Visiting Locations Makes ALL the Difference
Originally appeared on Just Romantic Suspense
Additional Pictures and Giveaway
I just mentioned to my husband that I was ready to spend the night under a gazillion stars again. I’ve never seen as many as when we traveled to West Texas to research Protecting Their Child. Thank goodness we did. There were so many details I was able to add because of that trip. AND it inspired three more books in that area: The West Texas Watchmen. Oh my gosh, the nights were so beautiful…there was so little light pollution that you could see trillions of stars. It was one of the most amazing things I’d ever seen.
I loved hiking through the Davis National Park. I don’t know why. At first glance it looks desolate, desert-like. And beautiful at the same time. But the isolation struck deep inside me as well. Sometimes it took hours to get around the mountains–a very scary thing when you’re running out of gas. The visit helped me create Kate McCrea. One of the strongest heroines I’ve been able to write about.
Where did the actual story come from? Well, about twenty-five years ago I had friends who lost a child… It’s such a sad moment. They stayed together to have two more children, but many couples don’t ever get over the loss.
Here’s a nice video someone made of the area to give you an idea.
is when Cord & Kate are escaping over the mountains:
“Do you think I should go first?” he asked, uncertain if it were safer to climb in front and check the path or behind her in case she fell.
She threw her gloved hands in the air. “I’m moving as fast as I can,” she said, the frustration of talking to him plain in her voice.
“That’s not why I asked.”
“Oh. Well, I don’t think there’s a good—or safe way to accomplish this, Cord.”
He looked back to the Jeep as he had every two minutes. A car dome light flickered on and off. “They found the car.”
“We couldn’t use them without being found, babe.” The familiar endearment slipped out before he caught himself.
“There’s nothing on the other side other than the state park and observatory.”
“Then that’s where we head. The observatory has satellites. People equal phones and they have a field for a helicopter to land.”
“Good grief, do you know how far that is? What’s wrong with hitching a ride to the highway?” She rolled her shoulders, swung her arms back and forth as if she was warming up for her workout video.
She shared a deflated long sigh. “You’re right. I don’t want anyone else hurt. But you know we’re headed to the highest point in the mountains and there isn’t between here and there. No ranches, no Ranger stations and we have no cell phones.”
The heavy mist that would have eventually soaked them, turned into bigger plops on their jackets. Kate got hit in the face. All she had was that old crocheted thing she’d made with her mother many years ago. When he’d ‘borrowed’ his jeans and shirt, he should have found Kate a suitable brim to keep the rain off her.
“Better get after it, then. Wait.” He placed his favorite hat on top of her worn cap. She gave him a genuine smile with lots of white, straight teeth and didn’t argue.
Kate set a steady, careful pace. Easy for him to follow and keep watch for men who might be following. So far there weren’t any lights flashing around below. Their mud-caked boots—neither pair made for hiking—contributed to the consistent slipping, adding another layer of danger to their journey.
Within minutes they were soaked. The temperature had to be just above freezing. Cord glanced at his watch again. They’d been climbing forty-five minutes with very limited headway. Kate slowed for another short catch-her-breath minute. They’d taken several and his back was more thankful than his lungs.
“There’s too much rain to locate our position,” he shared. “Think we should use a compass?”
Even at the slow pace she’d maintained, Kate huffed a couple of times before answering. “At this point, using a compass is pointless. There’s really only one path—even though I use that term very loosely.” She put her head down to avoid the pelting rain and took another step, falling to her knee, then waving him off. “I’m okay. Better get used to it. A scraped knee will soon be the least of our worries.”
She pointed to the rock face just above them. This little trek wouldn’t get them over that. They’d have to climb.God help him, but how had things come to this? was the one putting his wife in harm’s way now. The shrink’s voice popped into his head. his own voice replied. Family. He could think of his child and his child’s mother as family.
“We can’t attempt to climb in this weather. I don’t think anyone’s following, they probably haven’t been since they didn’t know which direction we’d taken off.”
“And this isn’t the logical choice.”
“Nope.” He pointed ahead. “There enough trail to make it to the bottom? Might find a bit of an overhang for protection. If we stop here, we’re fairly exposed to the elements.”
“I can make it, Cord. Don’t worry about me.” She turned and got going.
From the looks of things, they had at least another hour and a half before hitting the base. He stretched his back, swung his arms a bit slower than Kate had. The pain shot up his spine with the first step.
“I know you can make it, superwoman,” he mumbled to himself. “It’s me I have doubts about.”
If you haven’t read The Marine’s Last Defense…I hope you’ll give it a try.Here’s what a couple of readers thought
"If you love super-hot cowboys that kick butt and don't take numbers, this is a book for you. I enjoyed the story and re-connection of the relationship over the course of the drama. Cord and Kate touched my heart. Their story was one of heartbreak and learning to move beyond the pain. Look forward to more stories by Angi Morgan in the future..” ~Read-a-Holic
“Be prepared, because this book will keep you up late into the night reading. From the beginning to the end Cord, a Texas Ranger, and his ex-wife Kate are running for their lives. But there is another life to consider as Kate is five months pregnant and Cord is determined to keep them safe at any cost. But a drug lord wanted them dead, and Cord was haunted by his inability to protect his family in the past. Love had never been the problem between Cord and Kate, but they definitely needed to work on their communication.
In this story, Angi uses her magic of writing characters that make you care. With each obstacle and danger she throws at Kate and Cord, you wonder how in the world they will survive. Even with bullets flying, a winter storm, and being forced to climb the West Texas mountains, it may be their unspoken words that cause the most danger to their hearts. This is a must read for all those who love a good Intrigue.” ~Brenda R.
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USA Today Bestselling author ANGI MORGAN writes Intrigues where honor and danger collide with love. Her work is a multiple contest finalist and Publishers Weekly best-seller. She drags her dogs –and husband– around Texas for research road trips so she can write off her camera. They now have a map with highlighted roads they’ve traveled. Every detour somehow makes it into a book.
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