Scratch (Devil’s Boneyard MC) Now Available! #NewRelease #MCromance #NewAdult #OlderHero #MayDecember @changelingpress @HarleyW_Writer

HW_DevilsBoneyard2_bryan

Publisher: Changeling Press
Cover Artist: Bryan Keller
Genre(s): Guilty Pleasures
Theme(s): MC Romance, New Adult, Silver Fox

 

He just wanted to give the struggling single mom a hand up.
He never thought he’d fall for her.

Clarity — I’ve been on my own since I was sixteen, and I’ve fought tooth and nail to make a life for myself and the son I never planned to have. Caleb is my entire world, despite the circumstances of his birth. Being homeless a second time certainly hadn’t been in my life plans, so when a gruff yet sexy biker offers a bit of help, how can I possibly say no? Doesn’t hurt that the older man is easy on the eyes, and he’s so good with Caleb. I’d thought I wasn’t able to trust anyone ever again, but looking into his eyes, I know deep down he’d never hurt us. It just never occurred to me that I’d fall completely in love with him.

Scratch — The young woman and kid I find sleeping outside my club’s chop shop make me feel things I shouldn’t. Hell, she’s younger than my damn daughter, but it’s obvious she’s been to hell and back, and she’s still fighting. There’s fire in her soul, but the gentle way she treats her son leaves me wanting things I shouldn’t. Like a new chance at a family. What the hell would she want with a man thirty years older than her? When I took her home with me, I never counted on wanting to keep her. I’ll slay her demons, bury the monsters from her past, and then I’ll do the one thing I thought I’d never do… claim an old lady, then make her my wife.

WARNING: Contains anal sex, bad language, and scorching hot scenes between an older man and much younger woman. There are abuse themes that may make some people uncomfortable.

 

button_excerpt (1)

All rights reserved.
Copyright ©2018 Harley Wylde

I had no one. My mom had died when I was two, and when my dad remarried, he’d chosen a woman who liked to pretend I didn’t exist. Soon enough, my dad decided I didn’t exist either. Once his new kids starting popping out every few years, I was pushed to the side, and eventually I left. I’d been sixteen when I’d hit the streets, and no one had come looking for me. I was sure that my dad was relieved I was gone. It hurt, but crying over it wouldn’t change anything.

I’d thought I was doing okay when I found a man about five years older than me who offered me a place to sleep and help getting a job. I should have known not to trust him. Things had been fine for a while, but then he’d started asking to be repaid for his kindness. Blowjobs mostly, except for the night he was high on who knows what and decided to take more than I was willing to give. Caleb was the result of that night. Once I’d found out I was pregnant, I’d taken off. Even though the man hadn’t touched me again, I hadn’t wanted to take any chances.

A women’s shelter had helped at first, even found me a job and a place to live. Things had been going pretty well, until two months ago. The little thrift store where I’d been working shut down without notice. I’d had enough in the bank to keep our tiny apartment for another month, and then the money had run out and I hadn’t been able to get another job. So we slept where we could, ate what we could, and just tried to survive.

The church over on Pine Avenue would let me take a shower and would give me a dress out of the donations to wear for interviews, and the nice lady who worked in the church office would watch Caleb for me. I’d applied to every place in town that was hiring, and no one had wanted me. Our situation was bleak, but as long as we had each other, then I’d keep fighting. If Caleb weren’t with me, I might have given up by now. Or decided to join the ladies who worked the street corner on the other end of town. But I’d been a virgin when Caleb’s dad had raped me, and I couldn’t bring myself to take that step. Not yet. I didn’t think badly of the women who made their living that way, but I didn’t think I could do it.

An auto repair shop was just a few more steps away, with a large enough doorway that Caleb and I could hide in the shadows and get some sleep. I checked the hours on the window and saw it wouldn’t be open for at least five more hours, which meant I could rest a little. I’d learned to sleep lightly, so that I’d wake up at the first sign of trouble, or whenever Caleb stirred. I was always scared I’d sleep so hard that he’d wander off and I’d never see him again. Hunkering down into the corner of the doorway, I settled Caleb on my lap and used my backpack as a pillow. My son snuggled against me and closed his eyes.

I didn’t think I’d been asleep for more than an hour when I heard a loud rumble. My eyes opened as a single headlight focused on us, making it hard for me to see. I held a hand up to my face, and shielded Caleb with the other. The light stayed on, but I could barely make out a shadowy figure dismounting from what I’d figured out was a motorcycle. The man approached and loomed over us.

“This is private property,” he said, his voice deep and raspy.

“I’m sorry. We’ll go,” I said, struggling to stand.

I could feel his gaze raking over me. I managed to get to my feet without stumbling, got my backpack straps over my shoulders, then hefted Caleb into my arms.

“Where are you going to go?” he asked.

“Doesn’t matter. I’m sorry we trespassed,” I said. I hitched my backpack a little higher over my shoulder and clutched Caleb to me. I tried to step around the large man, but he reached out and placed a hand on my shoulder.

