by Carole Remy
Genre: erotic romance
Number of pages: 226 estimated, 404 KB
Word Count: 70,000
Cover Designer: Marissa Preciado
Teaser Description: Lucy, aka Candid, is a naughty girl who takes a sexy fun road trip across America, and tells everybody all about it!
In the spring of 1998, recent graduate Lucy Ralph decides to rebel. The NSA is blocking her job applications, her best friend Dick is a frustrating hunk of gorgeous, and her mother is driving her crazy. Worst of all, she’s still a virgin!
Lucy takes off on a road trip across America, and reinvents herself as 'Candid,' a naughty girl who has sexy fun with just about everybody she meets, and tells the world all about it! Her explicit 'Candid' Internet posts go viral overnight. The National Security Agency, the entertainment media, the paparazzi, and soon the entire nation are on her tail! While she spins a modern day sexual Arabian Nights, she's also being tracked by the sweet, sexy, and elusive Dick, who has his own tricks to play.
Will love ever be more than a virtual reality for Lucy? Can she and Dick get past the friends page? Will exposure ruin everything, if the nation finds out Who Is Candid?
She was tall and thin with a nimbus of red gold hair that dazzled the eye like a luminous fog. I had found her outside the library, looking lost. She accepted my offer of coffee on the second try, but she wouldn’t tell me her name. When I tried to introduce myself, she put a finger to her lips and shushed me. We took a bus to the French Quarter and landed at the Café du
Monde. She needed glasses to read the menu and she slipped them on surreptitiously when I turned to the waiter.
“You don’t need that,” I advised her, taking the menu out of her hands. “We’re going to have coffee and beignets.”
She slipped the glasses back into her purse.
“I read about those in a guidebook,” she smiled. “They’re French doughnuts.”
“Much more than that,” I told her. “Nothing in New Orleans is as ordinary as a doughnut.”
She smiled to herself and I wondered what she was thinking. She didn’t offer to tell me so I shut up and watched her. She glowed in the dim restaurant like the moon on a misty night. Her skin was pale and her features small and precise. She didn’t look like anyone I had ever seen.
“What animal do you imagine yourself as?” I asked her abruptly, leaning forward across the table.
She looked at me strangely, then sat back in thought. I waited. The silences seemed to be part of our conversation. Several moments later, she spoke.
“A race horse.”
I digested her words as we munched the feathery pastries and sipped strong black coffee.
“Fast, delicate,” I agreed.
“Ambitious,” she added with a smile. “I like to win.”
Then she turned the tables on me.
“What animal are you?”
“A panther,” I answered without thinking.
She narrowed her eyes and stared at me thoughtfully. When she didn’t speak, I filled the silence.
“What?” she asked.
“You’re also skittish, like a thoroughbred.”
“Am I?” she smiled. “Better not push me, then.”
The waiter refilled our coffee cups.
“I can see the panther,” she said at last. Waiting for each word had become a subtle seduction. She kept me suspended, then broke the tension at the last moment. “You don’t look like a panther, but you have cat eyes.”
“Tame on the surface and feral underneath.”
I blew out a breath.
“Do you have a name yet?” I asked.
“Not yet,” she smiled. “But you can tell me yours.”
The relief I felt was all out of proportion to the single word. I felt in that moment that she had accepted me. She had allowed me to become a person, not a man who bought her a coffee. I became a small fraction of how important she already was to me.
“What do you do, John?” she asked me with a slow smile.
“I’m in electronics.” I blushed and admitted, “Actually, I’m kind of a geek.”
“I like geeks.”
Those three words dispelled eighteen years of discomfort in school, years of being ignored by the popular girls and passed over for the intramural sports teams. Years of walking to school alone, sitting at home on Friday night, making excuses to my mother why I didn’t want to go to the prom.
“Well, John-geek,” she turned the word to a caress and I fell nine-tenths in love. “Do you want to go for a walk?”
We strolled around Jackson Square and she trailed her hand along the black wrought iron railing. She seemed to retreat from me mentally as well as physically. She was lost in her own world.
“Earth calling redhead,” I teased her.
She looked at me and smiled.
“Sorry, I was thinking about something.”
“Want to tell me?”
“I don’t know,” she admitted. “That’s what I was trying to decide.”
