*Plus an excerpt from SOMEONE LIKE YOU
Character Interview Cruise Elton and Kendall Jordan
“The Elton House has to be the cutest Bed and Breakfast I have ever seen,” Jen says. We walk up to the porch, spotting the painted flower pots and hanging baskets. Cruise and Kenny greet us at the door. Lisa shakes their hands and says, “Hi, I’m Lisa, this is Jen and Kristie and we’re the Three Chicks.” Cruise asks us if we want anything to drink and we take a seat on a U-shaped couch. Kristie asks, “Are we ready to get started?”
Kendall and Cruise: Welcome! Stay as long as you like. In fact, rent rooms…indefinitely and tell your friends. We need the bookings!
For Kenny: What were your real intentions for becoming the female version of Cruise? And why choose him as your “instructor” while pursuing your degree in “fornicating equality” at Garrison? (Jen and Lisa giggle like schoolgirls)
Kenny: *clears throat* technically it was a spontaneous idea—inspired by this gorgeous guy sitting next to me. I mean, look at him. Can you blame me? *laughs* Seriously, there was a moment when I thought—what have I gotten myself into? I should catch the next flight to California! But thankfully, I held on and embarked on the winding road to really finding one another.
For Cruise: Why did you keep Blair a secret from Kenny, especially since she was in her art class and trying to get you back? Wouldn’t you have saved yourself a whole lot of trouble by just telling her about Blair?
Cruise: You’re one hundred percent dead on. Hindsight is twenty-twenty and all those good things. I guess deep inside I didn’t want to rattle old skeletons in front of Kenny. We had a fragile beginning, and I didn’t want to spook her. But, I was planning on telling her.
For Kenny: Why did you not use a condom even if you were on the pill? It’s no secret that Cruise was, in your own words, on a road show with his penis.
Kenny: Stupid right? It just goes to show that decisions made in the heat of the moment are rarely the right ones. In fact, I’ve schooled Molly severely over this. The pill might be a safeguard, but its definitely a second line of defense.
Cruise: Molly is getting a chastity belt for her birthday.
Kenny: Best idea ever.
For Cruise: Have you ever had any kind of relationship with Pennington, even just as friend- did you have some sort of resentment towards him because of the way your father treated him? Or is he just a douchebag and not worth the effort?
Cruise: Pen and I are good. In fact, we’ve always been good. He lives a different life than I do, but in the end we get along—we’re family. I’ve never resented Pen, not even when I was younger. I’d like to see us doing more things together in the future.
For Kenny: You posed nude for money, how awkward was that showing all your “bits and pieces” ...considering you had never been naked in front of a guy before and there you were in all your glory in front of your whole class. Did having Cruise there make it more or less difficult?
Kenny *giggles* blushes* First, let the record show I had totally convinced myself I was doing this for art. But really, who am I kidding? I needed the cold hard cash. It was fast money, and I would never do it again. I did feel strangely empowered, though. *tweeks brows at Cruise*
Cruise: Feel free to empower yourself around me anytime.
For Cruise: Was posing nude awkward for you-you’re no stranger to being nude in front of women. Did it make it easier or harder (pun intended) having Kendall there?
Cruise: No. *blinks a wicked grin* Had I known Kendall were going to join me, for sure I would have bowed out. Well, maybe I would have hung out by the door and admired from afar. I would never want to make her uncomfortable. However, once we dropped the sheets I realized I was in a hard situation (if you will). I couldn’t help it though. Looking at Kenny under those bright lights made me want to do a little more than salute her.
For Kenny: What kind of relationship did you have with your mom while you were growing up and what is it like now?
Kenny: My mom…*blows a breath through her cheeks* She means well but she ended up sort of giving me and my brother a tough ride. In her quest for the perfect husband, she rerouted our lives more than a couple of times. I knew at a young age I never wanted to be like that. Although, she has found love and stability in her life and I’m super happy for her. She glows and I’ve never seen that light in her before. It’s pretty clear she was trying to fill a void with those other men when all she wanted was the man she left behind.
For Cruise: You had a heads up that Kendall was going to be in the Gender Relations class you were teaching. What perverse sense of humor made you devise her “special syllabus?” And were you hoping she would need tutoring with some of those chapters; namely the Master and Servant or the Body Frosting ones?
Cruise: Perverse? *holds back a smile* I thought it was generous. Garrison prides itself on offering each student individual attention, and I was simply trying to live up to their standards. *gives a quick wink to Kenny*
For Kenny: How are things with Molly, Cruise’s sister from hell, do the two of you get along now?
Kenny: Over the past few months I’ve tried my hardest to be more of a big sister to Molly. She’s at a stage in her life where she wants to do and try everything and not really take to heart anybodies advice, so I’m there for her if she needs me. I think the most important thing is that she knows my door is open.
