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Excerpt Reveal: Never Always by Rachel Robinson

NEVER ALWAYS by Rachel Robinson
Release Date: December 6th

Trailer:
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Blurb:
Tennyson
In a family filled with picturesque butterflies, I’m a moth. Camouflaged. The invisible, nerdy scientist who would rather study water and save the planet than don a dress and mingle in southern society. Unfortunately, having my nose in a book and eating goals for breakfast doesn’t bode well for a social life or my cobweb covered dating sector.

Then I met Grange. He’s a tormenter—an epic bully, but he’s promised to help me in my lackluster areas. He’s been ordered to fulfill service hours at my Aquatic Lab in Cape Cod, if I allow it.

He is bad, the worst. I’m talking wearing prison garb when I met him kind of awful. We all have our demons, but Corrick Granger’s seep into everything and everyone around him. Sure, I’d love his expertise on how to land a guy, but I’m not sure any man is worth dealing with an outcast Navy SEAL who has more issues than a magazine subscription.

Grange
One hazy mistake was all it took to ruin my life. Well, one mistake coupled with a chain of bad decisions, and a side of my hot temper. The court doled out an easy community service sentence. Never anything too harsh for a “hero.” I’ll be back at the Teams in six months, easy. I need to keep my cool, put my head down, and follow the rules.

A fiery redhead with something to prove is all that stands between me and my freedom. Tennyson is a maddening combination of know-it-all and knows-nothing. The type of woman who would cut off her own nose to spite her face, and yet when my one mistake snowballs into a life altering, soul-damning error, she’s undeniably there for me.

Even though I don’t deserve it.

Even though I’ve kept secrets.

And despite the fact I have become the monster she knew I would be.

Excerpt:
Grange watches my hands as I pull my hair over my shoulder, then his blue eyes lock with mine. “I want to stay.”

Honest. Forward. I gulp. How can I test my hypothesis? How would Sue-Ellen figure out if a man was interested? Would she just go in for a kiss? Flirt? I wish I could text her right now. Squirming under the heat of his stare, I think I might have something. “Will you tell me what to say if I call Grey right now?”

His right brow raises a fraction, but he recovers quickly. I see the flicker of amusement, and I think he knows what I’m doing, but that’s fine. I need a distraction from the path of my thoughts. “Call him up. Tell him to come over so you can finish your date.” Grange balls his fists and his knuckles crack. “Tell him what’s in store for him.”

I open my mouth to ask what exactly he means, but he holds up a hand to silence me.

“You’ll invite him in. Maybe you offer a game of chess, maybe you offer him a drink to take the edge off. He’ll want the drink because you intimidate him, looking like that. He’ll want to kiss you.” Grange stops midstride as he crosses to me. “But he won’t because he won’t be able to stop at a kiss.”

I scoff. “That’s not Grey.”

His expression grows serious. “Obviously.”

I take in a breath, his gaze lights on my mouth. “You’ll sit at the table or on the couch and talk about work. He’ll try to change the subject to something else but neither of you are comfortable talking about personal things. Dark desires, so you’ll think about them and hope he makes a move. After he’s had enough to drink, he’ll touch you.” Grange reaches out, setting a possessive, hot hand on my waist. I feel it between my legs and lose my breath. “You’ll like it.” His gaze is searing, but there’s a playful undercurrent because he knows what he’s doing and I’m crippled by it.

Grange lets his hand fall away. “He won’t have the courage to go any further and you wouldn’t dare act too forward and tell him to keep touching you. It’s against the way you were brought up.” His mouth picks up on one side. “Southern manners.” I hate that my waist feels cold, that I want him to touch me again. My mouth is dry and it seems I had every reason to be nervous about being alone with him. “Leaving you needing more and him not willing to cross that line.”

I blink several times, feeling all of a sudden lightheaded. “You know it all, don’t you?”

The man is bewildering.

Grange lifts one shoulder up and down and backs away, eyes wide and confident.

“What do I know? I’m probably wrong.” Flopping down on the sofa, he is carefree and unaffected. I, on the other hand, feel a deep pit of longing, stealing air from my lungs.

He casually grabs the remote and flips on the television. After several awkward seconds of me staring at him, standing in the same place, he glances my way. “Call him.”

I stomp my foot. “Why can’t you be normal? A good friend?”

About the Author:
Rachel grew up in a small, quiet town full of loud talkers. Her words were always only loud on paper. She has been writing stories and creating characters for as long as she can remember. CRAZY GOOD and SET IN STONE two of her Navy SEAL novels are INTERNATIONAL BESTSELLERS. After living on the west coast for many years she moved to Virginia. She resides there with her badass husband, and two children.

Connect w/Rachel:
Website: https://racheljrobinson.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/racheljeanrobinson
Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1681603638791568
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/rachelrobinsonauthor
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6917977.Rachel_Robinson
Amazon: https://amzn.to/33lIImz
Bookbub: https://www.bookbub.com/profile/rachel-robinson

Excerpt Reveal: Dirty Letters by Vi Keeland & Penelope Ward

Dirty Letters

Release Date: 11/05/2019

 

A Contemporary Romance Novel

 

New York Times Bestselling Authors Vi Keeland & Penelope Ward

 

EXCERPT REVEAL:

 

The small dining room table had a pile of mail. I’d had Dad’s mail forwarded to my house, so mostly it was just catalogs and junk. Once a month, Mrs. Cascio sent me everything that arrived, even though I’d told her it wasn’t necessary. I mindlessly fingered through the pile, not expecting to see anything worth keeping. But I stopped at an envelope addressed to me—well, not me, but Luca Ryan. That was a name I hadn’t heard in a long time. In second grade, my teacher, Mrs. Ryan, started a pen pal writing program with a small town in England. We weren’t allowed to use our real last names for safety reasons, so the entire class used her last name—hence I was Luca Ryan. I checked out the return address for the sender’s name. 

G. Quinn 

Wow, really? It couldn’t be.

I squinted at the postmark. It was from a PO box in California, not England, but I didn’t know any other Quinn other than Griffin. And the handwriting did look pretty familiar. But it had been close to eight years since we’d exchanged letters. Why would he write now? Curious, I ripped it open and scanned right to the bottom of the letter for the name. Sure enough, it was from Griffin. I started at the beginning. 

