New Release!!! It’s that time again. LOL
Guarding Flint, Wyoming Secrets Book 1, is my 31st title and is now available on Amazon. Just click the link at the end of this post and it will take you to the Amazon nearest you. Gotta love those international links. 🙂
Guarding Flint is a contemporary novel of romantic suspense. It’s also a clean read for those of you who don’t appreciate the bedroom door being open. 🙂
Ella Delaney is a small town girl with a big heart, except when it concerns Flint Harrington. She’s working a case when her sons’ long absent father winds up in the middle of her stakeout.
Flint reconnects with Ella during his working vacation in Thayne, Wyoming, hoping for a long overdue reconciliation. But shots fired at him coupled with his daughter’s kidnapping has Ella investigating him instead.
Can they work out their troubled past while surviving present dangers? Or the better question…after the way Flint left years ago without a word, can he count on Ella’s help?
“No!” Ella Delaney spoke under her breath as a car drove up to the building she had under surveillance. The old manufacturing plant had been redone and now encompassed several office suites, but as it was after hours, the amount of activity she’d seen as she drove by was unusual. This car was a late model Ford Fusion, a family car, different from the splashy vehicles that had arrived earlier.
“Don’t get out. Go away,” she pleaded silently to no avail. Instinct told her something was about to go down, but she hadn’t a clue what, so she’d called for back up and stayed out of sight.
The man braked to a stop in front of the main entrance. He turned off the engine. Her heart launched into her throat as he opened the driver’s door. Could he be part of the organization that leased this building? The man stepped onto the asphalt parking lot and closed the door. She saw the glint of a gun barrel from an upstairs window at the same time as she recognized the man by the car…Flint Harrington. He hadn’t changed much, except for the fancy suit he wore.
Everything seemed to happen in slow motion. Her stomach knotted in fear for him. Then adrenalin kicked in and she ran. The distance between them seemed farther with every step. “Get down!” she hollered. She was upon him in moments and knocked him to the ground. Bullets peppered the pavement around them, but they were relatively safe behind the shelter of his vehicle. “We have to get out of here.” She slipped sideways to let him up, suddenly conscious of the fact that she had landed on top of him. He used to like having me in that position. She gave her head a mental shake and moved into a low crouch. “Keep your head down unless you want it blown off.”
“What the hell is going on?” he asked in a harsh voice.
“Later.” Ella shot a quick glance at the window. “He’s reloading. Now’s our chance.” She opened the driver’s door and crawled across the seat, careful to keep her head low, but when she turned, he was still on his knees outside. “Flint, come on.”
His head jerked up when he heard his name and a brief moment later, she saw recognition dawn on his handsome face. He nodded once and climbed in behind the wheel. “Where to?”
“Anywhere. Just go. Get us out of here.” She dialed her partner as Flint reversed and, with tires squealing, took off. She ducked as bullets sprayed the passenger side of the car.
“Fred, where are you?”
“Enroute to your location. ETA two minutes,” he answered.
She straightened up in her seat. “I hope you brought back-up. Those guys are armed and shooting at anyone who goes near. I just rescued a civilian from their parking lot.”
“Good God! Are you all right?” he asked.
“I’m fine and so is the civilian.”
He mumbled something in response. She didn’t quite catch it, but she knew what he was thinking. She wished Fred wouldn’t come off as being so protective just because she was a female. She’d been on the job long enough to prove herself and then some.
“Signing off. We’ll park around the corner of Seventh and Douglas and wait for you.” She disconnected the call and clipped her phone back into its holster.
Flint braked to a stop in front of a derelict building on the corner of Seventh and Douglas.
“You were eavesdropping,” she accused.
He turned toward her, a frown marring his features. “Hardly eavesdropping when you’re sitting right beside me. I couldn’t help but overhear. So what’s going on?”
Business, Delaney. Stick to business and forget about those blue, blue eyes and that hunky body. “Why were you at that building?”
He settled back in his seat, his gaze roaming over her from head to toe. “It’s not polite to answer a question with a question,” he replied.
His avid perusal made Ella glad she was sitting down. Her body tingled with awareness from the top of her head to the tips of her toes. If she’d been standing, she was certain her legs wouldn’t hold her; such was his effect on her…still. “So sue me. Now answer the question.” She showed him her badge.
