Wednesday, April 1, 2009
Tormented Soul Excerpt
Erick McAlister is known as London’s Most Dangerous Bachelor; he enjoys scotch,women, and spending time in the London underground club, The Skunk’s Den.He’s never had a real relationship; women only want him for one thing- he desires more.
When the one he vowed he would never toy with, Lynn Westmore, gives him an unexpected proposition, his life takes an enjoyable turn. Just as he is beginning to find happiness, tabloids headline him, a woman from his past announces she’s expecting his child, someone is trying to kill him, and he finds himself questioning his relationship with the young courier he’s hired to teach him to ride his new motorcycle. Even though his life is in torment, he begins to believe in love, something he never thought he’d feel.
Unfortunately, Lynn doesn’t think Erick could ever be faithful to one woman, let alone be in love with her, so when she finds herself in love with him she runs. Erick falls into a spiral of depression, and it takes his brother and closest friends to bring him to his senses.
When he finds out a magazine has rated him as the World’s Most Dangerous Bachelor, he agrees to do the interview only if Lynn is the photographer and he uses the opportunity to let Lynn know
how he feels; he offers his heart to her one more time...
Erick stretched out his legs as Penny rushed up the stairs. He found himself becoming very attached to his four-legged friend: it was easy to care for her and even worry about her. After he hired a dog walker to take her out around lunchtime for a stroll, he had a peace of mind.
The phone rang and he raced up the steps.
“McAlister,” he answered.
“A large crate arrived for you today,” Andrew’s voice came through the line. “Would you care to elaborate what is going on?”
“Do you know what it is?” Erick puffed.
“Bloody hell, I do! Are you nuts?”
“Only as much as you are.”
“Go ahead and open it if you want.”
“What? And spoil your fun! Never! When are you coming to Sussex?”
“I’ll leave tomorrow. Can you send your driver to get me?”
“No problem. How do you intend to get this beast back to London?”
“I’ve hired a courier to teach me to ride. I’ll bring him with me.”
“A courier! Those creatures are lunatics who are more intended for motor sports rather than driving on the streets of London!”
“Oh, I think you’ll like Duncan. He reminds me of someone. You’ll see what I mean.”
“Argh!” Andrew groaned.
“You enjoy riding. You own a motorcycle.”
“I own a Harley. A piece of art. This is an engine with a saddle!” He paused. “You’re going to love it, mate.”
“Thanks.” Erick smiled. “We will see you tomorrow night.”
Erick relaxed and put his feet up in the Rolls Royce. Penny was curled next to him, dreaming what dogs do. He looked out the back window and saw Duncan following on his motorcycle. He had passed a note to the courier when he arrived in the morning. Life had become busy for Erick between business and the occasional dinner with Peter and Abby; he only saw Duncan at work and occasionally was joined by him on an evening jog with Penny.
They traveled past the gatehouse and up to the entrance of Hampton House. Penny jumped out with excitement when Andrew, Elizabeth and Lady greeted them. Duncan turned off his engine, took off his helmet and looked around as he slowly dismounted his bike. Erick took his sister and Andrew over to meet him.
“Duncan,” Erick called to him. “I’d like you to meet my sister, Elizabeth and her husband Andrew.”
Elizabeth drew her breath when Duncan looked at her.
“Pleased to meet you, Mrs. Somerby.” Duncan broke the spell and held out a hand to Andrew. “Mr. Somerby.”
“Please, call us by our first names,” Andrew said.
“You are really him.” Duncan couldn’t take his eyes off Andrew’s stripe. “You’re Puzzola!”
“Yes.” Andrew raised an eyebrow.
“Oh, wow!” Duncan stomped his booted foot and spun around with excitement. “I love your work. I could never afford your work, so I framed your publicity posters. Oh, man! I cannot believe I’m standing here with you. Wait until I tell my friends!”
Andrew and Erick looked at each other and laughed.
“I think I like this kid.” Andrew teased. “Say, do you want to take a look at your box or eat first?”
“You have to ask?” Erick took off with long strides to the garage.
Andrew had a crowbar with a bow tied on it waiting for Erick. Erick laughed, grabbed it and began to open the crate. Andrew stood behind Elizabeth with his arms wrapped around her watching Erick and his younger twin tear at the wood. The sides fell down to expose the sleek, black and chrome machine.
“Yes!” Erick caressed it as if it were a naked woman. “Beautiful, and all mine. What do you think, Andrew?”
“She’s a beauty all right.” He looked it all over with scrutiny. “She’s ready to go. I had my man from the local shop come over and service it. Then we nailed it back up. Why don’t you start the engine?”
Erick threw his leg over and sat in the saddle, then turned the key. He revved the engine and looked at everyone. Elizabeth was laughing at him, Andrew nodded his approval, and Duncan walked around checking out the features on the bike.
Give it a go!” yelled Duncan.