WYOMING WIFE? Harlequin Desire by Shawna Delacorte reissued by Harlequin in ebook
G-EXCERPT # 1: (opening)
Nowhere in Samantha Burkett’s neatly organized and planned-out life had she ever imagined she would someday be in a situation like this one—at the mercy of a complete stranger, strapped into a helicopter seat, and skimming above a frozen landscape toward some unknown destination.
She had never been so cold in all her twenty-nine years. The only impulsive action she had ever taken in her entire life, and look where it had gotten her. She shivered inside her lightweight jacket. One thing was blatantly obvious—the wilds of Wyoming was no place for a tailored silk pantsuit and Italian leather shoes. She was a long way from Los Angeles and the conference room protocol of the business world where she efficiently functioned on a daily basis.
A single tear ran down her cheek. She quickly wiped it away. She thought she had cried out every tear that could be squeezed from her body two days ago, when her entire world had come crashing down around her. She shook her head to clear away the bad thoughts. That part of her life was over forever. She had to make a plan for the future. Right now, however, she needed to figure a way out of her current predicament. She took a deep breath, held it for a couple of seconds, then slowly expelled it.
She turned toward the man seated next to her, the man piloting the helicopter. Everything had happened so quickly she had not even gotten a good look at him. One moment she had been on her backside in a snowdrift on a country road, desperately trying to get her car unstuck, and the next moment had found herself slung over this stranger’s shoulder like a sack of flour as he ran toward the waiting helicopter.
A few minutes later a large ranch house, barn, stables, corral and a cluster of surrounding structures came into sight. Snow had already started falling again when the helicopter touched down next to one of the small buildings. The stranger jumped out of the helicopter and was met by two men who ran from the barn. “See that the copter’s secured real tight, Ben. We’re in for a bad one.”
The older of the two men took charge. “I was getting worried about you, Jace. I was afraid the storm was going to cut you off and leave you grounded out in the middle of nowhere. They say the main thrust is going to hit with a vengeance—Arctic blast of freezing temperatures, strong winds, possibly as much as three feet of snow.”
“We usually get one pre-season snowstorm, sort of nature’s warning that winter is on the way, but nothing like this. I hope it moves on as fast as it came in.” Jace turned toward the ranch house, calling back over his shoulder to Samantha. “Come on, let’s get inside. You must be nearly frozen.”
Before she could respond, he was halfway across the yard. She ran to catch up with him, her progress anything but graceful as she tried to keep from stumbling while running through the snow buildup. This certainly was not an airport, but at that moment the only thing she wanted was to be somewhere warm and dry. She finally caught up with him at the porch of the ranch house. He held open the front door and she hurried inside. She spotted the fireplace and went straight to it, then kicked off her wet shoes and set them on the hearth. Her feet were almost numb with the cold, and her silk pantsuit was undoubtedly ruined. Her teeth chattered, and her hands trembled as she held them out toward the warmth of the flames. She knew she looked more like a rag doll that had just been run through the washing machine than a successful businesswoman.
She sensed his nearness, as if he were standing immediately behind her. Even with her back to him she could feel his eyes on her. She wanted to attribute the odd sensation that shivered across her nape to the cold, but she knew it was not that simple. She turned around. He stood not more than four feet from her.
He had taken off his dark glasses. She stared up into intelligent silver eyes that peered intently at her, seemingly studying her every move. Something about this imposing stranger reached out and grabbed her as nothing ever had before, and she did not understand it. The odd sensation that slowly spread through her entire body had a downright sensual feel about it. There had to be a rational explanation for what was happening. She was a sensible, logical person. Unfortunately, there was nothing sensible or logical about the very real attraction she felt toward him.
She glanced quickly around the room, then returned her attention to the man who continued to stare at her. “Who are you? Where am I? Why have you brought me here?” She caught the undertone of apprehension that came out in her voice even though she tried to control it. “This certainly isn’t an airport.”
“My name’s Jace Tremayne and this is my ranch. We’re here because the storm was closing in around us and I needed to get home before we were cut off and forced to land in the middle of a pasture.” He blatantly looked her up and down. “I think you’d better get out of those clothes.”
She felt her eyes widen in shock. Had she understood him correctly? Had he brought her to an isolated ranch just so he could tell her to take off her clothes? She swallowed the nervousness that tried to climb out of her stomach as she took a step backward. “Uh…excuse me?”
WYOMING WIFE?, a Harlequin Desire by Shawna Delacorte, is an ebook reissue and available at http://ebooks.eharlequin.com (do search for author name Shawna Delacorte). Also available at Barnes and Noble in NookBooks www.bn.com and Amazon for Kindle www.amazon.com Information is available on my website at www.shawnadelacorte.com
Samantha Burkett knew microwave meals, rush-hour gridlock and men in three-piece suits. But an ill-fated trip to Wyoming in the midst of a blizzard set her reality on its ear….
Jace Tremayne had literally swooped down from the big sky of save her life. The rugged, tautly muscled rancher hadn’t taken no for an answer, flinging her over his shoulder and flying her by copter to his remote ranch to wait out the worst of the storm. But close quarters with this irresistible cowboy showed Samantha how truly different their worlds were. And how completely Jace rocked hers….
But could she ever be content as this man’s Wyoming wife?