Business items first! I want to remind you the 69 Shades of Smut Blog is running a fabulous contest this month! Anyone anywhere is eligible, contest runs through Midnight PST on January 31, 2013, and the winner will be awarded a gift certificate for $200! And it’s easy! All you have to is Follow the blog! Are you already following us? You’re entered in the contest automatically. For all the details, hop over to the 69 Shades of Smut Blog! Don’t miss this opportunity to win a $200 gift card!
Revenge Sex, West Coast Book 1 will be free through the end of January! Here are all the places you can find it: Kindle Kindle UK Kobo Smashwords All Romance iBookstore US iBookstore AU iBookstore UK. So please download, download, download, and feel free to tell all your friends!
And now for my new release, Book 1 of The Jackson Brothers. Actually, it’s a new old release. This is my 2007 Rita Finalist (the contest for the best of romance by Romance Writer’s of America) about the Jackson family. The anthology was entitled Somebody’s Lover, but I’ve broken the saga down into its parts for you with fabulous covers by Rae Monet. Three years ago, Lou Jackson, eldest son, died in a work accident. And nothing has been the same since for the Jacksons. They lost their heart and soul the day Lou died, even as matriarch Evelyn tries to keep them together. But things are changing and the family will either find their way back to each other. Or they’ll be torn asunder.
Up first is Somebody’s Lover, Book 1, Jace and Taylor’s story. I cried while writing their story. Even reading it again, I cried. I hope you find it as emotional as I did. And I hope you’ll love it. Somebody’s Ex is David and Randi’s story, and after that, Somebody’s Wife, Mitch and Connie’s story.
A family torn apart by tragedy…
Widowed three years ago and the mother of two, Taylor Jackson is starting to feel that life as a woman is passing her by. Always somebody’s daughter-in-law, somebody’s mother, or somebody’s sister-in-law,
Taylor was his brother’s wife, and now his brother’s widow, untouchable yet irresistible to Jace Jackson. When he discovers her fantasies, Jace swears he’ll be the one to make them reality.
But can his family ever accept another man in Taylor’s life, let alone the black sheep of the family? Or will their grief and pain destroy any chance Jace has of being more to Taylor than her secret lover?
Somebody’s Lover, The Jackson Brothers, Book 1
Copyright 2012 Jasmine Haynes
The woman looked like Taylor, his brother Lou’s wife. But this woman’s lips were painted a deep shade of red, where Taylor always wore pink. The tight spandex top hugged her full breasts, and her leather skirt revealed endless, captivating legs encased in shimmering nylon. Taylor didn’t own a leather skirt, and to her, spandex was for jogging. Fuck-me high heels rested on the bottom rail of the bar stool. Taylor abhorred high heels.
The look-alike flipped her auburn hair over her shoulders, the locks sparkling with golden highlights in the flash of the strobe on the dance floor.
Jace Jackson cooled himself off with a slug of beer, his one and only bottle for the night.
Then she laughed. He shouldn’t have been able to hear it over the voices, the semi-drunken laughter, or the beat of another country western ballad, but he felt it in his gut, the way he always felt Taylor’s laugh, hard as he tried to ignore it.
The woman didn’t just look Taylor. It was Taylor.
Jace slammed his beer down on the table, ignored his drinking buddies’ raised eyebrows, and rose to his feet when the guy Taylor was flirting with put his hand on her knee.
* * * * *
Taylor Jackson knew she’d made a huge mistake the minute the man put his hand on her knee. She couldn’t remember his name, Buddy or Bubba or Bucky or something, although Bubba seemed to suit him best
It didn’t seem right to be planning to seduce a man whose name she couldn’t remember. Not that Bubba needed much in the way of a come-on from her.
She hadn’t dated since Lou died. In fact, she hadn’t been out on a date since she met Lou back in college. Not that she’d call what she was doing now dating.
