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A second chance never tasted so sweet
He puts the Bad in bad boy.
She puts the Sweet in sweetheart.
When a hired gun burns out from the life he’s been living, he returns to the small country town where rumors run rampant and everyone goes to church on Sunday.
With sins and secrets trailing Jason Koster home, he is searching for redemption in hopes of living a life less complicated. He didn’t expect to find the only girl he ever loved now a recently single woman running her family farm.
Delilah Noelle never needed much, but she wanted Jason Koster—one time love of her life. When misunderstandings tear the former beauty queen and quarterback apart, can a second chance heal their broken hearts?
Will the years and circumstances that have passed be too much to bridge the distance to a future together?
Solace is a heartwarming small town romance with plenty of action and swoons that will have this hometown hero vying for the affections of his high school sweetheart.
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It’s pouring rain, but I don’t care. I can’t look away from my past.
God, she’s beautiful.
We shared so many shameless kisses. Our bodies covered in the slick love we’d made. Carefree hair blowing in the wind. A sunset captured on the back of a fishing boat.
Yeah, we were wild and in love back then with no cares in the world. But something I’ve learned is all good things must come to an end, whether by choice or circumstance. Nothing good can last.
And it didn’t.
A love so pure, so innocent in its faith—like ours—could never survive.
We were young.
We were naïve.
We were so damn in love.
And then apparently, we weren’t.
The motorcycle’s too loud to be considered stealth. A bike like this, even custom and almost costing as much as a small house, will never impress her.
How do I know that? Because I never impressed her.
Guess that’s why she left me.
Or did I leave her?
I know the truth, but sometimes I pretend the facts are fuzzy. Hazy facts or not, four years is a lot of time to pass without living with your other half—your better half.
She’d called us soul mates at one time. Maybe she was right, and it’s half my soul I’ve been living without all this time. I’m back in the same town I once hated, sitting in front of the same house I once visited regularly, not thinking clearly, much like a night I’d like to forget.
This time she’s standing on that front porch.
I don’t know what I was thinking coming back here. I don’t know what to think at all.
Maybe . . .
No. She’s not an option—she’s married. She’s off limits.
It didn’t stop him back then, but it should stop me now. But then wild memories fill my brain—holding her in my arms and making her promises I intended to keep.
So damn in love.
Rumor is he hits her.
Rumor is she visits my mom on occasion to reminisce.
Rumor is she misses me.
Rumors. Fucking rumors.
Looking at her on that front porch now, she’s still so damn beautiful. I see that same look in her eyes I remember from back then. It’s the one that brought me to my knees the first time I ever laid eyes on her.
I scrub my hands through my soaked hair and question everything I’m about to do. What am I doing here?
Her smile, her small wave . . . two things I’ve craved. Missed.
My choice is made.
I swing my leg off the bike and cut the engine to the black Harley to find out. I shove my hands into the pockets of my wet leather jacket and start walking across the lawn I’ve walked a million times.
I grab the railing that wobbles and is covered in chipped paint, prop one foot up on the bottom step, and stare at her.
Life brings many things that catch us, distract us, keep us. I’m not one easily caught, though. But the one thing I never seemed to be able to get uncaught in is Delilah Noelle.
It’s been too long since I’ve laid eyes on the beauty standing before me. “Hi.”
Her shoulders drop, the tension falling away as if she’s been waiting for this day, and it’s finally come. “What took you so long?”
New York is always an option. I hate Manhattan, but I could live in a borough. I could blend into city life and disappear among all the other ghosts donning black clothes that inhabit the area. I pass the exit, the city no longer a choice, and keep driving south.
I never felt like I belonged there anyway.
I’ve traveled this country from Maine to Los Angeles, Alaska to Key West. I stayed a few days in a motel outside of Atlanta. Swam in the gulf along the Mississippi coast. Drank whiskey in the freedom of Joshua Tree, and slept under a blanket of stars in Texas.
Yet, all roads seem to lead me here.
My jersey number still graces the beat-up old sign along the highway. The billboard is just before the exit that leads you to a one-traffic-light town with a pharmacy that still serves ice cream at the counter and Wilbur Macy still sits in a rocking chair at the corner of Main and First Street.
It’s the kind of place where you’ll find the whole town at the stadium on Friday night and then in church on Sunday morning, not leaving much time to sin. Although we always managed to squeeze a little in.
I laugh when I spot the sign I use to shoot my BB gun at while driving by: This is God’s country. Don’t drive through it like hell.
This time I actually slow down. Might be the first time. I don’t want the attention, much less Jeffrey Whaley, the town deputy, pulling me over. I’ve managed to avoid the law for some time now, so there’s no need to cause trouble in my hometown, especially when I’ve earned a few new scars and inked my skin. I know he’ll have a problem with a tattoo. He’ll judge me from that alone, but I also have a backpack full of memorabilia. I don’t want to explain, much less talk about where I’ve been the last three years.