Free Fall (Free Fall Vol. 1): (Loving Summer #6: The Donovan Brothers #3)

BOOK: Free Fall (Free Fall Vol. 1): (Loving Summer #6: The Donovan Brothers #3)
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FREE

FALL

 

kailin
gow

A Contemporary
Adult Loving Summer Novel

 

Free
Fall

Published by THE EDGE

THE EDGE is an imprint of
Sparklesoup Inc.

Copyright © 2015 Kailin Gow

 

All Rights Reserved. No part of
this book may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means,
graphic, electronic, or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, taping
or by any information storage or retrieval system, without the permission in
writing from the publisher except in case of brief quotations embodied in
critical articles and reviews.

 

For information, please
contact:

THE EDGE at
Sparklesoup

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4
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www.theEdgeBooks.com

First Edition.

Printed in the
United States of America.

 

 

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Author’s
Note

 

Due to popular
demand,
Free Fall
was written in order to bring you more of Nat’s story,
but as you will see from reading
Free Fall
, there is still a lot more to
tell about Summer, Drew, Rachel, and Astor so it is their story.

 

Free Fall is in
a sense a new series, about Summer and the Donovans 10 years later.  It can be
read as the first book in a new series – Free Fall and/or can be read after
Perfect Summer of the Loving Summer Series.

 

This is a
Contemporary Adult book with language and adult sexual situations.

Prologue

 

Nat’s Letter to Summer

 

My
Perfect Summer,

 

It’s
been years since we’ve seen each other. I know since I left, my intel tells me
you have finished college, gone unto med school, and even work at a hospital in
Los Angeles. I am so proud of you, of all your accomplishments, and how you’ve
become the woman I’ve always dreamed you would be. It makes my decision to
leave years ago worth it hearing how you’re fulfilling your destiny and living
life to the fullest. The only regret I have is feeling as though I’ve missed
out on so much of your life. I left trusting that my good-for-nothing little
brother Drew would take good care of you, and from this wedding invitation in
my hand from both of you, I trust that he has.

 

I
am honored to be the best man at your wedding. I will be there next week at
Aunt Sookie’s Malibu Pad for the rehearsals. You two can count on me to be
there for both of you.

 

Love
Always,

 

Your
Nat in Shining Armor

 

 

 

Summer

 

 

I’
ve read Nat’s letter to me over again for the
hundredth time, and held it up in my trembling hands close to my chest. Nothing
these days can get my hands to tremble the way it was trembling right now. I
was known to have one of the steadiest hands in the country. It got me on the
fast track to become a neurosurgeon at USC, where I also went to medical
school.

I
could not believe Nat will finally be back at the Pad after being gone for nearly
10 years. 

In
a flash, I could remember the last time I saw him as though it was just
yesterday. It was the day after Drew and I spent the night together at Drew’s
place, a modern penthouse suite built on top of the Donovan Dynamics Los
Angeles building.

Being
that it was the location housing most of the data servers containing valuable
and highly classified top secret information, the building was one of the most
secured and safe places in the country. It was also the most logical place for
me to move to following the threat I received from my old stalker and his
international hacker ring friends who were also into other illegal and far more
dangerous activities.

Nat,
who had undergone a complex identity change, and who was the main target of the
revenge plot by that group, stayed in one of the rooms set up for him by Drew
at the building.  It was down the hallway, but out of sight. Although the place
had an appearance of a typical office building in Los Angeles, less than a half
an hour drive to the beach and to Aunt Sookie’s Malibu Pad, where I lived, it
was not open to the public, for obvious reasons. So…having Drew, Nat, and I in
the same place all under one gigantic roof was like being home once again, as
we were when we spent our summers at the Pad as children. 

We
had the entire building to ourselves, yet Nat was just down the hallway from
Drew’s room, and I…I spent the night with the Donovan brother I thought I would
spend the rest of my life with. It was the hardest decision I have ever made in
my life, being in love with both for so long, but it was one I had to make so
the one who had to leave…could move on. 

Could
let me go and pursue his own life’s goals.

 

            I
loved them both – Nat and Drew in their own ways, but I had to let one of them
go.

