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The hair on the back of her neck stood up as he slid his hand down to her crotch, rubbing her and pushing his erection against her backside. He whispered in her ear that he was going to fuck her hard like she deserved. She froze and went rigid as he continued rubbing her. Her mind was racing, because she knew the man touching her was not Tim; it was his uncle. Before she could do anything, he yanked her over onto her back. Lily pushed at him and yelled no, don't, stop. But he got on top of her, pinning down her hands while prying her legs apart. His fingers dug into the flesh of her inner thighs, and she cried out in pain. Then he was trying to kiss her, but she was moving her head back and forth so fast becoming sick from the thought of him touching her. When she screamed, he covered her mouth with his dirty hand. Leaning down in her face he said that if she didn't shut her mouth, he would shut it for her. His nasty breath made her gag as he told her to keep fighting, because he liked it. He reached down and pulled her hips up in the air to enter her. Bucking wildly and with her hands finally free, she started hitting him.
Lily jerked awake from someone pulling at her. She opened her eyes to see Monica staring at her.
With Lily's wrists still in her hands she said, "That must have been some nightmare. I don't know who or what you were fighting with but, man, you almost hit me. The moaning and yelling was scaring the shit out of me." Monica released Lily's wrists and reached up to wipe at a tear that was starting to fall down Lily's cheek. "Are you alright? You know, maybe if you talked about it the bad dreams would stop."
"You have no idea," Lily mumbled. "I'm so sorry."
Turning her head and looking out the window, she had to laugh at what she thought was going to be a good day.
The morning had started out to be a good one. Lily glanced at the clock and was actually ahead of schedule for once. She started brushing her long hair. Yesterday she had gone to get it cut short but just couldn't bring herself to do it. Instead, she left the length and got layers and bangs. It was a new style for her, which she thought made her look younger. It would take some getting used to. Now if only she had different color hair instead of the brown with red highlights. Brushing done, she pulled it around to her left shoulder and decided to braid it. The braid reached down to her waist, so it was easy for her to tie a lavender ribbon around it. The ribbon matched her tank top perfectly. She stood up and looked into a full-length mirror hanging on the bathroom door. Tugging down her mini jean skirt and putting on her silver hoop earrings, she thought she looked good. She took one last glance around her tiny trailer. She could actually sit on her bed and reach everything in the room, which wasn't much. Across from her bed was a small built-in dresser with only four drawers and on top of it were a microwave on one side and a nineteen inch television on the other. To the left of her bed was a small bathroom, consisting of only a toilet, and on the right side was a compact fridge. The outside door was just on the other side of the fridge. It might have been small, but it was hers. It had taken just about every cent of her paychecks plus her savings that she had brought with her to Florida to pay for it. Luckily, because she worked in the trailer park, she got lot rent for free. Not bad for an eighteen-year-old.
She pulled on her old worn cowboy boots. Grabbing her wallet and stuffing it in her backpack, she turned to take one last look at herself. Lavender looked so good on her. It really made the green come out in her eyes. She didn't believe she was very pretty, but she felt her eyes were her best asset.
Lily took a deep breath, pulled on her backpack, and left. The sun was just rising as she hurried across the highway to the motel. Heading to the back parking lot she noticed that the Greyhound bus was already there. It seemed so quiet. Soon people would be coming and going, traveling to God knows where. Just thinking about the trip made her thoughts race with excitement. Lately, work had consumed her, and she was ready to relax. So when her friend, Terrie, had begged her for days to go to Daytona, she replied with an exuberant yes. She was to meet Terrie here but she was obviously early. Oh, well, she usually ran late so this was a first.
It was starting to get hot outside. She slipped her backpack off and dug in it for a cigarette. People were coming out of their rooms as she found and then lit the cigarette. No one paid any attention to her standing there except for one old guy. He actually walked over to her and asked if she needed any help; well, he asked her breasts. Boy, that really pissed her off when men did that. She wanted to scream at him that her eyes were on her face not her chest. But she just lowered her sunglasses, blew smoke in his face, and shook her head no. He swatted the smoke away from his face, took a step back, and told her to have a nice day as he turned and walked away. Unbelievable! What was that guy thinking? Suddenly a car flew through the parking lot, music blaring. Smiling, Lily picked up her bag and walked towards the car.
"Hey, where have you guys been? You're late."
The two girls got out of the car. The driver, Monica, was a tall girl with bleach blonde hair down to her shoulders and blue eyes. She was very pretty but a little too skinny, Lily thought. Today she was wearing a blue halter top, white cutoff shorts, and white sneakers, which made her look like a model. Riding shotgun was Terrie, who was the total opposite of Monica. Terrie was short with dark brown hair cut just below her ears and big brown eyes. She wore a cute little pink flowered sundress with a tie-up wedge heels. The two looked at each other and started laughing.
