Wednesday, February 12, 2014


Light meets dark. Secrets meet truth. 

It's been three years, twenty-five weeks, and five days since Isis Blake fell in love, and if she has it her way, it'll stretch into infinity.

After a run-in with her mom’s ex-boyfriend, she scrabbles to remember what she’s lost to amnesia. Her ex-nemesis Jack falls deeper into a pit of despair, and his girlfriend Sophia does all she can to keep him to herself. But as Isis’ memories return, she finds it harder and harder to resist what she felt for Jack, and Jack finds it impossible to stay away from the only girl who’s ever melted the ice around his heart.

As the dark secrets surrounding Sophia emerge, Isis realizes Jack isn’t who she thought he was. He’s dangerous. But when Isis starts receiving terrifying emails from an anonymous source, that danger might be the only thing protecting her from something far more threatening.

Her past.

***This book contains language and sexual scenes, some of which may be unsuitable for younger readers.

***This is the second book in the Lovely Vicious series.

Part 2

My life has become a series of people asking me if I’m
Except I’m sitting in a hospital bed with a massive bandage
around my head like a turban. So no, I’m not better.
But people keep asking anyway because it’s how you show
concern for someone you care about, I guess, but frankly a giant box of
chocolate truffles and reign over a small kingdom would be acceptable
No school. No home. All I do is sit in bed all day and watch
crappy soap operas in which people faint dramatically all the time. Like, damn.
That shit’s an epidemic. I get so
bored I try to mimic their faints except the nurses catch me and say stuff like
‘you have a head injury’ and ‘contrary to popular belief, the floor is hard’,
or some nonsense, so nobody can blame me when I steal the nearest wheelchair
and bolt down the hall at top speeds. NASCAR ain’t got nothing on me. Except
the backing of huge corporations who give them money to go fast. But still. I’m
twice as cool and my ride is pimped as hell – a worn-out shitstain on the seat
from somebody’s dead someone and the stuffing pulled slightly out of the
“Good evening, chaps!” I nod at two interns. They shoot each
other looks but before they can call security, I’m blazing around the corner at
warp speed.
“Bloody good weather we’re having!” I smile at a man sitting
in his bed as I pass his open room. He cheerily returns my greeting with a
resounding “Go to hell!”.
I round the next corner and come face-to-face with Naomi, my
nurse. Her hair’s back in a strict bun, her face angry and worried and tired
all at the same time.
“’Ello, love. Fancy a cuppa?”
“You’re not British, Isis,” Naomi says.
“I can be things,” I insist. 

