Why did you start writing?

I’ve asked, ‘What made you start writing? Where do you get your inspiration? Where do find the time?’ Well, I write because I want to, need to. My characters speak to me and the can be quite insistent when it comes to having their say. I began writing Nightwalker: A Leah Wolfe SINS Novel, when my youngest child went to first grade. Writing was always something that I’d wanted to do. I’d even started a story years before Nightwalker was conceived and never finished it.

Life moved on and two kids later, I was back behind the keyboard with an idea and a title. Life still marched on an my first priority was, and still is, being a mother and wife. The cardinal rule to writing is ‘butt in seat, fingers on keyboard’, and I broke that rule on several occasions. It took months of late nights and a very supportive family to finally type “The End”. Then came the second guessing, tweaking, editing and self-doubt that led to part two of the process, getting published. I’ll write more about that in my next post. In the meantime, I hope you’ll enjoy at little bite of Nightwalker: A Leah Wolfe SINS Novel. You can click on the cover for the buy link or find it at you favorite digital retailer.

NIGHTWALKER COVER

 

Blurb:

Leah Wolfe has retired from serious police work in favor of seeking a normal life. Her unique, yet not fully discovered supernatural abilities allow her to speak to the souls of the dead, providing vital information in the search for their killers. Her abilities have also cost her almost everyone she has ever loved including her mother, who abandoned her to fend for herself on the streets, and, most recently, her ex-fiancé Joaquín Wildhorse, Chief Detective of the Native American Reservation Police Department. But when Joaquín’s new lover is found brutally murdered on the reservation, he turns to Leah for help. The hunt for a vicious killer leads Leah to sexy Ian Nightwalker and Leah is unable to walk away from the case that may cost her her most guarded possession of all. Her heart.

 

Excerpt:

Ian took my hand and led me to a glass-enclosed atrium. Stars glittered above me through the glass ceiling and the desert outside was backdropped by the mountain range. A jetted spa that trickled a waterfall into a large swimming pool illuminated the room. Palm trees surrounded the edge of the spa providing privacy. Wow.

“It’s like an oasis in the desert.” I spoke softly so as not to disturb the natural peace in the room. Like talking in a library.

Ian walked over to a large stone bench and sat down. He pulled his shirt over his head revealing his pale skin and muscles hidden beneath. I silently gasped and felt a wave of desire heat my body. Each muscle flexed and tensed as he moved to kick off his boots then pulled his socks over his feet. As he bent and exposed his back I couldn’t help but admire the breadth of his broad shoulders, my eyes following his spine down to his narrowing back and waist. His wavy black hair fell over his face and I was left with a view of his neck. I had the sudden urge to run my tongue along his exposed neckline to his kissable mouth. I wanted to run my hands over the strong shoulders and let them slowly caress a path down his chest and along the expanse of his stomach tracing the trail of soft, dark hair that led from his naval and disappeared under the denim of his jeans. I wanted to feel his hands fist in my hair as I explored his body.

I shook myself out of the thought.

My face blazed red as I saw Ian’s eyes bored into mine, the look of passion on his face that a man gets when knows your interested in more than just conversation.

It’s time!

Sexy men, steamy romances, sexy men, great books, sexy men, fantastic authors, sexy men, free books, sexy men, grand prize Amazon $50 gift card. Did I miss anything? Oh yeah, sexy men! Stop on over to The Romance Reviews and get your share! And as always, Happy Reading!

Wait! I almost forgot. Before you go, Follow this page and stay up to date! C’mon, look to the right, a little higher, Yay! Now just click Following Author Rhonda L. Print! Thanks a bunch!

Look for my Q&A on June 12th and enter to win any one of my books.

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Sunnysleevez is the winner. Contact me through this link and congratulations. 

 

Feel free to share this post.

Who wants to win an ebook of Forget Me Not. Just share and comment on this post. Winner chosen Wednesday May 31st.

