Seven Day Fiance ONLY
$2.99

a Love and Games novel by New York Times bestselling author Rachel Harris

Holt Medallion Winner – SHORT CONTEMPORARY – Award of Merit.

One bad boy. One good girl. One unforgettable week…

Angelle Prejean is in a pickle. Her family is expecting her to come home with a fiancé—a fiancé who doesn’t exist. Well, he exists, but he definitely has no idea Angelle told her mama they were engaged. Tattooed, muscled, and hotter than sin, Cane can reduce Angelle to a hot mess with one look—and leave her heart a mess if she falls for him. But when she ends up winning Cane at a charity bachelor auction, she knows just how to solve her fiancé problem.

Cane Robicheaux is no one’s prince. He doesn’t do relationships and he doesn’t fall in love. When sweet, sultry-voiced Angelle propositions him, he hopes their little game can finally get her out of his head. He doesn’t expect her to break through all his barriers. But even as Angelle burrows deeper into his heart, he knows once their seven days are up, so is their ruse.
 
 
Novels in the Love and Games series by Rachel Harris:

Book one: Taste the Heat
Book two: Seven Day Fiance
Book three: Accidentally Married on Purpose

 

Information:

Title: Seven Day Fiance (Love and Games, #2)
Author: Rachel Harris
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Length: 211 pages
Release Date: October 2013
ISBN: 978-1-62266-2-388
Imprint: Bliss
 
 
Pricing varies by country and can change without notice. Please confirm pricing and availability with your retailer before downloading.
 

 
 
 

Praise for Seven Day Fiance:

“Amazing chemistry and charm heat up the pages and make this an unforgettable romance.” –Robin Bielman, author of Kissing the Maid of Honor

 
 
 
Excerpt from
Seven Day Fiance
by Rachel Harris

Copyright © 2014 by Rachel Harris. All rights reserved, including the right to reproduce, distribute, or transmit in any form or by any means. For information regarding subsidiary rights, please contact the Publisher.

Chapter One

Shivering as cool November air kissed her exposed skin, Angelle Prejean quickened her pace across the Magnolia Springs Banquet Hall parking lot. The rhythmic click of her toe-pinching heels sounded amplified in the dark, but it did jack squat to drown out her mama’s voice still ringing in her ears. What Angelle needed was a distraction, and an event planned by her crazy roommate was sure to deliver. Digging through her beaded black handbag, Angie fished out her ticket and flashed it at the entrance, then stepped inside the toasty warm lobby with a hopeful smile. It promptly froze and withered on her face.

What the…?

Looming directly across from her in the crowded vestibule stood an almost life-size poster of three faceless, shirtless men. The words For Your Holiday Pleasure were written in elegant swirling letters along the bottom.

For her stupefaction was more like it.

Angie glanced at her ticket, confirming she had the date and location right, and promptly returned her gaze to the glorious sight before her. Her breath escaped in a rush. Heat crept up her neck. But a herd of wild horses couldn’t tear her gaze away. And from the excited whirr of murmurs and giggles filling the entryway, she wasn’t the only one enjoying the man-tastic view.

Together, the half-nude beefcake trio in the poster was devastating, each man impossibly gorgeous. But for Angelle it was one man in particular, the one in the center, who had butterflies doing the cha-cha in her belly and her limbs gushing with warmth.

Cane.

It didn’t matter that the image stopped at his throat. She didn’t need to see his face to recognize the rugged bartender. The confidence in the man’s stance, the ink on his skin, and the way her entire body shook with desire and trepidation gave his identity away. Thanks to the class they took together at Northshore Combatives, Angie had seen Cane Robicheaux in various stages of undress. But despite the overwhelming temptation, she’d never allowed herself the luxury of a thorough examination. In fact, she did everything she could to avoid eye contact of any kind—not an easy feat in a town as small as Magnolia Springs. Or with an attraction as fierce as hers. But now, alone with a bazillion other women doing the same, Angie let her eyes drink their fill.

Her gaze caressed the width of his broad shoulders. Traced the lines of his flat, rippled abdomen. And feasted on the artwork adorning his skin. A koi fish swam up one side of his smooth ribs, flames licked up a thick, muscular arm, and a cross with angel wings and his mom’s name peeked from inside the other. An intricate yin-yang of a tiger and dragon covered the left side of his bulging chest, and she knew from prior, covert inspection that a fleur de lis marked his toned calf. The sound of her erratic pulse eclipsed all other sound in the room, but if Angelle were a betting woman, she’d put even money that a hum of feminine swooning was breaking around her. Cane Robicheaux exuded sex—sex and danger. And in spite of her many, many, many attempts to pretend otherwise, she was every bit as susceptible to that potent combination as the rest of the female population.

