Tuesday Tales – Writing

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Hey everyone! It’s time for Tuesday Tales. We are back with Sloan and Abbey in Family Ties, book six of the Black Irish series.

Don’t forget to check out the other incredible Tuesday Tales authors! 

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Time slipped away quickly as Ame studied for her chemistry test. She had a crazy knack for the subject and loved it. If she aced this test tomorrow she had a great chance to end the year with an “A”. The only break she took was to have a supper of spaghetti, meatballs and garlic knots with everyone. She giggled as she watched the men she knew as her uncles perch on armchairs in the living room while they shoveled the pasta into their mouths just so their wives and children had a place to sit. The whole scene made her wonder. Would life ever go back to the way it was? Once she finished eating she tossed her plate into the sink of dishes her grandmother was already washing and scampered back to her room.

It was nearly nine o’clock when her cell rang. After writing a couple notes on her paper, Ame checked the screen. “Dakota,” she murmured. Her heart pounded in her chest as she silenced it. She couldn’t help the crush she had on him. But after seeing him with Chelsea she didn’t want to talk to him.

A few seconds later it rang again. With an irritated huff she silenced it again.

When it rang again she answered it. “What do you want, Dakota?”

“Hello, sweetheart.”

Ame nearly dropped the phone as every part inside her clenched in fear. This wasn’t Dakota. She knew his warm, sweet voice. The person who spoke was cold, devious, adult. She gasped as she recognized him. It’s the guy with the knife from school! Mom and Dad said his name is Oliver. “How did you get Dakota’s phone?” she demanded.

“Your little friend and I have been having a little talk. I think you should come join us.”

“No way. I don’t even know if he’s really there.”

“Really?” She heard the phone go distant. Then she heard Oliver talk. “I think your little girlfriend  wants to talk to you.”

There was silence for nearly a minute then a pain-filled gasp. “Ame, hang up please,” Dakota cried out.

Ame fought back a whimper. “Where are you?”

“On the other end of the lake behind your house,” Oliver responded.

“Fine. Let me sneak out. I’ll be right there.”

“Hurry, sweetheart. I wouldn’t want to hurt him again.”

“Don’t,” she pleaded just before the line went dead. She scrambled off her bed and slipped her shoes back on. She slowly opened her bedroom door. Even though her parents and six siblings had bedrooms on this floor, not one of them was upstairs. Silently she jogged down the back staircase and out the door to the garage.

Her heart stampeded in her chest as she ran alongside the lake. Her head filled with doubt. Did Oliver really have Dakota? How did he know who Dakota was? She tried to remember the television reports over the thud of her footsteps and the thundering of her heartbeat. She gasped as she remembered. Yes, one report showed Dakota with her and her grandparents, right before she ran to her father’s arms.

He’s in danger because of me!

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Hold Me Fast {McCullough Mountain 7} by Lydia Michaels

  
Blurb:

It’s more than a mountain. It’s a love story generations long.

Maureen O’Leahey has always hoped for a family to love, but with so many men returning from a lost war, she finds life to be a bit less romantic than expected—until she stares in to the blue eyes of Frank McCullough. Though the odds are against them, Frank and Maureen can’t seem to keep their distance. Against her father’s wishes, Maureen falls for the boy trying so hard to make it as a man and Frank fights to keep every promise made to the fiery red head that’s captured his heart.

During difficult times, they find solace in each other. As Frank struggles to do right by his young bride and Maureen aches to be a good wife, they are taught the true value of patience and shown the strength of unconditional love in this memorable story of a devoted Irishman and an untamable woman with a remarkable spirit.

Book Trailer:

 The trailer for Hold Me Fast {McCullough Mountain 7} can be found at:

Buy Links:

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• Lydia’s Blog http://lydiamichaelsbooks.com/blog/

Excerpt

“When’s that birthday of yours, love?”

She frowned. “July twenty-fifth. Why?” Was he planning on getting her a present?

He nodded, making a masculine sound in his throat. “I’d like to get my lips on you before then, lassie.”

Appalled, she turned and scowled at him. “And that is how you ask? I’d like a lot of things, Frank, mostly, to meet a man who knows how to ask a woman for favors. And if that is why you’re waitin’ for my birthday you can just forget it. I’m saving myself for marriage.”

Every trace of cockiness fled his face as her words sank in. Oh Christ. She wasn’t necessarily saving shit, but it pissed her off that he’d assume the calendar was all that was holding him up from gettin’ into her knickers.