Sarah’s head sang with the dizzying effects of both the champagne and the hum of conversations. Reaching into her pocket, she pulled out a jumble of business cards and passed them to Jake.
“What’s this?”
“Business cards. There are at least five who want bids on remodeling jobs and a couple with plans to add onto their homes.”
Jake skimmed his thumb down her cheek as his fingers slid through her hair. “I may have to give you a raise.”
“And I may have to accept it, but I think it’s highly inappropriate to discuss it on a date.”
One side of Jake’s mouth quirked into a smile. “I thought this was a business function?”
“Oh, I think we’ve reached the parameters of a date.”
Leaning in, Jake slid his fingers to the nape of Sarah’s neck. His expression changed from amused to sultry and Sarah could feel his breath on her cheek as he closed in. She put her hand to his chest and curled her fingers around the fabric of his shirt. When there was but a space of air between their lips she panicked, and pressed her hand flat against him. “I think you should drive.”
He gave a slight nod and then withdrew and fired up the engine. It was an awkward ten minutes before either of them spoke.
“So, tell me about the parameters.” Jake broke the silence and glanced at Sarah.
Smiling, she replied, “The way you kept your hand at the small of my back as we made our way through the crowd. I like that, by the way.”
“I’ll make a note of it.”
Glad the mood in the car had lightened, she smiled. “The possessive way you put your arm around me whenever we were being introduced to any man younger than fifty.”
“You noticed that, did you?”
“I did. Do you know you’re holding my hand?”
While they talked, he had linked his fingers with hers with his right hand and drove with his left. He gave hers a slight squeeze now.
“Intertwined fingers and hand holding are definitely not condoned at business functions.”
Pulling the car to a stop in her driveway he killed the ignition and turned to her. “I guess you’re right then. This must be a date. That means I get to walk you to your door.” Jake pushed open his own car door and then walked to the passenger side. With a flourish, he opened hers and reached his hand in to help her out.
“Are those all of the parameters?” he asked.
Jake kept her hand in his as they crossed the porch and stopped at her front door.
Sarah turned, enjoying the game. “Well, there were the flowers. I mean, what female doesn’t like flowers?”
“I’ll have to give them to you more often.”
“That implies there will be a second date.”
As Sarah turned her back against the door, Jake took the opportunity and caged her in. “I certainly hope so.” His voice deepened.
“So do I.” This time when Jake leaned into her, Sarah rose on her toes and met his lips. The kiss was soft, almost tentative at first. He tasted of champagne and spice and she found herself falling into the kiss, abandoning herself to the scents, tastes, and sensations of being held by him. He parted her lips with his and then groaned when she slipped her tongue
into his mouth. They met each other on equal ground, the slide of lips and tongues as his arms snaked around her, slid up her body and rested when his fingers found her hair.
Breathless he pulled apart just a fraction. “Are you going to invite me in, Sarah?”
She touched her lips to his again and smiled. “Not on the first date.”
Turning out of his grasp, she slipped her key into the lock. “Good night, Jake. Sleep well.”
“Not likely,” he replied as she closed the door behind her.

Image may contain: 2 people, people smiling, meme, text, outdoor and nature

Forget Me Not – Win a Copy

Forget_Me_Not-Rhonda_Print-final_mockup

Leave a comment below to win a copy. Winner chosen on May 23, 2017. Happy Reading!

Her life depends on a man she can’t remember. 

His future depends on a woman he can’t forget. 

Sarah Hall had everything she wanted in life. A man who loved her, a job she enjoyed and the joyful memories her deceased parent’s had left her with.

But when her world comes crumbling around her and even her memories are stolen, will she have the strength to recall her past to save her future.

Jake Porter knew he loved Sarah the moment he saw her. Now he just had to convince her.

Yet when tragedy strikes and he finds her near death, on the floor of his construction warehouse, both of their lives change forever.

Now protecting her is his only priority.

When her past catches up with her and everything is at stake, will his love be enough to save them?

 

Excerpt:

Sarah’s head sang with the dizzying effects of both the champagne and the hum of conversations. Reaching into her pocket, she pulled out a jumble of business cards and passed them to Jake.

“What’s this?”

“Business cards. There are at least five who want bids on remodeling jobs and a couple with plans to add onto their homes.”

Jake skimmed his thumb down her cheek as his fingers slid through her hair. “I may have to give you a raise.”

