Mika Jolie

Need You Now

Book Two of the Martha’s Way Series

The best relationships usually begin unexpectedly.

Puerto-Rican, American Liliana Serrano has never been one to let others determine her future—certainly not her pack of three overprotective brothers. She always stands on her own, which is exactly how she entered her arrangement with Adam Aquilani. The hot formula one driver is aloof, detached, and not interested in relationships. Fresh off a broken engagement with a cheating fiancé, no-strings-attached sex was just what she needed.

Except one year later, she never expected their hook-ups to have consequences.

Haunted by his past, Adam Aquilani is a man who lives on the edge. The absence of commitment and emotional attachment in his year-long relationship with Lily was just what he needed. Until he discovers the rules have changed, and he must decide between letting her go, or giving her full access to his well-guarded life.

As the two take a journey of discovery, secrets are revealed which test the strength of their connection.

Can they accept what is? Let go of what was and accept what will be?

Read an Excerpt »

Heart in her throat, she watched Adam put away the bottle of liquor and walk to the edge of the bar where she stood. He took her hands in his and smiled. Lily could have died that instant and she wouldn’t have cared. Instead, her lips parted with an overwhelming need to be kissed by him.

He didn’t kiss her.

“I didn’t think you were going to come,” he said in a low voice.

“I said I would.” Okay, her voice shook just a bit, but overall she had to give herself brownie points for sounding relatively calm.

“Let’s go talk.” He placed a hand on her back and guided her past the shuffle board to the stairs that led to the lounge.

As usual the lounge was quieter, less crowded, with a smaller bar. With a nod, Adam acknowledged the pretty bartender she knew as Maxie. He led her to the opposite end of the room, away from everyone to an empty table.

“What’s on your mind?” he asked once they were sitting and facing each other.

She blinked. Loneliness, fear, the fact that she was about to walk away from the man she loved, all plagued her mind. He reached and grasped her hand, automatically their fingers entwined.

“You said things have changed.” His voice was low and raw.

She nodded.

A painful silence settled between them.

“What do you want from me? From us?”

She met his gaze briefly and then looked away. “You race cars.” The words were spoken so softly, so out of the blue. She turned her attention to Adam. He sat, watching her, waiting. “It scares me.” She gave him a small smile, as surprised by this revelation as his expression said he was. “It’s dangerous.”

In the dimly lit room, she saw something flicker in his eyes. Annoyance. Anger. She wasn’t sure.

“Life is dangerous,” he responded. “You either live it or let the unknown cripple you. I chose to live.”

“But you could die. Look what happened to Sean Edwards, Allan Simonsen.” She named a few race car drivers who’d died recently.

He leaned forward, his elbows on the table. “Everyone dies, Lily.” There was emptiness in his voice she’d never noticed before. As if he were numb. “I live for now.”

She shook her head. “I need more, Adam. I need stability and tame.”

He sat back. “Tame,” he repeated.

“You’re not tame,” she said sadly. “You can never be tamed.”

He brushed a hand over his jaw and let out a breath. “You want boring.”

Silence.

He pushed his chair back, came to his full height and extended his hand to her. Puzzled, she looked at him. “I’ll walk you out.”

With a slight lip press, she absorbed the unexpected shock of disappointment and lowered her head to keep it from reflecting on her face. What did she expect? For him to fight for them, or even worse, try to convince her to stay.

“I want you, Liliana,” Adam admitted, his voice very quiet. “When I touch you, I melt. When I think of you touching me, I lose myself.”

Life needed to go easy on her. It just wasn’t right for him to tell her things like that. To whisper it as if she were the love of his life while he was breaking her heart.

“But I don’t fit the mold of your ideal guy. I can never be that person.”

There was a hint of regret in his voice that pulled at her heart. Lily glanced at him, his expression clouded. When she didn’t place her hand in his, he dropped his extended hand to his side and waited for her to join him.

This is it, she thought and stood. The end. No more Adam. No more secret smiles or early morning phone calls. She walked ahead of him, heading for the exit. Her heart beat a slow ache in her chest. She stumbled, almost tripping down the stairs. She quickly reached for the wall to catch her balance but he was already by her side, strong arms around her waist. Their faces inches away.

“Don’t fall,” he whispered. His gaze on her mouth.

The warning came too late. She already had.

Then he was kissing her, deep and hard. Lily’s arms instantly moved to his neck. Warm, soft lips matched hers. Her body ached all over, her head spun, and she forgot all about why Adam wasn’t the one. When he pulled back, he lingered, clearly not wanting to stop. The band had arrived and was singing a great cover ofAin’t No Sunshine by Bill Withers. Dazed, she remained still.

He released her. With clenched jaw, he ran a hand through his hair. “I’ll see you around.” He walked past her and opened the door for her to leave.

Meet the Characters »

Adam Aquilani

Age: 31

Occupation: Formula One driver and Entrepreneur. Owner The Wharf Side, a trendy restaurant in Menemsha. Co-owner of Vapor with Jason Montgomery

Hobbies: Surfing, Paddle-boarding, Plane gliding…anything that involves speed.

Residence: Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts & Verona, Italy

Status: Single but not available

Author’s Muse: Beto Malfacini

Liliana (Lily) Serrano

Age: 28

Occupation: Elementary Teacher

Hobbies: Soccer, spending time with her family and friends.

Residence: Somerville, New Jersey

Status: Currently sleeping with Adam Aquilani

Author’s Muse: Frankie Sandford



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