Romance author Jerrie Alexander brings you a story that keeps you glued to the pages.
Catherine McCoy has been on the move for a year. Hiding the secret and guilt in her heart, she expects her stay in small-town Texas to be brief. Her plan changes after she meets Sheriff Matt Ballard, who ignites a flame of passion she thought lost forever. Matt has scars of his own. He left the big city after an undercover operation went bad. Now, he hunts for a serial killer who paints his victims like porcelain dolls. Catherine becomes a safe haven for him. Two tortured souls finding comfort in each other’s arms—until he uncovers her secret, and their bond of trust is broken. When Catherine disappears, Matt races to find her, fearing the murderer has found his next green-eyed doll. But the killer has a surprise coming. Catherine will fight to the death before she’ll be a victim. Will her determination be enough?
Catherine’s engine groaned. Turned over once, then nothing. She tried again. Again, nothing. She rested her head on the steering wheel to indulge in a minute of self-pity. Her car door opened, scaring the crap out of her.
“Something wrong?” The sheriff crouched and put his hand on her arm.
“No. Everything’s fine.” His touch was surprisingly gentle for a man with such a large hand. Warmth rolled under her skin and across her chest. Confused, she pulled away from him.
His head tilted as if to get a better view. “You were collapsed across the steering wheel.”
“It’s nothing.” Damn, she wasn’t weak or needy. Yet every time he showed up, she needed help. “Sheriff, I’m fine.”
He removed his hat and rubbed his forehead. “Think you could call me Matt?”
“Matt,” she said his name softly, letting it rest on her tongue for a second. “I’m Catherine.”
The tension in the air eased when both their stomachs growled in harmony.
“Look, we got off to a rocky start. How about I buy you a late supper?”
She hesitated. Making friends with the sheriff went against her good judgment.
“You’ll be safe with me. Off duty or on, I’m one of the good guys. I promise.”
His full smile transformed his handsome face to beautiful. Catherine couldn’t remember the last time she’d eaten a meal sitting across from a member of the opposite sex. His offer made her want to forget the crisis of the hour. A car that wouldn’t start.
He stood and extended his hand. “We’ll grab a bite, and I’ll bring you right back.”
Defying all logic, she laid her palm against his. “I haven’t eaten since morning.” His grip was strong and warm. Before she had time to rethink her decision, he’d tucked her in his car and was buckling up his seat belt.
“Nothing’s open this time of night except the truck stop, but the food is good.”
“Truck drivers always know where to eat.” She looked around inside the cruiser and remembered a past and unpleasant ride in one. “What happens if you get a call, and I’m in the car with you?”
“If there’s a shootout at the OK Corral, I’ll leave you somewhere safe and come back later.” He tossed her a smile. “The chances of that happening are slim.”
So he had a sense of humor. How would he handle a more serious question? “Marty and some of the customers were talking about a missing woman. That sort of thing doesn’t happen a lot, does it?”
“No. And we’re doing everything we can to find her.”
His words sounded thick with concern, and his sharp jaw was set with determination. For some reason, she believed the statement came from his heart.
“Is that why you’re out late?”
“No. I live close by, and none of my deputies were in the area.”
“I get it. You can’t talk about the case.”
“I can tell you every available resource is working the case. And she’s never far from my mind. Will that do?”
“Now you sound like you’re reading a press release.”
He laughed a hollow sound. “That did sound rehearsed. But it’s the truth.”
His mood had shifted. The tone of his voice was solid yet warm with worry when he spoke of the missing woman.
A slight musky, woodsy scent filled the car and her senses. Her stomach fluttered. Not butterfly wings, Mallard ducks. She couldn’t remember the last time a man had made her nervous.
“Hello?” His voice pulled her attention back. “You drifted off. Keep that up, and you’ll give me an inferiority complex.”
“Sorry.” Her cheeks heated, making her grateful for the darkness. She’d forgotten how to make small talk with a man.
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A student of creative writing in her youth, Jerrie set aside her passion when life presented her with a John Wayne husband and a wonderful daughter. A career in logistics offered her the opportunity to travel to many beautiful locations in America, and she revisits them in her romantic suspense novels.
She writes alpha males and kick-ass women who weave their way through death and fear to emerge stronger because of, and on occasion in spite of, their love for each other. If they’re strong enough, they live happily everafter.
Jerrie is the author of The Lost and Found, Inc. series, Hell or High Water, Cold Day in Hell, No Chance in Hell. Her new series Killer Affections, Till Justice is Served released in Oct 2014. Her single titles are, The Green-Eyed Doll, The Last Execution, and Someone to Watch Over Me. Jerrie is currently working on No Greater Hell.
Social media links:
http://www.jerriealexander.com – website
Good morning! Desiree, thank you for having me over today! I appreciate your support.
Great excerpt! I love this book! It’s no wonder it won so many awards. Jerrie does her research and it shows! Thanks for sharing, I may have to read it again;)
Hey, Kym! Thanks for stopping by and for the kind words. 😛
Love this excerpt! Can’t wait to read more 🙂
Hi Rachael! Thank you for stopping by. I hope you enjoy the rest of the story.
Love this and the new cover
Thank you! I’m really pleased with the new cover.
Jerrie, What a great excerpt! 😀
Renne Ann, thank you! And thanks for stopping by.