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Authors: J Q Anderson

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BOOK: Intercepted
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Epilogue:
Natalia

 

From under my umbrella, I watch Jake walk back from the ocean with this
surfboard under his arm. His golden skin glistens under the afternoon sun. He
shakes the water off his hair. He
’s beautiful. He’
s mine.

The ocean used to remind me of Marc. Now it is one more new memory of
Jake and I together.

Saying goodbye to Marc was not easy. Despite the pain he once caused me,
I didn

t want to hurt him. There is a part of me that
will always love Marc. But when I saw Jake at my apartment that morning, the
morning of the flowers… It is true what they say about true love.

When you know, you know.

Jake and I had a small wedding at the beach a few months after his
proposal. We only invited our closest friends. It was fun and intimate, just
like we both wanted.

Double Post has become a Cardiff icon. People come from all over
California to meet Jake and his surfboards are in constant backorder. Jake is
happier than I have ever seen him.

My job at the Del Mar hotel under Chef Antoine is demanding, but much
more gratifying than I even imagined. Chef Antoine has a fiery temper, but I
don

t let it get it get to me and continue to work
hard. He doesn

t give praise easily, but I
think I am doing okay because he is slowly letting me in on his techniques and
years of experience. I am very lucky to work at his side. Chef Pierre has come
to visit at work and seemed impressed with my progress. He keeps telling
Antoine he will steal me when he

s not
looking. My dream to open my own pastry shop is getting closer. Jake helps me
with the planning and it is beginning to seem real. We are both keeping our
ears to the ground for retail space that may become available in Cardiff.

Dani and Dillon are engaged. It is good to see my friend in love and,
even though she and Dillon haven

t said
anything, I wouldn

t be surprised if they ended up
in California. Hopefully not too far from us. Zack is dating a marketing
director in Buenos Aires. She is in awe of his talent and wants to help him
open his own place.

I have met Jake

s brother
Jamie and his family. They have welcomed me warmly and I make sure we see them
at least once a month. I love to be a new part of their life and that they are
now a big part of mine.

Pete and Sydney are expecting another baby. A boy.

Jake wants to have a baby soon. I want a family with Jake, but I want us
to have time together first. There is still a lot we don

t know about each other and I am liking the
discovery stage of our relationship. Living my life without a perfectly planned
future is a new adventure. I have always needed to know exactly where I was
going. But I have to admit, that building a future with Jake every day is a lot
more fun. I take what life brings me and am no longer afraid I will lose the
people I love.

Love finally made it all the way into my heart.

And I will never let it go.

 

FIN
(For real!)

Other
Titles by J. Q. Anderson

 

Kings of Midnight: Book One of the Midnight Saga
(Coming Valentine

s Day 2016)

Read the first chapter

Ghost of Dawn: Book Two of the Midnight Saga
(Coming April 2016)
.

Acknowledgements:
 

So many people have
participated in one way or another in the creation of this book. Tiny pixels of
support, wisdom, information, or simply by conveying your belief that I could
make it happen. Huge thanks to all of you out there.

You know who you are.

A special hug to my guardian angel of dreams,
Marilyn.

I would have never
gotten this far, had it not been for you fueling my creative monster.

To my husband and
three kids, for the hours of listening to my ramble of ideas and thoughts, and
for giving me tight hugs when I gave up hope.

Your support is the
best gift I could have wished for.

A very special hug to
my family and friends in Argentina.

All believers.

All fans from day one.

Even before you read a
word.

You rock.

Lastly, but not least,
special thanks to all my friends who read bits or drafts of my work in progress
and made it better: Roberta, Julie, Maureen, Anne, Inga, Jen, Elise, a huge hug
to you all. And my friend Mike, for his endless patience and wisdom when it
came to my technical issues.

Until the next one...

About J.Q. Anderson

J.
Q. Anderson is a debut author who loves stories of all kinds, cooking food from
her home town, Argentina, and hanging out with friends and family. When she is
not working, she is writing relentlessly, or hanging out with her husband and
three kids.

Writing
is a multi faceted passion. You are in love with making stuff that wasn't there
before. You think, you create, you obsess, and then you obsess a little more.
Before the words even get to the page they have been roaming in all corners of
your mind, trying to shape themselves.

I
would have never dared to write a word had it not been for the people that love
and suck in those stories.

To all the crazies
out there, I hope you enjoy my attempt at making you travel to a faraway land.

Kings of Midnight:
Book One of the Midnight Saga

 
Chapter 1
 

That
morning, the morning of the pointe shoe and the speeding car, the morning I met
Him, didn’t start any differently. Life chuckled at me from above, nothing
tipping me off on how it was about to mess with me. Big time.

 

I rushed
down the streets of downtown Buenos Aires to another full day of rehearsals for
Giselle. I had exactly twenty minutes to pick up my new ballet shoes and make
it to the theatre on time if I didn’t want to get grilled by Madame Vronsky. My
feet complained from the long hours on pointe, but even after a year with the
company I still felt a high as I walked to work every morning. Being part of
the permanent ballet corps of the Colón Theatre was every dancer’s ultimate
dream.

I rang the doorbell, catching my breath.
Anna
’s small frame appeared almost immediately, as if she had been
waiting behind the door.

“Camila, Darling. Come on in. I have them right here.”

“Thank you, Anna. Sorry to come so early.” I hurried in
behind her. “I have no free time anymore.”

