Four years have passed since I left home, my parents, and my brother Asher behind – since I shut out my past. And Erin. Four years since I last saw her, since I heard her voice and held her in my arms. I’ve spent my time forging a path from woman to woman, from bed to bed, trying to find an answer. But I think I’ve lost my way. There’s no light at the end of the dark. No big surprise. I carry the dark inside me. I’m a bastard – branded as such from the start. I never give my phone number and address. I take my pleasure, and don’t come back for seconds. No commitments, no promises and no happy endings. Yeah, I’m a bastard down to the bone and I don’t give a damn. But now I’m back in my birth town, the town I fled at eighteen – back to make amends to the brother I abandoned and watch from afar the only girl I’ve ever wanted. Hope isn’t a currency I can afford. I learned that lesson long ago. Yet when she looks at me and says my name, I can’t help but hope.