Hey! It’s Sable. ;) Most people don’t make this association, but Louisiana is a home to wild & wicked cowboys as well. I am certainly a mix of Texas and Louisiana culture and my novels take on that quality similarly. I am known for my Texas Cowboys, most notably the McCoys of Tebow Ranch from the Hell Yeah! Series. Hell Yeah! has spun-off into a related series that moves the setting from the central Texas hill country to the swamps of Louisiana, Cajun Spice. Don’t fret, Cowboy fans. The men of Louisiana are just as wild and wicked. They may not wear ten-gallon hats, but their spirits buck untamed.
Louisiana has been home to Cowboys almost as long as Texas or California. In the absence of vast field and grassland, adaptations were needed to the Cowboy lifestyle. Spurs were tacked on to rubber swamp boots. Extra-long reins helped make the mud-trawling more manageable. Some cattle-drives were even driven by boat! They still recite Cowboy poetry today and have cattle auctions in French.
“Forget Me Never” was just released. It is the second book in my Cajun Spice series. The hero of my story is Patrick. He was not raised on a ranch, exactly. He grew up instead on a plantation where Spanish Moss replaces tumble-weeds and cotton replaces cattle. He, however, retains a free spirit and an assertive personage. He is a warrior, a Marine sniper that defends the country in Afghanistan. He is independent, clever and masculine. Instead of cussing in Spanish when things don’t go his way, he does so in French.
I think the reason why we love Cowboys so much is the manliness and the lifestyle that they represent. The cowboy is a strong, powerful man. He supports his family and smothers his woman in love. He wrangles nature and powers through obstacles. He does not settle for less than what he deserves and when he falls in love, he does not let his woman settle for less than she deserves.
I am a Cowboy lover, everyone, and I would like to introduce you to a kind of cowboy you might not be familiar with. Here is an excerpt from “Forget Me Never.” I hope that you enjoy the Wild & Wicked cowboy of Louisiana and the Southern Belle that captures his heart and promises to remember him and love him for the rest of her life.
Excerpt – “You would have defended me?” At that moment, he owned her. Oh, she knew he would never want to take possession of her – but that didn’t negate the fact that he had just earned the keys to her kingdom.
The absolute amazement on her face and wonder in her voice made it hard for Patrick to sit still. He wanted nothing more than to take her in his arms and show her how it felt to be cherished. They had just met – and he knew it wasn’t logical – but he felt possessive of her. This woman was important to him, but he didn’t feel like he could say all of that – not just yet. But he damn sure could put her mind to rest. “Hell yes, I would have defended you.”
Without thinking, she picked up her napkin and fanned herself with it. Then she laughed. Truthfully, she was having a hard time maintaining her composure. Savannah was extremely attracted to this man. Her whole body was tingling from arousal and she had the most incredible urge to crawl over in his lap and kiss him silly. “You say the most amazing things,” she sighed. “Maybe it would be better if we talked about something else till I calm down.” She began to thumb through the book, heading for the table of contents that would list the names. “The name LaVerdure isn’t familiar to me. But, I certainly don’t have this volume memorized.”
“Savannah, I don’t want you to calm down and I don’t want to do research right now.” Patrick took the heavy volume from her and sat it on the chair next to him. “Frankly, I’d rather get you alone and kiss you till you can’t remember your name.” After he had declared his intentions, they stared at one another for a long moment. Patrick was doing his best to re-memorize her face. During the long weeks ahead, he knew he would want to remember every beautiful detail and even though he had seen her in the well and drawn her likeness, nothing compared to the stunning reality of Savannah.
Savannah was dumbstruck. “You want to kiss me?” She was asking too many questions, and she probably sounded like she didn’t have a brain in her head – but this was important.
“More than you can ever imagine.”
Should she? Could she? She was clean, she knew she was. No doctor had ever found even one thing wrong with her. Savannah knew she was just like any other girl. He deserved to know the full truth – but, it was just a kiss. She wouldn’t touch his lips, but she longed to experience kissing someone – just once.
