The female writers, for whatever reason (men?), don’t much believe in heroes, which makes their kind of storytelling perhaps a better fit for these cynical times. Their books are light on gunplay, heavy on emotional violence. Murder is de rigueur in the genre, so people die at the hands of others—lovers, neighbors, obsessive strangers—but the body counts tend to be on the low side. “I write about murder,” Tana French once said, “because it’s one of the great mysteries of the human heart: How can one human being deliberately take another one’s life away?” Sometimes, in the work of French and others, the lethal blow comes so quietly that it seems almost inadvertent, a thing that in the course of daily life just happens. Death, in these women’s books, is often chillingly casual, and unnervingly intimate. As a character in Alex Marwood’s brilliant new novel, The Darkest Secret, muses: “They’re not always creeping around with knives in dark alleyways. Most of them kill you from the inside out.”
Okay but imagine Gaston going into the village after a hunt, prowling for a good half hour just for the perfect bouquet to attempt to gain at least your attention as he had been trying since you came to live in the village. Then, when he’s found the perfect flowers that made him think of you instantly, he sees you making your way towards the bakery from afar and his heart picks up its pace, beats rapidly and his toned legs wobble slightly as no other person has ever made him feel quite like you have just by walking along the market.
(even if he is going to have to work much harder to gain your interest (; )
The water was freezing as it lapped up Yuuri’s ankles. He held onto Makkachin’s vest keeping the poodle from running into the deep end. She whined and tugged. Yuuri looked back at the beach where Victor was rubbing lotion onto his already lobster red skin. They haven’t even been out for an hour.
“Afraid of a little sun?” Victor looked up and scowled behind Gucci sunglasses.
“Afraid of burning alive more like it. Is she giving you trouble?” Before Yuuri could answer, the dog jerked forward sending them both into the water. It was shallow enough for Yuuri to sit up, spitting out salt water. Makkachin took advantage of the new position to give him several wet puppy kisses. “I’ll take that as a yes.”
“Join us! The water isn’t bad once you get used to it!”
The response was a mistake the moment Victor said it. The man himself even winced. “Come over here and make me.” Yuuri was up and sprinting towards the beach in a heart beat. Victor yelped as he was picked up and half carried half dragged towards the water. Makkachin ran besides them delighted that her Dad was going to join them and New Dad.
“What do you think Makkachin? Should we throw him in?” The dog knelt down and barked tail beating the sand a mile a minute.
“Yuuri!” Victor could barely speak through his laughter. “I’m your coach! I’ll make practice hell tomorrow.”
Yuuri took the final steps into the water and trudged through until he was hip deep. “One…”
“A 15 mile run!”
“600 laps around the rink!”
“Your show will be nothing but quads!”
Victor sputtered up water and flipped his wet bangs back. Makkachin barked and jumped splashing them both in the process. Yuuri was hunched over in laughter as Victor readjusted his glasses scowling. “I was never this mean to my coach! You’re supposed to respect me.”
“I heard the stories about what you did to Yakov. This is nothing.” Yuuri stuck his hand out helping Victor up. Makkachin bumped the back of his knees making them step closer. Yuuri looked up as Victor’s hands tugged through his hair slicking his bangs back.
“Y’know…this is a good look for you. You should wear it outside of competition.” Yuuri gulped and nodded which seemed to remind Victor what was happening. His hands pulled back, and he laughed the worst of it off…but Yuuri could still see the blush through the sunburn.