were chatting on my radio show yesterday about how scenes that aren't
full on sex can still be sexy. I thought first of this one, but then
started mentally reviewing scenes from other books which also
qualify. I decided to pull out my favorite Not Sex Scenes from my
novels (both published and not published) to share with you.
Indian Summer is my historical romance,
set in Spanish controlled Florida in 1739. Gabriella Deza is the
daughter of the Spanish governor. Manuel Enriques is her father's
aide de campe. On her birthday, he admits to her that he's loved her
a long time and wants to marry her. Gabriella is somewhat overwhelmed
by this pronouncement. Like many young women of her era, she's
completely ignorant of the ways between men and women. She has many
questions and fears. Though they are closely chaperoned, Manuel and
Gabriella finally get a few precious minutes alone.
could tell there was something on my mind, but he waited for me to
bring it up in my own time. Instead he told me an amusing story of
something that happened when he was a child. I don't remember what it
was. I wasn't really paying attention, but trying to formulate my
question. He reached the end of his story and chuckled, noticing I
wasn't joining in.
His tone brought me out of my thoughts and I focused on him. He
pointed between my eyes. "The crinkle is back and the lips."
made the exaggerated face as he had done before, but this time I
didn't laugh. He lifted my chin with his finger.
to me, my sweet. You've something very important to ask and you don't
know how. Shall I guess?"
shrugged slightly, nodding, unable to look him in the eye. I could
feel a lump growing in my throat and the tears burned in the corners
of my eyes.
came upon you when I spoke to your brother, so I think I know what it
blushed deeply, not looking him in the eyes.
if I know how your mind works and I think I do by now, you want to
know if I'm as innocent of this union as you are."
looked me in the eyes a moment. I blushed even more deeply and
started to cry. He moved away from me a step or two, glancing at my
father, turning back to me. He looked down and then back up, biting
his lower lip as he always did when he was concentrating deeply on a
you want a pleasant lie to soothe you, or do you want the truth?"
He handed me his handkerchief.
took a shuddering breath. "The truth, please. I don't want there
ever to be lies between us. I think I know the answer and I'll not be
angry with you."
wouldn't look at me. He gazed at the moon rising full and white above
our heads. I knew what his answer would be, but I wanted to hear it
from him. I hoped I would hold to my word and not be angry with him.
My chest hurt with love and fear and unshed tears. I could hardly
breathe while I waited.
gazed upon a distant star, speaking so softly I could hardly hear
him. It was if the night lost its sounds, his voice became crystal
clear, all I could hear.
not innocent as you are, no, Mi Cariña. I've known the pleasures of
the flesh. I have, in many ways, led a very bad life until now. I've
over indulged in women, drink, gambling and other things I would
rather forget. Perhaps it was being on my own here. I went a little
wild." He stopped, facing me squarely this time.
promise you, however, since first I began to court you, there has
been no one else in my life." He looked mortified by his
confession. "But since your illness, when I thought I would lose
you, I've not gambled and I've had wine only with my meals. I'm
trying to be the man you deserve, Sweet Gabriella."
held out both hands to him. He came toward me and took them in his
what makes you think you aren't already?"
smile was tinged with sadness. "You deserve a man who is true to
you, not one who used to look at any woman he met as an object for
his use. I fear, at one time in my youth, that's all I ever
considered a woman to be."
hugged him as if my life depended upon it. I didn't want a kiss, not
then. All I wanted was to feel his arms around me, holding me,
promising me his heart, his strength, his trust. I whispered into his
love you so."
stroked my hair and held me close. It was not like sometimes, that
burning, aching feeling. I felt whole, complete, as if half of me had
been missing for years and I hadn't known.
love you more than words can ever tell, Gabriella."
I love you with all my heart."
don't know how long we stood there, I didn't care. All I wanted was
for him to hold me. He spoke quietly to me again.
do you forgive me my transgressions?"
looked up at him with tears in my eyes. "Whatever transgressions
you may have committed, that's between you and God. That you love me
and you've honored me with the truth, that's enough. But if you must
have my forgiveness, then I give it to you freely."
held me away from him, gazing at me. A look of wonder filled his
handsome face. "You're an incredible woman, do you know that?
I've wanted to tell you this for so long, but didn't know how. We've
had so little time alone. I thank God for providing this opportunity
to us." He embraced me again.
a terrible thing that our society is so very strict about what is
proper to discuss or not to discuss. I dream for a day when men and
women can talk freely about whatever is on their minds. And they can
have time alone together without someone watching over them for fear
they'll get to know each other too well." He cracked his wry
smile, his eyes twinkling like twin stars.
sound just like Maria. She's always talking about how to change
things, how the customs are foolish. If she could, I think she would
run naked down a street in broad daylight just to set people off."
laughed quietly at this so as not to wake Papa. We were enjoying our
privacy too much for that.
if you were to do that, I would be running wildly after you, ripping
off my own."
didn't know whether to be shocked or laugh, so I settled for
laughter. "I believe you would too!"
or not I would follow you to the ends of the earth, I promise you.
You're my heart and my soul. If you were taken from me, I'd look
until I found you, or I died trying. Since we are telling the truth,
I'll share something else with you I'm sure has been on your mind.
