Only Her Heart by Olivia Linden
Holding the pieces of her drama riddled life, Jade decides to leave her disappointments in the past and move on. When her aunt opens up about a family secret, she realizes that everyone else seems to do what they please. Well, now so will she. Building life from the ground up isn’t easy, but with the right friends, she creates the life of her once forgotten dreams.
At the crux of an intense love tug-o-war, the one question she must answer is which man will play the lead role? Will Julian, the ‘bad boy’ who mysteriously walks back into her life manage to win her heart? Will she find forgiveness and a happy ending with John, Mr. “almost perfect’? Maybe there is someone new on the horizon that she can start fresh with. Life is never simple for Jade, but when she listens to her heart, she begins to open doors to a whole new world.
With new friends, and new exciting adventures, Jade is growing into a woman that she is proud of. The real question she needs to figure out is? What does she want her life to become?
“Hey,” John murmured, cradling my face between his large hands.
“Hi,” I replied. There was a slight tremor to my voice caused by the nostalgia that being near him evoked. John. He had been the only thing that kept me sane when it felt like everything around me was falling apart. Now there was so much upheaval around me, I didn’t know where that left us. The conflicted look in his eyes as he looked into mine, further intensifying things. His eyes kept wandering to the almost faded bruise near my mouth from being manhandled. God, I don’t want his pity. Anything but pity, please!
“I don’t know what to say right now. I’m just happy to see you,” he finally spoke.
“I’m glad you’re here too.” I tried to smile through the crack in my heart. Once again John resorted to silence as he continued to hold me. Raheem Devaughn sang about his Luv Drug while my insides were churning with clashing emotions. I wanted to be consumed with the comfort I found in John’s arms, but part of me felt like I should keep some distance between us until I figured out what the hell I wanted. John’s words interrupted my emotional caucus.
“Is it ok if I kiss you?” He leaned in closer before I could even answer. Not yet touching my lips, but close enough that I could smell spearmint every time he took a breath. Close enough for me to make out the hints of amber and greens that tinted his hazel eyes. Wasn’t I just thinking about distance or something? Chile’ Please! I nodded my response and then closed the distance between us. John buried both hands into my carefully styled curls, insuring that I couldn’t escape his embrace. Like I even wanted to.
Our lips slowly did a lip caressing dance before he tentatively brought his tongue into the mix. I parted my lips, allowing him in and breathed a contented sigh when he deepened the kiss. Wrapping my arms around his neck, I held him closer, taking in all of his warmth. He kissed me slowly but thoroughly enough to send errant shivers down my spine. Before things progressed to an out of control level, he pulled away. Much like the kisses when I was in high school that were harmless, but still left me breathless.
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