July 31, 2018
Cover Designed by: Amy Queau- Q Design Cover and Premades
Amazon US: https://amzn.to/2LwZEBC
The first time I met Ian Kemp in the sparkling blue waters of St. Thomas, I was six years old and we shared a summer beneath the stars.
The second time I met Ian Kemp, he was a shell of the boy I once knew. Turbulent and infuriating, he refused my friendship at every turn. Like me, he was a casualty of life’s cruelty, but we were planets apart.
We’d both sought refuge on the island, hoping to find our anchor. Instead, we found each other and managed to reclaim our stars...until we both got swept away.
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Lorena's Five Star Review
Kate Stewart has become one of my favorite authors. Her words always stick to me for a long time and her books are always on my top read for the year. She has such a special way to make you always, always keep her words stuck in your head for a long time.
I can't decide anymore which one of her books is my favorite because I've fallen in love with each and every one that I've read from her. I can't honestly say I have a favorite because they're all stuck in the same category for me and they're always in my top 10 reads.
I honestly can't seem to get enough of her beautiful writing. She is a special kind of author for me. There is nothing that she writes that I will not like. I love how different her books are but they all have a way in leaving me a state of devastation, they feel so real.
I don't know what it is, but Kate's words are so damn addicting and I can't seem to stop reading her books!
Ian and Koti were such an unforgettable couple. The things that they both went through was devastating, but I absolutely loved how they were there for each other, how they found each other again after so many years. They were both so closed off at the beginning but they found a way to open up to each other and that led to more than just friendship and I absolutely love a book that has friends to lovers as a trope. But what I loved the most is just the chemistry between them and the love they both had for Ian's teenage daughter. She was a beautiful girl who embraced her disability and was a happy girl.
I could never get enough of her words!
Someone Else's Ocean is going on my top 5 of 2018!
IT'S TIME TO BE SHATTERED! Shattered Fears by Anna Edwards is AVAILABLE NOW!
AND YOU CAN GET IT EVERYWHERE! Amazon US → https://amzn.to/2M3iNGX Amazon UK → https://amzn.to/2LYfKzU Amazon CA → https://amzn.to/2M3bj7c Amazon AU → https://amzn.to/2yiKcTB iBooks → https://apple.co/2M0VDRK Kobo → http://bit.ly/2t8mEf1 Nook → http://bit.ly/2K315Gi
BLURB:The fourth installment in the internationally bestselling series Glacial Blood from Amazon Bestselling Author Anna Edwards... Isobel Ross has led a sheltered life, because her father is a Senator for Montana, and she has to act a certain way. She’s known love only to have her heart shattered when the man she gave her virginity to disappeared. Chance brings them back together. Can she find it in her heart to forgive him? Zain Thornton is the honey-loving bear of the Glacial Blood pack. Is his obsession a mask for the guilt and fear he hides? He’s a shifter. The woman he loves can never be with one of them. It’s too risky for all their futures. Can he find a way to live the life he wants when everything around him falls apart?
About AnnaAnna hails from the rural countryside near London. She previously worked as an accountant, and while she still does a bit of accountancy on occasion, the majority of her time is now spent writing and looking after her family. An avid reader herself, Anna turned to writing to combat depression and anxiety after her diagnosis in 2015. She loves travel, hunky heroes with dirty mouths, demure but spunky heroines, and dramatic suspense. You will find all four woven into each of her magical stories.
Follow Anna Online! Amazon → http://amzn.to/2Btjgyk BookBub → http://bit.ly/2ySXdOx Facebook → http://bit.ly/2yTKQC4 Goodreads → http://bit.ly/2BDeGjE Twitter → http://bit.ly/2CzwOYj Website → https://authorannaedwards.com
Title: At Midnight
Series: Runaway Princess: Flicka #4
Author: Blair Babylon
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Release Date: July 31, 2018
When is a rescue not a rescue? When itâs a kidnapping.
