Tag Archive | True Love

Under the Cherry Trees

Artist Preston Blair; pinterest.com

Romantic 4-line flash fiction:

Fresh air teemed with inexorable life as a cool mountain spring wind tossled Celosia’s honey blonde hair.

As the cherry blossoms dotted the landscape pink against an azure afternoon sky, my shoes crunched gravel as I meandered beside her along the path with my fingers interlaced with hers.

“This is it,” I said, drawing her to myself, wrapping my arm around her shoulders, my lips a hair’s breath from hers.

“Don’t let me go,” Celosia pleaded breathlessly, a tiny tear trickling down her cheek, as our lips met and warmth flooded my soul, my heart aching for her to stay.

Author’s note: I’ll be heading to Japan this weekend in search of cherry blossom trees. Perhaps there is a romance story lingering there beneath the cherry trees, waiting for just the right moment when an author may happen by and capture a slice of romantic magic.

What to Do in a Thunderstorm

Artist Raphael Desoto; pinterest.com

Romantic Short Story:

It was my first date with the woman of my dreams, Tansy Kaeller from Vienna. She had feathered blonde hair like lemon sugar and a radiant smile that made her eyes squint and sparkle. When her mouth turned up in a grin, she revealed a slight yet devastatingly cute overbite. Devastating to me because I was the one who fell head over heals in love with her. From her sweet Austrian accent and dainty voice to her soft creamy skin, I loved everything little thing about her. In short, she took my breath away.

On my private multi-acre ranch that evening, we meandered down a dirt path that wound through rose bushes with a view of the stars above as bright as lanterns. The crickets serenaded our walk, but otherwise, it was pretty quiet except for the sound of our voices.

Tansy was drop-dead gorgeous that night, wearing a pink dress that clung to every curve with a generous dip in the front to reveal plenty of cleavage. She was clinging to my arm and her hair smelled like shampoo from perhaps a shower she’d taken before coming out tonight. I could feel her soft breasts pressing against my side, igniting my insides. With Tansy, I felt on top of the world and above all else, I had to tell her that tonight.

I couldn’t wait. I stopped and turned to her and she to me. Her face glowed in the moonlight and I noticed her full lips were wet. Had she steathily licked them while turning to me, or were they always so naturally glistening? I didn’t care, but I knew they were calling out to my lips like a magnet.

We had been talking about stupid things to kill time while we were meandering down the prim rose path – topics like the weather, the ranch, her English learning, the horses I’d ridden that morning, and so on. It was time to get serious. “Tansy,” I began breathlessly, “I have to kiss you.”

Her eyes squinted as she smiled. “Then why don’t you?” she asked, pronouncing the w in ‘why’ like a ‘v.’

I didn’t need a second invitation, moving in and pressing my lips to her wanting velvet mouth, one hand around her back, the other gently holding the nape of her neck. When our tongues met, she moaned and pressed her tongue harder inside my mouth with passionate fervor. We kissed long and wet, indulging deep desires that were bubbling up like a furnace.

But when I lifted my head from our kiss, just to see that beautiful face again, I noticed that her cheeks were no longer glowing in the moonlight. I looked up to the sky and immediately had a sense of what was coming. You get this intuitive sense on a ranch that just before it rains, there is a kind of fresh smell in the air and leaves on the trees turn over one way or another.

Then a rumbling in the distance. Thunder.

“We’d better head for shelter,” I suggested. “If we don’t hurry, that storm’s going to overtake us.” She nodded and we both hurried back down the path from which we’d come. But then some raindrops tip-tapped over us and then some more.

We began to run.

“Are we too late?” she asked, beginning to panic, and wobbling beside me in her high heels, picking up the pace.

The downpour was enough answer for her, coming down in drips at first, then a steady stream, then a heavy shower. Then the crack of thunder. She shrieked and held her arm over her head as a basic survival instinct to shelter herself from the rain. It wasn’t working. Within seconds, both of us were soaked through the clothes and running down the path that was quickly turning to mud.

