Saturday, January 28, 2012

California Girl Chronicles, Book 1, Second Edition Additions

Readers of the first print run of California Girl Chronicles: Brea and the City of Plastic missed out. When I did the second print run, I rewrote and added a lot of new material. Some of it was to provide more character development and some of it was to develop relationships a little deeper. The reviewers, and we've had over 20 requests to review the book in the last two weeks, are seeing the new edition. So, here on the blog I'm going to pull some relevant excerpts from the new edition to give you a peek at what you didn't get to read. The following is the revised scene when Brea first meets our kind and loving producer, Kale.



I smiled and slinked by him just enough that he could feel my energy but far enough that we didn’t touch. I sensed his smile, turned, and grinned back. As I walked into the lounge area, I heard Drew’s band already playing. I decided to find an open stool at the bar and just hang back until he finished. Fortunately, a guy already drunk got up, or more like fell off, and weaved unsteadily toward the bathroom. I swiftly grabbed the stool, slid up, and could see Drew already at the microphone. I saw his eyes move my way, and he stared right back just for a moment. Then he drifted off into the song. Before I could order, a lemon drop was plunged in front of me by a cute guy sitting to my left. He was smoking a cigar and wafts of smoke twirled up into the air. He exuberantly grinned at me. “I bought you a drink,” he said with a wide smile that exposed perfectly white, straight teeth. He had one of those vivacious, electric smiles that you wanted to see on his face all of the time. It was sweet, genuine and nice. I found his smile very attractive, and I immediately warmed toward him.

“Oh, how did you know I wanted a lemon drop?” I asked with true surprise. It was my favorite drink.

“Girlie drink,” he replied with that same electric smile. “My name is Kale. I produce movies.”

I turned a bit and looked at him. Only in Hollywood did people offer what they did at the same time that they introduced themselves. I marveled at the abrupt nature of his introduction that included his job title. “My name is Brea. I write movies,” a slight lie given that I hadn’t written anything, but when in Rome or Hollywood-land.

“Hello Brea who writes movies,” his voice sounded silky. He looked right at me and took in the measure of my form with one swift appraisal. “You look more like an actress, though. Have you thought about acting?” he asked.

“No, not interested,” I responded. “Tell me, Kale, how does one end up a producer?”

Kale took a sip of his whiskey, inhaled from his cigar, blew out smoke, which made me cough, and answered, “Family money and good taste in film … well, more like good instincts on what sells.”

He reached in his shirt pocket and pulled out a card. He flipped it over and handed it to me. “You’re much too pretty to hide behind the lens,” he complimented me and extended his card, which I took. “You really should act,” he said in his silky, sublime voice. The tone of his voice alone could have seduced me.

“No, not for me, but you’re sweet and thank you,” I replied.

Now I took in my own appraisal of him. He wore all black shirt and slacks. His dark blond hair was cut short and slicked back nicely with the perfect amount of hair product so it wasn’t greasy or pasty looking. I was extremely attracted to Kale and leaned in closer. He smelled natural and sweet. He had a genuinely pleasant nature. He seemed authentic and not phony like all the want-to-be actresses and actors in this bar who posed like models. He also gave me his full attention and looked me right in the eyes. He was very tall (my fetish for tall men again) somewhere around 6’ 4”. I could tell he was roughly this tall since his lean body did not fit well on the barstool designed for average-height people. While my feet didn’t touch the ground, and I had to tuck them under the stool, his long legs reached all the way down. Yet it was his eyes that just captivated me. His eyes were light blue-green and acted like reflections for his every emotion. When he smiled, his eyes sparkled and lit up. When he frowned, his eyes darkened and seemingly deepened. He could have been Svengali and used those translucent, clear eyes to hypnotize and lull me into his mind control. I was drawn into those endless eyes, and then I had to shake myself loose so I could pay attention to what he said. He was something if not rich as he had more than just said. I wasn’t into guys for money, though, so that was really only a checkmark on my list of good points – unemployment was on the low end of that scale.

Kale and I talked back and forth. He asked about my fake script. I adlibbed and told him it wasn’t ready to share, which seemed to satisfy him. I did tell him I was laid off. I explained how I ended up at the bikini place. He was amused by the idea that trying on a bikini landed me a job but said it didn’t surprise him with my looks. Before I realized it, Drew suddenly showed up. I hadn’t noticed his set ended. I had been too busy talking and staring at Kale. Drew just seemed to show up in the middle of our conversation. He stood there and looked right at me. It took me a moment to notice him, and then I did and laughed.

