Dead Sexy imprint
After school one day, eleven year old Lucy Falcon disappears without a trace. Her frantic mother Isabel Falcon calls Lucy’s father, Micah Wild, to tell him, and suddenly their teenage history hits them both hard.
Isabel has to put out of mind that Micah never fought for her. She hopes that Micah will finally be the man she expected him to be when she learned she was pregnant. Micah already regrets letting Isabel go, and he can’t help but think this never would have happened if Isabel and Lucy had been with him.
Now Isabel and Micah must join forces to rescue their daughter before it’s too late. Who would take Lucy and why? Micah doesn’t know how he’s lived without Isabel all this time. Can he win her heart again, save his child and have the family he always wanted?
Micah felt as if his heart had been shredded to bits all over again. Isabel never cried. At sixteen, she’d been so damn tough, she’d been able to handle whatever came at her.
Of course, he’d never had anything to do with her or with any of the detested Falcons.
At least not until that fateful day that seemed like just yesterday...
“Yee-haw!” Micah yelled, swatting his horse’s rump with the brim of his hat. “Go, Slade, go!”
Slade’s muscles bunched and Micah lay along the horse’s neck as they raced up Suicide Hill, a half length ahead of his nearest competitor. He was doing a damn fool thing and the old man would threaten to whip the skin off his hide if he knew what they were about, but being eighteen, he was up for any challenge. He would get away with it, too, just as he always did.
Out of the corner of his eye, he saw another horse’s nose edging closer from behind. Micah dug his heels in Slade’s sides a little sharper. The horse’s neck was already wet with sweat, his breath heaving, steam coming from his nose. Slade responded with a powerful lunge that almost unseated Micah. Laughing, he grabbed onto the thick mane, tightened his thighs around the horse’s barrel and did his damnedest to hang on until they crested the top of the hill in front of his buddies.
“Woo-hoo!” he yelled, straightening in the saddle and bringing Slade to a dead stop.
The Soto brothers, Bobby and Hank, caught up to him. Though a few years younger, Hank was nearly as big as Bobby. They had the same blue eyes, olive skin, and ink-black hair. Bobby wore his hair longish, in what was little more than a stub of a ponytail at the back of his neck. He also sported a skull tattoo that peeked out from the neckline of his shirt.
“I won,” Micah informed them. “You each owe me a case of beer!”
“As if we’re old enough to actually buy beer,” Hank groused.
Bobby laughed. “Fake ID, bro.”
Hearing hoofbeats behind him, Micah turned in the saddle to see an incredible sight approach—a mahogany bay that had to be seventeen hands or better. The young woman who had complete control of the horse, despite the fact that she was riding bareback, brought him up short.
“What the hell do you boys think you’re doing?” she demanded.
Hank looked uncomfortable, but Bobby laughed again and asked, “Who wound you up, little girl?”
But damn. Isabel Falcon wasn’t little, Micah thought. Not anymore. She’d grown since he’d last seen her. He couldn’t remember when that was. He’d just graduated from high school and she was going to be a junior, so they hadn’t been in the same classes or anything. Even with her sitting a horse, he could tell her hips had widened. Her breasts had definitely filled out. And with the sun behind her, her hair glowed an incredible halo-red, though it was in fact a dark mahogany, nearly the same shade as her mount’s coat.
“Are you trying to kill your horses or yourselves?” she asked. “There’s a reason this is called Suicide Hill.”
Before Bobby could say anything, Micah asked, “So you’ve never tried besting it?”
“I’m not that stupid.”
Obviously meaning she thought they were.
Bobby edged his horse closer to hers, and in a threatening tone said, “You oughta watch that mouth of yours, Isabel, or maybe I’ll shove something long and hard in it to shut you up.”
Bobby and Hank’s father was a friend of Micah’s father, Jonah, and as such had enthusiastically supported the Wilds in their feud against the Falcons. Bobby was just following suit with Isabel.
About to talk him down, Micah started when, like magic, a knife appeared in Isabel’s hand. “Try it, Bobby, and I’ll cut it off.”
Bobby turned to Micah. “Are we gonna let her threaten us like that?”
“Hey, Bobby, maybe we should get going.” Hank backed his horse away from the confrontation. “Mess with her and we’ll get shit at home.”
But Bobby was paying his brother no mind. “Micah?”
“I think you need to cool down, Bobby.” Bobby might be a buddy of his, if not a close friend, but no way would Micah let him do what he appeared ready to do. Still, he wanted to ease the situation, give Bobby a way out, pride intact. “Isabel’s scared of you and defending herself, is all. Let it go.”
“Whose side are you on?”
“Ours.” Micah was talking to Bobby but watching Isabel. Her anger was palpable but, thankfully, she was keeping her mouth shut. He changed tactics and looked straight into Bobby’s eyes. “You don’t want to get into it with her brother, Cruz, anyway. You touch his sister and he’d split you open and feed you to the coyotes to get rid of the evidence.”
“I’m not afraid of Cruz Falcon.”
Somehow, Micah kept his cool, which he wouldn’t do if Bobby actually tried to carry through with his threat.
“Bobby, c’mon. Leave it.” He kept his voice friendlier than he was feeling now. “Just go on home.”
