What’s the best compliment you’ve ever received? Day 1

It wasn’t the “best” compliment I have ever gotten but it was the best “foot-in-mouth” compliment…

“You’re intelligent, gorgeous and you have a head on your shoulders. If I didn’t already have a girlfriend…”

The voice caught me by surprise. I was leaving my room to meet up with a few classmates for dinner and when I looked around, Paul was leaning against his door frame with his arms crossed. He was taking me in from head to toe with a twinkle in his eye.

As the resident advisor on the dorm floor, Paul was a friendly guy and you had to be if you were dealing with excitable first year students living away from the watchful eyes of their parents for the first time, doing whatever and whoever they wanted.

Paul was my dorm “neighbor”. His door was always open for student drop-ins and because my room was the size of a closet and I was semi-claustrophobic, I kept mine open even when studying which meant that we chatted a lot. Being older than the others (he was doing a master’s and I was only living on-campus during my 2nd degree out of convenience because home was too far away) we had lots of intellectual conversations, joked around, debated about current events and things unrelated to university life like our opposite tastes in music.

Paul was a smart and good-looking guy but since the only thing on my mind was completing that degree and getting out of that boring city, I had my Teflon armor on and wasn’t about to be distracted by anyone or anything, no matter how enticing.

“Ok, Paul,” I decided to bite. “Go ahead and finish that sentence. If you didn’t already have a girlfriend…what would you do?”

Did I mention that Paul was one of those flirty flirt kind of guys?

I leaned against my closed door, crossed my arms and waited.

“I would ask you out in a heartbeat.” He grinned and was just about to say something else when suddenly his bottle-blond girlfriend popped up behind him and stared us both down.

If looks could kill…

It was obvious from the look of horror on Paul’s face that he had completely forgotten that she had been in his room the entire time.

Out of sight and way out of mind.

As she stormed off, I felt a little sorry for him but definitely not for her.

You see, each and every time I would bump into her in the hallway (which was all the time even when Paul wasn’t there and though she didn’t even live in the dorm), she would never respond to my greetings of “hello”. Most of the time she ignored me and after a while, I simply ignored her right back. I had never even had a conversation with the girl. I simply chalked up her attitude to being immature (I think she was 19), a lack of basic manners and Becky-like behaviors long before the term “Becky” became an insult.

I couldn’t help myself and laughed. “Wow. I’m not sure how you’re going to fix that…”

After a few minutes, he shrugged and broke the ice.

“Well…now that I don’t have a girlfriend…. He paused and let his words hang in the air.

I laughed and purposely left his words hanging.

“Paul?”

“Yes?”

“I’m late for dinner,” I said and left him standing there.

I decided to take his “flub” as a compliment since he forgot all about his girlfriend because of me. 🙂

What’s the best compliment you’ve ever received?

Join in on this March challenge.

And the challenge begins…

I won’t fool you…

I’m totally surprised that I’m actually 100% prepared for the March writing challenge I talked about here.

I have Sandra over at What Sandra Thinks to thank for my preparedness.

When she told me how she had ideas for each and every March question, I was like…DAMN! I had better get my act together.

So, I’m ready.

I’m even going to post my March 1 post a day early as a reminder to those who said they would join in with me.

You know who you are…*hint hint* 🙂

If you are joining in by answering the questions on your own blog, please pingback to me so that I can visit your post. And if you don’t post on your own blog, feel free to answer the question in my comment box.

I hope you enjoy this month’s posts to get to know me a little better.

See you in the comments!

The A to Z Challenge in April? Maybe…

From one March challenge into an April challenge?

Maybe.

I have written some pretty decent stories in past A to Z Challenges.

I would love to take a stab at it again this year but I can’t think of a theme to base myself on. And I need a theme before I can even start choosing 26 words to accompany each post.

Of course, if I were to participate, it would have to be fiction-based and brief writings to keep up.

I like the idea of writing letters to someone based on the A to Z alphabet because I’ve seen other writers do this so well but if you have any ideas or words to toss out at me, feel free.

By the way, I wrote “If My Wounds Were Visible” during an A to Z Challenge and you can read it here.

