Sweet Saturday Sample – Her Dark Knight

She shook her head, but the words wouldn’t come to deny the charges. The nightclub would be an excellent cover for a drug operation.

“I’m not dealing drugs, Madelaine. I’m not involved in anything illegal,” he said sadly.

She winced at his tone. She didn’t mean to hurt him. “Then what?”

He ran a hand through his hair. “Something far bigger and far more evil than drugs. But not illegal. At least in the eyes of the law.”

“Unethical?”

“Possibly. But I’m on the side of right here. You have to trust me in this.” He stood and paced to the windows. The bright sun shone behind him, creating an aura of light that surrounded him. Like an angel. Her angel.

What was she thinking? Of course he wasn’t doing anything illegal. This was Christien. The idea of him dealing drugs or negotiating arms with terrorists was ludicrous and she’d been an idiot to think it in the first place.

“I’m sorry,” she said softly. “I know you would never do anything illegal.”

Sharon Cullen 267

He laughed, but the sound was cynical. “Don’t be so sure. At times I’ve done what I had to.”

“You had your reasons.” Just like he had his reasons to believe she was in danger. Proven twice now.

“I’m humbled by your faith in me,” he said sarcastically.

His words bit, but she absorbed the pain. It was no more than she deserved for doubting him when he’d done nothing but take care of her and try to protect her.

“Forgive me.”

“Ah, Madelaine. There’s nothing to forgive, mon coeur. You have every right to your doubts after what you’ve been through. I never meant for you to get hurt.”

She stood again to join him at the window. Her legs wobbled a bit. “It’s not your fault. You couldn’t have known.”

He touched her cheek, his thumb grazing her jaw. “But I did know. From the moment I saw you in my club, I knew you were special and I knew nothing good would come of this.”

She swallowed, suddenly nervous. “This?”

His hand dropped and he turned away from her to stare out the window. “Us.”

What was he saying? They had no future? Surely he hadn’t brought her all the way to France to break up with her.

She stepped away and raised her chin. “What do you mean?”

268 Her Dark Knight

His harsh expression softened. “Only that I should have walked away when I had the chance. But I never had the chance. One look at you and I’d found the other half of my heart.”

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The Notorious Lady Anne

Welcome to Sweet Saturday Samples. Click here to find other wonderful samples.

Boldly, almost daringly, she stared at him. Her eyes were more green than blue today, matching her shimmering gown. At any other time, in other circumstances, he would have admired her beauty, but his frustration wouldn’t allow it. Not when she was an interloper on his ship.

“You are aware we are sailing to Boston?” he asked. “Boston is nowhere near Barbados.”

Her smile didn’t dim. In fact it appeared to brighten as if she knew he was irritated and it pleased her. Which only served to drive his irritation straight into anger. Emmaline Sutherland was a distraction he could ill afford. Good God, they would spend five weeks together on this ship.

Impossible. He simply could not take her to Boston.

Except they’d already left port and if he were to stay on schedule, he couldn’t possibly drop anchor now.

“I am aware of the location of Boston on the map, Captain.”

“And what business have you in Boston, Mrs. Sutherland?”

He swore her jaw muscles tensed, but more than likely it was the shadow cast by the sails.

“Personal business, sir.”

What possible “personal business” did a woman have in Boston? If her husband was any sort of man he wouldn’t allow his wife to gallivant around the world unprotected on some mysterious “personal business”. His irritation now encompassed Mr. Sutherland. For allowing his wife to travel alone, for not protecting her. For not being here. Because if he were here, Nicholas wouldn’t be responsible for her.

“I admit to being away from society for some time. I wasn’t aware that the best dress makers are now in the colonies rather than England and France.” What the hell happened to him when he was around this woman? His tongue had a mind of its own, it seemed. He was about to apologize for his lack of manners but her narrowed eyes stayed the words and suddenly he wanted to see that back straighten again and those eyes flash fire at him. Because she was exquisitely beautiful when angry.

“Not all women are concerned with fashion,” she said between clenched teeth.

He barely stopped himself from grinning. Damn but she was beautiful. “I can’t imagine what other personal business a woman alone would have in Boston.”

Did she bar her teeth at him?

“That’s why it’s called personal business, sir. It’s personal. I wasn’t aware a sea captain need be informed of a paying passenger’s reason for travel.”

 

Find out more about Lady Anne here.

Sweet Saturday Sample

From The Notorious Lady Anne, out in February, 2013 with Loveswept (cover pending)

Gone was Lady Anne, in her place just Emmaline. Two components of one person, making a whole that baffled him but he wouldn’t think about it now.

