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Authors: Susan May Warren

Tags: #Fiction, #Christian, #Romance, #Contemporary, #FICTION / Christian / Romance, #FICTION / Romance / Contemporary

Tying the Knot

BOOK: Tying the Knot
8.41Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
Praise for Tying the Knot

“Warren’s characters are well developed, and she knows how to create a first-rate contemporary romance. . . .”


“In Tying the Knot, author Susan May Warren makes rooting for Anne and Noah easy, but putting the book down difficult.”


“Tying the Knot takes readers on a trek through the landscape of the heart. Susan May Warren has made it a journey worth taking.”


“Susan May Warren is an exciting new writer whose delightful stories weave the joy of romantic devotion together with the truth of God’s love.”

Author of It Happens Every Spring

Tying the Knot
was my second trip to Susan Warren’s delightful community of Deep Haven. Like Joe and Mona in Happily Ever After, the characters in Tying the Knot are so real you can almost hear them breathe. A hopeful, grace-filled story with plenty of adventure to boot. Susan Warren is definitely a writer to watch!”

Author of Remember to Forget

Visit Tyndale’s exciting Web site at

and Tyndale’s quill logo are registered trademarks of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.

Tying the Knot

Copyright © 2003 by Susan May Warren. All rights reserved.

Cover photograph of bench copyright © by John-Francis Bourke/zefa/Corbis. All rights reserved.

Cover photograph of backpack by Julie Chen. Copyright © by Tyndale House Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved.

Cover designed by Beth Sparkman

Interior designed by Julie Chen

Edited by Lorie Popp

Scripture quotations are taken from the
Holy Bible,
New Living Translation, copyright © 1996. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.

This novel is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents either are the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual events, locales, organizations, or persons, living or dead, is entirely coincidental and beyond the intent of either the author or publisher.

Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data

Warren, Susan, date. Tying the knot / Susan May Warren. p. cm. — (HeartQuest.) ISBN 0-8423-8118-X (sc) 1. Emergency medical personnel—Fiction. 2. Minneapolis (Minn.)—Fiction. I. Title. II. Series. PS3623.A865 T95 2003 813′.6—dc21 2003009960

ISBN 978-1-4143-2953-6 (ePub); ISBN 978-1-4143-2952-9 (Kindle); ISBN 978-1-4143-7305-8 (Apple)

Build: 2013-04-30 11:43:33

To my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. You are sufficient. Always.

Only God could have put this story together—He knows how frazzled I was during the writing of
Tying the Knot
. As usual, in His kindness, He equipped me with a team of encouragers who held me up and brought this work to fruition. I thank the Lord for you every time I think of you.

Andrew, supreme omelet maker and hero of my heart. I’ll never forget our first motorcycle ride. “Hold on tight, snuggle closer,” you said. I’ll never let go.

David, Sarah, Peter, and Noah, my sweet children who consistently offer hugs, cheers, and words of encouragement when I am beating my head on my keyboard. Thank you for putting up with endless burned or cold dinners and for not getting angry when I asked, one overwhelming day, “Do you
to eat?” I thank the Lord every day for the blessing of being your mother. You are a reminder of God’s love for me.

Dannette Bell Lund, for being a light in my world and for your enthusiasm that never fails to lift my spirits. I’m so glad you joined our family!

Tracey Victoria Bateman, who tirelessly and expertly critiqued every word. Thank you for panicking with me! You’re a gift of joy and fun in my life.

Susan Downs, for your prayers and steadfast encouragement. What would I do without you?

Juanita Santiago, vivacious, on-fire Moody Bible Institute student. Thank you for giving me your time, your insights, your guidance. This book is a product of your testimony and courage. May the Lord bless you as you seek Him.

The Common Ground class, especially Kathy Kirchner, Lyn Lindberg, Laurie Stoltenberg, Kathy Tulberg, Wendy Cavness, Laura Miles, Karin Webster, and Carma Hayenga for your support and enthusiasm and for putting up with my endless jabber about what God was teaching me. Your friendship has helped me heal.

Karen Boberg and Pat Reycraft, for your faithful prayers and for being there to fill in the “grandparent” gap.

Eric Ericksen, for your generosity. Your kindness made this book possible.

Anne Goldsmith, for your limitless encouragement. Your laughter and warm notes kept me going. Thank you for believing in me.

Lorie Popp, for your patience and words of wisdom as I worked through this manuscript. As usual, you took a rough piece and made it shine!

Thanks to the incredibly talented Julie Chen—once again you’ve taken an idea, put color and beauty to it, and created a cover that is beyond my wildest dreams. Thank you for your dedication and imagination.

To Darlene Guinn, our very own Granny D. Thank you for taking us under your wing and loving us so well.

Finally, to our friends and supporters who continue to pray for the Warren family. We need those prayers! May the Lord bless you richly for your faithfulness and sacrifice.

I wait quietly before God,
for my hope is in Him.
SALM 62:5
  1. Acknowledgments
  2. Prologue
  3. Chapter 1
  4. Chapter 2
  5. Chapter 3
  6. Chapter 4
  7. Chapter 5
  8. Chapter 6
  9. Chapter 7
  10. Chapter 8
  11. Chapter 9
  12. Chapter 10
  13. Chapter 11
  14. Chapter 12
  15. Chapter 13
  16. Chapter 14
  17. Chapter 15
  18. Chapter 16
  19. Chapter 17
  20. Chapter 18
  21. Chapter 19
  22. Chapter 20
  23. Chapter 21
  24. Chapter 22
  25. Chapter 23
  26. Chapter 24
  27. Chapter 25
  28. Chapter 26
  29. Chapter 27
  30. Chapter 28
  31. A Note from the Author
  32. About the Author

The crackle on the two-way radio gave EMT Anne Lundstrom a two-second warning that someone’s life teetered on death’s fine edge. The dispatch blared through the ambulance speaker and her stomach tightened, instinct telling her to brace herself.

