Thursday, August 4, 2016

Furious Rush Teaser/Excerpt by S.C. Stephens

Author: S.C. Stephens
On Sale: August 23, 2016
Publisher: Forever
Format: Trade Paperback & eBook
Price: $12.99 USD (TP) / $4.99 USD (eBook)

The first in an emotion-fueled, New Adult series from the #1 bestselling author of the Thoughtless novels!

Too fast, too furious—and way too hot to handle…

Mackenzie Cox has a lot to prove. Daughter of a racing legend, she is eager to show the world that she has inherited her father's talent in the male-dominated sport of professional motorcycle racing. The last thing Kenzie needs is to be antagonized by her rival team's newest rider, Hayden Hayes. Plucked from the world of illegal street racing, Hayden immediately gets under Kenzie's skin. His insinuations that Kenzie is a spoiled princess who was handed her career fuels her desire to win, and much to her surprise, Kenzie soon learns she performs better when she's racing against Hayden.

As Kenzie and Hayden push each other on the track, the electric energy between them off the track shifts into an intense—and strictly forbidden—attraction. The only rule between their two ultra-competitive teams is zero contact. Kenzie always does her best to play by the rules, but when her team slips into a financial crisis, she has no choice but to turn to Hayden for help. The tension simmers during their secret, late-night rendezvous, but Kenzie has too much to lose to give in to her desires. Especially when she begins to doubt that Hayden has completely left his street life behind...

Honda Boy was holding his helmet under an arm while he flirted with the girls

surrounding him. He was blond, with a short, shaggy hairstyle that probably took a lot more

effort to create than it looked like. I could tell from the way the girls around him were

tittering like teenagers that he was charming; with seemingly little effort on his part, he had

all of them eating out of his hand. When a break in the crowd gave me a clear view of his

face, I realized another thing: He was smokin’, someone-hold- on-to- my-ovaries- before-

they-explode hot.

There was a perfect symmetry to his rugged features that made it seem unreal that

he was standing just a few feet away from me. He should be plastered on a billboard

somewhere, half-naked, selling overpriced cologne to men who wanted just a fraction of his

sex appeal. As if he could feel my eyes on him, he turned his gaze my way. Our eyes met and

locked, and I was helpless to turn away. There was something carnal about him, primal and

dangerous. Exotic. I was instantly captivated, and I hated that I was. This guy was neck-deep

in a world that twisted my stomach, a world that spat in the face of my sport. My career.

As his light-colored eyes bored holes into mine, one edge of his lip curved up in a

devilish crooked grin that was both playful and promising. He was practically shouting, with

just that one deadly smile, that he would satisfy my every desire, satiate every craving I

could possibly have. My heart started thudding in my chest as sensations that had been

dormant for far too long swirled to life in- side me. Luckily for me, the big man taking the

guy’s bets clapped him on the shoulder, breaking our stare down. Once I was free of his

steamy gaze, I instantly turned around so my back was to him. Jesus, was I breathing

harder? Ridiculous, absolutely ridiculous. I was twenty-two, not twelve.

“Damn,” I heard Nikki say. “You were right. I should have bet on him from the get-go.

I didn’t really get a good look at him before, but he is freaking hot!”

Inhaling a deep breath, I attempted to force my body back in line with my brain.

“This guy is undefeated?” I asked Nikki. “Really?” She nodded in answer and I had to close

my eyes for a second. A face like that with racing skills to boot? Jesus.

Clearing my throat, I nonchalantly asked, “What did you say his name was again?” I

could at least label the guy in the fantasy I was surely going to have later.

“Hayden... something. He’s been around for a while, from what I gathered.”

I risked a glance over my shoulder at... Hayden. He’d slipped his helmet on,

thankfully, although his visor was popped up. The big guy taking bets had been joined by a

skinny Hispanic guy who seemed to be giving Hayden instructions. Or maybe a pep talk. The

little guy was acting out the race that was about to happen with his hands, complete with

swerving and explosions. God, I hoped there weren’t going to be explosions. While he was

going through his dramatic highlights, the big guy looped a camera over Hayden’s helmet.

When the two competitors were ready, they backed their motor- cycles onto the

street. A cheer ripped up and down the sidewalk as the hopeful gamblers prepared for

another round of racing. I didn’t want to feel anything but contempt for what I was

witnessing, yet the energy of the spectators, the roar of the bikes—I couldn’t help the zing of

excitement that raced up my spine. Against my will, my mouth twisted into a wide grin, and

a yell of encouragement left my lips. Hayden’s helmet swiveled my way as he revved his

engine. My pulse quickened as our eyes met. Then he winked at me and slammed his visor

As the riders moved into position, Nikki grabbed my arm. “Come on. We can watch

the action from the van.”

I had no idea what she was talking about. Before I could ask her, though, she yanked

me toward a black van parked on the sidewalk. The back doors were open, and a giant

monitor attached to a swinging metal arm was sticking out above the hovering crowd. The

screen was split in two, each half showing the footage from one racer’s helmet cam. Hayden

and his opponent were both looking straight ahead, and the dual feeds showed similar

stretches of barren road. Looking down the street, I saw that the pair were stopped at a

crosswalk, waiting for the light to change.

Returning my eyes to the monitor, I found myself holding my breath as I waited for

the signal to change colors. When it turned green and the bikes surged forward, I stepped

closer to the van, like that would somehow release my pent-up energy. In unison, the crowd

around me started hooting and hollering. Swept up in the moment, I bounced on my toes

and prayed for speed. But after watching the screen for just a few seconds, I was struck with

the harsh reality of the situation I was watching. This was no closed-off track with well-

defined paths. This was down and dirty, anything goes, just get to the finish line first racing.

The bikes blew through red lights like they meant absolutely nothing. The streets

were fairly empty at this early hour, but they blurred past the few vehicles on the road like

they were standing still; they had to be going 100 miles per hour, easy. They dodged

obstacles by hopping onto the sidewalk, they fishtailed around slick corners, and they came

close to colliding with oncoming traffic more than once.

I turned to Nikki with shock clear on my face. “This is insane! Someone’s going to get

hurt. Maybe killed!”

Nikki’s face was pure elation as she watched the screens. Her expression changed as

my words sunk in, then she looked at me like I had a foot sticking out of my head. I

supposed it was odd to hear that type of statement coming from someone who routinely

hovered around the 150 mark on the speedometer while riding, but that was a completely

different kind of environment. Believe it or not, what I did was safe, relatively speaking.

Millions of dollars were spent to make it that way. This was not safe. At all.

“They’re breaking every traffic law there is,” I added, feeling like a giant stick in the

mud. Someone needed to be the voice of reason here, though, because everyone was clearly

out of their ever loving minds.

Nikki smirked at my comment. “It’s a race, Kenzie. They can’t exactly drive

cautiously. Why do you think this happens so late at night?”

“Because it’s illegal,” I deadpanned. I got a couple of odd looks from the crowd after

saying that, including a particularly nasty glare from Hayden’s bet collector. Maybe this

wasn’t the best place to be talking about the law. Shutting my mouth, I quickly refocused on

the screen.

Just as I noticed a familiar section of street come into view on the monitor, one side

of the screen started wobbling, then the camera showed asphalt, sparks, spinning scenery,

and a rapidly approaching telephone pole. The crowd around me hushed as it became clear

that Hayden’s competition wasn’t going to finish this race. I heard Hayden’s bike rounding

the corner seconds later, then Nikki was once again pulling me along like a rag doll. She

shoved us into a good position to see the finish line right as Hayden’s Honda whizzed past.

He was alone. Cheers erupted mixed with a few groans from the people who’d bet on the

other guy.

Just as I was wondering if anyone was going to go check on the Ninja rider, Nikki

grabbed my shoulders and started shaking me with uncontainable joy. “We won, Kenzie! We

frickin’ won!”

“Great,” I said, clenching my teeth so I wouldn’t bite my tongue.

Releasing me, Nikki let out a squeal of excitement. “I just made enough money to pay

you back and cover my loss. See, aren’t you glad you came?”

I narrowed my eyes into poisonous daggers that would hopefully drill some sense

into her. “I hate you,” I murmured. Nikki held a hand over her heart. “I know by hate you

mean love, and I love you too, Kenzie. Now let’s collect my winnings and go home so you can

rest up. Big year this year!”

I opened my mouth to scold her with some biting remark about how I’d wanted to

leave ages ago, but she turned on her heel and left me there, gaping. Just as I was forcing the

muscles in my jaw to relax enough to contract, Hayden pulled up next to where I was

standing on the sidewalk. It felt like the world suddenly shifted into slow motion as I turned

my head to look at him.

He was still hunched over his bike, hands on the grip and throttle; the only

indication that he was looking at me was the direction of his dark helmet. Then, like some

freaking Prince Charming in a fairy tale, he slowly removed his helmet and tucked it under

his arm. I swear the air around me condensed as his tilted smile came into view. Jesus

Christ, this guy was sex on a stick.

Reaching up, he roughly ran a hand through his sweaty dirty- blond hair. The short,

sexy shag he’d had going on earlier was destroyed from the helmet, but somehow after just

a few scruffs of his hand, the carefree style was back to utter perfection. I kind of wanted to

mess it up again, run my hands through the strands, grab a handful and clench it tight while

I outlined those incredibly kissable lips with my tongue.

Whoa. No. I didn’t want that.

His penetrating gaze studied my face for a moment. There was something there in

his eyes that I couldn’t quite grasp. Interest, sure, but almost... sadness too. Then he smiled,

and the look vanished so fast, I was sure I’d imagined it. “Haven’t seen you here before,” he

said, his voice low and easy, like he hadn’t just risked his life. “I hope you bet on me. It

would be a shame to see someone as beautiful as you... lose.”

His grin turned suggestive, and warning signs started flashing in front of my eyes.

Danger! Do not proceed! Rocky road ahead! Turn back now! The warnings flared even

brighter when he stood from his motorcycle and began approaching me.

When he was directly in front of me, so close that I could smell the subtle spicy

aroma of his cologne, my heart was hammering so hard, I was positive he could hear it,

positive he could see my T-shirt lifting and releasing like a frantic hummingbird was hiding

under the fabric. What the hell was he doing to me? Was I nervous or excited? Because the

sensation was so similar to both, I honestly couldn’t tell.

Extending a hand, he smoothly said, “Name’s Hayden. Hayden Hayes.” I was just

about to lift my hand and touch him—my fingers even twitched in response—when he

added, “And what should I call you, sweetheart?”

Sweetheart? With those two simple syllables he had just dumped a bucket of ice

water over my head and killed any fantasy I might have had about him. I lived, worked, and

breathed in a world where men looked at me like I was a second-class citizen. To prove my

worth, I had to work harder, longer, and with everything I had inside me, all the fucking

time. I felt like he’d just tried to take all of that hard work away from me with that one

demeaning word.

“Leaving,” I said, walking away.


S. C. Stephens is a #1 bestselling author who spends her every free moment creating stories that are packed with emotion and heavy on romance. In addition to writing, she enjoys spending lazy afternoons in the sun reading, listening to music, watching movies, and spending time with her friends and family. She and her two children reside in the Pacific Northwest.


It's a virtual-party!!! Please join S.C. Stephens (and some pretty awesome authors) on Facebook for a pre-release celebration of Furious Rush on August 22nd! There will be prizes! There will be fun!


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