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Looks were deceiving. Joy Delaney’s looks, anyway.
Texas Ranger Rico Estrada marvelled at the sight of seemingly happy-go-lucky Joy clapping her hands and doing a line dance to Boot Scootin’ Boogie.
Since when was she so freaking happy? She hadn’t been that way yesterday when he’d seen her in the Grain and Feed. She hadn’t looked that way in the tabloids or fan mags since her auto accident a year ago. Did coming home to her parents’ ranch do that?
Grousing beneath his breath, Rico took another drink of his root beer. He wasn’t officially on duty, but he was tracking a suspect. Besides, he wanted his head clear to figure out what the hell to do about Joy’s reluctance to give him the time of day. Whenever she’d come home before for a visit, she’d been ready to hop into bed with him for a one night stand. Why had she come back into town just when he had the offer from headquarters to move? The irony made him see red.
Worse, he never got mad. Cool had always been his motto. It was how he’d got his job, how he kept it, how he worked alone like any Ranger to always get his man. Getting his woman was another story. And the one woman he had wanted since they were in high school had been Joy Delaney—and for certain, she did not inspire any rationality in him. Never had. Not over a decade ago when she was the pretty little blonde nerd who sang country and western with the soul of a wronged woman. Not later, either, when she won the title of Miss Texas, sans the big glasses over her amethyst eyes, suddenly the well-endowed contralto with the killer bod.
He hitched a boot up to the bar. His spurs jangled. His balls ached.
Why had she come home to Brewster County? To recover from any remaining disability from that accident, do some R & R, and look him up. As ever, she’d come to him for a dose of good lovin’, then leave him yearning for more than one great fuck. He muttered his frustration. This time, if she came to him for a lube job, he vowed he’d find a way to show her he was done being her Convenient Home Town Lover. He was moving. Going to Austin. Drowning his addiction to her and the ridiculous hope that tied him here to this jurisdiction. His high school crush on her had grown during the intervening years into the biggest illogical hard-on for the unattainable, irresistible Country Singer of the Year. Time to call it quits. Time to make her see he was in charge of his own damn life.