12 Days of Christmas Excerpts Contest Day 12

“Both of you tell me you are not one and the same, and yet you remember everything. You know each other’s minds. You know what the other is planning and you let it happen.” The words come in a rush and with them a terrible realization. “You let it happen.” Angry tears sting my eyes. I’ve given everything to this being; left myself at his mercy time and again. I’ve borne _____’s torments, as I’ve shouldered _____’s, hoping that my pleasance would better them in return.

And for all his now gentle words, I find that the fearsome, powerful _____ is a coward.

Possible points: 8

Complete contest rules here.

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12 Days of Christmas Excerpts Contest Day 11

_____ was the first man she’d seen whose scars were a fact of life. On him, they were a testament to his strength and will to survive. At least two of his scars would have been life threatening. He’d received them fighting for his life. As a scientist, _____ should have been impassive, looking at them. As a woman, she wanted to know how he’d gotten each one. She wanted to ask if it had hurt.

There was another scar on his forearm. It looked like it had come too close to severing part of his limb. _____ watched her hand reach for that arm, as if she weren’t in control of it.

_____ caught it in a flash, squeezing her wrist just enough to let her know he could crush it if he chose to. It startled her into looking up into his eyes again. Don’t, they warned.

Possible points: 7

Complete contest rules here.

12 Days of Christmas Excerpts Contest Day 10

The fantasy made the region around her heart ache. Why couldn’t she have met a guy like this before? Maybe if she had, her life would have turned out differently. Maybe he could have kept her thoughts and dreams occupied with more pleasant things than what those around her were thinking. Maybe she could have woken up with him, and spent her days smiling about how lucky she was, and come back home to sleep in his arms at night.

Maybe he would have kept her so busy in his bed that she wouldn’t have had time to think about anything else. Ah, sex. _____ remembered having had it. So very long ago. Remembered not being impressed with it. She should have known better, though. Nothing was ever as good as the books made it seem. _____ had built her hopes up with a steady diet of romance novels in which the hero was … well, like this guy, and everything turned out perfect when he found his heroine.

If she let herself, _____ could pretend that this was the beginning of some steamy romance novel. Wouldn’t be difficult, really. The plot had already begun with a complicated situation, and now here she was, trapped with the hero of the tale, with nowhere to turn except into his arms.

Possible points: 7

Complete contest rules here.

12 Days of Christmas Excerpts Contest Day 9

The doc cleared her throat. “In light of the unusual circumstances,”—her tone said just how much of an understatement that was—“I am willing to put aside what happened earlier, for now. I believe it is … not impossible … for us to have a rational conversation. After which, of course, I will expect you to leave.”

It would have sounded almost professional if he didn’t keep picturing her naked. “Fair enough,” he managed. “Please, sit.”

She hesitated, but finally sat, leaving plenty of room for herself, in case she had to bolt. He really hoped she wouldn’t. If he had to chase her down again, he might be tempted to do something stupid. “Who are you?” she asked, for the third time.

He answered only because she looked like she might actually hear him this time.

Possible points: 9

Complete contest rules here.

12 Days of Christmas Excerpts Contest Day 8

A pot broke in the kitchen. The cook screamed and chased the thief outside, but the wily youth escaped with a loaf of bread to fill a painfully empty belly. The wizard noticed and Woden smiled, savoring his reaction. There again, the girl who’d mourned an old woman’s death. She was the one. She would change everything. If only the wizard and his king could accept the counsel of a woman.

Another shift and there was the young prince, barely thirteen years old, strapping on armor and climbing the stairs to the battlements. He gravely surveyed the armies before him and directed the archers in their assault. A shout went up too late. _____’s faithful general grabbed the boy, shielding him with his body as a massive boulder struck the wall. The two of them fell off the battlements into the courtyard while pieces of the castle wall rained down on them. The boy lived. The general did not. Seeing his friend and protector take his last breath, _____ closed the general’s eyes, and mounted those same stairs back again, calling for the archers to light their arrows.

Possible points: 7

Complete contest rules here.