Sunday, January 19, 2020

Mika Lane presents A Player Romance Series

A Player Romance series banner

This is my stop during the blog tour for A Player Romance series by Mika Lane. This blog tour is organized by Lola's Blog Tours. The blog tour runs from 6 till 19 January. See the tour schedule here.

Mister HollywoodMister Hollywood (A Player Romance series #1)
By Mika Lane
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Age category: New Adult/ Adult

Sex. Money. Women.
Whenever I want. Wherever I want.
What’s not to love?
Well, me.
Keep your heart out of it. I do.
It’s just a job. A paycheck.
One night, and it’s over. Buh-bye.
Until not-part-of-the-plan Belle Thomas comes along.
Scared. Confused. Sexy as hell.
And pursued by a crazy ex.
I didn’t want that kind of drama messing with my mojo. I have women to f*ck, and money to fill my bank account with.
I promised to bring Belle the pleasure she deserved, but first she had to accept the Player's terms.
You get what you need, and forget we ever met.
Slam dunk.
Until I slipped, and my fatal flaw got the better of me.

Get ready for the gentlemen of Players, West LA’s premier escort agency, famous for making women curl their toes, forget their names, and wish one night would last forever. These men will take you for a ride you’ll never forget—and pleasure that you’ll live to talk about.

Mr. Hollywood is book 1 of a sexy 3-part series that can be read in any order.

You can find Mister Hollywood on Goodreads

You can buy Mister Hollywood here:
- Amazon
- B&N
- Kobo
- iTunes

Excerpt Mister Hollywood:
And somehow, dammit, he was right. When his tongue slipped between my folds, it was as if there was nothing else in the world. Pleasure shot from the sensitive bundle of nerves between my legs to my belly, where it spread like a wildfire. Within moments, I was writhing, gasping for breath, and grabbing for his hair. Oh my, with one lick, he’d made me an addict for life.

His hand wandered under my dress, lifting it a bit more with each stroke of my thigh until he hooked a finger in the waistband of my panties. He tickled my stomach before lowering the delicate lace, stopping to look at me and check in. My knees parted, telling him all he needed to know.

Mister Fake DateMister Fake Date (A Player Romance series #2)
By Mika Lane
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Age category: New Adult/ Adult

Sometimes you’ll do anything to get the world off your back. And that includes hiring someone to help.
And lying. So many lies.
I got to where I couldn't tell where they ended, and the truth began.
Will Adams became part of my lie. Actually, he was the lie. The handsomest, sexiest, biggest part. Problem was, he was a lie I couldn't shake.
But after this weekend, he’ll be gone. Forever.
That’s the way it works.
I pay—he delivers.
Game over.
And I’ll go back to my lonely-ass, frozen dinner, Netflix-bingeing Saturday nights.
But until that time comes, he’ll bring me pleasure like I’ve never had. And open up my heart in ways I’d never known.
He helped me see that in pretending to be someone I wasn’t, I could figure out who I really wanted to be.
And that rules are made to be broken.

Get ready for the gentlemen of Players, West LA’s premier escort agency, famous for making women curl their toes, forget their names, and wish one night would last forever. These men will take you for a ride you’ll never forget—and pleasure that you’ll live to talk about.

Mr. Fake Date is book 2 of a sexy 3-part series that can be read in any order.

You can find Mister Fake Date on Goodreads

You can buy Mister Fake Date here:
- Amazon
- B&N
- Kobo
- iTunes

Mister WrongMister Wrong (A Player Romance series #3)
By Mika Lane
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Age category: New Adult/ Adult

Dove Delaney
I needed a little… treat. Some relief, you might say.
Life was crazy and sometimes a girl has to do something nice for herself.
And I’m not talking about new shoes.
Or eating chocolate.
And James—well, he’s the best in the business. He became my relief. My escape. My purest pleasure.
The problem was, it was only supposed to be one night
But now I want more. So does he.
And that’s just not possible.

James Walker
Another day, another beautiful woman.
It was what I did. I enjoyed it, and I was damn good at it.
I made my clients happy, had some fun myself, and then got the hell out.
That’s how it works for us Players.
But when Dove waltzes in, it was anything but another day at the office.
And she was anything but another client.
Her curvy booty and rockabilly style threatened to soften my hard heart.
And harden something else…
I wanted more. And I always got what I wanted.

