Sexy Sunday Snippet: Fade to Black: Iris and Ezra by Holly Halsey Mayes
Sunday! More sexy happiness. Today we have a snippet from Holly Halsey Mayes’ contemporary romance, Fade to Black: Iris and Ezra.
When thirty-five year old nursing student Iris Walker accepts a concert invitation with a self-proclaimed “Ivy League go-getter”, little did she know she would be attempting to escape from him by the end of the date. She runs into Ezra Black, a man in the woods behind the concert venue, and later discovers he is the lead singer of one of the bands. Desperate to ditch her date-gone-bad, Ezra helps her escape. Even though their encounter is brief, she quickly learns she can’t get him out of her mind. He can’t forget her either, and when Iris inadvertently leaves her ID on his tour bus, he takes advantage of the opportunity to see her again.
Even though Iris is attracted to him, he’s ten years younger than her and leads a busy life in the public eye. She’s divorced, with an eight year old daughter, and trying to regain custody back from her manipulative ex-husband. Dating a rock star isn’t going to help her case, particularly one tormented by the secrets from his past. Despite the different paths they find themselves on, Iris and Ezra are drawn into in a relationship that seems destined to fade away before it can begin.
The locker room is empty. I change out of my clothes, which are still damp with sweat. I wasn’t initially going to use the steam room or sauna, but now that I’m done working out, I feel like it may be a nice way to wrap up my visit. Besides, who knows when I will get a chance to do this again?
I put on a fluffy white robe and head over to the hot tub first. These are separate for men and women, but the sauna and steam room are same sex. I lay my white robe on the chair and step into the hot tub, letting the warm water wash over me. On the edge of the tub, there is a pitcher of ice water with lemons, along with paper cups. I pour myself a glass and take a long drink.
Leaning back, I clear my mind. Even though the yoga was good for me, my heart still aches with sadness. I miss Ezra.
Stepping out of the water, I wrap my robe around myself and push open another door that leads to the steam room. The air is hot, but moist. I lay my robe down in a chair and wrap a towel around myself.
The steam room is empty so I sit on the corner bench and rest my forehead on my knees. I can’t get him out of my mind. It’s been two weeks, and my heart breaks every hour of every day. I can’t erase him from my memory—our late night conversations, his stories about the fans on tour, the places he’s seen. And the way he makes me feel when we’re together, the way he makes love to me, cherishes me. Moisture rolls down my face, from either sweat or tears, and a sob escapes me.
The door opens, causing the air pressure in the room to change as the steam rolls out. I sniff and wipe my nose with my towel. I keep my head down in a relaxed pose, and hope the person who came in leaves me alone—I’m not in the mood for conversation.
My mind strays to Ezra—his green eyes that get darker when he’s turned on, his slow sexy smile, crooked on one side when he’s teasing me, the one dimple that appears when he laughs out loud. It’s no wonder women go crazy for him. And he liked me, an older woman with a child and baggage out to here. The smell of his cologne haunts me, even in here. Did I make a mistake, letting him go? Pushing him away?
The steam jets spurt on, pushing hot air into the room, filling my lungs. I close my eyes and pull my towel over my face.
Warm hands press onto my shoulders, followed by heat—lips, softly placed on the center of my back.
I start to cry, my shoulders wracked with grief. Part of me is relieved, but at the same time, this is starting all over again with the loss. We’re postponing the inevitable.
“Why are you here?” My voice is choked up. I don’t look at him. I’m facing the wall, my knees drawn up to my chest.
“I miss you.” His deep voice echoes in the room, even though he’s trying to speak softly. “I miss the person I was when you were in my life.”
“Ezra, we can’t do this—” I start shakily, still amazed he’s here. He turns me around to face him. A towel is wrapped around his waist, hanging low. His chest hair, dark and glistening in the moist air, gathers around his navel into a trail that leads down beneath his towel. The steam vents have stopped, but the air is thick. He stands like a ghost in the mist before me. Perhaps I’m imagining him after all.
“I haven’t taken a full breath since you’ve been gone.” His eyes are pleading. His face is drawn, thinner, tired. Like he hasn’t slept in days. A lock of dark hair curls and falls down over his forehead. “Please, don’t send me away.”
My heart shatters and I let out a sob. He doesn’t hesitate, grabbing my hand to kiss my palm as he rubs his cheek against my hand, the scruff on his face lightly scratching at my fingers.
He leans me back on the hot tiles and loosens the towel from my body. For a split second, I consider the fact we are in a public steam room. He takes the lemon scented hand towel and gently lays it over my eyes. I can’t see anything, but the heat from his gaze and the steam in the room is like molten lava on my skin. I should tell him no. I should stop this, but in this instant, I don’t care—one more time, just one more time to be with him.
I smell lemon from the towel and mint as he lets out a breath before softly kissing me, licking and tracing the edges of my lips. He nips my bottom lip and gives it a tug. I kiss him back, hesitant at first, but he deepens the kiss, encouraged by my acceptance. When I reach my arms up, he backs away, leaving me lying naked on the tiles and blindfolded by the hand towel.
He pulls my arms up around my head and his mouth travels downward as he traces around my nipple with his tongue, drawing it into his mouth and sucking before letting it go with a pop. I’m on fire from the inside out.
He continues his descent, kissing and licking down my stomach, pulling my knees apart, and lowering his head between my thighs. Using his fingers, he spreads me wide, licking gently from the bottom to the top. When he gets to my clit, he gives it a hard suck and I cry out.
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Holly Mayes is a native of Michigan and enjoys reading, writing, photography and spending time with her two daughters, husband, cat and dog.
She has been published for her short stories in the Lansing Community College Washington Square Review, the women’s online journal When Women Waken, and the Rescued Pets Anthology by Splattered Ink Press.