Friday, March 28, 2014

Marian Cheatham's EASTLAND Blog Tour & Giveaway

by Marian Cheatham
Release Date: 02/14/14

Book Summary:

For hardworking teen, Dee Pageau, the annual employee picnic will let her escape the drudgery of work and possibly find love with her best friend Mae’s older brother, Karel. But in 1915 Chicago, girls don’t go on picnics without their mother’s approval.  
Unfortunately for Dee, Mama has had a premonition of disaster and forbids Dee from going. Forced to watch as Mae and Karel leave without her, Dee defies Mama and rushes off to join her friends.

But Dee’s joy soon turns to terror when the ship ferrying them to the picnic capsizes. Rescued not once but twice-by Karel and a mysterious sailor-Dee finds herself tested in unimaginable ways. What happens next turns out to be worse … and better … than anything Dee ever expected.
Available at: Amazon   B&N 

Something plunked onto my program. I glanced down at the wet spot on the page before looking up. A raindrop splattered onto the bridge of my nose. A split second later, the skies cracked opened. 
Women shrieked as rain poured down. Chairs scraped across concrete and thwacked against tables. Patrons raced for the shelter of the covered terraces or the exit to the indoor garden. Lars whipped open his umbrella. I squished against him.
“Told you one umbrella was a good idea,” he said. 
When Lars had suggested I leave my umbrella on the front porch, I had hesitated. 
“Don’t worry,” he’d said when he’d come to pick me up. “If it does rain, we can share.” 
I had tossed my umbrella aside without another thought. 
“We can’t catch a break from this rain.” Lars tilted the umbrella over my head. “Looks like our luck’s run out.” 
Luck was a matter of perspective. Right now, nestled against his broad chest, I felt pretty darn lucky. I squeezed in even tighter and looked up. Lars gazed down. Our lips seemed to be pulling in toward each other’s as though we’d been magnetized. 
A delicious tingle shot through me. I was about to get my second kiss. I worried for one fleeting second about Lars’s strength and then his lips were on mine. My apprehension evaporated. His kiss was tender and hesitant and unbelievably luscious. I pressed into him, fearing now for his safety against the overwhelming force of my desires. 

About the Author: Marian Cheatham lives in a suburb of Chicago with her family and their menagerie of pets. A graduate of Northern Illinois University, Marian taught Special Education for many years before becoming a full-time writer.
Author links: Website      Goodreads      FB

(please be patient it takes the rafflecopter a minute to load)

RULES AND RESTRICTIONS: Contest is void where prohibited. Entrants must be 13 or else have parent or guardian’s permission to enter. Winners will be notified via email and will have 48 hours to respond or another winner’s name will be selected. Winning entries will be verified for authenticity.

Blog Tour Organized by:

Friday, March 21, 2014

Brooklyn Skye's FRAGILE LINE Cover Reveal

Fragile Line

by Brooklyn Skye

Release Date: 04/21/14

Entangled Teen

Summary from Goodreads: It can happen in a flash. One minute she’s kissing her boyfriend, the next she’s lost in the woods. Sixteen-year-old Ellie Cox is losing time. It started out small…forgetting a drive home or a conversation with a friend. But her blackouts are getting worse, more difficult to disguise as forgetfulness. When Ellie goes missing for three days, waking up in the apartment of a mysterious guy—a guy who is definitely not her boyfriend, her life starts to spiral out of control. 

Perched on the edge of insanity, with horrific memories of her childhood leaking in, Ellie struggles to put together the pieces of what she’s lost—starting with the name haunting her, Gwen. 

Heartbreakingly beautiful, this poignant story follows one girl’s harrowing journey to finding out who she really is.

About the Author
Brooklyn Skye grew up in a small town where she 

quickly realized writing was an escape from small town life. Really, she’s just your average awkward girl who’s obsessed with words. Her Best-Selling New Adult debut, STRIPPED, is out NOW! Represented by Bree Ogden of D4EO Literary Agency.