“I wasn’t… I hadn’t meant to insinuate—”

“Don’t try backtracking now. I know what you meant.” It was like her mouth had disconnected from her brain and there was no stopping her words.

Like a runaway train, she’d unleashed on him. “You think I have nothin’ better to do than wait around so you can legally take my virginity? You can think again, Mr. McCullough. I have standards and they aren’t the sort that crumble for some blue eyed, silver-tongued Irishman wantin’ to put his lips on me. I’ll be expectin’ a gentleman, next time I see you, if your lips will be getting’ anywhere near me—”

His mouth was suddenly crushing hers as he pulled her halfway across the seat and cut off her words. She’d never been kissed before, at least not like that. His hand cupped the back of her head as his mouth slanted and his tongue pressed deep, teasing and awakening parts of her she’d rather ignore. Her eyes held wide as his other hand fit around her thigh and massaged through the fabric of her skirt.

“You talk entirely too much, Maureen O’Leahey,” he whispered against her lips. “I’m thinkin’ it’s high time a man shut you up in a way you found acceptable.”

He kissed her again and her chest lifted, her nipples tightening as heat pulled in her stomach and a strange pressure set her insides on fire.

“No,” she mumbled as his hand slowly rubbed higher on her thigh. Pulling back as that hand steadily crept to a place she strongly considered off limits to others, she did the first thing she could manage and smacked him across the jaw.

The sharp slap left the car in dark silence. Quietly, he chuckled. “You really are something.”

“I told you,” she said, out of breath. “You’ll need to be a gentleman to get your lips on me. Buyin’ me dinner doesn’t prove shit.”

The side of his mouth kicked up in a half-smirk. “You sure got a mouth on you, woman.”

She liked being called woman, considering she was only seventeen. “And wouldn’t you like to see all the things it can do.”

His half-smirk turned into a full smile as he laughed. “Well, look at you. You’re tongues as sharp as mine is silver. You better be gettin’ home before real trouble finds you. Tomorrow’s a big day.”

That was right. Tomorrow she was graduating. Funny how such a monumental achievement paled in comparison to being kissed by Frank McCullough.

“Good night, love,” he said, cracking open the door.

“Frank?” He stilled and she took a second to process her sudden insecurities.

He paused, still facing the door. “Yes, Maureen?”

“The kiss… did I do it okay?”

His head tilted as he again faced her. “Have you not been kissed before?”

“Never like that,” she whispered, her fingers tracing where his mouth had been.

He slid back inside the car and turned to the windshield, pulling his lower lip in for a taste. A quiet chuckle escaped, but he didn’t seem amused. “You’re that innocent then?”

“Never mind,” she immediately said, wishing she’d never opened her mouth—for anything.

“No, it’s fine. I shouldn’t have assumed…” he shook his head. “A gentleman indeed.” He laughed. “I’m sorry I came on so strong, love, but when I’m around you, I lose sight of right and wrong and all I can tell is that I want you.”

Her eyes widened as she choked on her words. “Me?” That couldn’t be right.

His gaze turned on her, his eyes appearing almost pained. “Aye, you. I think you’re bonny, smart, funny, and I think about you naked every day.”

“Frank!”

“Sorry, but it’s true. Your curves enchant me.”

Was that how men and women spoke to one another? “I’ve never been naked in front of anyone but my mum and my sisters.”

A smirk pulled the corner of his mouth tight. “We could remedy that.”

She smacked his arm. “Don’t be a pig.”

“I have a healthy appetite for beautiful women, love. There’s nothin’ wrong with that.”

“Aye, well if your wantin’ this woman you’ll lose your taste for all others, do you understand?”

“Aye.”

They were silent for several minutes. She fidgeted as she waited for him to say more, but he didn’t. Finally, she broke the silence. “What does this mean, Frank? People will talk if they see us together.”

“It means I like you.”

“Like me? Why?”

He shrugged and pointed to his chest. “It’s here, in the way my chest gets tight at just the sight of you and I want to hold you fast, but never feel like we have enough time.”

“Oh.” That was rather sweet and more poetic than she’d expected. “Are you saying we’re…”

“I want you to be mine for more than a minute.”

Lots of things were longer than minutes but still quite short. “Are you askin’ to date me? I’m not trying to be thick headed, but I’ve never much dated and…”

“Aye. I’m wantin’ you to be mine, Maureen O’Leahy. Mine and only mine.”

Liquid heat swirled in her belly as her veins pulsed with excitement. “I can’t let my parents know.”

“It’s no one’s business.”

Insecurity made it difficult to look in his direction. She didn’t want to say the wrong thing and sound foolish. “I…I never much dated,” she repeated.

