Chief Wyatt Lockwood is fascinated by Marine sniper Captain Talia Culver. But
she wants nothing to do with him after learning of his reputation as a
heartbreaker. The cocky Texan refuses to take the hint and keeps placing
himself in Tal’s path. When she agrees to help him tend to needy families in an
Afghan village, she learns there’s more to this SEAL than meets the eye. But is
she strong enough to risk having her heart broken again?
stay away from the beautiful, surly Marine. Tal is fascinating—and
frustrating—and he is determined to crack through her tough exterior and get to
know the soft woman he knows lurks beneath the surface. When he joins Tal on a
sniper mission in the Afghan mountains, their bond continues to grow. But the mission
takes a dangerous turn. Has he lost his chance with Tal forever?
“And all of this reconnoitering was to maneuver me into your bed?” “Frankly, yes. But it was more than that, Tal. The more your brother Matt told me about you, the more I needed to meet you, talk with you, see what was in that head of yours, understand how you saw the world around you, what made you laugh and what made you cry. I can’t fully explain it, and God knows I’ve tried over the years. We share an incredible, organic connection; I damn well feel it and I know you do, too.” He grimaced, his voice lowering, amusement in his tone. “And you’re the first woman I’ve ever met who asked me to explain why I want to kiss her.” Tal hid her smile, seeing the frustration in Wyatt’s eyes. She felt him floundering like she was, trying to figure out what was going on between them and whether or not it was worth connecting further. “I guess we’re both alike in that way,” she offered quietly.
“What way is that?” he growled. A half smile pulled at her mouth. “We’re both logical people. We want to understand things because we’re very self-aware. We don’t like going into a situation blindly. We want to understand ourselves, other people, and the elements surrounding them.”
“Spoken like a true sniper,” he rasped, giving her an appreciative look.
“Yes, well you’re a sniper yourself—just one in disguise,” she said accusatorily.
“So are you coming with me?” He pointed toward the supply warehouse.
Tal gave him a panicked look. “Wyatt . . .”
“I don’t know where this is going either,” he told her gruffly, holding her wary gaze. “You’re a natural-born risk taker, Tal, just like me. On every op we take, it’s a damned life-and-death risk.” His mouth pursed. “I’m willing to risk my heart on you. I have no idea how it’s going to turn out between us. I don’t have any expectations about us. I just want to explore what we have with one another when we can. Are you willing to risk your heart to find out too? That’s what this all boils down to.”
Wyatt’s eyes were a stormy gray now, and she felt his body calling to her. And then, she decided. “Okay,” she whispered, turning and starting to walk across the gravel toward the three-story warehouse. What was she doing? Tal felt her throat tighten, with all the fear warring with her need of Wyatt. But the fear began to dissolve as she continued walking into the deep shadows with him.
When they got to the building they’d stood by yesterday, Tal halted and leaned against the same wall, her heart pounding, her knees shaking. The burning need in Wyatt’s eyes seared her soul as he slowly approached her. This time, he put his hands against the wall and bracketed her head with his forearms, his breath warm against her cheek as he met and searched her eyes.
Tal dragged his scent deep into her lungs as if she couldn’t get enough of Wyatt—and he hadn’t even touched her! Then, as he lowered his head, his moist breath flowing across her cheek and nose, Tal closed her eyes. Automatically, her hands lifted, lightly resting against his powerful chest, his heart a low, deep thud against her opened palms. The first time he touched her lips was so light, she wondered if she’d imagined it happening. Tal leaned forward a little more, wanting more physical contact with Wyatt. The second time, he grazed her mouth gently, as if silently introducing himself to her. This was torment! She wanted so much more!
continues to hone her writing skills to this day. She sold her first romance novel in 1981. The rest is history.