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Rule No. 1: Don’t piss off the Sick Boys
They’re cruel. Reckless. Impossibly fucked up.
The Sick Boys feed on the order they create. They rule Eastpoint University just as their families have for decades. But their power doesn’t stop there. The three of them are heirs to some of the largest fortunes in the world, and behind that kind of wealth lies an underworld of corruption.
On the surface, they’re perfect princes and he is their King. But underneath it all, they’re filled with blood, lies, and secrets. With all of their connections, they have the power to crush anyone who gets in their way. But just because they’re as warped as I am doesn’t mean I’m going to give them a free pass.
Because I, Avalon Manning, bow to no one, and I live to break the fucking rules.
This is a Dark MF New Adult Enemies to Lovers Romance.
In the prologue to this book we see Avalon in a future scene in this book, one that made me want to read faster. It was definitely a tease.
In the first chapter we meet Dean, Abel and Braxton at the age of 16. Dean is being initiated into his family role by his father. Let me just say this is totally messed up.
The book progresses to Avalon at 14 where we get a birds eye view of her crappy home life, her mother surely isn’t a role model, neither is she a protector. It’s Avalon who protects herself. She finds herself in trouble once again and is about to be kicked out of the last school around when she’s given a reprieve of an unusual sort.
In spite of her violent tendencies, Avalon is intelligent. She’s caught the eye of a recruiter from Eastpoint University, a private and elite school, and now has the opportunity to enroll in classes that will allow her to finish high school and get credits toward her freshman year. One of the prime advantages here, she will live on campus albeit with a roommate.
Riley is her roommate, she’s the one who tells Avalon that the recruitment is more than just a scholarship opportunity. They’ve all been selected not only for their backgrounds but also for some purpose known only to the recruiters. A warning she gives Avalon is to stay away from the ‘Sick Boys’. Unfortunately Avalon attracts trouble even when she’s not looking for it.
Her first encounter is with Abel and Brax in class, this ends with her on their version of lockdown which doesn’t bother her in the least. Dean knows about her and usually doesn’t get involved with the games but this time something compels him to invite her to their party.
Of course Avalon refuses the invitation and subsequently gets herself kidnapped to attend.
That was a fun scene but this one is a bit better.
We can’t be that far from campus—there just wasn’t enough time in the car for us to be more than ten or fifteen minutes from where they’d picked me up—yet as I take a look around, I realize that we’re in the middle of nowhere. Or at least, it seems like it since there are no other nearby buildings and everything is surrounded by a dense wood.
“Welcome to the Frazier House,” someone says, pushing against my back. “Now, move.”
I take a step forward, glancing up to the three-story building before me. House is putting it mildly. This place looks like a freaking hotel. Long vertical windows stretch up each of the floors and white pillars line the front. Golden light spills from inside as does music and laughter. The party, it seems, is in full swing.
Music pours outside, and though we get a few strange looks as we march through the crowd of people surrounding the property, no one stops to ask why there’s a girl being led through a party in zip tied handcuffs. I start to wonder if this is, perhaps, a regular occurrence.
The guys lead me around the side of the house, through a massive area overwhelmed by plants and rocks and into what looks like a natural spring. It’s not, though, because natural springs don’t have heated pools or hot tubs bubbling out of perfectly cut rocks. A low whistle leaves my chest. These guys aren’t just rich, I realize, they’re fucking loaded.
Girls in low cut, barely there bikinis with martini glasses in hand—no Solo cups for these people—skirt around the edge of the water. Across from the glass back doors, a makeshift dance floor has been set up and unseen speakers radiate music out over the back lawn.
Someone pushes me towards the back doors, and they slide open just before I’m shoved inside. My thin soled Converse slap pure white tile and I stop and tilt my head back. A glittering chandelier hovers overhead, tinkling as the air conditioning kicks on and a wash of cold air brushes over my bare arms. Another door towards the front of the house is flung open and raucous laughter echoes up towards the massively tall ceilings as the three dickwads from the gas station come careening around the corner.
The place is packed, top to bottom. Several girls linger in the kitchen, giggling and reaching for Abel as soon as he stops inside the door.
“Abel!” one girl squeals, nearly leaping into his arms. Looking far less pale than he had at the gas station after round one with me, he grins at the girl and lifts her up until her legs spread wide and wrap around his waist. In the next second, his tongue is in her mouth and the sound of wet slopping groans follows.
I purse my lips and shift on my feet. The plastic around my wrists bites into the skin beneath my thumb as I slip my hand further out. Abel finally manages to pry his lips away from the girl humping his front. He whispers something in her ear that makes her giggle and drops her back onto her feet before slapping her ass and watching her walk away with a hungry look in his eyes.
Brax moves through the massive amount of people converging on the space now that the three of them are here with ease, and two of the guys who’d brought me in move to follow him. Together, they approach the island in the center of the kitchen that looks like the size of my mother’s trailer and start unloading shot glasses and a tall bottle of clear liquid—tequila.
Abel crosses towards them, shooting me a dirty look. I smile his way. “Looks like I didn’t completely ruin your night, frontman,” I say.
“Not for lack of fucking trying,” he snarls as Brax hands him a shot. He downs it in one breath before jerking his chin at the rest of the girls lingering about, not so subtly trying to catch their attention. “Give us the room,” he commands, and just like that, they do.