Which is why I’m in so much trouble,” she whispered with a disgusted snort.

A long shadow fell over the trio, breaking Angelle’s lust-dazed trance. She blinked and shifted her attention to a statuesque brunette wearing a bright red evening gown and an amused smirk. “Sure puts you in the holiday spirit, doesn’t it?”

“Uh, yeah.” Angelle averted her gaze back to the poster as the heat of a blush extended to her cheeks. “That it does.”

The annual Bachelor Auction was the town’s official kick-off to the holidays and usually involved tuxedo-clad gentlemen and endless glasses of champagne. Of course, that was before her roommate and Cane’s spunky youngest sister, Sherry, took control of the reins.

The brunette tapped a painted nail over Cane’s chest. “Makes me want to do a little early Christmas shopping.”

Irrational jealousy flared in Angelle’s stomach. Cane’s not really mine, she reminded herself. Despite what my parents may think. This chick’s free to bid on him if she wants. But as the woman’s lips tipped up in a cougar-like grin, that irrational flare grew into a blazing inferno of possession.

Chuckling to herself, the woman glanced at the elevated stage and catwalk centered in the room. “Good luck in there tonight. And may the auction gods be in both our favors, huh?”

Angelle nodded, forcing a brittle smile as the brunette sauntered away, hips swaying beneath the skin-tight fabric of her dress. Then, exhaling a frustrated breath, she began scouting for the bar. Normally, Angie wasn’t much of a drinker, but if Cane was a bachelor up for bid—which she should’ve assumed considering he was Cane, after all—then she was gonna need the mental fuzziness. Otherwise, she’d likely do something to embarrass herself.

Such as win the man and then ask him for an incredibly crazy favor.

Looking past the image of forbidden flesh, her eyes slid over the long silent auction table boasting lingerie, jewelry, and highly questionable novelty items. Lining the floor beyond that were cramped cocktail tables decorated with what appeared to be whips and bright feather boas. A jolly, holiday-appropriate, yet completely incongruous Christmas tree was off in the far corner, holding ornaments she was sure would shock the country out of her if they were visible. To say Angie was out of her comfort zone would be an understatement of massive proportions. She was so far outside the zone she may as well be in a different zip code.

Why on earth had she thought an event by Sherry Robicheaux would be tame?

This was what Angelle got for not asking questions. She’d been too slammed between working shifts at the stables and volunteering at the firehouse to push for details, and her roommate hadn’t exactly been forthcoming. Now she understood why. Sherry knew Angelle wasn’t brazen like the brunette or a flirty vixen like herself. Nope, she turned five freaking shades of red simply ogling a damn poster.

Shaking her head with a grunt, Angelle turned to leave, her well-worn flannel pajamas and the Hallmark channel calling her name…and locked eyes with Colby.

So much for her escape plan.

Colby was Angelle’s former rival turned friend. She was also Sherry’s sister, and together the two women had taken her under their wings, practically making her an honorary Robicheaux. Now that Colby had spotted her, there was no way Angelle could get out of staying. At least not without admitting her considerably non-sisterly feelings for big brother Cane. Which she’d never do. The two women would be like dogs with a bone if they ever caught wind of her feelings—matchmaking, plotting, and hankering for a love match. She loved her friends to death, but despite her town newbie status, there was one thing Angelle knew as well as any native…

Commitment, in Cane Robicheaux’s eyes, was a four-letter word.

Colby waved her over with a wide smile, indicating the empty chairs at her reserved table. A table located dead center facing the catwalk, giving them front-row seats to the debauchery beginning any minute.

Oh goodie.

“This is for charity,” she reminded herself, propelling her feet forward. Her continued presence and the tightness in her belly had nothing to do with Cane being a bachelor. Or the fantasy of bidding on him. Nope, even her overactive imagination knew that was never gonna happen.

Audacious she wasn’t. But oh, how she wished she were.

When she’d left her small hometown of Bon Terre, Angelle had vowed to reinvent herself. To leave the timid mouse behind in Cajun country, honor her sister’s memory, and carve her own destiny for once. But nine months later, Angelle was still Angelle, just in a different town.

Her plans for taking on the big bad city of New Orleans had changed the moment she stumbled upon sleepy, sheltered Magnolia Springs. A suburb a mere thirty miles shy of her intended destination and a town that, while certainly different, was only marginally larger than the one she’d fled.