“And I may have to accept it, but I think it’s highly inappropriate to discuss it on a date.”

One side of Jake’s mouth quirked into a smile. “I thought this was a business function?”

“Oh, I think we’ve reached the parameters of a date.”

Leaning in, Jake slid his fingers to the nape of Sarah’s neck. His expression changed from amused to sultry and Sarah could feel his breath on her cheek as he closed in. She put her hand to his chest and curled her fingers around the fabric of his shirt. When there was but a space of air between their lips she panicked, and pressed her hand flat against him. “I think you should drive.”

He gave a slight nod and then withdrew and fired up the engine. It was an awkward ten minutes before either of them spoke.

“So, tell me about the parameters.” Jake broke the silence and glanced at Sarah.

Smiling, she replied, “The way you kept your hand at the small of my back as we made our way through the crowd. I like that, by the way.”

“I’ll make a note of it.”

Glad the mood in the car had lightened, she smiled. “The possessive way you put your arm around me whenever we were being introduced to any man younger than fifty.”

“You noticed that, did you?”

“I did. Do you know you’re holding my hand?”

While they talked, he had linked his fingers with hers with his right hand and drove with his left. He gave hers a slight squeeze now.

“Intertwined fingers and hand holding are definitely not condoned at business functions.”

Pulling the car to a stop in her driveway he killed the ignition and turned to her. “I guess you’re right then. This must be a date. That means I get to walk you to your door.” Jake pushed open his own car door and then walked to the passenger side. With a flourish, he opened hers and reached his hand in to help her out.

“Are those all of the parameters?” he asked.

Jake kept her hand in his as they crossed the porch and stopped at her front door.

Sarah turned, enjoying the game. “Well, there were the flowers. I mean, what female doesn’t like flowers?”

“I’ll have to give them to you more often.”

“That implies there will be a second date.”

As Sarah turned her back against the door, Jake took the opportunity and caged her in. “I certainly hope so.” His voice deepened.

“So do I.” This time when Jake leaned into her, Sarah rose on her toes and met his lips. The kiss was soft, almost tentative at first. He tasted of champagne and spice and she found herself falling into the kiss, abandoning herself to the scents, tastes, and sensations of being held by him. He parted her lips with his and then groaned when she slipped her tongue

into his mouth. They met each other on equal ground, the slide of lips and tongues as his arms snaked around her, slid up her body and rested when his fingers found her hair.

Breathless he pulled apart just a fraction. “Are you going to invite me in, Sarah?”

She touched her lips to his again and smiled. “Not on the first date.”

Turning out of his grasp, she slipped her key into the lock. “Good night, Jake. Sleep well.”

“Not likely,” he replied as she closed the door behind her.

Book Giveaway! Forget Me Not release 5/9

I’m in the mood to celebrate! Forget Me Not is releasing on May 9, 2017 and is available for preorder on Amazon now.Forget_Me_Not-Rhonda_Print-final_mockup So to celebrate, I’m giving away a copy of my debut novel, Nightwalker: A Leah Wolfe SINS Novel to one person. All you have to do is like me on Facebook and leave a comment at www.RhondaLPrint.com. Winner will be chosen and announced on Friday June 2nd. Oh, and if you love it, share the love with a review!

Her life depends on a man she can’t remember.His future depends on a woman he can’t forget.Sarah Hall had everything she wanted in life. A man who loved her, a job she enjoyed and the joyful memories her deceased parent’s had left her with.But when her world comes crumbling around her and even her memories are stolen, will she have the strength to recall her past to save her future.

Jake Porter knew he loved Sarah the moment he saw her. Now he just had to convince her.Yet when tragedy strikes and he finds her near death, on the floor of his construction warehouse, both of their lives change forever.Now protecting her is his only priority.When her past catches up with her and everything is at stake, will his love be enough to save them?

 

Forget Me Not – Win a Copy

Forget_Me_Not-Rhonda_Print-final_mockup

Leave a comment below to win a copy. Winner chosen on May 23, 2017. Happy Reading!

Her life depends on a man she can’t remember. 

His future depends on a woman he can’t forget. 

