It’s Teaser Tuesday again, the series where I share snippets from my novels, upcoming releases and works-in-progress.
This week we’re venturing back in time to my second novel, Heart of the Valley. This book is a favourite of many, including me. The crush I had on the hero, Lachie, was agonising and lasted for months. He was so tender and understanding of the heroine, Brooke. Complete sighworthiness, but as I’ve said before when discussing my heroes, I’m shockingly biased!
Heart of the Valley is available now in paperback and ebook from Booktopia, Amazon, Kobo, iBooks, Google Play or your favourite retailer. You can also discover more about the story and how I came to write it on my ‘The Story Behind’ page.
Now for a little taste of Lachie’s niceness. Enjoy!
Brooke is at the family property, Kingston Downs, attempting, yet again, to cure herself of the phobia she developed after a terrible accident…
Her stomach clenched as Venus’s annoyed whinny sounded through the car’s open window. Despite the cold, Brooke’s hands were sticky with sweat. No sound came from the Land Cruiser’s engine and unless she took hold of herself and turned the ignition key, none ever would.
Gritting her teeth, she closed her eyes and rested her forehead against the steering wheel, trying to channel the resolve that had seemed so intense on leaving Willowgrove. Andrew and Chloe had faith; why couldn’t she?
She looked up to find Lachlan standing near the door, eyeing her with a worried expression, and quickly looked away again. ‘I’m fine.’
‘If you don’t mind me saying so, you don’t look it.’
‘I said I’m fine.’ She closed her eyes. ‘Oh God, I’m sorry. I’m just . . .’ She threw up her hands, hating her rudeness, this awkward, horrible situation.
‘Grieving,’ he said, tossing the word she’d used before back at her.
He took a step closer and curled his hand over the door. She stared at him. His eyes were doing that tortoiseshell thing, and his mouth held a gentle curve. Standing there, he seemed big and safe and strong and kind. Like Angus, except musclier and with much, much longer eyelashes.
‘It’s not grief,’ she said suddenly. ‘I’m scared, like you said. It’s Oddy’s screams. I can’t make him stop. He just gets louder and louder and then I can’t breathe . . .’ She slapped the wheel in frustration. ‘I need to beat this but he just won’t stop.’
‘Maybe I can help.’
He shrugged. ‘I don’t know. I don’t know anything about psychology but I can offer big shoulders to cry on. I could even be your punching bag if you’d think it’d help.’ He bent and picked up Billy, who greeted her with an excited doggy grin. ‘Or you can just borrow my dog. He doesn’t mind being cried on.’
‘How do you know?’
A shadow stole the brightness from his eyes. He glanced away. ‘Long story.’