Redeemed Cowboy Novella
Redeemed Cowboy Novella
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USA TODAY BESTSELLING AUTHOR Hope Ford brings you a steamy cowboy romance about a frumpy administrative assistant with a secret crush that discovers sometimes even playboy cowboys can change their ways.
- Curvy Woman
- Alpha Man
- Small Town Romance
- Age Gap
- Enemies to Lovers
- All the Feels
I’ve always been the ugly duckling. I never expected my Prince Charming to be wearing Wranglers and dusty cowboy boots.Crushing on one of my hot cowboy bosses isn’t smart. Especially the playboy, but try telling my heart that—it won’t listen. Not even overhearing him call me “frumpy” will discourage my affections. I mean, he’s not wrong. But then we dance, and the look in his eyes changes. Then a kiss, then a lot more, and I can’t help hoping he’s seeing me in a different light.
I’ve always believed I’d never get tired of sowing my wild oats. I never expected quiet, unassuming Mia, our ranch office assistant, to be the one to change my mind.My oldest brother forces me to attend the cattlemen's ball with her. I don’t like that other men are noticing her new hair and new clothes. I definitely don’t like it when she goes on dates with those men. But I’m the one she comes home to. It’s my ranch she lives on. One kiss turns into a heated night in my bed, and I know she has to be mine. Now I just have to convince her we belong together.Redeemed Cowboyis the second book in the Whiskey Valley: Bryant Brothers series. If you love reading age gap, alpha cowboy, innocent plus-size woman, small town romances, then you’ll love Ryan and Mia’s story. Each book in the series is a standalone.
Intro to Chapter 1
Intro to Chapter 1
I barely get seated at my desk and the phone starts to ring. I reach over and turn on the monitor of my computer and pick up the phone at the same time. "Double B Ranch," I say into the phone.
"Mia?" the woman on the other line asks. I clench my eyes shut when I realize who it is that's calling. Rachel. For most purposes, she's a pretty nice woman. Under most circumstances, we would probably be friends, but I know exactly why she's calling.
I don't even want to ask, but I don’t have it in me to be rude. "Hey, Rachel, what can I do for you?"
She hesitates and starts to hem and haw. "Uh, I was just calling to see if you or anyone at the ranch needed anything.”
I roll my eyes because we've done business with the feed store in Whiskey Valley for years now. At least as long as I’ve been here. We have a standing order with them, and if by chance we have a special order or anything, I call and place it, or if it’s last minute, we send in one of the hands to get it. I can't remember them ever calling to see if we needed anything. "No, I think we're good. I'll make sure that we put an order in as soon as we need something, though."
Rachel sighs into the phone. "Yeah, sure. Okay. But if you think of anything, no matter how small, just let me know, because I'm always out that way to one of the ranches. It wouldn’t be any trouble."
"Sure thing. I'll be sure to let you know," I tell her before I hang up. I rub my hand across my head, feeling a headache coming on. Poor Rachel. I’m pretty sure Ryan showed some interest in her the last time she was here. But I’m also sure he was upfront about not wanting a commitment and yada, yada, but Rachel is like half the women in Whiskey Valley: They all seem to think that they can be the one to change him.
I've been working at the Double B Ranch for almost three years now. I came here when I was eighteen to visit my father, who was working here as a ranch hand. When I came into town, the Double B Ranch needed somebody to work the office. Even though I lacked experience, I've always been good with computers, so King offered me a job, and I've been working here ever since. My father wasn't here very long after I got here, but that's just the way he is. He's never been one for settling in one spot. We moved all the time growing up. I was a little worried at first, when he said that he was leaving, because I thought that I would be out of a job, but King was sure to tell me how much I was needed here.
So I've been working the office, taking care of all the accounting and keeping up with all the herd records and everything that needs to be ordered and taken care of. The main boss is King Bryant. He's the oldest brother, and Chance, Griffin, and Ryan run the ranch too. I guess you could say I answer to all of them. But I don’t mind because they’ve all been good to me.