 

Dear Luca, 

 

Do you like scotch? I remember you said you didn’t like the taste of beer. But we never did get around to comparing our taste in hard liquor. Why is that, you might ask? Let me remind you—because you stopped answering my letters eight damn years ago. I wanted to let you know, I’m still pissed off about that. My mum used to say I hold grudges. But I prefer to think of it as I remember the facts. And the fact of the matter is, you suck. There, I’ve said it. I’ve been holding that shit in for a long time. Don’t get me wrong—I’m not obsessive or anything. I don’t sit in my house thinking about you all day long. In fact, there have been months that go by when thoughts of you don’t even enter my brain. But then some random thing will pop into my head out of the blue. Like I’ll see some kid in a pram eating black licorice, and I’ll think of you. Side note—I’ve tried it again as an adult, and I still think it tastes like the bottom of my shoe, so perhaps it’s that you just have no taste. You probably don’t even like scotch. Anyway, I’m sure this letter won’t find its way to you. Or if by some miracle it does, you won’t answer. But if you’re reading this, you should know two things. 

1. The Macallan 1926 is worth the extra cash. Goes down smooth. 

2. You SUCK. 

 

Later, traitor, Griffin 

 

What in the hell?

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BLURB

I’d never forgotten him—a man I’d yet to meet.

Griffin Quinn was my childhood pen pal, the British boy who couldn’t have been more different from me. Over the years, through hundreds of letters, we became best friends, sharing our deepest, darkest secrets and forming a connection I never thought could break.

Until one day it did.

Then, out of the blue, a new letter arrived. A scathing one—one with eight years of pent-up anger. I had no choice but to finally come clean as to why I stopped writing.

Griffin forgave me, and somehow we were able to rekindle our childhood connection. Only now we were adults, and that connection had grown to a spark. Our letters quickly went from fun to flirty to downright dirty, revealing our wildest fantasies. So it only made sense that we would take our relationship to the next level and see each other in person.

Only Griff didn’t want to meet. He asked that I trust him and said it was for the best. But I wanted more—more Griff, in the flesh—so I took a big chance and went looking for him. People have done crazier things for love.

But what I found could change everything.

ABOUT THE AUTHORS:

VI KEELAND

Vi Keeland is a #1 New York Times, #1 Wall Street Journal, and USA Today Bestselling author.   With millions of books sold, her titles have appeared in over a hundred Bestseller lists and are currently translated in twenty-five languages. She resides in New York with her husband and their three children where she is living out her own happily ever after with the boy she met at age six.

VI’S SOCIAL MEDIA LINKS:

Facebook Fan Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/ViKeelandFanGroup/

Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/vi.keeland

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Author-Vi-Keeland/435952616513958

Website: http://www.vikeeland.com

Twitter: @vikeeland https://twitter.com/ViKeeland

Instagram: @Vi_Keeland http://instagram.com/Vi_Keeland/

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6887119.Vi_Keeland

PENELOPE WARD:

Penelope Ward is a New York Times, USA Today and #1 Wall Street Journal bestselling author of contemporary romance.

She grew up in Boston with five older brothers and spent most of her twenties as a television news anchor. Penelope resides in Rhode Island with her husband, son, and beautiful daughter with autism.

With over two million books sold, she is a 21-time New York Times bestseller and the author of over twenty novels. Her books have been translated into over a dozen languages and can be found in bookstores around the world.

PENELOPE’S SOCIAL MEDIA LINKS:

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

Facebook Private Fan Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/PenelopesPeeps/

Instagram: @penelopewardauthor  http://instagram.com/PenelopeWardAuthor/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/PenelopeAuthor

OTHER BOOKS BY VI KEELAND AND PENELOPE WARD:

Park Avenue Player:

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Hate Notes:

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Amazon UK:
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THE RUSH DUET:

Rebel Heir (Rush, Book 1):

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Rebel Heart (Rush, Book 2):

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Cocky Bastard:

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Stuck-Up Suit:

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Playboy Pilot:

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Mister Moneybags:

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British Bedmate:

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OTHER BOOKS BY VI KEELAND

All Grown Up:

Amazon ebook:
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Audio:
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We Shouldn’t:

Amazon ebook:
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The Naked Truth:

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 Sex, Not Love:

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Beautiful Mistake:

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Egomaniac:

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Bossman:

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The Baller:

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Life on Stage series (2 Standalone Books)

Throb:

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Beat:

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Worth the Fight:

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Worth the Chance:

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Worth Forgiving:

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Worth It All (Complete Fighter Series):

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Belong to You:

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 Made for You:

Amazon:
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Left Behind (A Young Adult Novel):

By:Vi Keeland & Dylan Scott

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OTHER BOOKS BY PENELOPE WARD:

The Day He Came Back:

Amazon:
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When August Ends:

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Drunk Dial:

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Mack Daddy: 

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RoomHate:

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Stepbrother Dearest:

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Neighbor Dearest:

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Jaded and Tyed (A novelette):

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Sins of Sevin:

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Jake Undone (Jake #1):

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Jake Understood (Jake #2):

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My Skylar:

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Gemini:

Amazon:
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Excerpt Reveal: Atone by Cassandra Robbins

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ATONE (The Disciples #2) by Cassandra Robbins
Release Date: October 9th
Cover Designer – Michele Catalano Creative
Photographer – Michelle Lancaster @lanefotograf
Cover Model – Tommy Pearce

Add to Goodreads:
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/44771078-atone

Blurb:
I don’t apologize or regret the destruction I’m about to cause. I’m at peace with what I must do… nothing can or will stand in my way. Not even the raven-haired beauty with golden eyes who haunts my dreams.

No one is innocent in the story of my life. Fairy tales don’t exist!

I. Make. No. Excuses.

Everyone needs to atone, and I’m the man who is going to see to it.

Excerpt:
The warm breeze takes one of her locks and blows it in front of her exquisite face. Brushing it away, I say, “You’re so fucking beautiful.”

Her golden eyes narrow. “You might be biased.” I smile and shake my head No. My thumb rubs her lips as I bend down and taste her candy sweetness. It’s slow and I groan into her as she reaches her hands into my hair.

Our tongues are slow as they taste and twist, and if this could be the moment I remember forever, I’d be happy. Slowly I raise my head. My eyes caress her face. As she tries to tackle my pain, the tears dampening her face tell me she doesn’t know how to start.

