I tried to shake my brain into a plot twist that I hadn’t seen before. Since it was time for me to begin plotting for my next firehouse 17 story, I mulled on a possible scenario. Then out of the blue on my personal face book page I got a friend request. A total blast from the past. Fifteen years in the past to be exact. Thanks to this young man I briefly dated, I had the perfect conflict. We had a great conversation, where he profusely apologized for misleading me for months. I of course forgave him and laughed off youthful idiocy. For my story, instead of keeping it simple, I of course dug in and went to the dark side with the conflict and fleshed it out. I’d tell you all about it, well but you can read for yourself and probably see where I was going. It’s rare someone in my personal life lends to stories, at least on this level. It’s true that there are both positive and negative consequences for every action we take, and our actions show what our character is. Without mistakes we wouldn’t learn self-evaluation.
Forbidden Deception releases Aug 26th from Secret Cravings Publishing. Enjoy the blurb and teaser excerpt below!
No one knows how a solitary lie has the power to rip a heart to pieces. For ten years Ailyn Dominguez has lived with a constant reminder of heartbreak that left her devastated and pregnant. While nothing gives her more pleasure than being a mother, the lie she lives weighs her down like a ball and chain. Even if she knew where to look, her deceit could cost her everything she holds dear.
Responsibility for others has always rested on Seth Mahone. Every day he gears up to protect and serve, leads his men and finds fulfillment in doing his best. With one friend settled down, he reevaluates his life and the cost he paid when the one woman he loved left leaving an in fillable void. Regretting what caused their split, he hasn’t fully let go or found another to take her place.
When the past collides with the present both must confront the deception that split them apart.
“Welcome to Station 17, I’m glad you decided to come.” Seth opened the door for her. She shot him down as he reached to usher her in, avoiding body contact by retaining her distance.
“I can see myself in and open my own doors. What do you want?”
“To discuss what’s on my mind in the privacy of my office.” His smile waned into a frown as he led the way, this time keeping his hands to himself. Good, he learned quickly.
She ignored the questioning glances from the other men as she trailed after him, her eyes riveted to anywhere but his behind.
He opened his office door and gestured for her to move past him. Holding onto her temper, she breezed in before skirting away from him. When he shut the door and systematically drop each blind encasing them in privacy, she swallowed nervously.
“That isn’t necessary.”
“I disagree. We need privacy, and my men don’t need to hear our personal business.”
“We don’t have any personal business. Say what you want so I can leave.” She turned away from him, giving him her back.
“Christ. This is not going how I wanted. Why didn’t you let me make amends? I tried for months to reach out to you and fix us.”
“Fix us?” Her voice raised and pitchy, Ailyn whipped around and glared. “Fix us? There was no repairing us after your whopper of a lie.”
He held his palms up in an attempt to calm her. “I am sorry for any pain I caused you. You may not believe me, but I deeply regret not being honest with you from the beginning. But damn it if you’d only have listened for a moment, you’d have seen that I was graduating that year, early.”
“You were still underage! Unless you could’ve magically jumped from sixteen to eighteen, and somehow I don’t think you had the power to time warp. Not to mention we lived in a state where there are heavy statutory laws.”
“Please lower your voice.”
“You know, everyone around you may be fooled but I know the real you. You’re a liar, a master manipulator and an all around bastard. Do you even realize what your duplicity could have cost me?” Has cost me, she wanted to scream.
“Of course not. I was young and in love. I wasn’t thinking about consequences, I was thinking in a matter of months it wouldn’t have mattered.”
“Right, because true love means building a relationship on nothing but dishonesty. Your brand of love burned me.”
“I am trying to apologize.” Frustration radiated from him. She didn’t care or want his remorse. His struggle to find some common ground with her was ten years too late.
“Well thank you. Apology not accepted. Never accepted.”
“I don’t understand why you’re so angry all these years later. I was hoping we could have dinner and a few drinks, laugh over my idiocy and get to know one another now, as adults. A second chance with no secrets this time.”
Ailyn pursed her lips and crossed her arms under her breasts. “Why so history can repeat itself? Sure, let me just get to know you all over again and then wonder if you’re lying about everything. Been there, done that. I will date you when pigs fly and hell freezes over. Now if you’re done with whatever you have to say. May I leave and forget I ever saw you again?”
“Ailyn, we don’t have to be this way.” The emergency tones went off, making her ears ring.
“Don’t you have work to do?” She knew the sound echoing through the stationhouse meant they had people to go save.
“Strip. We’re far from done talking and I have less than two minutes to get on my truck and go. I’ll wait outside. You’re the one who used to make us strip, remember, don’t walk away, figure it out.”
