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Lilly is a Kansas City native who currently resides in sunny California with her well-traveled plants, Fred and Addie. She has a degree in English literature from The University of Kansas (and an incomplete degree in medieval history... So does that count? The tuition bills say it does.)

 

Lilly is a frequent traveler with a soft spot for Ireland, but Puerto Rico is her favorite destination. No matter where she is in the world, however, coffee is a need, necessity, addition, and obsession... one that she shares with all of her FMCs.

 

Although romance and containing HEA/HFNs, Lilly's stories address a range of trauma-related issues and are not intended/appropriate for readers under 18 years of age. A complete list of TWs for each book can be found on her LinkTree: LinkTr.ee/LillyKCee

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Being restrained isn’t what anyone wants. Not emotionally, anyway. But Elliott is:

Shackled by guilt.

Ensnared by grief.

Tethered by dark, taboo secrets.

Immured by wicked desires.

After learning about Jonah's responsibilities, she becomes convinced that he is:

Caged by expectation.

Constrained by belief.

But Jonah is the only man who has been able to rid her of the emotional ropes she’s wrapped herself up in.

Jonah has the uncanny understanding that Elliott is freed when caged. But he’s the one man she’s desperate to save from herself.

All Jonah wants to do is bind her to him.

Who bends?

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Book Excerpt

Jonah’s focus was locked on the corner of the building, waiting for the mystery that could cause Lucy’s momentary stupefaction—it was rare, the ability to stun Lucy—to be revealed. From around the corner came a sultry dark-haired woman steadily stalking her, moving like a panther, sleek and sure of her prey, a sheen of sweat covering her fantastically proportioned body. 

Enraptured, he understood Lucy’s astonishment because he was struck silent by white-hot lightning.

Her concentration was fixed on Lucy, a slight wariness combined with curiosity. She wasn’t unfriendly, but she wasn’t tossing out the welcome mat, either. Her arms swung out a bit wider at her sides to account for the open-fingered boxing gloves she was wearing.  

The thumps: boxing. Jonah’s interest in Lucy’s beguiling stalker skyrocketed. 

With a slight stutter, Lucy offered, “I—I didn’t mean to interrupt your… you… your… boxing… thing… but I was hoping that either Gage or Elliott Rork was around.” 

The woman continued to look at Lucy with cautious fascination, coming to a halt near the red door. Lucy skittered to a stop, too, glancing back at him—yep, still here—although he didn’t look away from their reluctant, captivating hostess. She sniffed and used the back of one glove to swipe across her nose. It was a masculine gesture from a definitively feminine form. The action was likely to imply that she may look like a woman, but she’d kick your ass like a man. 

Noted. It was sexy as hell. Not what she was going for, but he wasn’t a man who was put off by a woman who looked like… well, her: a woman covered in sweat from a workout. One who could handle herself. One who wouldn’t take anyone’s bullshit.

He hadn’t minded bringing Lucy to her impromptu job interview today, but now he felt the time had been well-spent, merely to look at the woman with transcendent silver eyes. 

She suddenly shifted focus to him; he was ridiculously giddy to have her undivided attention. He could tell she was assessing whether he posed any threat. The intensity of her stare shot through him like an electrical prod. Not heeding her nonverbal cues, he took his time in perusing her, leisurely roaming up from her bare feet (he reclassified: kickboxer), over her tanned and toned legs, abs and stomach, curved hips and full breasts. He suspected the nipples displayed against the tight black bra were aroused by adrenaline from her workout rather than the effect of his assessment… although a man could hope.  

He was infuriatingly aware of a definite tightening as his attention lingered, as though the tips were delighted to have an audience. He was a fan.

Her pink lips parted for air and possibly to express her disbelief at his obvious inspection, and he drank this in, as well—her lips—before he noted her sweat-soaked hair. He cocked an eyebrow, his own lips twitching, indicating hearty approval of what he saw. She glowered at him in warning, which, of course, he didn’t feel the full effect of because he wasn’t looking directly at her eyes.

He ran the risk of being mistaken for a misogynistic asshole, he knew, for not heeding her glare. But he was receiving mixed signals, and he wanted to puzzle them out; wanted to know why his attention pleased her body, but her stare threw daggers.

Withdrawing her warning look, she focused on Lucy. “Gage isn’t available. What do you want with Elliott? The space is closed right now.” She glanced once more at him, taking stock more thoroughly, and he was perfectly fine with her attention. 

“Oh!” Lucy shoved out her hand, which had the woman shaking her head and holding up the gloves with a baffled expression. “Oh, right.” She gave a breathy laugh. “I’m Lucy Moore. There was an ad for an event planner?”

The woman furrowed her brow in confusion. “Did you have an appointment?” 

“Oh, no,” Lucy assured her. “No, don’t worry, you didn’t miss anything. But if he’s here, and you can get me in to see him real quick, I would so appreciate it. I mean, I wanted to be spontaneous and surprise him. It’s kind of my thing; it’s how I work.”

The expressions crossing the woman’s face didn’t hide her reactions to what Lucy was saying. At first, she looked offended at the inference that she was a secretary who may have messed up an appointment, and then she looked at Lucy like she was insane. She tossed him a look of accusation, like it was his fault because he’d driven her here.

Again, he was more than happy to be the recipient of her attention. He could look at the combination of her black hair and unique eyes surrounded by dark lashes all day. She had the most penetrating gaze he’d ever experienced, and he found himself wanting to be speared. He was comfortable under her stare. 

