In TRAIL OF OBSESSION, Megan Cartwright, a successful real estate agent, is content with her work-driven life. While out running on a popular trail in Palm Beach, Florida, she is attacked and left for dead. Even though it's difficult, Megan is determined to get her life back on track.
When Megan crosses paths again with Stephen Braun, the handsome Good Samaritan who helped save her, neither one of them are prepared for the intense attraction that sizzles between them.
Megan finds she's been given not only a second chance at life, but a second chance at love. With Stephen's charm, patience, and support, he convinces the slow to trust Megan to take a risk on love again. As their relationship grows, neither one realizes that danger lurks around the corner. As a killer closes in on Megan as a target, Megan finds herself on borrowed time once again.
TRAIL OF OBSESSION is a contemporary romance with suspenseful elements, believable, empathetic characters, and enough steamy romance to keep you turning the pages for more.
“Hey, you look like you’re a million miles away.”
Megan startled in her chair at the unexpected interruption. She put a hand on her chest to calm her racing heart. A look of surprise crossed her face and she let out a breath of relief. “Stephen, sorry. I didn’t even hear you come in. I guess I was lost in thought.”
Stephen sat on the edge of her desk and tilted his chin toward the monitor. “A friend of yours?”
Megan swiveled in her chair to look at the picture on the monitor again. She chewed on her bottom lip. “No, the police were just here. They said she was murdered a few days ago.”
“Sorry, no wonder you look shaken up.” He reached for her hands and rubbed them soothingly between his. “Your hands are cold. Are you okay?”
A frown line crossed along the center of Megan's forehead. “I keep thinking that could have been me. I sometimes wonder if the guy that attacked me left me for dead or left me to live.”
Megan shook her head, trying to clear the mental images. “Sorry to be so dismal. What brings you by?” She looked at her hands held in Stephen's and met his concerned gaze. “You thinking of selling that beautiful house of yours?”
Stephen chuckled as he released her hands. “No. I came to see you. It’s turned out to be a nice day, and I was hoping I could convince you to join me for a walk around Lake Trail later.”
Megan studied Stephen. He was dressed in a button down shirt with a plaid pattern of turquoise, grey and dark blue tucked into a pair of khaki pants with a brown leather belt. The sleeves of his shirt were rolled up just past his elbows. His body was fit and muscular without being overly bulky. With his short hair and smoothly shaven jaw-line, he looked clean-cut and handsome. The softness in those vivid blue eyes and his full lips balanced out the harshness of his chiseled jaw line. She felt that prickle of awareness with him so near.
Megan grabbed a pen and tapped it against the desk. “Thanks, but I’m content with the gym these days.”
“What gym do you go to?”
When Megan mentioned the name of the gym, Stephen’s blue eyes brightened in surprise. “Small world. I’ve never seen you there.”
“I just joined a few weeks ago.” Megan shrugged her shoulders. “We must go on different days.” She tried to get to the gym at least three times a week. When she was at the gym, she didn’t have to worry about looking over her shoulder. She didn’t have the fear of someone grabbing her unexpectedly. She felt somewhat safe.
“It’s a beautiful day. It’s a shame to waste it indoors,” Stephen stated as he let the words linger. “I understand the place might still give you the creeps, but when you fall off a bike, the best thing is to get back on. We don’t have to walk, but I was hoping to bring Toby along. He needs a chance to burn off his energy.” He pushed a hand through his short brown hair. “And besides, Toby will protect you. Don’t let his friendly demeanor fool you. He can be a fierce protector if need be.”
Megan smiled. “I didn’t see that.”
Stephen’s blue eyes sparkled. His arms were extended behind him and he rested the palms of his hands on her desk. “That’s because he liked you.”
“I appreciate the thought, but I don’t think it’s a good idea. It’s been a rough day, and I’m not ready to get back on the bike or get back in the saddle, whatever the metaphor is yet.”
Stephen leaned in closer toward Megan. “How about I bring Toby and a taser? We’ll keep you safe. I promise.”
“A stun gun?” Megan tried to hide her shocked expression. “Do you really have one of those?”
Stephen smiled self-consciously. “No, but if it’d make you feel better, I could try to find one.”
Megan bit down on her lower lip as she tried to not smile. “I don’t think that’ll be necessary."
His blue eyes gazed intently at her. “Please go. I’d like to see you again. It was nice getting to talk to you the other day, and I thought it would give us a chance to get to know each other better.”
Megan was surprised at his admission. Was he asking her out? She was just getting herself back into a normal routine. Stephen was handsome, nice, and charming, but the thought of dating hadn’t even crossed her mind. She looked at him pointedly. “Why? Don’t you have a trail of women chasing you?”
Stephen almost looked bashful as he lowered his head and grinned. “But I’m not interested in them.” He looked back up and his intense blue eyes held her gaze. His knuckles grazed softly against her cheek and she felt the sparks of attraction bounce between them. “You on the other hand …. I can’t believe I actually let you leave the other day without getting your phone number.”
“Me?” Megan asked in surprise.
“Yes, you. You’re pretty, smart and easy to talk to. I’d like to get to know you better.”
Her cheeks started to turn pink at his unyielding gaze.
He tilted her chin so she was forced to look him in the eyes. “So what do you say? Will you give me a chance?”
Those blue eyes seemed to penetrate through her carefully built defenses. She felt her pulse rate quicken. She looked at him quizzically. “So you like me, but you want to drag me to a place that currently gives me nightmares?”
“Would you go back by yourself?”
Absolutely not. “No. If I had my way, I’d never go back.”
“And that would be a shame. It’s right around the corner from your work and it really is a great trail. Don’t let what that bastard did to you dictate your life.” His gaze wandered to her mouth and then returned to her eyes. “Let me help you get this part of your life back.”
She licked her lower lip with her tongue. The smoothness of his voice seemed to entrance her. “Why?”
“Because I like you, and it looks like you could use someone in your corner."
His thumb skimmed along Megan's lower lip and she felt sensations of want and desire tingle through her system at his touch. A man hadn’t made her feel like this in a long time.
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MEET THE AUTHOR:
By day, I work in the medical field as a Licensed Physical Therapist Assistant, helping elderly people get back to a great quality of life following a surgery or illness. I'm married with two kids, and live in Middletown, CT. When I'm not shuttling kids to practices, watching soccer games or gymnastic meets, I like to read. I received a kindle for my birthday a few years ago and it opened up a whole new world to me. I've fallen in love with so many new authors and their stories. It helped encourage me to chase my dream of writing as well.