Showing posts with label YA Book Bound Tours. Show all posts
Showing posts with label YA Book Bound Tours. Show all posts

Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Morgan is Missing (Kayla Falk Series #2) by K. Hanson

Morgan is Missing (Kayla Falk Series #2)
K. Hanson
Genre: Adult/New Adult Thriller
Release Date: August 2018


Kayla Falk is trying to move past the traumatic events of her mission in Syria and settle into a comfortable engineering job. However, when Morgan Bellamy, the younger sister of Kayla’s late best friend, disappears while on vacation, Kayla doesn’t hesitate to jump into action to find her. As Kayla investigates, she learns that Morgan has become trapped in a hellish human trafficking situation. Kayla is determined to find Morgan before she slips into the shadows forever.

Content Warning: This book is about sex trafficking. While I avoid explicit, graphic depictions of sexual violence, due to the nature of the subject matter, it is definitely implied that it takes place.


Blue eyes and a laughing smile, framed by wavy golden hair.
Those blue eyes stared back at Kayla Falk as she looked at the picture on her desk of her best friend Olivia. Her late best friend, that is. Even now, more than a year after returning from Syria, Kayla couldn’t quite believe that she’d never again hear the laugh that went with that smile. She had hoped the pain would fade away after enough time in a calm engineering job in Minneapolis, but it never did. It just lingered and, if anything, became heavier with time.
“Hey, Kayla!”
The shout tore her from her thoughts. Kayla blinked away the tears that had formed in her green eyes and turned her swivel chair around to see Olivia’s blue eyes looking back at her.
Except, they weren’t Olivia’s.
These eyes belonged to Morgan, Olivia’s younger sister, who stood in the doorway to Kayla’s office. “Hey, Morgan.” Her voice broke, though she smiled at the sight of her friend. “What are you doing here?”
“Are you all right?” asked Morgan, tilting her head.
Kayla cleared her throat. “Just have a tickle in my throat.”
“If you say so. Anyway, just stopping in to say bye to my dad before I meet up with Amanda and head out to the Black Hills. You know, you should really come with us,” said Morgan.
“I wish I could, but I really need to get some work done here.” Kayla gestured to the pile of paperwork that had spilled from its tray and invaded the rest of her desk.
Morgan rolled her eyes and brushed a strand of brown hair out of her face. “Come on. You work for my dad. He’ll let you come if you want to.”
“I’m sure he would. But he’s not the only one waiting for me.” Kayla waved around at the offices of the other engineers. “I have a pile of schematics to finish and pass along.”
“You still working on that wind turbine prototype?” Morgan asked.
“Yup, that’s it. It’s not quite coming along the way I’d hoped it would.”
“Don’t worry. You’ll figure it out. Maybe a nice break would inspire you a bit.” Morgan gave Kayla an encouraging smile. “If you can’t get away for a few days, can you at least come to lunch? I can text Amanda to wait a bit longer.”
“Sure, I can make that work.” Kayla turned around to lock her computer. “Where were you thinking of eating?” She threw her coat over her shoulders and walked out of her office with Morgan.
“How about we just hit that sandwich shop down the street?” Morgan suggested. “It’s not far, and they have decent food.”
“Sounds good to me.”
As they headed downstairs, Kayla asked, “How’s the new laptop working out?”
“I love it! It’ll be a big help this next semester. Thanks again. That was quite a Christmas present.”
They stepped out onto the street, with the chill air of the Minnesota winter greeting them and snowflakes floating through the air.
