Today we celebrate the fabulous
and her novel
as well as the free novella
(a missing moment from Slide)
(a missing moment from Slide)
Slide is the first of two novels that cover the story of Ash and Pete, and if you haven't read it yet, check out the buylinks at the bottom of this post.
From the blurb:
Don’t look back. Don’t you ever look back…
Shy tattoo artist Ash has a troubled past. Years of neglect, drug abuse, and life on the streets have taken their toll, and sometimes it seems the deep, unspoken bond with his lover is the only balm for wounds he doesn’t quite understand.
Chicago paramedic Pete is warmth, love, and strength—things Ash never knew he could have, and never even knew he wanted until Pete showed him. But fate is a cruel, cruel mistress, and when nightmares collide with the present, their tentatively built world comes crashing down.
Traumatic events in Pete’s work life distance him from home, and he doesn’t realize until it’s too late that Ash has slipped away. Betrayal, secrets, and lies unfold, and when a devastating coincidence takes hold, Pete must fight with all he has to save the love of his life.
NIGHT shifts sucked. I turned my back on the station house and stepped out into the bitter night. Yeah. Winter night shifts sucked even more. Chicago was cold, really cold, but even as my breath misted in the freezing air, I couldn’t raise the energy to care. I could take the subway, but I’d made that mistake before and slept past my stop, not waking up until the train pulled into Lakeview. Fuck that shit. I needed my bed.
Instead, I trudged across town, dead on my feet and my mind on autopilot. In some ways, it felt almost surreal to be finally heading home; the long night had seemed unending. After five years as a city paramedic I was used to it, but it didn’t get any easier.
With my mind a blank haze of exhaustion, the walk seemed to pass quickly. I pushed open the exterior door to the dilapidated building I called home with a wry grin. I could almost hear my bed calling to me. Maybe zoning out wasn’t so bad after all.
I wandered dazedly along the corridor until I reached the door to my apartment. Typically, my key got stuck in the lock. I muttered a curse as I tried to manipulate it quietly, but it didn’t work, and the door creaked open with an obnoxious groan. I winced, pausing, but heard no response to my fumbling. Good. Damn thing needed oiling, but it was just one of those chores that never got done.
A hot shower soothed my aching body, but I only lingered long enough to wash the day away. I dried quickly, threw on some sweats, turned out the light, and padded across the hallway. The scraps of paper pinned to every wall caught my eye. Sketches. Designs. Stencils. There was no order to them—no rhyme or reason. Just a load of drafted tattoos stuck up all over my place. The flurry of creativity made me smile, as it always did. The fucker had a studio right here in the apartment, but some shit never changed.
I eased the bedroom door shut. The room was dark and still, but I quickly found the outlined shape of the renegade artist in my bed.
I slid under the covers and scooted across to look at him. He was stretched out on his back with his arm flung over his head, his surfer-blond hair a riot against the light-gray pillow. His face was peaceful, which eased my guilt; he didn’t like sleeping alone. I cast my gaze around the room as the tension of the night began to seep out of me, spotting the stack of his books on the nightstand. I shook my head, letting the soft rush of love and awe sweep over me. The boy never ceased to amaze me. He’d worked all day and drawn all night, and he still took books to bed. Unbidden, I reached out to touch his chest, but I caught my hand before I could feel the warmth of his bare skin. If I touched him, I’d never stop. He was sexy as hell when he was asleep and at ease.
A low chuckle startled me. “Are you going to stare all night? Some of us are trying to sleep.”
I dove for him, smirking, and attempted to push him off the side of the bed. We wrestled for a minute, but he was too quick for me, his instincts too sharp. He had me pinned in seconds. I rolled onto my side to face him, grinning as he ran his shrewd gaze over me, taking in my heavy, drooping eyes. He reached out and touched my cheek; a cheek I knew was dark with two days of Italian stubble. “Long night?”
“Factory fire,” I said around a jaw-popping yawn. “Three busloads of burned-up dudes covered in soot. It took a while to clean up.”
He shuddered and made a face. Burns gave him the creeps. “Tired?”
I nodded and yawned again, but despite the soothing lull of his warm body, I kept my eyes open. I’d missed him over the past few days. He worked a lot, and I worked even more. Sometimes, we could go a week without seeing each other awake. Inevitably, my mind fell into the gutter. However long it had been, there were better things we could do than talk about work. He caught the direction of my thoughts, as he always did, and raised a challenging eyebrow. Unable to resist, I leaned in to kiss him, softly at first, but then harder as the familiar spark between us ignited.
Buy SLIDE from:
Get the free download for MARKED
Garrett Leigh is a British writer and indie cover artist with a special interest in using the arts as catharsis in mental illness. Currently writing and designing for Dreamspinner Press, Loose ID and Extasy Books, she has a passion for darkly troubled heroes, tattoos and tales of enduring true love…not necessarily in that order.
Garrett is a lazy person at heart. She enjoys terrorising her husband and generally wasting as much time as possible.
If there were a degree in doing sweet FA, perhaps she'd have stayed at school a little while longer...
Garrett is giving away three e-copies of SLIDE. Good luck!!!
Thanks for stopping by for our celebration! Come back next week for a Q&A with Garrett, info about Rare and Freed and another giveaway. See you then!!