Jules and Brogan Evans aren’t in any position to help out with their brother’s daughter, but they aren’t the kind of men to turn away family when one of their own is in need. Besides, surely they can manage a teenager for one month. They stand by that belief until their eighteen year-old niece shows up with match-making ideas on her mind and the perfect candidate at her side.
Serena Evans doesn’t understand why her uncles are so upset. They were willing to open up their home to her, why not her best friend, Jenna? Most men love Jenna, after all.
And there lies the problem.
Jules and Brogan run a large cattle ranch, a successful livestock operation by day and the city’s favorite hang out spot at night. They’re known around town for the parties they throw but when their niece and her friend show up, all good things come to an abrupt end, until Serena returns home to sit by her mother’s bedside. That's when the Evans brothers discover Jenna has no place to go and little motivation to leave.
“You could’ve said no,” Jules told him for the fifteenth time.
Brogan was sick of hearing his mouth flap. He grabbed a bale of hay and slung it more at Jules than the wagon and thanks to his tantrum, he missed both. Brogan swatted his palms together briskly, and then shook his head.
They glared at one another for a few more turns of tossing hay. Jules threw one bale and Brogan moved another.
“Tell you what. I’ll call him right now. Tell him to turn around and head straight back to Birmingham. You’re right. We don’t want two little women moving into our world and ruining our party.”
“Uh-huh,” Jules moaned.
“How about I tell him to give Fiona a kiss on each cheek for us? Maybe he’ll tell her how sorry we are that we couldn’t keep the kid because we had women to screw and pussies to tap this summer. What about it, Jules? Sounds like a good enough excuse, doesn’t it?”
“Shit, man,” Jules gritted his teeth. “What I mean is I don’t see why Serena had to bring a friend along. It doesn’t make sense. If her momma is dying, why doesn’t she stay with us for the summer and let us spoil her? Why bring a gal pal too? I don’t need two teenagers looking for trouble around here. If they start prowling around this town on a search for some, they’ll surely find plenty. With our reputations and this place here, every boy in his late teens will be looking our way. We’re askin’ for trouble’s all.”
“Heath said the gal with Serena has no where else to go. She’s been staying with them. Serena and this kid go everywhere together.” Brogan nodded toward the driveway. “Speaking of which, they’re here.”
Jules jumped off the large wagon, pulled his fingers away from his work gloves and tossed them aside. He swiped the sweat from his thick brow with a tented hand closed over his forehead. Trying to block the sun didn’t work. It only made it more difficult to see the sleek SUV moving toward them. The automobile looked like a black giant inching closer and closer. Maybe they should have taken it as a sign, a real warning.
Brogan felt an odd feeling, a true sense of dread wash over him all at one time. He shook off the sensation and decided it was the heat. As if he saw the whole thing in slow motion, he glanced over at Jules and saw his eyes widen about the time Serena and her father closed their doors simultaneously.
The back door opened and the first thing Brogan saw was a pair of long, slender legs. Golden curls bounced lightly on shapely, bare shoulders as a woman—maybe the most beautiful he’d ever seen—stepped away from the car.
“Shit,” Jules said. “That’s no kid, Brogan.”
“Maybe it’s Fiona,” he fired back. “It’s been two years since we’ve seen her.”
“Fiona never had boobs…or curves.”
“Maybe she grew five inches, lost fifty pounds along with twenty years in there too. Heaven help us if that’s Serena’s friend.”
“Uncle Jules! Uncle Brogan!” Serena waved wildly. “Hurry up. I want you to meet Jenna!”
The men stared at one another. Brogan felt his upper jaw twitch and Jules lost his color. They glared at their little niece like she wasn’t just the culprit in planned mischief but she was also the red-haired, freckled-face, favored child of the devil himself.
“Damn it to hell,” Brogan said before he reminded Jules, “I seem to recall Heath saying the friend staying with us was, in fact, named Jenna.”
“Sweet mercenary,” Jules whispered.
Both men started down the hillside and Brogan warned. “Not a word. Heath is counting on us. If he can stand to be around her, we can too. Maybe she has a quirk or two.”
“It’s not a visible one, if she even possesses a flaw. Besides, you’re forgetting Heath is a saint compared to us. Remember, Daddy always said he belonged to the milkman.”
“Preacherman is more like it,” Brogan muttered under his breath. “But I still remember a time when Heath liked the same things we do. He always liked his women young and willing to train.”
“He’s married for crying out loud!” Jules walked ahead of him. “And I don’t think he’s capable of thinking straight if he brought that to us!”
“He may have a ring on his finger, but he ain’t blind!”
Jules chuckled. “Remember that old adage. They say love is capable of all sorts of things. Heath must have full blinders on. No man in his right mind would drop that girl off here."
Maybe there was the problem. Why, sure, it explained everything. Heath just wasn’t in his right mind.
Thursday, June 17, 2010
Two Cowboys Are Always Better Than One
An award-winning, international bestselling erotic romance author, Destiny Blaine writes under several pen names. She lives in East Tennessee and spends a lot of time in Connecticut and Virginia, where her granddoll resides.