I led her to the closest shelter there was on my property: a barn. It may not have been a five-star dream hotel, but it had a roof and dry shelter inside, priceless when you’re stuck out in a thunderstorm.

A flash of lightning and another whip crack of thunder chased us in through the massive double doors that I quickly shut behind us when we got inside. We were panting and laughing at ourselves that our clothes were fully soaked and we’d just barely managed to escape the storm.

Inside the empty barn that normally housed the bushels of wheat during harvest time, it was pitch black, so I found her hand easily in the dark and led her to a narrow staircase with creeky wooden steps in the corner. The stairs led to a loft with a low wooden-beamed ceiling structure, so we had to at least kneel down when we got up there.

Tansy lied on her back, catching her breath. Even in the shadows, I could see her breasts rising and falling with every breath she took. Her head was turned to me and was silently appraising my shadow, too.

“It’s the perfect shelter,” she said in her sweet singsong accent. Even though I couldn’t see her face, I could feel her smiling.

Outside the thunder was still crashing and rain was pelting the roof not far above us. When lightning flashed, I caught a glimpse of Tansy on the floor of the loft and my heart melted. I had never seen her like this. She was more adorable than I’d ever imagined. All wet and uninhibited and free.

I reached around for what I’d come up to the loft for and found it, the kerosene lamp. I found the matches in the little box underneath the lamp and lit it up.

Suddenly the whole loft flooded with light, which wasn’t really all that bright but coming from pitch darkness, anything dim seems like the sun.

Finally I sighed heavily with relief that we were finally safely out of the storm, and I sagged down to my back next to her, staring up at the wooden beams, feeling her warmth next to mine as our arms touched and our fingers interlaced.

Tansy turned over and lay on my stomach, her sparkling eyes staring into mine. “Can I tell you a secret?” she whispered as the rain poured down outside.

“I love secrets,” I said, gazing back into her eyes.

“All I wanted tonight,” she said, her breath on mine, “was just the chance to get close to you. Just like this. And now because of the storm, I get my wish.”

I was beaming. It got me thinking that maybe we forget that even though the storm crashes in ferocity, it’s who you’re with in the storm that really matters. I was grateful to be with Tansy. Our lives would never be the same again after that because we’d spent one beautiful night together, not only in the shelter of a barn, but under the shelter of each other, in the midst of the storm.

Wrapping my arms around her, I kissed Tansy again, drawing her close, fulfilling the wish she had made, and the one that I hadn’t even had the courage to wish for myself, believing in vain that it would never come true.

The Things Time Can’t Touch

Artist Daniel Gerhartz: pinterest.com

Romantic Flash Fiction:

Morning sunlight streamed into the courtyard as the swallows who made a home here chirped their contented salute to the day. Nightingales were the loudest, their songs echoing like a symphony off the stucco walls of the elaborate Spanish home. A cool breeze tickled the air and the roses that grew in the courtyard gardens flourished in the spring dew. White columns lined the south porch near a stone staircase that led to the interior of the mansion.

You were leaning against one of the columns when I first saw you, where my breath was stolen from me for a moment, lost in the realization that I had been in the presence of heavenly beauty. I smiled at how the sunlight made your blonde hair glow like a golden tiara and how its delicate rays settled over your slim, creamy shoulders and melted into the artistry of your radiance. You were holding a rose, leaning against the column, your eyes melancholy, and my heart went out to you. Someone must have hurt you, and in that moment I wanted to slide into you and hold you and be the shoulder you could cry on.

Your eyes were distant, and at first, you didn’t even see me there watching you. You were twiddling with the golden pendant on your necklace, rubbing it languidly in your fingers, and I wondered if he gave that to you, and what special significance it held in your life. I wanted to know this and so much more about you. I wanted to step into your life like bathing in warm natural springs and making myself the heat that enveloped your skin, your heart, your tender soul. I wondered if you would even let me. I wondered why you were holding the rose, and if love was on your mind like it was on mine. Would you let me in if I revealed to you the light of my love, the sound of the birds singing in my heart?

