Friday, March 21, 2014

Hush Baby by Cindy Vine

Kyle Rushton appears to have everything going for him. His own home, a successful business, a beautiful woman in his bed and an adorable son.
But when things start to go wrong in his relationship it spreads like a cancer into every facet of his life. With his life turned upside down, he goes to his sister and some old friends for help.
Sometimes things are not what they seem.
Caught between a need for revenge and a search for justice, Kyle and his friends turn to the past for answers and the more layers they uncover the darker the truth becomes. Until he finds himself asking – is knowing the terrible truth going to help him move on with his life?

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Chapter 1
Damn.  She was going to make her way to his table.  A tall leggy blonde with bed-hair and a mini-skirt the size of a postage stamp.  As if he needed more complications in his life.  Women, who needed them anyway?  All he wanted was to watch the rugby game on the large-screen television in the bar seeing he wasn’t welcome in his own home.  That wasn’t too much to ask for was it?  The blonde had been checking him out since he’d arrived, trying to catch his eye, giving him toothy grins which showed the gap between her front teeth.  She wasn’t unattractive.  He wasn’t immune to the females of the species.  He just wasn’t in a good space, wasn’t in the zone.  Of course, the gap-toothed leggy blonde didn’t know that.  She thought she’d found a man desperate for female company, not realising that was the last thing he needed.  She was carrying two beers obviously thinking she could win him over with booze.  He took a sip from the beer he’d been nursing through the whole of the first half.  It was still half-full.  Just as the blonde was about to shoulder her way past the couple toasting each other in front of his table in the crowded bar, he felt a large hand on his shoulder. “Kyle man!  What you doing here?  Thought you were going to be watching the game at home?”  The blonde made eye-contact as she passed his table, the two beer glasses held high to avoid spillage as she jostled her way through the crowd.  Maybe it had all been in his head.  Maybe she wasn’t bringing him a beer and trying to pick him up.  He turned to face the tall muscular man with a full beard and clean-shaven head who had tapped his shoulder.
“Hey JT, I can ask you the same question.  What are you doing here?”  The crowd in the bar groaned in unison as the local team dropped the ball just as they were about to score.
“Miss-communication, if you know what I mean.  Posting the fixture list on the fridge didn’t stop the missus from organising a baby shower for one of her workmates in my home during the game.  No way I could try and watch the game with hordes of noisy women oohing and ahing over tiny items of clothing, and shaking rattles and stuff.  I called your house to see if I could come over…”
“What did the bitch say?”  Kyle took another sip of his beer.  An intercept had resulted in the local team crossing the line to score a try.  A huge cheer went up from the crowd in the bar.  The gap-toothed blonde was standing to his right still clutching the two beers.
“Just that you’d stormed out in a huff.  I figured you might have come here.  Kid was throwing a tantrum in the background so luckily that cut the conversation short.  Problems in paradise?”  JT stroked his beard and winked at the gap-toothed blonde.
“Don’t even go there.  If it wasn’t for my boy ...  ”  Kyle didn’t finish his sentence.  Another cheer went up from the crowd.  “Did you see that pass?  Magic, pure magic.  I swear he has hands like glue.  How he held onto that ball…”
“So do you come here often?”  The blonde’s voice came from his right, soft and husky.  As if she practised trying to get the right modulated sexy tone.  Nobody could naturally have a voice like that.
“Nope,” Kyle sighed, “I’m usually watching the game in the comfort of my own home.
“We’ve both been kicked out by our women,” JT clinked his glass with that of Kyle’s, “Cheers mate!  Here’s to us homeless men.”
“Oh, you’re married?”  The blonde couldn’t hide the disappointment in her voice.  Obviously, thought Kyle, she had morals and didn’t mess with married men.
“Sort of,” muttered Kyle as he gulped down the last of his beer.
“Well, here are two beers for you guys.  Enjoy.”  The blonde handed over the beers with her gap-toothed grin.  “I won’t interrupt your man-time together.  See, not all women are evil.”  The two men watched as she elbowed her way through the crowd back to the bar counter.
“Tempting,” said JT as he grabbed one of the beers the blonde had left on the table.
“Dangerous,” added Kyle, “Way too dangerous.  My life is already complicated enough.”
“So why did you storm out this time?  Note how I stressed this time,” JT chuckled.  “It’s your frigging house man; I can’t understand why you are always the one to leave.”
“You’re a fine one to talk!  Look who’s not watching the game in the comfort of his home either!”  Kyle disliked beer.  He hated the bitter taste on his tongue and the way it made his stomach feel bloated.  Why he’d ordered a beer he had no idea.  It was just something you drank if you watched rugby in a bar.  He picked up the beer the blonde had left and downed half the glass in one gulp.  Maybe beer would smooth the tension building up inside him.  Hard liquor would just make things worse.  He’d drink and drink until he passed out.  Once he started he wouldn’t be able to stop.  “As the game was about to start, she put on a DVD for Max to watch.  Bananas in Pyjamas.  Seriously.  A good rugby game is showing and she frigging puts on Bananas in Pyjamas.  It’s like she goes out of her way to piss me off.”
“I feel your pain, man, I feel your pain.  That’s just being a bitch.”  JT patted Kyle on the back.  “You eaten yet?  How’s about we make a move from here and go to the steakhouse across the road and grab something to eat.  There’s no way we’re going to lose this game.  Come on, let’s get out of here.  Too much noise, too many people, it’s freaking me out.”
“And the leggy blonde is too tempting,” Kyle said with a laugh as he finished the beer in another gulp.
“Too right my man.  You know me too well.”
I was born in Cape Town, South Africa. I’ve been married and divorced and had three lovely children.
Some might say I have gypsy blood as I’ve moved around a lot, but really I’ve used my teaching qualifications to teach in different countries and travel the world. I have one of those bucket list type of thingies – a list of things to do and places to go before I die. Before moving to Kyiv in Ukraine where I live currently, I lived and worked in Tanzania with armies of ants and frequent power cuts at the foot of Kilimanjaro
For some strange reason, things just seem to happen to me, and this gives me an endless supply of material to write more books. Writing is something I always loved to do from a very young age, and I’ve always been an avid reader. I put my weak eyesight down to all those nights of reading under the covers by torchlight. The teacher part of me will tell you that to be a good writer, you probably need to be a good reader as well. But, enough talk about work-related stuff.
Because of my travels, I enjoy writing articles about the places I’ve seen, sharing my trip with armchair travelers at home. My fist travel book is The Great Mountain to Mountain Safari, and is about my road trip from Kilimanjaro in Tanzania, to Table Mountain in South Africa and back again, with only my teenage daughter for company.
I believe that life is a series of adventures. Hope yours are all good!
Cindy Vine

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