Get ready for the gentlemen of Players, West LA’s premier escort agency, famous for making women curl their toes, forget their names, and wish one night would last forever. These men will take you for a ride you’ll never forget—and pleasure that you’ll live to talk about.

Mr. Wrong is book 3 of a sexy 3-part series that can be read in any order.

You can find Mister Wrong on Goodreads

You can buy Mister Wrong here:
- Amazon
- B&N
- Kobo

On the site Many Books you can read an interview with Mika about this series and Mister Hollywood here.

Mika LaneAbout the Author:
Writing has been a passion of mine since, well, forever (my first book was "The Day I Ate the Milkyway,” a true fourth-grade masterpiece), but steamy romance is now what gives purpose to my days and nights. I live in magical Northern California with my own handsome alpha dude, sometimes known as Mr. Mika Lane, and an evil cat named Bill. A lover of shiny things, I’ve been known to try to new recipes on unsuspecting friends, find hiding places so I can read undisturbed, and spend my last dollar on a plane ticket somewhere. I also drink cheap champagne and have way too many shoes.

I'll always promise you a hot, sexy romp with kick-ass but imperfect heroines, and some version of a modern-day happily ever after.

I LOVE to hear from readers when I’m not dreaming up naughty tales to share. Join my Insider Group so we can get to know each other better.

You can find and contact Mika Lane here:
- Website
- Facebook
- Twitter
- Goodreads
- Amazon
- Bookbub
- Pinterest
- Instagram
- Newsletter

There is a tour wide giveaway for the blog tour of A Player Romance series. One winner will win signed paperback of Mister Hollywood, Mister Fake Date and Mister Wrong (US Only).

For a chance to win, enter the rafflecopter below:
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tuesday, January 14, 2020

Heroes In Love By: David C. Dawson

This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. David C. Dawson will be awarding $10 Boroughs Bucks to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.


Can love last a lifetime? Billy Walsh and Daniel Richards never intended to be matchmakers. After all, they're only at the start of their own love story. When Billy uncovers a failed love affair, he learns it lasted more than fifty years until it fell apart. He and Daniel see their own fledgling relationship through the lens of the now estranged couple, and they vow to reunite the elderly lovers. But as they set about their task, the pressure of modern life threatens to tear them apart.

Read an Excerpt

“Hey. You okay?”

The voice was familiar. Billy pulled back from the window, opened his eyes, and turned to see the black wavy hair and brown eyes of the man he had collided with in the hospital entrance under an hour ago. Clumsily, he tried to wipe his eyes with the back of his hand and merely succeeded in smearing his hand with a gob of snot from his nose. His humiliation was complete.

Then the man’s oh-so-kissable lips moved, and he said, “Come on. You need a coffee.”

The cafeteria was on the ground floor of the hospital, close to the entrance. It was noisy and packed with people, and there was a long line at the counter.

Billy’s Good Samaritan introduced himself as Daniel. He invited Billy to find a table, while he queued up to buy them hot drinks.

As Billy waited, he reviewed the rollercoaster day. True, most of it had been downhill. Steeply. But this last turn lifted his spirits. He looked across the crowded cafeteria at Daniel standing in line. His back was to Billy as Daniel ordered coffees from the bored-looking assistant on the other side of the counter. He stood tall and confident. His dark blue linen suit gave him the look of a Hollywood actor in sharp contrast to the shabbily dressed people on either side of him. His haircut was obviously expensive, and he was well groomed.

Billy looked down at the sleeve of his shirt. The remains of his egg sandwich from earlier was smeared across it. He licked his fingers and rubbed the stain, in the hope of making the stain disappear.

“Here you are. I got some chocolate chip cookies as well. I love them, and I thought you might need the sugar.”

Daniel placed a large plastic tray on the table. He handed Billy a chipped mug of cappuccino, placed a large plate of cookies on the table, and sat opposite. Billy slid his arm into his lap, to hide the egg stained sleeve. “You okay now?”

Billy nodded. “Yeah. It’s been a really shit day, and I guess it all finally got to me. Work went tits up this morning. Then I met my mother’s oncologist this afternoon, and—” He stopped. Not wanting to repeat what he had learned.