Her wish to be daring did lead her to become a local volunteer firefighter, a dream she’d held since she was nine years old. But it also only took three months of flinching at every creak of the floorboard and whistle of the wind to kiss her dream of living alone good-bye and move into a cramped apartment with Sherry.

And finally—and perhaps the most distressing—it was Angelle’s overwhelming desire for more than a string of Cracklin Queen titles and a life of inactivity that had landed her in the biggest pickle of her existence.

The reminder of her ginormous lie, followed by the crazy promise she’d made her mama just an hour ago made her groan aloud. At least when I make a mess, I make sure it’s a good one.

Angie cut to the right as Colby lifted two glasses high in the air. Either her friend was double-fisting for the night or she’d miraculously read Angelle’s mind. She hastened her steps, the bright red drink calling to her like a beacon—then pitched forward abruptly when her heel snagged on the carpet.

Without thinking, she snapped her arms out to stop her momentum.

And whacked an elderly woman upside the head with her purse.

Time stopped. Then it fast-forwarded as Angie’s eyes widened in dawning horror. Wincing, she raised her head and saw Colby sitting a mere two table-lengths away, mouth twitching with laugher. Sadly, it wasn’t twitching with surprise, because this sort of thing was par for the course and, unfortunately, how Angie rolled: ungraceful and clumsy, with an added dash of socially awkward.

Bracing herself, Angelle turned to the poor blindsided woman, who smiled as warmly as she’d expected, because that was how residents of her new hometown rolled: forever kind and forgiving, even when randomly assaulted. “Oh, Mrs. Thibodeaux, I’m so, so sorry.” She smoothed her hands along the beaded sleeves of the elderly salon owner’s gown, wishing the ground would swallow her whole. “I didn’t see you. I didn’t—”

The gray-haired woman tsked, brushing her hands away. “Girl, that carpet’s older than me, which means it’s older than dirt. Your pretty shoes getting caught ain’t your fault.” She palmed Angelle’s flushed face and gave it a not-so-gentle tap. “Now stop all this fussing over an old broad and go grab yourself a drink. It’s almost time to win you a gentleman.”

Angelle placed a hand over the woman’s wrinkled one, grateful for the understanding. Of course, there wasn’t a chance in Hades she’d win anything—or anyone. But that drink was sounding better and better.

After escorting Mrs. Thibodeaux to her table of friends, Angie finally made it to Colby’s table. With a poorly disguised chuckle, her friend held out a tall glass. “You look as though you could use this.”

“What gave me away?” she asked, making grabby hands for the drink. “My elegant stroll across the room or my cheeks flushing as red as my hair at your sister’s welcome poster?” She took a long pull off the straw and made a yummy noise of contentment—hurricanes, nectar of the gods.

Colby laughed. “And here I thought that rosy flush was my brother’s doing.” Angie squirmed in her seat, and her friend winked knowingly. “As for the poster, I admit the majority of Sherry’s schemes are questionable at best, but in this case I think she’s onto something. Adding the Best Abs contest almost doubled advance ticket sales. Higher attendance means more money for Project Nicholas.”

Angelle nodded, agreeing that anything that made more money for the local charity, which provided a Christmas for kids who didn’t expect one, was indeed awesome. But then the rest of Colby’s words sank in, and she choked on her drink.

Colby patted her back as Angelle slapped her chest. “Did you just say Best Abs?”

That explained the poster in the entryway.

Colby sat back with a frown. “Sherry didn’t tell you anything about tonight, did she?”

She shook her head as lovely air made its way back through her windpipe. “That would be a gigantic nope. And I’m beginning to think that was intentional.”

“You’re probably right about that.” A chorus of hoots erupted from the table behind them and Colby rolled her eyes, leaning in. “Well then, let’s get you up to speed. The Best Abs contest kicks off the night. Instead of tuxes, I’m guessing the guys will be strutting around shirtless—most likely in Santa hats, if I know my sister. We’ll vote for the bachelor with the most delicious six-pack, and then it’s on to bidding on them like cattle.” She grinned as she looked at the rock on her finger. “Well, I won’t be bidding. But the rest of you will.”

An image of a shirtless Cane in living hot color leapt into her mind, and Angelle’s tummy fluttered. “I’m not bidding, either.” Colby wrinkled her nose, and she clarified. “I’m making a donation, but I’m only here to support the guys Sherry roped into this thing.”

