Sunday, August 9, 2009

Homecoming

South Coast Hwy. – Las Vistas City Limits
Ep. 101_Sc. 01_01

Making a sharp right turn onto the highway that would lead her back into her past, Isabella Monacco began the last leg of her journey to Las Vistas. So far very little looked different to her, but she was confident that everything and everyone that she once knew had changed. She certainly had, and not necessarily for the better.


Ep. 101_Sc. 01_02
It had been years since she and her family had left Las Vistas in a cloud of mystery and that same cloud, thick and cumbersome, cloaked her now. She arrived by private jet managing to duck the paparazzi and other prying eyes that camped out to get a glimpse of the celebrities who regularly passed through. Opting to drive herself to her destination rather take the company limo, which would have raised red flags, was another necessary precaution.Ep. 101_Sc. 01_03
Her instructions had been simple get in, get the job done, and then get out before anyone knew she was there. A great plan in theory, but she was hardly naïve enough to believe it would work in practice. But she had to try her best to make it work, not only for her sake, but for the sake of others as well. Besides, giving into her curiosity about him would only add to the large pile of regrets she already had.
Ep. 101_Sc. 01_04

Still, she couldn’t help but wonder how he looked now, what kind of man he had become, if he still thought about her at all, and if he saw her would he want to kiss her or kill her after everything that had happened. Ep. 101_Sc.01_05
She had gotten so deep into her thoughts that she had neglected to pay attention to where she was. When she looked up at the road sign she was passing she realized that her exit was next. She slowed down and turned off of the highway. It won't be long now, she thought to herself.


Ep. 101_Sc.01_06
Minutes later she approached the gates of a secluded residential community. She typed her code into the security panel and gained entrance into the exclusive enclave of Vista Hills. The car glided around the snaking curves of the affluent neighborhood, each mansion that she passed seemed to get bigger and bigger. The handful of neighbors she had as a child had swollen three fold. Each flattened sand lot she remembered now housed expansive adobe mansions with lush landscapes that blocked her once clear view of the beautiful red rocks in the distance.Ep. 101_Sc. 01_07
She finally stopped at a large estate that sat alone at the base of a massive rock hill. Prime real estate was just one of the many privileges her family’s money had given her; the seclusion of the Monacco desert estate would serve her purposes well. As she walked up the stone steps to the front door, she was met by her long time assistant Lexie Love.

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"How was your flight?” Lexie asked giving her boss a hug and opening the door for her. “Long…too long” Isabella replied. “Is everything ready?” “Of course, your room is furnished, the fridge is stocked, and the boxes that you sent are in the office waiting for you. Your attorney will be here in a few hours,” Lexie replied. She could tell that Isabella was tired and anxious. “Why don’t you go upstairs and take a nice long bath. I’ve picked up some of those bath salts you like.” “You are a mind reader, Lex. I don’t know what I would do without you,” Isabella said as she mounted the stairs to her bedroom.

Ep. 101_Sc. 01_09
The master bedroom had been beautifully outfitted with painted mahogany furniture, sumptuous linens and colorful potted desert plants. But Isabella barely noticed as she made a beeline to her bathroom and splashed cold water on her face at the marble sink.Photobucket
Staring for a long moment at her reflection in the mirror she realized the person looking back at her hardly seemed familiar now that she had left her comfort zone thousands of miles across the globe. Who was she was here and who would she become if certain people realized she was back? “What the hell have I gotten into?” she asked her reflection. When it didn’t answer she decided to take a break from her mental dilemma and escape into her bubble bath.
Ep. 101_Sc. 01_11
She peeled off her clothes, wrinkled and sticky from her long trip, and eased her tired body into the fluffy mound of bubbles atop the steamy water. She laid back, closed her eyes and let her mind drift.
Ep. 101_Sc. 01_12

Her relaxation soon gave way to sleep—sleep that was abruptly ended by the sensation of wetness on her face as she began to slide down into the tub. She awoke startled and quickly lifted herself back above the water line.


