Friday, October 13, 2017

Hallie. A Tit for a Tat by: Isaiyan Morrison w/ Giveaway

Title: Hallie. A Tit for A Tat
Author: Isaiyan Morrison
Series: Deamhan Tales Book 3 /Deamhan Chronicles Book 3.5
Genre: Adult/Paranormal/Urban Fantasy/Dark Fiction
Publisher: Self Published
Release Date: Newsletter Only Title
Formats Available In: eBook
I'm no killer. I'm not like them. Who am I kidding? I'm exactly like them.
I, Hallie Mortenson, didn’t asked to be sired and thrown into a ditch. I never asked for my life to be turned upside down or to live in a world where sunlight is nothing more than a fading memory.
It’s against The Dictum to sire someone as young as me, but no Deamhan pays attention to those rules anymore. With the entire world against us, we’re more concerned with survival and avoiding the feeling of being suffocated rather than adapting to the drama we inherited.
I think I’m starting to learn that lesson…slowly. However, with threat looming around every corner, my sire’s return to the city is making things worse. He has a secret agenda; one which involves a very old and powerful Deamhan bent on revenge against his sire line, which includes me.
I keep telling myself that I’m not like them and that there has to be more to life than this.

I am a Deamhan and this is my story.

Running back and forth from one place to another would make anyone tired, but not Deamhan. There’s something about running at tremendous speed, with the wind slapping against your face, which felt right. For me it felt like I was part of something bigger and better than who I was. It was liberating to be under the nighttime sky, especially when there were other Deamhan and a vampire running with you.
The city was dead quiet when we arrived at Dark Sepulcher, the vampire club of all vampire clubs. There were a few human walking about but not enough to notice or feel threatened. I was able to pick up on several different scents from the other side: food, old water, and vampires but nothing that resembled a Deamhan. Alexis knocked on the front door and soon heard slow footsteps approaching and the faint sound of someone grabbing onto the doorknob.
When the door opened, we stood face to face with a short, stocky bald black male. He was shirtless. A cigarette dangled in his mouth and his brown eyes looked us over. Alexis smiled at his appearance and he returned the gesture.
“Is everything ready?” she asked.
The vampire puffed out his chest and stepped aside. “Yeah. They’re all waiting inside.”
“They?” Still uncomfortable with going into what she called ‘the vampire’s den,’ Ji didn’t want to move an inch further. I calmed her by grabbing her hand.
“Lambert’s a friend to us,” I whispered.
“He’s your friend. Not mine.”
Alexis walked and I followed with Ji and Tank close behind me. When the vampire male slammed the door shut, Ji jumped and her eyes grew dark. I squeezed her hand and continued to tell her that everything was going to be fine. However, I had no idea what awaited us when we walked beyond the black drapes which separated the front area from the immense interior. There were too many vampires to count and their scents made my own senses go into overdrive. Then came the hunger pains. They felt like my stomach gnawed on itself. Suddenly these vampires began to look delicious.
Lambert sat at the bar with his right hand holding onto a cup of blood and his left hand resting on his leg. Everything I knew about him, I learned from Remy and the others. Before he was turned into a vampire, he’d lived a mercenary lifestyle which had made him the hard and sometimes unremorseful individual we knew today. He was a warrior and raided villages with his band of mercenaries. He was responsible for the deaths of countless families and he kept the head of his victims as trophies. He was also a born leader.
“Lambert!” Tank held his arms out as if the vampire would embrace him like a long, lost friend. “How have you been? Looks like you’ve been doing good for yourself!”
Lambert stood up from his stool. He wore a long white shirt that extended to his knees and dark pants. His dark hair was slicked back.
“You’re lucky that I have an interest in Hallie’s wellbeing.” He sipped from his cup. “If it wasn’t for her, you’d be in my dungeon right now.”
“Why do you and your vampire girlfriend always resort to torture threats?” Amused, Tank took one look at the horde of vampires under Lambert’s beck and call.
Alexis sauntered over to him. Lambert took notice and he gently placed a kiss on her cheek.
I searched the vampire crowd, hoping to see Remy or Enlai. Unable to find them, I asked Lambert if they’d been in Dark Sepulcher.
“I have my vampires looking for them now. When they find them, they’ll bring them here. Don’t worry.” He smiled.
“So, they’re still alive?” Ji asked.
“Yes. Surprisingly, Zila let them live.”
“Of course she did. They aren’t her targets,” Tank replied. “I am.”
“And what to do about that…” Lambert tapped his chin in thought. “Oh! I know.” He clapped his hands and the vampires in the club moved quick to surround us. Unaware of what was going on, I prepared myself for anything.
“So, that’s your plan?” Tank’s smile dissipated from his face. “To kill me? You know better than that Lambert.”

