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Dead over Heels by Theresa Braun

$3.99

4.82 out of 5 based on 11 customer ratings
11 Reviews

After countless hours of dead end online dating, Veronica meets up with Sebastian at a reportedly haunted restaurant, since he knows she has a fascination with the paranormal. However, it’s the ghosts of their own pasts that threaten to destroy their budding relationship. They join forces to face what they lost one Christmas Eve, but will they survive the evil that stands between them?

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Description

After countless hours of dead end online dating, Veronica meets up with Sebastian at a reportedly haunted restaurant, since he knows she has a fascination with the paranormal. While enjoying their meals and each other’s company, they share a shocking supernatural experience. Their romantic connection is overshadowed by the ghosts of their own pasts that threaten to destroy their budding relationship. Veronica decides she must return to the restaurant to face her past and dig up more answers. Unfortunately, she realizes she must go back, this time with a reluctant Sebastian. In the end, they join forces against the evil that stands between them, but will they make it out alive?

 

Theresa’s Author Page

 


 

Dead over Heels will also feature in All Hallows – an anthology, coming soon from Frith Books!

Additional information

Writer

Theresa Braun

ISBN

978-1-907623-62-2

Length

Short Fiction (10,000 – 17,000 words)

Format

.epub, .pdf

Kindle ASIN

B01MRLFLHF

Cover Design

Anna Reith

Read an excerpt


DEAD OVER HEELS

© Theresa Braun. All rights reserved.


None of this is his fault, but here we sit in the police station. The cold, white walls are scuffed and dirty. Scrolling mug shots of wanted criminals flash by on a mounted monitor. My hand is clutching Sebastian’s, although I’m not sure he’s even aware of it after all we’ve been through.  

His eyes are glazed over, his sandy-colored hair both matted and cowlick-y. He wears the circumstantial evidence: a scratched face and a split lower lip. Not to mention, his gray shirt is caked with blood and soaked in sweat.

It’s all rather fuzzy, but there’s dried blood under my fingernails. I’m pretty sure I’m to blame for everything.

My eyes are already swollen, but all I want to do is cry even more. I rest my head on Sebastian’s shoulder and pray he can forgive me. I’m here now. That should count for something.

I guess you could say he’s my boyfriend. Early on he told me he didn’t want to see anyone else. I didn’t either. Even though it’s been only about a month, I have to admit I’ve never felt this way. We’re in love. I’d like to think it’s even stronger now.

The problem is, I never knew that finding the one would be such a double-edged sword.

 

* * * *

 

“Make another candle,” my friend Liz, who worked at the Wiccan shop, advised.

“I’ve already made a shitload of them,” I complained.

“One more. Put your all into it.”

Maybe it was worth another shot. Magic isn’t really an exact science. So, that’s what I did. I had nothing to lose, except a few dollars.

I purchased yet another glass tower of wax, this time red, sprinkling a smattering of herbs and oils onto that bad boy. This time I didn’t use Cunningham’s Encyclopedia of Magical Herbs, but went on good old-fashioned instinct. The scents of dragon’s blood and sweet amber mixed with what smelled like dried grass. My hands encircled the concoction, and I offered up a pure intention for true love to finally find me. I’d tried dozens of strategies over the years, everything short of frolicking naked in the forest, raising supplication to the ancient gods.  

After I ignited the wick, the thing flared up like a Roman candle. I’m no witch, but considered I might have gotten this one right as the flames jumped to heaven with my desires. It flickered and flamed in my bathtub until it wore itself out.

Sometimes things are out of our control or beyond our understanding. I just needed it to work once.

How could that have been too much to ask?

 

* * * *

 

A couple of weeks later, there I was, getting out of my car, feeling hopeful. I had no pretense that this date was my soulmate, but his profile and our chats had been promising.

The River House Restaurant, where I had agreed to meet Sebastian, was near the old Discovery Center: a former schoolhouse and inn renovated as an interactive natural history and science museum. My very first job had been working there in the gift store. I recalled the countless mornings I’d climbed the front porch steps of the large, colonial building—back before the Riverwalk became so built up and full of bars and restaurants—usually doing my best to shake off the effects of yet another all-night scream fest between my parents. I’d always pass the room with the tarantulas as fast as I could, praying they would never escape and find me down the hall while I was in the middle of struggling to make change. Funny how it all seemed so recent, even though it was over fifteen years ago.  

After almost tripping up the creaky stairs to the front door of The River House, I took a second to catch my breath. I never could walk like a normal person in heels. If only my mother had given me lessons. Are there lessons for such things?  

When I grasped the doorknob, it seemed to be opening at the hands of someone on the other side, but there wasn’t anyone there. The teenage hostess, wearing a black pullover and miniskirt, grinned at me as I sat in the waiting area.

Usually the guy arrived before me, wherever we met for the date. However, it was going on fifteen minutes after our scheduled meeting time. Any number of things could have delayed him, or maybe he’d spied my bumbling in heels and bailed. Some men want the natural vixen, after all. I banished the insecurities, feeling silly.

