After suffering a bad fall on the ice, Dalia finds herself at crossroads in her life. Ryan a gorgeous stranger gives her an ultimatum, forcing her to choose between himself, a guy who promises her a chance at becoming all that she can be or Adam the boy that she's in love with.
Hearts are broken as Dalia's boundaries and courage are tested in this epic love story. The first in a series.
Excerpt from the book:
I finished drying my blades and covering them before shoving my figure skates into my bag. The change room was deserted now, because it took me so long just to get ready to leave. Minutes before the Zamboni took to the ice, I fell on my umpteenth attempt at a triple axel. I've been working on that jump for over a year now, and I still can't get it. Competitors two years younger than myself can land it, and make it look easy, so why can't I do it? Even my parents are getting frustrated watching my multiple attempts. They don't even come to the rink anymore.
As I got up from the bench, I felt this new pulling sensation in my hamstrings I never felt before. I hobbled out of the change room towards the front doors. Beams of sunlight were streaming through the lobby, I knew if I didn't hurry I was going to be late for school.
My mom's white Acura was parked by itself at the far end of the parking lot. I cursed myself for not foreseeing the possibility of injury and choosing a spot closer to the front doors. I hobbled through the parking lot with my skating bag slung over my shoulder, each step more painful than the last. I reflected bitterly on my skating career and wondered if it was time to pack it in for a more normal life.
My friend Tara had been encouraging me since freshman year of high school to start spending more time with her. She wanted to go out, do things, meet more boys. I always gave her excuses, hardly finding time to spend with her. Her patience with me was wearing thin, and her dedication to our friendship had been sorely tested multiple times.
As my butt clumsily hit the car seat and a sharper pain went searing down my calf, I swore things were going to be different. I never wanted to set foot in another ice arena for as long as I lived. I stared out the windshield to what appeared to be a promising day and inserted the key into the ignition. The car came to life and I was off to school.
I made it to class ambulating in the hallways like a ninety year old arthritic man with just under two minutes to spare. I carefully lowered myself onto my assigned chair. Homeroom was only ten minutes long so I knew I would have to get up from my chair immediately after making myself comfortable. There was absolutely no reprieve for me today.
The principal came over the p.a. speaker and said, "Would everyone please stand for the playing of O'Canada and our morning prayer." Using my desk and my chair for support I slowly rose as the static played with bits of the anthem in the background. The Catholic School Board really needed to invest in new equipment. There was a pause and then the principal came back on to give his usual long winded morning prayer. Today the focus was on a cure for Ebola.
Adam, a guy up until now, I would have sworn never knew I existed whispered to me, "Are you okay? You're moving around like you're debilitated. What happened to you?" Adam, the cutest guy in the sophomore class who I only see for ten minutes a day from Monday through Friday noticed me only because I was so lame.
He stood at least six feet tall making him the shortest guy on the schools basketball team. He had shaggy dirty blond hair hanging over the most gorgeous set of puppy-dog brown eyes I'd ever seen. His facial features looked like they were drawn with a ruler, and his beefy body was littered with muscles. He was far from tall and lanky which was what all the other guys his age on our basketball team looked like.
Mrs. Uptite our teacher lowered her glasses and glared directly at Adam sending him this nasty look for talking during her attendance. He ignored her just nodding back when his name was called out. This gave me a second to admire him without the fear of him catching me drooling over him.
"Skating injury," I whispered back. The loud bell signalling us to proceed to our first period went off. I eased myself out of my chair and swung my bag over my shoulder not realizing he had been watching me. It was too late to disguise my agony.
"You better get that looked at," he commented.
"Thanks," I grimaced stepping forward with my sore leg, a sharp pain went shooting down into my knee. Taken by surprise, my knee began to buckle and I was about to collapse, but Adam was there and he caught me.
Oh.My.Lucky.Stars! I was breathless as I found myself in his arms, the most gorgeous guy in the tenth grade. I so couldn't wait to tell Tara. He helped me up and let me lean on him for support. I told myself to breath, as I immediately tried to regain my composure, "You shouldn't be walking on it if you're in that much pain," he commented.
I tried massaging my leg, "It wasn't this bad before."
"Can I help you go anywhere?"
"Uh, sure, I have my mother's car," I stammered.
"Will you be able to drive?"
"Sure, I think once I get in the car I'll be fine." That was all the encouragement he seemed to need. He took my bag and placed it over his shoulder and then hoisted me up into his arms.
Suddenly my day was getting a whole lot brighter. I wrapped my arms around Adams neck touching his soft hair in the process and then I sniffed quietly trying to pick up the subtle scent of his cologne. He looked at me startled, "Did you just smell me?"
Mortified at being caught I turned red with embarrassment. Clearly amused, our eyes locked and I felt a flash of nervousness. For a second it was like in the movies just before the guy kisses the girl, he looks at her lips and then into her eyes before looking back down at her lips again. I swore if we were anywhere but in the corridor of the school he probably would have kissed me. The mood was instantaneously lost as friends started bumping into us with curious expressions on their faces. Everyone parted ways for us as he continued carrying me. If it wasn't for the pain searing down my leg, the ride in his arms would have been much more enjoyable.
"I'm taking you to the hospital," he insisted, "in MY car."
"You'll miss school," I argued.
"All the more reason," he grinned.
He carried me to his new looking black mustang that was parked only a couple of cars away from mine. He carefully lowered me down onto the ground so he could get his keys from his pocket.
"I'll drop you off at the emergency department," he suggested.
"The emergency department? You think it's that serious?"
"You can't walk," he pointed out.
"It's going to take hours," I complained.
He shrugged, "I can afford to miss a day of school."
"I better text my mother," I agreed. I pulled my phone out of the side pocket of my bag and texted mom: