Star-Crossed by Luna Lacour
Release Date: March 28, 2014
It started with a game - seduce the new teacher.
Eighteen-year-old Kaitlyn Laurent is living the American Dream. Born into a wealthy, socialite family with more opulent surroundings and material things than any girl could even fathom, Kaitlyn is the fresh, young face amidst a sea of morally-amiss Manhattan Debutantes. She is educated, poised, and on the outside - entirely virtuous. Her life, in short, is perfect.
Or so it would seem.
Inside the walls of her Upper East Side mansion, Kaitlyn is struggling. After her parents' divorce and her father's remarriage to a beautiful but otherwise utterly vapid woman, Kaitlyn quickly finds herself living in a realm of self-created fantasy, completely detached and entirely clashing with her new family – particularly, her classmate-turned-stepbrother, Marius. Arrogant and with a penchant for playing games, he is intrigued and infatuated by Kaitlyn's faux-chaste outer facade that she uses to cover an otherwise calloused heart.
When the two of them enter into into their final semester at Trinity Prep, and the buzz around campus is that a gorgeous new teacher has set foot in the classroom, Marius makes Kaitlyn a bet: seduce the man who is now her Literature teacher.
If she wins, she gets his trust fund. Money that she can use to finally escape a life that she has come to loathe.
If Marius wins...he gets her virginity.
When an initial spark turns into full-blown obsession, and her affections are inevitably returned – Kaitlyn learns that there are no actions without consequence, and some affairs are simply star-crossed.
ExcerptWe looked at each other, something bleeding through our eyes that was both a mix of desire and unshakable fear. We were both repelled and enthralled, alive and wavering in that small stretch of space between safety and chaos.
Let it be known that I crossed the line first. William Tennant, before that irreversible second, was an innocent man.
Pressing him against the wall, I stood on my toes, and kissed him.
At first, his hands shot up, like a criminal marked with a red hot target; like he was facing certain death by firing squad. They fell slow as quick-sand, eventually finding my hips where they settled with a shaky hesitancy, hovering just above the fabric.
There was no gripping of limbs, no clashing of teeth against teeth. Mr. Tennant kissed my mouth like it was something to worship, something to savor. Delicate and delicious, his breath shallow as a pool of puddle water. And if I were still a child, still stuck in the age of sticky-sweet candy and hop-scotch, I would have jumped and played in that murky depth forever.
In the dark, it was impossible to see him. All I had were what my remaining senses could grant me: touch and taste and the soft, intoxicating sound of his lips against my own.
I reached down, slowly, and pressed a hand against his covered erection. If he smiled, I couldn’t see it. I felt totally empowered. Awesome not in the sense of something great, but in that sole ability to bring a grown man to his knees.
“What are you trying to do to me?” he asked. Only there was no seductiveness to the question, no intent to arouse. It was a genuine plea, each word cutting like a razor against calloused flesh.
“I could ask you the very same thing, Mr. Tennant.”
I was touching his face, my fingers tracing over the full petal-soft flesh of his lips. The darkness was entirely impenetrable; it was impossible to see whether I was looking into his eyes or something else.
Around us, the sounds of cars hissing against wet pavement and the wind through branches told us that there was still life outside, even if everything in that moment, between my teacher and I, had managed to freeze. Our mouths met and parted with a fluid urgency, his hands still quivering like a teenage boy that had never touched a girl before. Like this was our first shared experience.
Will cupped my face in his hands, his breath fading in and out, rising and falling. The scent, the warmth, it had already imprinted into my cells.
“I need to know what you’re thinking,” he said.
I thought about Juliet, and how she had avoided playing the games that so many other women did. She had succumbed to her true passions. And here I was, locking lips with a man who was entirely fooled; there was no trace, no idea that he was also the key element to my freedom. A pawn in a bet.
I kissed him again, an unspoken apology.
“I’m a monster,” I told him. He smiled, like the three words were a joke, leaning in and pressing his mouth against mine. Hot, hot heat. Our mouths didn’t break apart for what felt like a slow-burning eternity. We were breathless bodies in the all-encompassing night. “We’re both monsters.”