Hey everyone! Sorry this is a day late. Releasing a book can get kind of hectic. Anyway, I just wanted to come and talk to you a little bit about the latest book in the Sealed With a Kiss series, My Bonds Are Sealed. This book takes place between My Lips Are Sealed/My Fate Is Sealed and My Heart Is Sealed, and it's River and Mason's story. Don't worry, Zoe and Elijah are still featured plenty. After all, if you'll remember, River is the one who set them back up. This book will show you why she did it. And it'll also show how she and Mason met and fell in love. Click on the book cover or click here to get your copy now!
This book is pretty different from the rest of the series for a couple of reasons. First, it's the first book in the series to be told from a dual point of view. You get to hear from River and Mason in this book and see both sides of their love story. Also, this book is a friends-to-lovers romance, so you'll get to see the development of River and Mason's friendship before you see the romance that it blossoms into. I fell in love with these characters and their love story more than I thought I would. I didn't think that any other love story that I wrote would be able to compare to Zoe and Elijah's story for me, but it turns out that I was wrong. The way Mason loves River is inspiring and beautiful in a completely different way from how Elijah loves Zoe.
To whet your appetite a little, here's a sneak peek:
Abby and I walked out of the communication building and I was shocked to find Mason standing there, in full police uniform.
“Mason?” I asked, confused. I had so many questions, I wasn’t even sure where to start.
“Hey, beautiful,” he chuckled. “Rob mentioned you had a couple of hours between classes right now. I thought maybe I could buy you lunch.”
Abby looked at me with a question in her eyes. Like she was trying to figure out why he was talking to me like that when he knew I had a boyfriend. But the thing was, he wasn’t being obnoxious. I wasn’t even entirely sure he was flirting. He was just being a good friend. One of the best friends I had, lately. I couldn’t even put my finger on when it was that I started thinking of him as one of my best friends, but I knew I did now.
“Abs, I’ve told you about Rob’s partner, Mason,” I said. “Mason, this is Abby. Disc jockey extraordinaire, fellow music director, and one of my best friends.”
“Nice to finally put a face with a voice, Abby,” Mason said with a smile as he shook her hand. “Rob and I usually catch the tail end of your show before River comes on. It’s usually as awesome as her show, but that song you played yesterday was horrible. Something about comparing a relationship to herpes or some shit?”
She laughed. “Apparently the Sugar Dolls are the next big thing. I don’t see it, but what do I know?”
He chuckled. “So, lunch? Or are you too wound up to eat?”
“We were actually just headed over to Pizza Time,” I told him.
“Great minds think alike,” he said with a smile. “Abby?”
“Actually, I’m going to leave you two alone,” Abby said as she finished checking a text. “I completely forgot about a meeting I have for a group project in fifteen minutes.”
“Okay,” I said, confused. Why would she have offered to go to lunch with me if she had a group project to do? “See you later?”
“Tomorrow,” she sighed. “And call me when you find out how your mom is.”
“I will,” I promised. “You’re still volunteering your camera and directing skills for the lip sync challenge video this weekend, right?”
“Hell yes,” she giggled. “I can’t wait.”
“I wish the same could be said for the other officers I wrangled into doing it,” Mason chuckled. “But it’ll be fun. Which is the point of it.”
“You might not say that when you hear what Grant has in store for you,” Abby teased. “See you tomorrow, River. Mason, see you Saturday.”
And then she left, and I turned back to my impromptu lunch date. I was still a little confused about how he knew where I’d be.
“So, were you stalking me or something? How’d you know where my class was?” I asked him.
He laughed. “No. Rob told me. That okay? Or is it too creepy?”
“No, it’s not creepy,” I chuckled as we started to walk towards St. George Street. “It’s sweet. I still haven’t heard from Mom or Rob to let me know what’s going on. It’s nerve-wracking.”
“I’m sure. But think positive. Them not calling you means there’s nothing out of the ordinary going on that you need to be worried about,” he said.
“You’re so sure about that?” I sighed.
“Yeah, beautiful. I’m sure. So let me buy you lunch and try to get your mind off of your mom for a little while.”
“Okay,” I conceded. “God, this is going to be a long week.”
“It’s every day this week and then Monday next week, right?” he asked.
“Yep,” I muttered. “I guess it’s twice a day, six hours apart. There’s a balloon catheter type thing that they put in that stays there until it’s done. They might end up doing another round before she does chemo if this round doesn’t work well enough.”
He stopped walking and pulled me into a hug. Right there in the middle of the sidewalk. But I couldn’t have backed away if my life depended on it. Damn, did he give amazing hugs. Here in his arms, for the first time in a while, I felt safe. I felt protected. And I knew that, unlike a certain other guy who would remain nameless, he actually gave a shit about how I was taking this today.
“You’ll make it through this,” he told me. “I know it sucks royally, but you’ll make it through this.”
“How is it that you care more than my boyfriend does about how I’m taking all of this?” I sniffled, unable to hold back my tears.
“What do you mean?”
“I mean that Patrick got pissed at me for having the audacity to touch his phone when we went to Jacksonville this weekend. And he knows what’s happening today and he hasn’t done so much as send me a text to say hi. It’s like our stupid argument is more important to him than my mom’s health,” I told him. “If it was me, no matter what I was mad at him about, it wouldn’t matter if he was going through something like this.”
Mason didn’t say anything. Not at first. He just pulled me off to the side and leaned against the building, not once letting go of me. I got the feeling that this was one of those hugs that he’d let last as long as I needed it to.
“Do you really want to hear my answer to that?” he asked quietly after a minute.
“Maybe, maybe not. But maybe I need to,” I sighed.
“Patrick doesn’t deserve the fucking time of day from you. He’s an immature jackass if he can’t get over himself and realize that what you’re going through right now is more important than him being pissed at you over something as stupid and trivial as his cell phone. He’s been treating you like shit for weeks, and I hate it,” he said. “You could do so much better, River.”
I smiled. He thought the world of me. I could tell. But he also didn’t know Patrick very well. He didn’t get our relationship. Not really.
“I only vent to you when he pisses me off, though,” I said. “I don’t tell you when he’s sweet or romantic or does stuff just to make me smile.”
“When was the last time he did?” he asked.
“Um…” I trailed off, trying to think of the last time he’d done something romantic or sweet for me. I couldn’t really say this past weekend, because it had turned into a shit storm. And I couldn’t even say Thursday afternoon, because having sex in the back of his car, no matter how great the sex had been, wasn’t really sweet or romantic.
“Okay, beautiful, if you don’t know the answer to that question, then it’s been too long,” he chuckled tensely. “It’s not my place to tell you what to do, but you said maybe you needed to hear what I had to say about him. That’s what I have to say.”
I nodded. “Maybe I did need to hear it.”
“Still want that pizza? Or do you want to be mad at me now?” he asked.
“Why would I be mad at you?” I wondered as I pulled away from the hug to look at him.
“Because I just trashed your boyfriend,” he said. “And because you’re stressed out right now and if you need to be mad at me to release that stress, you can be. It’s okay. I can take it and I’ll still be here when you need me.”