of struggling with alcoholism and drug abuse, I got clean and put my best foot
forward. I became the man worthy of Lacey Parrish’s love and made the girl with
the sad brown eyes my wife. But I’m not the only one in our marriage with
demons. Diagnosed a manic depressive, Lacey struggles daily with her mind,
never willing to succumb to the stigma of mental illness.
have always been stacked against us, but the stakes have never been this high.
Pregnant with our child, Lacey is forced to choose between her mind and the
baby we wished for.
pain, but I can’t take hers.
and at the mercy of all the things that plague us, I turn to my past.
our favorite sins that do us in.
through hell, hoping love is enough for us to survive one more blackout.
part one of the Leather & Lace duet and over 70,000 words.*
Book One Excerpt: “That’s Not How This Works”
2019 Janine Infante Bosco
our baby might be born with a heart defect if Lacey remains on her medication
was the final card to fall. Now, all that’s left is a mountain of debris and I
don’t know how to drudge through any of it.
Lacey says, keeping her back to me as she fills a water glass. It’s the third
time she’s poured herself a refill and I wonder if she’s wishing it was
something harder. God knows I’m fixing for something.
drink turpentine right now.
going anywhere, Lace, that’s not how this works,” I tell her, bracing my hands
on the kitchen island. We both know what happens if I leave, the problem is
she’s too wrapped up in her grief to realize she’s sending me straight to hell
because if I do as she says, I’ll either go to a bar or drive out to Queens to
score some drugs.
like either of us know how anything works,” she hisses, dropping her glass into
the sink. There’s truth to her words. A truth we’ve both been too fucking naïve
to me, crossing her arms over her chest as she gives me her dark eyes.
we take a step forward, we take three back. We’re a fucking joke, Blackie. Two
lost souls who will never get it right and now, we’re bringing a baby into the
world. If that’s not fucking selfish, I don’t know what is.”
think it was selfish the first night I came in you,” I fire back, slamming my
fist against the counter. My anger gets the best of me and I lose my patience.
Everything, all the shit with the club, Jack’s failing mind, my addictions, and
her fucking illness, it all comes crashing to the surface.
that night, I was worried about you getting pregnant and not because I thought
we didn’t deserve to be parents or because I didn’t want to have a baby. I was
concerned for you, for your fucking mental health but you told me there were
people like you all over the world having kids.”
like me,” she repeats.
the hurt in her eyes, I continue my rant.
fucking promised me you’d get in touch with your shrink. You swore you’d tell
her we were trying for a baby—”
know I’d get pregnant so quickly,” she spats.
on your fucking word,” I shout over her.
the words leave my lips, I regret them, but there’s no taking them back.
should’ve fucking left.
then I wouldn’t have to watch the painful expression fill her pretty face.
pain, but I can’t take hers.
swipe a hand over my face and bow my head.
sorry for expressing how you truly feel,” she spats, furiously wiping at the
tear that escapes the corner of her eye.
know what the fuck I feel,” I admit, gripping the edge of the counter again.
Frustration claws at me as I keep my eyes pinned to her. “All I know is the
last thing I want to see is you lose yourself to your maker. I don’t understand
why you won’t just talk to the doctor before you make a decision.”
don’t know what’s so hard to comprehend. You know, it’s my body, therefore it’s
ultimately my decision, but it’s our
baby, Blackie. It’s not a dream anymore. It’s not a what if—I’m pregnant and I
can’t understand how you would risk our child being born with a heart
slap me in the face, and I clench my jaw, trying to keep my emotions in check.
There shouldn’t be a choice. We shouldn’t have to choose between Lacey’s mental
stability and bringing a healthy baby into the world, but once again life’s got
us by the balls. No one gets a say in the cards they’re dealt. You get what you
get. You either play your fucking hand or you fold. Some people, go all in.
They risk everything they got and pray they don’t lose. Others, they’re more
cautious and maybe that’s because they’ve lost in the past. Maybe, just maybe
they want to hang onto what they got and don’t want to press their luck.
visit one wife in a cemetery.
want to visit Lacey in the fucking psych ward.
you something,” I say hoarsely, pausing to swallow the lump suffocating me.
“Have you thought about what happens after the baby is born? More specifically,
have you taken a fucking second to think about what happens to you?”
answer me as she diverts her eyes away and I take the opportunity to paint her
is born, and she’s perfect. She’s got a full head of dark hair and the
prettiest brown eyes either of us has ever seen. She’s everything we dreamed of
and yet, I’m the only one living the dream. You don’t look at her the way I do.
You don’t hold her and feel the same things I do. To you, she just exists, and
you don’t understand why. You forget the sacrifices you made bringing her into
the world. You forget the dreams you had for her. You forget it all.”
orders, balling her fists at her side.
growl. “I won’t stop. You won’t get to experience the joys of motherhood,
Lacey. You won’t hold her in the middle of the night when she wakes. You won’t
get to watch her grow or teach her how to walk. You won’t even give a fuck
because you and your maker will be one. She wins and your child, the precious
baby you fought to bring into this world, she fucking loses.”
Lacey spins around and takes the glass from the sink. Before I realize what
she’s doing, she turns back to me and throws it across the room. It misses me
by an inch and crashes against the floor.
fuck out of here,” she cries.
don’t move, she advances towards me and stands across the other end of the
I tell her. “But I won’t fucking apologize for a word of what I just said.
Children are born with birth defects every day, Lace. Sometimes the doctors
catch them early on and sometimes they don’t find out until the baby is already
in the mother’s arms. That don’t make them broken or any less loveable.”
loved reading and writing. When she was thirteen, she began to write her own
stories and her passion for writing took off as the years went on. At eighteen,
she even wrote a full screenplay with dreams of one day becoming a member of
the Screen Actors Guild.
Janine writes emotionally charged novels with an emphasis on family bonds,
strong willed female characters, and alpha male men who will do anything for
the women they love. She loves to interact with fans and fellow avid romance
readers like herself.
She is proud of her success as an author and the friendships she’s made in the
book community but her greatest accomplishment to date would be her two sons
Joseph and Paul.