Sarah Hall had everything she wanted in life. A man who loved her, a job she enjoyed and the joyful memories her deceased parent’s had left her with.

But when her world comes crumbling around her and even her memories are stolen, will she have the strength to recall her past to save her future.

Jake Porter knew he loved Sarah the moment he saw her. Now he just had to convince her.

Yet when tragedy strikes and he finds her near death, on the floor of his construction warehouse, both of their lives change forever.

Now protecting her is his only priority.

When her past catches up with her and everything is at stake, will his love be enough to save them?

 

Excerpt:

Sarah’s head sang with the dizzying effects of both the champagne and the hum of conversations. Reaching into her pocket, she pulled out a jumble of business cards and passed them to Jake.

“What’s this?”

“Business cards. There are at least five who want bids on remodeling jobs and a couple with plans to add onto their homes.”

Jake skimmed his thumb down her cheek as his fingers slid through her hair. “I may have to give you a raise.”

“And I may have to accept it, but I think it’s highly inappropriate to discuss it on a date.”

One side of Jake’s mouth quirked into a smile. “I thought this was a business function?”

“Oh, I think we’ve reached the parameters of a date.”

Leaning in, Jake slid his fingers to the nape of Sarah’s neck. His expression changed from amused to sultry and Sarah could feel his breath on her cheek as he closed in. She put her hand to his chest and curled her fingers around the fabric of his shirt. When there was but a space of air between their lips she panicked, and pressed her hand flat against him. “I think you should drive.”

He gave a slight nod and then withdrew and fired up the engine. It was an awkward ten minutes before either of them spoke.

“So, tell me about the parameters.” Jake broke the silence and glanced at Sarah.

Smiling, she replied, “The way you kept your hand at the small of my back as we made our way through the crowd. I like that, by the way.”

“I’ll make a note of it.”

Glad the mood in the car had lightened, she smiled. “The possessive way you put your arm around me whenever we were being introduced to any man younger than fifty.”

“You noticed that, did you?”

“I did. Do you know you’re holding my hand?”

While they talked, he had linked his fingers with hers with his right hand and drove with his left. He gave hers a slight squeeze now.

“Intertwined fingers and hand holding are definitely not condoned at business functions.”

Pulling the car to a stop in her driveway he killed the ignition and turned to her. “I guess you’re right then. This must be a date. That means I get to walk you to your door.” Jake pushed open his own car door and then walked to the passenger side. With a flourish, he opened hers and reached his hand in to help her out.

“Are those all of the parameters?” he asked.

Jake kept her hand in his as they crossed the porch and stopped at her front door.

Sarah turned, enjoying the game. “Well, there were the flowers. I mean, what female doesn’t like flowers?”

“I’ll have to give them to you more often.”

“That implies there will be a second date.”

As Sarah turned her back against the door, Jake took the opportunity and caged her in. “I certainly hope so.” His voice deepened.

“So do I.” This time when Jake leaned into her, Sarah rose on her toes and met his lips. The kiss was soft, almost tentative at first. He tasted of champagne and spice and she found herself falling into the kiss, abandoning herself to the scents, tastes, and sensations of being held by him. He parted her lips with his and then groaned when she slipped her tongue

into his mouth. They met each other on equal ground, the slide of lips and tongues as his arms snaked around her, slid up her body and rested when his fingers found her hair.

Breathless he pulled apart just a fraction. “Are you going to invite me in, Sarah?”

She touched her lips to his again and smiled. “Not on the first date.”

Turning out of his grasp, she slipped her key into the lock. “Good night, Jake. Sleep well.”

“Not likely,” he replied as she closed the door behind her.

Book Giveaway! Forget Me Not release 5/9

I’m in the mood to celebrate! Forget Me Not is releasing on May 9, 2017 and is available for preorder on Amazon now.Forget_Me_Not-Rhonda_Print-final_mockup So to celebrate, I’m giving away a copy of my debut novel, Nightwalker: A Leah Wolfe SINS Novel to one person. All you have to do is like me on Facebook and leave a comment at www.RhondaLPrint.com. Winner will be chosen and announced on Friday June 2nd. Oh, and if you love it, share the love with a review!

