Give Me Love – Jared & Casey’s POV

Did you miss the blog tour for Give Me Love? If so, that means you missed reading Jared and Casey’s POV and missed seeing the book trailer!

Watch the trailer here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g987_Fu6qC0

Chapter Twenty-Five

Jared
The waves rolled in. I could hear them crashing against the shore as I sat in the sand. I put my elbows on my knees and held my head in my hands as it pounded painfully from lack of sleep and from seeing Evie in my head. That slow, sexy smile that belonged to me.
Fuck.
Not. Mine.
Not anymore.
Right from the start I’d always believed she’d be mine. I’d endured years of patience to have her—texting every single day, slowly getting to know the girl who had stamped her name on my heart because it hadn’t belonged to anyone else since. Only her.

I sat and watched every single moment of us play backwards in my head: every crazy, happy, scary, heart pounding, excruciatingly beautiful moment until it finally hit upon when she opened the door of her Melbourne apartment and I saw her for the first time.

I swiped a hand across my face as though erasing the images from my mind, but she still stood there. Her hair had been a riot of waves, her legs long, her skin a beautiful rich blend of olive and rose. I’d wanted to touch it with my fingers to see if felt as warm and smooth as it looked. My heart had kicked wildly in my chest, and my hand came up to scratch idly at the back of my head as I tried to calm my breathing, but her wide eyes didn’t help. They were rich pools of sexy, decadent dark chocolate. I’d made Mac invite her to lunch after she’d disappeared on me, and during it I’d sat almost dumbstruck as I’d listened to her chatter and laugh with Mac and Coby. My eyes were glued to her as she radiated like the sun and it warmed me, leaving me reeling and realizing I’d been living in the dark for far too long. Using an excuse, I’d gotten her number, and from then on she was always in my mind. Every day my instinct had been to talk on the phone about anything and everything with her, and only ever her, but she’d been skittish. At the time I knew there was a reason; someone had hurt her and I wanted to know who and why so I could break his body into pieces. When she’d finally opened her heart, my own had sunk. Two men, and twice she had almost died. The beautiful rose in her cheeks, hearing her voice singing so rich and clear, the life shining in her eyes—I could have missed all of it. The thought left me breathless, but what had my heart sinking was that I was leading her down the same path. I didn’t know how to make a turn, or how to backtrack, or how to let her go.

But this morning she’d made it so easy and so very, very hard. Now I was here at the beach breathing in the cool chill until I felt it in my bones, trying to forget that Evie had taken my heart and ripped it clean in two in front of me. The agony had left me breathless, and fuck, I tried so hard not to let her see. I’d clenched my jaw until I thought my teeth would shatter from the pressure.

Darkness rolled in and eventually I stood and stretched my tired, aching muscles. I strode back to my car, gravel crunching beneath my feet, wind blowing in my hair. Opening the door I found twenty messages on my phone. I didn’t want to know. I grabbed my phone and stalked determinedly back to the beach, right down to the shore, until the waves hit my toes. Just as I was about to fling it into the water or hell, where it belonged, it rang as though desperate not to be tossed away.

I sighed heavily at seeing Travis on the other line. He had his own shit to deal with, and I hated him being caught up in mine. I knew I wasn’t the only one breaking in two. I could see it clear as day. I had no idea why no one else could see what was going on with Travis, but something needed to be done before he snapped.

I answered anyway and as he spoke, his words told me a tale that had my chest squeezing so hard my lungs locked down. It slammed my broken heart to the ground and crushed it into dust.

“Fuck,” I whispered when he’d finished.

The world spun before my eyes and tears burned fiercely. How could I have let my past blind me from seeing what was really there? It wasn’t a simple mistake I had made; it was one that carried so much weight where lives now hung in the balance. Lives that if lost, would mean mine was too.

I drew air into my starving lungs in such a rush I thought I’d choke.

“Fuck!” I roared, the word weighted with guilt and agony.

I turned and ran, adrenaline shutting off everything. The utter fear, the panic, the terror, it locked tight as my car growled to life and I raced for the stadium. When I arrived the shake of Travis’s head told me what I didn’t want to know.

As the early light of dawn arrived, we were still wide awake, eyes burning red, shaking from lack of sleep, lack of food, and the crash of adrenaline.

“Coby,” I answered when he rang.

“Jesus fucking Christ, Jared. Evie is gone. Gone!” he ended with a shout.

“No,” I denied, my voice a hoarse whisper. “Don’t fucking tell me that, Coby. Don’t fucking tell me she’s gone.”

Fuck. Please tell me I wasn’t watching my entire world crash around me. I felt like my body was in the eye of a hurricane and everything was burning and crashing and tearing apart around me as the wind whipped my hair with eerie silence.

