Romance Canadian Rockies style-read Something About That Lady by award-winning novelist Carol McPhee
Released on: February 10, 2008, 3:27 pm
Press Release Author: Carol McPhee
Press Release Summary: Struggling to pick up the pieces of her life, widow Brie Beaumont accepts an invitation to visit the Circle C ranch in Canada\'s Rocky Mountains. Co-owner Jed Cameron distrusts Brie\'s motives. He is determined to protect his brother and the ranch from the redheaded gold digger. But when tragedy strikes, Jed\'s only hope is the woman he vowed to run off.
Press Release Body: One She shouldn't have come! From the moment two well-worn, black leather cowboy-booted feet hit the ground and the pilot swaggered around the nose of his plane toward her, Brienna Beaumont knew she shouldn't invade Jed Cameron's territory. She inhaled sharply and pressed her fingernails to her palms but still failed to calm the butterflies twirling in her stomach. The merciless sun beating down on Vancouver airport's tarmac added to her distress. She wiped the perspiration from her forehead and hoped her underarms didn't display their discomfort.
The gleaming Cessna 210 drew her attention when she noticed the heat waves rippling above the metal surface of its bright yellow wings. The plane's engines purred, poised for take off. Brie hurried to catch up with her new friends and Alaska cruise mates, Matt Cameron, blind part owner of the Circle C, and his foreman, Hank. They had begged her to return with them to their ranch in Alberta. Their friendship on board Holland America's Ryndam had begun to erode her past year's misery. Grateful for their help, she couldn't back out and disappoint them.
They quickened their steps to greet the pilot, Matt's brother, Jed. When Jed Cameron removed his sunglasses, Brie's heart flip-flopped. His deep brown eyes twinkled as he grabbed Matt by the shoulders in a brotherly show of affection. Until his gaze fell on her.
Brie focused on the tall, lean and--judging by his scowl--surly man standing in front of her. At six-foot-two, he towered a good six inches over her. His coal black hair displayed a sprinkling of gray, but an errant forelock dipped low on his forehead, gave him a boyish appeal. For some indeterminate reason, she had offended him; his scathing appraisal told her so.
Brie stopped dead in her tracks. She had not even opened her mouth, but she felt as if she were a piece of meat, inspected by him and found unfit for human consumption. She inwardly cringed; she had been made to feel like that before.
Brie carried on with her own examination knowing it wasn't as tasteless as his. His deeply tanned, wind-burned complexion contrasted sharply with the white sparkle of his teeth. She wished he were toothless to destroy her initial impression of how handsome this guy was. If she could only get out of this arrangement and climb into a taxi for the short drive home. At least the jitters wouldn't attack her in her apartment.
Against her better judgement, she had agreed to this additional excursion shortly before leaving the ship. She wished she had time to pick up other clothes. Her suitcases contained feminine, cool-weather duds, perfect for the cruise they had ended this morning, but suitable for a cattle ranch? Not likely.
Dressed in a dark green, long-sleeved shirt and beige palazzo pants, Brie forced herself to endure the suffocating heat and humidity. She pushed her long burnished tresses back from her face and prayed it would be cooler aloft. Why hadn't her instinct kicked in and goaded her back to The Gallery so she could focus on her artwork? Then she remembered her instinct had advised her to take the Alaska cruise. The trip had given her hope that her emotional wounds had started to heal. Maybe some part of her wanted to accept this further challenge and continue the process.
Matt's introduction carried an uncompromising tone. "Jed, meet our guest, Brie Beaumont." Had Matt expected Jed's antagonism?
"Ma'am." Jed nodded, but he didn't remove his hat or offer his hand.
"I'm pleased we're meeting after hearing so much about you, Mr. Cameron." She ducked when a large plane thundered its takeoff overhead. She wrinkled her nose at the overpowering smell of jet fuel.
"Don't believe everythin' they said. Matthew's been known to exaggerate and Hank's not a helluva lot better." He winked at Matt. Hank shrugged his innocence and the pilot grinned. Trying to appear unperturbed, Brie extended her hand. She glanced up at Jed's face and wondered if this man would refuse to shake it. Was his rudeness a bluff or her imagination running rampant? He took the bait with obvious reluctance, but his grasp was firm, too firm. She was glad the handshake didn't last long because her fingers stung from his tight squeeze, a deliberate show of power. If he thought he impressed her by his display of strength, he was wrong--she'd had enough strong-armed tactics used against her to last a lifetime.
"I'm really glad Brie is going to be staying at the ranch, Jed," Matt said. "She guided me around the ship when Hank was seasick. I think she deserves a longer vacation since I took up so much of her time."
Brie reached down and patted Matt's hand. "It was a pleasure to help you enjoy the scenery, Matt. It forced me to look at the landscape in more detail so I could describe it to you. I felt like I was seeing everything through your eyes and that made it extraordinary."
"If you two are through fawnin' over each other, we'll get underway," Jed muttered. "There's a lot of work waitin' and we're burnin' daylight, Miss Beaumont."
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