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Countdown to Falling Away: Penelope Douglas


Falling Away (Fall Away #3)
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Expected January 6,  2015

Jaxon is the guy she’s supposed to avoid.

K.C. is the girl he won’t let get away....


K. C. Carter has always followed the rules—until this year, when a mistake leaves her the talk of her college campus and her carefully arranged life comes crashing to a halt. Now she’s stuck in her small hometown for the summer to complete her court-ordered community service, and to make matters worse, trouble is living right next door.

Jaxon Trent is the worst kind of temptation and exactly what K.C. was supposed to stay away from in high school. But he never forgot her. She was the one girl who wouldn’t give him the time of day and the only one to ever say no. Fate has brought K.C. back into his life—except what he thought was a great twist of luck turns out to be too close for comfort. As the bond between them grows, he discovers that convincing K.C. to get out from her mother’s shadow is hard, but revealing the darkest parts of his soul is nearly impossible.…

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Falling Away - Chapter 5 Excerpt

“So, how did this happen?” I asked, holding the gauze on his skin, under the cuts, to catch the saline.
His abs flexed, probably from the cold fluid, since saline didn’t sting, as I poured it over the cuts, cleaning them.
He sucked in air through his teeth. “Some of the science kids have greenhouses on the roof,” he grunted, and I almost laughed out loud. “Masters asked me to go up and make sure the roofs were closed, but I slipped coming back down the stairs. Scraped myself on some bolts.”
Ouch.
I used the rest of the gauze to wipe up the solution, and then ripped open a package with a wet wipe and made sure the blood was cleared up.
“You should be using gloves,” he pointed out. “You know? Blood and all.”
“I thought any girl was safe with you,” I shot back, tearing open bandages. “Isn’t that what you told me?”
Jax was silent for a minute, narrowing his eyes farther and watching me as I placed three rectangular bandages on his stomach.
“I said any girlfriend of mine,” he finally clarified. “But you shouldn’t be so careless. Use gloves next time.”
I ignored him, feeling weird on the occasions he acted like this. Jax had a habit of scolding me, sometimes acting as though he was protecting me, and then following it all up with being an asshole. I finally figured out condescension was his way of gaining superiority. Making others feel stupid.
I sat back, looking him in the eye and changing the subject. “Is anything else hurt?”
He hesitated only a moment. And then folded his arm back, lifting his right elbow to reveal the scratches I’d noticed earlier.
Repeating the same procedure, I stood up and leaned over him, catching the saline wash as it cascaded over his wound and into the gauze.
He hissed, and I blinked.
“Blow on it,” he ordered.
“It doesn’t sting,” I scoffed, knowing damn well that saline didn’t hurt.
“K.C., Jesus,” he barked, wincing.
I rolled my eyes but gave in. Holding the underside of his arm—his hard triceps—I leaned down and released a slow, cool breeze over the scratches. Jax’s scent wafted over me again, and I desperately wanted to close my mouth so I could breathe him in through my nose.
But I didn’t. I could tell his eyes were on me.
“Why are you watching me?” I asked, wiping up the rest of the solution and blood.
I didn’t look at him, but I heard him swallow.
“This is just the first time you’ve ever made me feel good, is all,” he replied in probably the most candid way I’d ever heard him speak.
I pinched my eyebrows together.
The first time I’d ever made him feel good. I didn’t know what to say to that. Hell, I had nothing to say to that.
Keeping quiet, I finished applying his bandages as fast as I could and didn’t meet his eyes again. He’d tried to be nice to me in high school. He’d tried to be a friend. Maybe friends with benefits but still a friend. Now here I was, forcing my attention on him, and he probably had no patience for me anymore.
“Can I ask you a question?” I ventured.
“What?”
“That night you drove Liam home . . .” I swallowed, smoothing my fingers over the bandage I’d fixed to his arm. “You said you had tattoos. Too many.” I repeated his words, my eyes fixated on his forearm. “What did you mean?” I pressed, because clearly Jax didn’t sport any tattoos. His statement hadn’t made any sense.
Even though I hadn’t looked at him, I noticed his head turn away as he inhaled a slow, deep breath. Kind of as though he was getting ready to dive deep underwater and knew he wouldn’t be up for air for a while.
“Sorry,” I said quietly, straightening up and crumpling the bandage wrappers in my fist. “I just . . . I don’t know . . .” I trailed off. “I just want to understand.”
I finally met his eyes, and he studied me silently. I didn’t know if he was trying to figure out what to tell me or if he wanted to tell me anything at all. Funny thing was, I’d thought about what Jax said that night a lot over the years, and while I was curious, it wasn’t until I’d overheard his conversation with Jared today that I knew it had something to do with his childhood.
And I realized that I didn’t know Jaxon Trent at all.
He rubbed his forearm and narrowed his eyes briefly before relaxing. “If you could get a tattoo, what would it be?”
I blinked, shocked by his question. “Um.” I laughed softly, thinking. “I thought about a set of angel wings, I guess. With one of the wings broken,” I admitted.
“It has something to do with your past?”
I nodded. “Yes.”
“And it’s something you want to remember?” he pressed.
“Yes.”
“That’s why I don’t have any tattoos,” he concluded. “People get tattoos for all kinds of reasons, but they’re always badges of what has made them who they are. I don’t care to remember what and who made me this way. The people that gave me life. The people that brought me up . . .” He shook his head, defiant. “The places I’ve seen or anything I’ve done. It’s all in my head, anyway. I don’t want it on my body, too. I don’t care about anything that much.”
Bully (Fall Away #1)
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My name is Tate. He doesn't call me that, though. He would never refer to me so informally, if he referred to me at all. No, he'll barely even speak to me.

