In a nutshell: The hottest Nicki book yet!
The Winchester Tribune publishes an article warning the women of Winchester that there is a sexual predator on the loose in the streets of the town they once thought was safe. Danger doesn’t stop Nicki, though, and it’s not till it’s too late that she discovers the criminal in the place she least suspects. And there’s no one who can save her this time. Meanwhile, she decides that her new love interest Jesse might be worth more of her time…but he’s not making it easy.
Trivia: Jesse was going to be a flash-in-the-pan character. He was meant to be secondary, but he said, “NO WAY!” He has now become an important part of the series.
Cool facts: No Place to Hide was the first Nicki book to get a review–not just on Amazon but anywhere. And it was a 5-star review to boot!
Jesse’s five favorite bands:
1) Stone Sour
2) Five Finger Death Punch
4) Ozzy Osbourne
5) Judas Priest
Favorite song: “Breed” – Nirvana
Theme song: “Pain” – Three Days Grace
Nicki Sosebee: A modern girl who works hard and plays harder.
Sean Ramsey: Nicki’s smokin’ hot best friend who can’t seem to see her as anything more than a buddy.
Jesse Roberts: Nicki’s new boyfriend whom her BFF Brandy describes as “Sean’s friend…the uber-hot guy with the pierced eyebrow.” He actually has a shot at erasing Sean from Nicki’s heart.
Brandy King: One of Nicki’s BFFs, Brandy has a hard time saying the F word and an even harder time trying not to giggle.
Detective Nathan Wright: A policeman who sometimes helps Nicki and sometimes…doesn’t.
Sergeant Darrin Graham: A policeman who seems to want to actually help Nicki. And he might be interested too.
Nicki arrived at Sean’s shop around eleven, before his usual lunch break, and walked in. He was working on some part at the big table up against the wall. He had safety glasses on and he was holding the part with some kind of clamp and then banging the part with a rubber mallet in his other hand. She couldn’t tell what he was trying to do. She didn’t want to startle him and potentially make him pound his hand or screw up what he was doing, so she stood back, remaining quiet, until she could get his attention.
She looked around the garage. She couldn’t see the Harley-Davidson clock anywhere, the one she gave him at his party. Maybe he’d hung it up at home instead.
“Hey, Nicki. How long you been there?”
“Not long.” God, how would she even begin? She sooooo wanted to just call him out. She had to control herself, though. Sean dropped the mallet on the table. “Haven’t seen you in a few days. Just wondered how things are going.”
“Fine.” He removed the safety glasses, then the heavy gloves he’d been wearing. “Jesse told me what’s going on between you two.”
She nodded. “You cool with that?”
“Doesn’t matter. But…” he shook his head. “You shouldn’t be here.”
Nicki sneered. “Why not?”
“Because, I promise you, Jesse doesn’t want you here.”
“Just ask him, Nicki. Ask him. He doesn’t like the idea that we’re friends.”
She couldn’t stand it anymore and blurted it out. “Maybe that’s because you told him we slept together.”
Sean paused. “He asked.”
“Yeah. And I don’t know about you, but I try not to lie to my friends.” So…was he lying to her now? Or merely stretching the truth?
Now she was confused. Of course. Sean was good at that. God, she was getting pissed. “Why the fuck did he ask, Sean? What did you say that made him think he should?”
“Does it matter? Shouldn’t he know?”
“If it’s so god*mned important he know, why didn’t you tell him before?”
“Why didn’t you?”
“You’re his friend!” Nicki took a deep breath. Sean was cool and controlled, but she was losing it. “Fine. Whatever.”
Sean picked up the gloves again. “So…like I said, you should probably get out of here.”
“Don’t be stupid, Sean.”
“I’m serious. Jesse doesn’t want us hanging out together anymore, and I’d like to respect his wishes.”
She took a step closer. “Well, you know what? Jesse can’t tell me what to do. I’ll hang out with whoever I want. I’ll take care of Jesse.”
Sean threw the gloves back down and looked at her, his eyebrow cocked. “Oh, you’ll take care of Jesse? You think you know him that well, Nicki? Think he’ll just tuck his tail between his legs and do what you tell him to do? You’ve been f*cking him for…what? A week or two?” Try a few days. “And now all of a sudden you know everything about him? Newsflash: You don’t know dick about Jesse Roberts.”
She might not know everything, but she knew his heart. She knew he… sh*t. She almost thought something that couldn’t be true…the l word. Could it? She started over in her head. She knew he cared about her and she cared about him. Nothing else mattered beyond that. He understood her. She understood him. Sean saw the puffed-up man, but Nicki had seen the sensitive soul. Sean had never been intimate with Jesse, so he had no idea what Nicki was referencing. “I do too know him, Sean. I know more about him than you think.”
He took two steps toward her. “Then you tell me why he doesn’t want us to spend time together.”
“You’re so full of sh*t, Sean.”
His eyes glinted and he stormed across the remainder of the distance between the two, getting close. “Tell me, Nicki.” She felt her heart beat faster and she looked up in his eyes. She felt intimidated. But she felt something else too. She took two steps backward until her back pressed against the table. He took three more steps toward her so that only a fraction of an inch remained between them, and he placed his hands on the table on both sides of her, closing her in. “Or maybe I’ll tell you why he doesn’t want us together.” His face got closer to hers and she averted her eyes, unable to look at him. “It’s that.” He brought his lips close to her ear, so close she could feel the warmth of his breath. “Can you feel that, Nicki?”
Jesus. F*ck. She could. Her heart pounded against her chest like a bass drum and she remembered…something animal, something primal, something electric she felt for Sean.
Sh*t. She wasn’t over him. Not even close.
But maybe she could bluff. She owed Jesse that much.
She stammered. “All I can feel, Sean, is your big f*cking ego.” Her voice was quivering, but she managed to get away…by just grabbing his one arm and lifting it, then sliding her body out. She didn’t touch or grab him other than his arm, and she was able to make eye contact once she got a little farther away. Then she turned on her heel and left his garage.
And then she realized it. As long as she and Jesse were together, her friendship with Sean had to be over. Jesse had evidently known that before she had. But how could Sean know how she felt in the places of her heart she kept hidden?
And then it hit her like a piano falling from a third-story window.
Sean could only know how she felt because he felt the same way.