Ep. 101_Sc. 01_13
She had been asleep for quite some time. Day had turned into night, the bubbles had disappeared, and the water was beyond tepid. She rose from the tub and wrapped a towel around her damp body before venturing out onto the terrace. Gazing out at the empty dry desert, she began thinking of all the ghosts of her past milling about just waiting to haunt her. All of the loose ends she had left untied where bound to intertwine now. “Hopefully not around my neck” she thought out loud.

Ep. 101_Sc. 01_15
Ep. 101_Sc. 01_14
Her thoughts were interrupted by a glint of light that caught her eye in the distance below. She looked down at the street to see what appeared to be the outline of a car. She hadn’t heard anyone drive up, but hadn’t noticed it when she first came outside either. It was just sitting there with the lights out.Ep. 101_Sc. 01_16
Suddenly, as if the driver realized they had been spotted, the engine started and the car abruptly zoomed away. Isabella hadn’t been able to make out a color or model, but she knew it was an older car; a strange sight in a neighborhood like Vista Hills.

Ep. 101_Sc. 01_16
Something didn’t feel right. She went back inside and instructed Lexie to alert the guard’s desk about the suspicious car. As far as she knew no one had seen her at the airport and the paparazzi would have used a more inconspicuous means of capturing a candid shot of her. Someone else was interested in her and if that someone was bold enough to park right across the street from her home she didn’t want to take a chance on finding out what else were they capable of.
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Club Oasis - Downtown Las Vistas

Ep. 101_Sc. 02_ 01

“I have the contracts for you Mr. Bolthouse.” Blake had been so engrossed in what he was doing that he didn’t even hear his assistant come in. “Thanks Daphne. Just put them on the table,” he replied, looking up at her. It was only two days until the club opening and his mind was a wreck with last minute details. He grabbed the envelope with the contracts to look them over one last time before signing.

Ep. 101_Sc. 02_ 02

“The contracts here yet?” A.J. asked as he walked into his and Blake’s office. “Yeah, I was just looking at them. What the hell is this new stipulation in the last section about?”

Ep. 101_Sc. 02_ 03

A.J. took a look and threw his hands up in the air absolving himself of any insight. “I have no idea man. Just because I’m a Carlyle doesn’t mean that I know a damn thing about business. You and Thad are the brains; I’m just the guy who throws the parties.”

Ep. 101_Sc. 02_04

“Fine, I’ll drop by your brother’s office tomorrow and figure this out. Did you audition that last band for the opening?” Blake said moving across the room.

Ep. 101_Sc. 02_05

"On my way over to the beach club now to check them out. We should probably go with them. They only want $2500 flat and 3% of the door.” A.J. said with a laugh. His last statement should have made Blake say yes immediately. “Blake? Blake did you hear me?”

Ep. 101_Sc. 02_06

"What? No, yeah I heard you. If they’re good book them,” he said absently staring off into space. A.J. eyed him with concern. “What’s going on with you? You’ve been out of it all week.

Ep. 101_Sc. 02_07

Blake faced his friend, reluctant to admit his troubles. “It’s the same old shit A.J., nothing new. Nothing a little female companionship won’t cure.”

Ep. 101_Sc. 02_08

A.J. knew exactly what was plaguing his friend, the same something that had held him hostage emotionally for years. But he wasn’t about to attend yet another pity party for him.

Ep. 101_Sc. 02_09

“Temporary high. You’ve got to get past this shit man; you’re becoming an addict to the female form.”

Ep. 101_Sc. 02_10

"You’re one to talk; you’re the biggest womanizer I know,” Blake retorted.

Ep. 101_Sc. 02_11

“Recreational use only. You’ve developed a debilitating habit,” A.J. shot back as he walked out the door.

Ep. 101_Sc. 02_012
Blake cracked a weak smile. He couldn’t deny what his friend had said. He had used countless women to fill the deep void inside him and numb his pain—to no avail. That fact however had yet to stop him from trying and so he pulled out his phone and dialed the number of his latest fix.