“I’ve called Frank,” came his hoarse voice. “We’ve tracked her phone to Canterbury Road. Where are you?”

“Closer than you, but still ten minutes behind. Leaving right now.”

I hung up and growled, “Car. Now,” at Travis and tossed him the keys. “You drive.”

My fingers jabbed at my phone with frustrating slowness as Travis squealed and spun tyres.

“Damn you, Evie. Answer your goddamn fucking phone!”

I tried again, leaving a message. “Baby, fuck. I’ve got frantic messages from Henry and Coby. What the fuck do you think you’re doing? Frank has your location on GPS, so wherever you think you’re going, Travis and I are right behind you. Just turn around and go home. Turn the fucking car around damn you and go home. We need to know you’re safe. Ring me, baby, please? Don’t do this. Please don’t… I… fuck.” My voice cracked and I hung up the phone.

Frank messaged through the address of where Evie’s GPS location had stopped at, and I had to lock down every single nerve ending to stop myself from yelling at Travis to plant his fucking foot. He knew the urgency of the situation; his red eyes were as frantic as mine. Shit was going down and it was all on me. I cursed again. If we survived this nightmare, then I swore I would leave. If that meant having to live in the dark, I would do it.

We pulled up outside an old, abandoned white weatherboard house. Evie’s blue Hilux was in the drive, empty, the driver’s side door wide open, keys still in the ignition.

I reached around, pulled the handgun from the waistband of my jeans, and engaged the slide. In one frozen moment I met Travis’s eyes, and then I ran for the door. As I surged through, arms up, finger on the trigger, what my eyes found had my heart choking in absolute horror and my entire world went black.

Chapter Twenty-Seven

Casey

I threw my bag in the back of the car and hopped in the passenger seat as Mitch turned the key in the ignition and reversed, taking us from the underground car park and into the early morning light.

I rubbed my hand across my tired eyes as the scenery began to rush by in a blur. I felt flat – not up or down, just somewhere in the middle of fucking nowhere and I hoped like hell I was doing the right thing by leaving. God knows I didn’t want to, but I reminded myself that Evie was worth so much more. Jared and Evie fit together, everyone could see it, and as much as it pained me, so could I.

I remembered back to when I first met her and felt myself smiling at the memory. I never smiled so much as I did around her, and it felt good. She’d had a mouthful of chips so large it was a wonder she could still breathe, yet I figured she could because she still managed to yell at her friends. Then after the meeting they’d had at Jettison Records, I got dragged along the shopping aisles with her. Usually, I hated the domesticity of it, but she questioned me on every little thing, and it was fucking amusing. “Salted peanuts or cashews?” she’d asked me as though lives hung in the balance over what was chosen. Mac had grabbed them both out of her hands and threw them in the trolley before stalking off on her phone. Then it was on to the chips aisle, and just when I thought we’d never make it out of there before we turned grey, we were heading for the checkout.

I chuckled and felt Mitch’s eyes glance my way. “What?” he asked.

I shrugged and shook my head.

We pulled up at a red light and as the car idled, Mitch asked, “What do you think of Quinn?”

Quinn was utterly charming. She was tiny—only coming to my shoulder—and with her with her tousled white-blonde hair and full lips, so very appealing. She’d been wearing a pretty yellow dress that should have brightened her eyes, but there were shadows behind them. I knew, because I recognized them in myself. My chest had a pang because someone as sweet as her didn’t belong in a place where shadows lived. I could only hope hers weren’t as dark as mine because I’d lived in hell for so long I didn’t know who the fuck I was anymore. I was trying to dig my way out, but when you weren’t sure you deserved to breathe fresh air, it was hard to summon the effort. People like Evie, and even Quinn, were the sort of people that made you want to try.

“I like her. She’s different then all the rest, but you didn’t need to push her over.”

Mitch laughed. “I didn’t mean to. How was I to know she was there? She’s so small a gust of wind could knock her down.” The light turned green and Mitch accelerated. “Tell me what’s going on with Travis, Casey.” He paused to check his blind spot and then changed lanes. “You’re closest to him than all of us these days.”

My lips pressed into a flat line, not liking what I was about to say. “We’ve gotta take him off.”

Mitch shook his head. “Fuck,” he muttered. “He won’t do it.”

I could only agree, and I knew why. It was the exact same reason why I wouldn’t do it either.

Mitch pulled into a park at the airport, and we both got out. “You could’ve just dropped me off, mate.”

“Yeah, but I need coffee. May as well get one here.”

Once inside, I checked my bag, and we both grabbed a coffee. “How long you gone for?”

“Four weeks,” I muttered. “Not long.” And it wasn’t, but who knew what four more weeks would do to Jared and Evie. It was better this way that I finished up the overseas contract.