Wordpress   Goodreads   Twitter   FB 

Cover Reveal Organized by:
Thursday, March 20, 2014

Clarissa Wild's FURY Book Blitz and Giveaway

Fury by Clarissa Wild 
(Fierce #1.5)
Publication date: March 17th 2014
Genres: Contemporary, New Adult, Romance

Would you risk everything for love?
Life has held nothing but hardships for Hunter Bane. Growing up with a learning disability wasn’t easy, especially when you’re poor. With only his brother to support him, Hunter clings to the short moments of happiness in life. Like when he meets Autumn Blakewood.

Autumn Blakewood is a geek at heart. Reading is her passion, and she can’t spend one day without her books. She’s always locked up in her room studying, trying to avoid trouble. Until Hunter comes into her life.

Hunter can’t resist the temptation to get closer to Autumn. She is his complete opposite, and yet he’s drawn to her in ways he can’t explain. But when his brother is caught dealing drugs and sent to prison, Hunter’s world shatters.

To save his brother, Hunter has to join the gang he’s feared his entire life. Now he’s forced to choose between his family and the one girl he loves. Fighting for both, his fury is all he needs…
Available at: Amazon   B&N    Kobo   Google Play   Smashwords   ARe   

My forehead leans against hers as I gaze into her deep blue eyes that are full of longing. I want her to believe me, to trust in me, to feel that I need her. I didn’t want her to get hurt because of me, but I can’t stay away any longer. I need her more than anything. She is my drug and I’m giving in to my addiction.
I lick and bite my lip in anticipation, waiting for her to let me in. I can’t stop wanting her, but if she really doesn’t want me the same way I do then I’ll have no choice but to stop. “Tell me what you want. What you really need. Do you want me to let you go? Do you want me to stop hunting for you?” I whisper.
I’m pleading in my head for her to say ‘no.’ I look her in the eye, telling her without words that this is what I desire the most. She takes in a deep breath and opens her mouth.
When she says, “Kiss me. I want you to kiss me,” I’m done for.
I press my lips on top of hers like before, taking it slow and easy this time. It felt like I was dying of thirst, but now, after knowing she’s okay with it, I’m much calmer. I take her lips in slow, lavish licks, kissing her with every ounce of my love.
She shivers in my arms as I hold onto her tight, pulling her closer to me. She kisses me back tenderly, her lips as caring and soft as she is. Her hot mouth is driving me insane. She’s the only one who can do this to me.
She’s turning to mush in my arms, and I love how it feels, so powerful, so intense. My instincts take over as I grab her hands and pin them above her head. I alternate my kisses with nibbles, arousing her so much she moans out loud. My cock responds with enthusiasm, poking against the fabric of my pants, eager to take her.
Before I know it, my hands are slipping down her body, along her waist, and to her thighs, my fingers desperate to squeeze that tight ass of hers. Her arms find their way to my chest, and I love how she feels me up, desperate to get a hold of me. She twines her arms around my neck, giving me full access to her skin. I kiss my way to her neck, finally able to press my lips on that one spot I know winds girls up. She starts panting, and then I know I’ve hit the sweet spot.
I’ve waited so long for this that it takes every fiber of my being not to pick her up and bang her against the car right now. She’s a virgin, and I don’t want to make her do things she’s not ready for. She’s never been fucked, and that’s all I ever do. I don’t make love. I bang girls, take them in whatever position I like. I’m not so sure she’s even been kissed like this before.
But shit, this is fucking hot.
I pull back for a second, breathing out my horniness. “God, that dress,” I groan. “Why’d you have to put that on?”
“Couldn’t come to the party in a pair of sweatpants,” she mutters.
She giggles when I leave little pecks on her collarbone, peeking down into her dress. I can already see the swell of her tits, primed and ready for me to cup and lick the crown. “Hmmm …” I rest my head on her shoulder, nibbling on her earlobe. “You look so damn hot … You don’t wanna know what goes on in my mind when you’re all dressed up like this. It’s too dirty to handle,” I whisper.
I can feel the goose bumps forming on her body as my hands slide down her arm. “Although I wouldn’t mind the sweatpants either. Easier to take off.”
Although nothing beats her sex appeal in this black dress. Damn.
I suckle on her earlobe and move back to her lips again, leaving hickeys all over her neck. My hand shifts to her ass and I squeeze tight, feeling her perky flesh in my fingers. She gasps. Hot fucking Jesus. Now I really want to come inside her.
Our lips are locked, our eyes closed, and my mind is whirring with thoughts about stripping her bare. When she grasps my hair and tugs me closer my cock thumps in my pants. My fingers slide down her leg and move up her dress, slowly getting closer to her most sensitive spot. God, I wonder if she’s ever been touched there. I’d like to be the first.
I’m fucking her with my mouth, my tongue going crazy as I press my cock against her thigh. Sweet Jesus. We’re not even naked yet and I already feel like I want to make her scream my name.

