I did something incredibly stupid this week. So stupid, in fact, that it not only derailed a trip I had planned but also caused a shortage of ice in my house.
I went on a hike without proper hiking boots.
This resulted in a severely sprained ankle, and like the real woman I am (and not a romance heroine) I had to walk the 1.5 hours back on the hurt foot. A romance heroine had, of course, bumped into a hunky billionaire hiker who selflessly carried her the entire way. He would have driven her home. And next week he's revealed to be her new boss...
The stupidest part is that I had proper hiking boots with ankle support in the trunk of my car. I just chose, like a stubborn teenager refusing to wear a thick jacket in freezing weather, to not wear them.
And thus my injury, new story inspiration, derailed trip plans and swollen ankle. I'm now sitting at my desk with an ice pack and wondering how I'm going to make it through my current manuscript.
Maybe I'll hobble one of my characters, too. Muhahaha.
But since I'm clearly well enough to write all of this to you, I'm probably well enough to write actual words today.
This email isn't all about my trip, though. It was actually meant to be 0% about my trip, but here we are. See, it was supposed to be about Honeymoon! I wrote a few mini scenes from Phillip's perspective, and I've shared the first one with you down below. It was so much fun to be in his head and I've been asked by readers to share more of his thoughts.
Hope you're enjoying a lovely and less pained-ankle-filled week!
"I love you," Eden says.
I stare down at her, frozen in place. Something in my chest feels almost painfully alive at the words.
"You do?" I ask.
"Yes." Her voice is soft, and her eyes softer still. "It’s okay if you’re not there yet, or if you don’t want to say it. But I want you to know how I feel.”
Happiness makes my head dizzy. But I need to make sure it's true first. "Really?"
She smiles. It's a beautiful sight. "Yes, so much I don’t know what to do with it all. It’s taken me by surprise… but I love that, too.”
I shift her more firmly beneath me and kiss her. She tastes like home. "Eden," I mutter. "Fuck."
“It’s okay,” she says. “It’s fine. This doesn’t change anything.”
I rest my head against the warm skin of her neck. My heart is beating so fast I can hear my own pulse.
"It's not that," I say. Because it really isn't. It's the opposite. It's the knowledge of how big this is, the two of us, and how important it is. I can't mess this up. It would kill me.
It feels like the biggest thing I've ever experienced. The best thing.
I look down at her. Tousled hair. Warm, open eyes. Kissable lips. Achingly familiar and still so new.
“I love you too," I say. "I have for much longer than I realized. It crept up on me, slow at first, and then so fast that I was deep in it before I knew.”
“You do?” she murmurs.
I nod and cup her face. The skin is warm beneath my hand. “Yes. I don’t think I’ve ever experienced this, or felt this much before.”
“Not like this,” she says.
“Not like this,” I agree. Not even close. “I know how bad it can hurt when things fall apart. And now? Feeling like this? I don’t think I could handle it, Eden. If I lost you.”
It feels like an understatement. But it's the best I can do, with these feelings burning in my chest. Eden wraps her legs around me and rests her forehead against mine. I can feel her heart pounding.
“You won’t,” she murmurs.
“No?” I ask. Never leave.
“No. Besides, this, with you and me? It’s an adventure. And we’ve been on those before.”
LOOK! My books are out in foreign languages, and it is so cool it deserves all caps. I have one of them as a physical copy already, and I can't wait to collect them all, even though I can't read them.
Do you recognize the covers? Foreign publishers often adapt or change covers completely, to better match the domestic market. But a few are very similar to my English ones!