About the Author: David C Dawson writes contemporary thrillers featuring gay men in love. He’s an award winning author, journalist and documentary maker. His debut novel won Bronze for Best Mystery and Suspense in the FAPA awards, and he has published two books since.

David lives in London with his boyfriend and two cats. In his spare time, he tours Europe and sings with the London Gay Men’s Chorus.

Social Media:

website: blog:

Buy Link:

Boroughs Press:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Sunday, January 12, 2020

One Night with his Rival By: Robyn Grady

One Night with His Rival
Robyn Grady
Published by: Harlequin Desire
Publication date: March 1st 2020
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance
Selling his soul for a sizzling night of passion…
“Wanting something doesn’t make it good for you.”
Wealthy horse breeder Ajax Rawson can have any woman he wants. So why can’t he keep his hands off the one woman he can’t have? Beautiful, independent and passionate, Veda Darnel is the daughter of his family’s biggest competitor. Years of bad business blood makes their affair dangerous…and forbidden. But will accusations of foul play end their star-crossed romance before it even begins?

Author Bio:
Robyn Grady's stories have been published in 29 languages with millions of copies sold worldwide. Her books have appeared at award ceremonies including the National Readers Choice, the Booksellers Best, and Australia's prestigious Romance Book of the Year. Stories in her latest Harlequin Desire series, About That Night, will hit the shelves January and March, 2020. Stay up to date with the latest news at


Friday, January 10, 2020

Glass Half Full By: Katia Rose

Glass Half Full
Katia Rose
(Barflies, #2)
Publication date: January 8th 2020
Genres: Adult, Comedy, Contemporary, Romance
You win some, you lose some.
Back at home with half a college degree after the fiasco of the century sent her packing, it’s safe to say that Renee NyobĂ© is losing some. She’s a hot mess, and not the cute kind. No, if hot messes had categories, hers would be ‘littering the stairs of the metro station with your sweaty underwear because you were too busy rushing to the job interview you’re already late for to zip up your yoga bag.’
A job—any job—is just what she needs to get her life back on track, and it might as well be at Montreal’s most famous dive bar, Taverne Toulouse.
Dylan Trottard is winning some. As Taverne Toulouse’s new manager, he’s got one rule for himself: don’t screw up. Following that rule gets a lot harder when the woman he’s spent the past three years trying to forget starts working behind the bar.
They were never supposed to want each other, and they sure as hell aren’t supposed to want each other now. She’s the girl that got away before he even had her, and he’s the guy she didn’t think would ever give her a second glance.
Now they can’t keep their eyes off one another, and the stakes are even higher than before. There’s a lot to lose, but as the pull between them gets harder and harder to ignore, Renee and Dylan start asking how much winning is worth.
Glass Half Full is part of the Barflies series, a set of standalone romantic comedies that chronicle the lives and loves of the staff at a Montreal dive bar.
“I always wondered something,” she continues when it’s clear I can’t speak. “That night, did you…Were you…Did you want to kiss me?”
I wanted to do more than kiss her. I wanted to breathe her in. I wanted to inhale her.
“It would have been a bad idea,” I manage to get out through my clenched jaw. She’s staring up at me through those damn eyelashes, and all I can think about is her mouth, her neck, that inch of her gorgeous bare shoulders I can see before they meet with the edge of her coat.
“I’m glad you didn’t.”
Everything grinds to a halt.
Shit, shit, shit.
“I’m glad you didn’t,” she repeats, “because I wasn’t ready for you to kiss me then, not like I am now.”

Author Bio:
Katia Rose is not much of a Pina Colada person, but she does like getting caught in the rain. She prefers her romance served steamy with a side of smart, and is a sucker for quirky characters. A habit of jetting off to distant countries means she’s rarely in one place for very long, but she calls the frigid northland that is Canada home.


Thursday, January 9, 2020

Accidental Shield By: Nicole Snow

Accidental Shield
Nicole Snow
Publication date: January 2nd 2020
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance
Accidentally married to a human stallion.
And I can’t even remember our wedding.