About the Author:
Cassandra Robbins has threatened to write a romance novel for years. After a stint as an actress, she finally let the voices take over. She’s a self-proclaimed hopeless romantic driven to create obsessive, angst-filled characters who have to fight for their happily ever after. Cassandra resides in Los Angeles with her hot husband, two beautiful children, and fluffy Samoyed, Stanley. Her family and friends are her lifeline, but writing is her passion.

Connect w/Cassandra:
Website: https://www.cassandrafayerobbins.com
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/cassandrafayerobbins
Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/cassiessassycrew/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/CassFayeRobbins
Instagram: http://instagram.com/cassandrafayerobbins
Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/scarllettt
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/17753407.Cassandra_Robbins
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Amazon: https://amzn.to/308y5WK
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Excerpt Reveal: Entice by Ava Harrison

ENTICE by Ava Harrison

Release Date: September 16th

Add to Goodreads:

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/46445321-entice

Blurb:

Eight years ago, I gave Grayson Price a piece of my heart.

To him, I was the strange girl whose mom had just abandoned her.

To me, he was a savior, an anchor, someone who stood beside me on that beach.

The next time I saw him, I was twenty, and he was thirty-six.

He didn’t remember me.

And when he flirted…

I didn’t tell him.

By the time he found out, it was too late.

We tried to deny our desire, but our attraction was too enticing.

Eight years ago, I gave Grayson Price a piece of my heart.

Too bad he’s my dad’s best friend.

Excerpt:

The bartender comes over a few seconds later and places a tumbler down in front of me. I lift the glass to my mouth, and as I’m about to swallow, I sense a presence beside me. I turn, take the swig, and look at who’s there.

A woman.

She’s beautiful.

Exquisite, really.

Young.

With long, sun-kissed locks that fall below her breasts, I lift my gaze to study her features. She’s too young for me, that’s for certain. She appears to be in her mid to early twenties with big blue eyes and freckled skin as though she’s just left the beach. Her hair flows in waves that look tousled by the wind.

If I thought she was lovely before, she smiles, and my pulse begins to race. How long has it been since I’ve gotten laid? Too long, if I have to ask.

I watch as she nibbles on her lower lip as if she’s waiting for me to say something. When I don’t, she pulls her shoulders back and then flashes me a smirk.

“Mind if I join you?” But she doesn’t wait for me to answer before she takes the seat beside me. In this position, I can see she’s wearing a dress, and from where she’s perched, it’s short.

“Not at all,” I say. “What would you like?”

“A glass of champagne, please,” she responds. Her voice is soft like an angel.

Fuck.

What is wrong with me?

I turn to the bartender again. “A glass of champagne for the lady.”

A second later, the flute is placed in front of her, and she tips it back, her full lips touching the glass, her tongue sweeping out to lick a drop that missed her mouth.

I wonder what her lips would feel like on mine.

“So what brings you to Malaga?” I ask, needing to know more about this woman. “Business or pleasure?”

A seductive smirk spreads across her face as if she’s up to no good, and the idea of bringing her back to my room later and sinking inside her becomes more and more promising.

“What?”

“Pleasure,” she finally draws out, and I know if I want her, I can have her. I take a swig of my drink and then sear her with my gaze.

“I’m supposed to be meeting a buddy for dinner, but it appears he’s not showing. Are you free tonight?”

Since Tyler isn’t here, I might as well make the best of my trip.

Her eyes widen, and she opens to her mouth to speak, hopefully, to say yes, but then I hear it.

“Grayson,” the voice calls out from behind me, and I turn to find Tyler approaching. I want to curse him for coming now. I know, at first, I hated that he was late, but now that he’s here, I want him to leave.

He turns to the lady on my right and smiles. “I see you found him,” he says to her, and I narrow my brows . . .

Found him?

He knows her.

“Yes, he was kind enough to buy me a drink.” She lifts the glass at him and winks.

“You’re not old enough to drink,” Tyler adds, and I swear it’s like I’m watching a ping-pong game, and I can’t figure out what’s going on.

“I am in Spain,” she chides.

And that makes me look from him to her.

What am I missing?

Tyler . . . Is he cheating on Kim?

“So, Grayson, does she look the same?”

“Does who look the same?”

“River, of course.” He points at the stunning beauty beside me.

She looks familiar. Why do her eyes look familiar, and why is Tyler looking down adoringly at this woman? And then it hits me in the gut.

This is no woman. She’s a girl. A very beautiful one but a girl, nonetheless.

Young.

Very. Fucking. Young.

How did I not see it before? A girl so young, she could be my daughter. She’s his daughter.

About the Author:

Ava Harrison is a USA Today and Amazon bestselling author.

When she’s not journaling her life, you can find her window shopping, cooking dinner for her family, or curled up on her couch reading a book.

Connect w/Ava:

Website: http://avaharrisonauthor.com/

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

Twitter: https://twitter.com/avaharrison333

Instagram: http://instagram.com/AvaHarrisonAuthor

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/13857011.Ava_Harrison

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Bookbub: https://www.bookbub.com/authors/ava-harrison

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Excerpt Reveal: That Forever Girl by Meghan Quinn

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That Forever Girl Excerpt

There is no way in hell she’s here.

My family isn’t that cruel. Right?

From my car, I try to gauge the number of bodies in my parents’ house through the windows. Ugh, I can’t see shit.

She can’t possibly be at family dinner. My family loves Harper, but they wouldn’t invite her, not after I called my mom the other day, telling her to put her matchmaking skills to rest. She just chuckled but reassured me she knew what she was doing. Whatever the hell that means.

I was very adamant about leaving Harper alone. The Knightlys can be too much at times, and I’m sure we’re the last thing she needs right when she’s trying to settle back into town.

Resigning myself to the inevitable, I retrieve my keys from the ignition and make my way to the front door. Hand on the doorknob, I take a deep breath and walk into the house I grew up in. The warm walls and carefully hung family pictures greet me first, followed by my family’s raucous laughter emanating from the back of the house.

I remove my shoes and hang my suit jacket on the coat hanger by the front door before cautiously making my way down the long hallway to the connected kitchen and large dining room. Ren, Griffin’s girlfriend, is the first to spot me. She gives me a small smile and a little wave. The rest of the family is scattered around the kitchen as usual, getting in my parents’ way as they try to finish up the dinner prep.

