Thursday, May 18, 2017

Sharon/Sam: Firework (4/13)

G – Girlfriend

They had been at the docks for less than two minutes when people began swarming around them, full of prying questions. A lot of admiring looks were placed in Sherry's direction as well. Sam couldn't blame any of them. This was a small-town and new residents always caused quite a stir although this new resident in particular was also incredibly beautiful. Sherry had her chestnut locks gathered up in a loose ponytail, soft tendrils of hair framing her perfect face. She was wearing a blue dress with spaghetti straps that showed off her amazing figure. He couldn't take his eyes off her even as a group of people jostled them apart. To Sherry's credit, she handled it all with dignity and grace. He heard Biff Sanders, an elderly man at eighty-two years, ask Sherry to "cut the rug" (though there wasn't one) with him and she looked at Sam before agreeing. The octogenarian could still move at his age and swept Sherry around the docks, hooting to anyone who would listen that he had the best looking girl there.

It was true.

Sam sighed and pushed through the gawking crowd. He went over to the dessert table and realized he was a bit too anxious to eat so he settled for pouring himself a cup of Sally Rubenstein's famous punch. Sally gave him an approving smile as he took a sip and pronounced it "delicious".

He then found his eyes searching the crowd for Sherry. She was no longer dancing with Biff but instead being chatted up by two local wannabe Romeos named Lou and Butch. He started to head over to them when none other than Edie was approaching him.

"Hey there," he greeted her as she narrowed her dark eyes at him.

"Who's that girl, Sam?" Edie asked. "Are you two … Are you seeing each other?"

Sam shook her head. He could honestly say "No" and he did, adding, "She is just a friend. An employee really. She works at my farm."

"Doing what exactly?" Edie asked.

"Helping me tend to the house and barn. She's great with the animals."

Edie rolled her eyes. "I just bet… So she's not your girlfriend?"


"Would you like her to be?" Edie pressed.

"Edie –"

"Sam, let's be honest here. We had some good times together but if you ever looked at me the way you are whatever her name is, we would have been married a long time ago instead of doing the off and on thing for the past seven years."

"I don't want to hurt you, not in a million years would I want that."

Edie sighed. "I know. You're a good man. Salt of the earth and all that. But we should just be friends and nothing but from now on."

"Are you okay with that?"

Edie shrugged. "I have to be. Besides, I want you to be happy and the way you were smiling at her right now … She makes you that way."

"She is just a friend. That's all she wants."

"Don't be too sure," Edie said and gestured to Sherry who was no longer watching Lou and Butch but instead him, though demurely under her long eyelashes.

"Make your move, Sammy boy," Edie said. "Or you'll end up regretting it. I know that much."

Edie then melded back into the crowd and Sam sighed. He finished his punch, tossed the paper cup into the nearest trash can and walked towards Sherry.

"Hey, Lou, Butch," he greeted the guys. "Do you mind if I steal Sherry here away for a minute?"

Lou and Butch sighed and shrugged but ultimately agreed. Sherry smiled at Sam and he offered her his hand. "Dance with me?" Sam asked quietly.

Sherry nodded. "I would like that."

And so they danced to some honkytonk song he didn't know the name of and he held her close, the two of them just being …


H – Heat

“Did you have fun tonight?” Sam asked, as he walked beside Sherry in the moonlight. They were headed back to the farm after a long night of dancing, eating and drinking. Sherry had seemed to loosen up a bit tonight. He’d even seen her smile a few times, especially during the square dance when she’d seen for herself that he had two left feet.

Sam studied her expression and Sherry stared right back at him. This time her gaze was unwavering. “I did, Sam,” she said. “It’s been a long, long time since I’ve been able to well, just be like that.”

“I’m glad you had fun,” Sam said. He reached out and tugged her to a stop.

“Wh-what is it?” She asked.

“Wait for it,” Sam said.

“Wait for what?”

Sam pointed up into the sky. “The last set of fireworks,” he said. “Ben Wheeler does a pretty spectacular send-off each year. He takes his speed boat out to the middle of the lake and just lets ‘em go.” Fireworks – red, white and blue ones – began popping off in the sky. Sherry threw up her arms like she could reach out and grab them. She laughed.

“They’re so beautiful!” she cried.

“Not as beautiful as you,” Sam said. He wasn’t sure that she had heard him at first but as the booms and pops died down, she turned to look at him. In the darkness, her eyes looked even larger and more luminous than usual.