I froze under that touch, tensing and waiting to see what would happen. Is this where he offered me a place to sleep in exchange for the use of my body? Wouldn’t be the first time I’d had that offer made to me, and I doubted it would be the last. I would do anything for my baby to have a place to rest and food to eat, or nearly anything. We’d struggled and things were bad, but I didn’t think I could handle having strange men touch me. Not after Caleb’s dad, or more like sperm donor. I didn’t think he would come after Caleb, even if he knew my baby existed, but I’d decided not to take any chances. Thankfully, I hadn’t seen him since we’d left. For all I knew, he wasn’t even in town anymore.

“Christ, you don’t even look old enough to have a kid,” he muttered.

My chin raised a notch. “I’m nineteen. Well, almost nineteen. Not that it’s any business of yours.”

I saw a flash of white teeth as he smiled in the darkness. “All grown up then, aren’t you? Eighteen, nearly nineteen, and think you know everything I bet. Why are you sleeping in the doorway of my business?”

I glanced behind me before facing him again. “I told you we didn’t mean to trespass.”

“That doesn’t answer my question.”

“We didn’t have anywhere else to go,” I admitted softly, my arms tightening around my son.

“There’s a lot of expensive equipment in there. Going to steal anything?” he asked.

I felt fire ignite inside me and I clenched my teeth a moment. I might be broke, but I wasn’t a thief!

“No!”

“Come on.” He walked up to the doorway I’d just vacated, then he unlocked the front door and pushed it open.

I hesitated. I didn’t know if I could trust him, and figured my chances were better out here in the open than inside, but what if he was going to offer food for Caleb? Or maybe there was a couch in the waiting room and he’d let my baby rest there for an hour or two. It was an opportunity I couldn’t pass up, but at the first sign he was going to be a perv, I was out of there.

I stepped inside as he flipped on the lights, and I blinked at how bright they were. There was a beat-up leather couch with duct tape holding it together, and a scarred table with a few magazines on top. But the man didn’t stop in the front room. He kept going, so I followed at a slight distance. If I needed to run, I wanted a head start.

He entered a small, cluttered office and turned on a lamp. It glowed softly, the light dim, but there was a huge couch on one wall that looked a little too inviting with its overstuffed arms. It was leather, but unlike the one out front, it didn’t have so much as a scratch on it that I could see. The man pulled a blanket off the back and motioned toward the couch.

“You can rest here a while. I can either lock you in and reset the alarm, or I can stay until you’ve had a chance to rest. I’ll leave it up to you. But know that if you steal so much as one thing, I will track you down,” the man said.

I focused on him and noticed he wore one of those black leather vests I’d seen the local bikers wearing. Scratch — VP was stitched on the front. He was an older man, a bit of gray at his temples and in his beard. I was horrible at guessing ages, but if I had to, I’d place him in his late forties or early fifties. He had the kind of eyes that looked like they had seen far too much, like he’d fought wars I could only imagine but was still standing. He was strong, his muscles stretching the sleeves of the T-shirt he wore, and his jeans encased muscular thighs. He could easily overpower me, and yet he hadn’t come close to me since grabbing my shoulder earlier.

“You can lock us in,” I said. “We won’t take anything.”

He nodded and looked at Caleb, who was yawning on my shoulder.

“When’s the last time the two of you ate?” he asked. “And I mean real food, not something you’ve scrounged from somewhere.”

 

button_get-it-today (1)

 

 

Cover Reveal: Scratch (Devil’s Boneyard MC) by Harley Wylde #NewAdult #MCromance #bikers #singlemom #MayDecember @changelingpress @HarleyW_Writer

 

He just wanted to give the struggling single mom a hand up.
He never thought he’d fall for her.

HW_DevilsBoneyard2_bryan

Publisher: Changeling Press
Cover Artist: Bryan Keller
Genres/Themes: Contemporary, New Adult, Silver Fox (older hero), MC Romance

Clarity – I’ve been on my own since I was sixteen, and I’ve fought tooth and nail to make a life for myself and the son I never planned to have. Caleb is my entire world, despite the circumstances of his birth. Being homeless a second time certainly hadn’t been in my life plans, so when a gruff yet sexy biker offers a bit of help, how can I possibly say no? Doesn’t hurt that the older man is easy on the eyes, and he’s so good with Caleb. I’d thought I wasn’t able to trust anyone ever again, but looking into his eyes, I know deep down he’d never hurt us. It just never occurred to me that I’d fall completely in love with him.

Scratch – The young woman and kid I find sleeping outside of my club’s chop shop make me feel things I shouldn’t. Hell, she’s younger than my damn daughter, but it’s obvious she’s been to hell and back, and she’s still fighting. There’s fire in her soul, but the gentle way she treats her son leaves me wanting things I shouldn’t. Like a new chance at a family. What the hell would she want with a man thirty years older than her? When I took her home with me, I never counted on wanting to keep her. I’ll slay her demons, bury the monsters from her past, and then I’ll do the one thing I thought I’d never do… claim an old lady, then make her my wife.

WARNING: Contains anal sex, bad language, and scorching hot scenes between an older man and much younger woman. There are abuse themes that may make some people uncomfortable.