You're scared of the ways between men and women, aren't you?"
couldn't speak to him, the answer burned in my face and showed in my
eyes. He took my chin in his hand. Raising it gently, he looked me in
the eye. I tried, but couldn't meet his gaze.
Cariña, there is nothing to fear, I promise you. Would I ever do
anything to hurt you?"
shook my head, wide eyed.
don't be afraid of this, for it's wonderful, not something to fear."
He held me close, but gently. "When we are close, or we kiss,
don't you feel something stirring inside you? And does it please you,
what you feel?"
tried to meet his gaze, but found that I couldn't. "It makes me
feel good, but ashamed as well."
ashamed, my sweet?"
I'm not sure I should feel these things for you right now. It's
wrong." Sighing, I hesitated. I simply didn't know what to say.
think it's wrong for you to want me to touch you, to get to know your
was nuzzling my neck as he moved us out of the direct line of sight
from the window. His voice changed, grew deeper, more sensual, full
of barely controlled passion.
don't think it's right, but you want it, don't you?" His breath
was hot on my neck, his lips demanding mine.
couldn't restrain myself. I wanted him, in a way I couldn't describe.
It felt so very good to have him touch me, kiss me, hold me. I could
feel him hard against me and I knew that was what I wanted. That
would ease the burning inside me. He could quench the fire with his
power. But I knew we couldn't, mustn't, wouldn't until we married. I
clung to him, my passion meeting his own, with his hands traveling my
body in an erotic journey, exploring with his hands and lips.
words exploded in my mind and I jumped as if someone had shouted
behind me. Summoning all my resolve, I pushed gently away from him.
At first I thought I'd made him angry. Then I realized he was not
angry with me, but with himself. Anger fought with lust as he gazed
down at me, embarrassed by his behavior. I could read shame in his
so very sorry. I've dishonored you with my conduct. I'm like a
stallion after a choice mare. I'm so ashamed!"
grabbed his hat and started for the gate. I took his arm, holding him
nothing to be ashamed of. Nothing!" I took his face between my
hands, kissing him hard on the lips. "If you're guilty, then so
am I, for all I could think of was how much I wanted you! I need you
to quench this fire inside."
you had the control, you pulled away. Gabriella, don't you
understand? If you hadn't stopped me, I would have ravaged you here
and now! It's how I am. I'm a wicked man and I don't deserve you!"
He made as if to pull away, but I restrained him once again.
you mustn't say that! You're not wicked, only human. God doesn't
expect us to be perfect, my love, but society does. So we don't
embarrass our families or dishonor them, then we must not."
agreed hesitantly, desire fighting honor. I could see the inner
struggle pulling him apart. This love, this great passion would drive
us both mad!
right. Of course you're right. Oh, God, Gabriella, I can't wait to
marry you! If I could shout our love to the four winds and marry you
tonight, I would do so! This just isn't enough. I want all of you,
not the little bit we're allowed when we can snatch it."
buried his face in my hair and I breathed in deeply his scent of
someday, sometime in our future, our lives can be different, Manuel.
I can only hope."
kissed me again, deeply, his tongue probing my mouth. I couldn't get
enough of him. I felt if I had to stop kissing him I was going to die
on the spot. I knew my father was near, my sister was just inside,
but I didn't care.
hands fondled me again in places he shouldn't touch, but I wanted him
to. I gave myself over the passion I felt, but part of me knew it was
wrong. A tiny voice kept insisting that we must stop and yet I knew I
didn't want to.
I couldn't, mustn't - not here, not like animals! This should be a
beautiful moment, not one of harsh lust. I tried to pull away, but he
held me tightly, not wanting to let me go. I grabbed his face as he
leaned over to kiss my breasts.
I whispered, not wanting to. "No, not this way."
wanted more than anything to let him touch me again, to kiss me, but
I couldn't allow it. There was much anger in his face. But I saw
reason prevail as he stood straight, adjusting his coat, shirt and
tie. Briefly I saw the temper flair that Aunt Securo had mentioned.
It was not directed at me, but again with himself. He was furious at
his own weakness.
so sorry." I started but it hardly seemed enough.
knew that I had gotten him in a state that no man should be in
without release and I knew I couldn't give that to him. I put my hand
on his chest, gazing into his eyes.
you found relief with another, I would understand."
looked at me puzzled for a moment, his mind befuddled by the
unconsummated act. "I promised you I'd have no other women and I
mean it. If I have to dive into a pool of freezing water, I'll
went to kiss me farewell, but thought better of it. I knew if he had
touched me then, I couldn't and wouldn't have said no.
me, something, Cariña. Promise we'll wed as soon as we may, for if I
can't have you soon, I think I'll burst into tiny pieces."
promise, my love! As soon as we are able!"
kissed my hand and ran to his buggy. I heard him cluck to the horses
and drive rapidly away. My heart skipped a beat with each click of
the ladies' hooves on the road.
I went back inside, I found the library deserted. Maria had gone up
to bed and so had Papa, apparently not realizing I was still outside.
As I locked up the windows, I couldn't help thinking, "Oh, we
could have, we could have after all! And no one would have known!"