Today is the last day to pick up your book deals at discounted prices and enter the giveaway. The giveaway has grown! You can win gift cards, paperbacks, assorted swag, and a bouquet of flowers. Enter here.
Today’s featured authors for the promotion are:
Cate’s fantasy works span a variety of topics, from time-travel to witches to guardian angels. Her novella, When Walls Can Talk, is free for the promotion. Check out Cate’s work here.
As the other featured author today, I thought I would share one of my favorite scenes in Cerulean. Cerulean is the first novella in my One Thousand Blues series, and features a dystopia that goes where few have ventured: underwater.
Jesse leads the way to the water. He pauses at the sand to remove his shoes, and I copy his movements. The sand sinks beneath my footsteps. The sun has warmed it, and as we walk toward the water, the grains crunch under my toes.
Gentle, rolling waves lap along the length of the beach. While the giant buildings form a row behind the beach, all I have eyes for is the water. I pull off my sundress, still wearing my two-piece, and run into the ocean. Warm water covers my feet, my legs, my waist, until I am far enough out to dive into the water.
“Wait for me.” Jesse grabs for me before I disappear. “Eager? I can barely keep up with you.”
His hands still wrap around my waist, and I am more aware than ever of the absence of my Skin. He lifts one hand to tuck my wet braids behind my ear, but keeps the other at my side. Jesse wears only his shorts, and tiny droplets of water run down his chest.
For a moment, I forget about Haku. I forget about our separation. I think only of Jesse and his closeness.
He rests his forehead against mine, his brown eyes boring into me. “I like you, Chey. Please don’t swim away from me.”
He fears I will return to the seas.
His lips brush mine, and I am not sure if I ever want the moment to stop.
A large wave douses us and pulls us beneath. We emerge, still holding one another, and laugh.
“Black Rock is at the far end of the beach.” He points out the giant lava rock overhanging the ocean. “Do you want to swim or walk?”
I have never gotten to choose before. Here, along this abandoned beach, the best of two worlds collide. The freedom of gliding through the waters and the joy of running across land; the wonders found within the ocean and the warmth of the sunshine.
“Both,” I decide. We could run down the long stretch of beach, soaking in the sun, then dive into the cool waters while I seek out Haku. Is it greedy to want it all?
“Can I help you ’screen up so you don’t burn?” Jesse holds the sunscreen.
I nod, shy again. Touching is so commonplace above the waters. Hugs freely given, dancing and snuggles and handholding as plentiful as the fish in the seas. Isolation is not an easy thing to recover from, but I am trying.
Jesse rubs my shoulders with the warm lotion. He smoothes his hands down my arms and over my back. The aroma of coconut hovers. His fingertips swirl around and around my cheeks, along my nose.
When it feels as though I have forgotten how to lung-breathe, he closes the bottle and grabs my hand. “Now?”
I smile. “We run.”
Hand-in-hand, we run through the little waves licking at the shore. Water splashes against our ankles, and Black Rock grows near. When the rocky cliff faces us, I turn and pull Jesse into the waters.
Finally, I release his hand and dive.