“Don’t worry about it. From what I saw of the old one, you really needed it.”
“For sure. Now it won’t take me eighty years to just open a browser tab.”
They arrived at the restaurant and placed their orders at the counter.
Once they had gotten their food, they carried their trays over to a corner booth and sat down. Between bites of her hot roast beef sandwich, Kayla asked, “So, what are your plans in the Black Hills?”
Morgan shrugged. “We don’t have a lot of concrete plans. I know we’re going to be in Deadwood for New Year’s, but we’re going to be in the Hills for a week after that. I’m not sure how we’ll fill the time. We’ll probably just make it up as we go.”
“That’s a good way to do it. There’s a lot to do and see out there so you won’t get bored.”
“Yeah, I know it’s cold, but there’s some beautiful scenery around there. Just driving through the Hills would be awesome.”
“Why did you decide to go to Deadwood for New Year’s?”
“I’ve heard it can be quite the party. Tons of people come out, and they do fireworks at midnight. Sounds like some of our friends are going to be there as well, so we’re hoping to run into them.”
“I hope you enjoy your last winter break. After this year, you won’t get time off like this again.”
“I know, but I am excited to finish school and finally do something for real.” Morgan flashed a smile and let out a bubbly giggle. “Did I tell you I got that pharmacist position at the children’s hospital?”
Kayla laughed. “You’ve only mentioned it a couple hundred times. I am happy for you, though. It seems like a perfect fit for you.”
“Yeah, after all of the volunteering I’ve done with the children’s hospital, I want to be somewhere I can make a real difference, not just stuck behind a counter at Walmart or something like that.”
“And Sioux Falls isn’t very far away, so you can come back to visit pretty easily.”
“Exactly.” Morgan finished her sandwich and crumpled up the paper wrapping, then checked her phone. “Looks like Amanda is outside with her car. I suppose we should get going. Rapid City is supposed to get some snow tonight, and we want to be there before it hits.”
“Okay. I’ll walk out with you.”
The two of them threw their sandwich wrappers away and walked out the door. Morgan found Amanda’s car and walked up to it. Kayla smiled at Amanda when they made eye contact through the car window. As Morgan reached for the handle, she looked back. “Hey, Kayla, before I head off, have you actually met Amanda?”
“I think I saw her maybe once. Didn’t she pick you up from our sparring practice once?”
Morgan opened the door. “Hey Amanda, come out and meet Kayla.”
Amanda came around the car, her long black hair lying over her shoulders. “I finally get to meet the badass who took out those terrorists at the Union,” she said with a grin.
Kayla touched her collarbone and glanced away. “Yeah, that was me . . . and Olivia.”
“Kayla doesn’t really like to talk about it, Amanda,” said Morgan.
“Sorry, that didn’t come out right. It’s just . . . my brother was one of the people they shot and I wanted to thank you. For what it’s worth, I’m sorry about Olivia. She was always kind to me.”
Kayla gave her a nod and a small smile, then turned to Morgan. “I really should get back to work.”
Morgan placed a hand on Kayla’s shoulder. “Are you sure you can’t ride with us for a couple of laps around the block? I don’t really think my dad is running a stopwatch on your lunch breaks, especially since he knows you’re out with me. Just take it easy and enjoy the time we have together.”
Kayla laughed. “Not now, but we’ll all go out when you get back.”
“If you really have to get back, I’ll let you go.” Morgan pulled the door open and slid into the passenger seat as Amanda went back to the driver’s side.
“Have a safe trip!” said Kayla as she waved to them.
“We will! See you in a week!” Morgan waved.