Griffin sees me next. “Ah, you finally decided to join us.” He checks his watch. “I think that was eight minutes in the car. Who had eight minutes?”

Reid raises his hand and hops off the counter, grabbing a bowl from the center of the table and pocketing the wad of cash inside. “I know him too well.” Reid pats me on the back and slips me a one-dollar bill. “Here, this is for you. Thanks for taking eight minutes to prepare yourself to come in the house. Daddy is going to buy a new pair of jeans.” He pats his pockets.

Ignoring everyone and their stupid bet, I pop the fridge door open and grab a water. Reid joins me, sticking his head in the fridge so I’m forced to look at him. “Aren’t you going to ask?”

“Ask what?” I grit out.

“If she’s here. I know that’s why you were hanging out in your car, debating if you should come in or not.”

My skin prickles, and I brace myself for the answer as I shut the fridge door. “Is she here?” I hiss.

Slowly, Reid smiles and nods. “Yup, she’s in the bathroom.”

“Are you fucking kidding me?” I angrily squeeze my water bottle, nearly popping the top off. “Why? Why is she here?”

Reid shrugs. “I don’t know, maybe because she wants to be here.”

“Who invited her? Was it Mom?” I don’t wait for an answer. Instead, I walk over to the culprit, who’s hovering over the stove, stirring a huge pot of chili.

“Oh, hey, sweetie. Cornbread is in the oven, honey is in the crock, and I also got tortilla chips because I know how much you like crumbling them in your chili.”

“Mom, why did you invite her? I told you to leave her alone, to leave usalone.”

“What are you talking about?” My mom looks me up and down and then goes back to the chili.

“Harper. I asked you not to invite Harper.”

The bathroom door opens, and Jen pops out, rubbing her hands together. “Did he come in yet?” Her eyes light up as she spots me. “What time was it?”

“Eight minutes. Reid won.”

Disappointed, she snaps her fingers. “Damn, I for sure thought I was going to win.”

Confused, I turn back to my mom. “Harper isn’t here?”

“No, of course not. I wouldn’t invite her so early. She needs time to settle. What made you think she was here?”

I whip around to find Reid leaning against the kitchen wall, arms crossed and with a giant grin on his face. I point at him. “You better run, because I’m going to fucking kill you.”

Like a bolt of lightning, he takes off, and I chase after him, nothing but pure murder on my mind.

ThatForeverGirl_teaser-10-2

That Forever Girl releases August 27th! Pre order your copy HERE!

Feature: CD Reiss

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Author Interview: CD Reiss 

Please introduce your newest release. 

Only Ever You is about a girl who planned for everything but never got what she hoped for, and a dweeb who hoped he’d to marry the girl, but never planned for it.

Rachel and Sebastian have an interesting history. They were friends as kids, but have lost touch as adults… 

They’re really strangers when they reunite at 30, but they’re burdened by what they think they know about each other. Sebastian was supposed to be an artist and Rachel was supposed to be a screenwriter. They have to shake all that stuff loose before they can see each other. When they do, they’re strangers.

I think attraction between strangers is real. Sexual heat is real. But “hearts and flowers” are earned. (I know that sounds like I’m your dad telling you to mow lawns, but that’s where the magic is. Not the lawns.) In the time just before you’re struck by lightning there’s a real electricity. It’s pure potential and anything can go wrong. It’s the best thing ever.

When they were kids they made up a ‘contract’ to get married at 30—which is pretty much panned when they do meet up and have the most awkward first kiss EVER. How do they overcome such an incredibly uncomfortable situation?

They overcome it by running away!

Sebastian is thinking “now or never” because he thinks Rachel’s never going to think he’s any cooler than when she sees him in the office of his own company. And she isn’t ready because her whole idea of herself is tied up in what a failure she is. Neither one of them is feeling good enough about themselves to have a really hot first kiss, which is the same reason they’re not ready to get married.

Excerpt: Only Ever You by CD Reiss

After I left her and CJ with Lucinda, I spent the weekly staff meeting wondering if Rachel was the same warrior I’d loved or if she was more the woman who’d held her laptop to her chest as if she needed protection.

I was obsessed.

I had to know.

Her text came in as I was leaving the meeting.

I need to check that we’re kidding

Before I could finish typing a response, I caught her coming out of the bathroom with her laptop under her arm.

Alone. Me and her. Nothing between us but the question of who we were and how we fit.

“Seb, I—”

She didn’t have a chance to finish. I crowded her back into the bathroom and locked the door behind us.

“Kidding about what?” I said.

“About getting married.”

“Why would that even be a question?”

“Our parents have been in negotiations about it.”

My mother couldn’t keep herself from talking if she tried, and I was her favorite subject.

“It might be a little soon for marriage, but—”

“Soon? I don’t like you seeing what I do for a living while you’re in a glass-walled office overlooking the ocean. I mean, I’m not marriage material, and the odds are that’s never going to change.”

“I don’t see why a date’s off the table.”

“Do you know what’s going to happen if we date?”

The list of possibilities was as long as my arm. I could have counted them off, from “We decide we hate each other” to “We end up in bed.” But I didn’t, because I was still trying to figure her out.

What did she want to hear?

With her wide eyes and parted lips, what did she want? Did she have a fondest wish where I was concerned? Was she leaning forward? Was her expression soft and yielding?

My mind spent too long deciding what to say, so my body spoke for me.

I kissed her hard and was met with teeth and stiff resistance. It was a kiss I’d wanted since I’d had hairless armpits and a voice somewhere in the low soprano range. I’d dreamed about it. Fantasized about it. Thought about it so hard in the middle of the night I could practically feel it.

But never, ever in my fantasies did she push me away so hard I fell back against a towel dispenser, watching her face twist into surprised rage as the machine spit out a ragged rectangle of brown paper.

“That was—”

“Messed up. I know.”

“Then why? What is wrong with you?”

She was livid, just like she would have been. Just like she should have been.

The tiger within Rachel was in there, and my attempt to tease her out had probably alienated her. She’d be right to never speak to me again.

“I’m sorry,” I said with my hand on the door lock. “I misread you. It won’t happen again.”

I started to open the door, but she held it closed.

“If we date, my mother’s going to get her hopes up that I’m going to settle down. And I’m sorry, Seb, but if we break up while she’s in chemo, it’s going to crush her.”

“You don’t even know if she’s sick again.”

