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SEALs of Honor: Easton: SEALs of Honor, #13

SEALs of Honor: Easton: SEALs of Honor, #13

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SEALs of Honor: Easton: SEALs of Honor, #13

évaluations:
4/5 (4 évaluations)
Longueur:
224 pages
3 heures
Sortie:
Nov 19, 2018
ISBN:
9781773360386
Format:
Livre

Description

Trips to Canada's wilderness for joint military training are something Easton always looks forward to. Meeting the lovely photographer contracted to capture the base and trainees for new marketing materials adds a whole new twist to a straight-forward routine…a twist with both a light and dark undertone.

Summer tends to get lost in her art so she's been called ditzy, absent-minded, and a host of less flattering names. She doesn't let any of it bother her. Her passionate nature has a rewarding creative outlet, and she adores traveling for her work. Unfortunately, her undistracted concentration means she isn't always taking care of herself the way she should. So, when she's attacked, Easton is the one who realizes she's unwittingly stumbled into a dangerous situation and she needs his help to stay safe.

The escalation of violence has Easton holding Summer close enough to kiss, close enough to shatter her ability to focus on a single other thing…

Sortie:
Nov 19, 2018
ISBN:
9781773360386
Format:
Livre

À propos de l'auteur

Dale Mayer is a USA Today bestselling author best known for her Psychic Visions and Family Blood Ties series. Her contemporary romances are raw and full of passion and emotion (Second Chances, SKIN), her thrillers will keep you guessing (By Death series), and her romantic comedies will keep you giggling (It's a Dog's Life and Charmin Marvin Romantic Comedy series). She honors the stories that come to her - and some of them are crazy and break all the rules and cross multiple genres! To go with her fiction, she also writes nonfiction in many different fields with books available on resume writing, companion gardening and the US mortgage system. To find out more about Dale and her books, visit her at http://www.dalemayer.com. Or connect with her on Twitter @DaleMayer or on Facebook at www.facebook.com/dalemayer.author. If you like Dale Mayer's books and are interested in joining her street team, sign up here - https://www.facebook.com/groups/402384989872660/ Books by Dale Mayer Psychic Vision Series Tuesday's Child Hide'n Go Seek Maddy's Floor Garden of Sorrow Knock, Knock... Rare Find Eyes to the Soul - fall/winter 2014 By Death Series Touched by Death - Part 1 - Free Touched by Death - Part 2 Touched by Death - Full book Haunted by Death Chilled by Death - fall/winter 2014 Second Chances...at Love Series Second Chances - Part 1 Second Chances - Part 2 Second Chances - Full book Novellas It's a Dog's Life- romantic comedy Charmin Marvin Romantic Comedy Broken Protocols #1 Broken Protocols #2 Broken Protocols #3 New adult/adult crossover books In Cassie's Corner Gem Stone (a Gemma Stone mystery) Design Series Dangerous Designs Deadly Designs Darkest Designs Family Blood Ties Series Vampire in Denial Vampire in Distress Vampire in Design Vampire in Deceit Vampire in Defiance Non-Fiction Books Career Essentials: The Resume Career Essentials: The Cover Letter Career Essentials: The Interview Career Essentials: 3 in 1

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SEALs of Honor - Dale Mayer

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About This Book

Trips to Canada’s wilderness for joint military training are something Easton always looks forward to. Meeting the lovely photographer contracted to capture the base and trainees for new marketing materials adds a whole new twist to a straight-forward routine…a twist with both a light and dark undertone.

Summer tends to get lost in her art so she’s been called ditzy, absent-minded, and a host of less flattering names. She doesn’t let any of it bother her. Her passionate nature has a rewarding creative outlet, and she adores traveling for her work. Unfortunately, her undistracted concentration means she isn’t always taking care of herself the way she should. So, when she’s attacked, Easton is the one who realizes she’s unwittingly stumbled into a dangerous situation and she needs his help to stay safe.