Your eyes glanced up as if on cue to my thoughts that clung to your heart and refused to let go. You gasped and lowered your hand that held the rose.

“Who are you?” you asked.

“Coriander,” I said your name, coming closer. I sensed your discomfort but wanted to set your heart at ease. “We’ve met before. Years ago. Outside a quiet pub in the center of town, we shared a glass of wine and a kiss that I’ll remember to the day I die.”

Your eyes suddenly filled with recognition and your chest lifted as you lightly gasped. “Is it you? All those years ago. We were young, lonely travelers crossing paths in our journey to nowhere.”

“To somewhere,” I grinned, my heart filled with joy that you remembered.

“Barely old enough to drink.”

“But old enough to love,” I said, sliding into your personal space. You didn’t move, your face glowing in the sunlight.

“Yes,” you whispered, your eyes sparkling.

I took the rose from your hand and brought it to my nose, inhaling its sweet fragrance, closing my eyes and wondering if I was dreaming or really awake. I handed the rose back to you.

“What are you doing here?” you asked breathlessly.

“To find that woman I fell in love with back then,” I replied.

Your eyes returned to the melancholy woman I saw when I had first come in. “Time changes things,” you said.

“There are some things time can’t touch,” I responded, my fingers lightly brushing loose strands of hair away from your face. “Come out with me tonight. Let me show you.”

What True Love Really Means

Artist Morgan Kane; pinterest.com

Romantic short story:

Daylight splashed like an invisible steam bath across the desert forest as they hiked out of the clearing, the final stretch to the road on the other side, or so they hoped. Desert quail chirped on a nearby tree and somewhere overhead the squawk of a hawk echoed around the valley that was cordoned off by a sharply rising rocky mountain ridge to the north. The dry heat of the day was enough to melt wax to a puddle in zero-to-sixty.

Having already trudged through the endless valley for well over an hour, they were both exhausted and irritable. Dirk glanced up at the cloudless blue sky and spied two hawks circling overhead. “They’ve been following us for at least half an hour,” he grumbled. “We stay out here any longer, we’ll probably be their next meal.”

Cicely had other things on her mind – dreams of love and romance and being whisked away to a tropical island and made love to for hours on a sandy beach. It came from the paperback she’d been reading in the car on their long drive. She leaned on the dry branches of a nearby tree, basking in the shade for just a while longer. It felt good to rest her feet. Their car had broken down on the side of a long stretch of highway in the middle of nowhere several miles back. Reluctantly, she had followed Dirk into the desert to search for another route to the other side where there was a rest stop and they could find help. But their ten-minute hike to the so-called other side was turning into a nightmare – ever longer, ever hotter.

“What the hell do you think you’re doing?” Dirk barked at her. Her boyfriend going on three years always barked at her. It wasn’t just today, or yesterday in the car, or last week before they left. It was always. “There’ll be time to rest when we get to the rest stop. That’s why they call it that. Now, I told you to get moving. I meant it.”

“Can’t I just dream here a little while longer?” asked Cicely in a high singsong voice, her mind starting feel the effects of the heat. She wondered how long she’d be able to go on.

Dirk snickered sarcastically. “Oh, sure, dream on, Cicely. You’re always so good at that. Stuck in your own little dream world. Why don’t you ever think of anything practical? Like surviving in desert heat? Now, let’s go or I’m gonna leave your ass here.” There were other words he used. Jarring words. Words that cut her down and made her feel very small.

He always spoke to her that way. At first, she didn’t mind so much. At least he stayed with her. Thrown in and out of foster homes since the age of fourteen, Cicely was used to harsh talk and angry, hurtful words from men. Some men hit her. That’s usually when she would leave, and keep running. But with Dirk, at least he never hit her. It was just what he said to her that always got under her skin. She never thought of herself as all that bad. But when you hear it so many times, you’re tempted to believe it.

But today was the last straw. Deep down, she knew there was a better life than verbal abuse. In fact, she had never even realized that’s what it was. Until today. Until right now.