 

Coming November 2018 from Changeling Press

button_add-to-goodreads

Pre-Order for November 9th at:  Amazon  /  B&N  /  iTunes  /  Kobo

Scratch_Graphic1

button_excerpt

All rights reserved.
Copyright ©2018 Harley Wylde

An auto repair shop was just a few more steps away, with a large enough doorway that Caleb and I could hide in the shadows and get some sleep. I checked the hours on the window and saw it wouldn’t be open for at least five more hours, which meant I could rest a little. I’d learned to sleep lightly, so that I’d wake up at the first sign of trouble, or whenever Caleb stirred. I was always scared I’d sleep so hard that he’d wander off and I’d never see him again. Hunkering down into the corner of the doorway, I settled Caleb on my lap and used my backpack as a pillow. My son snuggled against me and closed his eyes.

I didn’t think I’d been asleep for more than an hour when I heard a loud rumble. My eyes opened as a single headlight focused on us, making it hard for me to see. I held a hand up to my face, and shielded Caleb with the other. The light stayed on, but I could barely make out a shadowy figure dismounting from what I’d figured out was a motorcycle. The man approached and loomed over us.

“This is private property,” he said, his voice deep and raspy.

“I’m sorry. We’ll go,” I said, struggling to stand.

I could feel his gaze raking over me. I managed to get to my feet without stumbling, got my backpack straps over my shoulders, then hefted Caleb into my arms.

“Where are you going to go?” he asked.

“Doesn’t matter. I’m sorry we trespassed,” I said. I hitched my backpack a little higher over my shoulder and clutched Caleb to me. I tried to step around the large man, but he reached out and placed a hand on my shoulder.

I froze under that touch, tensing and waiting to see what would happen. Is this where he offered me a place to sleep in exchange for the use of my body? Wouldn’t be the first time I’d had that offer made to me, and I doubted it would be the last. I would do anything for my baby to have a place to rest and food to eat, or nearly anything. We’d struggled and things were bad, but I didn’t think I could handle having strange men touch me. Not after Caleb’s dad, or more like sperm donor. I didn’t think he would come after Caleb, even if he knew my baby existed, but I’d decided not to take any chances. Thankfully, I hadn’t seen him since we’d left. For all I knew, he wasn’t even in town anymore.

“Christ, you don’t even look old enough to have a kid,” he muttered.

My chin raised a notch. “I’m nineteen. Well, almost nineteen. Not that it’s any business of yours.”

I saw a flash of white teeth as he smiled in the darkness. “All grown up then, aren’t you? Eighteen, nearly nineteen, and think you know everything I bet. Why are you sleeping in the doorway of my business?”

I glanced behind me before facing him again. “I told you we didn’t mean to trespass.”

“That doesn’t answer my question.”

“We didn’t have anywhere else to go,” I admitted softly, my arms tightening around my son.

“There’s a lot of expensive equipment in there. Going to steal anything?” he asked.

I felt fire ignite inside me and I clenched my teeth a moment. I might be broke, but I wasn’t a thief!

“No!”

“Come on.” He walked up to the doorway I’d just vacated, then he unlocked the front door and pushed it open.

I hesitated. I didn’t know if I could trust him, and figured my chances were better out here in the open than inside, but what if he was going to offer food for Caleb? Or maybe there was a couch in the waiting room and he’d let my baby rest there for an hour or two. It was an opportunity I couldn’t pass up, but at the first sign he was going to be a perv, I was out of there.

I stepped inside as he flipped on the lights, and I blinked at how bright they were. There was a beat-up leather couch with duct tape holding it together, and a scarred table with a few magazines on top. But the man didn’t stop in the front room. He kept going, so I followed at a slight distance. If I needed to run, I wanted a head start.

He entered a small, cluttered office and turned on a lamp. It glowed softly, the light dim, but there was a huge couch on one wall that looked a little too inviting with its overstuffed arms. It was leather, but unlike the one out front, it didn’t have so much as a scratch on it that I could see. The man pulled a blanket off the back and motioned toward the couch.

“You can rest here a while. I can either lock you in and reset the alarm, or I can stay until you’ve had a chance to rest. I’ll leave it up to you. But know that if you steal so much as one thing, I will track you down,” the man said.

Scratch_Graphic2

HW logo

About Harley Wylde:

Harley’s other half would probably say those words describe her, but they also describe her books. When Harley is writing, her motto is the hotter the better. Off the charts sex, commanding men, and the women who can’t deny them. If you want men who talk dirty, are sexy as hell, and take what they want, then you’ve come to the right place.

You can follow Harley on her websiteAmazonTwitter, or Facebook. Get New Release notifications (for US readers) by following Harley on BookBub! Want to talk more about the Dixie Reapers or other Harley books? Join the Wyldlings on Facebook!

Harley’s Books at iTunes

Harley’s Books at Barnes & Noble

Harley’s Books at Kobo

 

Jackal (Devil’s Boneyard MC) by Harley Wylde #NewAdult #SingleMom #BikerRomance #MCromance #MayDecember #SecretBaby @HarleyW_Writer @changelingpress

 

Jackal never wanted to be a dad, but knowing he has a two-year-old little girl changes everything.

