Moonlit Storm

The following is a sneak preview of a work in progress. Moonlit Storm is book one of a four book series following the fictional rock band, Serpent Storm.

Book Synopsis:

Megan Saunders re-invented herself after a traumatic life event. She became DJ Megan moon, Radio’s night shift pop princess.

Jacob Weathers has a sordid past and a lot of talent. He overcame his rough beginning to become rock god Jake Storm; lead guitar for the chart topping new band Serpent Storm.

A chance meeting puts Megan and Jake in each other’s sights. She finds him obnoxious yet attractive. He finds her fascinating yet naive.

As the public learns of their meeting, they both discover they’re being stalked; they think by each other.

As the truth starts to unfold, they are forced together for protection.

Tempers fly….and so do sparks.

Moonlit Storm Chapter 1:

“Good early morning, Orlando! You’re all just waking up, and it’s time for me to go home. I’ll leave you with the number one song this week, and my partner Alex is coming at ya next. This is Megan Moon, signing off.” 

I played the number one song I had cued up and stood up to hug my friend. Alex Turner was the first friend I met when I moved to Orlando. He lives in the apartment building across the street from mine. He got me a job at the radio station, and I quickly became Megan Moon, Orlando’s radio pop princess on the night shift.

I changed my name to go with my fresh start. The moon is the light in the darkness of the night. 

Alex returned my hug with force. “Alex, I can’t breathe,” I croaked. He laughed as he let go. 

“Great show, Megs. I was listening on the way in,” He praised me. 

“Thanks, bud. Good luck with the morning show.” I lightly punched his shoulder as I left the studio. 

I made my way down to the ladies’ room before my drive home. I looked in the mirror and fluffed up my shoulder-length red hair, and took a second to look into my own green eyes in the mirror. I used to see those eyes look empty. Now, there was life in them again. I reached for my purse to grab my favorite watermelon lip balm when I realized I left my handbag in the studio. 

“Ugh!” I said to myself in the mirror. The studio door is the opposite way of the exit. Frustrated by my forgetfulness, I stomped into the hallway. I turned toward the studio and ran right into someone coming out of the men’s room across the hall. 

“Watch it!” I scolded the man, taking out my bad mood on him. His black shoes and ripped jeans came into view. I scanned my eyes up to his long, lean frame and found tattoos peeking out from under his black t-shirt, spiky black hair, and the deepest blue eyes I’ve ever seen. His face appeared to be sculpted by God himself with high cheekbones and a strong jawline. There was a metal bar in one eyebrow. 

I was staring. 

“I’m sorry, it looks like neither of us was watching where we were going,” He said. There was the hint of an accent; I couldn’t place it, though. It was the tiniest bit of a southern drawl. He offered me a lopsided grin and had a dimple on his cheek. My stomach somersaulted. I was suddenly nervous. 

“Well, look down once in a while, and you won’t run over us short girls,” I said, speaking of my 5’3″ frame. 

“I wouldn’t want any harm coming to the fun-size section of Orlando’s beauties,” He said and winked at me. 

My mouth dropped open for a rebuttal just as Alex called my name and ran up behind me, holding my handbag.  

The cocky work of art sauntered off, whistling a familiar song, before heading into the company’s rock station studio. 

“Oh my gosh, Megan, you were talking to Jake Storm! Tell me everything!” Alex paced in place, giddy beside me. 

“Who?” I looked at him dumbfounded. 

Alex rolled his eyes. “Megan, I swear sometimes you must live under a rock,” 

“I do,” I teased him. “It’s across the street from your rock.” 

Alex rolled his eyes again. “Anyway,” He carried out the word dramatically. “You were just talking to Jake Storm, of Serpent Storm? The hottest new bad boy rockers?”

It was my turn to roll my eyes. “Ugh, rock stars. Why do they think they can just get away with walking all over everyone? Literally. He walked right into me.” 

“Honey, when you look like that, you can walk wherever you want to,” Alex was practically drooling at the door. 

I shook my head. “Thanks for bringing my purse Alex. I’ll see you later?”

“You bet,” he said, kissing my cheek and heading back to our station. 

“Jake Storm, of Serpent Storm,” I muttered to myself in my car. I flipped to the rock station just as a loud guitar riff exploded through my speakers. 

“That was Serpent Storm’s latest single ‘bad love,'” I heard Jackson Fletcher, the rock DJ, say. “And here we are with the whole band now. Jake, thanks for joining us.”

“Sorry, I got caught up in the hallway by a tasty little morsel,” I heard the familiar accent say. 

My mouth dropped open. “Tasty Morsel?” I repeated. 

“Oh, well, that’s certainly excusable. I think your male fans will agree,” Jackson said.

 I’ll remember to kick Jackson later, I thought.

“Yeah, Spicy little pint-sized redhead. Made my bleep hard.” 

“Uh, Jake, we can’t say that on the radio,” Jackson said. 

“Oh well, then can I say it’s a good thing she caught me coming out of the bathroom instead of going in, or I would have bleep everywhere,” came next.

“Nope, Jake, you can’t say that either,” Jackson cautioned. 

“Censorship blows,” The rockstar added his opinion.

“That it does, my friend. It sounds like you met our very own pop princess, Megan Moon, out there.” Jackson informed him. 

“Well, she can moon me any day,” Jake said. 

That did it. I turned off the car and marched right back into the studio. I sat outside the rock station door until the interview was over and the band came out. Three other guys, all styled similar to Jake in varying degrees of rock hotness, emerged before I narrowed my eyes onto Jake at the end of the line. 

