Authors: Casey Peeler
Tags: #romance, #dating, #college life, #new adult, #southern literatrure, #mature young adult, #teen and young adult, #pretty little liars, #teen romantic fiction, #teen 16 plus
(Full Circle #3)
by Casey Peeler
Copyright 2013 Casey Peeler
All rights reserved.
This ebook is licensed for your
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away to other people. If you would like to share this book with
another person, please purchase an additional copy for each
recipient. If you’re reading this book and did not purchase it, or
it was not purchased for your use only, then please return to
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the hard work of this author.
This book is a written act of fiction.
Any places, characters, or similarities are purely coincidence. If
certain places or characters are referenced it is for entertainment
purposes only. Any resemblance to actual events, locales,
organizations or persons, living or dead, is entirely
No part of this book may be used or
reproduced in any manner whatsoever without written permission
except in the case of brief quotations embodied in critical
articles and reviews. The author recognizes all copyright and
trademarks that are mentioned within this work of
My husband, Billy, and
daughter, Carlee, thank you for being there on this adventure. I
love you both with my whole heart!
My sister, Pam Baldwin, at
Paperclutch for the cover design. You have always been there
at any given moment. Cover one was an adventure for both of
us, cover two was a breeze, and three full of choices! It is as
fabulous as you! Love you!
My parents, Mike and Cindy,
thanks for believing in me like you always do! Parental support is
important no matter your age!
Jeannette & Mike thank
you for your judicial expertise!
Chelly Peeler, you’ve had
my back from day one. You have helped keep up with reviews at
Hardcover Therapy while I finished writing, read
NTB, FC, & LC
it again, edited, and given advice. We aren’t just family;
you truly are one of my best friends, and I couldn’t have done this
My Boondock Betas, thank
you so much for your thoughts and feelings that have brought this
book to life. I owe y’all!
Paige, you have read,
edited, read, edited, read, and edited! I couldn’t have done
this without you! Round three has been amazing! I can’t wait to
continue our editing journey!
Southern Charms, my street
team, y’all are sweet as sugar! I honestly wouldn’t be where I am
today without you! With each like, share, comment, and review,
you’ve gone above and beyond each and every day! I <3
Cortlan Allen, my cover
model, thank you for taking part in this journey from start to
Brian Harris at Firelight
Photography for the cover photos.
My family, friends, authors,
and bloggers, thanks for your thoughts, posts, shares, tweets, and
For Chelly, who’s been with
me on this journey since it was a thought, and now it’s come full
“Somebody help me!
PLEEEAASSSSSEEEE!” I expel from my lungs. No one. Not a soul sees
us. My adrenaline kicks into high gear. I put the Ariats in the
wind and haul ass to the fire.
As the roar of the fire comes into
view, so do all the people. They are oblivious to what has just
occurred. They continue to sing, drink, and party as I run as fast
as I can. The more people I’m around, the safer I am. I see Piper
and Joe sitting on a log. A look of horror flashes when she sees
me, and her eyes speak volumes. I know that he is coming…that he is
coming for me… it’s time to face the devil with everyone watching.
Knowing that I don’t want to turn around and face him, I center my
feelings to my core, and I do it anyway.
Dylan is within a few feet of me. He
has a mix of emotions on his face that include shock, pain, and
confidence, but the obvious one is rage.
“Stay away from me,” I growl through
He laughs wickedly as he inches
closer. “I’ll never stay away. Don’t you get it? You’re mine.”
Grabbing my waist, he pulls me close to him. I try to escape his
clutch, but it’s impossible. “You were mine from the first time I
saw you at GPAC.”
For the first time, all eyes fall on
us. Dylan is about to be famous, but not in a good way.
“Like hell I was!” I say as a lean
back from him.
“You are so full of shit, Charley! You
know you wanted me, everyone does, but I made sure of it! That
state championship made you fall hard. You were different, like a
new event at a meet that I was going to win, and then I sealed the
deal at Trent’s. You fell for it so easily. I slipped that “Z” in
your beer without you knowing. You were so naïve and stupid! Going
to the bathroom was just classic!”
People begin to whisper and point, as
we are on full display now. Something inside me snaps. I push him
back, but he comes at me again. This time I can’t push him off me,
and I struggle to stand my ground. I use every ounce of force, but
as soon as I’m ready to push away again, a fist comes in contact
with his jaw. Cash.
Punch after punch, blow after blow,
Cash continues to take out the past eighteen months of bottled-up
emotions on him. Cash continues to hit him over and over. The
sounds coming from Dylan’s body are like none I have ever heard.