“Me neither.”

She laughed, still finding that hard to believe. A thought occurred to her and she frowned. “I’ll not have you hitting on other girls if you want to be with me.”

“I wouldn’t dream of it.”

His gentle tone retrieved a bit of her courage. “And I’m not easy. I’m not promising you a thing, if you get what I mean.”

“Aye. It’ll keep.”

Shooting him a sidelong glance, she snickered. “You seem certain I’m keepin’ it for you.”

“You are,” he said with palpable cockiness.

Her mouth gaped at his surety. “There’s something wrong with you.”

“To be sure, but I speak the truth. I’ll have you, Maureen O’Leahey, make no mistake of that. I’ll be a gentleman for you, as you’re deserving of such, but make no mistake, I’m a man and I will not deny what I want no matter how long you deny me from gettin’ it.”


Author Bio:

Award winning author, Lydia Michaels, writes all forms of hot romance. She presses the bounds of love and surprises readers just when they assume they have her stories figured out. From Amish vampyres, to wild Irishmen, to broken heroes, and heroines no man can match, Lydia takes readers on an emotional journey of the heart, mind, and soul with every story she pens. Her books are intellectual, erotic, haunting, always centered on love.

Lydia Michaels loves to hear from readers! She can be contacted by email at Lydia@LydiaMichaelsBooks.com

Webpage: http://www.LydiaMichaelsBooks.com

Other Titles by Lydia Michaels:

Falling In

Breaking Out

Coming Home

Sacred Waters

Skin

Chaste

Faking It

Forsaking Truth

As Tears Go By

Hold Me Fast

Simple Man

Breaking Perfect

White Chocolate

All 4 You

To Catch a Wolfe

Chasing Feathers

Called to Order

Calling for a Miracle

Destiny Calls

Call Her Mine

Blind (Coming October 2015)

Tuesday Tales – Picture Prompt


Hey everyone! It’s time for Tuesday Tales. We are back with Sloan and Abbey in Family Ties, book six of the Black Irish series.

Don’t forget to check out the other incredible Tuesday Tales authors!  

Stepping outside of the school. Ame was stunned to find her father’s Hummer outside waiting for her. Sloan sat behind the steering wheel, his eyes focused on the tablet in his hand, a bouquet of roses and a box of chocolates sitting on the dash. Both teenage girls and mothers alike stopped to stare at him. Ame pushed past the slowly growing crowd. “Dad, what are you doing here?”

Sloan frowned, confused, at the females gathered behind her. A slow grin curved his lips. Obviously he doesn’t mind the attention. “Your mom was taking a nap. I thought I’d come instead. You know, since your little secret isn’t much of a secret anymore. Hurry up and get in. Your siblings are waiting.”

“Right.” Ame scuttled around the vehicle and jumped in the passenger side. Sloan slowly pulled from the curb and wound down the lane to the next building. “So, how was school?” he asked.

“Everyone knows I lied. So you can come to my events now.”

“Sorry, Angel.”

“It’s not your fault. I shouldn’t have lied. It’s just, if everyone knew I was your daughter, they would treat me like I was privileged because you’re rich.”

“Amelia, you need to be yourself. Money shouldn’t affect how you act. That’s what I’ve been trying to teach you.”

“I know. That’s what I sort of told the entire school.”

Sloan glanced at her from the corner of his eye. “Really?”

“Yeah. Someone filmed it and put it on YouTube. I think they thought I was going to throw a punch instead.” She pulled her cell from the pocket of her jacket and found the video. Then she handed the phone to him. Sloan parked the Hummer in front of the elementary school then pressed play. A proud smile filled his face. “That’s my lass.”

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Tuesday Tales – Pen

  
Hey everyone! It’s time for Tuesday Tales. We are back with Sloan and Abbey in Family Ties, book six of the Black Irish series.

Don’t forget to check out the other incredible Tuesday Tales authors! 

 

Dark shadows stretched across Ame’s bedroom as she startled awake. This was ridiculous. Maybe a glass of warm milk would help. She frowned to herself. Did she know how to make warm milk? One thing was for certain. Both the milk and the source of heat to warm it were downstairs in the kitchen. Ame scooted out of bed and tiptoed down the hall. She froze when she heard her parents’ voices in the living room.

“She hates me,” Sloan moaned as he slumped into the leather sofa and buried his face in his hands.

“She does not,” Abbey assured.

He picked up Ame’s sketch pad and pens and tossed them into her lap. “Really? Don’t try to convince me that the image she drew isn’t me. She thinks I’m Satan.”