It’s awkward, okay? I didn’t plan on waking up hitched to Hubby of the Century.
Or one little misadventure erasing every memory of us.
No sweet nothings. No ugly cry vows. No flipping honeymoon.
But every time I see Flint Calum, I wonder.
How did I get so lucky?
Let’s forget all six foot something of his oh-so-bad superdad self.
His flashing eyes and SEAL perfected whip of a body aren’t why I’m dizzy.
It’s the bittersweet way he smiles when I poke at my past.
And something’s very wrong.
He tells me I’ll be fine.
He says he’ll get this sorted.
He promises to be my shield.
Totally not the pretender who’d scheme up an illusion to save my life.
Oh, but that’s the thing about memories.
Sometimes they come back with bitter truths wrapped in dilemmas.
What if I can’t stay mad at him?
What if I need Flint to hero me back together?
What happens when you fall in love with a beautiful lie?
From Wall Street Journal bestselling author Nicole Snow – a marriage mistake with two fierce truths and a lie. A dark knight single dad plays for keeps to save Little Miss Forgetful from a wicked past. Full-length romance novel with a fantabulous Happily Ever After.
I can’t look away.
Those golden eyes are mesmerizing. She’s so fucking beautiful and frail it hurts, this soft, confused young thing eyeing me like I can make all her worries vanish in a flash.
If only. Hell, just admitting how hot she is feels like a weird relief, considering I’ve been fighting it all day.
“Aren’t you coming to bed?” she asks, sitting up.
Shit. Here we go.
I shake my head, having decided I’d sleep upstairs in Bryce’s room. “Figured you’d be better off with the bed to yourself. I’ll sleep—”
“What? Why?” She shrugs. “It’s a big bed, and…”
Oh, hell. Her cheeks go rosy pink, and then her words hit me right between the eyes. “I don’t want to be alone.”
Well, fuck.
When she looks at me with those big gold eyes, something happens. Probably the same thing that’s been happening ever since Cash pulled up and I carried her into my house.
My heart starts thudding, telling me I’m not as immune to her magic as I thought.
My hands clench at my sides, forming fists, like some screwed up secret prayer trying to save us both from a cataclysm.
“Please, Flint?” she whispers. “We’re married, aren’t we?”
Right. That whole thing, I think to myself. Where’s the sniper to put me out of my misery?
I’ll kick myself in the ass for this later.
“Okay,” I finally agree. Gritting my teeth at the way other parts of my body react, I tell her, “Just let me hop in the shower first.”
She beams like the sun, stroking the cat that followed us in here. It’s resting on the bed beside her. “We’ll be here.”
Just frigging great. Another adjustment, having to share my bed with a mini cheetah and a girl who just might make me hard enough to hit a home run.
I head to the bathroom, shaking my head as soon as the door’s shut.
No lie, this might be the toughest job I’ve ever taken on.
And that’s saying a fuck of a lot, considering the Cornaro Outfit made me wish I was dead once upon a time.
I’m not sure what worries me more as I stand under the waterfall showerhead, temperature set to glacial.
Is it the re-match with Cornaro guns making me freak?
Or is it Valerie Gerard’s sweet looks that could end me in a puff of flame and testosterone?

Author Bio:
Nicole Snow is a Wall Street Journal and USA Today bestselling author. She found her love of writing by hashing out love scenes on lunch breaks and plotting her great escape from boardrooms. Her work roared onto the indie romance scene in 2014 with her Grizzlies MC series.
Since then Snow aims for the very best in growly, heart-of-gold alpha heroes, unbelievable suspense, and swoon storms aplenty. With over a million books sold, she lives for the joy of making two people fight with every bit of their soul for a Happily Ever After.
Current fan favorites include her Enguard Protectors series, accidental love novels, plus long beloved MC romance thrillers like the Grizzlies and Deadly Pistols.


