Have you ever imagined what it might be like to travel west on the Oregon Trail? Come back in time with me to take that trip with the first book of my Hot on the Trail series, Trail of Kisses!
Someone is trying to kill Lynne Tremaine. After her father sentences two members of The Briscoe Boys gang to death, Judge Tremaine feels he has no choice but to send Lynne to Denver City along the Oregon Trail to live with her Uncle George…against her will. For Lynne, the only thing worse than being sent away to the wild west is making the journey with the handsome, arrogant, wicked man her uncle has hired to escort her. Especially when the anger she feels toward him begins to turn to something hotter.
Cade Lawson is determined to prove himself to his employer, George Tremaine, after letting him down months earlier. But what he thought would be his second chance may, in fact, be a harsh punishment for his past mistakes. Lynne is headstrong, fiery, and determined to show him she is fearless. She is also beautiful and tempting, and when Cade sees just how afraid she really is underneath her brave act, he may be in danger of losing his heart to her forever. When her would-be killer attacks, it’s all he can do to keep Lynne safe.
Here’s a bigger taste:
“All right.” She took a breath to steady herself. She could be reasonable and hold her head high no matter how strange the situation. “If you’re truly here to take a bath, then bathe.”
She tilted her chin up and ignored him, taking the soap and running it over her arms and under the fabric of her chemise. It was a poor excuse for a real bath, but far better than anything she’d been able to manage on the trail so far.
She almost let her guard down and enjoyed the feeling of getting clean, until she noticed that Cade was still watching her.
“Do you mind?” she asked.
He shrugged. “I don’t have any soap.”
Her eyes wandered over the expanse of his chest, glistening with water in the sunlight now. His nipples stood out in sharp relief against his chiseled muscles. Without warning, she caught herself imagining that chest lathered with soap suds. She swallowed, hot and cold all over.
“Fine,” she said at last, breathless. “Have the soap.”
She rubbed it under her arms as one last, desperate measure to cool the situation down, then inched sideways, closer to Cade. She extended her arm to its full length and handed him the slippery cake of soap.
Cade reached for it, but as their fingers touched, Lynne pulled back. The soap tumbled out of her grasp and into the water before Cade had hold of it.
“Oh!” Lynne gasped as the current caught it and whisked it away. “Hurry! Get it!”
She lunched toward the spinning cake as it rushed past her. Laughing, Cade lunged after it, diving into the water. Lynne shrieked as he splashed her. She rubbed water out of her eyes as quickly as she could, then scrambled after Cade. As far as she knew, that was the only cake of soap they had for the entire trip. She wasn’t about to lose it so early in the journey.
“Get it! Get it!” she shouted, splashing and scrambling over Cade as he half swam, half floated on the stream’s current. Lynne reached out as the soap bobbed just out of reach, her arms tangling with one of Cade’s as he cut in front of her.
“Well, I would if you weren’t in the way,” he said.
Lynne tried to reach further, but the bulk of Cade’s body was in the way. His arm brushed against her waist. One of his legs bumped against hers, sending her careening off-balance. He was right there to scoop her up, though, and just about the time she was able to orient herself in the rushing water, the current running over her shoulders and around her chest, it dawned on her that Cade might have impeded her efforts on purpose. How she got there she wasn’t entirely sure, but she was firmly in Cade’s arms. Her chest pressed against his, nothing but the wet fabric of her chemise separating them. His hands spread across her back, holding her tight. His muscled thigh nestled between her legs, and with a gulp she realized she was sitting more or less in his lap. Her feet weren’t touching the ground. Every part of her that touched him, from her taut nipples to the aching juncture between her thighs, was alive with wonder.
“Now isn’t this an interesting predicament,” he said, smile as broad as the prairie.
“Is it?” She tilted her chin up, pretending every part of her wasn’t quivering with anticipation and…and a dozen other emotions she didn’t want to think about.
“It is,” Cade answered and brought his mouth slanting down on top of hers.
If the sky had opened up and gold nuggets had rained down on them, Cade wouldn’t have noticed. Lynne was hot and supple in his arms. Her body was as soft and curvy as he had imagined it to be through every long, sleepless night. Since he’d first laid eyes on her. Since she’d one-upped him by riding Arrow. Her lips were as sweet as nectar. What was more, she parted those lips and let him tease his tongue against them, let him taste as deeply as he had longed to, without a second of hesitation. Her body melded against him.
His response was strong and immediate. He pulled her closer, lowering a hand to cup her backside and press her against the growing spear of his erection. A tiny voice at the back of his head told him he was a damned fool for treating her like a saloon girl, but she didn’t offer up a bit of resistance, to the pressure of his hips or to his invasion of her mouth. In fact, she hummed with delight.
The sound that came from low in her throat must have startled her, because a heartbeat later she gasped and jerked back. Not enough to signal to him she wanted out of his arms, though. Her dark eyes went round and her mouth hung open. It was probably shock, but it was short-lived. Her heavy-lidded gaze focused on his mouth. Cade was ready to kiss her again the second she leaned toward him. This time, she took as much from the kiss as he did.
It was over far too soon.
“What are we doing?” she hissed, pulling away in earnest.
“So you do like me after all.” Cade smiled. Her kisses were better than Christmas and the Fourth of July rolled up in gold and ice cream.
One lucky reader who comments on my blog and tells me whether you would have pulled up roots and moved west will be randomly selected to win an eBook copy of Trail of Kisses. Good luck!"