# January 8th, 2018 #

Kayla sat upright at her keyboard and heard a knock at her office door. She turned around to see David, her boss and Morgan’s father, standing in the doorway. His brow was scrunched with worry, and his Bellamy-blue eyes had bags underneath.
“Kayla, can I talk to you for a moment?” he asked.
“Sure. You look stressed. What’s wrong?”
“Have you heard from Morgan at all?”
Kayla shook her head. “Not since her ‘Happy New Year’ text a week ago. Why?”
David stepped into the room and pulled the door shut. “I haven’t heard anything from her either. I didn’t want to worry about it too much since she’s on vacation, and you know how she is about responding when she’s busy. But they were supposed to be back yesterday. I’ve tried texting and calling her a few times and haven’t gotten anything back.”
“Maybe she just lost her phone. I’m sure Deadwood was crazy that night.”
“I’ve talked to Amanda’s mom, and she’s not having any luck either. Somehow, I doubt they’ve both managed to lose their phones at the same time. And even if they did, they’d have called to let us know they were going to be coming late.”
Kayla frowned. It did seem strange that they would both drop off the grid simultaneously. “Do you think something’s happened to them?”
David shrugged and shook his head. “I have no idea. I haven’t seen anything in the news, at least.” He looked down and wrung his hands before looking back at Kayla. “Would you do me a favor and head out to the Black Hills to see if you can find her? I’d go myself, but I need to look after things here, and I don’t want to be the overprotective father if it’s nothing. I know you’re trying to wrap up this project, but it’s keeping me up at night to think that something could happen to her.”
Tears welled in his eyes and his voice caught in his throat. “I can’t lose Morgan, too.”
Kayla looked over at the photo of Olivia, with Morgan’s same sapphire eyes looking back at her. Kayla still hadn’t told David or Morgan that she had been the one to kill Olivia to spare her from a painful death after being poisoned. I can’t lose Morgan, either, Kayla thought.
“Yes,” she said as she stood up. “I’ll find Morgan. She’s the closest I have to a sister. Everything else can wait.”
“Really? Thank you so much, Kayla.” David wrapped Kayla in a tight embrace. “I always forget that you’re nearly my height until I hug you.”
Kayla returned the hug for a moment but quickly stepped back and glanced away from David. “You don’t need to thank me. You’ve lost one of your daughters already because of me.” Her voice trailed off. After a moment, she clenched her jaw and fixed his eyes with hers. “Now, I’m going to bring the other one back to you.”
“You know I don’t blame you for what happened to Olivia. I know you did your best.”
Kayla held up her hand to stop David from speaking. “I know you don’t blame me, but I blame me because it was my fault.”
He stepped toward her, but Kayla put a firm hand on his shoulder. “I don’t feel like arguing about it. Where do you think I should start looking for Morgan?”
David shook his head. “I don’t really have any clues to offer you. The last place I knew she visited is Deadwood. I don’t know anything more specific than that. She has some pictures up on Facebook, though. Maybe you could look through those to see if any of them would help.”
“I’ll do that. I’ll just head home now to start packing and thinking about where to look.”
“Yes, please. Get started as soon as possible.”
Kayla took a long stride through the door and turned toward the stairs to leave, then turned back. “David,” she said, causing him to look back at her, “I’ll find her. I promise.”

About the Author

K lives in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, where he works as a software developer. In his spare time, when he isn’t writing, he enjoys reading, working out, playing video games, and spending time with his wonderful fiancee, Bobbi. Some of his favorite authors are Tom Clancy, George R. R. Martin, and Sarah Maas.
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Wednesday, August 15, 2018

The Azrael Initiative by K. Hanson

The Azrael Initiative (Kayla Falk Series #1)
by K. Hanson
Genre: Adult/New Adult Thriller
Release Date: March 2017


Best friends Kayla Falk, an engineering student, and Olivia Bellamy, who is studying nursing, are nearing the end of their college career when terrorists attack their university. Through a combination of cleverness, bravery, and luck, the two manage to foil the deadly plot. A mysterious man from the United States government, Mr. Hightower, sees their potential and attempts to recruit Kayla and Olivia for a program to take on ISIS. They initially refuse, but another terrorist attack that strikes close to home pushes them to change their minds and join the Azrael Initiative.

After several months of hard training, the two women are dropped into Al-Raqqah, the capital of ISIS, in Syria. Once there, they must blend in with the locals as they strike from the shadows to kill ISIS leaders, destroy their facilities, and free captives. As Americans deep within enemy territory, they know that they will be killed if discovered. As women, they also know that they would suffer before death. Walking the line between vengeance and justice strains their relationship. As they work to resolve their differences, the symphony of brutality around them ultimately pushes them closer together and forges them into the warriors that they were meant to become.