Colby shot her a look of disbelief, but a woman with purple-streaked hair and a bright red getup a la Mrs. Claus chose that precise moment to walk out onstage. Angelle watched as Sherry surveyed the amassed crowd with a wide, maniacal grin, then waved enthusiastically when she spotted the two of them front and center.

“That girl has no shame,” Angelle muttered. She pointed her finger with narrowed eyes, indicating her feelings on being bamboozled into coming, but Sherry merely sent her a dramatic air-kiss and Angie couldn’t help but laugh. It was dang near impossible to stay annoyed at her quirky friend.

“Absolutely none,” Colby agreed. “But to her credit, she offered to make tonight equal opportunity and let the women take part. Fortunately, no one thought Best Boobs on an event poster for charity would go over too well.” They shared a look and broke into laughter. Only Sherry would suggest something like that with the genuine intention of being fair.

Magnolia Springs may not be the adventure Angelle had set out to find, but she was ever grateful for the detour.

Women began taking their seats, alerting Angie that the auction was about to begin. Her heart beat a strange rhythm against her breastbone and, removing her straw, she tipped her glass back and drained the remaining contents with one big gulp.

Colby gave the empty glass a pointed look. “So you’re really not bidding tonight? Not even on an overbearing, good-hearted, bartender-slash-restaurant-owner?”

Especially not on him,” she answered emphatically, even as a voice whispered that doing so would solve her problem. Realizing that may sound harsh to the man’s sister, she explained, “Not that there’s anything wrong with Cane. Your brother’s great. He’s just not my type.”

Colby snorted. Judging by that and the arch of her perfectly defined eyebrow, the talented chef wasn’t buying the disinterested line of bull at all. Unfortunately, Colby had eagle eyes. She’d witnessed enough of Angelle’s squeaks, blushes, and stutters whenever Cane flashed his dimples or showed her extra attention that she could call her bluff. But Angie planned on pleading the fifth to the grave.

The truth was that other than a passing, embarrassing interest in Jason (the fire captain who was now Colby’s fiancé), Cane was the only man in town who’d even sparked Angie’s interest. And he put the miniscule flicker of attraction she’d once felt for Jason to shame. That’s probably because it hadn’t even been Jason Angie had wanted. More like the idea of him. Her ill-advised crush had been back at the start of the summer, when her parents had first started hounding her.

Before her lies had snowballed. And she became short one fake fiancé.

“Then sweetie, enlighten me,” Colby said, resting her chin on her hand. “What is your type? Because as long as we’ve been friends, I don’t think you’ve gone on a single date.”

Angelle blew out a breath as she flagged a passing waitress with her empty glass. It was always fun when that depressing truth made its way into a conversation. “To be honest, I don’t know,” she admitted. “I haven’t been on a first date since I was seventeen.” Colby’s jaw gaped, and she shrugged. “I didn’t really date much before then, either. Brady, my ex, was a family friend, and we actually dated until right before I came here.”

Right after he proposed in front of God and everyone.

Angelle wasn’t proud of how it had gone down, or that she’d broken her best friend’s heart. But they hadn’t been right for each other. He had proved that by proposing so publicly, both embarrassing and forcing her to decline in front of all their loved ones. But they’d had no passion, no excitement. And other than having to tell him no in front of a packed auditorium, she had no regrets.

Shifting her gaze to her wrist, she touched the word she’d branded over her old childhood scar the very next day when she’d decided to leave home. It was a reminder of what she was searching for, what she was hoping to find, and now that she’d gotten herself into such a crazy scrape, perhaps even a suggestion on how she could get herself out of it.

Chance.

How in the hell do I get talked into this shit?

Taking in his reflection in the men’s room mirror, Cane Robicheaux wondered if perhaps he’d lost his mind. Sherry had pulled some crazy stunts in the past, but this went beyond, even for her. He prided himself on always being there for his sisters, helping them with anything they asked. But after tonight, maybe it was about time he started telling them no.

The bathroom door opened, letting in the high-pitched squeals from the main room. Awesome. Just what he wanted—inebriated, horny, most likely middle-aged-and-over women. Never mind that was normal barfly material. At least when he tended bar he wasn’t dressed like a male stripper. A familiar face appeared in the mirror behind him, mouth pinched in a pathetic attempt to contain a laugh as he said, “Ho-ho-ho.”

Cane flipped Jason off, but it only made him laugh harder. “Your ass should be doing this shit with me,” he muttered, slapping the damn Santa hat on his head.