This Title Is ONLY AVAILABLE via Newsletter Subscription
Isaiyan Morrison ~ Newsletter

A veteran of the Armed Forces, Isaiyan Morrison was born and raised in Minneapolis.
Her passions include writing, reading, and researching historical events. She also spends her time gardening, playing video games, and hanging out with her three cats and beloved Pitt bull.

Links Below Go To Amazon
These books are the main books in the Deamhan Universe.
Deamhan (#1)
Deception (#3)
Links Below Go To Amazon
These novellas are side stories involving different characters in the main Deamhan Universe.
Kei. Family Matters ~ Deamhan Tales (#1)/ Deamhan Chronicles (#1.5)
Ayden. Deamhan Minion ~ Deamhan Tales (#2)/ Deamhan Chronicles (#2.5)
Hallie. A Tit for A Tat ~ Deamhan Tales (#3)/ Deamhan Chronicles (#3.5)
(Newsletter Subscription ONLY Title)
Links Below Go To Amazon
These books explore the histories of certain characters in the Deamhan Universe.
(Can Be Ready At Any Point in the Series)
Maris (#1)
Standalone Titles
Links Below Go To Amazon

Friday, October 6, 2017

Deception by: Isaiyan Morrison w/ Guest Post & Giveaway

Title: Deception
Author: Isaiyan Morrison
Series: Deamhan Chronicles (#3)
Genre: Adult/Paranormal/Urban Fantasy/Dark Fiction
Publisher: Self Published
Release Date: Feb 11 2016
Edition/Formats Available In: eBook & Print
The death of prominent Deamhan elders has left a gaping hole in their society.
Amenirdis, the Queen of Limbo and the Dark Mother of Deamhan, is now loose in the world. Her plans for total annihilation of her kind rests on the blood of Maris and the Dark Curse tablet.
News of her release has also awaken the Dorvo Coven; vampires who consider themselves the arch enemies of Deamhan. One in particular hunts for the Dark Curse tablet with a means to exterminate every Deamhan on the face of the planet. In order to do so she must collect the broken Dark Curse tablet and the blood of Maris.

However, there are some Deamhan who won’t go down without a fight.

No one is safe. Not even the supernatural baddies who hide in the shadows of their dark underworld.

