Synopsis (Cover links to goodreads – and just as a side thought – WHAT A COVER!!)
One, breathtakingly hot, passion-filled, night ignites a fire in his soul. Everything in his world should be nothing short of perfection…but he is Rainer Lawson.
His wild evening with Emily is the Realm’s front-page story. Could he have lost the respect of the man that has been like a father to him? Could his family’s hard-earned fortune really dissolve before his very eyes?
Evil rapidly cinches its chokehold, and everything his father fought and died for threatens to implode. Rainer attempts to protect those that he loves and satisfy the fiery passions between he and Emily, but everything in his world is spinning wildly out of control. His desire to prove himself could very well be his undoing.
Sometimes the best of intentions are not enough, but perhaps it is the trials by fire that make the man. Steel sharpens steel, and the passions burn white hot in “Lessons Learned.”
Jillian: “Welcome everyone! As promised today I will be bringing you my interview with the up and coming power couple in the Gifted Realm, Rainer Lawson, and Emily Haydenshire. Happy Birthday, Emily!”
Emily: “Oh, thank you.”
Emily is dressed in a darling hunter green sweater dress folks. She’s matched that with some adorable high heeled brown leather boots and an intricate, large canyon rock, necklace. It has to be one of a kind.
Jillian: “I love that necklace, Emily. Was that a birthday gift from Rainer?”
Emily: “Oh no, thank you though. It’s from Uncle Tad. Rainer hasn’t given me my present yet.”
Rainer: “Tonight, Miss Haydenshire. Be patient.”
Rainer and Emily have naturally been holding hands since they arrived at the coffee house. She’s elbowing him for his comment.
Jillian: “Well thank you both for being here with me today and for the interview.”
Rainer: “Well thanks for dreaming us up. We literally wouldn’t be here without you.”
Jillian: “Well, believe me the pleasure is all mine.”
Emily: “You seem a little nervous, Jillian? Is everything ok?”
Jillian: “Uh…” ok how could I have forgotten that she’s a Receiver. I made her that way. “Oh, I’m ok. I guess I am a little nervous. You’re both such big players in the Realm.”
Rainer: “Em, baby, I keep telling you, you freak people out when you do that.”
Emily: “Sorry. I just don’t want you to be nervous. We’re excited to be doing this.”
Jillian: “No, it’s fine. Let’s start there actually. Can you give my readers some kind of idea what it’s like to feel the emotions of other people around you? How do you learn to filter that?”
Rainer chuckles and wraps his arm around Emily. They are just so adorable!
Emily: “Well it does take a little getting used to. I mean,” Emily glances around. “Ok you see that guy over there with the beard? He’s really, really depressed. Like something really bad has happened. He feels really hopeless. So, I’m worried about him, but I can only read his emotions so I rarely know what’s causing someone to feel the way they’re feeling. And then there’s the guy in the back corner that’s pretending to read a magazine. He’s uh been staring at my chest since we walked in, and I can feel his sort of lewd energies.” Emily’s nose wrinkles as Rainer leans forward and shoots an infuriated glare at the guy in the corner. “The lady paying for her coffee is really stressed out, and the barista is frustrated. The little boy over there is happy but he’s got a mischievous streak. That lady over there is reading “Within The Realm,” and she’s kind of getting all turned on. She hasn’t seen us over here thankfully. And that guy over there, I have no idea what he’s thinking about, but I can tell you he’s having very devious thoughts. He could be anything from a mugger, or a murderer, or he may just have given in to a few darker thoughts. I mean everyone has them occasionally. I don’t ever know, but I can feel all of that all the time. The only time I kind of get any reprieve is when I’m in Rainer’s shield. Well, I mean, Logan and Garrett’s shield work the same way, but obviously I prefer to be in Rainer’s.”
Jillian: “Ok let’s talk about that. Rainer can you explain to us how an Ioses Shield is formed and what kind of protection it offers either you or Emily?”
