Authors: J.W. Phillips
Tags: #adult abuse, #adult abuse recovery love, #romance adult contemporary, #adult and contemporary romance
Copyright © 2014 J.W.
Published by J.W.
This book may not be
reproduced, scanned, or distributed in any printed or electronic
form without permission, except by a reviewer who may quote brief
passages for review purposes. This is a work of fiction. Any
resemblance of events to real life, or of characters to actual
persons, is purely coincidental. The author acknowledges the
trademark status and trademark owners of various products
referenced in this work of fiction.
To my beyond remarkable
Who was not only my
cheerleader in the writing of this book, but my biggest supporter
in life. If anyone was ever a person’s soulmate. You are
This book would have never
made it to publication without the tremendous help from the
Brina Brady, Kathleen
Miller, and Rachael Orman
I want to give a special
call out to a lady who gave me the courage to write and share my
stories with the world. If it was not for her, my stories would
forever be stuck in my computer. I was blessed the day I became
friends with you.
You are the Yin to my
When I was four years old, my
daddy hung a tire swing under an old oak tree. He spent hours
pushing me and telling me stories.
you only get to be a child once. Dance, laugh, be happy, let the
wind mess up your hair, get dirt under your fingernails. Because
one day soon you’ll be older, life will get hard, and the one thing
that will get you over the mountains is the magic of a happy
I didn’t know that my daddy was
capable of lying. The magic of my childhood was left out on that
little tire swing, never to be found again.
Sunday, March 2, 2009
Most sixteen year old girls
demanded the world. I didn’t care about designer clothes, never
dreamed of owning a car, I would never had been invited to a
sleepover. My one tranquility in a screwed up world was the
quietness and peace of my little closet. They left me alone in
there. I could dream of the day I would escape and finally find the
magic of the world.
That was why I bounced straight up
as light poured into the darkness.
Wednesday, September 4,
I contemplated going shopping that
morning. Who was I kidding? I was too poor to shop. I managed to
get by on the part-time job I held at the student center and my
overgenerous scholarship. But there was never any money left for
“Ugh.” I flicked a
pen in the air letting it fall on the papers scattered across the
table. I had to start journaling my life for my Sociology class. My
life story was not the kind of story I wanted to share. It was the
reason I chose the University of Tennessee. It was six hours from
my old life. I was a stranger there, just another overachieving,
fresh face college student. No whispers, or rumors, no judgment,
just me, Dylan Elizabeth Summers. So, I couldn’t figure out why the
nightmares of what they did to me had returned. It had been four
years since the attack.
Picking up a slice of
pizza, I let it flop back on the plate.
This crappy piece of pizza sure is not going to make
anything feel better.
sucked, but it really didn’t surprise me, I was at the Pizza House
after all. The home of slimy pizza, flat sodas, and the sweetest
I glanced up as a large group
walked in and took over. They caught my eye . . . or in that case,
one person in particular. After my experience, I could always spot
a lawyer. That group had to be the most vivacious group of suits I
had ever experienced. Especially him. Even with his back to me,
there was something about him. He had on a bright pink, pinstriped
dress shirt and designer pants. Not necessarily causal clothes, but
not quite business attire either. He pushed his hip against the
counter bringing attention to the tight, firm globes of his ass. I
wanted to bite him. I swallowed noisily when that idea crossed my
mind. The male species deathly scared me. Still, as impressive as
his magnificent backside was, it wasn’t until he flipped around and
I got a glimpse of his face that I almost slipped out of my
I could only stare. Stunned. He
pushed his blond, untrimmed hair off his forehead. He was the
perfect mixture of a pretty boy and savagely handsome. I wiped a
drop of drool off the corner of my mouth. His eyes caught mine.
That was the point I normally look down at my feet. Not that time.
That time our eyes connected. His expression altered, the
impressive and authoritative shield he had going slipped for a mere
second. His eyes grew hard with an unrelenting power that sucked
the air from my lungs.
My cell started ringing, but I
simply couldn’t look away. He shook his head, turned around, and
started arguing with the clerk. His voice sort of rumbled
throughout the building until it reached my ears.
A strange shiver of premonition
rocked my body when I heard it. I hastily stuffed my belongings
into my bag and started to leave. I looked back over my shoulder.
He was leaning over the counter, supporting himself by his fist. I
saw a tribal tattoo on his forearm peeking out from under his
rolled-up shirtsleeve. His cold, harsh, brown eyes were staring
straight at me. Immediately, I knew he was trouble. My life had
been nothing but trouble. I didn’t need any more.
Thursday, September 5,
Mike is coming over in a few. He’s bringing Chad
with him.” Sarah, my ever-bubbly roommate, was stretched out on the
couch, legs crossed, and eating a bowl of popcorn. Even in
was drop-dead gorgeous. From her blond pixie cut to her naturally
pink lips to her always manicured toenails, Sarah was full of
confidence and had the elegance of a ballerina. She was my total
opposite and slowly she became the best friend I ever
However, I hated her match making
skills . . . or lack of it. She loved me but hated the fact that I
seemed to be absent of any attraction for the male form. I think
she would have been happy if I came out of the closet and declared
myself a lesbian as long as I got hot and bothered over someone.
