The Dark Evoke Series Book 1
by V.L. King Genre: Romantic Suspense
****CONTAINS AN ELEMENT OF PHYSICAL AND PSYCHOLOGICAL ABUSE, AND IS THEREFORE ONLY RECOMMENDED TO READERS OVER THE AGE OF 18****
They say that old habits die hard, and twenty-seven-year-old, Kady Jenson, is about to discover how very true that statement is.
Waking up in the hospital with a complete stranger at her bedside should have caused panic and confusion, but for some unknown reason to her, Kady finds the company of the rugged, and devastatingly handsome man simply irresistible. And that Irish brogue. Oh, my word!
It’s only when she discovers that she has just awoken from a four-day coma, with a three-year void in her memory, that brings on her panic and confusion.
Kady soon comes to realize that things change with time, not only appearances. And if that wasn’t enough the sexual chemistry she once shared with her boyfriend, now so long ago, and she begins to fall back into buried habits unconsciously, each day, the growing sense of foreboding becomes increasingly harder to ignore. Kady is left on her own when her boyfriend goes on a business trip; she takes it upon herself to find her Irish Stranger which sends them on a quest, in a race against time, to piece the puzzle back together.
Seconds passed in a form of salted tears trailing down my face, and over my swollen lip. I tasted the salty residue as I swept my tongue over the cracked flesh between sobs. I have no idea how long I cried. All I can remember is the pressure in my head, directly behind my eyes, and the way it radiated through my cheekbones. Thrown into disarray, my shoulders juddered, sending my body into a mass of constricting, tautening muscles with each tiny gasp as I attempted to halt my cries in the warmth of Liam’s arms.
There was nothing I could do about my misplaced years. There was no magic medicine to administer to help spark something, no matter how trivial it may be. There was no magic procedure that the doctors of MA General could carry out like in some sci-fi movie, hook me up to more probes and wires and have my body zoom through a tunnel of flashing images while they flooded back.
They were gone. At least, they were gone for now. And that was something I didn't truly comprehend how demanding it would be to accept. But I had to accept it. Regardless.
“Mr. DeLaney,” Leviton’s voice shaded my rapid pants as I fought for a lungful of air. “If I could have a talk with you outside please,” he requested.
I unwillingly pulled myself away from the warm crook of Liam’s body, shifting my head from the consoling warmth and rhythmic rising and dropping of his chest, back onto the white cotton pillow. Striving to reassure me, he grazed his thumb over my knuckles as he thrust himself from the bed. “I won’t be a few minutes, baby,” he smiled.
Everything at that point may have been buried in a dense, stifling fog, but the look in Irish’s eyes didn't go unnoticed, as his gaze combed Liam while he was skirted at the foot of the bed, and trailed behind the sympathetic doctor into the hallway, closing the room door gently behind him. That grimace couldn't have gone undetected, totally impossible. It was the lighthouse beaming through my fog, guiding me to a question that I really didn't even wish to contemplate.
Incalculable times I exhaled loudly, ousting all of my frustrations in one simple breath, but it didn't help. My frustrations and alarm was as visible as the flat-cap on Irish’s head. Every fleeting moment which passed alongside a groan, had my agitation escalating, scaling higher and higher like one of those carnival attractions, where you hit the button with the hammer to see how strong you are. And I was very close to reaching the jackpot.
Air was expelled in hefty grunts, while my fingers had become a knotted mass in my lap. Teeth were grinded and temperatures had rocketed as the silence turned into piercing bells ringing in my already aching head.
“How do we…? How long have we…?” I wavered, my attention shifted from my blue woven cover, to the well-defined man at the foot of my cot. “How do I know you?”
Seeing the corner of his lips curl into a smile, albeit a sad one, I felt the atmosphere in the room begin to normalize and adjust. It was no longer suffocating and awkward like it had been with Liam amongst the room’s occupants. With his hands hidden in the front of his dark, denim pockets, his arms pushing his plaid shirt back to showcase his white T-shirt that clung to his torso, he paced leisurely to my side.
“We've known each other for about eighteen months. I work for, Liam.”
“Eightee––” I sighed. Quelling the sense of uprising panic, I breathed in a deep breath, well, as deep as my smarting ribs would allow, and exhaled through pursed lips. Having a void that immense in my mind was too overwhelming. I instantly began to wish I didn't ask such a stupid question, a question which would trigger an immeasurable degree of anxiety that I just didn't need at that point. “You’re an architect, too?” I added.
He sniggered then hung his head for a moment. When he lifted his gaze, his head was cocked; he looked adorable with that shy expression. Shaking his head, he licked his lips slowly. “No, I um…” he hesitated, and I sensed a degree of discomfiture radiating from him. “I’m in construction,” he sighed.
“Oh,” is all I could muster, before he removed his hands from his pockets, and took position on the ugly green seat next to me. “Do you enjoy it?”
Resting on the edge of the chair with his elbows supported on his knees, he rubbed his hands together, making circular motions over each of his palms, opting for nonchalance. “Its work,” he answered simply through an unconvincing grin.
I could understand and appreciate that. Being a stripper was never on my list of desired employment opportunities. The way my stomach knotted, and the shame I felt every time someone asked me what I did for a living, was considerable. People always judge a book by its cover, that’s a fact. And it’s unnerving when you know people judge you because you’re not a doctor, a lawyer, an architect…but work is work.
