To survive, she must put the past behind her. To love, she must learn to trust.
Homicide detective Leigh McBride’s first assignment with the FBI brings her face-to-face with a past she’s tried hard to forget. And when her temporary partner, a cynical ex-marine, lights a fire in her she thought long-extinguished, her darkest secret is threatened.
Scarred both physically and emotionally, Special Agent J. T. Noble is a man of few words. He prefers to keep people at a distance—until he meets Leigh. He’s attracted to her strength and drawn in by her secrecy. But in their line of work, secrets can be deadly.
When the killer they are hunting aims his vigilante justice at Leigh’s past assailant, the fine line between right and wrong blurs. To heal the past—and find their future together—Leigh and J. T. must learn that only through trust and forgiveness can love grow.
(Please choose only one excerpt)
Ethan turned his head sideways as he studied J.T.’s face. Wide eyed, the boy pointed at the scar with his index finger. J.T. wasn’t surprised. The kid was probably curious.
“How’d you get that?”
“A piece of shrapnel—” He paused and considered Ethan’s age. “I was in the war. A bomb went off and a piece of metal smacked me in the face.”
“Does it hurt?”
“Not anymore.” J.T. marveled at the innocence in Ethan’s eyes.
“Can I touch it?”
“I guess so.” J.T. breathed in and waited. Ethan hesitated, leaning closer.
“I’m not supposed to talk about your scar.”
“It’s okay. I won’t tell.”
J.T. turned his head to the side. No one had outright asked to touch the constant reminder of a day when his best friend caught the worst of an IUD. Hell, people shied away from his right side. Except Leigh, she looked him square in the face. He lay still while Ethan poked a finger into the scar a couple of times. After a few seconds of investigation, the kid cupped the scar with his small hand and patted lightly. The oddest thing happened to J.T.’s heart. It swelled inside his chest and then clenched.
“Mama said you were a brave soldier.”
Alien emotions swirled through J.T. and an unexplained urge to hug Ethan put a weird lump in J.T.’s throat. Unable to cope or understand, his mind raced for an idea, anything to end the moment.
The six-year-old missile launched himself into the air, giving J.T. two choices. Catch the kid, or let him fall to the ground like a deflated football. J.T. grabbed him and held Ethan out in front, as he would a wet, smelly dog.
Leigh jogged down the sidewalk, sparks flashing from her eyes. She pulled her son out of J.T.’s grasp and plopped the kid down at her feet. She knelt and got right in his face. J.T. made a mental note to not piss her off.
“What have I told you about running out the door?”
Ethan’s head bowed. “Don’t even think about it.” He stared at the tops of his bare feet.
“Obviously, you didn’t listen.” She tugged the knot at the back of her head tighter before she looked up. “Sorry about the attack.”
“Kid’s a natural born high jumper.” J.T. stuffed his hands in his pockets. She’d wadded her hair in the old-lady-school-teacher-bun-thing she wore at work. Probably just as well. If she’d left all that blond silk loose and sexy, he might’ve thought this was a date or something, which it wasn’t. Him being here was entirely the fault of his own big mouth.
“Please.” She waved a hand toward the wide-open front door. “We were about to come and get you.”
“You knew I was here?”
“A black Corvette rumbling around in our neighborhood doesn’t go unnoticed.”
Dressed in blue jean shorts and a thin-strapped top exactly the same blue as her eyes, Leigh looked more like a model than a mom. J.T. was glad he’d worn a T-shirt and Wranglers.
His chest double-clutched and pulled a weird stutter step when a small hand gripped two of his fingers and two small feet shuffled hurriedly to keep up with him. Tonight was a mistake.
Author the Author: A student of creative writing in her youth, Jerrie set aside her passion when life presented her with a John Wayne husband, and two wonderful children. A career in logistics offered her the opportunity to travel to many beautiful locations in America, and she revisits them in her romantic suspense novels.
But the characters went with her, talked to her, and insisted she share their dark, sexy stories with others. She writes alpha males and kick-ass women who weave their way through death and fear to emerge stronger because of, and on occasion in spite of, their love for each other. She likes to torture people, make them suffer, and if they’re strong enough, they live happily ever after.
The author of THE GREEN-EYED DOLL, and THE LAST EXECUTION, Jerrie and her husband live in Texas. She loves sunshine, children’s laughter, sugar (human and granulated), and researching for her heroes and heroines.