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Naked Heat

Naked Heat

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Naked Heat

Länge:
125 Seiten
2 Stunden
Freigegeben:
Nov 13, 2017
ISBN:
9781640630758
Format:
Buch

Beschreibung

Andrew ?Mac? McDaniel comes to Saddle Wells, Texas, and buys the rundown HanniganRanch. But he’s not just in town to get the place back to its former glory. He’s on a mission to find the drunk driver who killed his twin sister, and his latest lead has brought him here. Once he arrives in town, he gets more help than he thought he wanted from a group of locals who want him to feel welcome, led by the sexy realtor who sold him the place.

When Nida Beloit hands over the keys to Mac’s new ranch, she can’t ignore whatever it is that sparks between them. But even as undeniable interest turns to hot nights together, Nida feels Mac’s obsession getting in the way of what could grow between them, and she’s not sure she can stand by and watch him destroy himself when his investigation sends him on a path toward a potentially disastrous act of revenge.

Freigegeben:
Nov 13, 2017
ISBN:
9781640630758
Format:
Buch

Über den Autor

Desiree Holt is the USA Today bestselling author of the Game On! and Vigilance series, as well as many other books and series in the romantic suspense, paranormal and erotic romance genres. She has been featured on CBS Sunday Morning and in The Village Voice, The Daily Beast, USA Today, The (London) Daily Mail, The New Delhi Times, The Huffington Post and numerous other national and international publications. Readers can find her on Facebook and Twitter, and visit her at www.desireeholt.com as well as www.desiremeonly.com.


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Naked Heat - Desiree Holt

Table of Contents

Dedication

Chapter One

Chapter Two

Chapter Three

Chapter Four

Chapter Five

Chapter Six

About the Author

Discover more Select Contemporary titles…

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Three Simple Words

Bound to the Bounty Hunter

Hot for the Fireman

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

Copyright © 2015 by Desiree Holt. All rights reserved, including the right to reproduce, distribute, or transmit in any form or by any means. For information regarding subsidiary rights, please contact the Publisher.

Entangled Publishing, LLC

2614 South Timberline Road

Suite 105, PMB 159

Fort Collins, CO 80525

Visit our website at www.entangledpublishing.com.

Select Contemporary is an imprint of Entangled Publishing, LLC.

Edited by Heidi Shoham

Cover design by Fiona Jayde

Cover art from iStock

ISBN 978-1-64063-075-8

Manufactured in the United States of America

First Edition August 2015

Rerelease November 2017

As always to David, my once and future cowboy.

Chapter One

Andrew Mac McDaniel drove slowly down the main street of Saddle Wells, called jokingly enough Main Street, taking in the ambience of the town. Less than ten thousand people didn’t require much of a main drag, he figured, but they’d done a good job with what they had. Attractive banners on old-fashioned street lights, tubs of colorful flowers and benches for people to sit on and gossip and unique storefronts gave the place a lot of character. Shoppers moved in and out of the stores or gathered on the sidewalk to chat. In front of a place called Cyn-sational Rub, a very attractive dark-haired woman was standing on the sidewalk holding a small platter, passing around what looked like snacks to a crowd gathered around her. He wondered what that was all about. If he bought the property he’d come to check out, he’d probably find out.

He wasn’t sure how much he’d really enjoy all this ambience, however. He had a mission that didn’t leave much room, if any, for pleasure.

Alicia would love this place.

As soon as the thought hit him, a sharp pain lanced through him. His twin sister would never again enjoy the simple pleasures in life. Some asshole going too fast had taken that opportunity away from her. Six months after the fact, it still hurt just as much. He supposed it was more intense because of the twin thing. The two of them had been close since they were infants, even able to read each other’s minds. He still felt as if he’d had a limb amputated and now had put the rest of his life on hold until the asshole who’d hit and run was caught.

After the accident, he couldn’t seem to get his life back on track. People kept telling him to get over it, get past it, get it behind him. The idiot who’d caused the accident, who had smashed the rear corner of her car so hard he’d run her off the road into a tree, hadn’t even waited around for the police. He’d just taken off, assuming no one would know who he was. To this day, according to the police, they still didn’t.

He couldn’t seem to make people understand that it wasn’t just the loss of his twin. It was the way it had happened, and the fact that the police were obviously sweeping it under the table. People had gotten tired of listening to him, and one by one, his so-called friends had begun to avoid him. Then there was the intense grief, reinforced every day by the pain his parents and Alicia’s fiancé felt. Even they wanted him to find a way to move past it, convinced the driver would never be brought to justice. Then his work at the investment firm had suffered because of it and his partners had begun to tell him he needed to pull himself together.