Her life depends on a man she can’t remember.His future depends on a woman he can’t forget.Sarah Hall had everything she wanted in life. A man who loved her, a job she enjoyed and the joyful memories her deceased parent’s had left her with.But when her world comes crumbling around her and even her memories are stolen, will she have the strength to recall her past to save her future.

Jake Porter knew he loved Sarah the moment he saw her. Now he just had to convince her.Yet when tragedy strikes and he finds her near death, on the floor of his construction warehouse, both of their lives change forever.Now protecting her is his only priority.When her past catches up with her and everything is at stake, will his love be enough to save them?

 

Forget Me Not Release May 9, 2017 Pre-Order Available Now

Click on cover to pre-order via Amazon.Forget_Me_Not-Rhonda_Print-final_mockup

 

Sarah Hall had everything she wanted in life. A man who loved her, a job she enjoyed and the joyful memories her deceased parents left her with.
But when her world comes crumbling around her and even her memories are stolen, will she have the strength to recall her past to save her future?
Jake Porter knew he loved Sarah the moment he saw her. Now he just had to convince her.
When tragedy strikes and he finds her near death, on the floor of his construction warehouse, both of their lives change forever. Now protecting her is his only priority.

Keep the spirit alive with Holiday Ever After

 

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Baby, it’s cold outside! Come snuggle up with Holiday Ever After, a collection of 15 stories filled with love and passion sure to put you in the holiday spirit.

Get tangled up with a Regency tavern wench, your own Mr. Scrooge, or the ghosts of Christmases past and present. Open your home and your heart to visitors from far away. Is your secret Santa a Navy SEAL, a handsome jock, or an artist? Perhaps you’d like to ring in the holidays with that office party hottie, the sexy exchange student next door, or a Vegas stripper? Whether you like your holiday treats sweet or spicy, there’s something for everyone in Holiday Ever After.

Featuring stories by the Los Angeles Romance Authors (LARA), Holiday Ever After will keep you warm on a chilly winter’s night.

Belle Ami • Kate Bigel • Roxann Breazile • Cami Brite • Claire Davon • Beverly Diehl • Pamela DuMond • Susannah Erwin • Nora Flite • Mia Hopkins • Kadee McDonald • Teri McGill • Marla Murphy • Kathy O’Rourke • Jewel Quinlan

Excerpt:

She stole one more look at the approaching figures before turning her attention once more to the black rain gorged clouds that moved slowly across the sky. Taking a deep breath, she shrank into herself hoping to project a desire for privacy. She closed her eyes so she wouldn’t see them or encourage any curiosity from the man or his dog. She wanted no contact, accidental or otherwise with the intruders. Surely, she represented no irregularity in the scheme of things, just a woman sitting on the beach in meditation seeking a union between the spiritual and the natural world. Frozen, her posture rigid like a statue, she sat barely breathing, her senses tuned to the deafening struggle of wind and surf.

Amazon buy link:  https://www.amazon.com/Escape-Tip-Spear-Book-1-ebook/dp/B01N1X508R

Amazon buy link:  https://www.amazon.com/One-More-Time-Not-Enough-ebook/dp/B01HSDJLLA#navbar

Amazon buy link: http://bookshow.me/TheOne

Amazon buy link: http://bookshow.me/TheOneAndMore

Amazon buy link: https://www.amazon.com/Holiday-Ever-After-Nora-Flite-ebook/dp/B01M8KZIRK

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/belle.ami.96?fref=ts

Twitter:  @BelleAmi5

Pinterest:  https://www.pinterest.com/belleami96/

Website:   http://belleami.us

The One – Belle Ami

 

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Before the car sped away, Miles reached in to kiss her hand. His eyes were completely sober, “I told you when we met that I am impulsive and that it has usually served me well. I knew the minute I saw you, Adelia, that you were the woman I wanted, the one. Nothing will change that!”

How well do you really know the one you love? An erotic novel full of obsessive love, dark secrets, and unquenchable lust, Belle Ami’s The One proves that no one is quite who they seem.