Lily asked, "What is so funny?"
"Oh, you're not really early. We told you an earlier time to make sure you wouldn't be late," replied Terrie laughing.
All Lily could do was glare at them. Then she started laughing, "I guess you guys got me." She gave them both a hug and asked, "Am I really that bad?"
These two girls were her best friends. She had met them just after arriving in Florida. Terrie seemed to be the leader and was always getting them into some kind of trouble. Lily was the one with the short temper while Monica was known as the peacekeeper. Monica was definitely a godsend, since Terrie and Lily were usually butting heads. But all in all they got along quite well.
Both girls nodded their heads in unison and began laughing as they chorused, "Oh, yeah."
They grabbed their bags and headed for the motel. Walking across the parking lot, Lily got this overwhelmingly bad feeling. Something was wrong, but what? Looking around she didn't see anything out of the ordinary. Unexpectedly a door slammed closed. Looking up she saw an older, handsome man waving at them. She glanced at Terrie who was waving back.
Without taking her eyes off the man Lily whispered to Terrie, "Is that the man who's taking us to Daytona?" She hadn't even noticed that Terrie had begun walking toward the man and that she had asked the air. Shrugging she followed Terrie. The nearer she got to the man the stronger the feeling.
When they reached him Terrie made the introductions. His name was Nicholus. She didn't catch the last name, because she was too busy checking him out. He wasn't a tall man, probably in his late forties. Grey streaked his dark brown hair, which was cut short and slicked back. He had olive color skin, thick eyebrows over brown eyes, and one of those aristocratic noses. Although he was very good-looking, when he smiled something seemed wrong. They all headed for the bus.
As Terrie and Nicholus walked ahead talking, Lily leaned over to Monica, "Has she slept with him? Please tell me she hasn't."
Monica just shrugged her shoulders, "I hope not. Good-looking or not that's nasty. I mean would you do someone that old? I sure wouldn't. Besides, there is something creepy about him. Not to mention that he's a bus driver." Almost to the bus Monica grabbed Lily's arm. "I don't think this trip is such a good idea. Something just doesn't feel right."
Lily leaned into her and said, "Yeah, I know what you mean. I've been having this bad feeling since I first laid eyes on him." When Terrie yelled for them to hurry up, Lily gave Monica's hand a squeeze. "It'll be alright. Come on, we'll just watch out for each other, OK?"
They reached the bus as Nicholus was loading the passenger's luggage. Lily asked Terrie why there was more than just their luggage. Apparently, there were a few others taking the bus too. She thought that they were going to be the only ones today. Terrie told her not to worry about it; everything was cool. They loaded the bus and sat in the front. Lily and Monica sat together while Terrie sat right behind Nicholus. Ten minutes later they were on their way.
Monica snapped her fingers at Lily bringing her back to the present, "Hey, earth to Lily, have you been listening to a word I've said? Are you sure you're ok?"
Lily gave her a fake smile and said softly, "I'm OK, really."
Looking back out the bus window and watching the scenery pass on by she thought about the nightmare. Would it ever be behind her? Every now and again she replayed that terrible scene over and over in her dreams. She was tired of being used by men; maybe it was time to turn the tables on them. Sighing, she turned her head towards the window looking out at the sky. Tears filled her eyes. This was getting old. Crying wouldn't change things; nothing could. It took a lot to make her cry, because it was a sign of weakness. And weakness was something she learned long ago not to show; it only hurt you. Trying to blink back the tears, one escaped and ran down her face. Wiping it away before anyone could see, Monica nudged her and pointed at Terrie. What was she doing up there? Lily thought Terrie was fawning all over Nicholus like he was her boyfriend or something. Lily whistled to get Terrie's attention. When Terrie looked back, Lily motioned for her to join them.
Terrie sat down in the seat in front of them. "Hey, girls, what's happening? Only about another fifteen minutes and we'll be at the bus terminal where his neighbor will pick us up. Then it's only a short distance to his house." Smiling at them she added, "And then the party will get started."
"Just what the fuck are you talking about? You never said anything about a party. You do know that means we have to entertain your buddy's shit bag friends. Just what were you thinking?" Lily yelled. She was so pissed off that she started shaking.
Terrie glared at her. "I told you we were going to party with him, and he was going to supply all the booze and drugs."
"Terrie, you talked like it was just going to be him and us. Monica and I only came along because you didn't want to be alone with him. What have you gotten us into?"
"Oh, you worry too much, Lily. Let loose and just have some fun for a change. Must have been all that working, or was it that asshole you were seeing who made you such a fun sucker."