“Lean over the table,” she commanded quickly.
Dang, if she didn’t bark orders as good as he did. Patrick found himself doing exactly as she demanded. Standing up she framed his face, looked longingly at his mouth, and then kissed him tenderly on the cheek.
Patrick was momentarily speechless. Savannah had just blown him away. And when she moved back, licked her lips and whispered, “Thank you, I enjoyed that very much,” he fell completely under her spell.
“That was sweet, Baby. But I want more.” Not one to let an opportunity pass, he took her by the hand and pulled her over into his lap, fitted his mouth to hers and proceeded to kiss her like there was no tomorrow.
Savannah didn’t know what to do! How did one find the strength to stop rapture? She put her hands on his chest to push him away – she had to! Turning her head to break the kiss, she whispered in anguish – “No, please no.” Instantly, Patrick let her go. She was still in his lap, but his arms fell to his sides.
“Sorry, my mistake,” Patrick went instantly cold. And when she grabbed a napkin from the table, his guts twisted because he thought she was about to wipe his kiss from her lips. Instead, she turned to him and began to frantically wipe his mouth.
“I’m sorry, so sorry. It’s my fault; I shouldn’t have kissed you on the mouth.”
Patrick was baffled. “Shouldn’t you be wiping your mouth instead of mine?”
“No, I liked your kiss.”
Now, he was confused. “You’re not making sense.” She looked so stricken that all he wanted to do was comfort her. Taking her hand, he kissed the knuckles. A jagged sigh escaped her lips as he turned her hand over, unfurled the fingers and tenderly kissed the palm. “Tell me what’s going on, Savannah. I need to know.” Titters and murmurs from the other patrons of the restaurant tore his attention from her sweet face. “God, Baby – let’s get out of here. The only thing I care about is you and this is too public of a place to talk.”
Savannah didn’t argue. Actually, she didn’t know what to say. The unbelievable events of the day had her completely off balance. She stood by while Patrick got their food to go, paid for it and then escorted her back to the Camaro. “I don’t have a heck of a lot of time, but let’s go to that park you told me about earlier. Do you have a blanket in the car that we can sit on?”
“The historic site has picnic tables, but I have an afghan in the trunk.” Her voice broke; she was just about to cry.
“You’re in no shape to drive, let me.” When he escorted her to the passenger side, Savannah didn’t say a word. If dreams could come true, Patrick would drive her car, have the keys to her front door and leave his shoes under her bed every night.
“I’m sorry about everything.”
“Don’t be. How do I get to the park?” Patrick followed the directions she gave him to the Evangeline State Historic Site which was just out of town on Highway 31, but his thoughts were just a tangled web of questions. Suddenly a wave of fear washed over him. “Are you sick?” Please, God, no – don’t let her be ill, he prayed.
Savannah jerked in the seat next to him, but quickly and emphatically replied, “No, I’m not.”
Patrick let out a harsh breath of relief. All right. Then whatever it was – was conquerable. He was a damn Marine Special Op and there was no enemy big or bad enough that he couldn’t kick its ass. So, he decided to woo her into smiling. He’d get to the bottom of this – eventually. It may not be today, but he wasn’t about to give up. “Are you a lesbian? I like lesbians.”
“No,” Savannah hiccupped a laugh. “I like men.”
“I’m a man.” He informed her solemnly.
“I know.” Savannah sounded sort of wistful. “I can tell.”
“Hmmmmm, let’s see.” He pretended to ponder the quandary. “Are you a man-eating alien from outer space who’s on a diet?”
At that absurd suggestion, Savannah let out a little giggle so sexy it made his cock throb. “No, I’m just a plain ole’ girl.”
“You aren’t a ‘plain ole’ anything, Baby.” Patrick reached over and covered her hands with him. “Savannah, I am so glad you walked into my world. Whatever is going on, whatever is bothering you, I’d like to help you with it.”
