RTC2019 – thoughts and a giveaway

Check out this awesome giveaway! RTC19 was an amazing event…

SEELKs fire & ice

Hello and welcome!

I mentioned in one of my earlier blogs about my plans to attend Romancing the Capital in Ottawa, Canada again this year, I did and had a blast. Got to see old friends, made new ones and as usual I went over the budget by a smidge 😉

Eve Langlais and her minions rocked it as usual. Looks like this is it, at least for a while, so I am glad I went. I want to thank all the sponsors, the authors and those who helped them for a great event.

The VIP bags were full with the generous donations from the authors.


Thursday afternoon I was so excited to finally met in person one of my longtime on-line friends, Gayle, AKA Dark Angel, and we had a great meal and got caught up on our lives.

Then in the evening, I attended the “Audio & Crafts…

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FEAST OF SPARKS (Thornchapel #2) by Sierra Simone


FEAST OF SPARKS (Thornchapel #2) by Sierra Simone
Release Date: August 1st
Cover Designer: Hang Le
Photographer: Regina Wamba


Add to Goodreads:



Amazon US: http://mybook.to/feastofsparks
Amazon INTL: http://mybook.to/feastofsparks
Apple Books: https://sierrasim.one/iSparks
Nook: sierrasim.one/NookSparks
Kobo: sierrasim.one/KoboSparks
Google Play: COMING SOON
Goodreads: sierrasim.one/SparksGR


Review by Paula:

This is Saints POV but so much more. I’m basically speechless after reading this series so far! The kink is off the charts! Six people that make you hot and bothered and wanting more and more to there story. So many lies and secrets hidden your wanting to pull your hair out just to know the full truth. No spoilers here just have a open mind and a cold shower waiting for you cause the heat is intense! 5/5 stars



A LESSON IN THORNS (Thornchapel #1)
Amazon: https://amzn.to/2OgiJGp
Amazon INTL: mybook.to/ALIT
B&N: http://bit.ly/2UO1VsN
Apple Books: https://apple.co/2HJxKiI



I’m an outcast and a loner, named for death itself. Fate wasn’t supposed to have plans for me.

But then she came back—the girl I once kissed in a thorn-covered chapel in the woods. She came back, and I could no more resist her than I could pry out my own heart. And by some trick of fate, she wants me as much as I want her. The only problem? She also wants the man who owns Thornchapel, Auden Guest.

And so do I.

Eight years ago, I did something to Auden, something terrible. He hurt me back the only way he knew how, and so here we are: our hatred seasoned with pain and my loneliness seasoned with longing. The only thing we can agree on is Proserpina Markham, and she wants us to find a way to be together—all three of us.

If Auden wants to earn her as his submissive, then he has to earn me as well.

But with the discovery of bones behind the altar and the carnal revel of Beltane fast approaching, it’s becoming clear that Thornchapel’s secrets are much deeper and older than any of us could have ever guessed. And no matter how bright and merry a feast of sparks may be, it’s always followed by ashes.

And darkness.



Shame, hot and prickling, needles everywhere at my face and chest and belly as I begin to bend down to the floor. The cool air that caresses my pussy is now everywhere as the position begins to expose my most secret flesh, and there’s no pretending away the reality of what I’m doing. I’m doing something I’ve never done before, I’m offering up the filthiest part of me for inspection, and despite everything the three of us have shared in the past twenty-four hours, I’m flooded with shame. It’s real shame now, not play-shame, and my safe word floats to the top of my mind, a buoy in the clear waters.


I don’t want to safe out right now, I’m nowhere near the edge, but it’s nice to have it there all the same. Reassuring. There’s nothing they can do that I can’t stop.

And anyway, this is who I am—who I’ve been growing into ever since I found the words to define it.



About the Author:
Sierra Simone is a USA Today Bestselling former librarian (who spent too much time reading romance novels at the information desk.) She lives with her husband and family in Kansas City.



