I fell in love with Helena Hunting’s world of hot-as-sin tattoo artists in Clipped Wings and its sequel, Inked Armour, so returning to it has been an absolute delight. I am so excited to share with you an excerpt from Fractures in Ink, the story of Chris and Sarah, a book that can be either read on its own, or after the first two books in the series.
Strip clubs were like costume parties on Halloween—everyone dressed as the sluttiest version of themselves. Women in fetish outfits wasn’t what had drawn me to the club in the first place. It was that everyone there seemed the same as me. We were all damaged, and the girls who went to the private rooms and offered services were the most fragile of them all, even if they put on a good front.
I wasn’t a knight in shining armor coming to save them; I was a kinder, safer option than someone who would abuse them, because I knew what it was like. I wasn’t sure what kind of person that made me.
Sarah was different than those girls, and that had been clear from the beginning. I’d asked her out, fully expecting the no I got back. But I’d kept asking, and she’d kept saying no. And the more she said no, the more I wanted to make it happen.
I’d see her working the tables, smiling the way she was supposed to, shredding egos in that subtle way of hers where I couldn’t quite tell if she was joking or serious when she cut someone down. And when she thought no one was looking, I’d see that smile slip. Her sadness leached the warmth out of her gaze whenever she turned toward the stage to watch the girls strip down to thongs, offering the tiny straps for bills to be shoved in.
Her expression when she thought no one was watching made me re-evaluate my strategy. I wanted to understand why someone so well-spoken and gorgeous would choose to put herself in a position where she was regarded as a thing to be had and discarded.
After nearly two months of persistence, Sarah finally agreed to meet me at a juice bar. She’d driven herself and had been determined to hate me. I’d been determined to change her mind. I wanted to be someone better than I was. I hadn’t even tried to kiss her at the end. She’d been the one to lay one on me, and she’d looked pretty pissed about it. I’d called her an hour later and left a message asking to see her again. It took her two days to get back to me, but she’d agreed. That time she let me take her to dinner.
She’d been guarded at first, which was understandable. Her walls were like mine, which was another part of the allure. I understood walls. They’d kept me safe from people most of my life. Only my Inked Armor crew got past them, and even then, I only let them into the rooms I wanted to. There were locked closets no one but me could enter. But by keeping my walls in place with Sarah, I’d created a distance I didn’t know how to cross any more.
Part of me wanted to let her in, tell her all about my shitty childhood and the way I struggled with how to help my sister and mother with the poverty they couldn’t escape. I thought she’d understand, and maybe she’d empathize, and maybe she’d even give me some piece of her in return, but it was a dangerous slope. And it might tangle me deeper in something I wanted but couldn’t have. Not with any real permanence.
I finished folding the laundry, stuffing the nurse outfit under everything else. Then I went around turning off the lights. I stripped out of my shirt and pants, but left my boxers on.
Sarah was starfished on the bed. Most nights she’d roll over and give me space, not that her double bed had much to give. Tonight she burrowed through the covers, grumbling in her sleep. She did that sometimes when she was stressed. Xander’s name came up often. Tonight it was mine as she shimmied in closer.
“I’m glad you decided to stay,” she breathed. Her arm came around my waist, and she smoothed a hand up my chest, stopping on my left pec. I covered it with my own.
“I told you I would.”
“I thought maybe you’d change your mind.”
“Not a chance. I thought you were asleep.”
I smiled against her hair.
“I had to change the sheets today,” she muttered.
Now I knew she was only half awake. “Oh, yeah?”
“Uh-huh. I didn’t want to, but they’d lost your smell. Now I’ll get it back.”
“What do I smell like?”
I let the word sit, like oil floating on top of water; it didn’t mix with the answer I’d expected.
“I like that I can feel your heart,” Sarah whispered, her sleep-fuzzed mind drifting again.
She wasn’t really present in the moment. I knew that. So I said the thing I wanted to, but couldn’t when she was truly listening.
“It’s all yours, baby. All you have to do is want it enough to take it.”
115 Comments Hide Comments
Can’t wait to read this!
Your excerpts keep me coming back for more
Whoah! i ned to read the book.
Haven’t read this one yet!! But I really want to and that excerpt is great!!
Love Helena Hunting, Can’t wait to read this one!
I want more Sarah and Chris!
I need to read
Sounds like a great read!
OMG I love Helena’s book!! Cant wait to read this book!!! this excerpt is soo good
Love Helena’s Pucked series, but haven’t read this one yet. I’ve heard so many good things about it. It is on my TBR list. :)
This makes me even more excited to read it!
I just can’t wait! I love this
I’m so excited for this book
Awesome I can’t wait to read this!!
Love that excerpt!! Makes me desperate to read the book
Can’t wait for this
I love the excerpt. I love the whole book,
I can’t wait to own this beauty on paperback <3
Thanks for another awesome giveaway ?
Thanks for this awesome giveaway ?
I absolutely love this excerpt! Can’t wait to read this book!
Awesome giveaway and excerpt ?
