Monday, April 24, 2017

Baby Daddy Cover Reveal!




Title: Baby Daddy
Author: Nelle L’Amour
Genre: Romantic Comedy
Standalone Full Length Novel
Cover Design: Arijana Karcic/Cover It! Designs
Release Date: TBA



Blurb

A new standalone romantic comedy told in dual POV by New York Times bestselling author Nelle L’Amour!

What the hell was I thinking when I was in college? Me, Drake Hanson. God’s gift to women. Aka Donor 5262. Wanking off for dollars. It was a piece of cake and twelve hundred bucks a week came in handy. Wank, bank, and go. I just didn’t think about the consequences. One day, some kid is going to call me Daddy and I’m going to get hit with a major paternity suit.

Kids freak me out. This baby daddy has too many as it is. I don’t need another. If a woman asks me, how many kids do you want to have, I don’t walk away. I run. But now, my father is pressuring me to settle down because the investor who’s looking to acquire his animation company doesn’t want a player running a family-oriented business.


So, I’ve chosen celibacy until the deal goes through. No more one-night stands or tabloid headlines. And then she came along. The temp. Dee Walker. The minute the hot as sin brunette with that gorgeous ass and those chocolate brown eyes stepped foot into my office and saved me from an ugly disaster with her magic hands, I wanted her to be mine. Except she’s totally off limits. And there’s someone else she loves with all her heart and soul that I can’t replace. 

I’ve never mixed business with pleasure. But I’m willing to break all the rules. Can my temp become my forever before my past catches up with me?





Pre-order Links


Amazon links coming soon





Excerpt

Drake 


My eyes stayed on Dee as she returned to the kitchen. She was trying to play it cool, but she was on fire. I just knew it from the way she played with her food and kept drinking her wine. And from those little blushes. After our conversation, I found myself even more wildly attracted to her. 

I liked the fact that she wasn’t stuck up or material. 

I liked the fact that she was both honest and humble. 

I liked the fact that she was a fighter and a survivor. 

I liked the fact that she was funny and caring. Her laugh was adorable like the rest of her. And she made me laugh too. 

Yup, I liked a lot of things about my temp, even the fact that she could cook like America’s Top Chef, but I loved the fact that she totally turned me on. I craved more of her like a little kid craved more candy. She was irresistibly delicious. And not good for me. The warning sign was there in bright neon—Steer Clear!—but I found myself not heeding it. Why was it men wanted more of what they couldn’t have? Fuck. She wasn’t even available. My chest clenched as I fought the urge to follow her into the kitchen and bend her over the counter. 

“You’re going to love this.” Dee’s bright voice cut my mental ramblings short. My eyes instantly darted in her direction. She was heading my way with two sundae glasses piled high with whip cream. Long spoons stood up from the glasses. 

“Shit. Is that what I think it is?” My mouth was watering as she set one of the fluted glasses in front of me. She sat down again in her spot and placed the other glass on her placemat. 

“Uh-huh, it’s a hot fudge sundae. Tyson loves them.” 

I immediately dug in and put a heaping teaspoon of the creamy vanilla ice cream, warm rich fudge, and fluffy whipped cream into my mouth. I moaned as I swallowed. “Jesus, Dee, this is sinfully good! I haven’t had one since I was a kid.” 

“Your mother made them for you?” 

“Hell no. My nanny Blanca did. She made them just the way you do. I fucking loved them.” I ingested another big spoonful. “You’re going to kill me.” 

She laughed. The cutest, sexiest laugh. “Don’t die on me. I’ve had enough drama for one night.” 

I laughed too. That was a fact. 

Dee dug into her sundae. My eyes stayed fixed on her as she put an equally heaping teaspoon to her mouth. A sexy little “mmm” spilled out as she savored the delectable desert. It was so refreshing to be with a real woman who had a healthy appetite and didn’t pick at lettuce leaves or call a blueberry dessert. A little bit of the whip cream stayed behind on her kissable lips. My cock flexed as she licked it off with her tongue. She had no clue how fucking sexy she was and that’s what made her sexier. My deviant mind wandered to all the places I could lick whip cream off from her. Her pussy was one of them. My cock twitched at the delicious thought. 

