HIS TO PROTECT
By: Karen Rock
Released Oct 1st, 2016
Subject: Lt. Commander Mark Sampson
Mission: Keep his eyes on the skies…despite one sexy distraction!
There are things a man can never undo. For Coast Guard search and rescue pilot Mark Sampson, it was the agonizing decision that cost him a teammate—and his faith in himself. But an unbelievably sexy blonde on a secluded beach may help him forget…if only for a night.
Cassie Rowe needed a distraction—and, boy, did she get one! How was she to know the brooding stranger who rocked her world was the pilot who’d left her brother to die? And now they’re on the same mission. She should hate him. But she can’t fight the storm of desire threatening to pull them under…
Cassie brushed back a strand of hair and the light gleamed on a charm dangling from her silver bracelet. An anchor. Recognition exploded in Mark’s gut. He’d been with Jeff when his friend bought a birthday gift for his beloved sister back home. Of course Cassie had worn it here. She carried her brother’s memory as Mark did, had followed it into the worst storm of the century.
As if he wasn’t feeling enough for her, tenderness swamped him at her dogged, gutsy determination. What was more, he desired her with a wild rush that shoved him to the edge of his control then drop-kicked him over it. The last shred of his resistance shattered.
He wanted her. Wanted the peace, the mindlessness that night in Clearwater had offered. Reason wasn’t working. Not even with himself.
“I still don’t want you on board tomorrow, but just dancing with you is killing me.” Bending his head down, he found the beat of her pulse and he brushed his lips against it. “What if we forget everything else for tonight and just…”
Her lips curled into a sexy, sassy smile and then she veered through an opening in the shrubs beside them. What the…?
At her shouted challenge, he leaped onto the beach. Her long hair flew behind her as she raced down to the water and excitement surged. The masculine need to capture, conquer, dominate galloped through him and he sprinted after her.
Just before she reached the water, he grabbed her waist and swung her around. Their laughter rang out then slowed when he turned her in his arms and lowered her slowly along the length of his body, feeling every luscious inch of her.
Above them gulls rode the winds, screeching and calling to each other above the noise of the surf, but his mind was too filled with Cassie to notice.
He placed his hands around her face and pulled it gently to him. “You’re not meek,” he whispered against her mouth.
He ached. Throbbed when her lips curved and her eyes danced up at him.
“What am I, then?”
“Mine,” he groaned and his mouth captured hers, feasting. He wanted to banish her hurts. Erase the pain that shadowed her eyes. He didn’t know if he could protect her from the storm tomorrow, but he could shelter her tonight, comfort her the only way he knew how.
She enjoys returning to her teaching roots when speaking at regional and national writing conferences and interacting with other writers. She has a Master of Fine Arts in English and has continued to learn and grow professionally through her work with YA co-author, fellow romance author, friend and sister-in-law, Joanne Rock.
When she’s not writing, Karen is an avid reader who’s typically immersed in three different books at a time, all in different genres. She also loves cooking her grandmother’s Italian recipes, baking, Christmas (no need to specify—she loves every bit of it), and having the Adirondack Park wilderness as her backyard, where she lives with her husband, daughter, dog and cat who keep her life interesting and complete..
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