Category Archives: military

The Hot Summer Flash Blog Hop! #free #stories #flashfiction

Hi, everyone! Today is the House of Manlove Flash Hop! So exciting! A group of authors have each written an original flash piece, 1200 words or less, and are posting them on their individual blogs today. Some may be characters/worlds you are already familiar with from previous works. Some, like mine, may be brand new.

There are two types of stories floating around for this hop: Fourth of July– The Freedom to Marry (established couples) and Midsummer Madness (summer flings). For my 900+ words (I’m tired of recalculating my word count every time I tweak it), I did an established couple, of sorts. Read on to find out what I’m talking about. 🙂

 

Black Granite Wall

By K. Vale

Copyright Kimber Vale

 

Left. Left. Left, right, left. The cadence was stilted and sluggish, a lifetime away from the march of his youth. It was the subdued shuffle of a sixty-three-year-old man, made all the less brisk by the ancient knee wound that hurt worse on rainy days such as this. Still, cane in hand, Gary listened to the drill sergeant in his head, his destination calling forth memories from decades ago. Basic training. Boots and uniforms. Good times, and then guns. Bruce. Bruce. Bruce.

How they’d played at being men, before the war taught them that being men was an ugly job. It showed them that staying young meant you didn’t have to kill or be killed. You didn’t have to wake to the sound of shells and screams, whether real or only—blessedly—in your dreams.

Bruce.

You didn’t have to die in a tomb-dark jungle lit only by the violent back and forth of F1s and M26s. You didn’t have to take your last breath with swarms of mosquitoes angling for a sip before your blood thickened too much for their greedy tastes, and they flew off to the next course in their ample buffet.

The sole good to come of those two boys playing at men was that they had loved like men.

You go, I go. Gary closed his eyes against the steady mist and remembered touching Bruce’s youth-soft face as he made the promise. And then Bruce had gone for good, and Gary had gone home with a shattered knee.

The wall seemed to go on and on before bending at a right angle. As if the world couldn’t hold all those names in a straight shot. The black slab would fall off the ends of the earth before the last martyr was carved into it. Too many. Far too many.

Oh, the stories those voices would tell. All different, but all with the same tragic ending.

He ran his hands over the names, knowing he could search for many with whom he’d shared canned meals, borrowed time, and kid fears. The ones who had come home to their mamas in a zippered pouch instead of a wheelchair, as he had.

Bruce Klein. Tears filled his eyes and spilled down already damp cheeks, mingling with the rain like long-lost lovers. He traced the name with his finger as he’d traced Bruce’s lips so long ago, and then placed his palm flat against the stone.

Wet and smooth, like Bruce’s helmet had been when Gary found him and lifted it off to cradle his head in his lap. Life had already guttered out—no time for goodbyes and deathbed promises. But his skin was still warm. His eyes still vibrant blue as Gary gently lowered his lids and showered him in grief.

Time heals all wounds, or so the saying goes. Maybe that was true, but the scars never disappeared. They’d been etched in his heart as permanently as the fallen had been inscribed on this wall.

He stood for what seemed like years, leaning on black granite instead of his cane, replaying the flash of too-brief time he’d had with his best friend. His first love.  Finally, he felt as if he could speak.

“Bruce.” It was a whisper nearly lost to the patter of rain, but Gary knew the intended ears could hear him. Somewhere. Somehow. “I came to tell you my news. See, we’re here on vacation. Mostly, so I could come here, but D.C. has a lot to do. Got a nice little suite in a bed and breakfast, and we’re just takin’ it easy for a week. It’s our honeymoon, B.” His voice broke and fresh tears burned, flooded, and dropped.

“Who would have guessed, right? Way back when we were sneaking around? Now guys like us are gettin’ married all over the place. It’s a new world. You would have loved it. You would have loved him.”

Gary tipped his head up and stared into vast gray clouds, letting the heavens cry down on him, feeling washed clean by it all.

“That’s really all I came to say, B. That, and I miss you. I love you. I always will. And Glenn? He’s good with that. I think he loves you in his own way, too. Loves you for the stories I’ve told him.” He patted the stone with a wet slap. “Loves you for making me the man I am.” He swallowed over the lump in his throat. “Loves you just because I do.”

He stepped back and kissed his palm, placed it over Bruce Klein with a sniff and a soggy smile.

“Wherever you are now, buddy, they’re lucky to have you. I was so lucky to have you.”

Gary raised his right hand sharply, index finger barely touching his temple, and elbow at a 45-degree angle. He stood there, back straight and chest puffed out for only a moment before he dropped the salute.

“AMF.” Gary smiled with the derogatory goodbye. Adios, motherfucker. It was slang their unit had used heavily, as normal as a pat on the back and a see ya. Bruce knew. Somewhere, he was nodding, that old childhood scar on his cheek creasing as he grinned down on Gary and then pulled a Lucky Strike from behind his ear and lit it up, squinting as smoke curled toward his eyes.

Gary turned and picked his way back through the rain, gauging each step on the wet stone. The slick grass. Slow and steady as the hands of a clock.

Left. Left. Left, right, left.

