Blood in the Moonlight
As partners, Jenna and Hunter had developed a bond, a rapport that had carried them through many cases … until the night the killer calling himself Jack had stabbed her and left as his fifth victim on the steps of the police station.
Length: Mid Novel
Word Count: 61,094
Genre: Paranormal Romance/Romantic Suspense
Available formats: PDF, RTF, Epub, HTML, Mobipocket (.prc)
© Cover Art by Alex DeShanks, June 2008
New Concepts Publishing
Lake Park, GA 31636
This is a work of fiction. All characters, events, and places are of the author's imagination and not to be confused with fact. Any resemblance to living persons or events is merely coincidence.
Hunter McCall stared at Jenna Delaney’s front door for a long moment.
Then he swallowed hard and reached up, preparing to tap his fist on the window glass. Why should this be so difficult, he asked himself? He’d done far more dangerous things in his life, in his career. His knock vibrated through his knuckles and echoed within the log house before he got the chance to talk himself out of doing this.
At first, he heard nothing. Fine, he thought. She’s not home. Perhaps it was fate’s way of telling him he should never have come in the first place.
“Why am I thinking like this?” he muttered out loud. His question was lost to the slight breeze that touched him. “Idiot,” he went on to mutter. There was, after all, so much more at stake than his own pride that he needed to force down. Then he heard a loud crash and a breaking of glass, followed by a muffed curse.
She was home.
Hunter hardly had time to get used to that idea before Jenna Delaney opened the door and Hunter caught his breath at seeing her again. Three years had changed her very little.
For another long moment, he merely stared at her. His memory had failed him when it came to remembering her beauty.
He liked the way her long, dark, wavy hair was pulled back into a simple ponytail. It gave her heart shaped face a longer appearance and made her nose look somewhat more pointed. She had always been lean, lithe, keeping her body in perfect shape as she worked within a male-dominated career. Now, he thought her to be too thin. Her gray eyes looked like dark thunderclouds. She stood nearly a head shorter than he, yet she had always had the ability to somehow look him down with those eyes.
But now she stared up at him, her mouth slightly open, her shock at seeing him evident.
Then as if someone had run an eraser across a chalkboard, her shock disappeared. “Hello, Hunter,” she said.
Her rich, husky voice hadn’t changed a bit, he thought. He often heard her voice call out to him in his nightmares. What surprised him was the lack of emotion in her greeting, as if it had been only yesterday since she had seen him instead of nearly three years ago. What surprised him even more was the flood of emotions that surged through him when he allowed himself to fall into the trap of her gaze.
He should have known those feelings existed, even though he’d chosen to hide and ignore them as well as simply pretend they didn’t exist. He’d missed her, terribly, he realized now. What was more, he loved her. The idea touched him like the sudden heat of a searing brand on his chest. They’d worked together for years, and there had always been respect between the two of them. Yet, Hunter knew now there had been more than simple respect growing inside of his soul for her. It was love—pure and simple love. And even now, he tried to push the idea aside.
“Jenna.” His voice sounded lacking—in strength, in volume.
“Come on in,” she said slowly as if she wasn’t certain she really trusted him in her home. She moved aside so he could enter.
He recognized her home. It wasn’t the home he would’ve thought she would choose for herself. It was a log house, rustic, smelling woodsy, a masculine home. It had once been her father’s and she had inherited it upon his death. Hunter recognized so much of her father still there. He saw, too, the small subtle woman touches, hints of change.
“Come into the kitchen. I have a mess to clean up.” She turned and headed into the kitchen and gave him no choice but to follow her.
He watched her back as she moved away. He stuck his balled fists into the pockets of his jeans to keep from reaching out to her.
The mess turned out to be an entire pitcher of what smelled to be lemonade on the floor. Jenna got a sack from under the sink and knelt beside the mess. Carefully, she began to put large pieces of glass into the sack. “I’d offer you some lemonade, but you’re going to have to wait.”
He knelt down beside her. “Let me help you.” His hand brushed against hers as they both reached for the same piece of glass, and he didn’t miss the way she pulled away as if his touch burned her.
“No, thanks, Hunter. I don’t need your help. Why don’t you have a seat at the table, and I’ll fix some more lemonade in a few minutes?”
His gaze met hers, and he forced himself to hold it, not to look away from the pain that was so evident in the smoke of her eyes. “I want to help you,” he insisted.
“Now you want to help me?” she asked sarcastically. “Where were you when I needed it, Hunter? Where were you when I was learning to function again with all of my insides sewn together in different places? Where were you when I was learning to breathe without having to experience pain? Where were you when I had to deal with not having my dad here? Where were you when I refused to sleep because I knew if I did, I’d dream and live it all over again?”