What will happen… when Jenn learns the truth that has been brewing deep inside me"
…when she learns my desires have been restrained"
…when containing them is no longer possible"
Will she flee when there"s no place to run"
Traveling to the isolation of a tropical island, we agree to lay our marriage and our future on the line. It"s the only way to face the demons"my demons"that threaten our life together.
For us to make our marriage work, we must break down barriers, reveal the hidden places, and shine light where darkness has taken root.
This reprieve from life is meant to be about us, our marriage, and our future.
It is…until the unexpected happens…
Will our marriage survive" Will we"
This suspenseful, steamy stand-alone novella follows Paul and Jenn Masters, characters previously introduced in the novella UNCONVENTIONAL. This quick, spicy story may be read completely on its own or even before UNCONVENTIONAL.
If you enjoy a fast and furious, heart-thundering ride that leaves you breathless and perhaps a bit hot and bothered, check out New York Times bestselling author Aleatha Romig"s THE VAULT novellas: UNCONVENTIONAL and UNEXPECTED.
Have you been Aleatha"d"
*UNEXPECTED contains the never before seen Prologue of SECRETS, book 1 of WEB of SIN, Aleatha’s new dark romance trilogy with an all new anti-hero alpha coming fall of 2018.Books by Author:Aleatha Romig Books
I bite my lower lip, trying to hold back the tears, as I stare down at the papers before me, wondering how it all came down to this. How can six years of marriage be defined and dissolved in a litany of legal phrases, paragraphs, and division of assets"
"You both need to look at the paperwork carefully," Jonas Miller, our attorney, says. "If everything looks good, all you need to do is sign. Once you both sign, for all practical purposes, it"s done." His head bobs in agreement. "We need the judge"s signature, but basically, it"s all done."
The phrase rings in my head like bells from an old-time church.
Each clang a memory of happier times past.
Taking a sideways glance at my soon-to-be ex-husband, for some reason, my mind goes back to the afternoon he proposed.
Many of my friends tell stories of how they knew the proposal was coming, how they anticipated and planned. Maybe I"m dense, but when Paul popped the question, for me, it was out of the blue. We"d only been dating for six months, meeting for the first time at a work party. He wasn"t a coworker at the firm. He was the friend of a colleague and came along at the last minute. That impulsive decision on his part changed our lives"even if we sign today, that change is forever. From the first moment we met, we hit it off. All I can recall from that party was talking to Paul. The rest of the people ceased to exist. Before we parted ways, he entered his phone number into my phone, and unbeknownst to me, sent himself a text.
We were connected.
It wasn"t until the next morning when my phone buzzed that I saw the message he"d sent.
* * *
From my phone (the text he sent the night before): "Hey, it was great meeting you. Let"s have lunch tomorrow""
From his phone, the next morning: "I couldn"t respond sooner"I was busy thinking about you. Lunch sounds great. I"ll pick you up at noon. Address""
* * *
I had to giggle. It looked like I"d been the one to ask him out, but we both knew the truth. He was both sides of the conversation. Of course, I sent him my address along with a smiling emoji.
I hadn"t been looking for forever, so when it found me, I didn"t recognize it.
Six months later, the two of us went away for the weekend, up to a secluded resort in northern Wisconsin. There were no fancy restaurants or tall buildings. Instead, we were surrounded by the beauty of nature. For three days we hiked trails and found remote vistas with stunning views. On the final day, we took off early in the morning, walking until we finally made it to the shore of a quiet, out-of-the-way lake. From his backpack Paul pulled out a blanket, a bottle of Champagne, orange juice, and food. He had all the makings of a picnic breakfast, complete with mimosas. Lying on that blanket, staring up at the white fluffy clouds as they floated across the cobalt blue sky, we did what had come naturally to us since the night we first met. We talked.
We listened and heard.
As the words on the attorney"s papers blur, the heaviness in my heart reminds me that somewhere along the way we lost that essential element of our relationship.
Sometime during the last six years while navigating life"s ups and downs, we both lost the ability to listen, or perhaps we lost the desire to make time to listen"to make time for one another.
Talking hasn"t been an issue. We speak"sometimes obsessively.
We have both been known to say things we regret.
No, talking isn"t our issue.
On that afternoon that seems like a lifetime ago, Paul sat up, took my hand, looked into my eyes with his sexy brown-eyed stare, and asked, "Jenn, will you be mine forever""
As a lump formed in my throat, I found myself lost in his alluring gaze. "Forever""
"That"s a mighty long time…" We both laughed at the reference to lyrics of a song we both enjoyed and could recite in its entirety. He went on. "…but I"m here to tell you""
"Yes," I said, nodding as I interrupted a classic Prince hit. "It is a long time, and I want to spend it all with you."
"Mrs. Masters," Mr. Miller says, disrupting my thoughts and bringing me back to the present. "Is there a problem with anything in the paperwork""
"I-I…" I stutter, unable to find the right words. After all we"ve said and done, I don"t know if I can admit that I don"t want to sign, that even though I thought I was ready…I"m not. I"m not ready to give up on our forever.
"Jenn"" Paul asks. "We agreed to a no-contest divorce. Everything is divided equally. If you"d feel better with us each having separate representation…""