It's your world...unlaced
Copyright © Lacey Thorn, 2011
All Rights Reserved, Total-E-Ntwined Limited, T/A Total-E-Bound.
Excerpt From: Tempting Tess
"What do you mean he’s dead?" Tess almost wailed at the sheriff standing in front of her.
"He can’t be. I was supposed to meet him here today. He sent the money for my ticket and
he was meeting me here."
"I’m sorry ma’am," the sheriff said again. She thought his name was Sheriff Duckett, or at
least that was how she thought he’d introduced himself. Her mind had sort of shut down
after he’d said her fiancé was dead. "Mr Sutter died just two days ago."
"How?" she whispered, feeling like her whole world was falling down around her. What was
she going to do now?
"He was kicked in the head by a horse over in Mackenzie’s Stable," Sheriff Duckett told
her. "It was an accident. I don’t think he told anyone about you heading this way. Did you
know him long?"
Okay, so how did she admit that she’d answered an ad for a bride willing to travel to the
West? She’d seen it as the answer to her prayers. Her father had just passed away,
leaving her at the mercy of her cruel uncle and lecherous cousin. They had planned to
marry her off quickly to be rid of her. So when she’d seen the paper lying there it was as if
the ad had just jumped out at her.
She’d always craved adventure and thoroughly enjoyed reading every penny novel of the
Wild West that she could get her hands on. It had sounded so thrilling. Her father had been
a horseman once upon a time and had shared with her the joy of riding, much to her mother’
s dismay. When her mother had died of fever shortly after her thirteenth birthday, it had just
been her and Papa, though her mother’s family had tried to talk him into giving her up.
Thankfully, her father had refused and instead taught her things he’d learned from his time
in the military. She knew how to ride, how to shoot and how to survive off the land if she
needed to—all talents that meant little back home in Virginia but surely would come in
handy here. Her only problem was that she’d sneaked away with only the money Mr Sutter
had sent her, leaving her stranded now without a dime of her own.
Avoiding the question she didn’t want to answer, she asked one instead. "What am I
supposed to do, Sheriff? I only had enough money to get me here. Mr Sutter was to meet
me and we were to be married right away."
The Sheriff sighed and shook his head. "Come along with me for the moment and I’ll see
what I can figure out." He reached down and took her bag before turning and heading
towards what she took to be the jail. She’d never seen a jail, much less one in the West.
Maybe he had a gunslinger or outlaw behind bars. She felt a shiver of excitement.
He dropped her bag beside a beat-up old desk and indicated a chair for her to sit in. She
scanned the room and was disappointed to see that no one else was with them. The cell
"Disappointed?" The sheriff got her attention and she blushed as she realised that he
seemed to know what she was thinking.
"I was just curious if you had anyone locked up in here," she admitted with an unrepentant
grin. "I’ve read all about the West."