Connect w/Sierra Simone:
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Sierra-Simone-497450453680395/?fref=ts
Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/SierraSimonesLambs
Twitter: https://twitter.com/TheSierraSimone
Amazon : http://amzn.to/1PDR4K4
Goodreads : http://bit.ly/1oo9WEh
Instagram : https://www.instagram.com/thesierrasimone/
Website: http://authorsierrasimone.com/

Subscribe to Sierra’s newsletter:



As Fate Would Have It by Dee Lagasse

We’re celebrating the release of As Fate Would Have It by Dee Lagasse! One-Click yours today!

As Fate Would Have It (Caparelli & Co, #2) by Dee Lagasse
New Adult Contemporary Romance

Designed by Dee Lagasse



Six months.

That’s all that stood between Paxton “Pax” Callaghan and his new life. A life out of New Hampshire, far away from a past that continues to haunt him. After promising his family he would give it six months in his mother’s hometown of Abbott Hills before leaving, Pax settled in with a plan. A plan that is all but forgotten about when a certain beautiful blonde keeps appearing when he least expects it.
A favor.
When her mother’s childhood best friend’s heartbroken son moved to town, Nicole “Cole” Christian begrudgingly agreed to head the welcome wagon. The second she came face-to-face with Pax and his perfect smile, Cole immediately knew she made the right decision.
But small-town drama and a past they can’t escape make Pax and Cole realize they’re in for a fight… between their own heads and hearts.
Review by Candy:
Captivating! Small Town romance. Absolutely loved it! The title fits it perfectly! Sad to say I was sad it was over so soon that the end came when I wasn’t ready. This truly was a story at the hands of fate. Dee you did a fantastic job bringing Cole and Pax’s story to life. This story is a must read! 5+ Stars! It flows perfectly and you’ll be reading and then it’ll be the end before you know it and that’s where Dee, you rock! Pulled me in and kept me there. You’ll laugh and cry but love every minute. The characters are passionate and strong, you’ll fall in love with them.




Read Without Warning (Capparelli & Co. Book 1)
for #free with Kindle Unlimited or purchase for #99cents!
Purchase here–> https://amzn.to/2IMWney


About the Author:

Dee Lagasse is a forever 29-year-old, native New Englander. Before anything else, she is the momma to three kiddos – affectionately known as The Minis. When she isn’t writing, she can be found eating cheese fries, harassing her family to reach things on the top shelf, wandering a soccer field or fixing a cheer bow.
Connect with Dee here:

Instagram: www.instagram.com/daniellelagasse

Twitter: www.twitter.com/Daniellelagasse

Facebook Page: www.facebook.com/deelagasse


Blog Tour · Review · Uncategorized

Brick by ML Nystrom

Title: Brick
Author:  ML Nystrom
Series: Dragon Runners, book 5
Genre: MC Romance
Release Date: July 6, 2019
Cover Designer: Booksmith Design
 Add to TBR
Available now!
All other links: books2read.com/brick
In the beginning, there was one determined man and one strong woman. In their struggles, they created a dynasty.
Brick had one mission since he was a boy: become a Dragon Runner.  The motorcycle club meant everything to him. Blood and bone from his brothers paid the Dragon’s dues time and time again. And watching it split apart was more than he could handle.
Then he met Betsey.
An unwanted daughter born into abuse, Betsy lived her life beatdown under a rigid thumb, never allowed to be herself.  Her one goal was to leave her abusive family and be free.  She fought on the losing end of that fight.
Then she met Brick.

This is the fifth book in the series but can be read as a standalone, we are taken back to the beginning of Brick and Bessie’s relationship and it leads the reader through their ups and downs. It’s a fast paced, jam packed story which gives you the insight of how Brick becomes the president of the dragon runners mc and also the history of how the club ended up the way it is now.

We get to see how some of our beloved characters got together and met some new ones, I devoured this book in one sitting, I was totally captivated from the beginning and didn’t want the story to end! This was a fabulous addition to this series and I can’t wait to see where the author takes us next.

* * *
The Dragon Runners Series
(book 1)

(book 2)


(book 3)



(book 4)


I’ve had stories in my head since I was a child.  All sorts of stories of fantasy, romance, mystery and anything else that captured my interest.  I’m a voracious reader, and have spent many hours in my life devouring books, therefore it’s only fitting I should write a few myself!
I’ve spent most of my life as a performing musician and band instrument repair technician, but that doesn’t mean I’m pigeon-holed into one mold.  I’ve been a university professor, belly dancer, craftsperson, soap maker, singer, rock band artist, jewelry maker, lifeguard, swim coach, and whatever else I feel like exploring.  As one of my students said to me once, “Life’s too short to ignore the opportunities.”   I have no intention of ever stopping so welcome to my story world.  I hope you enjoy it!



