The Cowboy Way(4)

By: Anna Alexander


“You’re supposed to be released tomorrow. I’ll come get you in the afternoon, all right?” Her honeyed voice slid over his tight muscles, easing some of his tension.

“Okay.” Reluctantly, he let her go with a slow slide of his palm. Had those little sparks of electricity always been in her touch?

Greta looked him in the eye. A thunderstorm rolled across her face as she bit the inside of her lip. Before he could ask her what she was thinking, she reached out and brushed a lock of hair from his forehead. The movement shot like wildfire through his body down to his toes. The fact that a simple touch shook him so deeply amazed him.

Her plump lower lip jutted out while her gaze focused on his mouth. His own lips parted in anticipation. Did he deserve a good-bye kiss? No, but he wasn’t going to turn one down, either. He swayed toward her, caught between heaven and damnation.

The pad of her thumb brushed along his jaw. “Good night, Trey,” she whispered.

“Good night, Greta.” My wife.

Her lips curled up in a soft smile of promise and when she left, all of her warmth went with her. He heaved a deep sigh. Anticipation and excitement hummed in his vein. The electricity coursing through his body reminded him of how good it was to be alive.

What type of relationship did he have with the lovely Greta? He hoped the two of them were drunk with happiness, ‘cause she certainly left him lightheaded. Settling back against the perfectly fluffed pillows, he started counting the minutes until he was released, and he could delve into the mystery that was Greta Armstrong.





2





It took Greta three tries before her shaking hand forced the car key into the lock. Her thoughts were so focused on Trey that she had completely forgotten about the unlock button on the fob. Once inside the SUV, she rested her head against the steering wheel and let the tears fall.

“He’s okay. He’s okay,” she whispered into the plastic.

She hadn’t believed Mark when he called her about Trey’s accident. Her husband had been upright the last time she had seen him. He was stunned and in shock, much to her surprise, but at least he was still walking. What the hell had happened?

Seeing him in that bed, unconscious, weak, it had hit home just how much the man lying there was not the Trey she had married. She had married a man who wore a ready smile and a devilish spark in his eyes. Back then, he’d had enough confidence for ten men and never let anything keep him from what he wanted. That Trey she loved with her heart and soul, and she missed him. God, she missed him so much. The man she had seen hooked to monitors and tubes had been broken in both body and spirit. The guilt knowing that she was to blame tore her in two.

It was almost a blessing that he lost his memory, because if he remembered…

“Please, Lord, don’t let him remember,” she whispered over and over again.

The things she had said, the horrible things she said to him made her want to curl up in a ball as the tears fell faster. She didn’t regret saying them. She just couldn’t live through that experience again.

But now there was a chance she might not have to. A spark of her Trey was back. It was there in the light of curiosity in his eyes and the hint of the smile that had flitted nervously on his lips. The spark was small, but just enough to give her hope.

As long as he doesn’t remember. He can’t remember.

A knock on the window had her gasping as her hand flew to her throat. An orderly peered down at her through the glass.

“Are you all right, miss?” he asked.

Hysterical laughter bubbled to the surface. He had no clue just how far away from all right she was.

“Sure,” she replied and brushed back the hair that stuck to her cheeks. “I’m just fine.”





3





Never had going home felt so good.

The thermometer on the dashboard read ninety-four degrees, but that didn’t stop Trey from riding with the window rolled down. The brush of the hot, dry breeze on his skin was so much better than the frozen, recirculated air that had been pumped into his hospital room.

“Are you sure you don’t mind me having the window down?” He asked again of his fellow passengers in the SUV.

Greta smiled from the driver’s seat as she risked a quick glance in his direction. “No, you’re fine.”

He eyed her white-knuckled grip on the steering wheel and hoped to hell he wasn’t the cause of her anxiety.

His memory hadn’t returned. She said that it didn’t matter, but he found that hard to believe. On some level she must be hurting because the man who once knew her on the most intimate of levels couldn’t even remember something as simple as her middle name. Christ, what was her middle name?

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