Everyone in the vicinity, girls and guys alike—save for the two still standing at my back, the three assholes who orchestrated this kidnapping, and me—leave the room. I pry my attention away from Brax and Abel and meet the eyes of the most dangerous man in the room. Maybe he is and maybe he isn’t, but I’ve got the feeling that he’s the leader of this battalion of assholes. Therefore, he’s the one that gets the focus of my attention.
“So, Dean,” I say, emphasizing his name. I flex my arms. “Care to tell me why you thought it was necessary to bring me here? Do you want to piss me off?”
A cold smile filters across his face. “You and I both know you’re not pissed off about this,” he says. The blood in my veins freezes. I know that, but how does he know that? Dean folds his arms and stares at me as if he’s waiting for something. I don’t know what and I bide my time as I consider my response.
My gaze slides to the two guys remaining—keeping vigil at my sides as if they’re bouncers in a club and they want to make sure no one can come near me … or rather, that I won’t go near their bosses. Too bad for them, I think. They’ve got no clue what a little girl like me can do. They’re obviously athletes of some kind—football if their size is anything to go by, but size has nothing on smarts.
I decide that now is as good a time as any to prove that. I twist one arm free of the zip ties, but hold onto the plastic ring, keeping both of my hands behind my back. Brax looks up and locks onto me, and my back straightens. A smile lifts his lips and he glances over to Dean, who shakes his head subtly. I narrow my eyes, but since neither of them say another word, I don’t halt my plan. The green light is flashing and I’m feeling a heady mixture of anger and eagerness.
“So,” I start casually, “which of you actually put the bag over my head and zip tied me?” I ask the bodyguards. “Was it one of you or one of the others?” If luck is on my side, it’ll be either one or both of them.
They glance at each other and then with a shrug that determines how very little they consider me a threat, the one on the right answers. “We did,” he says. “Orders are orders.”
I grin. Ahhh, sweet lady luck. She did love me after all. “No problem. Just wanted to make sure before I did this.”
They frown and look down. “Did what?” the one on the left asks just a split second before I bring my hands around my front and punch him in the face before turning, grabbing the back of his friend’s head and bringing it down just as I bring my knee up. There’s a muffled crunch against my leg and then I’m shoved away.
I laugh, taking a step away from them and towards the butcher’s block. Abel, Brax, and Dean—all three of them don’t move a muscle as they watch me round the island and reach for one of the knives. Perhaps if I were more pissed off and less amused, they would have more reason to be concerned, but right now—I’m more curious than anything else. It takes a lot to get me to that kind of dangerous point. I use a sharper one to cut through the remaining zip tie and drop the plastic on the counter before reaching for one of the shots and downing it.
Red hot fire slides down my throat. Not as good without the lime and salt, but still … not bad. “Ahhh,” I say on a sigh.
“That’s top notch shit.”
Brax grins and takes a shot of his own before pushing another my way. This time, he hands me a cut lime and a salt shaker. “You’re staying for the party then?” he asks.
“Nah.” I pour salt on my hand, lick it, and take the shot. The lime goes in my mouth as I slap the glass back onto the counter before turning and striding for the doorway. “But thanks for the fun.”
As I pass, a hard hand grabs my arm. “You’re not leaving, Avalon.” Dean’s words slide over my skin, making that unhealthy darkness that festers within me respond. I tip my head back and grin.
“Oh?” I ask. “And who’s going to fucking stop me?”
His eyes glitter. Smoky and hazy with something unknown. Curiosity holds me bound. I don’t even mind that he’s grabbing me without my permission. For now … anyway.
“No one,” he says, “but you’ll stay.”
“Oh? Why’s that?”
Finally, he grins and releases me. I almost hate the feel of his skin leaving mine. He spreads his arms wide and takes a shot glass that Brax hands him. Swallowing, the workings of his throat mesmerize me for some reason. “Because you’re curious,” he replies.
With that, he nods to the others. Brax and Abel go for their guys—the ones who made the mistake of underestimating me—and they drag them out of the room. Just before Dean leaves, he turns and gives me a grin. “Enjoy the party, Avalon.”
Smoke, Lucy . Pretty Little Savage: A Dark Enemies to Lovers College Romance (Sick Boys Book 1). Kindle Locations (1075-1141). Kindle Edition.
Dean is more than a little bit attracted to Avalon and pretty much claims her as his. Avalon wants nothing to do with him, at least that’s what she tells herself.
Things get more and more interesting as Spring Break approaches and Avalon finds she can’t stay on campus.
We meet several other folks Corina another student, Kate who is Dean’s ex and the fiancé of Luc Kincaid. Luc himself, who appears as full of himself as Dean, and Jake who is kind of friend even though he answers to the sick boys just like everyone else.
There’s one heck of an ending in this one that definitely proves out the title of this book. I already started the next book in this series, I couldn’t wait.
5 Contented Purrs for Lucy!
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Lucy Smoke, also known as Lucinda Dark for her fantasy works, has a master’s degree in English and is a self-proclaimed creative chihuahua. She enjoys feeding her wanderlust, cover addiction, as well as her face, and truly hopes people will stop giving her bath bombs as gifts. Bath’s get cold too fast and it’s just not as wonderful as the commercials make it out to be when the tub isn’t a jacuzzi.
When she’s not on a never-ending quest to find the perfect milkshake, she lives and works in the southern United States with her beloved fur-baby, Hiro, and her family and friends.