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Fiction Friday: Staring at the Sun – Chapter 10

I have the final chapter of Staring at the Sun for you finally. After this, I’m not sure what I’ll do for Fiction Friday until I have Hawk’s story ready to go. I’m thinking about writing a flash fiction story each week, but we’ll see. Anyway, for now, here’s the beginning of Chapter 10.

Cassie opened her eyes to light streaming into the window Wraith climbed through the night before. There was no one there now, though, someone watched from the doorway. Henry, she realized turning her head slightly. Her mouth was dry, and her stomach ached. They hadn’t given her anything to eat or drink since they’d grabbed her. Now her heart sank, knowing Grady still wasn’t here for her.

He was coming. He had to be.

Henry sauntered into the room, and she tried to force her body up into a sitting position. She got herself braced against the wall, but that was about the best she could do without the use of her hands. “You ready to beg for forgiveness yet, Cassandra?”

“I don’t need your forgiveness, Henry. You should be the one asking for it. You took advantage of a scared young girl who found herself pregnant and no way to get in touch with the father. You held it against me every day. My trust in you, what I thought might be love. You used it to hurt me. And to hurt my son. No, I won’t ever ask you for forgiveness. I’ll never give you mine.”

He was in front of her in two strides. His hand shot out and her head bounced off the wall from the slap. “Do not ever speak to me like that again, Cassandra. I beat it out of you once. I’ll do it again. Don’t doubt it.”

“Oh, I never have.” She wiped the blood from her mouth on the shoulder of her shirt.

He started to leave the room. Cassie heard the roar of engines down the street and propped herself up on her elbows. That had to be Icarus. If it wasn’t, she didn’t know what she’d do. Henry apparently heard it too. He sent a glare over his shoulder at her. “I’ll take care of that. Once he’s gone, you won’t have any other option but to apologize and accept what I offer you.”

“Never,” she spit at him.

“You’ll see.” He started out of the room.

And if you want to read the rest of the chapter, you can find it here. I hope you’ve enjoyed the story.

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Fiction Friday: Staring at the Sun – Chapter 9

I’m getting this up early. My other computer is installing updates(for the last almost hour and a half!) so I can’t get the writing done I’d planned to. But, there are some things I can get done on my Surface while I wait for that to finish(computer’s restarting again, so hopefully that will be it *crosses fingers* *uncrosses fingers because that makes it hard to type).

Anyway, I have the next to last chapter of Staring at the Sun up on Wattpad now. So, next weekend will be the final chapter. Then, I have to finish writing Hawk’s story and revise it before I’ll have anything else for you. But, for now, here’s the beginning of Chapter 9.

Cassie leaned her head back against the wall, forcing tears back once more. She’d gone along with Jake and Daniel easily enough. Not that she’d call it of her own free will. She hadn’t put up a fight. She hadn’t wanted Jake to take it out on Barbie if she’d fought back before they were away from the clubhouse.

As soon as it was out of sight, they’d pulled over, put a cloth around her eyes and tied her hands behind her back with something she figured was only a step away from zip ties. She couldn’t have fought back if she wanted to. Suddenly she had. Even as she’d tried, one of them hit her with the side of a fist, if she could guess by the feel of it. It stunned her long enough for them to climb back into the front and pull onto the road.

She hadn’t even been buckled in, so she bounced around every time they hit a bump. She swore Jake hit every bump he could as hard as possible. She didn’t have any way to brace herself or even see what was coming. She’d smacked her head on the window several times and the seat in front of her even more often. By the time the car stopped again, her head throbbed and spun, and she was sure she would be sick.

Neither of the men cared. They yanked her out of the car and shoved her up the walk toward the house. She fell twice, and they handled her even rougher. They’d left her alone in this room, but they had at least removed the blindfold. She wasn’t sure if she could have taken much more of that. Still she felt like she would lose it.

She didn’t have a clue how much time she’d been here. Except night hadn’t come yet. Where was Grady? Would he come for her? How would he even find her? What had Henry done to him? Told him? What was he going to do to her? When would he get here? Where was she? This wasn’t the house she’d shared with Henry for eighteen years.

All those questions kept circling in her head the longer she was forced to sit here. By the time something happened, she wasn’t sure she’d have any sanity left.

That was probably their plan.

