“The day we first met, you said, ‘Before we begin’. Well, that was the beginning…it was the beginning of us.”After a disastrous end to a far less than perfect relationship, twenty-four year old, Samantha Kennedy has traveled the path of promiscuity in order to strive for affirmation of her desirability. Unknown to her, Samantha’s beliefs of the world of men, is about to chart a new course when she begins a new position at reputable law-firm, Wentworth and Associates, and sets her eyes on her boss, San Francisco’s tall, dark and handsome, renowned lawyer, Hayden Wentworth.After suffering the aftermath of his first love and having his heartbroken, thirty-one year old, Hayden Wentworth has lived the past year in black and white. Haunted by demons as a result of the torment he has endured, Hayden’s bleak world is about to be revived by his attractive new secretary, and sexual predator, Samantha Kennedy.Emotions that the pair long ago abandoned to save themselves any further heartache are unearthed, but should love ever be considered as a game of Russian roulette?If they are to come together, Samantha and Hayden must relive their pasts in order to bury them for once and for all.But what happens when you fall deeply and desperately in love with someone who has the traits of the one person who you strive every day to hate and resent?Sometimes indulging in your impulses is a way to stray from your fears.Sometimes, it is the only way to face them.
Even absent sight, the glare which bounds from my window and ricochets around my room causes me to screw my eyes shut farther, in an attempt to cling onto the vivid images that sleep delivers. But my effort is unavailing; the illusory world that I sink to fades and morphs into reality. Surrendering to wakefulness, I stretch my body, my muscles sigh indulgently as I straighten.
Reaching out, I search blindly for the protective, strong and gorgeous man that for most of the night lay spooning me and fingered through my hair until I drifted peacefully. Alas, I am greeted with cold and ruffled sheets beneath my wandering, caressing fingers.
I am startled by his unexpected absence.
Instantly assembling the covers around my body, I perch myself up in the empty bed. Fighting my way through the somnolent daze, I scan the room. My chaise-longue lay bare of Hayden’s neatly folded clothing. Where is he? What has happened? Did I dream that he stayed with me the night? Did I dream that he said he would never go anywhere?
Pushing my disheveled tresses back, I peek at my alarm clock, 2:45 p.m. I have slept most of the day away. A new sense of disorientation surmounts a minimal amount of panic that obscures my reasoning. I fling the comforter off my body and heave myself out of my pit. I throw on my sweats and black camisole before I leave the empty room.
“Good morning, Sammy. Finally decided to emerge?” Jessie calls impishly from the living room while I stagger through the dining area.
The only word that I can manage to verbalize through my unsettled haze is, “Coffee.”
“It’s in the pot,” she answers from the comfort of the sofa.
I round the pillar to the kitchen and pour myself a full mug of much needed caffeine. Briskly making my way back around the bar, I slip onto my stool.
“I take it everything went well last night?” She hauls herself from the couch and strides to the unoccupied seat next to me. She straightens out her overly large, black, boyfriend sweater that hangs off her left shoulder exposing her red bra strap. Her hair is braided in childish pigtails with identical tendrils on each side of her face hanging free.
“We now have no secrets that could be detrimental to our future if that is what you mean, Jess,” I mutter, stilling my mug in mid-air before taking a sip. “Where is he?” The notion of him being too much of a caring person that he couldn't find the strength to leave me while I was staring at him in the eye fills me with dread.
With an ache in my chest and the inability to catch a decent breath, mixed with the fear that maybe last night was the last night together, sends me into anxiety overdrive. My head starts throbbing, my ears ringing and the room spins on its axis as G-Force holds me fixed, paralyzed to my seat. I watch the events around me unfold but powerless to fight through it.
“Hey, sweetie, you look like you just seen a ghost. Are you okay?” Jessie brushes my matted hair back from my face.
“He’s left me, hasn't he, Jess? He couldn't do it when I was awake, so he waited until I was sleeping.” A sharp stabbing pain hits like a bolt out of the blue against my right temple as tears begin to gather.
“Sweetie, you have been summoning tears like a noble woman summons her servants, over the last day and a half.” Withdrawing her hand from my rats-tails, she presses against the top of my knee and squeezes with a reassuring influence. “No, he hasn't left you, but he did ask me to give you this.” She leans to the side and removes a folded piece of paper from the back pocket of her skinny jeans and hands it to me.
I stare at the paper between my fingers then back at Jessie. Her bright, emerald eyes are brimming with love and diligence as she cocks her head and smirks at me.
“It’s a goodbye letter. I know it is, Jess.” I verbalize my insecurities, shaking my head in denial, pleading to the cosmos that I may be mistaken, and that my trepidation and negativity is misguiding my judgement of Hayden’s abilities to be so callous.
“Stop thinking the worst of everything, and just read it, Sammy.”
I concentrate on the lined parchment in my grasp. With great hesitancy, I unfold it once. Peeking up into her warm expressive, green eyes, her sculpted pink lips and high-rise cheekbones, she inches forward on the stool. “I’ll be in the shower if you need me okay, Sammy.” And with a tender caress of my shoulder in and offering of comfort, she smiles her secretive smile and leaves me alone with my letter.
It rustles as I finish unfolding its contents. In Hayden’s neat, italic script, I begin to read:
From the first time I laid my eyes on you, I felt something in me shift and unfurl––awaken even. The words you spoke that day haunted my mind, it gave rise to a lost expectation I never imagined I could have recaptured. You said, “Before we begin.”
Well, Samantha, that was the beginning…it was the beginning of us, and you have consumed my every waking and sleeping thought since that day.
I recall the elation that I felt secretly exploding within me the first time you placed your soft lips upon mine. It was then that I knew that there was something different about you; you brought color into my dark, abysmal life, you made me feel hope. You unknowingly helped me rediscover feelings and abilities that I was convinced was lost forever in an abyss that was slowly singing out to me like a siren’s song––to become a part of and to lose myself to entirely.
Well, beautiful, I have lost myself to the siren’s song…I have lost myself to you.
Every passing moment that I’m with you, I feel I can achieve anything, can do impossible things just for you, because you are my strength. You have done more than just give me your time and affection, you have ignited the furnace within me, showed me that I can make someone happy and make them feel special without the menial, stereotypical things that some desire…and that I am not a weakened man.
Your faith in me, unlocks the door to my self-loathing and I am gradually freeing myself from the cursed voices that condemn me to acknowledge the derisive sentiments they torture me with everyday.
My furnace burns for you…I burn for only you, Samantha Kennedy.
You are the light at the end of my tunnel. You are the air I need to breathe.
I worship the ground you walk on; for you are a Goddess…you are my Queen.
Forever yours, Hayden xxx