Borrowing Trouble: He’s a chef, she’s a cop. Neither came to town looking for love but it found them. Trouble is, so has their pasts.
Here’s an excerpt from Borrowing Trouble:
“Sloane, honey, look at me.” She lifted her head and locked eyes with him. Man, they were blue. “I left some trouble behind in LA. It hasn’t followed me yet . . . but now’s not a good time for me to get involved.” It wasn’t safe for either of them. And then there was the fact that he didn’t do involvement. Ever.
“What kind of trouble?” she asked, her chin held high.
“Bad trouble.” He wanted to leave it at that, but she was looking at him skeptically. Like she thought he was either wanted by the mob or feeding her a lie after he’d gotten her in the sack. “I have a stalker. She’s delusional and dangerous and I don’t want to put you on the other side of that. You understand?”
He watched her morph back into cop mode. “What happened?”
“It’s a long story. I like you, Sloane. You’re beautiful, smart, and tough. And you’ve got enough on your plate. You don’t need my pot of problems to add to it.”
“Have you gone to the police?”
“Santa Monica PD is working the case. But my stalker is as canny as she is crazy. So far they have nothing to arrest her for. Their best advice to me was to get out of LA while the getting was good. That’s why I’m here.”
“You ran from her?”
He didn’t like the way she’d phrased that, but yeah, that’s exactly what he’d done. “She broke into my apartment, she trashed my restaurant, she violated the restraining order I took out on her . . . and that’s not the half of it. But she didn’t leave a trace of evidence. Just my word against hers. Sloane, hurting a woman goes against everything I know and believe in, but if I didn’t get the hell out of there I was gonna hurt her.”
“Was she your girlfriend?”
He gave a bitter laugh. “Nope. But she thought so. Still does. I met her in the bar of my restaurant, went home with her that night, and the next thing I know she’s threatening to kill herself if I won’t see her again. It’s too surreal to explain. Even I have trouble understanding it, and believe me, I’ve read all the literature there is about this kind of warped obsession, trying to comprehend how this happened. But if she ever finds me, I don’t want her finding you.”
“Did you tell Nugget PD about this?”
He held her gaze. “I just did.”
“So this is official?”
“Sloane, I’m not talking to you as a cop. I’m telling you because this woman is unhinged . . . seriously scary. Last night shouldn’t have happened. But this chemistry between us . . . Ah, hell . . . it was selfish of me.” He scrubbed his hand through his hair. “If anything happened to you, I couldn’t live with that.” It appeared that thinking with his dick instead of using common sense had become a pattern.
“Did you forget what I do for a living? If you’re just looking for a way to disentangle yourself from me, be a man about it, Brady.” She reached inside her handbag and got out her wallet. “Look, I’ve got to get back to work.”
“I’ve got this.” He quickly handed his credit card to a nearby server.
“Let me guess: This is the story you feed women because you’re hiding from your wife.” Sloane got to her feet.
“Hang on a sec.” He went after her, wondering if that married detective she’d dated had done a number on her. “That was a cheap shot, Sloane. But check it out for yourself if you don’t believe me. Just don’t leave any bread crumbs. I’ve worked hard at staying under the radar. Now give me your house key for the locks.”
“Don’t worry about it.”
“Ah, come on, Sloane, don’t be that way.” Not willing to take no for an answer, he held out his hand, waiting.
“Fine.” She took the key off her chain and passed it to him. Then she walked out of the Ponderosa with her head held high and Brady’s eyes pinned to her ass in those olive-green police pants.
No way would he drag her into psycho Sandra’s sights.
In the beautiful mountain town of Nugget, California, staying out of the limelight is easy, but staying out of love is a bit more challenging…
Back in Los Angeles, Sloane McBride was a great police detective, but after she uncovered corruption on her own squad, the job became nearly impossible. In the bucolic hills of Nugget, she can start to imagine a life after all that, where she keeps her head down, does her work, and doesn’t bother anyone. But her delicious next door neighbor isn’t going to make it easy to keep to herself…
Brady Benson’s wildest dreams came true in LA—but they were paired with a living nightmare. As executive chef of a searing-hot restaurant, he was lauded, adored… and then found himself caught in the sights of a lovelorn stalker. Now, laying low in Nugget, he finds his own heart ensnared by the beautiful new cop with her own reasons to start over.
Neither Sloane nor Brady came to town looking for love, but it seems to have found them. Trouble is, so have their pasts. And they’ll have to stop hiding from both if they hope to come out the other side together…
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Stacy Finz’s Bio
Stacy Finz is an award-winning former newspaper reporter. After more than twenty years covering notorious serial killers, naked-tractor-driving farmers, fanatical foodies, aging rock stars and weird Western towns, she figured she finally had enough material to launch a career writing fiction. She is the author of the Nugget Romance series (Kensington/Lyrical Press) about a small mountain town that has a strange way of giving people unexpected reasons to start over and find the most irresistible chances to fall in love.
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