Tonight was for them, Nicholas and Emmaline. No one else. He curled onto his side and tucked her into him. He fell asleep with the scent of her hair—ocean breeze and warm sunlight.

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Sweet Saturday Sample

Its been awhile since I’ve taken part in this. Hope you didn’t miss me too much :-)

“So tell me about Jay Lang.”

Okay, maybe one more night would make a difference. He sighed and ran a hand through his hair. “You went through my wallet.”

“Well, yeah.” She rolled her eyes. “Who are you?” This last was whispered and the tremor in Kate’s voice made his heart do a funny ka-boom.

He settled back in the bed, rearranging the sheets across his legs and lap, trying to figure out what to say, where to start unraveling all the lies. He still couldn’t believe they’d been together for nearly a year while he lived a double life. The guilt, at first, had been incredible, but as time had gone by, it got easier and easier. It’d been for her own good. For her protection. He’d had to keep reminding himself of that.

So, who was he? To be honest, he wished he knew. It depended on what day you asked. He could be anything the organization wanted him to be. In fact, it had been his ability to blend in, to become anonymous, that had gained the notice of Suzanne Carmichael. Who was he? No one good, that was for sure. “I’m Lucas Barone.”

“So who’s Jay Lang?”

“My cover.”

A long pause followed in which Luke debated telling Kate everything, regardless of the consequences or the oaths he’d taken to Uncle Sam. The only thing that stopped him was, once again, his concern for her safety. The less she knew the better.

“What have you gotten yourself into?” she asked and he vaguely recalled she’d asked him that before but he’d been in too much pain to answer.

“I don’t know. But I plan to find out. That’s why I need to get out of here.” Already he could feel his energy waning, the exhaustion pulling him under. It took considerable effort to keep his eyes open and it felt like his body weighed a thousand pounds as it pressed into the softness of the bed. Sleep called to him and he was powerless to stop it.
He cursed his weakness even as he succumbed to it.

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Sweet Saturday Sample

This is from my romantic suspense, Deception:

“Promise me you’ll do this my way,” he said, feathering his thumb on the sensitive skin under her jaw. She fought the tremor overtaking her insides. Fought the desire to lean in and kiss him. “Promise that we’ll work together to get this solved.” His eyes darkened even more and she bit her lip. “Stop arguing for once, Katherine, and promise. I know I lost your trust long ago, but trust me to get us out of this.”

“I trust you.”

His gaze searched her face, sliding over her chin and lips and cheeks until finally settling on her eyes. “Do you?”

“Yes.”

He opened his mouth to say more, then closed it on a sigh. The look in his eyes told her he was going to kiss her, but she was still unprepared for the light touch of his lips, for the zing of need racing through her and for her desperate desire to keep him just where he was.

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Sweet Saturday Samples

Since the weather is so beautiful here in Ohio I thought I’d give you a snippet of Her Dark Knight, which also takes place in the spring. Enjoy and if you get a chance, follow the other authors’ Saturday Samples

He wasn’t going to be the one to tell her she didn’t get the job based on her resume but based on her eerie likeness to a dead countess. He steered her onto the entrance to the River Walk.
Normally Christien barely noted the changing of the seasons. When time held no meaning, seasons were inconsequential. He’d lived through hundreds of them but today he could feel spring in the air. The breeze was warm upon his face. The sun seemed brighter. He was aware that this new appreciation had nothing to do with Mother Nature but rather Madelaine at his side.

She brought new awareness to his life, an edge to a dull existence.
“I need this job more than anything. I have to succeed.”

“Why do you have to succeed?”

“Well. For the same reasons everyone wants to succeed.”

“Generally people want success for money or

power or to rise above bad situations. Which reason is yours?”

“Money,” she said softly.

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Sweet Saturday Sample

This week my historical time-travel, Wherever You Are, was released in paperback. In honor of that, I’ll leave you with a sample from the book. For more Sweet Saturday Samples click here.

Hands curled around the edge of the boat and her rescuer’s head popped up. His shoulders bunched and flexed in the bright firelight. Biceps rippled as he pulled himself over, water pouring off a shirt glued to his sculpted body. Men cleared the way for him to make his way to the bow. He spoke to a few he passed, quiet, clipped words. The men nodded, their expressions grim. His gaze skipped over her before he lowered himself to the bottom of the boat and ran his hands through his long hair, squeezing the excess water out. He pulled his knees up and rested his elbows on them, letting his hands dangle between and focusing his attention on the towering ball of fire floating on the water.

“’Tis reachin’ the magazine,” the man beside her mumbled. A few men murmured their agreement.