Cicely spun around and faced him, burning fire in her tear-stained eyes. “Go, Dirk! Just… go! Leave me here!”

Dirk was taken aback by her full-frontal counter-attack, speechless at her fearless bravura that she had never shown until now. When he regained his composure, that angry vein pulsed in his neck. “Why, you little…”

“What are you gonna do, Dirk?” she snapped, standing up to him, walking directly at him, her shoulders back, her head held high. Now she had him backing up. “We’re in the middle of nowhere. The desert heat could kill us before we reach whatever ghost of a destination you have in mind. Why… don’t… you just… leave?” she seethed. “Now!” She heard her voice echo across the valley.

Her heart was racing a mile a minute. She had touched a nerve and she knew it. He was staring at her with swirling emotions, hardboiled anger mixed with confusion. Finally he seemed to have made a decision, calming down and stepping away. “Fine,” he said, turning his back on her. Then as he walked away, he spoke over his shoulder. “You always come running back to me, anyway. If you ever make it out of this hell-hole, you’ll be back!”

“Don’t count on it,” she shot back.

When he was gone, she turned and scampered in the opposite direction, back to the street where they had come from. But after a half an hour of desert heat, she was starting to feel queasy. Using all of the inner resolve she had, she pushed on. She had to make it. Someone would have to drive past – eventually. After an hour, or however long it took, doubt and uncertainty began to pound her mind with Dirk’s voice. She kept hearing him in her mind berating her, tearing her down, telling her she was worthless. It was getting harder and harder to walk. Finally, she stumbled and fell to the desert sand.

But just as she was about to lose consciousness, she heard a sound in the distance. Of course, she couldn’t be sure if it was real or imagined, but it grew clearer and clearer as it approached. The sound of a vehicle. A motor! She glanced up through squinted eyes and thought she saw a dune buggy riding in her direction. Someone was coming for her! And then she passed out, knowing nothing after that.

Little did Cicely know in that moment that the man on that dune buggy would find her, take her to shelter, stay with her for days to help her recover, and in the process, fall in love with her. He would speak kindly to her, words she had never heard in her whole life. That she was worth more than priceless jewelry, that she had a future beyond her ragged past, that she was special. More than special to him. He would love her and find a home for them both where love was the ruling factor. And she would become a radiant bride, finally coming home, finally knowing what true love really meant.

Breaking Free

Artist Enoch Bolles; pinterest.com

Romantic Flash Fiction:

After running almost a mile into the deep forest, I finally found Honeydew lounging against the half-supine trunk of a tree. I stopped to catch my breath and loosen my tie and collar that had been suffocating me all afternoon. Sweat was pouring from my brow as I removed my suit jacket and hung it on a nearby branch.

Then I took in the scene – Honeydew in rare form – the woman I had met less than an hour ago on the lawn of one of the richest homes in the county. The formal Victorian dress that I’d last seen her in had been haphazardly tossed into a bush nearby along with her corset and other items of intimates. She casually lay back on the tree trunk with only one article of clothing wrapped around her body. Apparently, she’d found my white scarf. I watched her, entranced in her spell of beauty. The melting softness of her smooth skin drew me further in as I revered her seductive and delicate features.

Under her broad-rimmed straw sun hat, she joggled her thick, dark hair that hung in graceful curves over her slender shoulders. As she watched me appraising her, the tender moistness of her ruby red lips curled into the most adorable smile I have ever seen in my life. My heart melted at the sight, and I knew in that moment, beyond the shadow of a doubt, that I loved her.

After I caught my breath, I said, “Honeydew, everyone’s been wondering where you’ve run off to. Some of them were starting to worry.”

“Yet you were the only one who came to find me,” she replied suggestively with a flirtatious squint in her eyes.

I didn’t know what to say to that. What she didn’t know was that I had desperately needed to find her. One dance, one glorious spark that could light a flame, doesn’t disappear without the slightest measure of a broken heart. She had no idea how happy I was to have found her.

