Today, I have Authoress G. Fife on my blog doing a sneak peek at her new release. I hope you read the excerpt and purchased your copy of her book today. Thanks so much.
Gina Hayes-Fife – of Louisville, Kentucky has been serving others for over twenty years in the Customer service industry. The married mother of one, has enjoyed reading and writing for as far back as she can remember.
Gina took a leap of faith and dove headfirst into the literary publishing scene. She is a hopeless romantic and as a result plans to take the romance scene by storm. Gina is devoted to giving her readers classic love stories sure to melt their hearts.
When she isn’t writing Gina is a key member of the Autism community helping to bring awareness and acceptance to those on the spectrum.
Before I Let Go: Carmen & Troy
We come to love not by finding a perfect person, but by learning to see an imperfect person perfectly. -Unknown
In the finale of The King Sisters Series, we find our beloved couple, Carmen and Troy Black, still madly in love after twelve years of marriage. Having defied the odds of staying together after losing their firstborn, they’ve recommitted themselves to each other, creating their very own perfect love story.
When photographer Troy Black is called to work on a project with news anchor Zya Chase, he jumps at the opportunity. Troy is no stranger to beautiful women throwing themselves at him, but his love for Carmen is steadfast. After two weeks alone with Zya in DC, Troy finds himself way too aware of her beauty, and she challenges him on his feelings for her. They are compatible in a way he hasn’t been with another woman, not even Carmen.
The eldest King sister, Carmen King-Black, is free-spirited and loyal, and she loves her family. She’s created a life that her sisters admire, and the love between her and her husband is a storybook love affair. Troy’s sudden distance has Carmen wondering why, but when Troy and Zya are linked together in the media, Carmen is left questioning the future of her marriage.
Did things go too far?
Zya tapped away on her keyboard as Troy flipped through his camera. They only had one interview left before Zya was scheduled to fly back home. Troy was planning to stay through the weekend once Carmen arrived with TJ the following day. They’d fallen into a comfortable silence as they worked, Troy introducing her to classic Miles Davis. The sound of his horn hitting peaks before resting in a mellow rhythm that caused Zya to close her eyes briefly.
“How did I go so long without listening to this man?” she whispered.
Troy chuckled looking up from his camera. “What I’ve noticed listening to Miles is you can listen to him at one point in your life and not get it but then try him at another time, and he steals your soul.”
Zya nodded. “That’s definitely what’s happening. I feel he has completely snatched my soul. I’m so in tune with this song right now. It almost makes me want to cry.”
“I’ve seen many women cry to Miles, so you won’t be the first. He brings a Zen like vibe when he hits that horn. He’s more than just a jazz musician… He is jazz… He is that thing that is jazz.”
“Yes, he is all of those things, and I can’t wait to build my collection.” Troy placed his camera down on the table, causing Zya to look up from her iPad. “How are things going with the photos? Do you think you’re ready to bring it all together?”
“I have some great material, and the interviews went better than expected. I can’t wait to get back to San Diego and onto the editing room floor.”
“Yeah, we work well together, so I know it will be magic.”
Troy walked to the mini fridge and pulled out a bottled water. “Do you want one?”
Zya shook her head. “I’m going to finish my wine.” Troy grabbed a bottle before joining her at the small table. He watched as she took a sip from her glass.
“I’ve had a great time learning about the culture of HBCU. I’m a little jealous that I didn’t attend one myself.”
“Stanford would be a hard school for anyone to turn down.”
“Yeah, but I missed out on a lot of the other stuff you learn in college. Academically, it’s one of the best schools, but I didn’t get the knowledge of cultural greatness that is African American culture. I didn’t have sistas like myself that I could connect and build bonds with. I was led to believe that the handful of black women at Stanford were my competition, not my sister.”
“And now you get to tell this story the way that you’ve learned for yourself.”
“You’re right. I’m happy to be in a position to make a difference.”
“Making a difference is really all that matters, right?”
Zya leaned back in her chair and sipped from her glass before speaking. “I wish we had guys like you at Stanford.”
“Like me? What does that mean?”
“Attractive, smart, and educated with chocolate skin. The kind you can take home to your mother, and she’d be proud to call son.”
“Are you telling me they didn’t have any black men at Stanford?”
“Yes, but they were super corny and not at all my type. You, Mr. Black, are my type,” she said, glancing in his direction. “You go deep.”
Zya blushed. “I mean with your conversation. Your sense of style could land you on the pages of magazines.”
Troy chuckled. “I’m flattered, but I’m sure you’re exaggerating.”
“No. Not at all.”
They sat in silence as the next Miles tune started, and Zya moved her head from side to side, enjoying the music. Zya toyed with her glass and glanced at him as if she wanted to say something more. Troy eyed her curiously but didn’t push her to speak.
“This song is titled ‘I Fall In Love Too Easily’. It is one of my favorites,” Troy said, breaking their silence.
“What about it makes it one of your favorites?”
“When I heard it for the first time, I thought perhaps, one day, I would fall in love with a woman that is as beautiful as this song. It has always set the bar for what I felt beauty was. It has no look. It’s raw, it’s pure, and it makes you feel.”
“And there it goes.”
“You just have a way with words. You have a way of making things sound more fascinating than they truly are. You should add Miles enthusiast to your list of things you’re passionate about.”