HW_DevilsBoneyard1_bryan

Publisher: Changeling Press
Cover Artist: Bryan Keller
Genres/Themes: Contemporary, Second Chance, MC Romance,
New Adult, Silver Fox (older hero)

Josie: I spent an amazing three days with Jackal before he disappeared, back to his club, the Devil’s Boneyard. He’d made it clear what we had was a temporary thing — he never wanted the picket fence and kids. I was fine with that. Then I faced the scariest thing ever. Telling my big brother, Tank, a Dixie Reaper, I was pregnant and alone at the age of nineteen. He wanted to go after Jackal, but I wouldn’t let him. I wanted this baby, and I knew Jackal wouldn’t. I never expected to see him again. Funny how fate has a way of surprising you.

Jackal: I’ve thought about Josie often since I walked away from her over two years ago. When I’m finally back in Dixie Reapers territory, I knew I’d look her up, see if we could have some more fun. I never counted on the little girl glued to her hip, or the fact the kid was mine. So I did what I do best. I ran. But now I want something I’ve never wanted before. My family. Because Josie and our daughter, Allegra, are exactly what’s been missing in my life. I just have to do some groveling and hope she’ll forgive me. Easy, right? I’ve never had a woman tell me no.

Figures the one I want more than anything might be the first to send me packing. But when she gets an unexpected visitor who threatens her and our child, I’ll do whatever it takes to keep them safe. Now that I’m ready to keep my woman and kid, I’m not letting anyone take them away.

WARNING: Lots of over the top hot sex, an alpha biker who just can’t seem to get it right, and an adorable little girl who will steal your heart. Guaranteed HEA. No cliffhanger.

Get it today at Changeling Press

Pre-Order for October 12th at:
Amazon / B&N / iTunes / Kobo 

JackalPromo1

EXCERPT

I frowned at Scratch. “What do you mean they want me out of here?”

Scratch rubbed his beard. “I didn’t ask questions, but I’d imagine it has something to do with you fucking Tank’s sister the last time you were here. You ran off with her for a few days and I don’t think that went over well with big brother.”

“Shit, Scratch! She’s a grown woman and can make her own decisions. If she has a complaint about our time together, I want to hear it from her.”

He shrugged.

“Do you know where she lives?” I asked.

“I shouldn’t tell you,” Scratch said. “They don’t want you anywhere near her.”

“We’re brothers, man. Come on. I just want to talk to her. If she’s pissed at me, fine. I want to hear it from her.”

He watched me for a moment, then nodded. “I heard she’s been living with Tank. Green two-story house about two miles down the road,” he said, nodding to the left of the compound. “But if Tank beats the shit out of you for going after his sister, you’re on your own. You’ve already been warned away.”

“I’m just going to talk to her. If she wants me to leave, then I will.”

“Don’t stir shit up, Jackal. I’ll send you packing and ask someone else to come help. You hear me?” Scratch asked.

“Yeah. I hear you.”

I got on my bike and went in search of Tank’s house. The car parked in the driveway of the green house looked to be the same one that had been outside the clubhouse that night over two years ago. I killed the engine on my bike and walked up the porch steps, then knocked on the door. A slightly curvier Josie opened the door, her hair up in a messy bun, no make-up on her face, but fuck if she didn’t look gorgeous. Her hips seemed a little wider than before and her breasts looked bigger too. She damn near took my breath away, and I knew I was staring. There were dark circles under her eyes, and there was a yellow smear on her tank top, but I ached to reach for her.

I smiled. “Hi, Josie.”

Her eyes went wide and she stepped outside, pulling the door mostly shut behind her. She cast a nervous glance into the house before facing me again.

“What are you doing here, Jackal?”

“I came to help Zipper and I wanted to see you.”

She nervously looked over her shoulder again through the crack in the door, pulling it closed a little more before looking at me. Something was up, but I didn’t know what. I knew Tank wasn’t in there, so who was? Was there a guy in there she didn’t want me to see? I hadn’t really thought about her hooking up with someone while I was gone, but I should have. A beautiful redhead like Josie? She probably had men falling at her feet.

“You should go,” she said.

“Go, but… What’s going on, Josie? Are you pissed I didn’t call?” I glanced at the door, anger burning in my gut. “Is there someone else?”

“Please, Jackal. I can’t do this right now.”

She stepped back inside, careful that I wouldn’t see into the house, then shut the door. I heard the lock click and her footsteps wander away.

What the fuck was going on?

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Short. Erotic. Sweet. Harley’s other half would probably say those words describe her, but they also describe her books. When Harley is writing, her motto is the hotter the better. Off the charts sex, commanding men, and the women who can’t deny them. If you want men who talk dirty, are sexy as hell, and take what they want, then you’ve come to the right place.

harleywylde.com

 

COVER REVEAL – Jackal (Devil’s Boneyard MC) by Harley Wylde #MCromance #coverreveal #bikerromance #newadult #singlemom @changelingpress @HarleyW_Writer

The wait is nearly over! Harley Wylde fans might be familiar with the Devil’s Boneyard, as several characters have made appearances in her best-selling Dixie Reapers series. Book one in the Devil’s Boneyard series will be arriving at online retailers on October 12th, 2018, or you can get it direct from the publisher on October 5th! And if you’re new to Harley Wylde’s MC world, you can jump right in! Jackal’s story will give you a good mix of Dixie Reapers and Devil’s Boneyard so it’s an excellent place to start.
HW_DevilsBoneyard1_bryan

Coming October 2018 with Changeling Press

Josie – I spent an amazing three days with Jackal before he disappeared, back to his club, the Devil’s Boneyard. He’d made it clear that what we had was a temporary thing, and that he never wanted the picket fence and kids. I was fine with that. Then I faced the scariest thing ever. Telling my big brother, Tank, a Dixie Reaper, that I was pregnant and alone at the age of nineteen. He wanted to go after Jackal, but I wouldn’t let him. I wanted this baby, and I knew Jackal wouldn’t. I never expected to see him again. Funny how fate has a way of surprising you.

