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Beyond the Red Carpet

By Debbra Lynn All Rights Reserved ©

Romance / Thriller


Sophia Donovan had it all: a beautiful home in the Hollywood Hills, a successful career at a high-profile celebrity magazine, amazing friends – and she was married to one of the hottest Hollywood Directors of their time. Things between her and her husband Marcus weren’t perfect but after 11 years, what marriage was? But if the secrets that lay behind the walls of the Donovan home were ever exposed life would never be the same for anyone. When an unexpected visitor from Sophia’s past shows up, it forces her to come to terms with her suspicions. As she unravels the truth about the people closest to her, it quickly becomes clear that fighting to save her marriage won’t be nearly as important as fighting to save her life.

Chapter 1

July 20, 2015 – And So It Begins

As she sat and stared out the window of her immaculately kept bedroom, Sophia Donovan studied each raindrop sliding down the glass against a dark sky. The silence around her was overwhelming, but at the same time it was a sound she welcomed more now, more today, than ever in her life. Vivid memories of the last eleven years were etched wildly in every corner of her mind as if a movie projector was going through reels of the story unfolding on a screen. Every flash of desire, happiness, sadness, anger, fear, hope, doubt and realization resurfaced, and she replayed every decision she’d ever made, every motive she’d had for her choices, and she wondered: Am I doing the right thing?

“It’s really quite strange,” she thought silently to herself. “Should I be scared? Or should I feel guilty?” She thought the answers should be obvious, but, oddly, she felt neither of these emotions. What she did feel, looking around the room at the perfectly made bed, the impeccable closet filled with designer shoes, clothes and jewelry, and the beautifully hung art clinging to the walls, was calm. Relieved, even. None of it made sense, but all she could think was: there’s no turning back now. What’s done is done. Sophia wondered suddenly if something was wrong with her. Perhaps she was in shock?

The once-silence that surrounded her suddenly seemed to become loud voices echoing in the darkness, and the giant walls of the luxurious Master seemed to be all of a sudden closing in around her, making it somewhat hard to catch her breath. Sophia stood up quickly from the bench seat overlooking the garden. As she paced back and forth, still gasping for breath, Sophia wondered if she was, in fact, having a nightmare.

She ran to the bathroom and leaned over the sink and started splashing her now-sweaty face with ice-cold water, in hopes that it would somehow wake her. To no avail. She stepped back into the bedroom and frantically circled, like a dog trying to find a comfortable position to sleep. “I’m doing the right thing, I’m doing the right thing,” she repeated over and over. Her pacing brought her to her husband’s side of the bed. As quickly as the panic had come, it was gone again. Calmly, she softly kissed her fingers and placed them on the cold, blood-splattered forehead of the man who, only a half hour earlier, laid peacefully sleeping, unaware that his wife was standing over him, pointing a gun directly at his face.

“I am so sorry, my love, “she whispered softly. “I had no choice.”

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