For Cruise: We want to know how you really felt about your relationship with your dad. You seemed to deal with it but you talk about “peeling away the old memories, the ones born of pain and yearning” with Kenny. How much were you affected by your father paying more attention to Pennington growing up than you and do you blame Jackie for most of that? How is your relationship at this point?
Cruise: I’d love to blame Jackie. In fact it would be much less painful to blame both her and Pen, but at the end of the day my dad knew where to find me, he’s always had my number and he let the relationship drift. It definitely taught me that I want to be an active dad, an everyday dad—I’ll never leave my children.
Both: Did either of you ever consider what would happen if the faculty at Garrison discovered the nature of your teacher/student relationship? It seems as though the thought never crossed you minds, Jen says, “Holy hell, how about the time the two of you had sex in your classroom Cruise-sorry, please feel free to answer the question.”
Cruise: *looks at Kenny* You want to go first?
Kenny: I defer to you.
Cruise: When we were in the thick of it, I really didn’t care. I was all in and I figured Kenny was, too. I knew deep in my heart Kenny was the one for me. She made every moment exciting in that class.
Kenny: I felt the same. I thought this is crazy and for sure not safe. I think that’s what made it so sinfully delicious. Cruise always seems to push me to the edge in a good way and I really do feel like I grow from that. *looks to Cruise* Nobody has every loved me so intensely as you do.
Cruise: *picks up her hand and kisses it*
For Kenny: How many days was it before you were able to finally get the collar off? Your fears that Cruise would find you asphyxiated wearing nothing but the collar and your Hello Kitty robe were hilarious. Did Cruise confess that the first time he ever used it was with you?
Kenny: First, let me say that Cruise is a stinker. No he did not tell me he hadn’t used the collar. It would figure it was a gift from Cal. *rolls eyes* Second, I really did think I was going to live the rest of my life in that contraption. All total, it was on for about four days. I felt like an escapee from some sexual dungeon. Needless to say, all equipment used since “the incident” has been tested for its safety features.
Both: Are you parents currently together and if so how do you feel about that?
Kenny: They are! *laughs* How weird is that? Mom is over the moon. It’s hard to believe she’s the same person, but I guess that’s what true love does to you. It shapes you for the better.
Cruise: It’s true and for sure my dad has found a soulmate in Karen. He’s really loosened up a lot. In a funny way I feel like I got my dad back. It was Jackie who ended the marriage and Kenny’s mom just so happen to come back into his life at the right time. It was meant to be.
For Cruise: Did you really believe that Kenny and Cal would betray you like that, and why not just confront her after seeing them together both times?
Cruise: Deep inside I would think it were impossible but when I saw them together, with my own two eyes, it really did feel like a punch in the gut. It’s hard to deny something you’re seeing. It was something I wouldn’t wish on anyone.
Both: Are you making any wedding plans?
Kenny: *flashes engagement ring* December!
Cruise: I would have done it the next day after we straightened everything out but this way we get the whole nine yards, the engagement, the planning, the wedding day—and night.
For Kenny: You told Cruise in the end, for you, that it was love at first sight. I'm sure your feelings for him were scary and foreign, but were there problems trusting Cruise given his reputation and your questioning whether sex with Cruise was a graduation requirement of Garrison’s?
Kenny: God, yes! In the beginning it was all new to me. I had never felt such an intense attraction to a guy before so I knew something big was happening. I was afraid of getting burned, but more than that I was afraid I would regret it if I played it safe and walked away. If it were anybody else I would have walked away.
For Cruise: Did you ever confront Blair for taking pictures of you and Kenny and turning them into the university?
Cruise: At that point, there was so much bad blood between Blair and me. To be honest, I don’t know how we got there. We were together once. It wasn’t great but it wasn’t brutal. I think, as a man, my ego was bruised when I found out she cheated on me, especially since she made it clear as crystal that we should wait. So sleeping my way around town was part retaliation but mostly it was me letting off some pent up hormones. As for the pictures, I had already had a couple of confrontations with her and I knew it was her way of acting out because she felt rejected. It was hard for her to see me committed and in love. I thought about telling her off, legal action, and everything in between but in the end I was relieved to have Kenny. My mom needs me at the B&B, and I’m good with that.
For Kenny: When Blair found out you were engaged to Cruise and unleashed her bitter, jealous red-coated spew, you ran to Lauren’s for some girl comfort. Why didn’t you tell Cruise that you found out he had been engaged and that you knew it was to Blair?
Kenny: It was one of those “I really need a girlfriend” moments. I needed to process what just happened independently of Cruise. Even when Blair revealed to me she was with Cruise, I never felt like he was hiding her. I don’t think we were ready at that point, you know, to have that conversation. We were just about to get there and Blair brought us there a little faster.
For Cruise: So let's talk about the chains on the bed...are they still there? Were they just for show or did you have any firsthand experience of them before Kenny?
