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Thursday, July 17, 2014

Cliff Hanger Thursday!

Our new Thursday meme is all about the cliff hanger. How do you leave your characters and readers dangling?

In comments, and in 300 words or less, share a bit of suspense from your story. Make us want more!

Don't forget your buy link and website/blog link. Have fun!

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Discover great reads on Exquisite Quills' Cliff Hanger Thursday!    


Rose Anderson said...

Hermes Online ~by Rose Anderson
A reader's choice winner. A contemporary erotic online romance that hints at divine meddling.
“You’ve got mail” burst forth from the speakers. I discovered I had been conditioned to have an autonomic response to seeing the envelope and hearing the computerized words. Like Pavlov’s dog, I began to salivate.
Find wherever books are sold. Sample here:

Get to know Rose

Victoria Adams said...

From Book 1 of Circles Trilogy – Dancing in Circles – NA contemporary romance. (Fight in high school parking lot at Friday night dance.)

Stephan grabbed Robert and wrapped him into a headlock. Julie couldn't move as Derek threw punches at Robert while he struggled to free himself.
She blinked, trying to focus on what was happening. "No. Stop." She grabbed at Derek, but Stephan pushed her away. Julie looked for a teacher, a police officer – anyone who could help. The parking lot was dark and empty.
Stephan shoved his face to within an inch of Robert's. "Now we'll show you Shore trash how good we Westlanders are." He stepped back then spit on Robert's shirt.
"Stop it, Steph! You've got it all wrong. He didn't do anything." Julie pulled at his arm.
Stephan placed his hand on Julie's face and shoved her away. "Back off. We'll deal with this bastard!"
With one arm free, Robert edged around and drove his elbow in Stephan's stomach, who yelped and released his grip. Robert spun. "What? Ya didn't learn your lesson the first time?"
The two men circled each other looking for that first opening. Derek picked up his beer bottle and before Julie shouted a warning, he swung. The glass crashed against Robert's head. He stumbled, shook his head then sank to the ground.
Derek chuckled. "Shoresmen always win their fights, yeah right." With a powerful swipe, he kicked the unconscious Robert.
Julie stepped forward, but Stephan pulled her away. "Leave the garbage alone. Come on, we'll take you home. Derek, get Chris."
Julie stared at a trickle of blood on Robert's forehead. She tried to pull away, but Stephan dragged her to his car. "Stephan, stop, we need to go back."
Stephan put the car into gear and pulled away. Through the passenger window, she saw Robert's prone figure lay with eyes shut while blood dripped onto the pavement.

Dancing in Circles -

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Elaine Violette said...

From A Kiss of Promisel. Ebook on sale until July 20th for $2.48!
“Did you miss something, Alaina?”
Her mouth dropped when she saw the worn tome in his clenched hand. “I don’t know what you mean. It must have fallen from the shelf.”
“Fallen? Remarkable considering that it was quite hidden. I assume you looked at it?”
“No, I…”
He stepped forward and clutched her shoulders. “Don’t lie to me. How did you know about them?”
“I didn’t. I was just—”
“Stop!” He slapped her hard across the face. She cringed and tried to pull away, her cheek burning from the blow, but he held her fast. He pushed her against one of the tall posters of her bed, her back digging into its ornate curves.
Gripping her chin, he forced her to look at him, his voice low and menacing, the book he held jabbed into her shoulder. “I have wanted to share my little secret, a secret of which I am quite proud. When I discovered this prized volume on the floor where you’d been probing about, I decided it was time to acknowledge my feat. Look at me!”
She focused on eyes that appeared crazed.
“Better. I just told your brother. I know he is loyal to me. He understands the importance of protecting what will be his someday. You, on the other hand, I cannot trust. You are too much like your mother, unable to understand what a man must do to gain what he deserves and to keep what belongs to him.”
“Father, please. You’re hurting me.”
“You are my daughter. You belong to me, just like everything else on this estate. Stop struggling. Like all women, you are weak.”