“You’re right.” She pointed a rigid finger at me as if I were her mother. “I’m going to make her tell me.”

“You’re really beautiful when you’re telling it like it is.”

She slid her hand off the door. Having been called out, the warrior was sent into hiding.

No. I wouldn’t accept that. I wouldn’t allow it.

“Let’s just go out and catch up,” I said. “Saturday.”

“Can’t. Saturday’s the soonest I can talk to Mom.”

I unlocked the door. “I’m sorry about . . . the thing.”

“Kissing me?”

“No, wasting paper towels. Of course kissing you.”

“Next time, give a girl a little warning.”

Next time? Her eyes darted to the door. Was she calculating the distance to her getaway? Or making sure it was closed?

“How about now?” I asked.

“Now what?”

“Fair warning. Now.”

I stepped a little closer and put my hands on her arms. Not right away. I let them hover an inch away before touching her to give her the chance to move away. A chance I was sure she’d take.

“Seb, really?”

But she didn’t move away.

Not this time. When I laid my hands on her biceps, she leaned in to me just a little. I smelled the floral lotion on her skin and a hint of cool water on her breath.

“Really.” I slid the laptop from her arms and placed it on the counter. “This is your warning.”

You’re doing this. I cannot believe you’re doing this.

“It doesn’t feel like a warning,” she said, and again—I noted—she didn’t move away.

“Flashing red lights.” My lips brushed her cheek, heading for her mouth. She felt better than I ever imagined. “A buzzer, maybe.”

“Just a kiss?” she asked, her lips moving against mine.

Before I could consummate what she was agreeing to, I was smacked by a swinging door.

“Oh!” CJ said. “I’m sorry! I was looking for you.”

Rachel snatched up her laptop and walked out. CJ raised an eyebrow with good reason, since I was in the ladies’ room. I left, and we all gathered in the hall.

Awkward.

“Well,” Rachel said. “Thanks for showing us your tedious financial-sector company.”

“Thank you for coming,” I said and let them walk away. I could have done or said much more, but not without getting her into trouble. She glanced back at me when they turned the corner, as if she wanted to make sure I was still there.

***

About the Book

Title: Only Ever You

Author: CD Reiss

Release Date: July 9, 2019

Publisher: Montlake Romance

Summary

Rachel knew exactly what turning thirty would be like. She had a plan, after all. First college, then a climb up the professional ladder. Love, marriage, children. All of it was on the schedule.

The cheap Hollywood apartment wasn’t on the list. Neither was the string of heartbreaks. Or the effect her mother’s cancer had on her career.

It’s hard to stay practical and on point when everything takes a left turn.

Enter Sebastian, the nerd across the street. The boy she defended when he couldn’t defend himself. The best friend she promised she’d marry if life didn’t go according to plan.

Not only is he successful, confident, and gorgeous, but he also still has their handwritten marriage contract.

No one goes through with childhood wedding pacts.

That’s crazy.

But their families might just be crazy enough to rent a hall and set a date. All Rachel and Sebastian have to do is fall in love.

Author Biography

CD Reiss is a New York Times bestselling author. She still has to chop wood and carry water, which was buried in the fine print. Her lawyer is working it out with God, but in the meantime, if you call and she doesn’t pick up, she’s at the well hauling buckets. Born in New York City, Reiss moved to Hollywood, California, to get her master’s degree in screenwriting from USC. In case you want to know, that went nowhere—but it did give her a big enough ego to write novels.

Reiss is frequently referred to as the Shakespeare of Smut, which is flattering but hasn’t ever gotten her out of chopping that cord of wood. If you meet her in person, you should call her Christine. Text cdreiss to 77948 to get a notification whenever she has a new release.

Social Media Links

Website: https://cdreiss.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CDReiss.writer

Twitter: https://twitter.com/CDReisswriter

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6896405.C_D_Reiss

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Chapter Reveal: Handle with Care by Helena Hunting

Posted on

Release Date: August 27th

Genre: Romantic Comedy

Series: Standalone in The Shacking Up Series

Summary:

HE WANTS TO LOSE CONTROL.

Between his parents’ messed up marriage and his narcissistic younger brother, Lincoln Moorehead has spent the majority of his life avoiding his family. After the death of his father, Lincoln finds himself in the middle of the drama. To top it all off, he’s been named CEO of Moorehead Media, much to his brother’s chagrin. But Lincoln’s bad attitude softens when he meets the no-nonsense, gorgeous woman who has been given the task of transforming him from the gruff, wilderness guy to a suave businessman

SHE’S TRYING TO HOLD IT TOGETHER.

Wren Sterling has been working double time to keep the indiscretions at Moorehead Media at bay, so when she’s presented with a new contract, with new responsibilities and additional incentives, she agrees. Working with the reclusive oldest son of a ridiculously entitled family is worth the hassle if it means she’s that much closer to pursuing her own dreams. What Wren doesn’t expect is to find herself attracted to him, or for it to be mutual. And she certainly doesn’t expect to fall for Lincoln. But when a shocking new Moorehead scandal comes to light, she’s forced to choose between her own family and the broody, cynical CEO.

Goodreads http://bit.ly/GRHandleWChh

Preorder Links

iBooks http://bit.ly/HandleWC

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Other Books in the Series:

Shacking Up → http://helenahunting.com/books/shacking-up/

Getting Down (novella) → http://helenahunting.com/books/getting-down/

Hooking Up → http://helenahunting.com/hooking-up/

I Flipping Love You →  http://helenahunting.com/i-flipping-love-you/

Making Up → http://helenahunting.com/books/making-up/

Website → http://helenahunting.com/books/handle-with-care/

Chapter One

What Have I Gotten Myself into?

Wren

I slip onto the empty bar stool beside the lumberjack mountain man who looks like he tried to squeeze himself into a suit two sizes too small. He’s intimidatingly broad and thick, with long dark hair that’s been pulled up into a haphazard man bun thing. His beard is a hipster’s wet dream. His scowl, however, makes him about as approachable as a rabid porcupine. And yet, here I am, sidling up next to him.

He glances at me, eyes bleary and not really tracking. He quickly focuses on his half-empty glass again. Based on the slump of his shoulders and the uncoordinated way he picks up his glass and tips it toward his mouth, I’m guessing he’s pretty hammered. I order a sparkling water with a dash of cranberry juice and a lime.