King recently got married to Natalie, and she and her son now live on the ranch too. Chance is quick-witted and reasonable. He’s good to have around in most situations. Griffin is probably the quietest one of the brothers. He was in the Army for a while and just got back last year. He doesn’t really talk about his time that he served. Ryan is the youngest brother, and it’s a big joke with all his brothers that he’s the playboy cowboy. Women seem to throw themselves at him wherever he goes.
I lean back in my chair and stretch my arms over my head. I can't even think about Ryan without a tremble going down my back. I don't know what it is about him, but I definitely shouldn't have my sights set on him. I’m only asking for heartache.
Since the day I've met him, girls have been coming and going. Women just like Rachel. He's never going to settle down. And even if he does, it wouldn't be with me. I let out a sigh just as Ryan comes in the office door. I don't get a Good morning or How you doing? Nothing. "I need the record for the Hereford cows that we got last week."
He heads straight for the filing cabinet, and with his back to me, I can't help but look at the way his Wrangler jeans fit him. He shifts his stance, and like in a trance, my eyes stare as he moves from one leg to the other. I can hear the frustration from him as he has trouble finding the file he's looking for.
I should give him a break, but I figure I'll just wait. Let him stew a little. He deserves it. However, it's not long that I have to wait because he turns around and looks at me with his hands up in the air. "Where's the file at?"
I pull my eyes up, not wanting to get caught looking at his butt, and point at the computer in front of me. "Everything is in here."
I open the software and search for the information that he needs. He comes and stands next to me, leaning over me and looking at the screen. He's so close all I would need to do is turn my head, and I'm pretty sure that my lips would be touching his cheek. Not that I would do that or anything.
For three years now, I’ve secretly had a crush on Ryan. You would think after hearing him tell his brother that I look like a frump that I wouldn't still have this stupid crush on him, but I guess old habits die hard. "What exactly do you need?" I ask him.
"I'm looking for a particular tag number."
I nod patiently. "Okay. Do you know the tag number?"
He pulls a piece of paper from the front pocket of his shirt and hands it to me. I type the number into the computer. When the information comes up, I hit print. Five seconds later, I hand him a piece of paper, and he grabs it from me, looking at it in awe.
He's still standing next to me, his hip pressed against my shoulder. "Wait, this is all the information? All of the shots, medicine, everything that has been done to this cow is kept here?"
I nod my head. "Yeah, anything that happens on this ranch, I just put into the computer. So everything is up to date, and we don’t have to search through files to get it."
He looks surprised and even a little impressed. "Thanks for this," he says. "Good work, Mia." I nod and try not to blush. It's crazy to think that he can say something just as simple as that, and I get all goo-goo eyed about it. He thinks you’re a frump, Mia. Get over him, I tell myself.
He gets to the door, and then I remember Rachel. "Oh, yeah. Rachel called."
He turns and looks at me with confusion on his face. "Rachel?"
I shake my head. Of course, he probably doesn't remember her. I roll my eyes. "Yeah. She is the one that works at the feed store. The one..." I let my voice trail off because I don’t really know how else to explain her without saying, You know, the woman Eli caught you with last week.
Red tinges his cheeks. He was caught by Elijah, Nat and King’s son, making out with Rachel a few weeks ago, so everyone on the ranch knows all about it. "Oh, yeah. What did she want?" he asks.
“She said that if we need anything at all out here at the ranch, no matter how small, she would be happy to bring it out here to us. So I guess just uh, let her know if you want her to come and bring you something."
He shakes his head. "I'm good. We don’t need anything. I mean, you do the ordering."
I nod in agreement. “Yep, I do the ordering.”
I bite my lip. There’s so much I want to say to him, but I don’t dare. He’s a player. He’s not interested in me, so I don’t know why I keep letting this get to me.