Meet Lea & Austin in this amazing love story!
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Lea Lamb and Austin Wolf were young when they fell in love. They never imagined the future could hold anything other than together-forever.
When Lea’s father dies in a tragic fishing accident, she's crushed under the weight of her grief and catches a glimpse of another type of future, one she knows she's not strong enough to face.
Austin is angry. For the past fifteen years, he's believed the woman he loved with every ounce of his soul left him without so much as a backwards glance.
When Lea unexpectedly returns to their hometown, all the years of heartache inside Austin bubbles to the surface and presents itself as blinding rage.
Faced with the truth about the past, a newly discovered secret, these former lovers will learn that if they want to have any chance at the future they’d given up on all those years ago, they will have to rescue one another from drowning in pain so debilitating it will leave them both fighting to breathe.
“CAN WE STOP by the liquor store on the way to dinner?” Mom asks from the passenger seat of my car.
“Should you be drinking?” I frown then turn onto the main road—well, really the only road in town.
“What’s it going to do, kill me?” she jokes, making me inhale a sharp breath. “Honey,” she says quietly, and I look at her briefly, wondering how the hell she can be so casual about this. “I’m dying. When it will happen, only the good Lord knows, but it is happening, and there is nothing you or I can do about it. I have made my peace with it, and I want you to do the same.” She reaches over to pat my thigh.
“Make peace with it?” I repeat, shaking my head in disbelief.
“Yes, make peace with it. If you think about it, I’m lucky. I know I’m going to die. I know that sooner rather than later God is going to come take me home, and when he does, I will be ready. I will have had a chance to say goodbye to the people I care about and right any wrongs I’ve caused. I’m lucky, honey.”
“What about me?” I wring my hands on the steering wheel, feeling my chest get tight as I fight back tears.
“I love you, honey. I loved you before you were even a sparkle in my eye, and I will always be with you. I know this isn’t easy for you. I know there are going to be a lot of tears shed, but we’re lucky, honey.”
I press my lips together to keep from saying something I might regret. I’m not lucky; in fact, I’m unlucky to the tenth power. How many people have I lost, how many people do I have to loose before it’s enough.
“Oh look! Sheryl!” She yells, pulling me from my thoughts as she reaches over, pressing the horn on my steering wheel while her other hand shoots across me so she can wave out my window. Looking to where she’s waving my heart begins to beat wildly
against my ribcage when I see not Sheryl, but Austin walking into one of the many bars that litter Main Street, only it’s not just Austin—it’s him and a woman with her arm wrapped around the back of his waist as he holds the door open for her.
Even from the distance separating us, my lungs compress at the beauty that is him. The years have been good to him. His hair is still shaggy, only now a little lighter; his face is tan and covered in a beard that makes his crystal blue eyes stand out even more. My eyes travel from his face to his torso, which is covered in a dark green thermal that shows off the muscles of his arms, chest, and tapered waist, then down to his denim-covered thighs. When my gaze sweeps back up, his eyes are on me, and I see them crinkle in confusion then realization that soon turns into anger.
“You missed the liquor store,” my mom complains as I speed up.
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