Savannah stared down at their joined hands. “There isn’t anything you can do, Patrick. It’s just something that I have to live with. But, thank you.”
When she met his gaze, he could see trails of tears down her cheeks. “So, what does this mean to us?”
“Us?” What a wondrous, amazing concept – us. “I’ll be glad to help you with your granddad’s research. We can talk about that, if you’d like.”
“Friendship is a good place to start.” Patrick couldn’t watch the road for wanting to look at Savannah. Stopping at a red light, he took advantage of the few seconds to make eye contact with her. “Will you write me every day?”
“Sure, if you’d enjoy hearing from me.” She couldn’t imagine that to be true. Patrick was saying all the right things, but Savannah didn’t have enough self-confidence to believe any of it. If he knew the truth, he would reject her. Everyone always rejected her. It wasn’t their fault; no one could get past millennia of misinformation. “I could write you every evening.” If he only knew how tempted she was to just throw caution to the wind and grab hold of him with both hands and never let him go. Noticing how far he had pushed back the car seat, she asked, “How tall are you?” There was no doubt about it, the man was built – muscled to perfection. His thighs were as big around as her waist and there was no way she could reach around his biceps with both hands.
“I’m six-three,” he made the turn into the park. “So, you’ll answer my emails and do videophone chats with me?” As he waited for her answer, Patrick realized he was holding his breath.
The thought of his leaving hurt her heart, anything could happen in a war-zone. And now that they had met – and kissed – she couldn’t stand the thought of something happening to him. “Yea, we can be computer friendly,” she smiled weakly.
Not exactly what he had in mind. But for now, he’d take what he could get. “I am definitely feeling friendly with you,” he cupped the back of her neck and gave it a little squeeze. To his great satisfaction, she leaned back in his hand as if his touch was more than welcome. “What was your childhood like, Baby?”
Starting slowly, she told him what she thought she could. “I never knew my real parents, so I grew up in foster care. In school, I was small and they called me Swamp Rat.” She smiled when he frowned. That was one of the nicer things they called her, but she didn’t go into that. “It’s okay, things got better. I won a scholarship in high school and now I’ve got a pretty good job.”
It always amazed Patrick how cruel people could be. Taking in her delicate body and perfect features, he couldn’t help but contradict the fools who had hurt her. “If I would have been there, I would have called you my Bayou Baby and beat the shit out of anybody who said different.”
What he said and how he said it made her feel all warm inside. Patrick O’Rourke was a hero. In her heart, Savannah had been holding out for a hero. Honestly, she had never expected to find one. And now that he was here and seemed to think he wanted her, quite frankly, she didn’t know what to do with him. “Where were you when I was hung on the clothesline by my sundress straps?” The memory of that prank always made her laugh. The older boys hadn’t hurt her, but she had dangled there till her foster mom had finally heard her squealing. “Park over close to the picnic tables,” she pointed to the left. “We don’t need to buy tickets just to picnic. The Maison Olivier Plantation house is interesting, if you’d like to take a tour after we eat.”
“No, I don’t want to take a tour.” He got out of the car before she did this time, so he could help her with the food, the blanket and that monster size book she kept wanting to wag around. “We’re going to eat our fish and get to know one another. I’m also hoping that you’ll let me kiss you again.”
“Patrick,” she murmured in exasperation. Savannah would have given everything she owned to kiss him one more time, but it wasn’t right. Later, if she confided in him, he would remember that she had taken advantage of him and the situation. “I am a little hungry, though.” Patrick didn’t answer, but she could almost swear she heard him make a low growling noise. “Was that your stomach?”
Patrick chuckled. “No, it wasn’t my stomach. That was my sexy growl. Couldn’t you tell?” When he noticed her amazed, amused expression – he laughed and tugged her close. “Being with you is a delight. It’s like seeing the world with a whole new pair of eyes.” He went on to explain. “When you said you were hungry, I was hoping you were starving for me – that’s why I growled.”
“Oh,” his explanation made her quiver.