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 Riding the Lines Submissions




WRITTEN WITH YOU by Aly Martinez

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“Aly Martinez is one of the best in the business. You have to read her books.” –Meghan March, New York Times Bestselling Author

Written With You, the emotional and highly anticipated conclusion to The Regret Duet from USA Today bestselling author Aly Martinez, is available now!

WW You FOR WEB.jpg

When I was fifteen, a single bullet changed my life. I spent the next decade trying to outrun the devastation of my past, building an empire that would shield me from whatever life could throw at me.

But all the money in the world couldn’t help me when I found a screaming newborn abandoned on my doorstep.

I’d never wanted to be a father. Passing the sludge that ran through my veins down to an innocent child seemed like a tragedy. But there she was—pink cheeks, red hair, and mine.

Somehow, against all logic, that little girl became the best thing that ever happened to me. It was impossible to stay lost in the past when I was the only one who could protect her future.

Which is exactly why, when her mother came back four years later, I was ready for battle.

If only I could stop myself from falling in love with her during the war.

Duet AN.jpg

Download your copy today or read FREE in Kindle Unlimited!

Amazon: https://amzn.to/2VMEV1Z

Amazon Worldwide: http://mybook.to/WWY

Add to Goodreads: http://bit.ly/2WkaS16

Review by Paula:

Wow what a amazing ending to a incredible series! This one is full of suspense and every question is answered! I’m sitting here still in shock with the outcome but I loved every page! Hadley, Willow and Caven’s story is heartbreaking and thrilling all into one deep story. Things happen for a reason and definitely with them three it truly did! I didn’t want the story to end and I couldn’t stop reading it! Definitely don’t pass this series up! 5/5 stars

Start the duet today with Written With Regret

Amazon: https://amzn.to/2JrOywh

Amazon Worldwide: http://mybook.to/WWR

Add to Goodreads: http://bit.ly/2IOYdg5

Every little girl dreams of the fairytale. The one where the white knight rushes in to save her from the clutches of evil. They fall in love, have babies, and live happily ever after.

By that definition, my life should have been a fairytale too.

When I was eight years old, Caven Hunt saved me from the worst kind of evil to walk the Earth. It didn’t matter that I was a kid. I fell in love with him all the same.

But that was where my fairytale ended.

Years later, a one-night stand during the darkest time imaginable gave us a little girl. It was nothing compared to the pitch black that consumed me when I was forced to leave her with Caven for good.

At the end of every fairytale, the happily-ever-after is the one thing that remains consistent. It wasn’t going to be mine, but there hadn’t been a night that passed where I hadn’t prayed that it would be hers.

I owed Caven my life.

However, I owed that innocent child more.

And that included ripping the heart from my chest and facing her father again.

About Aly

Originally from Savannah, Georgia, USA Today bestselling author Aly Martinez now lives in South Carolina with her husband and four young children.

Never one to take herself too seriously, she enjoys cheap wine, mystery leggings, and olives. It should be known, however, that she hates pizza and ice cream, almost as much as writing her bio in the third person.

She passes what little free time she has reading anything and everything she can get her hands on, preferably with a super-sized tumbler of wine by her side.


Connect with Aly

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AuthorAlyMartinez/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/AlyMartinezAuth

Amazon: https://amzn.to/2We92eT

BookBub: http://bit.ly/2V32S4B

GoodReads: http://bit.ly/2UKGUOM

Facebook Reader Group: http://bit.ly/2DEpPAh

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/authoralymartinez/

Website: https://alymartinez.com/

Stay up to date with Aly by signing up for her mailing list today:



Blog Tour · Review · Uncategorized

Smoke by Gemma Weir



Book: Smoke by Gemma Weir (#5 in the Archer’s Creek Series)Genre: Series-interconnected stand-alone contemporary MC Romance**NOW LIVE** 


Review by Candy:
That was an awesome read! 5 Stars! Being part of a series it was easy to read as a standalone. Loved it! There was so much tension between the main characters that it made it a page turner. Riley and Smoke aka Justin are great characters. Their personalities are total opposites but makes them seem likely to attract to each other but they may not either. Can’t give it away, lol. Gemma thank you for writing Riley and Smoke’s story. I see you struggled and glad these two won to over to be completed. Easy flowing story line with both characters point of view (my favorite). Highly recommend as a standalone or the series because great characters to want to find out more about.