Read the first three chapters:
Chapter 1
Dodging to her right, Kayla sidestepped the fist aimed at her head as it passed close enough to feel the air move. Her auburn ponytail swinging as she danced around her opponent, Kayla watched with bright green eyes and waited for any opening, any weakness to exploit. She did not waste her energy on extra movements or attacks, preferring to let her adversary tire herself and present an opportunity.
Her opponent had a fierce look in her blue eyes as she came at Kayla with a strike of her left hand. Kayla stopped the blow. The hand latched onto her shoulder and dug into the flesh above her collarbone. Kayla staggered back at the pain. The hand released, then both combatants regained their balance.
As another blow came toward Kayla, she sensed that her foe had placed too much weight on her front foot. With a swift movement, Kayla slid to the side, grabbed the incoming arm, and sent her attacker tumbling to the blue padded floor.
Enough!” said Olivia, with her arms up and palms facing Kayla.
Next time, don’t let yourself get caught off balance,” said Kayla, as she extended her hand to help Olivia to her feet.
Off balance? Naw, I just hadn’t done a somersault in forever,” grinned Olivia, her sapphire eyes twinkling. “Besides, I felt like taking a nap on this comfy mat.”
Maybe next time I’ll give you that nap.” Kayla joked.
Just make sure you tuck me in first,” responded Olivia as she brushed herself off.
I believe that I’m two out of three this week. Hope you’re not losing your edge,” teased Kayla.
Of course not. After kicking your ass all of last week, I thought you could use a couple of wins,” Olivia smirked.
Catching her breath, Kayla glanced around the gym where they held their morning training sessions. She saw other pairs finishing their own bouts and heading to the locker room. Training here required hard work, but Kayla always left feeling reinvigorated and confident about facing the challenges of being an engineering student. Besides, she always enjoyed throwing Olivia around a bit.
As the two of them walked toward the locker room, Kayla wiped the sweat from her forehead and Olivia shook her long blonde hair free of her headband.
I’d better get ready so that I can head to the workshop to work on my senior design project,” Kayla said.
Yeah, I need to head out, too. Class is in half an hour. See you for dinner?”
Sure, we’ll just meet at the Union around 5:30, if that works.”
Sounds good to me!” smiled Olivia.
As Kayla undressed and stepped into the shower stall to rinse off the sweat from her workout, she ran through a mental checklist of everything that she needed to do that day. Despite not having class on Thursdays, she had a lab report to finish and at least two hours of engineering homework to do. She also needed to spend a significant amount of time in the workshop working on her senior design project, a new design for a small, efficient wind turbine. She would certainly have a long day, but another day closer to graduation in just two months.
As she stepped out of the shower, Kayla dried her hair, pulled it back into a neat ponytail, and put on her jeans, a modest purple tank top, and black cardigan. She stuffed her workout clothes into her duffel bag and hauled it to her shoulder as she hurried out of the locker room.
As she left the Wellness Center and stepped out into the spring air of the South Dakota State University campus, Kayla Falk lifted her hand to shield her eyes from the crimson sun rising on the horizon, before she turned west toward the rest of campus. The closest building was the Student Union, a large building that was in a constant state of expansion. After countless meals and endless hours of studying within those walls over the course of nearly four years, it had become practically another home for her.
Kayla took a deep breath of the spring air. The grassy smell and cool atmosphere were refreshing changes from the heat and sweaty odor of the gym. In the distance, the bells of the campanile rang through the atmosphere. While she looked forward to seeing what the next chapter of her life brought, she would always treasure lovely mornings walking across campus.