“I planned on killing you, but now,” —she folded her arms and continued to eye him like a piece of meat— “I’m not so sure.”
He decided to change the topic to keep her mind off her indecisiveness. When it came to personal matters of the heart, or in her case, lust, she could never make up her mind. “Where’s the other one you always hung around with? Boyd?”
Well, that didn’t work. “My condolences.”
“Thank you for your attempt at sympathy.” She turned and walked back to the chair in the middle of the floor. “You and I both know that you never liked him anyway.” She lowered herself into the seat.
“But I knew how much he liked you.”
“I have a new lover now.” She flicked her wrist.
Remy felt the air tighten around him when Alexis nodded.
“Her?!” He couldn’t help but to laugh. “I don’t think Lambert will be happy about that.” With his past business out in the open, Alexis gave him a stare that he had never witnessed or seen before. It was ice cold, filled with confusion with just a sprinkle of anger.
“Not her. Another Deamhan,” Ruby replied. “He’s loyal, beautiful, and a beast in bed.”
From behind, he felt the Dorvo vampires homing in close. He took one quick glance over his shoulder. “I’m assuming that you aren’t here to get back together, then?”
“No, I’m looking for something—someone,” she replied. “Maris.”
“Oh, her? I thought you were looking for Anastasia. Didn’t she kill your maker?” He tapped his chin. “Wait. You squashed your differences with her, right? I could never get those details straight.”
“We came to an agreement, yes. Still I’m surprised she’s protecting her offspring. She’s not the same Deamhan I had the pleasure of tracking all those years ago.”
“Don’t you now feel a little betrayed?”
“Hardly. So, where is Maris?”       
“I have no clue. I’m not her sire and I’m not her keeper.”
“I know she’s not at that awful place you call a sanctuary. What’s the name again?” She looked at Alexis for an answer
“Blind Bluff Manor.”
“Thank you.” Ruby’s beautiful eyes jumped back to Remy. “Alexis has been really helpful. She told me that a sickly old human, a scared Metusba, Anastasia,” —her eyes narrowed— “and you lived there.”
“Sounds about right.” He turned his body toward Lambert’s consort. “So what else has your new vampire loyalist told you?”
“You shouldn’t be angry with her or her sire. I didn’t give them a choice in the matter. I told them about the consequences of ignoring a demand from the Dorvo Coven.” She folded her legs. “This city is renowned for Deamhan attacks. I couldn’t believe how many unsolved murders there are here. It’s beyond me how the nightlife functions; how humans are not tuned into what’s happening around them. I gave Lambert my word that his business would run as usual. That I and my coven would bring calm to the city. All he has to do is cooperate.”
“So you think by being here, you’ll be able to magically solve all the violence and the scared humans will have their perfect Utopian city?” By now the group had crowded around him and, feeling smothered, Remy reacted by allowing his eyes to take shape.
Seeing this, Ruby waved her hand and they took a step back. “Where’s Maris?”
“I told you. I don’t know.”
She uncrossed her legs and placed her hands on the chair’s armrests. “So how is it?”
“How’s what?”
“Living with a human? Does it remind you of living with me?”
He flinched. “I don’t know why you’d think that.”
She stood up. “I’m sure it has its ups and downs. For one, they sleep all night. And I can’t imagine how hard it is for someone like you to hold back your hunger.” She strutted over to him.
“He does look rather tasty from time to time.” The smile withered from his face and his body tensed. If he didn’t tell her what she wanted to know, she’d soon switch to the menacing ‘jewel’ he knew her to be.
When she stood close to him, she lifted her right hand and placed it underneath his chin. “You were never a great liar.” She squeezed and he felt her fingernails digging into his skin.
The fluctuating pain didn’t sway him from his stance. It was easier and smarter to tell her exactly what she wanted to know but at the same time, he loved the leverage he had. He tried to turn his head but her grip kept his upper body locked.
“Where is she, Remy? Don’t make me ask again.”
“Why don’t you ask Anastasia? I’m sure you both have a lot to catch up on.”
“In time.” She lifted her left hand toward his face. “Hmmmm, those full, dark eyes. I miss them.” She moderately began to push her forefinger toward his left eye. Remy attempted to pull back, but he felt cold hands grab onto his shoulders, holding him still.
Ruby continued to apply more pressure toward his eye and the pain elevated, making him bite his lower lip. His eye popped and he bellowed.
She stopped her attack. “Don’t worry. I have plenty of time to reminisce with Anastasia.” She studied her forefinger, which dripped with his dark, thick blood.
Her companions pushed Remy to his knees. He held his head low while the pain steadily continued. Anger rushed into him.
“Why so chafed?” she asked.
He clenched his teeth, careful to not show his pain. “I loved that eye.”
“That was to remind you of what you lost and why you shouldn’t fool yourself any longer.” She turned around. “Don’t worry. You’ll heal.”
From the corner of his right eye he saw Alexis’ face fill with excitement. “I know what this is.”
“Excuse me?” Ruby faced him again.
“You think I have a thing for her.” Remy nodded his head in Alexis’ direction. “But don’t worry, baby. There’s only one vampire bitch that’s ever had my heart.”
“That wasn’t about her. It was about that Veronica human.”
“She isn’t the first woman who has replaced you.”
Ruby leaned over him. “Maybe I should have taken your tongue instead.”
“Then what tool would I have to please you with?”
“The other tool you were born with.” She slapped her hand on his chest and slowly lowered it to his groin. At any other time, he would have welcomed her gesture but as her hand slid, he feared she’d discover the amulet in his pocket.
“Oh, I forgot about that.” In an attempt to stop her, he jerked his body forward. He moved too late.
“What is this?” She reached her hand into his pocket and pulled out the amulet. She glared at its smooth surface and then brought it up to her nose, sniffing it.
“Consider it a gift from me to you.” He wanted the object to work its magic like it did on Kei and turn her into a pile of blood and bones. From what he still knew about it, the amulet only killed Deamhan.
“This must be important to you.” When she pushed it toward him, he crouched back, afraid of its magical touch. She took notice. “Or dangerous.” She stood up straight. “I’ll find out what it is sooner or later.” She twirled the amulet in the air by its chain. “But for now, give me one good reason why I shouldn’t stake you.”
“Easy. You still love me.”

