THE COMMANDER (Red, Hot & Blue Series) New Release Excerpt #2

The Commander (Red Hot & Blue) Cat JohnsonJust when they thought they were out of last chances, love comes around again.

Red, Hot, & Blue, Book 12

To his men on his SpecOps team, Hank Miller is simply the commander. They treat him like he’s more than a mere man, but Hank would be the first to admit he is full of the same fears, feelings and desires. He just doesn’t let them show.

The military is his life, and that’s all he needs—until he travels to Pigeon Hollow for a wedding and meets the woman his men reverently call “Mama”.

Lois Gordon is nothing like Hank envisioned. Instead of the plump, older woman happily baking pies in her farmhouse kitchen, Lois is a smart, sexy powerhouse who runs Gordon Equine…and tempts him to break all his own rules.

The heat between them quickly flares into a weekend fling hotter than Lois’s oven. But with Hank’s dangerous career and two failed marriages between them, forever could be too much to ask for.

Product Warnings: Contains one smoking-hot mama and a man tough enough to not need pot holders to handle her.

EXCERPT

“I was just fixin’ to bring the last bag of trash from the living room out to the bins when I heard Mandy squawking.” Lois tilted her head toward the doorway.

“I can take it out for you.” Hank moved toward the hall. Lois jumped to follow. It was strange having a man around to do things like take out the trash. Jared was here, but he was so busy with the horses she handled the little things around the house herself.

She was sure there were a lot of things Hank could do for her—to her. Things no man had done in a very long time, and she wasn’t thinking about his cleaning the ashes out of the fireplace or anything like that.

Hank and his long legs reached the living room first. By the time Lois passed through the doorway after him, he was standing over the cardboard box in the center of the room, peering down into the contents.

Oops. She’d forgotten all about that.
He looked up as she entered. “What kind of party was this?”

“Just your average bridal shower/bachelorette party.” She bit her lip and almost laughed at his expression when faced with a box filled with sex toys. “One of the women in my book club sells personal pleasure devices at home parties. Those there are her samples. She’ll be by to pick them up in the morning. She had to leave the party early tonight to babysit her grandchild.”

“Her grandchild.” Hank looked a little horrified. “Okay.”

“Watch it. I’m about to be a grandmother now too, you know.” Like it or not. Lois moved closer to Hank and the box. She picked up the plastic package her friend had given her as a thank you. “A grandmother who now owns a vibrator, apparently. This was my hostess gift from her for having the party.”

Hank’s eyes narrowed as he focused on the object in Lois’s hand. He swallowed, sending his Adam’s apple bobbing in his throat. His gaze moved to her lips, then his steely eyes met hers. “I don’t believe I’ve ever seen any grandmother, much less such an attractive one, holding a vibrator before.”

Lois’s heart pounded, sending her blood rushing through her veins until she got lightheaded. They were standing close enough for her to see the beginnings of stubble on Hank’s chin. Then her gaze moved to his mouth. She bit her bottom lip before bringing her gaze back to meet his.

Leaning in, Hank brushed his hand against her cheek, hovering his lips temptingly close to hers. “Lois, if I’m about to make a fool of myself, stop me now.”

She shook her head. “You are many things, Hank Miller. But a fool is not one of them.”

He thrust his hand beneath the hair at the nape of her neck, cradling her head as he crashed his lips into hers.

Blindly, Lois dropped the vibrator back into the box and freed her hands so she could touch Hank. She ran her hands over the bulging back muscles beneath his shirt. It’s what she’d wanted to do since first seeing him get out of the car earlier that day.

Hank backed her up until her knees buckled at the edge of the sofa. She sat heavily and he followed her down, pressing her back into the cushions. God, how she’d missed a man’s weight on top of her and the feel of big, rough hands against her skin.

“Tell me to stop. If that’s what you want you have to say it, because I’m not going to do it on my own.” His voice sounded gruff and as breathless as she was. His eyes mere slits as he looked at her, Lois could only imagine how she looked herself.

She felt the heat in her cheeks. She hoped he saw the desire in her eyes. “Don’t you dare stop.”