“Did you just say that I’m –“

“Beautiful.” She nodded. “Yeah, I did. And I could take it back but I don’t want to. It’s the truth. You’re an amazing woman."

Sherry’s eyes gleamed in the darkness then and he could tell that she was tearing up. She clasped her hands and brought them up to her mouth for a moment, as if she didn’t trust herself to speak.

Sam sighed. “I am sorry. I didn’t mean to overstep. I just – I just wanted you to know.”

Sherry nodded. “It’s been a long time since a man said that and I actually believed him,” she whispered hoarsely. In the next moment, she was moving to close the distance between them, grasping his stubbly cheeks between her small, soft fingers. They stared at each other for a long moment and then they were kissing. Sam couldn’t tell who kissed whom first and he didn’t care. All he cared about was this moment.

The first kiss was soft and tentative but each one there after grew in intensity and heat. His fingers tangled in her long, silky tresses as he looped his arm around her waist and tugged her still closer. Her breasts were pressed against his chest and he could feel each ragged breath that she took as they held each other. Her lips were even softer than they had appeared and they felt so damn good on his. He darted his tongue out and lightly traced her plump lips with it. Their tongues soon danced together. They kissed passionately until air exchange became a necessity.

They disentangled but their foreheads rested together for a moment. Sam’s calloused fingers came up to caress the curve of her throat. “That was –“

“It was great,” Sherry said. “Really.”

Sam smiled in agreement. “Should we finish walking back to the farm?”

Sherry nodded. “Yes, yes we should.”

They fell into step beside each other. Sam smiled as after a few quietly charged moments, Sherry reached for his hand and threaded their fingers. They didn’t say anything to each other as they strolled back to the farm. Words weren’t necessary.


Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Sharon/Sam: Firework (3/13)

E – Effortless

He felt Sherry's eyes on him as he cast his line out for the third time. He had already brought in and released two fish while her line was still bobbing untouched in the water.

"How do you do that?" she finally spoke up.

He glanced at her as he kept his eye on the line, waiting to see or feel a tug on it. "Do what?"

"Make everything seem so easy, so effortless," she said. "Even fishing comes so naturally to you, it seems."

"Well I've been doing it for a really long time. My father used to take me out every weekend and teach me. At first I couldn't catch anything at all and then I got the brilliant idea to use marshmallows and they started biting then."

"I am using a marshmallow now and haven't caught anything," she pointed out. "Not that I really want to because I don't want to hurt the fishes, not even for a second. It's just you make everything seem so … easy."

He shrugged and glanced at her again, noted the way the sun danced on the locks of her brunette hair. She looked so beautiful framed in that light but still so sad. He didn't know if he would ever look at her and not see that expression of pain in her eyes; pain that said she had been through the trenches of hell itself.

He started to speak, started to break his own vow not to ask her any personal questions, when she began to squeal with almost-delight. "What is it?"

"Something, something's … tugging," Sherry said with something almost a kin to a smile. "On the line …" Sure enough the line was bobbing now and Sam quickly scooted over to her and helped her reel it in, giving her enough room that she would feel she had done most of the work herself.

Soon enough a silver-skinned minnow was on her line. Sam quickly took the pliers and unhooked it before gently settling it back into the pond. It immediately zipped far away and then delved under the blue-green water.

"Great job, Sherry," he said and he realized then he was still holding her hand. He quickly let go and she offered him a shrug.

"He wasn't very big."

"For a minnow, that was big!" Sam laughed.

"You think he'll be alright?" Sherry asked. "I didn't hurt him too bad, I hope."

"Nah, he'll be just fine. You did good. You're a good person."

"I don't believe that. I know it's not true but well, thanks for saying it anyway," she murmured and he nodded. She was a good person, a great person. Sam was a good judge of character and no matter what was dogging her steps, he knew Sherry was salt of the earth and had a good heart. She was far too hard on herself and he hoped one day she would be able to stop punishing herself for past misdeeds.


F - Fireworks

June came and went as they settled down into a more concrete routine. July came rolling around and Sam decided he wanted to ask Sherry to watch the fireworks with him on the lake at Old El Paso where many of the town's members would be gathering for the holiday celebration. He hesitated though because he didn't want to scare her off, didn't want to send her off running the way he had a few months before. Most of all, he was deathly afraid she would say "no".

It wasn't until the very morning of the Fourth that he could bring himself to ask her about it. He walked into the barn to find her already cleaning out the stalls. He got a good look at her jean-clad rear-end and flushed before quickly looking away.

She turned to see him standing there but if she noticed the heated look on his face, she didn't say so. "Hey, Sam," she said. "Happy Independence Day." She offered him her best attempt at a full smile.

"Same to you," Sam said, jamming his hands in his pockets and leaning his back against the wooden frame of the big stall. "So … uh, do you have any plans for tonight?"

Sherry sighed. "Do I ever?"

"Ahh … Well, I was thinking. With it being Independence Day and all … Well, there's this gathering down at the docks tonight. Food and dancing … Not that we would you know, have to dance … But there's food and fireworks and …"

Sherry put down the rake and moved around to face him. "You mentioned food. Twice actually."

"Yeah, are you hungry?" he asked and felt so stupid for asking that he could have kicked himself.

"Well not right now. I already had breakfast … Its just … You seem nervous."

"Nervous? Me?" He shook his head. "No. I just – I know you and big crowds don't mix. Plus I don't want you to think I'm hitting on you or –"

"Are you asking me on a date?"

Sam started to say "no" but then sighed. "Well, it could be just two friends watching the fireworks together or … Actually, for sure, just two friends …"

Sherry seemed to be thinking it over and nodded. "Okay. I actually need to get out of the barn for a bit any way. The Fourth of July used to be a big thing with my family and my daughter so –" Her voice trailed off. "I just don't want to be alone with my thoughts, I guess."

"You're sure you're okay with this?"

"Do you want me not to come after all?" she asked, biting her lip.

"No of course I want you to come. I just want you to be comfortable."

Sherry nodded. "I am comfortable. With you, I really am."

Sam nodded and smiled though he wasn't sure he liked the idea of Sherry being just comfortable with him. Comfortable was like an old shoe and as much as he would like to deny it, he wanted her to want him at least half as much as he did her. It was getting harder and harder to stay just employee and employer, or even tentative friends. More and more each day, he realized he was falling in love with this woman.


Monday, May 15, 2017

Series Promo!

Do you remember the 90's ABC soap opera, The City? A friend of mine has revived it in fan fiction form and you just have to check it out. Here's the link. I like the project so much that I even signed on as executive producer. Woot!

Sunday, May 14, 2017

Sharon/Sam: Firework (2/13)

C - Comeback

He never used to mind being alone. He had in fact liked the freedom of it all. Now he really disliked being by himself because his thoughts inevitably turned to dangerous territory. He often imagined what kind of life he and Sherry could have had if she had stuck around - should she have wanted a life with him at all. They had never even kissed but she'd gone and spoiled other women completely for him. Even Edie, his sometimes steady, was now just his sometimes Saturday night distraction. And he felt badly about that. He really did, but Sherry had captivated him and damned if he wasn't still under her spell even after she'd been gone for over four weeks. He never expected to see her again and that made him sadder than he cared to admit. He'd never been an overtly romantic or fanciful guy but she'd meant something to him and he wished he had meant enough to her that she would have stayed.

Sometimes, after all the animals in the county were tended to for the night, he'd come and sit in the barn and just lie back on a bay of hale and try to remember the smell of her perfume. His thoughts were always potent and full of regret but he had felt while Sherry was around, that this place had been their shared refuge.

He had thought of looking her up a few times (he knew her name, or at least the one she'd given him) but knew that if he found her, he'd only scare her off again. She wanted to be alone and untethered the way he always had wanted to be until she came along.

Tonight was one of the nights he was doing his best to relax in the barn. He kept seeing her teary eyes as she fled that day and he knew he'd always wish he could have taken away her pain somehow. Of course, it was impossible now.

"Knock, knock," a familiar voice came from the door and he looked up. She was a vision with her brunette hair tied back in a ponytail which fully showcased the sheepish look on her too pretty face. For a moment there, he really believed he was dreaming and thought about pinching himself but resisted.

"Well if it isn't the Sedona comeback kid," he said, feeling lame saying that but it was the only thing he could think of to say at the moment that wouldn't chase her right back out that door. He sat up and scratched his cheek while waiting for her to say something.

She finally did and his heart broke a bit for all over again. "I'm sorry I just walked out like I did. It's a really, really bad habit of mine," she said, biting her lip. "But I'm back if you'll have me."

He nodded nonchalantly. "Of course. I told you this place was yours for as long as you needed it." His heart was hammering uncharacteristically heavily as she moved towards him and he shifted on the bale of hay as she dropped down beside him.

"Thanks for not asking a bunch of questions, Sam," she said. Her arm brushed his lightly and he almost jumped but retained his composure as best as he could. "Thanks for everything. I don't know what you'll need me for now that Fanny's gone but ... I'm not leaving again. At least I don't plan to."

"I need you for lots of things," he said with a little smile. "Mainly I need someone to keep me company around here or I'll go stir-crazy from boredom."

She smiled a little. "I'd go stir crazy just from loneliness, I think."

Sam nodded. "Yeah that too..."

They ended up just sitting there beside each other for the longest time, neither moving or speaking but somehow managing to still be in tune with the others' thoughts and needs. When Sherry finally excused herself due to obvious exhaustion, he watched her slip into her room. In his mind, it was hers now. She had made her home here. Just like she had made her place inside of his heart.


D - D-Day

It was supposed to be a day like any other but the moment he stepped into the barn, he sensed somehow it was going to be very different. She was sitting on a bale of hay staring off into space and seemed not to know he was even there. Silent tears dripped down her tan cheeks and she had her arms locked around herself in a very sad and yet defensive posture.

"Sherry?" He said, slowly approaching her the way he would a scared and wounded animal. "Sherry?" he said again and slowly closed the distance between them. He lightly touched her shoulder and she jumped up with a screech. She nearly catapulted to the straw-covered floor but he caught her just in time before she went down face first.

She looked up at him, seeming to see him for the first time and then she was slapping his hands away angrily. "Don't. Don't touch me!" she snapped, her voice high and full of indigence. And misery.

He nodded and righted her as best as he could and then stepped away from her, giving her a wide berth. She immediately ran to the other side of the barn and hunched in the corner, looking sick to her stomach. He knew he should leave her alone but that wasn't his way. He saw someone broken and he instinctively wanted to heal them. It was the doctor in him, he supposed. Or maybe it was that he cared already far too deeply for this woman.

"I'll stay over here," he said. "But ... we should talk. You look really upset." He sighed. This wasn't coming out right. "Look, Sherry, you can tell me anything. Anything okay? If someone hurt you-"

"I hurt so many people," Sherry fairly whispered. "I broke so many people and I deserve to be alone just like I am."

He didn't know what to think of this but again, he resisted pressuring her, not wanting to send her off into the night again. This time she might not return and he hated that idea. It was selfish on his part but he also believed she needed someone, anyone, and he could try his best to separate his personal feelings for her and just be there for her as a confidant.

"I'm sure that's not true," he finally said. "And you're not alone. You have me and the farm and -"

She chuckled mirthlessly. "You don't even know me. You don't know anything about me. For god's sake, I could be a killer and all you care about is - God, I don't even know why you care. Or you say you do. Maybe you want into my pants, want to use me and throw me away like the trash everyone says I am ..."

He shook his head, resting his hands on his hips not knowing what else to do with them. He really just wanted to grab her and hold her and tell her everything was going to be okay but he couldn't do that and he couldn't lie. He didn't know how all of this was going to end up and he sensed she didn't either which obviously scared her as much as it did him. He just could hide it better.

"Sherry, I care about you. As a person. I am really not trying to get into your jeans and I really do care. I like to think we're friends. So just let me help okay?"

She shook her head. Shook it over and over again as tears rolled down her cheeks. He watched her and again had to resist the urge to move over to her and try to hold her. She had reacted badly though when he just tried to keep her from falling. She would reject any comfort he could pathetically offer her.

"You want some coffee or -"

Sherry glared at him. "I don't want any damn coffee! I want to be alone," she snapped. "Because it's June already and I totally forgot about May while I was gallivanting all over the U.S. and May is so damn important. May is like D-Day all month long. Hell all year long. That pain. That pain... It never goes away. Sweet Cassie, my sweet Cassie..."


Sharon nodded; this time looking a bit scared to say what was obviously pressing on her. "Yeah. She was ... my daughter... And she's gone and I forgot all about the anniversary of when it happened ... When my world fell apart and was never, ever the same. What kind of mother am I?"

