After learning her boss has scheduled a mandatory team-building excursion, financial planner Nona Rogers panics. What does she know about camping? Nada. Zilch. Heck, she doesn’t even like picnics. And the thought of sleeping amid bugs and wild animals knots her stomach.
No way can she risk looking like an idiot in front of her colleagues. Taking proactive measures, she acquires the services of a guide to give her a crash-course in camping. Seven days living off the land. How hard could it be? Nona swallows those words when she meets the sexy titan tasked with leading her into the wild. Getting mauled by a bear quickly becomes the least of her worries.
Mason Tinsdale’s first love has always been oil rigging. But a horrible accident has him doubting the job—more importantly, himself. Seven days in the Indigo Falls wilderness is just what he needs to sort out his thoughts. Then he meets Nona Rogers. He’s convinced the gorgeous woman is going to be far more trouble than she’s worth. And he’s right. However, there’s something about the feisty vixen that makes her irresistible.
Two guarded hearts. Seven days alone. An attraction that can’t be denied.
Chapter One Excerpt
When her boss had called her into his office under the pretense of “good news,” Nona Rogers assumed she was on tap for a raise, a bigger office, a promotion, even. No such luck. His idea of good news had been the scheduling of a week long, mandatory, camping expedition.
Camping. She didn’t even like picnics.
Nona spurned the thought with the same amount of disdain now as she had a month ago when Mr. White had sat behind his hand-carved desk and shared the news with her.
At least he’d given her enough notice to take proactive measures. Measures that included enlisting the services of a guide to teach her the ins and outs of camping. No way would she be the only one—not to mention only female—on the company outing who couldn’t survive the wilds.
Now here she sat, in the middle of nowhere, with her hired hand, ready to tackle the great outdoors. She was still waiting to discover what was so dang great about it.
A rush of Mason Tinsdale’s oaky cologne filled her nostrils when he opened the SUV door. It also filled her with a tingling awareness. God, she loved a good smelling man.
How in the hell could she have forgotten how handsome Mason was? Time did that, dissolved the small things from your memory bank. It’d been over six years since the last time she’d seen him, at her best friend Brianna’s wedding. When she returned to civilization, she would have a few words with the woman. She could have reminded her of how fine he was.
Good-looking, brawny, and a grieving widower. A dangerous, yet safe combination.
Nona hesitated exiting the black Range Rover they’d arrived in as a mammoth-sized bird—she’d have guessed a pterodactyl, had they not been extinct—soared overhead. The creature showed minimal respect for their higher ranking on the food chain when it dropped a load the size of a dinner plate on the windshield.
Nona’s face contorted into a tight ball of disgust. Gross. She closed her eyes and shook her head. Just one more reason why she shouldn’t have been there—disrespectful wildlife.
And as if there weren’t already enough reasons: snakes, bears, rabid foxes, load-dropping pterodactyls…she could add, mouth-watering, drop-dead gorgeous man to the mix.
She and Mason hadn’t spoken much on the drive to wherever the hell they were, because she’d spent most of the four-hour ride typing away on her laptop. Yes, she was supposed to be on “vacation,” but there was work to be done. Always work to be done. She sighed inwardly. She needed a life. One that didn’t consist of all work and no play.
Somewhere between typing a memo and sending emails, she’d fallen asleep; awakening just in time to see the sign on the highway that read: Welcome to Indigo Falls. It’d been the last sign she’d seen before pulling onto a gravel road.
She’d never even heard of Indigo Falls. And she’d lived in North Carolina all of her life. The mountains in the distance told her she was far from home, and definitely out of her comfort zone.
“You okay?” Mason asked.
His velvety voice soothed her nerves. Had he been informed of her fear of the woods? If so, she would strangle her BFF. Nona flashed a half-smile. Show no fear. “Fine, yes.”
“You gonna get out?” he asked, standing inside the opened driver’s side door.
The cool breeze wafted another delicious dose of his cologne in her direction. “Ahm…yes. Yes, I am.” She gripped at the door handle like an inebriated buffoon. Mason laughed and she swore music notes floated from his mouth.
Jesus, this is going to be the longest seven days of my life.
Camping with a man who reminded her with just a sexy chuckle that she was all woman. What the hell could she have been thinking? She should have said no the second she opened her front door to see Mason there. The way her mouth had gone dry should have served as her first warning.
Sun-dried leaves and pine needles crunched under Nona’s feet when she finally stumbled from the vehicle. The crisp air was void of exhaust fumes, which was refreshing. It brought a smile to her face. She surveyed the endless mass of lush, green trees and her isolated location.
Had her best friend not assured her Mason was one hundred percent harmless—and an absolute gentleman—she would have been uncomfortable alone in the woods with a complete stranger. Well, complete if you didn’t take into consideration their brief encounter six years ago. But there was something about him she couldn’t quite put her finger on that told her she was in good hands. Maybe it had been the sight of his strong hands gripped around the steering wheel, handling the oversized vehicle with ease and precision that caused her to feel that way.
Speaking of vehicles, she hadn’t seen another one since they’d turned onto the gravel road. No people, no forest ranger, hell, not even a park sign welcoming them to the wooded area.
Nona’s cell phone screen flashed no service and alarm set in, twisting her stomach into a tight knot. How in the hell would she call for help if Big Foot attacked?
Quit being paranoid, Nona, and get yourself together.
( Continued… )
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HIS UNTIL SUNRISE Book Trailer:
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Indigo Falls Romance, Book 1
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Book available at: http://amzn.to/1khOWvj
Meet the Author
Joy Avery is a North Carolina native with a passion for penning contemporary romances. When she’s not writing, she enjoys reading, cake decorating, pretending to expertly play the piano, driving her husband insane, and playing with her sixteen-pound peek-a-poo and hundred-pound Rottweiler.
There’s plenty of emotion in a Joy Avery romance. Sometimes there are obstacles and hurdles in love, and she enjoys showing this in her novels. Her stories guide readers along the rutted roads of love, delivering them to a gratifying happily ever after.
Romance is Joy’s genre of choice, because she enjoys the experience of characters overcoming the barriers that have held them back from finding true love. Plus, she loves happily ever afters.
HIS UNTIL SUNRISE is Joy’s second novel. Her first novel, SMOKE IN THE CITI, garnered attention for having well-developed and believable characters, as well as refreshing humor. She is currently working on Book 2 of her Indigo Falls series. Joy is a member of Romance Writers of America and Heart of Carolina Romance Writers.