SAMHAIN    AMAZON    NOOK    iTUNES

DON’T MISS THE REST OF THE RED, HOT & BLUE SERIES

TREY   JACK   JIMMY (3 novellas bundled for print as RED BLOODED)

BB DALTON (FREE Bonus Read)

JARED   COLE   BOBBY (3 novellas bundled for print as SMALLTOWN HEAT)

A FEW GOOD MEN (Novel-length)

MODEL SOLDIER (Novel-length)

A PRINCE AMONG MEN (Novel-length)

BULL   MATT   THE COMMANDER (3 novellas bundled for print as TRUE BLUE soon!)

www.CatJohnson.net/series-reading-order/

New Year, New Release! The final Red, Hot & Blue story – THE COMMANDER (Excerpt)

The Commander (Red Hot & Blue) Cat JohnsonAVAILABLE TODAY!

Just when they thought they were out of last chances, love comes around again.

Red, Hot, & Blue, Book 12

To his men on his SpecOps team, Hank Miller is simply the commander. They treat him like he’s more than a mere man, but Hank would be the first to admit he is full of the same fears, feelings and desires. He just doesn’t let them show.

The military is his life, and that’s all he needs—until he travels to Pigeon Hollow for a wedding and meets the woman his men reverently call “Mama”.

Lois Gordon is nothing like Hank envisioned. Instead of the plump, older woman happily baking pies in her farmhouse kitchen, Lois is a smart, sexy powerhouse who runs Gordon Equine…and tempts him to break all his own rules.

The heat between them quickly flares into a weekend fling hotter than Lois’s oven. But with Hank’s dangerous career and two failed marriages between them, forever could be too much to ask for.

Warning: Contains one smoking-hot mama and a man tough enough to not need pot holders to handle her.

AMAZON     NOOK     SAMHAIN     iTUNES

“a funny, highly emotional and totally hot read that will have the reader wanting to pick up the other eleven” Annetta, Fresh Fiction

30% off new releases at SamhainPublishing dot com

EXCERPT

Matt stared toward the group near the house. “Can you believe she’s old enough to be Jimmy and Jack’s mother?”

“I know.” Trey shook his head. “She must have been a teenager when she had Jimmy.”

The rest of the group turned to look at the woman who was now in Jack’s arms.

“Wait a minute. That’s Mama?” Hank nearly choked. The tempting brunette in the flip-flops, blue jeans and well-filled T-shirt? The one he’d been staring at and drooling over for the past few minutes?

“Yup.” Matt nodded.

“No way.” Bull squinted into the distance. “I pictured her looking like Betty Crocker or Mrs. Butterworth. You know, short, plump, wearing an apron covered in flour and holding a pie in her hands.”

That was how Hank had visualized her too. He certainly hadn’t thought he’d be imagining rolling around sweaty with her like he’d been since he first laid eyes on the tempting woman.

“Are you sure that’s Mama?” Hank couldn’t wrap his mind around this revelation.

“Of course, we’re sure.” Trey laughed. “Matt and I were here during our leave last year.”

“Visiting Jack and Jimmy,” Matt added.

“Yes, I know.” Hank had more productive things to worry about than what shady things these two jokers had done. Things such as why was the one woman he’d been interested in since his divorce the mother of two of the men under his command? That made the situation as sticky as one of her famous pies.

Hank watched as Jimmy hustled an ill-looking Lia into the house. Jared and the blonde followed them inside with the suitcases from the trunk of the convertible, and Jack escorted Mama back toward the SUV…and Hank.

His heart rate sped the closer she got, and he smothered a curse at how his body reacted to her like he was a damn teenager. This was the last thing he needed, a schoolboy crush on an off-limits woman.

He searched for a reason to not be attracted to Mama, besides the fact that she was Mama. He knew Jack and Jimmy’s father had left when they were young. He didn’t seem to be in the picture at all. Maybe Mama had a boyfriend. A woman who looked that good wouldn’t stay alone long. Yeah, that would be good. If she were dating, the guy would be invited to the wedding, and then Hank wouldn’t be tempted to even think about her. He blew out a soft breath as Mama took another step toward him.

Perhaps if he kept thinking of her as Mama, he’d remember how off-limits she was. That was his plan and he was sticking to it. Though his resolve wavered as she stood in front of him.

