HAWK’S WAY—where the Whitelaws of Texas run free till passion brands their hearts.

Hawk's Way Carter

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Hawk’s Way: Carter

Hawk’s Way – Book 5

Is there a husband in the house?

When single mother Desiree Parrish discovered that her abusive ex-husband was being released from prison, she knew she needed live-in protection at her ranch. And since hiring a bodyguard would only scare her young daughter, Desiree decided to hire a husband—a big, brawny husband—who had more muscles than questions.

All cowboy Carter Prescott had to do to own a piece of Texas was say “I do” and live with a pretty woman and her cute kid. He didn’t have to love his instant family, and since Carter was incapable of that, anyway, he thought he’d gotten one heck of a hassle-free deal. At least until the truth came out . . . 


DESIREE PARRISH HAD BEEN secretly observing Carter Prescott throughout the Christmas pageant. So she saw the moment when his jaw tightened, when he closed his eyes and clenched his fists as though he were in pain. A bright sheen of tears glistened along his dark lashes. Moments later, he rose from the back pew in which he sat and quietly, almost surreptitiously, left the church.

Desiree wasn’t sure what to do. She didn’t want to leave because her daughter, Nicole, hadn’t yet performed her part as an angel in the pageant. Nicole was an angel, Desiree thought with a swell of maternal pride. But it was because of her five-year-old daughter that she needed Carter Prescott’s help. Desiree had to speak privately with the cowboy, and she wasn’t sure if she would get another opportunity like this one.

According to his grandmother, Madelyn Prescott, Carter had come to Wyoming from Texas looking for someplace to settle down. What if Carter moved on before she got a chance to make her offer to him? What if he decided to leave town tonight? Without giving herself more chance for thought, Desiree rose and headed for the nearest exit. She made a detour to grab her coat and wrap a scarf around her face to protect her from the frigid Wyoming weather.

Desiree was alarmed when she stepped outside to discover her quarry had disappeared into the night, hidden by the steady, gentle snowfall. She frantically searched the church parking lot, running through the fluffy snow in the direction his footprints led.

She cried out in alarm when a tall, intimidating figure suddenly stepped from behind a pickup. She automatically put up a hand as though to ward off a blow. There was moment of awful tension while she waited for the first lash of pain. In another instant, she realized how foolish she’d been.

She’d found Carter Prescott. Or rather, he’d found her.

“Are you all right?”

She heard the concern in his voice, yet when he reached out to touch her, she took a reflexive step backward. It took all her courage to stand her ground. She had to get hold of herself. Her safety, and Nicole’s, depended on what she did now.

Disconcerted by the growing scowl on Carter’s face, she lowered her arm and threaded her fingers tightly together. “I’m fine,” she murmured.

“Why did you follow me?” he demanded in a brusque voice.

“I . . .” Desiree couldn’t get anything more past the sudden tightness in her throat. The cowboy looked sinister wrapped in a shearling coat with his Stetson pulled down low to keep out the bitter cold. He towered over her, and she had second thoughts about speaking her mind.

But she had no choice. If was two weeks until Christmas. She had to have a husband by the New Year, and this cowboy from Texas was the most likely candidate she’d found. She examined Carter closely in the stream of light glowing from the church steeple.

From the looks of his scuffed boots and ragged jeans, life hadn’t been kind to him. His face was as weathered as the rest of him. He had wide-set, distrustful blue eyes and a hawkish nose. His jaw was shadowed with at least a day’s growth of dark beard. His chin jutted with arrogance or stubbornness, she wasn’t sure which.

From having seen him in church, she knew his hair was a rich, wavy chestnut brown. He had full lips, but right now they were flatted in irritation. Nonetheless, he was a handsome man. More good looking than she deserved, everything considered.

“Look, lady, if you’ve got something to say, spit it out.”

Desiree responded to the harsh voice with a shiver that she chose to blame on the cold. Plainly the cowboy wasn’t going to stand there much longer. It was now or never.

She spoke quickly, her breath creating a cloud of white around her. “My name is Desiree Parrish. I know from having spoken to your grandmother that you’re looking for a place to set down roots.”

His scowl became a frown, but she hurried on without stopping. “I have a proposition to make to you.”


Print Length: 304 Pages (originally in print as The Cowboy Takes a Wife, 1994)
Publisher: Harlequin, November 7, 2016
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0-373-05842-x


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