Amazon Kindle

Friday, September 29, 2017

Ayden. Deamhan Minion by: Isaiyan Morrison w/ Giveaway

Title: Ayden. Deamhan Minion
Author: Isaiyan Morrison
Series: Deamhan Tales Book 2 /Deamhan Chronicles Book 2.5
Genre: Adult/Paranormal/Urban Fantasy/Dark Fiction
Publisher: Self Published
Release Date: Nov 14 2015
Formats Available In: eBook
For over a hundred years Ayden, a Metusba Deamhan has waited for the chance to avenge his sire who met a bloody end at the hands of Anastasia, a Ramanga Deamhan.
Being an obedient servant to Kyra, the oldest of their kind, he finally gets his chance to have his revenge. However there’s one small problem. He’s heavily indebted to Anastasia’s offspring, Maris and Kyra wants him to kill her.
He must decide. Be the obedient Deamhan minion to Kyra, who used the darkness inside him to fuel his rage or protect Maris, who saved him from that same darkness for a second chance to feel again.

The choice isn’t going to be easy. Then again, when has anything in his long tortured life been easy?

I stopped smiling. “We shouldn’t talk here.” I moved in closer to her. “We should move.” She referred to the promise we made to each other about Anastasia. We planned to take our revenge as soon as we dealt with Lucius and the Dark Curse. It was the main reason I brought her to Minneapolis in the first place, but it wasn’t the real reason that I came back. It wasn’t easy to tell her how things had changed in my already fragile relationship with the other Ancient Deamhan. I didn’t know how Maris would react if I told her the truth behind my return.
She looked around our environment. “Is someone following you? There’s no one around besides a homeless man underneath the bridge.”
“No. I just want to talk somewhere private.” With my arm around her waist we walked deeper into the park. Now with nothing around us but trees and thick bushes, she spoke again.
“Is something wrong?” Her eyes exposed confusion. “Have you changed your mind?” She took a few steps in my direction.
“No, of course not. Things are not simple anymore.” Of course I hadn’t changed my mind. I wanted to end her sire. The same Deamhan who conspired with Remy, another Deamhan at Blind Bluff Manor, to kill us both during the fight at the warehouse. The same Deamhan who killed Oliver.
“It’s simple to me.” She took a few steps in my direction, glaring at me. She tried to understand what I was trying to say. She rubbed her chin in thought and growing impatient she pushed herself into my mind. Throughout the hundred plus years we knew each other she had never forced herself into my thoughts and it startled me. I reacted quickly, expelling her away.
“Who is Biddy?”
Out of all the thoughts she could’ve picked up from my mind, Biddy was the only name she deciphered.
“No one important. Why did you do that?”
“I just had to know.”
“Know what?”
“Why you’re hesitant.”
We stood a feet away from each other when I watched as her eyes narrowed in on me. My statement didn’t seem to move her to speak up any more quickly than before. Eventually I had to break away from our staring contest. I turned my back from her and covered my mouth in anticipating for what I suspected. She believed that I had somehow reconciled my differences with Anastasia and no longer wanted to kill her. Like many Deamhan in her life, she believed I had broken my promise. She thought that I had turned weak.
“I am not weak,” I said, after picking up on her thoughts.
“Then why have you changed your mind?”
“It’s complicated.” I still didn’t have the strength to face her.
“The look in your eyes. Your body gesture. Your chest protruded slightly, your right pinky finger twitched. It’s Kyra, isn’t it?”