“Whoa, boss, looks like you might get your wish. She looks pissed,” One of them said. 

“Hey sugar, you come to show me that sweet ass of yours after the show?” He flashed me that grin again. 

My stomach flopped temporarily until I remembered what came out of that gorgeous mouth. “No, Sir, I assure you I will not be showing you my ass or any other part of my clothed body. I just came to inform you that you’re an egotistical pig, and I don’t appreciate what you said.” 

The band all stared at me; Jackson came out of the studio and stared at me as well. My focus never left Jake, who was still smirking at me. You could cut the tension with a knife. 

“Oink,” Jake replied, cracking up his bandmates. 

They all strolled down the hall toward a man who was yelling at them to move along. They had a soundcheck and three more interviews today before tomorrow’s concert. 

I waited until they were out the door before screaming, “AUGH!” For a minute, I thought smoke would shoot out of my ears. I was only mildly concerned about the damage if it had. 

Jackson eyed me, concerned. I turned to him. “And you,” I shouted. “Control your rockstars!” I kicked him in the shin.

I heard him yell out and grunt as he hobbled back into his studio before the current playset ended. 

I marched back out to my car and started it up. I was only mildly satisfied by Jackson sounding strained as he did his intro into the next song. 

I flipped the radio off and drove home, stewing over my encounter with that incorrigible, chauvinistic, asshole, gorgeous rockstar. 

I marched into the house and threw my keys on the table. “Who does he think he is?” I asked my two siamese cats. They started weaving in and out of my feet, not caring what I was mad about, only that it was their breakfast time. 

I let out a big sigh. “Come on, girls,” I filled the ceramic bowls with little fish on them that I had monogrammed with their names: Cleo and Sophie. 

I had spent a day volunteering at the shelter last year. I was hosting a radio gig there, but I volunteered to do it. These two were the last of a litter from a rescued feral cat. They looked so sad, left all alone without their siblings. Even their mom had been adopted, thankfully. There was no way I was leaving without these kittens. They were almost identical, except Sophie had bright blue eyes and Cleo had one blue eye and one hazel eye. 

The two munched happily on their breakfasts, uncaring of my foul mood. I moved on to get myself ready to sleep. I closed my black-out curtains from the daylight and climbed into bed. I stared at the ceiling for a long time, repeating what Jake had said about me. “Am I a tasty morsel?” I asked myself. I had no idea what defined morsel criteria. 

It took forever to fall asleep, and I stayed knocked out much longer than usual. Eventually, Alex came in and climbed into the bed next to me, waking me up. 

He knows I sleep late when I’m upset, so he raised his arm, indicating I should snuggle into him, which I did. 

We stayed there for a long time. I soaked up Alex’s comfort before breaking the silence. “Alex, am I a tasty morsel?” I asked. 

“What?” He asked, laughter in his inflection. “Sweetie, I am the wrong guy to ask that question. You know I play for my own team.” 

“Well, you must certainly know if a member of the opposite sex is attractive. You don’t have to be attracted to them for that,” I replied. 

Alex sighed. “Megan, you know you’re beautiful; where is this coming from?”

“Jake Storm, on the radio. He called me a tasty morsel and then said some vulgar things about our encounter this morning.” 

“Well, of course, he did. He’s a badass rockstar. That’s like, his job,” Alex informed me. 

“Funny, I thought his job was to make music. Isn’t that what he gets paid for?” I asked. 

“Well, yes, but rockstars have a certain persona to uphold. People expect them to be heathens. He’s playing the role.” 

“Alex, are you defending him calling me a tasty morsel?” I asked, sitting up. 

“I’m just saying; I’d give him a taste of my morsel if he wanted,” 

I made a face at Alex before hitting him with my pillow. 

“Ow,” He said, laughing, mocking fake hurt. “Come on, lady, put pants on. I know what you need.”

“Oh? What do I need, Alex? Please enlighten me with more male wisdom today.”

“Chinese food,” He replied. 

I sat and considered his thought. “Okay, you’re right. I’ll get pants.” 

“That’s my girl,” Alex said, pulling me to him and kissing my temple. He got up and grabbed the jeans strung over the chair in the corner, and threw them at my face. 

“Hey!” I cried as I caught the pants and laughed. 

“Alright, come on, tasty morsel, put your cute ass in those jeans and let’s go!” 

“You drove by the Chinese restaurant and saw Paul’s car in the parking lot, didn’t you?” I eyed Alex as I pulled on the jeans. 

“Maybe,” he replied, blushing. 

I smiled and shook my head. Paul is a waiter at the Chinese restaurant in our neighborhood. Alex had been eyeing him for a while but wasn’t sure of his orientation. Last weekend he saw Paul at an LGBT club dancing with another guy. The two smiled at each other however had both come with dates, so they couldn’t talk. Now that Alex knew, he was ready to flirt and had been staking out the restaurant for Paul. 

“You guys will be so cute together!” I said. 

“I know, right?” Alex replied. “Then we need to find you a man so we can double.”

“Absolutely not,” I replied. I hadn’t dated anyone regularly since Michael and didn’t plan on it. I went on dates here and there when I had an itch I needed scratched but no emotions. Michael spoke of marrying me one day. My one true love was gone, and the rest wouldn’t hold a flame to him. I wouldn’t see anyone Alex wanted to set me up with because I didn’t want to disappoint him when it didn’t work out. 

