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After She Fell
Author: Amber Laura
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She’s tried for years to convince herself that she isn’t in love with him. If it hasn’t worked, at least she’s managed to convince him of it, anyway. A tragic love affair from her past had shattered Christina’s illusions of romance—it’d shattered her entire world, left her utterly broken and blamed. She’s fallen once before. She isn’t about to make the same mistake twice! Jason Gordman is off-limits. Charming, playful, confident—he’s everything dangerous to her defenses. Worse yet, he’s the boss’s son. Hiding behind antagonism and indifference, Christina manages to keep him at a careful distance. That is, until one fateful night when she finds herself snowbound with him in a blizzard and she slips, allows herself one, forbidden kiss… Struggling to reconcile her feelings, Christina is entirely unprepared for where that one stolen moment will lead her.
Excerpt One: After She Fell Amber Laura She’d worked hard all these years to never be left alone with him. And yet, even knowing this, her feet made no move toward retreat.
Jason sent her a questioning look. “Want something?”
Christina hesitated, but only for a second. “Yeah. Okay, sure.” “Scotch?”
Turning nimbly toward the wet bar, he paused only long enough to ask over one shoulder: “You going to stand there all night or come inside?”
Christina frowned darkly from the staircase. “Of course, I’m not going to stand here…” she muttered, stomping quietly into the living room. Why was it, he could always make her feel like an overgrown child? Clumsy, off-pitch…. Which was particularly offensive because, to the rest of the world, she practically radiated sophistication and finesse. With anyone else, she wouldn’t have had to be reminded to enter a room, she’d have already been lounging in one of the chairs, her body sinking gracefully against the cushions.
Christina watched him surreptitiously, his hands deft as he reached for a particular bottle, unscrewed its cap, and poured her drink. She’d only just sat down on the couch when he finished. Coming up to her, he held out a scotch, neat.
Warily, she glanced at his outstretched hand. There was absolutely no way she could take it without touching his fingers. Bracing herself for the feeling that always followed—it was only the rush of the forbidden, she firmly reminded herself—Christina let her hand reach forward. Her fingers shook slightly as she curled them around the cocktail glass, but she consoled herself with the knowledge that it was only the finest of tremors.
“Nervous, Christina?” Jason asked quietly, expectantly, his body leaning just slightly toward hers, his left hand coming to brace itself against the armrest. His eyes stared daringly into her face.
Apparently it hadn’t been that fine of a tremor after all. Cupping the glass with both hands then, Christina tried to play it cool. He was far too close. In response, she sank farther into the cushions. It was a telling move, but for once, she didn’t care. “Of what?”
He nodded at the stranglehold she had on the alcohol. He filled her vision, closing in around her as he bent nearer yet, his other hand finding support against the back of the couch cushion. “You tell me.” His words were soft, but still, they fell against her consciousness with a blow. His eyes narrowed on her fingers, the unusual whiteness of her knuckles. “You’re trembling,” he informed her needlessly. His breath singed across her senses, the sound of his voice caressing against her half-open mouth.
A last-ditch defense, she raised her glass jerkily to her lips, anything to barricade herself from his proximity, the liquid sloshing violently against the sides of the tumbler with the motion. Only, at the last second, she changed her mind, lowering the untasted drink down to her lap. She doubted she could’ve swallowed just then anyway. Clearing her throat, her eyes falling to a warm droplet of scotch which had landed on her knee, Christina felt her control slipping, cracking.
“You know what,” she said, the words coming out adamant, hard. Moving blindly, Christina set her glass down on the end table. “I think maybe I’m tired after all.” With a sudden move, she scrambled wildly to her feet, swatting at one of the arms enclosing either side of her. The motion forced Jason upright, forced him to take a step backward. Still though, he had her pinned, the backs of her legs pressed against the couch, his chest only inches away from her own.
With a wild snarl, she made to push fully past his crowding body.
“Chrissy…” Jason’s hand shot out, forestalling her rushed getaway. Standing at full height now, he stared down into her averted features. Their bodies were so close now that they were almost, but not quite, touching. Except, of course, for his hold on her captured wrist.
“Let me go, Jason,” she commanded, tugging futilely against his hold. Her eyes flicked up and then away from his knowing gaze.
“Not before I get an answer,” he returned.
Exasperated, she felt her chin tugging up, her eyes clashing with his. “To what?”
“A theory,” he said, half under his breath. Before Christina had time to process this cryptic statement, his mouth swooped down, covering hers.
about the author
It's that twisting pinch of excitement in your stomach when the girl rounds the corner and-your fingers slip quickly to the next page-and there he is. The guy. Her guy. Leaning up against the side of a building, just as though he'd been waiting for her there all along. And, of course, he had been. It's that chapter when, over one too many glasses of wine, she finally speaks, sharing an intimate story of loss and betrayal; her voice thickens, the words rambling, bumbling over themselves as she tries to sort through a pain she's never let herself share before-and tears swim in your eyes as you read along.... It's that passage when the world shifts before your eyes, replaced by a still, quiet lake in the middle of the Midwest, replete with tall, mossy pines and the scent of sweet-grass; or perhaps it's a bustling side-street in Paris, or powdery sand in a small, pastel-colored coastal town-and you tag along for the journey, without ever leaving home. It's the scene when friendships are made (and they're real and they are profoundly felt), that love is found, when ordinary lives are explored for all of the extraordinary moments. It's excavation. Perspective. And, perhaps most important of all, it's creative imagination. That's why I write. That's what I write. And always: I write for you.