“The truth is,” she continued, her voice whimsical and free, “I hated that party, those people, that crowd. It was stifling, suffocating. I had to get out of there or I was going to faint. Or vomit. Whichever came first.”

“I thought they were your friends,” I said.

“My father’s,” she shot poignantly. “Not mine. I have no interest in conceited men and women that flash their wealth and play a role of expectation in society. I’ve never enjoyed being a part of that crowd. Never for a second have I even desired to be in the presence of those who do. Me, I like to live outside the box, to do the unexpected, to shed at my will the things that bind me… so here I am. You found me.”

Everything that she had said was what I had always thought in my heart. Everything she did was what I had wanted to do, too. For years. So why didn’t I? Why haven’t I? In that moment, I suddenly admired her most for her courage. So I thought I’d start right now on my own.

“Honeydew,” I began, “I think… that I am head over heals in love with you.”

And the Hills Cried Beautiful

Artist Arthur Sarnoff; photo: pinterest

Artist Arthur Sarnoff; photo: pinterest

Romantic Short Story:

For Daffodil, the world was a dark cluster of storm clouds and billowing thunder on the day she lost her darling love. From that moment on, even when the sun shone in the sky, the pouring rain of sadness in her heart would never end. Everything that she had ever loved or would love, so it seemed, all that she had depended on, all that had made her heart flutter, had died like spring flowers in winter snow, leaving nothing but emptiness in its wake and hopelessness in her heart. He was gone, and the aching loneliness in her soul felt like a thousand horses pressing her down, forcing her into submission to give up ever searching for love again.

What she hadn’t counted on, however, was that love would come searching for her. What she hadn’t imagined was that this new love would be even greater than the first.

It was a warm spring afternoon when Sage brought her to the mountains for a picnic on the grass. A ski lift transported them to the summit where they were the only ones around for miles. Vast views of mountain peaks that reached to clear blue skies above and flowery meadows in distant valleys captured their senses. A gentle breeze wafted clean fresh scents of azaleas and rhododendrons as birds sang hymns to a new season of love and hope.

The two of them mockingly argued on the place to set the picnic blanket down and when Sage half-jokingly refused her suggestion, Daffodil grabbed the picnic basket and hightailed down a path through the fields over the green hills. As she had hoped, he gave chase, laughing as he ran, and his infectious laugh started her giggling as she escaped over the ridge. Clearing the ridge came as a shock, however, which sharply sloped down at a 45-degree angle, catching her off guard. Without any thought whatsoever, Daffodil tumbled down the grassy slope, rolling over and over like a little girl and laughing the entire way down to the nearest glade that flattened out.

She turned to gather the things that had spilled out of the picnic basket, but when she looked back up the hill, it was already too late. Sage had tumbled down after her and rolled right on top of her, knocking her back. But somehow he was able to hold onto her in an embrace that kept her completely uninjured and the two of them laughed again as they rolled about in the glade until they finally came to a halt with Sage on top of her. She was grinning wide as they both caught their breath.

“How about right here?” Daffodil suggested.

Sage chuckled. “Right here it is,” he complied.

They must have stayed in that position for several minutes without moving, each gazing into the other’s eyes, not wanting to get up. Ever.

Daffodil caught the sparkle in his eye, the softness in his spirit, the clear indication that when he saw her, he looked straight to her heart and held it there. “What are you looking at?” she flirted.

Sage replied, his breath on her lips, “The most beautiful woman I’ve ever seen in my life.”

For a second it made her uncomfortable, but she melted into it, her eyes softening, receiving it gladly. “So we’re miles from civilization,” she began suggestively, her hands around his back drawing him closer. “What are you going to do with me?”

“First,” he said, grazing his lips tenderly over hers, “I’m going to kiss you.” And what a kiss it was. Deep, soulful, soothing like a warm bath in an outdoor pool. And when his lips separated, he said, “And then I’m going to ask you to marry me.”