Daryl Devore said...

From my Twisted Fairy Tale – Sexy Red Hood. When Red Hood's mother tells her to go visit grandmother.

Entering at the door marked R. Hood, Red barely stepped into the office, when her mother pushed her aside and closed the door. "Your grandmother's booked a stateroom on a cruise ship and is taking a man with her."
Sensing So, was the wrong answer, Red let her mother vent. This day could still be saved. If her mother stayed focused on the crisis-of-the-moment she might forget the weekly discussion of her love life.
"A man. Did you hear me?"
"Yes, Mother." Red settled in the brown leather chair in front of the desk. Her mother walked around and sat behind her large, hand carved, oak desk. It provided an imposing barrier between mother and daughter.
"I haven't told you this before, but your grandmother's going through your grandfather's money faster than you can go through a tub of maple walnut ice cream after a breakup."
Folding her immaculately manicured hands and placing them on her desk, Red's mother looked up. "Your flight's at two. Go home, pack, find your passport and save your grandmother."
Red's voice rose an octave, "Save my grandmother? From what?"
R. Hood placed her fingers on her forehead. "Save your grandmother from spending your inheritance on some gigolo." She pulled open a desk drawer, and handed a box to Red. "Samples for next year's chocolate line. Take those to your grandmother. A taste of home might bring her to her senses."
Red started to speak, but stopped herself. She didn't want to fly to Miami. If she was away, Katerina would sink her claws into Stanley. The gorgeous VP of Sales stud who made her body swoon with desire whenever he walked by. But what could she do?
Her mother snapped her fingers. "Why are you just sitting there? Go. Save your inheritance."

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David Russell said...

She handed him a volume of the collected poems of John Donne. “Now, I think you know which one I want you to read me. Hmm…while we’ve been working together, I bet you’ve had some reveries of me undressing, you undressing me.”
“I have to admit that is so and I know which poem you mean, it’s Elegy Nineteen—To His Mistress Going to Bed.
“We really are on the same wavelength darling. I had learned of that poem as a young girl, with a desperate desire one day to enact it. Every word of it struck home as I disrobed alone, for years I yearned for that lovely partner to give me those instructions live.”
Ferdinand beamed, then quoted from near the end of the poem referring to the poet’s nakedness at the beginning of the action. Then he proceeded to read, with his lovely, hypnotic voice.
He really made Hecate’s girdle feel like Saturn’s rings As she undid her sash and cast it down, she felt her abdomen was bathed in heavenly light, visible only to spiritual eyes.
The request to remove her ‘breastplate’ gave her an etheric shudder. Taking off the brooch at the top of her dress felt like casting away a shield, affirming that strife and combat had been replaced by love.
In response to the exhortation to unlace, she felt deliciously nervous as her fingers twitched on her zips and buttons.

Dreamtime Sensuality Antho - Devine Destinies

JoAnne Myers said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Susan Macatee said...

From American-Victorian romance, The Physician's Irish Lady.

Footsteps echoed outside the kitchen. Keara tensed, fearing Dr. James would appear with Rogan to lay claim to her. But he had no legal right to her. She lifted her fist to cover her mouth.

Dr. James entered the kitchen, Rogan nowhere in sight.

Keara trembled, hoping the doctor had seen through Rogan's lies.

"What happened out there, Elliot?" his aunt asked. "Miss Fagan is visibly upset and a bit pale." She gazed at Keara, patting her hand.

Elliot sighed. He sank into one of the vacant chairs. When his gaze rose to meet Keara's, she fought the urge to turn away in shame.

"The man at the door is an Irishman from New York City. He claims…" He hesitated. "He claims Miss Fagan is his wife, and he's come to bring her home."

Keara's face heated, and she clasped her hands in her lap. "I told you, the man is lying. I've never laid eyes on him before."

Dr. James frowned. "Makes it all the more puzzling, Miss Fagan."

"Why is that?" Millie asked.

