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Authors: Natalie Graham

Broken Ever After

BOOK: Broken Ever After
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Broken Ever After

Natalie Graham

Broken Ever After Copyright © 2013 Natalie Graham

All rights reserved. Under no circumstances may any parts of this book be reproduced or transmitted in any form without written consent from the publisher. The only exception being by a reviewer who may quote brief passages for review purposes only.

If you are reading this book and have not been given it by the author or won it as part of a competition, you are reading a pirated copy. Please delete and support the author by purchasing it from one of its distributors.

This book is a work of fiction. Any resemblance to any person
, living or dead, any place, locales, events or occurrences is purely coincidental.

All characters and story lines are created from the author
’s own imagination or are used fictitiously.

The author fully acknowledges the copyrighted or trademarked status and copyright or trademark owner for works
, products and companies listed within this work of fiction.

Cover design by
N. & B. Graham.

Published by N
. Graham.

E-Book
1
st
Edition – 2013.

*****

Warning. Contains language and scenarios which some readers may find offensive and / or disturbing. Contains scenes of a graphical, sexual nature. Recommended to readers 18+

Acknowledgements

I would first of all
like to give a shout out to my amazing husband. In the early days when I first started writing and I wasn’t sure it was going anywhere, you’d ask me all of the time what I was typing so furiously over, well this was it; I wasn’t really debating topics with friends. I was just too scared to tell you what I was really doing. Thank you for supporting me throughout this whole process and giving me the encouragement to get to the end (as well as bringing me copious amounts of tea and chocolate). You gave me the courage to keep on writing when I felt like there was no reason to. I hope I can make you as proud of me as I am of you. Also I’d like to thank you for reading my drafts, all of them. Yes, there were many.

I would like to thank my two beautiful daughters for all of their love
, the cuddles and the sloppy kisses that they made me break for. They reminded me that the most important thing in my life is my family and I wouldn’t be here without them.

For my Mum
, Dad and Brother; just because if they don’t get a mention they’d probably be angry (not that they get to read anything I write anyway – seriously, you guys are banned).

To the best
friend I’ve ever had that has supported me endlessly throughout my writing generally keeping me sane.

I’d like to thank an amazing bunch of ladies that although they were probably bored stiff every time I mentioned this happening, they encouraged me to push forward. I love you ladies.

To all of the bloggers that have given me a chance and helped me pimp this book, you’ll never know what agreeing to read this means to me – it’s a LOT!

I have one last thank you (Yes, I promise it’s the last! Does anyone actually read acknowledgements anyway?) I’d like to thank those of you
that have purchased this novel; I hope that you’ll love reading it as much as I have loved writing it. Please find my links at the back to let me know what you thought of it.

Dedicated to my wonderful husband,

for believing in me.

P
ROLOGUE

Never in my life had I ever believed in fairy tales.

I’d been raised by a family who had worked hard to get to where they were and I knew that if I ever wanted to get anywhere in my life, I had to work for it and earn it too.

Then he appeared.

I started believing in fairy tales; that he’d see me from afar and the rest of the world would cease to exist for us. The next day we’d be married and we’d live happily ever after.

That’s how fairy tales go, right? Well, I thought so.

ONE

Beep
… Beep… Beep… I rolled over reaching for my alarm. Eight-fifteen. Urgh, I was going to be late for school.

This week saw the start of revision fortnight for our final A
-Level exams, so I knew we weren’t learning anything new but I felt so stressed that I wasn’t sleeping properly at night causing me to over-sleep in the morning. After showering quickly and dressing even faster, I had five minutes to catch up with my best friend, Lily Copeland. I ran from my house in a whirlwind, leaving apples and oranges scattered across the kitchen floor after I’d knocked the fruit bowl over.


Hey, I thought you’d chickened out of classes today!” Lily called when I got within earshot of her.


No way, I need all the help I can get!” I replied around a yawn.


Late night?”


HA! I wish” I yawned again. “I didn’t sleep much, which of course meant I overslept this morning; I almost broke my neck rushing in the shower, nearly destroyed the kitchen with the fruit bowl and I’m pretty sure I’ve left the door unlocked, so I’ll be lucky if I have a home to go to this afternoon.” I yawned again and noticed she wasn’t listening to a word I was saying; she was staring down at her phone, her fiery red hair falling in her face covering her features. “Who’s that?” I asked, wondering who’d captured her attention so fully. “Lily?” no response. “Earth to Lily…” Still nothing; I was about to threaten physical violence if she didn’t answer me again when her phone beeped and she squealed in excitement as she opened her text. “I think you have something to tell me, spill it. Now!”


What?” she asked still gazing at her phone, with a little blush creeping over her cheeks; well this was intriguing, Lily was
never
that distracted. She certainly never blushed at anything; well, except for when she was thinking of her crush.