 

            Nat
had chosen a life’s path that placed him in constant danger, and Drew…Drew and
I had an incredible chemistry and friendship that enhanced the love we have
always had for each other for years.

 

            After
“choosing” Drew, and getting Nat’s blessing, in a way, Drew and I spent the
night together. When we finally opened Drew’s bedroom door to see if he wanted
to get something to eat, he was already gone.

 

            Not
a note or a letter as he usually leaves.

 

            Not
even a pen.  The room was empty.

 

            “Nat?”
I called.

 

            “Nat…”
Drew joined in. “We’re getting something to eat. Want to come with us?  Oh
yeah, you’re not supposed to be seen with us…new identity, so do you want us to
pick up something for you?”

 

            Silence.

 

            Drew
took long strides into the Nat’s room, checking out the bedroom, the
bathroom…anywhere where Nat could be, and walked over to me.  “He’s gone.”

 

            I
walked into Nat’s room and looked everywhere as if I had to see it for myself
instead of taking Drew’s word for it.  It was empty.

 

            “Maybe
he just went out for an errand,” Drew said walking up to me from behind and
placing his hand on my shoulder.

 

            I
shook my head.  “No, I think this is it. Nat is going back to being his new
identity.” I felt tears in my eyes.  For one crazy, strange, and dangerous
night; Drew and I got to see our old Nat once again.  Now he was gone…and who
knew when and if he would ever return to being our Nat again.

 

            As
I clutch his handwritten letter to me – he always wrote letters the
old-fashioned way because he thought they were more personal, I had a strange
but peaceful and warm feeling envelope me as though the letter provided this
glow of light, of warmth.  Our Nat was returning home as Nat. Finally Nat would
be back.

 

 

 

 

Chapter
1

 

Drew

 

 

I
didn’t think it would happen…that Summer
would get a response to her invitation and letter sent through Lamar, Nat’s FBI
contact, to Nat. 

Dammit,
Nat, it finally takes Summer and I getting engaged and getting married to get
you to acknowledge our existence. 

I
knew Nat loved Summer something fierce, but I didn’t think that he would
disappear the way he did upon finding out Summer chose me over him.  And for ten
Fucking Years!

As
manly as I am, even I was devastated by his disappearance act. Gone once.  Here
again, and then gone in a blink of an eye.  A real magician, my brother.  Like
some kind of modern ninja. Even the security cameras at our building Donovan
Dynamics couldn’t capture him leaving the building.  Whatever training he got
from those ex-Seals, ex-Special Ops, ex-Best of the Best military guys when he
went undercover to save Dad, it seemed he excelled in it, as he always did with
everything. 

Computer
genius. High School football hero. Model perfect son to Mom. Dad’s right hand
man. And Summer’s first love and crush. 

 

Nat
was always that kind of guy.  So…when he was set on disappearing from his old
life as Nat Donovan, son and heir to Donovan Dynamics, he did a fine job disappearing
too.  A too good of a job that even our Tracers, the specialist we have at
Donovan Dynamics, who are able to follow and find traces of any leads on people
and information, couldn’t find Nat.  I should know, the guy himself, trained
them. So when Nat wanted to disappear, he disappeared. No question about it.
Except when he wanted to be found.  Ten freakin’ years, Nat!  It took you that
long to finally be able to accept Summer was now with me.  Ten years was a very
long time for all of us. I’ve finished college, finished getting my MBA from
Stanford, took over as CEO of Donovan Dynamics for Dad so he could retire and look
after Mom, and now have my own homes in the San Francisco Bay area, Malibu, New
York, London, Paris, Hawaii, and wherever Summer and I wanted to spend time at
together. 

Summer…she
was and still is the best thing that ever happened to me.  She turned this
scrappy bad boy into a man. I love her so much, I get tears just thinking about
how much I do.  She is my everything, and to me, ten years wasn’t even enough
time for me to spend with her. To me, it would take a lifetime and more to ever
get enough of her. If I was away from her for over ten years like Nat was, I
would have changed so dramatically, I wouldn’t even recognize myself.

 

I
wonder how he’d look.  He had on a disguise last time I saw him that made him
unrecognizable. If I saw him, would I even recognize him?

 

I
wonder if he could recognize me or Summer or even our kid sister Rachel, who
was still crazy as before, but now she gets to be crazy in the public eye as an
actress on the small screen.

