Title: FLOWERS AND STONE
Author: JAN SIKES
Genre: Biographical Fiction
A hot Texas summer, dim-lit honky-tonk bars, a young naïve fledgling go-go dancer, and a wild rebel Texas musician set the stage for this epic love story.
1970 in Abilene, Texas finds young Darlina Flowers trying to figure out how to fit into the world she is most attracted to – the nightlife, live music, and go-go dancing.
Luke Stone, a veteran Texas Musician believes he’s lost all reason to care about his music career, his health, and most especially his heart. A chance meeting with Darlina changes everything. Yet, it seems it's too little too late, as fate has already determined the outcome. Join Luke and Darlina on a passion-filled journey down Texas roads while Luke and his band entertain crowds along the way, as Darlina Flowers struggles to adjust to this strange new world. Can she trust Luke Stone with her heart? Luke Stone, a good man who has made a career of bad decisions, falls as completely in love with Darlina as she does with him. Will their unyielding love survive the test of time, distance and iron bars?
Luke chose a chair between Mary and Darlina. After ordering a whiskey and Coke, he turned toward Darlina. “Big surprise seein’ you here, sugar.”
His nearness caused her to stammer. “I wanted to hear your band, so I twisted my sister’s arm, and we came out.”
Luke looked toward Norma. “And you must be the sister.”
Norma took a sip of her drink, “Yes. I’m Norma. I had to keep an eye on my little sister. Thank you so much for the drinks and letting us sit at your table.”
Luke looked at Mary for the first time since he’d joined them. “I hope you put their drinks on my tab.”
“Of course, I did, Luke.”
Just then, the man who had been checking I.D.’s at the door tapped on Darlina’s shoulder and motioned for her to come with him.
Luke grabbed the man’s arm, “Where the hell are you taking her, Randy?”
He quickly explained, “The boss man wants to talk to her about maybe workin’ here some.”
Luke took his hand off Randy’s arm. “You better not let her outta’ your sight.”
Randy nodded and then guided a perplexed Darlina through the club to the back office.
A middle-aged man dressed in a double-breasted Ralph Lauren suit, smoking a Montecristo cigar lounged behind a large desk. An open bottle of Johnny Walker Red sat on one corner, and two other men relaxed leisurely on either side with drinks in hand and their own cigars.
When Randy came through the door with Darlina, all three men stared.
“Mr. Johnson, this is the little gal I told you about that works for Marketa.”
Sonny Johnson came from behind the desk and put his arm familiarly around Darlina’s waist. “Well now, I hear you girls are causing quite a stir over at the Faded Rose. What’s your name, sweetheart?”
She expertly freed herself from his grip, having become accustomed to groping hands.
“What’s the matter, sugar?” Mr. Johnson asked.
“Nothing, sir. Let’s keep this strictly about business if you don’t mind.”
Mr. Johnson glanced at Randy. “Go on back and tend to things out front.”
Randy shook his head. “I can’t, sir. Luke Stone told me not to let her outta’ my sight.”
“Oh, so you’re one of Luke’s women,” he sneered at Darlina.
“I’m not anyone’s woman, sir. I understand that you may be interested in having some go-go girls here at The Silver Spur?”
Sonny Johnson’s eyes roved over Darlina’s body undressing her as he went. He sat back down behind the desk. “I’m looking for something to draw more of a crowd on weeknights, and I think go-go girls might be just the thing.”
“Marketa does get quite a crowd on the nights we dance.” She wasn’t exactly sure she wanted to work for this man but kept those thoughts to herself and hoped the expression in her eyes didn’t give her away.
“I’ll tell you what. Why don’t you bring some of your dancin’ girlfriends with you for an audition this Tuesday night?”
“I can ask some of the girls over at the club and see if they’re interested.”
“You just tell ‘em Sonny Johnson is interested and they’ll be here. We’ll have auditions at five o’clock on Tuesday. You come and show me what you can do.”
She glanced toward the door hoping this meeting was over and she could get back to listening to the band.
“Take her back to Luke,” he instructed Randy.
Darlina extended her hand to Sonny Johnson. “Thank you, sir. It was nice meeting you.”
Randy and Darlina had just started down the hallway when Luke Stone appeared out of nowhere. “I’ll take it from here, Randy.”
“Sure thing, Luke.” He walked briskly away.
Darlina confronted Luke. “What is it with you? Do you think I can’t take care of myself?”
Luke took a long deliberate draw off his King Edward cigar then draped his arm around Darlina’s shoulders, “That’s not it at all, sugar. I just know Sonny Johnson and his cronies.”
Darlina pushed his arm away and faced him squarely. “I don’t even know you, Luke Stone, and you sure don’t know me, and you’re all of a sudden acting like I’m your property or something.”
Luke grinned and without saying another word, pulled Darlina close and French kissed her. A tingling around the base of her spine sent a hot flush through her body. The smell of his cologne mingled with the taste of tobacco on his tongue left her breathless. She melted into the ferocity of the kiss. Then, she remembered he had a wife and resisted the urge to kiss him back.
She pushed him away. “You’ve got a lot of nerve, kissing me when your wife is sitting out there at the table waiting for you to come back.”
Luke laughed out loud. “Wife? What wife?”
“Mary’s not my wife.”
“Well, she certainly is something, and I’m not gonna be involved in anything between you and her.”
Once again Luke laughed, as if thoroughly amused. “Little lady, I don’t know where you came from, but either you’re a damn good actress, or you are the most naïve little girl I’ve ever run into.”
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This is the book that launched my writing career. It is a true story. All the events in the book really happened. It is written in fiction format, told through fictitious characters, and has over fifty reviews. Someday, this story will be made into a movie!
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Jan Sikes writes compelling and creative stories from the heart.
She openly admits that she never set out in life to be an author. But she had a story to tell. Not just any story, but a true story that rivals any fiction creation. The entertaining true story comes to life through fictitious characters in an intricately woven tale that encompasses four books.
And now, this author can’t find a way to put down the pen. She continues to write fiction and has published numerous award-winning short stories. She published her debut paranormal romance novel, Ghostly Interference, Book 1 in The White Rune Series, in 2020, which won a bronze medal award from Reader’s Favorite. Jagged Feathers released on January 31, 2022, as Book 2 of that series, and Saddled Hearts will release later in 2022.
She is an active blogger, an avid fan of Texas music, and a grandmother of five. She resides in North Texas.
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AMAZON AUTHOR PAGE: https://www.amazon.com/Jan-Sikes/e/B00CS9K8DK