“Why?” Alex whined. 

As close as Alex and I had become, no one here knew my secret, and I preferred to keep it that way, even if I thought I could trust Alex. 

“Well, you could always hook up with the badass rock star,” He waggled his eyebrow at me. 

Never mind being my best friend. Alex is clearly crazy and needs to be committed. 

“Stop looking at me like that!” He said, laughing. He must have read my thoughts. 

We headed out and walked around the corner to the restaurant. Paul’s face lit up when Alex walked in, and then his eyebrows crinkled when he saw me. I needed to find a way to assert myself as best friend quickly before Paul thinks I’m Alex’s girlfriend. 

We could seat ourselves, so we sat in Paul’s section, making him smile. He came over to take our drink order. “Welcome to China Dragon, you two. Are we celebrating a special date night?” He asked. 

Alex and I looked at each other, and we both burst out laughing. 

“Oh no,” I piped up. “I’m the bestie. Alex comes in here to admire you.” 

Alex kicked me under the table. 

Paul’s face lit up in a huge smile. “Would you like your tea and egg drop soup?” He asked Alex. 

‘Yes, Please,” Alex replied, holding Paul’s gaze.

“I’d also like soup, and some ice water please,” I broke up the stare fest. I was hungry. 

“Great, I’ll be right out with it,” Paul said and walked back toward the kitchen. 

Alex watched him walk away and then turned at me. “What the fuck was that?” He asked. 

“What?” I replied, playing dumb.

“Why would you tell that man I stare at him?”

“Because you do,” I shrugged. 

“Well, I didn’t want him to know that!” Alex hissed at me. 

“You should be thanking me. You two just had a moment,” I said, looking over my placemat full of Chinese history.

“Yes, which you just interrupted,” Alex said. 

“Was I not allowed to eat or drink? I’m hungry,” I replied. 

Alex sat back and rolled his eyes. 

“Dude, he’s clearly into you. Ask him out!” I encouraged. 

“No way!” Alex said. 

“Why not?” He wasn’t making sense now. 

“Because, what if he says no?”

“What if he says yes?” I shot back. 

Paul returned with our soup and drinks. 

“Hey Paul, we’re going to see a movie after this; maybe you’d like to come with us?” I asked. 

Paul’s flashed me a huge smile. “Yeah, that’d be great. I get off at nine.”

“Oh, perfect. It’s already eight, so we can hang out here until you’re done and then go.”

“Sounds great! Do you guys know what you want to eat?” Paul asked. 

I had completely forgotten to look at the menu. 

“Alex, you go first, maybe Paul can recommend some things, and I’ll see if anything sounds interesting.” 

Paul rattled off a bunch of seafood dishes, one of which Alex ordered. I don’t like seafood, Alex does, which Paul knew. 

“I’ll just go with beef and broccoli, please,” I decided when they both stared at me. 

“Great, I’ll go put these orders in,” Paul said, walking back to the kitchen. 

Alex watched him walk away again and then turned back to me. “We’re seeing a movie tonight?” He asked. 

‘We are now,” I replied, going back to study my placemat. 

“Have I ever told you that I love you?” Alex asked. 

“Yes, but it’s still nice to hear,” I said, smiling at him. 

Alex and I enjoyed dinner and then hung around waiting for Paul. The movie theater was just down the block, making an easy walk, and I would hang back to watch the chemistry. 

“What time does the movie start?” Paul asked. 

Alex had taken the liberty of actually looking up what’s playing and had decided on the new romantic comedy released. 

“It starts at 10:30,” Alex said. “Megan has to be at the station at 2:00 am, so we have time.

“Great, can we run over to the hotel real quick? I have to pick up some paperwork from my uncle. I’ll drive,” Paul said, noticing that Alex and I had walked here. 

“Sure,” I replied, heading toward the parking lot. 

Paul unlocked his car, and I rushed in front of Alex to grab the back seat, allowing him to sit up front with Paul. 

It was a short drive to the swanky hotel. Paul stopped at the desk and asked for his uncle. The desk clerk told him to head up to the penthouse suite. Alex and I raised our eyebrows at each other, following Paul to the elevator. 

It took a while for the elevator to get to the top. I felt a little uneasy looking out of the glass, watching the floor get further and further away. Paul walked out and knocked on the door at the end of a short hallway. Alex patted me on the back, helping my stomach to settle. 

My eyes widened as the man from the hallway rounding up Serpent Storm this morning answered the door. My stomach was tied in a knot. Please don’t let me be at the band’s hotel, I thought. 

“Hey, uncle Marvin,” Paul greeted the man. 

“Hey Paul, it’s good to see you!” The Man said, stepping out to hug Paul. 

“Mom said I was supposed to come to get something from you?” Paul said. 

“Yes, it’s in the other room. Come on in,” Marvin cracked the door open. 

I heard chanting of “CHUG! CHUG! CHUG!” Coming from inside. The band was here. 

“You know what? I think I’ll wait for you guys in the lobby,” I said, turning to head back to the elevator. 

“Nonsense,” Marvin said, “come on in. Have a drink if you want.”

“Hey, who’s out there? Did you order us, strippers?” I knew that voice. The door yanked open, and there stood Jake Storm. Shirtless and muscular, with a tattoo on one side of his chest and another phrase down his opposite side. I bit my tongue to try and stop the reaction I was having to him. 

