Forever with You
Starlight Hill #6
By: Heatherly Bell
Releasing April 26, 2016
Tydandon Publishing and Heatherly Bell Books
She forgot something on the way to the courthouse …
Sophia Abella has a good life, even if she is a little stuck. Not quite single, not quite married, she keeps men at a safe distance. But when her ex-Marine husband returns to town and takes the job of chief of police, it might finally be time to get that paper work done once and for all. After all, most of her family already thinks she’s divorced.
They’re not actually, in the fullest sense of the word … divorced.
Years ago, Riley Jacobs chose the Marine Corp over his wife and has regretted his decision every day since. But once a Marine always a Marine, and he’ll use every tactical advantage he has to get Sophia to realize that she’s the only one for him.
Love and marriage … take two
Life is not always easy, and sometimes it doesn't matter how much you love someone, things still don't work out the way you wished.
Riley and Sofia still have the connection, even though very fragile by now, after years of separation. They weren't that long time together, but they seemed to know each other well, like they haven't forgotten a minute of the time they spent in each other's company. Do they still care about each other, no doubt, but is there too much hurt, pain, and hurtful memories, to keep them separated, and keep them from each other. Is there enough strength and courage to face the life together, with the possibility, that there might be hurt and pain in some level again.
The story is lovely and sweet, yet at times brutally honest with the feelings of a deployed soldier's spouse - the fear, the possibility of losing your loved one, the what if, the loneliness, the waiting. As emotionally involved I got while I was reading, it was inevitable, that it was going to break my heart a bit in the process. And it did. Because it gets real, raw, and genuine with the realities of life. But it also built it all back together, and even stronger, if you give it a chance.
The small town where it all happens, the problems of a new police chief, the trouble with his sister and her boyfriend, the restaurant, Sofia runs, her fear of losing a loved one, they all play a part in the tale, as well as her large family, and dear friends. The story goes back and fort in the past and in the present, but never was there any doubt of the time.
It was more than just a love story, it was more than just a tribute to all the military spouses, and what they sacrifice, it was a story about love, life, and growth, living to your full potential, recognizing the dangers of mistakes, but still embracing this thing called living. It is a story, that is so easy to fall in love with, the town, the characters, and the Italian food
~ Five Spoons
He didn’t answer but only studied her. “Eat.”
She took a bite somewhat automatically and felt immediately annoyed with herself for listening to him. “You’re bad for me.”
What she didn’t say, because she didn’t even want to voice it, was that he’d somehow become nothing but a constant reminder of loss. Pain. Of a fear so overwhelming and raw it threatened to take over everything in its path.
“I’m not. I’m what the doctor ordered.”
“You’re like eating Chunky Monkey every night instead of once a week. Not a good idea.”
He moved closer, so that his shoulder was touching hers. “So what do you want? Vanilla?”
“Not vanilla.” She took another sip, moved her legs and Hershee jumped off her lap, disgusted with Sophia for not sitting still enough for Her Highness. “Maybe Neopolitan. It’s good enough but not so much that I want it every day of the week.”
Riley stood up, took Sophia’s bowl and set it on the coffee table. He pulled her up off the couch, his hands on her elbows. The blanket fell to the ground at her feet. “Admit it. You’d like to have Chunky Monkey every day of the week. And sometimes you catch yourself thinking about it in the middle of the day. Wondering how you could get away with it.”
She’d forgotten how perfect it felt to be this close to him, their breathing comingled. Without a doubt, she’d once known he would have breathed for her if he could. He would have done anything for her.
“You want Chunky Monkey. Admit it.” He pulled her closer, until she could feel every hard ridge of his body and then closer still.
“Wait. Are we still talking about ice cream?”
“No.” He kissed her. Not a tender kiss at all, but rough and claiming.
Her hands fisted his shirt, and then with both hands she untucked it at his waist, letting her palms glide up his hard chest, touching the soft short hairs between her fingers. How she’d missed this, missed him. No matter what, they’d always had this part right. Touching, feeling.
Riley squeezed her ass, his other hand sliding under her sweater to tug her bra cup aside. But then just as suddenly as he’d kissed her, he stopped.
“Stay with me.” She pulled on his arm, directing him toward the bedroom.
“Slow down, baby.”
“It’s this way to the bedroom.” Sophia tugged on his hand again, a little like trying to move a mountain. “Just like your floor plan but reversed.”
“Wait.” He bit his lower lip and didn’t move.
“I don’t want to wait. I’ve waited long enough.”
“You can wait a little bit longer, can’t you?” He grimaced.
“Why should I?”
He chuckled and framed her face with both hands. “Because I need you to be sure.”
“Oh, that. I’m sure, Riley. I want this. I want you.”
“No,” he said and his hands dropped down. “I want you to be sure about us.”
“You and me. Us. Forever. Can you tell me you’re sure about that?” He studied her.
“Listen, you and I …”
“Yeah.” He moved away from her, picking his jacket up on the way to the door. “I’ll talk to you tomorrow.”
“But—” Was he seriously leaving her? Now? After all that talk about Chunky Monkey? Bastard!
“Eat your soup,” he called out and shut her front door.
When early onset stage fright dashed dreams of Rock and Roll Hall of Fame status, Heatherly tackled her first book in 2010, and now the people and voices that occupy her head refuse to leave. She no longer sings unless you count randomly bursting into song to annoy her children (and the dogs).
If she were not an author, Heatherly maintains she would be a detective and a criminal's worst nightmare. She watches Dateline every Friday night and takes notes.
She lives in northern California with her family, including two beagles, one who can say 'hello' and the other who can feel a pea through several pillows.
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