“Commander, this is my mama, Lois Gordon,” Jack introduced them. “Mama, Commander Hank Miller.”

Up close she looked even more like her sons. Like them, she had hazel eyes and golden-brown hair, except hers fell to her shoulders in soft, sun-kissed waves.

Hank extended his hand. “Mrs. Gordon, it’s a pleasure to meet you. Your boys have told me so much about you.”

Everything except how young and attractive she was. That bit of information would have been nice to have in advance.

New Release Day: MATT (Red Hot & Blue series) is out!

Samhain New Releases 30% off

 ALL new release titles are 30% off at SAMHAIN including:

MATT (Red, Hot, & Blue)


Some SpecOp assignments are more special than others.

Matt Coleman. Task Force Zeta’s computer expert. Certified genius. Dateless loser. He’s getting damned tired of watching his teammates pair off, while the only thing he’s had his hands on lately is a computer keyboard

Even Sam, the Omega team’s communications guy—who Matt only knows through daily instant messages—is going on missions while Matt sits home, bored and jealous. Until he finally gets a shot at an assignment in Dubai

As the only female on Omega team, Samantha Foster isn’t surprised that the mission to Dubai is all hers. After all, only a woman can infiltrate a modern-day harem to ferret out a terrorist-minded mole. The big surprise is when she’s sent along with a guest’s dinner as dessert—and finds Matt on the other side of the bedroom door

After he gets over the shock that Sam is a woman, Matt is more than happy to help her in any way he can. In the shower. In the bed. Oh yeah, and on the computer too.

Warning: What happens in the harem doesn’t always stay in the harem.

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Enjoy the following excerpt for Matt © 2013 Cat Johnson

Matt (Red, Hot & Blue series) Cat Johnson (military romance)She dragged in a ragged breath. “Matt Coleman, I think I like you even more than I did before.”

He tensed. Something wasn’t right here. “You know my name?”

She pressed her mouth against his ear. “Don’t react. I’m not sure if the suite has eyes and ears.”

Not only did her speech sound distinctly American, but she’d just told him in the SpecOp code he used daily that his room might have audio and video surveillance in place.

Naked and unarmed with his back to a stranger who held his dick in her hands. He’d get what he deserved if he ended up dead for this act of extreme stupidity.

He should be able to overpower—

“Matt, relax. It’s me. Sam,” the woman hissed in his ear over the sound of the pounding water.

He angled his head toward her, calculating how best to go about taking her down. If only she’d stop stroking him. “I don’t know any Sam.”

She ran her hands up into the hair that curled around his ears and pulled his head to one side, giving her access to nibble his ear. He would have thought the fright of dying would have taken care of his hard-on. It didn’t, nor would it. Not if she kept this up, whoever she was.

“You frigging idiot. I’m Sam I am. You’re Computer God. Jeez. Make a girl feel forgettable much?”

That nearly sent him to his knees on the marble floor. “You’re female?”

His good buddy Sam? Not just female, but hot and naked, not to mention pressed firmly against him with his dick in her hand.

“Uh, yes. Sam is for Samantha.” She laughed against his ear. He shivered in spite of the hot water still pummeling him. “You didn’t know?”

Oh, boy. This added a whole other level of complications to the situation. He pulled her hand away from him and turned. She rested her palms on his chest, running them up and down his wet skin.

“Nope. Definitely did not know.” His erection was still alive and well, in spite of everything going on in his head. It stuck out straight as an arrow between them. There wasn’t much Matt could do about his situation, except ignore it and hope it would go away while he gathered some answers. “What are you doing here?”

She leaned in closer to his ear. “Talk softer. I don’t know how sensitive their equipment is. The water should cover it if we whisper. And I told you on IM I was going deep. Remember?”

Her comment about going deep while her hardened nipples pressed against him sent his mind to bad, bad places. He shouldn’t be thinking about being buried deep inside his good buddy Sam, but he was. Especially when she slipped the tip of her tongue into his ear. He supposed it was all in case there were surveillance cameras, but his body didn’t care. Goose bumps rose on his skin from the contact.

He nuzzled her neck and asked, “How did you know I was here?”