Smoke I know women. I love them and they love me. I don’t chase them; they line up and I pick out whichever takes my fancy. Only now there’s her. She’s unimpressed, disinterested. She’s different and I can’t look away. I don’t understand her, but I need to make her look. I need to make her see me and then never look away again.
Sometimes the things that don’t come easily are the things that we should fight the hardest for, and with Riley I’m in for the fight of my life 

 Riley I’ve been hurt and my heart’s still bruised. I know who Smoke is. I’ve seen it all before, the arrogant ‘king of the world’ attitude. So I’m mean, cold, and harsh because offense is the best defense when it comes to protecting myself. Only what if he’s not who I think he is? I don’t want to want him, but I just can’t help myself, and sometimes what we shouldn’t want is exactly what we need. 


Meet the Author
Gemma Weir is a half crazed stay at home mom to three kids, one man child and a hell hound. She has lived in the midlands, in the UK her whole life and has wanted to write a book since she was a child. Gemma has a ridiculously dirty mind and loves her book boyfriends to be big, tattooed alpha males. She’s a reader first and foremost and she loves her romance to come with a happy ending and lots of sexy sex.

Her social media links are:





RTF 2019 – thoughts and a giveaway

A great giveaway happening at my friend Eniko’s blog… enter now!

SEELKs fire & ice

Hello and welcome!

It’s been a while since I posted… you know… LIFE !!!

Today I would like to give you my thoughts on the latest adventure in the book world. I attended Romancing the Falls 2019 on May 18, I mentioned in my last post.

Freya Barker! Congrats on another awesome event and kudos to your team, the volunteers were exceptional.

Look at this beautiful stand-up banner that greeted the readers this year! I am jealous of my friend who won it, but I am happy for her too. I wouldn’t have the space to display it in my little place LOL


Got to ‘boss around’ M. A. Abraham again 😛 (sorry … inside joke), help with the table and got to sneak away to get my pre-orders and get a few more of course 😉

These are the books I got… I did pretty good, right?…

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Light by Angel Payne


Light (Bolt Vol 6)  by USA Today bestselling romance author Angel Payne Release 30th April Genre: Contemporary Romance #Light #BoltSaga #AngelPayne #WaterhousePress


SynopsisAs Reece and Emma Richards await the biggest miracle of their lives, their anticipation is mixed with apprehension. The Consortium has fallen eerily silent, increasing the couple’s dread about the superpowered chaos being brewed by the cunning Faline and her growing army of brainwashed worshippers.
But the gift of a new life also brings a rush of new hope for the super duo, reconnecting Reece and Emma in ways they never imagined. Soon, the power of love spreads through the rest of Team Bolt. Celebrations are in order, and Faline’s wickedness is eclipsed―until Bolt and Flare are called to help with a bizarre search and rescue beneath LA’s bustling streets. During the mission, the pair make a discovery that changes everything. As Reece and Emma discover their nemesis’s plans for global domination, they must face off with Faline in one last battle that will test their unity, push their limits, and force them to trust in their greatest power of all: the light of everlasting love.

Buy the Book Today!

Review by Candy:
Reece and Emma are the best Superheroes to ever be read. Angel fantastic series!
Well that was a fantastic ending for Reece and Emma. And welcome Lux an amazing little boy with amazing powers. This by far was my favorite installment to the series. There is so much keeping you interested and so much action. You won’t go wrong reading this amazing series, an experiment that changes your aspect of life and finding the woman who completes you as you are. This was absolutely a true love story with all the action you can imagine. A must read!! 5 Stars

It’s a great time to start the series if you haven’t already!

Buy Book 1 Today!