He leaned in as if to kiss her. Closing her eyes, she fought the craving of feeling his lips. Instead, he trailed his finger along her wrist and swiped her keys out of her lax grip before leaving his office.
“You choose now, all these years later, to remember the one thing I learned from my parents about relationships and problem solving?”
“I remember everything. I have to go, either strip or when I get off I’ll show up on your doorstep to finish this where we can both get naked.”
Ailyn froze. He couldn’t ever come to her home. She stripped in record time and thrust her clothing out the door.
“Thought you’d see things my way. I’ll be back soon.” Ailyn heard his pounding footsteps retreat and snapped into action. No way in hell was she waiting for him to come back. She ran to his desk and yanked open his drawers, looking for a T-shirt or something. All she found was random junk and a roll of black duck tape.
“God, I really hate him,” she seethed. Mia was dead wrong. In no way did she want to get to know anything about him as a man.
Yeah, strip naked, stupid. I don’t have any clothes, but I do have a spare ignition key in a magnetic box under my car. All I need is something to pass as clothing.
“Toilet paper and scotch tape?” She didn’t know where the bathroom was and toilet paper tore. Think Ailyn, think. A sudden idea formed and she grabbed the tape. Calming her hammering heart, she peeked out the door. “Anyone out there?” She waited a minute until she knew the coast was clear and jetted for the kitchen, hoping the cameras were down as she streaked across the fire station.
Holy hell, their kitchen is top of the line. Way better than mine. She stopped in awe of the gleaming appliances and fixtures. Sighing, she realized she was drooling and began opening and shutting drawers and cabinets until she hit pay dirt.
Keeping watch on the time, she tore off long strips of black duct tape and lined them on the counter. She took two strips and tore them down the length in half and wove them together.
Humming Mr. Know it All her favorite Kelly Clarkson song, so appropriate in this instance, she set to work. In college she became a pro at fixing costumes for the theater department or making clothing out of anything on hand. Thanks to reality modeling shows, she found a quick untearable solution. Saran wrap, and to her surprise in red. In no time soon she’d have an eccentric, one of a kind creation to get her the hell outta Dodge, before a specific commanding man returned. She cherished the thought of him finding his office empty and wondering how she’d slipped out from under his thumb.
Teaching him such a lesson gave her a heady high. Winding the hazy plastic around her body made her itch, but no one ever said getaways were easy. After numerous revolutions around her body movement became hard. She concentrated on making sure her girls were wrapped tightly enough that her nipples wouldn’t be seen. Certain she was covered adequately, she wrapped the tape under her boobs and smoothed the black tape across her upper back, using the wall to make the tape stick when she pressed her back on it. The last strip was the hem. She wiggled to bend down and placed the last pieces across the bottom of her masterpiece, then took a kitchen knife and slashed a tiny tear in the side to give her room to walk in her micro mini dress. And viola! Impromptu clothing designed to allow her to get to her car without being arrested for indecent exposure.
The firehouse remained silent. She returned the supplies to their designated areas and lit out of there like hell was on her heels. Upon reaching her car, she realized getting on her knees to find the extra key would cause an issue. Once down, she wasn’t sure she’d be able to get up, plus she didn’t relish the idea of giving all an up close and personal view of her bare pussy. She paced the length of her car, cursing her luck.
“Screw it.” She eased down on her back, wiggled under the driver side carriage of her car and slid her hand over the metal to find the box. She didn’t feel it at first and thought maybe it’d been knocked off. Reaching a little further, she closed her hand around it and pulled the slim container free.
“Now that is something you don’t see every day.” Ailyn wiggled her head out from under her car to see Seth’s team of men in full gear openly appraising her.
“Do you mind? Staring is rude.” She bet her salary her face was flushed and the men before her were enjoying her discomfort.
“What do you think she has on? I thought she was stark naked when we left. Lieutenant, get a load of your girl.”
“I am not, and I repeat—not— his girl. Now sh. Don’t call him over here,” she hissed at the men.
“Well, hey darlin’, I thought you were waiting for me in my office.” Seth lay down on the ground next to her. She bit her lip, dying in mortification as he raked a lingering gaze up and down her body.
“Go away. I’m going home. As soon as I get my key.”
“You mean this one? Yeah, I remembered teaching you to put a spare on the underside, since you were famous for losing them back in the day.”
“Thanks for the ride down memory lane. Now go away. I really don’t want to be near you. As you can see, since I was trying to leave before you got back.”
“Come on. You didn’t think I was going to let you walk away so easy this time, did you? Although, I must say I’m impressed with your resourcefulness. Saran wrap has never looked so damn sexy. The tape is a nice touch. To think you did this all for me. New form of foreplay, darlin’?”