Changing Tracks by Sarah Cass
There’s nothing simple about forgetting your past.
Cole Mitchell runs the busiest saloon and brothel in Dominion Falls. He keeps his women at a distance, unwilling to relive a past he worked hard to forget.
Until the night Jane Doe falls into his saloon bleeding and near death. She wakes with no memory, only the firm belief someone tried to kill her. In the strange world of amnesia she manages to find solace in Cole’s arms and he finds home in hers.
While they work together to solve the mystery of her appearance, their pasts – her lack of, and his buried – build a barrier between them.
To make matters worse, Jane’s past isn’t willing to let her go. A stranger proves he’ll kill to keep his secrets safe. With those she loves in danger, Jane’s errant memory is all that stands between them and death. Cole can only do so much to protect her, will it be enough?
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Did the man want to drive her mad? Or just get her to stop crying? Either way, he failed. He just managed to infuriate her again.
“Well, excuse me.” She flew to her feet. “I told you to go and I meant it. I’ll take my chances with the Indians.” Her body went numb the second the words left her mouth.
He tossed her over his shoulder and started back toward the horse. He ignored her beating hands and feet. “Stop acting like a fool. Get on the damn horse.”
“Put me down you stupid son of a—” A shriek escaped. She hit the ground hard enough to jar her teeth together.
“You wanna draw them renegades back with your shrieking, fine. I’ll leave ya to them.”
“Good. Be a heartless oaf. I don’t care. Excuse me for wanting to know more than anything who I am.”
“Just get on the horse or I’ll put you on myself.”
“Don’t you dare.” She stepped back. “You can’t just shut me up and drag me back to town because my emotions bother you. Just because you’re afraid to feel doesn’t mean everyone is.”
He took a step toward her. “You’re getting on my last nerve.”
“Who cares? This? This is not about you. This is about me. I have nothing. Nothing at all but my emotions and I’m damn well going to feel them when I need to.”
“I ain’t dealing with a hysterical woman.” He grabbed her shoulders.
She slapped him hard. “Then leave.”
He froze, his eyes growing dark as his scowl deepened. Grabbing her wrist, he started to drag her, kicking and screaming, the final few feet to the horse.
The moment he stopped dragging, she fought harder. Pounding her fists into his chest, his arms…she even got a few kicks to his shins.
Strong arms wrapped tight around her. Shock silenced her fury.
The moment she calmed, his hold changed. While he still had her pinned tight against him, his hand slipped up to press her head close against his chest. His other arm lowered to wrap around her waist, holding her in an unyielding, but gentle grasp.
A deep, wrenching sob ripped through her at the change and she collapsed against him. The hold she’d fought enveloped her, creating a sanctuary she hadn’t expected. It didn’t loosen. He didn’t tell her to stop. She gripped his shirt in her hands as her tears started to soak the material, clinging to his safety and warmth.
The tears slowed, but they both held on. She relaxed in the strong support his arms supplied. Her composure returned the longer he held her. After a deep breath, she pulled back, the loss of his arms creating a palpable discomfort. “I’m ready to go back.”
He stayed silent until she managed to look up at him. “Good.”
Sarah Cass’s world is regularly turned upside down by her three special-needs kids and loving mate, so she breaks genre barriers, dabbling in horror, straight fiction, and urban fantasy. An ADD tendency leaves her with a variety of interests that include singing, dancing, crafting, cooking, and being a photographer. She fights through the struggles of the day, knowing the battles are her crucible and though she may emerge scarred, she’s also stronger. Changing Tracks is her debut novel, but she’s already ahead of the game with another novel set for release in April. While busy creating worlds and characters as real to her as her own family, she leads an active online life with her blog, Redefining Perfect, which gives a real and sometimes raw glimpses into her life and art.
Where to find me:
Redefining Perfect – http://redefiningperfect.com
Sarah’s StoryLines – http://authorsarahcass.com
Twitter – http://twitter.com/sadiecass
Facebook – http://facebook.com/SarahCass.Author