“Well, well, well if it isn’t my tasty little morsel,” he said, scanning me up and down. 

I rolled my eyes. 

“Are you stalking me, sweetness?” He asked. 

I glared at him. “First of all, my name is Megan, not sugar or sweetness. And Second, I’m here with my friends and had no knowledge of you being here, or I certainly wouldn’t have come.” 

“Man, I love them feisty,” Jake said. He grabbed my arm and pulled me into the room. 

“Hey, guys, you remember this little firecracker from this morning?” He called to the rest of the band. 

“Aw, yeah, man, you got a stalker or what?” One of them asked. The man glanced at me with dark chocolate, brooding eyes. he had pulled his long wavy dark brown hair back in a low ponytail. A blank tank top over gray sweat pants showed off both arms fully sleeved in ink and left little to the imagination, not that I was looking. 

“Pretty sweet, right?” Jake replied. 

“I am hardly stalking him. I didn’t know he was here.” I said. He was still holding my arm, and I could feel my cheeks burning.

“Oh my God, she’s fucking adorable,” Another one chimed in. “Look at her blushing.” This one was a stark contrast to the other two, with spiky blond hair and eyes the color of the sky. He sat on the couch in dark jeans and a white shirt, staring at Jake and me. 

The first one picked up a guitar in the corner of the room and started playing. He sang a ridiculous made-up song about the little firecracker following the rockstar. 

Marvin returned with an envelope for Paul. “Here you go, just give this to your mom,” he said. 

“Great, can we go now?” I asked. 

Paul gave me a confused look. “Um, yeah, we’re done here.” He said. 

“Fabulous.” I yanked my arm away from Jake and stormed out the door. 

“She wants me,” I heard him say before the door closed. 

Paul and Alex followed me in the elevator. 

“What was all that about?” Paul asked. 

Alex was still completely starstruck from just being in the same room as the band. Since when did my best friend, the pop DJ, listen to hard rock and metal? 

“It’s nothing,” I answered Paul. “I just had a bad experience with Jake over at the station earlier.” 

“Jake does tend to be a bit out there at times,” Paul said. “Strange, he was never like that as a kid.”

“Wait, wait, wait, wait,” Alex suddenly sprang back to life. “You grew up with Serpent Storm?”

“Yeah, I went to grade school with Jake for a bit before I moved away. I was back visiting, and my uncle and I went to a battle of the bands they were in. He started working with them from there. 

“Oh, I need more info,” Alex said. 

“No can do, pal. I shouldn’t have even told you that much,” Paul said. 

We pulled up to the movie theatre. I suddenly didn’t feel up to it anymore. “Hey guys, you go on in. I think I’m just gonna head home.” 

“Oh, we can do this another day. We can head out. I’ll take you guys home,” Paul said. I watched Alex’s face fall; that wasn’t happening. 

“No, you guys go on ahead. It’s a nice night out, I’m not far, and I could use the exercise walking off the Chinese food,” I said, hoping they’d go for it. 

Alex and Paul looked at each other and shrugged. 

“You’ll text me when you’re home?” Alex asked. 

“Yeah, of course, but turn your ringer off,” Alex always forgets that in the movies. 

Alex walked over and wrapped me in a hug. “You sure you’re okay?” He whispered. 

“Yeah, Alex, I’m good. There’s just only so much Storm I can handle in a day before I need some solitude.”

“Okay, I love you,” Alex said, letting me go. 

“I’ll see you in the morning. Don’t be late.” I told him. 

You guys have a good night,” I wished them well and walked away as they went to get in line. 

I never actually planned on seeing the movie. I planned to bail from the get-go and let Alex and Paul have their first date, but Jake Storm added a much more realistic twist. Why does he have to be so obnoxious? And what is this reaction I have when I see him?

As soon as I got in the door, I was greeted loudly by Cleo and Sophie, discovering their food bowls were empty. I redeemed myself by emptying some tuna pouches in their bowls, and then I plopped in front of the TV. 

I pulled out my phone to text Alex: I’m home.

He replied with a sunglass emoji. 

I flipped on the TV to see a commercial for our station. They immediately announced they are proud to present Serpent Storm at our local arena. I rolled my eyes as I watched the screen. The camera panned out to show the whole band, complete with screaming girls at the front of the stage. There was Jake, right up front, shirtless in low-hung jeans with his guitar. I studied him for a second. I couldn’t help but notice the plethora of girls reaching for him on stage, yet his attention was on his instrument and bandmates. He didn’t look out into the crowd at all. I would have thought he would have eaten up that attention. Why do I think about this? I asked myself. With no good answer, I turned off the TV and decided to get ready for work. 

I work the overnight shift at a radio station where I’m in a booth by myself, yet the station manager still wants us to look public presentable. I’d much rather go in my pajamas, but Hunter is a great boss, so I do what he asks. I changed into a pair of skinny jeans with some on-purpose holes in the front and a cropped camisole under a pink lightweight hoodie. I kept make-up simple, fluffed out my hair, and added my favorite watermelon lip balm, replacing the tube in my purse before saying goodbye to the cats and heading out. 

I was going to be there super early, but Lana had the show before me, and she’s fun to hang out with, so I decided to have some girl time. 

“Hey girl,” She greeted me with a hug. “You’re here early,” 

“Yeah, I didn’t know what to do with myself and had some pent-up energy, so I decided to come in.” 

“Sexual frustration after meeting Jake Storm?” She asked. 

“What? How do you know about that?” I gawked at her. 

