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Read Online Books/Novels:

Thousands (Dollar #4)

Author/Writer of Book/Novel:

Pepper Winters

Language:
English
Book Information:

“Love had been stolen from me for reasons entirely my fault. But then a miracle happened, and Pim gave me something I thought was lost forever. She gave me a love I’d earned. Love that ruined me. Love that made me hopelessly hers…”

Once upon a time, I didn’t think I’d ever be normal.
Now, I’m talking and trusting, and it’s all thanks to Elder.
He gave me my life back, and I gave him my heart, but love stories like ours are never simple.
I did something to protect him.
He did something to survive me.
We screwed up.
And now, it’s no longer just about us.
It’s about safety, sanctuary, and sin.

Books in Series:

Dollar Series by Pepper Winters

Books by Author:

Pepper Winters books

Prologue

______________________________

Elder

I BELIEVED WHEN I was younger that hard work resulted in the ultimate pay-off. That the rewards gained from obsession were enough to justify hurting those I loved.

I always knew I lied to myself.

I always understood what the hidden frowns and unhappy glances meant when I became wrapped up in unhealthy addictions.

However, it wasn’t until they banished me that I finally came to terms with just how terrible one-tracked mindedness could be.

I was the reason for my loved one’s deaths, and being ostracised from my family was the least I deserved.

I was a monster.

I knew that.

Until Pim.

Until one woman gave me love despite all my flaws. She showed me I could have a life if I only harnessed myself better. If I learned how to stay in control for longer. If I finally replaced the heart I’d long since destroyed.

I started to believe her.

I grew that fucking heart.

Only for her to shatter it when she copied my family and left.

Chapter One

______________________________

Elder

ONE, TWO, THREE times, I paced the second bedroom.

One, two, three times, I strode to the door and almost turned the handle to return to her.

One, two, three times, I sat on the bed and clutched my aching skull, willing myself to stay in control until Selix arrived.

I gritted my teeth as the driving demands muttered ceaselessly in my head. There was no reprieve. No help. I’d run out of marijuana and just the knowledge that Pim was outside that door—waiting to ask more questions, to interrogate me with a sexy fierceness in her eyes and gorgeous bravery in her spine—made it that much harder to stay away.

Christ!

Even with a wall and locked door between us, I struggled to keep my distance. This morning was fucking taxing, but last night had been the longest I’d ever endured.

I’d told Pim the truth about how hard I’d fought to stay away. The only thing giving me strength was thinking of my baby brother. Of the atrocities I’d caused and the many more I might make if I gave in to the malicious chatter inside my head.

I winced all over again, recalling her face as I deliberately broke her heart.

My awful slur of ‘You’re not worth it,’ echoed sickly, making me suffocate with self-hatred.

She’d been right to call me a liar.

I was a fucking falsifier who couldn’t keep his story straight. Even to himself. So many instances I’d told her the truth, only to cover it up immediately with deceit.

One moment, I told her I didn’t want her body, only her mind.

The next, I admitted I couldn’t breathe without touching her.

One day, I told her she owed me every penny I placed on her self-worth.

The next, I retracted the hypocrisy and delivered her freedom free from any debt.

Yet, she didn’t take it.

She stood before me and accepted my forgeries as if she didn’t hear what I spoke but only what I was desperate to keep hidden.

She’d swum into my veins and infiltrated my soul without me knowing. By the time I understood what she’d done…it was too late. She’d reached inside my chest and fished out my heart. She’d gutted it, filleted it, and slapped it on a goddamn frying pan.

I had the power to stop my pain.

All it would take was six steps to the door and a twist of the lock to sink into the addiction I despised. If all I cared about was myself, then fine. I wouldn’t be sitting here rocking like a junkie, counting down the seconds for Selix to arrive to fix this. I would be out there, balls deep in Pim.

But unfortunately, by taking my heart, she’d given me something I’d been lacking since the flames ate my childhood and family.

She’d given me culpability.

And an even larger dose of self-control to never put myself first again—no matter how loud the whispers howled.

I wouldn’t put her in danger again. I would drive a stake through my heartless chest before I let that happen.

She was worth it.

Ten times, no, a thousand times fucking worth it.

She was worth more than any fortune or vengeance. And that was what sealed my deal with the devil plotting on my shoulder.

I couldn’t do this anymore.

Nothing in the world would seduce me into marching back to her, pushing her onto the bed, and ripping off every piece of clothing between us. I wouldn’t admit that the only way I could continue living was either with her naked and under me for the rest of our days or far, far away where she turned back into a stranger and I could return to my strictly regimented life.

Both options weren’t healthy and sure as hell weren’t acceptable.

But…she’s worth it.

And that was the lie I’d never rectify.

She had to believe she wasn’t worth it.

She had to hate me for what I’d done.

She had to accept my lies as truth—had to see me as the addict I was and not the quixotic lover she hoped.


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