“Yes, well, unless those things include a person who is
lying in bed recuperating, I don’t want to see them. And I especially don’t
want to see them wheeling around the hospital like a madman.”
“The madman is back that way,” I jerk my thumb behind me. As
if to prove it, a loud “FUCK!”
reverberates. Naomi narrows her eyes and points at my room.
“Back in bed. Now.”
“Why you gotta be like that?” I sigh. “We can work this out.
There can be bribes. Of the monetary kind. Or maybe not monetary. Do you like
adventures? I’m full of those. I can give you at least nine adventures.”
“You’ve already given me one for the day. If you don’t get
back in bed, I won’t let Sophia in after her check-up.”
I gasp. “You wouldn’t!”
“I would!”
I start to faint dramatically, but she catches me with her
meaty arms and plops me in the wheelchair, pushing me back to my room. I grumble
the entire way. In the doorway, I crawl out on my hands and knees and fake-sob,
collapsing into bed.
“Oh, quiet, you drama queen.” Naomi chides, and closes the
door behind her.
“Drama empress!” I
yell. “I prefer the title empress!”
My room’s quiet. Too quiet. I huff and cross my arms and
blow bangs out of my face. I need a haircut. And an escape plan. But looking
fabulous while escaping is somewhat required, so I’m putting one before the
I grab my phone and text Sophia.
Her text comes seconds later;
mean the thing you threatened that male nurse’s balls with?
I sigh contentedly at the reminder of my own past
brilliance. I’m so lucky to be me. 
She sends one smiley face; :D
Sophia and I are the youngest people in this hospital,
discounting the kid’s ward, and they don’t let you in there unless you’re a
doctor or a parent or you have permission, which is really hard to get. Which
is why I use the windows. I hate jello and it’s all they give you at meals so I
hoard the jewel-like cups and give them to the kids like a gelatin-laden Santa
and it’s a big hit. Not so much with the nurses. And security officers.
Regardless, Sophia and I make sense. Since the day we met at lunch a few weeks
ago and I gave her my apple, I’ve felt like I’ve known her forever. Being with
her is like a massive, run-on déjà vu. When she first told me her name, I
blurted; “Oh! You’re Sophia!” like it
was a huge revelation. She asked me what I meant by that, and I searched long
and hard in my own sizeable brain and couldn’t find a reason. I’d just said it,
without thinking, and I didn’t really know why. I still don’t know why.
Besides that tiny bump in the road, she and I have been
getting along famously. You can tell because A. she hasn’t run away crying yet
and B. she always ends her texts to me with a smiley. Only people who like you
do that. Or people who want to secretly murder you. But really, I don’t think
someone as delicate and beautiful as Sophia would want to murder someone,
unless she wanted to be like, beautiful and delicate and bloodthirsty, which, I’m not gonna lie, would add to her
considerable mystique –
“Isis,” Sophia says from the doorway. “You’re thinking out
loud again.”
I whirl to face her. She’s in a floral sundress, with a
thick, cozy-looking sweater. Her platinum, white-blonde hair is kept thin and
long, like strands of silver. Her milk-white skin practically glows. To offset
all her paleness, her eyes are ocean-deep and navy-dark. In one hand she
carries a book, and in the other –
“Scissors!” I crow. “Okay, okay, deep breaths everyone.
Because I’m about to say something mildly life-changing.”
Sophia inhales and holds it. I point at her.
“You’re going to cut my bangs!”
She exhales and fist-pumps. “I’ll chop them all off.”
“Soph, soapy Soph soapbutt, we have only been together three
weeks and I love you dearly, like a sister, like we are deer-sisters frolicking
in the woods, but this is extremely vital to my well-being and I am trusting
you with my life.”
“Ah, I see,” Sophia sits on my bed, giving me an
understanding nod. “You keep all your vital organs in your bangs.”
“As well as all my future prospects with Johnny Depp. So you
realize how important this is to me.”
“I am quite serious.”
“It’s not like you can make me look any less hot, since that
is impossible, but generally speaking don’t fuck up.”
She runs her fingers through my wild bangs. “Straight
“Uh, you’re the fashionable expert here. I just sort of
throw on things that don’t have holes in them and hope for the best. I read a
Cosmo once on the toilet. Does that count?”
“Depends on how long you were on the toilet.” Sophia brushes
my bangs with her fingers experimentally.