She was currently looking at him in confusion and irritation, seeking answers or maybe reassurance, but he didn’t add anything to the conversation; this was Lucy’s deal. Instead, he crossed his arms over his broad chest and his feet at the ankles. Leaning back against the Jeep, he prepared to settle in. He knew Lucy, and he was resigned to the fact that she wouldn’t be waylaid. He hoped his pose was a silent indicator to the woman that resistance was futile. 

The slightest twitch of an eye let him know she got it. Looking again at Lucy, she jerked her head toward the door. “Inside. Just you.”

“Oh, thank you!” Lucy practically squealed, throwing Jonah a grin over her shoulder. He winked at her. She headed toward the door, giving the woman a wide berth.

The woman’s frank assessment returned to him again, watching him, storm clouds gathering. He watched her back, amused. He admired her once more, unable to fight the temptation, impressed with the subtle softness of her body rather than the hardness athletic women often wished to achieve.

She lifted a glove to her mouth and used her teeth to rip away the Velcro: vicious. Again, attempting to project dominance and masculinity. She could have used her fingers but chose not to. He watched the movement with appreciation. Wildcat, this one.

Ripping off her glove, she snapped, “It’s rude to stare.”

He raised an eyebrow. “Is it? I’ll try to remember that.”

Q&A with Lilly K Cee

Q: Can you tell me a bit about yourself and how became an author?

A: This is one of those icebreaker questions in workshops that introvert-me never knows how to answer, and when it comes my turn, I overcompensate by sharing inappropriately. Ha! The truth is, there isn’t anything unique or interesting about me. I’ve been writing since I was a kid because it was my way to process my environment. Did I know that I was creating my own therapy as a kid? No. Was I writing sexually explicit content at the age of twelve? Yes. Did that make me a writer then? Who knows? But I was popular with my friends who read my stories.

 

In high school, it morphed into what I suppose would be considered fan fic today: entertainment pieces for my friends hooking up with their rock star crushes. I did write a friend into a pirate story and I had him captured and hung for piracy. He thought it was awesome to be a villain who died in one of my stories, so I obliged him. 

 

I stopped writing when I was in a relationship. For 11 years, that outlet was stunted. Literally, the day I sent him on his way, I sat down and the words came flowing out. Book one (which will never be published) was written. I wrote Turbulence (now a series, Entanglement and Tranquility) next. I moved to Minnesota and started writing Those Who Are Bound when a character named Mac made himself known and I had to stop writing Those Who Are Bound to write Mac’s story, Alive Day. 

 

After Alive Day was finished, I immediately returned to Those Who Are Bound. And then... I was in a grocery store in St Paul and the flash drive (on a key chain) was pick pocketed. Copies of my manuscripts were on the flash drive, so a writer friend of mine told me to copyright immediately and publish in order to protect my work.

 

So, now I am a published author. And I have moved to California.

Q: What is your writing process like?

A: Chaos. Ha! I don’t know that I have a process. When I have a moment, or the words come, I open up my laptop, zone out, and write. I’d liken it to meditation.

Q: What do you like to do when you are not writing?

A: I work a demanding and fulfilling full-time-plus job. Writing is the side hustle. Beyond these two things, when I get the chance, I do like to travel. As my bio states, Puerto Rico is a go-to. I am determined to get back to Ireland soon, however.

Q: How do you celebrate when you are finished writing a book?

A: I suffer something along the lines of anxiety. Writing is still my therapy, so when one story is complete, I need another to move on to. If I don’t have anything brewing, then it’s less of a celebration and more of a meltdown, lol.

Q: How do you celebrate when your books are released?

A: I don’t. It’s just me, so I hit the button and that’s that. Ta-da. I’m sorry the answer isn’t more exciting.

Q: Can you tell me how the book/series came about?

A: I mention below a book I’d read that influenced the religious aspect, but for the most part, I had just moved away from Kansas City and this story, writing about places in KC, was a way to keep a connection. I wanted to write something less angsty and lighter than Turbulence (I hadn’t published, so it was just one book then), and Elliott and Jonah popped up. I’m a pantser, so their story came as I wrote.

Q: Are any of your characters similar to real-life friends or family?

A: Not in this book, no.

Q: What was the most challenging part of writing this book?

A: Elliott and Jonah—all of them, really—stopped talking to me after the manuscript copy was stolen. For almost a year. I didn’t think I’d finish it; I didn’t think I could re-create the parts I hadn’t (stupidly) backed up. I tried to connect with Elliott, but it was Jonah who started talking first, while I was in Puerto Rico. And if you read it, it’s such a Jonah thing, to be the first one. I felt like I had betrayed them, allowing them to get stolen, and it was my punishment, their silence. ☹

Q: What part of writing this book was the most fun for you?

A: Writing about the places in Kansas City that I myself love to visit.

Q: What Authors or other Books have inspired you to write this book?

A: I don’t remember the book or the author’s name, and it wouldn’t be fair to mention. But years ago, I did read a story about a woman who had left the church and the man she started dating was religious. The gas lighting in the story and passive aggressive pressure – all presented as caring and love – triggered my own religious trauma, so I suppose you can say a part of this story was a response to that. Elliott doesn’t bend. But Jonah’s not too much of a dick about it, either. They can co-exist with different belief systems.

Q: What is your favorite passage from this book?

A: “Tonight, you’re that man.” 

 

...You’ll have to read it to know the context. But, gah!

Q: If you could meet any of your characters, who would it be and what would you say to them?

A: Britton, from the Turbulence Series, Entanglement and Tranquility. I’d just give her a hug and tell her I’m proud of her for coming out okay on the other side.