What I could really use is a cup of lavender-mint tea and my bed, but instead, I’m sitting next to a drunk man in his thirties. My life is extra glamorous, obviously. And no, I’m not an escort, but at the moment I feel like my morals are on the same kind of slippery slope.

“Rough day?” I ask, nodding to the bottle that’s missing more than half its contents. It was full when he sat down at the bar an hour ago. Yes, I’ve been watching him the entire time, waiting for an opportunity to make my move. While he’s been sitting here, he’s turned down two women, one in a dress that could’ve doubled as a disco ball and the other in a top so low-cut, I could almost see her navel.

“You could say that,” he slurs. He props his cheek on his fist, eyes almost slits. I can still make out the vibrant blue hue despite them being nearly closed. They move over me, assessing. I’m wearing a conservative black dress with a high neckline and a hem that falls below my knees. Definitely not nearly as provocative as Disco Ball or Navel Lady.

“That solving your problems?” I give him a wry grin and tip my chin in the direction of his bottle of Johnnie.

His gaze swings slowly to the bottle. It gives me a chance to really look at him. Or what I can see of his face under his beard, anyway.

“Nah, but it helps quiet down all the noise up here.” He taps his temple and blurts, “My dad died.”

I put a hand on his forearm. It feels awkward, and creepy on my part since its half-genuine, half-contrived comfort. “I’m so sorry.”

He glances at my hand, which I quickly remove, and refocuses on his drink. “I should be sorry too, but I think he was mostly an asshole, so the world might be better off without him.” He attempts to fill his glass again, but his aim is off, and he pours it on the bar instead. I rush to lift my purse and grab a handful of napkins to mop up the mess.

“I’m drunk,” he mumbles.

“Well, I’m thinking that might’ve been the plan, considering the way you’re sucking that bottle back. I’m actually surprised you didn’t ask for a straw in the first place. Might be a good idea to throw a spacer [CD3] in there if you want tomorrow morning to suck less.” I push my drink toward him, hoping he doesn’t send me packing like he did the other women who approached him earlier.

He narrows his eyes at my glass, suspicious, maybe. “What is that?”

“Cranberry and soda.”

“No booze?”

“No booze. Go ahead. You’ll thank me in the morning.”

He picks up the glass and pauses when it’s an inch from his mouth. His eyes crinkle, telling me he’s smiling under that beard. “Does that mean Imma wake up with you beside me?”

I cock a brow. “Are you propositioning me?”

“Shit, sorry.” He chugs the contents of my glass. “I was joking. Besides, I’m so wasted, I can barely remember my name. Pretty sure I’d be useless in bed tonight. I should stop talkin’.” He scrubs a hand over his face and then motions to me. “I wouldn’t proposition you.”

I’m not sure how to respond. I go with semi-affronted, since it seems like somewhat of an insult. “Good to know.”

“Dammit. I mean, I think you might be hot. You look hot. I mean attractive. I think you’re pretty.” He tips his head to the side and blinks a few times. “You have nice eyes, all four of them are lovely.”

This time I laugh—for real—and point to the bottle. “I think you might want to tell your date you’re done for the night.”

He blows out a breath and nods. “You might be right.” He makes an attempt to stand, but as soon as his feet hit the floor, he stumbles into me and grabs my shoulders to steady himself. “Whoa. Sorry. Yup, I’m definitely drunk.” His face is inches from mine, breath smelling strongly of alcohol. Beyond that, I get a whiff of fresh soap and a hint of aftershave. He lets go of my shoulders and takes an unsteady step back. “I don’t usually do this.” He motions sloppily to the bottle. “Mostly I’m a three drink max guy.”

“I think losing your father makes this condonable.” I slide off my stool. Despite being tall for a woman, and wearing heels, he still manages to be close to a head taller than me.

“Yeah, maybe, but I still think I might regret it tomorrow.” He’s incredibly unsteady, swaying while standing in place. I take the opportunity for what it is and thread my arm through his, leading him away from the bar. “Come on, let’s get you to the elevator before you pass out right here.”

He nods, then wobbles a bit, like moving his head has set him off balance. “That’s probably a good idea.”

He leans into me as we weave through the bar and stumbles on the two stairs leading to the foyer. There’s no way I’ll be able to stop him if he goes down, but I drape one of his huge arms over my shoulder anyway, and slip my own around his waist, guiding him in a mostly straight line to the elevators.

“Which floor are you on?” I ask.

“Penthouse.” He drops his arm from my shoulder and flings it out, pointing to the black doors at the end of the hall. “Jesus, I feel like I’m on a boat.”

“It’s probably all the alcohol sloshing around in your brain.” I take his elbow again, helping him stagger the last twenty feet to the dedicated penthouse elevator.

He stares at the keypad for a few seconds, brow pulling into a furrow. “I can’t remember the code. It’s thumbprint activated though too.” He stumbles forward and presses his forehead against the wall, then tries to line up his thumb with the sensor, but his aim is horrendous and he keeps missing.

I settle a hand on his very firm forearm. This man is built like a tank. Or a superhero. For a moment, I reconsider what I’m about to do, but he seems pretty harmless and ridiculously hammered, so he shouldn’t pose a threat. I’m also trained in self-defense, which would fall under the by any means necessary umbrella. “Can I help?”

He rolls his head, eyes slits as they bounce around my face. “Please.”

I take his hand between mine. The first thing I notice is how clammy it is. But beyond that, his knuckles are rough, littered with tiny scars and a few scabs, and his nails are jagged.

“Your hands are small,” he observes as I line his thumb up with the sensor pad and press down.

“Maybe yours are abnormally big,” I reply. They are rather large. Like basketball player hands.

“You know what they say about big hands.”

I fight not to roll my eyes, but for a brief moment, I wonder if what’s in his pants actually matches the rest of him. And if he’s unkempt everywhere, not just on his face. I cut that visual quickly because it makes me want to gag. “And what do they say?”

His eyes crinkle again, and he slaps his own chest. “Something about a big hands, big heart.”

I bite back my own smile. “Pretty sure you’re mixing that up with cold hands, warm heart.”

His brow furrows. “There’s a good chance.”

The elevator doors slide open. He pushes off the wall with some effort and practically tumbles inside. He catches himself on the rail and sags against the wall as I follow him in. I honestly can’t believe I’m doing this right now.

