(Uncompromising Series, #1)
Publication date: March 1st 2016
Genres: Adult, Romance
I pretend to smile.
Two years ago my life was perfect, until it wasn’t. I scattered my wife’s ashes then walked away from the Marines. I didn’t think I had anything else to lose.
I was wrong.
The blond showed up at my surf shop, beaten and stabbed. I did what I was trained to do—I stitched her up. I didn’t have a clue who she was and I told myself I didn’t care. Until they came looking for her.
I swore I’d take my last breath before I let anyone else hurt her except I didn’t know she was keeping a deadly secret. Now I had two choices, her life or mine.
Marriage and combat taught me the same thing—I was no one’s hero. And I was about to prove it.
Siren strolled over next to me. I wrapped an arm around her neck and kissed her temple. She leaned into me and warmth spread through my chest. I trailed my hand through her soft hair and brought my lips to her ear. “You got another coupla hours, darlin’. Why don’t you go back to bed?”
She set her coffee down and snaked her hand across my bare stomach. Her breasts pressed against my chest, her scent filled my lungs and suddenly the air between us was so fucking charged, I couldn’t see past it.
Eyes stormy, cheeks flushed, her face tipped up. “I want to be with you,” she said softly.
I didn’t know how much of her sentence was literal and how much was insinuation but I sure as sh*t was going to find out.
I pushed my hands into her hair. “I love hearin’ those words pass your lips, but you need to tell me what’s goin’ on.”
Despite me holding her head firm, she managed to look away. “Do I have to?”
Her hands gently braced on my chest. “Last night I felt safe. It felt good…being next to you.”
My muscles tensed, my jaw ticked and I shut everything down. “I’m no f*ckin’ hero, I told you that.”
“I like you,” she whispered.
The weight of her words went straight to my heart and for one second I let myself breathe it in. Her quiet strength pushed out all the sh*t in life and filled the voids with her unassuming resilience. That alone should’ve had me running in the other direction but three words and I was sinking. I wanted to drag her into my arms and never let go but she deserved better. If she knew what I’d agreed to last night, she wouldn’t be standing here. “You don’t know me.”
Her hands dropped and she stepped back. “I’m sorry. Forget I said anything. My mistake.”
I was on her before the last word left her lips. I slammed my mouth over hers and sank my tongue into her heat. Pulling her against me, I gripped her hair, pressed her into my hips and kissed the motherf*cking word mistake out of her mind.
Sybil Bartel grew up in Northern California with her head in a book and her feet in the sand. She dreamt of becoming a painter but the heady scent of libraries with their shelves full of books drew her into the world of storytelling. She loves the New Adult genre, but any story about a love so desperately wrong and impossibly beautiful makes her swoon.
Sybil now resides in Southern Florida and while she doesn’t get to read as much as she likes, she still buries her toes in the sand. If she isn’t writing or fighting to contain the banana plantation in her backyard, you can find her spending time with her handsomely tattooed husband, her brilliantly practical son and a mischievous miniature boxer…
Here are ten things you probably really want to know about Sybil.
She grew up a faculty brat. She can swear like a sailor. She loves men in uniform. She hates being told what to do. She can do your taxes (but don’t ask). The Bird Market in Hong Kong freaks her out. Her favorite word is desperate…or dirty, or both—she can’t decide. She has a thing for muscle cars. But never reply on her for driving directions, ever. And she has a new book boyfriend every week—don’t tell her husband.
To find out more about Sybil Bartel, be sure to follow her on Twitter (she loves to hear about your favorite book boyfriend!), visit her website, like her on Facebook or join her Facebook group Book Boyfriend Heroes for exclusive excerpts and giveaways.