Thank you for visiting The Riverbend Trilogy’s Blog Tour! Here you will find a sneak peek at a scene from the third book in the series, Waking Tide and learn a bit about the author, Andrea Goodson! Don’t forget to enter the giveaway at the end of the post and see where you can visit Andrea tomorrow!
Excerpt from Waking Tide
The blinding winter sun awoke Lena that morning. The cold winter light let on how frozen the world was outside, but she felt safe and warm in her bed. The lush down comforter wrapped tightly around her shoulders wasn’t the only thing providing that warmth. Will’s strong body lie next to her, though still sleeping, his presence there with her was more powerful than it had ever been. Her mind quickly flooded with all that had happened the previous night and the love she felt for him quickly grew within her. She didn’t regret being with him. She didn’t regret being weak and allowing him to take over both her body and her soul. In fact, she felt a sort of elated giddiness. A spark of light heartedness that had been absent for so long, yet always trying to find its way back to her.
As much as that spark exhilarated her, there was still a small feeling of fear within her.
She felt afraid and she didn’t know why. No matter how perfect it all seemed, no matter how happy she was in this very moment, being cradled inside of Will’s warm embrace, she still felt the fear. It lied low beneath the surface and it was screaming at her as it had so many other times in her life. It just resided there, within her, an unwelcome visitor in her private moment of bliss with Will. Lena despised the fear, she despised it more than she did the feelings of weakness and for the first time in her life she grew so tired of the fear that she suddenly felt strong enough to push it out of her life. Not just in this moment, but in every moment that she would have from this day forward. She was tired of being afraid of love, afraid of pain, afraid of not being in control, and it was finally time for that fear to leave.
Lena had spent many nights in the cold lonesomeness of her apartment in Georgia wishing the fear away. Many times had she asked herself why she must live with such anxiety and panic. She could feel it in every bone of her body almost every minute of every day. It only physically manifested itself as her feeling short of breath. But inside of her, the anxiety had been raging since she lost her father. She had always felt like a victim, like it wasn’t a choice or a decision. But now, lying with her head against Will’s strong shoulder, she felt…powerful. For the first time in years she actually felt as though she was in control instead of always trying to be. She wouldn’t wish the fear away this time. This time, she would demand it. This time, she would force it. It was her life and she knew deep down that she was finally strong enough to do it.
Lena ran her hand up the center of Will’s chest. She could hear him breathing softly as he slept, the soft thud of his heart beat against the side of her cheek. She wasn’t sure why she suddenly felt her strength return. Perhaps it had never left and she just needed to find it again. Lena knew that it wasn’t Will that had brought it out, though if anyone were capable of doing that for another person, it was surely him. No, Lena felt it was there all along and she had just needed to find it again. But as she looked up at the gorgeous man who held her, her strong protector, she had no doubt that opening herself up to the love that she felt for him had freed her in some way. That somehow, Will had made it possible for Lena to let herself out of the cage she had been living in all these years. It was a prison that had been built by the tragedy of first losing her father and then maintained well by Lena herself all of these years. As such, it was a prison only she could free herself from. It wouldn’t be easy, Lena knew that. It wasn’t as if she could just snap her fingers and all of her fears, insecurities, and anxiety would instantly dissipate. But she could try, with Will. With Will by her side, she felt she could do anything.
Suddenly the thought of Gabby crossed her mind, panic entered her being but was quickly relieved when she remembered that she was at her cheer coach’s house. The last thing lena wanted to do was set a bad example for her little sister. Though Gabby was 17 years old and surely not ignorant of such things, evidenced by her late night partying a few weeks ago. Lena still didn’t want to deal with the awkwardness if Gabby had discovered that Will had spent the night in Lena’s room.
Will’s body began to move in the bed next to her, rolling over towards Lena, he tightly wrapped his muscular arm around the front of her chest, holding her close to him. Slowly, he awoke and gently smiled at her. His dark black eyes speaking every word that Lena needed to hear without any sound leaving his lips. She could be with this man, she had been with him, both in mind and spirit, her entire life. And now that she had finally succumbed to her long felt desire to share her body and soul with him, she felt there was no turning back. Everything had been such a whirlwind of pain and grief in her life, she needed this relief. She needed him. And for the first time ever, Lena began to feel that he was safe.
Safe to need.
Will gently caressed her shoulder, still not speaking a word. No Good morning, no cocky comments like Thanks for last night, which was the type of thing Lena could always expect from him. Just silence for what felt like forever, and it was a wonderful forever. One that could go on and on without any boredom or awkwardness whatsoever.
When he did eventually speak, he only said three words. Three words that he had said many times before. Three words that Lena had denied for far too long. Three words that somehow felt different now than they ever had in the past. Three words that made her let the strong walls of resistance and fear that she had built over the past few years instantly come crashing down.
“I love you.” He whispered in her ear, followed by a trailing kiss down the side of her neck.
Lena gazed up at the stark white ceiling above her, her heart and body flooding with a warm rush.
“Will.” She whispered.
He looked up at her from his position against her shoulder.
“I love you too.”
His dark eyes sparkled and a lovingly familiar and overconfident smile spread across his face while he quickly pulled the down comforter over both of their heads.
Copyright 2013 Andrea Goodson
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Andrea Goodson was born in 1982 and had a love of and fascination with writing since she was very young. Always imagining ways in which the world could be different, she began to write short stories when she was very young. It wasn’t until many years later that she put pen to paper and began to work on what has become her first novel, Riverbend, part one in a trilogy. Upon completion of that work she found that writing was something she felt meant to do and would never be able to give up. Using her own experiences with hardship and tragedy Andrea uses her writing to reach others in an effort to show the world that we need not be victims of circumstance. Her main characters endure many conflicts yet find the courage and strength to better themselves.
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Thank you for visiting! You can see Andrea again tomorrow on I Heart Books and see reviews as well as catch an article about Bookish Boyfriends!