unDefeated by USA Today Bestselling author J.C. Valentine
unDefeated by J.C. Valentine Wayward Fighters #3 Publication Date: May 26, 2015 Also in this series: Wayward Fighters: Books 1 & 2 Genres: Contemporary, Romance
Synopsis:Spencer Bradley ruins everything he touches. Addicted to gambling, he’s lied, cheated, and stolen to get what he wants. Now, in order to protect those he cares for, he’s keeping his distance. Rehab’s taught him a lot, but when his time runs out and he finds himself with nowhere to turn, he seeks help from the one person he’s capable of destroying. Olivia Carter fell in love the day she met Spencer Bradley. Despite him being responsible for the downfall of his best friend’s career and landing himself in rehab, she can’t bring herself to stay away—even if it means risking her own recovery. *Note* While this book is a part of the Wayward Fighters series, unDefeated can be read as a standalone.
Also in the Wayward Fighters Series
Knockout by J.C. Valentine Wayward Fighters #1 Publication Date: April 6, 2014 Genres: Contemporary, Romance FREE: Amazon - Nook - Kobo - iBooksSynopsis: From the wrong side of the tracks... Alyson Blake had learned early on that the only one she could depend on was herself. The only light in her life was a boy whom everyone agreed was destined for prison; but with his first kiss, he had set her soul on fire. Since the day the police dragged him away in handcuffs, she had managed to lead a quiet life, but when she attends an event fraught with mayhem, trouble resurfaces. The one person she can’t forget... Jamison Weston is the kind of guy dads load their shotguns for; endowed with a hot temper and a rap sheet as long as both tattooed arms. Known as “The Judge,” Jami’s hot temper, lethal fists, and cocky attitude have earned him respect and admiration both in and out of the ring. But just when he thinks he’s pummeled his past to death, Alyson Blake reenters his life. Two paths collide… After years of separation, Alyson is eager to reexplore the man who’s never left her thoughts, but for Jamison, she’s both the distraction he wants, but doesn’t need. As the two embark on a relationship that neither of them expected or bargained for, an outside threat closes in. When Alyson crosses the line of professionalism and takes her work home with her, her life is put in danger, leaving Jamison with no choice but to once again step in and become her protector.
Tapout by J.C. Valentine Wayward Fighters #2 Publication Date: July 8, 2014 Genres: Contemporary, Romance 99c: Amazon - Nook - Kobo - iBooks
Synopsis: History brought them together. Circumstances may keep them apart.Alyson Blake’s past left her with scars. Scars that she tried to fix the only way she knew how—by helping others. But actions have consequences, and Alyson is about to find out that being naïve is no excuse. Fighting is Jamison Weston’s passion. Alyson is his obsession. Despite the past and a few lingering concerns, their relationship is as solid as ever. Until a shocking lie is uncovered and all of his plans begin to unravel. Now, Jami is rushing to pick up the pieces, but as relationships are put to the test, will he be strong enough to keep it together, or will it all just fall apart?
About J.C. Valentine
USA Today Bestselling author J.C. Valentine is the alter-ego of Brandi Salazar, whose enjoyment of tales of romance spurred her to branch out and create her own.
She lives in the Northwest with her husband, their wild children, and far too many pets. As a university student, she studies literature, which goes well with her dream of becoming an editor. Brandi entertains a number of hobbies including reading and photography, but her first love is writing fiction-in all its forms.
unDefeated (Wayward Fighters, #3) Buy Links
Amazon US: http://amzn.to/1DoI9Gn
Amazon UK: http://amzn.to/1G0qHf9
Amazon Paperback: http://amzn.to/1b1w1Bk
Knockout (Wayward Fighters, #1) FREE
Tapout (Wayward Fighters, #2) 99c
EXCERPTS - from unDefeated
“Are you still with me, Spencer?” O’Valley’s ultra-mellow, gritty voice that was no doubt the result of a pack-a-day habit brought Spencer out of his thoughts. He blinked at her, a touch of a smile making his lips twitch. Even the doctors in this place weren’t without their vices.
