I’ve spent my younger years acting, safe in a world of make-believe. I learnt to transform into roles to hold onto a sense of harmony in my life.
Years later, still in that moment, I am another face. Another mask. I am not me—the forgotten daughter, the quiet friend, the unrequited love.
Until the pretending becomes meaningless.
And my life hardens again.
I’m tired of acting for my friends when my parents ignore me. I’m tired of acting for myself when I want the world to stop being so hard. I’m tired of holding back from the only man I’ve ever loved.
Even though being drawn to him petrifies me above all else.
When I act to him, he sees right through me.
Each and every time.
She has haunted my dreams for years. The girl I teased to watch her blush. The girl I watched in quiet agony. The girl I had a chance with, one I ruined when I pushed her away.
Now, after all these years, she’s returning to work for me. A ruse to make her mine.
I will show her that she deserves to be cherished, and loved. I’ll bring back that goddess who took my breath away when I was twenty.
You only live once. Side by side, I only want this final lifetime spent with her.
Splinters is the second novel in the Running On Empty series and can be read as a standalone. It contains no cliff hanger.