Shannon here: Romantic Suspense author, Jodie Bailey shares a romantic excerpt from her latest release, Dead Run. Comment or answer the question at the end of the post to enter the drawing. Deadline: Jan 14th, 11:59 pm central time. Here’s Jodie:
Excerpt from Dead Run by Jodie Bailey:
“What do you know?”
He chewed on the words, unsure what to say. The army had likely told her everything she needed to know, and he couldn’t tell her the one new piece of information he had, that Kyle’s death had been friendly fire. The question was, did he want to rehash this with her?
Yes, he did. Because then he could be the one to comfort her if she needed it. “He was on guard duty. It’s rotational.”
“It was a clean shot to the head. He never saw it coming.” They’d reached the end of the trail, their cars in view through the trees, sunlight glinting off the windshield of his truck. He reached for her and pulled her to a stop, holding her wrist in a loose grip. “It sounds awful, but honestly…”
“I know. That’s what the army said, but… I don’t know. I was kind of hoping there was something more.”
It was a familiar desire. He’d heard it from family members before. The need to know what happened, to process every detail. To hear one thing they didn’t know before, one thing that might bring their loved one to life in their minds one more time.
With Kristin, though, there was one more detail, and he was certain CID wouldn’t want him leaking the suspicion Kyle was murdered, especially not to the sister who might know more than she let on. “I wish I knew more, Kris.”
Her shoulders stiffened, and she pulled her wrist from his grasp. “Kristin.”
“I’m sorry.” She’d corrected him more than once the past couple of days. “You don’t like the nickname?” He tilted his head, trying to catch her eye, but she was staring over his shoulder. “I’ve heard Casey call you that.”
She pressed her lips together. “My dad called me Kris. And it doesn’t bother me when Casey says it. It’s in a female voice. But when I hear a man say it…” She lifted her eyes and caught his. “I don’t know. It scares me when you say it.”
“Scares you?” He’d never say it again, would erase it from his vocabulary if it caused her any kind of pain.
Her breath hitched. She opened her mouth and closed it, and a sheen crossed her eyes. “It used to, but when you say it, it sounds like… It sounds safe.”
There was a soft vulnerability in the words she’d never shown him before. She looked at him as though she meant everything, as though she trusted him.
Lucas was done. Forget every warning bell clanging in his head. Forget every stupid mistake Travis had made. Forget every dumb ounce of drama that had gone down in their unit.
This was personal.
He closed the small gap between them and pulled her close like he’d finally admitted he wanted to, wrapped his arms around her, trying to tell her with words that wouldn’t come that she was safe, he’d shelter her from the memories of her past and the assaults of the present.
He pressed a kiss to her temple, and she melted against him with a sigh that undid everything inside him. He let his lips trail down her cheek until he found hers, then kissed her softly at first. But when she met him in the kiss, she caught him and drew out all of the feelings he’d been trying to hide from himself almost since the first day he’d seen her.
She met him full bore, winding her arms around his neck and pulling him closer, more relaxed than she’d ever been, giving him something from deep inside that no one else had ever given him. This was different, a rightness he’d never felt before, dissolving the walls he’d built around his own heart, burning away the lie he’d been telling himself. He couldn’t punish himself for someone else’s mistakes, couldn’t take on someone else’s lessons as his own.
He was meant for Kristin. It washed over him in a peace like no other, and he let go of everything except her.
She gasped and dropped her hands between them, shoving with all of her strength, pushing him away.
The world rushed in. He might be firmly in his right mind, but she wasn’t, and he might have cut her even deeper. Before he could speak, she backed away. With a wild, hunted look, she turned on her heel and ran for her vehicle like she was afraid he’d chase her, leaving him cold on the trail.
About Jodie: Jodie Bailey writes novels about freedom and the heroes who fight for it. Her romantic suspense, Crossfire, won a 2015 RT Reviewers Choice Award and her contemporary romance, Quilted by Christmas won a 2014 Selah. She is convinced a camping trip to the beach with her family, a good cup of coffee, and a great book can cure all ills. Jodie lives in North Carolina with her husband, her daughter, and two dogs. Visit her at www.jodiebailey.com. Learn more about the book: http://jodiebailey.com/book/dead-run/
About the book – Dead Run:
Kristin James’s morning run turns deadly when she’s attacked by a stranger who’s after something her deceased soldier brother stole overseas. Her neighbor Sergeant First Class Lucas Murphy steps in to help her and won’t let her brush the attack under the rug. He’ll do everything he can to keep Kristin alive, but he can’t tell her that he’s under orders to investigate her link to her brother’s misdeeds. Kristin has no idea what the bad guy is after and doesn’t want to believe that her brother wasn’t on the straight and narrow. But as evidence against him piles up, can they catch the criminals without becoming the next casualties?
Question for Readers: Do you have a nickname? If so, do you like it? Or do you have a nickname for a family member or friend?
Come back Jan 10th for Jennifer Slattery!