Title: Hawthorne's Calm
(#3 of the Oceans series)
Author: M.A. DeOlmos
Genre: MMA Romance
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The highly anticipated trio is back just in time for the holidays! Engross yourself this holiday season with the gorgeous Hawthorne men. Go ahead. You deserve to treat yourself to some holiday cheer & a new meaning of Fa-La-La-La-La!
For some, life has a grand and beautifully wicked way of handing out life's lessons. Ocean and Lawrence Hawthorne can attest to this until they've run themselves to the ground. Yet somehow, within those lessons that leaves them emotionally battered and scarred, comes the birth of new hope. New life.
Ocean Hawthorne is a man of action and principal. His past drug addiction and healing wounds of causing his twin sister's death has and still continues to shape him into the fierce fighter he's become outside the MMA cages. Life has been cruel to him, yet it still managed to give him the one person who gives his lungs the sole reason to keep breathing…Livie Acosta.
Livie has been through the worst of the worst. She lost her mother to suicide, followed by her father, who was also her best friend, in an unexpected death; which only led to her own suicide attempt. She has fought all her life. Lost a lot of those battles, yet still manages to keep her head above the turbulent rising waters with her feet planted on the ground. She is growing into her own person while becoming a firm and steady anchor within the Hawthorne family. She will soon learn what it is like to be completely selfless and will be driven more than ever to rise above the demons who have haunted her all of her life. There is one thing that she will have to face head on whether she is prepared to or not. As a Hawthorne, she has no other option but to fight and conquer!
Lawrence Hawthorne has been the glue within the razor edged pieces of hearts his family is still trying to piece together. He's never met a challenge he couldn't overcome, test he couldn’t surpass, or women he couldn't protect. Livie his Sunshine was the first stranger to flip his world upside down in all the right ways, and now he has the beautiful and witty Dulce on his arm to keep him on his toes. He still has a lot to learn about his soul mate's past. Even though he is a powerful force of determination and love, he finds himself in a bind when his guilt over Dulce's past begins to tear away at his heart.
Together this new family will have to conquer the worst. Ocean will have to grow wiser in patience, Livie will have to come to terms with her mother's intuition, Lawrence will have to let the past be exactly that...the past...as Dulce will finally have to let someone in.
Will these fierce souls find the strength within each other to find the calm after the storm or will they continue to repeat their pasts, once again?
Excerpt . . .
I find myself standing next to a man that just seconds ago was the happiest I’ve seen since… well actually, I’ve never seen him this happy. Moments ago, Ocean was showing me a side of him that instantly made me fall in love with him all over again. However, right now-within seconds-that same man has become a ticking time bomb—scratch that he's more like a unhinged hand grenade with less than one second to cause mayhem!
Immediately, Law arrives at the door after my initial set of screams for him to hurry his ass up and help me. Moving quickly and without hesitation, he takes a hold of Ocean’s arms and locks them behind his back.
Looking at Law, I see the shock and sprinkle of hate playing on his handsomely cool features and it further confirms to me that the arrival of Ocean’s mother-pregnant mother at that-is not a good omen for the days, weeks, or months to come.
The curious minds of our morning guests start trickling in, hovering around us at the front door. Finally, someone speaks. It’s Ocean, of course, more than ready to go 300Z Gerard Butler style on his own mother.
“Who the hell told her to show up!?” Ocean flings Law off him in one violent ripple of his shoulders. He spins around to face the crowd behind him.
I look at the woman still standing in the not so safe zone as she stares at the tight and rigid back of her son. A son that is in so much pain he cannot stand to look at her.
“Dad!” He roars out as his father comes forth.
“Yes son.” His father answers calmly, knowing better than all of us in the crowded foyer that this is an extremely dangerous situation.
The pain in his father’s eyes at the sight of a woman he once loved-and honestly probably still loves-is breaking my heart with each passing second.
“Did you tell her? How does she know? HOW. THE. FUCK. IS. SHE. HERE?!”
A shaky voice responds and it’s from no one standing on our side of the door.
“Ocean, son. No one invited me. I looked you up. I wanted to—to--”
“To what Sabrina! You wanted to show up on the happiest day of my fucking life and ruin it to hell? Is that what you wanted to do? Mission-a-fucking-complished!”
As he spoke to her with his back turned she winced at his hateful words, but I couldn’t blame him for it. I don’t think anyone could right now. Ocean was hurt and broken beyond repair when it came to his mother.
He forever blamed himself for what happened to his sister. He has the guilt of having killed her in that terrible bike accident engrained into his soul. He loved Stormie-his beautiful twin sister-with his whole heart. When he needed his mother the most after her death, she just up and walked away.
I would be beyond pissed too if she showed up today like this...which she just did. I push away the resurfacing thoughts of my mother’s demise before I allowed my own emotions of guilt and abandonment to resurface and cause me to react out of my own emotional torments. When I look away from Sabrina, my eyes too easily found the wet shiny pieces of glass on the tile floor in front of me.
Immediately, they held my eyes captive. The demons inside of me start rearing their ugly heads trying to find a broken link in my still-wounded and slowly healing armor. I was stupid for thinking they had left me, that I had won.
Apparently they’d only taken a fucking vacation! The bastards were just giving me a break. Layla and Dulce found their way to me taking each one of my hands in theirs. Damn… did my face look that twisted they recognized my rising fear too?