But no such luck. I just had never run across The One, and I
wouldn’t settle for Mr. Right Now.
It didn’t take Sarah long to get
hot and heavy with was it Nick or Mike or who cares. Sarah went
through guys more often than I changed the color of the polish on
my toes. I wiggled them; trying to avoid “the friend” that was a
little too close to my face . . . and realized that maybe she
changed men more, because my toes were gnarly. Chipped was an
“Earth to Dylan,”
Chad said, waving his hand in my face.
I am on earth, just
wish I wasn’t on this couch with you.
Don’t get me wrong; Chad was a cutie, in that good
boy, preppy kind of way. Perfect teeth, baby blue eyes, and wavy
dark brown hair. Though I could never imagine running my fingers in
that hair. They would had gotten tangled in all that gel. I wished
for once I could had enjoyed the best friend of Sarah’s newest
flavor of the month. From the sounds coming out of her room, she
enjoyed the flavor. Heck, I could had given Chad . . . and I was
sure his name was Chad . . . a chance. Most girls would had died to
been in my place. Crap, most girls would had died just to get
scraps from a guy like Chad.
Glad, I am not most girls.
“I love your hair,” he said a
little too loudly in my ear. “Mike was correct. You’re
Thanks, now would you
please get your nose out of it and kindly quit sniffing.
Okay, I had to change my internal
way of thinking if I was ever to attempt “to get it on” with that
By the way, I was no slut.
Actually, I could count on one hand how many guys I had even
attempted to kiss. But Chad might have helped me get the angry,
extremely hot S.O.B. from the Pizza House out of my mind. I had
never needed an emotional or physical connection with any guy I had
kissed anyway. So why should I have worried that he was less than
appealing to me? After all, I didn’t make out with guys for the
same reasons most girls did. It was not all butterflies and romance
with me. Instead, it made me go numb and for a brief moment, I
forgot everything. Sometimes I wondered if I was actually screwed
for life. If there was a small piece of me that was seriously
damaged. Sarah blamed it on all those unrealistic romance novels I
read. The ones where the beyond handsome, tattooed badass changed
his ways and fell in love with the clumsy, young girl who rocked
his world. But in truth, it was the long line of awkward badasses
that my mom brought into my life. If that was all the male
population had to offer, they could had kept their manhood to
I think somebody needs to smile.” He stood up
and flipped on the
. He swayed his hips in
perfect timing to the music. When he started to inch his shirt up,
I threw his coat at him and demanded he get out. We had been alone
less than five minutes and he was already stripping. I didn’t want
his hands anywhere near me. Not even with a full-body
“Out. I’m not an
open legs, insert dick kind of girl.” I gladly marched to the door
and swung it open.
“Come on, baby. It’s just that
you’re fucking unbelievably beautiful. I’ll be good, I
I started to make a snarky
comeback when Sarah came down the hall, pushing Mr.
What’s-his-name. She was fussing about premature ejaculation and if
he had that problem at twenty-two, she felt sorry for his future
When they stumbled down the hall,
I heard Chad mumble “slut.” Yeah, I threw him out on his ass for
trying to strip within minutes of meeting me, and I was the slut.
Sarah walked over to the couch and plopped down on it. She still
looked fresh and well-put-together after a ten minute round with
whomever. I seriously doubted I would ever see him again, so I
really didn’t care what his name was.
“Grab some ice cream and let’s get
down to finally having a good time.”
I laughed and headed to the
kitchen. A good movie, a pint of ice cream, and my best friend was
better than any guy at getting my mind off who was it?
Tuesday, September 17,
I squeaked the straw
in the lid on another flat
served at the
lovely Pizza House. Why I kept going back day after day? I didn’t
quite understand. The food was horrible. I did enjoy
people-watching. And there was always a room full of college
students and a few high schoolers trying to hookup with said
That day, however, I had too much
studying to do. With three papers due that week, and a speech to
write and present in less than four days, I didn’t even realize
that someone had sat down across the table from me. Until, that
was, I heard a loud and annoying fake cough.
I looked up. It was him. I had
thought about the tattooed business guy often over the last two
weeks. He smirked and raised an eyebrow. He was so much more than
my feeble memory remembered. I traced his appearance with my eyes
and had to bite my bottom lip to keep from mouthing,
He was far better looking close
up. His eyes sparkled. Were brown-eyes supposed to sparkle like
that? One thing for sure they contrasted with the pale blond hair
brushing against his eyebrows. I followed the angle of his high
cheekbones, the soft slope of his nose, and the squareness of his
jaw. Noting the few days’ growth of facial hair, my hands itched to