Torn Between Two Brothers
“You still here?” he mumbles.
“Clay asked me to take care of you.”
“And you’re so obedient, huh, Morgan? But you’ve never killed someone you love.”
It feels like my heart is bleeding. If I ever wondered exactly how Nathan felt, here’s the answer. Impulsively I touch the back of his hand.
“Stop. Liv wouldn’t blame you.”
It’s true, I don’t. The truck driver was lost, it was a dark, country road, and I didn’t have my seat belt on. None of that is Nathan’s fault.
His fingers curl around mine with desperate need, and his eyes are like a green fire, ablaze in the scruffy pallor of his haunted face. “You shouldn’t be so nice to me right now. It’s not your style, and I’m . . . not safe to be around.”
The Nathan I know is gentle, considerate, and thoughtful. “What’re you talking about? You wouldn’t—”
“I want other people to hurt,” he cuts in. “I might feel better if I can make someone else bleed. Do you understand?”
In a sudden move, he yanks on our joined hands and I tumble against him. He smells like he’s been drinking since he got home from school. Nathan grabs my shoulders as if he expects me to fight. In fact, I’m pretty sure that’s what he’s looking for; if I shove him back, then he becomes the villain, and he can keep beating himself up, adding to his list of imaginary crimes.
So instead I put my arms around him and give him the hug he refused earlier at school.
At first he goes rigid, his eyes narrowing. Then a shaky breath trickles out of him and he drops his head onto my shoulder, tucking his face against my neck. I imagine how Clay would feel if he walked in on this, but I can’t stand seeing Nathan in pain. Gently I rub his back in slow circles. This much could be explained away, right?
“It’s okay,” I whisper. “You’re not alone.”
I can feel him relaxing against me, and it’s heady, knowing I can affect him this way, even though he thinks I’m Morgan. But I have months of learning how to touch him behind me. As my mind skips through those lovely memories, my hands skim up his back. I work his shoulders like I used to after swim practice. He leans into me, recognizing the pressure on some level. Taking his response as an invitation, I rub the base of his skull. Nathan tips his head back like a cat; he always loved this.
“Don’t stop.” That husky tone is unmistakable.
And I don’t know how I feel about that. Because these are Morgan’s hands, and he’s drunk, hurting. What I’m doing is probably wrong, definitely confusing.
“Better?” If I talk, it’s not as intimate. I’m comforting him, that’s all.
In answer he kisses me.
About the Book:
Title: LIKE NEVER AND ALWAYS
Author: Ann Aguirre
Pub. Date: July 17, 2018
Publisher: Tor Teen
Formats: Hardcover, eBook, audiobook
On a hot summer night, a screech of brakes and shattering glass changes two lives forever.
Liv wakes in the hospital, confused when they call her Morgan. She assumes it’s a case of mistaken identity, yet when the bandages come off, it’s not her face in the mirror anymore. It’s her best friend Morgan’s.
Morgan always seemed to have the perfect life, yet Liv must navigate endlessly disturbing secrets of the criminal and murderous variety—and a romance that feels like a betrayal. Torn between the boy she loved as Liv and the boy she’s grown to love as Morgan, Liv still has to survive Morgan’s last request.
Ann Aguirre is a New York Times & USA Today bestselling author with a degree in English Literature; before she began writing full time, she was a clown, a clerk, a voice actress, and a savior of stray kittens, not necessarily in that order. She grew up in a yellow house across from a cornfield, but now she lives in sunny Mexico with her husband, children, and various pets. She likes books, emo music, and action movies. She writes all kinds of genre fiction for adults and teens.
1 winner will win a Kindle Oasis, US Only.
3 winners will win a finished copy of LIKE NEVER AND ALWAYS, US Only
7/2/2018- BookHounds YA– Guest Post
7/3/2018- Here’s to Happy Endings– Review
7/4/2018- YA Books Central– Interview
7/5/2018- Literary Meanderings– Interview
7/6/2018- The Desert Bibliophile– Review
7/9/2018- A Dream Within A Dream– Review
7/10/2018- Twinning for Books– Review
7/11/2018- Parajunkee– Excerpt
7/12/2018- Wonder Struck– Review
7/13/2018- Christen Krumm– Interview
7/16/2018- Jena Brown Writes– Excerpt
7/17/2018- Novel Novice– Guest Post
7/18/2018- Hauntedbybooks– Review
7/19/2018- Book Dragon Lair– Review
7/20/2018- Eli to the nth– Review
7/23/2018- Under the Book Cover– Review
7/24/2018- Confessions of a YA Reader– Review
7/25/2018- Moonlight Rendezvous– Review
7/26/2018- Simply Daniel Radcliffe– Review
7/27/2018- Two points of interest– Review
7/30/2018- For the Love of KidLit– Interview
7/31/2018- Smada’s Book Smack– Excerpt