He didn't know what to say. Saying "I'm sorry for your loss" was so trite and hollow. All he could say was, "I am sure you were a great mother ... You don't have to deal with that grief alone. I've lost people too, you know. Not a child but ... People. If you want to ..."

"Share and share alike?" She sniffed with no humor in her words. "No thanks."

"Okay... Well I don't want to leave you alone so maybe we could go out to the little pond behind the property and do some fishing."


"Or just watch the tadpoles. Or just sit there and watch the sky ..." He was grasping at straws here and she must have sensed it because she offered him a weak smile.

"Fishing sounds okay. Relaxing even. Just one thing -"


"If we catch the fish, we have to throw them back, okay? Because I don't want them to be hurt. Or die ..."

Sam nodded. "Alright, Sherry, we can definitely do that." He had always believed that she was a kind soul but her wanting to throw back the fish still surprised him. She was one surprise after another and she was also a good person. She may not believe that but he did and that was enough for now.


Friday, May 12, 2017

Sharon/Sam: Firework (1/13)

I may be in the extreme minority but I loved Sharon ("Sherry") and Sam and the time they spent together so I am writing this drabble series about them.
Enjoy and leave comments if you're up for it.

A - Admiration

He watched her under his eyelashes as she cleaned out the stalls while he was supposed to be examining their little lamb Fanny. That's what she had called the baby lamb earlier that day. Theirs. And he knew it shouldn't have affected him at all, let alone this much, but he was glad to share something with her. He realized now that he had been drifting along far too long, untethered by anyone or anything, having only his job to share his life with. And now here he was sharing something with the last woman he had ever expected to walk into his barn. Sherry was the last thing he had expected, period. She was beautiful and fragile but also hardworking and kind. The way she mothered little Fanny said it all: she was a woman with a good heart. One that had obviously been broken far too many times.

He was aware that she had a past. That much was painfully clear and she'd even said as much. He didn't know where she came from or why she was here but he knew she was hiding out from someone or something. He never peppered her with questions though. That would only drive her away and he had known almost instantly that he didn't want her to go. He wanted to her stay around a good long time, making the place shine with her fragile luminosity. Occasionally she even smiled now and though he never said so, that smile lit up the whole farmhouse and probably the whole of rural New Mexico too.

He realized he cared too much about her already; cared too much about the secrets behind her sad eyes but he was never going to force anything out of her. Besides, he sensed if he did that, she would run away for good and that's the last thing he wanted.


B - Blue Ribbon

She had actually been close to smiling for a whole minute that day.

Fanny was stronger than ever and Sherry clearly loved watching the lamb prance around the barn, lowing happily as she tried burying herself in the hay. Sherry loved their little lamb and sadly, Sam had to tell her that now that their little lamb was weaned, she was going to the little girl he had told her about before. He sensed Sherry had forgotten about that detail or didn't want to think about it but Fanny was a little girl's future blue ribbon winning 4-H project and Sam wasn't one to go against his word - even if it hurt them both.

Sam had purposefully avoided reminding Sherry about this for far too long. Maybe he shouldn't have waited because today was the day he was due to drive Fanny to the neighboring farm and somehow he knew Sherry was going to be devastated. Fanny wasn't just a lamb to her - but her new chance somehow. A new chance to make right the things she must have felt had been destroyed in the life she existed in before she walked into this place and shook his world to its core.

He saw the pain he had expected in her eyes when he gave her the news. But he also saw something else unreadable. He tried to ask her about it but she shook her head and bit her lip and then moved over to Fanny who was resting on a pile of hay. She picked up the getting-bigger-by-the-second lamb in her slender arms and nuzzled her face into its soft wooly fur. She gave Fanny a light tickle on her tail and then passed Fanny over to Sam. Sherry then promptly turned on her heel and ran out of the barn, never actually having said anything but having somehow expressed so much more than simple words could ever verbalize.

Sam sighed as he watched her go. He didn't expect to see her again for a good long time. If she ever did come back at all. He wanted to chase after her and ask her to stop running - from him, from everyone else, from the world - but he didn't dare. So he watched her go and hoped one day, by some miracle, she would return. His life had changed in every way since she had come crashing into it and now he realized he never wanted to go back to the status quo.


We Belong Together ~ Chapter 1

Note: This picks up from an episode of Y&R in May 2014. I have changed it a bit to suit my purposes. I was and still am a HUGE Jack and...