New Release/Giveaway/Excerpt

Title: Working Back
Series: Cook Brothers Novel
Author: BJ Harvey
Genre: Second Chance Romance
Release Date: October 23, 2019
Girls weren’t on Bryant Cook’s radar until the day he moved next door to the most beautiful girl he’d ever seen. Fortunately for him, Faith Baker fell just as hard that first day as well.
 
From age eight to twenty-two, it was the ‘Faith and Bryant’ show, and their happily forever after seemed certain. Until it wasn’t.
 
Now she’s back after twelve years and she wants what they had.
 
That’s when Bryant issues a challenge. One Faith can’t resist. After all, her future—their future—is riding on it.
 
She said she’d do anything. She just didn’t think he meant *that*..
 
***
Working Back is a full-length, second chance, childhood soulmates, house flipping romantic comedy that can be read as a complete standalone and is book 3 in the Cook Brothers series.

 

“OMG!!! Talk about ROMCOM PERFECTION!” – Reading Is Our Satisfaction.
 
 
“If you’re looking for light, fun, flirty, and a whole lot of steam, it’s right here.” – Goodreads review.
 
 
“You will swing from rolling around on the floor laughing to swoon worthy moments that will have you weak in the knees and your heart so full.” – Goodreads review.
 
“Bryant!” Faith shouts. My body goes still; then, I jerk into action. I drop my bottle to the ground. I rip the door open and race to her room.
“What’s wrong?” I ask, hanging off the side of her doorway when I reach her.
Her face is pale, her eyes snapping to mine as soon as I enter the room. She’s standing on top of the bed—more like cowering, really. Her finger points to the floor on the far side of the bed.
“There… there’s a…” She’s near-on shaking her bottom lip trembling.
“What, Faith?”
“There’s a spider under the bed,” she says, shaking her head from side to side, her hands covering her face. “And it had babies!
I freeze, unable to comprehend what I’m seeing.
“Faith, how on earth can you still be scared of bugs?”
“You don’t know what bugs are until you’ve lived in Australia, especially spiders.”
“You’re a biologist,” I say, remembering how she hated to be put in a ‘specific scientific box.’
“Zoologist actually. Which is a lot different than those bug people who study things like—you know—big-ass spiders, Bryant Cook.”
“Are you full-naming me, Faith Baker?”
“You bet your ass I am, and I’ll keep doing it till you remove said spider and all its spider babies from my room.” She’s shriek-shouting by the end of her demand, and it’s cute as hell.
I lean against the doorframe and cross my arms over my chest. “So no future as an arachnologist?”
“Bry…” she hisses. “I’m begging you.”
“Say please then.”
“What?”
“Please. It’s usually followed by a thank you when the person completes the task you’ve asked them to do. It’s Manners 101. I know Mrs. Baker taught you all about that.”
“He brings my mom into it,” she mutters dryly, looking to the ceiling as if seeking answers—or a weapon to throw at me. Her eyes plead with mine. “Please, Bryant. Torture me with anything else but not bugs.”
I sigh, fighting—and failing—to stop a small triumphant grin making its home on my face.
“Smug much?” she mutters as I round the bed and drop to my hands and knees. “What are you doing?”
I crane my neck to look up at her from the floor. “I’m trying out a new yoga position. What the hell do you think I’m doing? I’m looking for the spider mama and her babies.”
“Like that?
I sit up on my calves and look at her, dumbfounded. She’s always had a fear of spiders, but this is bordering on ridiculous. I arch a brow. “Got a spare hazmat suit lying around?”
“No need to get snippy.”
My lips twitch. “Never been called snippy before.”
“Never thought I’d need to say the word,” she retorts with a half-smile.
“What exactly does being snippy entail?”
She puts her hands on her hips and narrows her eyes. “Are we really standing here arguing about your behavior?”
“Well if you’d stop, then I could get on with ridding your room of all the creepy crawlies you hate.”
Her face falls. “You think there’s more than this?”
Ah, shit. This is not good. “No. I mean—”
“I can’t… I mean…” Her eyes fill with tears, and I feel like the biggest asshole on the planet.
I stand and open my arms, holding my breath as she looks at my hands then back to my face a few times before slowly moving forward and letting me comfort her. When she bends down and lays her head on my shoulder, a warm feeling settles in my heart.
“You probably think I’m a big baby,” she mumbles against my T-shirt. I smile, rubbing her back and cupping her head, keeping her close, enjoying this far more than I thought I would so soon. I swear this woman has superpowers when it comes to me.
“Can we fumigate the house?” she asks, her soft voice full of hope.
Without answering her, I tighten my arms around her waist and pull her off the bed. “Hold on, babycakes.”
She lets out a squeak as I carry her across the room. Her legs circle around my hips, and her arms strangle me as they tighten around my neck.
Once we’re in the hallway, I gently lower her to the ground, her fingers gripping my shoulders as she tips her wide eyes up to mine. Where I expect to find a spark of anger, there’s soft heat that I’m not prepared to see. She’s still standing close, her chest brushing mine. Her tongue darts out and traces along her bottom lip, and I can’t tear my gaze away.
“Thank you,” she whispers.
“Can’t have you being scared of your own room.”

