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About the author:
Sharlyn G. Branson is a Bestselling author of contemporary and new adult romance—BEAUTIFUL DEVIL DUET, BETWEEN CLOUDS AND STARS and THE LIMITS OF DESTINY SERIES (ranked #1 on Amazon USA, UK, Australia and Canada). She is known for her sexy romance style that's full of mystery and emotions.
Sharlyn is happily married and mother of a lovely boy. She is addicted to coffee and love to travel around the world with her family.
Sharlyn G. Branson is currently working on her next novel…
Here is a short sample from the book:
IRETURNED TO my apartment, which now seemed even smaller since I spent so much time at Ryan’s huge house. I threw my handbag at the desk. Then I bent to pick up my cat and lay with her on the bed, suppressing the desire to scream and cry.
The little treasure snuggled on my breasts. Kitty was small and incredibly fluffy. She meowed, prompting me to pet her. I slid my fingers across her tiny head and she closed her eyes and purred. The soft sounds calmed me down, if only for a while.
My thoughts returned to everything that happened. I was tormented by Ryan’s wild sexual fantasies and desires. It was a piece of cake for him to get two women in bed for a threesome. I’d never take part in that, I didn’t have those desires.
It wasn’t too long ago when I hadn’t wanted to give myself to one man, let alone consider the possibility of two— at the same time. I’d given my virginity to the only man who
stole my heart—Ryan Wilder. And he took it in the most seductive way possible, without causing any physical pain. He was a sex God who took whatever he wanted.
If you give your love to a man, your identity is lost— that’s the naked truth. Men become controlling and try to break you. They want to fit you into a mold, but that mold never quite matches. And inevitably, a woman loses her individuality, striving to satisfy her man.
Ryan was no exception to the rule.
My roommate, Misty, entered my room, interrupting my thoughts.
“What happened for God’s sake? You passed through the living room like a thundercloud, without even saying hi.” She asked demandingly, hands on hips.
Her chin was raised, she looked like a haughty queen, hair tied in a loose bun with large earrings hanging from her ears.
“Sorry, I’m not in a mood to talk. And to argue? Even less.”
She sat next to me on the bed. “What did Ryan do? Did he cheat on you?”
I sighed loudly. There was no getting out of this situation without telling her what happened. “I played the wrong film by mistake. A recording of Ryan having fun with two chicks.”
For a few seconds, silence fell. My friend gazed at me compassionately. I didn’t need her pity.
“Fuck, that’s a lucky guy,” Travis, Misty’s boyfriend, said loudly, his voice preceding his entry into my room. His words
won him not one, but two angry stares. If looks could kill, Travis would be a dead man.
He raised his hands defensively. “It’s true. I don’t know any man who hasn’t dreamed of having a threesome at least once.” He glanced at Misty and softened his face, trying to act like a fawning cat. “I don’t need that any more, now that I have you, my precious. You give me everything I need.”
As expected, my friend melted at his words. He leaned toward her and gave her a deep, sloppy kiss, making Misty wrap her arms around him with a sheer pleasure.
I rolled my eyes. Men. For them, real feelings held no value.
THE NEW YORK apartment where I lived with my mother and brother was small, but it was big enough for the three of us. There was one major problem. Mom always got too drunk and brought men home.
Today was no different.
As soon as I heard the man’s voice, I tugged my brother’s hand, quietly getting his attention.
“Fabien, let’s go play our game,” My whisper was mouse soft. I crossed my fingers and smiled with as much as excitement as I could muster, hoping he would agree.
Our game, consisted of us hiding in the closet, while I quietly told him stories I made up on the spot. They were about good magicians who cared for the poor and the needy, animals that could talk to people, and good parents who took care of their children. Our game was always about good things. Maybe because there wasn’t enough good in our lives.
We hid in the closet for one simple reason—I was afraid one of the men might come into our room and hurt us. In
order to avoid drawing anyone’s attention, I had to make sure my four-year old brother didn’t make noise.
“I’m hungry. I want to eat,” Fabien whined, refusing to go into the closet.
“Please, Fabien, we’ll eat later,” I implored, silently blaming myself for forgetting to bring food from the kitchen earlier. “Do you want to play with the airplanes?” I took two model airplanes from our small toy box and lined them up on the carpet. “Let’s make a runway. How about it?”
“I want Mom.” Huge tears started running down his small, still-babyish face. His lips curved down, making my heart twist in pain. I was only eleven, but I already knew our mother wasn’t capable of looking after us properly.
“Mom’s busy, she has a guest.”
“I’m hungry.” He raised his small fists to his face and wiped his wet eyes.
I hugged him and stroked his head. “Calm down. I made potato soup. It’s still warm. Be quiet and stay here while I go to the kitchen and bring you back a bowl.”
Slowly, I pushed to my feet and twisted the doorknob. The hinges creaked as I slid the door open and shut. I heard voices from my mother’s room. Her laughter sliced through my heart. How could she have fun with some man instead of taking care of her son? I was still a child and, therefore, no substitute for a mother, no matter how hard I tried.
I went into the kitchen and poured some soup into a bowl.
As I cut a slice of bread, I heard the familiar creak of the door and the man entered the kitchen. It was Pete, one of Mom’s usual guests. His shirt was unbuttoned, revealing his hairy chest. The zipper of his jeans was undone, showing a bulge under his boxers.
“Well, what do we have here?” As he walked toward me, I took several steps back. He was clearly drunk. I smelled alcohol on his breath. “You’re beautiful, sweetie. And what’s that under your T-shirt? Your breasts have started budding.” His glazed eyes flashed with perverted delight.
Gripped by fear’s ugly tentacles, I froze in the corner. The hands of terror were choking me hard, making blood throb in my ears.
The air in the room became dense and heavy.
As soon as my mother entered the kitchen, she said, “Let her be, Pete. She’s still a child.” Then she grabbed him by the elbow and tried to get his attention. In the process, her robe became undone, revealing one of her breasts.
Mom was very beautiful—long, blonde hair, small nose, high cheekbones and thick lips. She always told us she would become a world-famous actress and earn lots of money. But that never happened. The directors came and went, never getting past her bed. Years passed, but Mom never got her big break. My brother and I were the products of those dreams.
One day, I asked her about my father and she gave me a photo of some man. She explained he was a businessman who travelled a lot and, therefore, had no time for family and kids.
Fabien wasn’t lucky enough to find out about his father. I suspected my mother didn’t actually know.
Pete grabbed a handful of my hair. Horrified, I barely suppressed a squeal. “You’ll be even more beautiful than your mother. We just need to wait until your breasts get a bit bigger.” He laughed as if he’d made a great joke.
Eyes wide in terror, I looked at my mom. For the first time, I saw fear in her eyes.
“Please, Pete, leave Emily alone. Let’s go back to the bedroom.” She wedged herself between us and ran her hands across his hairy chest.
He gave her his attention. Pete’s mouth twisted into an ugly smile. He let go of my hair to grab her ass, and I fell to the floor.
Too shocked to move, I watched as she led him back to her bedroom. My face was wet—tears had been streaming unnoticed down my cheeks. I wanted to scream, cry aloud, but I needed to be quiet.
I turned to the open door and saw Fabien standing there, holding a small toy airplane.
“Don’t cry, Emily.” He rushed to me and hugged me with his small arms.
I kissed his curly brown hair. Tears blurred my vision.
Not knowing what else to do or how to stop it, I let desperation engulf me and broke down, piece by piece. The sticky, dirty fingers of hopelessness sank their nails deep inside my skin.