Oh my God! It’s Scott, isn’t it?” She blushed a shade deeper, looking at me shocked.


What? H-how do you know?” She stammered. I remembered him asking for her number but I’d figured he’d lost his nerve when she’d not mentioned anything. Scott Harding was painfully shy. He liked to sit at the back of class, quietly getting on with his work; he never did anything to gain anyone’s attention. Sticking to his close group of friends, he hardly ever spoke to anyone else. It wasn’t surprising as he was the son of a popular tabloid journalist who liked to spread gossip about celebrities, earning Scott a black eye or two along with it.


Because he asked me for your number during maths class forever ago when you were sick, I was partnered with him for an exercise.”


What? And you never told me?” She halted her step a moment to stare at me. “How could you have possibly kept that quiet?”


He begged me not to say anything and well, I kind of… forgot.”


You just
forgot
? How can you- Wait… This was during a maths class?”


Yeah, I just said that. Do you remember a couple of months ago you were out sick for a couple of days? It was then.”


No wonder you’d forgot he’d asked. I’m surprised you even heard him at all” she giggled at me.


What’s that supposed to mean?” I asked, giving her my best ‘I honestly don’t know what you are talking about’ face.

Lily snorted and rolled her eyes dramatically at me.
“Yeah, right! Miss Hot-For-Teacher!” I slapped her arm, probably a little harder than I’d meant to but she deserved it “OWW! What was that for?” She whined rubbing the sore spot.


Oh
please
!” I glowered at her. “You know”


Yes I do” She added timidly. “but it’s true! You’ve loved him since he took his first step into our classroom in second year.”


Love is a bit strong don’t you think, Lily?” I tried to push the thought of the notebook in my nightstand that was covered in hearts and sketches of a certain someone, to the back corner of my mind.


Nope” She said smugly with a bright smile, obviously pleased with herself. “I still remember that first day when you saw him. You almost melted into a puddle in your chair and I don’t think you’ve recovered sin-” I cut her off with another slap to her arm.


Never you mind about me and how pathetic I am; now tell me what’s going on with you and Scott. When did he first message you? What has he been saying?”

I had to
find some way to get her to stop talking about Mr Matthews our maths teacher. I’d had a massive crush on him for the last six years ever since he’d replaced our original teacher; we were in our seventh school year or second year of sixth form about to take our finals and leave for good. I was depressed at the thought of never seeing him again (that was partly what kept me up at night; my stupid pining for him). Although part of me would be glad to just go to university and maybe actually date without the constant reminder of how utterly gorgeous and unattainable Mr Matthews was and finally be able to stop thinking about him. Possibly.

I
’d tried dating boys at school but whenever I did, I’d see Mr Matthews and a feeling inside of me made me feel like I was betraying him in some way; like I was betraying my feelings for him. I was a mess. I heard Lily’s voice beside me and realised I was doing what I was just shouting at her for, not listening.


…for a family meal on Friday night, he was having a meal with his family too and we both spoke for a little while after dinner, he asked for my number and we started messaging across the restaurant, we’ve barely stopped since.” She told me how they spoke about everything from likes to dislikes to school and our upcoming exams which started in two weeks. I was as nervous as a Christmas Turkey, I’d been studying non-stop for weeks.

We arrived at our building to the sound of the bell signalling that registration was about to begin
. We both ran up the stairs to our class where Lily and I met our other friends waiting outside, Violet Andrews and Megan Smith. I blurted out the news about Scott Harding and how Lily was now madly in love with him, making sure the girls were perfectly distracted just in time for Mr Matthews to make his way down the corridor.

Executing
his catwalk perfect walk, he looked just like a model, not your average, stuck up, private school teacher. His left hand was tucked into his trouser pocket while his right hand swung free beside him, skimming over the messenger bag hanging from his shoulder. If the girls caught me staring again they might actually carry out that threat of gouging my eyes out.
Maybe I should bring sunglasses to school.
I chuckled.


Is there something funny, Miss Stevens?” Mr Matthews asked with a slight curve to his beautiful lips, gentle mocking covering his words. You wouldn’t even know he was smiling unless you were looking for it.
Crap! Way to go you idiot!
I mentally scolded myself.
Think fast!


No, Sir. I was just waiting for you to start all of your nonsense.” I waved my hand dismissively, playfully letting him know I didn’t welcome his jibes. I tried to keep my cool but I could feel the heat spreading over my cheeks and between my legs; he had that effect on me. My heart rate increased whenever I looked at him; I could feel my breathing becoming shallow. I sent a silent prayer to whoever was listening that he didn’t notice. Or maybe that he finally would notice and say something, tell me I wasn’t insane for my stupid crush, tell me that it was exactly what he was feeling too. He was only twenty-six; eight years in age difference wasn’t that bad. It was entirely possible that he could like an eighteen year old – or so I’d hoped.