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Lush Beach Club - Azura Beach, Center Strip
Ep. 101_Sc. 03_01

A.J. got to Lush, the beach club he and Blake owned, just as the band he was auditioning started their last set. Torture had a huge following locally and came highly recommended by Syd, Lush’s regular DJ. Taking a seat at the bar he observed the crowd’s reaction to the music.

Ep. 101_Sc. 03_02

Front woman, Willow Wakefield, had undeniable talent and a unique raspy quality to her voice that appealed to hardcore rock heads as well as the mainstream, while the guitarist, Halen O’Connor’s riffs often matched her voice in a beautiful, yet somber duet. The rest of the band was a hit or miss, nothing to write home about.

Ep. 101_Sc. 03_03

Easily convinced that Torture would play the Oasis club opening, A.J. ordered a drink and decided to check out who was in V.I.P. This club had been his baby straight out of college and he couldn’t help but keep tabs on what was going on even though he had hired a full time manager years ago.

Ep. 101_Sc. 03_04

He walked across the sand to the V.I.P lounge and was shocked to see the door closed and a red velvet rope blocking his way in. Even more puzzling was the fact that the bouncer was no where in sight.

Ep. 101_Sc. 03_05

He moved the rope, opened the door and got an eyeful of something he didn’t want to see. His sister Sienna half dressed with some random guy. “Get up and get dressed…now!” he shouted, slamming the door behind him. Sienna hoped up and began putting her clothes back on. “Sorry A.J. we just got carried away, no big deal.”

Ep. 101_Sc. 03_06

"No big deal? This is a business not your personal playground. It’s a nightclub not a brothel, now get the hell out of here and take your John with you,” he said glaring at the man she was with.

Ep. 101_Sc. 03_07

"Fuck you A.J.! I'm part owner of this place too; I can do what I want.” Sienna’s childish defiance drove A.J. crazy. Her constant need for attention and deluded sense of entitlement had gotten her into trouble more times than he cared to count—trouble that he or Thad always ended up bailing her out of.

Ep. 101_Sc. 03_08

“Two shares don’t control a damn thing Sienna. This is my club and I want you out now! You know how many damn paparazzi are in here every night. Do you want to end up with your ass plastered all over the place again?”

Ep. 101_Sc. 03_09

Sienna shifted her weight uncomfortably, just realizing the impact her actions could have had. The photos of her that had circulated on the internet had been extremely damaging for her and her family’s company. An event she did not want repeated.

Ep. 101_Sc. 03_10

“Whatever, this place is a dive anyway. Come on, lets go,” she said motioning to the mute man candy who was with her. She brushed by A.J. in a huff intentionally bumping him on the way out. “You’re such a damn brat. Grow Up!” A.J. shouted after her, but she didn’t turn around.

Ep. 101_Sc. 03_11

Getting free drinks and V.I.P. access was one thing, but carrying on her sexual escapades in his place of business was crossing the line. A.J. pulled out his phone and began dialing. “Hey Thad, it’s me. We need to talk about your sister.”

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Carlyle Mansion - Vista Glenn, Las Vistas
Ep. 101_Sc. 04_01

It was late and Thad was still in his study going over the Monacco files when A.J. called raving about the latest stunt their sister had pulled. Sienna had been a handful since their parents had died; a stage he thought she would outgrow by the time she became a legal adult. It was 5 years later there had been no change. Somehow he had to make it clear to her that playtime was over.

Ep. 101_Sc. 04_02

He shrugged off his thoughts about his sister and returned to the matter at hand. He would be meeting with Isabella Monacco the next day regarding “company business,” but he had been stonewalled when he pressed for more details. His family’s company, Carlyle Financial, had been entrusted with overseeing the Las Vistas division of Monacco Shipping Int’l when the family had abruptly left town years ago. Up till now Carlos Monacco had very little contact with him regarding his handling of the company. The sudden interest was puzzling.

Ep. 101_Sc. 04_03

Even more puzzling was why Carlos was sending his daughter to do his bidding instead of coming himself. “I wonder what daddy’s little princess has in store for me?" he said to himself. Just then he heard the front door open and Sienna’s voice filled the foyer. But she wasn’t alone.