Theme ideas and/or words please! 🙂

“If My Wounds Were Visible” #fiction

I’m throwing you back to one of my old A to Z Challenge fiction projects.

I wrote one letter of its’ alphabet for 26 nights straight and though it was a hard write and it’s still in its original draft, I’m proud of it.

“If My Wounds Were Visible” is a project that I would like to rewrite into a non-diary style because I would like to focus on more dialogue within the story.

Before you read “If My Wounds Were Visible”, I need to provide a TRIGGER WARNING because this story speaks to domestic abuse, rape and a few other difficult subject matters.

I have tried my best to place trigger warnings at the beginning of certain installments where I feel they are appropriate but everyone is different so feel free to stop if you feel triggered.

And if you are a survivor, you may want to skip this story in its entirety.

Here is the link again – If My Wounds Were Visible .

“Dirty and Flirty” – Part 4


[For the previous installments, please scroll back]

“Something tells me that’s not necessarily true Ms. Davenport,” he challenged as I felt his eyes slowly travel the contours of my face.

I took a deep breath in and challenged him right back even though my body was enjoying the proximity of his.

“I’ll just have to prove you wrong, won’t I?”

Neither of us could keep a straight face and we both cracked up laughing. He backed away and sat on the edge of Mr. Bernstein’s desk.

“The look on your face was absolutely priceless.” Tyler couldn’t stop laughing. “I thought that you would pass out.”

“If you’d said something, I probably would have.” It was my turn to tell the truth. I watched him give me a slow seductive once over, from head to toe.

“Don’t do that,” I told him and sat down so that he couldn’t continue.

“I’m just trying to see how I didn’t recognize you in the first place. Then again, you were probably only 13 at the time, right?”

I nodded.

“You definitely didn’t look like this in high school.”

“I’ll take that as a compliment. When did you figure it out?”

“To be honest, it took me a few days. I don’t believe in that psychic shit so there had to be a logical explanation. It all led back to things that happened in my senior year. And then I remembered your eyes.”

“My eyes?”

“Yeah, they seemed very familiar to me from the start, as if they were laughing at me. And then I remembered having that thought once before. And it was about you. I just couldn’t remember your last name until Bernie said it.”

I leaned back in the chair, folded my arms and then crossed my legs. Tyler’s focus immediately landed on where my skirt hiked up a little.

“Yeah, according to all the other girls, I was the lucky junior to be paired up with the popular senior for orientation,” I said, mimicking a teenage girl voice.

“Sarcasm…I take it that you weren’t a fan? Did I act like an ass to you or something? I was pretty spoiled back then.”

“I know. And from the looks of it, not much may have changed,” I kidded, knowing that he could take it.

He laughed and shook his head as if he didn’t know what to do with me.

“No, you weren’t an ass to me. It’s just that being paired up with you made all the other girls want to be my instant friend. And I couldn’t just stay under the radar where I wanted to be.”

“Why did you want to stay under the radar?”

“That’s not important.” I said, skirting around his question. “The fact was that after that, I couldn’t get a moment’s peace from the latest Tyler J. news. All I heard was gossip about you, you and more you…blah, blah, blah.”

“So that’s how you knew all that stuff about me?”

I nodded.

“But what about me being afraid of water?”

“Oh, you told me that yourself when you were giving me a tour of the sports arena at school.”

Tyler was quiet and pensive.

“Well, I must have felt comfortable with you if I actually told you that.” He smiled and crossed his own arms. “Or maybe I needed to fill up all of that empty space in our conversation. You were so quiet that I thought that you might have been mute. Or a church mouse.” He grinned and gave me a flirty look. “I can see that that’s no longer the case.”

“No, that’s definitely not the case anymore.”

“So you thought I was cute?”

“Don’t fish for compliments…I never said that.”

“You don’t pull any punches, do you Laney?”

My brows arched at what he called me. Only my close friends called me Laney and by using it, he was showing me that he remembered.

“I just didn’t see what all the fuss was about, that’s all.”

Tyler didn’t flinch.

“Nothing like a little brutal honesty from a non-fan.”

