Bonus Scene: Love and Lace, an alternate PoV scene for Whisper and Wishes
For 200 reviews on Whispers and Wishes, I offer you an alternate viewpoint to a scene from the book. The guys are all very different as are their relationships with Frankie, so when they take pivotal steps, it’s sometimes as much of a surprise to me as it is to them!
As birthdays went I’d never particularly looked forward to mine as much as I had this year. Frankie dating all of us—well three of us at the moment, though Bubba looked to be improving his chances—and after the disaster of Homecoming, it was more important to me than ever to share tonight with her.
Yes, we would have lots of other nights. But those rare nights where she was just mine were something I would treasure. I could share, I would share, and I loved that she was happy but I also liked being a little selfish, too.
The fact Rachel had popped around to help her with her make-up and hair amused me. Dinner with Grandpa probably wasn’t high on Frankie’s list of dinner dates for my birthday, but spending it with her and Grandpa? The only thing that would make it better was Nana being there.
Also, Frankie had a rule—what the birthday boy wanted, he got.
By the time she emerged, she looked like a million dollars. While I loved seeing her all dressed up, she was just as beautiful in a pair of cut off shorts and a tank top as she was in a silk dress. My favorite was nothing at all, but I didn’t relish sharing that view with anyone besides the people currently present.
Even Rachel got a pass.
Coop was a dick laying a kiss on her after he pinned her to a wall and removed nearly all of her lipstick. The fact he’d made sure to get a lot of fun pics of Frankie and me together with him only photo bombing one or two helped alleviate the need to punch him.
I added the shots to my locked folder of Frankie images. I’d started the collection not long after we met and it wasn’t about creeping. I’d even had a couple printed and framed in my room—it was for way more than spank bank material. Far more. Nana had all these huge photo albums and when I was younger, she would pull them out and go through them.
“Why?” I’d asked. We didn’t know hardly any of the people in those pictures. Well, I didn’t. Even the ones of Edward as a kid didn’t really register as being my father.
“Because, they’re memories. They’re my memories and every one of these pictures reminds me of a moment and they make me happy.”
“Like the one of baby me on the mantle?” She had a picture of me from each year I’d been alive. Several in fact, but the infant picture taken just minutes after I’d been born when I was red-faced and screaming was her favorite. She had it in a frame with a lace doily around the edges. She said it was a handkerchief, but it looked like a doily.
Anyway, she said it was her favorite because it was the moment I came into her life. That would be one she would always treasure. The handkerchief held her tears of joy. I thought it was kind of hokey, but I wouldn’t argue with Nana for anything in the world.
Until I saved that first picture of Frankie, I hadn’t quite understood what she’d meant. Now I did. Every single picture I had of her also held a story, a moment in time, a slice of emotion. Even when we’d been only friends—she was someone I would always treasure and I never wanted to forget a single instant.
The minute Frankie returned, I led her to the backdoor and called, “Don’t wait up for us, I might not bring her back until tomorrow.” In fact, I had zero intention of bringing her back before the next day.
We had a suite booked at a hotel and we were going to have it all to ourselves. I was going to get to spoil my girl in style.
Once we were in the car though, Frankie put a hand on my arm. The thrill that went through me at the contact never got old. Seriously. There were times when she stunned me now almost as much as she had that first day I met her.
“Before we go, can I give you your presents here?” The offer sent a pulse straight to cock.
Hell, even before I’d buried my face in her pussy and had her pulse around my dick as she came, it would have. Now? Well, now my dick and I both knew what we’d love our present to be.
“Right here?” I said, trying to ignore my rapidly stiffening cock. She’d also just finished fixing her lipstick. Course, she could leave a ring of that around my dick—I wouldn’t argue. “Cause the seats aren’t the best for it, but I’m totally game to try.”
“Not that and not here, perv.” She rolled her eyes and I just grinned. Playful Frankie was amazing. I adored the fact that just because we were dating didn’t mean I got a free pass. It was a hell of a lot more fun to have to earn it anyway.
“Damn. Though after the other night, you’re really going to need to work it to match that as a present. I still get hard thinking about it.”
A hot flush crept up her neck and flooded her face. It just added to her beauty and made me want her more if that was possible. “Archie. Let me give you your present.”
“Fine.” I sighed and mimed zipping my lips. Birthday boy might get what the birthday boy wanted, but I’d give it over to Frankie every damn time.
“Thank you.” She pulled out her phone. “Do you mind if I pair this with your car?”
Like I’d tell her no. It took me no time to get her phone paired with the sound system. Curiosity was like a restless beast in my system, it wanted to unwrap the present and devour her right there.
“Have I mentioned how hot I find it that you’re giving this moment a soundtrack?” I grinned at her and she wrinkled her adorable nose. Yeah, yeah, I was supposed to be quiet.
Obedience was not my strong suit. Leaning back in the seat, I eased the pressure on my dick and moved him over a little in my pants leg. Excitement or nervousness or maybe both seemed to shimmer over her skin. The first notes began to play through the speakers and I nudged the sound up a bit. I was way more rock and roll, but I assumed she had a point here.
Then a voice joined the piano music.
“The first step was the hardest one. You walked in and I invited you to sit and talk. I smiled at you and you joined in. You were a stranger then you were a friend.”
Holy shit, she recorded a song for my present.
“The second step was harder still. You wanted me and I was blind. Whispers and wishes, so many misses. Dancing. Playing. Laughing. Crying. You were the one who wanted to take my dreams flying.”
My heart pounded so hard, it threatened to drown out the music and I didn’t want to miss a note. I took her hand. No wonder she’d been nervous. She didn’t think she could sing…
“The third step and we fell off. My whispers became shouts and my wishes so many doubts. You were there every step of the way and when I tumbled you had to have your say.”
Sitting forward, I locked my gaze on hers. The leap of her pulse under my fingertips before I caressed her cheek told me that it had definitely been nerves. She was terrified and embarrassed and she’d—she’d recorded this for me.
“But here we are, crash and burn, rise and fall, song and singer, friends and lovers…” The last word trailed off. “If I have my way, this is where we’ll stay but I want your whispers and your wishes every day.”
The music rose again and then trailed off.
“Happy birthday, Archie. I always want your wishes to come true. So whisper them or shout them, but this song? It’s just for you.”
As it ended and she bit her lip, I lunged forward and kissed her. Every ounce of emotion she’d poured into that song flooded me and I was desperate to share it with her. She clung to me as I thrust my tongue against hers. Everything I asked for she gave and gave and gave.
“God, I love you,” I admitted between one pause for breath before kissing her again. I didn’t need oxygen. I needed Frankie. I’d loved her for so long.
Truly loved her.
The words were right there and the easiest declaration I’d ever made. This was another moment I planned to never forget and I was keeping that song.
And I was keeping her.
© 2021 Heather Long