Adelia, a rising star in the equestrian world, is still reeling from her parents’ deaths in a tragic car accident when she meets green energy investment banker Miles Bremen and his charming yet inscrutable twin sister, Karolin. With his insatiable lust, Miles ignites a passion within Adelia she never knew existed, and the two quickly find themselves entwined in a torrid affair that knows no bounds.

Little does Adelia know, however, that her meeting of the Bremen twins was no accident. Carefully selected as “the one” for her unsettling resemblance to the emotionally and physically damaged Karolin, Adelia is targeted to marry Miles and bear the children that Karolin cannot have.

The One is a razor edge mystery that enfolds on the playgrounds of the super rich, from Trump Tower to the Hamptons and Palm Beach; to the Amalfi Coast aboard Miles’s mega-yacht Green Way, The One is irresistible as the reader is drawn into Adelia’s journey through a suspenseful – and erotic world.

An edge-of-your-seat thriller that will leave readers breathless in more ways than one, The One is an irresistible journey through—new territory that fans of romantic fiction are bound to love.

Chapter 7

St. Regis Monarch Beach Hotel, Dana Point, California 

When Adelia arrived, the large suite was filled with horsey people: owners,

trainers, course designers, and riders. There was an air of excitement and

confidence among the revelers, who were always up for a celebration after

a long day of competition. The suite was large and well appointed, with a

piano and floor-to-ceiling windows that faced the turquoise waters of the

Pacific. Scores of people greeted her and congratulated her on her victory

as she wove through the crowd to the penthouse suite’s terrace.

A waiter handed Adelia a glass of champagne as she contemplated the surf that

rolled into the shore. The din of laughter, snippets of conversation, and

tinkling of the ivories seemed incongruous with the motion of the waves

and the sadness that pervaded her thoughts. Attending a party already felt

like a mistake. I think I’ll just say hello and make an early exit, she thought as

she watched another wave crash upon the shore.

“I’m so glad you decided to come!” Karolin’s arms encircled her in a

warm reception that was disconcerting coming from a complete stranger.

Once more, Karolin’s approach had caught her unaware.

“Come,” Karolin said. Taking Adelia’s hand firmly in her own, she guided her through the

room of people, toward a tall, dark-haired man whose back was to them.

“Miles, darling, I want you to meet Adelia. She’s the girl that won the

Grand Prix.”

“Excuse me.” Miles turned in mid-conversation and ceased talking. All of

his attention refocused on the person to whom his sister was introducing him.

Adelia was struck by the serious, penetrating, gray eyes. His smile, she

noticed, sat frozen on his lips never reaching his eyes. Miles was obscenely

handsome, and she sensed that he knew it. It was obvious that he could

charm a cobra or, for that matter, any woman he chose. She felt herself blush

under his scrutiny.

“Well, you gave us quite a thrill today. Congratulations.” He took her

hand and bent to kiss it. “I pay homage to a new star on the horizon.” His

eyes locked onto hers, daring her to look away. Her heart thundered uncontrollably in her chest as she searched for a response to his goading. Embarrassment ricocheted through her mind like

balls on a pool table. What the Hell am I doing here? She wondered.

“Leave it to my brother to play Lothario to your demure Camilla,” Karolin said with a chuckle, breaking the uncomfortable silence that ensued.

Will, an Olympic medalist who had been speaking with Miles, interrupted

the awkward moment. “Hey, you know what’s bizarre, you guys

look alike.”

Miles’s expression hardened. “I beg your pardon?”

“Karolin and Adelia look alike, except, of course, for their coloring.

Their hair color is obviously opposite, but their faces are like sisters’. Can’t

you see it, Miles?”

Miles surveyed the two women, forcing a laugh. “Does that mean I look

like her brother?”

Will wrinkled his brow as he examined the three of them. “It’s weird,

but there is a similarity. Of course, you’re much prettier.”

Miles cracked up, patting Will on the back. “Keep drinking, my friend,

and before long everyone in the room will begin to look alike.”

Will laughed as he walked away. “On that note, I think I’ll get a refill.”

Karolin clasped Miles’s arm as she leaned in and kissed his cheek. “And

I’ll leave you two to get acquainted while I see to the dinner, before our

guests are completely inebriated and I’ve failed in my duties as hostess.”

