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Book Excerpt

She rose from her chair to step away from the desk when she heard a crashing sound. Her heart hammered inside her chest as she froze, tension in every muscle of her body. What the hell was that?

After a moment of uncertainty, she took hesitant steps toward the hallway. The crash had come from the adjoining bedroom. It was dark inside and instinctively, she reached for the light switch. When she flipped it up, the light didn’t come on, but a buzzing noise could be heard from the center of the room and she saw a tiny spark light in the darkness. Her eyes adjusted to it as she shouldered into the space.

She scanned the room expertly. The window was open and the flimsy white curtain blew freely in the night breeze, creating an eerie vibe. She shivered. She hadn’t left the window open before settling in to work for the night. She remembered latching it and checking the lock for security. She started toward the window but nearly tripped over an object in the dark. Desiree crouched down and felt around the carpet with her fingertips. Her hands met a length of metal and she laughed hoarsely as she righted the lamp, which had somehow fallen. Her hands scraped the edge of a broken bulb.  It explained the noise she’d heard, but why was the window open?

She swallowed tightly and reached to latch it closed. As she began to put the curtain in place, though, a weird tingling swept through her body. Her movements stilled and her eyes widened. Down below on the street stood a dark figure silhouetted by a streetlamp, and he was staring up at her window, at her. Was it really a man? She couldn’t be sure. She couldn’t think straight either; she’d forgotten to breathe in those seconds. When the figure turned and headed down the street, Desiree breathed a long sigh of relief. What was happening? Who was that man? Was she being stalked? She closed her eyes. Had he been in her house?

She shook her head. There was no way he could have gotten in from a second-story window unless he’d climbed. That was a lot of trouble to go to, and didn’t most burglars wait until the occupant left the house to rob it? No, it had to have been a coincidence. Maybe she had left the window open and just didn’t remember.

There was something unsettling about the man in the street, though. A weird sensation that he was dangerous, yet somehow appealing, swept through her.

Author Bio

Bestselling author of UPON YOUR RETURN and 19 other books. 2014 BTS Red Carpet Review Nominee. Finalist and Runner-up in the MARSocial's Author of the Year Competition. Honorable mention in the January 2014 Reader's Choice Award. Liebster Blogger Award for 2013 and 2014. Top 50 Authors on Winner of the Great One Liners Contest on the Directory of Published Authors.

Marie Lavender lives in the Midwest with her family and three cats. She has been writing for over twenty years. She has more works in progress than she can count on two hands. Marie has published twenty books in the genres of historical romance, contemporary romance, romantic suspense, paranormal romance/fantasy, mystery/thriller, literary fiction and poetry. Lavender just released Second Nature, a paranormal romance/urban fantasy, in December of 2014. She released Magick & Moonlight, a romantic fantasy, back in March of 2014.Upon Your Honor, released in late April of 2014, is her second historical romance. Her current series are The Heiresses in Love Series, The Magick Series and The Blood at First Sight Series. Feel free to visit her website at for further information about her books and her life. Marie is also on Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and LinkedIn.

A list of her books and pen names are as follows:

Marie Lavender: Upon Your ReturnMagick & MoonlightUpon Your HonorSecond Nature

Erica Sutherhome: Hard to GetMemoriesA Hint of ScandalWithout YouStrange HeatTerror in the NightHauntedPursuitPerfect GameA Touch of DawnRansom; Leather and Lace

Kathryn Layne: A Misplaced Life

Heather Crouse: Express CafĂ© and Other RamblingsRamblings, Musings and Other ThingsSoulful Ramblings and Other Worldly Things

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