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Composing Sins

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When Andrew Schwarzman, world renowned classical music cellist crashes head-on into up and coming rap artist Lakin Jackson dark streets of Manhattan. As Lakin pulls the 31-year-old Manhattan billionaire from his mangled wreck, she discovers darkness within him. His anger, arrogance and cocaine addiction threats all that he is and as the paparazzi close in it will be a day that Andrew Schwarzman will never forget as Lakin not only saves his life but saves him from himself. 

Drawn to his darkness, Larkin can’t stop herself from helping the stranger that almost killed her. His smell, his touch and his plea to be saved lands her in a whole new world of sex, money and dark desires. Can the young woman from Harlem survive the tormented inner demons of Schwarzman without losing herself in the process? Their lives go together like two discordant notes that create perfect harmony. 

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EXCERPT

The crowd in front of me was dark, thanks to the glare of the stage lights. But there was only one face I could picture, and I lowered my head with it burning my brain. I played the opening bars on my cello, the New York Philharmonic slowly coming in on the bass, violins, woodwind. I raised my bow once more, close my eyes and give the slightest nod of my head as I set my fingers free to dance across the fingerboard. In my right hand, the bow is an extension of my arm. I swing it effortlessly over each string, my fingers digging in—grabbing hold, pivoting and leaping like the ballet. I coax and tease and pull the notes from my one of a kind Duport Stradivarius cello, fingers rocking back and forth from string to string, everything around me falling away. I know they aren’t really gone, its the cocaine and the scotch. I know it’s not the smartest move being high performing, but I don’t know how to stop. 

Since I was fifteen, I’d always loved the slow burn of alcohol and the exhilaration of cocaine. They were easy. The made me feel. They also made me forget. Forget that I was the reason my mother is dead. One second I’m flying high and the next I’m scraping my soul off the bottom of a bug-infested trash can outside the halls of Lincoln Centre. You would have thought the chronic nosebleeds and sinus infections would have slowed me down, but they never did.

Then when the New York Philharmonic placed me as first chair, I’d cut out the other drugs. The acid, LSD, MDMA. Now a solo cellist, doing lines before each concert is just to stave off the depression and anxiety because we couldn’t disappoint dear old dad. Oh, no, that would mean I lost everything. The money, the power, the name that means I can do just about anything I fucking want. But doing anything I want and having anything I want are two very different things. I want to be the best cellist in the world. I want my mother back, I want…. fuck, I don’t know what it is I want anymore.

As the notes flow, I feel as if it is pouring out of me and spilling into the theatre. It is only when the very last note has died away that I remember that I’m no longer alone. 

As usual, the requirements of post-concert schmoozing. They want professional concert cellist on staged and charismatic playboy off it and didn’t I play the part just perfectly. Another snort of cocaine and I step out into the pouring rain still blinking away the dark spots in my vision left behind from the stage lights.