The Wreckage of Us, a standalone romance that will leave you wrecked and wanting more from Brittainy C. Cherry is available now!
Never in a million years did I think it would be Ian Parker who saved me…
I know I should stay away from Ian Parker.
But when my drug-dealing stepdad kicks me out, I have nowhere to go. Squatting in an abandoned shed on Ian’s grandpa’s farm seems like as good a plan as any.
Ian finds me there, of course, and he insists on me moving into his spare room. I should say no, but the appeal of a roof and a warm bed is too much. Not to mention Ian’s brown eyes and strong arms.
We’re nothing alike, but the spark between us is undeniable. My life is finally looking up.
Until I call the cops on my stepdad and unintentionally get my pregnant mom arrested.
Now I have to sacrifice my dreams to take care of my mom’s baby. She’s the only family I have left. Meanwhile, Ian’s band is taking off; his dreams are coming true.
Ian is my one chance at love. I just hope he doesn’t become the one chance that got away.
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I needed the job at Eres Ranch in order to save up money for my sister or brother. I needed money to buy prenatal vitamins for Mama. Money to make sure her fridge was full. Money to make sure that somehow the baby could come into the world with a little bit more than I had.
Then, with the rest of the money, I’d buy a one-way ticket and leave Eres and never look back. Somehow, I’d convince Mama to come with me, too, with the new baby. The last thing she needed to do was raise a child with Charlie around.
Mama was right—we did have a roof over our heads because of Charlie. But just because someone gave you four walls to stay in didn’t mean they weren’t a prison. I couldn’t wait for the day that I collected enough money to get myself my own four walls. Those four walls would be filled with love, not threats. With happiness, not fear.
And the name Charlie Riley would be a distant memory.
Big Paw rubbed the back of his neck. “We were looking for ranch hands, not some girl who’s probably too afraid to get her hands dirty.”
“I’m not afraid of that at all. I’ll get down and dirty with the rest.”
“You have to be able to lift over sixty pounds.”
“I’ll lift seventy.”
He cocked an eyebrow and leaned forward. “You have to be here before the sun rises, and if you don’t finish the task, you stay after dusk, and there ain’t no overtime. You get paid by the daily tasks being completed, not by the hours you spend here. If you get done early, you can leave early. If you get done late, you’re stuck here late. Also, I don’t
believe in three strikes. I believe in one. Mess up, and you’re gone. You understand, girl?”
If anyone else called me “girl,” I’d slam my fist straight into their nose to show them just how much of a girl I was, but hearing it come from Big Paw wasn’t an insult. He called it as he saw it in a straightforward way. He’d call any man younger than him “boy,” too, because he could. I was sure people who identified differently would be offended by the title Big Paw would give them, but he was too old to bother correcting himself.
Old dog, new tricks and all.
“I understand.” I nodded. “I’ll be the hardest worker out there, I promise.”
He grumbled some more and rubbed his beard. “Fine, but don’t come complaining to me when you ruin your favorite pair of shoes in the pigpens. You report to the stables tomorrow at noon sharp for training with my grandson, Ian. He’ll be in charge of getting you up and running.”
I sat up a bit straighter as my stomach tightened. “Wait, Ian is training me?” I frowned. “Are you sure Marcus or James or someone can’t take me on?”
“No. Those boys are already training a few other ranch hands.” He raised his brow once more. “You aren’t already making yourself difficult, are you?”
I shook my head. “No, sir—er—Big Paw. Sorry. That is fine. Noon tomorrow. I’ll be there.”
The idea of being trained by Ian Parker made me want to gag. He was known as the playboy rock star of Eres. Ian had graduated three years before me, and I’d been the lucky girl with my locker right beside his during my freshman year. Which meant I’d had a front-and-center viewing of him swapping spit with whatever small-town groupie was wrapped around his pinkie at the time.
Author Brittainy C. Cherry is an Amazon #1 bestselling author.
She has been in love with words since the day she took her first breath. She graduated from Carroll University with a Bachelor Degree in Theatre Arts and a minor in Creative Writing.
Her novels have been published in 18+ countries around the world. Brittainy lives in Brookfield, Wisconsin with her fur babies.
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