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Tuesday, January 23, 2024

Hidden Scars by A. Akinosho πŸ’• Book Tour and $10 Gift Card Giveaway πŸ’• (Forbidden Age-Gap Contemporary Romance)



He’s a beast to all …. but for her, he cages his beast.

Naseer
My days of being an alpha are long gone. I’d resigned myself to staying hidden forever.
Out of nowhere, she walks in. Surprising us both, I asked her to “
Sit with Me.” Three words that would change everything.
I would later realize that the universe had slowed me down, then gave me a second chance and that second chance came with Jade by my side. Like I told my dad, “
I would destroy a thousand men for Jade.
No one gets it. Jade is a need that I cannot do without.

Jade

Sit with Me,” he said. Little did I know those three words would be the beginning of us.
Subconsciously, I knew the word “
US” would only be temporary because I’m the girl from the other side, and they all consider me unworthy of him.
The beast is the one that makes my heart thump.
Unfortunately, the beast is 
forbidden.



I watch Jade running to James, and I can’t do anything about it. James stole that first kiss from me. I want to hate him and punch him for it, yet I can’t blame him. Nadra made that possible. She’s racing to him like it’s the norm and I can only watch from afar like a creepy stalker. I see the moment she walks into his arms, and he kisses her, openly claiming her in front of everyone.
If jealousy had a raging twin, that would be me right now watching James as he openly claims my woman and I’m the creepy older guy stalking them. I watch with a fist clenched as he possessively holds her, with no right or stance to punch him out. I was born with privilege and power in this country and most places in the world, yet I have no right or privilege to Jade.
Do you want me to do something,” Rilwan says.
No, that would make her dislike me. Right now, I’m on eggshells with her because of what Nadra did.”
What did Princess Nadra do to Ms. Bankole,” he asks. I can’t keep things from Rilwan. He’ll find out, anyway.
Nadra slapped Jade last night when she came into my room, calling me by my name without the title. I saw a look on Jade's face that I never want to see again.”
I saw Ms. Bankole when she came out of the bathroom yesterday. She looked like a goddess, breathtakingly beautiful.” My glaring eyes shot up to meet Rilwan’s in the mirror with a look that said don’t you dare look at her. He breaks the look. “That’s why I came to you asking if you were ready. I guess the action had already happened.”
Unfortunately, yes,” I answer, turning to watch Jade and James holding hands, walking on the beach.
She has talked so much about James, and I certainly didn’t realize James is half-black. Looking at them together. I subconsciously agree that they look good together. She’s hoping they end up in the same college. I’m hoping that doesn’t happen.
I continue to watch in disgust and anger as he tucks her hair behind her ears and laughs with her. This boy is pulling all the stops to steal my girl. No way am I going to let this happen. He may not know it, but he’s not the only contender for her heart and I play dirty.
Annoying Nadra put me in this position. James may have gotten the first kiss, but that’s all he’s going to get. I instructed one of my guys to watch James and Jade. They are to call me when they see them leaving the beach.
Rilwan and I head home. It’s painful to watch them together and have no right to pull her away from him. James needs to watch out.
After hours of no call from the guys, I’m restless. I headed to Jade’s house to wait for her.

  
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I've waited five years. She's not getting away from me again.

Jade:
Five years ago, I took the money, signed my love away and ran far far away as agreed. Now, I accepted the job that would be a game changer for my company and my team. Unfortunately, for me he’s a partner in the company that hired me.
We now work in the same office, which is too close for comfort and I must hide my secret from him. It gets harder everyday with every lie I tell. I’ve asked for a divorce, he laughed at me. My fiancΓ© is a perfect shield from him but for how long can my shield stand?
Naseer:
I’ve waited five years for her, now she has a fiancΓ© and children. That f...ing hurts
I know she’s hiding something from me, even as she perfectly weaves lies and truths daily. I intend to find out what she’s hiding and if she thinks there’ll be a third time of her getting away from me, she’s in for a rude awakening. She’s mine and I’m never letting go.