Ame’s heart sunk deep into her chest as guilt washed over her. Her father continued. “I never wanted her to know. She’s my little angel. She always has been. Now in her eyes I’m evil.”

“She’s fourteen. She’s a smart cookie. I think it’s time to tell her the truth.”

Sloan glared at Abbey. “Really? Are you prepared to tell Ame that we’re mercenaries?”

Abbey wrapped her arms tight around his waist. “Just let me handle it. All right?”

“Of course.”

“Has B found out anything more about those three men? Does any of this have to do with The Butcher?”

“All he found is that they have worked for him at one time. He doesn’t know if he was behind the attack or not. I have no idea why The Butcher would be after us. Yes, we were on the opposite sides of the war. But we never crossed paths.”

“We’ll figure this out, Sloan. We always do.”

“I won’t have you and our children in danger. You are my world. I will end the world to protect you.”

“And what about you? You are just as precious to me. I’m not about to let anything happen to you or our kids.”

Sloan turned to her and pressed his forehead against hers. Moments later his mouth dipped low to cover hers. Abbey melted into his kiss, pressing her body tight against him. Ame spun on her toe and raced back to her bed. Her mind was already a muddled mess over what happened at her school. She sure didn’t need to see her parents getting busy on the living room couch.

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Tuesday Tales – Bloom

  
Hey everyone! It’s time for Tuesday Tales. We are back with Sloan and Abbey in Family Ties, book six of the Black Irish series.

Don’t forget to check out the other incredible Tuesday Tales authors!  

Oliver dabbed the blood dripping from his chin as he scrambled to his feet, his eyes locked on the approaching Sloan. “Let’s go, guys.” The three men scampered across the playground disappearing between the grade school and the junior high buildings.Sloan towered over his crouching family. “Is everyone all right?”

“We’re fine.” Abbey let the girls go then accepted his hand to help her to her feet. “The motorbike was a bit much, don’t you think? How’d you blow it up like that?”

“I had a chunk of explosives in the trunk of my car. I taped it to the fuel tank.”

“Should I ask why you’re keeping explosives in you car?”

Sloan motioned to the charred van. “For moments like this. And no, this wasn’t excessive. These basta…” His words were cut of by an icy glare from Abbey. “These bad men were trying to hurt my girls. Nothing is excessive then.”

“How are we going to explain the explosion and the burned out van to the Dean of Students? I’m sure Dean Williams isn’t going to be thrilled with us.”

Sloan cocked her an evil grin. “I called Agent Dunham and cashed in one of the many favors he owes us for Afghanistan.”

“CIA intervention? Nice touch.” Abbey slipped her gun back into the holster around her thigh.

Ame could hear a growl slip from her father’s throat as his eyes fixed on her mother’s leg. His voice was deep and rough as he spoke. “Are you taking the girls back to class, lass?”

“We both could. Then we could both go talk to Dean Williams. I didn’t blow up a vehicle on her campus.”

“Yes, luv. But you did bring not one but two guns onto school grounds which is against the rules too. Besides, Agatha Williams hates me but she adores you.” Sloan rubbed his chin as he studied the building. “Just tell her the money to replace the couple dozen windows that were broken has already been deposited into the school’s account plus an additional million for any trouble.” He pointed to the dark sedans that prowled along the lane. Each car’s windows were tinted black. “I’m going to go deal with the CIA.”

“Sloan Michael O’Riley, don’t leave me with this!” Abbey demanded.

He winked at her before planting a kiss on her cheek. “You can handle this, luv. I know you can. You’re brilliant.” Sloan backpedaled away from her with a grin before spinning on his toe. He jogged away towards the men in suits now mulling around the wreckage.

Abbey muttered under her breath as she stowed her other gun in the waistband of her skirt then took Aubrey’s hand in hers. The little girl’s resolve broke. She began wailing loudly. “Mommy, no. I don’t want to go back. I’m scared.”

Abbey glanced down at her then at Ame. Ame hugged herself tightly to try to stop herself from shaking. It didn’t work. She felt tears sting her eyes. She never had been so confused in her life. Dad just blew up a van. There could have been someone inside. I think my dad just killed someone…

Abbey smiled at her gently. “Do you want to go home, Ame?”

A tear slid down her cheek as she nodded. Abbey wrapped an arm around her as a gentle smile bloomed across her face. “All right. Let me go talk to Dean Williams then get you both excused. We’ll go home.”

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Tuesday Tales – Tiger

  
Hi there! It’s time for Tuesday Tales. Our word prompt is “tiger”. We’re back with Sloan and Abbey in Family Ties.