"Will you two stop arguing?" Monica cried. "Lily! There is nothing we can do about it now. We're here, so we might as well make the best of it. And, Terrie, just so you know, I agree with Lily. You should have told us the whole truth."
"You're right. I'm sorry," replied Terrie. "Still friends?" She looked at Lily and Monica with puppy dog eyes.
Lily nodded her head yes. She was so mad she didn't dare say anymore. They were stuck here. None of them had enough money to get back home. There wasn't anyone who would make the drive just to pick them up either. They had no choice but to ride it out. However, this was the last time that she would go off on some too good to be true scheme of Terrie's.
They finally arrived at the bus terminal. Nicholus parked the bus and stood up. He winked at Terrie and got off.
"He wants us to wait and let the other passengers off first," whispered Terrie. She stood up and leaned towards both girls. "Please don't be mad. We are going to have fun this weekend, trust me. Nicholus will do anything to make me happy."
Lily just looked a Terrie. "Yeah, well at what price, Terrie? Have you even given that a thought? You know we love you, but I think it's really nasty for a man his age to be lusting after someone our age. And God only knows how nasty his friends are."
"Oh, since when has age ever bothered you, Lily? We all know how you like older men. All the guys you date are always quite a bit older than you," Terrie hissed.
"You're right, Terrie, but the guys I see aren't as old as Nicholus. Jesus, he's older than my dad for Christ's sake; but whatever! Let's just do this," said Lily.
"Hey, let's all play nice now. We're friends, remember? Let's have a group hug now," piped in Monica. They all looked at each other and busted out laughing. As the last person walked by them staring, they grabbed their bags to leave.
Exiting the bus, the humidity in the air hit Lily like a brick wall. It almost took her breath away. They stood there waiting for Nicholus to finish unloading the luggage from the bus. Lily lit up a few cigarettes and handed one to each of the girls. Boy, she really needed one. A car soon pulled up behind the bus. When the guy got out of the car and yelled to Nicholus, Lily about shit. The guy looked to be in his mid twenties with a very muscular body. He walked over to Nicholus and shook his hand. The two men stood there talking a few minutes then turned towards the girls. Nicholus motioned for them to come to him.
As they started walking Terrie whispered, "I sure hope you don't get stuck entertaining that shit bag there, Lily. I mean he's real nasty, right?"
"Well it'll be a tough job but for you, Terrie, I guess I could give it a try," Lily quietly quipped. Then all three girls started giggling.
As they reached the men, Nicholus introduced his neighbor, Lee, to them. Seeing Lee up close made Lily's heart race. He was really hot with shaggy blond hair, big brown eyes, and a bronze color tan that seemed to cover his entire body. He wore loose faded blue jeans low on his hips and an old faded red T-shirt. When he shook her hand all she could do was nod. Maybe this would be a great weekend after all, she thought.
Lee asked for their bags so he could put them in the trunk of the car while Nicholus finished up his business at the terminal. Meanwhile, Lee asked them if they had brought bathing suits, because tomorrow would be a good day for the beach. Terrie batted her eyes and smiled that ear to ear smile of hers while asking Lee if he would be going to the beach too. Then she touched his arm and soon moved on to touching his chest.
Lily couldn't believe the way Terrie was acting; like she was a bitch in heat. Monica had told her before how Terrie was with men but until now Lily had never seen it. Lee seemed to be enjoying himself as he leaned down and whispered something in Terrie's ear, which made her laugh. Lily had to turn around because she was fuming. If she had to watch anymore she would definitely throw up. Looking around she noticed Nicholus heading their way. Now the real fun was about to begin. She wondered if he could see anything that was going on here. If he did see something he didn't act like it. He greeted Terrie the same as always, grabbing and hugging her.
Excerpted from Highlander Heat by Laureen Hanley Copyright © 2011 by Laureen Hanley. Excerpted by permission of AuthorHouse. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
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Posted January 5, 2012
When I first heard that it was a romance novel, I felt like it would be like any other. I was wrong!! This book kept my interest so strongly that I hated when I had to stop reading it due to work or sleep. I read it probably faster than any other book and CAN NOT WAIT for the next book!! :) This definitely is an author I will be anxiously waiting for more to come!Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted December 23, 2011
This book is fantastic! I stayed up all night to finish reading it and wanted more when it was over. Ms. Hanley is a very skilled writer who knows how to hook her audience in. After Chapter 3 I could not put the book down! Highlander Heat is a very passionate novel that keeps you on your toes, I can usually predict the outcomes of movies or books, but not this one! AMAZING! I will keep my eye out for anything else Ms. Hanley writes!Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.