Veterinarian Matty Connors’ visions lead her to homicide detective Brian Sullivan once again despite her resolve to remain anonymous the past four years. Her official work with the police in California resulted in the brutal murder of her fiancé, and since, a recurrent nightmare she barely survives. Brian, the reputed ladies man of the Sullivan family, has yet to give his heart to a woman until Matty lays claim to it. His black-and-white approach to solving crimes doesn’t jibe with Matty’s spooky pronouncements or her reputation for alleged infallibility. A wild goose chase searching for a murder weapon casts doubt on Matty’s “truths” and threatens their smoldering romance. Is Brian her nightmare slayer and ultimate truth? When the puzzle pieces fall in place for Brian, will it be too late to save Matty?
Matilda braved a glimpse in her dresser mirror and assessed the toll nightmares had etched on her face this time. The cut over her eye had scabbed over. Were those dark circles under both eyes from the accident or lack of sleep?
Her finger traced around the scalloped rim of the framed picture of her and Eric. Smiling, carefree, linked together side by side in the blazing sunshine—foolishly in love and unaware that there wouldn’t be a long string of lazy days at that beach in their future. Who could have guessed that three weeks after the picture was snapped Eric would be dead and she would be alone?
Tears welled. Four years, eight months and twenty-two days without you, and I wish I could stop counting. Maybe then the nightmares would stop.
Brian Sullivan’s request had triggered a cyclone of dreams: Eric-haunted nightmares and Brian-laden fantasies. Dreams featuring Brian admittedly caused most of the tossing and turning last night, but she wouldn’t linger on that. If she did, she’d have to acknowledge the heady reawakening of his fantasy kisses, the yearning he stoked in her while defenseless in sleep.
Dreams could be denied and forgotten in daylight. But she couldn’t deny how many times thoughts of Brian had upped her pulse and shot suggestive musings through her brain during her routine yesterday. Why am I letting this happen? Tempting as the man is, I can’t risk the danger.
A red rubber ball bounced against her foot. Clyde clamped his mouth around the ball, lifted it off the ground with a yank of his neck and dumped it again on her foot, demanding her attention.
She stooped and picked it up. “Want to play? Dumb question, right Clyde?”
The Boston terrier cocked his head, trained his screwy eyes at her, dashed out of the room and took off down the hall. Nails clicking against hardwood flooring, Clyde pulled up short, skidded to a halt and turned around toward Matilda, anticipating her toss. Bent halfway out the door, she pitched the ball; he retrieved it, raced back into the bedroom and dropped it on her foot again. The mind-numbing game of fetch continued as Matilda varied the directions she heaved the ball, in the intervals applying her make up and managing to finish dressing. Clyde was Eric’s dog. Eric and Matilda would sit for hours in their backyard in California sipping wine, watching the sunset, and throwing the ball for the then frisky puppy until they both ran out of steam—Clyde always won the fetch “endurance” contest.
“OK, kiddo, time to go to work,” she commanded.
GUEST POST: Our First Hero
For most little girls, their Daddy holds a special place in their hearts – that’s the case for “The Daughters”.
Our Dad was a paratrooper in World War II. The sparse stories he related about his experiences during the war – usually funny anecdotes that had nothing to do with the grim reality of serving our country, under fire on foreign battlefields – captured our imaginations, instilled an awed appreciation in us for men in uniform, and entrenched our Dad as the ultimate hero in our hearts.
He sent us our first Valentines, and every Valentines Day thereafter, we received another card from him, signed, “your first Valentine.” He adored our mother, and even to sheltered little girls (who he intended to protect from lustful males forever) he modeled the romantic love of a man for his woman.
Daddy died when Pat was 19 and Kathie was 15. Shoveling snow after a freaky Easter snow, he halted before he finished the driveway and weakly made his way back inside. Three terrified females: Mom, Pat and Kathie, watched helplessly while the paramedics carried him to the ambulance. Eleven days later, he lost his ultimate battle against acute leukemia.
Mom was only forty-four years old when she lost her first and only love. She never remarried. For her, after him, no other man compared - a sad, but gloriously romantic influence on her daughters.
All our romance novels explore and celebrate the healing power of love, and our characters overcome loss and grief in pursuing their “happily-ever-after”.
We take after our dad in our love of language and the written word, and the craft of writing itself. He penned children’s stories, so story-telling runs through our veins. Our father, Michael Lynch, inspired us to write about unforgettable heroes who capture their ladies’ hearts.
K.M. Daughters, in addition to the autographed copy of AGAINST DOCTOR'S ORDERS for a randomly drawn commentator (as well as the tour host with the most comments), will be giving away charms to randomly drawn commenters-- two sterling Chamilia “Sisters” charms and a Claddagh charm (fitting for a Sullivan Boy) that fit Pandora style bracelets.