Don’t forget to check out the other incredible Tuesday Tales blogs!

  

He wrapped his hand around Ame’s wrist and tugged her to him. She stiffened as she felt the point of a blade poke her beneath her chin.

Her captor looked up the slide to Aubrey. “Come on, sweetheart. You don’t want me to hurt your big sister, do you?”

The only reply he got was a squeak. Aubrey straightened herself then slid down the slide, clasping her little arms around Ame’s waist in terror. She looked up with tear filled eyes. “I’m scared,” she whimpered.

“Me too,” Ame breathed.

“Ok, girls,” Oliver began. “See that white van over there.” He pointed at the nose of a beaten up white van peeking from the tree lined lane. “We’re going for a ride.”

“Like hell you are.”

Ame gasped as she noticed Oliver’s spine straighten. She knew that voice but there was no way it could be… She carefully glanced around her captor to the source.

Abbey suddenly had appeared, dressed in her business suit for the office. And she had a very dangerous looking pistol pressed against Oliver’s temple. “I don’t know who the hell you are, but please take the knife away from my daughter’s throat. Because if I see you so much as flinch I’ll put a bullet in your brain.”

Oliver laughed, a wicked twinkle glimmering in his chocolate brown eyes. “Abigail O’Riley, I was hoping you would be the one they would send. I’ve been dying to meet you. If you haven’t noticed, Tiger,  you’re outnumbered.”

One of the other men reached for his gun. Before he could pull it free, Abbey slipped her hand beneath her skirt, whipping the pistol in the holster wrapped around her thigh free. She pointed it at him. “And if you know me that well, you know I’m not alone. There are sniper rifles pointed at each of you right now. Now I have a question for you. Do you have anyone in that van of yours?”

“Why would I tell you?” Oliver questioned.

“Because if there are, you’ll want to get them out. Now. Call it my Good Samaritan moment of the day.”

Ame heard the faint buzz of a motorbike approaching. It was barely audible over her stampeding heart. She was trying to stay brave for her little sister but she knew the little girl could feel her shake. Snipers? Where did Mom come up with snipers? And why is she holding those guns? Has she done this before? Does Daddy know about this?

“Amelia, Aubrey, get down,” Abbey gently instructed.

Both girls stood stone still. The sound of the motorbike grew louder. Abbey sighed as she glanced out of the corner of her eye at her daughters. “Girls, I said get down. Now.”

Everyone’s attention suddenly was torn away to a large figure dressed in black racing up the drive lined for a direct collision with the van. In a fluid motion, he laid the bike on its side. Sparks erupted from the scraping metal as the man kicked the bike away and tumbled onto the lawn. Abbey used the second of distraction to land a roundhouse kick into the belly of one of the captors. Ame gaped as she watched her mother incapacitate the three, leaving a particularly wicked elbow for Oliver’s chin, strong enough to cut him open. She flew to the ground and tugged the girls to her to shield them.

The explosion was hard to miss. The van erupted in flames sending a fireball into the sky past the line of trees. The roar was quickly followed by the tinkling sound of shattering glass as several of the school windows blew apart. Aubrey screamed and clung to her mother. Ame pulled her head free enough to look.

The motorbike rider slowly rose from the ground like a demon from the flames. He brushed the dirt from his suit then strode across the lawn towards them. Ame quaked inside. She could only squeak one word. “Dad?”

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Tuesday Tales – Picture Prompt

  

Welcome to Tuesday Tales! This week is a picture prompt. The excerpt is from the sixth and final book of the Black Irish Series, Family Ties. Let’s catch up with Sloan and Abbey…

Don’t forget to check out the other amazing authors of Tuesday Tales!

 
Ava leaned against her. “Who are they?”

“I don’t know.”

“Ame, you can’t go with them.”

“I’m not.”

“Would they have stopped at the other schools?”

Fear seized Ame’s heart. “Ethan. Colin. Aubrey and Liam…”

“Give your books to me and go.”

Ame piled her books into Ava’s arms, breathing a silent thanks to her friend. She raced out the fire door, leaving the blaring siren behind her as she sprinted across the grass to the drive that led to the other schools.

Hoping the lofty branches over the tree lined drive would hide her, Ame hurried down the hill to the elementary school. Someone from the high school must have sent a warning throughout the campus. Teachers shepherded children between them back into the building long before recess was over. She ran across the lawn to the group. “Missus Smith!”

“Amelia, what are you doing down here?” the teacher questioned.

“Where is Aubrey and Liam?”