As she strode toward the workshop on the other side of the SDSU campus, she slipped one of her backpack straps off of her right shoulder and pulled the bag around to her front to access its contents. Unzipping the small pouch, she pulled out an energy bar and an apple for her post-workout breakfast. The sight of the food made her stomach growl and her mouth watered as she bit into the peanut flavored bar.
While she chewed, she thought about how it was basically a candy bar for breakfast. It did, however, contain some protein, so it didn’t entirely lack nutritional value. At least she also had her apple for something a bit healthier.
As she approached the shop, she tossed her wrapper and apple core in the trash bin just outside. Opening the door, the sound of power tools greeted her, as other engineering students worked on their own projects. The oily smell in the air always reminded her of the time she had spent helping her father, a mechanic, in his garage. When she had been younger, he had her do simple tasks like changing oil or putting new tires on a car. By the time she had become a senior in high school, she could dismantle and reassemble an engine almost as well as her dad.
She walked over to the work area that her team had reserved for their project and set her bag under the workbench. Today, she had set the goal to assemble the system of gears that transferred energy from the turbine blades to the generator. Having worked with automobile differentials in her father’s shop, she had volunteered to design and assemble this piece of the project while other members of her group handled other aspects.
Kayla opened her project binder and flipped through the pages until she arrived at the diagram depicting her design. For several minutes, she reviewed the schematic and contemplated the steps she needed to take to assemble the collection of parts correctly. Her design was a planetary gearing system. She would attach the generator shaft to a sun gear, at the center of the arrangement, with blades attached to interlocking gears flanking it. By using such a system of gears, the generator shaft would rotate in the correct range of speeds when the blades rotated.
Satisfied that she had refreshed the design in her head, Kayla hauled the crate of parts to the top of the workbench. She pulled out each gear and piece needed for the assembly and arranged them in the order in which she needed them. For the next several hours, she fixed each gear in its proper place.
When she finished, she checked her phone and saw that it was already one o’clock. As the task at hand required all of her focus, she didn’t realize until then just how much she craved lunch. Kayla’s stomach growled as she gave the gear assembly a test spin. Satisfied that it operated smoothly, she set it in the crate before putting away all of her tools and equipment. After stashing her design binder in her backpack, she threw it over her shoulders and walked out of the workshop to find something to eat.
Reaching the Union, she went to Weary Wil’s Sports Grill to grab a burger to go. When it was ready, she put it into her backpack so she could head to the engineering building and find a quiet corner to grind through some homework. After she reached the building, she walked into the mostly empty study area, which was surrounded by rows of windows.
On a sunny afternoon such as this, it made for a cheerful and energizing work environment. Settling into a comfortable seat, she pulled out her lunch and munched on it as she started working through her Turbomachinery homework. Her work kept her busy until the time arrived to meet Olivia for supper.
At a quarter after five, Kayla packed up her notebooks, calculator, and pencils so that she could meet her friend. After sitting down for three and a half hours, she groaned as she stood up, her muscles stiff and sore after the morning’s workout. Gathering her bag, she left the engineering building to head back to the Union. As she approached her destination, she spotted Olivia Bellamy walking on another sidewalk.
Hey Liv,” Kayla called.
Olivia jumped a bit as the shout startled her. She looked around for a second before spotting Kayla. “Oh, hi! Good timing.”
Have a good day?”
Yeah, classes weren’t too bad today and clinicals at the hospital were pretty interesting. You?”
Definitely. Got a lot done on our project and made some good progress on my homework for the night. For now, I’m ready to grab some food and relax, at least for a bit.”
Same here. Let’s head in and get a bite to eat.”