He doesn’t have to press a button since the elevator only goes to the penthouse floor. As soon as we start moving, he groans and his shoulders curl in. “I don’t feel so good.”

Please don’t let him be sick in here. If there’s one thing I can’t deal with, it’s vomit. “You should sit.”

He slides down the wall, massive shoulders rolling forward as he rests his forehead on his knees. “Tomorrow is going to suck.”

I stay on the other side of the elevator, in case he tosses his cookies. “Probably.”

It’s the longest elevator ride in the history of the world. Or at least it feels that way, mostly because I’m terrified he’s going to yak. Thankfully, we make it to the penthouse floor incident-free. On the down side, now that he’s in a sitting position, getting him to stand again is a challenge. I have to press the open door button three times before I can finally coax him to his feet.

In the time between leaving the bar and making it to the penthouse floor, the effects of the alcohol seems to have compounded. He’s beyond sloppy, using the wall and me for support as we make our way to his door. There are two penthouse apartments up here. One on either side of the foyer.

He leans against the doorjamb, once again fighting to find the coordination to get his thumb to the sensor pad. I don’t ask if he needs my assistance this time since it’s quite clear he does. Once again I take his clammy hand in mine.

“Your hands are really soft,” he mumbles.

“Thanks.”

The pad flashes green, and I turn the handle. “Okay, here we go. Home sweet home.”

“This isn’t my home,” he slurs. “My cousin’s family owns this building. I’m crashing here until I can get the fuck out of New York.”

I scan the penthouse. It an eclectic combination of odd art and modern furniture, like two different tastes crashed together and this is the result. Aside from that, it’s clean to the point of looking almost like a show home.

The only sign that someone is staying here is the lone coffee cup on the table in the living room and the blanket lolling like a tongue over the edge of the couch. I’m still standing in the doorway while he sways unsteadily.

He tries to shove his hand in his pants pocket, but all he succeeds in doing is setting himself off-balance. He nearly stumbles into the wall.

“Thanks for your help,” he says.

He’s back in his penthouse, which means my job is technically done. However, I’m worried he’s going to hurt himself, or worse, asphyxiate on his own vomit in the middle of the night, and I’ll be the one catching heat if that happens. I’ll also feel bad if something happens to him. I blow out a breath, annoyed that this is how my night is ending.

I heave his arm over my shoulder and slip mine around his waist again, leading him through the living room toward what seems to be the kitchen. There’s a sheet of paper on the island, but otherwise it’s spotless.

“What’re you doing?” he asks.

We pause when we reach the threshold. “Which way is your bedroom?”

He looks slowly from right to left. “Not that way.” He points to the kitchen. It’s very state of the art.

I guide him in the opposite direction down the hall, until he stumbles through a doorway, into a lavish but simply [HH5] furnished bedroom. Once we reach the edge of the bed, he drops his arm, spins around—it’s drunkenly graceful—and falls back on the bed, arms spread wide as if he’s planning on making snow angels. “The room is spinning.”

“Would you like me to get you a glass of water and possibly a painkiller for the headache you’ll likely have in the morning?” I’m already heading for the bathroom.

“Might be a good idea,” he mumbles.

I find a glass on the edge of bathroom vanity—which is clean, apart from a brand new toothbrush and tube of toothpaste. I run the tap, wishing I had a plastic tumbler, because I’m not sure he’s in any state to deal with breakable objects. I check the medicine cabinet, find the pills I need, shake out two tablets, and return to the bedroom.

He’s right where I left him; sprawled out faceup on a massive king-size bed, legs hanging off the end, one shoe on the floor beside him. I cross over and set the water and the pills on the nightstand.

I make a quick trip back to the bathroom and grab the empty wastebasket from beside the toilet in case his night is a lot rougher than he expects.

I tap his knee, crossing my fingers he’ll be easy to rouse. “Hey, I have painkillers for you.”

He makes a noise, but doesn’t move otherwise.

I tap his knee again. “Lincoln, you need to wake up long enough to take these.” I cringe. I called him by name, and he didn’t offer it to me while we were down at the bar. Here’s hoping he’s too drunk to notice or remember. His name is Lincoln Moorehead, heir to the Moorehead Media fortune and all the crap that comes with it. And there’s a lot of it.

One eye becomes a slit. “Every time I open my eyes, the room starts spinning again.”

“If you drink this and take these, it might help.” I hold up the glass of water and the pills.

“’Kay.” It takes three tries for him to sit up. He tries to pick the pills up out of my palm, but keeps missing my hand.

“Just open your mouth.”

He lifts his head. “How do I know you’re not trying to roofie me?”

I hold up the tablet in front of his face. “They don’t say roofie, so you’re safe.”

He tries to focus on the pill and then my face. I have my doubts he’s successful at either.

His tongue peeks out to drag across his bottom lip. “The cameras in the hall will catch you if you steal my wallet.”

I laugh at that. “I’m not going to steal your wallet, I’m going to put you to bed.”

“Hmm.” He nods slowly and opens his mouth.

I drop the pills on his tongue and hand him the glass, which he drains in three long swallows. “Would you like me to refill that?”

“That’d be nice.” He holds out the glass, but when I try to pull away, he covers my hands with his. His shockingly blue eyes meet mine, and for a moment they’re clear and compelling. Despite how out of it he is, and how much he resembles a mountain man, or maybe because of it, I have a hard time looking away. “I really wish I wasn’t this messed up. You smell nice. I bet your hair is pretty when it’s not pulled up like that.” He flops a hand toward my bun. “Not that it’s not pretty like that, but I bet if you took it down, it would be wavy and soft. The kind of hair you want to bury your face in and run your fingers through.” He exhales a long breath. “I haven’t had sex in a really long time, but I feel like I would have zero finess[CD6] e if I tried right now.”

I smile and turn away. In the time it takes for me to refill his glass, he’s managed to get one arm out of his suit jacket. He’s made it most of the way onto the bed, feet still hanging off the end, but he’s on his back, which is not ideal.

I set the glass on his nightstand, along with a second set of painkillers, which I’m assuming he’ll need in the morning, and give him another nudge. “Hey.”

This time I get nothing in the way of a response. I poke him twice more, but still nothing. He can’t sleep on his back with how drunk he is. He needs to be on his side or his stomach with a wastebasket close by.