Flicka and Dieter, whose real name is Raphael Mirabaud, tried to escape her ex-husbandâs Secret Service and army, but they couldnât. Dozens of military personnel, maybe hundreds, surrounded them, trying to kidnap Flicka. The only way out was with mercenaries hired by Raphaelâs father.
But Raphaelâs father has other plans for them, plans that would force Raphael to go back to a destiny he tried to leave behind, and his father will hold Flicka and Alina hostage and threaten their lives to make him do it.
The story gets darker, AT MIDNIGHT.
AMAZON US / UK / CA / AU
B&N / KOBO / iBOOKS
AMAZON US / UK / CA / AU
B&N / KOBO / iBOOKS
Blair Babylon is an award-winning, USA Today bestselling author who used to publish literary fiction. Because professional reviews of her other fiction usually included the caveat that there was too much deviant sex and too much interesting plot, she decided to abandon all literary pretensions, let her freak flag fly, and write hot, sexy, suspenseful romance.
BREAK by New York Times Bestselling Author Cassia Leo is out now and #FREE in Kindle Unlimted! Read it now!
A humorous and heartbreaking second-chance stand-alone romance from the New York Times bestselling author of the Shattered Hearts Series.
For six years, she was the only one. My best friend. My kitten. My world. Then, I broke us by getting caught in a web of lies.
Hard to believe, after everything we’d been through, I could do what I did to her… in front of 600,000 people. I doubt she’ll ever believe I did it because I love her.
Three years later, my music career is booming. I have a movie deal in the next comic book reboot. And now the only parent I have left has been given a death sentence. I have to go home, but going home means facing what I did to her.
Read now on Kindle Unlimited
I’m about to turn around and head back to the Uber, when Charley stands up from the chair and begins making her way toward the entrance. It’s like watching an angel coming at me, but from the stony expression on her face, I can’t decide if she looks more like a guardian angel or an angel of death. Either way, she’s gorgeous: tall and slender, with hips that would make a grown man cry; her dark hair cascades over her shoulders in luscious waves; round, hazel eyes and full lips framed by soft cheekbones and a perfect oval face.
She always complained about the tiny bump on her nose, or that her top lip wasn’t as full as her bottom lip. I used to tell her that complaining about those things is like looking at a gorgeous sunset and complaining that the sun is too bright.
Michelle glares at Charley and says something that looks like, “What are you doing?”
Charley says something to her that I can’t make out, but Michelle shakes her head adamantly. Charley glares at her, then says something that looks like, “Do it.”
Michelle rolls her eyes and they both continue toward me as Michelle pulls a ring of keys out of her apron. My heart soars as I realize Charley is forcing her friend to open the door. Maybe she’s not as angry with me as I anticipated.
The whole time Michelle is unlocking the door, I keep my gaze focused on Charley, willing her to look at me and give me some kind of smile or nod or something to let me know I’m right. But her eyes are trained on Michelle’s hands. Finally, the door pushes out toward me and Charley emerges with an expression on her face I’ve never seen before. I can’t explain it any other way except a stone-cold lack of emotion.
“Charley, I just want to talk to you. Just give me five minutes.”
Her expression doesn’t change. “I don’t want to talk to you, Ben. You should leave before Mason gets here.”
“It’s probably better that he’s here. I owe him an apology, too,” I say, taking a step toward her.
Michelle steps sideways, half her body shielding Charley now. “That’s close enough.”
Charley puts her hand on Michelle’s arm. “You can go inside. I can handle this.”
“Are you sure?”
Charley nods and we both watch in silence as Michelle shoots me one last burning glare before she heads back inside. “Look, Ben, I’m sure you’ve probably made up some kind of excuse that justifies what you did to me. But there’s nothing you could say that will make me understand or forgive what you did. So, once again, I’m asking you to leave. I really don’t want to see what Mason will do to you when he gets here.”