He appeared suitably impressed, his eyebrows rose in surprise as he nodded. “I didn’t know you’d entered law enforcement. And to answer your question, I was there to check on an order.”
How could you know? You left without a word and didn’t bother to keep in touch. “What kind of order?” Several vehicles pulled into the lot across the road. “Never mind. Later. Stay put.” She exited the car and joined her comrades.
“Who’s your friend,” Fred asked.
“Flint Harrington. What’s the plan?” she asked, nodding at her colleagues to acknowledge their presence.
“Harrington? What’s he doing in town?” Fred’s forehead creased as he squinted his eyes against the sunlight and tried to see through the tinted glass on Flint’s car.
“Delivering an order, but we’ll get to that later.”
“All right. You said they’re shooting? From where?” Fred asked.
“The shooter was at an upstairs window in front. As soon as Flint got out of his car, he opened fire.” She shuddered at the realization that he could’ve been shot. Hell, they both could’ve ended up bleeding out on the asphalt.
“And you ran to his rescue at the risk of getting yourself killed? You just might have saved one of the organization’s men. Did you think of that?” Fred lectured, his stance one of outrage.
“Momentarily, yes, but if he was part of their organization, why would they shoot at him?” she asked, trying to keep calm in the face of his questioning. “Now, what’s the plan?” she asked, effectively changing the subject.
“How did you get so close without them seeing you?” Fred asked.
“I saw too many cars in the parking lot of a vacant building, so I parked and went in from the east side. There aren’t any windows on that wall and I was able to hide behind a dumpster and watch as several shady-looking characters arrived, most carrying packages of some sort. It didn’t look good and I wasn’t going to tackle that crew alone, so I called for back-up. From what I’ve observed, the east side is still our best approach.”
“Then let’s go.” He turned to the other officers present. “Ella and I will go first, then count to ten and send two more. Repeat. Any questions?” Fred asked.
Everyone shook their heads, ready to follow at ten paces.
“Keep alert,” he said.
Fred took the lead, as usual, even though it had been her stakeout. She couldn’t blame him though. He’d protected her from the time they were little kids and living in foster care. She’d needed him then. Now…not so much, but he was the big brother she’d never had and she didn’t want to hurt his feelings by protesting too much.
Halfway to the building, she heard engines start around front. Tires squealed and she could smell the burnt rubber as they took off. “I don’t like this.”
“Neither do I,” Fred said as they kept moving forward.
An explosion rent the air and they dived for cover behind an abandoned vehicle, debris falling all around them as if it was dark rain.
“What in the blazes was that?” she asked, brushing a burning ember off her shoulder.
“They bombed the place. You okay?” Fred asked as he looked her over and brushed away more of the ash that had landed on her.
“I’m fine. You?” she asked as she took stock of the officers following. It looked as if no one had gotten hurt in the blast. Fred didn’t have time to answer as a second explosion, much nearer, had them running for a safer spot.
She hit speed dial for emergency as she ran. This was an older section of Thayne, Wyoming, and these buildings would burn like matchsticks.
“911. What is the nature of your emergency?” asked the dispatcher.
“This is Officer Ella Delaney. There’s been a bombing at the old cheese factory on Douglas. Send emergency crews.”
“Right away, Officer Delaney. Was anyone hurt?”
“I don’t think so. Better send the paramedics just in case.”
“I’m on it.”
Ella stopped beside Fred and the other officers at a safe distance from the blaze and looked back at the carnage. Several smaller explosions added to the flames as they watched. The entire building was a blazing inferno. She heard sirens in the distance. “It’s a good thing we didn’t try to rush the place. We would’ve been blown to kingdom come.”
“Or shot down on sight.”
“Yeah. Do you think Flint was a decoy? If they suspected we were onto them, they might’ve arranged that little scenario to draw us out into the open.”
“Maybe, or it could be that he was targeted because of his involvement with them,” Fred said, watching her closely.
Did Fred suspect she still had feelings for the man after all the time that had elapsed since Flint had been gone? “You mean they didn’t trust him for some reason?”
“Could be just about anything.”
“Then we’d better get back and take his statement,” she said, hoping Flint had a viable answer for being on the scene. The fire trucks arrived and the firefighters went to work on controlling the blaze. They assigned a few men to crowd control and, as there was nothing else they could do to help, they walked back to their vehicles.
Flint’s car was gone.
That’s it for now, folks. Enjoy!