Clarissa Wild is the Amazon Bestselling Romance author of FIERCE, a top 200
and top 15 New Adult Romance novel. She is also a writer of erotic romance such as the Blissful Series, The Billionaire's Bet series, the Doing It Series and the Enflamed Series. She is an avid reader and writer of sexy stories about hot men and feisty women. Her other loves include her furry cat friend and learning about different cultures. In her free time she enjoys watching all sorts of movies, reading tons of books and cooking her favorite meals.
Links: Goodreads   Blog   Fb   Twitter   


1.     So tell us a bit about yourself. What’s your background?

I’m Clarissa Wild, and I’m a 23 year old writer of New Adult Romance and Erotic Romance. My latest book FIERCE, which is a college romance, became a top 200 bestselling Romance book on Amazon. My new book FURY is number 1.5 in the series, and it’s a retelling of FIERCE from the guy’s POV.

2.     What’s the story behind your book? Where did you get the idea?

FIERCE was created when I listened to a song from the Goo Goo Dolls called Iris. It told a story of a guy who was misunderstood and the only one who could understand him was a girl. I knew I had to do something with it. Somehow the idea of drugs and college popped into my head, and from there on out I created a story. Sometimes ideas just pop into my head!

3.     What is it that you like most about writing?

I love creating new worlds and stories and coming up with plots and secrets that will amaze readers. I love writing about things that are shocking, on the line of what’s right and wrong. I like seeing what my work does to readers. Their reactions keep me going.

4.     When you write a book, how do you start? Do you plan ahead or do you do something else?

Before I start, I must have a few songs available to listen to while figuring out the plot, so I always search for music that fits the storyline. I create all the characters and their backgrounds first in a spreadsheet. That way I know if it’s too much to put into one book or not. I almost always know how many books I’m going to write before I start writing. Then I start crafting all the scenes, chapter by chapter. Once I have that done, I start writing. :)

5.     Do you have any tips for other writers out there?

Yes, always keep writing, and never give up! I can’t stress this enough. No matter how many times you fail or something doesn’t go your way, you have to keep going. It’s the only way to succeed. That, and drink plenty of tea or coffee ;)

6.     Are you planning on writing more? If so, what types of other books can we expect?

Yes, of course! First, I have a sequel to FURY in the pipelines, which will be book 2 in the series. It’s called FLAME and will continue Autumn’s and Hunter’s love story. Then I would also like to write another book in this series, number 3, which will focus more on his brother, although this idea is not set in stone yet. It all depends whether I’ve got enough material, so it might happen or might not happen ;) If you get my drift.
I have plenty more other novels coming up that I am still brainstorming about, but you’ll definitely hear more from me in 2014 and onwards! Can’t wait to bring you all some more amazing books!

