Tuesday, October 22, 2013

"Tattoo Thief"

22-year-old Beryl doesn't know why Gavin Slater trashed his penthouse, abandoned his dog and fled the country. But as his house sitter, she must pick up the pieces for the front man of the white-hot rock band Tattoo Thief.

When ultra-responsible Beryl confronts the reckless rock star, she wants to know more than just what to do with his mess. Why is he running? What’s he searching for? And is he responsible for the death of his muse?

New York newbie Beryl must find her footing in Gavin’s crazy world of the ultra-wealthy to discover her own direction and what can bring him back.

Steamy, sassy and tender, Tattoo Thief is a story of breaking from a comfort zone to find a second chance.


In Tattoo Thief, Beryl leaves her sleepy hometown to become a house sitter for New York’s elite, including Gavin Slater, front man for the rock band Tattoo Thief. He’s trashed his apartment, abandoned his dog and fled the country—leaving Beryl to clean up the wreckage and unravel the mystery of why he fled and what can bring him back. 

In this scene, Beryl is fed up with Gavin’s filth and his short, rude replies to her professionally worded emails that never get a satisfying response. 

When I get back to my desk, I see a message from Gavin.

I don’t care. You figure it out.

Rude! Gavin’s abrupt reply pushes my simmering resentment to a full boil. Before my brain can reign in my fingers, I click on his email address in the right-hand side of my screen and attempt to Google Chat with him.

Me: Mr. Slater? Are you there?
Gavin: Who’s this?
Me: Beryl Sutton. From Keystone Property Management.
Gavin: I thought it was Barry.
Me: Never mind. I want to talk to you about your place. I have some questions.
Gavin: What kind of a name is Beryl? Are you a guy or a girl?
Me: It’s a good name. I was named after a famous pilot who crossed the Atlantic in her airplane, solo.
Gavin: A woman? I thought that was Amelia Earhart.
Me: There’s more than one woman pilot in history, asshole.

My fingers freeze over the keyboard and adrenaline shoots through me. What the hell did I just do? After all the horrible things I’ve been thinking about Gavin, that word just flew from my fingers. 
I want to bang my head on my desk. I am so screwed.

Me: Oh my God, Mr. Slater, I am SO sorry. I did not mean to type that. I meant there are more women pilots than *Amelia.* Please forgive me!! 
Gavin: Liar.
Me: Excuse me, sir? I am truly sorry. That was totally unprofessional. It must have been autocorrect?
Gavin: You’re a rotten liar. You meant to call me an asshole. Admit it.
Me: No. I meant … it’s been a rough morning. PLEASE forgive me. I don’t want Keystone to lose your business because of my mistake.
Gavin: Look, Beryl, it’s not like I haven’t heard it before. And if you lie about it, I’m not sure I can trust you with the rest of my business.
Me: Mr. Slater, I am very, very, very sorry I called you an asshole. I totally did not mean to offend you. (Are you very mad?)
Gavin: No. It actually made me LOL, and I don’t remember the last time that happened.
Me: I’m sorry. My brain is always two steps behind my mouth. Fingers. Whatever. 
Gavin: Stop apologizing. And stop calling me Mr. Slater. I’m twenty-five. Mister makes me sound like a geezer.
Me: Yes, sir.
Gavin: Sir sounds like I’m a drill sergeant. Just Gavin, OK?
Me: OK. May I ask you about handling your apartment? Do I have your approval to proceed?
Gavin: Yes. Now you sound like a drill sergeant. How old are you? 
Me: I don’t think that’s relevant.
Gavin: Do I need to play my asshole card?
Me: Twenty-three. Almost. My birthday’s in a few weeks.
Gavin: See? That wasn’t so hard. I’m pretty good at interrogation. Do you think I could make it as a spy?
Me: You’d probably need to live a little more … subtly. Ugly yourself up. Put on a shirt.
Gavin: ROFL. How would you know?
Me: A mysterious invention called the Internet.
Gavin: You’re feisty. I like that. Don’t worry, Beryl, I won’t tell on you about the asshole thing. And for the record, I’m not an asshole all the time.
Me: I guess I don’t have much to go on. You *were* kind of an asshole to leave your apartment such a dump.
Gavin: I have my reasons.
Me: Name one good one.
Gavin: No.
Me: OK. When are you coming back?
Gavin: Wondering when I’ll kick you out?
Me: There is some planning needed, yes.
Gavin: Not anytime soon. I’m in Kenya now. It’s hot as hell, and I’m drinking coffee at an Internet café in Nairobi. Hot coffee. I must be crazy.
Me: That thought has crossed my mind. What are you doing in Kenya?
Gavin: Looking for something. I’m not sure.
Me: Well, look for Beryl Markham. She died a long time ago, but she grew up in Njoro in the Rift Valley and she’s who I’m named after. She trained racehorses and flew elephant-scouting missions and all sorts of amazing stuff.
Gavin: Why’d you get named after her? Family connection?
Me: My dad was a pilot.
Gavin: You fly with him a lot?
Me: No. He died in a plane crash.

I blink hard to push back tears. I’ve been “handling” my dad’s death fine for nearly a decade, but every once in a while something unexpected shocks a round of fresh tears out of me.

Gavin: I’m sorry.
Gavin: Beryl? I’m sorry. I didn’t know.
Gavin: I lost someone close to me, too.
Me: I’m here.
Gavin: I thought I lost you.
Me: No. I just needed a breath.

Heidi Joy Tretheway  Bio:

Heidi Joy lives in Happy Valley off Sunnyside Road. She swears she did not make that up.

Heidi’s obsessed with storytelling. Her career includes marketing, journalism, and a delicious few years as a food columnist. Media passes took her backstage with several rock bands, where she learned that sometimes a wardrobe malfunction is exactly what the rock star intends.

You’ll most often find Heidi Joy with her husband and two small kids cooking, fishing, exploring the Northwest, and building epic forts in their living room.

She loves to hear from readers via messages at facebook.com/author.heidi



Beryl is pretty funny when she isn't over thinking things. She finally decides there's more to life than her boring existence in Eugene, Oregon & is offered a once in a life time opportunity to be adventurous.  Soon she relizes things are going to be a bit more difficult than she hoped but she easily finds her way with a few bumps in the road. It's exciting to read how Gavin & Beryl develop a relationship from the inside out. Beryl seems to have a gift for seeing what others really need in life. There are a few sex scenes nothing steamy or raunchy. 
Fabulous Ending. Can't wait for Stella's story. 

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