Planning a seduction had been the easy part. Dressing for it even easier. The hour between dropping off the kids at her mother-in-law’s house and finishing her final primp in her bathroom mirror had been like playing dress-up with her mom’s makeup when she was a little girl. Of course, when her mother caught her, she’d blistered her butt. Taylor had started feeling jumpy on the drive over, out of Willoughby to the outskirts of Bentonville, the next town over, and home of Saddle-n-Spurs, a rowdy country western joint.
She’d chosen the bar because she wouldn’t be recognized. No one she knew would come to a place like this. It wasn’t a PTA/soccer-mom kind of place.
Jumpy or not, Taylor had climbed out of her minivan and headed inside. Her head had begun to pound with the din before she’d even taken a seat at the bar. She’d ordered wine to calm her full-fledged nerves and probably would have bolted before the bartender poured it if Bubba hadn’t taken the stool beside her and paid for her drink.
She shouldn’t have let him do that. Not that she felt like she had to sleep with him because he bought her a glass of wine. This wasn’t how she’d planned it. In fact, the whole seduction plan seemed suddenly idiotic. If she hadn’t felt so desperate, so needy, so out of control, she never would have considered picking up a guy in a bar for a night of casual sex.
It had seemed like forever since she’d felt a man’s touch. For months after Lou died, maybe a year, she hadn’t given sex a thought. She’d been too busy getting out of bed in the mornings, accepting the monumental changes his death wrought, wondering if she could handle things on her own, and helping Brian and Jamey cope with the loss of their dad.
Somewhere along the way, in that second and third year alone, she’d started remembering she was a woman. With needs. She didn’t want a new father for the boys or a boyfriend or husband for herself. She only wanted the embrace of a man for a little while.
Bubba wasn’t her idea of a dream lover. Reality didn’t match the erotic fantasy she’d spun through-out sleepless nights. Now, she wasn’t quite sure how she’d get rid of him, or for that matter, get herself out of the bar.
“Get your damn hand off my wife’s knee.”
Oh Lord. It couldn’t be. She glanced up and almost choked on her sip of wine. It was her brother-in-law. And Jace didn’t look like a happy camper.
In the next moment, she was terribly glad to see him as the hand on her knee suddenly shot back where it belonged.
“Your wife?” Bubba sputtered.
Jace’s hand closed around her upper arm. “Yeah. My wife.”
“But she ain’t wearing no ring?”
How could she have considered that a man who didn’t have proper command of grammar would know how to bring a woman fulfillment of her deepest desires?
“Where’s your ring, sweetheart?” Jace shot her a feral grin.
She smiled sweetly. “On the kitchen counter, where I left it after I caught you with that hussy in our bed. The hussy being my dear sister.” What chigger had bitten her bottom? But now that the immediate Bubba crisis was over, she felt giddy with relief.
Bubba stood and backed away, holding his hands out in front of him. “I don’t want no part o’ this,” he said, loud enough to draw attention.
A semicircle suddenly opened up around them, and the bartender froze, beer mug still tipped beneath the draft tap.
Jace tugged on her arm. “Why don’t we talk about this at home…sweetheart?”
She wasn’t mad at Jace. In fact, he’d saved her from an unpleasant scene.
“I’ll only go if you promise not to beat me black and blue again. And you have to stop screwing my sister.” She almost giggled, despite less than half a glass of wine.
Jace merely glowered.
Spoilsport. Still, she climbed off the stool and let him half pull, half drag her across the bar to the entrance. The patrons parted like the Red Sea. No one stopped him. What if they hadn’t been joking? What if he really was a bully who’d beat her once he got her home? Didn’t anyone care?
Once the door of the bar had slapped shut behind them, the question didn’t matter.
“You don’t know how glad I was to see you.”
Jace didn’t answer, nor did he turn to her as he hauled her down a long aisle of cars and trucks.
“You can stop dragging me now.”
“Get in the truck.”
“The minivan’s there.” She pointed a couple of rows over.
“I said get in the truck.” He opened the passenger door and practically shoved her up on the front seat.
He was actually mad. Her brother-in-law was a pretty easygoing guy. She couldn’t remember ever seeing him quite so angry. He stomped round the front of the truck, raking both hands through his short, brown hair and muttering to himself. Climbing in, he slammed his door.
