Title: Scared of Forever (Scared, #2)
Author: Jacqueline Abrahams
Genre: New Adult Romance
Release Date: December 14, 2014
BlurbEvery lie, no matter how small, has some degree of truth. Five months after moving to New York City, Emily is engaged to Blake Carson, future doctor and the man who she believes to be the love of her life. Until she starts to realize that the foundation upon which she’s building her future is based on a series of Blake’s self-serving lies. Blake can’t let her go. He can’t continue to deceive Emily, either. But Blake’s biggest problem is that he has to maintain the life he has become accustomed to, at any cost. And that means keeping his overbearing mother happy, and keeping Emily ignorant. Tyler Carson left New York City two years ago, happy to leave behind all of the Carson family drama. Until he comes home and meets Emily. Falling in love with his brother’s fiancée was easy. Protecting her from his family was necessary. Leaving her was almost impossible, knowing that he was breaking her heart, and his own. Finding solace in her friendship with Tyler, Emily is forced to face the reality that Blake is not the man she thought he was. But neither is Tyler, the friend who gave her the clarity she needed, and then left her alone to pick up the shattered pieces of her life. Heartbroken and deserted, Emily has had enough of the Carson brothers. But sometimes, love is not that which sends us soaring, but that which keeps us grounded. Can Emily ever bring herself to love another Carson completely? Secrets, lies and lust-filled nights, all in the name of the screwed-up pursuit of happily ever after, Scared of Forever is the second novel in the Scared Series, which features characters from Scared of Beautiful, but can be read as a standalone.
Purchase the series!
Scared of Forever (Scared, #2)
Infinite Fear - A Novella (Scared #0.5)
Scared of Beautiful (Scared #1)
Scared of Forever – Alternate EpilogueThe torrential rain and violent winds that carry it seem to mirror the feeling in my soul as I stare out at the dismal grey sky ahead. I’ve stood at this window a million times in the years that Tyler and I have lived here. The beach, the house; they hold a lifetime’s worth of memories, all orchestrated and carefully planned out by the love of my life. Tyler and I were supposed to have forever. The stars aligned so perfectly when we met, the universe blessing us with another chance. And we had made the most of it. Tyler turned fifty-three years old yesterday. We had grilled cheese sandwiches for breakfast and hot dogs for dinner, as we do every year on his birthday. A tradition he had insisted on. We had made good on his promise, and had three more beautiful children after Sadie, each one boasting Tyler’s warm, brown eyes. Two boys, two girls. Tyler, because of his pleasant nature and easygoing personality, had quickly become one of the most respected photographers in New York. Our life was idyllic. Yes, we fought, over stupid things like who finished the peanut butter and put it away empty. Whose turn it was to do the dishes. Where I was stubborn and strong willed, he relinquished the need to be right. Where he was impulsive and rash, I was metered and grounded. We fit together, two souls, intertwined to create one magnificent life together. Cancer has riddled Tyler’s body for months now. His fight has been courageous. But it was a fight never to be won. I take the opinion that a being as loving as he was had a much greater purpose in life. That he was lent to me and to his children to give us a lifetime of joy and happiness. And now, now the time was drawing near to hand him back to the earth and the stars. And with every passing minute leading to that moment, my heart grew heavier, sadder, more fearful. Our daughter, Sadie, now thirty-one, walks over and places an arm around my waist, resting her chin against my shoulder. The mechanical whoosh of the ventilator behind us, the constant beeping of the monitors, is now the soundtrack to the end of my world as I know it. “Are you okay?” Sadie asks softly. She had taken over Tyler’s business a year ago, when he first got sick. And she was the image of her father. Sweet, hardworking, resilient, and an absolutely brilliant photographer. I smile, eyes still fixed towards the torrential storm. “I’ll be okay,” I say softly. Tears fill my eyes. “Your father always said that I was strong in adversity. Sadie, I never thought I’d have to be strong enough for something like this.” She hugs me tighter. I don’t know how to exist in a world without Tyler. I don’t know how to not miss the kiss he gave me on the forehead every morning for the last thirty years, or the gentle kiss on the lips every night before I fell asleep, wrapped safely in his arms. It’s a tragedy worse than any other in the history of the world. We were reliving our very own version of Romeo and Juliet. A love story that has ended too soon. Sadie and I walk over to the bed, joining the rest of our children. Both Eliza and Dr. Carson had passed away some years ago. We never heard from Blake again. In the years of our marriage, Tyler proved himself to be the son that his parents had no choice but to be proud of. And through us, and our children, they discovered happiness again. And spent their final years that way. Tyler gave them that. The nurse and doctor are standing next to Tyler, flanking the