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Casey Jones has wasted so much time chasing other people’s dreams and always making excuses to put off her own. So, after quitting her job, she is heading back home to live with her parents, in the hope of finally doing something she wants to do.
Daniel “Rusty” Locke has always regretted not telling Casey how he felt before she left for college. He had to watch her drive away from him, but now she’s back. He’s got a chance, and he’s not going to screw it up. With her back in town, he intends to show Casey exactly how he feels for her.
Casey doesn’t believe in love or commitment, but being in Rusty’s bed, she finds it hard to want to leave. He’s everything a woman could ever want. Only, sleeping with him, comes with a chance at commitment. Is this what she wants out of life? In her fear, she retreats inside herself.
When the truth finally hits her, Casey knows she has to do something to make it up to Rusty, but what exactly can she do? Propose? She has never put herself out there for any other person, but Rusty’s not just anyone—he’s her man, and she’s willing to do whatever it takes to keep him.
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Going back home after eight years didn’t exactly feel like the right thing to do for Casey Jones. No matter what anyone said, in her own eyes, she’d failed. Well, not really failed, but she needed a break from the city life. She had hoped it wouldn’t come in the form of her quitting her much-loved job as an editor, but she needed to take a break. Fortunately, working for the past eight years without a single vacation meant she’d saved enough to take an extended one right now, possibly through Halloween, Thanksgiving, and even Christmas, and it was only June.
What could possibly be wrong with actually enjoying the last half of a year without doing anything but what she’d set out to do since she was ten years old—write?
There were so many excuses she could come up with for her reason not to write a single thing. From going to work every single day, to helping other budding authors, to just needing a weekend to clear her head. Characters weren’t coming, or just plain and simple, she didn’t want to write anymore.
Not great for an author who had zero releases under her belt in the past eight years. She’d seen a couple of amazing authors come through her work, and they all had the same advice: write what you love, not to market.
Seemed simple enough.
Of course it did.
Only, Casey never really knew what she enjoyed. Sure, she loved certain tropes in her books, but what did she really want to put on paper? She could write erotica easily enough. All she needed was a dick and pussy, and that was easy. It wasn’t about the ease; she wanted to write something with true meaning that connected to others on some basic level. She started to sound so fucking pretentious.
Reading was supposed to be for fun.
Yet, her little laptop remained empty of actual words. She had about three hundred saved documents, and nothing on them apart from the occasional mention of chapters, prologues, or random words that were just in her head. She even believed there was a chapter that said, “I don’t know what to write”. Maybe even a couple instances of “fuck you” there as well. Either way, it hadn’t gone well.
Now, she was on her way back home to Mom and Dad, who, according to them, were excited to finally have their little bear back.
She didn’t know why they called her bear. She was neither cute nor furry, but then, she did have a nice temper to match her mood at times. She wondered, not for the first time, if it was that.
No, it couldn’t be.
Her parents wouldn’t be like that.
She ran her fingers through her dark brown locks, the tips a lighter shade as she had attempted to dye it a blonde a few years ago. The only proof of that was the locks right at the end. Damn things.
Not long to go now.
Creeker Falls awaited.
She had no idea why the town was called that. Her mother had once said it was because if you stood still for long enough, you could hear the entire town creaking as it headed into the falls.
Yeah, not buying it. She figured out long ago that her mother was just trying to get her to be quiet. The good old quiet game that never worked. It did though for a short time. She’d lie silently listening to the world, believing they were moving. She would even measure where she stood, and see if she’d moved.
Crazy imagination some kids had.
She’d been right up there.
For the longest time growing up, she’d been convinced there had been a clown hiding out in her closet. It wasn’t. She always had bright clothes as a kid, and it meant any color she saw through the slats was from all her own clothes, but in her young mind, it meant a killer was waiting for her.
It was one of the last times she’d ever snuck in a horror movie. They just weren’t worth it. Horrors were the bane of her existence. She refused to edit them; not that she had a problem with the genre, she just wasn’t good at it.
Being in the city in her early years after leaving home, she had watched a whole trilogy of horror movies, only for her to scare herself shitless and end up keeping the lights on for an entire month to be able to deal with the chaos going on inside her head. It had been a really interesting summer.
Fortunately, during all this time, she hadn’t found much reason to date. The guys were okay, nothing ground-breaking. She wasn’t some simpering twenty-eight-year-old virgin. There had been boyfriends, but only the few months kind.
Nothing really … interesting.
She had only enjoyed them, as they had enjoyed her.
Of course, if any of the guys she went out with even mentioned something about her going on a diet, they were kicked to the curb. Much to her shock and irritation, a lot of men thought it was okay to comment on a woman’s size.