Daffodil’s heart skipped a beat as she sharply drew back. “What?”

“Marry me, Daffodil,” he said, “and I’ll never let myself stop loving you for the rest of my life.”

Suddenly her past posted barriers like army defense posts around her heart. Fear had the upper hand and won out. “No,” she said flatly. “I can’t do that.”

The disappointment on his face was evident, and his eyes fell. She had to explain herself. It was only fair. For the next hour as they laid out the picnic blanket and feasted on roasted chicken, corn on the cob, and potato salad, Daffodil shared her story of loss, of hurt, of pain, of heartache that she would never let herself experience ever again. It wasn’t fair to Sage, she explained.

In the end, she left it with an open question, “After all of that, is love really strong enough for us?”

He had been quiet, silently listening and waiting. When they’d finished eating, he gave his answer. “Daffodil, I can accept your reasons. You’ve experienced love and also hurt. So have I. You’ve experienced courage, but also fear. I have, too. You’ve had great gain but also great loss. Is love strong enough for us? I love you, Daffodil. If you love me back, it will be strong enough. No matter how small we start. It will grow into a field of flowers like we see here. And not just a field, but hills, mountains, strong enough to hold us together forever.”

With many such words, he tried to persuade her as they held hands and traipsed up the path back to the ski lift. She was grateful that he didn’t give up on her, even after she had rejected his proposal, and she continually pondered what he was telling her.

When her heart cried sorrow for what she had lost in the past, the hills in their desperate silent plea would cry out how beautiful her life really was. Gazing into his eyes, envisioning her future with him, she smiled and her heart melted.

Pretty soon, she thought, in spite of the past, she was going to believe the voice of the hills.

A Valentine’s Wish

Artist Jon Whitcomb; photo: pinterest

Artist Jon Whitcomb; photo: pinterest

Romantic Flash Fiction:

You have dreamed of this moment for years, decades even, and now you have it. Step aboard the cruise liner headed for destiny, next stop: true love. Gaze reverently at the light of the full moon shining magnificently over rippling water, fragmenting into star-like sparkles on the surface of the warm sea. The evening breeze ruffles your elegant dress, sending goosebumps over every pore of your skin, and as you close your eyes, you dream of what you have come for, luxuriating in anticipation for what joy awaits.

With a step of courage, you stride out alone onto the open-air terrace with a view of the stars glistening in the night sky. You whirl around in your dress and feel it twirl, the evidence that you have stepped up to the status of a princess. But then, even here, doubts defy you like an army on a frontal assault. They whisper harsh words of your past and play to your fears, stinging your heart like a poisonous ray, until all that is left of your courage are the cold feet you walked in on. Yet there is something deep within you willing you to go on and fight the fears like a counter-battalion of fortitude you never knew you had. This is destiny. And you will not be overcome.

Sounds from the galley below drift up to the terrace where you stand, the exquisite music of a philharmonic orchestra, playing your tune, giving you hope.

Out of the stairwell, on the other side of the finely polished terrace, steps a man whose confidence and gentle demeanor flow from his heart, capturing yours in one smooth motion. He smiles to you as he walks over. Your heart beats wildly with a mixture of anxiety and apprehension. This couldn’t be happening, you think. And yet it is. He sees you and finds you and comes to you.

Words could hardly do this meeting justice, so he slides his warm hand into yours, entwining his fingers through yours, drawing you near. His other hand slips around your back as his touch electrifies your spirit, like the fire of a torch. Gently and hardly noticeably at all, you find yourself swaying together, dancing to the rhythm of the philharmonic melody. You lean closer and close your eyes, swept away by this man whom you feel like you’ve known for years.

As you dance, your cheek touches his and you feel an overwhelming desire to kiss him. As your heart melts under the bliss of true love, you turn to him, your lips a hair’s breath from his. His arms are wrapped around your waist and you feel his warmth through every part of your being.

As you gaze into his sparkling, inviting eyes, he grins. “Happy Valentine’s Day, sweetheart,” he says. “I knew you’d come.”