I explained what my team was going to bring to the table. I didn’t go into details on the how, but I did give some information. I stay focused on my work, which is my preferred position. I now know why my gut would not check.
He's here! How could this have happenedI did my homework. I crossed all the Ts and dotted all the I, just how’s it possible that he’s here? The one person I must avoid is here. Taimani assured me that he'd been out of Rhanaz for a while. Even if he returned to Rhanaz, he was going to be busy with the king. But he's here–how-the-hell did this happen? Focus, Jade. He's nothing to you, anymore. I took the money; I signed the NDA. Focus, Jade, focus.
"How long do you expect before the app is up and running," Josh asks, bringing my mind back to the present.
"Presently, we can't give an exact time, but we have begun work. Once we have it all mapped out, we’ll have a concrete timeline, please expect about a month for us to have the mapping,” I answer Josh, making effort to avoid the man next to him.
"Any other question for us," I ask, avoiding any glance at him. I nervously rub my engagement ring. I keep my eyes laser-focused on Josh.
"I have a question. How long is your contract?" I managed to take a deep breath, he just had to ask or say something to me. Doesn’t matter that I’m freaking out.
Six months, but we hope to be done sooner than six months," I respond, still looking at Josh.
Good, any other questions?” Josh asked the room and got no response.
We are adjourned,” says Ken. I swiftly pack up and move close to Orion.
"We need to get started ASAP.” He nods.
"Sure, I'll be in your office in a few." I brisked out of the meeting like a rocket is up my ass without a word to Lucy. As soon as I’m in my office, I lock the door. I need a moment. I've breached the first portion of the contract; I exhaled the minute I drop my laptop. I will my mind to relax but it seems impossible that he's here. I fan my hands because they feel sweaty. My heart races like I was on a raging bull ride, and quite frankly I am about to face a raging bull. Luckily, I didn’t wear red. Relax, Jade. I take a deep breath, and I exhale.
I cannot be flustered in my professional element, though I heard him ask for an office. I need to handle this.
I'm a grown-ass woman,
I'm a mom and a leader of my team,
I’m a boss lady.
I can surely handle him. I exhale, inhale, exhale again. I know handling him is not possible, I can hype my mind as much as possible, and skyrocket my willpower. Mantra all day non-stop. Deep within me, I know that handling him is me wishing I had a wand to rewind my past, but even a magic wand can’t rewind him. He’s too much of a force, a constant, that cannot be erased. No matter how I slice, dice, chop, shake, rattle. He can’t be erased. I’m pacing in my office. My mind is spiraling. I feel the beads of sweat seeping through my blouse.
I'm still pacing when I hear the pounding on the door and the rattling of the door handle. My heart races like it's about to burst out of my chest. My feet feel like they are stuck in a block of concrete with each movement to the door. I let out a heavy sigh.
Time to face Grumpy’s evil twin. I open the door.
Naseer barges in wearing anger like a well-tailored bespoke suit. Lucy is right on his tail as he owns the room, looking dapper in his perfect-fit black suit, and a sage color shirt, the color I always thought made him look debonair.
My body reacts to his proximity, my female parts awakening from years of slumber; now is so not the time to wake up lady parts. Lie back and be a dessert lady again. I mentally chastise my body. Because now is the time to face the beast, not crave kisses from the beast.
We stare at each other; though scowling, his eyes still cocoon me. The air is equal part sizzling and stifling as we stare. I whiff his natural scent and the Pavlovian response is immediate. Be still, girl.

  
A. Akinosho lives in her own little nest in Illinois. An avid reader and enjoy reading thrillers, suspense and romance novels (partial to romance genre). When, She’s not reading or keeping up with life. She enjoys writing and creating twist to stories. She loves writing about diverse characters, friendship and overcoming challenges through, what is perceived as a weakness.


    

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