Exciting, Exciting, Exciting…
I’m so excited to host my first guest post with Lexi Ryan. Lexi has written several new adult romance novels including three different series: New Hope, Decadence Creek, Stiletto Girls, and her newest series Here and Now.
And Now Presenting…
Our Guest Post By Lexi Ryan
LOST IN ME
The Here and Now Series
“Do you know what retrograde amnesia is? Because I just learned about it and I have this story idea…” This was few years ago on call with my critique partner. The conversation was supposed to be about the book I was finishing, but I was distracted by this shiny new story idea.
The kernel of the idea was there, born from my fascination with retrograde amnesia. A woman wakes up in the hospital and is engaged to a man she remembers (though she doesn’t remember getting engaged…doesn’t remember anything from the last year, in fact). She’s in the days approaching her wedding…but there’s this other guy. This guy who seems to know things about her life that no one else does. This guy who’s in love with her and doesn’t want her to marry her fiancé. This guy she doesn’t rememberand yet feels connected to somehow.
I carried this kernel of a story idea with me. I wasn’t sure what I was going to do with it or whose story it was. I never know much about my plot when I start writing. Instead, I start with emotion and character, and I was fascinated with how it would feel to wake up and think you had to perfect life, think you’d finally gotten everything you wanted…but have no memory of how you got there.
Meanwhile, I was also carrying the character of Hanna with me. Hanna who has struggled with her weight her whole life, who’s totally in love with a guy she grew up with but believes herself to be completely unworthy. I met Hanna while I was first writing Maggie’s story (now Unbreak Me), and I knew from the beginning she needed her own story.
Then, one day while I was writing a scene in Wish I May that had Hanna pining for Max, the puzzle pieces floating around in my head clicked together. Since I’d already written about Max and already “met” Asher’s musician friend Nate Crane in my mind (I know, writers are weird), the rest of the premise fell into place. I knew not only that I needed to write this sexy amnesia love triangle for Hanna but that it had so many twists and turns it was going to take me more than one book to tell it. And so the Here and Now series was born—a series where the main character has to choose between the two incredibly sexy guys that want her. How do you make the right choice for your future when you can’t remember your own secrets?
I hope you’ll check out Lost in Me, book one of the Here and Now series.
Lost In Me Playlist
Anna Nalick—Breathe (2am)
Barenaked Ladies—Odds Are
Dave Matthews Band—The Space Between
Matchbox Twenty—If You’re Gone
Shakira, Rihanna—Can’t Remember to Forget You
Sarah Bareilles—I Choose You
Jason Mraz—I Won’t Give Up
Nine Inch Nails—Something I Can Never Have
A Great Big World—Say Something
P.M. Dawn—I’d Die Without You
Macy Gray—I Try
James Blunt—You’re Beautiful
Get the Playlist on
I wake up to someone climbing into bed next to me, hot, hard muscle cozying up behind me.
I blink away sleep. Max is in my bed and I want to enjoy it, enjoy him, but sleep has such a tight hold on me I can hardly keep my eyes open. I snuggle as close to him as I can get, but sleep is already tugging me back down.
“Couldn’t stay away?” I murmur in the darkness.
“You know I can’t,” he whispers against my ear. His voice is different somehow. Deeper? Maybe sleepy? I don’t have time to think about it because I’m wrapped up in his heat, his bare chest against my back, one of his hands right between my breasts, and I can’t fight it when my dreams suck me back in. But somehow, with his heat against me and his arms around me, my fitful dreams fade away and I don’t just sleep. I rest.
When I wake again, the room is still dark, but Max’s mouth is doing delicious things to the side of my neck. I arch against him and am greeted by the hard length of his erection against my ass. I have to bite my lip at the thrill that rushes through me. Not only can I do that to him, but he wanted me enough that he had to come back tonight.
Under my shirt, his fingertips skim the underside of my breasts, and a soft moan slips from my lips. He cups my breast in his hot hand and grazes his callused palm against my nipple, toys and teases until it’s hard and tight under his hand and I am rocking back into him instinctively.
“Jesus, I missed you so much.” His voice sounds funny, but I hardly have time for the thought to register before he’s squeezing my nipples, sending electric jolts of pleasure from my breasts and right up through my center. His touch is harder than it was earlier. Rougher. But I like it. He’s so good at this. He knows exactly how to touch me, exactly how much pressure I like. I wouldn’t want him to ever stop touching my breasts if it weren’t for this nearly painful ache that’s been pulsing between my legs since we were interrupted in my living room—the ache my own touch couldn’t quite ease.
