Among the Shine Clan, Dellani Oakes

Among the Shine Clan – Part 20 by Dellani Oakes

among the shine clan coverThere is a wonderful party after the ceremony. After a special dance, Deacon takes Fiddlestix back to bed. The following morning, Jasper wakes them again, because it’s time for her to go home.

“I don’t want to go, Deacon. I wish I could stay with you forever.”

“You could, Hannah-Belle.”

“I’ve got commitments, Deacon. I can’t walk out on them.”

“I know, baby, I just don’t want you to go.”

“I’ll come back.”

“You promise?”

“Cross my heart,” she whispered, her voice catching in her throat.

“I’m gonna hold you to that promise, Hannah. You stole my heart right out of my chest. You can’t stay gone, a man can’t live with long without his heart.”

“I’ll give you mine then,” she placed her hand on his chest.

She could feel his heart beating strong and fast. Suddenly terrified by the idea of commitment, she kissed him one last time and dashed from the room. Deacon followed her to the door, stopping just outside the compound as she and her people prepared to march down the mountain. Their air transport, sent by Captain Bark, would pick them up near their drop point and take them back to their base.

Deacon raised his hand, whistling to catch her attention. The sharp, shrill sound rent the air. Fiddlestix turned and grinned, raising a hand to wave goodbye. Deacon blew her a kiss which she returned. One last, fond look and she ran to the head of the formation, bellowing at her troops.

“Move it out! Double time. Don’t make me wait!”

“Yes, Master Sergeant!” they yelled in unison, speeding up.

The last Deacon saw of her was her spiky, blonde hair bobbing at the head of the column. That faded into the mist that hung over the mountain top. With a heavy sigh, he turned and walked disconsolately back into the compound. Jasper ran up behind him, nearly tackling him.

“Yo, big brother! You’ve got a meeting at 1100.”

“Yeah? So what? Maybe I’ll cancel all my meetings today.”

“No can do, bro. Life’s got to go on, Deacon. Even if she’s gone, you can’t stop doing your duty.”

“I know. It’s duty got me into this, it’s duty that will keep me going until she comes back.”

Punching his brother in the arm, he walked to his office. He sat behind the desk that had been his father’s and grandfather’s before him, wondering what else life had in store.

Fiddlestix had to force herself not to keep looking back. She knew Deacon would stand at the door until she was out of sight. If she looked back at him, she didn’t know if she’d be able to stand it.

Kaz jogged up next to her, puffing hard. “Master Sergeant, can we slow it down a little? Some of us, me included, can’t keep up. I’m hurtin’ bad. If you don’t slow down, I’m gonna drop dead. Hell of a note to live through the battle, and die of exhaustion.”

Fiddlestix laughed and slowed down. “Sorry. I had to make a clean break. If I hadn’t, I don’t know if I’d have left.”

“You could have stayed.”

“And make you face McLain alone?”

Kaz looked wistfully back at the mountain peak. “I wouldn’t have minded staying myself, Master Sergeant.” He sucked air in sharply. “Damn, that girl was fine! I could have stayed my whole life and never been sorry a day. When I get out of the Army, I’m going back. I’m going home.”

“I’m not the settling down kind, Kaz. It was fun while it lasted, but it’s not the life for me.”

“You might surprise yourself, Master Sergeant. I seen the way you looked at Deacon. You ain’t gonna admit it to yourself, but you’re hooked on that big, blond hillbilly.”

“And I suppose you aren’t hooked on Betsy?”

“I’m gonna marry that girl and have a passel of pretty, redheaded babies.”

“I truly hope you can, Kaz.”

© 2018 Dellani Oakes

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Fedelta Book 2: Captured

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Meanwhile at the Matteo’s Bar & Bistro, Jimmy was bound and trapped in the basement of the neighborhood hot spot.  When he first gained consciousness and he didn’t like what he saw.  Every instinct in his body told him this was a mob hit in the making and he had to get out of there.  As Jimmy scanned the room for a door or window, he heard footsteps coming down the stairs.  Quickly, he put his head down and pretended to still be unconscious.  The footsteps were slow and purposeful, they were also heavy, either the guy was huge or he was carrying something.  “Careful, the boss said he wanted everything done exactly his way,” a raspy voice said.

“I know what I’m doin,’” answered a very annoyed and out of breath accomplice.  Jimmy listened hard for any other voices or footsteps but heard none.  He still couldn’t be certain there were only two of them, for all he knew there could be ten more thugs upstairs.  Escape wasn’t looking good.  As Jimmy listened on, he heard dragging sounds then a thud, quickly, he peeked and saw a body being dragged across the floor.  His heart raced as he tried to discern whether this person was dead or alive.  Did it really matter?  There was nothing he could do, he was chained up like a dog which meant, this poor SOB was on his own.  Closing his eyes again, he kept his head down and made sure not to move.  As the men took off for God knows where, Jimmy was left alone with a body in the middle of the basement floor.

