He’s my best
friend’s brother – and the only boy I’ve ever loved. Movie star, manwhore, and
it was time to move on, until one epic night changed everything. Now there’s no
denying the way I feel when he touches me, or the reckless desire in his eyes.
cross that line, there’s no going back. But can I risk it all for him when he’s
still hiding secrets of his own?
love stories are destiny. Ours is still unwritten.
deeply, and uncontrollably in love with me.
letters on the first page of my new journal, and every year, I finish out
December with those some words still taunting me. But not this time. This year,
I’ve decided, I’m really going to make it happen.
The party is in full swing around me, hundreds of people crammed into the
amazing beachfront mansion. Music plays so loud I can feel it in my chest, and
everywhere I look, people are flirting and laughing, getting ready for that
to midnight. My heart beats faster. If I’m going to do this, I need to do it
now. I can see Blake out on the deck, looking illegally
hot in a vintage white T-shirt and jeans that deserve an award for their
services to womankind. I haven’t seen him in a couple of years, but
clearly, he only gets more devastating with age. It’s the reason he’s
tipped as the hot new Hollywood star, about to break out in his first big movie
role. But to me, he’ll always be plain old Blake Callahan:
my first love, my unrequited crush.
that line, but tonight is different. Tonight, everything changes. I take a deep breath,
slide the doors open, and step outside.
bold. Good start.
drops. I feel another tremor of nerves, but they melt away when I recognize the
familiar look in his eyes, the one I’ve
seen from plenty of guys since my transformation, but never from him.
breezy, like he’s been the last
thing on your mind.
him on both cheeks, the way I learned in Europe. I leave a smudge of scarlet on
his skin, so I reach up and wipe it away. He looks confused. “Sorry, Paris,” I explain, kicking myself for the
body, all the way to my peep-toe sandals, the ones that usually make me feel
invincible. But now, I feel stripped naked under his blue eyes, my heart
beating so loudly in my chest I swear he can hear it over the muffled sound of
the music inside.
you,” Blake smiles.
remind myself. Not some stranger. I know him. “I missed all of you guys,” I add, thinking of the whole Callahan
family: Tegan, and their two other brothers too. “Europe is a long way from home.”
out to watch the dark shadow of the ocean play along the distant shore. “So what’s your resolution?” I ask, trying to sound flirty.
tables again to make a living.”
talent, it just took the world a little while to catch on.”
that Santa Monica ever saw.” He dressed up as a
surfer Scrooge and played scenes on the promenade for fifty bucks. His brothers
never shut up about it; we teased him all year.
photos, the tabloids would go crazy,” he groans.
knew I could count on you.” Blake smiles, and I’m hit all over again with the force of
him: that chiseled, handsome face, the smile, those magnetic blue eyes that
always belonged on a movie screen. I feel the same flip in my stomach I felt
the day we first met; time and distance have done nothing to lessen his effect
expression, a glimpse of desire,
but it must be wishful thinking, because he turns away.
inside,” he says shortly. “You’ll miss the party.”
like a fool. All my plans are for nothing; I tried and struck out again.
nudges me. Didn’t you promise to
give it your best shot?
back to him. I put my hand on his arm, and pull him around to face me.
courage, and then I reach up on my tiptoes and press my lips against his.
the kiss. Blake’s mouth is warm,
and I can taste the bourbon on his lips, feel the faint scrape of stubble on
in place. He’s not kissing me
back—but he hasn’t pulled away either.
his neck and pull his body down against mine. As if it was the signal he was
waiting for, Blake suddenly sweeps me into his arms. He spins me around,
pushing me back against the railings as he kisses me hard and deep, and I come
those years of innocent fantasy. I must have played this moment a hundred times
over in my mind, but nothing is as sweet as the feel of his lips claiming mine,
the heat and desire blazing to life throughout my whole body.
tongue deep into my mouth. I moan against him, arching up to press closer
against his body. I can feel the taut muscle through his clothes, the gorgeous
planes of his shoulders and back. His hands slide over my body, cupping my ass
me to him, until there’s not an inch of
space between us. And all the while, his mouth is driving me crazy, teasing and
demanding, his tongue sliding hotly against mine, igniting a fire in my
bloodstream that spirals low between my thighs.
the haze. I pull away, breathless. Bursts of glitter and stardust light up
across the bay, and there’s the sound of
cheering inside. For a moment, I feel like the universe is celebrating our
kiss, then I realize we kissed our way into the New Year.
and here it is: big neon letters saying “He wants you too.”
there, looking shell-shocked. I smile. “Happy New Year.”
back into the house before I can ruin the moment. But just as quickly, my joy fades. Because
now that I know there’s something between
us, my feelings aren’t so safe anymore.
friendships, my sense of family—everything that’s important to me in the world. Once
we cross that line, there’s no going back.
do I take that risk?
Beachwood Bay series. A small-town girl turned SoCal beach lover, after
spending her life with her nose in a book, she decided it was time she wrote
one herself. She loves steamy romance novels, happily-ever-afters, and lusting
after fictional menfolk. She lives in LA with her two kittens, Bucky Barnes and