Wednesday, January 8, 2020

Something Wicked By: Nicole m. Rubino

Something Wicked
Nicole M. Rubino
(Something Wicked, #1)
Publication date: November 26th 2019
Genres: Paranormal, Young Adult
A break-up and a car accident are no way to begin your seventeenth birthday.
For Theo Montgomery, that is exactly how it began. Her bad luck turns worse when she returns home from a school dance to find her home engulfed in flames – with her parents still inside.
Theo is sent to live with her estranged aunt, Elizabeth, in Salem, Massachusetts. Salem proves to offer many new discoveries, one of those being that Theo, like her aunt, is a witch. A witch who must keep her magic in check, lest the Town’s witch hunters discover that magic has returned to the world after more than three hundred years. But how can she navigate a new school, new magical powers and avoid the witch hunters, when she finds herself enjoying the company of one?
Trystan de Lancre is a dangerous witch hunter and the only son of the Salem witch hunter clan leader, the notorious Joseph de Lancre. Despite his growing feelings for Theo, Trystan has his own reasons for getting close to her – and they are far from romantic. Yet, Trystan isn’t the only one keeping secrets. Theo knows her aunt is hiding something, something linked to the tragedy that happened in Salem long ago, and to Theo, herself.
Salem’s dark past rises to haunt Theo and the present-day witches, unraveling a shocking revelation: the true cause of the Salem Witch Trials.
Theo made her way down Essex Street, heading toward the center of the Town. There didn’t seem to be many shops this far down, and she wondered why Elizabeth hadn’t dropped her off further in the city.
Because she doesn’t trust you not to go into that bookstore to find Trystan, a voice reminded her.
Slightly disgruntled at that, she walked for a good five minutes, taking in various little shops and admiring the cobblestone street. She questioned when she would come upon a storefront she might be interested in, when a large figure came from around the corner and collided with her. She grimaced as her face landed directly on the hard bone of someone’s sternum.
“Ouch!” she exclaimed, rubbing her nose where it struck the individual, and felt strong fingers lay upon her arms to move her back.
Theo heard a small chuckle. “This isn’t exactly how I pictured getting you in my arms.”
She recognized the voice instantly, her eyes darting upward. “Trystan,” she breathed.
“In the flesh, I’m afraid. Sorry about pummeling into you. It was just payback.” His wide grin reached his sparkling eyes, making the features of his face more beautiful.
She was distracted, her eyes outlining his chiseled cheekbones and strong jawline, complete with a set of lips that looked perfect for kissing.
“Remember, you nearly killed me with a stack of books?” He must have mistaken the silence of her admiration of him for confusion.
“That’s right. I suppose it’s only fair.” She shrugged, hiding a smile.
The way he was looking at her gave her a fluttery sensation in her stomach. Once more at a loss for words, she bit her bottom lip and started twirling a strand of unruly dark hair around her finger.
“Where are you heading?” he asked, eyes now focused on her lips.
“I’m not really sure,” she admitted. His features contorted into a mask of puzzlement as she continued, “I was taking a walk, trying to explore more of Salem.”
“There isn’t really much to see this far down Essex Street,” he responded, still looking perplexed.
“My aunt is at the Athenaeum for a few hours. I walked from there.”
Trystan’s eyebrows rose in understanding, his eyes twinkling with intrigue. “You’re alone?”
She nodded. “For a little while, at least.” The corners of her mouth turned up in anticipation of what he would say next.
“Would you like some company? I can show you around. I’ve lived here all my life.”
Theo hesitated. Her aunt’s cold grey stare was visible in her mind’s eye, as well as the feeling of unease at disobeying her aunt’s request.
That you stay away from the bookstore . . . Theo replayed the conversation from this morning and the day before, realizing that in fact, her aunt had not specifically demanded to stay away from Trystan, but rather to stay away from the bookstore.
You know damn well that’s not what she meant, her own voice of reason argued. But seeing the way Trystan’s white thermal sweater hugged the muscles visible underneath, she made her decision:
“That would be great. Thank you.”
He flashed a heart-stopping smile, and she nearly melted.
“This way.” He held out his hand and stepped back, allowing her to pass first. His etiquette reminded her of the gentlemen she had read about in books written by the likes of Jane Austen–gallant and courtly. He lightly placed his hand on the small of her back to guide her; the small touch sending jolts of electricity throughout her entire body.
Trystan led her around the corner and stopped in front of an ominous looking sports car. It wasn’t sleek and refined the way she remembered Tali’s BMW. Trystan’s car had a rugged, dangerous look to it, and she briefly wondered if boys picked cars the way girls picked shoes, as extensions of their own personalities.
Theo reached forward to grab the handle, but Trystan was there first, opening the door for her. She thought this old-fashioned gesture had disappeared, along with returning text messages and phone calls.
“I see chivalry isn’t dead in Salem,” she commented as she nestled into a black leather seat that was even darker than the color of the car.
He paused to look at her, one hand still on the door frame and the other twirling his keys. “You will find there are a lot of things that aren’t dead in Salem,” he replied with a mischievous smirk and shut the door.