I circle my hips and rub my backside against his erection. Thick and wild arousal buzzes through me, electric and sharp with its intensity. He wants me as much as I want him.
“Touch me,” I whisper into the darkness. “I need you to touch me.”
He groans against my neck and then his fingers are dipping into the waistband of my sleep pants.
I turn in his arms just as his hand meets the hot and needy place between my thighs. Our mouths touch in the darkness, and something niggles at the back of my mind. Something’s changed between last night and now. Does he smell different or—
The thought disintegrates as he slides a finger inside me. I can’t believe how slick and wet I am. Except that this is Max and I need his touch.
I rock against him, letting him touch me the way I touched myself in the bath. Only this is hotter. Sweeter. More intense. Not just because it’s him. It’s almost as if he knows what I like better than I do. His finger moves inside me and his teeth nip at my neck almost painfully. But I like it. I want more of this unbridled lust, more of his expert touch.
He withdraws his finger and replaces it with two, stretching me in a way that has my body pulsing around him in response.
“Yes,” I whisper. I want this. Need it.
His thumb finds my clit and his fingers curl.
“Oh God…” Am I a screamer? I bite my lip, but holy shit, I can’t—
“Let me hear you scream,” he growls in my ear, his stubble scraping at the tender skin of my neck. “Let me feel you pulse around my fingers as you come.”
I curl my nails into his forearm, not to stop him, but because this pleasure inside me is so intense I have to do something, put this energy somewhere.
His other hand slides up my side and squeezes right at the bruise on my ribs. Pain vibrates through me, and I cry out.
“Hanna?” He pulls away and clicks on the light.
I’m still wincing at the pain from my manhandled bruise when I look at him through squinted eyes.
And then I scream.
I shove the man off me as hard as I can. My mind gropes for the lessons I learned in the personal defense class I took in college. I bring up my knee, aiming for his balls.
He lets out an airy oomph, and I flail, backing as far away from him as I can get. I fall off the bed, and the impact of my already-battered body slamming into the floor has me crying out.
“Jesus, Hanna!” the man—who is definitely not Max—says from the bed. “What the fuck was that for?”
Oh God. He knows my name.
My phone is on the bedside table, and I scramble to get to it before he can take it away.
“I’ll call the police!” I warn, holding the phone up like it’s a weapon.
The man on the bed is white-faced and stricken and looking at me like I’ve lost my mind.
“You can’t just come into a woman’s house and get into her bed.” Shit. Now I’m trying to reason with a sex offender. Jesus. But he’s just sitting there. Is that normal?
His expression goes from confused to desolate as he skims his eyes over my bruised face. “Damn. What happened to you, angel?”
I fumble with my phone, pressing the button on the side and trying to get it to light up. Nothing. It’s dead. Why didn’t I charge it before I fell asleep last night?
He pushes off the bed, and I back into a corner, arms wrapped around myself. “Leave. Please.”
He holds up his hands and takes a step toward me. “Hanna, baby. Tell me what happened. Tell me—”
I press my body as close to the wall as I can. I should have locked myself in the bathroom or something. I am one of those too-dumb-to-live heroines you see in horror movies. Especially since the thing keeping me here—keeping me from running to safety—is the hurt on his face. I’ve always been the kind of person who tries to make people happy, but this is ridiculous.
Think, Hanna. Okay, I’ll need a description for the cops. Tall—taller than Max, maybe—messy dark hair, an Incredible Hulk tattoo on his right shoulder, some numbers tattooed above his left pec. God, is he an ex-con? Don’t convicts get numbers tattooed on themselves?
He steps closer, and a shudder runs through me.
“Please don’t hurt me.” I sink to the floor and cross my arms in front of my face.
His gaze catches on my left hand, and his jaw goes hard. “I see.” He backs off and grabs something off the floor. Then he’s tugging a shirt over his head. It falls into place and covers that amazing body.
Amazing body? What the eff is wrong with me?
As stupid as it is, I don’t believe this man is here to hurt me. There’s nothing intimidating about his body language, and even though his face has gone hard and angry, there’s no violence in his eyes.
He grabs his jeans. “You could have told me.”
“I don’t know what you’re talking about.” My voice cracks.
Jeans unbuttoned and half up his hips, he’s heading toward the door. Stupidly, I follow him. My hands are shaking, my head spinning.
He grabs the doorknob and goes still, but he doesn’t look at me. “When I was touching you just now”—he swallows—“you thought I was…”
“I thought you were my fiancé.” The whisper seems to swell in the small space and vibrate off the walls.
He punches the wall beside the door. “You and Max have a nice life.” Then he’s leaving, slamming the door behind him and making the whole room rattle. And me right along with it.