Peter loved Kate with all his being, but that didn't mean he'd tolerate an ultimatum from her.For Sneak Peek Sunday we share six paragraphs from a published work or a WIP (work in progress).
My submission for this week is from my 5th book, and newest release, Acting Lessons.
He was a strict and demanding college professor turned professional director who excelled at giving acting lessons. She was his shy and uncertain former student who became a professional actress under his tutelage. They fell in love, married, and won two Tony Awards before tragedy struck and a simple kiss ripped them apart.
After a six month separation, Peter Thorton decides to take matters into his own hands by making his famous wife, Kate, an offer she wouldn't refuse. Plainly put, he wants her back and he intends to do whatever is necessary to achieve his goal, even if it means giving his stubborn, willful leading lady a daily reminder over his knee that she promised to obey him.
In this scene, which occurs early in the first chapter, Peter Thorton, seated comfortably in an agent's office, is attempting to convince his wife, Kate, to give their marriage a second chance by signing her to appear with him in a College Summer Stock production of "Kiss Me Kate." Kate isn't sure she can trust Peter with her heart again, since she believes he's been unfaithful to her, but she's never stopped loving him. And though Domestic Discipline originally played a part in their marriage, their last two years together had them living like polite strangers sharing the same house. Peter realizes he made a mistake in letting Kate do as she pleased, so he's determined to rectify matters immediately, however, Kate is suspicious.
Narrowing her eyes, Kate crossed her arms and sat back. Peter grinned at her like the cat that had devoured the canary and lapped up a saucer of cream as a chaser. She didn't trust that look. More to the point, though, she didn't trust herself--not when she was with him. She'd never forgiven him for cheating on her, but she'd never stopped loving him, either. However, he loved another woman, so why was he coming to her with an offer?
He wanted something. Something he wasn't ready to reveal, yet. And, he'd changed. He seemed more commanding and insistent, like he'd been in the early days of their relationship.
Back then, he hadn't let her get away with much. He insisted she do things the way he wanted. If she dared argue the point, she'd find herself panties down, draped over his knees, regretting her obstinacy.
She hadn't forgotten the burn of his iron palm when it descended with displeasure. But what she remembered most about those days was the way he'd kissed and hugged her once she'd promised to do what he wanted.
And, more often than not, what he wanted would only help her become a better person or actress.
During those moments when she curled up on his lap seeking the reassurance he all too willingly gave, he surrounded her with security, love and protection. She missed those days, but they bore little similarity to his attitude toward the end of their marriage.
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