Amazon Kindle

A veteran of the Armed Forces, Isaiyan Morrison was born and raised in Minneapolis.
Her passions include writing, reading, and researching historical events. She also spends her time gardening, playing video games, and hanging out with her three cats and beloved Pitt bull.

Links Below Go To Amazon
These books are the main books in the Deamhan Universe.
Deamhan (#1)
Deception (#3)

Links Below Go To Amazon
These novellas are side stories involving different characters in the main Deamhan Universe.
Kei. Family Matters ~ Deamhan Tales (#1)/ Deamhan Chronicles (#1.5)
Ayden. Deamhan Minion ~ Deamhan Tales (#2)/ Deamhan Chronicles (#2.5)
Hallie. A Tit for A Tat ~ Deamhan Tales (#3)/ Deamhan Chronicles (#3.5)
(Newsletter Subscription ONLY Title)

Links Below Go To Amazon
These books explore the histories of certain characters in the Deamhan Universe.
(Can Be Ready At Any Point in the Series)
Maris (#1)

Standalone Titles
Links Below Go To Amazon

Friday, September 22, 2017

Dark Curse by: Isaiyan Morrison w/ Creative Post & Giveaway

Title: Dark Curse
Author: Isaiyan Morrison
Series: Deamhan Chronicles (#2)
Genre: Adult/Paranormal/Urban Fantasy/Dark Fiction
Publisher: Self Published
Release Date: Aug 11 2015
Edition/Formats Available In: eBook & Print
The Deamhan world is in disarray. Freed from Limbo, Lucius, the once feared and Ancient Lugat, goes on a killing spree to wipe out any remaining traitors in the city of Minneapolis. Meanwhile The Brotherhood's return along with the growing population of vampires riles up the remaining Deamhan who choose to stay behind rather than abandon the city.

The body count continues to pile up forcing both humans and Deamhan to pick a side. Either allow Lucius to free the Pure Ones, the first living Deamhan from Limbo, or take him out and cripple their already fragile presence in the city.

They walked down the hall and to the room. They saw Selene standing near a wide open window with her back to the door and to Anastasia’s surprise, Lucius standing off to her right. The large room encompassed the length of three large master bedrooms. A bed was lined up against the wall with several packed suitcases on top of it. Selene looked over her shoulder, frowning at Anastasia but her piercing eyes revealed a woman who still had something up her sleeve.
“I told you we couldn’t trust her.” Selene stared wildly at Lucius.
A look of disappointment appeared on Lucius’ face.
“And she brought her annoying friend.” Selene’s green eyes circled to Remy.
Remy’s eyes tapered and he quickly turned to Anastasia. “We’re about to die, aren’t we?”
“There’s a high probability,” Anastasia muttered to him.
“So I guess I should just say what’s on my mind.” He cleared his throat, preparing for his speech. “Believe it or not I’m a Deamhan that follows Decretums.” He looked toward Selene. “Your Decretum, in particular, demands that Veronica be protected at any cost. So, yeah, whatever happened to that?”
Selene’s eyes narrowed in on Remy. “You need to leave. This doesn’t concern you.”
“Hey, we’re all sorry that Lucius was thrown into Limbo, but what you’re both trying to do isn’t right and you know it,” Remy said.
“And what makes you think my stint in Limbo was wrong?” Lucius asked him. “It was the best thing to ever happen to me.”
Remy burst out in laughter. “You’re kidding, right?” His eyes moved to Anastasia. “He’s kidding, right?”
Anastasia allowed her body to tense up and at any moment she felt that Lucius would strike Remy down in a single blow. She wanted to avoid any confrontation and hoped to sway Selene with words alone.
“We don’t have time for this.” Lucius looked to Selene and nodded. “Go. I’ll join you shortly.”
Anastasia didn’t want to Selene to leave. She would miss her opportunity to get her alone and if she made one move to follow her, Lucius would easily manhandle her.
Selene walked over to the bed and she picked up a long brown jacket with a white ruffled collar. She slid the jacket over her body and adjusted it. “You made a mistake coming here.”
“What makes you both think that once you release them, they’ll welcome us with open arms?”
“Because we are their children, Anastasia, and good children obey their parents.”

