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Authors: Nancy Straight

His Frozen Heart

BOOK: His Frozen Heart
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His Frozen Heart
Nancy Straight

Special preorder price of $0.99! Regular price of $3.99 after release. For best friends, Candy and Libby, money is tight with hardly enough to cover their living expenses. When they are desperate for grocery money, the girls bet on their pool playing skills to add to their income. A simple wager on a quiet winter evening has devastating results.

 

 

 

His Frozen Heart

 

Brewer Brothers Series, Book
1

 

 

Nancy Straight

 

 

 

Published by Nancy Straight at
Smashwords

 

Copyright 2014 Nancy
Straight

 

This ebook is
licensed for your personal enjoyment only. This ebook may not be
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This publication is protected under the
US Copyright Act of 1976 and all other applicable international,
federal, state and local laws and all rights are reserved,
including resale rights; you are not allowed to give or sell this
book to anyone.

Any trademarks, service marks, product
names, or named features, are assumed to be the property of their
respective owners and are used for reference only. There is no
implied endorsement if we use one of these terms. This is a work of
fiction. Names, characters, places and incidents are the product of
the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously, and any
resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, business
establishments, events or locales is entirely
coincidental.

Printed in paperback in 2014. Available
electronically from all major bookstores.

 

Acknowledgements

As I finished this story,
there were many people I needed to thank. First, Lisa Henderson,
although I have never met you in person, I look forward to the day
that I do. Lisa was a fan who read my Touched Series and told me it
was the first Paranormal Romance she had ever read. She told me she
would love for me to write a Contemporary Romance; it was her
prodding that made
His Frozen Heart
a reality.

To Charles Young, Melissa Balentine and
Rebecca Ufkes: Do you know why football teams have cheerleaders? Me
either, but my goodness, you all make me feel like the starting
line-up for the Green Bay Packers. Your support means the world to
me. No author could ever be more fortunate than I – to have three
of the best beta readers and friends on the planet.

Jaime Radalyac, there are no words to
tell you how much I appreciate everything you do. I like that when
I say something crazy like, “Hey, let’s do a cover reveal this
week,” your only response is, “You bet!” I’m convinced there is
nothing you cannot do, and it is my privilege to know you and call
you my friend.

To all the book bloggers who have
supported me since I started this career a few years ago, “Thank
you,” is inadequate. I have never met a group of people who are
more giving of their time. Your willingness to take a chance on my
work has humbled me from the beginning, and I grow more grateful
every time I discover a new one of you in the blogosphere. Your
passion inspires me every day. Thank you for doing what you do for
me and for all the other independent authors out there.

To the citizens of Charles City, Iowa –
you have my deepest apologies. I’m certain you have had to ask for
resupplies of red ink pens from neighboring cities since my editor,
Linda Brant, has bled the town dry! Linda, this has been quite an
adventure. I wouldn’t have wanted to go on this journey with anyone
but you!

To my sons, Alex and Zack, your
imaginations, humor, and enthusiasm inspire me every day. I feel
blessed to have two of the coolest kids in the world. Thank you for
finding a way to make me laugh even when I am buried in my
fictional worlds.

Finally, Toby, thanks for all the
nights you played Plants vs. Zombies® with Zack so I could write
and for never rolling your eyes when I said, “How about take-out
tonight?” Few wives are lucky enough to have a husband who not only
believes in them, but encourages them to chase their dreams. I am
the luckiest wife/mom/author I know.

 

All my love,

Nancy

 

 

 

Chapter 1

 

I ran to the shadow of an enormous
maple tree and crouched low to the ground. I couldn’t believe I had
let Libby talk me into this. We had set our alarm clock for 2 AM,
then sneaked out of my house while my parents were sound asleep.
Libby was ticked off about some stupid science assignment over
spring break. She believed she had been purposely singled out by
Mr. Brinks. I pointed out that her entire class had a project to
work on over the break, but she insisted her assigned project was
more difficult than everyone else’s.

Still confident that this was the
dumbest idea she had come up with in months, I asked, “You’re sure
this is his house?”


Of course, I’m sure. I
wrote down the house number today, 811 Stone Avenue.”

I eyed the small scrap of paper in her
hand – only the number was scrawled down. “You’re sure this is the
right street?”


C’mon already. Yes, his
address is 811 Stone Avenue. Do you need me to break in and steal a
piece of his mail?”

I was struggling to find a way to talk
her out of her plan. Delaying, I pointed at the driveway, “I
thought he drove a blue four-door car?”

Her gaze drifted to the driveway where
a red SUV was parked. She shrugged my question off, “Maybe he keeps
it in the garage.”


Or maybe this isn’t the
right address.” I eyed the upscale neighborhood where the two-story
brick home stood. It had a three car garage, and there looked to be
a detached guest house in the back. This didn’t look like the sort
of home a high school science teacher could afford.

Libby scowled at me, “It’s the right
address. Are you going to help me or not?”

I took another look at the SUV. The
license plate caught my eye: it was a vanity plate that read:
SUPRINT. “What do you think the license plate stands
for?”

Libby barked, “Surprise instantly,
super instantly, super instructor. . . who knows, he’s a dork. If
you aren’t going to help me, go wait in the car.”

