Here’s a short excerpt from my new release, The Gunslinger’s Mail-Order Bride. The story takes place (mostly) in the Arizona Territory in 1877. For those of you who like sweet-rated stories with lots of action, this is a great read!
He walked back to the edge of the ravine and saw the precarious position of the stagecoach below. Fortunately, the space was narrow enough that the Apaches couldn’t surround and attack, which was their preference. Unfortunately, the driver was injured…and from what Flynn could tell, he was the only person fighting against the Indian’s relentless attack.
A flash of purple filled the coach’s window, and he realized it was the bonnet he’d seen earlier. The purple monstrosity disappeared, and Flynn’s eyes widened when the prettiest woman he’d ever seen stuck her head through the open window. Streaks of gold glistened in her red hair. He was even more amazed and horrified when she proceeded to crawl through the small opening and pull herself onto the top of the coach.
The driver’s own horrified expression turned toward the woman for only a second before he yelled and pulled her down into the box where he crouched, trying to avoid bullets and arrows as the Apaches fired at them. Another face, this one older and surrounded by a wealth of white hair, appeared in the opening where the girl had crawled through. In her arms, she held a small baby.
Without another thought, Flynn made his way down the crumbling dirt wall as fast as he dared, then slid the last three or four feet to the rocky ground. Before he could talk himself out of it, he sprinted toward the stage and jumped onto the leather-covered rear boot where the passenger’s luggage was stored. Wrapping his hands around the top metal railing, he pulled himself up and landed on top of the stacked boxes.
“Yo, driver! Don’t shoot—I’m here to help!” Flynn yelled as he scrambled over the mound of crates toward the driver’s box. He dropped down into the small space, made even smaller since the driver and the girl were already hunkered down. “How many passengers are inside?”
The driver’s gaze narrowed until his eyes were nothing more than angry slits. “Ten, including Miss Paxton here,” he bit out between clenched teeth, pain lacing each word. “Where in the hell did you come from—how do I know you ain’t one of them Apaches?”
“You don’t,” Flynn said, not bothering to answer his other question.
The driver let out a frustrated huff, and the woman put a hand on his shoulder before turning to Flynn. “Unfortunately, there are now nine of us. Mr. Rogers is dead—and please call me Dallas.”
“Damn…double damn,” the driver muttered. “Who’s takin’ care of the baby?”
“My traveling companion is for the time being. No one else would even consider it,” Dallas scowled, but even that didn’t detract from her pretty face. An arrow plunked into the wood above their heads, making her jump and slump down a bit more. “What are we going to do?”
“Can’t do much of anything with me injured. Can’t get down there to cut the poor critter loose,” the driver said, craning his neck to get a glimpse of the downed horse then met Flynn’s gaze. “Is he dead?”
Flynn stared at Dallas a moment longer, entranced by the expressions on her face…worry, disgust, and fear. But it was her wide green eyes that drew him. If he didn’t know better, he would almost think she was excited. He shook his head at the crazy thought. What woman would find excitement from being in the middle of an Indian attack?