I’m so excited! Hero Undercover is finally releasing tomorrow!! While it’s been on pre-sale for a couple of weeks, the actual release of any book is terribly exciting. I’ve had several people read my sexy novella and they seem to love. I have a rather warped brain and my characters have a feisty, ballsy quality – whether male or female. I also love cowboy cops – they just have everything you desire in a hero. They’re sexy. Commanding. Rugged. Handsome. Did I say sexy? Imagine the hot guy holding a lasso or a gun. Whew… Is it hot in here? I have another excerpt for my piece, a little novella I’ll expand later and I’m very proud of. I’m also thrilled and proud to be a part of this amazing collection. Don’t forget to pick up a copy for only $.99. This lasts through July 3rd only!
A TASTE FOR RED
Private Investigator Shanna Jacobs has no issue chasing scumbag criminals down on her Harley. Blackmailed into working with the local police department, the case involving wine fraud utilizes one of her many talents. However, going undercover alongside a sexy cowboy cop may destroy her mask of steel. Detective Cody Walker is estranged from his ranch in Montana, taking the only job offered after his involvement in a horrific incident. Working alongside, Shanna and Cody realize the case isn’t what it seems. As they delve into the clues, sparks fly, but both refuse to accept their growing need. Can he save the woman he’s fallen in love with before it’s too late?
Shanna flipped through her notes. “Stop here.”
“Here?” Cody eyed the busy street, searching for a location to park. The sidewalks were crawling with activity. Sidewalk cafes were packed with tourists and locals alike enjoying the warm evening, the atmosphere relaxed and inviting. “Why here?”
“Wine store. One of the best. We should be able to find what I need.”
He had to wonder what she believed necessary. He maneuvered the Ferrari into a space. “Let’s keep a low profile, or as low as possible anyway.”
“What’s that supposed to mean?” she asked then climbed out of the car.
“You should have placed a neon flashing sign around your neck. You’re overdressed.”
“My style. Not yours. Remember?” She shot him a look of disdain and slammed the car door, taking off down the sidewalk without waiting for him.
Cody caught up to her quickly and wrapped his arm around her waist, pulling her in close and whispering in her ear. “You don’t have to like me but you do have to pretend. Remember, anyone could be watching.”
She tilted her head. “Yes, of course. I hope you brought the credit cards.”
“Always the ballbuster. Now, I’m going to take your hand. Act like you adore me instead of wish I were dead.” He grabbed her hand, interlocking their fingers, and tugged her down the sidewalk. The touch was electric, far too intense. His hands sweated instantly and his heart rate skyrocketed. Shanna had managed to get under his skin.
While she didn’t pull away, she remained stiff until they walked inside the quaint shop. When she pulled away, everything about her demeanor had changed. “Look darling. This is the little shop I was telling you about.”
“Find whatever you like, baby. I want you happy.” He scanned the store, making mental note of the various patrons. The majority were well over forty and he suspected given the few prices listed on selected shelves, they were all wealthy.
Shanna swayed her hips as she walked toward the counter, pushing aside several customers. Her smile was huge, her eyes twinkling with mischief. “You know I will. You owe me for last night.”
Cody resisted reacting. They’d already been noticed by just about everyone close by. Flamboyant was her style. “But you said I was delicious last night.” The comment had mixed reactions but none that stood out. Like looking for a needle in a haystack.
She pushed her long hair behind her shoulders and leaned over the counter, winking as the well-manicured man behind the counter flushed. “I’m looking for something extra special tonight. Hubby and I are celebrating.”
The man cleared his throat then smiled thinly. “We have many incredible wines. Did you have something in mind?”
“Hmmm…” Brushing the tip of her finger across her lips, she exhaled in an exaggerated fashion her eyes darted to the gold nametag on the clerk’s lapel. “I’m thinking Merlot tonight, Scotty.”
“That’s Scott and all right. Let me show you the section where I think you’ll find exactly what you desire.” The man eased from behind the counter.
She held out her arm, twisting her index finger back and forth. “I always know and get what I want and right now, I desire that you find the wine I’m looking for, sweet Scotty.”
Cody folded his arms. He had to admit, the woman was good. At least six people were lingering, drinking in every detail. Five of the six were men. Two he ruled out immediately. The pudgy golfer types were definitely tourists. The woman was intriguing. Her necklace full of what appeared to be diamonds, she reeked of money. The other three men were all in their mid to late forties, impeccably dressed and extremely attentive. He memorized their faces. They weren’t the few on the suspect list.
Scott’s forehead glistened with perspiration. “What wine would you like? I’ll see if I can find. Please keep in mind that our wines are very expensive.”
Cody was forced to look away for fear of bursting into laughter. At least three people murmured under their breath.
“My dear, sweet Scotty. Money is no object. Isn’t that right, babycakes?” She flashed a look in Cody’s direction.
“As I said, anything your heart desires, my love.” So much for laying low. Cody shifted and walked to the other side of the store. From the vantage point, he caught a glimpse of Stoker Wilde entering the store. An interesting coincidence? Maybe.
“I’d like a bottle, no two bottles of Opus One. Since you’re such a fine establishment, I’m certain you carry the wine?” Shanna twisted, enabling the men already ogling to catch a better glimpse of her cleavage.
“We have a fine 2009 but it’s almost two hundred dollars a bottle,” Scott said in a clipped tone.
Shanna rolled her eyes. “Not the 2009. That’s like drinking grape juice. I’m talking the 2011.”
Whatever kind of wine she’d asked for garnered several reactions from the bystanders. Cody inched closer as did Stoker until they were only two feet apart.
“Your wife has excellent taste,” Stoker said, his tone husky and low.
“Her tastes match her proclivities, a bit wild,” Cody countered. Stoker owned several businesses in the Napa Valley including what many in law enforcement believed to be an exclusive BDSM club. Throwing out the bone was only one tactic.
“Hmmm… You’re a lucky man, although if you ask me, she’s a bit on the impetuous side. If she were mine, a round of discipline would be in order. Yes, she wouldn’t be able to sit down for days.” Stoker grinned and walked away, but his eyes never left Shanna.
One human trait he knew about Stoker was that he usually marked his territory. Stoker’s statement was of intent to conquer. This was Cody’s intuition and not just because he was a cop. As they left the store, walking hand in hand, he noticed Stoker watching their every move. He shivered and he wasn’t entirely certain why.
I so hope you enjoyed. Don’t forget – like my page and if I have 100 likes through July 3rd – I have a sexy give away. Speaking of which, Blushing Books is giving away an iPad. The link is below! Good luck!!
B & N tinyurl.com/ycktvt24