If it feels right, do it...even if it could get you killed.
Bound and Tied, Book 1
After months of isolation--and celibacy--claim partners Zach Braun and Jake Thompson finally discover gold. And, as their celebration spills over into forbidden lust, an unexpected sexual attraction to each other rises. Then they discover they're not alone...and the spy is trying to make off with their clothes and their gold.
On the run from an Indian captor, parson's widow Honor Whitaker is hungry, desperate, and determined to never let another man control her. Stumbling upon two men touching each other in an extraordinary way, she finds herself mesmerized by their tryst. And scandalously aroused by a totally different kind of hunger.
Catching the little thief is easy, but Zach can think of only one way to silence Honor's panicked babbling. Kiss her senseless. One sample of her delightful lips leads to more...then to a night where Zach and Jake show her that a man's control over her body isn't necessarily a bad thing.
Even as the three learn to let go of the notion that pleasure is the devil's work, someone else is watching. Someone who's out to reclaim what's his.
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October 25, 2010
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Excerpt from Honor Bound by Myla Jackson
Zach sat across the table from Jake, his fork poised over the beans he'd been picking at for the past half hour.
Jake had cleaned his plate and sat nursing his second cup of coffee. The man had the good sense to keep his mouth shut through preparation of the meal as well as during the consumption. Twice he'd opened his mouth, thought better of it, and then closed it again.
Finally, Zach laid his fork to the side of his uneaten meal. "Spit it out."
"You gonna leave her out there for the wolves?" Jake asked.
"What do you suggest?"
"Well, it ain't right to leave a defenseless woman outside in the cold."
Zach snorted. "Defenseless?" He held up his arm, displaying the cuts and scratches and a bite mark. "She's not defenseless."
"Trussed up like that, she is." Jake glanced toward the open door.
Zach had his back to the woman. She'd been quiet now for almost an hour. Guilt gnawed at him and the guiltier he felt, the angrier he became. He'd seen her legs stretching out beneath the hem of his best shirt. When she'd squirmed in his arms, he'd felt the shapely curves of a woman. Even now he remained affected by her feminine parts.
His shaft hardened, pressing against the buttons of his trousers. He had to shift and readjust twice before he got any relief. Across the table, Jake stared at him, a smirk curling the corners of his lips.
Zach frowned. "If you laugh, I swear I'll punch you right in the nose."
"We've known each other, what? Seven years?"
"So?" Zach looked down at the food on his plate.
A grin spread across Jake's face. "I don't think I've ever seen you so confused."
"What did you expect? After what happened out there..." He nodded toward the door. "I don't know what to think."
Jake laughed, immediately holding up his hands to ward off Zach's promised punch. "That's what I'm talking about. Confused."
"Gentlemen, it's getting cold out here," the woman called out, her voice weaker than earlier.
Another pang of guilt knotted Zach's belly, making it bubble.
"She's a pretty little thing, don't you think?" Jake fiddled with his cup, his gaze on the coffee, not Zach.
"That's the other thing. How am I supposed to act around the ladies after... Ah, hell." Zach rose so fast his chair fell backward, thumping against the dirt floor.
Jake shrugged. "The same. You act the same as always." He stood slowly and walked around the table. He reached out and laid a hand on Zach's shoulder. "Look, it's nothing to get your breeches in a twist. You and I, we're friends. That won't change."
Zach stared into Jake's face. "How could it not change?"
"Hello? Anyone listening? It's getting extremely cold." This time the woman's voice shook.
"I'll always be your friend." Jake glanced toward the door. "Don't get me wrong, I still like women and look forward to having me one in Idaho Springs, but what we did was special. Don't make something dirty out of it." He faced Zach and stuck out his hand. "Friends?"
Zach sucked in a deep breath and let it out, then clasped Jake's hand in a firm handshake. Man to man. "Friends." The word was brief, gruff and not nearly as fancy as Jake's flowery speech, but he meant it. No matter what, he still had a great respect for the other man.
Jake's smile widened. "Good. Now, are you going to do something about our little thief, or am I?"
Zach pushed the sleeves of his shirt up his arms and braced himself for his next round with the hellcat.
He stepped through the cabin door, for the first time realizing just how cold it had gotten since he'd gone in to cook supper. A chill shivered across his skin as he glanced down at the woman in the dirt. Still he didn't move to untie her or carry her into the cabin. "You gonna fight me?"
She twisted her head to look up at him, dirt streaking her face where tears had dried. Fiery red hair sprang out in wild disarray, the lustrous curls only slightly dingy from the layer of dust. Long, slender legs ended in moccasin-encased feet.
The little bit of relief he'd gotten at Jake's hands in the pool didn't seem nearly enough. A woman like this could provide even more enjoyment if a man didn't have a sense of morals and responsibility. He bent beside her. "That's my shirt."
She glared at him. "You can have it back. Just untie me."
He stared at her for a long moment, admiring the emerald green of her eyes and the dusting of freckles across her nose. "You stole our gold."
"I swear I didn't know about the gold. I was hungry. I only wanted the beans." As if to emphasize her words, her stomach grumbled loudly.
Jake laughed. "Can't be lying about that, not with the noise her belly's making. Let the girl up. We have some of those beans she tried to steal left in the pot."
"Please," she said, her eyes pleading with him. "Please untie me. I promise not to steal anything. I'll leave and you'll never see me again."
Zach didn't know what to do with the woman. The cabin barely had enough room to house two big men. If he left her out in the open, the wolves would finish her off. If the wolves let her be, the cool mountain temperatures would be the death of her, dressed in nothing but his best shirt. Zach rubbed his chin.
Bruised, scratched and thin, she could use a good meal. His dead mother's voice poked at his conscience, urging him to take care of those who couldn't take care of themselves.
This woman in front of him had stolen from him. She didn't deserve his charity.
Then again, he couldn't leave her out in the open.
Zach sighed, scooping his hands beneath her legs and back. He stood, slung her over his shoulder like a sack of seed and strode through the cabin door. Once inside, he dumped her on his bed, flipped her onto her face and untied her feet and hands. With one hand holding her arm, he pulled her to her feet and spun her around to face him.
Her free arm swung out and she slapped him hard across his cheek.
He jerked her forward, slamming her into his chest. Both arms wrapped around her, pinning her arms to her sides. "What'd you go and do that for?"
Her green eyes blazed, bright red staining her cheeks beneath the dirt. "That's for your poor treatment of a lady."
"Why I should--"
"What?" She practically spit the word in his face. "Rape me? Murder me? Leave me out in the cold to die from exposure or as wolf fodder? Go ahead. You deserved that and more."
Behind him Jake chuckled.
"I don't know what you're laughin' about, but you better shut yer goddamn mouth."
"I wasn't the one to get slapped." Jake laughed louder. "And if you'd seen your face when she did it..."
Honor's chest rose and fell with every breath. "You can't do anything short of killing me that hasn't already happened. I'm sick and tired of men treating me like a slave. Here, give me your gun, I'll do the deed for you. I've had quite enough--"
His ears ringing and no spare hand to shut her up, Zach did the only thing he could.
He covered her mouth with his, kissing the fool out of the angry redhead.