Happy Valentine’s Day, Smexy Readers! I’m so happy to be here celebrating the month of love — and the trade paperback release of Archer’s Voice! — by sharing a snippet of Archer and Bree’s love story. I would call this book my most romantic story, and I hope you agree. Let me set up the scene for you: Archer (who speaks only in American Sign Language) and Bree have had a fight and been distant for days. A thunderstorm begins which scares Bree as thunderstorms remind her of another night when she experienced something traumatic, something which she confided in Archer about.
By eight o’clock that night, the rain was coming down hard and the thunder had started booming, lightning zigzagging across the sky.
I sat huddled in my room, Phoebe on my lap. The feeling of that night came flowing back over me as I sat there. I had a better handle on it now, but I knew the loud booming above me would always remind me of feeling alone and helpless.
I had several candles burning around my bedroom in case the power went out. Normally, candles provided a calming, romantic atmosphere, but tonight the shadows they cast on the walls surrounding me made the storm even scarier, more unnerving.
I heard a soft knock at my door and startled. Phoebe perked her ears up and barked softly. Who the hell was that?
I had already had him in the forefront of my mind because of the storm, and so my heart rate accelerated as I slowly got up off my bed and tiptoed down the hall, Phoebe at my heels.
I went to the front window and peeked out the curtain where I could just barely see my porch in front of the door. Archer leaned back, looking at me as I stared at him. My heart started pounding as I took in his drenched form: his jeans, white T-shirt, and unzipped sweatshirt plastered to his body. Oh God, he must have walked here in the downpour.
I hesitated for only a second before I hurried to the door and flung it open to the sound of the rain pounding the ground in front of my porch. A loud clap of thunder shook the cottage, and I jumped slightly, causing Archer to take a step toward me.
What are you doing here? I asked.
You don’t like thunderstorms, he answered.
I tilted my head, confused. You walked a mile in the rain because I don’t like thunderstorms?
He hesitated for a second, looking away, frowning slightly. Then he looked back at me and said simply, Yes. He paused, his expression pained. I know I’m probably the last person you want to see right now, but I just thought if I sat on your porch, you wouldn’t be scared. You wouldn’t be alone.
I couldn’t help it; my face crumpled, and I started to cry.
Archer took a tentative step toward me and silently asked permission as he looked into my eyes. I nodded at him, acknowledging his unspoken question, and he took me in his arms and pressed me to him.
I brought my arms up around him and buried my face in his neck, breathing in his clean, rainy scent. I cried silently in his arms for several minutes as he held me, rubbing circles on my back, his warm breath on my ear, his drenched clothing soaking me, too. For those few minutes, I was oblivious to the thunder and rain coming down noisily all around us—for those few minutes, it was only him and me, and nothing else.
More on Archer’s Voice:
Mia Sheridan is a New York Times, USA Today, and Wall Street Journal bestselling author. Her passion is weaving love stories about people destined to be together. Mia lives in Cincinnati, Ohio with her husband. They have four children here on earth and one in heaven. She can be found online at miasheridan.com, @miasheridanauthor on Instagram, @authormsheridan on Twitter and @miasheridanauthor on Facebook.
ALSO. This June, her next book, More Than Words is releasing and I’m excited. Last year, Most of All You was a favorite book of mine. I can’t wait for this new one!
Today I have 3 sets of Archer’s Voice + More Than Words to give away! So three random commenters, will each win both books. Open to all – I’ll choose a winner on Friday.
Edited 2/21: The winners are: Erin K., Mollie W., Kareni – winners have been emailed