Author Bio:
Hello! I'm Nicole Rubino, author of Something Wicked, the first in a four-book series about witches, witch hunters, and everything in between!
I fondly remember Roald Dahl's James and the Giant Peach as the first book that took me on an adventure, and so, I fell in love with reading and writing fantasy. Another one of my favorite books by Dahl should come as no surprise: The Witches.
My equal love for history propelled me to dive further into the witch hunts throughout Europe and the witch hunts in Salem, which is where I got the idea for my debut novel.
Authors I love and whom inspire me are Leigh Bardugo, Holly Black, Sarah J. Maas, Jay Kristoff and Pierce Brown.


Tuesday, January 7, 2020

Stranded At Night By: Rebekah Dodson

Stranded At Night
Rebekah Dodson
(California Express, #1)
Publication date: January 4th 2020
Genres: Adult, Romance, Suspense
Two days after Christmas, two in the afternoon, two passengers must face the storm to prevail against the darkness.
Maggie Espinoza needs to get away from Portland, Oregon, from a blown out past and a bleak future. She figures taking the Express train to balmy Southern California to start over is just what she needs. Two days after Christmas while everyone is preparing for the New Year, she makes her escape during the worst blizzard the state has ever seen.
Jesse Cabot senses a darkness in fellow passenger Maggie when he sits next to her on the train.
Why is she so haunted and broken?
When the train suddenly stops in the middle of the blizzard weird things start to happen.
Random disappearances, an assault, a body in the snow.
It becomes clear it’s up to Jesse and Maggie to find the culprit or face the music on the stranded California Express.
Jesse hoisted himself on top of a stack of suitcases and his legs swung under him. Maggie continually surprised him and had been strong this entire time, but he should have known this was coming. It was in her file, after all.
Why hadn’t he been prepared?
He flipped his phone out and lit up the flashlight, setting it upside down so he could see her better. The baggage car was pitch black otherwise and utterly freezing.
Exhaling heavily, Maggie leaned back against some backpacks and nearly slumped down. She clutched the shoulder strap of a bag until her knuckles turned white. She said nothing, but Jesse knew this would get worse before it got better. He waited.
He watched as Maggie’s panic erupted into rage. Her face purpled again, and she heaved for breath, but this time she was pacing up and down the far end of the car – away from the bodies.
“What did he do?” she asked the nearly empty car. “He was innocent!”
“Perhaps he saw something…” Jesse offered, but clammed up when she glared at him.
“He didn’t deserve it!” she shrieked. “Beth, oh God, his sister. What if she finds him? We have to go back… we have to…” she paused suddenly and fiddled with the pocket of her coat. She finally yanked out her vape pen and sucked heavily, exhaling an acrid plume of marijuana.
Jesse coughed and waved the vapor away from him.
“Feel better?” he asked her, mostly sarcastically. “And is now really the time to be getting high?”
She glared at him with a venomous look of ‘shut up.’ He could take a hint.
A few more puffs and she stilled, finally sinking to the floor and pulling her knees to her chest.
Jesse leapt down from his perch and finally rushed over to her, pulling her into his arms. He wasn’t sure if he should, but he didn’t know what else to do. He’d seen more than a few dead bodies in his time, but he wasn’t ready to divulge that to Maggie.
He should have known it would trigger her – most people wouldn’t be okay with seeing a freshly dead body, and why would she be any different?
She’d been okay with the bodies in the snow, with seeing the fatal gunshot wounds, but Damon had been different. He saw it in her face; she knew what killed him, just like she knew what killed Nick.
He also suspected he knew what was in that syringe, but the question really was, did she?
“Nick… Jay… Maurice… Damon…” the way she murmured the names of the dead pierced his heart.
He gulped hard, trying to hold her, knowing it wouldn’t, or rather shouldn’t, make a difference. He felt like an asshole because as she shook under his grasp, all he wanted to do was kiss her.
Distracting him, she clung to him and trembled through her panic attack, and he wondered again who had damaged her so much that she would react like this. While there were other people on the train were mostly blissfully unaware of all the carnage, Maggie seemed to be taking it worse than the others, and yet another murder – plus losing the engine car – was shaping up to be hell on earth. But something told him it wasn’t just about the body – whether it was his instinctive intuition, or his years of training, he didn’t know. But she was smart, capable, and curious – he needed her to help solve these murders, if they were going to get to the bottom of this and try to get rescued.
