Growing up in an abusive, alcoholic home, Heather struggles for normalcy. She believes she has found it with her stepfather, only to discover he is not the man her mother, brother, and she had longed for. Trusting him completely, they are unaware of his involvement with the Greek syndicate. In an attempt to keep his new family safe, he makes a deal involving Heather being courted by Gregor, the son of his business partner and lifelong friend. The story revolves around Heather’s passionate and tumultuous relationship with Gregor, as she struggles with his affairs, drug addiction, and the reality of his family connections. Ultimately, Heather is placed in grave danger from Gregor’s family. Having run out of options to be safe, she must make a sacrifice that almost destroys her to protect herself and those she loves. She deals with her loneliness and remorse while remaining strong and capable, hoping that eventually she’d find peace and the happily-ever-after of her dreams. From the Chain O’Lakes in Illinois, to the Greek Isles, the north woods of Wisconsin, and Denver, Colorado, Heather must make peace with the enmity of her past and be in accord with the decisions she made made and with the people who wounded her.
EXCERPT: At one point, the car following them got close enough to shoot again and thankfully missed, though there was a metallic plink on the car. Gregor pushed the gas pedal to the floor and the car accelerated quickly. The other car was no match for the Stingray. They finally got to the long driveway entrance of Chantos’ Esperís with the pursuing car still behind them but not as close as when they first left Ambrose’s. They drove around the back of Chantos’ Esperís, tires squealing, and the stones opened up like elevator doors on the far south side of the building. As the car drove through the entry, the doors quickly closed behind them, and he pulled into a parking slot.
Gregor was breathing heavy, his hair and clothes soaked from sweating. “Are you okay, love?”
“No, Gregor, I am not okay! What the hell just happened here? Why on earth would you take me to a place like that? Count me out on the next one!” She was angry and scared, but then looked at her husband with compassion, “Are you okay?”
“No, Heather, I am not okay either. I did not expect it to turn out like this, and I am quite sure my father has no idea what is going on in the open at that club or he would not have sent me at all, especially with you. God, my heart is racing!”
Two men with guns in their holsters, earphones, and microphones of some type on their shoulders opened each door of the Stingray. “Boss man wants you, now!” A hulking black man, the height of Gregor, shouted at him. Another massive man, this one blonde and light-eyed, opened Heather’s door and motioned for her to get out. Gregor came around the car to take her hand and she stared at him, “What’s this, the fucking Bat Cave? Now what’s going on?” Gregor placed his finger over his mouth to signal “shh.” They walked through a door that Gregor had to punch several numbers into in order for it to unlock. “Don’t shush me! Are you really shushing me? I just got shot at and you are shushing at me! This is insane!”
“Heather, please, shut up! We’ll talk in a minute,” Gregor snapped. The two men were following them up a set of basement stairs to another locked steel door that Gregor pushed numbers into a pad to unlock again. They were in a vestibule that had three doors. Gregor knocked on one and Andreas opened it.
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