bed. I look on at my love, at his pale skin and sallow eyes that haven’t opened for weeks now. The doctor stands prepared next to the vacuum cleaner-like machine that forces air into his lungs. I look over sorrowfully. “Can I have a moment?” I ask the medical staff and the children. The nurse hands me a small envelope before she walks out. I pay it no mind. They leave quietly, and then it’s just him and I. As we were, all those years ago. I look on at the bedroom wall opposite me. When he was first diagnosed, Tyler would hole himself up in his studio for days at a time. I assumed he was processing his fate. But as I saw the pictures on the wall go up, one six by nine at a time, I knew exactly what he was doing. He was recreating the wall of photos in his apartment. This time though, he was building it with the last thirty years of us. Me, him, and our children. He didn’t stop until he had covered the whole wall. A lasting mosaic. I think, in some ways, he did it more for his own self, so he could process what was happening to him. “You told me I went into everything with blind faith. How do I have faith in this, Tyler? Tell me. How do I have faith in the fact that our whole life together will soon become a memory?” I lay my head next to his, violently sobbing against the pillow. Like a rolling reel of film, our life together flashes before my eyes. Sandcastles on the beach. Midnight baby feedings. Children’s birthday parties. Nights spent alone and content in this room. Walks on the sand at midnight. His hand holding mine to welcome our children into the world. My eyes avert to the white square of paper on the side of the bed, featuring Tyler’s familiar writing. My name is scrawled across the front. I open it carefully, as if it’s infinitely fragile, made of nothing but air. To my Emily, If you’re reading this letter, then it means I have to go soon. It’s a good thing, because it means that I stayed for a while. I kept my promise, and you and I made it. We made it, and we made it amazing. You may remember me thanking you on our wedding day for everything that would come after it. For the past thirty years, I have been complete with you in my life. I didn’t need to tour the world looking for adventure. I was home. My heart breaks because I know that you are reading this beside me, probably crying. And I’m gutted that I can’t put my arms around you and make things okay. I hope you believe me when I say things will be okay. My life was spectacular. I could have died thirty years ago, and died happy, knowing that I had the privilege of loving you. But you never really needed me to be strong for you. You had it covered. And you’ll see me every day, in the eyes of our children. In the memories made in our house. The physical me, the real me, may leave you. But there is so much reality in all of those things, too. Remember them. Don’t cry, baby. Goodbye is just a state of mind. And I’ll love you from heaven or hell or wherever I end up. And I promise that you will feel me next to you for all eternity. (Just let those angels or demons try and stop me!) Close your eyes, and I bet you can feel my arms around you. And I’ll save you a cloud, and we can spend the rest of eternity dancing underneath the stars together. ‘Doubt the stars are fire, doubt the son doth move, doubt truth to be a liar, but never doubt I love.’ (I know you just smiled. I love your smile!) I’ll see you later, my Juliet. I love you. Always, Tyler The heartbreak I feel now is overwhelming. He has even found a way to comfort me now, when he knew I would need it the most. My heart shatters to the ground around me, sadness rendering it impossible for me to retrieve the pieces. He remembered everything. And I remembered him. I close my eyes, and I can almost smell the scent of his cologne, feel his arms folded around me, hear his sweet voice narrate his spectacular goodbye. Our children come back into the room shortly after, each one engulfed with the grief of losing the father that loved them so very much and who had taught them so much about love and life. The nurse hands them each an envelope of their own. Their father’s last goodbyes. Eventually, it’s just the doctor and I left in the room. I kiss Tyler gently on the cheek, my tears falling relentlessly around his face. “I’ll see you later.” I whisper to him, before nodding to the doctor, who administers the morphine and turns the ventilator off. The beeping of the machine a few hours later marks Tyler’s body leaving this earth. But the Tyler I know lives in a place inside of me, where no one can reach him. Where no one and nothing can take him away. He was my heart, and now I begin the process of living without one. For never was a story of more woe, than this of Juliet and her Romeo… And for the first time in all my life, I’m scared of forever.
About the AuthorJacqueline Abrahams is the author alter ego for an ordinary mum to three children (two human and one canine) and wife to one husband. Born in South Africa, she now calls Sydney, Australia her home. A collector all things books and bookish, she in an avid reader and has a tiny obsession with filling bookshelves. When she's not preoccupied wearing her aspiring author or mummy hat, she is working her way towards completing a degree in Primary and Secondary Teaching (with an English major of course!)
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