Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Excerpt: Cold Hands

The red, pink and blue lights of the wheel spin so fast you can hardly see the carts with people in it. Good luck to him. I don’t really like fast rides. Except if Cass wants to go.
Looking down at him, I relax at the reluctant expression on his face. He looks so gorgeous in his dark, grey woolen coat and thick blue scarf. Every time he exhales, little clouds of steam puff out of his mouth. He doesn't move away when I sneak my hand to the small of his back, guiding him to some of the funfair games. 
I let go of him and we walk side by side. 
“What do you wanna do?” I ask as we walk between the booths, our fingers brushing now and then, sending sparks through my system every time. 
“I don’t know,” he says, but then spots something interesting behind me. “Shoot ducks?”
He answers my big grin with a shy smile, walking ahead of me to the stand. It’s decorated like everything else in the park in red, white and green Christmas decorations. 
“Let’s play for something, all right?” I ask while we wait our turn.
“Like what?” he asks, a little gleam in his eyes I don’t see too often. It makes him look damn sexy. Not that he isn't sexy all the time.
“Like a kiss,” I murmur, leaning toward him with a wide smile. 
“Not here,” Cass whispers, pushing me back, but there’s a playful smirk on his face. 
“Okay.” I step up behind him to whisper in his ear. “If I win, you’ll make out with me on the Ferris wheel.”
“And if I win?” he asks, twisting his torso to look up at me.
“You can ask one thing of me.”
“One thing?”
“Yes.” I steal a touch by sliding my hands along the rough fabric on his coat, over his stomach. “Whatever you want, and I’ll try my best to make it happen.”
“Deal,” he says, still looking up at me, still with that playful gleam in his eyes. 
For a moment we just stand like that, gazing at each other. I’d just have to bend down a bit to kiss him. It looks like he wants me to, but he asked me not to earlier. Does he want to now? I lower my head a little, just to test the waters. He tilts his head up in return.
“Hey!” I jump back at the loud yell from the booth, taking in the middle-aged guy with a black beard. “You guys are up.”
We step away from each other and Cass picks up a riffle. 
“You’re gonna lose,” he mutters, taking his aim as I hand the supervisor a ticket and let out a laugh.
“No way. Got a date to impress,” I say back, watching him as he waits with that little smile still on his lips.
The man flicks a switch and starts busying himself with arranging toys. A line of wooden ducks starts moving back and forth and Cass shoots the first one down. And another. And another. I gawk as he shoots them down one by one until none are left standing. He even has a shot to spare. Cass lowers the riffle with a shy grin.
“Wow,” says the bearded guy, raising the ducks and stopping their movement. “Pick a prize.” He points at the big stuffed animals lining the top shelf.
“Ummm…the zebra,” Cass says. He stuffs the huge animal under his arm, the four long legs dangling.
“Where the hell did you learn to shoot like that?” I ask.
“Joey’s dad runs a shooting range. Did I win already?”
“Not so fast,” I say with a laugh, picking up the riffle and taking my aim. The guy flicks the switch again, now a little more interested in the game. Just as I’m about to pull the trigger, Cass gently bumps into me. I jerk back and miss my target.
The beard guy shakes his head and continues arranging the stuffed toys.
I glance back at Cass who’s got his face half buried behind the zebra’s head, looking back at me all innocent. I chuckle and take another aim.
A black zebra hoof “accidentally” brushes against my face when I take my second shot, missing the duck by a foot.
“Casper?” I say, trying hard to keep the laughter out of my voice.
He looks all innocent again. “Oh, sorry.”
Shaking my head I go for the third shot, but then I feel this cool hand brush against the back of my jeans just as I pull the trigger. “So, it’s gonna be like that, huh?” I ask, barely holding in my laughter.
“Like what?” asks Cass from behind the zebra.
I end up winning a tiny pink dog key chain for shooting one duck—a duck next to the one I was aiming at. Cass breaks out in laughter every time he sees it.

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