Today, I welcome my dear friend and morning writing buddy Ofelia Gränd back to the blog. She’s here to talk about the re-release for one of her books, and you can expect her back several times in the future to do the same. I welcome all my writer friends on my blog when they need a place to talk about their books.
Now, before I leave the floor to Ofelia; is it just me, or is the guy on the cover reminiscent of a young Johnny Depp? 😁
Hi! Thank you, Nell, for letting me drop by yet again. I have so many releases coming up – they’re re-releases, I haven’t written four years’ worth of stories these past few weeks – I fear I’ll write more blog post words than words on new stories. But it’s all good. I’m excited to get the stories out there again.
The one I’m here to talk about today is called Dazzle Me. I wrote it back in 2015 for an anthology called Summer Bigger Than Others which is an anthology of short summer stories.
I seldom write summer stories. I’m not a big fan of heat – and for those of you who don’t know, I’m Swedish. What I think is too hot might not be hot at all for you LOL. And I don’t like bugs. Winter is a blessed bug-free season. I honestly don’t understand how Nell could live in Malaysia for several years. I would’ve died 😀
In Dazzle Me, we have Tom who has it in his mind that he’s gonna propose to his boyfriend on their one-year anniversary. Santino, the boyfriend, has to go to Thailand for work at the time of their anniversary and begs Tom to come along. Tom doesn’t do aeroplanes, he doesn’t do tropical heat, and he does not do spas – but for Santino, he’ll do anything.
I can still remember laughing while writing this LOL
“Wow! Look at all these sculptures. Hey, Tommy-boy—”
“Stop calling me that,” I hissed and peered around the enormous airport.
“But we should totally get one of these when we move in together. How cool would it be to have a huge Buddha in the living room?”
My breath caught in my throat. He’d never mentioned us living together before, and happy as I was hearing him talk about it, I also realised—he’s never mentioned us living together before! My stomach turned inside out. What had I been thinking? God, I wanted to ram my face into one of the stone pillars next to us.
Maybe this whole wedding thing was too impulsive of me. I wanted to get married, but that was the thing: I wanted it. I’d never even considered him not wanting to spend the rest of his life with me. I’m such an idiot! I pinched the bridge of my nose. Why would he even want to? I was old and grumpy, well maybe not that old, and not that grumpy, but I had eleven years on him. My God! Am I going through a midlife crisis?
Santino was too fascinated with a sculpture of a bunch of people having a tug of war with a dragon to notice my little breakdown. My Santo, so animated and alive. Was it selfish of me to want to trap him? What would he do with a rugged, oil-stained husband? I rubbed my forehead, trying to see this whole thing from his point of view.
“Look at this! Tom? What’s wrong?”
So much for him not noticing. “Erm…nothing. Nothing. Where did you say our bags would be?”
“Oh, right! Across the hall here, I think. Read the signs—ours should be on ten.”
It was impossible to miss the baggage claim, and we went to number ten to wait for our bags to arrive. The carousel started humming a little before the conveyor belt began to move. People pushed and shoved to get to their bags, the smell of perfume and sweat almost suffocating. Santino’s bag was among the first out on the belt. He grabbed it and edged to the back of the hall, waiting for me to get mine.
The suitcases rapidly became fewer and fewer, and sooner than I thought possible the hall had emptied of people. My skin was shrinking. A girl the age of maybe four or five managed to grab her pink little Hello Kitty bag before it could go on another spin, and I watched as the empty conveyor belt came to a stop. Dread spread like evil tentacles throughout my body. My bag wasn’t there. Saliva flooded my mouth, my stomach threatened to turn. I never should’ve put the ring in the bag. What if someone had stolen it? I’d had that ring custom-made for Santino.
“Where’s your bag?” Santino searched the hall.
“Huh.” He shrugged. “Guess we’ll have to report it missing.” He took my arm and dragged me toward a petite Thai woman standing by a desk farther down the hall. I cast a longing look over my shoulder, hoping the conveyor belt would miraculously start moving again. It didn’t.
Santino did most of the talking, and the woman gave me a reference number and promised that they would be in touch as soon as possible, but that it would probably take twenty-four to forty-eight hours to locate my lost baggage. I started to hate Thailand. I needed my bag now, not in forty-eight hours. I needed the ring. Selfish or not, I was going to ask Santino to be mine tomorrow. But I couldn’t tell that to the woman with him standing there, I hardly think she could’ve done anything to help anyway.
Tom and Santino’s anniversary is coming up, and Tom has a plan. He’s going to show Santino how much he means to him. The night will be magical.
Tom’s plan did not include a trip to Thailand. He doesn’t do aeroplanes, doesn’t do tropical climate, and he doesn’t do spas. Yet he finds himself without a stitch of clothing on a spa table, with a man he’s never met before while Santino is away on a business meeting.
This was not how it was supposed to go. Tom will do his best to live through the day so they can celebrate their anniversary when they get back to the hotel, but If Santino wanted him smooth and sparkly, couldn’t he have told him instead of booking him an appointment?
M/M Contemporary: 9,524 words
Ofelia Gränd is Swedish, which often shines through in her stories. She likes to write about everyday people ending up in not-so-everyday situations, and hopefully also getting out of them. She writes romance, contemporary, paranormal, Sci-Fi and whatever else catches her fancy.
Her books are written for readers who want to take a break from their everyday life for an hour or two.
When Ofelia manages to tear herself from the screen and sneak away from her husband and children, she likes to take walks in the woods… if she’s lucky she finds her way back home again.
Find Ofelia on social media: