Authors: Cat Johnson
Red, Hot & Blue
Studs in Spurs
Red, Hot, & Blue
Studs in Spurs
The best way to heal a broken heart is to jump right back on the horse. So to speak…
© 2010 Cat Johnson
Red, Hot & Blue, Book 2
After watching the girl he’s crushed on for years fall for his best friend, the last thing special operative Jack Gordon wants is a vacation. If cooling his heels doesn’t drive him crazy, doing it under his family’s scrutiny will.
But once he’s back home things get more than a little interesting. The new farm hand is cute, sexy—and his instincts tell him she’s got something to hide. Luckily, he’s got the skills and the backup to find out what.
Gordon Equine is the perfect place for Niccolina Campolini. The Gordons pay in room, board and cash. And they don’t ask questions. Perfect for a girl on the run…until Jack shows up. Sexy as hell and far too inquisitive, Jack strikes sparks and suspicions that put both her body and her heart in danger.
Jack knows better than to trust a woman with as many shadows as Nicki, but the heat waves of their attraction are messing with his focus. And when her secrets catch up with her, he’s not sure if he’s protecting her from something, or protecting his family from her…
This book has been previously published and has been revised from its original release.
Warning: This book contains extremely stupid gangsters bearing guns, a bored team of special operatives looking for some action, and one Southern gentleman guaranteed to charm your panties off.
Enjoy the following excerpt for
Nicki leaned against the fence, watching the newborn in the corral with his mother. She sighed and tried to pinpoint what she was feeling. Contentment, she decided. She finally felt semi-safe for the first time in a month of being on the run. Although she feared she would never be truly safe again. Not as long as the man she was hiding from still lived and breathed. At least she could allow herself to relax just a little bit here at the farm.
She was about as far from New York as she could get. Who would think to look for her buried away here in the Deep South on a small horse-breeding farm? Certainly not the thick-necked imbecile she’d run from. As long as the Gordon family accepted her without question, and continued to pay her in cash and give her a place to live, she was set. She could drop off the radar indefinitely.
The colt walked slowly up to the fence and nuzzled her hand. She ran her hand over him. “You are such a sweetie.”
“Why thank you, darlin’.”
The deep voice caused Nicki to startle. She let out a squeak of fear, spooking the colt. He took off running for his mother.
She turned to look at the stranger, heart pounding until she saw his face. He was so much like the other two Gordon brothers, right down to the way he stood and talked, she knew who he was immediately. Relieved and feeling a little silly for thinking her enemies could find her all the way out here, she smiled in greeting. “You must be Jack.”
He raised a brow. “I must be. You know me, but who might you be, darlin’?”
Mmm, mmm. How she loved the way southern men sounded. So much nicer than the horrid accents she’d grown up around in New York. The accents from the five boroughs of New York City and Long Island made her cringe. But a southern man could practically make a girl’s panties fall right off just by talking to her.
She nearly shook herself to regain her senses. This was no time to be thinking about romance, or sex, or whatever this feeling was that Jack caused. She was in hiding. Besides that, this particular Gordon man was only here temporarily from what she’d heard. Good thing too. He was much too yummy and tempting to have around for very long. She sure did like the way he called her darlin’ though.
“I’m Nicki.” She offered him her hand.
His handshake was warm and slow. But then, everything in the south seemed warm and slow. She imagined what else might be warm and slow with him…
“Nicki…?” He apparently wanted her to elaborate.
“Camp. Nicki Camp.” The guilt of the lie hit her hard. Did it show as obviously on her face as it felt on her tongue? If it did sound like a lie to him, the expression on Jack’s face didn’t show it.
He was still holding her hand in his big, strong one when he crooned, “Nice to meet you, Nicki Camp.”
Slightly shaky, she pulled her hand back and then glanced up at his face again. His hair was a bit more golden brown than his brothers’, and his hazel eyes had flecks of green and gold in them.
Stop it, Niccolina
She was in no position to be checking this guy out. No matter how cute and charming he was.
“So what brings you here to Pigeon Hollow, Miss Nicki Camp? You don’t sound like a local girl.”
Nicki considered her answer carefully. She didn’t think she had a New York accent. As a teenager, she’d worked damn hard to make sure of that. It had been important to her then because she’d wanted to sound more sophisticated. It was even more important now. It was a matter of life and death that no one knew where she was from. But Jack was right. She didn’t sound like a native southerner. She didn’t think she could pull that off no matter how many times she watched
Gone with the Wind
“Oh, you know. Just seeing the country.” Yeah, that didn’t sound too lame.
He took one step closer, and she resisted the urge to take a step back as he towered over her.
“Well, I sure am glad you decided to settle here for a bit.” He smiled as his eyes twinkled.
Another few minutes of this onslaught of charm and Nicki didn’t know what she’d do. Thank goodness, Jared chose that moment to interrupt them. Otherwise, she may have swooned like in all those old movies where southern men made the belle of the ball faint.
“Steer clear of my help before you scare her away.” Jared shot Jack a stern look, and then smiled and winked in her direction.
She decided to make a joke of her own and get the hell out of there before Jack wedged her any farther between him and the fence. “Not much scares me, except my boss finding me loafing around not doing my job. I better get back to it.”
