Isabelle Peterson Exclusive - Feels Like a Dream

Feels Like  a Dream


Like most men, Kevin Parker had always dated women his age or younger. Then after dating an older woman for a couple of weeks (now just a good friend, ElizabethBethFairchild), Kevin developed a new perspective on love and romance. With his newfound insight, Shelby OSullivan catches Kevins eye. Confident. Funny. Beautiful. Getting to know her, he quickly realized that she is the woman of his dreams.

Nine years older than Kevin, a history of less than amazing boyfriends, and a health history she feels is tarnished, Shelby OSullivan has avoided falling in love over the past several years. She doesnt want to fall for Kevins southern charms and sinful good looks, but soon finds herself doing just that.

Is their romance a dream come true or a nightmare in the making?

Feels Like a Dream Deleted Scene

Monday, June 10, 2013

Id been looking forward to this night for so long, I could hardly believe it was here. Tonight, I was finally getting to take Shelby out on a date. A proper date. I was surprised to find myself nervous about this. Its one thing when you ask someone out and they agree and you go out that following weekend. Quite another when the girl makes you wait three weeks.

I had raced home from my teaching job at Greenwich Village Academy, ditching after school hours, something I rarely did, to get ready. We were meeting at five oclock and I had only twenty minutes to get ready before I had to leave the apartment. I took a quick shower then attempted to get dressed. I looked at myself in the mirror, and quickly ripped off the long-sleeved black U2 360°Tour t-shirt I had on from the concert my buddies and I had gone to in Montreal July of 2011, and tossed it onto the bed with the white button-down Id already rejected. I wanted to look good for Shelby. Really good. Getting her to agree to this date was like getting congress to balance the national debt.

So, the plan for tonight was low-key'.  No reservations. Not even a restaurant in mind. Well, only sort of. I didnt have a restaurant in mind, but Shelby and I had been talking about Broadway shows, and I knew that she really wanted to see Avenue Q. So, I did break our little agreement that things would be low-key. I actually had a friend from NYU who was a theatre and stage production major, and worked lights for the show. He was able to get us primo tickets at the New World Stages to see the show at eight tonight.

I finally decided on my favorite, a black button-down, a pair of jeans, and my black boots. I straightened my lightly gelled hair and put on a bit of cologne and headed out the door.

Wed agreed to meet at Union Square, at Fifteenth Street and Park Avenue at five oclock. She looked at me odd when Id suggested the time to meet, but when I explained that I thought (well, my neighbor and our mutual friend, Phoebe, suggested) that it would be fun to be adventurous and walk around until we found a place to eat, she agreedwith a smile. Apparently the adventurous attitude sat well with her. And I did make sure to thank Phoebe when I saw her.

As soon as I came up from the subway, I scanned the crowds, but didnt see her, so I propped myself up against one of the many ornate lampposts and watched the crowds. It was a great place to people watch. There was a street performing troupe of dancers on the Park Avenue side of the square, and a small garage band on the University Place side. Vendors were selling everything from balloons to shirts to ice cream. An artist was drawing a caricature of a young couple, and another was creating a sand art mandala. There were tourists gawking at it all, and New Yorkers ignoring all of it.

I was checking the time on my phone when I heard a familiar voice call my name. I turned and my stomach dropped when I spotted a short strawberry blonde running up to me. Erica. Erica and I were together for two years, but we were on two different wavelengths. I loved being a teacher; Erica took every opportunity to encourage meto go back for an educational administrators degree so I could be the principal of a school, seemingly embarrassed by my career path of just teaching. I liked my small condo, but Erica liked to drag us to open houses on Sunday afternoons to look at other options. She used to drag me shopping, and I used to drag her camping. I liked to go out dancing; Erica always refused, unless it was at a wedding of one of her many sorority sisters. And speaking of marriage, barely a week would pass where she wouldnt find a way to drop hints about what she liked in engagement rings or wedding themes. We started out fine, but it was obvious that she was looking for prestige and status, things that didnt mean very much to me. And I was not interested in marriage, at least not to Erica. Regardless, I still cared for her as a person, so I put on a smile and stepped toward her.

Erica, good to see you,I said leaning in and giving her a friendly kiss on the cheek.

Good to see you, too. What are you up to?

Oh, just running errands like crazy, the wedding is only six weeks away and oh, right. Um. Wow. I…”

I spotted a ginormous diamond ring on her left hand and wondered how she could even move her arm. Wow. Youre getting married, I see,I said, relieved and happy for her. Whos the lucky guy?

