I have a teaser for you today from ALL FALLS DOWN, an adult/NA contemporary romance. It's from the prologue, which you can read in it's entirety here. AFD will be released in November of this year exclusively on Amazon, :)
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Prologue: It Doesn't Hurt
Soft music drifts through the room – quiet, ambient. Expensive crystal clinks, one glass against another. Strains of conversation and laughter mingle in the perfumed air. It's warm… too warm.
I swallow convulsively. Take a deep breath.
You can do this, I chant to myself. It's become my motto in the last few days, playing like a single verse of song stuck on repeat. Sometimes, I actually believe it.
I don't tonight.
My stomach feels sour, my throat too tight. The expensive heels I've donned are stuck to the floor as if made of lead. I feel like a fraud. An imposter.
I want to run.
I coach myself to smile instead. Smile… just smile.
My cheeks ache from the false smile they support, my lips pulled back from my teeth in a show of faux-happiness. Inside, I'm crying. Screaming. Dying.
Movement across the room catches my attention and freezes my blood.
A shock of dark blond hair. Broad shoulders encased in expensive black silk.
My stomach somersaults, drops, and then somersaults again.
Heads turn in his direction. I'm so focused on him, I barely notice the way conversation stalls all around me. His eyes – the coolest green jade – don't even shift in my direction.
I want to scream at him like the Whos in Whoville screaming for their lives as their little world is forced closer to destruction: I'm here! I'm here!
I don't make a sound.
My eyes travel down his form. I ache. Burn. Remember….
"I want you to remember something for me," he whispers, staring into my eyes. He reaches out to stroke my cheekbones. "Can you do that for me, love?"
Words fail so I nod.
"I want you to remember that it's you. It's only ever been you. Forever." He kisses me softly. "Can you do that for me? Can you remember that, Savannah?"
"Jared…." His name is a pitiful sob as I throw myself into his arms. Tears pour down my face.
"Beautiful girl," he chastises, gathering me up against his strong chest. "I love you. No matter what, I love you."
I bite my lip against the cry of protest rising in my throat when he tilts his head to the side, forcing her into my line of sight.
With her perfect blonde hair and brilliant smile.
Her with her sultry laugh and womanly curves.
Her. And him. Together.
I bite my lip harder. A new ache begins in my chest, where my heart used to be.
Her eyes flit around the room, widen slightly when they fall on me, and then drift away again. Her head tilts toward his. His dips lower. Perfect red lips form words against the shell of his ear… words I can't hear.
They stab like a knife in my chest anyway.
He lifts his head, looks… sees me.
My motto shifts. Don't cry. Don't cry. Don't cry.
The champagne flute shakes in my hands as searing green tangles for a brief moment with my own dull brown. His eyes strip me bare, set me adrift, and unmake me. For just a minute as he stares at me, everything is right. I'm whole, safe, and loved.
And then his eyes move away again and I feel none of those things. I feel… afraid, confused, and lost. So lost. His next move doesn't help.
No, I want to cry out to him when he straightens and they start in my direction, each step matched perfection. I say nothing instead. I'm frozen solid… thought, preservation, and instinct completely wiped away.
They walk toward me.
I want to lift my skirt into my hands and flee into the night. Flee until my lungs explode, my heart stops, and this sight – Her. Him. Together. – is burned from my memory. But I can't.
I stand completely still instead.
I can't do this, I can't do this, I can't do this, becomes my third motto of the night.
The champagne in my flute sloshes around. A droplet runs down my hand, sticky, messy… like the last time we were together.
FALL– The Ragnarök Prophesies: Book Two is now available at Amazon | Barnes and Noble | KOBO. FADE - The Ragnarök Prophesies: Book Two is available at: Amazon US | UK | DE | FR | IT | ES | Barnes and Noble | Kobo | Books-a-Million.