My attention shuffled from Irish to the door as I heard the click of the handle being pushed down. Liam stepped inside, closing the door behind him.
“Hey,” I breathed.
His soft, loving expression turned cold and hard, as he was welcomed by the sight of his employee sitting beside me, leaning into his arms and only a few inches away from the bed itself. Liam may have been at the end of the room, but his jaw was working like Santa’s elves the day before Christmas Eve. Scowling, he stomped into the room with as much control as he could gather…which wasn't a lot for Liam DeLaney; he was never able to keep a firm lid on his emotions.
Still, Irish didn't even batter an eyelid, let alone shift out of the seat, which made Liam worse.
“What did the doctor say?” I asked, not only out of pure interest, but in an attempt to bring an end to the once again, thickening, hostile atmosphere.
Taking extra caution not to snag my IV, he took a seat on the left of my bed. I watched and blenched as his thumb traced over my cracked, swelling mouth before lingering over my lower lip. I couldn't help but smile when I met his green and blue speckled eyes.
“He said that…” he began but soon trailed off. The man to my right was shot a disdainful scowl. “You can go,” he snapped.
I glance to my right, a V scorched into his dark brown eyebrows, his molded, pale lips hardened into a stubborn, firm line.
“I said, go. There is no need for you to even be here now. Kady doesn't even know you; you’ll get her confused.”
“Very well,” Irish muttered on an outbreath. He pushed himself up slowly, and placed a kind hand over mine. Yes, you knew he definitely worked in construction, because callouses which covered his palm was scrapping across the back of my knuckles. “I’ll be around if you need anything, Kady. I won’t be far.”
I felt the mattress quivering beneath me, as Liam’s body shook frenzied and incessantly. “She has me. She doesn't need your charity,” he seethed.
“Even still,” he lifted his head, his eyes narrowed at Liam in silent warning, before returning them to me. “I’ll be around. Nothing will change that,” he promised with a smile.
“Thank you, that’s very kind, um…”
I remember how his eyes blazed and how a twitch kissed the left corner of his mouth, a tiny dimple making an adorable appearance. It was a look that was both sad and hopeful. And although I have no idea why, it warmed me.
“Walker. My name is, Walker.”
The Dark Evoke Series Book 2
****CONTAINS ELEMENTS OF PHYSICAL AND PSYCHOLOGICAL ABUSE, AND IS THEREFORE ONLY RECOMMENDED TO READERS OVER THE AGE OF 18****
Three years lost; a body marred and a mission complete.
Waking after a four-day coma, Kady Jenson felt her life crashing down around her. Three years of her memory were missing, and the compelling man at her side was not her years-long partner, but a stranger – a stranger who promised to help her recover what she had lost.
But how did Kady come to such a place?
What dark, mysterious events had stolen her past and threatened her future?
How did her lover become a stranger, and this stranger become so terribly important?
What happened to turn Kady’s orderly life into a terrifying nightmare which would leave her permanently marked, body and soul?
****CONTAIN ELEMENTS OF PHYSICAL AND PSYCHOLOGICAL ABUSE, AND IS THEREFORE ONLY RECOMMENDED TO READERS OVER THE AGE OF 18****
tr.v. con·trolled, con·trol·ling, con·trols
1. The power to influence or direct people’s behaviour or the course of events.
2. To hold in restraint.
v. sur·vived, sur·viv·ing, sur·vives
1. To remain alive or in existence.
2. To carry on despite hardships or trauma.
Kady Jenson was a fighter.
For four days, she fought through the darkness of her unconscious, and for weeks afterward she fought for answers as to why her long-term boyfriend was more of a stranger, while she felt so connected to the Irish stranger now at her hospital bedside. The apprehension, fear, anxiety, scars that she had no memories of gaining and an unfamiliar passion which spawned each time she was in close proximity to the stranger, provided a wake-up call.
Receiving something she secretly craved helped regain the memories of the three years she had lost... but nothing could prepare her for the gut-wrenching truth. Kady discovered she had gone from fighter to victim at the hands and from the manipulation of the one person she truly loved - The one person who was supposed to love and cherish her. Beatings, emotional cruelty and mental torture had been an everyday occurrence. This was her life...
Now, she’s back and so are her memories. With Irish steadfast at her side to protect her and maintain any residual fight she has left, can she finally break free of Liam’s hold? What remained of the fighter, fought to discover how she, at the lowest point of her life, was a victim.
I suppose my life could be described as a romance novel itself. Life has many twists and turns, many forks in the road, and numerous bumps. But we learn and we grow.
I am a firm believer in, 'your life is what you make it', And I am greatful for the two important people in my life that taught me that approach. May they be watching me now.
I married my childhood sweetheart, and had he gifted me with a son...everything has a Happy Ever After, you just need to believe in it.
Yes, I ramble, and at times it is a challenge to shut me up.
Apart from the obvious duties in life, writing is the only thing that I can sit and concentrate on without contemplating all the other things I should/could be doing. If I'm not writing...I'm thinking about writing, usually with a coffee in my hand.
I always start the day with a coffee, and a motivational quote. It really does help.