Yeah, thanks. His name is Shane Sloan.She reached into her purse and pulled out her phone, a device I seriously thought was permanently attached to her hand at times. She opened up the photos app and started showing me pictures of a man who even I had to agree was good looking, and seemed right up Ericas ally wearing a necktie in almost every photo, and a tuxedo in a few. Hes a lawyer, likely to make partner in the next six months or so. Hes got this amazing condo on Fifth Avenue by Central Park.Yup. Shane seemed to check every box on Ericas wish list for the perfect man.

Erica kept talking, barely taking a breath as she did, filling me in on every detail of her whirlwind romance with Shane when something caught my eye. I turned my head slightly to see Shelby enjoying the music the small band was playing. I was taken aback and almost didnt recognize her. Ive only ever seen her with her hair pulled up, probably dictated by restaurant and food service policies, and wearing all black which was the uniform. Now, her hair fell in soft waves down over her shoulders. It was actually blonder than I thought it would be. And she was wearing colors that really suited her: a bright blue shirt, and a pair of bright pink pants that came down to a few inches above her ankles. Her adorable ankles. And on her left ankle, she had a beautiful tattoo of a Celtic knots and a Celtic cross on the outside like a clasp for the knots of the anklet. I found myself awestruck and wondering if she had other tattoos. I grewexcitedwondering where else she might have tats hidden on her body. I hoped she wouldnt notice my bodys reaction.

Kevin? Kevin? Whered you go you silly boy,Erica said pulling on my arm like a petulant child.

Sorry, Erica, but I just spotted my date,I said, not tearing my eyes from the woman who had the lions share of my attention.

Oh!she gasped. Im sorry. I havent even let you get a word in edgewise, I—”

Uh-huh. No problem. Listen, you take care okay, and congratulations. Im sure Shane will make you very happy.I gave Erica a brief hug and headed over to Shelby who was thoroughly enjoying the music of the decent band.

I slid up next to Shelby, surprising her briefly, took her hand and got my groove on, twirling her and then pulling her in close. The song had a rumba beat and I easily navigated Shelby through the steps, and she had a terrific sense of rhythm. She relaxed in my arms and enjoyed the dance, and soon we were surrounded by people watching our own little street performance. The song ended, and the crowd applauded. I gestured to Shelby, who took a gracious courtesy, and then I took a quick bow myself. I fished out a few bills for the band and dropped them in the guitar box, then led Shelby away.

Well, that was the best start to a date Ive ever had,she said, beaming.

And you are a fabulous dancer. I thought you might be.

Oh really? Is that what youve been thinking sitting in seat five?

Oh is that my seat number? Five?

She nodded.

So, in which direction should we head?I asked. And do you have any kind of food in mind?

Lets just see what we see,she said smiling. And how about we head north?

I took her hand, my heart pounding in my ears adoring the feel of how her hand fit perfectly in mine, and we started north on Park Avenue.

So, how did you learn to dance so well?she asked.

My abuela taught me,I shrugged. When she first started teaching me, I must have been ten? I know all the dances.

Grandmother, right?


So what was that one back there?

Pretty much a rumba.

Ah, thats the dirty dance,she said.

What?I asked, both stunned and stifling a laugh.

Well, thats what they say on Dancing with the Stars,she shrugged, smirking.

Holy hell. I couldnt wait to dance dirty with her.


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Author bio:

The short story:
I'm the wife of a most fabulous man for twenty years.
I'm a mother of 2 busy teens.
I'm a dog lover.
I'm a serious drinker of coffee and wine.
I live near New York City.
My favorite place that I've visited is Monaco.
My favorite color is green (but I look best in pink/salmon).
My favorite food is chocolate.
My favorite kind of music is New Country.

The long story:
I've always been a creative sort of person... I started with my college studies in Advertising Design and Illustration. I'm good at drawing and coming up with clever ideas.
As for story telling - well, that's where I have the most fun! Ditching The Dream is my first novel, but I've been working on writing movies since, what seems like forever. Way back in high school my friend Aimee and I started writing a movie and I was hooked. We didn't know what we were doing, but we loved coming up with the story. I also like to come up with stories about people I don't know. Like the guy that cut me off on the expressway...He had quite a story - at least in my mind! Who knows? Maybe I've come up with a story about you! ;)

Ditching The Dream is a story that came to me while I was helping two author friends of mine. I was helping them with their books and I would make suggestions to amp up their stories along the way. Bev and Amy encouraged me to write my own story and Ditching The Dream was born. Is it auto-biographical? No, not in the least. But it sure has been a fun story to come up with (especially when my hubby gets involved with coming up with ideas).

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