“Yeah. Yeah, I’m listening,” he said, clearing his throat and sitting up in his seat.
She smiled warmly. “Good, because I was wondering if today might be the day you’d like to share why you’re here. It’s been over a month— your time here is almost up—and you still haven’t told me what brought you to this point.”
As if he didn’t count the days. Spencer’s eyes narrowed. “I told you. I have a gambling problem.”
“Yes, but what, precisely, drove you to the point where you knew you needed to get help? Was it a friend, a lover, family member? Everyone has their reason for coming here, and I’d like to know what yours is.”
Shifting in his seat, Spencer stared at the degrees over her head. It shouldn’t be so difficult, but for whatever reason, he just couldn’t say the words.
He’d already admitted that he had a problem, which was the first step to recovery, right? Why did she have to keep pushing him for more?
“Sorry, Doc, but I’m just not ready for all that. Are we done here?” He didn’t feel like talking anymore. The thoughts running through his head had twisted him up, and he needed space and time to think, especially today—without Doc’s astute gaze fastened on him.
Wiggling an expensive silver pen back and forth between her fingers, she regarded him in that shrewd, assessing way of hers. Frankly, it unnerved him, made him feel as if she were looking straight through him, digging into all of his hidden places—places he never showed anyone.
“Sure. Your hour’s up anyway.” Spencer jumped to his feet, relief flooding him, only to be halted on his way to the door. “Your homework for tonight is to write in your journal. I want you to explore one important relationship and write down any positives that come to mind.”
It was like being in high school all over again. Well, from what he remembered when he actually showed up, that is. Should be easy enough. His emotions were fucking raw today.
With his hand on the doorknob, Spencer gave her a two-finger salute. “Will do, Doc.”
Passing a row of chairs, he ignored everyone and everything as he breezed out of the office. There was never a greater freedom than the one he experienced when he was dismissed from one of his sessions. It always felt as though he were a prisoner, his gray matter being picked apart with a pair of shiny silver tweezers.
The closer he came to his room, the faster his feet moved down the carpeted hallway. Sweeping through the open door, he acknowledged his roommate with a lift of his chin, grabbed his half-empty pack of cigarettes, and practically ran for the exit. No way in hell he was in the mood to get sucked into another nausea-inducing conversation with the guy.
Swapping one addiction for another, he thought as he packed the fresh pack into his palm. Getting treatment for one addiction, while feeding a new one. Spencer chose to ignore the irony of that as he tore away the plastic wrapping, placed a cigarette between his lips with trembling hands, and lit up.
Inside, a droning voice sounded over the loudspeakers, announcing weekly visitations. Hearing his name through the cotton in his ears, he ignored it. His chest ached and his heart pounded furiously. He inhaled deeply and in quick succession the first few times, until calm washed over him, then leaned back against the brick façade and closed his eyes.
Some people hated Mondays.
Spencer hated Thursdays.
All of those people, the patients, and their families, were kidding themselves if they thought this experience was making their lives better. The fact was addiction was one cruel bitch. There wasn’t a soul in that place that could escape her evil clutches, and anyone who tried to say different was lying through their rotting teeth. Addictive personalities didn’t just stop being that way because they poured their heart and soul out to someone with a handful of degrees on their wall. All they did was exchange one addiction for another.
Half the people living under that roof with him were smokers, and if they didn’t smoke, they had some other socially acceptable vice—chocolate, pop, shopping. Sex. Deflection was the name of the game, and Spencer was well on his way to becoming a master player. And that just meant they were all one step away from falling right back into the hole.
Through the glass partition, she watched the line of patients being paraded into the room, trying to pick out Spencer’s face in the crowd. She hadn’t seen him since he became a patient and wondered how much he had changed. Would he be thinner? Unshaven? Healthy? Longing to see him, just a glimpse, always threatened to consume her whenever she came here, but as with the last four visits, Spencer hadn’t shown.
