Tuesday, January 24, 2012

If Wishes Were Husbands

When Rachel invents the perfect husband, she thrills her friends with tales of his wonderful cooking, enthusiasm for housework and amazing sex! Until her invention takes on a life of its own and her fantasy husband appears on her sofa. Suddenly married to a man with only three things on his mind, she finds out why you should be careful what you wish for.

Elizabeth Kyne has created a brilliant romantic comedy in the tradition of Bridget Jones.

Rachel re-invents herself when she moves back to her home town of Aylesbury; with a new job, a new house and a new haircut. But people’s eyes glaze over when she tells them about her life as a forty-something singleton who works in accounts. So why not spice things up a bit? Why not tell her new hairdresser and her new friends about her fantastic husband? Everyone wants to hear about Darren, the man who cooks her amazing meals, cleans the house and takes her to bed for orgasmic sex three times a night! What a shame he doesn't exist…

…Until she comes home one night and finds Darren sitting in her lounge. And everything she said becomes true: from his sensuous food to his skill in bed. So real, that she believes it.

Not as if living with a perfect is man is… well, perfect…

She can’t find anything because every time she puts something down, he tidies it away. Then there’s the shock of the credit card bill from buying all that gourmet food. Not to mention the sex! Three times a night is great at first, but sometimes all she wants at the end of the day is a sandwich and some sleep.

Then Rachel decides that Darren has to go - and that’s when her troubles really begin.

Elizabeth Kyne takes the absurdities of the modern woman's quest for love and turns them into an enjoyable romp. She finds the comic in everyday situations, from buying a dress to experimenting with hair dye at home. While, underneath, she comments on the pressure to find the perfect husband and how that quest is doomed for us all.

This is a full-length novel which comes in at 340 pages in trade paperback (84,000 words approx.).

If Wishes Were Husbands is available in eBook format, from all good retailers including Amazon UKAmazon US, Smashwords, iBooks (UK), iBooks (US), All Romance eBooks and Barnes & Noble (Nook).
The trade paperback can be purchased from Amazon UK and Amazon US.

There was something different about it when I walked into the hallway. The light was on in the lounge and there was a smell that wasn't quite right - sort of perfumy. I stood for a moment, looking at the soft glow coming from underneath the lounge door, trying to remember if I'd left the table lamp on. The police say to always leave a light on in your house when you're out to deter burglars. Except, I'd just taken on a mortgage and was trying to keep the electricity bill down.

I turned the handle of the door and entered.

The glow wasn't coming from the table lamp, but from a collection of candles on the coffee table. I froze. I would never risk burning down my new house by leaving lit candles unattended - not as if I'd lit them in the first place.

I tensed at the sound of creaking upholstery. A man's head poked up from the sofa. "Hello Rachel," he said. "Had a nice time?"

I screamed.

Fear, anger and panic inside of me all at once, scrambling my ability to think straight. I turned left and right and left again like a trapped wild animal, searching for something - anything - I could use as a weapon. I grabbed the tiffany lamp from the phone table next to the radiator and held it to my chest - a barrier between me and him.

"Whatever's the matter?" He got up from the sofa and approached me.

My heart racing, my breath panting; I backed off and bumped up against the lounge door I'd just closed behind me. The cord of the lamp snagged tight at the socket. I was ready to yank it free from the plug and beat him to death with it if I had to. "Who are you?"

"It's me."

He took another step. I flinched.

"It's Darren."

Whirls of confusion made me dizzy. "No." I shook my head. "No, no, no, no, no, no."

"Are you all right, darling?"

"You're not real." I said it more to convince myself.

"Rachel, what are you talking about?" He smiled - an amused smile. "Of course I'm real - look at me."

He stood with his arms out wide. He was handsome and slim with a full head of black hair swept across his forehead and a toned body beneath his clothes. He was tall enough to be manly - almost six foot - but not too tall as to dominate me. He was the type of man my fantasy Darren might be - if he were real.