His best friend for more than thirty years leaned his shoulder against the doorjamb and grinned. “Ah, but see, a perk of being engaged is getting out of the annoying crap your future sister-in-law asks of you.” Cane narrowed his eyes, and Jason punched him on the shoulder. “Having a smoking-hot fiancée doesn’t suck, either.”

Cane grunted. Five months together and it was still awkward as hell hearing Jason call his little sister hot. And whenever Colby went there, Cane straight-up tuned her out. He had no problems with their relationship—marriage wasn’t for him, but if they were happy, he was happy. He just didn’t want to hear the gory details.

The door opened again, and this time his youngest sister stuck her head into the room. “Five minutes, Santa-man.”

Jason tugged a strand of her dyed-purple hair. “Sherry, you realize this is the men’s room, right?”

“Please,” she scoffed. “Ain’t nothing I haven’t seen before. Besides, have you gotten a look at the hotties in this group? If I ‘accidently’ caught a peek at their bits, I certainly wouldn’t cry.”

Cane grimaced, and Sherry flashed him a grin, flicking the white puffball dangling off the side of his face. He plucked the hat off his head and raked his fingers through his hair. “You owe me for this.”

“Brother of mine, tell me, how is this different than any other weekend at the restaurant?” she asked. “You know good and well women line up the moment you step behind the bar, all on the off chance you’ll shoot those magical dimples at them, and we rake in the profits. The only difference tonight is you’re being ogled for charity.”

Cane didn’t give a shit about being ogled; Sherry was right, women did it all the time, and if admitting that made him a dick, so be it. But prancing around like a jackass wasn’t his thing. Auction organizers had hounded him for years to be involved and he’d declined them every time. But when his baby sister did the asking… Of course, she’d waited until after he’d reluctantly agreed to mention he’d be a shirtless jackass, in bright red drawstring pants and a Santa hat.

He shook his head in disgust at his reflection. He looked like a damn pansy.

“Oh, cheer up, you grump,” Sherry teased. “Buzz on the street is you’re gonna raise Project Nicholas a crap-ton of money.” Pushing up on her toes, she kissed his cheek, wiped her thumb over the red lipstick mark, and grinned. “Besides, it’ll be fun. I promise.”

Fun was a Friday night behind the bar. It was strumming his guitar after a long-ass day, grabbing a beer with Jason, or even watching a stupid teen movie with his godchild because it made Emma smile. It was balancing the restaurant’s budget because he was screwed up in the head and enjoyed that kind of thing. He doubted any part of tonight would be fun.

As if playing devil’s advocate, his mind brought forth the image of a jittery woman with haunting green eyes and a killer body. Now if she were in the audience, it would be a different story.

Sherry sent him another dazzling smile. “I’m off to gather the rest of the cattle—I mean guys. See your cute bootie out there.” She blew him a kiss as she backed out the door, letting in another wave of horny female buzzing.

Jason chuckled under his breath, and Cane turned with a scowl. “Why are you here again?”

“To help Sherry with the sound equipment,” he replied, unfazed. Grabbing Cane’s hat from the sink, he held it out with a smirk. “Besides, you didn’t think I’d miss seeing this, did you?” The gleam in his eyes promised he’d never let Cane live this down.

Yanking on the damn hat, Cane strode from the men’s room. The line of half-naked bachelors extended down the hall, and with a shake of his head, he took his place at the back. Together they looked like a deranged elf’s wet dream. Or a Christmas card for Playgirl. Jason slid him another smirk on his way to the sound equipment, confirming they looked as stupid as he felt, and a minute later, Michael Buble’s “Holly Jolly Christmas” faded.

It was show time.

“What’s up, Magnolia Springs?”

The response to Sherry’s animated question was a wave of whoops, and Cane rolled his eyes.

“Do I have a treat in store for y’all!” his sister continued. “Sixteen of the hottest guys in the area are here tonight: musicians, business owners, and local heroes, all eager to become your l-ove slaves.”

The audience exploded again and Cane muttered, “I’m eager to get the hell out of this outfit.” The guy in front of him turned and gave a nod of agreement.

“First up is the highly anticipated Best Abs contest!” Sherry shouted, and Cane could picture her gleeful smile. “One at a time, the men will strut their stuff on the stage, and it’s your job to clap, squeal, and stomp your feet for the bachelor with the most toe-tingling, tummy-twirling, sinfully sexy washboard abs. And ladies, I got a sneak peek at the goods backstage and let’s just say I know the temperature’s cool outside, but it’s about to get hot up in here!”