“I came to investigate the American visitor. I carried in your dinner tray and saw your name and address on your luggage tag. I take it you’re not undercover, so what the fuck are you doing here?”

It was a simple enough question, though he had trouble forming an answer while she slid her hands over his ass and pressed her body against his.

Matt sucked in a breath and tried to think. “I’m working at Al Minhad Air Base on one of our programs they’re using there. Why are you here? And in a frigging harem?”

She pulled back so her gaze met his. “I can’t say.”

Matt frowned. He had the highest clearance there was. She should realize that. “You don’t know if you can trust me?”

Sam leaned close again. “I do know that you’re going to expose me and get me killed if you don’t start playing the part of the horny American with the harem girl.”

He knew she was right, but that still didn’t make it feel less strange or wrong. Or so disturbingly good.

REVIEW:

“appealing and fast paced… a funny, hot and intriguing read”  ~Annetta, Fresh Fiction

 THE RED, HOT & BLUE SERIES (in order)

TREY

JACK

JIMMY

BB DALTON (Bonus Read)

JARED

COLE

BOBBY

A FEW GOOD MEN

MODEL SOLDIER

A PRINCE AMONG MEN

BULL

MATT

THE COMMANDER

www.CatJohnson.net/series-reading-order/

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HOT NEW RELEASE: BULL (Red, Hot & Blue) from Cat Johnson

BULL (Red Hot & Blue series) Cat Johnson Military Romance

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When the going gets tough, the tough go out with a bang…

Spec Op “Bull” Ford is as big as his nickname. His team, the civilians he protects, whether they know it or not, all depend on him. But beneath his stony exterior beats the heart of a caring man—unless he’s crossed.

Between her job as professional harpist and fending off an ex-boyfriend who won’t take the hint, Marly feels like a circus juggler. She doesn’t need some oversized, overzealous security guard accusing her of being a terrorist—as if a five-foot-nothing woman in a ball gown could threaten anyone.

Though when the real terrorists strike, she’s more than grateful to have Bull at her side…or on top, which certainly makes what could be her last breaths memorable.

But after Bull takes the brunt of the explosion, Marly is left with feelings for a man who doesn’t remember who she is. And by the time the red-hot memories come flooding back, the trail to her heart may have gone cold.

Warning: Contains explosive sexual encounters—literally!

AMAZON KINDLE (in the US)

AMAZON (for INTERNATIONAL readers)

BARNES & NOBLE for NOOK

ALL ROMANCE EBOOKS (ARe)

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KOBO

SAMHAIN

Don’t miss the rest of THE RED, HOT & BLUE SERIES

READ AN EXCERPT

REVIEWS:

“humor and danger, plus a smoking hot guy, sex on the mission and even a cheating girlfriend gave this story that extra something and kept my interest from page one.” Terri, Night Owl Romance Reviews TOP PICK

“Bull is a must read if you’re looking for a hot, fast-paced novella. ” The Harlequin Junkie

NEW Paperback Release ~ SMALLTOWN HEAT

Smalltown Heat (Red, Hot & Blue series Paperback) The Red, Hot & Blue series trilogy of stories JARED, COLE and BOBBY, are together again in one single book, as they were written, as they were meant to be read, and it’s available only in paperback for you all who still like to hold a book in your hand.

SMALLTOWN HEAT releases today in trade paperback (no, it is not available as an ebook though the individual stories are). You might be able to find it on the shelves at your local Barnes & Noble, but the trade paperback is also available for order online.

Amazon (United States)

Amazon (International)

Barnes & Noble

BooksAMillion

Who said happiness has to end with the word “cut”?

JARED
Jared enjoys simple farm life, until an LA producer blows into town like a tornado hitting a trailer park.

Pigeon Hollow is perfect for Mandy’s new reality show, and she’s sure Jared will have the female demographic glued to their sets. Except the red-hot cowboy is cool to the idea…even as their attraction heats up.

COLE
Ten years ago, just as Cole was about to head to the major leagues, Lizzie gave him everything…then broke his heart. Now he’s back with a bum arm and a cancelled contract. Lizzie is still there, still keeping her secrets.

