The Beautiful Now

The Beautiful Now Book Cover

Dane James worked my stepfather’s fields. He was the boy next door.




From the moment we met, we were star-crossed lovers—always wanting, never having. We loved each other for most of our lives, but right from the beginning Destiny had other plans. She knew we would fall in love. She knew we would fall apart. Over and over again, like the curse of a recurring nightmare. Or the hope of a familiar dream.  

Our past was tumultuous. Our future was bleak. But the one thing we always had was the beautiful now.

Until that was taken from us, too.



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“Dane.”  My voice was a whisper, carried on breath as eager to touch him as I was. My hands, my mouth, my skin—I wanted every part of me to be in contact with every part of him.

I leaned in. He bent down.

His lips found mine. My soul found his.

Our legs were a tangle, our tongues a hot twist. We were hungry hands and greedy lips and frenzied moans.

We touched and clung.  We kissed and tore.  Fingers gripped, palms smoothed, mouths devoured.  Neither of us could get close enough fast enough.  This was all that mattered.  We were all that mattered.  Dane James and me and this night.  There was no yesterday. There was no tomorrow.  We had the now, and we both knew that might be all we’d ever have.

My clothes were peeled away with sweet intensity. I felt the urgency in Dane’s fingers, knew precisely what he was feeling as he shed them. He was in a rush to get back to me, to get back to my skin and my warmth. And I was in a rush to feel him again.

For a single deep breath, cool night air chilled my skin. I watched with wide, rapt eyes as Dane backed away to undress. He was strength and grace and every manly thing I’d ever imagined, wrapped in beauty and covered in flawless skin.


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