I am a plotter when I write. I really love writing characters, and I usually know them before I know the story because I allow them to drive the story in my outlines. The Crush Collision was no different. This time, I knew Jake really well because I’d met him in the The Sweetheart Sham and knew he’d have his own story next. Haley took a little more time, and I’d actually tried to put her with another love interest first.
Because I do write from an outline, I rarely have any deleted scenes from my books. Everything I keep serves a purpose. This time, in our last pass, my editor suggested I re-evaluate a scene and now, for maybe the first time, I have a deleted scene. I wanted to share it somewhere because while it didn’t fit in the book, I think it’s a really great stolen moment between Jake and Haley.
Deleted scene from The Crush Collision:
I’m almost there. She texts me.
I told her to meet me here before homeroom; I focus my eyes out on the horizon of the parking lot and watch her get closer and closer. I didn’t tell her what I wanted, just that she needed to come. What I wanted was her.
“Is something wrong?” she asks.
My phone vibrates, and I look down; I number I don’t know calls me, so I ignore it.
“No,” I say, reaching out and taking her hand. I pull toward the side of the building; there is this little nook that is hidden from the rest of the world.
Haley leans into me, a small smile on her face. “You had me worried.”
“You said ‘Hurry I need to see you.’”
I smile. “I do.” I lean over to kiss her neck and pull her closer. She sighs, and she curves into my body.
“I just missed you. I’ve been thinking about this,” I say kissing one part of her neck. “And this,” I do it again. She’s smiling, even though she’s trying to act annoyed. It’s cute really.
“And this,” I say again, but this time I press my lips against her slightly enough to make her want more. Then we’re kissing like its air and we’ve been drowning. Haley is pressed against me, digging her fingers into my back with her arm wrapped around my waist. I like kissing her too much for my own good.
I don’t know how long we stay like that. Long enough for my back to go a little tingly from being pressed against the brick. Hell, I’m not one to complain about that though.
Haley pulls away quickly. “We should get to class.”
I nod. “We should.”
She steps back, adding more space between us. Haley smiles really big at me. I love that look. “I’ll see you later.”
Danielle Ellison is a nomad, always on the lookout for an adventure and the next story. In addition to writing, she’s the founder and coordinator of the NoVa TEEN Book Festival. When she’s not busy with books, she’s probably watching her favorite shows, drinking coffee, or fighting her nomadic urges. She is newly settled in Oklahoma (for now) with her cat, Simon, but you can always find her on twitter @DanielleEWrites.
The Crush Collision
(Southern Charmed #2)
by Danielle Ellison
Publication Date: February 18, 2019
Publisher: Entangled Teen: Crush
Haley Howell has had a hopeless crush on her brother’s best friend, Jake Lexington, for as long as she can remember. Too bad to him, she’ll forever be off-limits. But with senior year and acceptance to a college outside their tiny southern town of Culler, South Carolina, comes new confidence. Haley’s ready to get Jake to notice her—whatever it takes.
No one in Culler notices the real Jake anymore—to them, he’s nothing more than the star football player or the kid with the family tragedy. When one mistake lands him in community service, he’s shocked to find his best friend’s little sister there, too, looking cute as hell and threatening all his no-friends-with-benefits rules. But Jake isn’t ready to take a chance, no matter how crafty Haley’s willing to get to prove him otherwise…