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Federal Agent Alex Turner deals better with guns than boyfriends, and prefers it that way. Her emotional range is bleak, but her aim is damn near perfect.
Thinking saving the world is a far easier task than dating, Agent Turner springs at the opportunity to prevent young scientist Marcus Gibbs from selling his biological weapon to the highest bidder. With her goal in sight, and Marcus eating out of the palm of her hand, an obstacle she doesn't see coming interferes. Meet Jeremy Hunt -- the distractingly handsome CEO of Sunscape Biotechnologies, and Marcus's boss and best friend.
A man who is accustomed to getting what he wants, Jeremy's never been one to take no for an answer, which has Agent Turner realizing for the first time that her wit might get her farther than her weapon. With no protocol or training to reference when it comes to matters of the heart, she worries that this might be her hardest assignment yet.
I try the distraction technique. I press my lips against his, and though he is shocked by the move, he accepts them willingly. His lips devour mine in need.
He slams my body hard into the wall, and pins me with his hips. His hands drag down my torso, gripping my behind roughly, and his fingers dig into my skin.
This is Jeremy Hunt. Commanding and demanding. Another favorite. With this version, I don't need to think.
He pulls away from me, out of breath. "I need to know we are OK." I realize this is our way of doing things. Sometimes I suck at talking, and this might be my only way of showing him that we are fine.
His mouth covers mine again, and I can't help but whimper. He pulls away once more. "That's better."
The bastard knows that talking like this isn't my thing, and he seems aware of his power over me. I return his heated crystal glare with a wry look. Obviously, he's aware I let him control me. "Fine. Let's not talk, then."
He scoops me up, bridal style. "Jeremy, what are you doing?" I yelp in surprise.
"You don't want to talk. Fine! But I will at least make this more comfortable for both of us." He beelines for my bedroom.
"I am no good at talking," I blurt out.
He raises an eyebrow at me, starting up the steps. "Oh really? I think you are good at it when you are scolding me."
Before I can respond with something sarcastic, he throws me onto the bed. "Jeremy!"
"Oh, are you angry at me now?"
His grin is infectious as I watch his Viking form, in only his boxer briefs, crawl over the bed toward me. My previous anger vanishes, and I smile. How does he do that?
Before I can finish my thought, his lips come down on mine hard, he presses his hips into me, and he grabs my hands, pinning them above my head. His tongue dips into my mouth for a brief moment, teasing me, eliciting an involuntary moan to slip from my lips.
He pulls away looking triumphant. "Now that I've got you calmed down, and right where I want you"—his eyes glitter mischievously—"you need to know that I am glad I am everything to you."
My eyes widen, and the previous panic seeps back into my core. My arms jolt, trying to get free of his grasp, but his grip is firm. I try to speak, but he cuts me off with an authoritative voice. "I am not finished yet." He places a chaste kiss on my lips to soften the conversation. "We don't have to talk about it if you don't want to, and I have to admit that would frustrate the hell out of me, but for now I will let it go. I just want to say a few things. Maybe we don't know what everything means to us, but those feelings are mutual. You don't need to be scared, or embarrassed by your emotions. I can tell this is something you don't know how to handle, and in a way, it's kind of"—he tilts his head to the side as if pondering it for a moment—"cute."
I furrow my eyebrows at the word cute. Teddy bears are cute, not trained federal agents.
He laughs at my look and kisses the soft skin between my wrinkled brows. "You are so much cuter than you let on, but that is beside the point. You are a lot to handle, you know that?"
My lips twitch playfully, hiding my own secrets.. "Oh, you have no idea."
We both let out a belt of laughter, and things feel back to normal. Whatever normal means to us.
Thank you so much for sitting down with Toot's for an interview. If you don't mind, I have some questions for you about your new book Emotionally Compromised and your process for our budding authors as well as fans.
So first off, Emotionally Compromised Questions.......
In your own words, what is Emotionally Compromised about?
It’s about Federal Agent Alex Turner, who’s emotional range can be compared to a teenage boy, and answers all of her problems with her gun. But it is also a story about finding yourself, letting go, and allowing the walls you have put up to fall. It’s about taking the leap, because life is all about risk, whether it means pulling the trigger to a gun, or saying I love you.
How did you come up with the title of the book?
This has a pretty hilarious answer to it. Being “emotionally compromised” is a term used in the 2009 Star Trek movie. When Spock becomes too emotionally involved, or erratic with his decision making to captain the Enterprise, he has to stand down from his post. I knew in that moment that that was a perfect title, being Emotionally Compromised, and it is exactly what I was going for while stewing on the idea of the novel.
Is Emotionally Compromised a standalone book or will it be part of a series?
It will be part of a series, and hopefully a three part series. I have already begun book two that will be titled, Separation Anxiety.
What was your favorite scene to write for either your hero or heroine in Emotionally Compromised?
