Earth to earth, ashes to ashes, dust to dust; in the sure and certain hope of the Resurrection to eternal life.
Four caskets. Two bodies.
Jessica and Jude Day witness their funeral and that of their parents a few yards away from mourning family and friends. Stripped of the only life they’ve ever known, the Days say goodbye to San Francisco forever.
Four months later, two thirty-year-old misfits with elite self-defense skills and penchants for alcohol, sex, and trouble arrive like an earthquake to Peaceful Woods, a retirement community in Omaha, Nebraska, that thrives on rules and gossip. Welcome home, Jackson and Jillian Knight.
Jackson celebrates his new beginning by embracing his job and wiping his cavalier past clean with a temporary oath of celibacy. But Jillian’s past is branded into her soul—the deaths, the insanity, Dr. Luke Jones, and the need to make her lovers bleed. Her chance for redemption comes in the form of a next door neighbor, one Senior Master Sergeant Monaghan. He’s sexy, dangerously alluring, and riddled with emotional issues from years of service. He’s also … So. Damn. Grumpy.
Their mission is simple: Let go, start over, don’t kill anyone, and pray that nobody wakes the dead.
“Miss Knight.” He shut the driver’s door and slung his messenger bag over his shoulder. “Do you need something?”
“What does AJ stand for?” She inched forward until they were toe to toe, red rain boots to tan combat boots. Jillian loved how her skin tingled in his proximity, how she felt dominated by his stature but not submissive to his strength.
“Your shorts are too short.” The authoritative intonation of his voice felt like a tongue dragging over every pleasurable nerve ending in her body.
“Too short for what? You, Sergeant Monaghan?”
“We don’t have a club house or swimming pool. Why the bikini top?” AJ clenched his fists as Jillian moved her feet between his. Her cleavage-bared chest pressed against his stomach.
“Is my body appalling to you, Sarge?”
“The old men in this neighborhood don’t need to have their wives pissed at them all day because the new neighbor gets her mail wearing a little bit of nothing.” His voice escalated with each word as it muffled into pure grit.
“Sarge, are you upset about my mail-retrieving attire or that I get the mail after you’ve already left for work?”
He narrowed his eyes.
“Because you’ve already seen more than the other neighbors.”
AJ maintained a scowl, but his deep swallow gave him away.
“How’s your lip?”
The tip of his tongue instinctively glided over the small red spot that was still there. “Tell me. Are you one of those kinky dominatrixes that likes it rough?”
Jillian twisted her lips and rolled her eyes, diverting her gaze from his. “Hmm … no, that’s not an accurate assessment.” Dr. Jones ruled out that possibility years ago.
“And why is that?”
She yanked his T-shirt from his pants and snaked her hand up a few inches against his taut, bare skin. Gripping his dog tags, she gently tugged until he gave in and leaned forward to prevent her from breaking them.
“Because I don’t want you to submit to me,” she whispered her words like a potion meant to cast a spell.
AJ secured her ponytail in his fisted hand. “I assure you words like surrender, succumb, and submit are only under the list of things I’m incapable of doing.”
Jillian smiled. She never considered her issue an addiction, but at that moment it was powerful and all-consuming. “I’m going to bring you to your knees, Senior Master Sergeant Monaghan.”
About the Author
With 10 years of flossing lectures under her belt, she took early retirement from her dental hygiene career to stay home with her three awesome boys and manage the family business.
After her best friend of nearly 30 years suggested a few books from the Contemporary Romance genre, Jewel was hooked. Devouring two and three books a week but still craving more, she decided to practice sustainable reading, AKA writing.
When she’s not donning her cape and saving the planet one tree at a time, she enjoys yoga with friends, good food with family, rock climbing with her kids, watching How I Met Your Mother reruns, and of course…heart-wrenching, tear-jerking, panty-scorching novels.