With only a week left to go in his treatment, she wondered where he planned to go when he got out. Did he have someone ready to take him in? Not knowing filled her with worry.
Damn him. Why did he keep shutting her out? He knew she was there, knew she wanted to see him, to talk to him, to offer whatever support she could, and he never showed. Not once. All around her, families reunited, and she sat alone. The orderlies probably pitied her by now, the girl who kept coming, even though she clearly wasn’t wanted.
With a heavy heart, Olivia looped her purse over her shoulder and walked out. As she signed her name on the chart with her in and out times less than ten minutes apart, she had to resist the urge to make excuses for him. She was always making excuses for Spencer, whether to other people or just herself.
The fact was, no matter how he had treated her and how they ended, she still cared about him. Probably more than she should. No, scratch that. Definitely more than she should, because it was obvious the feelings weren’t mutual. Why else would Spencer ignore her so completely? He didn’t even have the decency to tell her to her face. But the silence said everything he wouldn’t pretty clearly.
Stopping by the front desk, she made her final deposit, adding the tip money she’d saved up that week to his account. Even if he didn’t love her anymore, she couldn’t justify leaving him in there with no way of buying personal items. She would still be his friend until he told her otherwise. And it didn’t look like he intended to talk to her anytime soon.
Now, she just needed to stop torturing herself. She needed to move on, but how did a person move forward without their other half?
“You look nice.” Spencer was lounging in the middle of Olivia’s living room, his bare feet propped up on the glass top coffee table, wearing nothing but a pair of drawstring pants and a smile. It had been forever since he’d been afforded the luxury of watching a simple television program without a bunch of nut jobs running commentary on the sidelines.
His attention span was blown, however, when he looked up to find Liv entering the room looking like a Greek goddess. Her flowing blonde hair fell over slender shoulders in rich waves and she wore a deep purple dress that wrapped snuggly around her body with a plunging neckline that made her tits look twice their normal size. With her smoky eyes and glossy pink lips, she had fuck me written all over her.
Irritation and hunger burned in his gut because he wasn’t stupid enough to think she’d done all that for him.
“Thank you.” Her cheeks flushed pink and she hurried to the coat closet to retrieve her purse.
Her back stiffened. “Yes, to dinner.”
Jaw tightening, Spencer watched as she checked her hair in the mirror over the antique credenza. “With whom? A friend?”
She paused in touching up her lip gloss, her reflection finding him in the mirror. “Yes, a friend,” she said with equal venom.
Spencer’s lip curled, prepared to tell her exactly what he thought of her going out with what he was certain to be another man, even though he had absolutely no claim on her anymore, when the doorbell rang.
His whole body stiffened as if struck by a sudden bout of rigor mortis. Liv’s soft blue eyes pleaded with him as she turned to answer the door. Spencer’s fingernails dug into his palms as he was forced to sit back and watch the whole thing play out.
“I just have to get my shoes on,” Olivia said quietly as she opened the door to let her date enter.
As soon as the man stepped inside, Spencer struggled not to laugh. On her way past him, Olivia shot Spencer a warning look that screamed play nice! Lifting both brows, he feigned innocence.
Dressed in a pair of light wash jeans and a hunter green cable knit sweater complete with collared shirt poking out underneath. The guy had gray around his temples and looked to be ten or twenty years older than Liv. What a joke. As if she’d ever be into this guy.
“Hi, I’m Mike,” the tool said with a wide smile that revealed a row of slightly crooked teeth. Approaching he leaned into one leg and reached out his hand. His shake was firm and confident, which was about the only thing Spencer thought he might have going for him. “Are you Olivia’s…brother?”
“Friend,” Spencer said with a mocking smile and gripped Mike’s hand a little tighter before releasing it.
Stepping back, Mike stuffed his hands into his pockets, an obvious sign of discomfort. Spencer’s chest puffed. Stretching his arms across the back of the couch, he crossed his ankles on the table and regarded Mike with cool indifference. “So, Mike, how do you know Liv?”
