I finished polishing up Healing the Heart last week. I’m still looking for beta readers for that if anyone’s interested in reading and giving me feedback. It’s the follow-up to Duty to Protect and is Melanie’s(Garren’s former fiancee) story(and another character that doesn’t show up in the first story.
Today I’m sharing a bit from the MS I’m currently editing, Guarding the Heart. This is the first in my BC Security series. This snippet is from close to the beginning.
“Does she get everything she wants?” Casey asked, coming up behind them.
He saw Alex’s back stiffen, knew he hadn’t heard him approach. Then, his friend was turning to him. Hannah was already sliding down from the pony’s back and climbing through the fence. “Uncle Casey,” she cried, throwing herself at him.
“Hannah Bana,” he said, wrapping his arms around her. The nickname had started a couple years ago when he’d called her Hannah Banana and she’d tried to repeat it. Just her smile always made him feel better. It had from the first time he’d held her.
She giggled. “You’re silly, Uncle Casey. I’m a big girl now. I don’t need a silly nickname anymore.”
“That’s right. You’re all grown up now. Are you ready to ship out to college?”
She giggled again. “I’m only six. You’re being silly again.”
Not too many people had ever accused him of that. But, from her, it sent a jolt of warmth through him. Along with the pain of knowing he’d never have this for himself. That had died with Marie.
“Why don’t you go in and see if Mom has dinner ready,” Alex suggested.
The little girl ran toward the house. Casey had sobered by the time he straightened. “We need to talk.”
Alex nodded. “Let’s walk. Sarah will call us when dinner’s ready. I’m sure she’ll set a place for you once Hannah tells her you’re here.”
“I don’t want to intrude.”
“You never do.” He let out a breath and ran a hand through his hair. “You know you’re always welcome here. You’re not an intrusion.”
“I know. I’m still not used to it. Family. Being welcome. It’s not easy for me.”
“It should be.” He sighed. “So, what’s going on?”
“I got all our bills paid, but the next ones aren’t going to be if we don’t get another job soon. I called George. Turlington has blacklisted us. That’s why we can’t get any jobs.”
Alex leaned his arms against a fence and stared out at the horses grazing there, many of them heavy with foals. “It’s what we figured. Don’t really care to have the confirmation though.”
“At least we know. We just have to figure out what we’re going to do.”
“What can we do, Casey? We can’t force people to hire us.”
“George said he’d help us until we got some jobs. I don’t want to take it. He’s done so much already.” Casey rapped his fist on the top rail of the fence. “I hate that he’s brought us to this. What right does he have?”
Alex pushed away from the fence. “At least you finally stopped blaming yourself. But, it doesn’t solve the problem. If George wants to help,-”
Casey shook his head. “No. It’s not to that yet. I have my savings. It’s just sitting there. I can dip into it first.”
Alex turned to him. “No. You were saving that for a house. I won’t let you do that.”
“I was saving it to get a house with Marie. That’s not a possibility anymore. I won’t let you dip into yours. You have a family, you need it for them. I don’t need it for anything.”
“You are so damn stubborn, Case.”
“It doesn’t matter, Alex. I don’t need the money. My apartment’s over the office, and George bought that building for us. The only thing I need money for is food and stuff. Hell, I eat more here than anywhere else. I should be paying Sarah for feeding me.”
“You know she’d never take it.” Alex slapped his shoulder. “We might as well head up. Dinner should be ready soon.”
“We haven’t figured out what we’re going to do yet.”
“It sounded like you already figured it out for yourself. Come on.”