“Mr. Romance”, Ch. 23-26: Kent Plans to Meet Hope’s Family, 3/10/12 Gratiana Lovelace (Post # 148)
An Original Fiction Story Copyrighted by Gratiana Lovelace (all rights reserved)
[(1) “Mr. Romance” story logo, left]
Author’s Mature Content Note (R rating): “Mr. Romance” is a love story–and love is passionate. Some chapters contain tender love scenes and are rated accordingly. However, if you are unable or unwilling to attend a movie with the rating I provide, then please don’t read that chapter. That is my disclaimer.
Author’s Scheduling Note: I am fast tracking posting “Mr. Romance” this week so that we can conclude its storyline before FanstRAvaganza 3 starts this coming Monday. So, the final installment of chapter bundles will be posted tomorrow, on Sunday.
“Mr. Romance”, Chapter 23: Hope and Kent Thanksgiving Holiday Planning and Lovemaking (PG-13 )
Kent: “Whew! Meeting the family.” Kent’s facial expression looks as worried as he feels [(2) right]. Will he measure up and pass muster? Strangely—for him–Kent realizes that he wants to make a good impression with Hope’s family.
Hope: “It won’t be so bad. They’re really nice people. Aunt Harriet and Uncle Pat will be there since they have no kids. Then we’ll have my brother Dennis and his wife Anna and their five kids Deanna, Donna, Debbie, Denise, and their little one is Dennis Jr. They range in age from four years old to fourteen years old.”
Kent: “I guess they kept trying for the boy.” He smiles mischievously.
Hope: “Yup.” She says stressing the ‘p’ sound like Kent does.
Kent: “Well, that’s only nine people–and you said there were fifteen people. Who are the others? Are your parents’ living?”
Hope: “Yes, but they’re divorced and remarried. So, we’ll see both couples. Now, to warn you, we have to sit them apart, because it wasn’t a happy divorce. But, they seem to be happy in their remarriages.”
Kent: “Yes, my parents divorced when I was young, but they died years ago after I finished college. So, I’ve just been on my own.”
Hope: “Oh, I’m sorry.” She gazes at him caringly. “Did you have any brothers or sisters?”
Kent: “Nope, Hope.” He says stressing the ‘p’ sounds. “It was just us and an odd great aunt and uncle or two growing up.”
Hope: “Your grandparents weren’t alive? Even when you were little?”
Kent: “No. I never had the Norman Rockwell family as you call it.”
Hope: “I’m sorry to hear that.” And she thinks, no wonder Kent was ‘Mr. Romance’–just taking love where and when he could find it.
Hope: “Well, … there’s you and I.” Hope says looking up at him lovingly.[(3) right]
Kent: “So, you included me in your count before you even asked me join you?” He asks her teasingly.
Hope: “But, I hoped that you might want to join us.” She smiles sweetly.
Kent: Kent kisses Hope tenderly. “Now Hope, just warn me ahead of time. Is there anything that I shouldn’t say or do?”
Hope: “Well, we’ll have kids around. So, obviously, curb your conversation topics and language accordingly. And, …”
Hope: “Well, my family knows that I haven’t had a ‘serious’ boyfriend before.” She looks at him pointedly.
Kent: “You mean they think you are still a virgin?”
Hope: “Yes. We’re a little old fashioned in that regard in my family.” She lowers her eyes demurely and smiles. “So, if we could be discreet about our relationship around them, that would be good. I don’t want to broadcast that I’m no longer a virgin–and that you’re the fellow who did that.” She smiles at him cheekily. “Besides it’s hard enough knowing how to navigate our relationship in front of our work colleagues—and now we’re compounding it by being around my family.”
Kent: “Uh huh. … Well, does that mean no touching whatsoever?” He asks with a mock look of horror on his face.
Hope: She laughs softly. “Well, we can hold hands and you can kiss me on the cheek. But, that’s it for the day. Oh, and my aunt and uncle are staying with me—they’re coming in Wednesday night and leaving Friday morning. I’ll put them in my bedroom and I’ll sleep on the couch.”
Kent: “Hope Darling, do you mean that we can’t make love for three whole days?” He says—now with a true look of horror on his face.
Hope: “Sorry Kent Dear.” She says sheepishly. “If it’s any consolation, I’ll miss being able to even cuddle with you.”
Kent: “Well then, we’ll just have to make ourselves some memories to tide us over.” Kent kisses Hope adoringly, lovingly, and lustfully. “Hope Darling, if I could walk, I’d pick you up in my arms right now and carry you to our bed this instant to make mad passionate love with you. But, I can’t walk. So, if you could walk to the bedroom, I’ll hobble there behind you.”
