Tuesday, November 11, 2014

"The World: According to Rachael" Teaser #2

Two weeks from today "The World: According to Rachael" will be live! Here's a little something to hold you over...

I don’t arrive home until after midnight. This is my norm; not an exception. I toss my briefcase and purse on a chair by the front door and head straight up the stairs to my bedroom. Briefly, I contemplate taking a shower, but my bed is screaming my name way too loudly.
Consulting the clock on my phone, I ponder what I should do about Graham’s phone call. We never made it official if I was to call him or him to call me. Is midnight too late to call? Growing up, my parents said the rule was eight o’clock. Does that still apply when you’re almost forty?
After a long internal debate, I decide to send a text.
Me: Just walked in the door. Call if you’re still awake.
My phone barely hits the quilt on my bed before it’s ringing. A huge smile breaks across my face as I scoop it up.
“Hi.” My voice sounds dreamy. I’m hopeless.
“Rachael.” God, the way he says my name takes my breath away. It’s not Rachael, one syllable, like most people say it. He turns it into a prayer; “Ray-ch-ellll.” Just a hint of Texas twang.
“How was your day?” he asks.
“Boring. Then gaudy flowers arrived, and it was great.”
He chuckles. “Glad to hear it.” His voice is as smooth as the bourbon I drank earlier in the evening.
“What are you still doing awake?” I ask. “Don’t you have to be at work in, like, six hours?”
“I do. But I could ask the same question of you.”
I’m still in workout clothes but I crawl under my quilt, turning off my lights, and snuggle into my pillow. “I don’t sleep much.”
“Me either,” he says as if he’s excited that he’s found another thing that we have in common. “Hold a second,” he instructs.
He must be speaking to the dog because he says, “Go get on your bed, boy. Good night.”
I’m not a huge fan of pets, especially in the house, but the level of endearment in his voice for his dog does funny things to my heart.
“Sorry about that. George gets all testy if he doesn’t get his night pets.”
“I’ve heard that it’s very important for dogs to get at least twelve hours of sleep a day.”
“Ha! If that’s the case then George will live forever. Sometimes I bring him to lacrosse practice so he can get more exercise. He’s pretty useless.” As he talks about George, and school, and coaching lacrosse, I find myself envious of his life. He sounds happy and passionate about what he does. He doesn’t have a countdown clock to when his career is over.
“So did you broker world peace today?” he asks.
“Hmm . . . Not world peace, per se. But the President and I did spend a good part of the evening discussing his priorities for his final year in office.” The words “final year” are hard to choke out.
I snuggle deeper into my thick mattress and pull my quilt up around my ears.
“I’ve heard that immigration reform might be a part of the agenda,” he says.
I give a rueful laugh. “You and all of Washington have heard that. Apparently, it’s the worst-kept secret in this town.”
“Want my opinion?” He sounds tentative.
I’m bone tired, but I can always discuss politics. “Sure.”
“I think the White House is going to have to address the issue. If it’s not President Jones, then it’s the next administration.” His words are like a knife in my heart. “Our country can’t afford to keep providing social services to illegal immigrants. Naturalize them so we can start collecting the revenue.”
 “Graham, that argument doesn’t make sense.” I sit up straighter in bed and prepare to defend my position. “The amount of taxes that we would collect from the new citizens does not come close to equaling what we pay out in social services. Plus, you’re giving the green light to millions of people that it’s okay to enter our country illegally.”
“Forget the economics. The financial models support my argument.” I swallow hard. “What this is really about is the safety and security of our citizens. There are health issues, like vaccinations, that must be addressed. And don’t get me started on border security and the smuggling of drugs and weapons into this country.”
His voice is strong. “So you agree with splitting up families when we send one or two illegal residents back to their home country, leaving the rest of the members here?”
“Wow. Don’t you sound like a bleeding heart liberal? They shouldn’t have entered the country here illegally in the first place.” I wrap one arm around my chest defiantly.
“Look. I don’t see that this issue has a one-size-fits-all approach to fixing it, and for the record, I’m not a liberal. What I do see as a solution is that if someone can prove that they’ve been working here in the U.S. for a defined period of time, and are in good standing with the law why not naturalize them. I mean, isn’t that how most of our ancestors started out here?” His voice rises as he finishes.
This is fun. I’m really enjoying our verbal sparring match, but it’s late. “Well, Coach Jackson. I see you can take the man out of politics, but not the politics out of the man. I say we table this discussion for tonight.”
He chuckles. “Fair enough.” Then, he changes the subject. “When can I see you again?””
“During the week is really hard for me. You see what time I get home. I don’t know. Let me check my calendar tomorrow, and I’ll text you.”
“You know I didn’t get much sleep last night because every time I closed my eyes I saw how gorgeous you were when you got lost in me.” Graham drops that little grenade out there.
At just the reminder of our heated make-out session, my body flushes. “It was a nice kiss . . .”
 “Oh, Rachael, there wasn’t anything nice about it. It was dirty in the best kind of way.” When he delivers this line, albeit a very good line, his voice drops a couple of octaves. I want to climb through the airwaves and kiss him again. I have to remind myself that we just met, and I am getting more comfortable with the idea that this may be more than sexual. But right now, as turned on as I am, my body is not very pleased with this waiting-and-getting-to-know-each-other nonsense.
“Are you in bed?”
“Yes. Are you in bed also?”
“I am.”
“What are you wearing?” he asks, and then quickly corrects himself. “No. Don’t tell me. I’ll just spend another night not sleeping.” After a pause, he adds, “I think we’re going to need to speed up this getting-to-know-each-other business.”
I giggle—yes! Giggle. My thoughts exactly, Graham. “First thing in the morning, I’ll check my calendar.”

“You do that. Now, let’s watch something on TV that’s very PG.”

"The World: According to Rachael" is live on November 25. You can pre-order it now at http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00OMBKXDC


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