Love blooms in the most unexpected places!
Abduction & Seduction
Contemporary Novellas – “The Bluest Eyes in Texas”
Joan Johnston’s “The Bluest Eyes in Texas” is one of three novellas in this collection which also features “Redbird” by Diana Palmer and “The Bounty” by Rebecca Brandewyne.
Three short works of fiction follow themes of rugged and dangerous men of the West who kidnap the women of their choice and unexpectedly capture their hearts.
LINDSEY MAJOR PRESSED HER FINGERS AGAINST HER temples to ease some of the awful pressure, then rolled onto her side, hoping that would relieve the pain in her head. As she did, her skirt wrapped around her legs. That was odd, because she slept in men’s pajamas and had since she was a teenager and thought it was a cool thing to do. She reached a hand down to untangle the yards of material and realized it wasn’t just any old skirt. It was ankle-length taffeta. She was still wearing her ball gown!
Lindsey sat up abruptly, which set her head to pounding ferociously and brought a wave of nausea. She fought the sick feeling, sliding her feet onto the floor and carefully pushing herself upright on the edge of the bed. Which was when she realized she wasn’t in her own bed upstairs in the Texas governor’s mansion. She was . . . somewhere else.
It wasn’t a dream. I was kidnapped right off the front porch of the mansion. I’ve been drugged. That’s why my head hurts.
Lindsey caught a glimpse of herself in the mirror across the room and was appalled at what she found. Her tawny golden hair had fallen from its sleek French twist. The makeup she’d sparingly applied to what the press had labeled “the bluest eyes in Texas” was so badly smudged that she looked like a raccoon on a binge. And her beautiful strapless taffeta dress—a glorious shade of lavender that rivaled the remarkable color of her eyes—was crumpled from having been slept in. Lindsey tried to remember what had happened after the struggle on the porch but drew a blank.
There was no window in the room, no route of escape. She crossed to the only door and slowly, silently, tried the knob. It was locked. She pressed her ear against it, hoping to get some clue as to who had kidnapped her and what terms they were demanding for her release. She could actually make out voices in the next room. Two men were arguing. What they said sent a cold chill down her spine.
“I say we might as well enjoy her while we can. Hector ain’t gonna let her go even if the governor commutes the Turk’s sentence like he asked, and the Turk goes free.”
The Turk! Lindsey thought with despair. I should have known.
Turk Valerio, the man who’d accidentally shot and killed her mother in an abortive assassination attempt on her father five years ago, had been sentenced to die for his crime. The Turk had boasted that he would never be executed, that the Texas Mafia, headed by Hector Martinez, would find a way to set him free. Lindsey had the sinking feeling that she’d become a pawn in a very deadly game.
“I can see the governor’s face when he read that note,” a second voice, one with a distinct Texas drawl, said. “’Commute Turk Valerio’s sentence by noon tomorrow, or I’m gonna blind the bluest eyes in Texas.’ Bet the man turned white as a ghost!” A high-pitched, almost girlish giggle followed.
“I’m telling you both, leave the girl alone,” a third voice said.
“Hell, Burr, you wouldn’t spoil our fun, would you?”
“Make a move toward that door and we’ll see,” the man called Burr replied in a steely voice.
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Print Length: 384 pages
Publisher: Silhouette, February 1, 1995