"Why, he knows her name and knows I escorted her from the train in York." He turned his gaze on Keara. "If you've never seen him before, how would he know all this?"

Keara tensed, not sure what she could say to convince him.

Millie leaned forward, reaching for her nephew's hand. "The man is evil, Elliot. You mustn't allow him to take Keara. You must protect her."

JoAnne Myers said...

From "The Tarot Card Murders" one story in my crime/mystery anthology "Flagitious" released in August by Melange Books.

Nick frowned, instantly suspicious of Eva’s no-care attitude toward her dead sister. “When the coroner’s done with it. You and Jenny were very close in age. That usually means competition with men. I’d hate to see this happen to you.”
“Don’t say that ever,” she replied. “I am not jealous of any female. I have my share of men.” She then abruptly ascended the stairs and out of Nick's sight. As territorial as a pit bull when it came to his town’s safety, Nick knew a crime like Jenny’s was highly unusual here. Before the local newspaper stretched the facts, he needed to solve this crime pronto.


Melissa Fox said...

From ASH RISING, a contemporary romantic suspense

Emma and Jim approached the building that housed the gym as they finished their run, but she didn’t spot Inspector Beaulieu’s tall, imposing figure. He must have been finishing his workout when she’d…well, when she’d attacked him.
She imagined taking him down, jumping on top of him, and having her wicked way. The memory of his intense blue eyes flashed through her mind. If anyone were wicked, it would be him. She bet he had the market cornered.
“What?” Jim asked as they slowed to a walk and stopped to stretch.
“You’re smiling. It’s making me nervous.”
She wiped the grin from her face. She had no business entertaining any sort of sexual or intimate thoughts about Inspector Beaulieu, no matter how compelling he was.
“Just looking forward to my shower. I’ll see you at the office.” With a wave, she jogged back to the gym. She’d just finished changing her clothes when she heard her name barked from the across the room.
“Yes?” She grabbed her bag and headed for the man standing in the doorway of the women’s locker room.
“Delivery for you.”
“What is it?”
He handed over a large manila envelope. “Commander Davenport said to give you this and tell you and Blankenship to report to his office ASAP.”
“Thank you.”
She pulled the papers out and sucked in a breath. She’d been expecting a report, dry black and white words, but what she held was a crime scene photograph in gruesome, washed-out-from-the-flash color.
Someone had slit Gina Salvatore’s throat.

Elaine Hopper said...

From Cooking Up A Storm by Ashley Ladd
A contemporary male/male erotic romance

He tried to quell the jitters attacking his stomach so the animal wouldn’t smell his fear then whispered to Brooks through clenched teeth, “What do we do now? Freeze or run?”
“Run. But where?” Brooks whispered back, a frown trembling on his lips.
“To the closest protection.” He prayed their hunters had lost them, that they wouldn’t run back into a barrage of bullets. As Rique bunched his muscles to run, already feeling the animal’s fangs ripping into him, he noted how the tiger’s thick muscles corded in his shoulders, and how saliva ran down his snarling lips.
“Dear God, we’re going to die.” Panic laced Brooks’ voice. “If we get out of here alive, let’s both turn down the job and move in together.”
Swallowing hard, Rique couldn’t reply so he nodded. Besides, as much as he wanted to live with Brooks, he couldn’t do it as long as he was indebted to the mob. However, the point was moot. He couldn’t see a scenario in which one of them didn’t die in the next five minutes.
Feeling responsible, Rique couldn’t let anything happen to Brooks as long as he was alive. He would take on the tiger giving Brooks time to reach safety. “On the count of three, run!”
As Rique whispered, “One,” hisses, then a blood-curdling growl wrenched the air. It was a different sound than the tiger was making. Then a crocodile bellowed and jumped out of the bushes and snatched the tiger by its belly. As it dragged the struggling creature back to the bushes, the tiger howled in surprise and pain. It clawed the air in vain as the reptile’s powerful jaws clamped tighter biting through flesh and bone.