There are cracks, crunches, whimpers, and howls. By the time Cash
is finished, Dylan is lying in a fetal position in the dirt, not
“You listen to me, motherfucker.
Char-coal’s not yours. She’s mine.”
Dylan doesn’t move. He
just lies there… motionless.
Oh God, is he
Dustin leaves Tessa and rushes to
his side like the brother he should be. My heart begins to race,
and I’m terrified of what just happened. As I glance around, I
notice everyone’s eyes are focused on us. For a while, Cash stands
there like he is glued in one spot and then slowly begins to walk
backward from Dylan and toward me. I want to speak, shout from the
rooftops to tell everyone to quit staring at me, but nothing… not a
damn word escapes my lips.
“Char-coal, let’s get the
hell outta here,” Cash says firmly while looking over to Dustin.
Dustin looks up at Cash and nods with assurance that he will try to
keep the repercussions to a bare minimum. “Char, did you hear me?”
I’m still frozen.
Before I have time to
think, Cash engulfs my body, picking me up in one swift move. As I
semi begin to snap out of shock, I see Tessa and the Kluft girls
gathering their things and following behind us.
Once we reach the truck,
Cash boosts me into the passenger side before hustling around to
the driver’s side. After he closes the door and cranks the truck, I
slide as close as possible to him. I look up into his eyes and say
the only words that I can mutter, “Thank you, Cash
“There’s no need to thank
me, Char-coal. He’s had that comin’ for a long time now, but I’m
pretty sure this isn’t the end of it.”
Removing myself from his
right side, I glance at him with a questioning look. “What do you
mean?” He uses his right hand to put the truck in reverse, but
pauses as pain flashes across his face. I see that his right hand
is beginning to swell and has a knot the size of a golf ball on it.
“Ohmygosh! We’ve got to take you to the hospital.” He laughs as he
uses his left hand to put the truck in gear. “What’s so funny?” I
“Do you know what will
happen if I go to the hospital? I’m pretty sure that Dylan’s gonna
end up there, and it’s not gonna take a genius to put the puzzle
At that moment, the impact
of this entire situation has come to the forefront. I now know that
this plan was a mistake, not only for me, but also for everyone I
love. There is no way that I am going to be able to fix this, but
I’m going to try my best, even if it kills me.
Once we enter town, my phone starts
blowing up. The Kluft girls need to know what to do and where to
go, Tessa’s an absolute wreck, and Piper and Joe are on our heels.
Without thinking, I do the one thing that I should have done a long
time ago. “Cash, it’s time.”
“Time for what?”
“It’s time to go downtown. I need to
talk to the police before they come after you. I can’t let you go
down for my mess.”
“Char-coal, no! Regardless,
I’m gonna get in trouble, but you are not putting yourself through
this. I don’t want you to have to keep reliving this.”
“Don’t you get it? I’m
always gonna relive this! Until I tell the truth, it’s not going to
end. Please, I’m begging you! You’ve protected me for so long; it’s
my turn now. Let me be the one to rescue you like you have done for
me as long as I can remember.”
As we get closer to the
center of town, I’m positive that Cash is going to keep driving and
not stop. “Cash, if you don’t stop now, I’m coming back as soon as
you drop me off. It’s better off if we do this together. Remember,
Char-coal plus Cash Money equals forever.” I take his swollen hand
“Are you sure? Once we do this, there
is no turning back, ya know?”
“Things will be different, people are
going to talk, and your parents will know it all.”
“It’s time.” With those
two words, Cash makes a left-hand turn for the police station. I
send Piper, Tessa, and Georgia a brief text. I’m a mess of
Can I really do this?
Is this what I want? What will happen to Cash?
What are my parents going to think?
we pull into the station, I’m only one emotion—calm. Just like the
eye of a hurricane or the calm before the storm. I know that things
are going to be a battle from this moment forward, but it’s one I’m
ready to fight until the end.
He puts the truck in park
with his left hand and turns off the ignition. I see Piper and Joe
pull into the space beside us. Cash looks at me, and I fall into
those eyes of his. No words are spoken at first because I can read
his thoughts. We are walking in together, but I doubt we will be
walking out the same. Placing my hands on his scruffy cheek, I
place my lips slowly on his as the tears stream down my
Knowing time isn’t on our
side, we pull ourselves apart. “I love you, Cash Money, and no
matter what happens, I’m here. We will come out on top. Now, let’s
get this over with.”
He opens his door and
slides out, and I follow right behind him. Piper and Joe are
getting out of the car as well. “I think y’all might need to go on
to the farm. This is about to be a mess, and I need someone there