“Do you want my cherry?” she asked, giving me a jolt. What kind of loaded question was that? Oh God, Lord of the Boners! I wanted to eat her pussy, oh pretty please with a cherry on top. 

“You don’t want it?” I managed, almost choking on my words. 

“Uh-uh. I don’t like them. I just put it on to make the sundae look pretty. Tyson loves them. She once ate a whole jar of them.” 

“A girl after my own heart. I did that once, too, when I was her age.” 

“So, you want it?” she asked again, already dangling the bright red candied fruit in front of me by its stem. 

What a fucking tease! With a boner raging under my jeans, I snagged it out of her fingers with my mouth and sucked it, squeezing out the juice. I had the burning desire to kiss her, to share the sweetness, and to taste hers. It took all I had not to pull her into my arms and devour her. I wasn’t getting kudos from any little voice in my head or from my throbbing cock. I went back to the sundae and consumed it until there wasn’t a drop to be had. 

“Should we listen to the auditions now?” Her voice was hesitant. 

“It can wait till Monday.” The truth is I didn’t even bring them along. 

She shifted uncomfortably. “Well then, I guess it’s time to call it a night.” 

A short stretch of silence followed until I broke it. “Dee, I don’t think you should stay here alone tonight. It’s too risky. The asshole may come back.” 

She weighed my words. “What are you trying to say? That I should check into some hotel? 

Or come home with me. The thought of her all naked in my bed sent my cock into a tailspin. Before I could respond, she continued. 

“I don’t think so. I need to be here for Tyson when she comes home in the morning.” 

“Then let me stay here.” 

“You can’t. One bedroom belongs to my sister who will likely be home later; the other is mine. Tyson shares it with me.” 

“I’ll sleep on the couch. C’mon, think about it. I won’t come near you.” I paused for a beat. “Unless you beg.” 

She flushed and then flung one word at me: “Fine.”


In no time, I was stretched out on the couch, my eyes closed with dirty dreams ahead.



Author Bio

I am a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author who lives in Los Angeles with her Prince Charming-ish husband, twin college-bound princesses, and a bevy of royal pain-in-the-butt pets. A former executive in the entertainment industry with a prestigious Humanitas Prize for promoting human dignity and freedom to my credit, I gave up playing with Barbies a long time ago, but I still enjoy playing with toys with my hubby. While I write in my PJs, I love to get dressed up and pretend I’m Hollywood royalty. My steamy stories feature characters that will make you laugh, cry, and swoon and stay in your heart forever. They’re often inspired by my past life.

To learn about my new releases, sales, and giveaways, please sign up for my newsletter and follow me on social media. I love to hear from my readers.


Author Links

Saturday, April 22, 2017

ARC Review - Fashionably Fanged by Robyn Peterman!


BLURB:

My name is Venus. I’m a two-hundred-year old killing machine and I’m trading in my daggers and sword for a sparkly dress and an obscene swim suit. Tiny strips of Lycra are not my typical battle wear, but when in Oklahoma…
 
Armed with a fairly decent attitude, two debatably heterosexual insane old ladies, a woman I’d wanted to kill less than eight hours ago and the possible love of my undead life, I’m in over my head with this. Of course I have no clue what this is going to entail, but that’s never stopped me before.
 
I’m learning quickly nothing is as it seems—not my past and least of all my future. With the not-so-angelic Angels watching our every move and more butt glue, lipstick and hairspray than I knew existed, I’m gonna take my fate by the balls and twist. Hard.
 
In a race with death for the cursed life of the man I’m falling in love with, there’s no room for error. Especially when I can’t decide if I’d rather head butt him or jump his sexy bones.
 
Mixed up in a tangled trap of spotlights, sequins and seduction, I’m gunning for a crown and my happily ever after with the arrogant alpha-hole who makes me feel alive.
 
And the winner is…
Hopefully me.

