Below is an excerpt from my short story Laundry Day (and the Stacy Juba Mystery Sampler) about romance gone awry. It is available as a free download from Amazon Kindle, B&N for the Nook, and Smashwords, and includes four sample chapters from my romantic suspense/mystery novels Twenty-Five Years Ago Today and Sink or Swim. Links for the free download sites are at http://stacyjuba.com/blog/short-stories/
Here is an excerpt:
Gregg knew he should get the hell out of there. The shower curtain gaped open like at a strip show. Wet lingerie hung over the bathtub and the hand-rail above the soap dish. Warmth rushed through his body as he gawked at a scarlet negligee, hot pink teddy, black mesh corset with garters, and a pair of fishnet stockings.
Gregg envisioned his wife clad in the teddy and matching G-string, and his breathing accelerated. Wait till she heard about her best friend’s racy wardrobe. Maybe it would inspire her to don something equally dirty. Gregg turned toward the sink and caught his grin in the mirror. It widened as he spied the lacy bra and thong soaking in the sudsy basin.
Unbelievable. He never would have imagined his sweet neighbor, Bridget Severin, as a temptress who treated her husband to Frederick’s of Hollywood fashion shows. The jerk insulted his wife all the time.
Just a few moments ago, when Gregg had entered the house after snow blowing his neighbor’s driveway, he found Bridget screaming into the phone at her ingrate husband, hassling her even while away on a business trip to San Diego. "I’m tired of you ordering me around," she snapped. "You’re my husband, not my keeper."
Retreating to the bathroom and giving her privacy seemed like the gentlemanly thing to do.
Now, waiting for Bridget to finish her call, Gregg slipped into the corridor and parked himself before a display of framed wall photographs. He aimed an uneasy glance down the hallway. Silence. That meant . . .
"Thank you for helping with the driveway." Bridget rounded the corner, her cheeks brighter than the scarlet negligee that adorned the tub. "Here are the muffins I promised."
She was off the phone.
For how long? Had Bridget searched for him earlier and seen the door closed? Did she know where he’d been? Or, was she just worried that he’d stumbled across her unmentionables?
Gregg shuffled in his snow boots and hoped to hell they hadn’t smudged the tiled bathroom floor. "Thanks. I’ve been admiring your pictures." He tapped a photo of the Severins and their teenage son at the boy’s high school graduation. He’d played in the marching band with Gregg’s daughter.
Bridget clamped the Tupperware container of muffins against her chest, fingers white-knuckling the sides. Miniature snowmen festooned her heavy sweater. She tugged the lank ends of her auburn bob. "Oh God, I’m so embarrassed."
He hoped she meant about the fight, not the sexy garments, though he would have preferred dodging both topics. Gregg zipped his coat up to his collar, chose the lesser evil. "Everyone has spats with their spouse. Don’t worry about it."
"Not just that. I know you were in the bathroom. You must think I’m an idiot, leaving my. . .my laundry all over the place."
Why couldn’t women allow anything to pass? He’d let her off the hook and she had jumped right back on. Gregg offered her a sympathetic, please-let-me-leave smile. "Oh, that? I see that stuff at home all the time." He wished. "Nothing to be embarrassed about."
"I can’t help it. It must look like laundry day at the whorehouse."