Sneak Peek: Excerpt!
She hadn’t had a drink in a long time, in part because of Ian. She was overcome with guilt drinking around him after everything they’d been through. Alcohol repulsed her now, but at the same time it sort of intrigued her. She wanted to let go, forget. Sometimes she wanted to get drunk. The thought upset her, because she didn’t want to end up like her father.He glared at her when she questioned him.“Don’t treat me like a goddamn child,” he scolded, and she sensed the emergence of the man she feared, the one who harangued her, criticized everything she did, and called her names. In that moment, she wished she hadn’t let him come visit.Several days later, he stumbled into an end table in the living room and broke a lamp. He found every reason he could to insult Amalie, who sneered in return and stomped back to the bedrooms while her father sat on the couch in the dark pouring shots.Just before Amalie could reach her own room, a hand snaked out and grabbed her wrist. Ian tugged her into his room and slammed the door shut behind her. He stood so close she could smell his minty breath.“When. Is. He. Leaving.” His gaze was sharp, edged with displeasure.“Next week sometime.” Amalie sniffed, holding back tears.“I’m sick of him, all he does is pick fights with you and criticize you.”“Ian, that’s not entirely—”“It is entirely,” he snapped. “What was that he said to you yesterday?”Amalie slumped on Ian’s bed, sighing. “That I should get a real job. He doesn’t think what I do is a real job. I work my ass off.”“He doesn’t appreciate you, Am.”“This is really upsetting you.” She said it as if she’d only just noticed.“Damn right it’s upsetting me. Know why?” He sat beside her, appearing defeated. “Because when he screams at you, I see myself. When his eyes are glassy, and he tells you that you’re fat, or that you’re not doing something right—” Ian put his arm around her, drawing her close. “He reminds me of me, Am.” His brow creased, and he seemed to be holding back tears. “I treated you like shit. You put up with it. Just like you put up with him for years.”Amalie hung her head. “That’s not the same.”“Yes it is. I was a fucking drunk. Just like your dad. I swear to God, Amalie, I’ll never drink again.”She felt beaten, exhausted. She’d run out of words, so she said nothing. She merely slipped her hand into his as they listened to her father pounding on the door:“Amalie, open this fucking door. Goddamn it, what’s wrong with you? You never listen to me. You’re such a fucking bitch. Open the fucking door, Amalie.” The knocking turned into slamming.“Wanna get out of here, baby?” Ian squeezed Amalie’s hand as she wept.“Yes,” she whispered. “Yes, I do.”