MY REVIEW:

BABY JESUS IN A TUBE TOP, who is ready for Venus's wild, entertaining, SUPER sexy story? I know I am! This book was another rip-roaringly, disgusting, laugh-your-butt off good time that left me both flabbergasted, giggling uncontrollably and definitely hot as heck! Robyn Peterman takes crazy, wild, paranormal fun to a whole new level with Fashionably Fanged! Venus is amazing, and sweet, strong and with a temper that is quick to ignite and boy, she can kick some major butt! And Gareth, even in his weakened state, is hot, cocky, sinful, charming and when him and Venus get together, its like the fourth of July with all the sparks and pops!

If you love a book with loads of humor, witty dialogue, entertaining banter and a HOOT of a story, then you will LOVE Fashionably Fanged. Robyn Peterman has fantastic writing skills! She makes me laugh, makes me fall in love each and ever time with her freaky adorable characters and crazy side characters as well as laugh out loud every few seconds....I just CAN'T go wrong with a book by Miss Peterman!

Fashionably Fanged gets a WILDLY ENTERTAINING FIVE SHOOTING STARS! Fun, sexy, snarky, and OH SO CRAZY, Venus may very well beat Astrid! 

Pre-Order Fashionably Fanged today:



ARC Review - Sultry At 30 by Cassandra Lawson!



BLURB:

Delaney
Most days, I feel like a complete fraud. I’m an erotica writer whose only lover in the last decade has needed a constant supply of AA batteries. When I told my closest friends I was going to find a lover, I didn’t plan to actually follow through. I certainly didn’t expect to have mind-blowing sex with Sebastian, a much too young man I met while shopping for a new vibrator. The scenario was even too extreme for one of my books.

It was supposed to be one night, but Sebastian has no intention of settling for just one night. The question is, can I get past my own hang-ups and give him a chance to prove he can help me write my own happy ending?

Love Without Batteries Series
Following their disastrous marriages, Brook, Chelsea, and Delaney swore off men. After years of being on their own, these ladies have decided they want more. At the age of thirty, the three friends make a pact to re-enter the dating world. Little do they know they are all destined to find love in the arms of younger men.
 

MY REVIEW:

HOLY HOTNESS ON A HOT DAY BATMAN! Sultry At 30 WAS HOT HOT HOOOOOOOT! Steamy, sultry, downright SEXY, Sebastian and Delaney were AWE-MAZING! Some...ok EVERY dirty, delicious scene left me hot and bothered and deliciously turned on. This being the third book in Miss Lawson's addicting and incredible Love Without Batteries series, I am DESPERATE to reread every single book, just to feel EVERYTHING I felt when I first read this series. Out of all the books, Delaney and Sebastian are most assuredly my favorite couple! I love how dirty, sexy, fun, and AMAZING they were. You can't get scenes any hotter than the ones I read in this book.

Other than the amazing sex, I LOOOOOVED the humor and banter between Delaney and Sebastian. These two were a ton of fun and had me laughing at every turn and sighing blissfully. Cassandra Lawson writes some of the VERY best romantic comedies I have had the pleasure of reading. I love her humor, and the way she writes a witty dialogue and the way she made me fall in absolute LUST and LOVE with her younger heroes and slightly older heroines. I never imagined I would be interested in reading ANY romance featuring a younger man because I never pictured a younger man being mature or all that manly yet, but Miss Lawson created the PERFECT man with Sebastian. He may be only 22 but he was so incredibly sexy, passionate, dominant, fun, charming, and amazingly mature. I couldn't resist him or ANY of the other younger heroes in this series and for that I thank Miss Lawson! She made me cross that invisible line I never expected to cross. And I not only don't regret it, but I am not afraid now to search out romances with younger men and slightly older women. 

Sultry At 30 is WONDERFUL, AMAZING, CHARMING, AND SEXY AS HELL! I give this book a DOWN AND DIRTY FIVE SHOOTING STARS! I have hearts in my eyes over this book, and I have no doubt you will too...an ABSOLUTE TREASURE!



Sultry at 30 is now available for pre-order!

ARC Review - Her Relentless SEAL!


