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Hard Love to Handle

Title: Hard Love to Handle

Blurb: Quinn Garner is a single mother to the only child of international pop star Jake Cabot. His past was a celebrity cliché of addiction, but he finally found peace with himself and a relationship with his daughter. An unauthorized biography brings up his demons and threatens to pull Jake and Quinn into the destructive times they never wanted to revisit. Through their struggle to shield their daughter from the scandal, their feelings for each other resurface. Jake must decide between the mother of his child, who he put through hell and for years forced to raise their daughter alone, and his girlfriend Simone, who stood by his side as he cleaned up his life.

Target Audience: I believe my target audience is romance lovers who like pop culture.

A link to the story is here: https://www.wattpad.com/story/38688761-hard-love-to-handle-wattys2015

Sample:

The hotel was in the middle of the famous and glamorous Buckhead section of Atlanta. Walking through the lobby of the band's hotel was different than the mania during the days Quinn was what she considered an active fan. The current crowds were smaller, but they were just as dedicated. She spotted a couple dozen middle-age women and younger ones hoping for a night to remember, even though three of the four band members were now married and all four of them had kids. And the looks on their faces when they saw her confirmed they were fans.  They knew her; she was a name to remember in fan world. She gripped her daughter's hand tighter.

"Keep up with mommy Mac." She looked down at her daughter. It's not like she expected there to be a mad dash towards her and Jake Cabot's daughter, but it only takes one person to make a bad experience. She worked hard to shelter Mackenzie from the negative aspects of her father's fame while still allowing her to enjoy the benefits, like joining him on tour or attending award shows.

Quinn Garner was public enemy number one to Departure fans. She didn't take pictures with them nor did she allow them to take pictures with Mackenzie. Being the mother of Jake Cabot's child didn't make her a celebrity. And she would not allow her daughter to grow up feeling she was entitled some type of public adulation simply because of her DNA.

Of course, the most dedicated still managed to take photos of them. They were posted all over the internet on every social media site one can imagine. Most of the pictures were of them at a hotel, at concert venues and out with Jake. She understood their devotion, but couldn't involve Mac in that obsessive behavior. Her daughter wasn't a prop or a bridge to their favorite singer.

"Hi Quinn. Hi Mackenzie." An unknown voice called out from somewhere in the lobby.

Mackenzie, the social butterfly, waved and smiled. She even returned their greeting. Quinn turned her head and gave a slight smile to acknowledge their greeting but never slowed down and her head went back eyes front as they made it into the elevator right before it closed. She was a confident woman, but the sight of them sometimes caused her heart to feel as if it would beat out of her chest. 

"I haven't seen daddy in forever."

Forever was actually six weeks, before the band left for the China and Southeast Asia leg of their world tour. But more and more, that was far too long for Mac, who suggested they move to Los Angeles so she could be near her father.

"Mac, I'm not saying you should be rude, but please don't get too friendly with the fans."

"All I did was say hello. And they're people just like you and me."

"I know. But just try okay." It was hard to explain to a child when to be polite and when to be guarded. She had internal conflict about it herself. She was raised to be polite. But when given an inch, Jake's fans had been known to take a mile. And they could be vicious; Quinn knew from experience thanks to her previous off and on relationship with Jake. So vicious, back in the day there were times she refused to leave a hotel room because she didn't want to be cursed out or abused by them. When she wanted to be nice and took pictures with a fan who asked, she was accused of pretending to be famous, of thinking she was the celebrity instead of Jake. When she stopped taking the pictures, she was a bitch who thought she was too good for Jake's fans.

 "Okay," she said. It was followed by a heavy sigh.

Nine years old and her daughter was already sighing heavily at her. It was the signal that Quinn didn't know what she was talking about; the sigh of dealing with the insufferable ignorance of someone too old to understand. Next would be the rolling of those green eyes. As she grew older, Mac was brazen and had no problem questioning rules and beliefs. She never made it easy for Quinn. On the other hand, whatever Jake said went with little opposition. Quinn's mother told her Mac's cheeky personality was God's payback for how she behaved when she was a child. Not that Quinn was a problem child, she was simply an old soul, wise beyond her years telling grown folk's business that was meant to go to the grave.

"Simone brought me a gift from China."

"Oh, what is it?"

"I don't know."

Simone was Jake's longtime girlfriend. They had been together for four years. It was the longest relationship Jake ever had, even longer than theirs. She seemed to be nice enough and she definitely had Mac's seal of approval. The only thing that mattered to Quinn was that Simone treated Mac well and respected Mac's need to spend time with Jake.  

When Jake first mentioned a new girlfriend Quinn was skeptical. If she were being honest with herself, there was a time when she believed she was the best woman that ever entered Jake's life. She was educated, grounded in reality and had her own life and interests.  Even at the height of her immaturity eleven years ago when she first met Jake, she was different than anyone he'd ever been with. Jake was damaged and he tended to attract those that only brought more damage into his life.  She didn't damage him, at least she didn't think, but his life was never the same after she entered it; she gave him a child.

Once the elevator opened Mac ran down the hall. 

"Mac, that's the wrong way. 2210 is this way." They headed directly to Jake's room. The bellhop took their luggage to their room; it was one floor below the floor Jake and the rest of the band were located. 

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