Crawling Into Bed With Jeremy Pack
And a Good Book To Touch the Stars
Micro fleece. Probably a petroleum derivative. Silk scares me. True story: I can’t touch the stuff without thinking of how it’s made. We watch the Science Channel a lot around here. Interesting, but it’ll ruin you for silk. Worms make that stuff. Shiver. By the way, you might want to protect your sensitive parts, Ellie--that toothless six-year old trying to steal your pillow-- is a traveler and I’m convinced her feet have genital radar. If it hurts to have it kicked, she’ll find it.
What are you wearing?
Oh this sexy getup? I’m sure you can tell by the holes this tee-shirt has gone a few (thousand) rounds with the bleach. The sweats are an old pair of Jason’s which is why I have to roll them up. His legs are a mile long, I swear. He’s so tall I’m at the perfect height for... Never mind. (He always gets embarrassed when I tell people about belly kisses and raspberries.)
What are we snacking on in bed while we read tonight?
Hey! You found my night-stand snack stash. Awesome. You know, it’s a good arm workout, bench-pressing that “Party Size” bag of Peanut M&Ms.
If I open this nightstand drawer, what will I find?
*Blushes* Uh... Certainly not an industrial sized bag of Swedish Fish. What are you looking at me like that for? They wouldn’t fit in the cupboard where I keep the M&Ms. (Is it scary that this is all absolutely true? I know I’m starting to feel a little exposed...)
Do you roll up in the blankets like a burrito, or kick the covers off during the night?
I’m always buried under the blankets... or Jason. One leg out, though, unless we’ve been watching Paranormal Collector or Ghost Adventures, and then I’m huddled as far under the covers as possible. That ghost stuff scares the bejesus out of me. If I have to pee in the middle of the night after watching one of those shows, I will seriously hold it until sunrise—no matter how painful it gets.
Can I put my cold feet on your calves to warm them up?
Yeah, but I have a pair of fuzzy microwavable socks you can borrow. Much better than my hairy little chicken legs. Jason, would you mind nuking these bad boys for sixty-seconds? Thanks, love.
What are we reading?
Tonight, we’ll dip into To Touch the Stars, my second novel just out from Dreamspinner Press. I’m not a very good reader, but try to imagine I’m Morgan Freeman. His is the voice I heard in my head when I was writing it. Swoon...
This is from the MC’s first meeting. They don’t exactly get on very well in the beginning.
Nick was surprised when Tait stopped abruptly and folded his arms across his chest. The shy, friendly demeanor had evaporated, and now he looked seriously peeved. Black, curly hair clung to Tait’s damp forehead, and the red in his cheeks wasn’t entirely the result of the heat. The doe eyes flashed anger.
“Something wrong?” Nick asked sweetly.
“Maybe we should do this another time.” Tait said, snapping his notebook closed.
Nick could see the handsome reporter struggling to keep his temper in check. Maybe he had gone a little too far with the abuse. “But it’s been so much fun,” Nick said sarcastically, though he instantly regretted it. The simmering, barely contained anger flashed again in those entirely too compelling brown eyes.
“I’m not an idiot, Mr. Sullivan—”
“Mr. Sullivan,” Tait emphasized. “NASA is a civilian agency.” Uh-oh. Nick had no comeback for that. Tait took a step in his direction. “I’ve got a long fuse, but I can only take so much. Running me around in the furnaces of hell to see how long it takes before I collapse from heat stroke? Why didn’t you just tell me to go away? You think this is funny?”
“Those are your words,” Nick parroted, feeling a little disconcerted. Suddenly, Tait Williams didn’t seem to be the shy simpleton Nick had pegged him for. Suddenly, he seemed confident and tough. What was worse, Tait wore fortitude well. Anger on that angelic face was quite alluring.
Tait advanced, leveled a finger, and poked it into Nick’s chest. Though Nick was taller than Tait, he felt inferior somehow. Tait said, “Let’s square up here. I didn’t ask for this assignment, and from your behavior, I suspect you’re as happy about it as I am.”
So much for having the upper hand. Nick was about to have his ass handed to him.
Tait’s anger seemed to feed off itself. It was as if Nick had unleashed something Tait couldn’t contain. This was very bad. “I’d much rather be covering important news, like Vietnam or civil rights, but instead, I’m stuck here with a bunch of daydreamers grubbing at the Treasury and shooting for the moon.”
That prickled. Nick hadn’t been truly riled before, but now he was angry. “Wait just a minute—”
“Total waste of resources and taxpayer dollars. Do you realize, Mr. Sullivan, that by the time we drop a man on the lunar surface, it will have cost every person in this country more than three thousand dollars? And that’s a conservative estimate.”
Was that true? If so, Nick was impressed. Williams had obviously done his homework. He was smart and confident and made reasoned arguments. Nick was sorry to discover that he was probably intellectually outclassed. No small feat. Nick had been top of his class at the Air Force Academy.
The tirade continued. “How many meals do you suppose three thousand dollars could buy a starving child? Hmm? How quickly do you think we could win the war if our best and brightest minds weren’t playing with rockets?”
“So now that we’re square, just you give some thought to the fact that your job is to be the prize pig, and mine is to make a silk purse.” Tait tugged at his jacket to straighten it, cast one, last smoldering glare in Nick’s direction, and said, “Good day, Mr. Sullivan.” With nary a backward glance, the reporter stomped away, his shoulders stiff, his head held high.
Mouth agape, Nick could only stand there and watch him leave. Maybe he should just pack his bags right now. If Nick didn’t get drummed out of the corps for what this guy was going to tell America about the space program, falling head over heels for him ought to just about do it.
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