Ep. 101_Sc. 04_04

He stepped out of the study to find her and a male companion kissing at the bottom of the stairs. “What the hell do you think you’re doing?” he demanded. He had grown tired of her midnight trysts with various strangers and she wasn’t getting her way tonight.

Ep. 101_Sc. 04_05

“Relax Thad, I’m just entertaining a friend,” she replied with a sly smile. The man remained silent and tentative, pausing to see if he was going to be ushered out of another Carlyle establishment. “Not tonight you don’t, especially after the stunt you pulled at the beach club. I assume this is the same partner in crime?” Thad crossed his arms and threw a disapproving stare at Sienna’s boy toy.

Ep. 101_Sc. 04_06

“This is exactly why I used the V.I.P. room. I can never get any privacy around here. You and A.J. act like I’m still a child. I am a grown woman, which Mateo can certainly attest to.” Mateo gazed as a smile of agreement crossed his face. It quickly disappeared when he turned to look at Thad, who was now moving towards him.

Ep. 101_Sc. 04_07

“Mateo is it? I need to discuss a few things with my sister. I’m sure you understand.” Thad motioned him toward the front door as he spoke. He wanted him out now, and, for the second time in one night, Mateo left with all hopes of a sexual conquest dashed.

Ep. 101_Sc. 04_08

“Damn it Thad, why did you do that?” Sienna shouted, her shrill voice echoing in the cavernous expanse of the foyer. “I’m so sick of the two you treating me like some baby you have to handle.”

Ep. 101_Sc. 04_09

“I’m sick of you acting like a damn baby Sienna! You prance around here like the world revolves around you, you spend my money like it grows on trees, you bring strangers into my house at all hours of the night. Who the hell do you think you are?” his calm demeanor had become an irritable storm, thundering down on her.

Ep. 101_Sc. 04_10

“I could ask you the same question. Your money? Your house? Last time I checked our parents where the ones who made this money and they bought this house. All three of us are equal beneficiaries Thad. You don’t control the money and you certainly don’t control me!”

Ep. 101_Sc. 04_011

“That’s were you’re wrong. I have power of attorney for their estate, I have controlling interest in the company that makes the money, my name is the only one on this house and the accounts that you bleed money from all belong to me! You have no money of your own, no valuable shares in the company, no skills, and if you continue to pull stunts like this, you won’t have a pot to piss in either. Are we clear?!”

Ep. 101_Sc. 04_12

Sienna stood toe to toe with him with a defiant gleam in her eyes. She knew everything that he said was true, but she wasn’t about to let him intimidate her. “Go to hell Thad!” was the best she could muster before storming up the stairs to her room and slamming the door.

Ep. 101_Sc. 04_13

“Delusional bitch” he said to himself as he walked back into the study to finish his work. He was going to have to teach her a hard lesson about life…very soon.


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Rook DeSantos Warehouse - Phoenix Heights - Downtown Las Vistas


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Ep. 101_Sc. 05_02

“Hey kid, you didn’t’ take out the trash,” Rook said, standing over the snoozing teenager. “I have a name you know” Rider said as he moved to take care of his forgotten chore. “And I’m not a kid anymore.” “Whatever you say…kid” Rook gave him a smirk and walked away.

Ep. 101_Sc. 05_03

Although Rider had lived with the De Santos family since he was a toddler, Rook never took to him. Some kind of sibling rivalry or something. Nico had always treated him like a brother. Either way Rider had begun to resent Rook’s attitude as he had gotten older and knew that one day they would have it out once and for all.

Ep. 101_Sc. 05_04

He put the lid back on the can and headed back to the rec room of the grimy warehouse he shared with Rook. As he approached the room he realized that the door was half closed, and he could hear Rook talking to someone. He slowly cracked the door just enough to hear what was being said, but made sure to remain out of sight.