Another round of girlish cheers went up as the very un-holiday beginning of Right Said Fred’s “I’m Too Sexy” rolled through the speakers. In unison, the line of guys’ heads in front of him drooped. If he weren’t so pissed, Cane would’ve laughed. Apparently, he wasn’t the only one dreading this.

It just went to show how formidable his little sister’s powers of persuasion were.

“Our first bachelor, Michael LeBlanc, is the newest member of the Magnolia Springs Police Department…”

As Sherry called out names and read each guy’s stats, she’d pause for the women to show their approval. The whole thing was ridiculous. The dude in front of him took the stage, and Cane lifted his eyes to the clock mounted on the wall. Seven fifteen. In forty-five minutes, the auction should be over. Less than an hour of torture, doing his time with whomever won him, and then he could change back into normal clothes and get the hell out.

“Last but obviously not least, we have my brother, Cane Robicheaux. He manages Robicheaux’s, the best Cajun restaurant not only on the north shore, but in the entire New Orleans area, in my ever-so-humble opinion.”

At his sister’s corny joke, the crowd laughed and Cane exhaled. Here went nothing. He stepped out from behind the curtain and the previous wall of laughter morphed into one of sharp whistles and innuendos. A woman in red near the front licked her lips.

Cane averted his eyes to Sherry, conveying again how much she owed him for this, then began walking across the long stage, eyes focused on the wall ahead.

“As most of you know, you can also find Cane behind the bar on the weekends serving up your favorite drinks, and if you’re lucky, you may just catch him on our small stage serenading the masses with his soulful voice and guitar. Cane’s thirty-three years old, six-foot-two, and the three words he’d use to best describe himself are tenacious, ambitious, and focused.”

Cane swung his head around, and Sherry shrugged.

She hadn’t asked him any questions.

“The three things he can’t live without,” she continued, “are his family, his guitar, and Colby’s beignets. His biggest pet peeve is dishonesty. And his idea of the perfect first date involves a bottle of wine, a quiet dinner, good music, and a great good-night kiss.”

Up until that last part, he’d actually been impressed. As Cane turned to walk back across the stage, he mumbled for her ears only, “Better get used to the morning shift, little sister.”

The agreement had been that she’d take all the opening shifts for the next two weeks in exchange for Cane doing the auction. After that little stunt, she’d extended her sentence to a month.

Sherry grinned. “As my big beast of a brother takes his mark, let’s hear who thinks Cane Robicheaux has the Best Abs of the night!”

The applause was deafening. Before he knew what was happening, his sister had placed a bright red sash over his head, declaring him King of Abs. And he’d thought he looked like a pansy before.

Cane grasped Sherry’s elbow, ready to inform her she was on permanent opening duty, when he lowered his gaze to the crowd and spotted her front and center. The one woman he wouldn’t mind shouting innuendos at him. And the only one, other than his sisters, who currently wasn’t.

Angelle’s head lifted from her drink as if she could feel his stare. The spark of attraction she always tried to hide flared within her deep-set, vibrant green eyes—eyes Cane couldn’t forget. He’d first seen them five months ago, shortly after the sexy redhead tripped over her own two feet and then apologized. He’d been hooked ever since.

Angelle was a mystery, as exotic and foreign as her French-sounding name. Guileless wide eyes, an aura of innocence, a voice like whiskey, and the word Chance inked on her wrist, she was the first woman ever to get under Cane’s skin…and the first and only to appear ready to hurl whenever she saw him. Strangely enough, it only made him want her more.

Women didn’t tell Cane no. If anything, they acted like the vapid red dress in the front.

But Angelle was too close. Near the danger zone. She was friends with his sisters, worked with Jason, and gave riding lessons to Emma. She ate at the kitchen table he shared with Colby more often than he did, which should make her off limits. Yet against every instinct and belief he had, Cane wanted her.

For months, he’d fought it. Tried ignoring the attraction, tried losing himself in other women. But in each face he looked into, he saw her eyes. Eyes so open and honest they gave all her thoughts away. Heard her sexy, roughened tone instead of the soft, feminine voices that used to turn him on. Nothing he’d done had gotten her out of his system, and he was starting to think the only thing that would was the woman herself. He needed to satisfy his curiosity for her and get his carefree, no attachment, no commitment life back on track where it belonged. Thanks to his father’s infidelity, Cane wasn’t made for forever—but he was good for one hell of a night.

And now was as good a time as any to prove that.

Usually, women chased him, but for Angelle Prejean, Cane was happy to play the hunter. He actually looked forward to it. Settling his determined gaze on hers, his lips tipped up into a smile as a slow flush rose in her cheeks.