Bolt (Volume 1): https://amzn.to/2S15VV0

Other Books in the Series 

USA Today bestselling romance author Angel Payne has written for four publishing houses, and is also independently published. She loves to focus on high heat romance starring memorable alpha men and the women who love them.

She has numerous book series to her credit, including the Suited for Sin series, the Cimarron Saga, the Temptation Court series, the Secrets of Stone series (with Victoria Blue), the Lords of Sin historicals, and the rebranded Honor Bound series, as well as several stand-alone titles.
Currently, she is serving as the Vice President of Romance Writers of America’s Passionate Ink Chapter.
She lives in Southern California with her soul-mate husband and beautiful daughter.


Giveaway · Release Blitz · Review · Uncategorized

HWY 550 by Freya Barker

Title: HWY 550
Author: Freya Barker
Genre: MC Romance

Release Date: February 17th, 2019
Hosted by: Buoni Amici Press, LLC.

Special Agent Luna Roosberg lives and breathes her job. Who needs a personal life when work is so rewarding?
When a new case sends her to investigate a local motorcycle club, covering as the president’s new flavor of the week, the lines between professional and personal quickly start to blur.
Although the Arrow’s Edge MC stays mostly on the right side of the law since Ouray took the gavel, the appearance of the feds at their gate can still rattle his cage.
When a string of robberies points squarely in Ouray’s direction, he’s forced to cooperate and put the blonde, prim and proper half-pint on the back of his bike.
With pressure mounting both in—and outside—the club, Ouray no longer knows who he can trust, except the woman who is shaking up his life—and stirring his blood.

Review by Victoria:

Finally, Luna! She’s been such an amazing side character I couldn’t wait to learn more and she did not disappoint!

Luna is an incredibly tough FBI agent in Durango.  She’s guarded with a past you can’t quite put your finger on but you’re not sure you want to either. Luna’s icy exterior rivals the ice queen but one man always seems to get her blood pumping. When a case takes her under cover, how will she walk away?
Ouray is the rough and tough biker fine straight. He runs a tight ship with his men and trusts those around him. Never one to settle, an FBI case has him putting a woman on the back of his bike for the first time. Can he survive when she doesn’t have to be there for work?
Freya brings us back to Durango in this amazing  instalment. I’ve been waiting so long to find out more about Luna. She’s been such an amazing character to see develop over the course of so many books before getting her own ending. Durango is my new go to place for love connections in the most unlikely situations. Luna has already survived so much and held everything together. Reading this connection grow in such a natural, steamy way. Freya has a way with words to make you feel like you’re right there, feeling those emotions, both good and bad. This book will keep you on your toes and in need of a cold shower! 5 Stars

Freya Barker inspires with her stories about ‘real’ people, perhaps less than perfect, each struggling to find their own slice of happy.

She is the author of the Cedar Tree and Portland, ME Series, the Northern Lights Collection and the Rock Point Series. She is also co-author of the SnapShot Series.

To see Freya’s complete backlist, or to find out what is coming down the pipe, visit freyabarker.com.





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The Girl In The Closet by Michelle Heard


The Girl In The Closet, an all-new suspenseful and romantic standalone from Michelle Heard, is available now!

The Girl In The Closet Michelle Heard Ecover FOR WEB


Escaping an unthinkable nightmare, I’m given a second chance at life. Cole Trenton is the first person to look past the broken girl. But the moment I give him my heart he leaves.

Secrets never stay buried, and mine returns with a vengeance.

Cole walks back into my life when I need him most. He shows me how to be strong, that monsters only have the power you give them.

But my biggest fear remains.

How do I silence the girl in the closet before I lose Cole again?


I always knew Birdie Liles was different, but that didn’t stop me from falling for her.

After years of being away, I return home to bury my best friend,

only to learn that Birdie’s in trouble.

If I had known about the monster from her past, I never would’ve left.

I went to fight someone else’s war while I left the woman I love unprotected.

But I’m here now, and I’m ready to send Birdie’s demon right back to hell.


Download your copy today for only 99¢ or read FREE in Kindle Unlimited!