BJ Harvey is the USA Today Bestselling Author of the Bliss Series. She regards herself as a smut peddler, suspense conjurer, and a funny romance thinker upper. An avid music fan, you will always find her singing some hit song badly and loving every minute of it. She’s a wife, a mom to two beautiful girls, and hails from what she considers as the best country in the world—New Zealand—although she currently lives in Perth, Australia.
 
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New Release/Excerpt

Title: Covet
Series: Beautiful Sinner Series #2
Author: Elena M. Reyes
Genre: Romantic Suspense/New Adult
Release Date: October 21, 2019
Cover Design: Black Widow Designs
I’m a sinner. A criminal.
The beast that will never let her go…
Everyone in England knows the name Casper Jameson. They know that I’m a cruel bastard with no regrets when it comes to dealing with those that cross me. They fear me; a man with no morals. Someone cold—without a weakness.
Until I see her…
 
She’s beautiful; a delicious temptation standing across the room from me without a care. Unaware of the danger that lurks—that this man wants to consume her.
I’m going to own her every sigh.
Taste her every moan.
Drown in her pleasure.
Let the bloody chase begin.
 
(The Beautiful Sinner Series are all interconnected standalones full of suspense and romance and an OTT alpha willing to burn the world to the ground for the woman he loves! It’s sexy and has an edge of darkness that will leave you breathless!⁣)

I NOTICE HER the bloody second she comes into the room. There’s a shift in the air, a different kind of energy that sweeps over my over six-foot-two frame as I take in every delicate detail of her body. How she walks. How the little black dress she wears clings to each sinuous curve.
This girl commands the attention of every drunk arsehole without an ounce of effort.
From my seat, I have a view of every inch of this pub; from its entrance to the bar, to the small dance floor off to my left where bodies grind to the beat of some chart-topping artist. The place is full to the brim, and yet, she’s all I see. All I can seem to focus on. Taking into account every minute detail while all around me people continue to slam back pint after pint.
Each swing of her hips is a call to the animal within. A taunt.
The woman she’s with stops a few tables from the one I’m occupying near the back with my men; a setup of high-top seating, and along the wall, two private booths. They greet another couple already sitting there with a small handshake, though hers is more on the distant side, the kind you give a stranger. A bit timid.
She shifts a bit—head bobbing to the music—and I follow the move, lowering my eyes to roam her small frame and liking the way her hip juts a bit to the side. Naturally coquettish, she’s small but thick where it counts. Young, but legal. A beautiful little thing with the face of an angel and a body made to worship. At no more than five foot three and no older than twenty-two, she’s all hips and thighs and has a gorgeous face with hazel eyes and plump berry-colored lips.
Moreover, it’s that mouth that first caught my attention.
How she throws her head back, laughing at what someone at the table says. How carefree she looks. How those lips stretch wide and her eyes close for a brief moment before meeting mine.
We hold each other’s stare. Not moving.
And then that mouth parts in slow motion, her tiny pink tongue peeking out to sweep across her bottom lip, sealing her fate. At that moment, every single thought of retribution leaves my mind. My hunger morphs into something wickedly delicious.
I need that tight body on her knees.
I want her breasts encasing my thick cock as I slide between them.

 

I want her wetness running down my length, bathing me as those hazel orbs stay on mine.