And, they do. Hope wears a new ivory colored silk nightgown that Kent admires, and then promptly takes off of her. Kent and Hope make love passionately, tenderly, adoringly, and lustfully, all night long. They give themselves only a three hour breather of cuddling and napping in between each lovemaking interlude before they make love again. Hope is amazed with her lover Kent and she delights in their tender love making. Kent feels that he and Hope are so in harmony with each other in their love making and the other times they spend together. So Kent really feels like he is falling in love with Hope. Of course, Hope is already in love with Kent. So, they are still not quite as much in harmony as they could be–yet.
To be continued with Chapter 24
“Mr. Romance”, Chapter 24: Wednesday Traveling Home to Chicago and Celebrating being a Couple (R rating)
Kent and Hope fly home to Chicago together Wednesday morning, November 24, 2010—the day before Thanksgiving. And, rather than stopping at Kent’s place first, they just go on to Hope’s apartment to give them more time for together before they pick up her relatives at the airport around dinner time. And, they also stop at the grocery store along the way to Hope’s to pick up some needed items for the meal—especially the fresh turkey Hope has on order—and then truck it, their bags, and themselves home to Hope’s apartment. Kent hobbles into to Hope’s apartment carrying some lightweight groceries in plastic bags hanging from his crutches while Hope has the turkey strapped to her rolling suitcase and the milk strapped to Kent’s rolling suitcase.
Hope: Opening her airy apartment’s front door wide, she says “Well Kent, welcome to my home!”
Kent: He looks around and says warmly. “This is really lovely, Hope—very warm and inviting.”
Hope’s one bedroom apartment is an open floor plan for the main living area with a large leather couch opposite the fireplace [(4) right], with two comfy wing chairs and ottomans on either side of it in a slightly pattered brown plush fabric—the ottomans adding extra seating potential around a large burnished wood coffee table–and a few decorative antique touches sparingly here and there for character. The kitchen and dining room are to the right when you enter, with the bedroom and bathroom opposite the front door on the far wall. The ceilings are at least 12 feet high. So, the tall Kent doesn’t feel like he has to scrunch down to fit.
Hope: Seeing his expression of relief, she asks him while she puts away the food for now. “So, not what you pictured, Kent?”
Kent: He laughs. “Well Hope, since you’re the antiques and special arts features writer—and miss prim and proper as well—I pictured a lot of pink flowery and gilt details.” He says sheepishly.
Hope: She smiles warmly at him as she moves into ‘hostess’ mode—with Kent as her guest. “Well, why don’t you sit down on the couch and I’ll make us some lunch.”
Kent: Pulling Hope close to him in a loving embrace, Kent kisses her passionately and asks. “Can lunch wait, my Darling?”
Hope: “Hhhh.” She sighs. “But Kent, we can’t make love in my bed.” She pouts disappointedly. “The sheets are clean for my aunt and uncle and I don’t have time to wash them again. And I don’t’ want to wrinkle the bed spread.” She pouts. However, Kent keeps kissing Hope adoringly with his kisses moving to her neck and then to her breasts as his hands caress her intimately through her clothing. “Well, I suppose we could use the deep leather couch with the sheets that I’m going to use to sleep on it with tonight?”
Kent: “Hmmm. Sounds like an excellent idea.” He growls suggestively at her.
So, Hope gets her sheets and blankets for the couch and makes it up like a bed. Then she and Kent each visit the bathroom to change. Kent retrieves his condoms from his suitcase and he leaves a few of them in Hope’s bathroom cabinet drawer–so they’re handy after her family leaves—and he puts one of the condoms on himself and he hobbles on his crutches back into Hope’s apartment naked. Hope is already there—wearing only a towel and a smile.
Hope has made up the couch for them to use. And that might be one option–but Kent has another idea initially when he reaches Hope standing by the back of the couch. Kent lays his crutches on the side of the dining table behind them and he tenderly kisses and caresses Hope. Kent’s muscular physique is something to behold in broad daylight even with his sprained right ankle wrapped tightly as he holds it up and not putting his weight on it. Kent’s legs have the muscular definition of an avid skier—and he will need that strength now as he balances on his good leg. Kent opens Hope’s towel to reveal her womanly curves and he delights in them—her sweet face with its creamy complexion, her graceful neck, her beauteous breasts, her trim but womanly curvy waist, and her sensuously round hips and backside. Hope is a Venus and she is all Kent’s.
