Tangled Love on Pelican Point
Tangled Love on Pelican Point
- Purchase the E-Book Instantly
- Receive Download Link via Email
- Send to Preferred E-Reader and Enjoy!
Sophie Bristol is a woman who has learned to navigate life without the trappings of love so she can work several jobs, take care of her ailing father, and fall into the pages of a book. Surrounded by people finding their soulmates, she's content with her busy schedule and her belief that fairy tales only exist between the pages. After all, her parents' bitter divorce scarred her perception of love, and her stepmother's acceptance came with a price.
Anthony Hill, lead singer of the chart-topping band Crimson Strings, has achieved the fame he always dreamed of. But success comes at a price, and the pressure to replicate his success weighs heavily on him. Seeking solace and redemption, Anthony returns to Fireweed Island, the place that holds painful memories from his past. Little does he know that his journey will collide with the enigmatic Sophie.
As their worlds intertwine, Sophie and Anthony discover their love is far from the fantasy they envisioned. With walls built around their hearts, they embark on a journey of trust, vulnerability, and self-discovery. But the road to romance is filled with obstacles, and Anthony's rockstar persona presents a challenge. Can he convince Sophie that his feelings are genuine, despite the complexities of his life?
- Rockstar Romance
- Small Town Romance
Emilia Hudson has never been one to consider arranged marriages, especially if it meant her fifty-five year old parents would have a say, but with her dismal love life, she’s almost reconsidering.
After her latest dating disaster, Emilia writes a simple blog post that goes viral. Worse yet, people start considering her a relationship expert, and all she feels like is a fraud.
As the emails and speaking engagements start rolling in, she realizes her only option is to take the bull by the horns and run with the unexpected fame.
What she doesn’t want to do is talk about the real reason why she won’t ever fall in love again.
However, when she gets an offer she can’t refuse from a major publisher, that’s all they want her to write about, but It isn’t until she meets the man behind the proposal that she realizes why…
Intro to Chapter One
Intro to Chapter One
My finger ripped through the envelope, and I slid the credit card statement out only to immediately wish I hadn’t. This was going to be a rough month, but nothing I couldn’t handle.
It would work out.
“Okay, tell me about this punch.” Nick hauled the grocery bags to the counter and waited for my instructions. “Are we talking a little kick or a lot of kick?”
“We won’t put it together until we get to Natalie’s house, and no kick. Absolutely zero. It’s going to be for the people like me who have to work tomorrow.”
I placed the credit card statement back into the envelope and let out a silent sigh.
If only I could win the lotto. It wouldn’t need to be a big jackpot—even ten thousand dollars would do.
Five thousand dollars? Who was I kidding? One thousand smackers would be marvelous.
“What’s wrong?” Nick asked, taking the ice cream out of the bag and placing it in the freezer.
“Nothing.” I pushed the rest of the mail to the far end of the counter.
This wasn’t the time to let my worries get in the way of an unforgettable night. Soon, we’d be on our way to Natalie’s house—our other best friend—for a surprise engagement party, and I could put this mini-crisis out of my mind for the night. Natalie had no idea what was about to go down, and I loved getting to be a part of it. Natalie’s boyfriend, Cole, had arranged everything, but keeping the details from Natty over the last couple of weeks had been torture.
“I can see it in your eyes. You opened your mail and your mood immediately took a nosedive. Let me have it.” Nick smiled as he motioned with his fingers. “Come on. Tell Papa.”
I rolled my eyes and grabbed a can of ginger ale. How I managed to collect the one astute male on the island, I didn’t know.
“My mood is just fine, Papa.” I took a sip of the warm soft drink as Nick shook his head, walking over to me in about two steps. “But it’s becoming excruciatingly clear why you’re still single, Nicky boy.”
I lived in a small one-bedroom apartment with an even smaller kitchen and living room, but it was my home, and I loved it. The landlord even let me paint the dingy cabinets white and replace the worn knobs with glass ones I’d found at the thrift store.
Now, I just needed to find a way to keep this place.
Nick wrapped his arms around my shoulders and playfully shook me.
“Sophie Bristol, one of your best friends is about to get engaged, and you look like you saw someone skin her cat, Pickles. What’s going on?”
I didn’t want to tell a soul. The truth of the matter was that I was embarrassed. I was mortified that my credit card balances had climbed through the roof ever since my dad’s stroke, and it was getting more and more difficult to pay the minimum payments on them, let alone my rent and utilities.
Life was tense.
I brought my gaze back to Nick’s and tried to bring the same smile to my eyes that I’d plastered on my lips.
“All is good. I think I’m just coming down with something.” I unwrapped his arms from around me and took another sip of soda.
“Is it your dad?” Nick asked, not buying my excuse.
“Sort of.” I didn’t lie very well. It was a curse.
“I thought he was getting better.” Nick’s voice softened.
“He is, but their finances aren’t.”
Nick let out a sigh and ran his fingers through his dark hair.
“And that is your concern because?” Nick’s brow rose.
“Because I can’t let my dad and stepmom wind up on the streets.”
“So you’re willing to put yourself out on the street?”
I narrowed my eyes at Nick. “It’s not like that. I’ve got money coming in and they don’t.”
“Sophie, there’s only one of you, and none of us want anything to happen to you. You work three jobs and barely have time to breathe, let alone do anything you want to do. It’s not healthy.”
“I want to take care of my dad and stepmom. It’s my responsibility. They’d do the same for me.”
“Would they?” Nick crossed his arms, his smile fading.
“It doesn’t matter one way or the other. I wouldn’t feel good about life if I didn’t try to help.”
“You know you can come to me if you need anything.” Nick’s gaze sharpened, and I flicked my eyes to the ground. “Right?”