It was only after the door closed did Jimmy dare to open his eyes again.  Taking a deep breath, he calmed himself down and looked around for a way to get out of his chains.  To his disappointment, the room was completely bare, these guys were smart and weren’t taking any chances.  They seemed to have thought of everything; the windows were covered, the door was steel, and there were shackles on the floor as well as chains hanging from the ceiling.  However the most disturbing part of the décor were the drain traps on the floor.  It was becoming crystal clear to Jimmy; this place was a slaughterhouse.  Like cattle, he and his new roommate were going to be butchered.  This was not how he imagined his life ending.

 

Character Quotes

Character Quotes from The Experiment by Dellani

character-quotes-image“Got your design with you?” Mr. Bixbie asked.

Maggie grinned, opening her portfolio. “Would I come see you without it?”

“Not if you’re smart,” he chuckled. “Bring it on into the bright light.” He turned on a lamp with a large magnifying glass.

Maggie handed him the design. Mr. Bixbie nodded, chuckling. “You done lucked out again, baby girl. Tillie, fetch them patterns from Vogue.”

She nodded and headed back to the Collection room.

“Now, it ain’t exactly what you got here, but it’s close enough that you can make it work.”

He dug through the box and pulled out a pattern. It was almost exactly Maggie’s dress. With a few minor changes, she could modify the pattern and save herself a lot of time.

“Now, you, little girl. What do you need?” He addressed Willow Mae.

“I want to make Wallis Simpson’s dress.”

“That’s a pretty thing. You don’t want blue.”

“No, Mr. B. I want the fabric you found.”

“Good choice. I think I got a pattern for you too.” He pulled another one out. It was an exact replica of the designer dress. “Back in the eighties, there was this special line done to commemorate somethin’. They made knock off patterns of famous wedding dresses and Inaugural gowns. They was real popular at the time.”

“Mr. B., you’re the best!” Willow Mae hugged him, kissing his withered cheek.

He chuckled, patting her arm. “I do my best. Some men woo you with roses and chocolates. I win y’all with fabric.” He winked.

© 2018 Dellani Oakes

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Among the Shine Clan, Dellani Oakes

Among the Shine Clan by Dellani Oakes – Part 19

among the shine clan coverAt the ceremony, Kazinsky, Harmony and Fiddlestix are awarded ranks in the Shine Clan Militia. Not only that, Fiddlestix is formally adopted by the Clan. Oh—and Deacon proposed.

Deacon extended his hand. When Fiddlestix took it, he drew her to him and kissed her passionately in front of the entire assembly. He held her close, whispering in her ear. “One day, Hannah, you’ll stand here as my wife.”

Fiddlestix didn’t know what to say. She was stunned by her reception by this clannish, secluded people. They treated her like family, called her friend, and extended the warmth and comfort of their hearts and home to her. Even among her own people, she had never been so well accepted. Tears threatened to fall. To hide them, she took Deacon’s head in her hands, bringing his mouth down to hers once more. They kissed hungrily as the crowd went crazy.

Someone in the audience started yelling, “Speech! Speech!”

Everyone took up the chant. There was nothing for it, she would have to say something. Deacon led her to the center of the stage and the crowd grew quiet before being asked.

“I’m not good at giving speeches,” Fiddlestix grinned rather nervously. “But I do want to thank you all for your kindness and generosity, as well as your bravery and sacrifice. Everyone here lost someone they care about. Therefore, I honor your dead by swearing to you that I will always do my best, no matter what, to protect the Shine Clan. You are my family now. Thank you!”

She stepped back by Deacon, trying to lose herself behind his massive body. He took her hand, leading her forward once more. To loud, joyous applause, he took a bow, encouraging her to bow as well.

Blushing furiously, she backed up to hide in the ranks of her soldiers. They parted enough to let her into the front row, but refused to let her go any further. They were proud of her and they thought she deserved all the praise she was getting.

After the ceremony, a huge dinner was set up. The Shine Clan women prided themselves on being able to feed a man until he could eat no more. They pressed food on Fiddlestix’ men, practically force feeding them. After eating, the tables were pushed out of the way and musicians clamored onto an improvised stage at one end of the room. They struck up a traditional square dance and Frank Lord got up to call it.

Fiddlestix had no idea what she was doing, so she refused to dance. Deacon and Jasper tried to persuade her, but she kept refusing. Finally, in desperation, Deacon spoke to the musicians and asked for a different tune. Because it was for Fiddlestix, they heartily agreed. The square dance tune ended and the couples left the floor. The band struck up a slow dance, an old tune from the 1970’s.