The escalation of violence has Easton holding Summer close enough to kiss, close enough to shatter her ability to focus on a single other thing…

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Chapter 1

Easton Gallagher grabbed several of the large packs off the back of the plane and tossed them to the stack below. The supplies had finally arrived. They’d come in a few hours later than the personnel. They were doing a joint SERE training which would include survival and evasion, resistance and escape, but the real reason they were here was the water survival. The Canadian military was known for their water purification systems. While there, they’d be doing additional training on new drinking water convertors. He was looking forward to it. He loved the Canadians, and this country was just too beautiful to ever get tired of. That Devlin, Ryder, and Corey were beside him made it that much better. He loved his unit. These guys were the best.

Although Devlin could be a pain in the ass since he’d met Bristol. Now that he’d found somebody perfect in his world, he couldn’t resist matching up all the others. And that was the last thing Easton wanted. He’d gone that route once, and it ended one month before the wedding date. He wasn’t trying again. Her reason was valid back then, and he assumed every other woman’s would be the same as nothing in his life had changed. She couldn’t take his frequent absences, worrying he might not return. Not to mention sometimes he was gone for weeks or months at a time. She never knew when he would return—or if he’d come back alive from his dangerous missions.

Easton didn’t know how Devlin and Bristol would manage it, but Bristol was so wrapped up in her work she might not even notice. He laughed at that.

Devlin looked at him sideways. What the hell’s so funny?

Easton shrugged. I wonder if Bristol even realizes you’re gone.

Devlin gave him a wicked grin. After last night, she’ll never forget.

Inside Easton could feel the envy clawing at his gut. It’d been a long time since he had felt that way about anybody. Even knowing he wasn’t ready himself, he was still happy for his friend. He grabbed more gear, then carried it down the ramp and added it to the rest. As he turned, Devlin tossed him a bag that shoved him back slightly. He rolled his eyes at his buddy, grabbed the next one midair and threw them both down again.

He headed toward the big metal cases they had to unload. As he rounded a corner, a woman packing more cameras than anybody should be allowed to own, plus several bags, started down the ramp to exit the plane. He walked over to give her hand, but she turned suddenly, and a camera swung out, hitting him on the side of his face. It was hard and sharp enough that he knew it had left its mark. He stepped out of the way, ignoring the cutting pain on his cheek.

Oh, my goodness. I’m so sorry.

He shook his head. Ma’am, do you need any help with all that?

Her gaze widened. Ma’am? She shook her head. My name is Summer. Summer Jones. She held out her hand, but it was full. Looking awkward for a moment, she shuffled the items to her other hand so she could take his.

Instead he stepped back and motioned for her to go ahead. Let’s get you off the plane.

She beamed and said, Thank you so much. Again, I’m sorry for hitting you with my gear.

He groaned. You’re not Canadian by any chance, are you?

She laughed. Actually I’m one of the few who has dual citizenship. I’m half-Canadian, half-American. She stepped around him and banged him again with her bag. I’m so sorry.

She couldn’t seem to stop apologizing. Easton took a moment to really study her. She was small with jet-black hair forming a skullcap to outline her face, with her huge Miss Congeniality grin and massive blue eyes. He shouldn’t even be noticing such things, but she was hard to miss.

She smiled. So sorry again. And she disappeared.

He spun to watch as she raced down the ramp. As he did so, he caught Devlin’s eye.

Interesting. She did smack you upside the head to get your attention. Even you should be able to see that sign.

Easton glared at his buddy. Her camera did that. Doesn’t count.

Devlin’s wicked grin flashed again.

Easton grabbed one of the big two-hundred-pound gun cases and carried it out on his own. He needed to vent all his frustration on something. Hauling this should do it. Of course, once he did that, the other guys raced in to prove they could as well.

As soon as all the gear was off-loaded, they filled the back of the jeeps and drove to the main part of the base. He was looking forward to the next couple weeks. The first was in-camp work; then they’d be in the backwoods for the next. And he couldn’t wait. This wasn’t a Navy operation. He and his unit were meeting the equivalent team on the Canadian side. Friendly training, camaraderie, and information-sharing. All good fun.

