In the meantime, click here for a sneak peek of Chapter 1 and check out the first look at Chapter 2* below.
What would you do if you found out your husband had been unfaithful?
Divorce him? Take him back?
Mark Monroe becomes the victim of option “C” after his wife, Kelly, discovers evidence of an illicit affair and stabs him to death. In a panic, she flees, deciding she will turn herself in the next day.
But before she can, Kelly learns devastating secrets about her husband and starts a frantic mission to unravel the mystery of the man she married and
murdered—all while trying to stay one step ahead of a dogged police detective determined to bring her to justice.
She heard the door open. Slowly, her lids lifted as she waited for Mark. He closed the door and she heard him drop his keys.
“Kelly! Kelly, baby, where are you?”
She continued to sip her wine, not saying anything. He came running into the kitchen, sweaty panic smeared across his face. When he appeared, Kelly’s heart stopped. She could never get over how fine he was. All caramel-colored goodness with deep, chocolate brown eyes, perfect white teeth and a lean, taut body. And he always smelled amazing, a sensual combination of Ivory soap, the cocoa butter he’d used religiously for years and the faintest hint of Obsession cologne.
Be strong girl, this is no time to get caught up.
“Baby, it’s not what you think—”
“Don’t bother, Mark,” she said as she picked up her wine glass. “I already know. You’ve been fucking some skank behind my back.”
“It’s not like that. Just let me explain.”
She looked up at him. “Don’t. Don’t say one goddamned word. You can tell everything to my lawyer.”
“Kelly, please look at me,” Mark said, pleading. She took a long swallow from her wine glass. She put the glass back down and looked at him.
“As you can see, I’ve already packed your things. I would appreciate it if you would get out of my house. Now.”
“Baby, this is our house—”
“The minute you brought your dirty business into our bedroom, this stopped being our house. Now leave.”
He shook his head. “Not until you let me explain—”
She cut him off. “I told you, I don’t want to know who she is, or how long—I don’t even know why you brought your dirty ass trick up into my house and fucked her in my bed.” Kelly’s hand dropped down on the table. “No, all I want is for you to get the out of my house—and make no mistake, Mark—this is my house and I want you out of it.”
She picked up the wine glass again, wanting to drink this whole thing away. Mark licked his lips.
“Just let me explain—”
“Explain what? ‘Oh, baby, she doesn’t mean anything to me—” Kelly stopped. “It is a she, isn’t it?”
Mark shrank back, stunned. “Oh, my god, Kelly. I can’t believe you would say that.”
Kelly plunked the wine glass down so fast, the liquid sloshed over the rim, angry as she was it seemed. “Don’t say what? That you’re a disgusting liar? A pig? That I’m sorry I wasted three years being married to you?”
His eyes glittered with tears. “You don’t mean that.”
Kelly put her hand on her temple and closed her eyes. “You know what Mark? Shut up. Just shut up.” She opened her eyes and looked up at him. “There’s nothing you can say. It’s over.”
He shook his head emphatically. “No, no, no. It will never be over with us. We belong together.”
Kelly snorted. “Please, Mark. I don’t mean shit to you, you’ve shown me that.”
She picked up her wine glass and took another long swallow.
“Come on, Kel, talk to me.”
“Shut up, Mark.”
“I swear, if you’ll just let me explain—” he tried again.
She could take it no more. She slammed the wine glass onto the ceramic tile floor. Mark jumped back as bits of glass jumped up and went flying everywhere.
“Don’t you fucking explain anything to me! Our whole life together has been a lie!” She felt the tears again and struggled to stop from shaking. “How could you do this?” she whispered, looking him square in the eye. “How could you be with some other woman, and then come home and tell me how happy I made you, how I meant the world to you, then make love to me?” Kelly couldn’t stop the torrent of words from tumbling out of her mouth and now her head was starting to hurt. Why wouldn’t he just leave?
“Was it just one woman, Mark? Multiple women? Just in Chicago, or do you have a woman in every city? God knows you travel enough. How many times in our bed?”
Mark held out his hand. “Please, let’s go talk in the living room so you don’t hurt yourself. There’s glass everywhere. Come on.”
“You don’t get to care about me anymore,” she sobbed.
He took a step towards her, and without even thinking, she grabbed a knife out of the knife block on the counter next to the wine bottle. Maybe if she scared him, he’d leave. Mark stopped short and held his hands up.
“Mark, I swear to God…just get…the…fuck…OUT.”
“Okay, I will, but first, baby, just put the knife down. Please.”
“You have no idea how much you’ve hurt me,” she bawled gripping the knife. “You’re such a bastard,” she whispered through her tears. Kelly closed her eyes, trying to contain the fury inside her. She hated Mark so much right now. Why wouldn’t he just leave her alone to feel sorry for herself and cry and grieve in private?
She opened her eyes and saw he was still standing in front of her, a pained look on his face. Kelly waved the knife in his direction.
“Go,” she said.
“Kel, please, come on, let’s go in the living room before one of us gets hurt.”
She took a deep breath and shook her head, the black plastic handle of the knife sweaty in her palm.
Mark swallowed and his own tears began their inevitable slide downward. “I never wanted this to happen. I was terrified this would happen,” he whispered.
“Oh, I’ll bet you never wanted me to find out. You’d have kept on screwing her if I hadn’t found out.”
He shook his head. “No. No!”
“So what was today, one last screw for the road?”
Mark pursed his lips and held out his hand again. “No.”
“Oh, planning to go at it again? When, tomorrow?”
“Just listen, for one minute, please. If you let me explain—”
Kelly waved the knife at him again. “I don’t want to talk to you. Don’t you get it? I just want to be left alone.”
Almost as fast as it had come, the fight oozed out of her and all of a sudden, she felt tired. Kelly placed the knife down on the butcher-block table in front of her, her hand resting on the handle. She placed her other hand over her eyes and began to cry again. She heard Mark coming toward her and not wanting to feel his hands on her flesh, she turned abruptly.
“Mark, just leave me the hell alone!” she screamed as she swung around, the knife still in her hand.
It was like a dream. No, more like a nightmare that would nestle deep within the recesses of her mind and play itself over and over again, like a DVD stuck on repeat. She saw herself spin around in a kind of half arc to stop Mark’s advance towards her; he was closer to her than she realized. How had she not realized how close he was? And Mark—so determined to get her to listen to his lies, to charm her, sweet talk her into taking him back—walking into the knife. They’d both gasped at the same time, locking eyes with each other at the moment of impact. Both their eyes glimmered with fear and shock.
She saw the blade slice into his stomach, felt the rip of his body as he came apart at her hand. She yanked on the knife, trying to dislodge it from her husband, succeeding only in twisting it further into him. He grunted. She wheezed. His face coiled into a distorted mass of lines and circles. She tried again. Her hands were so slippery. Soaked, in fact. The handle swam in her hands. She felt her feet shuffle a bit, knock into his. They danced, him moving forward one step, she moving back a step. They were welded together now, she unable to let go of the knife, and he unable to disengage from the cold, hard grip of the blade.
He groaned and closed his eyes, a soft hiss escaping his lips. He looked at her again, tears and sweat sliding down his face. He shook his head, just a little.
And so did she.
“Kelly,” he whispered.
*Published book may contain slightly different content from posted excerpts