About the Author

K lives in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, where he works as a software developer. In his spare time, when he isn’t writing, he enjoys reading, working out, playing video games, and spending time with his wonderful fiancee, Bobbi. Some of his favorite authors are Tom Clancy, George R. R. Martin, and Sarah Maas.

Author Links:

Interview with K. Hanson

 Do your characters seem to hijack the story or do you feel like you have the reigns of the story? 
For me, it’s a bit of both. I have major plot points that I want to hit, so I make sure to guide the story in the right direction to make those happen. However, I also like to allow the characters room to breathe and to create natural character moments. I find that this helps me have a plot that continues to move forward while still having relatable characters.

Convince us why you feel your book is a must read. 
When starting this series, I wanted to simultaneously educate and entertain the reader. In The Azrael Initiative, I believe I’ve created a good story that can get the reader thinking a bit about the conflict with ISIS, while giving them characters they can root for.

Have you written any other books that are not published?
The second book in my fantasy series is currently with my editor, and I plan to release that late 2018 or early 2019. I’m getting married in December, so we’ll see how much time I have to work on writing 😊.

 Pen or type writer or computer? 
Definitely computer. I prefer to use the program Scrivener, which makes it very easy to move chapter or scenes around as necessary. It also has a nice section for notes on characters, setting, history, etc. which is handy for reference as I right.

Anything you would like to say to your readers and fans?
I’d just like to thank them for checking out my book and that I hope they enjoy it.

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Monday, July 23, 2018

Winter Flowers (The Flower Series #2) by Tani Hanes

Winter Flowers (The Flowers Series #2)
Genre: NA Romance
Release Date: July 20th 2018


What ever happened to Pete and Daisy? 

When we left them, their daughter had just been born, and some momentous decisions had been made.

It’s now four years later. Their family has grown, as has their love for each other. Clio is a rocky smart, precocious four year old, and she’s been joined by baby sister Francie. Pete’s career as a musician is finally taking off, and things should be rosy; however, fame and fortune bring their own pitfalls, and a voice from the past arrives in their lives, threatening to upset everything they’ve worked for.

Can they survive Pete’s success, and the long shadow cast by Daisy’s past? How will Pete deal with groupies, temptation, and prolonged separation from his family? And how far is Daisy willing to go to protect those she loves? 

Join the Santangelos on this rollicking roller coaster second installment of their journey.

Buy on Amazon!

