Thanks for having me today to share an excerpt from IF I WERE YOU and THE INSIDE OUT TRILOGY to celebrate the release of the attached series.
I have my fiancee to thank for this series because he pushed me hard for years to write it. We were buying and selling storage units when he found journals and decided I had to write a story about someone who finds a journal and it leads them into erotic danger. He was determined and road me about it for YEARS. I began thinking about it and the characters became a part of my life and I got to know them long before I wrote them. I think that helps them come to life. I hope you think so!
The serials are in Rebecca’s POV who you get to meet in the series through her random journal entires. These serials actually tell her story and begin when she first arrives at the same gallery Sara from the series later visits and starts working at. You will meet all the characters that you know from the series through Rebecca’s eyes and you will find loads of clues to what happens in the series!
Inspired by a real journal found in a storage unit during my eight years buying and selling units, the series embraces the dark sensuality of Shades of Grey and the intrigue with storage units that is Storage Wars in one spine tingling series packed with mystery and passion.
The serials can be read alone but they are perfect for in between IF I WERE YOU and BEING ME. I thought today I’d share a sexy excerpt from IF I WERE YOU.
First about the series...
One day I was a high school teacher on summer break, leading a relatively uneventful but happy life. Or so I told myself. Later, I’d question that, as I would question pretty much everything I knew about me, my relationships, and my desires. It all began when my neighbor thrust a key to a storage unit at me. She’d bought it to make extra money after watching some storage auction show. Now she was on her way to the airport to elope with a man she barely knew, and she needed me to clear out the unit before the lease expired.
Soon, I was standing inside a small room that held the intimate details of another woman’s life, feeling uncomfortable, as if I was invading her privacy. Why had she let these items so neatly packed, possessions that she clearly cared about deeply, be lost at an auction? Driven to find out by some unnamed force, I began to dig, to discover this woman’s life, and yes, read her journals—-dark, erotic journals that I had no business reading. Once I started, I couldn’t stop. I read on obsessively, living out fantasies through her words that I’d never dare experience on my own, compelled by the three men in her life, none of whom had names. I read onward until the last terrifying dark entry left me certain that something had happened to this woman. I had to find her and be sure she was okay.
Before long, I was taking her job for the summer at the art gallery, living her life, and she was nowhere to be found. I was becoming someone I didn’t know. I was becoming her.
The dark, passion it becomes…
Now, I am working at a prestigious gallery, where I have always dreamed of being, and I’ve been delivered to the doorstep of several men, all of which I envision as one I’ve read about in the journal. But there is one man that will call to me, that will awaken me in ways I never believed possible. That man is the ruggedly sexy artist, Chris Merit, who wants to paint me. He is rich and famous, and dark in ways I shouldn’t find intriguing, but I do. I so do. I don’t understand why his dark side appeals to me, but the attraction between us is rich with velvety promises of satisfaction. Chris is dark, and so are his desires, but I cannot turn away. He is damaged beneath his confident good looks and need for control, and in some way, I feel he needs me. I need him.
All I know for certain is that he knows me like I don’t even know me, and he says I know him. Still, I keep asking myself — do I know him? Did he know her, the journal writer, and where is she? And why doesn’t it seem to matter anymore? There is just him and me, and the burn for more.
Rounding the corner, I enter the hallway, and Chris is suddenly there in the narrow passage with me, pressing me against the wall, his powerful thighs framing mine.
My hand goes instinctively to his t-shirt-clad chest. I am immediately aware of the intimacy of the touch, of my body’s reaction to the man who has betrayed me. “Don’t shove me against another wall and try to intimidate me, Chris.”
“I’m not trying to intimidate you. I was protecting you, Sara.” His hands move to my waist, scorching me, and my reaction to the sizzling touch is instant. I cover his hands with mine, trying to control what he does next, but it doesn’t help. Now, my hands are on his hands and his hands are on my body.
“Call it what you want,” I ground out, “but you had no right to do what you did.”
“He had to know he couldn’t manipulate your dream. Money, and my many resources at your disposal, does that.”
His words knock my anger and my breath away, and confusion consumes me. His actions and his words conflict at every turn. “Why would you help me? You said I don’t belong in this world.”
“Because I won’t watch him gobble you up and destroy you.”
I remember his words, and understand now that he wanted me out of this gallery, not this profession. “Because he’s a dark, messed up, arrogant asshole who will play with my mind and use me until there is nothing else left of me I recognize.”
“And yet you say you’re worse.”
He stiffens and cuts his gaze, seeming to struggle before fixing me in a turbulent stare. “I am, Sara, which is why you should run as far away from me as you can. And I should step back and let you.”
“Then why aren’t you?” I whisper.
His eyes hold mine, and what I see there, the depth of his desire, overwhelms me. He flattens his palm on my belly and I tremble beneath the touch, and he has to feel it too. “Because,” his voice low, seductive, his hand traveling up the center of my body, “I can’t stop thinking about you, and everything I want to do to you, everywhere I want to touch you.”
His hand presses to the swell between my breasts, and my nipples ache with a wish he would touch them. His boldness ignites something sultry and dark inside me, a side of me that defies the good-girl school teacher who is appalled I haven’t stopped this. I want him. I want him here and now, and any way I can have him.
And when his gaze lowers to my mouth and lingers, I know he is thinking about kissing me and I have never wanted to be kissed so badly in my life.
“Do you taste as good as I think you do?” he asks, but he doesn’t wait for my reply.
Suddenly, his fingers have tunneled into my hair and he’s dragging my mouth to his. I am all soft submission, yielding to the moment, to the man. I melt into him, welcome the hardness of his body pressed to mine. And when his tongue presses past my lips, a long, wicked caress, I taste his hunger, his need. There is possessiveness to his kiss, to his hand on my back, molding me closer. I am lost in the ache that has become my need for this man, this stranger I cannot resist. He says he’s protecting me; he says he’s dangerous. I am conflicted, and sure I should be angry with him, but I am completely incapable and unable of processing why.
Have you read anything from Lisa Renee Jones? What did you think? Have a favorite?
Have a question or comment for Lisa?