BLURB:

ON THE RUN FOR HER LIFE
Small-town girl Evie Avery’s dream vacation has become her worst nightmare. Now she's on the run in a foreign country, and has no idea why.
NO ROOM FOR ERROR
Navy SEAL, Aiden O’Malley, had his reasons for turning his back on Evie all those months ago, but he hasn’t been able to get her out of his mind. She changed him, for better or worse. When he finds out she's missing, long-pent-up feelings come roaring to life, and he will stop at nothing to bring her home.
A LOVE WORTH FIGHTING FOR
Evie finds herself face-to-face with a man she vowed to forget. The flame she thought had burned out months ago suddenly ignites. Storming back to Tennessee, she is mad as hell when he follows her. Worse, she finds that the terror she’d experienced abroad, is still stalking her. Aiden hounds Evie’s every step as he tries to keep her alive, but she doesn’t care, it’s not his protection she wants. If she can’t have his heart, she wants him gone. As the enemy closes in, Aiden wonders if there enough of his battered soul to give to a woman who deserves the world.


MY REVIEW:

Aiden O' Malley is most assuredly the BEST SEAL, protector, sweetheart, lover of ALL time in this series! I thought Drake was protective and caring and wonderful, but nope, Aiden beat him by a landslide! 

Her Relentless SEAL had mind-blowing danger, great banter, sweet sweet romance, HOT-SIZZLING sex, and loads of action! This is heart-pounding, bite-your-lip, leave-you-on-the-edge-of-your-seat kind of AWESOME. Every chapter left my heart pumping wildly, or falling over in a swoon. Caitlyn O' Leary just does it for me every time with her books. I can't get enough of her SEALS or her amazingly lovable characters and unbelievably amazing plots. 

Miss O' Leary gives me chills with how good her books are. I love each and every hero and every time I think the next one just can't beat the last one, I am proven wrong...and I can't say that I am disappointed with that. I LOVE...and I do mean LOOOOOOOOOVE the way she writes her books! Honestly I hope she keeps writing books for a VERY VERY long time! Make sure to RUN...and NOW to get Her Relentless SEAL because its the PERFECT Romantic Suspense! I give this a SWOON WORTHY FIVE SHOOTING STARS! Heck..lets give it a TEN! 




Her Relentless SEAL Releases 4/25/17!!!!

Pre-Order Today

Friday, April 21, 2017

Fox Release Boost!




Title: Fox
Author: S.M. Lumetta
Series: Bodhi Beach #1 (Standalone)
Genre: Romantic Comedy
Cover Design: S.M. Lumetta
Release Date: April 17, 2017



Blurb

What’s a little sex between friends?

Sophie Fordham never thought much about motherhood until her body forced her to. With the onset of early menopause, she knows if she wants to have a baby, it’s now or never. So what’s a single, financially-strapped girl to do? Go with what you know, of course.

Fox Monkhouse has been Sophie’s gorgeous best friend since preschool. This sun-kissed surfer boy has no shortage of ladies, but she’s hoping he’ll put that aside to help her out. As there’s never been anything romantic between the two, things get awkward when she asks him to put a bun in her oven—especially since it has to be done the old-fashioned, no-pants dance way.

When Fox agrees to do the deed, Sophie is ecstatic. But she soon realizes that this chance at a baby could cost her everything. Keeping sex and emotions separate is clearly not in her wheelhouse especially when her best friend is involved. If their relationship can’t evolve into something new, their unusual arrangement could destroy the friendship of a lifetime.





Purchase Links

AMAZON US / UK / CA / AU
B&N / KOBO / iBOOKS





Excerpt

Chapter 1

The Diagnosis: “It’s menopause.”

Laughing. All the laughing. Until Doctor Beaufort looks at me like I’ve cracked. I stop myself and swallow. “Wait, what do you mean, ‘it’s menopause’?”

“Sophie, your symptoms and test results point to perimenopause. Your estrogen levels have been a little all over the place, and with your erratic cycle, it’s extremely likely that early menopause has begun.”

I’m glad I’m not drinking or eating because I would have choked. Oh, scratch that—I’m choking on my own spit. It’s so great that I don’t even need to put anything in my mouth to choke.

The studio audience in my head reacts on cue, complete with cheering and lewd gestures.

“I’m sorry?” I ask, my throat on fire as I cough roughly. I sound like a veteran smoker. Or maybe even like I’ve moved past that into voice box territory.

My doctor finally notices my insta-panic and waves her hands in front of her face. “That is to say it could be.”

