I’m on a man-fast.
You heard me, a male detoxification plan.
WELCOME BACK TO SHELL COVE MEDICAL CENTER WHERE THERAPY SESSIONS IN SEDUCTION ARE JUST WHAT THE DOCTOR ORDERED…
Lina James, psychiatric nurse and self-proclaimed independent woman isn’t going to allow another man to walk out of her life. Her love is officially off the market. She’s declared a preemptive strike on the male species with a man-fast. There’s just one glitch in Lina’s detox plan–Gideon. Her blood sugars spikes remembering the one kiss they shared.
Gideon Rice, is a veteran Marine and respected psychiatrist with more emotional wounds than his patients. He lives his life in camouflage–a wall between his rejection filled past and his new life ensures the two worlds never intersect. Gideon’s life plan is simple–give wounded warriors a place to heal and convince Lina James she’s the only woman for him.
When Lina’s past brings danger to her doorstep, she’s forced to accept Gideon’s help. His tender touch and determination to keep her safe, rocks the foundation of her man-fast, but she’s determined to resist her cravings.
How will she keep him at arms length when he is the safe haven she’s always wanted?
In a high stakes game of cat and mouse, how will they find the courage to risk their hearts in a fight for their lives?
Read the first chapter:
"I know you can hear me. Open the door." Lina let her arms fall to her side. Time to discard the baggage. Turning around, she stalked through the open balcony door, crossing the glass and steel dining kitchen combo room en route to the front entrance. At the incessant knocking and unrelenting buzzing she reached for BETAS, the smooth hardwood stick she kept by the door. Jace would be the first person to experience the power of her wood deterrent.
A leather tie long enough to slip over her wrist held it suspended by a j-hook on the adjacent wall. She was thankful the beveled glass inlay door separated her from the intended target. Standing in her foyer, she offered him a final opportunity to walk away from her welcome mat.
"I have BETAS with me and we both agree it's in your best interest to get away from my door." Grateful it was Sunday morning, her neighbor usually slept until noon. The thought of Estrella witnessing a live breaking news event, she could do without.
"Betas. Who is Betas?" Steam that could rival a tea kettle rolled off her at his tone and inflection. He abandoned me and he had questions? Not in this lifetime, buddy.
"Lina." The singsong quality was gone. His voice was sharp with disapproval.
Lina grabbed the door handle, turned the lever, and pulled the door open a fraction. Jace's lean frame darkened a sliver of her doorway. For a moment, they both regarded each other, without exchanging a word. He stood in his white, long-sleeved button down collared shirt paired with a navy sweater vest. The dark blue and green pinstriped tie she purchased for his birthday knotted to perfection at his thin neck. Khaki Dockers and black oxfords completed the ensemble. She felt her brows bunch and her lips purse. The unwelcome intrusion had her fist tightening on BETAS.
The morning breeze carried the floral amber scent of his cologne through the partially open door. It was seventy-seven degrees in the shade. Most native Floridians would consider that hot for an Atlantic coast January. Coupled with the mid-morning humidity, the smell was about as welcoming as a park trash can. Bile rose up in her throat and she swallowed in succession. Gastric disaster averted.
"It's about time. I'm melting out here." Beads of sweat dotted his forehead and the bridge of his nose. The dark brown mess of curls plastered to his forehead were a sharp contrast to his pale blue eyes and reddening skin.
"Then go home." He moved to step inside her condominium, but her full-figure blocked his path. Considering she was two inches taller in her bare feet, he was the one to halt. He regarded her, irritation clear on his boyish face.
"Does he know I'm at the door?" He had the audacity to be territorial after the crap he'd done to her.
"Who Jace?" An image of her curling her fingers around his tie, pulling him close flashed in her mind. Feeling the warmth of his breath on her chin, while she inched the knot higher up his neck. Watching as he turned a kaleidoscope of colors before losing consciousness brought a smile to her face. To kill was sinful, but to choke was divine payback. Right?
"Do I know Betas?"
"No, but he wants to meet you," she gave a saccharine smile. The stick resting at her side seemed to pulse against her palm. The leather lariat around her left wrist felt tighter. She glanced downward, and he tracked her movement. His eyes came to rest on the stick in her hand. Eyes wide in alarm, he took a cautionary step back. Yep, caution warranted. She'd had enough of his drop by visits.
"Meet BETAS, my beat-that-ass-stick." Jace took
a step back. "If I raise this stick above my
kneecap, he doesn't go back on the wall until somebody gets their ass beat."
Siera London, a former naval officer, is an Amazon best selling author of contemporary romantic fiction. A native Floridian, her love of coastal towns and bustling cities shines through in her sassy and sexy storytelling. Currently she resides in the Washington, D.C. area with her active duty husband and a color patch tabby that has free reign of the house.
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