It felt strange that I was sitting there in the first place. The hours of online scrolling, skimming through awful profiles, then making small talk and wondering if there would be enough of a connection, had been torture. When the guy wasn’t a weirdo, it became a whole different problem. The anxiousness would set in: would he call or text? Would we go out again? It was almost better if I didn’t care.

Daring the powers that be to grant my prayers for love had become my mission, at least before Sebastian came along. After a frustrating bout of fruitless interactions, I had actually deleted all of my profiles when he sent me a message… or so I thought.

It seemed easy enough to deactivate both the free and paid subscription sites. I’ve never been a computer genius, but I could definitely navigate a few clicks. I suppose it could’ve been human error. My intuition told me no on that score. There must have been a bug in the system. I mean, computer programs have glitches all the time, right? It could have been the candle, but I doubted that. None of the other candles had worked. Why this one?

When I read what he wrote—something like “Hi, you seem like a woman of substance. Noticed you’re into spiritual things. This reiki master would like to get to know you.”—I was intrigued. Most guys had no idea what reiki was and, if I told them about it, they acted like they’d rather clean their toilets than hear about healing energy.

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11 reviews for Dead over Heels by Theresa Braun

  1. 5 out of 5


    Braun’s story captivates from the beginning. She twists and turns the plot interweaving past & present leaving the reader wanting more. Any woman who has been rejected in love will identify with the heroine. Fasten your seatbelt and buckle in for a great read.

    Thanks for an entertaining read. Braun does not disappoint.

    ♡ Tanya

  2. 4 out of 5


    What would you do if the ghosts of your past were threatening your chance at happiness? Would you stand idly by? Or would you fight to be with the person who is responsible for your happiness….even if it means confronting old demons?

    Dead Over Heels, a short story by Theresa Braun, is a pleasant mix of a crime fiction, chick lit and paranormal thriller. I do not usually like short stories, in my experience; they spend too much time building a plot and not enough time spent on resolution. They don’t allow for character development. This story changed my opinion. Braun gave me exactly what I wanted in this story; well-developed characters, a lot of action and a creepy, concise ghost story with a shocking twist.

    For such a short story, it packs a serious punch!

    From the first paragraph, I was hooked by this one. Initially, we meet Veronica. She is your typical, and relatable, woman taking a crack at online dating (and failing miserably). She cancels her account, but fate intervenes and allows one last message to go through. A message from Sebastian. Veronica and Sebastian meet online and have their first date at a reportedly haunted restaurant; Veronica mentioned in her profile that she has an interest in the paranormal. They have some instant attraction but, while enjoying their meals, they experience a supernatural occurrence. Veronica is haunted by this and decides she must return to figure out what’s happening. To her shock and dismay, she realizes that she has a connection to these occurrences, as does Sebastian. Veronica and Sebastian must work together to keep their own past demons at bay.

    There were twists and turns throughout the story that were completely unexpected for me. I wasn’t expecting a whole lot, especially since it is a short story, but shame on me! Braun led me on a journey will plenty of unanticipated moments. The twist at the end was a complete shock for me!

    I am not sure what Braun will come up with next, but I know one thing for sure: I’ll be reading it.

    I would recommend this story to someone who wants a quick dip into the genre; you will not regret it!!

    I voluntarily received an e-copy of this book. Thank you to the author, Theresa Braun.

  3. 5 out of 5


    From the few words of this book, I knew I wouldn’t be putting it down until I was finished with it. I met Veronica – a woman I can relate to, who tries what we all do at some point: online dating. At first her attempts are unsuccessful, and she decides to delete her account. However, before the deletion is complete, one text message seeps through the internet lines.

    Now we meet Sebastian. And of course he comes across as a bit of a weirdo, because their first IRL date is in a supposed haunted restaurant. Then again, it is not all that weird, since Veronica’s profile mentioned her curiosity into the paranormal.

    From there the story just grips you, takes you on a rolercoaster ride and makes you clench your thumbs into the corner of your kindle. And it left me wanting more, at the small 38 pages of the entire story, I wished there were more.

    I would recommend this story to anyone with a love for romance and the supernatural.

  4. 5 out of 5


    This was a wonderful short story that has an ending you wouldn’t expect. Veronica is a empath with a Gothic style and horrible past- her father controlled every aspect of her life, and she lost her mother at a young age. Told her mother abandoned her, her father passed away years ago and Veronica has a false memory etched in her brain. However, this changes when she meets Sebastian, where strange events begin on their first date. Veronica discovers how connected Sebastian’s family is to her own, and this is where the action begins.
    Veronica’s experiences with her own family are parallel to Sebastian, but the two lovers discover how fatal their attraction is.