Cassie gasped as something moved in the window. She blinked, sure she had to have imagined it. Maybe this was how losing her mind started. Seeing things that weren’t there, couldn’t be there.

The face remained there. She blinked again and recognized it. She couldn’t remember his name, but she’d seen him talking to Grady out at the clubhouse. What was it they called him? “Wraith,” she breathed out the name as it came to her.

If you want to find out what happens next, you can read the rest of it here. Let me know what you think. And next week, I’ll have that final chapter for you.

Fiction Friday: Staring at the Sun – Chapter 7

I’ve got the next chapter of Staring at the Sun up and ready read. And a more laidback weekend ahead. Thank goodness for that. 🙂 And here’s the beginning of Chapter 7:

Cassie felt like her feet were glued to the porch. What was happening? She was supposed to be safe here. Grady promised her she would be. They shouldn’t have been able to find her.

That was definitely Jake driving that SUV up the drive. She’d always felt a little uneasy when he’d come by the house to see Henry. Jake was probably only too glad to do Henry’s bidding.

“No,” she whispered. “No, I can’t go with him.”

“You won’t.” Chief stepped up behind her and putting a large strong hand on her shoulder. “Go in the house. I’ll take care of this.”

Before she could do what he said and take Raven with her, the SUV jerked to a stop and the back door opened so fast she assumed whoever was back there had kicked it open. Someone stumbled out, another figure following right behind.

Chief’s hand tightened slightly on Cassie’s shoulder. “Barb,” he breathed.

Cassie saw Barbie was exactly who stumbled out of the SUV first. “No,” she gasped, taking a step forward. She couldn’t let Barbie be used against her.

Chief yanked her right back. “Grady would never forgive me if I let something happen to you.”

“You can’t let anything happen to her either,” she insisted. “She’s your son’s wife. Eric would -”

“I know,” Chief said gruffly. “I know, Cassie, but it’s my job to protect you today. I can’t fail.”

She wanted to argue with him about that. She wasn’t any more important than Barbie. Barbie had been a part of this group from the beginning. And a part of all their lives longer than that. It would devastate just about everyone in this club if something happened to Barbie. Whereas Cassie really only meant something to Grady and Trace.

“How’d they even get to her?”

“She doesn’t like to watch the men leave. Especially lately. She says good-bye to Bull and goes for a walk. They’d have seen her from the other side of the property.”

Cassie didn’t know why the ‘especially lately’ part was significant, except Bull had been acting more protective of her lately. So, she wondered. “You have to let me go, Chief. I won’t forgive myself if she gives her freedom or life for mine.” Or, if Cassie was correct, her baby’s life. “You have to let me go.”

“This is an impossible choice.” She heard the battle in his voice. “I think of Grady as much of a son as Eric. You’re his. I can’t choose one of you over the other.”

The man pushed Barbie closer to the porch, and Jake stepped out, his gun pointed at Cassie. “Send her down here, old man, or both of them die.”

Well, that’s not looking too good for them, is it? If you want to see what happens next, you can read the rest of the chapter here.

Fiction Friday: Staring at the Sun – Chapter 5

I’m back with the next chapter of Staring at the Sun. This brings us halfway through the story. I don’t have much else to say here, so I’ll get right to the beginning of the chapter:

Cassie wasn’t sure what to do. It had been a couple days since that story had been printed in the newspaper. Every morning when she came out of her room, Grady waited for her. They walked down to have breakfast together, and if he didn’t have to have a meeting with the guys or take a ride somewhere, they spent most of the day together. He did have other responsibilities, and she understood.

Sometimes she preferred it. Sometimes she wanted a chance to breathe. Hard to do when it felt like you were constantly under watch.

He did walk her up to her room every night, and he kissed her before telling her good night. She tossed and turned until dawn, thinking about how much she wished they’d take those kisses farther.

What was stopping her? She was no teenager any longer. The prospect of taking that step forward was almost as scary as thinking of what Henry would do next.

Not that she would admit that to anyone. Least of all Grady. He had enough on his mind.

She stepped into the library, grateful she slipped away from Damon–Devil according to the tag on his vest and what everyone else called him–apparently taking his shift as her shadow. She let out the breath she’d finally had the chance to take. They were trying to protect her, it was what Grady wanted. Right now it felt smothering. She needed some space for a moment.

“You come in here to hide out, too?”