Ep. 101_Sc. 05_05

"No, the kid’s outside, I can talk. So was it her?” Rook asked the person on the other line. “I told you so. That was definitely the Monacco plane I saw in the hanger. How the hell should I know what she’s doing here? No, no one was with her, she was alone. Okay, I’ll ask around and see what I can find out but I think you’re just asking for trouble with this.”

Ep. 101_Sc. 05_06

"You let me worry about that," Nico DeSantos replied to his brother. “Just get any information you can.” With that he hung up the phone and stared off into space trying to get his mind around what he had seen that night.

Ep. 101_Sc. 05_07

It was definitely her; that much he knew. Her face was burned in his memory and every curve remained the same. What he didn’t know, what bothered him most, was why she had returned after so long.

Ep. 101_Sc. 05_08

The knowledge of her presence made him uneasy as he tried to repress the memories of her that kept flooding his mind. Bittersweet memories that tugged at his heart and took him to an emotional place that he had long since abandoned. He tried desperately to quell the anticipation building within him; crush the foolish hopes that he had never let go of. Whatever she’s here for doesn’t concern me that’s for damn sure, he thought, trying to convince himself.

Ep. 101_Sc. 05_09

Everyday he made hard choices. Decisions about who got paid and who could suck it up; who was a friend and who was an enemy; who lived and who died. Hard choices—this one was no different. But this time the answer was easy; under no circumstances could he let himself go there, not even a little bit. She had been dead to him for years and for his sake it had to stay that way.


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Bolthouse Beach Residence - Azura Beach, North Strip
Ep. 101_Sc. 06_01

It was already 3:30 in the morning and Blake hadn’t managed to get any sleep. He was physically worn out from his session with Nicolette, the latest starlet he had managed to bag, but his mind wouldn’t stop racing. This was his pattern when the memories became too much; sleep with a beautiful woman, preferably a famous one, get bored, and fall right back into the emotional hole he had been digging for years. It was just what A.J. said…a temporary high.

Ep. 101_Sc. 06_02

He looked down at the sleeping woman in his bed and decided he needed a bit of distance, but rather than kick her out—his usual asshole tactic—he decided to let her sleep. He rose from the bed and made his way to the private strip of beach behind his house.

Ep. 101_Sc. 06_03

He had chosen this house for many reasons, access to the water being one of the primary. It was like living at the edge of the world. The hot, dry desert sand running straight to the cool moisture of the sea; fire and water; heaven and hell dancing together in one place. It was the perfect metaphor for the state that his life was in.

Ep. 101_Sc. 06_04

Most of all he had chosen this place, because it had been her favorite place in the world. In certain ways it was the last piece of her that remained.

Ep. 101_Sc. 06_05

He stared out at the ocean for what felt like hours as if searching for answers in the shifting tide. Finding none, he closed his eyes and let the rhythmic sound of the waves and coolness of the breeze wash over him. His meditation was interrupted by the light graze of an object that swept across his face. He opened his eyes and looked down to see a scarf fluttering the sand next to him.

Ep. 101_Sc. 06_06


Where did this come from, he thought to himself. He hadn’t seen anyone else before. He looked up, scanning the beach for the scarf’s owner. In the distance he could make out the form of a woman standing alone. “Hey!” he called out. But she didn’t move.

Ep. 101_Sc. 06_07

Isabella had had trouble sleeping that night as well. She had grown restless and, against Lexie’s advice, decided to go for a drive. Figuring no one would be there at that hour, she had ended up at the beach.

Ep. 101_Sc. 06_08

The peaceful sound of the surf had always had a calming affect, ever since she was a child. She had spent countless summer afternoons on her family’s yacht just listening to the waves with her eyes closed, imagining the beautiful and distant places she had always wanted to see. Her mother had loved the water as well, a similarity between them that comforted and disturbed Isabella at the same time. The ocean had been the last place she had seen her mother happy—also, the last place she had seen her alive.

Ep. 101_Sc. 06_09

Her thoughts were interrupted by the sound of someone yelling. She turned toward the sound of the voice and saw a man waving at her, and, strangely, holding her scarf in his hands. She hadn’t even noticed that it had blown away in the breeze.