  5. 5 out of 5


    Theresa Braun’s “Dead Over Heels”

    Warning! This short story is highly addictive. Step into Theresa Braun’s “Dead Over Heels” paranormal thriller. A must read fro crime fiction buffs. The story from beginning to end keep’s the action full force. Keep’s you wanting more!
    Meet Veronica, the down on your luck main character whose attempt at love seem’s futile. It seem’s that she’ll never get her chance at love until in messages Sebastian, the mysterious online user who has the same interests as her. Thinking what does she have to lose, gives the mysterious Sebastian a chance. There first date leads them to a restaurant with a haunted history. In the mist of getting to know eachother, the restaurant begins to reveal it’s own secrets. Reliving their parents tortured past, the story takes you on a roller coaster of emotions. It will keep you enthralled, wanting more to the very end.

    Disclaimer: This eBook was provided to me. The compensation received will never influence the content, topics or posts made by myself.

  6. 5 out of 5


    Braun’s amazing short story with wonderful twisting. Veronica, the leading character contact Sebastian on the online dating site and met him at The River House and then the story begins and ends with an amazing twist.At every stage, I was curious to know what will happen next.

  7. 5 out of 5


    Dead over Heels by Theresa braun is an gripping short paranormal story. The author has proved that “Great things comes in small packages”. What happens if you could see and feel, super natural things only with one particular guy? When Veronica feels she has found her soul mate, she experiences extra ordinary incidents in a particular restaurant on a date.
    Why she feels in that particular restaurant and with that particular guy is revealed one by one. The beginning is intriguing and the author has not let us down as a reader from start to end. I was wondering over the title and the end gives the meaning. I have read stories with twists and turns, but here is a story of only twists and turns. The characters are less, inter connected and deeply interwoven with each other’s lives.
    This book could be read anywhere in a short time but the impact it leaves on you, makes you shudder. I got this book as a free copy to leave my honest review. Waiting for your next book, Theresa Braun.
    Hi, I have submitted the above review. This is my honest review

  8. 5 out of 5


    Very creative plot elements with a strong Paranormal feel.
    In an attempt to put it briefly, “Dead over Heels” is a more than worthwhile read and one that I would recommend to any fans of the genre who love a strong Paranormal feel in their thrillers. I truly enjoyed this story, it is well-written with a well-drawn cast of characters that enriched the supernatural love story between Veronica and Sebastian. I have devoured this book twice in less than two days and I must say it’s an awesome read and the end was a surprise I didn’t see coming, it has a Mystery that compliments a clearly well-thought-out plot that I’m sure many readers will be impressed by. Highly recommend it.

  9. 5 out of 5


    This review has been edited to remove spoilers

    Dead over Heels is definitely a book that’ll leave you wanting for more! At 38 pages, it doesn’t seem much but this short story certainly packs a punch!

    Veronica, the story’s heroine, proves herself to be a relatable character as a girl looking for love. With the dating sites, magic candles and different prayers for The One, it seems as if she’s tried all the avenues in looking for true love, much like what a lot of girls in my generation have been doing lately, with Tinder, Match.com and other social dating sites, and she seems to have finally found her match with Sebastian, when his message goes through to her and their interests line up upon her perusal in one of the sites. Interest gets piqued, however, when a few odd coincidences are discovered between the two of them.

    With a healthy mix of horror and romance, the story just kept me on edge! You wouldn’t see the plot twist coming and the climax takes the saying “History is doomed to repeat itself” on a different and creepy level! The story ended so quickly, though, I was surprised it already ended.

    I’m looking forward to hearing more, if ever there is a sequel in the works.

  10. 4 out of 5


    I read a lot of full length novels—but, have always loved shorter stories. The length seems to satisfy my urge to read—and fit my time and attention span! What did I think of the paranormal, Dead Over Heels?
    Braun packs a lot of story into a small space. This paranormal story from Theresa Braun packed a lot of storyline and character development in a short space—without losing any of the storyline or character development. Certainly, this book could have been a full-length novel—but, it was worth the spot on my reading list just as it is.
    Braun weaves several genre into the story. Dead Over Heels combines paranormal, a little mystery, drama and romance into its pages. While much of the storyline is quickly apparent to the reader—the author still manages to throw in some of the unexpected.
    Would I recommend Dead Over Heels? This is a fast paced story. Readers will be able to quickly read it in a sitting. The author does a great job delivering a well-developed story with characters of interest in a short story fashion. I would recommend it to readers seeking a quick, fast-paced, paranormal story.

    I received a copy of this ebook from the author. All thoughts are my own.

  11. 5 out of 5


    Dead over Heels” by Theresa braun is Short but interesting love and crime story, It is a story that got my attention right from the first paragraph. The story line kept me wanting to know how it will end from the start, the connectivity between our daily social network activities was really in play as I envisioned myself in the story.

          The story is all about Veronica and Sebastian, two different people with similar past and life style. They met through online site, after Veronica almost gave up on dating and even on Sebastian due to the time it took him to honour their date. They fell in love and fought against their past.

         “Dead over Heels” is a book a have already recommended to friends, it is very interesting, addictive and tells a lot in such a short story. It’s one of the books I have read with all my attention on it, I’m looking forward to reading other books from by Theresa braun

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