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Tale of an Anxious Heart follows the heart-wrenching journey of Marianne, a young woman plagued by anxiety, as she takes a hitchhiker on her way to her beach house. Despite her reservations, she can’t help but feel drawn to his dark and mysterious persona. However, with each encounter, she begins to realize the man isn’t the person she thought he was.
As they continue on their journey, Marianne’s anxiety worsens, and she struggles to control it. James becomes a trigger for her panic attacks, yet she can’t seem to let him go. Her anxious heart is torn between her love for him and the need to protect herself from the danger he brings. Their relationship becomes increasingly complicated, and the line between love and hate blurs.
And when they start to find peace, their world is turned upside down. As they run for their lives, Marianne and James are pushed to their limits. They face betrayals, heartbreaks, and death at every turn. The journey is full of angst, heartache, and passion as Marianne struggles with her anxiety and traumas, and James fights for his redemption. Will they make it to safety and find a new life together, or will their pasts consume them both?
After three hours on the road, we make a pitstop.
“At last!” he blurts, getting out of the car.
Then, I notice something I shouldn’t have. My hitchhiker stands with a slight groan, hand pressed against his right side. And as he stands, he reveals the inside of his jacket, and there it is—a shiny gun sitting in his pocket. My paranoid thoughts aren’t so paranoid after all.
It’s not rocket science to figure out where this equation leads. Nobody carries that kind of gun unless they are a criminal.
I’m going to die, sliced up by a crazy hitchhiker.
Can I handle this?
But then again, he’s hurt. Maybe he’s losing blood; maybe his life is in danger.
He enters the convenience store. It’s almost comical; the way he walks, like he’s invincible. Professional criminal, tough as nails. And here I am, professionally screwed.
I imagine what they’ll say on the six o’clock news: “A young woman was found sliced up so her killer could make a house of cards out of the pieces…”
I can’t take my eyes off his form. The man stands tall, arrogant, his badass attitude taped to his face. He feels nothing.
Although, his eyes are more narrowed than before. He’s a human being. A wounded human being and I’m a nurse.
I fill up the car while chewing on my bottom lip. He heads toward the back of the building. My heart is pounding, unsure of what might happen next. I might have made a huge mistake. The options before me are unappealing—leave him there, join him, or wait for him to come back and pretend nothing’s wrong. I finish filling the gas tank and pay, trying my best to appear normal. The store is dimly lit and eerily quiet, adding to my growing uneasiness. A knot forms in my stomach as I push the door open, my heart trying to spread my ribs apart.
My eyes dart back and forth as I scan the aisles frantically, grabbing snacks and drinks, not knowing what the road ahead has in store.
As I approach the exit, my heart is in my throat. I can’t catch my breath, and I only hear an irregular heartbeat in my ears.
Shit, I’m having a panic attack.
Time slows as my legs weaken, and unwanted sweat rolls down my neck. My sweaty palms land on the door, but the ground drops from under me. My vision blurs, and I can’t breathe.
I can’t breathe. I’m going to pass out. Shit.
My phone’s ringtone blares. I don’t recognize the number.
“Yes,” I answer, my voice barely above a whisper.
An old voice comes through the line. I don’t recognize that, either.
“If you value your life, you’ll leave him,” the voice growls.
I glare at my phone.
I don’t even know if my life has any value at all.
“You have a few seconds to leave, Miss Milosh.”
The call disconnects, and my eyes flutter to my phone as it chimes again. Another ring announces an incoming text message, but I ignore it. I know what I need to do. I steel myself for the task ahead, fully aware I’m going to tread dangerous waters. One stop to grab my first aid box, and I’m thrilled.
I’m Elsa Jacobs, indie author of contemporary romance from sweet and seductive to dark and gritty. All levels of steam.
A few years ago, I found myself obsessed with a bunch of characters and plots, swirling madness in my mind. The only reasonable cure was to write them all. In less than a year, I had written four draft. I had no intention of publishing because fear held me back, and I put them aside, unsure if they were worth sharing with the world.
Years passed, and I finally mustered the courage to read one of my drafts and spoke to an editor, sending them a chapter. The wait for their response was nerve-wracking.
But, as you can imagine, that one chapter led me on a journey that brought me here. And the story is about to be legendary.
My debut novel, Tale of an Anxious Heart, is a fast-paced and thrilling ride that will keep you on the edge of your seat with its twists and turns. This contemporary medium spice read is not your typical romance, featuring morally gray characters and a steamy, possessive alpha male hero who will leave you breathless.
But don’t be fooled by the conventional tropes – My strong female hero is more than capable of holding her own and conquering inner demons as she embarks on a road trip that will change her life forever. Pick up Tale of an Anxious Heart today and discover why it can be challenging to pick up a hitchhiker…