Not only did the Canadians have a new gadget for making freshwater out of saltwater that they used for their humanitarian efforts all around the world, but they had a much smaller version that could be used for backwoods travel. Which meant, anytime they were stuck out at sea or where the water was less than ideal, the gadget converted it to drinking water.

Besides, being in Canada was almost like going home. Easton had spent a lot of summers up here. He was in northern Ontario this time, but he’d traveled from one end of the country to other. He couldn’t tell which part was any better than the rest. It was just so diverse.

Back at camp, it was dinnertime. As they walked into the mess hall, they were met by several other military units here for the same event—one of those learn-something-while-you-have-fun-getting-to-know-your-neighbor type of events. He was good with that. He’d yet to meet a Canadian he didn’t like.

Just as they joined the chow line, somebody stepped right in between him and the next guy. He had to hit the brakes so as not to overrun her. Of course it was Summer once again.

She turned and beamed at him. Hi. Nice to see you again.

Easton just glared at her. She seemed to be a person who would be in the wrong place at the wrong time on any given day. She reached for a plate and handed it to him.

Devlin leaned around Easton’s back to say, His name is Easton, and I’m Devlin. This is Ryder and Corey.

Summer’s smile jacked up several more notches. I’m the photographer for this event, she said. At least the first part of it. I’m really looking forward to it.

Easton turned her gently so she could see the gap between her and the guy in front, seriously holding up the line.

Oh, my goodness. She raced forward so fast she almost slammed into the man ahead of her. Easton stepped up behind her and pointed out several dishes she’d already missed. Using his long arms, he grabbed her plate and served her some vegetables and a big potato.

As he handed it to her, she looked at the food on her plate and then at him and asked, How did you know I wanted this?

He just stared at her.

She studied him for a long moment. Thank you.

He rolled his eyes. Do you ever say anything else?

Oh, you speak, she exclaimed. I wondered for a moment if you were a deaf-mute.

Devlin snickered behind Easton.

He shook his head. I’m definitely not deaf. I only speak when something needs to be said.

Oh, me too, she said happily. Could you reach a set of cutlery for me, please?

Easton looked to where she pointed. Sure enough, on the far side of the double buffet line, somebody had placed the cutlery. He reached across and picked up a set for her and him, then snagged a bun from a large basket for himself.

That looks delicious. I’m hungry. I missed lunch, she confessed, and I really need to eat or my blood sugar drops. Kind of like it has now.

He looked at her plate, already half-full.

She glanced at her food, but also stared at the bun in his hand, snatched it up and took a big bite.

Easton’s gaze narrowed. You okay?

She nodded rapidly, her jaw busy chewing. When she could talk, she said, Like I said, I haven’t eaten for a while.

He noted a tremor sliding through her voice. Is your blood sugar that low?

She shrugged and took another bite. The color on her cheeks had bleached out.

He watched as she quickly ate as if she really needed it. He grabbed a second one for himself, wondering if she needed another too. He couldn’t imagine her being that hungry, so it must be her blood sugar. He had several diabetic friends and understood white carbs surely weren’t the best option. Still not a whole lot was available on base. With a couple hundred men in here, she’d have a hard time finding any other selections. Surely fruit or juice would be better, if available.

He searched down the line that had stopped just before the meat section and spied a juice bar in the center of the room. He turned and told Devlin to hold his plate and place and headed to the table. There he grabbed several juice bottles and came back, holding one out to her. She looked at him, her gaze getting wider and wider, and then awkwardly grabbed the bottle. He took her plate from her and, with his voice low, said, Drink up.

She had already popped off the lid and took several swallows. By the time she was done, three-quarters of the bottle was empty.

She stood still for a moment, as if assessing how she felt, then smiled at him. Thank you. That was very smart.

She pocketed the bottle into one of the many pockets on her vest. Then she took her plate back and popped a piece of broccoli into her mouth. Now I have to have something for the juice to slosh around in there with. She got another piece and surveyed the food to see what else she could snag.

Here, have my other bun. You need it.

I’ll be fine. I’ll grab more up ahead. She looked toward the meat with longing.