No sooner had he said the words than the ship exploded. Night turned to day as flames raced toward the sky. Juliana screamed and covered her head with her arms as bits of fiery debris rained down on them. The ones who’d been rowing began to row harder, their expressions ranging from shock to anger to blank trauma. They were wet and bedraggled and every one of them was armed with knives and pistols. Strange-looking pistols. Old-fashioned pistols. Not the Smith & Wessons, Glocks, and Berettas she was used to seeing in her work as an investigative journalist.

Something inside Juliana turned cold. Colder than the seawater soaking her clothes. Colder than the wind whipping her hair into her eyes.

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Sweet Saturday Sample

From my romantic suspense, Redemption. Enjoy!

“What bad things have you done?” she asked.

“This isn’t about me, Hope. This is about your father.”

“My father’s dead.” Grief flashed across her face, but she contained it.

“Yes, and we need to find out who did it.” He was desperate to get the conversation back on track. Hope had a way of derailing him, making him think of things other than their purpose. He knew she did it as a defense mechanism against the emotions battering her.

“We will. You will. I trust you.”

“Don’t.” He took another step back, his hand going out in a motion to stop her words.

“Why does that scare you?” She tilted her head, the waterfall of hair sliding over her shoulder and shimmering in the late-afternoon sun spilling in from the window.

“It doesn’t scare me. It’s just not wise to trust me.”

“My father seemed to think it wise.”

“Hope, please—”

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Sweet Saturday Sample

Happy Saturday after Valentine’s Day! Did we all survive the big day? My sample is from my romantic suspense, Obsession. Enjoy!

Upton stepped closer, going nose-to-nose, toe-to-toe with him. “I’m saying better him than you. I’d rather scrape his sorry ass off the ground than the best damn cop in the department. “Don’t go getting teary-eyed on me, Officer Juran. That kid made a lot of bad choices long before he ended up a chalk outline, and not one of them had to do with you.”

Alex ground his teeth. “What if I had been the chalk outline? Would the case be closed then?”

Upton stepped back. “You weren’t and you should be damn happy about it.”

Alex ran a hand through his hair. “So that’s it. Case closed. No more bad guy.”

“What should we do, Juran? We’ve followed every lead. Until your memory returns—if your memory returns—our hands are tied.”

“And what about the intruder? The guy who attacked Tess?”

“What about them?”

“LT never mentioned them.”

“And why would he? They’re nothing but harmless pranks.”

“So you’re telling me Tess’s attack was a harmless prank?” He took a step closer to Upton and stopped, afraid of what he’d do if he got too close. Upton glanced at his clenched hands and raised his brows, the warning clear in the depths of his eyes. Alex relaxed his fingers, but the anger was still seething inside him. “You were there that day, Matthew. You saw her. You saw what that bastard did to her.”

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Sweet Saturday Sample

Happy Saturday! Since today is my daughter’s birthday I thought I’d post a snippet of one of my heroine’s birthdays. This is from Wherever You Are, a historical time-travel. Enjoy! And if you want to visit other authors’ samples click here.

“I brought you a present.” He indicated a wrapped package on a side table.

“A present? What for?”

“Have you forgotten, Juliana? Today is your birthday.”

She’d completely forgotten. In fact, she hadn’t been keeping track of the days at all. There seemed to be no reason when there wasn’t anywhere she needed to be.

Morgan placed the package in her hand and stepped back, putting his hands behind him again. “Open it.”

There hadn’t been many presents in her life. More often than not her parents forgot her birthday and Christmas was always hit or miss in her house depending on her mother’s mood. Daniel told her to buy whatever she wanted for her birthday and the one Christmas they spent together, they decided to fore go gifts and work in a soup kitchen.

Morgan’s gift wasn’t wrapped prettily. The paper was coarse and brown, the whole thing held together by twine. She blinked her tears away because it was perfect.

Slowly she pulled the twine and pushed the paper away. Inside lay a book bound in red leather, her initials in gold leaf very discreet in the bottom right corner. When she opened it the pages were blank. She looked up at Morgan in question.

He shrugged as if he were uncomfortable. “You kept pestering my crew for paper and pen. I thought you might like your own journal. To write.”

The tears she’d been holding back leaked out of her eyes and down her cheeks. She hugged the book to her chest and cried.

Morgan’s eyes widened. “I didn’t mean to make you cry, Juliana. Please don’t cry.”

“It’s p-perfect.” She sniffed. “Thank you.” She cried harder, not for the journal, but for everything that happened. Everything she lost.

Nook | Kindle | Paperback available March 2012