“Oh, if I met him and didn’t get my hands on him, I’d sure be frustrated,” She replied. 

I rolled my eyes. Eye rolling is my new favorite sport. “No, not that. I mean, how did you know I met him?”

“The whole building is buzzing about you telling him off and then kicking poor Jackson,” She said, laughing. 

My mouth dropped open. “That’s ridiculous. Don’t people have anything better to talk about?”

“A girl who didn’t go weak in the knees interacting with rock gods? Nah, that’s top story gossip!” Lana said. She was grinning at me. 

“Tell me, is he gorgeous up close? He looks muscular,” Lana asked. 

“Yes, and yes,” I answered. 

She smiled at me. I could almost see the hearts in her eyes like the emoji. 

“He’s also a pig and completely obnoxious,” I said. 

“Well, yeah! He’s a rockstar!” Lana argued. 

“That is not an excuse,” I fired back. 

Lana shook her head at me. “Look, I’ve been in this business a long time. You’re still kind of a rookie. One day you will learn, stars are spoiled. But, we are in the entertainment business. If we want the ratings, we spoil the stars that bring them in.”

I nodded. “Luckily, I’m on the graveyard shift, so my time with stars is limited.” 

Lana rolled her eyes and cut her mic back on to introduce the next playlist. Once the music was going, she turned back to me. 

“I’m tired of talking about Jake Storm. Lana, what’s new in your world?”

“Hmm, well, I bought new throw pillows yesterday,” She offered. 

“Oh nice, what color are they?” I asked, pretending to be interested. 

“They’re different shades of brown with this like geometric pattern on them. They add to my dark brown furniture and coffee house theme.” 

“So, is there anyone special coming around to see them these days?” I asked her. 

“Oh, I was seeing this super sweet guy for a little while. I liked him. But then he listened to my show and heard I was pro pineapple on pizza, and he dumped me,” She frowned. 

“What? Lana, that’s ridiculous!” I exclaimed. 

“Hey, pineapple is good!” She shot back. 

I looked at her, trying to figure out if she was serious. “No, Lana, I meant that’s a ridiculous reason to break up with someone.” 

“Oh, yeah, I agree. Though, I think his wife made him.” She said. 

Again, I looked at her trying to figure out if she was serious. “Well, Lana, I mean, if that’s true, I can’t say I blame her. You’re too pretty to have to date married guys. You could get anyone you want.” 

She got a mischievous smile on her face. “Do you think I could get Jake Storm?” She asked. 

I really need to learn when Lana is joking. 

“Probably. Their concert is tomorrow night. Maybe you should go. You get backstage with your station ID.”

“That’s right!” She exclaimed, her bright blue eyes sparkling. “We have to go!” 

“We?” I questioned. 

“Yes, we. Megan, you’re my only single friend. You have to come with me!” 

How do I get myself into these messes?

“Okay, Lana. I’ll go with you, but I’m not talking to him. That’s all you.” I told her. 

“Oh, that’s fine. That’s more than fine. You can split as soon as Jake wants to keep me around,” she offered. 

“The best deal I’ve heard in a while,” I said, letting out an exasperated sigh. 

“Oh! I’m going to tell our listeners. I bet ticket sales will increase knowing you’ll be there!” 

“Wait, Lana, no-” it was too late, she turned on her mic. 

“Well, listeners, that does it for me. Next up is your favorite pop princess Megan Moon! Megan has just informed me she and I will be heading to the Serpent Storm concert tomorrow night, so make sure you come out and join us!” She cued up another song and handed me the headphones when it played. 

As soon as I took them, she hugged me, trapping my arms against my body. “I’ll see you tomorrow, bestie,” She said, and she was gone. 

I took my seat and waited for the song to end. “Hello, Orlando insomniacs! Thanks for hanging out with me tonight. We’re going to do your top 40, and I want to hear from you. Send in your requests to the station’s social media and tell me what you’re up to tonight!” I programmed the top 40 count down to start playing and sat back watching the requests roll in. 

At the end of the countdown, I started playing some requests, doing some dedications. The phone started lighting up with callers trying to get on the air for their requests and dedications. I answered a few and let the callers speak their mind, hovering over the censorship button, just in case. 

“you’re on the air with Megan Moon; what can I play for you?” I answered the next call. 

“Hello, sweetness,” the familiar voice said. 

“Well, hello caller, who might you be making a dedication for on this lovely night?” 

“That would be you, love, now that I know you’re coming to the show. I knew you couldn’t stay away.”

Shit. I can’t tell Jake off on the radio, and he knows it. 

“Well then, what song can I play for you?” I asked in the sweetest voice I could muster. 

“I want you to play your favorite song for me so I can learn it,” he said. The gesture took me by surprise. I wasn’t expecting him to say something nice. 

“I need to know what to play to get you in the mood when I take you to bed,” he said next. 

And there it is. 

“Well, that won’t be happening, but I’ll play you a song anyway. Thank you, Mr. Storm.” I cut off the call and cued up a mix of nursery rhymes from the kid’s station, knowing he would hate it. 

I sat and listened to my phone repeatedly vibrate with social media notifications. I didn’t even want to look. I made it through the rest of the shift without losing my cool, despite four callers asking if Orlando’s pop princess is experiencing the storm. I wanted to kill him. 

Morning arrived, and Alex stormed into the studio. He looked less than pleased. 

“Hey Alex, how was your date?” I asked him right away, hoping that would be a distraction. 