“I’m safe,” I offered.
“I know. You won’t betray me.”
“Betray? That’s a loaded word.”
“Can I talk to you, and you won’t ask me any questions?”
“I’ll try not to.”
“You have to promise. Don’t even think questions.”
“I’m a brick wall.”
She laughed. That first time I heard her laugh, I stumbled and almost fell. The sound was pure and simple, as though she hadn’t worn out her humor on trivia but saved it for important moments.
“I was picturing you as a brick wall,” she explained. “The bricks are all nice and orderly on the outside, and then they begin to undulate like there’s a force inside them that wants out. Then they settle back down and everyone thinks what a nice, sturdy brick wall.”
“You caught me,” I admitted, though I doubted she understood my double meaning. “Johnny the Geek with a panther inside. Are you psychic?”
“Not really. I pay attention.”
We walked along in silence around the square. When we reached our starting point, she seemed to come to a decision. She slipped her hand into mine. I waited for her to speak, but she pulled me along to walk beside her again. We circled the plaza in silence twice more. I tried to relax into our leisurely pace. Impatience would surface for an instant and I would beat it down. She was a woman who knew how she wanted to run the race. She might let me pretend to be the jockey, but we both knew who was in control. She would throw me if I dug in the spurs.
At last I did relax. If we didn’t speak for the rest of the day, that was okay. Her hand in mine, a warm day in New Orleans, I was content. She seemed to sense my submission, for she led me to a bench and we sat.
“I may be in trouble,” she admitted simply.
Guest Post by Carole Remy
Thank you for inviting me to write a guest post for your blog. I’m honored! Browsing through your blog list, I noticed several blogs on Buddhism and yoga, which gave me the idea to write something a little different for you and your readers today.
Taoism and Erotica, Not as Strange a Mix as You Might Think
If I were to describe Taoism in erotic terms, I would say that it’s a philosophy of topping from below. The hand that holds the whip isn’t the hand that’s really in charge. It’s an odd concept for those unfamiliar with SM, but maybe makes sense to some of you.
Taoism is all about influencing from the sidelines, guiding from beneath, surrendering in order to lead.
“Superior leaders are those whose existence is merely known.” (17)
“Those who use the Tao to guide leaders do not use forceful strategies in the world.
Such matters tend to recoil.” (30)
[quotes are from R L Wing’s translation of the Tao Te Ching.]
Taoism is about having the patience and stamina to wait for the right moment. It’s about honoring the female, the stream, the flow, the creation. It’s about emptiness and the value of the vessel. Yeah, it’s erotic.
How has being a Taoist influenced me as a writer of erotica?
Thinking in practical terms, I think Taoism has had the most influence on my male characters. I like men with strength and gentleness. I like men who respect and have the urge to protect the feminine. I’ve always thought of the men in my erotica as updated Regency heroes, but writing this article makes me see that they are all Taoists at heart.
I confess to falling in love with the hero of each novel as I write it. If I don’t love them, why should the heroine, and why should you the readers?
Dick, the Hot Hunk Nerd Taoist God!
Dick, the hero of Who Is Candid?, is just about perfect. Yeah, he’s a little dorky, in a gorgeous hot hunk, not taking advantage of his sexiness kind of dork. Imagine a young Harrison Ford. Yeah... Hot! He’s also sweet and protective and secure enough to let Lucy leave and find her own way back. Now, that’s sexy! And the ultimate Taoist!
There’s a Taoist fable that a farmer has a strong young son. The neighbors say, “How lucky you are.” The farmer shrugs. The son breaks his leg and can’t work. The neighbors say, “How unlucky you are.” The farmer shrugs. The army comes and takes all the young men off to war, except the farmer’s son. The neighbors say, “How lucky you are.” The farmer shrugs. And so on, and so on... The point of the story is that we can’t see a big enough picture to judge how something will ultimately turn out.
Dick could be that farmer. He trusts Lucy; he trusts the future. He’s the ultimate in non-judgmental! And when the time comes to act, trust me, Dick knows EXACTLY what to do!
So how about you? Readers, can you sometimes see the philosophical underpinnings of characters in novels? Is there a certain type of character that you just love? Writers, does your philosophy of life reflect in your writing? Please comment! I’d love to hear your thoughts, and look forward to a lively discussion!