Title: A Way Back Into Love Series: Love Series #1
By: Veronica Thatcher
Publication Date: February 15, 2017
Publisher: Notion Press
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Cover Designer: Notion Press
Nothing is perfect. Life is messy. Relationships are complex. Outcomes, uncertain. People, irrational. But loveâ¦well, that makes everything complicated. And when you are caught in a tangled web of secrets, lies, and complex affairs, someone is bound to get burned. Emily Stevens is a spunky, spirited college girl whose life gets turned upside-down when she realizes she's in love with her best friend of fifteen years, Derek Thorpe. As Emily prepares to confess her feelings to Derek, something happens one night which changes her life forever. Five years later, Emily finds herself in Boston, alone and heartbroken. Will she ever be able to forget the past? And what will she find when she returns home...to the man she left behind?
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Derek let out a frustrated sigh and ran his fingers through his hair. "Emâ¦I mean thatâ¦Itâs just this person you have become. The Emily I used to know didnât hit on random guys at the bar."
Emily crossed her arms over her chest and gave Derek a glare. "Five years is a long time, Derek. Maybe I have changed," she said, "And besides, why do you care so much?"
Derek glared back at her as he replied harshly, "Oh, so you have changed so much over the last five years that now you throw yourself at random men like aâ¦â he trailed off, not finishing his sentence.
Emilyâs mouth fell open and her eyes widened as she let Derekâs words set in. She couldnât believe her own ears for a minute. Had Derek really accused her of being a slut? She couldnât believe it â it all felt like a nightmare.
"What did you just say to me?" Emily whispered, her voice sounding foreign to her own ears. "What did you just say to me?" Emily asked in a louder voice this time.
Derek didnât say a word as he continued to look at Emily coldly.
Emily took a step towards Derek and narrowed her eyes. Poking Derekâs chest with the index finger of her right hand, she said in a soft yet acerbic voice, "You donât get to call me a whore. Youâve no right to judge me. Do you hear me? Youâve no fucking right to judge me." The anger, the jealousy and the heartache combined with the alcohol she had consumed gave Emily a newly acquired courage. She felt more emboldened than she had felt in her entire life, and so, she didnât hold back in letting out her pent-up exasperation. "You broke me," Emily continued, her words slurring slightly, "You broke me, but I am all glued up together now. And I make no apologies for how I chose to repair what you broke. You donât get to call me a whore." Emily finished her diatribe, her breaths coming in short pants as a result of her outburst.
Derek looked into her eyes, the anger and bitterness in his eyes now replaced by confusion. "I broke you? What do you mean?" he asked in a bewildered voice, his eyebrows shooting up.
Emily stepped back from him and shook her head. "Oh, you know damn well what I mean. You know what, Derek? Iâm done having this conversation with you. Iâm so done with this conversation and Iâm so done with you," Emily spat out angrily before brushing past him.
"Emily, wait," Derek said, catching her by her arm. "Where are you going?"
Emily spun around and gave him a bitter look before looking down at his hand gripping her arm. "Leave my arm," she said in a low yet threatening voice, "And why do you care where Iâm going? Itâs none of your business."
Derek didnât leave her arm in spite of her warning and said, "Em, youâve had too many drinks. You canât drive in this condition. Iâll drop you home."
Emily jerked her arm free from his grasp and replied in a bitter voice, "Thank you, but no. Iâm perfectly capable of getting myself home on my own. I donât need you to drop me home. Do you get it, Derek Thorpe? I DONâT NEED YOU!" Emily yelled the last words, causing a few people to look their way.
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