Saturday, February 20, 2016

#Spotlight: Debt by Rachel Dunning

by Rachel Dunning 
Expected publication: March 30th 2016
The Debt Collector

I pay my debts, and I expect others to.

I was raised in the slums of London, I knew nothing of privilege. My father was murdered when I was seventeen. Morty figured my father's passing meant I would automatically take on dad's debts. I refused.

And I paid for that refusal.

So did my sister.

So now I fight. All I know how to do is fight. The best cash is in the states, so that's where I am now. A big fish called Vito came along offering me a "favor" when I arrived.

Another debt.

I paid for that one too.

I knew Kyla Hensley would be trouble when I met her. But I wanted her. I could see through the falsehood of her wannabe-slutty clothes and her sexy legs. So I chased her.

Besides, trouble is my middle name.

Kyla Hensley

I was brought up in privilege, but I lacked everything else. My father is a business tycoon who buys and sells and doesn't care who gets rolled over in the process.

I never knew my mother, and all I have of her is a photo with a note scrawled on the back in French saying "I'm sorry." The only Female Figure I had growing up is my dad's wife who is a bleach blond with seven boob jobs. We never bonded.

I drink. I party. I meet guys.

But I wasn't always like that.

I've had a string of lovers in the last few years, the worst and most recent of which was Vince Somerset. My best friend Vera was dating a guy called Rory Cansoom who is the opposite of Vince in so many ways, and yet so the same.

She and I hit the road for the summer, getting away from the two college psychos and just trying to have some fun.

But there's a funny thing about trouble, the more you run from it, the more it finds you.

Which is when I met the Debt Collector.

It was only supposed to be sex. He made that clear. I made that clear.

That's all it was supposed to be.

I never expected to fall in love. I never expected to fall so deeply, madly, uncomfortably in love with a man who is wrong, so wrong for me.

And unbelievably right.

Exclusive Excerpt:

It’s in the third round that I see her.
Up to that point, things had been going well. The fight had been evenly matched. It could go either way, but I was close to winning it. Kaiser has built up tremendous resilience, and the fucker is hard to get down and keep down. But I was wearing him down. 
I had him in a necklock, my leg slamming up against his ribs, trying to crack them. But all his muscle made it difficult. He was tired, and I was using that to my advantage. His neck squirmed and writhed as he tried to ease himself from my grip, but I was relentless. He wouldn’t get out of it. This was going to be it. One more hit, and he’d be down.
And then there she was. Goddamnit...
I had seen flashes of her outside the cage throughout the fight, but I couldn’t tell if it was really her. And, really, what the fuck does it matter? I’m in a goddamn cage where a dude can break my neck if I’m not alert. 
But my eyes kept darting toward her, idiotically, like a fool. 
And still, I wasn’t sure.
Until now—now, with Kaiser’s threat minimized, standing near the edge, the glare of lights softened...there she is. Damn it... I’d recognize that hair anywhere, that strawberry-shaped face. It distracted me for a second. One second would have been OK. But then I saw the hand on her leg, his hand, the guy in the baseball cap and the parka, sliding up, sliding way up...and I saw her push the hand away, and the man’s hand stayed there. She fought it off again, and he kept it there.
I lost focus.
My grip loosened just a fraction from Kaiser’s neck.
It was a fraction too much.
The blow which hit me was a freight train. 
There was a moment when I thought I had reached Nirvana. The cage spun around me, sounds went hazy, my vision blurred. 
It felt like I was in a dream. I knew I had been hit, but I didn’t realize I was in the cage anymore. It felt like a mountain had tumbled onto me. I was somewhere else, at home, in London, and the guy in front of me was Morty. 
And then the pain began, even before I hit the canvas. 
I don’t remember going down. I don’t remember hitting the floor. 
But I remember waking up. I remember a headache like a meteorite hit me. I remember people standing above me. Someone counting. Three fingers in front of my face. Or is it two...?
And here she is, above me, inside the cage, slapping my face, eyes so goddamn blue I could freaking drown in them. She’s screaming at me, but I hear nothing, nothing at all. Wake up. Is that what she’s saying? Her hair’s a mess. Fuck me, it looks like she and I have just tumbled in the hay. Is that what she looks like after sex? Slapping my face, slapping...
A tremendous feeling of warmth swallows me...
I remember...
When I wake up, I’m in a hospital.
And she’s here.

About Rachel
Rachel Dunning
Rachel Dunning hit the scene in August 2013 and is the author of the highly praised Naive Mistakes Series, Truthful Lies Trilogy, Johnny Series and the paranormal romance series, Mind Games.

A prolific writer, she sticks to stories where Alpha Males aren’t pricks and where women have guts.

She’s lived on two different continents, speaks three different languages, and met the love of her life on the internet. In other words, romance is in her blood.

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