Adelia watched as Karolin maneuvered through the crowd with catlike

undulation, which explained her ability to come and go without announcement

or sound; the gentle sway of her hips barely affecting the air currents.

Her focus on the departing Karolin allowed her to avoid Miles’s eyes,

which she felt had never left her. She wanted to return to the balcony and

the endless panorama of ocean and sky that beckoned through the sliding

doors. If she could, she would have run away from him. Instead, she found

herself cemented in place. She wondered if her attraction to him was obvious.

She felt her cheeks fill with color.

Miles saw only her discomfort and took her hand in his. “Come on. Let’s

get a breath of fresh air. It’s too hard to talk with so many eavesdroppers. I

might want to tell you the story of my life,” he jested.

His mercurial change in demeanor to gentle persuasion lifted the fog

that was clouding her reactions. Gratefully, Adelia allowed herself to be led out to the terrace. A mild breeze blew, whispering through the potted bougainvillea, their red plumage

adding color and contrast to the view. The setting sun sparkled radiantly

on the sea like a thousand mirrors. It promised a glorious sunset when

it sank into the Pacific. As she and Miles stood watching nature’s regalia,

she was well aware that Miles still held her hand firmly in his. His fingers

warmed her, and she acknowledged that it was good to feel another’s touch.

She breathed the moist salt air, but with the fragrance of salt and sea came

the unmistakable scent of the stranger who held her hand in his grasp.

Without turning his eyes from the beauty in front of them, Miles said,

“I knew your father, Adelia.”

The unexpected words sent a shiver down her spine. “You knew my

father? How?” She withdrew her hand from his as sorrow enfolded her like

the wings of a bird.

“We served on a couple of corporate boards together. He was a fine man,

a legend. Everyone in my business knows of Lars Lindstrom. He’s one of

the founding fathers of the ‘green’ movement, the man who awakened us

to global warming and inspired us to stand up and do something about it.”

“And what, may I ask, is your business?”

“I run a venture fund that invests exclusively in green companies.

Naturally, your father and I shared a common vision. I’m so sorry about

your loss, Adelia. I’m sorry for the world’s loss.” Once again he reached for

her hand, and this time she did not pull away.

“I still can’t believe it’s real. The senselessness of it all.” She turned

toward him. “The accident, I mean…I cry myself to sleep every night. I ask

myself will I ever reach a place of peace and acceptance, but then I realize

that a lifetime is not enough time to mourn their loss. I had to get back to

training or everything that we—my parents and I—had dreamed would

have been lost. And now that I’ve done it—won—I have no one to share

it with. It doesn’t seem to mean as much to me as it would have. I don’t

suppose I’m making any sense…” She shook her head, at a loss for words.

Miles turned toward her, grasping both of her hands as he pulled her

closer. “Since when does life or death ever make sense? You’re suffering

through a difficult time in your life. The way I see it, you’re doing the best

you can under the circumstances.” He leaned in slightly and kissed her on

the forehead.

She closed her eyes for a moment. Perhaps she had expected that he

might kiss her, but when she opened her eyes, she saw that he had turned

and was once again staring out to sea. She felt a flush of embarrassment and disappointment. She had revealed her soul to him. She wasn’t sure why, but she wanted him to kiss her, and

he hadn’t. It was clear she was making a fool of herself.

“I really have to go. Please tell Karolin thank you for the invitation.” She turned to leave, but was stayed by his hand on her arm.

“I know the timing isn’t the best, but I’d like to call you. Dinner? Just

the two of us? I’d like to get to know you.”

Now she felt completely taken aback, with no ability to read him. She

had to get out of there now. “Sure, why not? I mean—I’d really like that.”

She spent the ride back to San Ynez wondering about Miles. It was

impossible to ignore the attraction she had felt for him. He was clearly successful,

sophisticated, and confident, everything she was not. Don’t be foolish,

she told herself. A man like that has women standing in line. What the hell

would he need some horsey, country girl for. Nonetheless, she vowed to Google

him when she got back to the ranch. He’ll never call anyway.

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