 

MINE: Early 2020

YOURS: Summer 2020

Elena M. Reyes is the epitome of a Floridian and if she could live in her beloved flip-flops, she would.


As a small child, she was always intrigued by all forms of art: whether it was dancing to island rhythms, or painting with any medium she could get her hands on. Her passion for reading over the years has amassed her with hours of pleasure, but it wasn’t until she stumbled upon fanfiction that her thirst to write overtook her world.

She’s a short and sassy Latina with an adorable pup, a kiddo that keeps her on her toes, and a husband who claims she’ll cause him to go bald prematurely. Lol

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Submit

NewRelease/Excerpt

Title: Christmas with the Single Dad
Series: The Single Dads of Seattle
Author: Whitley Cox
Genre: Single dad/erotic romance/ contemporary/ Holiday romance/ Christmas romance/ romantic comedy
Release Date: October 19, 2019
Will a Christmas love built on lies melt away just as surely as the snow?
 
Welcome to Seattle, the Emerald City and home to The Single Dads of Seattle. Ten sexy single fathers who play poker every Saturday night, have each other’s backs, love their children without quarter, and hope to one day find love again.
This is Zak’s story …
Single Dad of Seattle, Zak Eastwood plans to spend Christmas with fellow lonely hearts. His kids are supposed to be at an amusement park with their mom. However, fate has other plans. When a woman from his club finds herself stranded in the snow, he takes her to safety.
 
Drowning in student loan debt and her father’s medical bills, first-year law associate Aurora Stratford allows herself but one splurge—a pricey membership to Club Z Fitness to watch the gorgeous Zak flex his muscles. Though out of her league, fantasizing about his blue eyes and tattoos is the only thing that keeps her sane these days, especially since her Christmas will be spent alone with her dead cactus and money woes.
 
When the snowstorm of the century moves in and the hero of her dreams offers her a ride and a place to stay, Aurora’s Christmas begins to look up.
However, Aurora is ashamed of her current financial state—she’s nobody’s charity chase—and her lies of self-preservation begin to take on a life of their own.
Can Aurora spend Christmas with the single dad and win over everyone? Or will her deceit get in the way of not only their happy holiday but her happily ever after?
**Note: This book can be read as a standalone. It includes lots of steamy scenes, cursing, and of course as with all my books, this has an HEA and no cliffhanger or cheating. If you like single dads who take charge, this book is for you.

“OMG! I so loved this book. Zak and Aurora were amazing.” ~Stephanie Ditmore (Amazon Review)

“What a story is this book Sexy Zak, with his muscles and tattoos and sexy red hair. This story pulled at my heart both Zak and Aurora have both had hard times for different reasons. Passionate and emotional tale, with so much love to go around this book keeps you turning the page to see how hot and steamy the story has got.~ Mel (Amazon Review)

This book is everything you could want in a Christmas love story!! Aurora has been lusting after Zak the buff work God at her gym for awhile. Well thanks to Mother Nature she get stuck in the parking lot during a snow storm. Zak comes to the rescue and offers her a ride home. Then you have to just read it because it takes your breath away! This books has laughs and makes you cry but it is so worth it!~ Mrs. Taz (Amazon Review)

He was about to ask as much when she moved toward him, her pace full of purpose. She grabbed his face and kissed him.
 
And it wasn’t just a peck on the lips. No, this woman knew how to kiss. She knew how to throw her whole body into it. A low and pleasant hum warmed him from the center outward.
 
Her soft, slippery little tongue pushed its way into his mouth. Then she started to suck. She started to fucking suck on his tongue. He moaned as his cock stirred beneath the towel, his hands moving to wrap around her back.
 
This had been so unexpected, and yet he couldn’t get over how much he suddenly wanted it—wanted her.
 
A shrill beeping sound from downstairs made them both still. She was the first to pull away.
 
Her light brown eyes were glassy, and her cheeks held an adorable pink flush. He dropped his gaze to her plump, wet lips and he swept his thumb over the bottom one back and forth. He stilled when she pressed the tip of her tongue to his thumb, then parted her lips and lunged at it with her teeth, nipping the pad.
 
He tugged it away, grinning.
 
Oh, she was a wicked little thing.
 
