Kelly Maher

Spring Storm

SweetHeatCollectionvol2-Web
D Ink Editions
November 10, 2015

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Originally published by Phaze, 2006. Re-released as part of Sweet Heat: Collected Stories, Volume 2, 2015.

Gwyn Murphy finds herself in a ditch after swerving to avoid a deer in a heavy rainstorm. Trooper Aiden Loughlin has also had a recent run-in with a deer, and happens upon Gwyn in the rain. Sparks literally literally fly whenever they come close to touching, and they cannot deny the attraction.

About the Book

“Spring Storm” was fun to write. Which is a good thing as I did it in four days. I wanted to submit a story to Phaze for their SURGE line, but was running out of time. Brainstorming was called for. Hmmm, new website with a Celtic theme, strong Celtic heritage, a little birdie told me that they were looking for something paranormal-y for the line, what can I do? Who was the Celtic god or goddess of lightning? Well, in my research, I discovered Lugh. In addition to having light and lightning remotely associated with him, he’s also considered the god of travelers in some of the various Celtic traditions. If you’re familiar with the Greek or Roman pantheons, think Hermes/Mercury. Well, my family will be travelling to Ireland this summer and I figured it was a sign! Also, I love playing around with family legends and phone sex 😉

Read an Excerpt

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Gwyn had just closed her eyes when the phone rang. “Hullo?”

“Gwyn Murphy?”

She rubbed her eyes. “Yes?”

“This is Aiden Loughlin. From this afternoon?”

Gwyn flipped on the table light and sat up in bed, hitching her covers over her chest. “Trooper Loughlin. How did you get my number?”

“Aiden, please. The dispatcher noted it down from the caller ID when you called.”

“Oh.” For some reason she felt struck dumb by that. “Isn’t it a bit late for you to be calling?”

“Yeah, but I just wanted to make sure that you were feeling okay after getting caught in the storm.”

Gwyn smiled at the faint huskiness in his voice. “I’m fine. Thank you for calling. I was actually just about to go to sleep.”

“Really? I’m sorry for waking you then.”

“It’s okay. I feel safer knowing that county police force takes the welfare of its citizens so seriously.”

“Admittedly, some citizens do get more attention than others.”

She propped her pillows more supportively behind her back and settled in. “I feel special now.”

“You are special.”

“Aiden, you flatter me.”

“How many men have you set off sparks with just by touching them?”

His voice was so serious, her breath caught in her throat. She forced the word out. “None.”

“That’s what I thought. It’s never happened to me before either.”

“The storm. Static electricity?”

“Gwyn, once, or even twice, I could write off, but every time we touched?”

She kicked off the blankets. In a room that had seemed cool when she climbed into bed, she now felt as if she were a ball of heat lightning ready to explode.

“What’s your explanation then?”

His sigh fluttered over the phone line and through her. “I have no idea. I just know that it’s not coincidence, static electricity, or the storm.”

“Why are you calling, Aiden? Really. Give me the truth.”

“I’ve tried to ignore it all night. I can’t. We’re connected somehow. No woman has left me so on edge or charged, even after we’d parted. I want to explore this…this…tie with you.”

Gwyn’s breath shuddered. She knew what he was talking about, though she couldn’t find the words to fully describe it, either. All night she’d felt that if she’d only reach over, he’d be there to take her hand, as if little wires had found some way to bind the two of them together. When she’d closed her eyes to sleep, she half expected to feel his arm settle on to her stomach as he curled up behind her.

“Aiden…” Was that reedy voice really hers?

“Yes, Gwyn?”

“I’d like to explore it, too.”

“Thank you. Can I come over?”

Gwyn closed her eyes, knowing that the coming change she’d felt earlier was here now, urging her on. “Yes.”