Five months ago I started writing a short story. Two months ago I submitted said short story to a publisher and crossed my fingers. Nearly two weeks later, I got the contract. One month later, the edits came in and now, on this day, my debut has arrived.
High Scandal is officially published!
Last night I was beside myself with nerves and "Oh my God, what did I do?" A good friend of mine simply took me aside and calmed my fears, explaining that now, officially, I am considered a published author. It's quite humbling and I'm very gracious for the opportunity to share stories with the world.
If you'd like to take a gander at a story that has more of an underlying message than romance and secrets, check out High Scandal. Through Evernight, it's on sale for $2.99 and at Amazon for $3.99. They'll be more links posted soon.
Here's an expert again of High Scandal. Enjoy!
Utter mortification, like a heavy hammer, washed through her. Tristan was standing in the door way, his dark, smoldering looks holding something akin to shock in his features. She felt her legs start to shake, to wobble in the five inch heels she wore. As she released her skirt, the fabric fell, brushing against her ankles. Just the feel of the cloth brought her chin higher, her cloak tighter.
Tristan took a step forward and the door shut behind him.
Oh dear, God, what was she going to do? Why isn’t he saying anything?
She cleared her throat. “Mr. White,” she began.
He cut her off, lifting his hand, palm out. The action snapped her head up. His eyes bore into hers, a perplexed expression on his face. He was staring at her with such a look, the only thing she could compare it to would be two strangers passing one another on the streets. As those two people passed one another, they’d catch each other’s attentions and feel as if they knew one another. That look, as if he had seen her somewhere before but she was a stranger now. It was projected across his face.
She frowned. “Mr. White…”
Once again, that palm came up. “Stop speaking, Isabelle.” His palm fisted tightly and his gaze left hers. He dropped his hand and turned in a slow circle.
She followed his gaze, cringing as she took in what he was seeing for the first time. Shoe box upon shoe box, white, black, pink and red, all stacked and lined against the walls. The shelves were full of them, overflowing in abundance.
As he turned back towards her, she caught his slack jaw, his wide eyes and braced for it. What…is…he…thinking?
Tristan stepped forward and knocked the lid off of a box, revealing tissue smothering black lace pumps, sitting there waiting for her.
Oh those were so pretty. A small, contented sigh left her mouth as she took in the sight of those shoes. They felt like heaven on her feet, despite the four inch heels. Combined with the inch platform, the Mary Jane strap and the peep toe, they made her feel like a woman, like a vixen begging to be let out. She tore her eyes from the shoes and glanced back up at Tristan.
His hazel gaze wasn’t on the shoes anymore. No, they were watching her, studying her mouth.
She watched as his gaze roamed down her body, the touch of his eyes feeling almost physical. The heat held behind his gaze had never been directed at her, but now it blazed. As his eyes landed on her feet, he took a step forward and on instinct, she stepped back. Her foot wobbled as she hit the lid to the box of shoes she was wearing now. She felt her ankle give out and then her weight shifted as she fell back.
Her arms flapped wild. Her foot kicked from beneath her. Through her own panicked state, she heard a grunt as steel arms wrapped around her waist and caught her before she hit the ground. Her body was bent backwards, her face pressed tightly to his neck. She leaned her head back and looked up.
Tristan’s pain-filled face filled her gaze, his complexion turning an unreasonable shade of purple. He promptly lifted her, keeping his grip on her hips as he bent at the waist. Deep breaths racked his large frame, heaving sounds pushing from deep within him.
His hands tightened on her waist, then dropped as he stood. His shoulders hunched forward and drew her gaze down, to stop on the bulge…in between…his legs. Oh dear, God, no!
Breath pushed in and out from between his pursed lips and his coloring grew more normal, from purple to red and then to pink again. After a few terse moments, Tristan finally stood to his full height and, ignoring the bulge in his crotch, glanced pointedly at her shoes.
She fought not to fidget. “Mr. White...”
“Isabelle, please.” His look cut her off and he raised his eyes to look around the room once more. “What is this place, Ms. Stanson?”
She scrunched her face up and searched for an answer. “A closet, Mr. White.”
He gave her a droll look, the answer not mollifying him in the least. “I know that, Isabelle. But what are all these boxes doing in here? And what,” his gaze dropped to her feet, “are those?”
She did shift now. “Shoes, Mr. White.” She reached up and started to gather her hair at the base of her neck.
Isabelle froze. “What?”
“You’ve worked for me for three years, Isabelle. I’ve asked you more than once to call me Tristan.”
She frowned again at that. She didn’t exactly think that was professional. Resuming her hands, she pulled the heavy tendrils together.
Her mouth opened to tell him her thoughts, but he cut her off again. “I said stop that.”
She stopped again. “Stop what? I didn’t say anything.”
Tristan let out an exasperated breath and stepped forward. The front of his body brushed against hers, and she drew in a sharp breath. He set his hands over hers and gently pulled them away until they fell to her sides. But he did not let go.
Isabelle stared straight ahead, focusing on the dark blue of his suit jacket. She panted and the movement pushed her chest out. With each touch of his jacket against her skin, she grew all too aware of him. Not as her boss. Not as Mr. White. But instead as the male she had been lusting over for three long years.
“Why do you always keep your hair up, Isabelle?” His voice rumbled through his jacket and held an intimate appeal with them standing so close. His hands still didn’t move.
Slowly, she lifted her head until his handsome face filled her vision.
A strong jaw curved across around a face that was more than handsome, almost pretty. Hard hazel eyes searched her face, seeking something. They roamed over her skin before landing on her mouth.