“Maggie?” He brushed her hair away from her face. “Are you all right?”
To his surprise, she reached up and braced against his shoulders and pushed him away.
Caught off guard, he stumbled backwards and tripped over a suitcase. Catching himself before it was too late, he stepped over it and landed on his feet.
“Who are you?” She screamed at him, wrapping her arms around her in the freezing cold emptiness of the baggage car.
“I told you I’m a—”
“Yeah, a builder from Haiti, and a tattoo artist; which is complete and utter bullshit.”
Jesse’s left eye twitched. Had she pegged him already? He’d clearly underestimated her.
She held up her hand. “One, you have a gun. Not a regular one people around these parts carry.”
“Everyone has a gun these days,” he tried to protest.
“Two, you are so formal when you talk – not like an idiot from California.”
“I’m not from here…”
“And that’s another thing. Your accent? Totally fake. And this?” She stalked forward and tried to snatch his sunglasses from his face. “What are you hiding behind this…”
He couldn’t have her uncovering at least one of his secrets, maybe the least deadly of them all. But she was in for a surprise if she thought she’d guessed everything. He side stepped her nimbly, and reaching out, snatched her arm and spun her around, pinning her hand behind her back and shoving her against the baggage. She yelped as he did, and his other hand pressed her face against the luggage. He was careful to only apply a gentle amount of pressure, so he didn’t hurt her.
“I’m not just a simple builder, but you’re not an art major, either,” he hissed into her ear.
He expected her to fight, to break free, maybe even take a swing at him – which she’d miss of course. He’d had a few years of training and was faster, smarter, and as a last resort, he had a weapon. She did not.
Instead, she froze, and all he could hear was her breath coming ragged again. Her spine stiffened, and he knew she was going right back into a panic attack.
Jesus Christ, who could have done this to her? he thought, and at her distress he immediately let her go and stepped back.
He expected her to collapse again, but instead, her eyes flashed at him as she turned around.
“I said don’t fucking touch me!” She launched herself at him, and the full force of her body slammed him to the cold, metal ground.
“What are you hiding?” she yelled, shaking his shoulder. “You have a gun … you can shoot… Are you a fucking cop? Who. Are. You?”
He let her straddle him with his arms pinned to his sides – better for now she didn’t know he could kill her in a dozen different ways if he wanted – but he certainly wasn’t expecting her to reach down and rip his sunglasses away and toss them into a corner. The gasp that rolled over her didn’t shock him, in fact, he should have anticipated it. Even his own boss at the agency was uncomfortable looking at him most days. He’d grown so accustomed to wearing his sunglasses everywhere they were like a second skin, now.
Maggie scrambled off him slowly and turned and slid to the ground, grasping the cold, metal floor beneath her. In the light from Jesse’s cellphone, her cold breath expelled in airy puffs. “Your eyes…”
Realizing she was smarter than he thought, just based on the fact she’d let him hold her a few minutes ago but then flipped at a moment’s notice, he waited. He knew well enough when an intelligent criminal was about to confess, and part of him was excited she was so close. It was either that, or she was just plain crazy. But in all his years he hadn’t been wrong about a case.
If only he didn’t want to protect her, to save her. He’d never fallen for a suspect, and he wanted to curse at these feelings she’d awoken in him. He hated himself for how he felt, but he couldn’t deny it.
Did she feel the same way?
He crawled over and sat next to her, pulling one knee to his chest.
“It’s called heterochromia iridium, in case you’re wondering,” he told her gently. “One blue, one brown. It’s hereditary, or so I’m told.”
“Who are you?” she asked again, looking at him. “No more lies.”

Author Bio:
Rebekah Dodson is a prolific author of over 30 romance, fantasy, and science fiction novels. Her works include the series Postcards from Paris, #1 bestselling Curse of Lanval series, Life After Us series, and several stand alone novels and short stories. She has been writing her whole life, with her first published work of historical fiction with 4H Clubs of America at the age of 12, and poetry at the age of 16 with the National Poetry Society. With an extensive academic background including education, history, psychology and English, she currently works as a college professor by day and a writer by night.