Cassie’s head jerked up, and she stared at the woman who stood at the other side of the room. It took her a moment to place her, as she wasn’t wearing her vest. “Molly.” Everyone else called her Medusa.

Her face twisted up. Cassie thought that was a flash of pain in the woman’s eyes. That couldn’t be right. She didn’t think the other woman ever felt any pain. She was too tough.

“Please don’t call me that,” she said. “No one does.”

“I-I’m sorry,” Cassie said. “I’m not…I feel weird using your other names.”

Molly laughed, but it didn’t sound as mean as it usually did. “I barely even think of myself as Molly anymore. The last time someone called me that…”

She ran her thumb over her left ring finger. Which Cassie noted was bare. Had it always been? She didn’t have a clue. They’d never really had a conversation before. In fact, she’d been under the impression the other woman hated her for some reason.

“Why did you come in here?” Molly asked her.

“I…I had to get away,” she admitted. “Everyone’s watching me, and I get it. But, I had to get away to breathe. And forget for a moment there’s something to be afraid of.” She sucked in some air. “I don’t know how to do that when every minute I feel terrified. Of everything.”

“Except of Icarus.” When Cassie didn’t answer, she asked, “Right?”

“Of everything,” Cassie repeated.

If you want to read the rest of the chapter, you can find it here. And I’ll be back next week with more.

Fiction Friday: Staring at the Sun – Chapter 3

I’ve got Chapter 3 of Staring at the Sun up on Wattpad now. It’s been an eventful week, with son’s birthday party Sunday, getting our internet fixed on Monday, and kids back to school on Tuesday. Then, me trying to get settled into a routine now that I have the house to myself all day once again. That shouldn’t be too difficult, just trying to figure out the best way to fit everything in. But, now, here’s the beginning of Chapter 3.

Henry Kearns stepped out of his cruiser and headed for the front of the store. He still walked with a limp, and his knee ached like a bitch almost constantly, but he’d tossed away the cane he’d been using. His doctor suggested he keep it, but fuck that. As long as he used it, the department would keep him on medical leave. He couldn’t take that anymore.

He wasn’t going to let that bastard Hartson keep on winning.

He was off duty now and should be in his recliner already, taking his weight off this knee. He’d remembered on the way there, he wouldn’t have anything to eat as soon as he walked in the door. After a year, he should damn well be used to it. Sometimes he still forgot Cassandra wouldn’t be waiting for him, putting a hot dinner on the table as soon as he came inside.

He’d taught her that lesson well.

She’d still left him. For fucking Hartson. He thought she’d learned how that would go for her twenty years ago. Should never have let the little punk out of a cell. But Sheriff Vallis had been sure he’d stay away. And, well, he had. Just not long enough. If Henry ever got his hands on Trace again, he’d pay for ever bringing Grady Hartson back into their lives.

He walked through the store to the prepared foods section. Several people lifted their hands to him in a wave as he passed. People around here respected him. As they damn well should. He picked up a small roasted chicken from the warmer and a small cup of fried potatoes. That would work. If he hadn’t already passed the diner, he would have stopped there like he had most nights.

“It’s good to see you up and about, Deputy Kearns,” the cashier said.

He nodded back at her, not bothering with a thanks or even a glance at her name tag. What did any of that matter to him?

“It’s a shame they never caught the men who broke into your place and shot you.”

Henry barely held back a snort. He couldn’t believe everyone bought that shit he’d shoveled out a year ago. He’d waited for that little punk to follow through with his threat to expose what he knew about Henry’s dealings for months. Nothing had ever come of it. Little fucker had probably only been bluffing. He couldn’t have known any of that.

He walked back out into the parking lot and heard the roar of a motorcycle. That sound always made a chill flash over him. He couldn’t help looking for the source of it. It was never Grady. Or any of his accomplices. He so wanted to take at least one of them down, haul them in, get whatever he could from them before he found a way to lock them up for the rest of their miserable lives.

If you want to read the rest of the chapter, just head over this way. I’ll have Chapter 4 up next week.

Fiction Friday: Dance with the Devil – Chapter 10

This is the final chapter of Dance with the Devil. I should get the next story polished up next week, and be able to start posting it either then or the following week(once I get a cover figured out for it). But, for now, here’s the beginning of the end of Dance with the Devil:

I woke to Hawk’s bare chest right in front of me. I traced the Marine tattoo covering one side of it. I had a similar one on my arm. Hawk shivered, and his hand ran up my back. “We have to get up, Devil,” he said, and I heard the regret in his voice.

