Vampire Up: A Cowboy Rides
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by Destiny Blaine
Description: Ryan's riding in blizzard-like conditions so when he spots a cabin outside of Tombstone, he thinks he's one lucky cowboy. While he's anxious to warm his hands against a fresh fire, he's just as interested in occupying them once he spots the woman living there. Beth Earp claims an ordinary existence and deceives her guest from the start. After one night under her roof, Ryan understands something more than fate delivered him to the door of a woman only interested in his blood. It doesn't take a smart cowboy to understand his predicament. Beth delivers an unusual request and while he's hard with anticipation--and false pretenses--those 'cowboy notions' are quickly put to rest. Beth leaves Ryan to fend for himself in a big, lonely bed, and it wouldn't be a problem, except the woman has a peculiar way of making him feel welcome and unwanted all at the same time. [Contemporary Erotic Romance. Warning: contains graphic sexual content and adult language.]
eBook Publisher: Siren-BookStrand, Inc./Siren Classic, 2009 2009
eBookwise Release Date: October 2009
3 Reader Ratings:
Available eBook Formats: OEBFF Format (IMP) [72 KB]
Reading time: 43-60 min.
Ryan Chelson clucked to Old Blue and moved closer to the cabin. The horse approached with caution because the poor old creature was nearly lame. In an act of courage, he responded with enough loyalty to keep his hooves clopping against the cold ground. Somehow, even with a vile limp, the gelding managed to carry them through the violent winter storm.
Ryan pulled the collar of his snow-covered coat up around his neck and hunched down as far as his shoulders allowed before his earlobes tapped the frozen triangular corners. He felt numbed by the chill found in the icy material rather than warmth from the failed attempt to hide from the spin of high winds.
"Whoa! Blue," he called out to the animal, as he pranced underneath him. Using exaggerated strength and a cowboy's might, he tugged hard on the leather reins. When he looked up, he saw a young woman peering out of the cabin's only front window.
If coal black eyes staring back at him didn't warm him in places a man likes to feel the hottest of body heat, then without a doubt, frostbite carried significant drawbacks. Never mind what her gaze did to inspire personal sudden growth--to think of such things now, right then and right there, would send most men swinging. Yeah, by the neck, and maybe by his manhood too. He doubled over before he thought too much about it.
He snapped the reins with another quick tug, and moved his right leg over the horse's withers with dismounting on his mind, never once did he alter his focus. The young woman tilted her head and watched him with adamant curiosity.
Yep, danglin' from the longest rope found in Tombstone.
Some wouldn't consider it good enough taking into account what he'd like to do to a pretty young thing like her. After riding west from Virginia, without the companionship of a woman, certain things popped up now and again. A man often dwelled on what he needed to satisfy them.
The sudden blast of a cold breeze nearly knocked his weight from under him, but it didn't make it impossible to tie off the horse. Twice around the makeshift hitching post, he moved the reins under and over the old log. Then, he left Old Blue behind in order to tread up the front porch steps. He took them two at a time. There were only six of them, so it wasn't a chore.
His fist immediately ached from one hard knock against the front door. Cold hands and numb fingers. The woman inside looked like she knew how to warm up a number of body parts. He wanted to wander beyond the porch and cold air just to find out. He had to fight to keep his teeth from chattering. The task proved more and more difficult when no one answered the door.
He knocked again. This time he gave it his all. Maybe the gal he saw didn't want to step outside under the dark sky, but too damn bad. He wasn't interested in leaving. Another knock and another, he needed out of the freezin' cold. She'd have little reason to think any different before he warmed his body against the fire on the other side. He mashed his ear against the wood then and listened.
"Hello?" Ryan pressed harder. "Hello? Anyone there?" He knew damn well someone was there. He'd already seen her, and the evidence left behind to remind him had his dick twitching with anticipation. Thankfully, he possessed a stout hard-on, because it made other chills tolerable. He barely noticed his body trembling until a gust of snowflakes powdered his cheeks all at one time.
Another hard hit against the wood and a tantrum drove him to add a swift kick, which was stupid--now he had a sore toe and blue balls. Life wasn't always fair.
With no response, he walked over to the window and peered inside, which was a task in itself given his enormous size. Yeah, cock and body length weighed heavy on his mind after he spotted this woman and he wasn't eager to travel now. Still, he was over six-foot tall, and it didn't always prove advantageous when it required a man to keep his head low. He looked to the left and stared hard to the right cursing the low porch. Then, he stooped down and stole a better look at the pretty little flower behind the glass, but it was only a glance.
Crouched down behind the door, the young woman clutched what resembled a heavy officer's rifle. The big, dark eyes staring back at him moments ago now closed everything out, specifically him, if he cared to wager on it. He might.
He moved a large gloved hand to the window and pecked lightly. "Hello? Ma'am? I'm not going to hurt you. I'm just cold, hungry, and need a place for Old Blue here to bed down tonight against this storm. I'd gladly take up a place in your barn if you wouldn't mind, or if you could spare a cowboy some supper, I'd be much obliged."
She didn't move and neither did he.
Her eyes flew open after he experienced a few more agonizing seconds. She glared into the looking glass realizing he watched her through an old mirror positioned across from where she hunkered down. She recognized her predicament, no doubt.
"You can't come inside..." Her voice trailed off and provided enough meaning for Ryan to pick up on the rest of it.
