Remember in high school, a long, long time ago. Well, at least for me—when you were fifteen and fell in love from afar. A crush, we call it, but my heart still gets all aflutter when I think back to my high school infatuation. Most times nothing happens from it, yet we hear of love stories of reuniting later in life. The passion still lives on.
Sometimes that first love is the strongest one we have because we hadn’t been hurt or jaded. That ultimate trust and whole hearted love is special. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying it can’t happen again in your life. Just that we can carry a flame for someone we barely knew in high school.
My new release is about such a crush. Eric, the nerd next door, worshipped his best friend’s twin sister Spice. She didn’t even acknowledge his existence except to threaten to knock his block off if he tattled on her. But Eric knew there was more to her than the tough exterior, her twin, Sugar, told him everything. When Spice returns to Chicago to reunite with her sister, Eric gets re-introduced and his world is rocked when his high school crush starts flirting with him.
Someone is about to get some Spice in his life.
Spice has nothing but the clothes on her back when she returns to Chicago. She's looking for a better life, and that means reuniting with her estranged twin sister, Sugar. She isn't thrilled to find out Sugar's boyfriend is a vampire. But then she meets Eric, once the bottle-cap-glasses wearing nerd next door - now grown into the kind of man she'd love to snuggle with on this cold winter night...and he’s offered her his room in Sugar’s house.
Eric can’t believe Spice has returned. He’d given up hope of ever seeing her again, let alone having her stare at him as if he’s sex on a stick. But now that all of his fantasies for them are coming true, reality rears her ugly head and Eric must tell Spice his intimate secret; he’s actually an Alpha werewolf looking for his mate and he thinks he’s found her.
Warm yellow light streamed from behind her. “Forget your keys, Sugar?” a male voice asked from the doorway.
She stopped and glanced over her shoulder but saw only his silhouette.
“Oh my God, you cut your hair. Daedalus is going to freak.” The laughter in his comforting voice disappeared and he moved closer. “Don’t cry.” He wiped a tear from her face. “It looks great.” With a grin, he ruffled her short blond curls.
She couldn’t help but smile back.
He thought she was Sugar, her twin sister. Something in his voice sounded familiar. The face didn’t ring a bell though, but shaggy brown hair fell around most of it. He had a nice, easy-going smile. It would be wonderful to come home to a smile like that every night, but it belonged to her sister.
Her grin faded.
He wrapped his strong, thick arm around her shoulders and pulled her inside. Laughter drifted from the living room where three men and an oriental woman were setting up a board game.
One of the men, who had short cropped red hair, looked up. “Where’s the food? You were supposed to grab some grub on the way home from work.”
“We’ll order pizza.” The guy next to her squeezed one more time before walking into the next room, a huge kitchen.
“You cut your hair.” The woman spoke with a thick accent and sprung across the room to run her fingers through her hair.
Spice retreated and bumped against the entrance wall. This game of pretending to be Sugar used to be fun as kids but not anymore. With her hands raised, she kept the strangers at bay as they surrounded her like a pack of wolves. None of them looked dangerous, but what were they doing in her sister’s house while she was at work?
The way they grinned at her and each other, she concluded they were all good friends.
Sugar had everything she wanted; a loving man, friends, and a home.
“Daedalus let you cut your hair?” A short man built like a bodybuilder approached her.
The awe in his voice snapped Spice out of her self-pity and the protector inside reared its head. This was the second reference to someone allowing her little sister to do something. “What do you mean ‘let me’?”
What kind of relationship did Sugar have? She needed permission to cut her hair? Maybe destiny brought her back to Chicago to save her little sister from some monster. Again. All those bad things happening to drive her here couldn’t be coincidental.
She crossed her arms over her chest. “Where is my sister, and what are you doing in her house?”
They glanced at each other, confusion apparent on their faces. “What?”
The man in the kitchen stuck his head out of the door, chocolate brown eyes wide as he stared at her. “Spice?” The smile he’d given to her when he thought she was Sugar returned but wider.
Her heart skipped a beat. In the light his face seemed familiar as well. “I know you.”
“You should, we were only neighbors forever as kids.”
“Eric!” He had grown. Stupid, of course he’s changed. But she never expected that the skinny, lanky bottle-cap-glasses-wearing nerd would develop into a charming, handsome I-wanna-snuggle-you-on-a-cold-night kind of man. “Hi.” The jobs as a hostess, a bartender, and the most recent, a stripper taught her how to talk to men the way they liked. But with him grinning at her like a happy puppy, her mind went blank.
He swept her into his arms in a bone-cracking hug.
“Wow, I’d forgotten Sugar had a twin.” The redhead scratched his chin. “You look exactly alike, except your hair is short.”
Eric set her back on her feet. “Let me take your coat.” He tugged on the belt and untied it. To her surprise, the small action sparked warmth between her thighs. Not like he took off her clothes but she began to wonder what it would feel like if he did.
Their eyes met. His pupils dilated, the chocolate brown faded to amber, and something feral peeked at her.
She gasped and stepped back.
The pretty oriental girl took her arm and dragged her into the living room. She chattered about making tea, but Spice’s attention riveted on Eric as he stood with the men surrounding him.
What the heck? She’d seen need in men’s eyes before but this was darker, deeper, and so much more alluring.
To celebrate my release day I am giving away a copy of The Alpha today to a commenter.
Confession time! Tell me about your high school sweet heart, crush, or reunion.