If you’re looking for the next installment of Under His Wing…it’ll be up a little later today. In the meantime, Jasmine Betrayal, the next BeauTEAful Summer story is all polished up and ready for release!
I need to take a minute and thank Carol R. Ward and Ardee-ann Eichelmann for naming the two main characters in this book – Genevieve and Max. Ladies, you’ll both be getting free copies tonight, with my undying gratitude!
Morano owes just fifty dollars to the lienholder of the diner her
father left her. It seems like a paltry amount, but when a strange
northerner shows up late one night, she realizes the situation is much
more complex, and she’ll have to rely on the handsome yet secretive
stranger if she wants to survive.
Westlake owes Pete Morano, and the only way he can pay it off after
Pete’s death is to protect Pete’s daughter from the man hell-bent on
taking her inheritance away. But when she finds out why he’s working so
hard to help her, the betrayal might just be too much for her to
Miss the serial version? Want to know what you’re getting into? Here’s an excerpt:
“You wanted me to lock myself in a freezer, and then basically kidnapped me while men were crawling all over my property with guns, supposedly trying to kill me. Why, exactly, would I trust anyone in that situation?”
She had a point.
“So why tell me now?” he asked.
She glanced at him and then looked back at the road, her expression guarded. Weary.
“You said my father saved your life. If that’s true, he must have trusted you.”
Max nodded. “Pete was a good man. Always believed the best of people.”
He could see her watching him from the corner of her eye, and he knew what she wanted. He couldn’t give it to her though. Not until he knew she was safe. No way would she stick around, much less let him help if she knew her father’s heart attack hadn’t just happened naturally.
And that Max had been there the day it happened.
“You’re gonna have to tell me sometime,” she said on a sigh. “Whatever it is, I can take it.”
Max studied the long, bare line of her neck as she tilted her head side to side, stretching. His fingers itched to explore that delicate column. More so knowing he’d probably never get the chance.
“I will,” he said, forcing himself to look away. “After this is over, I’ll tell you everything.”
“Why not now?” She exited into the city and he surveyed the unfamiliar buildings as they went by. He hadn’t exactly been conscious the last time he’d been in the city, and when he’d come to, it had been in Pete’s trailer behind the diner.
“Because we need to focus on what’s important right now, and that’s making sure you stay alive.” He felt a prickle at the back of his neck, and checked the side mirror as Genevieve made another turn.
“How close are we to your apartment?” he asked, noting a silver sedan making the same turn a few seconds after them.
“A block and a half or so. Why?”
“Turn left at the next corner, then right after that. I think we’re being followed.”
She did as he requested, the silver car just a couple of cars behind them the whole way.
“I see it,” she said, tension in her voice. “What do you want me to do?”
In any other context, Max would have enjoyed hearing that from her lips. He forced himself to focus.
“Look for a restaurant or shop, and park in front. We’ll have better luck losing them on foot, I think. Was there anything at the diner that could connect you to your apartment here? Anything at all?”
She shook her head, pulling into a parking space in front of a clothing shop. Cutting the engine, she reached for the door.
“Hang on a second,” Max said, watching the sedan pick a spot farther down the street. “Which way are we going?”
She pointed towards the window in the passenger door. “It’s two blocks back that way and another block to the right after that.”
Four men got out of the sedan and split up, two on one side of the street, two on the other. Max motioned for Genevieve to slide across the seat.
“Come this way. Be ready to run.” He slid out of the truck and held the door as she followed. Grabbing her hand, he held tight as he walked briskly toward the sidewalk with her in tow.
“I can walk by myself,” she hissed, though she didn’t fight his grip. He rubbed his thumb against hers, keeping a brisk but casual pace down the sidewalk. Their tails seemed content to follow at the moment, which is exactly what he’d hoped for.
“I know you can,” he said, stopping for a moment to look in a store window. “But this makes us look like a couple.” He raised their joined hands and met her confused stare, placing a light kiss on hers. She shuddered, her eyes going wide as he let their hands drop between them and started walking again. Just up ahead, he spied the hotel awning they’d passed earlier.
“Why would it matter?” she asked, trying to reclaim her hand. “These guys know who we are, so I don’t get–”
Max stopped under the awning, pulled her close and snaked an arm around her waist. Leaning down, he captured her surprised mouth in no-holds-barred kiss, male pride surging as she melted in his embrace.
Or you could sign up for the Brazen Snake Monthly, Variety News, or both, and get it for a discount when the newsletters go out early next week!
No matter how you get your hands on it, I hope you enjoy reading this sweet romantic suspense novella as much as I enjoyed writing it!