“Hey! Great set,” I smiled.

“Really? You blabbed at this guy the whole time,” he replied clearly annoyed.

“Jeez, Drew, whatever. Great job, and this guy’s name is Kale. Kale, Drew,” I replied.

“Hey man,” Kale said and extended his hand, which Drew shook and put his attention immediately back on me. A girl came up from behind Drew, and Drew wrapped his arm around her shoulders. She giggled and seemed pleased with the attention. “This is my girlfriend Amy,” he grinned in some strange triumphant way at me. “Amy, this is my friend Brea and Kale.”

“Hi,” she pleasantly replied, exposing her stained, crooked teeth.

She was much younger than Drew, maybe by two or three years, and her brown hair was long and cut around her ears almost like a mullet. She wore a too-small white tank and simple skinny, black jeans with red heels. Drew’s taste in trashy women again exposed. Well, I thought, if he had another girlfriend, why was he hovering over me and interrupting my conversation with Kale, a hot, interested and clearly available man? Once more, Drew managed to send off mixed signals.

“Well, you got a job, huh?” said Drew. “Where?”

“I told you. Teenie’s Bikinis? What do you care anyway?” I replied with my angst showing. I was weary of his odd attention. I was also aware of the young girl who hung on him and marked her territory. Drew’s odd interest in me made her insecure. She started kissing his neck and giggling into his ear. He smiled, turned, and kissed her, but he kept his eyes opened and looked right at me.

About that time, Kale caught on and grabbed my hand. “You want to dump this dive and head out for some real drinks somewhere else?” he asked with the same open smile.

I turned away from the spectacle in front of me. “Yes, that sounds great. Can you drive?” I asked.

“Sure,” and with that he stepped down from the barstool, and I followed suit.

Drew stepped back and let me pass. “Have fun,” he called after us.

When we got out front, the valet pulled up with Kale’s black convertible Mercedes. I smiled and realized he wasn’t putting me on about the money. I got in and was careful to keep my legs together to avoid pulling a Britney beaver shot.

As we pulled out, Kale adjusted the mirror and talked again. “What’s with band boy?” he asked.

“What do you mean?”

“What an ass,” he declared. “He interrupts us, stares at you, and then brings over the little girl with the bad teeth. What the hell was that about?”

“Who cares,” I shrugged and tried to play it off even though it bothered me too. I didn’t get it. Was I just some member of his harem or a good, reliable fan? I was too good to be his doting fan. I made a mental note not to show up at more of his concerts. And the girlfriend – what terrible taste in low-class women! If we were just friends, as he claimed, then why get territorial when I talked to another guy? Well, I figured tonight I wasn’t going to analyze it. Kale seemed really nice and very interesting. Attention was required to go toward him – this absolutely sexy, gorgeous man. 

We had a wonderful nightcap at this bar with an outdoor patio. Kale mostly talked about the business and the movie his production company had under way. He didn’t share the particulars since it was confidential, but he said it was a $50-million film that would be finished in two years. He offered to have me come on set as an extra, which once more I declined. He was an intense guy, and he kept laser-beam energy on me all night. I didn’t tell him about Lance. I figured that information would be a major turnoff. I didn’t tell him that deep down I had feelings for Drew either. I just acted completely single and available.

“What do you like most about writing?” he asked.

“Escape,” I replied. “I like it when you’re not even in your own body anymore. You’re molding and shaping this story. I’m visual too. So it is almost like watching my movie on the screen in my head. It’s the great escape for me. I’m not worried or concerned about reality. I’m in an entirely other world. You know sometimes, it’s not that fun being me,” I admitted with a chuckle.

Kale cocked his head and looked at me with a frown, “How could it not be fun to be you? I can only imagine the kind of trouble you could get into. And now you live here?” he rolled his eyes and threw back the last sip of his  merlot. “Just be careful. Most of the talented, creative people are fantastic. I love all of them. They are my second family. I’ve heard the stories, though. Don’t be fooled and check people out. This town is littered with pathological liars.”

