Finding the Cure by Cassandra Giovanni

Finding the Cure by Cassandra Giovanni Publication Date: June 18, 2015 Genres: Contemporary, New Adult, Romance
Ellie Abela’s life has been anything but easy. Tragedy follows her where ever she goes, and she’s been a lot of places. At twenty she’s lived in over ten different states, all because of her dad’s career in medical research. His career is just another list of the causes of tragedies in El’s life. He’s dying, and with every breath he takes closer to Heaven, Ellie dies a little bit inside too.
At twelve she lost her mom in a drunk driving accident, and in a matter of months she fears she’ll lose the last person she has in the world to cancer. While Ellie’s life has been rife with sadness, Trent Wentworth’s has been a challenge. A drug-addicted mom and a dead-beat dad meant at twenty three he was the adoptive father of his two year old sister. Now at twenty five he’s working his way up the corporate ladder and a struggling single parent. Each is searching for a cure to the things in their lives dragging them down. Not all cures are black and white; not all cures save us–and sometimes saving isn’t what we need. Sometimes we just need to realize how lucky we are to be alive, at least for this moment
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About Cassandra Giovanni

Cassandra Giovanni
Cassandra doesn’t remember a time when she wasn’t writing. In fact, the first time she was published was when she was seven years old and won a contest to be published in an American Girl Doll novel. Since then Cassandra has written more novels than she can count and put just as many in the circular bin. Her personal goal with her writing is to show the reader the character’s stories through their dialogue and actions instead of just telling the reader what is happening. Besides being a writer, Cassandra is a professional photographer known for her automotive, nature and architectural shots. She is happily married to the man of her dreams and they live in the rolling hills of New England their dogs, Bubski and Kanga. Cassandra Giovanni is published by Show n’ot Tell Publishing based out of Connecticut, USA.
I slipped into class late, and Morgan narrowed her eyes at me. I signaled for her to keep quiet as I took a seat behind her. I tried to concentrate on the class, but my mind kept wandering to Trent and how he was doing at work. My phone buzzed in my pocket, and I pulled it out beneath the desk.
Missed Call - Dad 9:00AM
I swallowed, my hair forming a curtain so the professor couldn't see what I was doing. I must have missed his call while I was driving over. My blood pounded through my ears. He knew my schedule. I flicked my finger across the screen as another missed call showed.
Missed Call - Hospital 10:10 AM
The hospital called.
The phone shook in my hand.
The hospital called.
My body numbed  as I stood, my books falling to the floor. Morgan's eyes met mine.
I shook my head as my vision blurred, my chest heaving.
The hospital.
I thought we were past this--past me having to keep my phone ringer on.
"El!" Morgan called at my back as I grabbed my bag off the floor. It was caught on the desk.
"God damn it!" I swore as I yanked at it.
The tears were streaming down my face as my chest hammered so hard it made it impossible to breathe.
Was I breathing?
"Ellie!" Morgan grabbed my shaking hands, lifting the desk so the bag pulled free. "What's wrong?"
Every fucking thing.
I shook my head rapidly as I turned, rushing out the door and running to my car. I paused at it, my chest rising rapidly as my fingers shook over the screen of my cell phone.
Call. Hospital.
"Paul Abela," I whispered. "I don't know what room."
"One moment," the operator said.
I slipped into the car, putting my head against the steering wheel as my whole body trembled.
"Hey, princess," Dad's voice came over the line, and I thought I might faint.
"Daddy?" I gasped, choking on the name.
He could speak.
He's speaking.
"Can you skip class today? I need you to come to the hospital and speak with the doctor and I," he said and his voice was flat, devoid of emotion.
I knew he was holding something back. Something he wanted to tell me this morning.
"Yes," I choked.
"El--don't drive like an asshole. Nothing is going to change no matter how fast you drive," he said.
I grit my teeth. "Yes."

Excerpt 2
The guardrails were just silver blurs as I hammered the gas.
Too fast.
I'm going too fast.
This ticket would be one that cleared out the savings account. Worse than the first one. The one where I knew there was no cure for Dad, or for me.
That seemed so long ago.
Between now and then I had developed hope.
Hope that was shattered in a moment's time, with some medical term I had no understanding of.
I grit my teeth.
I just didn't give a fuck.
Tingles sped up my spine as the engine whined at me, telling me to slow down. To stop acting stupid. The tingles spread across my cheeks, and the small metal cross cupped in the indent between my collarbone burned.
I wanted to believe.
A part of me needed to.
But at that moment all I could feel was anger fueled by pain. The heat from the cross spread across my body and I gripped it, the edges cutting into my flesh as I yanked it off, throwing it as I screamed. The scream hollowed out as the rain catapulted down, unexpected, in true monsoon fashion.
I couldn't tell if the rain was blinding me, or if it was the bitter tears slipping into my gasping mouth.
I wanted to believe.
My eyes settled on the dashboard as the dial slowed, my foot easing from the petal as I stared at the silver cross.
But how could I?
I kept driving; driving towards the edge of the Earth.
There was an edge, and I felt my soul plummeting off of it.