Lizzie did what she had to do to give Cole the future he wanted, but there was no hiding the results of her one and only night in his arms. Now that he’s back it’s only a matter of time…

BOBBY
Bobby has two problems: a reality show that keeps creeping into his personal life, and an unexpected desire that the show’s assistant producer will creep into his bed.

Christy never mixes business with pleasure, but the town sheriff has her breaking all her own rules. And now she’s scrambling to keep her career from crashing and burning.

Warning: You met them in RED BLOODED, now fall in love with the men of Pigeon Hollow! Contains three hot men who have to get creative, both in and out of bed, to win the women they want.

“SMALLTOWN HEAT will definitely be given a place on my keeper shelf.” Romance Junkies

Meet Bull -my Red Hot & Blue series’ next hunky military hero!

IN EBOOK OCTOBER 29th

BULL

When the going gets tough, the tough go out with a bang…

Spec Op “Bull” Ford is as big as his nickname. His team, the civilians he protects, whether they know it or not, all depend on him. But beneath his stony exterior beats the heart of a caring man—unless he’s crossed.

Between her job as professional harpist and fending off an ex-boyfriend who won’t take the hint, Marly feels like a circus juggler. She doesn’t need some oversized, overzealous security guard accusing her of being a terrorist—as if a five-foot-nothing woman in a ball gown could threaten anyone.

Though when the real terrorists strike, she’s more than grateful to have Bull at her side…or on top, which certainly makes what could be her last breaths memorable.

But after Bull takes the brunt of the explosion, Marly is left with feelings for a man who doesn’t remember who she is. And by the time the red-hot memories come flooding back, the trail to her heart may have gone cold.

Warning: Contains explosive sexual encounters—literally!

PREORDER ON AMAZON

Military Romance Reads

I had no plans to post a blog today. I’m much too busy worrying about my one active-duty military consultant who is counting the months until he returns home from Afghanistan, while my other is packing because he can count in days his departure to the same region. But then I saw the mass amounts of others posting and felt left out. :( So call me a sheep, but here I am, following the flock.

So here you go, the military heroes who I write to honor the real military men in my life. Some are soldiers and cowboys both, some are Marines, some are special ops while others are tankers and infantrymen, but all encompass the qualities of the very special men who inspired them.

FYI- BB Dalton is FREE and Cat Snips, my anthology which is also FREE, contains 2 military-themed short stories (Fireworks and The Soldier and the Siren).

Trey (erotic military romance)

Jimmy

Model Soldier (a Red, Hot, & Blue Novel)A Prince Among Men

One Night With a Cowboy by Cat JohnsonTwo Times as Hot (Oklahoma Nights Series)

Cat Snips ~ A short story anthology

A PRINCE AMONG MEN eRelease Today!

A Prince Among Men

Who needs a prince when there’s a sexy soldier in your bunk? Hoo rah!

Red, Hot, & Blue, Book 9

.
Sergeant Ryan Pettit blogs anonymously as Groundpounder, recording non-confidential details of a deployment where every day feels exactly the same—until a female reporter shows up at his firebase. And he realizes nothing will ever be the same again.

.
Though his orders are clear—protect her, but make her life so miserable she high tails it back to London—the last thing he wants is to watch her leave in a cloud of Afghanistan dust.
Intrigued by Groundpounder’s blog posts, Vicki Vanover flirted, bribed, and outright threatened her way to the front lines outside of Kandahar. Nothing has ever stopped her from getting a story, but an accidental night in Ryan’s bunk is a distraction—and attraction—she never anticipated.

.
Yet Afghanistan leaves Vicki with more questions than answers. Why won’t Ryan let her anywhere near the local women she wants to interview? Who is the mysterious, red-headed Lt. Wales everyone treats with such deference? Worst of all, why is watching Ryan run toward danger, instead of away from it, enough to stop her heart?

Warning: Contains super-hot sexual encounters in the war zone.

This book has been previously published.

eBook available now at:

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Don’t miss the lead in story, MODEL SOLDIER, where we first meet Ryan and the men in his unit.

Real Men -the other 99%

I was just reading about how there is yet another series of books to be launched about Navy SEALs.