Winter Flowers Excerpt #2

Clio looked dubiously between her parents. “Hunh? It what?
The three of them were sitting in her parents’ bedroom, on their big, fluffy bed. It was Clio’s favorite place in the entire house, as it smelled like both her mother and her father. It was a cloudy afternoon, with rain imminent, though none had hit the ground yet. Francie lay sleeping in the room she shared with her sister, the sister who was presently doubting the sanity of her mother and father.
Pete had just finished explaining how the baby had gotten in her mother’s tummy, and he and Daisy were looking expectantly at Clio. Her response to this was huge. It would color their home lives for the next six months.
That sounds like the biggest load of crap,” she finally said. Pete and Daisy looked at each other and resisted the urge to laugh.
You’re telling me that something from Daddy joined together with something from Mommy, and it turned into a bunch of tiny cells, and they’re inside Mommy’s tummy right now, growing into a baby? No, sorry, her, um uterus?” The unfamiliar word rolled off her tongue.
Clio was nothing if not precocious, both of them knew that. Her aptitude tests, placement tests for pre-school, and frankly every kind of test they’d ever given her was off the charts for intelligence; she was the smartest, the most articulate four-year-old most people had ever encountered.
That fierce intellect was now focused on her mother and father, her go-to source for anything and everything, as if she could no longer understand their accents.
How did it happen?” she finally threw out into the huge silence. “How did the, um, sperm get to Mommy’s egg? Did it just fly through the air?” And she made a jumping motion with her hand to clarify her meaning.
Pete sighed and rolled his eyes, running his fingers through his hair. Daisy swallowed, looking around the room as if for inspiration. They again looked at each other, both utterly at a loss as to how to proceed.
Well, no, it didn’t fly through the air,” Pete finally answered. He blew out another breath, making his cheeks huge. “You know how Daddy has a penis? And Mommy doesn’t, right? Well, there’s an extra opening down there that women have, and we fit together, and that’s how my sperm and Mommy’s egg met, inside Mommy’s body…” he trailed off to see the effect his words were having.
And when you guys do this it’s called ‘sex,’” Clio said, brows drawn together, just like Pete. Clio wore a searching look, her “detective look,” Pete and Daisy called it. It was the look she got when she needed to know something, and was going to find out, no matter what. “So that’s how you got me? And Francie? By fitting yourselves together?”
Pete and Daisy both nodded, relieved. The end might actually be in sight.
So what about Uncle Evan and Uncle Bjorn?” she asked skeptically. “They have Molly and Ethan, but they don’t fit together, do they? They’re both boys.”
She looked from Pete to Daisy, her face one big question mark. “How did they get Molly and Ethan if they can’t do what you guys are saying? Sex? Or can they? Can one man put his penis in a different opening on another man and make a baby?”
No, only a man and a woman together can make a baby, though any grownups who want can have sex; but it wouldn’t be fair if only man-and-woman families could have children, would it?” Daisy asked. “So when there’s a woman who wants to be a mommy, or a man who wants to be a daddy, they can adopt children, from anywhere in the world. You remember how Molly has dark skin? The man and woman who made her are from Africa, and they couldn’t take care of her, so they let Uncle Evan and Uncle Bjorn adopt her, get it?”
And thankfully, Clio was nodding, beginning to smile.
So you guys are just lucky that you can make a baby with each other,” she said. “Right? Otherwise, you could adopt, too? From anywhere?”
Esattamente,” Pete said, relief all over his face. “Sometimes people get sick and die, or they can’t take care of a child. Sometimes people make a baby by accident, and aren't ready for it or whatever, and other people who want a family can adopt those children.”
Oops, too far. Clio’s look of dawning comprehension was replaced by another question mark. What now?
Hold on, Daddy, how do people do that by accident?” She looked between them again, and Daisy wished the bed would just open up and swallow her. She always prided herself, as did Pete, on being completely forthright with their kids. “As much truth as they can handle, always,” had been their motto, and it had been going gangbusters until this major pileup.
Clio, mistaking her parents’ silence for a lack of comprehension, proceeded to elucidate. “How do people ‘accidentally’ have sex?” she asked, even putting air quotes, which she knew Daisy hated, around the word “accidentally.” “Is that something that can happen in, like, a car accident or something? Or when people aren’t paying attention when they walk?”
Fuck. Fuckfuck.
Daisy pursed her lips, and bit the inside of her mouth, hard. She mustn’t laugh at her daughter’s very legitimate question. Pete wasn’t having as much success, and was grinning.
No, baby, the sex isn’t the accidental part. People like to have sex.” He looked at his wife, who was hanging on his every word, eyebrows so high they were in danger of disappearing into her hairline.
People like to have sex,” he repeated, trying to figure out how to continue, “but they don’t always want a baby, you see? The baby is the accident, the lovely surprise.”
So the new baby is a surprise?” Clio asked, gesturing at Daisy’s tummy.
Yes, it’s a lovely surprise,” Daisy agreed. Pete had, for once, hit upon a wonderful turn of phrase. “It’s something we didn't even know we wanted until we got it.”
Clio, ever the practical creature, had more questions for her floundering parents. “So when do you guys do sex?” she asked. “Have sex, have sex, I mean,” she corrected herself, and Daisy again marveled at the human brain, which could hear a phrase once and learn it and use it correctly. Clio looked around the bedroom, eyes finally coming to rest on the bed upon which all three sat.
Her eyes widened and she jumped off the bed. “Here? You guys do that here?” she asked, hands spread wide. She looked like they’d just told her they liked to drink from the toilet. She looked at the bed carefully, as though it might accidentally impregnate her.
She again looked from Pete to Daisy. “I’m not doing that for a long time, okay?” she said, shaking her head, making her ponytail swing from side to side. “I’m too little, right?”
And at those words Pete did laugh out loud, holding his arms out to his amazing four year old daughter. “Yes, you’re definitely too little, Topolina, you don’t have to worry about anything like this for years and years, I promise.”
I think that’s enough talking, you guys, okay?” she asked as she hid her head in her father’s neck.
Yes, yes, definitely,” Daisy said, laughing herself.
As they were leaving the bedroom, she thought of one more question. “So you guys had to do that thing, that ‘sex’ thing, two times?” Her voice indicated that she was very impressed. “Wow, you must’ve wanted Francie and me a lot, hm?”

About the Author

My name is Tani Hanes, and I am a 51 year old substitute teacher. I'm from central California and am a recent transplant to New York City. The most important things to know about me are that I'm punctual, I love grammar and sushi, and I'm very intolerant of intolerance. The least important things to know about me are that I like to knit and I couldn't spell "acoustic" for 40 years. I've wanted to write since I was ten, and I finally did it. If you want to write, don't wait as long as I did, it's pointless, and very frustrating!

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