I had one scene in mind when I first had the idea for the book, and I literally wrote that scene first and then worked around it for a bit. It is the scene where the main character, Agent Alex Turner and her love interest, Jeremy Hunt, are right on the cusp of trusting each other, and getting used to the idea of being in a relationship. I don’t want to give any spoilers, but it is essentially a scene where Agent Turner saves Jeremy’s life within a split-second decision, shooting the assassin, narrowly missing Jeremy’s face. She can’t go to Jeremy immediately to comfort him right after saving his life, even though he is obviously rattled in silent wide-eyed shock, and instead she forces herself to follow protocol, managing the crime scene that lay before her first, because in her mind, keeping Jeremy safe is her number one priority, and she has a hard time wrapping her head around it while at the same time savoring her rush of adrenaline. The mixture of emotion, plus the blatant brutality, but also an element of professional skill involved was so much fun to write. Not to mention the way the couple works through it. How they have to find a way to understand each other and accept one another. Just loved it.
What was the hardest scene to write?
Even though I had the ending in mind since the beginning it still was the toughest to write. Mostly from the point of view from the protagonist of the story, Marcus Gibbs. I wanted to be sure I presented him how I pictured him: a villain to be sure, but a human you pitied. I wanted the reader to fall in love with him too while at the same time understanding his depravity, but still knew he could never win. I knew I had to capture this, and tie it up nicely in the end, and I wanted to be sure I did it justice. I hope I did! haha
*with a wink* Did anything memorable happen to you, that you wouldn't mind sharing, during the writing of this book?
Memorable? Haha, the only thing I can think of is while in the editing process my ex-boyfriend of 4 years ago randomly got back in touch with me! And this is only relevant because I had written his dog, which I had adored (a beautiful golden retriever by the name of Auggie), into the story. I thought I’d never talk to that guy again! While editing, maybe two days after starting to talk to this guy, I read over the dogs name and literally had a giggle fit in the coffee shop, feeling silly, embarrassed and in awe of the stumbling circumstances. Who would have thought? Oh, and yes, I did tell him, and he found it funny too.
Do you recall how your interest in writing originated and what made you decide to pursue it as a career?
Well, I always loved writing, and I knew even before high school that writing a book was on my bucket list. However, the real moment of decision didn’t happen until I had lost my job, and I was unemployed for a month. I found myself in between applications escaping into writing, finding that I had this awesome idea. Even when I found a job I couldn’t stop. Nothing has ever felt more perfect than writing since.
What inspires you to put the pen to paper or fingers to the keyboard?
People. Weird, right? I just love people. They are such dynamic, interesting creatures. The idea of writing about people and their emotions is so appealing to me, because everyone is different, yet anyone can understand their emotions or how they feel, or even the situation. I just love writing about people and their experiences.
What are some of the elements in/of your writing process?
I wish there was a method to the madness, but honestly it is just the act of doing. I tell everyone that. If you want to do something, you just gotta do it! When it comes to writing, usually I have a scene, or an idea that sparks something, but most of the time half the battle is forcing myself to sit down and write. It seems the moment I take the time to focus and write it all unfolds into something great … usually.
Are you a Plotter or a Panster?
I’d like to say it’s a little bit of both. I have a general plot idea but generally I take a seat with the general idea and just let my fingers do their work on the keyboard.
Have you released anything under a different pen name, and if so, is there any difference between them?
No. With this being my first writing project I have only published under A. Rosa, and for now I do not plan on any pen names, but you never know.
What's next for you?
What a great question. Well, begin the editing process for my second novel to come out, which is a New Adult Romance titled Tryst, all the while writing to the Emotionally Compromised sequel, and dabbling in some other writing projects, all the while trying to keep up with my full time job, and life. Haha. *crosses-fingers*
If the book had to have a theme song, what would it be?
I’ve always thought the song “Madness” by the band Muse was perfect for the book, with it’s lyrics and epically dramatic beats. I used it as the song in my book trailer. The lyrics “But now I have finally seen the end. And I'm not expecting you to care, no. That I have finally seen the light. And I have finally realized. I need your love” ring so perfectly for Emotionally Compromised, I think.
Lastly, let's steal an idea from the magazines.....What 5 things do fans not know about you and 5 they don't know about the book?
Okay, 5 things about me…
1. Crazy fact: I actually used to be a coroner for the city of San Diego. Yup, that’s right. I used to bag and tag the dead!
2. I lived in London, England for two years right before high school.
3. I enjoy things to have a Jane Austen charm, but an Edgar Allen Poe feel to it.
4. I put honey mustard on about everything I can, within reason.
5. I enjoy visiting cemeteries in any city I venture to. The older the better.
Now, 5 things about the book…
1. I got the idea for the book from reading Francine Pascal’s young adult series, Fearless.
2. Finding the name for the main character proved to be one of the toughest tasks.
3. I set the book in Boston because I desperately want to move there.
4. My main goal was to have a badass girl main character who had the emotional range of a boy.
5. Jeremy Hunt is my favorite fictional boyfriend name I have come up with so far.
THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU for taking time to answer some questions. Congratulations on the new book and I can't wait for everyone to read it!
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