Here’s the thing– yes, my first romance stories that I wrote way back in 2006 featured Spec Ops (these are the Red Hot & Blue series short stories that are still being rereleased slowly but surely by Samhain Publishing). My choice then to feature these elite teams was for a number of reasons–I was reading Suzanne Brockmann and Alison Kent’s series at the time who both also feature special operations, the real life Task Force 145 was all over the news regarding al-Zarkawi, and I knew next to nothing about the military back then and figured if I invented a team of Black Ops, already known for their secrecy, I’d be less likely to mess things ups.

What happened next is this, while researching military details for the writing of those books, I came in contact with the real life boots on the ground–the infantrymen, the tankers, the average Joes, the guys I routinely see in cammies while I’m on a layover in the Atlanta airport. And I realized THESE were the guys whose stories needed to be told. Not just the darlings of the romance industry, the 1% of the military who are SEALs. My stories morphed to feature SNCOs (Staff Non-Commissioned Officers) and the men they lead.

There’s plenty of room in this industry. With avid readers polishing off a book a day, if writers put out a quality story, competition with other authors is not the issue. So yes, I sigh when I see one more SEAL series, but then I close that browser, open my WiP (Work in Progress) and write about some of the men that make my heart go pitter pat. Yours too?  Good to hear! Below are my stories featuring men-in-uniform as the main hero: One Night With a Cowboy, A Few Good Men, Model Soldier, and coming soon A Prince Among Men. (Please note the Prince cover is just a draft version and I haven’t received confirmation from the publisher that it’s the final yet.)

One Night With a Cowboy by Cat Johnson

Model Soldier (a Red, Hot, & Blue Novel)

Welcome BOBBY to the Red, Hot, & Blue Smalltown Heat trilogy!

BOBBY Red, Hot & Blue Series Book 6Happy release day!

Today marks the long awaited Samhain Publishing eRelease of BOBBY (Red, Hot, & Blue, Book 6). We first met the brooding, steely-eyed small town deputy sheriff in JACK (Red, Hot, & Blue, Book 2) when Jack Gordon is home at the Gordon family horse farm in Pigeon Hollow on a break from his Black Ops unit duties.

We get to enjoy Bobby Barton again in a larger role in JARED (Red, Hot, & Blue, Book 4) as Jared Gordon’s best friend during the trying time when a Hollywood film crew moves in to focus on their tiny town. We get more of Bobby, and his protective side, as heroine Lizzie Barton’s brother in COLE (Red, Hot, & Blue, Book 5).

Now Bobby gets his own tale, and his own girl, as we wrap up the continuing reality show sub-plot in Jared and Cole.

For the full Red, Hot, & Blue Series reading order go here.

On a side note, this past week I got notification that TEXAS TWO-STEP was up for Best  Erotic Western Romance in 2011. The voting is happening now through the end of March at The Romance Reviews. Long live cowboys! Now, back to Bobby…

BOBBY

When the reality TV cameras stop rolling, things really start to heat up. 

Deputy Sheriff Bobby Barton agrees to put up with a reality TV show in his town for two reasons: it’ll be good for local business, and the producers promise to keep out of his. Except the show keeps creeping into his personal life. Plus, against his better judgment, he finds himself hoping that the show’s assistant producer, Christy Dunne, will creep into his bed.

Christy never mixed business with pleasure, but Bobby has her breaking all her own rules. When she makes a decision that can cost her job, suddenly she’s scrambling to keep her career from crashing. Though landing in Bobby’s bed might make it worth all the uproar.

With cameras all over town, a meddling executive producer manipulating everyone’s lives, their own scruples getting in the way, and the show’s deadline looming, Bobby and Christy can’t think about love. Then again, how can they not?

This book has been previously published and has been revised from its original release. 

Warning: Contains one sexy, brooding, overprotective officer of the law who uses his handcuffs for more than catching criminals.

 Enjoy this EXCERPT from BOBBY-

The sun was just making its presence known in the eastern sky when Christy and her cameraman, John Fletcher—Fletch for short—pulled up and parked on the road in front of the Barton house.

Christy spared a moment to take a second glance at the peachy glow on the horizon. She didn’t see the sun rise in L.A. often. There was that one night her girlfriends took her out for her birthday and then to a diner for breakfast after the dance club closed. But she didn’t remember noticing the sunrise. No surprise there.