Rainer: “Sure,” he pauses for a moment to shoot another glare at the guy that is still rather overtly staring at Emily’s cleavage. “Uh, my shield forms out of my cells just like everyone’s Gifted energies, and it comes out of the pores in my skin. It’s a combination of gravitational and kinetic energy along with electromagnetic energies that are constantly switching polarities. That’s how I block out things like bullets. The polarity reversal is actually what causes it to appear green. I can fill my shield with any kind of energy. So, if Em’s cold, I’ll fill it with warmed thermal energy. If she’s scared, I can fill it with my own soothing energies. That’s what I do when the emotions all around her just get to be more than she can take. I can block out all other energies from my shield. Other people’s emotional energies are what her body picks up on so if I block out the energy then she can’t feel them anymore. I form a vacuum that forces everything but me away from her. It’s kind of hard to explain if you’re not an Ioses. I just do it.”
Jillian: “Interesting. So since we’re talking about your being a Shield tell us a little about working with Iodex. What’s working with Dan Vindico like?”
Rainer: “Uh well, I do love my work. It’s kind of exhausting since I’m just getting used to everything. The Academy really didn’t prepare me for Elite as well I would have liked. Vindico is…well… the fiercest Ioses shield ever. I think I would say he’s kind of like awe-inspiring and terrifying. But maybe don’t tell him I said that.”
Jillian: “I will never mention that. Did you ever think maybe Dan’s not so bad? He’s had a lot of stuff to deal with. Maybe he has a soft side somewhere?”
Rainer: “Uh…no…I don’t really think so. You may have written him, but I have to work for him.”
Jillian: “O…K, uh Emily why don’t you tell us a little bit about playing Summation professionally. What’s it like to be an Arlington Angel?”
Emily: “Being an Angel is just amazing. I mean, it’s an honor to be a part of such an outstanding organization. The Angels were the first Summation league for female players and they ultimately worked until we were able to challenge the male teams. Now, women are allowed to try-out for any Summation team. Summation is obviously the only Gifted sport, but since we only have six to ten challenges every year, the Angels focus more on our service projects. We work in orphanages, food pantries, inner-city Non-Gifted schools and daycares, and with the Auxiliary Department of the Senate doing volunteer work.
Jillian: “Any upcoming service projects coming up that you’re particularly excited about, Emily?”
Emily: “Well, kind of, but that’s in the fourth book and you told us not to give away any spoilers.”
Jillian: “Right, ok well how about “Lessons Learned” it comes out in two and a half weeks. I’m releasing the synopsis on the site tomorrow. How do you feel coming out the other side of our second novel.
Rainer: “We were morons.”
Emily: “Well, maybe let’s just say we had a lot of learning to do. I think you really see Rainer and I grow up in this novel.”
Jillian: “I totally agree. What would each of you say was your favorite part of “Lessons Learned?”
Emily gives her signature giggle, and before I know it, her hair is pushed back behind her right ear and her bottom lip locates her teeth. Rainer’s shaking his head at her.
Rainer: “You know, honestly, I really liked that drive we went on towards the end of the book. That was a great day. That night was horrible, but the day was good.”
Emily: “I loved that, too! One of my favorite parts would probably be New York. It was crazy, but it was really good too! Very hot, but you already knew that.
Jillian: “Let’s talk about some of the reviews of ‘Within the Realm,’ we had a few female reviewers that seemed to think you might be a little bit abrasive Emily. How would you respond to the slight criticism?” Rainer huffs audibly and rolls his eyes. I get the distinct impression that he doesn’t take kindly to anyone speaking ill of Emily.
Emily brushes a kiss on his cheek, and he seems to instantly calm.
Emily: “Well, I suppose, I am me. I mean, I grew up with seven older brothers that were simultaneously terrorizing me and then terrorizing anyone that messed with me. I learned really quickly never to act afraid and not to put up with anyone’s crap. I’m just not the kind of girl that doesn’t really have opinions or thoughts of my own. And I probably do have kind of a temper, but like I said, that’s who I am. And you know, after “Lessons Learned,” I really think that I like who I’m becoming.”
Rainer: “And I love who she is, exactly the way she is. I wonder if people get that I need her to be her. In fact, she is the only thing I need.”
Jillian: “Well said. All right, let’s talk a little about the upcoming novel. The third in “The Gifted Realm” series will be called “Every Action.” Without giving too much away, what are we going to see coming up for Rainer and Emily?”
Rainer gives me a smirk. He really is such a cutie.
Rainer: “Well, we do quite a bit of traveling.”
Emily: “Let’s just say that my family has a really rough time coming up.”