Amazon Kindle

Amazon Print

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

the Queen by:Skye Warren (BLITZ)

Title: the Queen
Author: Skye Warren
Series: The Masterpiece Duet:  Spin-Off from the Endgame Trilogy (Damon Scott) Book 2
Genre: Dark Romance Contemporary Suspense
Publisher: Self Published
Release Date: Sept 19 2017
Edition/Formats: 1st Edition ~ eBook & Print
I have one chance at a new life. A college education. A future outside of Tanglewood’s dark walls. For a breathless moment it seems like I might actually escape.

One call from home, and everything changes.

Damon Scott is my own personal dragon, the fight I’ve always lost, the secret hope of my heart. And he needs my help right now. Only my mind can solve the puzzle of his long-lost sister.

Only my kiss can unlock a man with such a tragic past.

This is my final gamble, with everything at stake. His history. My future.

And a love strong enough to break the city apart.

***THE QUEEN is the final novel in the bestselling Masterpiece duet, about a game of lies and loyalty, of betrayal and power, and ascension to the city’s throne.***


The Masterpiece Duet are spin-off titles of the USA Today bestselling Endgame series about Damon Scott.

Book Links


Skye Warren is the New York Times and USA Today Bestselling Author of contemporary romance. For those new to her work, consider the following bestselling series...
Experience the dark glamour and forbidden love of the Stripped series. The mafia romance prequel TOUGH LOVE is free!
Meet the gritty and dangerous men of Chicago Underground... start reading for free with book one, ROUGH.
Fall in love with the sexy modern fairy tale the Beauty series, starting with Beauty Touched the Beast.
Don't miss a release! Sign up for the newsletter to find out about new releases and sales:

Author Links
Facebook Group Skye Warren’s Dark Room 
Instagram @skyewarrenbooks
Twitter @skye_warren

Skye Warren’s Other Works
Links Below Go to Amazon
The Stripped Series
Experience the Stripped world of dark glamour and forbidden love…
Tough Love (Stripped, #0.5) Free Download
Love the Way You Lie (Stripped, #1)
Heartbreak (Stripped, #1.5) Free Download
Better When It Hurts (Stripped, #2)
Even Better (Stripped, #2.5)
Pretty When You Cry (Stripped, #3)
Caught for Christmas (Stripped, #3.5)
Hold You Against Me (Stripped, #4)
The Chicago Underground Series
Meet the gritty and dangerous men of Chicago Underground…
Rough (Chicago Underground, #1) Free Download
Hard (Chicago Underground, #2)
Fierce (Chicago Underground, #3)
            Wild (Chicago Underground, #4)
Dirty (Chicago Underground, #5)
Secret (Chicago Underground, #6)
Sweet (Chicago Underground #7)
Deep (Chicago Underground, #8)
The Beauty Series
Fall in love with this sexy modern fairy tale…
Beauty Touched the Beast (Beauty, #1) Free Download
Beneath the Beauty (Beauty, #2)
Broken Beauty (Beauty, #3)
Beauty Becomes You (Beauty, #4)
Loving the Beast (Beauty, #5)
The Dark Nights Series
Take a trip to the dark side with this twisted series…
Keep Me Safe (Dark Nights, #0.5)
Trust in Me (Dark Nights, #1)
Don't Let Go (Dark Nights, #2)
The Dystopia Series
Experience a world thrown into darkness and the men who find love in it…
Leased M/M Novella  
Caged M/M Novella  
Endgame Series
It’s all about revenge and seduction in the game of love…
The Pawn (Endgame, #1)  
The Knight (Endgame, #2)
The Castle (Endgame, #3)
The Masterpiece Duet
Endgame Series Spin-Off (Damon Scott)
The Prince (the Masterpiece Duet, Prologue) (FREE DOWNLOAD)
The King (the Masterpiece Duet, #1)
The Queen (the Masterpiece Duet, #2)
Standalone Dark + Dangerous Romance
These standalone books will hold you captive and leave you breathless…

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Saturday, September 16, 2017

Never Let You Go by: Andrew Grey w/Creative Post & Giveaway

Title: Never Let You Go  
Author: Andrew Grey
Series: Forever Yours (Book #2)
Genre:  M/M Contemporary Romance
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Release Date: Sept 8 2017
Edition/Formats Available In: eBook & Print
Friends since they met in school, Ashton and Brighton soon become much more. Ash and his aunt are Brighton’s haven away from his mess of a family, and when Ash enlists in the Army, Brighton learns to endure his long absences and eagerly awaits his return from missions.
Until one day Ash doesn’t come back, and Brighton thinks his greatest fear has come true.

