Authors: Eden Summers
Rush of Insanity
She won’t go down without a fight…and he’s looking forward to it.
Harper left the world famous solo artist, Judd Hart, over a year ago. No matter how much she cared for him, their worlds were miles apart. All they shared was great sex and the ability to drive each other crazy. So why is she at his concert, drooling over the sound of his delicious voice, when she’s spent months convincing herself they can never work?
Letting Harper walk out on him was the biggest mistake of Judd’s life. And now that he’s sighted her amongst the crowd, he won’t let her run away again. Not even if it means holding her hostage on his tour bus until he can seduce some sense into her. They have a lot to work out, but this time, he will do whatever it takes to convince her they have a future.
Apart, their lives are smooth sailing. Together, it’s pure craziness. But sometimes it’s okay to enjoy the rush of insanity.
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RUSH OF INSANITY
Copyright © 2016 EDEN SUMMERS
All Romance eBooks, LLC Palm Harbor, Florida 34684
This is a work of fiction and any resemblance to persons, living or dead, or business establishments, events, or locales is coincidental.
All Rights Are Reserved. No part of this may be used or reproduced in any manner whatsoever with out written permission, except in the case of brief quotations embodied in critical articles and reviews.
First All Romance eBooks publication: February 2016
Harper Douglas eyed the screaming fans seated around her and tried to ignore the prickle of paranoia that informed her she stood out like a flare in a sea of darkened faces. She promised herself she’d never come here again. Not to another concert. Not when the singer was Judd Hart.
The only reason she was inside the packed stadium was because of the recent dissolution of her friend’s marriage. If Nicole hadn’t been depressed and barely communicative for weeks, Harper could’ve ignored the sudden, almost tantrum-like demands to attend. She could’ve been sitting on her sofa right now, eating popcorn and pretending her last job as Judd’s stylist hadn’t existed.
Instead, she succumbed to incessant nagging from a woman who acted like a sleep deprived five-year-old in need of a Ritalin prescription and dragged her feet to a concert performed by her deliriously good looking ex. All in the name of friendship.
“Do we have to stay for the entire show?” Harper raised her voice to drown out the lyrical orgasm hitting her ears. Judd’s delicious tone was already sinking under her skin, clawing its way into her erogenous zones.
“Stop being a douche.” Nicole poked out her tongue. “Doesn’t this bring back great memories?”
Great? Of course. But did the recollection slice through her chest with the force of a rusted butter knife? Most definitely.
The man was a hypnotist. Someone who could manipulate the mind and body with a flash of those hazel eyes. She’d already spent fifteen months forcing the memories of him from her life. Some days, surviving without him was like conquering a craving for soda, chocolate, or coffee. The yearning was a constant annoyance, yet usually bearable. On others, it was like fighting the need to breathe.
Yeah, unfortunately he was
good—sexy as sin, sly as hell, and as awe inspiring as Neil Armstrong’s boot imprint on the moon. Talent didn’t come close to what this man had flowing through his veins. His musical gift—his voice and his lyrics—were so perfectly intertwined that nobody could fault his perfection. It was the gentlemanly, I’m-a-lover-not-a-fighter attitude that topped it off, making fan girls swoon.
“Why do you always turn into a head case around him?” Nicole’s voice interrupted the music Harper wished she could despise. “It’s not like he can see you up here. We’re practically closer to God than we are to Judd right now.”
. Harper rolled her eyes. Her friend would never understand the affect her ex had on her. She didn’t understand it herself. Around Judd the world ceased to exist, and in its place something new evolved. Something that made the hairs on the back of her neck tingle and all her nerves stand at attention.
All the damn time.
And nothing was ever the same again, not emotions, not sensations, even the air tasted different after a Judd high.
The worst part was becoming someone different. Harper had no control over who she was around him. He dragged the craziness out of her and jabbed at it with a sharp stick.
Poke, poke, poke
. The result was mind-altering, soul shattering sex, but she wasn’t sure the delirious pleasure was worth the price of her sanity.
Fifteen months ago, she’d been convinced they didn’t have a future. Not merely because she skirted psychosis in his presence, but because their lifestyles were miles apart. Only now, seeing his tempting body highlighted in stage lights, felt like a sign from the heavens. A sign she chose to ignore.
“If you wanted to come to the concert with someone willing to bounce along to the beat and scream their overachieving groupie lungs out, you shouldn’t have insisted on dragging me along.” She shifted in her chair, still endeavoring to fade into the background when a bullseye was tattooed on her forehead. “You know I’m more than uncomfortable being here.”
“Yeah, well, I didn’t think you’d be this paranoid.”
Pfft. She’d surpassed that phase with flying colors. What Harper had now was full-blown nausea-inducing anxiety. Problem was, her feelings had nothing to do with how Judd would respond if he knew she was here and everything to do with how she would react if they came face-to-face.
Thus the basis of choosing seats that were well above the nosebleed section.
She couldn’t look at the stage for longer than sixty seconds without her belly churning. She feared her heart would break at close proximity, and that stony, undefeated organ wasn’t going to succumb after all this time. Nope. Too much time had passed since she walked from Judd’s life, and she wasn’t going to start looking back now.
It’s not like he ever did.
“How you doing tonight, Denver?”
Harper winced at the sound of his devilish drawl. The crowd erupted around her, a mass of crazed siren wails all demanding attention. It was infuriating—the noise and the jealousy it provoked. His chuckle into the microphone didn’t help, that honeyed voice seeped through every speaker to hit her hard in the vagina region.