It wasn’t something Fiddlestix remembered hearing before, but it was so sweetly compelling, she agreed to dance with Deacon. The melody carried her away and she lost herself in his embrace. As they danced, he sang to her, his voice a smooth, melodic tenor. The lyrics brought tears to her eyes as they danced.

“I wanna rock your gypsy soul, just like way back in the days of old. And magnificently we will go into the mystic.”

It wasn’t a long song, but the band enjoyed watching Deacon and Fiddlestix dance so much, they improvised, each instrument taking a solo. She didn’t even notice that she and Deacon were the only ones dancing until the music stopped. Her heart was so full, she wanted to cry. Tears welled in her blue eyes, dripping out the corners and down her cheeks. Deacon leaned forward, kissing her gently. Quiet applause surrounded them as they walked off the dance floor. Instead of stopping for the congratulations and well wishes, Deacon took her back to his quarters.

“Won’t everyone wonder where we’ve gone?”

Deacon got his elbow stuck in his sleeve and nearly ripped his shirt trying to get it free. “I don’t give a good damn. Let ’em wonder.”

“As their leader, don’t you have to put in an appearance?”

“Did that all ready. Hush now, woman, and kiss me.”

They made love long into the night, finally falling into an exhausted sleep once more. It seemed no time later that Jasper was again banging on the door. This time, he woke them to let Fiddlestix know that her people were ready to go. Their job done, it was time to go back to General McLain and make their report.

© 2018 Dellani Oakes

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Among the Shine Clan, Dellani Oakes

Among the Shine Clan by Dellani – Part 18

among the shine clan coverAfter the cyberwarriors are taken care of, Deacon and Fiddlestix enjoy one another’s company. Jasper wakes them the next day, calling them for a meeting.

After a short explanation, a sharp slap and a brief apology, he got her some clothing.

“Next time you visit, I promise to have clothes in your size for you to wear,” he smiled as he watched her dress.

“You know, I didn’t like you much when we first met,” Fiddlestix told him. “But damn if you didn’t grow on me.”

“Kind of like a fungus?” He winked. “You should marry me, Hannah-Belle. I’d make you mighty happy.”

“That’s just the sex talking, Deacon. You don’t want me. I’m a soldier, not a wife.”

“I don’t want just a wife, Hannah. I want someone who will stand beside me and help me lead, like my mama and grand-mama before her. Our women don’t take second place, they’re equal to their mates. Think about it, Hannah. The offer’s open.”

“Thanks, Deacon. I will.”

“I’m serious,” he told her, taking her hands in his. “I’ve never met a woman I wanted more than you. Stay with me, Hannah. Forget the Army. Stay here with me.” His kiss was compelling, inviting her to forget everything else.

“I can’t,” she whispered. “This is who I am, Deacon.”

“But you could be so much more.”

Dropping the subject because he could see it made her uncomfortable, he led her to the main gathering area. It was a huge auditorium lined with benches, set up like an amphitheater. They walked to the base of the steps. Deacon held out his arm to her, walking beside her up the stairs. Her soldiers were already gathered on the huge stage, Harmony and Kaz in the forefront. Deacon escorted her to the head of the line, walking to the center of the stage.

Holding up his hands, he signaled for quiet. The chatting and whispering stopped and almost complete silence fell. Fiddlestix was impressed. She had never seen a quieter, more orderly crowd.

“We are gathered here today to honor those who came to our aid. Let us rejoice that our home is once more safe and secure!”

Wild cheering filled the room, echoing off the metal lined walls. Deacon let it continue a few moments, then held up his hands once more. Silence fell again.

“For bravery in combat, and continuing to fight even though he was sorely wounded, The Fire Star goes to Corporal Walter Kazinski of the United States Army.”

Kaz limped forward, one arm in a sling. His bruised face was wreathed in a happy grin. Betsy stood by his side, supporting him. Deacon put the medal around his neck. It hung from a red and gold ribbon. They exchanged a complicated handshake and Kaz stood to one side.

“From now on, Walter Kazinski also holds the rank of Guard Sergeant in the Shine Clan Militia.”

Fiddlestix knew that Guard Sergeant was equivalent to her rank and was more than just an honorary position. If Kaz ever returned to live with the Shine Clan, his orders would be honored and followed like any other officer’s.

“For bravery in the face of the enemy, and his assistance in shutting down the enemy soldiers, The Silver Star goes to Private Steven Harmony.”

Harmony strutted forward and was given his medal on a blue and silver ribbon. He took his place beside Kaz.

“Private Harmony now holds the rank of Lance Corporal in the Shine Clan Militia.

“Finally, for bravery, courage under fire, tenacity, and ingenuity, the Shine Clan Golden Star goes to Master Sergeant Hannah Braun.”