“You’re doing the right thing.”

I nodded because I kept telling myself that. Hearing it from Mitch reinforced the decision, but it still didn’t stop the feeling of what might’ve been. I swallowed the hollow feeling and finished my coffee, the heat of it warming my insides.

“Right. Better get going.”

Mitch nodded and gave my shoulder a slap as we reached the gate. My eyes caught Evie running towards us.

I stopped in shock. “Evie.”

Breathless from running, she planted her hands on her hips and I stood, my eyes running over her. As usual, she looked fucking sexy as though she’d just rolled out of bed, giving you the urge to roll her back in it. I smothered the punch to the gut that lust gave me and waited for her to catch her breath.

“You’re leaving,” she said, the accusation and hurt clear as day in her eyes. Fuck. I didn’t want to leave her. We’d become good friends, and I hated knowing she’d feel like I was abandoning her right when she needed her friends most.

“I need to get going.” Mitch gave me a nod, and I returned it. “See you in a few.” He gave Evie’s shoulder a squeeze. “See you tonight, sweetheart.”

She snagged his arm before he left. “What’s tonight?”

I tuned their conversation out as I watched her speak, realizing with a pang that I’d miss her.

The announcement of my flight boarding came over the PA, and I interrupted them. “That’s my flight.”

Mitch left with a wave, and Evie folded her arms, her voice wobbling when she asked, “Are you leaving because of me? Because I swear to God, I’m sick of people leaving me. It hurts.”

Fuck. She was blinking back tears, and I wanted to take her in my arms and hang on tight. Instead, I gripped her arm gently and moved her out of the way of the traffic flow before someone pushed into her. “How did you know I was leaving? Did you speak to Jared?”

She nodded.

I let go of her arm and told her why I was leaving before picking up my carry-on bag when they announced the final boarding call.

When she said she’d miss me, it filled the hollow feeling for a minute, and I brushed my hand down her cheek, relishing the brief touch.

Offering her a final wave, I turned, and hardening my heart, walked through the gate and onto the plane.

Huge thanks to the participants of my blog tour for their time and efforts contributing to such a worthy cause 😉
See their blog and reviews below!

In order of appearance:
Reading Is My Timeout: http://readingismytimeout.blogspot.com.au/2013/05/blog-tour-give-me-love-by-kate-mccarthy.html
Rude Girl Book Blog: http://www.rudegirlbookblog.com/2013/05/give-me-love-by-kate-mccarthy-blog-tour.html
Smardy Pants Book Blog: http://smardy-pants.blogspot.com.au/2013/05/blog-tour-stop-giveaway-for-give-me.html
Devoured Words: http://devouredwordsbookblog.blogspot.com.au/2013/05/give-me-love-blog-tour-stop.html
Reality Bites Lets Get Lost: http://realitybites-letsgetlost.blogspot.com.au/2013/05/giveaway-review-tour-give-me-love-by.html?zx=6f9287e22b048fa2
Novel Seduction: http://novelseduction.blogspot.com.au/2013/05/blog-tour-review-dream-cast-giveaway.html
The Book Hookers: http://www.thebookhookers.com/2013/05/11/my-review-of-give-me-love-by-kate-mccarthy/
Book Reader Chronicles: http://bookreaderchronicles.com/2013/05/11/blog-tour-give-me-love-by-kate-mccarthy-review-excerpt/
Wine, Relaxation & My Kindle (excerpt only): http://drwrnmk.blogspot.com.au/2013/05/give-me-love-by-katie-macarthy-excerpt.html
The Book Avenue: http://www.thebookavenue.com/2013/05/blog-tour-give-me-love-by-kate-mccarthy.html?zx=cc3319bea03b83f
Book Nerds Anonymous: http://avasmith.org/2013/05/12/blog-tour-give-me-love-by-kate-mccarthy-excerpt-review-and-giveaway/
Book Crush (excerpt only): http://bookcrushbookreviews.com/2013/05/12/give-me-love-by-kate-mccarthy-blog-tour-giveaway/
Love Between The Sheets: http://www.readlovelust.com/2013/05/blog-tour-give-me-love-by-kate-mccarthy.html
Book Addict Mumma: http://bookaddictmumma.wordpress.com/tag/give-me-love/
The Book List Reviews: http://thebooklistreviews.blogspot.com.au/2013/05/blog-tour-give-me-love-by-kate-mccarthy.html
Reviews by Tammy & Kim: http://tammyandkimreviews.blogspot.com.au/2013/05/blog-tour-and-giveaway-give-me-love.html
Shh Mom’s Reading: http://shhmomsreading.com/blog-tour-and-giveaway-give-me-love-give-me-1-by-kate-mccarthy/

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