by Tamra Lassiter
Publication Date: October 1, 2014
Genres: Contemporary, Romance, Suspense
Innocent or guilty—there’s nothing perfect about it.Phoebe Davidson is a good girl who’s been through some bad times. Her life changed forever when she learned that her husband was living a secret life. Now, six years later, she’s just going through the motions of her life, afraid to let anyone in.
When a horrific crime occurs in her home, she meets Logan Matthews, a police detective working the case. When Phoebe herself is charged with the murder, can she trust Logan? Can she, and should she let him into her life?
I live outside Washington, D.C. with my wonderfully supportive husband and two daughters, one of which is approaching her teenage years. Help us all! If that isn’t enough, we have a Great Dane and an English Bulldog to keep us on our toes. It’s crazy around here and I love every minute of it!
Writing is my third career. I didn't set out to be a writer, it was just meant to be. My Mechanical Engineering degree from Virginia Tech prepared me well for my first career as an Engineer/Program Manager. My second career was in Human Resources. Long story, but I figured it out. I believe the best start for a writing career is to be a reader first and I’ve been an avid reader my whole life. I've loved to read ever since I picked up my first Nancy Drew mystery in the fourth grade. Now I love reading just about everything, but I don’t read sad books and I don’t watch sad movies either for that matter, no matter how many awards they’ve won. Life’s too short and who needs all that strife to bring us down?
Many of my words have been penned late into the evening, which explains why I’ve never viewed whatever television show you recommend to me. I would, however, love to hear your recommendations for a great read!
My spine stiffens.
I thought that I’d imagined the sound, but there it is again. A muffled gurgle…maybe. Then silence.
Not a sound that belongs in my home.
I think of fleeing.
The urge to see where it’s coming from is too great. Besides, it doesn’t sound threatening. How stupid would I feel if I called someone to help me, and it was just the dishwasher overflowing or something equally frightening?
I breathe in deeply, taking my fortification from the air around me and then release it slowly. My heartbeat echoes in my ears.
I take my first steps, moving gingerly toward the back of the house. Goosebumps wash over my arms.
The sound echoes again.
Why am I being so ridiculous? Get your butt in there and see what the problem is.
It probably isn’t even that loud, anyway. It just seems that way because it doesn’t belong. I expel a breath and get on with it. My courage renewed, I ignore the bumps of warning on my arms, take the turn into the kitchen…and fall to my knees.
Hysteria bubbles to the surface of my being.
My breaths now escape as rough sobs.
A black cloud forms around my vision, but I push it away as I try to assess the sight before me.
There’s blood—so much blood—in pools and smears on my white floor.
And a man.
Just lying there.
Something protruding from his chest.
I choke back the bile that’s building in my throat. It’s too late to turn back. I crawl to him slowly on shaky limbs. I sway, dizzy from the sight before me.
His chest rises and falls, revealing the source of the sound.
Is he alive?
I step closer—only about a foot away now. He doesn’t move. I take another step until I’m inches from him, so close that I can smell his musky scent. I wish that I was dressed in something a little more alluring than my pajamas.
“Stay,” I say. The word is barely a whisper.
His lips take mine. Take is the word that comes to mind because he claims them so completely. My mouth surrenders to him, and I’m on fire. There’s nothing tentative about his tongue as it explores my mouth. His hands move to my shoulders and then my back as he pulls me tightly to him.
A moan echoes from deep inside me. I rake my hands through his dark hair. He pulls me even closer. The feel of his tight body brings sensations to places that have been dormant for way too long. One kiss, especially a first kiss, has never had this effect on me—from zero to sixty in five seconds flat.
He pulls back enough to break our kiss, but one hand still rests on my lower back, holding me close. His other hand caresses my cheek. His eyes hold an unmistakable fire that I’m sure are reflected in my own.
“I should apologize for that, but it wouldn’t be sincere.” The corners of my lips turn up to a smile that he returns. The hard lines of his face soften, the corners of his eyes wrinkle, and his eyes brighten. For a moment, all is right with the world. Until a hard punch of reality hits him, and his smile recedes. “Still, I shouldn’t have kissed you. I can’t believe that I came here.”
He begins to pull away, but I refuse to let go. “I’m glad that you’re here. Does that count for anything?”