Ep. 101_Sc. 06_11

Not wanting to be seen, she turned and began to walk away, but realized that she couldn’t. The scarf had been her mother’s…there was no way she could leave it. Reluctantly, she made her way over to the beach house where he was standing.

Ep. 101_Sc. 06_12

As she approached the first thing that struck him was her eyes. Beautiful and glistening; stained in a deep blue hue that rivaled the ocean before them. They were intense, piercing, and held an indescribable something behind them that he instantly connected with. They drew him in, a reaction that took him by surprise.

Ep. 101_Sc. 06_13

“I think you lost this,” Blake said holding the scarf out to her as he took in the rest of her. Shiny blonde hair blowing in the breeze, soft pink lips, her small curvy frame. As uncomfortable as he knew it must have made her, he couldn’t take his eyes off of her.

Ep. 101_Sc. 06_14

But she hadn’t noticed his staring at all. “Thank you,” she said softly, somewhat distracted. She took the scarf and turned to walk away. “I know it’s none of my business, but you being out here alone at this hour might not be the best idea. There are all kinds of crazy people in this town,” he said.

Ep. 101_Sc. 06_15

“She stopped and looked back at him as if she hadn’t heard a word he had said, and then acknowledged his comment with one of her own. “I’m well aware of that. You wouldn’t happen to be one of them, would you?” she gave what appeared to be a slight smile that quickly disappeared. Why am I talking to this man, I need to get out of here before someone else comes along, she thought to herself.

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“No, not yet” he said, still trapped in her gaze.

Ep. 101_Sc. 06_17

“That’s too bad, it’s generally the sane ones that give me the most trouble,” she said looking out into the ocean. “You at least know where you stand with the crazy ones. She paused for a moment more before turning to leave. “ Well, thank you again.”

Ep. 101_Sc. 06_18

He watched as she began to walk away and was suddenly overcome with the need to stop her from leaving. “What about you?” he asked. “What about me?” she said turning to face him again. “Are you one of the crazy ones?” She paused for a moment shooting Blake a look that bordered on annoyance, but then gave him what was an unmistakable smile.

Ep. 101_Sc. 06_19

Just as she was about to answer a light flashed on inside the house. Blake looked up to see Nicolette, half naked, perched in the window staring out onto the beach, probably looking for him. “Great timing Nic, he said under his breath.” Trying to quickly come up with some excuse to explain away his obvious overnight guest, he turned back to face the woman, but she was gone.

Ep. 101_Sc. 06_20Ep. 101_Sc. 06_21

“Damn it.” He scanned the beach, looking for any trace of her, but came up empty. He looked back up at the window at Nicolette. I wonder who she was, he thought to himself as a flash of the woman’s shadowed face came into his mind. Shaking it off, he began to walk back to the house. He would find out about the mystery woman later— he had other business to take care of now. It was time for the tall lanky actress in his window to go the hell home.

Ep. 101_Sc. 06_22

Once she was convinced that the man had left the beach, Isabella emerged from the rocks she had ducked behind. It was bad enough that she had been spotted by some mystery driver. Now some stranger on the beach had gotten a good look at her too. She decided to get back to the house before she ran into strike three.

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Not even 24 hours had past since she arrived and already she felt anxious and trapped. Her anticipation of the worst coming to fruition, her past colliding with her present and the wreckage it would leave, consumed her mind. It was nearly 4:00am and she hadn’t slept at all. It was just as well. Her meeting with Thad would happen in a couple of hours and right now all she wanted was to finish her assignment and get the hell out of Las Vistas.

11 comments:

  1. I am completely blown away!! I don't even know where to start but I am HOOKED!

    The whole atmosphere is so perfect, the hot dry desert, the beach, the way you use light and color to complement the writing. I have to pick my jaw up off the floor! GORGEOUS GORGEOUS!!

    And the story you are weaving is fascinating. So what is Isabella doing there? Nic is obviously still holding a torch. But you've got all these other fantastic characters - Thad and his brat sister; Blake; AJ; and my favorites at the moment, Rook and Rider (OMG...).

