Series: Ex Ops - Book #1
Author: Jessie Lane
Publication Date: June 15, 2013
Genre: Adult Contemporary Romance
Some mistakes from the past haunt us forever... unless fate steps in with a second chance.
One 'dear John' letter haunts Bobby Baker's every living moment. It’s the letter he stupidly wrote to his high school sweetheart, Belle, right after he left to join the Army. The letter that he told her that he wasn't so sure if they were ready for forever yet. But before he can let her know that the letter, and his second thoughts, are nothing but a mistake, she up and disappears from the small Georgia town they were both raised in.
Fifteen years later, Belle unknowingly walks back into Bobby's life when her job as an ATF Agent forces her to work with a group of men secretly headed by the CIA to help her track down whoever is involved in funneling black market weapons to a drug cartel in Mexico.
Bobby will use this mission to try and soothe Belle's hurt feelings while proving to her that their love is still meant for forever. He'll use every dirty trick he's learned since he joined the Army to maneuver her back into his life for the long haul. But Belle's not making it easy as she keeps him at arm's length in the hopes that mistakes of her own never come to light.
If she didn’t stop flailing around like this, she was going to fall and hurt herself. “Stay still and calm down.”
Ignoring me, she continued waving her arms around. “Don’t you get it? We’ve been over for fifteen years!”
Her body tipped dangerously the other way and, for a second, I thought for sure she was going to go head first into the wall now, instead of the carpet. The thought of her accidentally hurting herself was driving me crazy. I ground out between my teeth, “Calm down and give me your attention, dammit.”
Instead of doing as I asked, she screeched, “What in the world do you think we need to talk about?”
I grabbed her by the hips to keep her from falling on her ass. The gesture clearly wasn’t appreciated since she started trying to pry my hands off her. Ignoring her attempts to remove me, I pulled her closer until we were only an inch apart and she had no choice except to look me in the face.
The pupils were dilated in those big, beautiful, green eyes of hers. She was panting and clearly more nervous than outraged. Most of all, she was vulnerable and doing her best to hide it. What she didn’t understand, yet, was that I had no intentions of hurting that vulnerable side of her. I wanted to do the exact opposite. I wanted to protect it and her, so that nothing could ever hurt her again the way I had.
“Do I have your attention now?”
Eyes wide, she nodded.
“Good, now listen closely because this is important and I want to make sure that it penetrates somewhere through that thick skull of yours. We were never over, Belle, not as far as I’m concerned. Maybe on hold until I found you again, but never really over. I’ve been looking for you since the day you left Sylvania so I could tell you that I fucked up. I should have never sent you that letter.”
Belle’s breathing was ragged now. Eyes watery, threatening tears at any given second. Still, she didn’t say a word.
“Do you understand what I’m trying to tell you, baby? I’m trying to say I’m sorry. I was so fucking stupid and I will go to my grave regretting how badly I hurt you, but I didn’t just hurt you, I hurt us both. I’ve been walking around all these years in pain with what feels like these chunks of my soul missing. Moving through life with a heart that felt as if it wasn’t actually beating and how could it? It wasn’t possible because everything that was ever good about me was missing and it was missing because I didn’t have you.”
About the Author:
Jessie Lane is the writing team of Melissa Pahl and Crystal Leo. The two sisters-in-law share a passionate love of naughty romance, cliff hanging suspense, and out-of-this-world characters that demand your attention, or threaten to slap you around until you do pay attention to them. Because really, it is ALL about the characters. (They're kind of megalomaniacs - but don't tell them that we said that.)
Crystal and Melissa often live half their lives with their heads in the clouds dreaming of alpha military hunks, werewolves and kick ass heroines crazy enough to chase after creatures that they unquestionably should know better than to chase.
Their first YA novel, The Burning Star, was released in May 2012. Big Bad Bite is their second novel, but their first adult paranormal romance. They are now working on their next two novels, Walk On The Striped Side and Secret Maneuvers. With these projects underway, they are looking forward to showing the rest of the world their crazy stories, heroes and heroines that often plague their minds until written, and hope you will join them on their journey!
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