"How did you get in here?"

"I live here," he said.

"No. This is my house. I paid for it. My name's on the deeds."

"Rachel darling, it's our house. We bought it, remember? Are you feeling all right?"

He moved as if to get closer, but I lifted the lamp higher, ready to take a swing at him. It tugged at the flex again.


"Stay there."

Stuck between the need to protect myself and my instinct to run, I tried to think. He'd got into my house somehow, he knew my name and knew about Darren somehow. No ordinary burglar could do that - surely? A conman could go through my rubbish and find out stuff about me, but only a few people knew about Darren.

It was a wind up. It had to be a wind up. God, let him be a wind up, and not some mad psycho rapist.

"Did someone put you up to this?" I said.

"Rachel, what are you talking about?"

He wasn't going to admit to it. Fine. But this prank had gone beyond the point where it was funny; not that it had been funny in the first place.

"Don't move." I threatened him with the tiffany lamp again.

He obeyed.

Keeping the lamp in one hand, I used the other to delve into my handbag. I rifled past hairbrush, purse, petrol receipts, half-used tissues, until I found my phone. With hands shaking and heart pumping - not taking my eye off the stranger for a moment - I called Sheila.

It rang. Good, her mobile was still on. It kept ringing. I willed her to pick it up.

At last she answered. "Yeah?" A sleepy voice down the phone line.

"Sheila? It's Rachel." My voice trembling. "I don't know how you did it - ha ha, very funny - but you can tell him to leave now."

"Wwwhat?" she slurred. "Rachel? What're you talking about?"

"The man you snuck in pretending to be Darren."

"What? Rach, Darren's not real." A heavy sigh. "I'm tired, hon. We'll talk about it tomorrow."

"Sheila, don't--" I shouted.

--hang up.

The line went dead. I hit re-dial. It went straight to voicemail.


The Darren-man was still looking at me. Like a dog looks at his master when it can't understand why the human is behaving strangely. "Why don't you come and sit on the sofa," he said in a soothing voice. "I can pour you a glass of wine and then we can make love."

"No!" I screamed, loud enough to wake the neighbours.

He was larger than me, stronger than me. If he attacked me, I could fight back, but he would win. I started to wheeze. I put my hand out to the doorframe, leaned against it, trying to slow my breath. It brought back playground memories of childhood asthma. I hadn't had an episode for years and I wasn't going to be flawed by it as an adult. I willed my breathing to slow.

I told myself he wasn't going to attack me because it was just a joke. Some male escort Sheila had booked while we were at the pub and given my spare key to during one of her many supposed trips to the toilet.

"Look," I said, gathering myself together. "I know you've gone to a lot of trouble, and you're really impressive, but I haven't got time for this now. You can tell Sheila you got me and we can have a laugh about it down the pub another time. But right now, I'm tired and I need some sleep because I'm starting a new job tomorrow. So, if you don't mind, I'm going to go to bed now and you're going to leave."

I left the sanctity of the doorframe and placed the lamp back on the phone table, keeping my eye on him all the time. Without my weapon, I was even more vulnerable, but he didn't make a move. If he'd been a burglar or a rapist, he would have taken his opportunity there and then. With relief, I knew at that moment, he was part of a practical joke. The man - whoever he really was - was a damn good actor, and that's all.

With added confidence, I walked right by him like I owned the place.

Damn it - I did own the place. Minus a £100,000 debt to the bank.

I caught a whiff of his cologne as I went past, mixed with his manly scent.


If I hadn't needed a decent night's sleep, I might've taken advantage of the practical joker to see how far he was prepared to take his little act. I kept on walking, through to the kitchen, where I ran myself a cool refreshing glass of water. When I returned moments later, I found him gone. Thank goodness. Boy was I going to have words with Sheila when I next saw her.

In some ways, though, it was too bad. It was about time I gave my libido a workout. But - hey! - easy come, easy go.

I went upstairs to bed.

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