I gasp, hacking up a lung for good measure and in hoping I heard her wrong. “But… I’m twenty-eight.”

This is where the audience supports my outrage with a sharp gasp followed by a dead silence.

Doctor Beaufort smiles, her teeth blindingly white next to her dark skin, but it does not comfort me. “I’m aware of your age,” she says with humor. “But I’m pretty sure this is premature menopause. It can hit women as young as their early twenties, though it’s rare.”

I stare at her, my mouth agape but still trying to form a word or two. All that comes out, though, is “buh buh buh… buhhh.”

For all the erratic and weird symptoms for the past six, maybe eight months, I never even considered this a possibility. Ever since I dumped that life-suck Brett, I blamed everything—from cycle woes to crazy unusual mood swings and a bout or three of awful night sweats—on stress and the breakup. Though the first missed period caused a different kind of nightmare. Or as my best friend Nora put it, The Pregnancy Panic Heard ’Round the World.

Dr. Beaufort is talking, but my brain is white noise. I’m forced to shake my head a bit to tune back in.

“Twenty-eight is certainly not common either but it’s not unheard of,” she continues, oblivious to my dumbstruck noises—or maybe because of them. “And it’s not immediate. As you probably know, menopause itself is a process. It can take years to complete itself. So you may still have time to have a child if that’s in your life plan! Many women going through menopause have a ‘oops’ baby.”

“Baby?” I ask, and I sound like I’ve never heard of them. I flash back to The Scare and for a quick second, wonder if that wouldn’t have been a blessing. Jesus, no. Then I’d be attached to Brett forever. I shudder. My credit score is still in the toilet because of him. That’s more than enough of a legacy and intrusion on my life.

My resulting silence stretches out before the both of us, but not because I have nothing to say or ask. It’s mostly because I find that I cannot speak.

“Sophie?” Dr. B begins, and I think she asks me a question, but it sounds like I’m underwater.

I have sudden trouble focusing and feel my body sway. The room leans into a cartwheel and everything goes black.

***

When I wake, I’m happy to find I did not, in fact, fall off the “spread and swipe” table after all. However, a nurse holds my legs up toward the ceiling. Dr. Beaufort hands me a paper bag.

“I’m not hyperventilating, Dr. B,” I murmur, pushing the bag away. I sound drunk. Great. Maybe I had a stroke, too? That would be a tasty cherry on top of this shit sundae. “I choked and then I freaked out.”

I’m well aware of my dramatic tendencies. At times. Occasionally. When it suits me.

“You passed out,” she says simply, no judgment. “Do you feel light-headed?”

I do a mental check. “I’m good.” Sitting up slowly and with assistance, I notice the nurse is my oldest friend in the world, Fox Monkhouse.

“What the fuck?” I try to kick him, but it comes across like the death throes of an extremely long, uncoordinated fish. “I’m commando, Fox! Shouldn’t there be a female nurse in here?”

The attempted kick seems even more foolish now. I pull my hospital gown tight in the back and slap my thighs together to hide my cooter.

“Mr. Monkhouse was just outside when you fainted. And he has a master’s in nursing,” Dr. B adds, unaware that I’m familiar with his qualifications. Even so, that doesn’t mean I want him all up in my lady biz. “He’s a professional.”

“Yeah, but a professional what is debatable,” I say.

He breaks into a huge grin.

Jerk. “What are you even doing here? You work at Shoreline!”

Fox rubs the corner of his eye with his middle finger. “Same hospital network,” he says, faux professionalism oozing everywhere. “They needed a floater today.” He makes an incredibly immature face behind Dr. Beaufort’s back as I try desperately not to crack up at “floater.” His immaturity rubs off too often for my own good. A few instances of which flit through my mind. The facial expressions that result are likely horrifying. I’m glad I cannot see my face right now.

“Are you all right, Sophie?” she asks, looking at me with concern. “I take it you and Fox are friends.”

I fake a cough and clear my throat. “Fine. And yes, I guess you could say we’re friends.”

Fox snorts, tucking a stray sun-kissed curl behind his ear. The rest of his shoulder-length blond hair is tied back. “I’ve known Sophie since we were… I’m not sure, five?”