I smiled at him. I had all sorts of hot feelings boiling over for him. He sounded protective and caring. I wanted a fresh start. And Kale could help me with my career. Kale was clearly attracted to me too. He never shifted his gaze off my eyes. He wasn’t just looking at my body. He was listening, hearing, absorbing, and responding like an admirer. He leaned in very close to me. His face was inches away. I could smell his peppermint breath mixed with a tinge of scotch. He stopped talking for a moment and just looked at me in silence. He held back his desire – it was written on his face. Yet he behaved like a gentlemen, which was honestly refreshing. At least he wasn’t going to piss in a drainage ditch right in front of me. By the way, despite some really nasty and rude behavior, I still just couldn’t help myself when it came to Drew. A guy normally takes a leak in front of me anyplace and that is a deal-breaker.

“Do you meet women who try to seduce you for jobs?” I asked and grinned. “You’re pretty hot. I can only imagine young actresses all over your shit.”

Kale frowned and replied, “That’s not how I roll, sweetheart. I respect women. My mother is a scientific genius who works as a professor at MIT. She raised me right. You don’t treat women like hamburger, and they won’t treat you like hotdog.”

“Hotdog?” I burst into laughter, which also made him laugh. I paused and asked, “Any brothers or sisters?”

“On my dad’s side. He divorced Mom after I was born. Dad loves kids. I have three half-brothers and a little half-sister.”

“Who’s got all the bank?” I asked mostly out of curiosity.

“Dad and Mom both,” he replied and motioned to the bartender for a refill. “Tell me, Brea,” he said my name with an emphasis on the “e” sound. “Do you have a boyfriend?”

“Yes, many,” I replied with a sly smile.

“A lover?” he asked and raised his left eyebrow.

This question begged for a seduction. I twisted to one side so that my crossed and extended leg could tap against his calf muscle. I slipped my shoe off and maneuvered my foot just under his pant leg until I found his hairy skin. I ran my toe up his leg a bit, leaned in very close, and said, “Do you want to be mine?” This gesture gave rise to an intense look of arousal. His mouth dropped open a little, he unconsciously licked his lips, and then gave me one of those wide, electric smiles.

He moved in just a little closer so our lips were nearly touching and coyly replied, “Maybe.”

This made my pulse quicken and my girl parts warm. I barely knew this man, and I had an urge to fuck him. I liked him, though, and tonight would not go that far. I pulled back, caught my breadth, and fanned myself right in front of him. “Umm, wow!” is all I could muster. Kale took another drink and looked very pleased with these results. He had just won my sexy game of mental chess. A woman full of nothing but words was now speechless and utterly turned on.

Later that night, Kale brought me back to my car. He pulled up and stared at me. Those clear eyes mesmerized me yet again. “You want to come to my office? Pitch your script?” he asked.

“Oh, yeah, great,” I responded immediately and realized I faced a serious problem without a real script or good idea to pitch. I didn’t want to tell him I was a colossal failure. A girl lured to Hollywood by stupid relationships with men who had just ended up working for a ridiculous bikini shop instead of a professional job. I could barely face those facts let alone admit it to anyone else including this hot producer with the great eyes and hair.

Then Kale decided to seduce me. He leveled his eyes on mine. He said nothing, and silence fell between us like a pregnant pause. He used this quiet and his desire to mentally pull me toward him. I did move to the middle of the car and prepared to feel those tulip-shaped lips on mine. Kale leaned over, took his time, and pulled me gently by the back of the neck toward him and into a slow, passionate kiss. His lips were warm and perfectly moist. He was a great kisser. It was one of those surprise kisses. You know the one where you think it will be nice yet there is something super sexy about it – the kind of kiss where you want to strip down right there and do it. He kissed me over and over then ever so slowly he used his tongue to sweetly, gently lick until I accepted it into my mouth. We kissed more passionately, and I was almost uncontrollably turned on. I could have kissed Kale for hours. And we lingered in that kiss. When he pulled away, he was breathless. His face was flushed red, and he sucked in air and released it like air out of a balloon. He pulled his emotions and desire back under control.

He turned and said, “You’re so sexy.” Then he ran his hand along the top of my arm, which made the hairs stand up. I smiled and realized I had better leave now before I wound up at his house in bed. I just nodded and replied, “Thank you for the drinks.”

The valet opened my door and off I went. Kale gazed at me, waited until I handed the valet my own keys, nodded, and drove off into the night. As I stood there, waiting for my little, inexpensive and less-sexy Corolla, I felt a twinge of lustful desire. I liked Kale. And now I really had a problem. Time to move.

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