Grabbing her around the back of the neck, he crushed his mouth to hers, taking control of the kiss this time, forcing her lips to part for his, to mold to his. She gave over all the power and melted against him, her arms wrapping around his neck and pulling him down to her. He was about to push the hem of her shirt up to explore her lack of a bra when the loud beeping of the oven timer downstairs had them pulling a part once again.
 
Her ample chest rose and fell rapidly, his did too.
 
“Hold that thought,” he murmured, grabbing hold of his towel and heading downstairs toward the kitchen. “Be right back.” Then he took off as fast as his legs could carry him, hoping that his chicken wasn’t burning, but even more so that the woman in his bedroom would still be there when he returned.
A Canadian West Coast baby born and raised, Whitley is married to her high school sweetheart, and together they have two beautiful daughters and a fluffy dog. She spends her days making food that gets thrown on the floor, vacuuming Cheerios out from under the couch and making sure that the dog food doesn’t end up in the air conditioner. But when nap time comes, and it’s not quite wine o’clock, Whitley sits down, avoids the pile of laundry on the couch, and writes.
 
A lover of all things decadent; wine, cheese, chocolate and spicy erotic romance, Whitley brings the humorous side of sex, the ridiculous side of relationships and the suspense of everyday life into her stories. With single dads, firefighters, Navy SEALs, mommy wars, body issues, threesomes, bondage and role-playing, these books have everything we need to satisfy the curious kink in all of us.
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NewRelease/Giveaway/Excerpt

Title: Venom
Series: The Sinister Fairy Tales Collection
Author: Dee Garcia
Genre: Dark PNR/UF
Release Date: October 15, 2019

 
Tink
From the moment I befriended him, I set a conspiracy in motion.
A revolution.

 

Kill Peter Pan.
And I was their ultimate weapon.
I was also none the wiser, falling hopelessly and irrevocably in love with him as the years went by.
Just as they hoped I would.
But their plan comes to a screeching halt when Peter vanishes into thin air, something I’ll learn has nothing to do with Rosewood at all.
You see, Peter never truly loved me…because he loved a wench instead.
He lied to me, he used me, he left me, and he broke me. 
Forever altering me in ways that incite revenge when Hook sweeps in with revelations and the ultimate truth.
Peter may have turned his back on me, but in the end, he and his precious little Wendy will choke on every last tear I once shed.
And I’ll have Hook to thank for that.

 

Hook
It’s no secret I always despised Peter Pan.
A common threat amongst the factions, I should’ve killed him when I had the chance, long before he sank his claws deep into Tinksley’s heart.
But his death at my hands wasn’t what the plan called for, despite how I felt for her.
I’d always been drawn to the girl, innocently enough at first…until that vile abomination marked her with his stamp, unleashing a sense of propriety I had no rights to.
Didn’t matter—he had her…and I wanted her.
Then like magic, he disappeared.
I thought my time had come, but the road to owning Tinksley’s heart comes with a price.
A price so dark and depraved it strips her of her purity and awakens the beast within.
All because of the truth.
Sometimes, there is honor in revenge, and it will be my utmost pleasure to watch as Peter Pan finally meets his maker.
His maker who will soon be my Queen.
 

 

Don’t do it, Tinksley. Turn around, says the angel on my shoulder, a voice I’d forgotten existed amidst the demands of depravity.

Do I listen? Of course not.

I have to know what’s happening. I’m too intrigued not to.

An intrigue that continues amounting as I pass this hand-carved archway with thick spiraled pillars. The pillars themselves aren’t what draws me—it’s the marionette puppets hanging off each one. They’re both female; one blonde, one brunette, both surprisingly quite scantily clad unlike a typical puppet.

I’ve never seen one like this before.

Reaching out to graze the tips of my fingers over one of their wooden bodies, I—

“Boo!” a husky voice ghosts in my ear.

My heart shoots up to my throat as a terrified scream breaks free. Next thing I know, I’m spun around, staring into amused blue eyes.

I literally feel myself deflate in his grip before I can react accordingly.

Bastard.

“What the f*ck!” I shout, wiggling myself free.

Callan chuckles darkly and shakes his head, crossing his arms over his chest. “Look at you. So crass these days.”

I mimic his stance. “What can I say? I learned from the best. You’ve got one helluva sailor’s mouth yourself.”

