Sometimes the last thing you want is exactly what you need…


Six years after trading in his combat gear for hospital scrubs, Luke Rafferty still hasn’t found what he’s been searching for: a normal life. At his job, Luke is faced with things just as heartbreaking as those on the battlefield, none more so than the abused children brought in by a pretty red-headed social worker.


For Devon Manning, being a social worker is a rewarding job, but also a constant reminder of her own troubled youth. Devon takes everything one day at a time—unable to form a relationship with anyone except the children she rescues.

A DESIRE TO HEAL… When Luke meets Devon, he thinks he might have found what he’s been looking for, but in order to get the life he wants, Luke has to break through Devon’s emotional barriers and make her realize that his healing touch might be just the complication her life needs…


“So if you’re not here for to watch football, why are you here?”

Devon scanned the crowd and then shot him a grin.  “You, being a guy and all, might not have noticed that outside this steakhouse with the loud TVs, wonderful wings and cold beer, there’s this nifty thing called a mall.  There are lots of stores–bookstores, music stores, shoe stores, stores where you can buy all sorts of girly stuff like lotion and clothes.”

Luke grinned at her. “So you’re shopping?”

“The coming of fall also means end of the season clearance.”  She rolled her eyes.  “I just spent half of next week’s paycheck and I haven’t even gotten it yet.  I’m kind of bad about that.”  She shot him a small grin and shrugged.  “I have an addictive personality.”

Crooking a brow at her, Luke repeated, “An addictive personality.  Addicted to what?”

Devon smiled.  “Oh, all sorts of things.  Books.  That girly stuff, lotion and stuff.  Shoes–oh, man, shoes.  I love shoes.”

He craned his head around a little and glanced under the table.  She had on a pair of glittery, strappy heels.  Pretty feet, too.  Her toenails were red.  He hadn’t ever thought that he was the foot fetish type, but Luke had an overpowering desire to see her wearing those shoes–just the shoes…


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