    I can't wait for the next chapter! This is perfect - tense lean writing; gritty detail; spot on characters.

    Way to go!!!

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  2. Wow!!! Thanks S.B. I swear that means so much coming from you. I admire and respect your work so much that I am flattered that you enjoy mine as well.

    I have always loved the contrast between the desert and the beach and for these characters, because they have so many different aspects about them and experiences that have shaped them, I thought combining the two natural wonders was the perfet compliment to this story. I'm so happy that that metaphor is coming across.

    Isabella...... Her return is going to be the catalyst for so many things. She's been running from her past for a long time and she's being forced to face it and deal with it all. It is fascinating to me how one person can affect so much change and as much as she doesn't want to be there right now, she's going to be around for quite a while.

    Holding a torch is an understatement for what Nico is feeling. He is seriously conflicted and his emotional battle is going to take him to some interesting places and cause him to do things he never would otherwise.

    Rook and Rider are a funny pair to me. They hate each other on the surface, but I think there might be some love there...down deep.

    All of these characters mean so much to me and the crazy part is I have so many more to introduce. I'm so happy that you like it.

    Thanks for the comment :)

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  3. For an opening chapter this really packed a punch! I am already intrigued with what you have here and how everyone's lives will intertwine. You have some great threads that I cannot wait to see develop! Through your writing I feel like you have slowly begun to peel open each character as well as their story! I'm so excited! Cannot wait to read more!

    Magnificent shots and some truly lovely scenery. Well worth the wait.

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  4. Thank you so much Gayl. I'm glad you like it. That means so much coming from you as much as I admire your work. I am so far along with this story in my head, I can't wait to get it all out so that you guys can see it too.

    I have to say, that this is so much more work than I thought it would be. Hats off to you and S.B. for cranking out your stories with such regularity. Don't know how you do it.

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  5. Wonderful first chapter! I'm completely hooked...
    for a moment I thought the "Him" Isabella was thinking about was Blake, but now that they had met, it doesn't seem like I was right!

    Nico does look like a very intriguing character, cold and detached, I wonder what kind of person he was before,or was he always like that?

    I can't wait to read what happened before in their past, and I'm really looking forward to find out what is going to happen to all from now on..

    Looks like everybody's lives are about to change...

    I agree with Gayl, it really seems like with this chapter you have beginning to peel open your characters and their stories!!!!

    Wonderful job!!!
    I love the decor, and the sets you are using!!!
    It was beautiful written and illustrated!!!

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  6. Thank you so much S@ndy. I'm glad you like it. Thanks for coming back to read it now that it is actually visible to human eyes :)

    Peeling is a good word for how I am trying to expose who the charcters are and where they have been. I'm working on not making that process too slow and painstaking for the reader though.

    Thanks again for commenting.

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  7. SB recommended you highly, so I could not resist, as we both love actual adult stories, with real relationships, and this fits the bill, what a great set-up and intro to all your characters, the scenes flowed seamlessly.

    I certainly will be back to check out some more, great, great start Muzegoddess!!

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  8. Hi Drew,

    Thank you so much!! I really appreciate you taking the time to read and comment. I must admit that I have been lurking on your blog for a looooong time but just haven't had a chance to read everything so that i can comment. I'm a nerd so I have to read everything from the begining but I love, love your writing so I take it as an extreme compliement that you enjoy mine as well. Thank you again.

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  9. Damn this is good! I have to give you a thumbs-up for that! Well-written too. :P

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  10. Hi Cami! Thank you so much for reading and letting me know what you think. I'm really glad you like it so far. I've been on a mini-hiatus but hope to have a new episode out soon.

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  11. I read this a while ago, but lost track. Since I saw you again at SWG, I'm rereading everything again and the more I do, the more I fall in love with the world you've created and the characters.

    For the first chapter I must say you've breathed life into the characters already. I love the desert, arid atmosphere you've created and your shots are stunning.

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