“King One-Two, we have a fifty-two-year-old female complaining of chest pains. Respond to 2135 Franklin Avenue.”

Anne made a wry face in response to the fire department dispatcher’s voice. She tossed her half-eaten hamburger into its wrapper in her lap and reached for her seat belt as her partner, Gary Muller, popped the rig into drive.

“Try not to kill us,” Anne said as she grabbed the dash. She didn’t know what she hated more, lurching in the passenger seat or manning the wheel herself, as they careened through Minneapolis’s congested inner city.

“Hey, gimme a break. Last time I only skimmed off one layer of paint.” Gary grinned, but his hands whitened on the steering wheel.

Anne grimaced against the scream of the siren. More often than not, instead of parting traffic, the sound panicked drivers who slammed on their brakes, or worse, jerked into the empty lane. As the rig flew through a red light, Anne tensed, praying silently for the crosscurrent traffic to yield.

Her hamburger tumbled onto the floorboards. She kicked it aside and planted her foot. “Franklin. It had to be Franklin Avenue.”

Mercifully, Gary stayed silent.

She didn’t have to wonder what they’d find in Minneapolis’s seedier part of town. Probably a dilapidated two-story Victorian, with paint peeling off once-beautiful columns, boarded-up windows, and a sagging, rotted porch. The front yard would be littered with battered furniture, rusty car parts, broken glass, cigarette butts, and even used syringes. Inside, amid the acrid smells of moldy food and the lingering smoke of illegal substances, she’d find a crying, dirty child or two. Of course, the grandmother, the only sane person in the dwelling, would be stretched out on the floor, stroked out or otherwise “fixin’ to die.”

Her pessimism had Anne kneading a pulsing vein in her temple.

“You’ve been on three days straight.” Gary shot her a quick look. “You should take a sick day.”

“It’s not that.”

Gary dodged a minivan full of children, whose driver apparently hadn’t yet heard their siren. “I know.”

Anne bristled as they barreled into the inner recesses of the city. Obviously her years spent walking this neighborhood hadn’t dissolved from her system. She noted a few changes in the landscape—a new liquor store and the burned shell of a grocery store, plywood nailed to its windows. They passed Woodrow Wilson High. A few teens were playing hoops in the yard, adeptly skirting weeds that infiltrated the crumbling asphalt.

“We’re at Twenty-second,” Anne said without looking at the signs. “Next street up, take a right.”

Gary slowed and took the corner on all four wheels. Despite the warning siren, they could be disrupting a game of street hockey. She wished that were the worst they were disrupting. Summer calls made her instinctively wary. Too many kids with empty time on their hands. More likely they’d be upsetting a carjacking or a drug deal.

Anne winced again at her cynicism. She
need a break. Unfortunately, she had bills to pay and a semester of school to finish. Only then could she chuck this job and move away—far, far away—from inner-city Minneapolis and its ugliness. Maybe then she’d find a measure of peace and safety, things she’d been praying for relentlessly for nearly fifteen years.

She long ago stopped expecting God to answer.

“Three minutes, twenty-three seconds.” Gary stated their response time as he braked next to a quaint bungalow with a fresh coat of baby blue paint. He parked behind a beat-up green pickup with all its windows intact. “Go in. I’ll get the jump kit.”

Anne blew out a breath, reined in her prejudice, and leaped from the cab. A patient inside needed her help, and she’d do well to focus on that.

The inner door of the bungalow hung open. Anne rapped on the screen door. “Hello? Emergency medical personnel. Anyone here?”

She waited three seconds, then jerked the door open. The family room buzzed with an eerie silence. Two brown tweed sofas, worn but clean, claimed much of the room, as did a sprawling spider plant hanging from a green macramé planter in the far corner. Anne called again, then stepped onto the green shag carpet. Strange that no one had come to meet them. Who had placed the call? Perhaps the woman had called in her own symptoms.

Anne ventured farther, toward a short hallway. “Hello?” No reply, save her own thundering heartbeat. The aroma of supper cooking filled the house with an unusual hominess. Her half-empty stomach twisted. She couldn’t remember the last time she’d eaten a home-cooked meal.

Gary pounded up the porch steps. “Where is she?”

“I’m not sure.” Anne grasped a wobbly door handle covered with several coats of paint and pushed the door open.

A large Native American woman, dressed elegantly in a lavender dress and cream-colored hose, lay on the bed. Her long gray hair fanned out over a floral pillow, but her pale face evidenced significant pain. Considering her size, she was primed for an angina attack. Anne’s attention went to the linebacker-sized man holding a compress to the woman’s forehead.

“I’m an emergency medical technician with the Minneapolis Fire Department.” Anne directed her words to him, seeking consent. “Can I help?”

He stared at her, alarm glinting in his light brown eyes, a color unusual for someone of his Native American ancestry. A line of sweat dotted the man’s forehead against his coal black hair pulled into a ponytail. Anne recognized the early signs of psychogenic shock and braced herself for refusal. It wasn’t uncommon for family members to fear medical professionals or even faint at the sight of a loved one undergoing trauma. Especially in this part of town.

BOOK: Tying the Knot
8.41Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub

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