~ Blurb ~
Haunted by memories of war and strangely prophetic dreams, Gaston "Ranger" Boudreau spends his time alone in the Louisiana bayou he calls home. When fellow SEAL, Matthew "Wolf" Steel calls in a favor, Ranger can't refuse—a Boudreau always pays his debts.
Writer Sarah Sloane is in New Orleans on a mission, to find her missing sister. Unsure what she'll uncover, she needs somebody who knows the city—but more, she needs a bodyguard who can keep her safe. One sexy former Navy SEAL might be just the person for the job.
As Ranger's dreams evolve, the dangerous search for Sarah's sister becomes a race against the clock. Can they find her before it's too late, or will their quest cost more than one life?
~ Excerpt ~
Weaving in and out of the pedestrian traffic got a little trickier the farther he walked. Tourists congested the sidewalks at the outer edges of The French Quarter, and he maneuvered around them with predatory ease. When his path got too obstructed, he detoured around a corner and took an alleyway between buildings. It wasn't long before he stood at the back door of Lucky's, the hole-in-the-wall bar that was today rendezvous point.
Lucky's bar wasn't some chic New Orleans hot spot. It wasn't on any list of tourist attractions, though it had been around for decades. Nope, it was the kind of place men like him frequented when they wanted a cold beer and a distinct lack of conversation.
The bar's scarred and pockmarked wooden floors had seen customers come and go for the last ninety years. Though gouged and rough in spots, the golden brown patina felt warm and welcoming. Huge plate glass windows heavy with painted advertisements fronted onto the street, where people strolled past, intent on seeing the sights of the touristy part of The French Quarter. Lucky's didn't broadcast its location with fancy neon lights or huge signs trawling for customers. Lucky, the owner, claimed the garish neon was too pretty for his place.
Ranger looked around the half-empty bar, scoping out the dark corners for Wolf or any of the other guys from his SEAL team. He'd met them all during the rescue except Tex, though he'd talked to the man several times since he'd been back. Tex had stayed behind and coordinated the extraction of Ranger and his teammates. He respected each of the men who'd helped save their lives and brought home the ones who hadn't been so fortunate. Not a single member of Wolf's squad was here in the nearly empty bar.
Knocking his knuckles against the huge wooden bar top, he got Lucky's attention and within seconds had a longneck bottle in his hand. With a practiced ease that came almost second nature, he checked out the smattering of tables spread out throughout the right half of the bar. Some held bikers wearing leather jackets and a lot of attitude, but they kept to mostly to themselves and weren't causing any trouble—yet. A couple of dock workers sat at another table, nursing longnecks, and one couple doing their best Hoover imitation rounded out the motley crew.
He eased his tall frame into a chair in the farthest corner away from the front door, his back against the wall, leaving a clear line of sight to both the front and back entrances, and twisted off the cap of his beer.
Long minutes passed with only the occasional straggler coming through Lucky's front door. If he hadn't had that itchy feeling at the back of his neck, he'd have chucked it all after the first hour and headed home.
But he didn't. Couldn't. Something big was headed his way—that damned psychic connection of his was buzzing, though he hated when it didn't give him anything concrete. This lousy ephemeral woo-woo crap was for the birds. Give him solid, concrete, hold-it-in-your-hands proof and he was a happy camper.
Still, he couldn't discount his gut instincts or whatever anybody called it. They'd never let him down. And the one time he hadn't paid attention, he and his entire team ended up in a bombed out hovel, surrounded by Taliban gunmen. He didn't plan to make the same mistake twice.
A flash of light shone on the worn and gouged wooden floor of the bar as the front door eased open, but that wasn't what caught his attention. It was the gorgeous brunette framed in the battered wooden opening that held him mesmerized.
Dressed in ragged jeans and a faded AC/DC T-shirt, there wasn't anything extraordinary to made her stand out from the crowd. Except he knew, with a deep down, positive-to-the-bone certainty, she'd come to Lucky's to meet him.
She slid off the dark glasses shading her eyes, and plunked them on top of her head. From this distance, he couldn’t tell what color they were, but strangely found himself certain they'd be blue.
Ranger watched her scan the room. Yep, the woman definitely had a specific target in mind, and he had a sinking feeling he knew exactly who she searched for. When their eyes met, he was positive.
Wolf wasn't coming. Instead, he'd sent this raven-haired beauty.
~ Meet Kathy Ivan ~
USA TODAY Bestselling author Kathy Ivan can’t remember a time when books and reading weren’t a part of my daily life. I was blessed with a mother who instilled the love of reading in me at a young age. That progressed into a passion for the written word in all forms, which led to my writing. Every day I have new stories and new ideas roaming through my brain, the characters chomping at the bit for their turn to be front and center and have their story told. Today that love of storytelling translates into my desire to write and share my stories with others. I write in many genres, but I’m currently concentrating on romantic suspense and paranormal.
My day job is about as uncreative as it gets. I do medical transcription, spending numerous hours at the computer each day trying to decipher the mumbled, garbled and often unrecognizable words the physicians are dictating, in an effort to make a complete and comprehensive patient record. It’s almost as bad as trying to read their handwriting!
Born and raised in Miami, Florida, I’ve lived in various places throughout my youth, from California to Hawaii and back to Florida (Key West), before finally settling in Texas. I make my home outside Dallas, Texas with my spoiled black lab (Missy).
I am a member of Romance Writers of America and the Dallas Area Romance Authors (DARA), where I’m an active member; you can find me at the local meetings each month.
That’s about it off the top of my head. I love talking with other readers and writers, so feel free to contact me.
~ Connect with Kathy ~