“Years. They talked about face shapes. Like, do I have a
square face? A heart-shaped face?”
“Definitely heart-shaped.”
“Really? Because I was thinking more
that-one-unfortunately-misshapen-Skittle-in-the-bottom-of-the-box shape.”
Sophia laughs. “Just hold still, and close your eyes. I
promise I won’t disfigure you for life.”
There are the soft sounds of snipping and Sophia’s gentle
fingers, and then she tells me to open my eyes. I leap out of bed and dash into
the bathroom. The age-stained hospital mirror reflects a short-banged girl, her
slightly-faded purple streaks gracing her forehead. A single bandage wraps
entirely around the base of her skull. She looks tired, old. Her face contains
two volcanic eruptions on her chin, one on her nose, and bags under her eyes that’d
make Coach jealous. And something’s wrong. Something deep inside the girl is
“What’s the matter? Don’t like it?” Sophia comes up behind
me. In the mirror, she practically radiates pale, waifish beauty, and I’m…
“No, I love it. You did great. Fab. Baf. Nothing’s wrong!
Absolutely zero. Absolute zero. It’s kind of chilly in here, isn’t it?”
I run back to the bed and burrito myself in the blankets.
Sophia follows, sighing.
“If you don’t like it, you don’t have to lie.”
“No, I do! Shit, I really do. Sorry. It’s not that, it’s –
other stuff. Stuff from before I came here.”
“Ah.” She settles on the foot of my bed. “The hard stuff.
The stuff the hospitals can’t heal.”
I nod. Sophia’s gaze isn’t piercing, but something about it
has weight, gravity, like she’s decades older than she seems. I haven’t told
her about Nameless, mostly because she doesn’t need to know when she already
looks so sad all the time. She hasn’t told me anything about her past, either,
and it’s better that way. I can tell she’s had it worse than me. 
“Was it a boy?” She asks, finally.
She folds her hands over each other, like a dainty lady. The
nurses gossip about her; the way she’s been in the hospital for five years, the
way she has no family – her mother and father died in a car accident, and her
grandmother raised her, but she passed a few years ago, leaving Sophia all
alone in the world. Mostly they gossip about the boy who comes to visit her –
Jack, the same guy who happened to see our house door open and saved me and Mom
from Leo. Infuriatingly good-looking, and an infuriatingly good Samaritan, he
apparently visited her a lot. But since I came, he hasn’t come at all. He’s
sent letters to Sophia (letters! In this day and age!), but he hasn’t come
personally. The nurses love to gossip about that, too. I scream politely
from across the room
correct them whenever I can; I don’t know him! He
barely knows me! I’m indebted to him, sure, but there’s nothing going on and
there never will be because duh – all
boys who aren’t Hollywood actors with prestigious pirate acting careers are
“I’m sorry,” I blurt.
“For what?”
“For your boyfriend. He’s…he’s stopped coming around since I
came, and if it’s because of me, I’m sorry, and I know that’s arrogant to
think, but the nurses blab and I can’t help but think –”
She pats my hand and smiles. “Shhh. It’s okay. They don’t
know anything. He’s just busy is all. He works a lot, and he has school.”
“I have school,” I grumble.
She plops the book she brought down on my lap. “And you have
seven chapters of The Crucible to read if you wanna catch up before you go back
next week!”
I contemplate seppuku, but after remembering how big the
medical bill for a cracked head is, I refrain. Mom’s having a hard enough time
paying without me adding spilled organs and general death to the list. Besides,
I can’t die yet. I still gotta thank Jack properly. Dying before you pay
someone back is just plain rude.
“I don’t wanna go back to school,” I say.
“Yes you do.”
“I totally do. It’s a snoozefest in this place.”
“Then we better get reading.” Sophia smiles. I groan and
roll over, and she starts reading aloud. She enjoys torturing me. Or she’s just
happy to have someone here with her. I can’t decide which. We might get a long
great, but she’s still a huge mystery to me. Me! The queen empress of
deducing what people are all about! I study her face, her hands, her dress as
she reads. Everyone in the hospital knows Sophia, but no one knows what she
has, exactly. The nurses don’t like to talk about it. I asked Naomi and she
glared and told me it was under doctor-patient confidentiality. Sometimes
Sophia stays in her room for ‘treatments’, and those last for days. She doesn’t
limp or cough or vomit, and no bandages or stitches are on her. Except for the