“Four,” I correct, just to be a bitch. He rolls his eyes, and I smile. “When my family moved in down the block, I hadn’t started preschool yet.”

“Oh, right. We bonded over the ice-cream man.”

“Rocket Pops.”

“Ohh,” he moans, damn near orgasmically. Dr. Beaufort shoots him a look, but he’s not paying attention. “I loved those.”

“It’s basically frozen sugar and food coloring,” Dr. B throws in her two cents. “It’s—”

“Don’t crap on my childhood, Beaufort,” he snaps jokingly, but realizes his place with an “oh shit” expression. “I mean, yes, doctor. Sorry. Yes, of course. You are totally correct.”

The idiot pauses to clear his throat. I catch Dr. B minutely shake her head in what I assume is exasperation. I completely understand where she’s coming from. After an awkward beat, he picks up where he left off.

“Anyway, Sophie wouldn’t go to school unless I was in the same class. She needed me.”

“He was held back,” I add. “Started preschool at seven.”

Fox coughs, “Asshole!”

Dr. B rolls her eyes before looking at me. “I stand corrected on the professionalism. Are you feeling okay?”

“I’m good, Dr. B,” Fox says.

“I’m okay,” I say at the same time. At least, I’m okay where the fainting is concerned. The rest is still pretty sketchy.

“Good,” she says, eyeballing Fox with a sliver of a smile on her face. She pats me on the shoulder and tells me to get dressed. “We can chat more in my office before you go. Mr. Monkhouse, let the patient dress, please?”

“I will,” he says with a nod. She smiles as she walks out.

“Did you sleep with her? Or are you trying?” I ask him.

“I don’t shit where I eat,” he says.

“Oh, really?” My eyebrows jump for my hairline as my eyes drill into him my blatant disbelief.

“She’s twenty years older than me!”

I tilt my head, waiting. He’s holding out. He knows damn well he’s nailed a colleague or two well into their forties. Such as… “Rita?”

His mouth drops open, his dual-colored eyes going wide. Thanks to his scrubs, the green one shifts to blue-green or turquoise like the ocean and the hazel one looks golden. I still marvel at how strange yet beautiful they are.

“Wow, pulling out the stops,” he says. “Fine, I have cleaned up on the nurse aisle before, and a couple docs, but I’ve learned my lesson. It gets ugly.” He opens the door and stops. “Get dressed.”

I wait for him to close the door behind him before I peel off the gown and put on my clothes.

“Why’d you faint?” he asks when I get out into the hall. He’d clearly waited just outside.

I lightly punch his arm, noting a slight sunburn on his nose. Someone went surfing this morning and forgot his sunblock. “Don’t you have actual work to do, stalker?”

“Not at this very moment.” He looks around. “So what’s up? Are you okay?”

“Low blood sugar,” I lie. It feels gross, especially given his sincerity. I never lie to my best friends. “Forgot to eat this morning.”

“Forgetting to eat? That’s not like you.” Likely sensing my bullshit, he steps a little closer. “You’d tell me if something was wrong, wouldn’t you?”

I’m warmed by his concern, but I’m not yet ready to discuss anything. Time to redirect.

“Are you calling me fat, Monkhouse?” I like giving him shit. Not to mention, I’m quite comfortable in my own skin. At five foot nine, I’m pretty lanky with the exception of a bit of a bubble butt that popped out when I was in college.

“Always, Porky.”

An elderly woman walks by at that very moment. She stops to spit at him and expresses her extreme outrage on my behalf. “Horrible man! You want me to crush his man business?” she asks me, holding up her cane, which has flames painted on it.

“Um,” I stammer. I pretend to think about it while Fox’s eyes grow wide.

He purses his lips as if to say, “be serious!”

I turn back to my savior. “That’s very tempting, thank you. But I’m okay.”

“You’re sure?” Harley Quinn’s grandma doesn’t buy it, and is clearly looking to dole out a beatdown. Maybe she got bad news today, too.

“Totally.” Leaning toward her, I cup a hand by my mouth to offer an aside. “I have it on excellent authority that his dangle isn’t exactly swinging in the breeze, if you know what I mean.”

