Jack Tuckers life as a morning radio host is uncomplicated, attachment free and without regret.
Brought together by a mutual friend the pair are at odds from the moment they meet. She finds his confidence swagger arrogant and beyond reproach, while he in turn sees her as a self righteous controlling dictator.
As Kate struggles with her confidence, Jack begins to realize his life without strings is missing something, or someone. Adversity quickly becomes attraction. Jack and Kate find themselves flirting with the flames of unexpected desire.As emotions rise, scars are revealed and secrets are uncovered. Will the reality of their very different worlds bring them together or rip them apart?
Jack got back into his car and proceeded to his hotel. Checking in he cleaned up and headed out for something to eat. The butterflies in his stomach churned as he headed back to her house. He pulled into the same place he had before and got out of the car. The light in her front window was on, and he saw that as a good sign.
Taking a deep breath, moved across the parking lot, and to her door. About to knock, he heard his name.
“Jack?” He turned to see her walking toward him, her male companion at her side.
“What are you doing here?”
“I needed to see you.” His eyes locking with hers.
“You two obviously need to be alone,” Kate’s companion said, giving Jack a look of warning. “I’m going to head inside.”
Kate simply nodded, not breaking Jack’s gaze. The man disappeared into her house. She stood staring at him and Jack realized she was waiting for him to say something.
“I wanted to apologize for the way I left things in Vegas.” She looked away from him.
“Thanks, but it’s over. I’m --”
“I know I messed up. I didn’t mean to push you away and I--”
“I don’t know what this is. All I know is that since you left everything…stopped.””
“You don’t know what you’re saying.” Her eyes filled with emotion and he saw a ray of hope.
“Listen to me,” moving closer, looking down into her eyes. “I know that this isn’t what was supposed to happen, but it did and I want to start over.”
“I’m not good for you, Jack,” hugging herself as if a chill had fallen between them.
“That’s not true,” shortening the space between them. The ocean air swept through her hair, her scent filling him. “I have never been more alive than I am with you.”
“It’s a fantasy. It isn’t real.”
“Yes it is,” seeing the denial in her eyes. “I’ve tried to forget, Kate! I’ve told myself that it wasn’t real…”
“But I was wrong! It is real and I can’t let it go,” refusing to let her push him away, keeping her eyes locked within his. “And I don’t think you can either.”
He watched her struggle and wanted desperately to wrap his arms around her. He forced himself to stay where he was. She gulped something back and took a deep breath.
“I have nothing to give you.”
“I’m not asking for anything,” searching her eyes for some sign of hope.
“Yes you are.”
“You are…you are looking for Texas Kate. Problem is that laid back, nice, Texas Kate doesn’t exist! My life is complicated, dangerous, and all consuming! At the end of the day there is nothing left.” She purposely stepped back, out of his reach. “You think you know me, Jack, but you don’t.”
“You’re right I don’t, not all of you. I do know the Kate I rode the stratosphere with, the woman who prefers an orange soda to a beer, who didn’t hesitate to tell me when I was being a selfish ass. The exquisite creature I held before the world exploded.”
“Please…stop.” Her hand running through her hair, while she refused to meet his eyes.
“I’m useless without you.”
“There’s nothing to be sorry for!”
“Yes there is. I was trying to run away from who I am and you got caught up in it. None of it was real. The Kate you are talking about doesn’t exist, she never did. I’m sorry that I misled you—“
“Don’t do this. Don’t stand there and tell me it was a lie when you know it wasn’t! I know you felt it too. I saw it in your eyes when you looked at me. It was overwhelming and I can’t forget. I don’t want to forget--”
“It’s a fairy tale,” breaking away from any connection he had made with her. “It’s not real. She’s not real! I created a character to cope, to hide and you fell for her, but she doesn’t exist. She never did! Let it go.”
“I can’t believe you’re doing this.”
“Believe it. I’m not as understanding as your Kate is. I don’t have the time or the patience. It’s unproductive and does me no good.”
“Fine,” blocking her eye line, forcing her to face him. “Look at me and tell me that you don’t want me here. Tell me that I am crazy. Tell me there is nothing but air between us and I’ll go.”
They seemed frozen in time. Jack saw a flicker of light in her eyes but it disappeared. As if she had consciously decided to extinguish their last ray of hope, and his heart ached.
“I’m sorry, Jack.” He watched her turn and walk away from him. He wanted to stop her, tell her that she was being stupid. They could make it work, but he didn’t. He let her go.
He let her walk away.
COMING April 15th 2011 from Extasy Books!
All rights reserved. This is a work of fiction. All names, characters, locations, and incidents are products of the author’s imagination, or have been used fictionally. Any resemblance to actual persons living or dead, locales, or events is entirely coincidental. No portion of this work may be transmitted or reproduced in any form, or by any means, without permission in writing from the author.