Release Date: May, 2014
Northern was supposed to be a fresh start—a place where people didn’t know who I was or how I had spent years in and out of mental institutes. People didn't know about my parents death or the island no one heard of. But when Peter sits next to me in lit class, I can’t stop the memories, and I don’t want to. He looks too much like the boy from the island, and despite my best intentions, coaxes my secrets from me.
He’s gorgeous, irresistible, a little mad, and completely lost—we are a pair of broken cogs in a world neither of us truly fits into. And he listens when I talk, about the past and the terrifying future. He is somehow gentle and fierce, heartbreaking in his devotion and savage in his defense.
When Belle, his best friend, shows up, pale and lovely and sick, Peter pulls away from me, a startling withdrawal. It’s a relationship that scares and confuses me. She is at times warm and friendly, and other times is violent and unpredictable.
Peter says that he wants me, but refuses to let himself get close. And there are secrets, surrounding both of us, that border on nightmares. As the memories close in, as Belle gets sicker and more violent, I’m torn between what is true and what I believe, and what this magical boy knows about my mysterious past.
*Suitable for 17+. A romantic contemporary retelling of the boy who never grew up.
I shrug. "Because I can't help but trust you. Even though it's stupid and I have no good reason for it--I want to trust you. I want you to be someone I can trust." I open my mouth, to tell him about the boy, about why it is so important to me. Why I should stay away from him, and why I can't seem to.
Peter speaks first. "I don't know who your father is. I don't know why you want to run from your past. But the thing is, Gwen, I don't care. I want to be part of now. I'll fight tooth and nail to be part of now."
"What if now is temporary?" I ask, thinking about my aunt and my tenuous grasp on sanity and all the reasons I should step away from Peter.
"Then we enjoy what we have," he murmurs. I shudder as his voice wraps around me, as warm as the hand curving around my neck. He makes a low noise, and lifts me, until I'm sitting in the circle of his crossed legs. Pressed against him. I can feel his heartbeat through his shirt, the unsteady pounding. His fingers are still pressed against my hips, still holding onto me despite having me where he wants.
I should move back, put distance between us, so he knows that this isn’t ok. I sit still and silent in his arms and wait for the chiding voice, telling me it’s wrong.
The voice that has drown out every thought and feeling, every time a boy has touched me.
But it’s silent, oddly absent—maybe it is as charmed by Peter’s appearance as I am.
“What is Lane, to you?” he asks, breaking my thoughts.
I shrug, looking at the pulse point pounding in his throat. “A friend.”
“I don’t want you near him.” He says.
There is a part of me, slight but there, that is annoyed by his pronouncement. But the bigger part is smirking, leaning in so that my lips tickle along his neck. Peter goes very still, as I whisper, a hairs breath from his skin, “Are you jealous?”
His voice is low, gravelly, “Yes. Fuck, yes I am. I don’t want any man near you—I hate Micah for being your brother. I want you with me, always.”
His voice is so fierce, wild. It’s a savagery that is at odds with the soft circle of his arms, the gentle press of his fingers on my back.
That is all tenderness and fragile care.
About the author:
Nazarea Andrews is an avid reader and tends to write the stories she wants to read. She loves chocolate and coffee almost as much as she loves books, but not quite as much as she loves her kids. She lives in south Georgia with her husband, daughters, and overgrown dog.
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