“It was fantastic, but we’re not going to talk about that right now,” he said, glaring at me. 

“Um, okay. What do you want to talk about?” I already knew what was coming. 

“You going to see Serpent Storm? WITHOUT ME?” He yelled at the end. 

“Alex, Lana wants to go to use her station ID to get backstage and hook up with Jake. She is just making me come, so she doesn’t have to go alone. She just decided last night.” 

His face relaxed some. “Well bish, sorry to tell you but Paul and I are coming too. His uncle got us VIP treatment.” 

“You yelled at me, and you were going anyway? What the fuck, Alex?” I punched him in the arm. 

“Language, my dear. The F-bomb is unbecoming of a princess.” 

“Yes, okay, I’m sorry, but seriously, why were you upset?”

“Because I wanted you to go with Paul and me, but I didn’t ask because I didn’t think you would go,” Alex whined. 

“Oh, I don’t want to go, but Lana needs this. Things haven’t been great for her lately?”

“Oh? Do tell,” Alex rested his elbows on his knees and his chin in his hands. He is a horrible gossip. 

“There’s nothing that is my business to tell,” I said, shrugging. 

“You’re no fun,” Alex said, pouting. 

“But you love me anyway,” I replied. 

“Yeah, I do,” he said, smiling. Alex couldn’t stay mad at me for long. 

“Now, tell me about your date.” I prodded. 

“Oh, it was amazeballs!” Alex said and told me how he and Paul held hands at the movies, then walked in the park, sat on the swings, and talked for hours until he pulled out his phone to listen to the show, and Lana dropped her announcement. 

“But then, Paul called his uncle and said we wanted to go to the show, and Uncle Marvin hooked us up!” He said. “Paul drove me home, walked me to the door, and kissed me goodnight. I have you to thank for giving me that push.” He kissed my cheek and wrapped me in a hug. 

“Well, then save some of that energy for the morning show because you’re up now,” I said as the current song died out. I cut my microphone back on. Thanks for spending the night with me Orlando, I had a lot of fun, and I hope you enjoyed the show. That’s it for me. Alex is up with your morning show, right after this song.” I played the next song and then gathered my stuff. 

“Have a good show, bud.” I patted him on the back on my way out.

I wasn’t heading to the bathroom today; even though I had to pee, I’d do it at home. I headed straight out to my car. There was a piece of paper stuck under the wiper blade. Kids always put flyers to their raves on windshields of the vehicles in the network’s lot. 

I grabbed it out of the wiper and was going to throw it away when it caught my eye. It wasn’t a flyer; it was a note written in calligraphy.

 “Watch out.”

What. The fuck. 

Have Faith

The following is a sneak peek at my book “Have Faith” which is available on Amazon.

Book Synopsis

After a bad breakup, Zoe Miller is DONE! She is happy to have her house and her life to herself and the ability to concentrate on herself, her family and friends and her career as the office manager of Grace Church.

Zoe’s family and friends have other plans for her, and much to her dismay, the universe sides with them.

A natural disaster causes Zoe’s best friend Alexis to move in and rewires Zoe’s way of thinking about living alone.

Then, Zoe discovers significant dangers within her family and her job and spends time with three eligible bachelors to sort the messes.

Chris is the foreman of Miller construction and Harold Miller’s right-hand man. He and Zoe have a fun, friendly relationship. Chris is a playboy and practically her brother as he is the son her dad never had. When Zoe discovers her dad’s company is in trouble and her dad is in danger, Chris jumps in to help. Zoe and Chris become closer than ever, but when they team up to set up Alexis and the company’s new employee James, Zoe and Chris see each other in a new light.

Jack is a wounded army veteran with a chip on his shoulder. He’s also a good friend of Zoe’s boss, Pastor Mark. When Zoe arranges a veteran’s networking event at the church, Pastor Mark invites Jack, who is obviously annoyed at Mark’s attempt to get him to join the veteran’s support group. As Jack takes out his annoyance on Zoe, she can’t wait to be rid of him. She soon finds out that’s not going to happen as Mark has hired him as the church’s new maintenance man. Jack begins to soften around Zoe as the two spend time together investigating a possible scandal within all five Grace churches in the city. Sparks fly but so do emotions as they both struggle with past hurt.

Zoe and her sister Melissa have never been close. While Zoe is their Dad’s daughter, Melissa is their mother’s daughter. The two warm up to each other as Zoe seeks Melissa’s help deciphering how much trouble their father’s company is in. To appease her new friendship with her sister, Zoe agrees to go on a date with the best friend of Melissa’s fiancĂ©. Erik is handsome, successful, and seems nice enough but one night with him puts Zoe in danger.

As all of the dangers begin to intertwine, Zoe’s faith is shaken. She’s convinced she is being punished. Can Zoe keep everyone she loves safe? Can she figure out who her heart belongs to? And will he return her feelings? Can she believe in herself and her faith again? The answers lie in the story.

Have Faith Preview:

“Zooooooeeeeeeee” I heard a sing-song version of my name all drawn out. This must be a nightmare. Only in a nightmare would someone be singing my name in the middle of the night. Then it happened. It jumped on me. The attacking creature jumped on my back and was screaming, “WakeUpWakeUpWakeUp.” 

I jumped out of bed, throwing the attacker off of me. I landed in a karate stance. I then realized that the attacker was my best friend, and I don’t know karate. 

