The Colony by Cami Checketts
To protect her sons from the mistakes of her past, Brinlee Trapper escapes to a secluded mountain home. But there are dangers lurking in the mountains she has never encountered. The little family is saved from injury by Jed, a mysterious hunter. Brinlee is drawn to him, but she worries about his involvement with a peaceful commune hidden deep in the mountains behind her property.
Lance, Brinlee’s attentive neighbor, has his own troubled history. Between his obvious attraction to Brinlee and his developing love for her children, Brinlee finds it more than difficult to guard her heart against this tender intrusion.
While Jed offers a life of excitement and freedom, Lance holds the key to the family Brinlee always wanted. When it comes time to choose, she learns that both men have secrets that could shatter her fledgling trust in men and the wrong decision could leave more than her heart exposed to danger.
“I think you want me as much as I want you,” Lance continued when she managed to say nothing, “but there’s something in you that’s holding back. When you’re ready to let go and share your secrets with me, I’ll share mine with you.”
With that he released her and walked to the back door, swinging it open and gruffly saying, “Lock this behind me.”
Brinlee took a deep breath. “Trying to protect me again?” It came out more bratty than she’d intended.
He nodded shortly. “From me and every other man who wants you.”
Brinlee swallowed and whispered, “I don’t need protection from you.”
Lance let go of the doorknob. Strong strides carried him back across the room. His eyes never left hers as he wrapped her in his arms and kissed her until she couldn’t breathe. Each movement of his lips and hands shot warmth through her entire body. The desire was there, but somehow she knew that wasn’t the only reason he was kissing her. He wanted all of her—body, mind, and soul. His kiss made fire race through her and she never wanted it to end.
He released her, turned away, and looked back over his shoulder. “Lock the door, please.”
Brinlee numbly followed him to the door. He gave her one more longing look before striding outside. She turned the lock. All she could hear was that deep voice saying, “I’m yours.”
It was the most amazing kiss of her life. Her lips still tingled. Sleep wasn’t an option so she returned to her studio to paint. But this time through the dark of night she painted with light. She savored each stroke of the brush as she re-created the passion she felt toward Lance on canvas. Her hands still covered in paint, she stepped back and sighed with happiness. In the picture her brave warrior was surrounded by a fiery sunset and staring into her eyes. She’d captured the way Lance looked at her in real life, and there was no hiding the joy her portrait felt, and the happiness she experienced deep in her own soul. Lance had told her he was hers, but the truth was she was his also.
"Cami Checketts is a genius! She writes about topics that aren't widely discussed, in and out of books, and she does such a brilliant job of crafting these things into wonderful stories that touch your heart and remain with you for days afterwards." ~Myra, Reviewer, Pieces of Whimsy
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Cami Checketts is married and the proud mother of four future WWF champions. Sometimes between being a human horse, cleaning up magic potions, and reading Bernstein Bears, she gets the chance to write fiction.
Cami graduated from Utah State University with a degree in Exercise Science. Cami teaches strength training classes at her local rec and shares healthy living tips on her fitness blog: http://fitnessformom.blogspot.com.
Cami and her family live in the beautiful Cache Valley of Northern Utah. During the two months of the year it isn’t snowing, she enjoys swimming, biking, running, and water-skiing.
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