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Batteries Not Required

Batteries Not Required

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Batteries Not Required

2.5/5 (5 évaluations)
68 pages
1 heure
Jul 19, 2016


Previously published in BEACH BLANKET BAD BOYS
 Handle with Care
Experience has taught Gayle Hayes one thing: men are jerks. And after forgetting that one lesson again and again, Gayle has decided to come back to her small-town Montana roots and reset her curlers, so to speak. The last person she expects to run into is her former high school sweetheart. With his steely grip and steady gaze, rodeo bad boy Tristan McCullough isn’t quite the boy she left behind. What hasn’t changed is the spark still zinging between them—and with a little luck, a little timing, and exactly the right touch, it just might light up the rest of their lives together . . .
Jul 19, 2016

À propos de l'auteur

New York Times-bestselling author, Linda Lael Miller was born and raised in Northport, Washington. The author of over 50 novels and the daughter of a U.S. marshal, Linda has bid farewell to her home in Scottsdale, Arizona, and returned to her rural, Western roots. On the horse property in the arid Arizona desert, Linda now enjoys riding her horse Skye in the early morning sun. She has finally come home to the lifestyle that has inspired numerous award-winning historical novels including those set in the Old West.

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Batteries Not Required - Linda Lael Miller


Linda Lael Miller


Kensington Publishing Corp.


All copyrighted material within is Attributor Protected.

Table of Contents

Title Page

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Teaser chapter

Teaser chapter

Copyright Page

Other Lyrical novellas by Linda Lael Miller

One Last Weekend

The 24 Days of Christmas

The last thing I wanted was a man to complicate my life. I came to that conclusion, on the commuter flight between Phoenix and Helena, Montana, because my best friend Lucy and I had been discussing the topic, online and via our Black-Berrys, for days. Maybe the fact that I was bound to encounter Tristan McCullough during my brief sojourn in my hometown of Parable had something to do with the decision.

Tristan and I had a history, one of those angst-filled summer romances between high school graduation and college. Sure, it had been over for ten years, but I still felt bruised whenever I thought of him, which was more often than I should have, even with all that time to insulate me from the experience.

My few romantic encounters in between had done nothing to dissuade me from my original opinion.

Resolved: Men lie. They cheat—usually with your roommate, your best friend, or somebody you’re going to have to face at the office every day. They forget birthdays, dump you the day of the big date, and leave the toilet seat up.

Who needed it? I had B.O.B., after all. My battery-operated boyfriend.

Just as I was thinking those thoughts, my purse tumbled out of the overhead compartment and hit me on the head. I should have realized that the universe was putting me on notice. Cosmic e-mail. Subject: Pay attention, Gayle.

Hastily, avoiding the flight attendant’s tolerant glance, which I knew would be disapproving because I’d asked for extra peanuts during the flight and gotten up to use the rest room when the seat belt sign was on, I shoved the bag under the seat in front of mine. Then I gripped the arms of 4B as the aircraft gave an apocalyptic shudder and nose-dived for the landing strip.

I squeezed my eyes shut.

The plane bumped to the ground, and I would have sworn before a hostile jury that the thing was about to flip from wingtip to wingtip before crumpling into a fiery ball.

My stomach surged into my throat, and I pictured smoldering wreckage on the six o’clock news in Phoenix, even heard the voice-over. Recently fired paralegal, Gayle Hayes, perished today in a plane crash outside the small Montana town of Parable. She was twenty-seven, a hard-won size 6 with two hundred dollars’ worth of highlights in her shoulder-length brown hair, and was accompanied by her long-standing boyfriend, Bob—

As if my untimely and tragic death would rate a sound bite. And as if I’d brought Bob along on this trip. All I would have needed to complete my humiliation, on top of losing my job and having to make an appearance in Parable, was for some security guard to search my suitcase and wave my vibrator in the air.

But, hey, when you think you’re about to die, you need somebody, even if he’s made of pink plastic and runs on four ‘C’ batteries.

When it became apparent that the Grim Reaper was otherwise occupied, I lifted the lids and took a look around. The flight attendant, who was old enough to have served cocktails on Wright Brothers Air, smiled thinly. Like I said, we hadn’t exactly bonded.

Despite my aversion to flying, I sat there wondering if they’d let me go home if I simply refused to get off the plane.

The cabin door whooshed open, and my fellow passengers—half a dozen in all—rose from their seats, gathered their belongings, and clogged the aisle at the front of the airplane. I’d scrutinized them—surreptitiously, of course—during the flight, in case I recognized somebody, but none of them were familiar, which was a relief.

Before the Tristan fiasco, I’d been ordinary, studious Gayle Hayes, daughter of Josie Hayes, manager and part owner of the Bucking Bronco Tavern. After our dramatic breakup, Tristan was still the golden boy, the insider, but I was Typhoid Mary. He’d grown up in Parable, as had his father and grandfather. His family had land and money, and in ranch country, or anywhere else, that adds up to credibility. I, on the other hand, had blown into town with my recently divorced mother, when I was thirteen, and remained an unknown quantity. I didn’t miss the latest stepfather—he was one in a long line—and I loved Mom deeply.

I just didn’t want to be like her, that was all. I wanted to go to college, marry one man, and raise a flock of kids. It might not be politically correct to admit it, but I wasn’t really interested in a career.

When the Tristan-and-me thing bit the dust, I pulled my savings out of the bank

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