As much as I hated this idea, I
couldn’t let Libby do it on her own. I grabbed a roll of toilet
paper, “Okay. I’m helping. I’ll take the trees, you do the
house.”


You’re the best.” Those
were the last words spoken before the two of us set off an external
alarm and the house lit up like Caesar’s Palace. A computerized
voice began to broadcast, “Intruder alert,” every five seconds.
Flood lights poured down onto the grass from several points on the
roof. Lights in the house turned on, then the computerized voice
coming through the loud speaker shut off. We had obviously awakened
Mr. Brinks, and he was about to catch us red-handed teepeeing his
house. I froze. I willed my legs to move, but they ignored
me.

The front door opened and Mr. Brink’s
voice shouted from the front porch, “Who’s out there?”

I was sort of hidden in the shadows
when I heard Libby’s voice whisper to me. “Candy, I’ll distract
him. You get home. You were never here.”

Before I could stop her or try to tell
her I wasn’t leaving her, Libby skipped from out of the shadows –
not walked, not ran, but skipped. She overexaggerated her
movements, nearly dancing in circles in the glow of all the lights.
The man on the porch adjusted his glasses, cinched his bathrobe up
tight, then reality hit me that this was definitely not Mr. Brinks.
Whoever this man was, he was not happy about a girl skipping
through his yard with a roll of toilet paper in the middle of the
night.

The man shouted, “Who are you? What
are you doing?”

In a shrill voice, Libby shouted, “I’m
the gingerbread girl, and you can’t catch me.” She sprinted around
the side of his house and into the side yard. As soon as his
attention was diverted, I ran across the street and tucked behind
his neighbor’s garbage can. My heart raced, I wiped my palms on my
jeans, and it sounded like I was breathing heavy enough to be a
prank telephone caller.

I couldn’t leave Libby. I needed to
delay the man who was now rounding the side of his house chasing
her. It was my turn to create a distraction for her. I looked at
the SUV, which had a small red flashing light above the rearview
mirror indicating the alarm had been set. I knew what I needed to
do. I darted back across the street, ran up to the side of the SUV
and kicked it as hard as I could.

The vehicle’s alarm blared to life as
I ran back to the safety of the garbage cans where I had taken
cover minutes before. The SUV flashed its lights, a loud siren
awoke every neighbor who had managed to sleep through the previous
alarm and the man’s shouting. The man ran from around the side of
the house where he had chased Libby, onto the porch, and through
his front door. A minute later he reemerged from his front door
holding a remote to turn off the vehicle’s loud plea for
help.

This had been enough time for Libby to
run over to my side of the street and squat down beside me behind
the garbage cans. I whisper shouted at her, “Couldn’t stay up and
watch old movies. Couldn’t surf YouTube. No, you have to teepee
your teacher’s house. Oh, wait, scratch that, teepee a stranger’s
house.”

She answered me with an enormous smile
and mischievous eyes, “Admit it. This is soooooo better than
braiding each other’s hair and painting our nails.”

A voice shouted from directly behind
us. “They’re over here. There’s two of ‘em. I already called the
police.”

The two of us popped up from behind
the garbage cans and ran full-speed down the street away from the
ruckus we had caused. We ran the four city blocks straight to where
we had left my car. Libby made my life interesting. She was never
one to see the flaws of a plan before initiating it – life with
Libby was an adventure. We both watched for police cars as I drove
home, but didn’t pass a single squad car. I turned off the car and
coasted it into place so as not to wake up my parents. We both sat
there in front of my house for several minutes before our breathing
slowed and Libby asked, “What do you want to do now?”


Now? We almost got thrown
in jail. I want to go to bed.”

Libby snarked, “We did not almost get
thrown in jail. We didn’t even see one police car.”


And that’s a bad
thing?”


Well, no. But since we
already sneaked out, maybe we should make the most of it. It might
be risky trying to sneak back into your house.”


So, what’s your plan?
Sleep in my car?”


We could go out to the
lake and see if anyone were there tonight.”


The lake? If anyone was
there, the police have already sent them packing and confiscated
the beer. C’mon, let’s get in before anyone notices we’ve
gone.”

She reluctantly followed me inside; we
had been gone less than an hour. The next morning, Libby was on the
computer when I woke up to, “Oh, crap, it was 118.”

Rubbing the sleep from my eyes, I
asked, “What was 118?”


Mr. Brink’s address. I
just wrote the house number down because I knew I could remember
the street. His address is 118 Stone Avenue; we went to 811 Stone
Avenue last night.” She paused for a minute, “Want to try again
tonight?”

She handed me the slip of paper from
last night which read 811; when I turned it upside down it read
118. That was Libby. Once she got something in her head, the only
way to get it out was to follow her blindly on whatever objective
she had set her sights on.

 

*****

 

The memory of that adventure played
through my head as I tuned out the commencement ceremony. Returning
to reality, I listened to our class valedictorian’s speech drone
on. A smile formed when it hit me that every happy high school
memory I had was with Libby. When the valedictorian’s speech ended
with the cliché, “This is the first day of the rest of our lives,”
I was sure I would puke.

BOOK: His Frozen Heart
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