But he still won't leave me alone.

We were best friends once. Then he turned on me and made it his mission to ruin my life. I've been humiliated, shut out, and gossiped about all through high school. His pranks and rumors got more sadistic as time wore on, and I made myself sick trying to stay out of his way. I even went to France for a year, just to avoid him.

But I'm done hiding from him now, and there's no way in hell I'll allow him to ruin my senior year. He might not have changed, but I have. It's time to fight back. 

I'm not going to let him bully me anymore.

***This novel contains adult/mature young adult situations. It is only suitable for ages 18+ due to language, violence, and sexual situations.


Until You (Fall Away #1.5)
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Have you ever been so angry that hitting things felt good? Or so numb that you actually felt high? The past few years have been like that for me. Traveling between fury and indifference with no stops in between.

Some people hate me for it, while others are scared of me. But none of them can hurt me, because I don't care about anything or anyone.

Except Tatum.

I love her so much that I hate her. We used to be friends, but I found out that I couldn't trust her or anyone else.

So I hurt her. I pushed her away.

But I still need her. The sight of her centers me, and I can pool all of my anger into her. Engaging her, challenging her, bullying her...they are my food, my air, and the last part of me that feels anything human.

But she left. She went to France for a year, and came back a different girl.

Now, when I push, she pushes back.

Rival (Fall Away #2)
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From the New Adult sensation and New York Times bestselling author of Bully and Until You

Madoc and Fallon. Two estranged teenagers playing games that push the boundaries between love and war…

She’s back.

For the two years she’s been away at boarding school, there was no word from her. Back when we lived in the same house, she used to cut me down during the day and then leave her door open for me at night.

I was stupid then, but now I’m ready to beat her at her own game…

I’m back.

Two years and I can tell he still wants me, even if he acts like he’s better than me.

But I won’t be scared away. Or pushed down. I’ll call his bluff and fight back. That’s what he wants, right? As long as I keep my guard up, he’ll never know how much he affects me….

Upcoming

Aflame (Fall Away #3.5) 
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Pre-order: Amazon/B&N/iTunes/Kobo
Expected April 21, 2015

Jared and Tate's story continues...

Penelope Douglas 
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Penelope Douglas was born in Dubuque, Iowa and has a Masters of Science in Education from Loyola University in New Orleans. She lives with her family in Las Vegas.




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