Title: A Debt to the Devil
Author: D.M. Hamblin
Genre: Women’s Fiction
Liz (Andrews) Ericson is an intelligent, hard-working entrepreneur, with a trusting heart, especially when it comes to her husband, Matthew Ericson. After struggling with childhood obesity and losing fifty pounds, Liz met Matthew, a handsome and charismatic Texan. By the third year of marriage, Liz starts hearing of whispers and suggestions of her husband’s infidelities, but is unable to see through her husband’s expert manipulation … until the day she’s presented with undeniable proof.
A Debt to the Devil is a romantic thriller with many twists and turns through Liz Ericson’s life, from the emotional damage caused by being an overweight adolescent to her efforts to free herself from the emotional claws of her sociopathic husband.
Liz rented a tuxedo for Matthew to wear to the Christmas party. She put it on the bed the night of the party. “It’s black-tie.”
“A tux? Fancy schmancy company you have there, moneybags.”
God grant me the serenity … “Shirley organized it. She always wanted to attend a black-tie affair, so she created one. It’ll be nice.”
Liz slipped on a black off-the-shoulder chiffon gown, and diamond earrings—her wedding present—complemented by a diamond necklace and her emerald and sapphire bracelet. She fluffed her bobbed hair in front of the mirror. Matthew came up behind her and hugged her waist. “You’re striking tonight, Mrs. Ericson.” His lips brushed her neck.
“You’re giving me goose bumps.” She turned around to face him. “And you’ll surely be the most handsome gent at the ball, Mr. Ericson.” She fiddled with his black bow tie.
He took her hands and gently kissed them. “Let’s go paint the town.”
Shirley met Liz and Matthew at the threshold of their private room at Terramia Ristorante, in Boston’s North End. The room sparkled with countless white mini lights. A tall Scotch pine tree in the corner of the room was adorned with white lights, glass icicles, and small and large silver and red bulbs. A glittering star adorned the top.
“Shirley, the room is spectacular. And I love your dress. You’ve met my husband, Matthew?”
Shirley turned to Matthew. “I don’t think I ever have. Although I’ve spoken with you on the phone. You’re a handsome bugger.”
Matthew kissed her hand. “Thank you, Shirley. And, thanks for being my wife’s right hand. I’d never see her if it weren’t for you.”
Shirley nudged Liz’s shoulder. “He’s quite the charmer.”
“That he is.” Liz put her arm through his. “We’re going to get a cocktail.”
They walked up to the bar that was strung with white mini lights. Matthew told the bartender, “I’ll have a martini and my stunning wife here will have a cosmopolitan.”
“Matthew, a martini?” Liz raised her eyebrows.
He whispered, “I can’t order a Bud in a classy place like this. I’m playing the part.”
“This place feels enchanted and you’re my Prince Charming. I feel like I’m in a fairy tale!”
“You deserve it. It’s been a long time—”
“Liz! You’re looking lovely tonight.” Ken, Liz’s business partner, kissed her cheek. “This is Sam Redman, my life partner.” Sam reached for Liz’s hand.
“It’s a pleasure to meet you, Liz. I’ve heard so much about you.”
“It’s a pleasure to finally meet you as well.” She put her hand on Matthew’s back. “This is my husband, Matthew.”
“It’s nice to meet you.” The men shook hands.
The filet mignon dinner was enjoyed by all. Matthew and Liz danced under the shimmering lights. Matthew twirled her under his arm; she spun and returned to him. “I feel like I’m twenty-five again,” she whispered in his ear.
Liz was in the ladies’ room when she saw Heather’s text. How’s it going?
Super. We’re having such a wonderful time. And Matthew’s a giant hit. Everyone’s telling me what a great husband I have. First time, in a long time, I’ve been proud of him.
As Ken headed for the bar, he noticed Matthew chatting with the cute thirty-something bartender. She handed him a piece of paper and gave him an enticing smile. He slipped the paper into his jacket pocket. When Matthew noticed Ken, he threw two bucks on the bar and walked away.
Ken stopped in his tracks. He was sure he had heard Matthew say, “I’ll call you.”
If money were no object, where would you go for a Spring Break vacation and why?
I would veg out on the Outer Banks of North Carolina. On May 4 2015 at 6:15 a.m., I sat on the third-story deck of a $1.5M beach house with a cup of hot coffee in hand and my feet crossed on top of the railing. I faced a brilliant sunrise coming over the horizon and basked into the sounds of crashing waves, one after the other. It was the most peaceful moment of gratitude. I loved everything about that vacation. It was financially affordable. For me, time and method of travel is the issue. A fourteen-hour car ride is the best method of travel from Massachusetts to the Outer Banks. Someday, I hope to live there.
What’s your favorite thing about Spring and why?
Nothing signifies renewal like Spring. Watching the earth come back to life excites. The warmth of the sun, getting stronger every day, soothes my skin. The smell of flowers wake my senses. The sense of renewal feeds my soul. There’s no better time of year.
Spring Break Bookapalooza Giveaway:
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Runs April 1 – 30
Drawing will be held on May 1.
Since childhood, D.M. Hamblin always loved writing whether it was a paper for school or college, advocacy letters for herself or others, love letters, short stories or business communications. She was accepted to study communications at Boston University's School of Communications to major in public relations, in September 1980. However, life interrupted. She became a single mother the following year instead. While raising a delightful daughter, she went from a short stint on welfare to finish college, start a paralegal career, send her daughter through private schools, began and finished the first manuscript of Once Broken from 1995-1996, abandoned it as her paralegal career excelled, married the love of her life when her daughter was fourteen, blended two beautiful step daughters, built two businesses in the legal industry, fell madly in love with three amazing grandchildren, suffered Lyme disease for seven years, sold two businesses -and in 2015 was blessed to have found the time and resources to resume the dream of writing. After twenty years, she unearthed Once Broken, converted it from floppy disk, revised and edited several times, and launched her long-awaited writing career with the self-publishing of her debut novel, Once Broken.
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