Cruise: The chains are still hanging from the bedpost and… *looks to Kenny* I plead the fifth.
Kenny: Has Cruise met your brother Morgan yet?
Kenny: Yes! He came down for Mom’s wedding! It was…*glances at Cruise* interesting. Morgan is great. I love my brother to death.
For Cruise: When Kenny went through her pregnancy scare (you remember, when you didn’t want to go back to “wearing a hat”), why weren’t you freaked out by that possibility? She certainly was having a slight melt down.
Cruise: *holds up his hands* Greed, thy name is Cruise. *guilty laugh* We had already done it several times without “the hat” prior to the scare, and after the scare I’ve left it entirely up to Kenny. For the record, we don’t wear a hat.
For Kenny: Did Cruise ever tell you where those rodents came from or that he had fixed the heater? And where did those rodents go? They just seemed to disappear.
Kenny: What! *smacks Cruise across the chest* You so did not do that!
Cruise: Nope. *Shakes head* Okay, maybe a little but it was worth a rodent or two wouldn’t you agree?
Kenny: You are a deviously brilliant man. And by the way, I pegged you for the broken heater.
For Cruise: Kenny was afraid to tell you that she took Molly for birth control pills, but when you found out you seemed to be okay with it. Was that because you know your sister so well and tricking Kenny into getting her pills didn’t seem that far off?
Cruise: I knew Molly was serious with her boyfriend and believe me I didn’t like it. So, when Kenny told me what happened I figured any measure of protection was probably a good one. And like she mentioned, we schooled her on using it only as an extra precaution. And can I just say how much I hate talking about my sister’s sex life? It killed me just to say that. If I had my way, she’d still be sleeping in a crib.
For Kenny: How did you not pick up on the clues that Blair knew Cruise-she showed interest in your proposition to her about trying to seduce someone’s boyfriend to prove he’s not a cheat until she found out it wasn’t for Cruise, she was always overly interested in talking about your boyfriend, not to mention how many times there was a streak of a red coat lurking around every corner?
Kenny: Looking back, all the clues were there,
but Cruise was a player and I seriously assumed he had slept with every girl at Garrison—which is probably not a far stretch. Plus, Cruise is beyond gorgeous and when you have someone this insanely good looking in your life *holds up his hand a moment* you expect it on some level. Knowing what I do now, I wish I would’ve squashed her like a bug.
Cruise: *chest rumbles with laughter* I would have paid cash money to see that.
Kenny: By the way, I now have a serious aversion to red coats.
For Cruise: Now that your fellowship plans have been sidetracked, are you still running the Elton Bed and Breakfast for your mom?
Cruise: I am. I have the rest of my life to figure things out as far as school goes. I’m pretty content running the business. My mom has reached the point in her life where she’s ready to hand over the chains. She lost the passion, and I definitely feel a spark for that place, so I think in the end things worked out.
Both: What’s your favorite thing you love about each other? What’s the thing that most gets on your nerves with each other?
Kenny: Me first! *laughs* Cruise loves me with the all the passion a girl could ask for and that’s what I love best about him. He’s there for me like no one else has ever been. However…
Cruise: Here we go… *gives a long blink*
Kenny: He knows what I’m going to say. Cruise has a pattern of leaving dishes and wrappers right where he left them—for days, and that drives me nuts. He actually hid this “habit” from me in the beginning but it’s come to light and it’s not pretty. At first, I was like, okay, I’ll just leave it there and see how long it takes for him to put it away, but months were passing. And every time my mom came over I did a clean sweep, so in the end it was me doing it anyway.
Cruise: That was you? I thought it was the cleaning fairy.
Kenny: *Tosses throw pillow at Cruise*
Cruise: Whoa. My turn. *cinches a smile* Kenny brims with love. I never thought I could feel this full. I miss her when we’re apart. I know that sounds goofy because at the end of the day we’re together, but I do. *looks at Kenny* I miss you when you’re gone.
Kenny: That’s so sweet. *leans in and pecks him with a kiss*
Cruise: Now—what drives me nuts is the fact she leaves the toilet seat down. It’s an annoying “habit” that I’m determined to break her of. *lips twitch with a wicked grin*
For Cruise: We noticed you love playing the “Questions” game with Kenny, have you always talked like “Questioning Cruise”; desk or chair, whips or chains, good or great?
Cruise: No, in fact, that first night I was asking her a genuine question. The rest was all Kenny. But it’s our thing now and that’s something else I love about Kenny, her playful side.
For Cruise never slept with Blair-right? so "I know who your last partner will be, but who was your first?"
