Sent to help an overwhelmed cavalry, Lieutenant Colt Prescott is afraid of nothing, cowed by no one, and ready to ride for what he believes. . .
Hannah Brownley is a Texas girl, through and through. Defiant even after being held prisoner for years by the Comanche, her spirit has kept her fighting--and kept her alive. And it's not about to be broken now by a so-called rescue that's separated her from the one person who matters--her son.
But Colt cannot let Hannah return to her captors, even if doing so would appease the ruthless warrior endangering his fort. Nor can he forget her haunted moonlit eyes that seem to see through him, to his deepest desires. Which leaves him no choice: to find Hannah's child and be the hero she's always deserved. . .or die trying.
Praise for the novels of Georgina Gentry
"Pure entertainment!" --Rendezvous on Rio
"Delicious...full of action, snappy dialogue, and humorous characters...readers will laugh out loud with this winner." --Romantic Times on To Wed a Texan (4 stars)
"The most delightful western of the season." --Romantic Times on To Tempt a Texan (4 1/2 stars, Top Pick, and KISS Award for the hero)
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February 07, 2012
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Excerpt from Colt by Georgina Gentry
Summer 1852 The Texas plains
Abruptly Hannah felt something was wrong. She paused in dropping a sand plum in her basket and wiped at a drop of sweat that ran down her breasts under her faded blue gingham dress.
No one else seemed to sense anything. On the other side of the creek, the others continued to pick wild plums, the midsummer heat making dizzying waves in her vision as she watched them. It was just a smattering of people from the settlement out here picking today, mostly women, an elderly person or two, and half a dozen small children.
Hannah had crossed the creek because she was tall and there were a few bigger bushes with plump fruit that only she could reach. Now she smiled at the chil�dren and stood on tiptoe in her worn shoes to reach another plum. If they could buy a little sugar, these would make good jam for the winter.
Her smile turned to a frown as she watched her hus�band, Luther, leaning on his rifle. Guarding gave him an excuse not to help with the work, she thought. He glared at her and motioned to her to get back to work. Last night's bruises still ached and she felt old at the age of eighteen. Hannah gritted her teeth and returned to picking plums, hating Luther for the way he treated her. She had run away from an abusive stepfather at fif�teen and had married Luther because he seemed to be so kind, and she had known little kindness in her life. How wrong she had been. Out here on the Texas plains, there was no place to run. It must be fifty miles to the nearest town and she had no money and could barely read and write.
Well, Luther might break her body, but he could not break her heart or her spirit, she vowed, thinking of their little son. Somehow she would survive and leave Luther. Right now, she brushed back a lock of blond hair and lifted her basket.
Then she realized what it was that had given her pause: the silence. The birds and all the insects had stopped their singing and it was deathly quiet. The other people didn't seem to notice; they all had their heads down, intent on the fruit in the straggly bushes.
Very slowly, Hannah turned to look over her shoul�der and her heart almost stopped. On the nearby rise, a group of Comanche warriors sat on paint ponies watching the whites.
"Indians! Comanches!" Hannah shouted and started through the weeds, tripped over her basket, and fell, the ripe fruit crushed under her weight and staining the ragged blue of her dress.
Now the birds and insects exploded into a mass of noise as the Comanches galloped through the dry grass, coming down off the knoll. Already the other people were running for the safety of the settlement, little children crying, women screaming. Hannah heard the pounding of hooves behind her, but she didn't look back. She was only concerned with getting across the creek. The Indian war cries rang in her ears as they gained on her.
"Luther! The gun!" she shouted, but her cowardly husband had already dropped the rifle and was tram�pling over one child after another as he ran for the safety of the settlement. Had she expected any better from him? If she could reach that gun, she'd protect the retreat--she knew how to shoot. But then as she crossed the creek her foot caught the ragged hem of her dress and she tripped and went to her knees.
Now the mounted Indians surrounded her and she struck out at them with her bare hands. "Luther! Help me!" she screamed, but her husband only paused mo�mentarily and then kept running, outracing the women and children to get to the safety of the cabins, where other men were now firing at the invading savages. If she could just make it to the cabins, she thought, but her way was blocked by screaming, painted warriors who rode around her, blocking her path.
She'd heard the horror stories about women cap�tured by the Comanches and she'd go down fighting before she'd let them take her. Even as she thought that, the leader of the war party, an ugly, grinning devil, reached down and grabbed her arm, lifting her to his dancing paint horse. He smelled of grease and smoke and old sweat, and she fought him, while he grinned at her with yellow teeth. Then he struck her, hard. She felt the pain, so familiar from a man's hands, and tasted blood as he hit her again. She must not pass out or she could not fight. Wasn't that what always en�raged Luther? The fact that she fought back instead of taking his beating meekly like a proper wife should? Somewhere in the distance, she was vaguely aware that men still fired from the settlement and most of the plum pickers had made it to safety. Only one or two lay in the grass not moving.
Her captor shouted a command in a language she did not understand and then the group took off at a gallop, away from civilization, away from safety, one of the warriors brandishing Luther's dropped rifle. She had to get away; this was her last chance or face terrible slavery or torture at the hands of the Comanche. Blood ran from her mouth as she struggled, but the ugly warrior hit her again and she could fight no longer as she hung from his saddle. The war party galloped away across the plains and she realized she was a captive.