Do you know someone who’s ever had amnesia, where they’re fully functional and cognitively aware but have no idea who they are? Probably not.
Have you ever read a novel where someone has had exactly that condition? Much more likely.
Who hasn’t wished for a clean slate, where you could have a fresh start in life without reliving the traumatic teen years or going tens of thousands of dollars into debt for a new college degree? How different would our perspective be if we weren’t dragging our baggage and preconceived notions about everything and everyone into every situation?
There is something so compelling and seductive about losing our memories. It forces us to live in the moment and be ourselves when we have no idea who that person actually is. Maybe, we’ll discover our true selves, instead of the person everyone else wants and expects us to be.
All of these deep thoughts and musings are to say I wanted, maybe even needed, to explore the amnesia trope as a romance writer. Even better than falling in love is falling in love all over again without remembering how it happened the first time!
by Sara Daniel
If she remembers the past, they won’t have a future.
Gwen Fairfax awakens in a hospital, deluged by stabbing head pain and unable to remember anything about her past, especially the man who claims to be her fiancé. A trip to the Wiccan Haus is her only hope to discover the woman she used to be, understand her mysterious dreams about a resort, and fall in love with the man she’s supposed to marry.
To stop his stepmother’s land development schemes from ruining the natural habitat he’s dedicated his life to preserving, Tucker Wilde is willing to do anything, even pretend to be engaged to the woman his brother left at the altar. But he isn’t prepared for the sweet, vulnerable woman to tempt him at every turn until he longs to give in to the temptation.
The more Gwen gets to know Tucker, the more she’s certain he’s a man worth remembering. But if the Wiccan Haus heals her memory, he’ll have to fight to keep his bride.
“This week is for you, Gwen, not me.”
She shook her head as they stepped into the elevator. “It’s for both of us. Just because you’re helping me get my memory back doesn’t mean you should have any less of a vacation.”
If he wasn’t enjoying himself, why would he want to share his life with her? Up until dinner, his complete focus had been on her, but his eyes didn’t shine when he looked at her the way they did when he talked about his conservation efforts.
Just because they were engaged didn’t mean their relationship had been perfect before she’d lost her memory. By paying attention to what he loved, she could strengthen their bond or discover if they were right for each other at all.
As the elevator crawled upward, she glanced at him, unable to believe he wasn’t right for her. Not only was she comfortable with him, their chemistry compounded with every passing moment. The real question was if she fit with him, but she didn’t know herself well enough to answer.
The elevator doors opened, and Tucker placed his palm against her back as they exited. A few steps later, they stopped in front of her room. “This is you,” he said.
“Yeah.” Now what? She had no idea how to wrap up the evening and no past experience to fall back on. “Would you like to come in for a cup of coffee?”
He raised an eyebrow. “Is that a euphemism for something else?”
Oh gosh. She might not have a memory, but she understood what she’d implied. She forced a laugh to cover her embarrassment and deflect the sex offer she definitely wasn’t ready for him to take her up on. “Apparently, you’ve gotten engaged to a clichéd and trite woman. I fell asleep so fast earlier, I didn’t notice if the room had a coffee pot.”
His lips twitched. “I would never get engaged to a cliché. Don’t sell yourself short.”
She rubbed her temples. If he’d been attracted to something unique and special about her, she’d like a clue what that thing might be. She enjoyed getting reacquainted with him, but getting to know herself proved far more unsettling. “Okay, no coffee and no euphemistic coffee. Uh, good night?”
“A goodnight kiss?” he suggested.
She dropped her gaze to his full pink lips. How many times had those lips kissed hers before? She wanted to remember, but she couldn’t handle the intimacy of a full, deep kiss when who she was remained elusive.
Rising on her tiptoes, she brushed her lips over his cheek, scratchy with his customary beard stubble. The touch warmed her, inviting her to linger and explore his face. Instead, she pulled away.