Before We Fall Blurb:
When quiet Cally, an amateur ballet dancer, is suddenly diagnosed with cancer she runs away from her boyfriend Liam, her job in a call centre and her safe life in Wildham – in order to experience ‘real’ life in London. Taking a job as a stripper and flat-sitting in the top of an office tower she meets her obnoxious neighbour Bay; a tattooed, drug-taking, suicidal artist, haunted by the death of those close to him. Despite their differences, the two strike up a friendship – Bay pushes Cally to try new things while Cally provides Bay with a muse – and they fall in love. But their secrets threaten to tear them apart and time is running out…
Before We Fall Excerpt:
Bay took his time setting up – righting his easel, re-securing a canvas, arranging the low lighting and organising his supplies. Retrieving our vodka Martinis from the kitchen, he set them by the bed before switching off my playlist and putting The Fragile album on repeat. This time he stripped off his trousers and settled on to the stool butt-naked except for his wristwatch; a paintbrush in hand, and his expression all business.
I watched him as he worked, his gaze shifting constantly between me and the canvas, even while he was mixing up new colours or incorporating a gel medium to alter the texture. My eyes feasted on the parts of him that the easel didn’t block from view – his sexy feet; his long, athletic, hairy legs; his impressive private parts relaxed and weighty against his thigh; the bulge of his inked biceps; his black unruly hair, sticking-up in great tufts where I had pulled it – my fingers tingled at the memory – and his eyes; that dark, intense steady gaze, that turned me inside-out with longing.
‘Tell me what you see,’ I said.
He kept painting as if he hadn’t heard me, and I started to wonder if I had ruined things between us. Shamelessly, ruthlessly, I had taken what I wanted. Would he forgive me? Or would I live to regret it? Abandoning his brush in a jar of water he took up another, kneading the bristles in his palm and then into fresh paint. At length he returned his impassive gaze to me, as welcome as the sun.
‘I see the gentle slope of your shoulder…’ he said, applying brush to canvas, ‘…the elegant line of your neck and the way the light burnishes the tips of your knuckles beneath you cheek.’
His measured words physically stirred me, as if he were actually reaching out and caressing my skin. I swallowed. ‘What else?’
‘I see the shadows captured by your collarbone; the way your breasts rise and shift with each breath, and the deep, wine- red splashes of your nipples, which pucker and harden under my scrutiny.’
I shivered at his words, an aching heat unfurling inside me and pooling low down in my groin. ‘Cold?’ ‘No.’ ‘Move your right hand up and cup your left breast.’
I did as he said, as if in a trance, and my fingers didn’t feel like my own. My skin thrilled at my touch as if it was his.
‘Now rub your nipple with your thumb,’
My breath caught in my throat as sensation zinged through me. I had become Bay’s willing marionette; in his thrall and at his mercy. Calmly he returned his attention to his painting while I continued to pleasure myself. But I wanted more. ‘What else do you see?’
‘The gentle swell of your stomach… the feminine curve of your hip… and the soft, dark nest of curls between your thighs, still damp with my come.’
I was breathing harder now, my face felt flushed and I unconsciously squeezed my thighs together to ease the throbbing there.
‘Slowly move your hand down your body – slowly,’ he repeated. His eyes followed as my fingers began their torturous descent. Despite his stern expression, his steady voice, and his determination to paint, Bay was hard again; his impressive shaft restrained in his left fist. Every part of me yearned for Bay to give in, to lose control and take me again. But we said only once – that was the deal – and I didn’t want to be the one to break it.
‘Raise your thigh and touch yourself there,’ his voice was lower and rougher than before.
Sinking my fingers between my legs, I quietly moaned as a shudder of pleasure rolled through me, but I fought to keep my eyes fixed on Bay. His paintbrush now hovered ineffectually in the air, his gaze ensnared by my body, his left hand slowly working his length.
‘Taste it,’ he said and I withdrew my fingers. They glistened with moisture as they caught the light and I sucked them slowly and deliberately.
I no longer recognised myself at all. But it did the trick.
With a groan of defeat Bay abandoned his work and strode towards me. Nudging me over onto my back, he leaned down, pressed the flat of his tongue to my lower belly and licked all the way up to my neck in one long, slow sweep. I instinctively spread my legs for him as he crawled onto the bed and kissed me on the mouth, tasting our combined desire on my tongue. It was a much gentler kiss than before – soft, warm and probing – a proper long, drawn-out, bone-melting snog. I was so relaxed that it felt entirely natural when he eased inside me – the most sublime feeling in the world.
Having worked as a collage artist, sculptor, prop maker and garden designer, Grace
has always been creative, but she is a romantic introvert at heart and writing was, and is, her first love.
Before We Fall, the second novel in The Wildham Series, is published by Accent Press, who also released her debut contemporary romance novel, Kindred Hearts, in
A lover of rock music, art nouveau design, blue cheese and grumpy ginger tomcats,
Grace is also an avid reader of fiction – preferring coffee and a sinister undercurrent, over tea and chick lit. When not making prop costumes or hanging out with her favourite nephews, she continues to write stories from her Hertfordshire home.
Find Grace Here:
Facebook – /GraceLowrieWriter
Twitter – @GraceLowrie1