Months pass and Brighton grieves for Ash, not knowing that a terrible misunderstanding sent Ash running, unable to cope when he thought Brighton had betrayed him. Even after an emotional reunion, their relationship isn’t the same—Brighton is now responsible for his young niece, and he’s having a hard time rediscovering the trust he once had in Ash. Ash must still tend to his mental health, but before he can, he’ll have to deal with a past secret that puts all their lives at risk. With so many forces determined to tear them apart, can Brighton and Ash hold on to each other and never let go?

“You had that video game console, and you used to sit in front of it all the time with the volume low so I wouldn’t tell you to stop.” She seemed so happy, and Ash didn’t want to discourage her.
“I remember,” he said quietly. Though he tried not to, because one of his playmates at the time had been a smaller boy, Brighton. They’d been friends since Ash came to live with his aunt. That first year had been misery on top of sadness after his mom and dad’s deaths. “What I loved most was that you used to let me have fun as long as I didn’t break anything and cleaned up when I was done.” Those had been the only rules. He sighed and drifted on waves of gentle memories. Maybe this was what he needed, to come back home where he knew he’d been loved. His muscles relaxed as the old movie about baseball and a cat on television slowly grew more distant.
The oak tree out back loomed overhead with ropes that hung down from the platform he was building. Ash stood under the great green expanse, looking up at the thick canopy.
“Are you going to look up or climb up?” Brighton asked, grabbing the nearest rope and propelling himself upward with the ease of a monkey. He was always climbing something.
“I’ll beat you one day.” Ash grabbed for the nearest rope and climbed as well, reaching the platform a second before Brighton. He stood up in the branches. “See, I told you.”
“Yeah, yeah.” Brighton pulled on the other rope, raising the box of tools they’d loaded. The plan had been to build a treehouse, but they’d only gotten the platform finished. “We need to get to work if we’re ever going to get this done.”
They started building the first wall that would eventually be raised along one side, which in Ash’s mind morphed into the completed treehouse.
The now-teenaged Brighton was sitting on the floor of the treehouse. It seemed to have gotten smaller as they’d gotten older, but neither of them cared.
“I hate math,” Brighton groused as he passed over the book so Ash could look at the problem.
“It’s not that hard. Just move things to the same side of the equation and then solve it.” Ash moved closer, sitting next to him, showing Brighton how to do it, and then waited while Brighton finished the work, doing it correctly. “Perfect.” Ash smiled, and Brighton did the same, his eyes widening as he looked at him. Ash’s heart beat faster and his cheeks heated. Brighton leaned a little closer, and Ash drew in, pulled by a force he didn’t understand, until he kissed Brighton, or Brighton kissed him—he wasn’t sure and it didn’t matter.
Pain instantly ripped through him as the image faded from his mind. Ash did his best to hold on to it like a lifeline. He clenched his hands together, willing Brighton to stay with him.
“I have nothing to tell you,” Ash said for the millionth time. “I don’t know anything about that.”
Ash was yanked away from the pole, and he stumbled before his head was plunged into a tub of icy water. He held his breath, and fingers gripped his hair, forcing him under, holding him there. The images of Brighton grew stronger as Ash willed them to let him die. This needed to be over. There wasn’t much more he could take. Once again he held on to Brighton as though he were tangible, giving him strength and support. Darkness closed around him, and he thought this might finally be the end.
Ash gasped and sat upright, blinking, hands flailing. He came in contact with the lamp and pulled it onto his lap. It was only a dream. The television once again came forward, and he saw the walls of the living room. He took a deep breath to calm his thumping heart and set the lamp back on the table next to him.