Jillian: “Agreed. Ok, well your relationship is a little different in that you really grew up together. Rainer you moved to the farm permanently when you were just barely fourteen, and you spent a great deal of time there before that. What was that like growing up together and being so in love? Any stories you’d share with us that maybe we haven’t heard just yet?
Emily: “Well I mean, we never got away with much with all of my brothers there so much. Oh, there’s the you and Levi paintball story.” Rainer looks momentarily horrified. I’m intrigued.
Jillian: “What paintball story?”
Rainer: “Em you are not gonna tell that story, please…”
Emily: “Oh it’s so sweet. It’ll be fine. Ok, so my brothers and Rainer used to play paintball all the time together. Even Will and Garrett have guns out in the barn and they actually still play, but anyway it was a few weeks after Rainer came to live with us. So he was just fourteen, and you know, when you first kind of finish puberty it’s a little hard to fully control all of the Gifted Energies…”
Emily: “This was so sweet. So, they’re all out there playing, and they’re playing teams. Well, Logan and Rainer kind of gang up and take out Levi and he was the last man on the opposing team. Well, I had just come out to the back fields, and when I saw Levi go down I started cheering. Well, Levi was furious, and he turned around and shot me with the paintball gun. He wasn’t that far away, and he left huge whelps on my thigh.”
At this point Rainer’s head is in his hands.
Emily: “So, Rainer just gets really, really mad. And he’s an Ioses that had just kind of gotten all of his energies so his shield just sort of explodes from him, and somehow he threw Levi back like ten feet. He couldn’t control it, but he also couldn’t hold it very long. Levi got up and came after him. Will and Garrett had to pull them apart. Mom and Dad were really mad.”
Jillian: “Wow! Levi is quite a bit older than you two. That must’ve been some shield.”
Rainer who is now the color of a beet nods his head.
Rainer: “I saw the whelps, and she started crying. I just lost it. I threw him before I even felt my shield develop. I was just as shocked as everyone else. It’s like that for a few months after your energy is fully in place. It’s really powerful and really hard to control. It’s quite a change.”
Jillian: “Ok, well why don’t you tell us one about Emily?”
Rainer chuckles as he begins to consider my offer. Emily is already blushing.
Rainer: “Oh, how about when you were five and decided we were all gonna play hair salon with you?” Rainer begins laughing hysterically. Emily’s eyes squeeze shut.
Rainer: “Ok, so Em had just gone to the salon with her mom, and she comes home and somehow convinces me and Logan and Connor that she can cut hair.”
Emily: “No, I promised if you’d play with me that I’d give you all my Easter candy.”
Rainer: “That’s right. Ok, so she starts like wetting our hair down and combing it and stuff, and I don’t think we knew that she was really gonna cut our hair. She brought out the Crayola scissors, and we all looked like deranged elves.”
Jillian: “And the Governor said…?”
Rainer: “I think he just sat us all down and gave us buzz cuts. There wasn’t much that could be done but let it grow back out. Oh, and as I recall she did have to give us all of her candy and lost her scissor privileges.”
Emily: “I think that was very harsh.” She can’t really get her statement out without laughing.
Jillian: “Well I really can’t thank you both enough for sharing with us today. I really appreciate it! You were both great!”
Rainer: “Well, I mean, can we ask you some stuff? Since you write us and all?”
I consider this for a moment.
Jillian: “Uh, well, maybe a few. I guess…”
Rainer: “Ok, first, why do you feel it necessary to always tell everyone whenever my pants get tight. I mean, it’s a little embarrassing.”
Jillian: “Uh well… I suppose that I want to tell your story to the best of my ability, and I am a romance writer so that is part of your story. I don’t think you should be embarrassed. It’s a perfectly normal reaction.”
Rainer: “Right… uh you know all of the guys on Elite that Logan and I work with read your stuff. Do you know how many hard-on jokes we’ve heard lately?”
Jillian: “Sorry… I guess…?”
Emily: “Oh, what about the trial with Adeline’s mom? Is she going to have to go to jail because of that horrible woman?”
Jillian: “You know guys, I’m really sorry, but I have to get back to work. It’s been so great talking with you. Happy Birthday, Emily!”
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Jillian lives outside of Atlanta with her husband, and children.