I can’t in good conscience leave him like this. My options are limited. I shake my head as I kick off my shoes and climb up onto the bed with him. This is not at all what I expected to be doing when I brought him back up here.

I stare down at his sleeping form. His lips are parted, they’re nice lips, full and plump, even though they’re mostly obscured by his overgrown beard. His hair has started to unravel from its man bun, wisps hanging in his face. He has long lashes, really long actually, and they’re thick and dark, the kind women pay a lot of money for. His nose is straight and his cheekbones—what I can see of them—are high. With a haircut, a beard trim or complete shave, and a new suit that actually fits, I can imagine how refined he’ll look. More like a Moorehead than a mountain man lumberjack. I shake my head. “I need you to roll onto your side, please,” I say loudly.

Nothing. Not even a grunt.

I pull on his shoulder, but he’s dead weight. Leaning over him, I make a fist and give him a light jab approximately where his kidney is. “Lincoln, roll over.”

And roll he does, knocking me down and turning over so he’s right on top of me. We’re face-to-face. Good God, he’s heavy. His bones must be made of lead. He shifts, one leg coming over both of mine. I push at his knee, but his arm swings out and he wraps himself around me on a low groan, pinning my arm to my side. He’s like a giant human blanket.

“How did this become my life?” I say to the ceiling, because the man lying on top of me is apparently out cold.

I try to wriggle free, I even yell his name a bunch of time before I give up and wait for him to roll off me. And while I wait for that to happen, I replay the conversation with his mother, Gwendolyn Moorehead, that took place forty-eight hours ago and put me in this awkward position underneath her drunk son.

I’d been standing in Fredrick’s office, still digesting the fact that he was dead. It was shocking that a massive heart attack had taken him, since he was always so healthy and full of life.

Gwendolyn, his wife—now a widow—stood stoic behind his desk, papers stacked neatly in the center.

“I’m so very for your loss, Gwendolyn. If there’s anything I can do. Whatever you need.” The words poured out, typical condolences, but sincerely meant because I couldn’t imagine how my mother and I would feel if we lost my father.

Gwendolyn’s fingers danced at her throat as she cleared it. “Thank you,” she whispered brokenly and dabbed at her eyes. “I appreciate your kindness, Wren.”

“Let me know what you want me to handle, and I’ll take care of it.”

She took a deep breath, composing herself before she lifted her gaze to mine. “I need your help.”

“Of course, what can I do?”

“My oldest son, Lincoln, will be returning to New York for the funeral, and he’ll be staying to help run the company.”

A hot feeling crept up my spine. I’d heard very little about Lincoln. Everything from Armstrong’s mouth was scathing, Fredrick’s passing references had been with fondness, and my interactions with Gwendolyn had been minimal as it was Fredrick himself who hired me, so this was first I’ve heard of Lincoln through her. “I see. And how can I help with that?” I could only imagine how difficult Armstrong would be if he had to share the attention with someone else, particularly his brother.

“Transitioning Lincoln.” Gwendolyn rounded her desk. “You’ve managed to turn around Armstrong’s reputation in the media during the time you’ve been here. I know it hasn’t been easy, and Armstrong can be difficult to manage.”

Difficult to manage is the understatement of the entire century where Armstrong is concerned. He’s a cocksucker of epic proportions. He’s also a misogynistic, narcissistic bastard that I’ve had to deal with for the past eight months on a nearly daily basis—sometimes even on weekends.

My job as his “handler” has been to reshape his horrendous reputation after his involvement in several scandalous events became very public. It wasn’t a job I necessarily wanted, and I was prepared to politely reject the offer, but my mother asked me to take the position as a favor to her since she’s a friend of Gwendolyn.

Beyond that, my relationship with my mother has been strained for the past decade. When I was a teenager, I discovered information that changed our relationship forever. Taking the job at Moorehead was in part, my way of trying to help repair our fractured bond. The financial compensation, which was ridiculously high, also didn’t hurt. Besides, Gwendolyn is on nearly every single charitable foundation committee in the city, and since that’s where my interests lie, it seemed like a smart career move.

“Since you’re already working with Armstrong and things seem to be settled there for the most part, I felt it would make sense to keep you on here at Moorehead to work with Lincoln. He’s been away from civilized society for several years. He’s nothing like his brother, very altruistic and focused on his job, rather than recreational pursuits, so he should be easier to manage.”

I fought a scoff at the last bit, since “recreational pursuits” was a reference to the fact that Armstrong couldn’t seem to keep his pants zipped when it came to women.

Gwendolyn pushed a set of papers toward me. “It would only be for another six months. And of course, your salary would reflect the double work load, since you’ll still have to maintain Armstrong in some capacity while you assist Lincoln in transitioning into his role here.”

“I’m sorry, what—”

Gwendolyn pulled me into an awkward hug, holding onto my shoulders when she stepped back. Her eyes were glassy and red-rimmed. “You have no idea how much I appreciate your willingness to take this on. As soon as your contract is fulfilled, you have my word that I’ll give you a glowing recommendation to whichever organization you’d like. Your mother told me you’re interested in starting your own foundation. I’ll certainly help you in any way I’m able if you’ll stay on a little longer for me.” She dabbed at her corner of her eyes and sniffed, then tapped the papers on the desk. “I already have an agreement ready and an NDA, of course. Everything is tabbed for signing.”

I’m pulled back into the present when Lincoln shifts and one of his huge hands slides up my side and lands on my breast. At the same time, he pushes his nose against my neck, beard tickling my collarbone. He mutters something unintelligible against my skin.

I’m momentarily frozen in shock. Under any other circumstances, I would knee him in the balls. However, he’s not conscious or even semi-aware that he’s fondling me. Thankfully, now that he’s moved, I have some wiggle room.

I elbow him in the ribs, which probably hurts me more than it does him. At least it gets him to move away enough that I can slip out from under him. I roll off the bed and pop back up, smoothing out my now-wrinkled dress. My stupid nipples are perky, thanks to the attention the right one just got. Probably because it’s the most action I’ve seen since I started working for the Mooreheads eight months ago.

I hit the lights on the way out of the bedroom, pause in the kitchen to grab a glass of water and check out the sheet of paper on the counter. It’s a list of important details regarding the penthouse, including the entry code. I nab my purse, snap a pic, and head for the elevators.

I have a feeling this is going to be a long six months.