“Liam is already in the building. We can’t find Aubrey.”

Ame’s heart slammed in her chest as she raced back to the playground. She called out her little sister’s name as she searched frantically. A whimper stopped her dead in her tracks. She looked up the slide. Beneath the mouth of the tunnel, Aubrey huddled with her tiny arms wrapped around her legs. She stared at her older sister with big, blue eyes.

“Aubrey, come down,” Ame demanded as she pointed to the ground. “Please. Now.”

The little girl shook her head, her black curls bobbing around her face.

“Come on, Aubrey. We have to go inside. I think we’re in danger. Please…”

Chills ran up Ame’s spine as a voice approached from behind her. She turned slowly to find the three men that asked for her standing there, the one named Oliver wearing an evil grin. “Look what we’ve found, boys,” he purred.

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Tuesday Tales – Flexible

   

Welcome to Tuesday Tales! This week’s word prompt is “flexible”. The excerpt is the beginning of the sixth and final book of the Black Irish Series, Family Ties. Let’s catch up with Sloan and Abbey…
Don’t forget to check out the other amazing authors of Tuesday Tales!

  
Beep-beep-beep…

The ear piercing tone of the alarm clock filled the large sunlit bedroom. A hand slipped from under the downy daisy yellow comforter to slap it silent. It quickly retreated under the covers. I don’t want to get up. Just five more minutes.

The creak of the door hinges and the sound of footprints reported someone else was in the room. “Ame, sweetheart. It’s time to get up. You don’t want to be late for school.”

Ame’s only response was a groan. She buried herself deeper into her bed. He could hear her mother sigh. “Amelia, you need to get up. You know what comes next.”

“I’m getting up, Mom,” Ame assured.

“All right.” By the sound of Abbey’s sigh, it was evident she had no faith in her daughter. She closed the door behind her. Ame snuggled deeper into her pillow. She could close her eyes for just a moment more.

“Amelia O’Riley, get up!”

Ame shot up in her bed, her heart beating out of her chest. She didn’t have to look up to see who was standing beside her bed. The deep Irish brogue told her exactly who it was not to mention his very large shadow now darkened the wood floor of her bedroom. “I’m awake, Dad,” she whined.

“Now you are,” Sloan scoffed. “Hurry and get dressed. Your mother almost has breakfast finished.”

Ame watched as her father slipped from her room, smooth and cool as a shadow. She tossed the comforter off her and scooted off the bed. Trudging to her ensuite, she started the water for her shower. She stared at her reflection in the mirror. Her long, nearly ebony hair was a rumpled. Her blue eyes with flecks of hazel were sleepy. And there was a zit right in the middle of her chin. She sighed. Sometimes being fourteen sucked.

After a quick shower, Ame shuffled to her closet to get her school uniform. Another sigh escaped her lips. She hated her school. The elite of the Twin Cities sent their children there. Being the children of billionaires, that included Ame and her siblings. She turned her head at the sound of squealing and screaming. Yeah, siblings. Six of them. Did anyone ever talk to her parents about birth control?

She tugged on her skirt and blouse, slowly fastening the buttons so not to miss one. She sat on her bed to pull on the regulation knee socks. As she picked up the navy blue blazer with the gold emblem on the chest she heard voices call out in unison. “Ame!”

Ame shrugged the jacket on with a huff. Grabbing her backpack she made her way down the hall to the staircase that led to the main floor. She froze as her foot hit the bottom step.

Her father was pressing her mother against the counter with his body, his lips roaming the curve of her neck. Ame could barely make out the tips of his fingers caressing her breasts. Her mother had her head thrown back against his shoulder in surrender. A soft moan escaped her lips.

“Seriously?” Ame screeched.

Sloan lifted his head confused for a moment. When he caught sight of his daughter he chuckled. “Lass, if I hadn’t done this to your mother, you and your siblings wouldn’t be here.”

“But at the breakfast table?”

“The breakfast table is over there in the other room.” Sloan pointed in the direction of the dining room where the rest of the children were enjoying breakfast. “What we do in the kitchen shouldn’t be of concern to you.”

“There are seven of us, Dad.”

“Are you adequately fed? Clothed? Do you have everything you need? Is there someone home for you at night?”

Ame sighed again. “Yes.”

Abbey cupped Sloan’s chin in her palm and kissed his cheek. “We can pick up on this later.”

“My office?”

“Sounds like a plan. I’m flexible.”

Sloan laughed again, kissing her lips then smacking her rump playfully. Abbey squeaked, winking at him before he strode to his office. She turned towards the dining room. “Come on, guys! Wrap it up. I need to get to work.”


