Availability date: 10/28/2015
Griffin Stone knows the stats. Sons of abusers become abusers. This is his single fear. After witnessing firsthand his parents’ tumultuous marriage, Griffin worries that he, too, harbors an explosive dark side. He volunteers at Holly’s House, a safe haven for abused women. Through sculpture, Griffin gives these women pieces of themselves they’ve long forgotten. Holly’s House is the only place where Griffin finds peace and purpose.Until he meets Frankie Moore. Frankie is an aspiring photographer, finding beauty in things most people miss, including Griffin. He is attracted to her free-spirited, sassy attitude but fears she will trigger the most intense part of him, the one he must keep buried.
“You seemed to be enjoying yourself.”
Ordinarily, that would be a good thing when you meet your boyfriend’s parents. Not this time.
“I guess.” I’m not sure what the appropriate response is to this statement. I feel like he’s baiting me, daring me to say the wrong thing.
“You liked him.” He spits out the words as he walks up the subway steps leading to my street. He still doesn’t look at me.
“Griffin, he was…” I start, as the warm night air hits our faces.
“I know how he is.” He turns to me now. His voice is deep and gritty and booms for miles. People passing by glance for a second before minding their own business. Of all the things that happen on my block, this is probably the least exciting. “Don’t you think I know how he is, Frankie? It’s the reason she goes back for more. Over and over. He’s a fucking prince, right?”
I don’t know what to say. I know for sure anything that comes out of my mouth right now will be the wrong thing. “Griffin.” I’m not sure of where I’m going. “You’re overreacting. I didn’t say any of that. I was just being polite. It’s not so clear-cut. You’re usually very perceptive, but I think you’re too close to this. Like with your mother. I don’t think you see everything that’s there. I saw something in her…women stay for a lot of reasons—”
“Holy shit!” His hands fly into the air as he paces on the sidewalk. “Now you’re going to defend her, too? You’re going to tell me why she stays? I’m the one who lived there. I’m the one with the memories, not you. Don’t you think I know what I lived with, Frankie?”
“I’m just saying you may not be the most objective right now.” I want to stop talking. Everything I’m saying is making this worse. Every inch of his body is tense.
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