The cool expression on her face and the even tone in her voice chills my blood. What have I done to her?
“You know damn well Mason’s never been able to take me.”
“He’s been rage-lifting,” she replies coolly, using the phrase I made up for when I would take my aggression out at the gym. “I don’t want him to get in trouble with the cops when he kicks your ass.”
I suppress my laughter, so I don’t further piss her off. “Baby, I’m not here to get in fights or make excuses. And—”
“Don’t call me baby.”
I pause for a moment and take a deep breath. “Look, I don’t expect you to forgive me. Not tonight, anyway.”
She clenches her jaw and lets out a puff of laughter through her nose. “You really are just as cocky as always if you think I’d ever forgive you.”
I close my eyes for a second to collect myself as anger roars inside me. “You…have no fucking idea why I did what I did.”
“I don’t care why you did it!” she shouts, her stony expression crumbling. “You broke us! I don’t want to see you ever again. Go back to L.A., Ben.”
I step forward and grab her elbows. “This isn’t over, Char.”
“Don’t touch me!” she yells, wrestling her arms from my grip.
I’m close enough to smell her now, that sugared-strawberry scent I remember so fucking well it makes my arms ache to hold her. “You have no fucking idea how sorry I am.”
“Are you drunk? I can smell alcohol.”
I blink at her question, standing my ground as I see the headlights of a car approaching.
She glances toward the lights and her eyes widen with panic. “Go home, Ben. Please. As much as I hate you, I don’t want to see you hurt.”
I shake my head. “It’s too late for that.”
About Cassia Leo
New York Times bestselling author Cassia Leo loves her coffee, chocolate, and margaritas with salt. When she's not writing, she spends way too much time re-watching Game of Thrones and Sex and the City. When she's not binge-watching, she's usually enjoying the Oregon rain with a hot cup of coffee and a book.
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Shimmy Bang Sparkle by Nicola Rendell
Release Date: August 21st
Add To Goodreads:https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/37916608-shimmy-bang-sparkle?
Pre-Order Today! Amazon: https://amzn.to/2GcGChh
To catch a thief…or fall for one?
All Nick Norton wants is to stay on the straight and narrow…and never get caught stealing again. Then he lays eyes on her: Stella Peretti—100 percent sexy and absolutely irresistible. Especially when he sees her smooth moves lifting a two-karat diamond. Nick realizes he’s found the sparkling woman of his dreams—one so perfect for him it’s almost criminal.
The Shimmy Shimmy Bangs are master jewel thieves who are planning the heist of the century. And Shimmy leader, Stella, isn’t about to let anyone—even if he is a hunky, tatted-up studmuffin—get in her way. But when two of her girls are put out of commission, Stella realizes that Nick isn’t just a red-hot distraction. He might be the answer to her pilfering prayers.
Now, Nick and Stella are putting everything on the line for one last job. But when two thieves have this much chemistry, it’s only a matter of time before somebody’s heart gets stolen.
About the Author
Bestselling author Nicola Rendell loves writing naughty romantic comedies. After receiving a handful of degrees from a handful of places, she now works as a professor in New England. Nicola’s work has been featured in USA Today’s Happy Ever After and the Huffington Post. She loves to cook, sew, and play the piano. Her hobbies might make her sound like an old lady, but she’s totally okay with that. She is represented by Emily Sylvan Kim at the Prospect Agency.
Connect with Nicola
Today we have the release day blitz for The Protector by HelenKay Dimon! Check it out and get your copy today!
Title: The Protector:
Author: HelenKay Dimon
Genre Romantic Suspense
About The Protector:
Salvation, Pennsylvania. The commune located in the small town was advertised as a modern Utopia: a place to live, share, and learn with other like-minded young people. Cate Pendleton’s sister was one of them. Now she’s dead—and Cate won’t rest until she finds out who killed her. Stonewalled at every turn, she approaches a DC Fixer for help and ends up with Damon Knox, a mysterious man with a secretive past. But Cate soon discovers that she not only needs Damon, she wants him, which isn’t good—for the attraction brewing between them will only lead to complications that can turn into danger . . .