“Lexi, what are you doing?” I inquired. Alexis Briel has been my best friend for my entire life. She’s adorable with curly blond hair and bright blue eyes. She had dimples when she smiled, and her infectious personality could light up any room. That’s how she gets away with so much. She was outgoing and playful, often bringing me out of my shell on her coattails. In exchange, I grounded her by being quiet and reserved when the situation required a serious approach. I could see at the moment that she was playful while I was quite serious. 

“Zo, you promised we were going to start pre-work walks this morning,” she whined.

“Was that today? I thought that was next year.”

Alexis looked down her nose at me, indicating she was now the serious one. 

“Okay, okay, yes, I know,” I said, holding up my hands in defeat. “I just figured you’d have forgotten by now. 

“Zoe, we agreed three days ago,” She reminded me.

“Precisely,” I argued. 

“Come on, lady, out of your jammies and into some workout gear,” Alexis said before she smacked my backside, making me yelp.

I grabbed some leggings and a sports top, matching Alexis in style, and headed for the bathroom. Soon we had ventured out into the unknown. 

Alexis and I walked at a decent pace, me following her lead. We quickly wound up in the neighborhood next to mine, the one my dad’s company was working on. 

“Construction workers,” Alexis commented. Alexis was the only other single friend I had. She dated a lot, but she has never married. She likes to flirt. I followed Alexis to the construction workers and was too asleep to notice who the objects of her affections were. 

“Hey guys,” she called out, walking by.

Chris turned around. “Well, well, well, Zoe, could you not wait for our date next week?” 

Alexis’s jaw dropped. She smacked my arm. “You didn’t tell me about a date,” she scolded.

“Lex- it’s not a date,” I reassured. “It’s a joke,” I said, glaring at Chris.

Chris put a hand to his chest. “You wound me.” He said dramatically. 

Alexis scrunched up her nose as she giggled. She knows she’s adorable when she does that. 

“Chris, don’t make me actually hurt you,” I replied to his dramatics. 

“Feisty, I like it,” he teased. 

“It’s too early to roll my eyes this much,” I said as I turned to walk away. 

“Chris is the one I need coffee for,” I explained to Alexis when we left.

“Well, that’s fine. I was more curious about who that was behind him,” She reported. 

There was another man I didn’t recognize with Chris. Alexis certainly noticed him.

“I don’t know, but I’ll find out for you,” I promised.

“You’re the best,” She hugged me. 

I got home to be greeted by a very vocal Chloe, who was not at all pleased her breakfast was late. 

“I’m sorry, Chloe. That mean lady made mommy exercise this morning,” I told her. 

She turned her back and lifted her tail as she ate. She was clearly not impressed with my excuses. I ran my hand over her soft fur before heading for the shower. 

I walked into my office to see that all of the material for tomorrow’s veterans’ event was piled on my floor. I skipped around it, trying desperately not to drop my coffee as I climbed to my desk. I knew what my project was today.

After some of my daily duties, I knew it was time to start on the floor pile. 

After all that, it was lunchtime. I ran out to the store and picked up the cookies for tomorrow, grabbing myself a sub as well. I turned from the counter and ran right into Chris.

“Are you stalking me, Zoe?” He teased.

“Yes, absolutely. Take me now,” I poked back. We both laughed. 

He noticed my full cart. “Is there several bottles of wine and some chick flicks to go with all those sweets?” He asked me sarcastically.

“Ha Ha,” I responded, rolling my eyes. “They’re for an event tomorrow,” I explained. 

“Well, let me help get all that in your car,” he offered. Chris really is a good guy.

“Thanks. I’d appreciate that.” Then I remembered Alexis. “Hey, who was that with you this morning? I don’t know him.”

“Asking me about my friends Zoe? I’m hurt. You’re for me. I can’t set you up.” He said, faking dramatic pains.

I playfully smacked his arm. “Not me, you neanderthal, Lexi was asking,” I explained.

“Oh, the cute blonde out walking with you this morning?” He asked, raising his eyebrows at me.

It was my turn to cover my heart in fake pains. “Chris, I’m hurt you are admiring my friend. I thought I was the one you looked at.” 

He laughed and shook his head. “His name is James. He’s new. Seems like a good guy. I don’t know him very well yet.”

“Well, get to know him. We have a match to make.” I smiled at him. 

“Really? You want to play matchmaker?” He asked.

“Yeah, why not?” I shrugged.

“You hate anything to do with dating,” Chris reminded me.

“I do not. I just hate anything to do with me dating. Other people, I’m totally on board,” I explained. 

“Why?” He asked. “You’re a catch.”

“Well, the only one’s fishing is the ones that should be thrown back themselves,” I said. 

Chris laughed. “Okay, so you want to fix up Alexis and James?”

“Yep.” 

“How about we double?” He asked. 

“You and who?” I asked him. “It has to be someone Alexis can stand.”

Chris rolled his eyes. “How about her best friend?” 

“Are you asking me out?” I raised my eyebrow at him.

“Well, no, just as friends to set them up. Make them more comfortable. We hang out until it’s going well, and then we can take off.”

“That’s kinda genius,” I agreed.

“I know. That’s what I am,” Chris replied, clearly full of himself.

“And the moment is over,” I teased. He laughed.

The day of the event:


I woke up early, antsy to get to work. I texted Alexis and told her we would resume walking on Monday. 

I was first to arrive at the office just as I planned. I took the signs outside and set them up, then I finished the refreshment table and was available to direct traffic for the people staffing other tables. By the time Mark and Amy arrived, we were set up and ready to go. 