FURY Playlist

FURY was written using a lot of the same songs I listened to while writing FIERCE, but there are a couple of new ones that might be interesting to you ;) Check them out! 
You can check them out below, or listen to them on youtube:

"Hold Me Now" by Red
"Demons" by Imagine Dragons
"Radioactive" by Imagine Dragons
"Supermassive Black Hole" by Muse
"Uprising" by Muse
"Glorious" by Muse
"SAIL" by AwolNation
"The Fighter" by Gym Class Heroes ft. Ryan Tedder
"Iris" by Goo Goo Dolls
"The Reason" by Hoobastank
"Wonderwall" by Oasis
"Work B**ch" by Britney Spears
"Dark Horse" by Katy Perry Ft. Juicy J.
"Holding on and letting go" by Ross Copperman
"Army Of Me" by Björk
"Sweet Dreams" by Sucker Punch
"Ni**as in Paris" by Jay-Z & Kanye West
"Rap God" by Eminem
"All Is Full Of Love" by Björk

Listen on Spotify:


Prizes - open INTL
A paperback copy of Fury 
10$ Amazon Gift Card

Brought to you by 

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Colleen Hoover's MAYBE SOMEDAY Release Day!

From #1 New York Times
 bestselling author
 Colleen Hoover
 a passionate tale of friendship, betrayal, and romance.

At twenty-two years old, Sydney has a great life: She’s in college, working a steady job, in love with her wonderful boyfriend, Hunter, and rooming with her best friend, Tori. But everything changes when she discovers Hunter's cheating on her—and she is left trying to decide what to do next.
Sydney becomes captivated by Ridge, her mysterious neighbor. She can’t take her eyes off him or stop listening to his playing his guitar every day out on his balcony. And there’s something about Sydney that Ridge can’t ignore, either. When their inevitable encounter happens, they soon find themselves needing each other in more ways than one…

From the author of the New York Times bestsellers Slammed, Point of Retreat, Hopeless, This Girl, and Losing Hope, Maybe Someday is destined to be another bestseller and long-lasting fan favorite.

Ebooks buy links: Amazon   B&N   iBooks 

 Links: Maybe Someday Website  

CD: iTunes  

Bio: Colleen Hoover is the author of five New York Times bestselling novels.
Her first series was published in 2012 and includes SLAMMED, POINT OF RETREAT and the companion novel THIS GIRL. Her second series, published in 2013, includes the #1 NYT's bestseller HOPELESS and the companion novel, LOSING HOPE. She has released a free novella, FINDING CINDERELLA, as a thank you to her readers for their continued support. The novella is a companion to her Hopeless series, but can be read as a standalone.
Connect with Colleen: Website   FB  

Monday, March 17, 2014

WIN THE RINGS by K.D. Van Brunt

Win the Rings 

by K.D. Van Brunt

Blurb: Jace has been the property of the U.S. Army since they found out about her when she was five, and now she has become one of its most valuable weapons. But Jace is not the only one of her kind. Gray is one too, but with the help of his sister, he has spent most of his sixteen years hiding from the Army.

Now, the Army has found out about Gray and they cannot allow him to roam free. Operating on the theory that it takes one to catch one, Jace is send out with a special ops squad to hunt Gray down. But Jace is not the only one pursuing Gray, and the competition is after her too. What ensues is a desperate chase through city after city as duty and honor collide with love and sacrifice.

Bio: During the eight hours of the day when I’m not writing, reading or sleeping, I’m a lawyer in Washington, DC. I grew up in Southern California, moved to Seattle before coming east to Boston to go to school. Now, I live in the great state of Maryland with my wife, my dog—a standard poodle named Buffy (and who do you think named her?), and my hot Camaro. One of the few things I like better than pizza is driving fast. So, if you happen be in the DC area and a black Camaro with a red stripe and a rear spoiler roars by and blows your doors off…thaaat could be me.

Blog Tour

03/12 Salon Reads

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Cover Reveal for SON OF SET by Kelsey Ketch

Son of Set
(Descendants of Isis #2)