“Ocean. I know you’re mad at me and hate me, but I am still you’re mother.”
Uh-oh! Wrong thing to say Sabrina.
Ocean spins around this time to face his mother.
She did not shrink under his hateful glare, stupid woman. “Ocean. I am still your mother. I came here to find you so you could meet your sister when she’s born.”
Time stops as well as Ocean’s breathing and probably his heart. He sways on his feet and I release my hands from Layla and Dulce to support him. He grabs onto me desperately as his body and mind fight against each other to steady himself.
I feel like slapping the shit out of this woman. How dare she say some shit like that? I look up at his face needing to see what's there. His eyes are locked on his mother’s stomach. She looked about ready to pop any moment now.
“I’m having her here in Dunlap, Ocean. Her name is going to be Stormie.”
All hell breaks loose inside of Ocean. He pushes me back towards Law, lunging forward toward the woman screaming at the top of his lungs.
Thank god Santi, Trevor, and Joseph were close enough because if not, they wouldn’t have been able to stop him in time from strangling his own mother.
As tempting as it is to let him have at her, it just isn't right. Pffft, almost isn't right.
“YOU CAN’T REPLACE STORMIE! SHE’S DEAD! STORMIE’S DEAD! I FUCKING KILLED HER, YOU STUPID BITCH!” Ocean repeats this chant over and over as it takes three huge men and all of their muscles-and I mean all of their muscles-to hold him down.
I personally had enough of this show for today. Our happiness was now tainted by this selfish bitch standing in front of all of us in all her fucked up, pregnant and shameful glory.
Ocean is dragged away from me like a two year old having the temper tantrum of the millennium back into the living room.
I step forward grabbing the door facing off with Ocean's mother. “Listen, your bright idea to show up after being ghost for so long… not such a bright idea. I don’t suggest you ever try doing this again. Ocean is a great man, cousin, friend, soon to be husband, and a great son…but he is not your son anymore. Please don’t come back here because next time it’ll be me gunning for your throat for the pain you’ve caused him, not Ocean.”
I close the door lightly in her face even though I want nothing more than to slam it shut. The only thing that keeps me from doing just that is her extremely pregnant belly.
Subconsciously, I was seeing my mom standing there with AJ in her belly in the once upon a time good memory bank my brain was still desperately holding onto.
Layla touches my arm, bringing me back to my reality. “Thank you for doing that. I was afraid of hitting her myself, pregnant or not.” She laughs lightly at her comment as if she was joking to lighten up the tension but I know the threat was real.
I understood though, I too wanted to cause that woman as much pain physically as she was causing her beautiful son, my Ocean, emotionally.
I smile at her, feeling the pain I know she feels as well. Walking back into the living room together where moments ago, everyone was shedding tears of joy.
Ocean was on the floor pounding his fists into the tile as if the porcelain tiles were the cause of all his life’s pain.
“No!” I rush over to him, shoving my way through Law who briefly tries to block me. Dulce tugs at his arm just in time helping me move his solid ass out of my way. My body crashes onto the floor in front of Ocean before I know it.
Ignoring the sharp stabs of pain my knees are tingling with, I grab both of his hands to stop him from breaking all of his knuckles or worse. I pull his hands up to my lips kissing each knuckle that are already turning red and bruised.
He slowly lifts his head as tears and ferocious sobs pour out of his heavenly lips. I shuffle closer to him on my knees pulling his arms around my waist. If I could climb on top of him I would, but too many people were here.
“Ocean baby, this is still our day. Remember this?” I flash him the beautiful promise ring he put on my finger. “That means we get through this together. I am not leaving you. This is Livie and Ocean’s day. We can do or go wherever you want, just me and you baby. We go big together or we don’t do this at all. Will you take me? Will you take us away to start our new promised lives together? I need you to Ocean. Please.”
I place one of his hands on my chest so he can feel my heart beating for him. His tortured eyes roam over my face resting on my lips, then his head cocks to the side as he continues to study my face. Not knowing how else to reach him I cover his warm and badly bruising hand pressing it harder on my chest.
“You still w—want this? You still want me?”
I roll my eyes at him in exaggeration expecting him to have said something much more intelligent than that. “Ocean. For a twenty seven year old man, you’re ridiculously stupid. I love you Ocean Grant Hawthorne. L-O-V-to the fucking E you! Get your ass up and make this day about us. Now!”
I don’t know why I’m yelling or cursing but he responds to it. Grabbing my face as if I’m an apparition about to disappear any moment, he kisses me hard. So hard it hurts my lips, but I take his anger, his passion, and his hate.
I absorb it all for him because we drown together; that’s our rule. I wipe his tears away with my hands kissing his face dry with my newly aching lips.
He places his hands on my hips, guiding us both off the floor and pulls me tightly into him again. “You got it baby, let’s go.”
Ocean holds out his hand to Law who tosses him a set of keys. He quietly guides me out the front door of our home without saying a word or making eye contact with anyone.
As we walk down the stairs to his Range Rover, I pray.
Os Jesus Cristo dao-me por favor a forca para sobreviver a este mar aberto, nos estae afogandose Amen. (Jesus Christ, please give me the strength to survive this open sea, we are drowning, Amen)
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