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Starting the Fourth of July Weekend with a Bang!!

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Happy Independence Day! This is one of my favorite holidays and I am very grateful to the men and women who made this country what it is today and for giving me the freedom to do what I love to do.

Probably my favorite thing that happens on the Fourth of July is fireworks. When I was little I hated them. I used to hide in the back of my parent’s station wagon because the bang scared me. As I grew older I fell in love with the bright colors and the brilliant displays, especially after I learned to put my fingers in my ears.

Beautiful firework display for celebrationTo celebrate the holiday, I want to share my Independence Day excerpt from Breaking the Silence. When writing Breaking the Silence I got the extraordinary opportunity to work with Operation First Response, a group that supports our veterans when they return home from combat. They are an incredible group of people and the programs they offer to our country’s veterans are awesome. For more information on Operation First Response, click here!

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**Just a warning…The following excerpt is definitely a spoiler. If you plan to read Breaking the Silence then you may want to skip ahead to the really good stuff – the giveaways!!**

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They had returned home to finish their wedding planning. Shortly after they arrived, they had found out the venue that they had chosen was double booked. Avery had been crushed, wondering if that was a sign.

Dan had been the one to come to the rescue. He had told them of this resort north of the Twin Cities that he used to go to with his family when he was a child. On a cool, spring day, she and Rico had made the drive to take a look. They had fallen in love with it instantly. The gazebo at the lodge was the perfect place for the ceremony. The lake reminded them of their own spot near the college.

There was going to be a fantastic fireworks display the night of the Fourth of July. And the fact that they could rent a beautiful cabin for a honeymoon getaway less than a mile from the location of their wedding had sealed it. They had booked it immediately then raced home to make the changes. Several wedding showers and a joint bachelor and bachelorette party had led them to the present. Now, here they were, ready to start their forever together.

Avery startled as she felt a hand on her arm. Chloe smiled at her. She smoothed her own crimson, ankle length gown before she signed. The car is here to take us to the ceremony. Are you ready?

Can’t wait. Let’s go.

The two women slipped into the waiting vehicle outside the cabin. Avery’s heart thundered in her chest as they wound along the forest roads to the lodge. Rows of cars appeared then the roof of the building. Hopefully, the love of her life, along with his friends and the minister, would be waiting for her in the gazebo that overlooked the lake.

Her dad opened the car door, helping Chloe out first then Avery. She saw the tears pooling in his eyes as he glanced her over. Avery, sweetheart. You look beautiful.

She placed a kiss on his cheek. Thank you, Dad.

Avery noticed Chloe watching someone approach them. Avery smiled warmly as her father gave Lindsay a hug. Lindsay looked sharp in his dress uniform.

Even though he was her brother, Avery had to admit Lindsay was devastatingly handsome. Lindsay beamed at her as he signed. Dad thought since we have been so close over these past few years that I should walk you down the aisle also. If that is all right with you.

Avery grinned. I think you might like Rico.

She watched Lindsay laugh. Yes. It has grown on me. Like a fungus.

All of them chuckled at Lindsay’s comment. Lindsay gently weaved his arm around Chloe’s to escort her up the walk, pressing a cordial kiss to her cheek. Avery’s father did the same with Avery as they followed them behind the lodge toward the gazebo.

bridegroomAvery anxiously watched Chloe as she slowly made her way down the aisle to stand beside Max. Lindsay wrapped his arm firmly around her free one before they began a similar journey.

Avery read the minister’s lips then glanced to her Dad to see him speak. Her father nodded to Lindsay then let her go and sat beside her mother. Lindsay placed her hand in Rico’s then looked Rico in the eye. “Welcome to the family. I’m proud to call you my brother,” Avery saw him say to her future husband.

Rico’s deep blue eyes misted with tears. It nearly made Avery cry. She knew that this was the first time since he had been a child that Rico had an actual family to claim as his own. Sure, he loved the makeshift family he was a part of at Hard Drive. But it wasn’t the same.

Lindsay smiled at the both of them then took his spot next to his parents.

Chloe signed for Avery as the minister spoke his message. Then, Avery recited her vows clearly, as she had practiced. As Rico pulled his hands free to sign his vows, she recaptured them.

“I’ve been practicing reading lips. Please say your vows,” she encouraged.

A proud grin graced his face as he began to speak. Tears filled her eyes. She understood it all. He, Rico Choate, was promising her forever. She couldn’t hear his voice, but she knew each word was spoken in truth and confidence. He needed her as much as she needed him. Once the rings were exchanged and the minister pronounced them husband and wife, they sealed their marriage with a kiss.