I took my place at the registration table. “Wow, do I even need to be here?” Mark asked. “This looks fantastic.”

“That’s what you pay me for” I smiled at him. “And yes, you need to be here; I suck at speeches.” 

Mark chuckled at me as Amy approached. “Amy, I love the pins,” I told her. She does a great job with trinkets and favors.

“Aww, thanks, Zoe,” she replied. “They fit here. The place looks great!” She praised. 

Our first group arrived. “Good morning!” I greeted. If you would please sign in to track attendance, grab a favor and check out the fair. The pastor will start the group in an hour.” I told them. They did as asked and then meandered around the event. 

Mark does a lot with the local veterans. He holds a monthly group, which he was doing today, but he wanted more participation, so we organized this fair. Today we had booths set up for all the local groups that assist them. Benefits, housing, support dogs, counseling, work opportunities, everything. This first group was all new faces, so already we have success!

I operated the table for 45 minutes until I was approached by Amy, who looked very tired of standing. “Zoe, do you want a break? I’d really like to sit,” she said. 

“Oh, Amy, absolutely! I replied. “I haven’t even checked my email yet today. I could do some work for a while.” She looked very thankful to take my chair. 

I headed to my office and fired up the computer. I have no idea how my inbox fills up overnight. Don’t people ever go home? 

I was in the middle of a response when a man entered. “I’m here to see Mark?” He said.

I looked up. Well, he was certainly new. “the pastor is getting ready to start his address. The fair is happening right across the hall there, and the meeting will be in the church in 10 minutes.” I explained.

“I don’t know anything about a meeting. I was just supposed to come here to talk to Mark,” he responded, a definite edge to his voice. What’s his problem? I wondered.

“Are you a veteran?” I asked.

“How can you tell?” He asked.

“Well, because despite all the signs and red, white and blue everywhere for the veterans’ event, I figured maybe you were called here.” I was sarcastic, but he hadn’t given off the friendliest vibe. 

The man then looked around. “Mark set me up, didn’t he?” He asked.

“I’m afraid I don’t know what you’re talking about,” I explained. “Today, we have our monthly veteran support group and event to connect to some new faces.” 

He looked confused.

“Who told you to come by?” I asked him. 

“He did.” The man answered. 

It was like pulling teeth to see what was going on with this guy. I better catch Mark before he starts. “Sir, what is your name? I will go and find the pastor and tell him you’re here.”

“Jack,” he replied. 

“Just, Jack?” I asked. I figured he would have given his last name.

“Just Jack,” he confirmed. 

Alright then. I went into the back of the church and found Mark. “Mark, there’s a man in my office.” I started.

“It’s about time you met someone,” Mark answered. He thinks he’s funny.

“Oh my goodness no!” I reprimanded him. “A man named Jack says he is here to see you.”

“Jack is here?” Pastor Mark answered, clearly delighted with this news.

“Yessir,” I replied. 

He all but ran by me headed for my office.

“Jack!” He exclaimed. “I’m so glad to see you.” He wrapped the man in a hug.

“Good to see you too, Mark. But why am I here?” Jack replied.

“Listen, I’m hosting a meeting. How about you join us, and then we will chat after. We can do lunch! Zoe will get something ordered in.” Mark said as though I wasn’t here.

“Sure, Zoe will take care of that.” I chimed in. 

“Okay, sounds great,” Jack said. 

“Come on,” Mark said, putting his arm around Jack’s shoulders and leading him toward the fair. 

They stopped by the registration table, and Amy jumped up to wrap her arms around Jack. It was clear now he was a friend. He just hadn’t been very friendly to me. 

I announced to the banquet hall for everyone to head to the church for the meeting before returning to my office. I called the Deli and put in a lunch order before starting on a big stack of paperwork. 

I was interrupted long enough to accept lunch just as the fair was ending. I delivered it to the conference room before heading for clean up in the banquet hall. Amy asked if I would join them. It appeared Jack was shooting daggers, so I politely declined. I wonder what I did to him?

I thanked everyone who operated the other booths and made sure we had correct contact information for them before hauling in big barrels to sweep up the mess in the empty room. After putting the cleaned tables away and hauling the garbage out, I brought the registration information to my desk. I found a sandwich, macaroni salad, and a cup of fruit sitting there. I had ordered extra, unsure if anyone else would stay. I was thankful for it. 

I was munching away and entering registration information into our database when Mark appeared. “I’m sorry you didn’t have lunch with us. There was plenty of food.” He said.

“Oh, I know there was; I ordered it.” I smiled at him. I knew I was being a smart Alec, but it was okay; he’s used to it. “I wasn’t sure who was going to be staying,” I explained.

“Jack Hudson is an old friend. We served together.” Mark explained. Before taking over the church, Mark was an army Chaplin.

“I see,” I explained. “Hopefully, it was nice to have the time to catch up.” I was now glad I hadn’t interrupted his catch up time with an old friend. 

“Jack has been through a lot,” he continued. I was hoping he wouldn’t give me details. It wasn’t any of my business.

“He’s lucky to have such a good friend to guide him through to the light,” I offered.

“Well, hopefully, that can happen as he spends more time here. I hired him to do maintenance. He starts orientation with you on Monday.” Mark reported and walked away.

Fantastic.

Have Faith, along with my other books can be found on my Amazon Author page at http://www.amazon.com/author/catbanks