“I’m not a sailor, love.” He smirks. “A pirate? Yes. The Captain? Obviously. Not a sailor, though.”

 
 
 
 
 
Dee Garcia is a voracious fan of romance novels and a long time lover of the written word. Her mission is to craft unique, compelling stories that will give her readers a place to briefly escape the trials and tribulations of everyday reality. With headstrong heroine’s who don’t need a man to stand on their own two feet, Dee hopes to leave her mark in the Indie world, one plot twist at a time.
 


 
 
 
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New Release/Excerpt

Title: Hidden Heart
Series: Windy City Series #1
Author: Measha Stone
Genre: Contemporary BDSM Romance
Release Date: October 15, 2019

 

Royce Blandford follows a promotion to Chicago, because when he wants something- he gets it. He’s a man with determination.

 

 

And after one evening with Jessica, he’s determined to claim her as his. 

 

 

Jessica is perfectly content keeping relationships casual. She’d rather fall in lust than love. And one glance at Royce- she’s definitely in lust. 

 

 

But Royce doesn’t kiss and bail. Jessica may try to hide behind a thick wall, but he senses the fires burning hot. If he has to break through kiss by kiss, he will.

 

 

 

He kissed her on the cheek and picked up the crop. “Are you curious about this?” He touched the flapper to her nose.

She shook her head and stepped back.

One of his eyebrows rose. “Did you hate it last night?” Had she rethought the scene after the arousal had worn off?

“No,” she admitted, taking another step.

“Are you ashamed you liked it?” He toyed with the crop.

“No.” She shrugged, her eyes darting from the leather to the window behind him, seeking a safe place to mentally hide.

“That’s one. I’ll give you one more chance to be honest with me.” His jaw tightened. “Are you ashamed of what we did last night?”

“Not ashamed.” She scratched her elbow, her eyes on the coffee table.

“Then what?” She had more lingering in that beautiful mind of hers, and he wanted it. He wanted to know everything about her—her feelings, her desires. If only he could get her to stop hiding from them.

Her eyes fixed on the leather rod. “What we did was fine. I liked it.” Another shrug.

“And that’s a bad thing.” He slapped the crop against his palm. The sound hung between them.

“Stop putting words in my mouth,” she demanded with balled-up fists and a stomp of her right foot. Such defiance for such a simple question.

He tilted his head and stared her down like the adversary she was making herself. “Do you think stomping and yelling is the way we should handle this?” His words didn’t hold curiosity, but rather a warning.

“You keep insisting you know my feelings.”

“You keep insisting you don’t have any,” he threw back. “Tell me, and I’ll stop assuming.” He crossed his arms over his chest, still holding the crop in his hand.

“I don’t understand why I liked it. I shouldn’t have liked it.” She took a deep breath.

“Tell me something, Jessica. When I instruct you and you obey, what does it feel like to you?”
Measha Stone is an international bestselling author of erotic romance. She’s had #1 top-selling books in BDSM, and suspense. She lives in the western suburbs of Chicago with her husband and children, who are just as creative and crazy as her. Her vanilla writing has been published in numerous literary magazines, but she’s found her passion in erotic romance.
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New Release/Excerpt

Title: Taming His Rockstar
Author: Samantha Morgan
Genre: Steamy Rockstar Romance
Release Date: October 15, 2019

 

It was just supposed to be one night…

Being KD McNeil, badass rock goddess with it all under control, is a role she’s played for so long that she can’t remember being any other way. But she’s tired of the spotlight, tired of always having to be on top of everything–including the men she dates. She needs a night off from being herself, from always being in control.


 

Enter sexy bartender Jake who gives her one amazing, freeing night that leads to a sizzling friends-with-benefits affair. But when that becomes something more, the paparazzi turn it into salacious tabloid fodder that threatens their relationship and his job. KD knows how cruel the media can be, and she ends things before they can destroy Jake’s life. But he isn’t so easily deterred, and he’s out to prove to her that he can take the heat as easily as he gives it.

 

 

“Not so fast,” he says as he steps back and stares at me. “This is going to take a while, and I don’t need my boys arriving at this party early.”

I grin at him. “Don’t tell me you’re scared.”

