For Cadence Miller, the fast track to adulthood proves intimidating and frustrating. She’s a little girl lost—abandoned by her parents and uncertain of her future. She doesn’t think she “fits” anywhere. She’s eighteen. She wants to be older. And the result is both comical and heartbreaking.
Mark Connelly will do anything to provide Cadence a stable, loving home—to be her protector. But he’s just as broken and lost, and his heart won’t let go of his past so easily. He knows he must share his secret with Cadence. And he hopes his revelation won't tear them apart. He hopes it will draw them closer, and make their love better.
Cadence turned left out of the elevator. She wandered down the dorm hall looking for Room 24. But the numbers were too low, and she realized she went the wrong way. She was just about to turn around before glimpsing a message left on a tiny whiteboard attached to someone’s door:
“Student union at 5 sharp. Got someone I want you to meet. – Lindsay”
Cadence stared at the smiley face beside the word “meet.” She wondered if it was a blind date set-up and if Lindsay’s friend would be happy about it. She knew Michael was waiting, but she decided to read a few more messages.
She strolled the hall in no particular hurry, stopping at each door, reading the notes of students who were experiencing college in a very different way from her. She had no idea how long she stood in front of Room 8 staring at the hearts someone drew on the board. She had no idea why she couldn’t control her impulse to draw her own hearts, and reached for the pink marker hanging by a string. She gripped the marker like it was her lifeline to this other world.
She traced the outline of a heart in the lower corner of the board, then colored it in carefully.
Cadence jumped back, dropping the marker. It slapped against the door in the deafening silence of the hallway.
S. Walden used to teach English before making the best decision of her life by becoming a full-time writer. She lives in Georgia with her very supportive husband who prefers physics textbooks over fiction and has a difficult time understanding why her characters must have personality flaws. She is wary of small children, so she has a Westie instead. Her dreams include raising chickens and owning and operating a beachside inn on the Gulf Coast (chickens included). When she's not writing, she's thinking about it.
She loves her fans and loves to hear from them. Email her at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow her blog athttp://swaldenauthor.blogspot.com where you can get up-to-date information on her current projects.
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