Then, the party began. A picnic of fried chicken and salads led to conversation and games. Max started a bonfire when the sun set. Avery cuddled with Rico on a blanket laid on the ground as the fireworks began. After she had returned from Afghanistan, she had avoided these displays. Normally the flash of the explosions terrified her. But being held tight in her husband’s arms made her feel safe enough to enjoy the show.

Before they were over, he helped her to her feet and led her to his Jeep. The night sky above the trees was filled with bright color as they drove back to the cabin.

Her heart raced again as they stepped inside, and Rico locked the door. He pulled a long, velvet box from his tuxedo jacket and handed it to her. My wedding gift to you.

She slowly opened the lid. A beautiful, white gold, double heart pendant lined with diamonds held on a fine chain rested on the satin. She gasped as she threw her arms around his neck and hugged him. “Thank you. I love it. But I didn’t get you anything.”

Rico’s smile was pure sin as he pulled her back to look at her. His eyes roamed over her. Actually, I have been waiting all day to open my gift from you. It has been killing me.

What gift?

He ran his tongue along his bottom lip. I will admit—the wrapping paper is absolutely beautiful. But I am ready to rip off the gift-wrap and get to my present.

She felt her face grow hot as she met his hungry eyes. She understood then that she was his present. It was their wedding night, and they had yet to sleep together. Would she be able to compete with his other lovers?

That thought fled her mind as he tugged her back into his arms and engulfed her lips with a devouring kiss. She gasped softly as he jerked the zipper of her dress down and let the garment pool on the floor. Suddenly, there was no doubt in her mind that this would be the best night of her life.

Buy links for Breaking the Silence. A portion of the proceeds to Breaking the Silence goes to Operation First Response to support our nation’s wounded, injured and critically-ill Heroes and their families.

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Breaking-Silence-Hard-Drive-Book-ebook/dp/B00NR3JUQ2/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1411271702&sr=1-1&keywords=Hard+Drive+Series

Sweet Cravings Publishing: http://store.sweetcravingspublishing.com/index.php?main_page=book_info&products_id=238

Barnes and Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/breaking-the-silence-tricia-andersen/1120376719?ean=2940150627079

All Romance E-books: https://www.allromanceebooks.com/product-breakingthesilenceharddriveseries2-1631761-153.html

Smashwords: http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/478151

Now for the Giveaways!

For a chance to win the e-book version of the entire Hard Drive Series plus a $5 Amazon gift card, just leave a comment below! I’ll be drawing a winner on the morning of July 7th.

Thanks for stopping by! Happy Fourth of July! And don’t forget to stop by and visit the other Freedom Hop Blogs!

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Tuesday Tales – Stiff

  Welcome to Tuesday Tales! This week’s excerpt is from the sixth and final book of the Black Irish Series, Family Ties. Let’s catch up with Sloan and Abbey…

Don’t forget to check out the other amazing authors of Tuesday Tales!

 
Abbey nodded to the glass of wine in his hand. “I would have thought after our meeting with the Board of Directors this morning you would want a stiff drink, not merlot. 

Sloan chuckled. “Trust me, Luv. I had one in my office right after. Although you handed the whole thing brilliantly.”

“Yeah. I gave a bunch of geriatrics and their idiot lawyer their walking papers. Even thoughts felt so good to kick Nathan Paulson to the curb after everything he’s done to us.”

“You made an excellent point. We built our company. We and our family, not them. They have been reaping the benefits without any effort on their part. You were incredible, Luv. I am proud of you.”

Abbey felt her cheeks grow hot at his compliment. Then she noticed his ice blue eyes narrow hungrily.”Lass, you’re blushing. You know what that does to me.”

“Me breathing does that to you, Sloan.”

A chuckle rumbled from his throat again as he took her glass of wine from her and set it with his on the hearth of the fireplace. Cupping her face in his hands he drew her to him, enveloping her lips in a deep kiss that turned her insides out. Instinctively she wrapped her arms around his shoulders pulling herself onto his lap. She could hear him moan through their kiss. His fingers tugged on the buttons of her blouse, exposing her soft breasts cradled in her lace bra.

Abbey pulled away from his mouth. “The kids,” she protested.

“We have the baby monitor. It’ll pick up any sound from the hall,” Sloan assured as he drew her back into another passionate kiss. Abbey surrendered hopelessly. Who was she to argue with his logic?

Don’t forget to check out the other Tuesday Tales blogs!

 

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