She nodded knowingly and handed me my new pointe shoes. I
looked down at them and grinned. Closing my eyes, I pressed them to my nose and
inhaled my favorite smell in the world. Nobody made ballet slippers like Anna.
At seventy years old, she still ran her own workshop. The wait list was
normally three months long, but I lucked-out because my Dad was her doctor and
she loved him to pieces. Anna always squeezed my orders in. I handed her the
money and kissed her wrinkled cheek.

“You rock, Anna. Saved my life. I gotta run. See you soon,
okay?”

She smiled, unlocking the door. “Say Hello to your father
for me, will you?”


Will do, Anna.
Chau.
” I dashed out, shouldering my ballet bag as I clutched the shoes
with both hands, bending them back and forth. I would have to go through a
whole ritual before being able to wear them. Bend them to break them in, buff
them,
pull
out the inseams to mold them to my feet.

Needles of wind bit my cheeks as I waited at the light on
9 de Julio Avenue, known to be one of the widest in the world. Fortunately for
me, at seven fifteen in the morning it was still fairly free of crossing
pedestrians. I bolted forward as the light began to change, jogging my way
across. I was almost at the other side when a middle aged woman heading in my
direction pointed behind me.


Querida
.
You dropped something.”

I whipped my head around. My heart stopped and my fist
instinctively tightened on the one shoe I was still holding. The other one lay
a third of the way across the street, a small wedge of pink silk against the
abused concrete. That single shoe cost more than half my salary, plus the
waiting time.

I had no intention of letting it go.

My eyes flew to the light.
Shit
. Almost green. I
sprinted back in the direction of my shoe, adrenaline flying thorough me as the
sounds of the incoming traffic grew louder. Crap.
Crap
. Without stopping
I scraped my fingers against the asphalt and hooked them on the edge of the
slipper. A horn blazed by at a deafening volume startling the soul out of me. I
tripped forward with my hands still clutching the shoes. Bracing for the
impact, I closed my eyes, envisioning the fall in slow motion. My shoulder hit
the ground first, but something that felt like a tornado scooped me up from the
side, wrapping itself around me as it pulled me off the street.

“Are you
insane
?” A deep husky voice that went with
the tornado asked.

“Jesus.” I blinked my eyes open, panting. I looked up and
pair of ash color eyes was locked on mine. They were breathtaking, so pale they
were almost colorless. I stared at them, dumbstruck. “What?” I whispered.

“Did you seriously almost killed yourself for a
shoe
?”

I straightened out of his arms and looked down at the
shoes in my hands.

“These are important.” I shook my head. “I have to go.” I
took a step, but he gripped my arm.


Wait
.
Are you alright?” His tone was impatient. I looked up at him and stilled as I
took in his appearance for the first time. Rebellious strands of raven hair
framed his face. Those pale eyes blazed against his olive skin. He was… fucking
beautiful
. A mix
between a superhero and something darker, like an
X-Man
. My heart
hitched.

“Yeah, I’
m
fine.
” Shaking off the trance, I glanced down at my watch.
Dammit
.
Now I was going to have to run or I’d be late for the warm-up. I shuddered
inwardly at the thought of Madame Vronsky scolding me. I turned on my heels,
but he caught my arm again.
Jesus
.
What?

“Let me walk with you.” The deep tone of his voice rippled
through me. My breath caught in my throat. I resented the way my stomach swam
at the heavenly scent of body wash coming from him. And I didn’t like the fact
that he was so good-looking. Made me nervous. I pulled my arm away.

“Look. Thanks for helping me, but I have to go and I don’t
need you to walk with me. I can’t be late for work.” I took off and he started
following me.
Jesus
, what was it with this guy? Couldn’t he just go
away? I shot another quick glance at my watch.
Shit
. I was going to be
so late. He caught up with me and easily matched my pace.

“What’s your name, crazy girl?”

“I’m
not
crazy,” I spat without stopping. “That
shoe costs a fortune.”

“I can only imagine if you were willing to kill yourself
for it.”

I ignored him, dodging the bodies in suits, but he managed
to stay right by me. What did he want? I skidded to a halt and faced him.
“Look. Thank you. Really. But I am late and I don’t need a bodyguard. Just… go
away.”

“You did something pretty stupid back there. I just want
to make sure you are okay.” His tone was firm, like he was giving an order.
People side stepped us as they walked by. I let out a sigh.

“For the millionth time. I’
m fine.
Okay
?”

He ran a hand through his shoulder-length hair, a
beautiful mess in perfect disarray. I caught myself staring at those eyes. They
were
stunning
. Like they’d come up with their own color and didn’t give
a shit if it existed or not.

“You know, a simple Thank You would have been enough.” He
slipped his hands into his jean pockets and I wished I hadn’t noticed the roped
arms under his half-rolled-up sleeves. He was fit and obviously comfortable in
his own skin. He shook his head and his mouth curved into a lopsided smile. A
million butterflies I didn’t know existed inside my stomach fluttered their
wings.

“Thank you.” I sighed, stifling a smile. “You can brag to
your friends over how you saved a crazy girl from her death. Now go.”

He lifted his arms in surrender.
 
“Okay. As you wish. Be safe, alright?” A
little comma curved his mouth up and my insides swirled. I suddenly felt
completely disarmed and exposed in front of this totally
panty-scorching
stranger.
 

“I need to go,” I muttered—maybe to myself. Before
he could respond I dove into the crowd, desperate to escape the unfamiliar
electricity buzzing through me. My legs were shaking, my heart was a fist
pounding on my ribs.
What in the hell was all that about?
I had never
reacted that way to a guy before.

Shaking off the unsettling sensations, I bolted into a
sprint the rest of the way to the theatre.

 

To be continued...

BOOK: Intercepted
2.14Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

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