It’s impossible to focus on college biology when your family believes doomsday is imminent and the government is out to get you.
All Pete Wilson’s ever wanted is to become a veterinarian, but those dreams are going up in flames. Commuting to an urban college and helping his parents with their apocalyptic prepper crap is more than he can handle.
Worse, Pete’s asshole neighbor is stirring up trouble, his family’s stockpile has been destroyed and farm animals are turning up dead.
Lindsey Linger is the tomboy sister of his best friend. Now a sexy spitfire, she and Pete are liable to set the barn ablaze as their romance finally heats up. But she’s hiding a terrible secret, and rural life isn’t all bonfires and hayloft romps. That becomes clear one icy winter night when the survival of everyone Pete loves hangs in the balance.
Can Pete be the hero they need, or will this be the end of the world as he knows it?
*Mature situations and sexual content – recommended for ages 17+*
“What the hell?” Mom charges out of the utility room and into the kitchen with my jeans balled up in one hand. In the other hand is a small plastic bag. “What is this? Tell me it isn’t what I think it is!” She shakes it in my face.
“I don’t know! It’s not mine.”
“Then why did I find it in your pocket?”
“My—” Oh, hell no. “I can explain. There was a girl at the party last night—”
“Party? I thought you had a project to work on at the library. Now you’re doing drugs and lying?”
“No! I mean yes. Yes, I went to a party last night, but no, I’m not smoking pot. She must have shoved it in my pocket.”
“She was close enough that she had her hands in your front pocket?”
I open my mouth for a second then snap it shut. I’m screwed either way, so I decide on the lesser of two evils. “Yes, she had her hands in my pocket. I’m eighteen. I can’t stay your innocent little boy forever, Mom, but I promise you I’m not doing drugs.”
“Did you drink?” I feel my cheeks redden under her glare. “I see.”
“What’s going on?” My stomach lurches into my throat at the sound of Dad’s voice.
“Tell your father what you did, Pete.”
“Mom—” Shame, hot and sticky, crawls up my neck. Mom only knows the basics, and if she and Dad knew what really went down last night, they’d die, come back to life, tell me how disappointed in me they are, die again, and make me feel guilty for eternity for killing their vision of the perfect son…the one who doesn’t bang girls who sell pot and have sex with other girls.
Always a misfit, Stephanie Lawton writes twisted romance that tugs the heart strings then punches you in the gut.
She has a tendency to psychoanalyze people, which comes in handy when creating characters. She’s fascinated by teacher-student relationships, bullies, psychics, doomsday preppers and larger-than-life characters.
Making readers squirm is her greatest pleasure. Proceed with caution.
Originally from rural northeast Ohio, she lives in Coastal Alabama with her family.