I’ve been married almost thirteen years to my crazy-gorgeous husband, and Valentine’s Day always seems to get me giddy. Maybe it’s because we spend so many Valentine’s Days apart, since he’s in the military, that I really savor the ones we get together. And by savor, I mean giggle like a school girl over a card while we sneak a kiss between bath and bedtime for our five kids at home.
But even the ones where he’s been deployed have been incredibly special. Why? Words.
I always get a card from my husband with the sweetest little love letter, and the words mean more to me than any gift, dozen roses, or expensive date night could. Between his job and mine, his deployments and my conferences, the five kids and their hockey schedule… well, it’s easy to lose track of one another, lost in the world of grocery-shopping, parenting, and partnering.
So it’s our goal never to get so lost that a simple few words can’t bring us back to how we started… as two nineteen year-old kids in love.
Maybe that’s why I write New Adult—at my core, I’m still that nineteen year-old girl, falling in love. There’s nothing I like more than first real, epic love, the kind that transforms you. My Flight & Glory Series is all about that first kind of soul-encompassing love, alongside the challenges that come with living the military life.
In Eyes Turned Skyward, Paisley Donovan is living with the same heart condition that killed her sister. It keeps her from telling Jagger Bateman, a jaw-droppingly gorgeous lieutenant in Army flight school, her feelings for him, until she can’t contain herself anymore. And it just so happens to be on Valentine’s day. 😉
I rose on my tiptoes and cupped his face in my hands, running my thumbs across the sharp stubble that had grown since his morning shave. “You don’t have to worry. Whatever it is, it’s not going to stop me from wanting you… from loving you.”
His lips parted, and his eyes turned hungry. “Say it again.”
“You don’t have to worry.” I smiled.
“Not that part.” I glimpsed the vulnerability he hid so well. He was so adamant against attaching to anyone, to any kind of relationship, so he didn’t love anyone, but it also kept anyone from loving him.
He was starved for it.
Guilt slammed into me. I’d known I loved him for months and couldn’t say it, even when he did. Couldn’t make that promise that I’d be here for him to love. I’d accidentally withheld the one thing he needed desperately.
I grazed my thumbs across his lips and searched his eyes. “I love you, Jagger Bateman.” My lips met his in the softest kiss we’d ever shared. We clung there for a moment, and I reveled in the love unfurling through my chest, radiating through me.
He slowly brought his hands to my waist but didn’t deepen the kiss. “Say it again,” he begged.
“I love you,” I whispered and kissed him again. “I love you.” I brought my lips to his cheeks, his chin, the skin of his throat, punctuating each kiss with an “I love you” until his hands tightened on me, his grip turning possessive.
He brought his mouth down to mine, this time stroking his tongue inside with a tenderness he’d never shown before, drawing a moan from my throat. “I need you.” His voice snapped any tether in my mind.
“Yes,” I answered as hunger awoke in my belly. Three words, and I was ready to strip in my kitchen.
His hands skimmed down my back to my rear, and he lifted me easily. I wrapped my legs around his waist, my arms around his neck, and kissed him with every ounce of love I could pour into him. He walked us up the stairs, pausing just outside my bedroom to lean me against the wall. He didn’t pounce like I’d come to expect; instead, he ran his fingers down my cheek, looked into my eyes like he was making love to my soul, and I liquefied. “I love you, Paisley. I love you so much that I don’t understand how I could have taken a single breath before I found you. I came to life when you did on that beach. I don’t want to live another day that I can’t tell you that.”
Those are the words he’s needed to hear. It’s all about the words, peeps!
For Valentines Day, I’d love to offer a giveaway: an e-copy of both Eyes Turned Skyward, and the first in the series, Full Measures! Both can be read as standalones, but you two are better than one! Just leave a comment below to enter. Don’t forget to include your email address!
Happy Valentines Day! Write a note, sign a card, and tell the people you love how you feel. Because you never know who desperately needs to hear it.
~ Rebecca Yarros
Visit Rebecca’s blog here to find her Scavenger Hunt clue!
Buy Eyes Turned Skyward here.
Buy Full Measures here.
Want to know more about Rebecca? Check out her website!