Fletch yawned. “You have no mercy, dragging a man out to work before his first cup of coffee.” The video camera balanced tenuously on his shoulder, making Christy want to put her hand up to steady it.

She put one finger to her lips. “Shhh. I want to sneak in and get him as he’s waking up.”

Fletch managed to raise a sleepy but suggestive-looking eyebrow. “You’re just hoping he’s naked.”

Christy frowned at him and opened the back door stealthily, hoping he didn’t notice she hadn’t denied the accusation.

It still amazed her how everyone around Pigeon Hollow left their doors unlocked. Once Mrs. Barton had assured her she was welcome to let herself in at anytime, day or night, she had begun to plan how to best capture Bobby without his being on guard because of the camera. Today’s little fishing excursion was the perfect excuse to sneak in and find the man right where she wanted him, in more ways than one—in bed. Which was why she was sneaking in just before five, when he’d told her to arrive by five-thirty.

She crept through the silent kitchen and down the hall to where she knew Bobby’s bedroom was. Mrs. Barton, the quintessential southern hostess, had given her a tour of the house on the first day. Bobby, unhappy Mandy had named him as a main character for the show, had scowled the entire time.

At first Christy had assumed Bobby’s reaction to her being privy to his home life was caused by embarrassment. After all, he had to be thirty, but he still lived with his parents in spite of having what appeared to be a good job. That was before Christy gleaned the real situation. Bobby was there to help raise his sister’s fatherless son, or formerly fatherless son. But that was a whole other story, one she’d had on tape, the tape she’d turned over to Bobby. The decision that would likely cost her job.

When she had realized that the reason Bobby wanted that tape was because he didn’t want his nephew or his sister exposed to the entire world, and not to protect his own reputation, she’d finally given it up to him. But the bonus side, which made up for the crap she’d taken from Mandy over it, was that he now owed her. He owed her big and she intended to collect.

Her heart started to beat a little faster when she reached Bobby’s closed bedroom door. She turned the knob tentatively, not knowing if this was the one door in Pigeon Hollow that would actually be locked.

It opened and her heart pounded harder as she stepped into the room lit by only the soft glow of early morning light creeping through the half-raised blinds.

Bobby slept with the two windows open, a fan propped in one, blowing on him where he lay on the bed. It figured he didn’t have an air conditioner in his room, even in the summer. Mr. Tough Guy wasn’t the type.

He slept face up, on top of the sheets, totally exposed and clad in only dark- colored boxer briefs. In the dimly lit room, Christy’s eyes widened. There was a lot of man contained in those briefs—long, thick, hard. She swallowed at the sight.

In hindsight, this had probably been a risky idea. She’d never considered he slept on top of the covers. What if the man had slept in the nude? She swallowed and was very aware that Fletch had begun filming next to her. The tape was rolling. Too late now.

She glanced back to the underwear and the man within them. Privately, she’d been torn as to whether this staunch public servant would be a boxer or a brief man. This morning had answered her question. His garment was neither and both at the same time, much like the man himself. Yes, Deputy Bobby—as Mandy called him—was a paradox all right.

Bobby stirred in his sleep. With a groan, he reached down and rubbed his impressively thick length through his underwear before rolling over onto his stomach and showing her his other asset. That side was just as nice to look at as the other. This man was definitely a two-sided coin, and both sides were equally attractive.

The red glowing numbers on the bedside alarm clock changed to 5:00 and a deafening beeping filled the room. Christy jumped. Fletch cursed. Bobby rolled over and slapped the button. Then he made Christy fear for her life, no exaggeration, since it seemed the deputy slept with his weapon. Or at least with it right next to his bed on the nightstand.

Gun drawn and wearing a glare that could kill without bullets, Bobby growled, “This here is a good way to get yourselves shot.”

With another withering glance in her direction, but without any sign of self- consciousness, he stood. He grabbed a pair of jeans off the bedside chair and strode into the hall on his way to what Christy assumed would be the bathroom.

She let out a breath she hadn’t realized she’d been holding. “You get all that, Fletch?”

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