Release Date: 05/02/14
Summary from Goodreads: “. . . the Sons would never just let him go—alive.”
Seth O’Keefe has broken the laws of his god. He never thought he would sacrifice his own future to protect a Daughter of Isis. But when the Sons of Set discovered Natti is the Secret Keeper, he had no choice. Now, Seth and
Natti are on the run from his father, who wants nothing more than to see Seth
dead. With no allies, Seth turns to the Daughters of Isis for help, hoping they
would protect Natti. But when they meet the Daughters, he discovers a secret
that puts both their lives in more danger. Low on options, Seth sees only one
possibility for survival. He must help Natti solve an ancient puzzle and find
the secret name of Ra.
Natara “Natti” Stone is having a hard time swallowing the truth. She can’t believe what she has learned in the past twenty-four hours: Seth is a Son of Set blessed with charm; she is a Daughter of Isis blessed with a sliver of 
Ma‘at; the locket her grandmother gave her holds an ancient Egyptian secret
linking to Osiris and Isis. That along with being tortured and brutalized by the Sons of Set, she can hardly hold herself together. Thank God for Seth’s touch! That warm, tingling sensation that drowns it all out. Yet her heart struggles to stay focused. She must quickly embrace her destiny before the secret name of Ra falls into the wrong hands.  

*Note: Content for Upper YA*

Book One:(cover linked from Goodreads)
Available from:
Available from:
B6096376-6C81-4465-8935-CE890C777EB9-1855-000001A1E900B890_zps5affbed6.jpg photo
111AD205-AA04-4F9E-A0F4-C1264C4E9F30-1855-000001A1E8CEB6D7_zps9b730b94.jpg  photo KoboIcon_zps515cdc1a.jpg

About the Author: During her high school years, Kelsey Ketch could always be found tucked away in a little corner of the hall or classroom, writing her fantasy worlds and creating illustrations and maps. Today is no different, except now she’s writing in the break room at her office building or at the tables of the Barnes and Noble Café in Cary, North Carolina. She is also an avid reader, a part-time book blogger at Ketch’s Book Nook, and lives with her two orange tabbies and awesome and humorous flat-mate.Daughter of Isis is her debut novel.  For more information, please visit her site at

***Author Links***  photo
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icongoodreads32_zps60f83491.png  photo icontwitter-32x32_zpsae13e2b2.png  photo


Two prize packs, each
containing a silver ankh pendant with seven knot anklet, Son of Set e-reader
bling, 3 bookmarks, 2 temporary tattoos, 2 character collectable
cards, and 2 wristbands (INT).
Cover Reveal Organized by:

Friday, March 14, 2014

Rachel Schieffelbein's DON'T FALL Cover Reveal, Vote For Your Favorite Cover

Don't Fall
Release Date: 2014 
Swoon Romance

Summary from Goodreads:  In which a teenage girl endures the over-protective love of her adoptive mother until she falls for a boy who has her wanting to spread her wings, pitched as a contemporary retelling of RAPUNZEL 

Seventeen-year-old Anya leads a very secluded life in a house on the edge of town with her adopted mother. She doesn't go to school, but instead has a private tutor. Her over-protective mom keeps her so sheltered that she doesn't even have a best friend. 

But Anya doesn't seem to mind. She has her books, her photography, and her daydreams, and would do anything to please her mom. Until one day at the library, the only place she's allowed to go, she takes a picture of a beautiful boy. 

Before long she's lying to her mom, and sneaking out late at night to meet Zander. But Zander wants more than a secret romance. If Anya wants to be with the boy of her dreams, she will have to risk her relationship with the only other person she's ever cared about.

Swoon Romance wants you to help them decide the cover for Don’t Fall!
They have three lovely cover options for you to choose from.  Please vote below on your favorite cover!

Which cover do you like better? 

Option #1 Designed by, photograph by Beth Mitchell

Option #2 Photographed and designed by Laura Lanning

Option #3 Designed by Anna Zaffke, photo from  Aleshyn_Andrei

Poll Maker

About the Author: Rachel grew up in a tiny town in Minnesota. She still lives there, with her husband and their four kids. She coaches high school speech and theater, rides Arabian horses, reads as much as she can, and writes stories.

Author Links: 

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Thursday, March 13, 2014

Book Blitz- Black Amaranth by Sasha Hibbs

Black Amaranth 
by Sasha Hibbs 
Release Date: 08/16/13

Summary from Goodreads:

Eighteen-year-old Ally Watson arrives home from high school graduation, more than a little annoyed that her Uncle Argyle—Ally’s legal guardian and only surviving relative—didn’t even bother showing up. But instead of berating him for his forgetfulness, Ally finds him in a life-or-death battle with a monster. Argyle manages to kill the creature, and gives Ally a parcel containing a destiny she never knew existed.

