A platonic Dom/sub relationship?
It’s a damn odd arrangement.
When FOR SPARROW, the third book in the Dream Dominant Collection, won the 2018 Golden Flogger Award for Best BDSM Book in the category of BDSM Light, I was beyond thrilled. I felt validated that A) the folks at the BDSM Writers Con liked my book, and B) they approved of the way I portrayed the lifestyle.
That second part was important to me, because with Sparrow, I wanted to do something different. We’ve all read and loved those billionaire Dom/poor little sub books. But with this book, I wanted to write something more realistic in honor of the regular couples out there who happily live out their power exchange lifestyle in quiet anonymity.
In the book FOR SPARROW, Jessi Crenshaw is devastated when her Dominant husband Graham unexpectedly dies. But as it turns out, Graham had an inkling that his health was in decline, and he has made arrangements for Jessi in the event of his death. He has asked his young friend and mentee in the lifestyle, firefighter paramedic Judd Farris, to look after Jessi if the need ever arises.
It’s a responsibility Judd takes very seriously, and he’s determined to honor his friend’s unorthodox request, at least until Jessi finds a new Dom of her own. But as time goes by, Judd realizes he’d like to be that man.
Here’s a snippet from FOR SPARROW.
Back inside the house, Judd washed up in the kitchen sink. Jessi handed him a dishtowel to dry his hands. He eyed the old dishwasher, then looked to Jessi.
“I don’t really feel like messing with a dishwasher today, do you?”
Jessi’s eyes widened. “Oh, well, no, of course not. I’m sure you have plenty to do. Don’t worry about it at all,” she said quickly.
Judd shook his head. “It’s a beautiful day. Why spend it inside?” He stood straight, hands on his hips. “How do you feel about stand-up paddleboarding?”
She worked her mouth for a moment, frowning. “I don’t guess I’m opposed to it, as an activity, you know. I’m sure people enjoy it. Live and let live,” she giggled nervously.
“I mean,” he cupped her elbow gently, “how do you feel about going? With me. Today.”
“Oh, I don’t know, Judd. I’m kind of the queen of klutz.” Jessi’s face turned bright pink. “I don’t know if I’d be any good at it.”
Judd’s eyes narrowed slightly. “Not sure I like my little one putting herself down. Besides, there’s nothing to be ‘good at,’ you just…stand and paddle.” He pantomimed for her.
He saw the reluctance in her face and gave his best reassuring smile, eyes sparkling. “Come on, Jessi, it’ll be fun.”
Slowly, her smile spread to match his. “Okay. Let’s do it.” She went upstairs and quickly changed into her swim suit and beach cover up.
On the way to the surf shop, Judd stopped by his place to pick up his paddleboard and gear. He let them both into the townhouse and Jessi waited as he bounded up to the second level.
“It won’t take me a second to load my stuff into the truck,” he called from upstairs. Jessi clutched her hands together anxiously as she surveyed Judd’s living room. Everything was neat and tidy. She didn’t know why that surprised her.
You just think about the stereotypical ‘bachelor pad,’ she supposed.
Crossing the room, she saw that the view from the sliding glass doors was breathtaking. She imagined what it would be to wake up with a view of the ocean every morning.
“Almost ready,” Judd said, returning downstairs wearing aqua board shorts, a white t-shirt, and a Marlins ball cap. A pair of black Oakley sunglasses hung around his neck from a black strap.
He held up a small black cube. “I want to try out my new GoPro while we’re out there today,” he grinned.
Five minutes later, they were on their way north, heading for Blueline Surf and Paddle on A1A. They rented gear for Jessi and declined the offer of a lesson. “I’ve got it, man,” Judd smiled to the clerk.
Jessi was surprised to find that they were going to put into the river right next to Guanabanas, a local outdoor dining hotspot just across the street from the surf shop. “Afterwards, I’ll buy you a cocktail,” Judd promised.
After a brief orientation, Judd helped Jessi onto the board and gently pushed her out into the Loxahatchee River. “Am I supposed to wear the life jacket?” Jessi called back to him, indicating the ocean blue PFD currently resting on the nose of her board.
“Can you swim?”
“Of course!” she returned.
“Then you don’t have to wear it. But you do have to have it with you, it’s the law.”
Judd smiled as he watched her wobble slightly. She looked hot in what was actually a modest blue tankini, her auburn hair clipped up and off her neck, the red highlights gleaming in the sunlight. He could only imagine Jessi in a bikini. Did imagine it. Then tried to think of something else, before she noticed his arousal.
Sighing deeply, he clipped the GoPro to the bill of his cap and paddled quickly to catch up with her.
When their hour was up, they returned Jessi’s gear to the shop, and put Judd’s things back in the truck. With Jessi’s white beach dress back in place, they wandered into Guanabanas and found a small high-top table in the bar area. A lone guitarist was playing Jason Mraz covers on the tiki stage.
Jessi ordered a Cat 5 hurricane while Judd opted for a local brew, and they chose a few appetizers. After the server left, Judd pressed the button on the GoPro. “So, Jessi, what do you think of paddle boarding?”
Her grin was stunning. “I loved it! It was so much fun, and way easier than I ever thought.”
He leaned into her and held the camera at arm’s length. “Well, you had a kick-ass teacher, so…” They both laughed into the camera.
Deciding that he had enough footage for the day, Judd shut off the camera, and he and Jessi chatted companionably about the day’s adventure.
During a lull in the conversation, Judd wrinkled his brow thoughtfully. “Was Graham much of an outdoor kind of guy?”
“Graham?” Jessi chuckled. “No. He wasn’t really into sports and things. He was something of an academic.”
Judd looked thoughtful. “What about you?”
“Me? Oh, I don’t know.” Her gaze was far off. “I remember once I took the kids camping. They wanted to go so badly, but Graham just wasn’t about sleeping outside, you know?”
She laughed lightly. “Not when there are perfectly good air-conditioned rooms available.” She stirred her drink with her straw.
“But you enjoyed yourself today?” His gaze was earnest.
“Oh, God yes. I’d love to do this again.”
Judd gnawed the edge of his thumb thoughtfully. “What other things have you always wanted to try, but never have?”
Jessi shrugged and rolled her eyes. “I don’t know.”
He watched the flush creep up her neck, but stayed quiet, waiting for her.
She sighed when she realized he was going to remain silent. “I guess…I’ve always sort of wanted to try scuba diving.” She looked at him out of the corner of her eye.
Judd grinned broadly. “We can make that happen. I’m certified, and I know an instructor. We can get you out there in no time.”
“I don’t know, I mean… Maybe I should try snorkeling first.” Jessi blushed and slugged back the remainder of her hurricane.
He nodded. “We can do that, too. Anytime. You know, we don’t have to just work all the time. We can get together for fun.” He lowered his voice. “As your Dom, I’m supposed to push you, to help you grow.”
Jessi looked up at him shyly. “Yeah, I know. It’s kind of exciting.”
His grin was dazzling. “This is good. This is really good.”FOR SPARROW by Pandora Spocks