“Scared? Not really. Let’s just say I want to make a good first impression.” He nudges his head at my dress. “I have half a mind to rip that off you. How attached are you to it?”

I cock a brow at him. “Very much attached. Took me hours to get this one. Besides, I don’t see why guys think it’s that easy to rip a dress apart. That only happens in cheesy movies.”

“Do you want to test that theory?”

I stare at his muscles and then think of the delicate edges of my pretty dress and decide not.

“Thought as much. So how about you take it off yourself? Wait,” he stops me when I move to reach the zip at the back of the dress. He leans against the back of the couch and folds his hands over his chest. “How about you do it slow and steady? You know, like I was a gentleman in a club, and you’re trying to get me to empty my pocket?”

“So, I’m your stripper now?” I ask, my hand cocked on my hip.

“No.” His gaze suddenly goes dark, his voice deep as he stares at me with a look that is so blatantly sexual it makes my mouth go dry. “For this night, you’re whatever I want you to be. Whatever . . .”

That should not arouse me as much as it does.

 

 

 

USA Today bestselling author Samantha Morgan is a survivor. In a world where the negative and dark things that go bump in the night try to drag you down, she uses her words as a weapon. The stories she writes offer an escape, pure and simple. She is best known for her sinful rockstars, steamy personal trainers and hot-as-hell heros.


 

When she’s not lost in a story, Sam loves to spend her time playing video games and watching movies. Feel free to contact her anytime, she loves to hear from her readers. authorsamanthamorgan.com

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Cover Reveal/Pre-Order/Excerpt

Title: Defending Roxanne
Series: GHOST Book #2
Author: PJ Fiala
Genre: Adult Military Romantic Suspense
Release Date: October 22, 2019
Cover Design: Cover Me Photography & Design

Secrets and lies have become deadly.

 

 

 

While investigating the murder of her parents, Roxanne Bowman encounters more than she ever thought she would. The secrets that both of her parents kept knock her off kilter. Finding an intruder in their home afterwards changes her life forever.
 
GHOST operative, Hawk Delany is back in the swing of things after being shot while working a case. Sent to Washington D.C. to investigate the murder of a foreign dignitary, and an American couple with ties to deadly secrets, places him in a precarious position, between the fight to help solve the murders and to keep his heart from theft by the lovely Roxanne.

 

Chapter 1

“Roxanne, it was weird, he looked like your dad’s cousin, Raymond. Do you remember Raymond? He was always a bit different and he had so much trouble dealing with people. That’s why when I saw this man following me, it completely scared the crap out of me. Then, I saw him again yesterday and I don’t know what to do.” 

Roxanne’s eyes flew open. Staring at the ceiling, her heart pounded in her chest as her mother’s words came back to her. Throwing back the covers, she sat up and turned so her feet were touching the floor. Her childhood bedroom still had the same furniture, same bookcase across from her bed, same creeks in the floor. The only things that had changed were that her mother had repainted the room to a soft gray last year and had updated the bedding to match.

“I want you to be comfortable when you come home, and you’ve outgrown the pink floral patterns. This suits you so much better,” her mother had said. Oh, how she wished she could speak to her mom now.

Sliding on her slipper socks, she walked out of her room and hesitated. This home seemed too large and ominous somehow now. Glancing down the hall to her right, her parents’ bedroom door was closed now and would be forever if it was up to her. But, only time would tell. Her brothers, Brendan and Matthew’s, bedrooms were to her left. It had been her paternal grandparents’ home before they passed, then her family’s. Now it belonged to her and her brothers.

Descending the enormous, dark mahogany staircase with its white-painted handrails, which curved to the right of the large foyer in their old Georgetown home, she turned left and entered her parents’ office. 

Her mother had remodeled this room twenty years ago, but it still suited the era of the house. Majestic mahogany pillars stood adjacent to the wall behind her father’s desk and in between those pillars were towering shelves of books. She loved playing in this room when she was a girl. Her father spent countless hours in here as his military career soared. His final position landed him at the State Department working as the Chief of Protocol, appointed by the President. It’s also the position that got him and her mother killed. 