Jackal – I’ve thought about Josie often since I walked away from her over two years ago. When I’m finally back in Dixie Reapers territory, I knew I’d look her up, see if we could have some more fun. I never counted on the little girl glued to her hip, or the fact the kid was mine. So I did what I do best. I ran. But now I want something I’ve never wanted before. My family, because Josie and our daughter Allegra were exactly what’s been missing in my life. I just have to do some groveling and hope she’ll forgive me. Easy, right? I’ve never had a woman tell me no. Figures the one I want more than anything might be the first to send me packing. But when she gets an unexpected visitor who threatens her and our child, I’ll do whatever it takes to keep them safe. Now that I’m ready to keep my woman and kid, I’m not letting anyone take them away.

WARNING: Lots of over the top hot sex, an alpha biker who just can’t seem to get it right, and an adorable little girl who will steal your heart.  Guaranteed HEA. No cliffhanger.

Add to your Goodreads

 

Where to find Harley:

Website / Facebook / Twitter / Instagram / BookBub

 

#NewRelease – Valentina’s Miracle (Blossom Creek #1) @AuthorPaigeW @changelingpress #romance

PW_Valentina_XL

Valentina needs a miracle. Instead she finds a sexy bad boy with a heart of gold.

Available January 19th from Changeling Press

Pre-Order for January 26th at:
Amazon / B&N / Kobo

Valentina Cupid has always despised her name and the stupid holiday that goes with it. Starting over in the small town of Blossom Creek, she’s hoping for a miracle. Down to her last few dollars, she has no choice but to sleep in the car with her two kids, hoping to blend in with the other cars parked at Gleason Auto. But one sexy mechanic definitely notices.

Jesse Jameson is no one’s idea of a knight in shining armor. With a checkered past and a trail of broken hearts, he’s not anyone’s ideal. Still, when he sees the single mom sleeping in her car, he knows he can’t just walk away. But Jesse underestimates the temptation that is Valentina Cupid, and one kiss ignites a passion that won’t be denied. He’s going to prove to Valentina he’s not like her loser exes, and he’s going to give her a Valentine’s Day to remember.

Publisher: Changeling Press
Cover Artist: Bryan Keller

 

Excerpt

*please note this is an unedited excerpt*

 

Valentina Cupid tried to ease the tension in her neck. Her children, Max and Katy, were asleep in the backseat. It had only been a few days since Gage had walked out of their lives, or more like run. Valentina had come home to find his things packed and gone, and an eviction notice tacked to the door. She’d quietly packed their belongings, put the kids in the car, and just drove until her vision blurred. After traveling for three days, she was down to their last hundred dollars and knew they couldn’t run any further. Blossom Creek, Texas would have to do until she could find a job and earn some more money.

Her hand smoothed over her still flat stomach. At least she wasn’t showing yet. A new start in a new town was just what her little family needed, but she knew once people learned her kids all had different fathers, they’d sneer at her just like the last town had done. She had a thing for bad boys who knocked her up and took off, and never seemed to learn her lesson. If she ever dated again, she’d have to pick a nice, nerdy guy who sat at a desk every day. Tattoos and muscles were overrated.

“Momma, I’m hungry,” Max said from the backseat.

The box of peanut butter crackers lay empty on the passenger seat. She’d bought it yesterday in hopes of spreading their cash a little further, but her kids really needed a hot meal. A diner on the right caught her attention and she pulled into a space out front. Scrubbing her hands up and down her face a few times, she unbuckled her seatbelt and got the kids out of their car seats. They’d been travelling for three days, only stopping at truck stops and rest areas long enough for Valentina to close her eyes for an hour here and there.

She gripped their hands as they entered the diner and waited to be seated. It seemed almost as if every eye in the place turned their way. Valentina’s cheeks flushed and she tried to avoid their gazes. An older woman wearing an apron came over, flashing them a smile.

“You want a table or a booth?” the waitress asked.

Max tugged on her hand. “Can we have a booth, Momma?”

The waitress nodded. “I know just the spot.”

She grabbed a menu and three rolls of silverware before leading the way to a booth in the window. Max and Katy both needed booster seats, but once they were settled, Valentina slid into the other side. She was so damn tired the words on the menu ran together and turned in black fuzzy blotches, but she fought to focus and remain upright. Her kids needed her.

She read off the menu choices they could afford and let Max pick his meal. Katy hardly ever ate anything but mashed potatoes and mac ’n cheese. As much as Valentina wanted to order the biggest burger with the largest order of fries on the menu, she settled for a cup of soup and some crackers. After she placed their order, the waitress returned with some paper and crayons for the kids.

“Thought they might want something to do while you wait for your food,” the woman said. “I’m Barb. Just holler if you need anything.”