Ally, along with her best friends Michael, Jessica, and David, hurry to Georgia to uncover the truth of Uncle Argyle’s secrets, and the meaning of the mysterious marks that Ally bears. Are the marks related to the blacksmith mythology of her ancestors? Who are these heavenly warriors who show up in the oddest of places? And will an ancient gypsy curse destroy the very things Ally fights to save?

Black Amaranth: a simple flower, a symbol with an ancient legacy, a conduit for prophecy…while faith and hope are essential to the journey, Ally soon discovers that love is the most powerful force of all.

Buy Links: Amazon

About the Author

By age 5, Sasha Hibbs' favorite movie was Gone With the Wind. By age 12, she completed her 7th grade book report on the sequel, Scarlett. By 18, she met and married her very own Mr. Rhett Butler and as it turns out, she never had to worry about going back to Tara to win the love of her life back. Fortunately, he stuck with her.
With a love of all things paranormal, the ambiance of the South with its gigantic antebellum mansions and canopies of Spanish moss, and a love for her husband’s rich storytelling of blacksmiths and the mythology surrounding their origins, it wasn’t long until the world of her debut novel, Black Amaranth, was born.
When not working her day job as a nurse, you can find Sasha dreaming of her next beach trip, reading the latest YA novel, and drinking more white chocolate mocha than she should.
Sasha lives in mountainous West Virginia with her husband, Tim, and their two daughters, Aeliza and Ava. She is currently hard at work on book two in The Vulcan Legacies series.

Author Links: Facebook ~ Blog ~ Website ~ Goodreads ~ Twitter ~ Website


1 print signed copy of Black Amaranth (US only)

 a Rafflecopter giveaway


Contest is void where prohibited. Entrants must be 13 or else have parent or guardian’s permission to enter. Winners will be notified via email and will have 48 hours to respond or another winner’s name will be selected. Winning entries will be verified for authenticity.

“Stay, girl.” Ally pointed her finger down at the porch. Miss Elma was obedient, sliding her long muscled legs down, crossing them over top each other and resting her head on her large paws. “Good girl.”

Ally stepped in behind of Parthenia, leaving the rest to trail in after her. Ally looked around in awe. She had never been in a bar before, and wasn’t too disappointed by the one she was standing in now. Red booths lined the unevenly cut board and batten walls, and a few were occupied by men and women who stared directly at them. Round tables just big enough for two were scattered throughout, leading up to a large empty dance floor. Strings of colored bulbs hung down low from the walls, casting dim shadows that mixed in with smoky air. Bar stools surrounded the long slab bar, while behind it a large, intimidating man eyed them up as he casually wiped his hands off on a white towel.

“Hello, Lou,” Parthenia said. “Denaulda around?”

He jerked his head in the direction of the stage, Parthenia following the line of his gaze, sighed softly and said, “Great.”

“Remember me just saying that Gypsies were gifted with a particular talent? Strong magic?” Parthenia whispered close to Ally’s ear.

“Uh-huh,” Ally said, looking straight ahead to the empty stage.

“Well, you’re about to find out what Denaulda’s is,” Parthenia said, sitting on a barstool and turning to face the stage. “Might as well have a seat and try to stay there.”

Michael and Dave eased down into an empty booth, leaving the opposite side open for the girls. Eli and Brandi opted to sit with Parthenia on barstools.

At the corner of the wooden stage, men were pulling out and tuning guitars and harmonicas. As a slow sultry rhythm played out of their instruments, a petite, dark-haired woman emerged from behind beaded curtains onto the stage. She slinked her way up to the microphone stand like a snake closing in on its prey. She curled her slender fingers around the mic as she cocked her head to the side, looking at her audience with thoughtful, heavy-lidded eyes. Ally’s arms erupted in goose bumps, a surefire warning that something otherworldly was about to happen.

She began to sing, sound floating dreamingly out of her mouth, weaving in and around the crowd like an invisible serpent, creeping up around their heels, sliding up and into their souls.