——————–

 

Don’t forget to check out the other flashers! 🙂

 


Look what was in My Inbox!

Happy surprise release day to me!

Like a Chill Down Your Spine: Erotic Ghost Stories

Like a Chill Down Your Spine: Erotic Ghost Stories

By: Trish DeVene | Other books by Trish DeVene
Annabeth Leong | Other books by Annabeth Leong
Artemis Savory | Other books by Artemis Savory
David Hubbard | Other books by David Hubbard
Angela Goldsberry | Other books by Angela Goldsberry
T.C. Mill | Other books by T.C. Mill
Kimber Vale | Other books by Kimber Vale
Cristofer Darius Arthur | Other books by Cristofer Darius Arthur
Published By: Circlet Press, Inc.
ISBN # 9781613901021
Word Count: 33000
Heat Index     

Available in: Epub, Mobipocket (.mobi), Adobe Acrobat

add to cartRead More

About the book

A well-told ghost story should send a chill–or a thrill–to your very core. In the erotic landscape of the supernatural, who better to bring that thrill than ethereal spirits, the shades of unfulfilled lovers, or the poltergeists of mischief? Vampires and werewolves may rule the media these days, but ghosts will never fade away. Feel the emptiness, the presence, the sense that someone is looking just over your shoulder as you get into bed at night. What haunts will visit you in your sleep?

Ghosts are everywhere: they haunt the movies we watch, the dreams we keep, and the places we choose to visit or re-visit. Ghosts are history. They are searching for a way to repeat what they’ve done already, or to try things they have never done before. In these seductive stories, characters revisit, or are visited by, old friends who were dying to be lovers, or old lovers of family, or ghosts attracted to strangers.

Like a Chill Down Your Spine: Erotic Ghost Stories includes contributions by Pushcart Prize nominee Trish DeVene, Angela Goldsberry, T.C. Mill, Annabeth Leong, Kimber Vale, David Hubbard, and Cristofer Darius Arthur. Come experience the erotic thrill of the ghostly at the hands of these fiction maestros.

—————

My MFM story “Grave Secrets” is in here.

Blurb:

Carmella waits at the cemetery hoping to bid a final farewell to her deceased grandmother. She isn’t the only one who comes to call, however. Two ghosts–brothers–also appear to reclaim  the woman they loved decades ago. It’s an honest case of mistaken identity when they welcome Mel with open arms and open military uniforms.

-Kimber


#MySexySaturday Excerpt from “Comando Especial”

This is a new venture for me. I signed up for My Sexy Saturday today, and I’m thinking it’s gonna be fun.

The rules of the hop for this week (#21) are simple: post 7 paragraphs, 7 sentences, or 7 words of sexiness.

I can dig that.

My lucky seven comes from my latest release, Coming Together: In the Trenches. Here are seven paragraphs from my story “Comando Especial” in this philanthropic anthology.In the Trenches

What’s sexy to me? Well, lots of things, 😉 but in this story, a high-octane hero who rescues the woman he loves from the clutches of a sadistic drug lord spells H-O-T.

——

“He has a gun!”  Luz shouted a moment before the awful ring of a fired bullet fractured the air.

Alexander had dropped to a fighting crouch while the gun was drawn.  His right leg snapped up in a round-house kick and his booted foot struck the pistol a heartbeat before it went off.  The bullet smashed through the wall of the building, and the gun flew from Ramirez’s grasp.

In a blur of dark green, Alexander dropped and spun.  His left leg swept his opponent’s feet out from beneath him, and Ramirez landed on his back.  Alex tackled him in a blink, pinning his shoulders to the dirt floor under unforgiving knees. 

A number of soldiers and aiming their rifles a...

A number of soldiers and aiming their rifles at the start of a training exercise at Brisworthy on the southern edge of Dartmoor. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The officer pulled a handheld radio from his belt and spoke into it.  “Hostage is safe.  Ramirez is apprehended.”  A crackle of voices responded.

Moments later, as Alexander bound Ramirez’s wrists and ankles with zip ties, a deafening explosion sounded in the distance.

“Say adios to your refinery equipment, Don.  I’m glad you survived, as much as I would love to put a bullet in your ear.  The United States Justice Department would be disappointed if we failed to deliver you alive.”

He looked up at Luz.  “Ready to go home now, corazón?”

-Kimber

My Sexy Saturday

This is a Blog Hop!


 


“In the Trenches” Cover Reveal

I recently received notice from editor Lady Grey that Coming Together: In the Trenches has a release date of November 11th! This military-themed anthology promises to be explosively good.

Here’s the cover:

In the Trenches

I’ll post the TOC as soon as I get the deets. For now, I’ll tell you that my story “Comando Especial” is in here.

Blurb:

When a sadistic Colombian drug lord captures Lieutenant Colonel Alexander Luis Rojas’ lost love, the commander of a special anti-narcotics unit of the Comando Especial del Ejercito must use his considerable training to rescue Luz. But career criminal Jamie Antonio Ramirez won’t go down without a bloody fight. Can Alexander save the beautiful Luz, and will she finally realize they belong together forever?

-Kimber


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