“You seemed to be the picture perfect stereotypical party boy jock who everyone was impressed with.”

“Except you.”

I said nothing and stood up.

“And what do you think now?”

He got up from the desk and spun around like he was on display.

I laughed.

“I don’t know, maybe a more refined and older version of that teenage boy?”

I picked up my purse from the floor and started to angle myself toward the door but he blocked me.

“What about that coffee? You can explain to me in detail why you ran this morning. And I can tell you what I’m doing here. I know that you’re dying to know.”

I was curious but I also wanted to get away from him and regroup. I was about to say no when he stopped me before I could.

“Don’t say no.”

Tyler reached out and put his hand on my arm. I had to hand it to him, he knew how to give the kind of look that could make a woman reconsider a thing or two.

“It’s not a “no”. It’s more like a “maybe” as in maybe another time.”

Tyler laughed.

“Lawyers and their slippery words but I’ll take your “maybe”.”

I needed to get serious.

“Can we agree that you’ll never ever tell anyone about the coffee shop thing?”

He extended his hand and mimicked my seriousness.

“Sure. But only after we’ve had that coffee so you’d better jump on my offer quick. Monday – after work” I nodded. “Great, let’s shake on it friend.”

It wasn’t a real handshake – it was just an excuse to take my hand.

“Nothing about your handshake feels friendly to me Tyler.”

“It sure feels friendly to me.”

He brought my hand to his lips and kissed the back of my hand. Tyler was incorrigible and I liked it. He accompanied me to the elevators and I noticed how the receptionist eyed him as we walked by.

“One more thing…”

“If it’s for a real date, the answer is no,” I preempted him and pushed the call button.

“Now look who’s got the ego…Don’t get ahead of yourself just yet.” He laughed.

The elevator arrived. I got in and waited for him to finish his thought.

“It took a little time but I got more than what I wanted.”

He held the elevator door open to stop it from closing.

“What’s that?” I asked.

“I’d asked you for your name and number, remember? Now, not only do I know your name but I also know where you work which is much better than your number.”

As the elevator doors closed, Tyler laid one of his smiles on me.

“Because I know where to find you at all times. See you Monday, Laney.”

“See you Monday Ty.”

I laughed and shook my head all the way down the 25 floors.

This is where the excerpts for this specific story ends.

On Tuesday February 23, I will post a link to another story.

If you have enjoyed my writing, feel free to sign up for my mailing list here. I’ve been neglecting it and trying to get it up and running again. If you have any issues signing up, you can email me at simplymarquessa@gmail.com .

Thanks for reading!

©2016 Marquessa Matthews. All Rights Reserved.

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Memory lane

Wow.

Thinking about what to write for my March challenge is taking me down memory lane and stirring up things I have not thought about in years.

It’s also got me thinking about drafting some in anecdotal-style while simply answering the question for others.

In either case, it will give you a chance to get to know me a little better while not giving too much away…

And if you would like to join in by answering the questions on YOUR blog, just jump in!

“Dirty and Flirty” – Part 3

[For the previous installments, please scroll back]

When I felt a presence next to me, I stood up and turned around.

“Delaney, meet Tyler Jordan. Tyler, meet Delaney Davenport.”

We both just stood there and stared at each other in shock for a long moment. A very, very long moment.

The shock on his face transformed into a slow and wicked smile but I couldn’t do the same.

I was beyond mortified.

I was busted.

“Delaney is joining Legal on a contractual basis. I’m looking forward to her working the same “magic” she did with that Toronto file we had last year,” Mr. Bernstein told him.

I was frozen.

What the hell was Tyler doing here? 

The last thing I pictured him doing was “working”. He came from money.

The confusion must have shown on my face. Or maybe my mouth was still open because I could see how thoroughly amused he was. I didn’t even notice that his hand was extended to shake mine. I quickly took it before Mr. Bernstein realized that something was wrong.

“Nice to see you again Delaney.” Tyler enunciated all three syllables of my name as he shook my hand. My mind raced.

Oh God, he wasn’t going to play us off as strangers!