Damon has tried to erase the hellish memories and the evil that happened in Salvation ever since he left a long time ago. Still, he can’t turn his back on Cate. As Damon works with Cate to uncover her sister’s killer, he finds himself drawn to her more and more. But how will she feel about him when she learns about his connection to the place?
Joining forces to uncover the truth, they must stay one step ahead of a cunning killer who’s bent on not being exposed.
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Cate Pendleton dumped her grocery bags on the kitchen counter and glanced around the living room area of her small one-bedroom condo. Flattened pillows. Magazines spread across the coffee table. A blanket in a ball on the floor from where it slipped off her last night while she watched television. The remote stuffed between cushions.
Everything was exactly where she left it when she took off on her store run an hour ago. But something struck her as off. She felt it rather than saw it. A violation of her scared space. A lingering menace. The sensation of unknown hands skimming over her things. A shiver skated through her at the thought.
With her keys sticking between her fingers like a weapon, she walked around the condo, peeking in the closet and looking inside the bedroom. The journey ended back here she started. She approached the couch nice and slow. She listened for footsteps, but the only sound came from the hiss of her clunky, usually-malfunctioning icemaker.
She leaned toward the cushions, just a bit, and sniffed. There it was. Aftershave. Faint, but present. Since a man hadn’t been in the condo for weeks the smell was out of place. And this was not the first time this had happened. She came home two days ago to the same scent. A mix of musk and orange. The last time it happened in the evening. This time in the morning.
On that first day, she found her patio door unlocked. Living in a city, she didn’t take her personal safety for granted. Being two floors up, tucked behind rows of government buildings and a few blocks back from the National Air and Space Museum in downtown Washington, D.C., she kept her guard up. The neighborhood served as home to many congressional staffers. Traffic, both human and the car variety, moved in a steady beat. But she knew better than to assume everything was fine. She locked her doors. All of them and all the time, but someone got in.
A punch of awareness moved though her as she brushed her fingertips over the arm of the chair. The idea of someone snooping through her stuff, standing in her space, made her gag. Last time nothing was stolen, so she skipped calling the police with that fear. Wrote the whole thing off as faulty memory. She knew something strange had happened, but she blocked it and pretended otherwise. But this was different. From the first whiff of that cologne, the trembling started deep down in her stomach, spun up to her head and would not stop.
She forced her mind to focus. Someone kept getting in without leave much of a trail. They didn’t stick around, and for that she was grateful. Nothing stolen. Not obviously, anyway.
Her sister. That’s what this had to be about. Cate thought back to the last six weeks and all the ground she’d covered. She poked around, asked uncomfortable questions and clearly upset someone. She got too close, which was exactly her plan. Maybe she uncovered some piece of information she hadn’t realized yet. But she would.
If someone broke in thinking they’d figure out her strategy or grab every lead she’d collected, they miscalculated. No way would she make it that easy for anyone to destroy her work or derail her.
After the first time this happened, she called the police but that led nowhere. A second call likely would end the same way. They would ignore her, write her off as the crazy one with the dead sister. Add to that her complaint wouldn’t pinpoint any clear evidence. This was about a sense of a presence, of being spooked, and she would become the new lunchtime story for the officers.
But she knew. He had been there. He or she. The person knew how to get in and was playing with her. The next time she might come home too soon.
Despite her worries and the downsides, she picked up the phone and dialed the one person who might be able to help her, the mysterious D.C. fixer. The guy no one ever saw who went by one name – Wren.
Catch Up On the Series!
