I thought you incorporated the prompts beautifully. The sentence prompt was challenging. I took the approach of giving my protagonist a serious mental illness to have it make some sort of sense. Your approach of incorporating it subtly and seamlessly works too, I suppose. 😉 And hey, you do passion very well! You are a writer of many talents. This is great. It’d make a wonderful longer piece.

    • jannatwrites April 10, 2014 / 12:44 AM

      I like what you did with the prompt, Tinsenpup. What I like about reading responses is to find out how differently we approach them. I still have eight more to read…. I’m so behind this week! I’m glad you liked the ‘passion’ – I really don’t see it as a strength of mine…

  14. Lance April 9, 2014 / 7:21 AM

    Difficult prompt that you nailed. I love the dialogue. That’s always been your strongsuit.

    • jannatwrites April 10, 2014 / 12:46 AM

      Thanks, Lance! I’m glad the dialogue worked for you. I try to write it as I picture it in my head- when I’m lucky, it comes off as believable 🙂

  15. Stacie April 9, 2014 / 11:47 AM

    Great job on the sentence prompt. It’s a hard one to really fit in well!

    • jannatwrites April 10, 2014 / 12:51 AM

      Thanks, Stacie! I really had trouble with this one. I think because it’s not a sentence I’d normally use, so it just feels out of place to me.

  16. Suzanne April 9, 2014 / 1:57 PM

    I think I enjoyed your write-up at the end almost as much as I enjoyed that story! I love your racy side – and I hope things work out for them. They seem well-suited. 🙂
    Great take on the prompts, Janna!

    • jannatwrites April 10, 2014 / 12:58 AM

      I’m glad you liked the write up at the end, Suzanne… sometimes I get a little too goofy! I have a feeling things will work our for these two (if they don’t get arrested for trespassing and indecent exposure 🙂 )

  17. agjorgenson April 9, 2014 / 6:47 PM

    Oh, that was so very nice! Sweet twist in that!!

  18. Silverleaf April 10, 2014 / 1:41 AM

    That was a hard prompt but you worked it in really intelligently. I love the tone – good fun 🙂 Nicely done!

    • jannatwrites April 10, 2014 / 9:28 PM

      Thanks, Silverleaf! So glad you enjoyed the story.

  19. BCIJo (aka Joanne Edith) April 10, 2014 / 7:28 AM

    I loved this, especially“Security shouldn’t fit in a purse.” Asthe proud owner of a 18# Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, whose bark is definitely worse than his bite (in fact he has no bite) I laughed out loud when I read this. Seriously, a very sensitive and sensuous piece of writing.

    • jannatwrites April 10, 2014 / 9:38 PM

      We’ve had our share of ankle biters, Joanne! Cybil the Psycho Cat is our most intimidating pet. I appreciate you taking time to read the story… glad you enjoyed it.

  20. peggyshope April 10, 2014 / 7:37 AM

    I loved the suspense and the romance and the nuances of this story. I hope he sneaks into her window tonigh…

    • jannatwrites April 10, 2014 / 9:40 PM

      Thanks for reading, Peggy! I’m glad you enjoyed the story…I like to think he’ll do the window 😉

  21. janisezayas1 April 10, 2014 / 11:21 AM

    Loved the sizzling connection between these two. Dialogue drew me into their story straight away! Great job

    • jannatwrites April 10, 2014 / 9:42 PM

      Thanks, Janie! I appreciate you taking time to read the story and to share your feedback.

  22. pattisj April 10, 2014 / 8:50 PM

    Love this, especially the last line. It’s perfect.

    • jannatwrites April 10, 2014 / 9:47 PM

      Thanks, Patti! I’m glad you stopped by to read the story!

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