Published On: TBA
Grief brought them together
A hospice center is no place to fall in lust. But with his world cracking during his estranged mother’s last days, Hayden Crewe needs something sweet to focus on. It doesn’t matter that he’s the backbone of Australia’s hottest international rock group—here, watching his mother die, he’s more alone than ever. So when he meets long-legged, clear-minded Briar Moore, he suddenly knows exactly what will fill the hole inside.
Fortune will drag them apart
Briar has just escaped a job and relationship that nearly crushed her. Crawling out of the wreckage of her previous life, she’s done playing it safe. Sexy, vibrant Hayden is what she wants, and Briar is going to take him. For as long as she can…
Out of heartbreak comes hope
With their time short and the ghosts of their pasts haunting every moment, Briar and Hayden know they’ve fallen too deep. While those few, intense days changed them both forever, everyone knows a connection this intense should burn out as fast as it ignited…
“Drink, Mr. Crewe?”
The flight attendant was back.
“Coffee. Black. Thanks.”
She poured it, handed me the Styrofoam cup I knew Briar wouldn’t approve of. Must be something about spending time in the Northwest. In just those few days, I’d managed to absorb some of their earth-friendly initiative.
“I was sorry to hear about your mother, Mr. Crewe.”
My eyes snapped up to hers. She wasn’t going to leave. If I asked her to, I’d seem rude. But I didn’t want to deal with a fan right now.
“Your friend looked upset. Was she close with your mom?”
What the hell was she talking about? “My mum was in hospice. She had cancer.”
“Yes, I read that. It’s all over the news.”
I leaned back and closed my eyes. My friend. Upset. The pieces fell together. “You mean Briar?”
The coffee sat heavy in my stomach. I’d left early . . . there was no way the media could have found out already. “Can I see the picture you’re talking about?”
“They’re all over the Net. Just pick a site.”
I pulled out my phone. “Okay for me to use now?”
She shrugged. “Sure. Let me know if I can get you anything else.”
I nodded, scrolling through the menus to get access to the Internet. My heart tripped at the number of times the piece had been shared. Fucking hell. I clicked on the first one, trying to brace myself for the worst.
And there she was. Briar. Hair damp, eyes wide, surrounded by reporters.
Why hadn’t I considered that? She was scared. Alone. Fragile. But so beautiful.
The picture was taken in the lobby of the Edgewater. And there were so many other photos—all of Briar with that same scared look in her eyes. Where was security? The paparazzi obviously surprised her, but the hotel was supposed to be prepared for these types of events.
The coffee churned in my stomach again and I barely swallowed it down. Security was there for celebrities. I was the celebrity, and I’d checked out hours ago, leaving instructions for all of Briar’s bills and needs to be put on my card. I didn’t think the media would turn their focus on her in my absence.
After going through the photos, I read the story, my heart rate escalating with each word. She’d been so brave, facing the reporters. I’d left her alone to clean up my mess. And she’d defended me. Offered up an explanation for the inexplicable. For the way I’d left her.
I didn’t even have the decency to look her in the eyes and say goodbye. I’d sent her a text message, cowardly arse that I was, and run away from my deepest fear.
I checked another site, then another, mouth hanging open as I realized just how big this was. First, that I’d been photographed with a woman at all. Second that I’d left her without even a Dear John ending. But no one pounced on that part. Because Briar kept her mouth shut.
She’d promised me the day we met that she wouldn’t share any details of my life. She’d kept her word even though she had to have read my message by now. Even though she must hate me.