Kent takes Hope’s towel off of her body and he lays the towel over the top of the heavy leather couch. Hope looks at him quizzically. Then Kent lifts Hope to sit on the back of the couch on the towel–with her facing him, and with Kent balancing on his uninjured left leg. Kent showers Hope with kisses and caresses over all of her body and she does the same with him. Then Kent and Hope join their bodies together with Kent standing and Hope sitting. Again, and again, and again, and again, Kent and Hope join their bodies together lovingly and adoringly. Kent eagerly kisses and caresses Hope’s breasts as he dips her backward and her legs go around him. Hope is lost in the whirl of these loving pleasures and she does not worry about falling backward onto the couch—that is the last thing on her mind. Then Kent pulls Hope forward and they kiss each other adoringly. Hope kisses Kent’s head and caresses his shoulders and back. Then, as they both feel their bodies’ pleasures surge in rapturous bliss and ecstasy, they cry out their love for each other.
Hope: “Oh Kent, I love you so.”
Kent: “Hope Darling, I love you so.” Then he asks so spontaneously, it surprises even himself. “Will you marry me, Hope my love? I want to be with you always, Hope Darling.” Kent kisses Hope lovingly and tenderly on her lips as their bodies are still joined together and embracing.
Hope: “Oh Kent my love. Yes, I will marry you.” There are tears of joy in Hope’s eyes. She has loved Kent and dreamed of being his forever for a very long time–almost from the moment that she first met him as her writing colleague two years ago. And now in two short weeks, that has happened–she will be his forever. “I’m so happy.”
Kent: “And I’m so happy.”
Kent has gone from lonely love’em and leave’em ‘Mr. Romance’ to Hope’s adoring fiancé in two short weeks—and after knowing each other two years as colleagues and good friends. Kent leans back and looks at Hope adoringly and then he laughs joyously, as does she. Then Kent gently holds Hope’s head in his hands as they kiss each other once more, sweetly, tenderly, lovingly, and adoringly—as newly engaged lovers do. Then they actually do like down on the couch–to give Kent’s uninjured leg rest–and they kiss and cuddle with each other adoringly for some time. Kent and Hope love each other deeply. And this moment of committing themselves to each other is a memory they will treasure forever in their hearts. Of course, they will have to come up with an alternate PG rated wedding proposal scenario that they can share with their family and friends. Ha!
To be continued with Chapter 25
“Mr. Romance”, Chapter 25: Picking up Aunt Harriet and Uncle Pat at the Airport late Wednesday Afternoon
After Kent and Hope spend a loving afternoon as newly engaged lovers at her apartment, they take a taxi to drop off Kent’s suitcase at his place. Then they head to the airport around 5:00pm to pick up Hope’s Aunt Harriet and Uncle Pat and take them out to dinner. Later, Hope and Kent will return home for the evening—Kent to his apartment and Hope to her apartment.
Hope: “I see them!” She waves her hand in the air at her Aunt and Uncle at the other end of the terminal as Kent sits on a bench with his crutches beside him. “I’ll be right back, Kent Dear.” She kisses him on his cheek and then she dashes off in the direction of her Aunt and Uncle.
Aunt Harriet: “Hope Dear!” She says hugging and kissing her. “You’re looking well. It’s so good to see you!”
Hope: “Oh, you too, Aunt Harriet!” Harriet is her favorite Aunt—her father’s sister.
Uncle Pat: “Now don’t forget about me, Kitten.” He says using his nickname for Hope as a child as he hugs her warmly.
Hope: “Hi Uncle Pat. You look like the bees knees.” Her Aunt and Uncle are slightly older than her parents and they always have fun using ‘olden time’ expressions with each other.
Aunt Harriet: “Hope Dear, it looks like you have a ‘gentleman caller’ with you?” She asks inquisitively.
Hope: “Oh yes, that’s Kent!” She says excitedly. “He’s my …” She stops herself because she and Kent had not discussed when to reveal to her family that they are engaged. So Hope says sweetly shyly. “Well, Kent is my boyfriend and co-worker. Come and meet him.”
So the three of them walk the twenty yards back to Kent who stands up politely [(5) right], while resting his left arm on both crutches for support. Kent always appears to best advantage standing up to his full height well over 6 ft.
Hope: Putting her arm around Kent’s waist—already breaking her ‘rules’ of less public displays of affection around her family—Hope introduces him. “Aunt Harriet, Uncle Pat, this is my boyfriend and co-worker, Kent Barron. Kent, this is my Aunt Harriet and Uncle Pat Morris.”
Kent: Kent extends his hand to theirs and shakes them. “I’m delighted to meet you both. I’ve been looking forward to it.” Kent says in his best well mannered voice and smiling warmly at them. Kent notices that Hope didn’t refer to him as her fiancé, so he’ll have to ask her when they’re alone at some point how she wants to handle their engagement news with her family.
Uncle Pat: “Just call me Pat, my boy. What happened to you?”
Kent: “I sprained my ankle on the ski slopes of Galena.”