That dopey smile returned. “Through a friend.”
“Anyone I know?”
A muscle in Spencer’s jaw flexed. Of course, she would be behind it. Ally never made it a secret that she didn’t like him. He’d bet the minute he checked himself into rehab she pounced on the chance to set Liv up with someone else. It made him wonder how many dates Liv had been on and where this guy fell in the lineup.
He was about to ask when she reappeared. As Liv exited the short hallway, he glanced down to see she wore a pair of shoes he recognized well. They were nude with an opening in the front that showed off her polished toes and a thin six-inch heel that accented the muscles in her calves.
“Nice shoes,” he commented. Her gaze flashed to him, then down at her feet. When her face turned red and her step faltered, he knew she remembered the last time she’d worn them.
They were out drinking and dancing, celebrating a bet he’d just won. They were riding the high together as he pushed her up against a dirty wall in an alley outside a club and fucked her hard. Those heels had left angry red scratches all over his ass and the outside of his thighs.
He grinned shamelessly as Olivia tore her gaze away and informed her date she was ready. Frowning, Mike placed his hand on the small of her back and guided her out the door.
“Have a good time,” Spencer bit out as the door closed behind them.
Spencer was gone when she stepped out of the shower. With efficiency, Olivia toweled off, dried her hair, and twisted it up on her head, securing it with a lobster clip. Dusting on a thin layer of foundation, she went heavy on the eyes, finishing with a bold red lipstick. It was a lot of makeup for daytime, but it was perfect for the dark, smoky atmosphere inside the club.
After dressing in the required uniform—a short, black mini dress—Olivia hurried into the kitchen to put together a sack lunch. Spencer was already there, shirtless—a look she was beginning to realize must be a normal thing for him. She’d never had the opportunity to pick up on those sorts of things before.
She wasn’t complaining.
Her eyes were immediately drawn to the intricate dragon tattoo extending from the top of his shoulder down to his elbow. It was fierce, with vacant eyes and claws that seemed to grab on to his flesh. She had to force herself to turn away to keep from reaching out to touch it.
Hearing her approach, Spencer turned and his gaze skated over her appreciatively, pausing on the red-soled black heels that added a few inches to her height. “Damn, girl.”
Her stomach flipped at the compliment. Smirking, she reached past him to dig in the refrigerator for the lunchmeat. “Thanks.”
“Please tell me they have bodyguards there; otherwise, you’re about to gain yourself an escort.”
She rolled her eyes, ignoring the nervous flutter in her stomach in response to his possessiveness. “Yes, they have bodyguards.”
“Good, because I have stuff to take care of tonight and I don’t need to be worried about going to jail for kicking some grabby motherfucker’s ass.”
The mention of stuff froze her insides. She hoped he wasn’t planning to go out and get into trouble.
When she realized what she was doing, she shook the thought free. Spencer was showing progress. Now, she just had to have a little faith in him.
“Seriously?” Turning, Olivia leveled him with a look. “Do you even hear yourself right now? You’re talking about getting into a fight with someone for touching me when we aren’t even together.”
His pierced brow arched up. “First of all, yes, I do hear myself, and I meant what I said. I would kick someone’s ass if they so much as laid a finger on you without permission.” He braced his arms on either side of her, bracketing her in. “And second,” he said with a dangerous edge as he crowded her against the counter, “it doesn’t matter to me if we have an official title or not— you’re mine, Liv. So no more talk of us not being together bullshit. It’s starting to hurt my feelings.”
Surprised, her mouth gaped open, her thoughts skidding to a halt. With Spencer standing so close, the heat from his body seeping into hers, she couldn’t think straight. “I thought you were done.”
His eyes narrowed. “Done with what? You? Never.”
EXCERPT #5 (R-rated)
Olivia awoke bathed in an incredible heat all along her backside. It reminded her of days when she and Ally would spend time together lying out poolside on their beach towels while the summer sun baked them a nice golden brown.