I cannot wait for this book! Been wanting more from this series!
OMG thus sounds so amazing. A definite one click for sure. Thanks
I’m very interested to see where this goes… ;)
I can’t wait for this!
Oopps made a mistake in my email reposting :)
I can’t wait to read this!! Thanks!
I can’t wait to read this. Just the excerpt made my heart ache a little.
Can’t wait to read this one! Thanks for the giveaway!
I can’t wait to read this book! Thanks for the giveaway!
I can’t wait to read it.
Eeeek! I can’t wait to read this! Thanks for the Chance: )
Can’t wait for this! Gah…this right here: “What do I smell like?”
So excited for this book!!!
Gah I need more!
this is awesome! loved the excerpt <3 thanks for the giveaway!
Cant wait to read this book.
I LOVE everything about this book..the cover, the Title, especially the excerpt?
Can’t wait to get over with my exams so that I can freaking DEVOUR this book??
I’m so excited to read Chris and Sarah’s story. The first book was quite emotional and I loved it, loved the characters.
Can’t wait to read these! Thanks for the awesome giveaway !
I cant wait for this book I love Helena Huntings books. Love the excerpt <3
Thank you for the opportunity!!
Looking forward to reading this one!!
can’t wait! (i want more! :P )
Sounds good :)
Sounds great!! I can’t wait to read this!!
Looks awesome! Definitely going to read this one!
I can’t wait to read this! OMG. That excerpt tho… ?❤
I’ve missed the Clipped Wings series. #NeedAngst #HurtMeBaby #WordDaggers
I heart HH so hard, this was the first series of hers that I read and fell in love with. Can’t wait to read C & S’s story x
Love this book!!
I can’t wait to read this! I’ve been looking forward to Chris and Sarah since I started Clipped Wings.
Cant wait to read this!!!
Can’t wait to read! Love the Clipped Wing series!
I can’t wait to read this.
Aw, that dialog at the end… I need to read it!
Absolutely in my Tbr list
Thanks for the giveaway! Sounds really good!
Touchy feely! Nice…
Looks like a MUST READ book to me! Thank you for this awesome giveaway!
Another Must Read, I just love H. Hunting !
Can’t wait to read this book!
Thanks For the chance! <3 <3 <3
I loved the excerpt! Can’t wait to read this.
Wow great excerpt! So excited for this one now, I really loved the first 2 in the series. Helena Hunting books are so so good. Thanks!
I can’t wait to read this!! Thanks!
Cant wait for this book..
Can’t wait to read this!!!
Love this series!
Can’t wait to read
LOVE! So excited to read Fractures in Ink! <3
This excerpt is making me more impatient for the book!
All the excerpt did was make me anxious to get my hands on this! Loved the first two and I can’t wait to read this one!
I can’t wait to read this I’ve heard it’s amazing! <3
Can’t wait to read it !!!
Excerpt sounds amazing. Can’t wait to check it out.
Can’t wait to read it!
Cant wait to read this!
Love every ink
Love the first 2 books cant wait for this one
Sounds like a good book ? Can’t wait to read it ?
Love Helena Huntings books. She is a fabulous writer with a great sense of humor.
I loved the first two books in this series!
LOVE Helana Hunting´s books and I can´t wait to read this one!
Looking forward to Helena Hunting’s latest!
thanks for the chance! looking forward to read it.
Been looking forward to this release for ages!
You can’t go wrong with Helena Hunting! Amazing excerpt.
I’m excited to read this series!! I just picked up the first 2 books in paperback!!
I love her books!!
thanks for the chance <3
Can’t wait to read this! Helena is always a one-click author!
I can’t wait to read this! Helena is AWESOME!!!
Love the excerpt.. can’t wait to read the whole book. Thanks for the chance.
Sounds like a great book Thanks for sharing it with us
I adore this series and am so excited that Fractures in Ink is LIVE!!! Cannot wait to read it!
Helena Hunting is one of my favorites. Thank you for the excerpt.
I can’t wait to read this book! Thank you for the giveaway <3
I don’t know that books and I’m curious
thanks for this release
Oh, I can’t wait to get my hands on this one!
Love, Love, Love Helena Hunting! Thanks for the generous giveaway!
Definitely going on my list! That excerpt sounded sweet and heartbreaking at the same time. Thank you for the chance and good luck to everyone!
Love Helena’s books! Thanks for the info etc. and the fab cover reveal!
Love Helena’s books and can’t wait to read this. Thanks so much
Love the excerpt – can’t wait to check it out! <3
Sounds so good!
SQUEEE!!! So excited to read this!!! I can’t wait!!!
Love this excerpt! I can’t wait to read this book!
I haven’t read this series but i’ve been wanting to & just reading this
excerpt of Fractures In Ink makes me really wanna read this series
especially this book. Helena Hunting is fkn amazing so i have no doubts
i will fall in love w//everything about these books <3 :).
Sounds awesome! Can’t wait to read it!
Can’t wait to read it!!! Love all of Helena’s books!!!