Amazon: https://amzn.to/2TQwJZF

Amazon Worldwide: http://mybook.to/TheGirlintheCloset

Add to GoodReads: http://bit.ly/2P0DGJ0


Review by Paula:

Heartbreaking, intense and beautiful and loving those four words describe this book. Birdie is afraid of the monster daily but having Cole come back maybe she can see the light again and not the dark. Cole is going through so much but the one person he needs to make him see the light is hurting as well. Two people that need each other so the closet stays close forever. Amazing story. Only thing I do wish is that we had more glimpse to Birdies past.  4 stars





I adjust my grip on the gutter so I won’t go crashing to the ground from the top of the ladder. The last thing I need tonight is to break my neck. One more twist and the light bulb is in, lighting up the parking area. I take a deep breath as my nerves settle, and I soak up the bright light stinging my eyes. Reaching up, I twist the dome-shaped cover back into place.

I feel like a badass handyman after replacing the light bulb out front. Over the past years I’ve been working hard to beat my fear of the dark and water, and although I’ve had some success, it all came back since my father was released from prison two years ago. After I received the first letter,I’ve been living in a constant state of cold terror, watching for him in every shadow, hearing his whispers in the dead of night.

Life has become an endless tunnel with nothing to look forward to. Just one long dark night.

I take the flashlight out of my mouth and looking down, I sigh heavily. Why is it always easier getting up than down?

“Dang,” I mumble, and as if I’m not under enough pressure being stuck on the ladder, headlights beam across the parking area, falling right on me.

“Oh,crap.” It doesn’t get any worse than this.

Oh wait, it does. Not only do customers arrive when I’m up on the ladder, but it has to be while I’m dressed in my rattiest pair of shorts and an old long sleeve shirt with I’ve bypassed insane and gone straight to psychowrittenin bright green letters across my chest. I got it at a fair a couple of years back, and it’s become one of my favorite shirts to sleep in.

I want to kick my own butt as the car parks right behind me. Needing to get down and fast, I wiggle as I try to feel my way down to the first step on the ladder while clinging to the gutter like some crazy-ass monkey.

“This is so not workin’, Birdie,” I mumble under my breath, thinking I should just jump.

I glance down at the ground thinking the worst that can happen is me face-planting and knocking every one of my teeth out in front of the customer. Damn this is such a bad position to be stuck in.

“Do you need help gettin’ down?” a deep voice says from below. Startled, I drop the flashlight. I grab hold of the gutter with both hands, soI don’t go tumbling after it.

Oh, dear mother of all that’s good. It had to be a man. Why couldn’t it be a woman?

“I’m okay.” I squeak like a damn chipmunk.

I attempt another stupid wiggle in the hopes of actually finding the top step. I hear a chuckle from below, and my butt freezes in mid-air.

Is this dude for real? He did not just laugh at me.

Irritated, I glare down. “Seriously?”

Considering I’m stuck on a ladder in skimpy shorts, I don’t think glaring is helping much right now. Crap,I haven’t shaved in a few days. I must look like a baby wooly-mammoth by now.

It’s by far the worst check-in experience I’ve had since I started working here during my senior year. It’s even worse than the time Mrs. Hardy booked in with what I thought was her son. I went and shoved my foot in my mouth by saying, ‘I hope you and your son enjoy your stay at Pebbles of Destiny,’ only to be glared at as if I was gum stuck under a shoe.

Turned out he wasn’t her son.

Turned out he wasn’t Mr. Hardy either.

I didn’t sleep that night, because it turned out she’s a screamer, and she only knows one sentence, starting with a four letter word followed by, ‘… me harder’.

But tonight, yeah, tonight beats that one hands down.

When I see the man my glare fizzles away faster than I can summon it to my face, like if you get a firecracker that you light and you expect this big bang, but instead all you get is a lousy ‘pffft’ sound.

He walks closer, taking hold of the ladder, and it’s right about thenI take in the fact that he’s tall. Damn, he’s taller than the ladder. Seeing his uniform, my heart stutters, andshock ripples through me.

Shit, this can’t be happening to me while I’m up here.

Cole Trenton is back?

My eyes jump to Aiden, then back to Cole. My world stops spinning right then and there as I look back to Cole’s drop-dead gorgeous face. From where I’m standing he looks like a dark-haired, perfect specimen of all things defined as male.

