Title: The Secret
Author: J. Beck & C. Hallman
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Secrets… they can make or break you.
I would know. I’m hiding the biggest secret of all. My scars are so much more than skin deep. They consume me, control me.
Then I meet him, Clark Jefferson. Six foot two inches of greek god hotness, with a smile that’ll make your panties disappear. He wears a clear warning label: Heartbreaker, and if I was smart I would stay away from him.
With my past, my secrets nothing could ever come of being with a man like him. Still I cannot ignore the feelings he stirs inside me. He frightens me and excites me all at once.
He makes me want to break free of the suffocating fear that claims my heart.
Our meeting isn’t fate though, he needs me as much as I need him, and so we strike a deal.
He’ll be my fake boyfriend and I’ll help him get out of trouble with his dad.
But secrets can’t remain secrets forever and as I grow closer to Clark my feelings for him grow too. Soon the line between fake and real blurs and when the past I’ve been running from finally catches up with me I’ll have to confess to Clark the truth or let go of a love that was only ever supposed to be fake.
**This is book three in the North Woods University Series. It can be read as a complete standalone and contains NO cliffhanger, NO cheating, and a HEA. Please be advised this series contains material not suitable to all readers. This is NOT a YA series.**
“Please don’t look at me like that…” I slur.
“Please leave… just… leave me alone,” she pleads and my heart breaks at her words. That’s what my mom used to tell me. She asked me to leave her alone and I listened to her. Maybe if I hadn’t listened to her and listened to my gut instead she would still be here, alive.
“I won’t leave you,” I tell her, shaking my head, determination coating my words. “But please don’t look at me like I’m going to hurt you. Please, don’t be scared of me.”
“You’re dunk,” she points out and that wild look in her eyes overtakes her features now. She continues taking small steps backwards, retreating further into the room, further away from me. I want her close, in my arms, safe, secure. It’s the strangest, but truest emotion I’ve ever felt before.
“Yes… I had something to drink, but that doesn’t change the fact that I would never hurt you. I can control myself,” I sigh and set the plate down on top of the dresser
“You’re scaring me,” she admits, her voice small and shaky. I don’t know who hurt her, but in that moment I vowed to myself to find out. I will find out who did this to her and then I will make them pay. It’s obvious she was powerless, weak, but she’s not anymore. She has me now, and I’ll protect her, defend her till my last breath. I know this without even thinking.
Holding my hands up, with my palms showing, I try to calm her like I would a scared animal. “You don’t have to be scared of me. Not ever,” I assured her. “I just want… I want you to feel safe. You don’t have to be scared here. I promise I’ll keep you safe. No one will hurt you, least of all me.”
About the authors:
J.L. Beck & C. Hallman are two ladies with a love for coffee, books, and the bad boys who live inside them.
They’re a dynamic duo who love writing all genres of romance, from erotica, to suspense. To date they’ve written ten books together and don’t plan to stop any time soon.
When they aren’t writing you can find them making jokes, discussing their next book, arguing over cover photos, and of course drinking more coffee.
They’re humble, and truly blessed to have found such amazing readers.