Easton dropped the roll on her plate and said, Just take it.

She snatched it and took a big bite again.

He watched in amazement as she polished off the second. Orange juice and two buns were hardly a healthy dinner.

I sure hope they leave me some, she muttered, seeing what the holdup was.

Behind him, Easton could hear Devlin snickering again. Easton shook his head at his friend. Slowly the line moved forward. Up ahead were more vegetables, salads, and finally proteins. He thought she wouldn’t have any more room, that she’d be too full, but she loaded up her plate heavily with roast beef, a piece of chicken, then added salad with a slab of cheese on the side. There were more buns, and she grabbed yet another, then stepped out of the line and turned to look for a place to sit.

If she was alone, it would be a little hard to assimilate. It wasn’t that military men weren’t friendly, but they’d group up in a situation like this. Easton collected the rest of his dinner and waited for his friends. They turned and studied the room. An empty table was off on the far side. They slowly made their way in that direction, saying hi to a few friends as they kept going. They knew several of the Canadians and, of course, many from his own military branch. At the table, Ryder nudged him.

Easton glanced at him. What?

Ryder pointed. Up ahead Summer stood in the middle of the room, still looking for a place to sit. She wasn’t very tall, and it had to be difficult to see far away.

Really?

You know how it goes, Ryder said with a big smile. Let’s help her out.

Damn it. Easton slammed his plate on the table, the sound loud enough to make several people turn in his direction, including Summer.

When she saw him, her gaze lit up. Seeing his group, her face fell. He motioned for her to come join him. She hesitated, looking around, making sure he had motioned to her.

Oh, for God’s sake. He walked toward her, took her by the elbow and ushered her to his table. You hit me in the face, he muttered. You ate the buns off my plate, and you drank the juice I gave you. You might as well sit at my table and finish eating your dinner.

She smiled. Thank you so much, she said quietly. I was a little intimidated, finding a place to sit.

He motioned at an empty seat on the far side, but, just as he pointed, Devlin dropped into it, leaving the seat beside Easton the only one open. He glared at his buddies; they all had big grins on their faces.

She turned to Easton. I don’t remember who your friends are. Instantly the men introduced themselves. As she sat down, she said, Hi. Thank you so much for letting me join you.

The guys grinned, and Devlin said, Any friend of Easton’s is a friend of ours.

She beamed across the table. That’s a lovely thing to say.

*

Summer was delighted with Easton and his friends. They were dressed differently than the others here, but she didn’t dare ask about it. Rank was a point of pride, and she didn’t want to get it wrong and insult them. There was also an air—a commanding presence—surrounding the four of them that she hadn’t seen around anyone else here.

She wondered at that. Hundreds of men and women were in this place. It wasn’t that she had trouble making friends, but it was always awkward to acclimate at the beginning. She wasn’t so sure Easton had been the first one to step forward, or if his friends had pushed him, but she was grateful and relieved nonetheless. The place was a busy hub. It had already been bad enough that she’d felt her energy drop. She didn’t know if Easton had seen her swaying on her feet or not. It was a sure sign her blood sugar was low enough to cause trouble.

She’d been tested many times, but wasn’t diabetic or even prediabetic. But she was given to severe blood sugar drops. She had to stabilize, eat regular meals, and avoid junk food or, in this case, simple carbs—because those helped in the short run but made it drop lower in the long run. Eating the buns would lead to trouble. But she hoped enough stabilizing food in the rest of her meal would counteract the side effects. Besides, she’d had to get her blood sugar back up, or she would’ve passed out in the lineup.

She couldn’t believe she had hit this poor man. Her gaze drifted over to the giant beside her, zooming in on the cut on his cheek. She gasped. Oh, my God, did I do that you? She gently stroked the dried blood.

He turned to look at her, his fingers checking out his injury himself. With his overlapping hers, he shrugged. Maybe. Maybe not.

Her jaw dropped. If that was my cheek, I would have known when and where.

He glanced at her. "With skin like yours, I wouldn’t doubt it. But I’m

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