Series: Lake State University Books 4-6
Author: Rachael Brownell
Genre: College Romance, Forbidden Romance, Friends to Lovers, Boss/Intern
Cover Design: Emily Wittig
Graphics: SWBR Graphics & Design
He’s my new boss.
We’re also friends. Nothing more.
So what if he’s my secret crush of three years? Or that he’s sexy, tempting, smells like heaven, and makes my girly parts twitch? He’s also sweet, caring, and everything I’d want in a man… if I wanted one.
Which I don’t.
Falling in love is the last thing I want right now. I’m not even sure I believe in love anymore. It leads to heartbreak and that’s an emotional rollercoaster I’m not interested in riding.
All my friends might be coupled up and deliriously happy, but that doesn’t mean I want what they have. Happily ever after is not in the cards for me.
No, I’m not jealous.
I keep telling myself that, not that I believe my own lies.
Which makes the next few months the biggest challenge of my life. Spending hours alone with him. Working side-by-side late into the night. Keeping my hormones in check when I get a whiff of his intoxicating scent.
I can handle this. I’ll just repress my feelings the same way I have been since the moment we met. Masked by a fake smile and practiced deep breathing.
How hard can it be?
When he starts making me promises, it becomes harder than I could have ever imagine. Because I want him to keep those promises even though I know he won’t be able to. I won’t let him.
It’s the only way to keep myself from falling in love with him. Because if I do, I may never recover.

I’m the youngest but that doesn’t mean I’m naive. That I can’t take care of myself.


Or go after what I want.

Which is exactly what I plan to do, no matter how many times my brother tries to stand in my way. This is my life, not his. He may be afraid to let me go, but I’m not scared of spreading my wings and flying.

Of rising from the ashes.

I’m tired of mourning. I’m tired of being treated as fragile. And I’m ready to start living my life again.

First thing on my list… sex.

So what if it’s my first time? Who cares if it’s supposed to be special?

I’m not looking for a relationship, I just want to lose my virginity.

I’ve even set my sights on the person I want to give it to.

His messy hair falls in his honey brown eyes, making me weak in the knees. His touch lights a fire inside me I didn’t know existed and I find myself begging to get burned. Best of all, he says he likes to fix broken things.

I’m still a little broken, and I have a few ideas how he can fix me.

The only problem… my brother’s forbidden him to come near me.

It’s a good thing sneaking around is hot.

I’ve wanted her since the moment I first saw her. She was wearing sweatpants and a baggy shirt. Her hair was tucked under a knit cap, her hands wrapped around a large to-go cup of steaming coffee.


We spent hours together that semester. Working. Studying. Talking. Becoming friends.

Friends.

Ha! I never once thought of her as my friend. The only thoughts I had where she was concerned involved us naked and her screaming my name. Over and over again.

But like the idiot I am, I waited too long to make my move. She started dating some jerk and I remained in the friendzone.

They’re not together anymore, though. So when I spot her standing in the bookstore, looking hot as hell, I don’t hesitate. This may be my only shot with her so I’m not going to blow it.

Only, that’s exactly what I do.

Because instead of rekindling our friendship and moving slow, I end up devouring her lips and taking her back to my place. Worshipping her for hours. And almost letting my true feelings slip.

Would that be so bad?

Yes. Because she’s made it clear that we’re friends, even if we can’t seem to keep our clothes on when we’re around each other. Which is why we’re sneaking around.

If she only knew how I really felt, maybe things would be different.

Then again, opening myself up to her could expose my darkest secret. One that I haven’t even shared with my friends, my brothers, the people who know me the best.

Telling her my secret could also set me free. Because when I’m with her, that’s how I feel.

Free.

Of the burden. Of the memories. Of my reality.

 
 
Rachael Brownell is an International Bestselling author of new adult romance.
 
She lives in Michigan with her husband, son, snuggly dog, and hateful cat. She moonlights a few days a week (her excuse to get out of the house and socialize) and writes almost full time. Her first book was published way back in 2013 and since she’s released more than 30 additional titles.
 
When she’s not writing her next novel, you can find her hanging out with her family, watching her son play baseball, or running on the treadmill at the gym (though she skips more days than she goes). She also enjoys golfing but is still learning, so if you see her on the course… stand back.
 
 
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