Wild cheers exploded around the auditorium as the gold and white ribbon slid over her head. The Shine Clan members were only marginally louder than Fiddlestix’ own soldiers. Even when Deacon held his hands up for silence, it was several minutes before quiet descended again.

When everyone finally settled down, Deacon continued. “As an additional honor, Hannah has been awarded a captaincy in the Shine Clan Militia. Also, the Clan adopts her as one of its own. From now on, Hannah, you are a member of our family, second to none.”

© 2018 Dellani Oakes

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Character Quotes, Dellani Oakes

Character Quotes from Food Truck Hero by Dellani

character-quotes-imageRowena was dressed in clinging pink slacks and a pretty, flowered shirt that looked like a throwback to the Seventies. The creamy, gauzy fabric was gathered just under her breasts, showing enough cleavage to get my juices flowing.

“You look lovely,” I said as I wheeled in my cart.

“Thank you. You look delicious…..” A smack of her palm on her forehead, she blushed. “I’m so sorry. You look very nice,” she corrected herself.

“I like delicious better,” I murmured right next to her ear.

© 2018 Dellani Oakes

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Character Quotes, Dellani Oakes

Character Quotes from One Night in Daytona Beach by Dellani

One_Night_in_Daytona_Beach_by_Dellani_Oakes - 200Once the bag was packed, Draven slung it over his shoulder.

“We’ll have to go out the front door, and hope they don’t see us.”

“Why? You think I can’t get over that fence? How the hell do you think I got out of my house to see you all those times I was grounded?”

“That was ten years ago, babe.”

“And I teach gymnastics. Duh.”

Putting her foot on the lower support, she hopped up, finding the top beam of the fence with ease. She swung over and dropped before Draven even got to the top. In fairness to him, his right arm still didn’t feel right. He lost his grip twice before getting over.

Jamie waited impatiently.

“Now I know you’re hurt. You can make that climb in your sleep.”

“Moose hit me with my baton.”

© 2018 Dellani Oakes

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Character Quotes, Dellani Oakes

Character Quotes from Somewhere Out There by Dellani

character-quotes-image“Four o’clock?” Ouelle giggled. “When’s the last time we stayed up that late?”

“I don’t know about you, but I do it all the time. I haven’t been sleeping much.”

She shook her head, curls bouncing. “No idea. I’m usually not much of a night owl.”

Ross chuckled, brushing her hair from her face. “You used to be. Why do you think I call you Owl?”

“I always thought it was because of my name.” She frowned. “It’s not?” She covered her mouth with her hands, suppressing her giggle.

“How often did we stay up all night talking? And you’d try so hard not to wake your father, you’d hold in the laughter, hooting like a little owl.” He teased her hands away from her mouth. “You’re doing it now. Some things will never change.”

“And some things do.” She traced his lips with her finger. “I am ever so fond of you.”

Her words and smile stabbed his heart. “I love you, Ouelle. I’ve loved you forever. I can’t remember a time I didn’t. In all that time, you’ve never told me you love me. You tell me you’re fond of me, that you treasure me, but never the words I most want to hear. Do you love me Ouelle? Even a little?”

© 2018 Dellani Oakes

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Character Quotes, Dellani Oakes

Character Quotes from How Far is Heaven? by Dellani

character-quotes-image“Okay,” he hesitated. “Are you sure everything is all right? We can do this another night.”

“No!” She said too loudly and suddenly. “No, I don’t want to cancel. Just please come by here and I promise we’ll talk about it in detail later.”

“Sure, Maeve. No problem.”

But he sounded odd to her, hollow and deflated. Her father watched her talk to Hal on the phone, pretending to go over the order sheet she had filled out and printed online.

“So, he’s coming by, is he?”

“Yes.” She didn’t mean to snap, it just came out that way. “Sorry, Papa. It confused him. How could I explain that my father wants to meet him? It could totally terrify him. Hal is shy, very insecure. He’s not from the city.”

“But he’s coming?”

“Yes!”

“Good. That’s very good.”

Maeve could tell that Hal had unexpectedly scored points with her father already. That was a good sign, at least she hoped so.

© 2018 Dellani Oakes

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Character Quotes, Dellani Oakes

Character Quotes from Bad Fall by Dellani

character-quotes-image“The Alzheimer’s lady? I saw your show last night. I want to put my Dolly in there. And me, I’ll come. Dolly’s getting a little loopy.” He made a crazy gesture by his right temple.

“I prefer to avoid terms like loopy,” Marka said gently.

The elevator opened. A few people got off and they got on. Frank greeted everyone by name. Those still on the elevator were pleased to meet Marka.

“What else to do I call her?” Mr. Witherspoon asked. “She’s got corn flakes for brains. But she’s my Dolly.” He strode purposefully off the elevator as soon as it opened.

© 2018 Dellani Oakes

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