Hope: “After unsuccessfully trying to help me learn to ski.” Hope adds. Then she looks up at Kent and says cheekily. “But, I couldn’t stay vertical.”
Aunt Harriet: “Well, from the looks of it, that was Kent’s problem, too.” They all laugh.
Kent: “Why don’t we all walk toward the taxi and we’ll take you out to dinner before we head home for the night.”
Hope: “Yes, after dinner, we’ll drop Kent at his place and then go on to my apartment. We just got back from our latest assignment today, so we haven’t even unpacked ourselves.” Of course, Hope is telegraphing to her Aunt and Uncle that she and Kent each have their own apartments–as in not living together. That is, not yet.
To be continued with Chapter 26
“Mr. Romance”, Chapter 26: Dinner with Aunt Harriet and Uncle Pat Wednesday Night
As they walk into one of Kent’s favorite restaurants in Chicago—he had made reservations for them earlier that afternoon—it has sweeping views of the city skyline and they are seated near a window and they can see Lake Michigan.
Uncle Pat: “So, Kent. You work with our Hope at the magazine?”
Kent: “Yes Sir.”
Uncle Pat: “It’s just Pat.” He waves his hand in a friendly dismissive way.
Aunt Harriet: “And I’m just Harriet. Now Kent, you’re not that ‘Mr. Romance’ that Hope has told us about, are you?.” She asks teasingly as she and her husband chuckle while Kent and Hope look a bit discomfited.
Kent: Kent’s eyes widen. Then thinking on his feet—well, at least sitting down, with one good foot—he says with a deadpan expression, but wondering what Hope had told them. “No, that’s Bob Phillips.”
Hope: Giggling, she says. “Get it, Phillips, ‘screw’ driver?”
Kent: “Hope!” He says a bit mock chastisingly—unusual for him, but he’s trying to behave around Hope’s family. “I think you’ve been around Sherry too much.”
Uncle Pat: “Oh, is she the food and drink writer?”
Hope: “That’s right.”
Aunt Harriet: “So what do you write about, Kent?”
Kent: Saying with some trepidation, because he doesn’t want to be revealed as ‘Mr. Romance’, but he feels it’s better to stick to the truth–because it’s easier to remember. “Restaurants and hotels.”
Uncle Pat: “Oh, I see.” He says, thinking that he remembered Hope said in the past that ‘Mr. Romance’ wrote about restaurants and hotels.
Hope: “Yes, our group has just come off an extended two week trip—first to Galena and then to Duluth.” She says smiling sweetly–also wishing she hadn’t mentioned ‘Mr. Romance’ to her family before.
Aunt Harriet: “This looks like a nice restaurant.”
Kent: “Yes, I’ve often enjoyed this restaurant myself, but this is the first time Hope and I have been here together—we’re so rarely in Chicago. So, Hope Darling, you’ll have to let me know if you like it.” Kent smiles warmly at Hope.
Hope: “I will, Kent Dear.” Hope smiles at him warmly and squeezes his arm. [(6) right]
The four of them go on to have a lovely dinner with Kent learning a bit about Hope’s childhood, why her Uncle calls her Kitten—because she loved kittens so much as a child–and what to expect tomorrow when the rest of Hope’s family arrives. When their taxi drops Kent off at his apartment building, Hope makes an excuse to walk Kent upstairs and they decide to wait to tell her family of their engagement until Thanksgiving dessert. Kent plans to come over early—around 8:00am for breakfast and to watch the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade with Hope and her Aunt and Uncle. Then, Hope and Kent reluctantly part for the night—having been with each other constantly for the last two weeks–with a steamy and passionate good night kiss, since no one can see them.
To be continued with Chapter 27
(1) The “Mr. Romance” story logo image representing the character of Kent Barron, is an image of the character Lucas North (as brilliantly portrayed by Richard Armitage) in Spooks series 8, episode 2 (pix 94) found at http://www.richardarmitagenet.com/images/gallery/Spooks/spooks8/album/Episode2/slides/ep2_094.html; and the cropped red hearts are courtesy of MSOffice Clip Art found at http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/images/results.aspx?qu=red%20hearts&ctt=1#ai:MP900440293|mt:2|
(2) Kent image (cropped) is of Richard Armitage as Lucas North in Spooks 8, episode 3 (pix 48) found at
(3) Hope Image is of America Ferrera found at http://ml.berkeleyblogs.com/archives/americaferreraaward1.jpg
(4) Chair and coffee table darkened and Fireplace found out
(5) Kent Image is of Richard Armitage as Lucas North in Spooks series 8 Promo (pix 4) found at
(6) Hope Image is of America Ferrera found at http://images.wikia.com/disney/images/d/dd/America-Ferrera.jpg
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