“I’m in the mood for a game,” he announced. “Who wants to play?”
She stiffened, as if he’d spoken the words to her and her alone. He didn’t have a reputation for crowd interaction. She knew because she’d seen him perform many times. Every city and every concert in his last tour, to be exact.
She shuffled forward in her chair and peered over the top of heads to see the man she’d been trying to ignore. Her disloyal heart celebrated with painful arrhythmia.
He was still the stuff of fantasies. His tank was loose, exposing tanned, muscled arms. His chin-length hair was mussed, the tangled strands brushing against the barely visible stubble on his jaw like a lover’s fingers, and his drugging gaze beamed down at her from the projection screens at either side of the stage.
“Jensen, can you kill the glare and turn on the house lights?”
She slunk into her chair as the stadium was bathed in a fluorescent glow. There was no way he could see her up here. But she felt exposed. Naked in front of a crowd of over fifteen thousand.
“That’s perfect. Now I can see all your gorgeous faces.” He strode to the front of the stage, his faded, ripped jeans exposing tempting parts of his legs as he searched the sea of fans. “It’s a simple game, last one standing wins.”
Shouts rang out—“
What do we win?
Are you the prize?
Pick me, pick me.
The last came from the person seated next to her—her best friend—which Harper was happy to counter with a
Judd removed his earpiece and a satisfied smirk tilted his lips. “First question—hands up if you’re a local.”
The sea erupted with high flying fingers. Harper remained slumped, happy to sit this one out. Whatever the prize was, she didn’t want it. Not now. Not ever.
“Keep those hands high if you’ve been to one of my concerts before.”
Very few hands lowered, everyone still waving madly to gain any sort of attention.
“That’s awesome. I appreciate the loyalty.” He shaded his eyes, peering into the upper levels. “Now, this time, I want you to keep your hand raised and stand if you have all my albums. I mean CDs not downloads.”
Harper scoffed. She remembered a conversation with him a lifetime ago about CDs versus iTunes. He was a technology nut and loved having access to his music wherever he went. Whereas she preferred something tangible. Always would.
Groans murmured through the stadium as people lowered their hands and a lot less stood.
“You have all his CDs, don’t you?” Nicole nudged her arm. “Stand up.”
“No, thank you.”
Her friend huffed and pushed to her feet, raising her hand high.
“What the hell are you doing?” Harper tried to tug Nicole back down and was batted away by a swinging arm. “You don’t have all his CDs.”
“No. But you do. And if you’re not going to participate, I’ll do it for you.”
People in the row below shot them disapproving glares. People in the seats beside them, too. They didn’t understand the importance of being inconspicuous. Obviously, Nicole didn’t either.
Sit the hell down
,” Harper grated through clenched teeth.
She wasn’t only hiding from Judd, it was also his security team. Anyone who had worked on the previous tour would recognize her, and she didn’t want the man of the hour finding out she was here.
“Harper,” Nicole warned. “You’re ruining my night.”
“Mine, too,” the man beside her leaned forward to add.
She shot him a look that spoke of rage and insanity. “Fine.” She slunked as far down in her chair as possible without the threat of a back spasm and crossed her arms over her chest. “Just pretend I’m not here.”
“My next question will see most of your butts in seats—”
She closed her eyes at the sound of his voice, wishing away the past and their inevitable end.
“—how many of you have a tattoo that contains my lyrics?”
Harper’s stomach dissolved in a mass of tingles and the script on the side of her left arm itched. She opened her eyes to the stadium roof and measured her breathing. Slow in. Slow out. The question hit her in the feels, and she’d sat through enough emotional crap because of this man to last a lifetime.
No more. Please, no more.
She didn’t want to see the result of his question. To place a number on how many women had marked their body for Judd, like she had. But it was a train wreck she couldn’t refrain from witnessing.
She scooted back in her chair and hunted through the mass of people. One…Two…Three…Four… There were more on the lower levels and no doubt some were out of view. All female. Probably all grinning like they scored a role on
, when in reality it highlighted their pathetic existence. And then there was Nicole, still standing proud at Harper’s side, inching closer to the cusp of being slaughtered.
“I wish you’d sit down,” she whispered, not hiding the plea in her tone. This was like a
pivotal life and death scene and Nicole simply didn’t understand the significance of being stealthy.
“Well, maybe you shouldn’t have had ‘love is an affliction,’ tattooed on your arm.”
“Last question.” Judd spoke over the top of them. “And this is the most important.”
She couldn’t help it, she inched to the edge of her seat, fully invested on what he said next. Judd might not be famous for crowd interaction, but he was a ladies man and she wanted to see the face of the wench who would win something from the charmer she used to claim as her own.
“Here goes.” Judd rubbed his hands together, glancing from woman to woman to woman. “Keep standing if your name is Harper Douglas.”
Nicole screamed, the piercing volume causing a Mexican wave of gazes to snap in their direction. Surrounded by an army of betrayers, Harper had no choice but to slide off her seat and crouch in the leg space as she silently begged for the world to end.
“Sit the hell down,” she pleaded. “
Sit the hell down!
Nicole waved one arm and used the other to point a traitorous finger toward Harper’s hiding place.
. No, no, no, no, no. This wasn’t real. Nope. She was going to stand up and find herself miraculously naked. Everyone would laugh. She would be horrified. Then she’d wake up in a cold sweat realizing this was all some elaborately horrific nightmare and her existence would be peaceful again.