I already was. Unfortunately there wasn’t time for that this morning. I still pressed my mouth to his chest, but he hauled me up so our lips met. “Later,” he promised, “when this is over.”

I rolled away from him and found the clothes I’d stripped off the night before. “I’ll meet you downstairs,” I told him. His eyes were hot on me, even as I headed for the door. We had to get the job done, to keep the club and everything we stood for safe, but when that was taken care of, I’d be right back here with Hawk, and we could figure out where this would go.

As long as we both made it back. That was something I couldn’t bear to even think about. I pushed it away as I headed back to my room to get ready for this mission.

I was downstairs fifteen minutes later, just behind Hawk. I did not mind taking that position. I saw the slight bulge of one gun at his back, right at the bottom of his vest. I knew he’d carry another in the inside pocket of his vest. We all did that. Except Trace if he could help it.

I was pretty sure that was only one reason Icarus planned to leave him here to protect the ladies. Not that most of them couldn’t take care of themselves. I didn’t dare even insinuate that. But, I knew Icarus’ Cassie couldn’t. Birdie could protect herself, but she’d been abducted once before. Icarus wouldn’t want to take the chance it would happen again.

I rested my hand on his back right outside of the dining room. He glanced back over his shoulder and smiled at me. That look held a whole lot of promise for later. I wasn’t sure how to act now.

Hawk took care of that as we grabbed plates from the side table. He took my hand and pulled me in for a quick kiss. It was as simple as that.

And you can read the rest of the chapter here. I hope you’ve enjoyed it.

Fiction Friday: Dance with the Devil – Chapter 9

Well, we’re almost to the end. I have Chapter 9, the next to last chapter, of Dance with the Devil today. I’m about to start revising the next in the series, Staring at the Sun, Cassie & Icarus’ story. So you shouldn’t have to wait too long for me to stat posting that. For now, here’s the beginning of Chapter 9.

When we pulled up to the garage at the clubhouse, I was surprised to see how empty it was. “I thought everyone was sticking close until this thing with the Crows is over,” I said to Hawk as we put our bikes away.

His gaze coasted over the bikes still in the garage. “Icarus wanted to increase patrols until we’re ready to move on it. The two of us and Dive are to stick close, since we’ve been the ones targeted by them directly.”

Damn it. That was not what I wanted to hear. “I don’t need to be protected. I can take care of myself.” Hawk stood there and stared at me. “Okay, so they caught me by surprise the last time. Doesn’t meant it will happen again.”

He took a step toward me, his leather-clad thigh pressing against mine. “You know what it would do to me if it did? They wouldn’t have to come after me, because I would be utterly destroyed. You might think you aren’t important, but you have to see how much you are to me. I’d do anything to make sure you don’t stop breathing. Don’t forget that, Damon.”

I didn’t think I could breathe now. No one had ever made it so clear how much they cared for me. I leaned forward and pressed my lips to his. “Let’s get inside,” I said when I finally pulled back.

Hawk’s lips curled up, then we were both stripping off our chaps and rolling them back up to store in our saddlebags. We left the garage, and he closed the door behind us, pulling me in for another kiss before heading up to the house.

To my surprise, we didn’t run into anyone on the way up to the clubhouse. Usually there was at least one or two people wandering around the yard. It was still a little chilly out, so maybe everyone was inside.

I stopped thinking about that when Hawk snaked an arm around my waist as we neared the porch and pressed a kiss to the back of my neck. I wanted him so bad right then. But, there was no way we could do this right here. The guys might be okay with us being together, but I couldn’t imagine them caring to witness it.

Inside. We just had to get inside. And up to one of our rooms. Hopefully no one would stop us on the way. I might keel over if I had to wait much longer.

We barely even made it through the doorway. His mouth was on mine again, and he pressed me to the wall right next to the door. Holy shit. My engine was revving so much I was about to overheat. I moaned against his mouth then his fingers were in the loops of my jeans, pulling me away from the wall and toward the stairs.

If you want to read the rest of the chapter, you can check it out here. I’ll have the final chapter next week.

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