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Kindle | Nook | iBooks | Google Play | Kobo | Avon Digital
Kindle | Nook | iBooks | Google Play | Kobo | Avon Digital
About HelenKay Dimon:
HelenKay Dimon spent the years before becoming a romance author as a...divorce attorney. Not the usual transition, she knows. Good news is she now writes full time and is much happier. She has sold over forty novels and novellas to numerous publishers, including HarperCollins, Kensington, Harlequin, Penguin Random House, Riptide and Carina Press. Her nationally bestselling and award-winning books have been showcased in numerous venues and her books have twice been named "Red-Hot Reads" and excerpted in Cosmopolitan magazine. She is on the Board of Directors of the Romance Writers of America and teaches fiction writing at UC San Diego and MiraCosta College. You can learn more at her website: www.HelenKaydimon.com
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Masters of the Castle -Tempting Tasha by Tabitha Black and Guarding Grace by Katherine Deane & Kate Richards- Teaser Share
Masters of the Castle: Witness Protection Program
Where will you be when the bomb goes off?
Ten of your favorite BDSM authors. Eight brand new stories. One really, really bad man.
When Master Marshall gets an emergency phone call, he can’t believe his ears. His cousin, Grace, has become the only surviving witness to a terrible murder and she is refusing witness protection. Fortunately for her, as far as Marshall is concerned there is no place in the world safer than a medieval castle full of protective Doms.
Unfortunately for them all, the assassin hunting her from the shadows disagrees.
Add it to your TBR list - http://bit.ly/2LF8rNJ
Pre order it here - https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07FMDZKKP
Coming - August 7
Katherine Deane & Kate Richards
USA Today bestselling author Tabitha Black has been writing erotic spanking fiction for over twelve years, mostly in the age-play and historical genres. More recently, she's discovered the joys of writing more contemporary, darker, edgier books with a greater emphasis on BDSM – one of which, Sharing Silver, was nominated for a Golden Flogger award and won the Spanking Romance Reviews award for best ménage.
Having lived in four countries on three different continents, and been an active participant in her local kinky communities, she likes to "write to discover what she knows." Her own personal kinks include anything and everything to do with spanking, fireplay, edge play, scarification, age-play, and too many more to count. Some girls like wood, some adore leather, but Tabitha is partial to big, shiny, ornate knives… nothing else makes her quite as weak at the knees.
She lives in Europe with her Daddy/Sir, and a lilac cat who likes to sneeze in her face.
Tabitha loves getting mail, so if you want to drop her a line, please do so at email@example.com. You can also check out her website here, follow her on Twitter @BlushingTabitha, Instagram, or join her Facebook page. Thank you for reading!
Katherine Deane is a multi-published, top 100 romantic and BDSM author and romantic at heart. She loves cheese, red wine, chocolate, and snuggling up with her daughters’ kittens while reading a good book. When not reading, or writing, you can find her knitting, sewing, crafting, or doing pretty much anything to keep her hands busy. She has taken over the dining room AKA craft room, much to her husband’s dismay. In one of her books, an energetic “craftaholic” would find herself over her husband’s knee for losing an important document in a pile of bi-cone crystals and mod podge. Her real life, and the people in them, give her plenty of ideas to work with. Katherine has dubbed herself the queen of cheese. Not only is she a former Midwestern Cheese Head; she also loves to incorporate it into her books. In her opinion, all romance deserves at least one cheesy scene that makes you cry.
You can catch up with her at:
Kate RichardsKate Richards divides her time between Los Angeles and the High Sierras. She would gladly spend all her days in the mountains, but she’d miss the beach…and her very supportive husband’s commute would be three hundred miles. Wherever she is, she loves to explore all different kinds of relationships in her stories. She doesn’t believe one-size-fits-all, and whether her characters live BDSM, ménage, GLBT, spanking, or any other kind of lifestyle, it’s the love, the joy in one another, that counts.
Amazon Page http://amzn.to/2bBGzeq
Facebook Fan Page http://on.fb.me/14Vqx48
Goodreads Page http://bit.ly/19yVcWh
Their first chance at love ended in heartbreak.
Wade Rycroft fell in love with Geneva Harris when she was the smartest girl in his class. The rodeo star and the shy academic made for an odd pair, but their chemistry was undeniable. They made plans to get married after high school. Those plans changed when Genny broke his heart. Joining the Army gave him a chance to leave that life behind. News that Genny married the town’s golden boy let Wade know that he could never go home again.
A chance encounter rekindles an old flame.
Fifteen years later, he’s found his place in the world and tried to forget the woman who left him standing in the rain. After leaving the Army he forged a new life as a bodyguard at McKay-Taggart, but he still feels incomplete. When his brother’s wedding brings him home to Broken Bend, Texas, he walks into a storm of scandal. Genny’s marriage has dissolved, the town has turned against her, and someone is making threats. Seeing her again reawakens feelings he thought were long gone, and he worries that staying close enough to help her could be too much to bear.
Their reunion just might kill them both.
After an attempt is made on Genny’s life, Wade can’t refuse to help her. Watching over her day and night, it’s clear that having her back in his life could be the thing to finally make him whole. When the danger follows them back to Dallas, their second chance at love could be over before it even begins.
Coming to other retailers October 29, 2018
“There’s no reason for you to be jealous of Hutch. He gave me a few kisses, that’s all.”
He dropped her hand, turned, and started back toward the office. Hutch’s truck was still here. He would kill the little fucker and that would teach him. He would torture him first. Hutch liked computers. Wade would see how much he liked them when they were shoved hard up his ass.
“Wade.” Genny ran after him, her laughter a musical sound he didn’t want to hear right now. “Wade, come on. I was joking. He let me raid his desk for chocolate. Those kind of kisses. Please don’t murder him.”
He stopped, completely embarrassed. He hadn’t been thinking. She was used to being around a man who took out his temper on her. “I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to scare you.”
She grinned up at him, her hand on his arm. “You didn’t scare me. Why would you… Wade, I know you’re not Brock. I’ve always known that. I’m not terrified of all men. Hell, I’m not afraid of Big Tag. He’s kind of funny once you let him know where the boundaries are.”
“You gave Tag boundaries?” He’d been afraid to leave her alone with Ian. Not because he thought Ian would hurt her, but because he could be intimidating at times. Now that he thought about it, Big Tag was actually perfect for Genny to start practicing her newfound sass on because he would like her more if she gave him hell.
“Very firm ones, but I also offered him something in exchange. We’re going to get along fine, Tag and I. And Hutch and I are only ever going to be friends. He talks way too much about Game of Thrones, but he does have a lot of candy so it evens out to a nice friendship.” She moved her hand up to his shoulder. “I’m not interested in Hutch, but there is this guy who works in the office I am interested in.”
His whole body went on full alert. He had things to tell her, things that were important, but was here really the place to do that? Here was the place to talk about work things and who she was interested in. Interested in seeing? Interested in spending more time with? “Who might that be?”
Her eyes met his, heating up. “He’s in the bodyguard unit and he told me once that if I ever want a real kiss, I should ask him.”
He could feel the erection coming on like a runaway locomotive. He’d spent the last few months going without. The scene at Sanctum had gotten boring for him. At first it had been filled with excitement, but watching all his friends settle down had made him look at his life in a different way. Having Genny back in it made him absolutely sure he didn’t want casual sex. He wanted a woman who belonged to him, who he belonged to. He wanted disgusting, nasty, utterly committed sex. “Then you should definitely ask.”
“Wade, will you kiss me?”
NY Times and USA Today bestselling author Lexi Blake lives in North Texas with her husband, three kids, and the laziest rescue dog int eh world. She began writing at a young age, concentrating on plays and journalism. It wasn’t until she started writing romance and urban fantasy that she found the stories of her heart. She likes to find humor in the strangest places and believes in happy endings no matter how odd the couple, threesome, or foursome may seem.
Jason Lee is the friend everyone would like to have. He’s loyal, sensitive and generous and kind to those he loves. He has dedicated himself completely to his work at the pub that he manages with his friends, who have by now become a second family to him. He is trying to make sense out of a life that is damaged by loss and pain, closing himself into his safe haven of a world that is far removed from his previous suffering, and he is determined not to lose any more than he already has.
Alex McBride returns to Dublin, having been away for five years. She finds her old house, goes to places familiar to her when she grew up there with her friends, but nothing is like it used to be. Coming back is never easy, especially if your absence is responsible for the slow destruction of someone else’s life, someone you had hoped to forget but who actually remained exactly where he was, like an open wound that continues to bleed.
Jason and Alex find each other together again after a long separation: they’ve been friends, confidants and conspirators but now they’re forced to reconcile a past that has never stopped hurting and a future impossible for them to live out together, because there’s something that could separate them, and this time, they might be parted forever.
A.S. Kelly was born in Italy but lives in Ireland with her husband, their two children and a cat named Oscar.
Bookworm, music passionate, coffee drinker, she lives in a small village in the North of Dublin, where she looks for inspiration for her new stories.
Title: The Hawks
Author: SD Hendrickson
Genre: Romantic Suspense/Family Drama/New Adult
Cover Design: SD Hendrickson
Release Date: July 26, 2018
âSultry summer of suspense that leads to the fall of a powerful familyâ
He warned me. Said hawks were dangerous birds. Their majestic beauty could blind your eyes as they picked the flesh from your bones. But even hawks have enemies. And they eventually came for the Hawthorn family. Held us hostage. Demanded retribution.
But I wasnât a Hawthorn. No, I was just the help. Caught in the turmoil of a tragic family. I worked hard for Delsey Hawthorn. Tried to earn the respect of the reigning tyrant. Assistant. Event planner. Gardner. Chauffeur. I added it all to my resume.
And then I met Javier Hawthorn. Delsey ordered me to stay away from her grandson. But like a moth to a burning flame, I gravitated toward him. He was so different than my world. Irresistible. Charming. He brought a calmness to the chaos.
But that was before the intruders came into the house. Tied us up. Hurt us. We struggled to get away. We fought to survive. But who were the men behind the masks? Did we know them? Because someone who got this close to the family at night must be even closer during the day.
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âIâm sorry. I wasnât trying to upset you.â My hands cupped his cheeks. I peered into his eyes, trying to read him better as I wore my heart on the outside. âI know this is supposed to be casual. But this doesnât feel casual to me. You are so good to me. So much more than I ever expected. The way you make me feel. I just need to know if you feel the same way. And itâs okay if you donât. I just need to know the truth.â
Javier rested his forehead against mine. âI feel the same, Sarina.â
âYou do?â The elation filled my chest and I leaned up to kiss him, but his words stopped me.
âI feel the same, but youâre not really mine. Not permanently. What right do I have to feel jealous or angry?â
âBut you have every right,â I pleaded with him. âIf you think weâre together.â
The emotions shifted in his eyes as he struggled with his answer. âMaybe I tried to pretend at first. That you could mean nothing. But I couldnât. I care about you, Sarina. And in another time or place, I could see myself wanting so much more with you. But the more we feel, the harder it ends.â
âYou donât think I know that?â I whispered. âI know you will hurt me. Eventually.â
âBut I donât want to hurt you. So I have to ask you this. Do you want to stop now before this gets more serious? Before it hurts more?â
âNo,â I gushed. I didnât even hesitate. The idea of him pulling away sent a panic through me. I didnât care about the heartbreak that would come later when he left me. I needed him in my life right now. âI donât want to stop seeing you.â
SD Hendrickson received a Bachelor's of Science in Journalism and Public Relations from Oklahoma State University. She is the author of The Mason List, Waiting for Wyatt, and My Lucky Days.