Angie is a survivor. Anything you could throw at her, she could overcome.
After her father left her like a pile of unwanted trash, she began fighting. Fighting to build a life. Fighting to keep her child. Fighting to matter.
She thought she had it all figured out.
Then Bowen Race Tannenbaum walks into her life, turning it into a flurry of confusion, hope, and then ultimately despair. He tore down, brick-by-brick, her carefully constructed world, leaving her heart in tatters and longing for more. Such as a happily ever after, something that wasn"t ever going to happen for her. Not when she couldn"t give him what he wanted. He"d break her, and she couldn"t be put back together a second time.
Bowe wasn"t always so jaded, but when you keep drawing a losing hand, it tends to affect a man. He didn"t mean to lash out so carelessly. But he was so over being told no. He was done being lied to. He through with being cheated on.
This time, his heart was getting what it wanted. If Angie wasn"t able to see what he was offering, what was right here in front of her, well then, he"d just have to damn well show her.Books in Series:Kilgore Fire Series by Lani Lynn ValeBooks by Author:Lani Lynn Vale Books
You"re making it difficult to be the parent I always imagined I would be.
-Angie"s secret thoughts
15 years old
"Do you see him yet"" I asked my little sister.
My little sister stretched to the tops of her toes then shook her head. "No."
"Mom," I said. "Do you see him yet""
Mom, although I knew she"d rather be anywhere but here, shook her head.
My parents had divorced only a few short months ago, and not by my mother"s choice.
With their divorce came a financial strain that left my mom unable to go a day without working, less we lose the roof over our heads. Especially now that my father wasn"t helping pay for it.
"No." She looked around.
I felt for my mom. I really did.
"You don"t have to stand with us. You can go to the car," I tried again.
My mother looked down at me like I"d grown a second head.
"I"m not leaving you in the same vicinity with that woman," my mother said. "But nice try."
I looked over at "that woman" and cringed.
"That woman" was my father"s new wife, the woman he cheated on my mother with. The one who had two kids the same age as my sister"s eight, and my fifteen.
"Why are they even here"" I asked, fisting my sign in my hands. "They don"t even know him all that well. They"ve seen him like twice."
And it was true.
My father was in the military. He was deployed more than he was here, and I had no clue how those girls were "so in love with their daddy" like their sign said since they"d only seen him twice. Once for a birthday party for the girl my age that my father had dragged me to, and once for the marriage of my father and that woman.
"Oh, there he is!" my sister cried, pointing in the direction of the runway.
We watched as his plane taxied, and then moved up until the walkway was in place.
We watched even more as my father started down the long walkway in our direction.
His eyes, though, weren"t on us.
They were on his new family.
Then, as if it were some cruel joke, my sister started running towards my father, not realizing what was going on"not realizing that my father"s eyes weren"t even on her.
God love my sister, but she was slow. Not slow as in mentally disabled; slow, as in she was slow to catch on. To realize what my mother and I already had.
Which I guessed we should be thankful for right then.
Had she been faster, I was sure that he would"ve pushed her down in order to get to the other little girl running toward him.
I watched in horror as my father swooped down and scooped that little girl up like he should"ve done to Ariel. Pulling the girl in his arms, he swung her in a circle as he lifted her high above his head, practically knocking Ariel down in the process as the little girl"s ridiculously high heeled shoes swung out behind her.
"Jesus," my mother cried, running forward.
My mother swooped Ariel up into her arms, then started running toward me, staring over her shoulder at the man we all used to know.
"Let"s go," my mother murmured, tears already tracking down her cheeks. "I can"t breathe here."
I looked down at the sign that said, "Welcome home, Daddy. I missed you" and hurried to catch up to her, my feet dragging slightly.
With one last look to be sure"no, he still wasn"t looking at us"I walked away, shoving the poster into the trash as I went.
"Hey!" I heard called from behind me right before I"d reached the airport exit.
I turned and saw a boy about my age running after me.
"Yeah"" I asked, swiping at the tears that I hadn"t realized were running down my face.
"I like your hair."
I blinked, surprised.
He grinned and walked off, but not before looking at me once more over his shoulder.
I waved and he waved back.
Then I got into the car with my mother and my sobbing little sister, and never looked back.
7 years later
"Push, honey," my mother whispered. "Push hard."
I pushed hard, but the fact that the room was fucking full of people I didn"t want there was making it hard to concentrate.
"I think it might be the time to consider a C-section." The doctor"s kind eyes looked at me.
"Why do I have to be here"" Jade asked. "This is ridiculous."
Jade was my step-sister who also happened to be in a relationship with Troy, the father of the baby I was in the process of delivering.
I looked over at my brother, who was standing at my head and not looking at anything but my face, and pleaded with him.
"Please get her out of here."
His grin went lethal.
"I can do that."
Without another word, he went to work, getting not just her, but a very pissed off Troy, to leave.