Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Love Amid the Azalea

Hello all! My name is V.L. Locey.  I am a self-published and traditionally published author that lives in the mountains of Pennsylvania with my husband of over twenty-one years, my seventeen year old daughter, a herd of dairy goats, chickens, geese, ducks, turkeys, two dogs, two cats, and a partridge in a pear tree. For more info about me and contact links, check out the author bio tab up above.

Today we`ll start an M/M mini-series about new love blooming in a nursery. Just for a challenge for myself, I`m going to try to keep each issue under a thousand words, which should be daunting for Madame Wordy here.


Love Amid The Azaleas


V.L. Locey

Issue # 1


“Blooming Idiot`s, how can I help you?” I asked, making myself sound far more chipper than I really felt. I should be ecstatic about the opening of my nursery, right?  I`ve only worked at this dream of mine for ten years. Somehow being shafted by two of the teenagers hired as part-time help had taken the dew off my entrepreneurial rose.

“Oh yes, Mrs. Miller! I`m just now loading the flowering crab trees into the truck. I`m sorry, what did – but you were sure it was flowering crabs you wanted in – well yes, I can easily swap the crabs out for  willows but are you sure you want willows there? They tend to be rather shallow rooted. Yes, that means they may fall on your house,” I said, rolling my green eyes at Lydia as she ran up to the register with a flat of annuals.

I scooted over. She mouthed ‘Who is it?’ to which I mouthed ‘Mrs. Miller’ and feigned a death by hanging. Lydia found the pantomime amusing. The round woman buying flowers didn`t. I smiled widely then turned my back to the affronted woman glowering at me.

Then I saw him. I blinked rapidly, assuming it was a trick of the sun and the sprinklers. Like a rainbow or a mirage. The man was no mirage though. The wireless phone slid from my ear to rest on my shoulder. He was a tall man, ruggedly built and not afraid to show off his impressive guns that were coated with tattoos. The man was a walking sex addiction in a blue wife beater and worn Levi Strauss. His hair was short and dark and neatly combed. I wet my lips when he bent over to poke a finger into the soil of a pink hydrangea.

“Hey,” Lydia, the tiny little Mohawk wearing sprite nudged me soundly in the ribs. “You plan on answering Mrs. Miller?”

I gaped at the young woman with earrings lining her ears for a second. “Of course,” I parried neatly, “I was just letting her run herself out.”

“Uh-huh,” the minx snickered. “I can see the boner that guy gave you.”

I instantly looked down at my faded Lee button-fly. “Oh ha-ha,” I growled and slapped the always abrasive Mrs. Miller back to my ear.

Lydia bounced off in the direction of tall, dark and tattooed. I walked into the store itself, leaving the wide open doors that led into just one hot house for the cool, dark interior of my showroom. Here I had fountains and statues and gardening implements for sale. I made the obligatory sounds for Mrs. Miller as she prattled on. I dipped my fingers into the bubbly water of a urinating cherub fountain. Then someone tapped my shoulder. I turned to find Mr. Hotness and Lydia. I had to rip my eyes from the bluest eyes I have ever seen to look down at Lydia.

“Guess what?” she asked, rocking from her toes to her heels with her hands clasped behind her lean back.

“Can you hold, Mrs. Miller?” I asked, and then placed her to my shoulder before she could respond. “What?”

“This is Bryan Mason and he`s looking for a job. Oh,” the hyperactive little matchmaker added, “He also wants to know if we know about changing the colors of hydrangeas.”

My mouth dropped. Lydia skipped off merrily leaving me to stare with unbridled passion and admiration at one Bryan Mason. He held his hand out. I slapped my palm into his. His grip was warm, strong, and lingered just a moment longer than any het shake would have. Or maybe I was just projecting? How could this man be knowledgeable about color-change in hydrangeas, look as delicious as he does, and be gay? My luck simply does not run that way.

“Jon Harrison,” I mumbled letting my hand drop to my thigh. “Let me get Mrs. Miller placated and we`ll talk about hydrangea color changes.”

“Sounds good,” he smiled. I nearly tumbled into the peeing angel fountain when he flashed those pearly whites. The day was starting to look up.

“Hello? Mr. Harrison? Hello? What about dogwoods? Will they fall on the house?”

Well, the hired help part of the day was looking up anyway.