“Thank you,” Valentina said with a tired smile.

When their food was delivered, Barb set down a large salad with chunks of grilled chicken and a side of ranch. Valentina opened her mouth to protest that she hadn’t ordered it when the woman held up a hand.

“You need more than soup,” Barb said. “Won’t do your kids any good if you pass out from hunger.”

Valentina’s cheeks flushed.

“You sticking around town or passing through?” Barb asked.

“I thought we’d stay for a while.”

“Diner’s closing in an hour. Why don’t you wait until the customers are gone, and if you’d like, you can help me close up. I’ll pay you cash.”

Valentine’s face burned with embarrassment as she nodded in agreement. Was it noticeable that they were on their last leg? She hated accepting charity, but if Barb would let her work for the salad and a few extra dollars to get them by a little longer, she couldn’t say no. They ate their food and the kids colored a little more while they waited for the diner to empty. When the last customer had walked out, Barb locked the door and flipped the sign to Closed.

“You ever worked in a diner before?” Barb asked.

“Yes, ma’am.”

Barb snorted. “None of that ma’am nonsense. Just call me Barb. I’m going to let you refill the napkins and condiments at each table. Then you can sweep and mop the floor. I’ll be in the kitchen helping Hank prep for tomorrow. Come on. I’ll show you where everything is.”

It took almost two hours for Valentina to get everything done, and her kids had fallen asleep at the table when she was finished. Barb insisted on paying her twenty dollars in addition to the salad she’d already provided, and wouldn’t take no for an answer. Valentina pocketed the money and carried her kids to the car one at a time, fastening them back into their car seats. She had no idea where they’d go for the night, but fatigue pulled at her.

Valentine drove until she found a darkened parking lot by a large building marked Gleason Auto. It seemed to be closed for the night, and she hoped to blend in with the other cars in the lot waiting for repairs. She turned off her headlights and shut off the engine. She’d have to wake in an hour and run it again to warm the car back up, but she didn’t have enough gas to leave it running all night.

She reclined her seat a little and closed her eyes, after making sure the doors were all locked and the windows all the way up. Her body felt like lead weights were pulling her down and her eyes burned from exhaustion. She knew pushing herself so hard wasn’t good for the baby, but she had little choice right now. Barb hadn’t mentioned a permanent position tonight, which meant Valentina would have to spend some of her money on a local paper and see if any jobs were posted. It was that or walk up and down the main strip checking with every store along the way. Not that she had any idea what she’d do with her kids while she worked. She couldn’t afford daycare without a job, but she couldn’t work without someone to watch the kids.

Valentina let sleep pull her down, sleeping harder than she had in days.  A slight chill in the air woke her a while later. Looking into the backseat, her heart lurched when she saw how flushed Katy looked. Her daughter had kicked off her blanket at some point and shivered in her car seat. Max still dozed, but looked fine. Valentina got out of the car and opened the back door. Katy was burning with fever, but Max felt cool to the touch. Her heart ached as she realized that her heavy sleeping had likely gotten her child sick, since hadn’t been awake to turn the heat back on, all because she couldn’t afford a motel room.

Booted steps came toward her and she spun to face the person, her hand at her throat as her heart raced. A man, who didn’t look much older than her twenty-two years, had a scowl on his face as he approached. Despite the cold February air, his short sleeve shirt displayed the tattoos on his arms. The man drew nearer and brushed his long hair out of his face.

“This is private property,” he said, his deep voice sending shivers down her spine.

Not another bad boy, Valentina. Get a grip.

“I’m sorry. I didn’t realize we were trespassing.”

“We?” he asked as he came to a stop in front of her. The man peered around her shoulder and his eyes widened a little when he saw her kids in the backseat. “Holy shit. Did you sleep in your car last night?”

Valentina’s cheeks burned. “Yes.”

“Bring the kids inside and warm them up,” he said, turning to head toward Gleason Auto. “I have some hot chocolate they can drink.”

She bit her lip. “Is there a free clinic in town?”

He paused and turned to face her again. “A free clinic?”

“My daughter. I think she’s sick.”

The man came closer again, peering into the backseat. “Blossom Creek doesn’t have a free clinic. Do you not have insurance?”

“No, we don’t.”

“Old Doc Johnson owes me a favor. Bring your kids inside and I’ll have him stop by on his way to his office this morning. The three of you can get warm while you wait.”

“I don’t even know you. Why are you helping us?” Valentina asked.

“Let’s just say I have a soft spot for kids. Why isn’t your husband here helping you?”

“I’m not married,” she said softly.

“And their dad?”

“Max’s dad left two years ago. Katy’s dad took off right after I told him I was pregnant.”

“Two different dads?” he asked, his eyebrows lifted.

Valentina placed a hand on her stomach. “Three.”

He studied her a moment and seemed to come to some sort of decision. “You need help getting the kids inside?”

“You’re still going to help us?”

“Figure someone should. Sounds like you’re the type to attract assholes.”