I need to get down right now.

“Aiden.” I have no idea why I say his name first. Maybe it’s because Aiden knows about the worst in my life, andright now he’s standing right next to the man who’s responsible for the best experiences I’ve ever had. I don’t want to see them together. I don’t want the bad to taint the good.

Cole reaches a hand out to me. “As much fun as it is watchin’ you up there, I think we should get you down.”

I stare at his hand for a moment, not sure what to do.

“Put your hand in mine, Birdie,” he says, sounding much calmer than I feel with my heart beating frantically.

I reach down, placing my hand in his. I almost tumble forward as tingles race over my skin, electrifying every single inch of me. His strong fingers wrap around mine, swallowing my hand whole.

“Now your other hand,” he says.

I start to crouch slowly down so I can reach his other handwhen my whole body is jerked forward. Just as I realize Cole has yanked me off the ladder, he lets go of my hand, andI nose dive toward him.

My eyes grow huge as an embarrassingly loud shriek escapes me. To make things worse, I fall ungracefully like one of those big ole’ trees when they yell timber.

Cole’s hands grab hold of my waist, andan intense sense of relief spreads through my chest.Somewhere between the ladder and my feet meeting dear ole’ Mother Earth, I grab hold of Cole’s shoulders. I manage to get my hands around his neck, and as he brings me down my brain cells must be short-circuiting, or self-destructing, or both, because I pull myself right up against him as if I’m some octopus who’s just found its next meal. Given a few more minutes,I might’ve left an imprint of myself on him.

“Birdie, you really think I’d let you fall?” His breath spreads warmth over the top of my head, and it keeps spreading like a runaway fire, only intensifying everything about this moment by a gazillion times.

Cole’s arms wrap tightly around me in a hug. My feet lift off the floor as he holds my body to his. His one arm slackens its grip, but only so he can take hold of my chin and tip my head up.

When our eyes meet, Cole says, “Hi, Birdie. How have you been?”

I almost blurt out that I’ve missed him but swallow the words back just in time. I thought I managed to get over the crush I had on Cole, but seeing him again, the fluttering in my stomach is back with full force.

“Hi, Cole. Welcome back,” I answer automatically as I step out of his embrace while doing my best to get the walls back up around myself to keep others out. Any chance I ever had with Cole disappeared the day I got the first letter from my father. I need to remember that Cole’s come back to bury Hunter, and my father’s coming back to bury me.

I can’t make the mistake of letting Cole in again. Not knowing my psycho father is on his way to finish what he started all those years back.

Cole tilts his head trying to catch my eyes, just like the Holden brothers always do. The family trademark tilt is guaranteed to turn your heart to mush, and boy, it’s sure doing a great job right about now.

I bite the inside of my mouth to keep it from trembling as emotion pushes up my throat. This moment is way too intense for me to handle. I’ve been hanging on by a thread of my sanity and seeing Cole is stretching that thread too thin. It’s going to snap.

I look past Cole at Aiden, hoping he’ll save me from this awkward situation.

“Hi, Aiden. Can I make you guys some coffee? Maybe a beer?” I hear the tremble in my voice and hate that I can’t control my emotions better.

Aiden just gives me the usual comforting smile he always does when he’s here to talk about my psycho father. My eyes drop to the file in his hand, and just the sight of it makes my stomach fall somewhere at my feet.

Why did Aiden bring the file along with Cole?

My eyes dart between the two men as an anxious feeling starts to gnaw at my insides.

“Hey, Birdie,” Aiden answers, drawing my attention back to him. “A beer sounds great.”

I went to Aiden in a moment of weakness, andI regret it. I should’ve hit the road instead. With Cole standing only a few inches from me, I now regret more than ever not running when that first letter came all those years back.

It’s been so hard trying to distance myself from the people I love. Mom, Dad, and Reece wouldn’t have any of it and kept fighting me whenever I tried to push them away. Clay’s been so busy lately that I don’t even have to worry about him.

But now Cole came back at the worst possible time.

About Michelle:

Michelle Heard is a Bestselling Romance Author who loves creating stories her readers can get lost in. She loves an alpha hero who is not afraid to fight for his woman.


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