“Yeah, I know, but I’m fine. Promise.” I walked over to the couch and sunk into the cushions with Nick following right behind me.
“Can you believe Natalie is going to get married?” Nick said, taking a seat next to me. He was in jeans, a t-shirt, and a black hoodie. If he were anyone but Nick, he’d be hard to resist. But he was Nick, and just as confused about love as I was.
He propped his foot on the coffee table I’d made from pallets, used paperbacks, and plenty of glue. It was one of my cuter creations—as long as you didn’t light a candle anywhere in the vicinity.
“We’ll no longer be the Three Musketeers,” he sighed.
“Since when have we ever been the Three Musketeers?” I scooted my legs underneath me. “I’ve never heard you call us that.”
“Not out loud. I’ve got to keep street cred. But seriously. It’s hard to believe she’s getting married so fast.”
“It’s not fast. It’s been a long time coming.” I adjusted my sweater over my leggings and let out a grunt. “I wonder what it’s like to fall in love like that.”
“You’re asking the wrong person.” Nick unzipped his sweatshirt. “It’s getting hot in here.”
I threw my head back in a fit of giggles as Nick began to overheat at the mere mention of a lasting relationship. It was something neither of us dabbled in.
“It’s not for everyone,” he continued, tossing his hoodie over the arm of the couch.
“I’m beginning to agree, and I don’t think that’s a bad thing. I’m perfectly content coming home to my one-bedroom apartment and decorating it how I see fit. And I can make popcorn for dinner and not even give it a second thought. I think the older I get, the more complicated love would be anyway.”
“Agreed.” Nick ran his hands over his face and whistled. “But I’m not sure everyone sees it as we do.”
I chuckled, already feeling the tension slip away.
Nick nodded. “I heard Cole’s brother is back on the island.”
“That would make sense, considering what’s about to go down. What’s the big deal?” I rested my head on the couch and wondered what it would be like to be a rock star.
And absolutely fantastic.
Anthony Hill was Cole’s older brother, and he had recently hit it big in the music industry. He’d been back on the island off and on in recent months, but I’d never managed to cross paths with him, which was fine with me. He looked like trouble in the tabloids and one more headache I didn’t need.
I lifted my head back up and brought my eyes to Nick’s. I saw a glimmer of amusement pass through his gaze.
“What?” I asked. “I can tell you’re keeping something from me.”
“Like what?” Nick stood up and stretched. “I don’t know what you’re talking about, but we should head on over.”
I shot up from the couch. “Spit it out. You wouldn’t have brought up Cole’s brother out of the blue.”
Nick smirked and rested his hands on my shoulders, staring into my eyes.
“Natalie wants to set you two up.”
I froze in place and stared at Nick in horror.
“That’s the worst idea I’ve ever heard.”
“It might not be the worst,” Nick said. “It could be fun.”
“Spoken like a true man. If it didn’t happen to be the biggest day of Natalie’s life, I think I’d seriously hurt her.”
“It’s not that big of a deal. He might not even show up.”
“Does Anthony know what Natalie’s up to?”
“I doubt it.” He sounded too nonchalant, which told me Anthony knew.
I pulled out my phone and typed in Anthony’s name. Hundreds of images flashed on the screen, and I slid my phone in between Nick and me.
“Does that look like fun to you? It looks like my worst nightmare come to life. A self-absorbed rock star who has his pick of any and all women.”
“Actually, it doesn’t sound half—”
“You’re such a guy.” I pulled my phone away and sat back down on the couch, searching through the images. There was no denying how good-looking Anthony was, but I could also tell he managed to slip into every celebrity-filled event that involved a red carpet and flashing lights.
No, thank you. I liked quiet island living.
“So you’re telling me what I need is to leave one high-maintenance situation and jump into another?”
Nick held up his hands. “I’m not telling you anything. I’m just letting you know what your friend has up her sleeve. I thought with everything going on today, you’d like a heads-up.”
I kept mindlessly scanning the pictures of Anthony, and I let out a groan.
“Hopefully, he’ll bring one of his many groupie girlfriends.”
“He has one?” Nick asked, glancing over my shoulder.
“I’m sure one will be on hand, at least for the weekend.” I smiled.
“Hear me out.”
“Do I have to?” I teased.
“Maybe you guys will bump into each other today, or maybe you won’t. But why not just let things fall where they may?”
“Hey, speaking of . . . is Jewels back in town?” I was now in the kitchen, standing next to Nick and loading punch ingredients into a grocery bag.
“No clue. Why do you ask?”
Jewels was Natalie’s newly-divorced sister and the latest to arrive back on Fireweed.
“Maybe you’d like to try dating her. You know, no big deal. Maybe if you run into one another, you can just let things fall where they may—”
“Point taken,” Nick said. “Let’s get going before we’re the ones who ruin the surprise.”
I slid the bill under the stack of mail and glanced at Nick.
“Okay, but promise you won’t mention a word to Natalie about my dad or anything. This is her day, and I don’t want anything to take away from that.”
“You have my word, but Sophie?” he asked, going into the kitchen.
“Promise me if there’s anything you ever need, you’ll tell me. I can’t help if I don’t know.”
I took in a deep breath and nodded. “Deal.”
I grabbed the punch bowl, and Nick took the bag as we headed out the door to celebrate the best thing to happen in town since as long as I can remember.
“And thank you for letting me in on Natalie’s secret plan.”
“I’m sure you’d do the same.”
I grinned. “Hmm. Boy, I don’t know if I would.”
Nick shut the door to my apartment, and I glanced at the storm clouds ahead, hoping I could make it away from the party unscathed. I wasn’t sure of much in life, but I was certain of one thing. I had absolutely zero interest in a self-absorbed celebrity, even if he was the brother of the groom-to-be.