fact she’s so pale and thin and sometimes complains she has migraines, she’s
perfectly healthy as far as I can see.
“Soph,” I interrupt. She looks up.  
“I know this might be super invasive, and historically
invading has been pretty bad overall, but I don’t think I can physically
contain my curiosity any longer. Or, I could. But I’d like, implode the star
system from the stress. Why are you in the hospital?”
Sophia slowly closes the book. “You really don’t remember,
do you?”
“Remember what?”
Her eyes dampen with sorrow. She stares out the window for a
long time before sighing.
“What?” I insist. “What is it?”
Sophia looks back at me. “Oh, nothing. It’s just sad, is
all. I’m sad for him. He was so happy, for a while.”
I wrinkle my nose, and before I can explode with the demand
for answers, Sophia starts talking again.
“I have the same thing you have.” She taps her head with one
finger. My mouth makes a little ‘o’.
“You…split your head open like a melon, too?”
She laughs, the sound like bells made of crystal. “Something
like that.”
I look over at the bag she brought. A bunch of romance books
crowd it, various clones of Fabio flashing their brooding frowns on every cover
as a scantily dressed female is in the inevitable process of fainting on a rock
somewhere nearby, preferably directly beneath his crotch.
“Why do you even like those? Aren’t there just like,
princesses and kissing and misogyny?” I wrinkle my nose. Sophia shrugs.
“I don’t know. I like the princesses.”
“They’ve got great dresses and fabulous hair and loads of
money. Kind of hard not to.”
“I suppose I like the way the stories always end happily.
Since…since I know my story won’t end as happily.”
My heart twists around in my chest. She sounds so sure of
“H-Hey! Don’t talk like that. You…you’re the closest thing
I’ve ever met to a princess. Like, a real life one. Minus the tuberculosis and
intermarrying. And like, beheadings.”
Sophia laughs. “You’re a princess too, you know. Very brave.
And noble.”
“Me? Pft.” I buzz my lips and a delightful spray of saliva
mists the air. “I’m more like…more like…I guess if I was in one of those books
I’d be like, a dragon.”
“It just makes more sense!” I smooth my hair. “Fabulous
glowing scales. Beautiful jewel-like eyes.”
“Wings for arms?” Sophia smirks.
“That’s a wyvern! Dragons have wings independent of their
limb system! But I forgive your transgressions. I’ve encountered a bit of
heartburn today and am not in the mood to eat a maiden like you in the
“What would you do as a dragon?”
I shrug. “You know. Fly around. Collect gold. Fart on some
Sophia is quiet for a moment.
“But I still don’t get it. Why does a dragon make sense for
“Think about it. I’d just make a badass dragon. I
mean…nobody really likes the dragon. You get to be alone, in a cool quiet
place. As a princess everybody likes you and you gotta be in the middle of hot
sweaty balls all the time.”
Sophia raises an eyebrow.
“Ballroom…balls. Dances. Uh.”
She laughs that chime-laugh, and I can’t help the laugh that
bubbles up, too. I sound like a donkey.
“And I mean,” I add. “You know. Dragons never have to worry
about. Um. What I mean is, princes don’t fall in love with dragons –”
“ – they fall in love with princesses –”
Did you
think that’s what this was? Love? I don’t date fat girls.
“ - so it makes more sense, you know?”
“Isis?” Naomi pokes into the room. “Let’s go. It’s time for
your session with Dr. Mernich. Hi Sophia.”
“Hello,” Sophia says, and smiles at me. “You should go.”
“Ugh, no thank you. Mernich’s going to ask about my feelings
and frankly I’d rather swallow a centipede than talk about those things. Or
become a centipede and crawl away. Can I become a centipede? Do they allow that
in America -”
“Isis,” Naomi says sternly.
“- you can become a certified lightsaber maintenance
engineer in America, so I really think you should be allowed to become a bug -
“Arthropod,” Sophia corrects.
“ – arthropod, and Naomi! My, what big hands you have. The
better to grab me with, am I right? ACK, gently, woman! I’m damaged goods!”
Naomi steers me out of the room, Sophia cheerily waving
after us.

Did you miss part 1 of Chapter 1 from SAVAGE DELIGHT?
Click here to find where to can view it!

Sara Wolf is the author of ARRANGED, a college-aged romance series centered on an arranged marriage. She’s currently working on her next New Adult romance series. She’s addicted to the Vampire Diaries, loves chocolate and romantic angst, and can’t get enough of damaged heroes.

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