Turning to the opposite side of the room, where her mother’s identical desk sat, she walked behind the desk and opened the left top drawer. Somewhere in here her mother had kept the key to the storage units in the basement. She needed to find a picture of Raymond. Her first order of business tomorrow morning would be to find Raymond and figure out why he had been stalking her mother and if he had anything to do with her death. The sheer level of chaos, not to mention the political uproar, that had enveloped her parents’ deaths and that of Kanan Mammodov, Prime Minister of Azerbaitani at the same time was monumental. Feeling around the papers in the drawer, she also found office supplies, staples, tape, and a ruler but she couldn’t feel the key. The moonlight that shone through the tall windows to her right was ample light for moving around the house, but didn’t offer enough light to see a small key. Yet, she enjoyed this darkness and the anonymity it offered. There had been at a minimum a handful of reporters on the street in front of the house since her parents died two weeks ago. Turning on the lights would allow them to see in better and use the zoom lenses on their cameras. Fuck that. 

Pulling the papers out of the drawer and laying them on top of the clean desk, she felt around a bit more. Nothing.

The top drawer on the right was next. Pulling the multitude of tablets and notepads from the drawer, she felt around the bottom of the drawer and found nothing. Repeating this motion for the five remaining drawers on each side, she had a mess to show for her efforts laying all around her and still no key. Standing with her hands on her hips, she looked across the room to her father’s desk, then remembered, he’d hidden things on the underside of drawers from time to time. Pulling out the top right drawer of her mother’s desk, she ran her hands underneath and smiled when she felt an envelope taped to the underside. Peeling the tape away and pulling the envelope from underneath, she smiled to herself as she removed the key and stepped over her mess to make her way to the basement. Through the foyer and into the living room, she turned right and headed to the back of the house and the kitchen.

The basement door was directly to the right of the entrance to the kitchen. Opening the door, she clicked on the light and descended to the basement. Over the years her parents had reinforced the basement and added lighting and the locked storage units, which her father had insisted upon having, since his position meant he had access to and possession of confidential information. Her mother then had insisted they have a room in the basement where family heirlooms and pictures were stored, keeping the room at a constant temperature and humidity free. 

Opening her mom’s storage room, she looked at the shelves, walking down the row until she found the storage boxes marked “Family Photos.” Her mother, ever the organizer, had them stored by year. Trying to recall the last time they’d seen Raymond, she remembered being around ten, which was twenty-nine years ago. Finding this box, and pulling it down from the shelf with both hands, she turned to take it upstairs and lay the photographs out on the dining room table.

At the top of the steps, she nudged the light switch with her right elbow and closed the door with her behind. Turning to her left, she headed into the dining room from the kitchen and set the box on top of the table. 

A noise from her parents’ office caused her to freeze. Papers softly shuffling, then nothing. Slowly reaching around her back, her heartbeat increased rapidly, and dread filled her gut as she realized she’d left her gun upstairs in her nightstand. Shit.

Softly she crept to the door of the dining room which was directly behind the huge staircase she’d come down earlier. Staying close to the wall she listened again. Inhaling, she took a slow deep breath and crept out of the room and around the staircase. 

A massive hulk emerged from the office, and she froze for only a moment before turning to run in the opposite direction. The back door was in the kitchen; if she could get there, she’d run across the lawn and to the neighbor’s home for help.

Three steps from the kitchen she was grabbed from behind, an iron band of arm around her waist and one hand over her mouth. She was pulled into the hardened chest of her attacker and barely able to move. Her left arm was trapped next to her body in the steel grip of the man who now began to drag her deeper into her home. 

Panic flooded her brain and her stomach. She struggled to get free, twisting her body as much as she could, hoping to find a weakness to exploit. She began kicking back, but her slipper socks weren’t going to do any damage to this man. A second man appeared in her peripheral vision and chuckled before saying, “Well, Hawk, looks like you found yourself a thief.”

 

Writing has been a desire my whole life. Once I found the courage to write, life changed for me in the most profound way. Bringing stories to readers that I’d enjoy reading and creating characters that are flawed, but lovable is such a joy.
 
When not writing, I’m with my family doing something fun. My husband, Gene, and I are bikers and enjoy riding to new locations, meeting new people and generally enjoying this fabulous country we live in.
 
I come from a family of veterans. My grandfather, father, brother, two sons, and one daughter-in-law are all veterans. Needless to say, I am proud to be an American and proud of the service my amazing family has given.
 

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