I walked over to the door leading to his room and pushed it open. I wanted a distraction. I didn't want to think about it. I heard Trent follow me, and I walked over to the guitars hung on the wall. I ran my fingers over the strings. I knew Trent was leaning against the door frame, watching me carefully.
"My dad used to play drums before he got sick," I explained. "I used to want to learn how to play guitar...then we could have our own band."
Trent walked forward, going to sit on his bed, and I turned to face him.
"He's a scientist. He's been trying to find the cure for different types of cancer for as long as I can remember...and I don't mean little labs somewhere. Government labs...and all those tests...and chemicals--and whatever the fuck," I replied, stopping as my body trembled. "He was handling--that's what gave him it...the cancer. He was trying to find a cure," my neck pushed forward as I fought back the tears. "And he...he basically killed himself."
"There's no cure?" Trent whispered.
I looked at the ceiling, dimly lit by the bedside lamp. "If there was, he would've found it."
Trent stood and his face came into my vision as he looked down at me. He ran his hand up my back until it reached my head, tipping it back to a normal position. He put his forehead against mine, his hand cupping my cheek as his other stayed on my lower back.
"Not all cures are black and white--not all cures save us," Trent whispered, and I felt my eyelashes heavy with tears.
"I'm dying too--every time I look at him and know that every breath he takes is closer to his last one." I didn't bother wiping away the silent tears now making their way down my face.
"It's always been that way, El. We're all going to die someday," He crushed his eyes shut, shaking his head. "That sounded harsh. I didn't--"
"You're right."
He opened his eyes, his chest rising with the deep inhale he took. "I do get it. I used to come home and wonder if I was going to find my mom dead." His eyes drifted before coming back to mine. "But every time I didn't--every time I came home and she was fine--I was thankful for it, even more so if she was straight."
I laid my head on his chest, and his hands stayed on my lower back, his own head lowering into the crook of my shoulder. We stayed like that for a moment as my heart beat evened out, my eyes drifted to his bed and the rate picked up again. My chest tightened as I stared at the neat brown and tan checkered comforter, and then my eyes drifted to the time.
1:30 PM.
My eyes suddenly felt heavy, and my mouth formed a yawn.
Trent looked down at me, and his own eyes were heavy. "Tired?" he asked.
"Yeah, and I don't feel like driving home." I ignored the whooshing of blood through my ears as my face heated.
"I can take the couch," Trent explained as he pulled away and pointed his thumb over his shoulder before going to his dresser and pulling out a pair of pajama bottoms and a plain black tee. "They might be big, but it should be more comfortable for you."
I took them from him, my hand touching his and causing tingles to run up my spine. "You know, I don't mind if...if you don't take the couch."
Trent's eyebrow twitched as he looked at me, and I laughed.
"Come on, we're both adults, and I'm sure you can keep your hands off of me if I'm hidden under all this," I replied, holding up the clothing that undoubtedly would be baggy on me.
"Are you sure?" he asked, pulling his own pair of pajama pants out of the drawer.
"Positive, now turn the other way so I can get undressed," I ordered, using my pointer finger to signal a circle.
He put his hands up. "Of course, but I think you'll be the one peeking."
I rolled my eyes as I turned, pulling my shirt off and replacing it with his. I paused as I heard the zipper of his pants go down. I pursed my lips as I gazed straight ahead as I unzipped mine and pulled them off. I cursed as I struggled to pull the tight bottom off. "Skinny jeans."
"You okay?" Trent asked, his voice deep with amusement.
"Oh, shut up! If you had to wear jeans this tight you'd understand."
I turned and flopped on his bed, putting my arms behind my head as I stared at his bare back. Between his shoulder blades was another tattoo, this one of a bird flying through the sun.
"You didn't tell me about that one," I commented, and he turned, putting his hands up.
"I didn't know you wanted to know where all of them where," he replied, smirking down at me as my jaw dropped.
There was another tattoo on the cap of his shoulder, this one a Japanese lotus in bright orange and pink. My eyes wondered to his chest, which was covered in a thin layer of hair I hadn't expected. He scratched it, his neck turning red up to his ears.
"Sorry about the hairy chest. I can put a shirt on if it bothers you," he said.
I sat up, pulling my knees to my chest as my eyes wandered again. I shook my head, putting my eyes back where they belonged, on his face. "If you have to put a shirt on it won't be because of your hairy chest."
His eyebrows twitched as he laughed. "You like it then?"
I tapped my hands on my knees as my eyes dropped to his slightly sculpted chest, down to his flat stomach and his hip bones. I lay back, pulling the pillow over my face. "Why couldn't you put on a burlap sack?" I muttered into it.
I felt Trent's body indent the bed next to me, and he lifted up the edge of the pillow, blinking at me.
"What was that?" he asked.
I rolled my eyes smacking him with the pillow before putting it back under my head and turning my back to him. Trent reached over me, flicking off the light switch, and wrapping his arm around me. I snuggled into him and closed my eyes.

You Tube Play list:
Lights – Toes
Our Last Night – The Heart Wants What the Heart Wants
Our Last Night – Stay
Our Last Night – Dark Horse
Hands like Houses – I Am
Fit for a King – Descendants (Full Album)
Maroon 5 – Sugar
For Today – Break the Cycle (Featuring Matty Mullins)
Legend – Four Horseman
Breathe Carolina – Sellouts (Featuring Danny Worsnop)
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