Michael and Dave twisted around, their heads following the direction of the eerie tune as Jessica mechanically stood up from the bench.

“What are you doing?” Ally whispered between her teeth while tugging on Jessica’s sleeve.

“Just one…dance.” Jessica didn’t look down at Ally; she walked slowly onto the dance floor as though the melody willed her to do so. Problem was, Jessica was a wallflower, or at least when they went to the prom Ally couldn’t peel her away from the wall if her life depended on it.

Ally looked around wondering if Denaulda’s music was having the same effect on everyone else. Brandi smiled naughtily which told Ally there must have been some part of her that expected this. Beside her, Eli watched Jessica through burning eyes. A few patrons joined Jessica on the dance floor, swaying back and forth to the beat, their bodies sweeping in and out in circular motions.

From the wall, a steely gaze followed Jessica. A boy with a shock of blond hair materialized from the shadows and inched his way towards the dance floor. He didn’t look much older than they did but he carried himself like a prowling marauder. His arms encircled Jessica’s waist as he closed the distance between them. To Ally’s surprise, Jessica welcomed him.

Denaulda’s lips curled up into a wicked smile. The tune hung in the air, like a poisonous gas. Ally couldn’t ignore the soothing, rich words.

When we were young and full of life you reached in deep, and pierced my heart with a knife.

The night cries out, sweet and high, weeping for her children with a gentle sigh.

Young nights, young nights, where did you go?

I can smell the night air, and how the moonlight glowed.

Young nights, young nights, come back to the home we both know.

“Where’s Lucy?” Dave kept his eyes fixed on Denaulda. “I think I should…” Dave’s words drifted off into the chorus.

Jessica reached her hands up and tangled her fingers into the thick blond hair of the boy she’d glued herself to. They appeared to only have eyes for each other as though no one else existed in the room. Ally was ready to get up and separate the two when another wave of lyrics poured out from Denaulda, nailing Ally to her seat.

I have loved you tender and loved you long,
but you were caught in the crossfire, we got it all wrong.
Can we ever go back to the way it used to be?
Young nights under the Spanish moss, just you and me.
I can smell the night air, and how the moonlight glowed.
Young nights, young nights, come back to the home we both know.

Ally couldn’t budge. “Michael?” She looked up, knowing he would fix this, but when she met his eyes, her breath caught in the back of her throat. Heat spread up through her face as his blue eyes bored into hers. The Michael staring at her now wasn’t looking at her as friends look at one another, but as something much different: as a man who looks, really looks, at a woman. Without Denaulda’s enchanting music, Ally wondered if his penetrating gaze would have bothered her or not.

Eli crossed the floor in long strides, catching Ally’s attention. She sat there unable to move, nervous, knowing that the direction Eli was currently going in wasn’t a good one. Eli’d had a chip on his shoulder since they all met, but more so towards Jessica than the rest of them. Ally just didn’t know why, though.

“Enough.” Ally could barely hear what Eli was saying to Jessica over the music. Denaulda looked entertained by what was transpiring on the dance floor. Jessica paid no attention to him, moving in closer to her partner, so close you couldn’t wedge a piece of paper between them.

Eli’s lips twisted into a snarl as he grabbed Jessica’s wrist. The next few moments happened before Ally could fully register what she was seeing. The blond boy swung at Eli, whose hand cupped the boy’s fist, holding him there effortlessly. He jerked Jessica to the side, causing her to rock on her heels, attempting to balance herself. He flung the boy’s fist down in disgust. “You’re done here,” Eli said to the boy through clenched teeth.

“Oh, no we’re not,” Jessica said, seething and stepping away from Eli, going back into the arms of her dance partner.

Eli growled as he grabbed her arm. Jessica spun around and slapped Eli across the face, sending an echo throughout the bar.

“Do not ever touch me again!” Jessica’s face reddened, almost matching the color of her hair. “Do you understand me?”

Eli stood there blinking in disbelief, raising a hand up to where hers had just been.

“Okay, boys.” Denaulda motioned for the band behind her to stop. “I think it’s time for a break.”

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