 

#NewRelease – Jennifer and the Alien Badass #scifi #aliens #romancebooks

Jennifer and the Alien Badass (Intergalactic Brides #15)
By Jessica Coulter Smith
Publisher: Changeling Press
Cover Artist: Karen Fox

AlienBadassCoverFinal

Jennifer Montgomery has never needed anyone in her life except her daughter. A single mom of a now eighteen year old, her entire life has revolved around Lila. But when Lila goes missing, Jennifer is devastated and determines to do whatever it takes to find her. She just never expected her search to lead her to the Terran Station and their bride program. Or to learn that her daughter isn’t who Jennifer thought she was.

Siril, Captain of the Herack, is revered on his world for his tireless pursuit of the space pirates infesting the galaxy. The best of the best, as they say. If killing people were an art, he’d be da Vinci. But all the blood is starting to wear on him. There are only so many heads you can lop off before it grows old. At fifty, he’s ready for a break, but when he agreed to a vacation on Earth, he never expected to meet his perfect match, someone he’d decided didn’t exist. Who would ever want a battered and broken old warrior like him? But Jennifer is fierce, sexy as hell, and he wants to make her his.

As the two come together, and sparks become a blazing inferno, Jennifer realizes that maybe it’s okay to live her life and do something completely selfish — like fall in love.

Available January 12th at:

Amazon / B&N / iTunes / Kobo

Purchase January 5th at Changeling Press

Excerpt

“Should we set a course for home?” Haptir asked.

“Yes. Once you’ve finished disposing of the pirates. I don’t want their remains anywhere near Zelthrane-3.” Siril left them to their work and went to his quarters. The door had barely closed before he started removing his boots and pants. He turned on the cleansing unit and stepped under the spray. Scrubbing his body and hair twice, he leaned his head against the wall and wondered what life would be like without constant bloodshed. Not that a good battle wasn’t fun — preferably on someone else’s ship so they had to deal with the cleanup.

Such things didn’t used to bother him, but the older he got, the less he liked the messy side of his work. Why couldn’t they die neatly? Was it really necessary for a decapitation to douse everything in blood? But what else was he to do? If he wasn’t beheading people, was he supposed to sit at home and die of boredom? He’d been asked to train their warriors full time, and it was an honorable position, but Siril wasn’t certain he was ready to hang up his blades just yet. There were many good fights left in him.

He shut off the unit and dried himself. He looked at his bed longingly, but there would be plenty of time to sleep once they reached home. They’d been after the pirates for days and he’d slept little. In his youth, he could have stayed awake for days on end without feeling the least bit tired. But now, as the oldest active warrior for their world, he was feeling every one of his fifty years. Donning clean clothes, he checked his boots before putting them back on, and went to the galley. He grabbed a Melranian star fruit and leaned against the counter. His crew could handle the cleanup and navigation necessary to get them back home. There was little for him to do.

Except think.

The council had often offered Siril time off over the last few years, encouraging him to take a trip to Earth and get off world without having to engage in battle. He’d always waved them off and gone right back to work, but maybe it was time to take a break. Even a week off might be nice. While Zelthrane-3 was more advanced than the humans’ Earth in many ways, the blue planet had a lot of marvels that interested him. Like music and movies. And while he’d heard there would be a place to dance opening soon in Terran Prime, it might be entertaining to see all of those things on Earth and explore the human world a bit. Providing he didn’t scare the puny humans.

When the bride program had first opened, they’d welcomed all humans to their world, including males who took temporary jobs on their planet to make the human females feel more at ease. But over time, only brides were allowed on Zelthrane-3, and the screening process had gotten stricter. The first few months of the program, there had been too many fights, as well as human females falling for the human males. Things were streamlined now, and from what he could tell the program was a huge success. He’d often thought of checking out the brides to find a mate of his own, but they all seemed so young. He wondered if the council only approved the young ones to guarantee children for the mated pairs. He didn’t know much about humans and wondered if the older females either couldn’t have children or if it would be too hard on their bodies. More than likely, he would spend his years alone.

“Captain,” Velic said over the system. “We’re about to enter warp drive and will be home shortly. It might get a little bumpy.”

Siril braced his feet and continued to eat his fruit as the ship vibrated around him. He wondered what sort of female would ever settle for someone like him. He’d been handsome once, but wars had ravaged his face and body. There were females out there who thrilled over being with a warrior such as he, but they were few and far between. And once the thrill was over, they left and he was alone once more. No one wanted to wake up next to him every day for the rest of their lives.

If he ever did claim a mate, he had a wonderful home for her. The council had provided him one of the best houses on his world. It was large, easily big enough for many children, and had a lush garden out back. He seldom saw it, spending most of his time on this ship trying to keep the galaxy safe. If he did take a mate, he supposed he’d have to spend more time at home. Was he ready to give up this way of life if it meant having a warm female to bed every night?

He wanted to say yes, but he wondered if he’d miss wreaking havoc and striking fear into the hearts of those around him. Just his name was enough to send most running in fear. He’d earned his reputation and was proud of it. Human females seemed fragile, though, and he doubted they would thrill over his many kills. He wanted a female every bit as fierce as he was, but he had yet to meet one. Someone who could take care of themselves if he had to leave on a mission. Worrying about a helpless, fragile mate would only get him killed. No, he needed a warrior. But in all his travels, he’d never met a female warrior. There were stories of some on far off worlds, but it was doubtful he’d ever meet one.

