Is D ready for the modern world of dating? Is the modern world of dating ready for D?
It started out as a desperate cry from lonely Druid – let me have a date with your character, 1WriteWay (Marie Ann Bailey), I promise I’ll behave. Yeah right, said the writers. Nevertheless, the date happened. Read on for the exciting conclusion to “A Date with A Druid” as D attempts to woo Mary, a contemporary woman in a series about three widowed cousins who start a private investigation firm.
The Druid picked up the bouquet of roses and held them out to her. “Has your lover ever given you flowers as beautiful as these? Has his lips burned a kiss onto your hand, as I have. Oh, yes, dear lady, I felt you shiver with that kiss.”
Mary took another gulp of wine. She was going to have to have a long talk with 1WriteWay, her author. She studied her glass, wondering why it was empty so quickly and, more importantly, how to extricate herself from this large, overbearing, egotistical hunk of a man . . .
“Come, my lady – don’t tell me you haven’t wondered what it’s like to live outside the lines your writer has given you.”
He gestured to the gentleman behind the bar for another round. Mary twisted herself around to shake her head at the man but he was already gone. Damn. She turned back to D. He was still talking. Well, he certainly enjoyed the sound of his own voice, didn’t he? Too bad she did, too.
“She doesn’t give me – I mean, she’s very good at interpreting my story–”
“Don’t you want to feel for yourself? Feel alive in ways no one else can possibly imagine?”
Mary had a hot denial at the ready but paused. She lifted the new glass of Chardonnay and eyed D over the rim. He had a point.
But he was far too pleased with himself to give in.
She touched her lips to the glass – just a small taste this time. Her cheeks were already flushed with the heat of the alcohol and it would not do to let that heat encourage those ridiculously blue eyes any further than she already had.
“I suppose you can help me do that, then?”
A slow, wicked smile spread over the man’s face and his eyes drifted to her lips. A cool tingle of wine still lingered there and Mary resisted the urge to lick them.
This was not fair. What was it about Druids that made them special? Was it magic? 1WriteWay should have warned her to brush up on her history before allowing this date to happen. And that A – she had a lot to answer for, letting this man loose.
“Not magic, my lady – just several centuries of watching man’s progress and interaction with one another.”
“Oh.” Mary frowned. Had she said that out loud? She didn’t remember speaking. No more Chardonnay. “You know, you’re making this very difficult for me.”
“And what could I do to make it better for you? I do only wish to please.”
“Why is it when you say that, it sounds so . . . so . . . naughty?”
“Only if you wish it so, my lady.”
“Why, I – Oh for heaven’s sake, put on a shirt.”
The Druid burst out laughing and Mary covered her cheeks with her hands. Her face was burning.
“Alas, all I have is a rag from my days as a pirate – I did not wish to embarrass you with my poor wardrobe.”
“Pirate?” Mary fanned her cheeks. Visions of swashbuckling heroes flickered through her mind.
No. No swashbuckling. No pillaging of her honor. No. No. No. Overbearing, that’s what he was. Overbearing, egotistical and . . . and . . . deeply affecting . . . No!
Mary gave herself a mental shake. Chauvinistic. Yes, that was it.
Perhaps his naked torso was better. “Maybe, um, you could just button up your coat,” she muttered.
“As my lady desires.”
“And stop with that – my lady this, my desires that. My name is Mary, and I would prefer you use it.”
D bowed his head. She couldn’t be sure, but she thought he was laughing silently. His eyes were far too merry for him not to be. Honestly, this was just too much.
“And what’s this about not wishing to embarrass me? Quite frankly D, I think you’re enjoying my discomfort far too much. My God, if Randy ever said—What? Why are you laughing?”
“Your lover’s name is Randy?”
D was giggling into his stout. Giggling.
Druids shouldn’t giggle, Mary thought as she sipped her Chardonnay.
“I’m sorry, my lady – much of my life was spent in the British Isles,” he said. He was gulping at the air, trying to catch his breath.
“What does that have to do with it?”
“Oh well, it’s just that – excuse me – the word ‘randy’—“
God, he was snorting now. Mary rolled her eyes.
“The word ‘randy’ is slang for – for–” The Druid took a deep breath and managed to compose himself. He arched an eyebrow at her but the effect was lost in his ruddy face and the tears that were still coursing down his cheeks. “For the sexually excited – well, for you my lady.”
His smile turned into a leer and he reached for her hand again.
“Why, you conceited pig! You are the worst kind of – of man!”
Mary yanked her hand from his heated paw and bolted from her seat with enough force to rock the chair on two legs. D stared up at her and she thought she caught a glimmer of surprise in his face before the mask of suave confidence smoothed his features.
“I am the only kind of man—“
Before he could even finish the sentence, Mary smashed the bouquet of roses in his face and stomped to the door. Of all the—1WriteWay owed her for this, that was for damn certain.
But even as she reached the door, the Druid’s words echoed in her head. “Don’t tell me you haven’t wondered what it’s like to live outside the lines.” She paused, her hand wrapped around the handle. She did wonder.
Against her better judgment, Mary spared the Druid a glance over her shoulder.
Oh, for the love of—not only had the waitress rushed to his aid, but D was also smiling graciously at the barman as he stooped to clear the scattered rose petals. As she watched, D turned those deep bedroom eyes on the girl until she twirled her hair.
Honestly. Man or woman, it didn’t matter to that randy—Mary caught herself and grinned. It was funny – somewhat. Perhaps she should go home and teach Randy what his name really meant.