She was alone--all alone. The war must've gotten her father or brothers, maybe even a husband. It sure killed at least half a dozen other good men. Make it two dozen. Surely to hell and back there were at least that many good men who fought in the war. Since he often stared down the undesirable end of a gun, he wasn't so sure.
Ryan felt a frog in his throat; maybe from the winter weather or maybe just because he was stunned silent by her beauty. Either way, he didn't plan on mounting Old Blue again until morning. He didn't want to weather a storm outside when he had his mind on a fire worth tending just beyond the legs--logs, yeah logs--separating a man from a woman.
He tossed out a proposition. "Ma'am, please consider an act of kindness and I'll pay you for it--" He stopped himself as he considered possible translations but he didn't make the necessary correction in time.
"I just bet you would!" She hollered out and clutched her gun tighter. "If you think I'm some whore you can buy, bed, and tender, then you best ride on in a little closer to Tombstone. I think you'll find most men are better serviced there."
"Ma'am, I ain't looking for no whore. I'm just plumb frozen, almost to death, or close enough to the edge of a grave anyway. I'll pay you if you--."
"I already told you--you will not come in here!" she screamed out with a mad-woman's temper.
Ryan rarely saw a woman on a lonesome trail but on occasion, he passed the time with a few whores when he ran up on a gold mining town. Never in his lifetime, did he recall finding one with such a perfect shape, high cheeks, deeply set eyes framed by a wave of beautiful hair. He cleared his throat and tried to think of a way to coax her, reassure her he only wanted to warm his tired body. He came up empty-handed.
Ryan pressed his face to the glass to make sure he had it right--sure enough, he did. He backed away again. He didn't want to give the little woman cause or reason to clean out her dead daddy's gun, assuming he was in fact dead.
He looked around behind him. The fences were down and the barn door swung wide open and slammed shut again and again. A farmer didn't leave his fences down and his barn open for critters. With the thought of varmints, he turned to look through the glass once more.
"If you want to pay a woman for her time, then you're in the wrong place, mister!"
She stepped out from behind the door, and he saw her much better then. As much as a man just making eyes at a woman for the first time had the right to see. She had too many clothes on for his liking, but he'd give her time. They'd only just met.
A long dress met the woman's thin ankles, and the design, while fairly practical, looked all the more beautiful fitted to a slender woman's body. A paisley pattern followed her long torso way beyond her knees. The neckline reached far too high for Ryan's preferences, not that he should have any, but he did--and it didn't take long for him to form another opinion or two.
The lady was blessed with big breasts, and he liked those on a woman. Shew! What I'd give to touch them once. He stopped himself and almost took off his hat and dusted his own backside. He changed his course of thought. What I'd give to be inside that cabin in front of a roaring fire about right now. Now then, he felt some better about himself.
As if shaking the gun in his direction would scare him off, the little gal moved closer. He chose to believe she didn't really aim with the intent of shooting but she did it just for show--or maybe practice.
The practice part was what worried him.
"If you don't get back on that horse and ride on out of here cowboy, I swear, I'll give you enough incentive. The best you can pray for is I'll miss your pride and joy but let me assure you, I mostly hit when I bother to fire."
He did too. But he didn't bother to tell her which gun he planned to set off once he got inside the feisty woman's home. Some things were better left unsaid in situations like these. Of course it depended on who was holding what gun too. Right now, he was going to lose his.
Ryan loosened his belt and let his holster fall to the planks where he stood. After a threat like hers, most men would. Still, some might believe he didn't make a wise move considering he slowly released his belt. All sorts of implications were left there on the porch right along with his pistol.
A minute or so passed and he held his arms high. "I'm unarmed and dangerous." Hot damn, he had a slip of tongue.
Well, if she cared to look, she might be inclined to believe he told the truth and a lie. He wasn't dangerous, not really, but he was most definitely armed with a man's most intimate weapon.
"You got that right." Her lips turned up in a wicked little smile, and she moved toward the window.
Ryan grinned real big too. Thank God, she had a sudden change of heart.
Her mouth twitched a little in a perverse move to make him, maybe even her, all the more aware of his frontal bulge. Her eyes settled on the one part of his anatomy a wiser woman would've chosen to ignore.
"What I meant was..." His teeth chattered each syllable. "Damn, woman, it's cold out here!" He didn't bother to finish what he should've said because the way she looked at him made his balls tighten all at once.
"Come on back around to the door, Mr. Dangerous. If you plan to threaten me with a different kind of gun, the least you can do is give a lady a closer look at what you're gonna be drawin'."
Ryan felt his mind churn in one direction and then another. He never expected to find a cabin in this storm, let alone a woman, but to find one, who just showed off two very different personalities, profoundly confused him. He'd heard all his life that a woman reserved the right to change her mind but this was something else, something that intrigued and warned him. Ryan seldom paid attention to a good warning, even his own, when it concerned a female.
He glared at his plug horse. Maybe he really should grab Old Blue by the bridle and ride on closer to Tombstone. A smarter man would've done just that, but no one ever made the mistake of calling him out as a man with a lot of brains. He possessed them, but most of the time, he only discovered them at the bottom of a whiskey bottle. The rest of the time, women found them for him. It didn't take the opposite sex too long to figure out which head he used most once they had him settled in between their legs.