Bonus Scene: Dresses and Devotion, an Untouchable Bonus Scene for Keys and Kisses
Congratulations on reaching 500 reviews with Keys and Kisses. Funnily enough, this is probably the toughest book for me to come up with a bonus scene for, largely because the first five of the series were getting bonus scenes every 100 reviews and because so many seeds were planted in this book that were then paid off later.
So, after some brainstorming, I decided to do something a little fun. Hope you enjoy it. *winks*
“You have to try the blue one,” Cheryl said. Her too sweet voice was just this side of irritating, but for the most part I tuned her out. My attention was firmly on Frankie. The last place she wanted to be was trying on dresses.
It was almost comical, except she was unhappy. I debated trying to get her out of this. However, as much as she disliked this whole thing, she also craved “normalcy” and what every other high school girl had.
Dates. Dances. Dress-up.
So…if that’s what my best friend wanted, then that was what she was damn well going to get. It was also why I was flipping through a rack of dresses trying to picture her in each one and find one that would make her happy.
“Not really my style,” Frankie answered, her expression a contrast between dismay and confusion. She really didn’t want to be here.
“No, it’s perfect. You have a great body and the ruching hides anything you might think you need to hide.” A half-snort and laugh later, Cheryl added, “Not that you need to hide anything. Does she, Coop?”
That wasn’t even a question. “Nope. She’s perfect.”
The absolute note of disgust in Frankie’s scoff almost made me laugh out loud, but she held the skimpy blue dress up to her chest and faced me. “Really?”
My dick swelled with approval. But this wasn’t about making me happy. Frankie would look amazing in a paper bag.
And out of one.
Right. Not the time to think with my dick.
I focused on the dress. The blue wasn’t bad, except… “Do they have it in green? It would match your eyes better.”
The “are you for real?” look in her eyes made me grin.
“But this matches Bubba’s eyes, and he may not notice,” Cheryl argued, catching Frankie’s arm to pull her attention away from me. “Trust me, guys don’t notice it consciously when you do it, but their subconscious? It’s the perfect prey, it recognizes the colors, and then they’re drawn in by the symmetry.”
That sounded almost profound coming from Cheryl.
“Right color or not, I don’t wear skimpy dresses.” Frankie glared at her. Well, it wasn’t a real glare. I’d seen Frankie’s real glares. They’d tear the strip off the concrete if you weren’t careful. But she was so disgruntled it was adorable.
“It’s not skimpy,” Cheryl said in an impatient tone. “Just add it to our rack there.”
The rack for their dresses waited, very loaded on one side for Cheryl and with only one for Frankie. A fashion show wasn’t what she had in mind. Okay, time to make this a little easier for her, especially since I wasn’t sure how much of this was real nerves.
Right, I yanked out the next dress on the rack and with the most straight-faced expression I could manage for the nightmarish dress that looked like a bad recital costume for a dance class, I held it up.
“What do you think of this one?”
“I think you’d look great in that,” she deadpanned. It was almost as good as flipping me off.
I grinned as I shoved it back onto the rack.
Cheryl’s giggle was nails on a chalkboard though. “Oh, do we get to dress Coop up, too? Why didn’t you say so!”
“I’m good,” I informed her. The only person I’d let dress me in anything was Frankie. This wasn’t about me. “Let’s focus on Frankie.” Ignoring Cheryl, I went to the next outfit I’d uncovered and this one was—sexy as fuck. “But seriously, what about this one?”
It was a two-piece outfit, a lacy high-neck crop top with a satin mini-skirt. It was almost the exact color of her eyes, the perfect green. She’d look amazing in this.
“Oh, I like that,” Cheryl said. “Find it in blue, too.” She immediately dove into the rack next to me. “We may have found your calling, Coop.”
I didn’t say a word and just got out of her way.
Then she whooped. “Royal blue. This will match Bubba’s eyes, right?” She all but thrust the outfit at me.
“How the hell would I know?”
“Hang on, I have a picture, let me check…”
Now I rolled my eyes. When Frankie shot me a look, I made a face until a flicker of her smile returned. Cheryl consulted her phone and tried to match the dress, but I ignored her as Frankie pulled out a lovely gold dress.
Well, I ignored Cheryl until she said, “No, Frankie. You need to work on your tan if you want to go for that. Too cold and pale. It will wash you out.”
Ugh, she was cracked. Frankie barely pulled out another dress before Cheryl grabbed it to add to their rack.
“It’s like watching a hurricane in action,” I commented as I moved to look at the rack she’d been perusing.
“Kind of feels like one. She had a picture of Ian?” The discomfort in her voice was a clarion.
“Yeah.” I’d seen the one she’d been looking at. “It’s just from one of the parties over the summer.” I had no idea when she’d even taken it, to be honest. Pretty sure it was before Ian’s birthday but after the fourth.
It was not cool.
“Frankie…” If I lived to be a hundred, I didn’t think I could feel more like an ass than I did right now. We’d hurt her and we hadn’t even realized we were hurting her.
Now? We were still hurting her.
She was so steadfastly not looking at me, I sighed and looked at the dress she’d pulled out. “That’s beautiful. You’d look great in it. ‘Course, you’d pretty much look great in anything here.” I did a quick scan for Cheryl before leaning in to whisper, “Even the cold and pale colors.”
There. The corner of her mouth curved. “Thanks, Coop.” She bumped my shoulder, so I hip checked her with equal care.
“Anytime. Want me to go add that to the rack?”
She frowned at the price tag though. Yeah, she didn’t have to buy it to try it on. Right now, I’d sell a kidney to get her what she wanted.
“Come on,” I said, bumping her shoulder again. “Try it on. I bet it looks amazing.”
“You know what…why not?”
“That’s the spirit.” I added it to the collection.
By the time Cheryl declared they had enough dresses to begin trying on, poor Frankie looked like she was ready to flee or to collapse.
“Divide and conquer,” Cheryl said. “We walk out in every dress. Coop, you are going to be the tie breaker if we can’t agree.”
“Oh. Joy. I was about to offer to get you ladies something to drink.” Or food. Cause if Frankie was really tired and hungry, Cheryl might actually be in danger.
“Nope.” Cheryl pointed me toward the puffy flat square seats. “Park it. You have to give us feedback.”
I checked with Frankie, cause really didn’t want her starving. “You said this would be fun, remember?”
There was my favorite girl. Reminding me that since I got her into this—at least partially—I was stuck doing it too.
I stuck my tongue out at her and she returned the favor, but then she grinned when we both shot our middle fingers at the same time.
Something akin to relief flooded me. It was the most “grounded” and “normal” she’d managed since everything went sideways the last couple of days. If she needed me here, then right the fuck here was where I’d be.
The next couple of hours were a deceptive exercise in sensual torture and entertainment. Despite her uncertainty, Frankie looked flat out fucking amazing in everything. She looked almost too good in some.
Especially the skimpier ones that made her so uncomfortable and would give way too many people a solid look at her ass and her panties.
Yeah, not a fan of those for public events.
Still, by the time she came out wearing the dress she loved, it radiated off of her.
Now to get rid of Cheryl and go feed my girl.
©2022 Heather Long