Then he turned to glower at her. “What the hell did you think you were doing in there?”
“Well, it’s a tad embarrassing to explain.” A tad? Who was she kidding? “Maybe we could talk about it tomorrow.”
“We’ll talk about it now.” He emphasized with a stab of his finger in the air. “Don’t you have any clue what could have happened to you in there?”
Yeah, she had a clue. She’d made a mistake. Next time, she’d try looking for someone down at the PTA. Right. “I thanked you for coming along at the appropriate moment to rescue me.” She refrained from asking if he was going to tell his mother. Taylor knew Evelyn wouldn’t understand.
Jace stared her down.
“All I wanted was a little drink.” Boy, she couldn’t look at him when she fed him that lie.
Which he didn’t buy. “You went for a drink dressed like that?” He swept her attire with a slash of his hand. “To a meat-market bar twenty miles away from home?”
She smiled. “Yes.”
“Are you crazy? You’re the mother of two kids, for Christ’s sake. You’re my brother’s wife.”
Her smile died. “I’m your brother’s widow. And I wasn’t here looking for a replacement for him.”
He shoved his hands once more through his hair. He looked a lot like Lou. Brownish hair only slightly longer than the buzz cut Lou had preferred. Brown eyes, laugh lines, and a killer smile. That’s what she’d noticed first about Lou. His smile. Even then, back in college, he’d had laugh lines.
Jace hadn’t laughed much since his brother died. Except with the boys. He was great with her boys.
He puffed out a loud breath. “You were here to get laid. Jesus Christ, I can’t believe it.”
“I was here for a drink.”
Jace’s gaze traveled from her throat to her breasts to the short skirt that barely covered the essentials when she sat, and finally to her shoes. Earlier, she’d stood in front of the full-length mirror admiring those shoes. Lou had once forbidden her to wear them.
Sudden anger spiraled deeply. How dare Jace judge her? He’d done his share of catting around over the years. One woman after another, partying up a storm, though he’d calmed down since Lou died. Still, that didn’t give him the right to castigate her.
“Men go out and get laid all the time,” she pointed out.
“Dammit, Taylor, you’re not a man. There’re different rules for women.”
“What are they?” She shook her head. He was almost laughable, if he wasn’t pissing her off so much. “Lou has been gone for three years. And what, I’m supposed to go off to a convent?”
He looked straight ahead through the windshield. “You could try dating, you know.”
“Like who?” Willoughby wasn’t jumping with candidates.
“How about Joe?”
“He’s ten years older than me and still lives with his mother.”
“That makes him respectable.”
“I don’t want to date Joe. I don’t want to date anyone. I’m not looking for Lou’s replacement.” To the family, Jace included, she was Lou’s wife, not Lou’s widow. Keeping his memory alive meant never letting her move on. They wouldn’t like her dating a new man, and God forbid she should ever want to marry again. Which was fine with her, really it was. She was self-sufficient, and Lou’s family, her family now, meant more to her than having a man around the house. She didn’t want a husband. Most of the time. Except in the middle of a dark and lonely night as she climbed into a cold, empty bed.
“I need…” She stopped. She couldn’t tell Jace that it wasn’t true what they said about vibrators. They were not a woman’s best friend. They couldn’t replace a man’s weight, a man’s body, or his hardness inside her.
He smacked a hand on the steering wheel. “You’re a mother. With my brother’s two kids at home. You can’t pick up men in bars.”
If he said that one more time, she’d reach across the seat and belt him. She was Brian and Jamey’s mom to him. He couldn’t see anything else. None of the family could. She loved them, she never wanted to lose them, never wanted to hurt them, but sometimes, she wanted to scream. Suddenly all those bottled up feelings spilled out over Jace.
“I am not just somebody’s mother. Or somebody’s wife. Or somebody’s daughter-in-law. And I’m not just somebody’s sister-in-law.” She wanted to be somebody’s lover. Leaning over, she stared him down glare for glare. “I’m a woman, Jace. A woman.”
“I know that.” He backed off.
“Do you?” To him, she was his nephews’ mother, his brother’s wife. “Do you really?”
“Yeah, uh, sure.”
Right. She was a sexless thirty-three-year-old. Forget the word woman. It didn’t even fit in his definition of her. Later she wouldn’t be able to say what had snapped inside her. She barely remembered diving across the space that separated them, but she did remember fastening her lips to his.
He tasted of yeasty beer and smelled like some cool aftershave. She pressed her breasts to his chest, wrapped her arms around his neck, and hung on as he braced his hands against her ribs and tried to push her away. Taylor wasn’t letting go.
She angled her head, sucked at his mouth, then ran her tongue along the seam of his lips. Her nipples peaked through the spandex as she rubbed against him. Then she forgot it was Jace. She forgot he was her husband’s brother. She simply reveled in the feel of a man’s lips beneath hers. His thumbs began to stroke the soft undersides of her breasts.
He opened his mouth to her tongue, tested her, tasted her, then leaned her back against the steering wheel and kissed her as if she was somebody’s lover.
Lord, he felt good, so good. Her body moistened against her miniscule panties. She throbbed. Her nipples ached for the rasp of his tongue on them. She wriggled in his lap and moaned against his mouth. His hand rose, cupped her, taking her nipple between his thumb and forefinger. She almost came—it had been so long since she’d felt like this. He shifted, his hips surging up to rock his erection against her.
She was actually wondering how she could get her nylons off and not let go of him.
Then the horn honked. Long and loud. Taylor snapped back to reality, pulling away from the steering wheel to stop the racket.
Still cupping her breast in his hand, Jace stared at her, a weird shell-shocked grimace on his face. Dilated pupils, air puffing in and out of his lungs, his Adam’s apple slid as he swallowed.
Oh Lord. She jerked from his lap, yanked down on her skirt where it had ridden to the top of her thighs, and lunged back to her side of the truck.
She’d been ready to straddle his lap right there in the front seat. In a parking lot. Jace. Her husband’s brother.
“I’m sorry. I don’t know what came over me. I’m really sorry. I…” Lord, the things she’d revealed. All her turbulent, needy emotions. She’d told him everything.
He stared at her, and her face heated with humiliation.
She almost stammered trying to get her words out. “I’ve got my car. I’ll see myself home.” She grappled with the door handle, wrestled it open, then almost fell out. “Thanks for helping me. I don’t know what I would have done…” She was babbling.
She dug in the pocket of her skirt where she’d stashed her car key and alarm remote, then slammed his truck door. Where was her minivan? There! She stumbled in the high heels, caught herself on the truck bumper, then took off like a mortified teenager.
She fumbled with the remote. His truck door opened, and he called her name. Then she was in, thank you so very much, God. She slammed and locked the door, cranked the engine, and pulled out in a spray of gravel and dirt.
“I can’t believe you did that,” she said to herself.
She couldn’t believe he’d tasted so good, felt so good.
She saw his headlights following her, at least she thought they were his. She hoped they were his and not Bubba’s. The drive took forever, absolutely forever, but finally she was in her own driveway, and the house key was under the doormat where she’d left it because she’d intended on traveling light, only a twenty-dollar bill, her license, and her car key in her pocket.
Jace idled at the end of the driveway.
She bumbled her way inside and slammed the front door.
Lord, she’d just thrown herself at Jace. At her brother-in-law, whom she’d known for almost fifteen years. Since she was nineteen and he was sixteen. Since the first time Lou brought her home to meet the family.
The worst part? Taylor was hoping Jace would get out of his truck and follow her in to finish what she’d started.
I hope you enjoyed this excerpt of Somebody’s Lover. If you’d like to read Jace and Taylor’s story, you can find it on Kindle Kindle UK Nook Nook UK Kobo All Romance Smashwords. Somebody’s Ex and Somebody’s Wife will be out later this month (hubby is working on the proofing and formatting for me!).