In honor of the ‘Lover’s Holiday’ that is upon us today, here is an excerpt from my western romance book, Me and Billy the Kid.
Softly, Garrett asked me, “Angel, won’t you stay with me? Don’t go back to Billy.” My mouth fell open, but no words could be heard.
Garrett wasn’t finished; he held out a satchel, “Make up your mind Angel: stay here with me and let me protect you. I’d be good to you, Angel, and I’d be good for you. Or you can take this bag; inside there are twenty dollars, a change of clothes, your gun and knife, and enough food and water to last you a week, and you can run. Run as far as you can. Maybe Billy will take you back and maybe not. Either way, I’ll always love you, and I’ll be hoping you’ll come back here and knowing it won’t take long for me to win you over, really win you over. And I’ll be wishing you’ll come to love me, too.”
I hadn’t expected this. Garrett loved me? Sheriff Patrick Garrett loved me? Impossible, and yet, hadn’t I know that all along? Didn’t I see it in his eyes? Or tell by the way he walked beside me, protective and loyal? Yes. I had known. And hadn’t I been just the tiniest bit proud? Or maybe the right word was smug. Yes, that was true. But did I love him back? My heart pounded and I screamed at myself, ‘Traitor!’ as I finally unraveled one of the many feelings I had for that tall, dark eyed man that was beside me.
I felt a…fondness towards him. Of course, it was nothing like the deep love I had for Billy, but still, there was something. But if I had to choose, even if Billy didn’t love me anymore, I would never, could never, choose Garrett.
He was the Law. I ran from the Law. So why wasn’t I running now? My heart was pounding in my throat as I reached out and roughly took the satchel from Garrett’s hands. I turned, but not in time to miss seeing the immense hurt in his eyes. But the hurt was replaced almost instantly with determination. I could tell Garrett was going to try and earn my love.
I spurred my horse forward, hearing him call after me, “I still love you! I’ll be waiting for you! Angel, please!” I tried to block his words, but they found me, hurting and burning me like hot coals.