She nods knowingly and threatens Fox with her badass cane one more time before walking away.

“Wow,” I say after she turns the corner. “That was like tenth grade all over again.”

In high school, I struggled to keep on weight because my metabolism was pretty high. Some incredibly rude people called me “Rexy,” so Fox would call me “Chubs” in protest. He got in loads of trouble because the perceptive teachers of Bodhi Beach High assumed I was, in fact, anorexic and Fox was bullying me. Since the actual name-callers were girls, that slipped right under their radar. Fox, however, was loud and proud about it. It was a hell of a mess, but in the end, it was just my friend sticking up for me in his own poorly thought-out, controversial way, as per usual.

“I’ve never been threatened with the official cane of the Hells Angels before,” he says, wiping the spit off his scrubs.

“Go back to work,” I say with a giggle. “I’ll talk to you later.”

“You coming to the barbecue this Saturday?” he calls after me. “It’s my birthday, you know.”

“Wouldn’t miss it, old timer. Is the bonfire going to be legal this time?” I wink. Fox’s house is on the beach. It was his grandpa’s and he inherited it, the lucky prick.

“Of course not!” He rethinks his volume. “I mean, yes. Yes, it is. Bring beer. Oh, and is your brother coming?” he asks.

“You know, I haven’t talked to Cameron in a few. Seems like he’s been a little incommunicado, according to my mom. I don’t see how he’d miss it though.”

Fox nods. “Well, I hope he can make it! Tell him to come in drag because I want to motorboat him again. I don’t know where he got those falsies, but they were super comfortable to stick my face in.”

I perform the expected eye-roll followed by an about-face toward Dr. Beaufort’s office. “See you then, perv,” I call.

“Takes one to know one!”

***

After a more in-depth conversation with Dr. B, I’m not very good anymore. I may only have one good year of fertility if I want to conceive a baby without assistance. Or I could have five years, maybe more, but even that’s hard to say. Menopause is not only hard to predict, but makes my cycle erratic, which heavily lends to the odds against me. I thought I wanted kids but I’m hella single at present. It’s been eight months since I dumped Brett, and after that debacle, the “do I want kids” question is, well, questionable. With my new and the-opposite-of-improved timeline, I’m forced to address an issue I should have had more than a decade to consider.

Freezing some eggs is supposedly a legit option as I’m otherwise healthy and a good candidate for it. “But I wouldn’t wait,” Dr. B had said, stressing the point that I might not have very long to decide. “Think about it. You have a little time, but don’t think too long. Before you know it, it could be too late.”

I told her I didn’t have to think. I don’t have tens of thousands of dollars to plunk down on iced egg-os. Thanks to Brett’s bullshit and my stupid trusting heart, I loaned him the money to start his deejay business. I blame blind lust.

I ended up charging a bunch of stuff, which the imbecile sold for cash to blow at the bookie’s. Turned out, he didn’t want to start a business, just further a secret gambling habit. My credit took a nosedive along with our relationship. I’m still wading out of the debt he helped create and I have no money left to take out a hit. Where’s the justice?

I have my grandma’s 1967 Mustang convertible that’s worth a little money, but she’s not all original or in the greatest shape. I’d also need much deeper, unindebted pockets to pay for the work needed to make her a showstopper. I can’t imagine parting with it to pay shit off for my stupidity.

With all this on my shoulders, I sit in my not-very-cherry classic Mustang convertible in the parking garage and cry. And cry. And cry until I’m thoroughly dehydrated and have a mark from the steering wheel on my forehead. The setting sun is piercing directly through the structure when I come up for air.

It’s well past rush hour, and there shouldn’t be much in the way of gridlock left on the 405. So there’s that.





Author Bio

S.M. Lumetta was born in Detroit, MI, and now resides in NYC. Since she was small, she has adored storytelling in all its forms, especially books and films. Sooner and later, she figured out that since her love of words was overwhelming, she had no choice but to take the words in mind and share them. Romance is her favorite read, but horror and crime novels are a close second. She loves to travel and has a bucket list of places to visit long enough for several lifetimes. She also has a plethora of unnecessary t-shirts, a penchant for sarcasm, and a unholy love for the oxford comma.


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