Everything is just right...until she turns his life upside down.
Red, Hot & Blue, Book 4
It doesn't take anything fancy to make Jared Gordon a happy man. A slice of his mama's pie, a pretty girl, a well-bred horse. Life on the farm is just how he likes it. Simple. Until a big-city girl blows into town like a tornado hitting a trailer park.
Quintessentially small-town Pigeon Hollow has everything L.A. producer Mandy Morris needs for her new reality show. A smoldering deputy sheriff, a quirky diner owner and a horse farm complete with a hunky horseman. If her own instant attraction is any indication, Jared will have the female demographic glued to their sets.
Except the red-hot cowboy is cool to the idea of cameras in his face. And the harder she negotiates, the deeper he digs in...until their head-butting strikes sparks that fan a prairie fire of unexpected passion. She doesn't usually mix business with pleasure, but as Pigeon Hollow's charm works its magic, the youngest Gordon brother has Mandy rethinking many things.
Like happiness doesn't have to end with the word "cut".
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May 09, 2011
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Excerpt from Jared by Cat Johnson
The babe in front of him was looking mighty warm in that jacket. He started to sweat in sympathy. She blew out a breath and ran a hand along the back of her neck and under her shoulder-length hair. Then she took the jacket off.
That was enough to make a man stand up and take notice. Now she looked downright hot, enough to make Jared sweat for real and not from the air temperature.
Under that jacket, she was wearing nothing but a tight, low-cut, sleeveless top. Much better than the jacket, he decided, forcing his eyes up from her breasts and back to her face.
"We've got satellite television with all the channels, but I can tell you that a pretty stranger is much more entertaining." He treated her to his most charming smile but it didn't seem to work like it usually did on most women.
"I need to speak with the owner. Do you think you could stop whatever you are doing--" she looked around pointedly as if to let him know she didn't think he was doing much of anything before she continued, "--and go and get her for me?"
What she'd said captured Jared's attention even more than her sexy tank top had. He raised a brow. "Her? What makes you think the owner is a she?"
She let out an annoyed sounding sigh. "I do my research. I know this farm is registered with the small business bureau as being a woman-owned business."
The question of why she was researching them remained unanswered. He was about to interrogate her further when the woman owner in question, his mama, stuck her head out of the kitchen door.
"Jared, honey. The computer crashed again. When you come in for lunch maybe you can figure out why that keeps happening."
The pretty stranger glanced from his mother standing in the door of the house and then back to Jared. The look she shot him was full of suggestion. "Is that the owner?"
"Yup." He started walking toward the kitchen, resigned to the fact that this nosy but hot female was bound to follow.
As anticipated, she practically jogged to keep up with him. "Are you and she...ah, you know? A couple?"
He stopped dead and turned in horror. "No."
She shrugged. "It's okay if you are, I'm just wondering."
Jared shot her another unhappy glance and then scowled all the way to the back door at her lewd suggestion.
Okay, maybe if he took a moment to re-evaluate his mother the way a stranger might see her he wasn't so shocked. Mama had been really, really young when she got married and started having babies. She'd just turned fifty, but she took good care of herself.
Dressed in cut-off jeans and flip-flops the way she was today, she looked easily in her early forties. Jared was in his late twenties. He knew there were some actresses in Hollywood who dated guys as much as twenty years younger, but still, this was his mother.
Jared shook his head. This woman came from a totally different world than he did. A world he could barely comprehend. Given that, he'd have to try not to judge her too harshly, particularly since he had kept his real identity from her. He also resolved to find out her damn name so he could stop thinking of her as this woman because he had a feeling he'd be thinking a lot about her.
Holding the screen door open for her, Jared waited for her to walk through first. Hell, he had been raised right. He knew how to act around a lady, even if she was likely some sort of salesman, uh, salesperson. He would have introduced her to his mama too, but again he didn't know the woman's name. Luckily, she was one of those assertive business-like types and stepped right up without waiting for him. "Ms. Lois Gordon?"
His mama nodded.
"I'm Mandy Morris." She smiled and stuck out her hand. "It's a pleasure to meet you."
"The pleasure is all mine. Jared never brings his girls home to meet me." His mama smiled wide and shook her hand.
Mandy--cute name--glanced at him briefly and then turned back to his mother. "I'm sorry, Ms. Gordon. I think you've gotten the wrong impression. I'm not one of Jared's girls. I'm actually here to see you. I have a business proposition for you. If you have some time now, I'd love to discuss it with you privately."
Jared noticed she said the last word very pointedly, as if to let him know he was not welcome to participate in the discussion about whatever this business proposal was. He looked her over again, all decked in her city clothes. No way was she here to make an offer to buy the farm, or even a horse. She was probably trying to sell them ad space in the local yellow pages or something.
"Ms. Morris, I may be the owner on record for Gordon Equine, but my son runs the farm. All I do nowadays is handle the paperwork and the accounting and crash the computer." Mama smiled and indicated the computer, phone and stack of papers on a desk set up in the corner of the kitchen.
She insisted on working in the kitchen rather than making one of the many other rooms into an office. Mama said it was because she usually was cooking or baking something at the same time she was working on the books. Multi-tasking, isn't that what women called it?
Personally Jared preferred doing one thing at a time. Though glancing at Mandy again, he decided he could definitely get into doing some multi-tasking when it came to her.
"Your son?" Mandy looked understandably surprised at what Mama had just revealed. She also didn't appear happy. She shot him quite a nasty look.
Now he was in for it.