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Still Not Yours
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Pretend engaged. Total opposites. So wrong it hurts.
I’m on my last nerve.
Then along came little old me.
If only the men who want me dead were my biggest problem.
We’re crossing lines like electric fences when it hits me.
From Wall Street Journal bestselling author Nicole Snow – a tale of hot tempered opposites thrown together. Fate has no chill when alpha bodyguard meets the sheltered sweetness who makes his world complete. Full length romance novel with all the Happily Ever After butterflies!
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Little White Lines (Olivia)
You never know which day will be the last day of your life.
I’m pretty sure this is the last day of mine, right now, as the sound of gunshots whites out the world around me into nothing but reverberating echoes, then splashes that emptiness with blood.
My ears are ringing.
My heart hits my ribs, racing so fast, running on pure adrenaline and moving at Mach speeds.
Jesus, there’s a dead man at my feet.
I don’t know him, never met him. But I know if I live past this frozen, pulse-stopping moment, I’ll never forget his face.
I’ll never forget his strange look of shock, eyes wide, like he’s not really dead. Just frozen in time. Caught in the moment he realizes the two men leaning out of a nondescript, matte grey van outside my sister’s palatial mansion are pointing their guns right at him.
Only, that was fifteen seconds ago. Now, he’s crumpled on the sidewalk, and those guns are pointing at me.
I can feel the sights of the weapons like they’re touching me, reaching across the motionless space between us to caress the vulnerable places of my body and make them quiver, tremble, tighten up with frightened chills.
Everything goes loud. It’s not just the surrealness either.
The men are shouting something, but I can’t make out the words.
I can’t make out anything but the rattle of my own breathing. Then one word repeating over and over in my panicked brain.
Ask me later, and maybe I’ll tell you I made a calm, calculated decision, took a risk, and did something badass to save my life.
Ask me now, though, and the only thing I can say is my mind isn’t moving but my legs are, my lizard brain taking over and deciding the best option out of fight or flight is flight. No contest.
I don’t look where I’m going. I’m just airborne, so fast and frantic I can’t feel my feet touch the ground.
The only direction that matters is away – away from the dead man, away from the danger, away from the van full of men with guns. I don’t realize I’m fleeing right out into the busy street.
Until I almost die for the second time in less than a minute.
I’m lucky the cab driver saw me coming and slowed down.
His front bumper only jolts against me, just hard enough for the pain to slap me out of my daze of animal panic. I tumble against the taxi’s hood, clutching the metal to keep from falling, my feet wobbling under me.
For half a frozen second the taxi driver and I stare at each other through the windshield, his eyes wide and ringed in white, my face feeling like a frozen mask caught mid-scream.
Then a gunshot rings out behind me, loud as an explosion, and I fly into motion.
I scramble around the side of the cab, grabbing at anything I can reach until I feel a handle. It’s not even the right door, but I don’t care. I yank the front passenger side door open, throw myself inside, slam the door shut behind me, and immediately duck down below the dash.
“Listen, I’ll double your fare, I don’t care, but if you want to get us out of here alive – just drive!”
The driver stares at me for a second too long, an eternity where I feel my heart stopping and restarting all over again. Then he slams down on the gas so hard, he nearly throws me against the dash.
I barely catch myself, flinging my arms out and smacking them against the glove compartment hard enough to form bruises.
I can feel everything, honestly, my senses ramped so high by adrenaline that just the tickle of my own hair on the back of my neck is like claws and feelers raking over me, making me want to scream.
Shaking, I push myself up and grab the seatbelt strap, though I can’t bring myself to move enough to actually put it on.
Staring in the rear-view mirror, I see traffic scatter around us as the driver rockets down the street. I don’t see the van anymore.
I don’t see anything but annoyed people honking at us, flipping us off, and my sister’s front gate receding rapidly in the distance.
Not rapidly enough.
I don’t think anything is fast enough to put real distance between me, them, and what just happened.
“Miss?” the driver ventures tentatively. The violent vibrations of the car around me ease a little as he lays off the gas as we get deeper into traffic. “Miss…I think you should call the police.”
“Yeah,” I manage shakily. “Yeah, probably. I don’t…I don’t know what that was. Why they…”
Words die when my stomach suddenly revolts. I clutch harder at the seatbelt strap until it’s just a scrunched up ribbon in my hands. Everything turns sideways, wrong-ways, and my gut roils and my head is swimming and my mouth floods with a terrible salty taste.