I"m in love with a man who tried to kill me. At least that"s what they tell me . . .
Six weeks ago, paramedics found me unconscious in my apartment. Beaten. Bruised. Hardly breathing. When I woke up, I couldn"t remember the last three years or anything about my life in Jackson Harbor. They tell me my fianc", Colton McKinley, is on the run for what he did to me. They tell me I"m safer if I stay away.
I don"t care if my memories ever come back. I want nothing to do with those missing years . . . until a sexy stranger with angry eyes shows up on my doorstep and demands I stop ignoring him.
Levi Jackson is my fianc"s best friend, but seeing him sparks something inside me. As the truth unravels in my mind, I know they"re wrong about Colton. My own secrets are far more dangerous than the man I was engaged to.
I return to Jackson Harbor to search for answers and find myself running from a faceless boogeyman and seeking refuge in Levi"s arms. And in his bed.
I can"t deny my feelings for Levi. But as the pile of lies between us grows, I realize that sometimes the truth can"t set us free. Sometimes, it"s the very thing that can destroy us.Books by Author:Lexi Ryan Books
Two and a half years ago . . .
I prefer my parties loud, crowded, and a little dangerous"the kind where I can find a girl, a couple of shots, a dark corner, and fucking enjoy how good it is to be alive.
The biggest crowd at this party is currently gathered around the martini bar. The fake laughter and artificial kindness feel like poison in the air.
I"m only here because I"m expected to be. My family"s business, Jackson Brews, is sponsoring this fancy little fundraiser, and I"m doing my part to show my face.
"Hey there." The greeting comes from a leggy brunette who"s leaning against the wall beside me.
I blink at her. I"m tucked into a back corner of this party for a reason"I needed a place to watch rather than participate"and I didn"t even see her walk up. At my kind of party, I keep tabs on the hottest chicks in the room. At my kind of party, I"d have already been watching every move of a girl like this. She"s a fox with her tight dress that"s cut low in the front and that cradles every curve, from her tiny waist to where it stops just above her knees. Her sultry smile is the cherry on top. The fact that I didn"t notice her before proves that the uptight idiots at this party are rotting my brain.
She"s mimicking my posture, leaning against the wall, a beer dangling from her fingertips. A beer. The other women here are drinking champagne or cosmopolitans. I like her already.
"Anyone ever tell you you"re prettier when you smile"" she asks.
"Did you just say I"m prettier when I smile""
"Yep." She laughs and tosses her hair. "It"s my new thing"stealing ridiculous pickup lines guys have used on me and unleashing them on unsuspecting men."
I arch a brow. "And now you"re coming on to me by telling me I"m pretty""
"In reality, I"m just entertaining myself." She laughs, and the sound is so light and carefree it lifts some of the tension from my shoulders. "But now I wish I"d used a different line, because you kind of are pretty. Do you know how much women pay to have eyelashes like that""
I grunt. "I can"t decide if that"s a compliment or an insult."
"It was definitely a compliment." She flicks her gaze over me. "Definitely."
I groan, the magnetic force field of attraction already pulling me in. "Okay. Redo granted. Try another one of your lines on me." I can"t resist, though I probably should.
"Are you religious""
I frown. "What kind of line is that""
"Because you"re the answer to all my prayers."
I laugh. "Shit. That"s bad."
"How about this"" She slides her gaze down to my shoes and slowly back up. "That outfit looks terrible on you. Let"s go somewhere and take it off."
"Guys really say this shit to you""
She takes a sip of her beer and scans the crowd as she nods. "Oh, yeah. Most guys treat a come-on like a gift a girl should cherish. As if we"re all so desperate for attention that we should be thankful, even if the effort is half-assed."
"And yet here you are, trying to get mine."
She shrugs. "Just because my date stood me up and you are so obviously my type. I couldn"t resist."
I blink, taking a beat to unpack that simple sentence. Part one, her date stood her up, which means he"s a fucking idiot"then again, most guys are when it comes to beautiful women, and this one is over-the-top gorgeous. And part two" "Why do you say I"m your type" What"s your type""
"Tall, dark, and bad for me," she says cheerfully. "I really like them bad for me."
"You"ve known me two minutes but you already know I"m bad for you""
"Oh, yeah." She rakes her gaze down my body like she did before, but this time there"s so much intensity behind the look that my dick is hard before she even makes her way back up to meet my eyes. "You have that dark-and-brooding look about you. You know, like you"re too busy being pissed at the world to enjoy the little things. A real asshole." She presses her palm to her chest. "It just so happens that I"m a sucker for assholes. I"ve spent the last eight years of my life collecting them."
"You collect assholes. That"s . . . different."
She grins, unashamed and sexy as fuck. "Obviously, I"m good at it, too, since I"m at this stupid party alone when I was supposed to be here with a guy I thought liked me."
"You have me all wrong," I mutter.
"You"re not an asshole, or you"re not pissed at the world""
"I"m not"" Oh hell. I"m not sure I can deny either. I fucking love my life, but I"ve definitely indulged in my share of asshole behavior in my efforts to live life large. Though I"m not always pissed at the world"only sometimes and about certain things.