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Preview Chapter One of Deep End

November 1, 2017


(Deep Blue Trilogy Book 3)




“Are you about ready to go, sweetie?” she asks. “We don’t want to be late to the party.”

My wife of more than a year, Claire Martin Silverman, stands with her back to me in the bedroom of our tiny Manhattan pied a terre, applying lipstick in front of a mirror while I perch on the edge of our bed.

 “Whenever you are, babe.”

The truth is I’ve been ready for more than half an hour, killing time by catching a re-run of my favorite cooking show while watching her touch up her makeup. Out of boredom I texted Artie Hoffman, my musical partner and co-founder of our band, Deep Blue, with a one-word message: S’up?

He texted back: Sitting and waiting for my woman to tell me what to do.

Same here, I responded. See ya later.

I glance at Claire again from across the room. She’s dressed to kill, wearing a little black dress that hugs her trim body in all the right places and a pair of stilettos that are sparking a multitude of lewd thoughts.

A silvery blonde mane drifts over her shoulders. She claims there’s a lot more gray in her hair since we met, and there may be some truth to her statement. Claire hasn’t had an easy time of it, being married to me.

As she reaches for the lipstick to tuck it into her beaded bag, the tube rolls off the dresser and onto the floor. She bends over to retrieve it, causing the fabric of her dress to stretch tight across her nicely rounded backside, a vision that threatens to bring me to my knees.

Having my nine-year-old son live with us full time has been delightful, challenging, and downright exhausting. It’s also meant some lifestyle changes for Claire and me. I miss our first-thing-in-the morning encounters and the so-called afternoon “naps” we used to take when it was only the two of us. Claire and I haven’t spent any quality time in bed together for three weeks. Twenty-four days and counting, to be exact. On our last two scheduled “date nights,” we went out to dinner, came home, and promptly fell asleep.

Tonight, Matthew is staying over at my daughter Jill’s house with her two kids, and my romantic hopes run high. Claire turns around and catches me staring at her. Light dances in her smoky green eyes. I’m pretty sure she recognizes the lustful expression on her husband’s face, having seen it a lot.

“What are you looking at?” she teases.

“Your sweet ass in that dress,” I admit. Why lie?

What I’d like to do is hike the little black dress up to her waist, bend her over our bed, and forget about going out. Make love, have some dinner delivered, and maybe go at it again. All of that will have to wait, though, because we’ve got a party to attend and my wife is the star attraction.

I’d better get used to being her escort because this is gonna be Claire’s year. After her short-lived sabbatical last fall, she reconnected with Food TV president Jason Etheridge and restarted their “Art of Food” project, which will be on display tonight.

This unveiling is only the beginning of what will be a promising time for my talented spouse. Claire found out she’s been chosen to represent her home state as one of a handful of visual artists in a new exhibit set to open at the Denver Museum of Art in a few months. The collection, labeled Colorado: State of the Arts, will travel to several other major cities, ending in Berlin three years from now. We’re flying to Denver before the opening so she can lead a series of “urban landscape” workshops for aspiring painters.

After we get home, there’s a wedding to attend, not to mention shooting the second season of Deep Blue’s cable TV show and promoting our band’s new CD. It’s gonna be a busy summer.

This evening, Claire takes one last look at herself. Satisfied with the result, she saunters over and slides one freshly manicured hand around the back of my neck. Her lips brush my cheek as I inhale her familiar scent—lavender shampoo combined with a touch of crisp perfume.

 “Later, baby,” she says, rubbing the lipstick stain off my cheek with her thumb. “We’ll come home and get our freak on.”

With that thought sizzling in my brain, I grab our coats, usher her out of the apartment, into the elevator and down to the lobby, where our doorman bids us a pleasant evening. A limo, courtesy of her client at Food TV, is idling on the street.

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