I
wonder if he knew about Rachel’s success, about Mom’s progression, and of
Summer becoming a neurosurgeon. I wonder if he ever bothered checking up on any
of us, seeing how we were doing, seeing how we’ve grown.

He
was my big brother, and I hate to admit that I missed him, but I did.  It made
me angry at him at first, but then again, if I had lost Summer to my own
brother, as he did, I wouldn’t want to be around to see them together.

 

So…now
that we have his attention, and he was coming back for our wedding, the big
question remained…I wonder if he still feels the same way he did about Summer
that many years ago.

 

And
if he did, would I need to be worried?

 

Chapter
2

 

Summer

 

 

I
never thought planning a wedding would be
harder than brain surgery.  But to me, it was. Thank God, Rachel was helping me
with most of it.  It was something she lived for, having become more of a girly
girl than I could have ever imagined.

Gone
was the heavy black eyeliner she used to wear as a goth, and gone was her
school girl, punk rock outfit. She was now a beautiful stylish brunette with
jet black flowing long hair, a curvy figure dressed in designer dresses, and a
collector of beautiful shoes. The only reminder of her rebellious days as a
teen was that streak of purple hair. It was still there, but blended in more
with her black hair, tinted with a slight burgundy tone. Needless to say, she
grew into her role of a billionaire daughter, and matched her twin brother Drew
so well when they had to go into shareholders meetings, commanding the room
with their striking jet black hair and sapphire blue eyes.

And
her crush on Astor Fairway? It was something she barely told me or hinted to me
about. 

Guess
she still thought there was something there with Astor for me or vice versa,
but I never got a chance to really discuss it with her, although I could have
sworn I saw a spark or two over the years between them.

“I
swear,” I said to Rachel, who was sitting patiently on the creamy leather sofa
in the bridal boutique, flipping through some fashion magazines as she waited
for me to try on my hundredth dress. “I never had to go through more wedding
dresses and dress changes than I had when I was styled to match Astor.”

Rachel
smiled, her eyes lighting up with the mere mention of her favorite actor’s
name.  “Well, you know Astor, any woman who is to be seen with him had to look
worthy of being with him.  You would think.”

“Yes
or suffer the ire of spurned girls all over the world,” I said.

Rachel
laughed.  “Thank God, that paparazzi-crazed days of Astor Fairway, teen
heartthrob is over, and he could finally pursue other roles that were more
meaningful to him.”

“He’s
really grown as an actor these years,” I said. “His latest film is a contender
for the Oscar. It blew me away. I love when he chooses a role in an independent
film that has more meaning and substance over some of the big tent poles the
studios had him in following the success of some superhero film. Not that it’s
bad for his career or anything, but he really shines in these parts that shows
off his acting chops from these indie gems.”

“Absolutely,”
Rachel said, standing up and coming toward me.  She walked all around me, her
face serious for a second.  “Hold on…hold it a minute, this dress…” her eyes
went wide with excitement as she spread out her arms.  “This dress is the one!”

“Really?”
I turned around on the platform facing the 180 degree mirror.  “It’s just a
simple plain white silk strapless gown.”

“Exactly,”
Rachel said, “It is pure innocence and romance. Simple and understated, a
natural, like you didn’t fuss too much with it. You look darling in it, and it
would be perfect for the beach wedding.”

“You
know,” I said. “I was thinking about having a train, but when you reminded me
that it was at the beach at the Pad, of course!  It had to be this dress.  No
trains, easy to walk in bare-foot on the beach, and just there.”

“Just
you, Summer,” Rachel said. “You don’t need a fancy dress to shine.  In fact,
that would only take away from your brilliance.”  She looked at me with a
wistful smile and said shakily, “My dream of having you as a real sister is
finally coming true.”

I
stepped off the platform and went to her, enveloping her in my arms.  “Mine
too. You’ve always been like a sister to me, and now, it’s becoming official.”

Rachel
smiled as she quickly wiped away tears.  Then she scolded me.  “It’s about
time! I don’t know why you and Drew kept us all waiting. It should have been
years ago.”