More comfortable than ever, she burrowed deeper into the pillow, hoping sleep would reclaim her so she wouldn’t have to get up. She wasn’t ready to leave the bed yet.
That’s when she felt the mattress shift, and she realized she wasn’t in her bed. The heat grew more intense as Spencer’s body curved against hers, jamming a rock hard erection into her lower back.
She wiggled, trying to inch away, but his heavy arm draped over her, holding her in place.
And wedging that stiff member along the crease of her buttocks and between her thighs.
The feel of it there, tucked up against her body, made her shiver with desire. It had been so long since they’d been together that way. She missed the feel of his body against hers. Missed the feel of it pressing in deep, the way he masterfully played her into a frenzy of absolute bliss.
Instead of moving away, she found her hips pressing back, seeking more contact. The subtle movement of her hips against his pulled a sleepy moan from him, and she paused, waiting to see if he’d woken up. When he didn’t make any further sounds or moves, she pushed back again…and felt the head of his cock burst through the opening of his boxers.
The feel of his hard flesh between her legs caused a ripple of sensation to move through her, settling into a throbbing ache between her legs. Biting her lip, she continued the steady motion until the small beads of precum that leaked from his tip created a slick glide. This time, she moaned.
It was a small, keening sound that barely left her lips, but in the absolute quiet of the room, it might as well have been an alarm.
She knew she should stop. She had no idea if Spencer even wanted this. He was still sleeping, which meant she was taking advantage of him. She was too ashamed to admit that even that wasn’t enough to make her stop what she was doing. It felt too good, the pleasure too much for her to abandon. She needed this. With him.
She needed to feel close to him again, the way they used to be, and sex felt like a really good start in that direction. There was nothing that could bring a couple closer than that. In the right situation, sex stripped away all inhibitions, all masks, and created a kind of soul-baring intimacy that had the power to solidify relationships.
That’s what this felt like to her, a move toward solidifying them as a couple. She wanted to strip away the walls between them and bring them closer together, creating an unbreakable bond.
Spencer’s arm tightened, crushing against her ribcage. As she rocked her hips faster, rubbing his cock against her soaked panties, his breathing deepened, gusting against the back of her neck where he’d buried his face.
She wasn’t sure if he was awake now, but she couldn’t imagine anyone sleeping through this. Her body was on fire, her insides an inferno of pleasure so profound, her eyes crossed beneath her closed lids.
She wasn’t sure how much longer she could keep this up, but as her legs began to tremble and her muscles shook with her building orgasm, she managed to tap into her last vestiges of energy. It was just enough to get her to the edge, and when she felt Spencer’s cock swell between her thighs and his pained moan as he spilled against her flesh, she came—hard.
“Oh, God, yes,” Olivia cried out, gripping the blanket as her muscles clenched down hard. The orgasm felt as if it lasted forever, rather than mere seconds, and left her gasping for breath.
She was still trying to collect herself when she was forced to her back. Rolling on top of her, Spencer split her legs open to accommodate his larger frame and his eyes, a stormy blue, bored into hers.
“That was the hottest fucking thing I’ve ever seen.”
Caught red-handed—or wet-thighed—Olivia blushed furiously.
“Don’t go getting embarrassed on me,” Spencer admonished. “I like that you used me. Getting you off is my pleasure.” With a wan smile, he reached between them and ran his fingers through his semen. “Obviously.”
“Spence,” she complained, covering her eyes with her hand.
“No, baby. Don’t hide from me.” Pulling her hand away, Spencer forced her to look at him. “As much as I enjoyed making a mess out of you, I want to do this right. The next time you come, it’s going to be around my dick.”
He rocked his hips against hers, and she was shocked to realize that he was still hard. Looked like that time apart had some benefits after all.“That’s right, Liv,” Spencer crooned, his voice low and rough and dark with promise. “I’m going to fuck you hard, and this time, it’s my name you’ll be shouting.”
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