Cruise: I do remember this. It was a girl Cal introduced me to at a frat party, and it happened after a drunken binge. She used to work for him at the front desk. And, after the catastrophe we shared, I cringed every time I saw her. By the next night, she was already onto her next conquest. In a way it crushed me and at the same time I felt relieved. I wasn’t looking for anything else from her. And that was just the first in a long string of empty one-night stands that thankfully ended when I met Kenny. Before her, love was about as real as Santa.
Cruise: Okay, Santa is real—and for damn sure, so is love. *kisses Kenny sweetly on the lips*
“Kenny and Cruise, that was fantastic! Thanks again for meeting with us today,” Jen says while standing and stretching. “We had a great time, this is a lovely home.” “ Must be great not having to commute to work,” Kristie says laughing as she and Jen walk toward the door. Lisa hesitates and Jen whispers to her, “What’s the matter?” “I was hoping to catch a glimpse of their bedroom, think they still have the chains on the bedposts,” Lisa mutters. Jen rolls her eyes and nudges her along. As we walk outside we hear Kenny say to Cruise, “Now what do you want to do?” We turn and see Cruise wink and say,” Swim- clothes on or off?”
Kenny: Definitely off.
Here is a special preview of Addison Moore’s upcoming novel, SOMEONE LIKE YOU, Ally and Morgan’s story. Coming 2013.
(Just home from a party while staying at Kendall and Cruise’s cabin.)
SOMEONE LIKE YOU (Someone to Love 2)
*(Morgan’s point of view)
“Everything go okay tonight?” I pull out the pan and break a half dozen eggs over the rim without looking at her. I’m afraid if I seem too interested I’ll scare her off like a timid bird. God knows I am way too interested in Ally to scatter her in the wrong direction.
“It was fine.” She shakes her head. “I don’t really want to talk about it.” Her voice dissolves to a whisper. “But you looked like you had a good time.”
“Great time,” I correct. Nothing like prodding a little jealousy to spur things along. “Met a lot of friendly people—real friendly.” I cut her a quick glance as I start the bacon.
“Yeah—that Blair…” Her voice trails off.
Knew it. She saw the whole damn show, front and center, while making it look as if she didn’t even notice Blair and Molly pawing over me like a couple of bears on honey.
“Especially Blair,” I say. “I’m not too into the kid—but Blair—you know, she’s all woman.” The bacon sizzles right along with Ally. You could see the steam rising from her ears, her eyes lighting up like flames.
“Really?” She says it curt, a little louder than necessary. It’s obvious I’ve moved the boundary stone a little too far. “I’m sorry.” Her shoulders sag. “I really can’t stand her. She thinks just because she’s rolling around in ‘daddy’s money’ she can have whatever, whoever she pleases.”
I switch off the eggs and turn up the heat on the bacon to move the party along.
“Do I sense a bit of hostility?” At this point I’ll take any emotion she’s willing to give me. But I know what she means. That “Rutger” douche with his upturned collar, his glow-in-the-dark-never-seen-a-sidewalk before tennis shoes didn’t impress me much either. And he gets Ally just because he’s got a fatter wallet than I do? Please.
“Never mind.” Ally shakes out her blond hair and my fingers demand to run through it. But I maintain and watch the bacon before the smoke alarm goes off. God forbid I disturb Cruise from his ever-present task of defiling my sister. On second thought, I should burn the bacon—often.
“Blair’s probably good for you,” she continues. “She’s definitely one to refine you. And if you’re nice she might even let you drive the Corvette.”
There’s a Corvette involved?
The bacon starts in on it requisite charring, so I call it a day and scrape the food onto a couple of plates.
“For you,” I say, setting it down before her and taking a seat.
“Wow, thank you.” She says is sweetly, almost quiet as if she’s about to cry. “I’ve never had a guy cook for me before.”
“Really? I’d think they’d be bowing at your feet, fulfilling your every whim—starting with your stomach, then moving to far more interesting places.” A smile hedges on my lips but I hold back long enough to watch her cheeks rise in heat like a colorful barometer.
The night we shared runs through my mind—hot, mindless sex with no pretense, no words for that matter. This is exactly why one-night stands have a magnificent downside. You might be sleeping with a goddess and not even know it. If I could go back I would appreciate things a whole lot more, savor Ally’s body like it were the most exotic fruit, the last bite of my entire existence.
“My stomach, huh? You’re funny,” she says it quiet as if the idea were a joke. Ally sweeps the floor with her gaze and I pop a piece of bacon in my mouth, studying the mystery of this forlorn woman in front of me.
Ally latches onto me with those lawn-green eyes, powerful and magnetic.
“Morgan?” She runs her tongue over her lips in one clean swipe and my crotch ticks to life like a bomb. “I hope you don’t mind if I ask you something crazy.”
“Go ahead.” Damn—I fucking love crazy.
Ally picks up my hand and walks over, pressing her body in tight against mine.
“Morgan?” She tilts into me with those glassy jade eyes. “Do you think you could love me tonight?”