“I
know, Rachel,” I said.  “I guess time just flew by when I was busy trying to
skip grades in college and then getting myself buried in work at medical school
and at the Academy. And Drew, it took so much for him to have to step into Nat
and your father’s shoes at Donovan Dynamics. We barely saw each other
sometimes… but now…”

Rachel
hugged me tight, “I’m so happy you two are making it official finally. Mom and
Dad will be so happy. And, well, although we didn’t have much time to plan this
wedding…you gave me less than a month, I think I’ve got most of the details
with the catering, and stuff down.  Since it’s at the Pad and outdoors, we
don’t have to worry about finding a place.  We now have your dress.  We’ve got
the invites out.  Your mom will officiate, and the reception afterwards…Astor
has it taken care of.”

“Astor?”
I asked.

“Oh
yes, Astor is helping of course, Summer.  You know he wouldn’t miss it for
anything.  He’s been so close to us for years. I’ve asked him to take charge of
the catering.”

“Okay,”
I said. “You can do whatever you like, wedding coordinator, even if it’s a ploy
to see Astor more…”

Rachel
blushed. “Who said I want to, and also, who said if I wanted to, I needed an
excuse like this one to see him. As far as Astor Fairway and I…I’m
tight-lipped. Especially since we’re both actors, and even the mention of us
seeing each other or even as friends will send the press wild with some kind of
scandal.”

I
laughed.  “Okay, I won’t pry. You always had your own way of doing things
anyways so I’ll leave you at that.”

“Good,”
Rachel said, “Because my love life is as complicated as it is, and I don’t need
Astor making it even more complicated.  Um, I hate to leave you, but since the
wedding is next week, and you nearly gave me a heart attack worrying whether
you will finally find your perfect dress, I have to go follow up on
everything.  You know me, wedding coordinator and all, I’m on top of things!”

“Okay,”
I said, watching her fly out of the bridal boutique.  The owner of the boutique
came around to help me unzip the dress.  “I’ll take this one,” I said smiling.

“It
does look beautiful on you, Miss Jones,” she said. “I’ve never seen a dress
look so right on anyone.  This is the one.”

“Thank
you,” I said.  “Can you have it delivered to my address in Malibu?”

“Of
course,” the chic boutique owner said. “And don’t worry about it, Mr. Donovan
has taken care of the bill.”

“Oh
no,” I said. “I couldn’t.  I make enough to pay for my own dress.  Can you
cancel his card and place it on mine?”

The
woman looked surprised.  “He would be very disappointed.  He said it would be
his wedding gift to you.”

 

“I
can’t.  Here’s my credit card,” I said, handing mine to her. “What’s the
damage?”

 

“Are
you sure?” the woman asked.  “This is a one-of-a-kind London Lenore.”

 

I
glanced down at the invoice she had placed with the dress and inhaled a sharp
breath.  $250,000 for this dress. “Oh My Gosh!” I said.

“Did
you change your mind?” the woman asked.

“Is
there another dress similar but for a fraction of the price?” I asked.

“I’m 
afraid not, and this dress, it’s just perfect for you.”

“But
that is unbelievable or a dress, I mean…”

“Mr.
Donovan will take care of it,” the lady said, walking away from me. “He said it
adamantly.”

“Did
he know how much it would be before he agreed to it?” I asked.

“Yes,”
the woman said. “I showed him all the dresses in here earlier, and told him how
much some of them run.  He said it would be no problem.”

“But…”

The
woman rang up the dress with a smile. “You wouldn’t want to argue with the man,
I assure you. He was dead set on getting you a wedding dress as a gift, and
from the looks of this man, as handsome as he was, you know you wouldn’t want
to go up against his wishes.”

I
blinked my eyes.  That didn’t sound like Drew to me.  He was normally pretty
easy-going.

“Well,
I’ll be sure to thank Drew for this,” I said.  I squinted. “Don’t worry, I
won’t get you in trouble.”

“Smart
girl,” the woman nodded. “No wonder why Nathaniel Donovan is getting you this
dress.”

“Nathaniel?”
I asked.

“That’s
the name Mr. Donovan gave me,” the woman said.

“But
I thought…” I swallowed my words. Why would Nat buy me my wedding dress, and
how in the world could he afford it if he was no longer a Donovan?

 

 

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