Troy chuckled but only spoke with his eyes.
“I have to ask you a question that may be mildly inappropriate, but the journalist in me has to ask anyway.” Troy’s eyebrows rose, but he stayed silent, waiting for her to continue. “Is there something lingering between us?” she asked.
Zya locked him in with her gaze, and Troy held it. He hadn’t wanted to admit, not even to himself, that there had been something that rested in the air between them. There was an unfamiliar feeling he hadn’t felt for another woman since meeting Carmen for the first time. Beautiful women threw themselves at him often, yet he’d never faced the challenge of having to make the right choice because Carmen had always been his only choice. The feelings he was having for Zya were foreign to him.
“Lingering between us?” he asked for clarification. Maybe she didn’t mean it the way that it came out.
“Yes. Do you feel like there’s a connection, maybe even chemistry, transpiring between us?”
Troy shook his head lightly. “I think it’s just two people who have a lot of things in common enjoying each other’s company. Not to be confused with chemistry.”
“But isn’t that what chemistry is?” she questioned, appearing awkward and unsure of her question.
“Not for me. Not all the time. You can have things in common with anyone. Chemistry is what two people find in each other that transforms them, that makes them want to be great. You can have everything in common with that person or nothing at all. It sometimes doesn’t make sense, but it just is, and that’s chemistry.”
Zya nodded and lowered her head. “I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to cross the line. The journalist in me makes me ask questions, even when I probably shouldn’t.”
“You don’t have to apologize. You make me think about things I wouldn’t generally think about.”
“Like what you would do if you found yourself lusting for another woman?”
Troy didn’t respond at first. He felt that Zya was now challenging him with her questioning. She held him with a challenging gaze, no longer appearing to be awkward or unsure about what she wanted from him.
“You can say that.”
“And what have you convinced yourself you would do in that situation?”
“I would remember not to let lust interfere with love,” he answered with little hesitation.
Zya gave him a forced smile.
“You’re smiling. What’s funny?”
“You asked for this conversation. You can’t just say nothing.”
“OK.” Zya crossed her legs. “I call BS on your answer. I don’t think you would allow yourself to ever admit that you were lusting for another woman. I think you would convince yourself that it wasn’t happening because that’s safe.”
“And what’s wrong with safe?”
“Nothing. It just doesn’t leave room for honesty.”
Troy moistened his lips with his tongue as the air started to thicken around them. Zya continued to hold his gaze. He felt the silent challenge that she placed in his lap, and he didn’t like to be challenged.
“What are you saying exactly?”
“I’m saying you feel the connection between us but have found it easier to deny it so that you remain faithful to your wife.”
Troy leaned forward in his chair. He gave her the look that he gave anyone who dared challenge him. “Remaining faithful to my wife is not a challenge for me.”
“Well, being honest about our connection shouldn’t hurt anything.”
“What makes you so sure that there is a connection between us, Zya? Why do you think it’s more than just two people sharing a few random things in common?”
To his surprise, she didn’t back down. She leaned in closer, keeping her eyes connected to his. “Because our chemistry, and yes, I said chemistry, is undeniable. It’s more than a love for the Padres and sharing a like for whiskey. It’s what happens between us when words aren’t being spoken. It’s the awareness I feel when you enter a room before I even see you. The way that we communicate with our eyes. The way you make me laugh, and I don’t even recognize my own voice. That’s chemistry, Troy. It was present the very moment I met you.”
Her words made him sit back in his seat. She suddenly felt too close for his level of comfort. Maybe there was some validity in what she said for her, but not for him.
“Look, Zya, I think you should go.”
Zya laughed a humorless laugh. “What happened to open and honest conversation.”
“I think we’ve entertained that enough. Don’t you agree?”
“Maybe you’re right.” She countered.
The twinkle in her eyes angered him just a bit. She’d felt what he’d been fighting since seeing her in the newsroom the day they’d offered him the job. They stood at the same time, with only the small table separating them. Troy felt the magnetic force between them but kept his feet planted firmly to the floor.
She was staring at him, willing him to her. Zya rounded the table slowly, allowing her fingers to glide across the table behind her. She stopped inches from him. She was too close, and Troy held his breath. Troy stiffened when she placed her hand on his chest. He felt her stand on her toes, inching her lips to his. Her movements were slow and calculated. Troy’s mind screamed at him to stop her as she snaked her arms around his neck. Troy stepped away from her just before her lips touched his. Zya’s lips landed on his chin, and Troy could have sworn he felt her tongue taste him.
“Zya, I can’t do this.”
Troy gently pushed her away. She covered her face with her hands.
“I know… I’m sorry… I don’t know what came over me…The wine and Miles…” She stumbled over her words as she grabbed her things to leave. Troy reached out and lightly touched her arm as she scrambled around.
“It’s OK. Don’t worry about it.”
Zya looked him in the eyes before she looked away. “I’m going to get out of here before I embarrass myself anymore. I will see you in the morning.”
Troy nodded and watched as she left the room. He fell back on the bed, closing his eyes tightly, forcing her scent and touch from his mind.
Visit Amazon to purchase full novel
Before I Let Go: Carmen & Troy (The King Sisters Series Book 3) www.amazon.com/dp/B07T1V6DNS/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_i_gYNfDbR1RCXSW
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