“Without you? What about the beer Hank and me owe you?”
“Beer?” Isabel echoed. “You’re not even legal, Bobby, and your brother is just a kid, younger than me. What kind of an influence are you on him?”
Micah cringed inside—did Isabel really want to chance raining trouble down on herself?—but kept in bluff mode as he stared Bobby down. “The two of you don’t even have to buy me the beer you owe me if you just leave well enough alone.”
Bobby thought it over for a moment and then said, “Well, as long as there’s something in it for me...”
Taking the easy way out, Bobby shrugged, gave Isabel one last angry look, and to Micah’s relief, rode off.
Hank was right behind him.
“Walk those horses!” Isabel yelled after the boys. “You need to cool them down!”
“I know you’re an expert on horses, and all.” It had been a point of contention between their families that the Falcons ran a horse ranch directly next to the Wilds’ cattle ranch. “But you could stir up Bobby again.”
“I’m not afraid of him.”
For a moment, he almost believed her. Then he caught a glimpse of doubt in her thick-lashed hazel eyes. And her full lower lip trembled before she caught herself and clenched her teeth together. She really was afraid and determined not to let him see it.
“Sure you are,” he said reasonably, “as you should be. You’re just too stubborn to admit it.”
“Am not.” Isabel returned her knife to the sheath attached to her belt. “And you should be walking your horse, too, to cool him down.”
Like he had to be told.
When she turned her gelding, clucked, “C’mon, Crank,” and walked him off, Micah followed on Slade.
“What do you think you’re doing?” she asked.
“Making sure you get home safely.” He was almost disappointed when she didn’t argue. For some reason, he enjoyed her prickliness. “At least to the Falcon property line.”
He didn’t dare ride onto Falcon land without expecting some kind of retribution.
They rode in silence together for a few moments, before she said, “You had to work there to call Bobby off. Thanks.”
“No problem.” As an afterthought, he added, “You know I wouldn’t have let him touch you.”
Isabel glanced at him and something in her expression caught and held him. He felt as if a vise were gripping his throat, making it hard to swallow. She was gazing up at him like he was a hero or something. But Micah knew damn well he was nothing but Trouble-with-a-capital-T, as Dad and Gramps kept telling him.
Shaking away the weird feeling, he asked, “You always carry that thing on you?”
“The knife? When I ride out, absolutely.” Then Isabel smiled at him, a smile that showed her perfect white teeth and made his pulse rush a little faster, and said, “After all, I never know when I’ll run into a snake.”
With 92 novels and more than seven million books in print, Patricia Rosemoor is fascinated with "dangerous love" – combining romance with danger. She has written various forms of romantic and paranormal romantic thrillers, even romantic horror, bringing a different mix of thrills and chills to her stories. Patricia has won a Golden Heart from Romance Writers of America and two Reviewers Choice and two Career Achievement Awards from RT BOOKreviews, and in her other life, she teaches Popular Fiction and Suspense-Thriller Writing, credit courses at Columbia College Chicago.
BORN FOR Q&A
ANGI: What’s your favorite locale for one of your upcoming releases?
PATRICIA: Born To Be Wild is set in Northern New Mexico, including Santa Fe, one of my favorite places to visit. I’ve been there a half-dozen times and hope to return.
ANGI: Can you tell us about a real-life hero you’ve met?
PATRICIA: Dayton Hyde, rancher, naturalist, author and founder and president of the Institute of Range and the American Mustang. His vision brought the Black Hills Wild Horse Sanctuary to Life. I met him on a research trip to the sanctuary and was fascinated by his life. He’s in his mid-eighties now, and he’s still working to save horses that would otherwise be destroyed.
ANGI: What do you like about the hero of your book?
PATRICIA: That Micah is not only strong but compassionate.
ANGI: What’s your favorite thing about the heroine of your book?
PATRICIA: That Isabel might be fearful for her daughter Lucy’s fate, but she is fearless for herself.
ANGI: What’s the most unusual way someone’s been killed in one of your books?
PATRICIA: Geez, if I told you, that would spoil HOLIDAY IN CRIMSON and NIGHTMARE IN CRIMSON, my November and December releases from Dead Sexy. Let me just say Santa Claus is killed in both of them in the most unusual ways.
PATRICIA: Hum. Lots of fun places, because I challenge myself not to use beds if I can help it. I’m thinking a pirogue in Louisiana bayou is one of them.
ANGI’S GOTTA ASK: Hey Pat, I know you love showing off Chicago (whoot, we’ll have to get together again while I’m there over Thanksgiving!). What is your favorite, favorite thing about your city?
PATRICIA’S GOTTA ANSWER: Lake Michigan. I live about a mile and a half west of the lake, the farthest I’ve lived from it in my adult life. I’m always fascinated to see its many moods, from soft Caribbean-like color and waves to dark and stormy to cold and icy. I always get a thrill driving on Lake Shore Drive.
Patricia’s Novels on Facebook
From Entangled Publishing’s Dead Sexy line:
HOLIDAY IN CRIMSON (Nov)
NIGHTMARE IN CRIMSON (Dec)
The McKenna Legacy novels:
SEE ME IN YOUR DREAMS
TELL ME NO LIES
TOUCH ME IN THE DARK
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