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Sometimes, even true love needs a kick in the…
Claire Miller fell in love with Jake in the third grade. Years later, one hot night of reckless passion changed things between them forever. Jake rocked her world, but Claire had plans for her life. Knowing she could never be what he needed, she let him go and has missed him every day since.
Jake Walker knew the first time he saw Claire, when he was nine years old, that he wanted to marry her. At seventeen, he let her go. But seven years later, the sight of her hit him like a punch to the gut. Every cell in his body demanded that she was ‘The One’. But can he convince Claire?
ALONE WITH YOU
The Walker Brothers Book 2
BY AMANDA ADAMS
Jake looked her over, from the dusty toes of her hiking boots to the wild bits of hair that had escaped her French braid. She looked a mess and she knew it. When she was about to run for cover, he turned his attention to the horses and walked up to greet them through the openings in side of the beat-up white trailer.
“Hey there, boy. I bet you’re ready to get out of there.” Jake pulled a treat of some kind from the front pocket of his jeans and Widowmaker whinnied and talked back, as if Jake could speak horse. Hell, maybe he could. Jake walked back to her and held out his hand to take Widowmaker’s lead rope from her. She handed it over as Mindy pulled the pin and swung open the back of the slant-load trailer.
Claire stepped back and let Jake take over unloading the stallion with Mindy’s help. Eager to be out of the trailer, Widowmaker walked out with Jake a hell of a lot faster than he’d gone in. Typical. Claire tried to ignore the scene as Jake and Mindy both patted and soothed the horse once they had him on the ground. A handful of treats, and the stallion followed Mindy to the pasture like a docile pony.
If only all men were so easily tamed.
Claire sighed and hopped up into the trailer with Starlight’s bright red lead rope in hand. She ducked under the center gate and clipped her mare onto the lead. Jake hopped up behind her to help and she nodded to him to indicate she was ready for him to open the middle gate.
So easy, slipping back into her old rhythm with him. She still knew every move he was going to make before he made it, every step and every look, and every motion of those big, strong hands.
She even knew he was going to take Starlight’s lead from her before he did it. What she didn’t anticipate was the flare of anger his take-charge attitude inspired. That ire lent some steel to her spine and she squashed her longing for him like a spider under a boot heel. She’d left for a reason. She needed to remember that. Nothing had changed. “I’ve got her. Thanks.”
“I can lead her out.”
“I said, I’ve got her.” Claire refused to look him in the eye and didn’t bother asking herself where all this irrational fire was coming from. She knew exactly why she was about to lose her mind, and it was the reason she had avoided coming to the ranch all these years. Seeing Jake again, now, made the raw edges of her life bleed all over again. It was like she’d never left.
“All right. Don’t get your panties in a bunch.”
“What?” He did not just say that.
“Nothing.” Jake turned away and walked back up into the trailer to secure the center gate, then hopped out, closed the gate, latched and pinned it for her drive home. Such a gentleman, which made her feel like screaming on the inside.
She tugged on Starlight’s lead and the horse followed her in the direction Mindy had taken the stallion. The dirt trail had been worn into the ground by tractor and truck tires, and led to a pasture about a quarter mile from the main house.
Starlight nudged her in the side of the head and Claire absently reached over to pat her old friend on the nose. Jake hadn’t been the only thing she’d missed. She and Starlight had been best friends since she was thirteen. The mare had arrived at her dad’s small farm with a bright white bow tied around her neck on Claire’s birthday. In the horse-breeding world, Starlight was worthless, the unplanned foal of an old quarter horse sire and an American Saddlebred dam.
Her dad had laughed and said that Starlight’s mother had gone slumming. Claire didn’t care where the horse had come from, only that Starlight was a beautiful chestnut with white feet and a white star on her forehead, and she loved to run. Her parents’ small property backed to national forest lands which she’d explored for hours, covered hundreds of miles. With Jake. Always, things came back to Jake.
Claire rubbed Starlight’s nose and picked up the pace. All she had to do was avoid Jake and get out of town as quickly as possible. That was the only way she could keep her head on straight. Her heart was a lost cause, and had been for years. But real love and real life didn’t mix, at least not for her. Her job was her life now and that was just the way things worked out.
Claire chanced a glance back over her shoulder to see Jake leaning up against the split rail fence, arms crossed over that massive chest, and his hat back on his head, watching her walk away. This time, there was no confusion or hurt in his eyes. Those blue eyes of his were cold and hard. Unforgiving.
Well, tough shit. She’d done what she thought was best. And she’d do it again, because some things never changed. And Jake Walker was one of them.
Starlight whinnied and shoved into her hand. Claire sighed and turned back around.
Love was such a bitch.
Meet Author Amanda Adams...
Amanda Adams is a contemporary pen name for sci-fi/paranormal romance author Michele Callahan. As Amanda, she writes super-sexy, new adult romance. If you can’t handle what she calls “keeping it real”, you can’t handle falling in love with her dirty-mouthed, a**-kicking Walker brothers.
The funny, sexy, sweet contemporary Magical Matchmaker series she co-writes with her one true love, and the mysterious, meddling matchmaker, Opal, is based on her real-life grandmother, who was an amazing character and inspiration for anyone who knew her.
Links to Amanda’s website, blog, books, etc.
Amazon US: https://goo.gl/kPgcO1
Amazon UK: https://goo.gl/jzHHpO
Sign up for Amanda’s VIP Reader List — http://bit.ly/AmandaNews
Thanks, Amanda, for sharing your book with us!
Don’t miss the chance to read this book!