27 Lies

By: MJ Fields

DEDICATION


This book is dedicated to my favorite band



My very first book, Blue Love, was inspired by the song Hate Me, by Blue October.

Their music is so inspiring and is always playing when I write novels that are raw and full of the feelings that dig so deep you feel it in your soul. That's what their music does to me.

27 Truths and 27 Lies was written while listening to many of their songs on the album Sway. Worry List, and Not Broken where the top two.

The song Bleed Out is my go to when I need 'someone' to cry with.

Thank you, thank you, thank you for your music. It inspired, heals, and let's me feel.





NOTE TO READER


In the name of love, we often do things we would normally question ourselves for doing. One of those things is lie. Often times, they are trivial, meaningless lies.

Yes, I’d love to watch that movie with you. In reality, we just want to spend time with that person, and we’ve seen the movie and disliked it.

I love the way that looks on you. Even though it isn’t flattering.

I don’t mind. Really I don’t. And in reality, you mind.

Then there are lies we tell ourselves.

It won’t happen again. When, in fact, it’s already happened before.

It doesn’t matter; it’s just words. When someone says something unkind and we swallow it back, yet it chips away a tiny piece of our heart.

It’s okay. I love him, and he will change. He doesn’t change. It just keeps getting worse.

He loves me.

Love is so very complicated. In order to make love last, both parties must love themselves and be on the same “page” as to where their futures are heading: together...or in separate directions.

Like love, Luke’s book is not easy.

The hero is flawed and has done things that may be unforgivable. The heroine is, too, as well as broken, shattered, and growing into a role that was meant to be shared by two people.

At it’s very core, though, there is growth, realization, acceptance, a mutual path to be traveled, and love in its truest form, one that is shared.

In each chapter heading is a lie told in the name of love, as told by one of my amazing readers. It does not necessarily introduce the chapter.

This book does end in a HEA, but like all journeys worth traveling, it is not easy. It is about the beautiful and the broken.



XOXO

MJ





PROLOGUE


My childhood was picture-perfect as far as childhoods go. I have a loving mother, a great stepfather who raised me as his own, a brother, and two sisters, who are funny and kind. They have never made me feel like I’m not one of them.

Outside of that circle is an extended family who love me, who I love, and who loved a man I was never able to meet. Through them, I learned of their memories. Through me, they get to keep a piece of Tommy Lane.

In high school, I was a star basketball player, like my father. I excelled at football, like my father. I was tall and built, like my father. In essence, I used to be a constant reminder of the young man who was some kind of wonderful. In reality, I was, and still am, no such man.

The months preceding graduation, I felt lost. I felt like a child who had held the hand of a man who was always there, but I knew he hadn’t been. I also knew I outgrew him, my father. One simple statement meant to provoke thought and encouragement, instead incited anger.

I was angry at myself for never stepping out from the shadow of a ghost. Angry at all the people who never gave me the opportunity to grow outside of who he was and into my own person. Therefore, I joined the military, something I heard my father had planned to do but was never given the opportunity. He, too, lived in a shadow of sorts. He also died in that shadow.

I was going to honor my father in my own way and grow beyond his shadow, leaving behind those who held the both of us back. It was a wonderful plan and, when executed, I became a man. I found myself, and in finding myself, I got to serve my country, and she served me.

Home was a great place to visit, but not a place I ever wanted to plant roots, until a little girl I could never say no to grew into a woman.

Ava Links, the daughter of my father’s best friend, the man whose shadow my father lived in until his dying breath. One night inside of her, hovering over her, her calling out to God, to me, she was in my shadow. At least, that was what I always told myself the morning after.

Seven years later, she was still at my mercy.

My. Mercy.

Then she told me she loved me, and my fucking world imploded.





CHAPTER ONE


I don’t love you. - J. Dietrich


LUKE


Sleep isn’t always necessary. Hell, I have gone without it for days when out in the field. When I am home, though, in Fayetteville, North Carolina, it’s welcome.

Why can’t I sleep? Because five-foot-nothing; one hundred and ten pounds of curves and ass; long, thick raven hair; and blue eyes pop into my head when I close my eyes. I am a full foot taller and outweigh her by a hundred pounds and yet the sight of her is enough to weaken me and cause blood to pump into my dick, something I have kept in check for years.

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