Finally, he’d leased out his condo and taken a leave of absence from work. His partners thought he was crazy, and maybe they were right. Consumed with grief and a thirst for revenge. That’s when he’d decided to move his base of operations. He wasn’t without resources. Through his contacts, he’d managed to find out that the driver lived in the Hill Country, somewhere in this particular county.

Out here, he’d be far enough away from San Antonio and everyone driving him nuts. He needed isolation. He didn’t want anyone’s company but his own. And the rundown property he’d found online looked as if it would just suit his purpose. No one would bother him, and as long as he could make it semi-habitable, he would be in good shape. So here he was, in tiny Saddle Wells, looking to begin his journey of vengeance.

At the end of Main Street, his GPS announced that he had arrived. He managed to score a parking place then hoofed it up to the entrance of the real estate office. The door was as western themed as the town, made of heavy carved oak with a lasso worked into the design. He truly felt he was stepping into another world, and that was probably a good thing.

The reception area was empty, but the jingle of bells over the door announced his presence. A woman walked out of one of the small offices with an expectant look on her face. Shockingly every cell in Mac’s body zinged to life. What the hell? Since Alicia’s death—murder, he amended in his own mind—he’d had zero interest in women or sex. He sure didn’t need the distraction. So what was going on here?

Mac stared at the woman, trying to figure out where the zap of invisible electricity was coming from. He guessed her to be mid-thirties, maybe five foot five, and dressed in what he guessed was Saddle Wells professional attire. But her neat black slacks couldn’t hide the graceful curves of hip and thigh and a tailored blouse of some soft fabric caressed her breasts. Midnight-black hair was pulled neatly back in a clip and he had a sudden itch to free it and run his fingers through the silky-looking strands. Creamy skin, emerald-green eyes and naturally thick lashes accented a heart-shaped face. Unlike the businesswomen he was used to in San Antonio, she’d ditched high heels for comfortable flats, probably to accommodate all the walking through properties she did. Point to her for practicality without sacrificing appeal.

Mr. McDaniel? Her voice was a low, smooth, warm contralto that wrapped around him like a soft blanket. I’m glad you found the office without a problem.

He managed to pull his tongue back into his mouth. It wasn’t too hard.

No, I guess not. Saddle Wells isn’t exactly San Antonio. She laughed softly and held out her hand. Nida Beloit. It’s very nice to meet you.

Ditto.

The skin of her hand was soft, but her grip was strong and warm. The surface of his palm where they connected tingled as if little needles danced on it. She wore minimal makeup, but to his eyes, she really didn’t need it. Her lips were plump and full, enhanced only with some soft gloss, and a touch of mascara to enhance the thick curtains of her silky eyelashes. Something warm flowed through him, and he had to resist the urge to yank his hand away from hers.

Shit!

Why the hell was he even noticing anything about Nida Beloit? These days, he barely paid attention to any females at all. His awareness of her shocked him, and he did his best to ruthlessly suppress it, putting on what he hoped was his business face.

Sorry I couldn’t get here this morning, he apologized. I had some personal business to take care of. Hope that didn’t inconvenience you.

Not at all. She flashed him a smile. I made sure my schedule was flexible today. Why don’t you step into my office for a second while I get everything together?

He hoped she didn’t think he was here for polite chitchat. He wanted to get this taken care of with a minimum of fuss. Then he could get away from her and figure out why his libido, that he was sure had been buried under a ton of grief, had picked today to suddenly come to life.

I’m really anxious to get this taken care of, he told her.

Understood. I just want to be thorough. She picked up an iPad from her desk. I know you said you were only interested in the Hannigan place. However, so we don’t miss out on anything, after your phone call, I pulled some similar properties I thought you might be interested in. Places that are in slightly better shape.

That’s very thoughtful of you but—

Everything is on the way she assured him, so we really won’t be wasting time. And I feel obligated to give you some options.

I’m really not— He caught himself. It would be faster and easier to let her do her thing, get to the place he was interested in and take care of business.

She frowned. You know the place is in a total state of disrepair, right? I’m not sure the pictures really showed you how bad.

It must really be bad to go for the price that’s listed.

It is. She shook her head. "It’s so sad, because it used to be a thriving ranch with bulls

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