Who was he kidding? No one would ever want a mate like him. He was too damaged for someone to ever love him. But if he did have a mate, if a female ever took a chance on him, he’d shower her with love and affection and make sure she never wanted to leave.

When he was home, he watched the mated couples. Their females smiled at them with such affection, and grew round with their children. Not that he had the slightest idea of what to do with a child. He’d never held one for fear he might hurt them. They seemed so small and breakable. Part of him wanted children to experience the pleasure of having a family, but the thought of bringing a tiny baby into the world was frightening. And at his age, by the time he had grandchildren he might be too old to enjoy them. Gods! Grandchildren?

He shook his head at his folly. He wasn’t getting a mate and wasn’t having children, so it was a moot point. He’d do better to hone his battle strategies and mold the young warriors who needed a guiding hand. Leave populating the planet to the younger males. The greatest gift he could give his people was keeping them safe, either by his own hand or those he trained. With some luck, he’d die in battle and never have to live a lonely life once the council retired him.

The ship shuddered under his feet and groaned, telling him they’d touched down. Siril tossed the core of the star fruit and made his way through the ship to the docking port. His crew was already exiting as he made his way down to the ground below. There was no one to greet them, but there never was. All of his crew were single, and while some of them still had parents, they were very much on their own.

The suns shone brightly overhead, their warmth caressing his face. It was good to be home, another crisis averted. His people were safe and were none the wiser to the threat that had been hanging over their heads. If the pirates had managed to land, many lives would have been lost. He walked the streets, smiling at the children playing he passed along the way. This was why he spent so much time in space. So families could stay together, could live in peace, and those precious children would have a chance to grow up and maybe become warriors themselves one day.

The clinic loomed ahead and he hoped no one was waiting. He didn’t mind the wait, but the fewer people he had contact with the better, until he knew he hadn’t been contaminated. He stepped into the cool interior and breathed a sigh of relief when he saw the waiting room was empty. Easing down onto a chair, he extended his bad leg to give his knee a break. Sometimes the metal of his prosthetic made the joints in his knee ache. Getting old was a bitch.

He looked around the interior of the clinic, noting the changes since he’d last been in. Some blocks were stacked in a corner for the children who had to visit. A few books with human females on the cover graced a few tables. What were those called? Magazines? He picked one up, curious as to the contents. As part of his extensive training, he’d learned to speak and read all of the languages of Earth and all of the surrounding planets in his galaxy. The magazine in his hand was in Earth English and had articles on losing weight, the best summer diets, and “the top ten reasons he doesn’t love you”.

Siril smiled and shook his head, amused by the things human females found entertaining. He’d much rather read a book on the latest weaponry. He flipped through a few more of the books, wondering why all of the females in them were so skinny. The females in the bride program came in all shapes and sizes. Why didn’t their magazines have fuller-figured women in them as well?

He tossed the book aside and stood, moving across to the door that led to the offices and exam rooms. He cracked it open and peered down the long hall. Light shone under one of the office doors and Siril decided to make his presence known. His boots were loud against the polished floor and must have alerted the doctor someone was in the building.

The office door opened and Vyrex stepped out.

“Siril, it’s good to see you. Another successful mission?” Vyrex asked.

“The mission went well, but my ship was covered in the blood of pirates. Some got on me as well. I wanted to make sure I hadn’t contracted anything.”

Vyrex motioned for him to follow and led Siril to an exam room. He scanned Siril head to toe, ran some blood tests, and gave him a few injections. As the doctor studied the results of the tests, Siril waited to find out if it was bad news or if he’d managed to come out unscathed once more. He figured that eventually his luck would run out. Yes, he’d lost some body parts along the way in his missions, but otherwise he was still very healthy.

“Everything looks fine,” Vyrex said. “The injections I gave you will help boost your immune system and should fight off any viruses if any present over the next few days. I wouldn’t worry unless you start feeling ill, then come back and see me. We’ll run more tests then.”

“I think I may go off world for a bit.”

“Earth?” Vyrex asked.

Siril nodded. “The council has offered to send me many times for a vacation. I think it’s time I took them up on their offer.”

#CoverReveal – Valentina’s Miracle @AuthorPaigeW @changelingpress #RomanceBooks #SingleMomRomance

PW_Valentina_XL

Coming January 5th from Changeling Press

Available at Amazon, BN, iTunes, and Kobo January 12th

 

Rotten luck follows Valentina Cupid everywhere she goes, and to make matters worse, her most hated holiday is coming soon. Valentina has always despised her name and the stupid holiday that goes with it. Starting over in the small town of Blossom Creek, she’s hoping for a miracle. No more teasing, no more name calling, and the acceptance she’s always craved. Down to her last one hundred dollars, she has no choice but to sleep in the car with her two kids, hoping to blend in with the other cars parked at Gleason Auto. But one sexy mechanic definitely notices.

Jesse Jameson is no one’s idea of a knight in shining armor. With a checkered past and a trail of broken hearts, he’s not anyone’s ideal. But when he sees the single mom sleeping in her car, he knows he can’t just walk away. But Jesse underestimated the temptation that is Valentina Cupid, and one kiss ignites him with a passion that won’t be denied. He’s going to prove to her that he’s not like her loser exes, and he’s going to give her a Valentine’s Day to remember.