What nonsense?” I flexed my fingers nervously as my palms became clammy.


Oh so are you just waiting until class to humiliate me then?” His favourite football team had beaten mine over the weekend and I knew he was dying to tease me over it. He’d tease me even if they won.


I wouldn’t know what you mean, Miss Stevens” he winked at me. Holy hell, playful Mr Matthews was… hot!


Of course you wouldn’t.” I rolled my eyes at him and looked down towards the floor as I grabbed the bracelet on my left wrist, twisting it nervously between my fingers. I looked up at him through my lashes to see him grinning at me.

Noises filtered through my ears as I remembered we weren’t alone; we were in a hallway full of students and teachers. We stood there doing our usually private, flirty banter thing
as
student and teacher.

I quickly scanned the hallway to see if anyone had taken any notice of our little exchange
, relieved to find no one looking. My classroom door opened and out stepped Miss Granger, my registration teacher. Straight away she spotted Mr Matthews across the hallway, immediately switching to her obnoxious, over flirty mode which made my blood boil and a wave of nausea to course through my stomach, instantly wiping the smile from my face. Anger rose in my chest as I watched her batting her eyelashes at him and doing the hair-flip over her shoulder that you see in dumb movies; I wanted to knock her down on her fat backside that she’d squeezed into a skirt two sizes too small. My fists bunched at my sides and I rolled my eyes in disgust as I started to walk into class trying to figure out if there was actually anything between the two of them. Mr Matthews called out to me just as I was walking in the door


Hey, Olivia, did you see the score on Saturday?” I turned around and scowled in his direction as he gave me that cheeky grin of his and stepped in to his own classroom. I could feel my emotions tugging against one another as I battled to control my sudden anger and feeling like I wanted to melt into a puddle at his feet.


Come on, you can see lover boy later” Lily giggled as she shoved me through the door.


I can’t believe you just said that!” I snapped back.


What? No one heard me” She laughed harder as I pulled her towards our desk, looking around frantically.

We were dismissed to our first class quickly
and I was too busy talking on my way out of the door to see myself walk straight into the wall. It took me a second to realise the wall was oddly warm, soft… defined… smelled of the most delicious scent I could think of. There had never been a time that I wanted to snuggled myself into a wall until that moment and I felt a pang shoot through my stomach as it began pulling away from the grasp I had on it that was keeping me upright.
No!
Hearing giggles sounding behind me brought me back into the corridor, I soon realised I’d walked out of the door into Mr Matthews’ back.
Oh god.
I stumbled slightly as he began turning.


Hey, watch wh-” he turned to face me. “Oh it’s you again.” He said sounding surprised and slightly amused, my heart lurched. “So, did you or didn’t you?” The edges of his lips quirked up into a smile as he stepped sideways, pulling me by the elbow to let the rest of my class out into the hallway.


I did” I pretended to scowl at him and he laughed as he mock punched my arm.


Better luck next time eh?” He said, sounding awfully like he didn’t mean it.


Luck has nothing to do with it; it takes skill to lose like we do.”
What the hell was I saying?
“We’ll get you next time though” I tried to sound confident with what I was saying but I wasn’t sure it was very convincing as he laughed his carefree laugh that I loved.


We’ve beat you three times in a row now, they should just not bother turning up next time. Hey you know if they forfeit then we only get three-nil by default, it’ll save all the embarrassment for you” He play shoved my elbow with his, sending waves of electricity souring up my arm through my body.


You’re such an arse!” I said without thinking. He raised his eyebrows at me in shock; I looked at him in horror. Crap, did I say that out loud? Lily, Violet and Megan were sniggering behind me, trying to hold in their roars of laughter. Oh God, I did, I did, I did.
Uh oh
. He looked around the corridor before levelling his gaze back to mine.


We’ll see how much of an ‘arse’ I am in detention tomorrow after school.”


Hey that’s not fair! I didn’t mean to say it. You provoked me” I said with anger rising in my voice.


Get to class, Miss Stevens” I groaned and stomped off to my first period with him chuckling behind me as I walked with Lily laughing the whole way.
Arse, arse ARSE!
I screamed in my thoughts. I got to my first class just down the hall and turned to scowl in the direction of his classroom; he was still standing there looking at me and I could see he was still chuckling.
Idiot thinks he’s so funny.
I shook my head and narrowed my eyes at him before walking into my English class.

My teacher wasn
’t there yet so I got my books and pens out of my bag ready for class to start and left my mind to wander around, to think about how gorgeous Mr Matthews had looked. He was wearing my favourite navy blue, three-piece suit, with a white shirt and black tie; I swear I could feel myself melt to a puddle when he wore that suit. He was just so gorgeous. Most of the girls in school had a thing for him including some of the teachers; even the married ones.

BOOK: Broken Ever After
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