Sometimes the only way to leave the past behind is to ignore the voice of reason—and leap.
© 2009 N.J. Walters
Jamesville, Book 7
For Linda Fletcher, the sign in front of her new business says it all. Past Promises Antiques is her declaration of independence from her powerful and manipulative family—and a vow to herself that her future will be different.
She never considered herself the no-strings-affair type, but the chemistry between her and her newly hired handyman is too intense to ignore. Moving to Jamesville was a bold step, so what’s the harm in taking one more—into his arms?
Levi Mann’s shadowed past keeps his bags packed light and his feet on the move. But one look at Linda, and he finds himself willing to hang around—just long enough to figure out what it is that triggers their explosive passion.
Warning, this title contains very explicit language, a dysfunctional family, a very large inheritance and lots of wild, hot sex.
Enjoy the following excerpt for
“Are you okay?” A low, male voice startled her out of her daydreams of the past. Linda whirled around, hand on her chest, heart pounding.
He stood just behind her. Watching. Waiting.
She had no idea how long he’d been there. It should have been impossible for a man his size to sneak up on her. At six-and-a-half feet tall, Levi Mann took up a lot of space. His body was massive, but it was all solid muscle. There wasn’t an ounce of fat on the man.
He was wearing his usual uniform of jeans and a T-shirt. The faded denim clung to his thick thighs like a second skin. The soft cotton of the shirt molded to his biceps and chest, leaving little to the imagination.
And she had imagined him. A lot.
Lying in bed late at night, Linda had wondered more than once what it would feel like to touch all that sculpted muscle. She knew what it looked like. Levi had helped her with much of the renovation work on the building, as well as the painting, often removing his shirt while he worked. She’d lost count of the number of times she’d stopped painting just to stare at him while he was working. Levi gave new meaning to the phrase abs of steel. His tanned flesh looked as though it was pulled tight over slabs of muscle.
And the man was just as potent from behind. He had wide shoulders that tapered down to his thick waist, the muscles making a perfect V. His butt was first class all the way.
“Linda?” The way he said her name gave her shivers. “Are you okay?”
Oh, God. She was standing here like a ninny, staring at him again. “I’m fine.” She shook herself and dropped the letter in the garbage. “Just thinking about things.” That was vague enough for him to drop it. In her experience, most men were just as happy to avoid lengthy, in-depth discussions with females.
Levi stared at her, his golden-brown eyes sending a shiver down her spine. He had a way of watching a person that made you think he could see all the way to your soul. Then he blinked and the moment passed. “Excited about this morning?”
She ignored the fact that his shoulder-length hair was down this morning, making him look even sexier. Usually, he kept it tied back while he worked. And there was no doubt about it. Levi was a man of action. If not for him, she’d still be working on the building instead of opening the doors on her new business.
“Excited and scared.” She laughed and motioned to the coffee pot, which had just finished perking. “Would you like a cup of coffee?”
Turning her back to him, she struggled to regain her composure. He was one hot guy, no doubt about it, but she wasn’t looking for that kind of complication in her life right now.
Not that he’d come on to her in any way since she’d hired him. The arrangement they’d worked out helped them both. When she’d bought the building that housed Past Promises, it had needed a lot of sweat and elbow grease to make it livable. Which wasn’t a problem. Linda wasn’t afraid of hard labor.
The building was almost a hundred years old, three stories high and built of brick. The main floor was the retail space, but some time in the nineteen-seventies someone had converted the two upper floors into apartments. Linda had revamped the top floor for her own use. She hadn’t planned on renting out the second floor apartment until Jonah Sutter had approached her about Levi.
Jonah was married to Amanda Barrington, Amanda Sutter now, a friend of Linda’s from Vermont who had also relocated to Jamesville. Jonah had introduced her to Levi, who was looking for a place to stay and was willing to work in exchange for rent. It had saved her a bundle on the renovations. Levi could do the work of three men and there wasn’t much, if anything, he couldn’t do.
Cyndi and Shamus O’Rourke, more friends who lived in Jamesville, had pitched in to help her as well. Shamus was a partner in B & O Construction, a local contracting company, so he’d given her great advice and a good price on work when she’d needed it done.
Jonah had done his part as well, using his skill as an electrician to upgrade all the electrical work in the building. Not for the first time, she was thankful for her new friends and glad she’d made the move. The contrast between her friends and her family made her stomach ache.
It was no good to question why her parents and brother couldn’t just be happy for her. They were what they were, but she was through trying to please them.
She finished pouring the coffee into a paper cup and handed it to Levi. From past experience, she knew he took his black. Over the past few months of working together she’d gotten to know him fairly well. Or as well as anyone knew him. Levi was incredibly self-contained, keeping to himself when he wasn’t working. But she’d like to think they’d become friends, of a sort.
“Thanks.” Their fingers grazed as he took the coffee from her. Heat shot down her arm and her breasts tingled.
She dropped her hand and rubbed it up and down the fine wool of her dress pants. It was distressing how quickly her body reacted to Levi. It had been that way from the first moment she’d met him. All the man had to do was walk in the room and she felt her body temperature rise. She had to control herself. Levi was a friend, nothing more.