I braced myself for the total embarrassment I was about to feel when he recounted the coffee shop incident. I could hear the flush of the toilet where my professional credibility would soon find itself.

Mr. Bernstein raised his eyebrows curiously as he looked from Tyler, to me, and then back to Tyler.

“The two of you know each other?”

Here we go…

I almost closed my eyes and held my breath, bracing myself for his words.

“You could say that,” Tyler’s eyes were steeled on mine.

When he hesitated to explain, Mr. Bernstein gave him an odd look and then looked down at our hands. That’s when I realized that Tyler hadn’t let go. I extricated my hand from his but he held on for a moment longer and then gave it a soft squeeze.

It was a silent reminder of what I had done to him in the coffee shop.

Touché.

“We went to the same high school.”

He remembered.

I didn’t know if I was more relieved that he hadn’t outted me or surprised that he had remembered our connection.

“And yes Bernie, Delaney can definitely work magic with these hands of hers. She has a way of knowing what people are thinking. Sometimes it’s almost as if she’s psychic.”

Touché. He was on a roll.

When Tyler finally let go, all I wanted to do was slap that arrogant grin off his face.

“What a small world!” Mr. Bernstein was amazed.

“It sure is.” Tyler finally took his eyes off me and turned to Mr. Bernstein. “Didn’t you need this file for your meeting in a few minutes in Patterson’s office?”

Mr. Bernstein looked at his watch and grabbed the file from him.

“You are absolutely right. I almost forgot.”

He turned to me and shook my hand. “Looking forward to seeing you next week.” Then he turned back to Tyler. “Be sure to be a gentleman and escort Delaney on her way out.”

“When am I not a gentleman Bernie? Ms. Davenport and I may even catch up over a coffee first. You still love coffee, right?”

Touché.

This time I gave him the evil eye. I’d had enough. It was time to snap out of my fog.

When Mr. Bernstein left us alone in his office, Tyler followed after him and shut the door.

“What are you doing? Why are you closing the door?”

“Making sure that you can’t run like this morning,” he teased. “And just giving us a little privacy.”

“I didn’t run.” The lie didn’t roll off my lips as well as I would have liked.

Tyler laughed and made his way back over to me. He stood about a foot away and looked down at me.

“You know that’s not true.”

I’d almost forgotten how tall Tyler was. Close enough for me to inhale his cologne, he was purposely creeping into my personal space to see how I’d react.

I stood my shaky ground. “Are you calling me a liar?”

“You said it, not me. What I will say is that you play dirty.” His voice was a deep whisper as he studied me. “Very dirty.”

“How so?” I whispered back.

Why were we whispering? The door was closed.

“That day we met, you really had me going. You even had me up part of the night,” Tyler admitted.

If this was going to be a battle of double entendres, he was going to lose.

“Really? I can’t believe that. I’d think that a guy like you would have much more interesting things keeping you up at night, Mr. Jordan.”

What in the hell was wrong with me? Playing with fire like this at my new job?

He inched a little closer and flashed me a bigger smile. I could easily see how Tyler used his arrogant charm to disarm and disrobe women.

“A guy like me? That sounds a little sinister. You are interesting. But now that we’ve been “officially” introduced, you won’t be keeping me up at night anymore, that is, unless you want to Ms. Davenport.”

There was already almost no room left between us but I stepped forward defiantly anyways.

“Is that some kind of veiled invitation Mr. Jordan?”

I could see that he was fighting the urge to respond.

“Is this the way you always try to impress women?”

“Always. Isn’t it working?”

As we stood there in a silent stand-off, I tried not to notice his blue eyes and how the corners crinkled when he grinned.

“Not at all,” I shot back but feeling a little ashamed at the sinking sensation in the pit of my stomach that argued otherwise.

“Something tells me that’s not necessarily true Ms. Davenport,” he challenged as I felt his eyes slowly travel the contours of my face.

I took a deep breath in and challenged him right back even though my body was enjoying the proximity of his.

“I’ll just have to prove you wrong, won’t I?”

Next installment: February 21

©2016 Marquessa Matthews. All Rights Reserved.

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