I hope you enjoy this week’s installment! (Fair warning, though! It’s hard to do excerpts from a novella without risking spoilers! So be forewarned before you read ahead!)
And here we go!
My mother reaches over and snatches the fork out of my hand. For a moment, I’m fool enough to think that she’s going to get in the spirit and try the cake. But all she does it point the tines at me. “Honestly, Nichole,” she says, in a tone that leaves no doubt that I have committed some heinous sin. “Are you trying to ruin your wedding? Have you thought about your waist? Your hips? Not to mention your skin!”
She turns to to Sally, who is clearly struggling to wipe the expression of appalled shock off her face. “Bless her little heart,” my mother says, in a tone that practically drips sugar, “but my Nichole isn’t a girl who can eat cake and then get into something as form fitting as a wedding gown.”
“Nikki is a lovely young woman,” Sally says firmly. “And I’m sure she’s going to look stunning at her wedding.”
“Of course she will,” my mother says, her voice sounding farther and farther away from me. It’s as if I’m sliding back, moving down some tunnel away from her, away from Sally, away from everything.
“That’s why I’m here,” Mother adds, her tone entirely reasonable. “My daughter knows she has no self-control about things that are bad for her—cakes, candies, men,” she adds in a stage whisper. “I’ve always been there to help her keep her eye on the prize.”
“I see,” Sally says, and I have a feeling she sees more than my mother wants.
As for me, even from the depth of this well into which I’ve fallen, I am seething. I want to leap out of my chair and tell my mother that she’s never helped me, she’s only manipulated me. That she’s not interested in what I want, but only what I look like and how I act and if I’m presenting an image that stands up to the Fairchild name—a name that’s not worth what it used to be since she took over—and decimated—the oil business that she inherited when my grandfather passed away.
I want to say all of that, but I don’t. I just sit there, my plastic smile on my face, hating myself for not moving. For not telling her to get the hell back to Texas.
In the UK, you can grab Take Me here (more retailers coming soon):
And if you missed Release Me, you can snag your copy from your favorite retailers here:
Amazon United Kingdom
Barnes and Noble (print or Nook)
And here are the links to Book 3, Complete Me!
Barnes & Noble
your favorite independent bookseller
in the U.K. from Amazon
in the U.K. from Waterstones
in the U.K. from WH Smith