TEMPTED BY HIS TARGET

Harlequin Romantic Suspense
October 2011
ISBN 978-0373277483

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Excerpt

He could deliver her unharmed...but not untouched

Wanted for the murder of a Mexican drug lord's son, party girl Isabel Sanborn fled to Oaxaca. Now she owes her life to Brandon Knox, a passing tourist who just saved her from a hit man.

But Knox is no accidental hero-he's an undercover U.S. Marshal assigned to bring Isabel to justice. Instead, wanting to protect her, he joins her on the lam...with cartel goons and corrupt police in hot pursuit!

And as the danger escalates, sexual tension sizzles. For the first time in his career, Brandon considers jeopardizing his mission to safeguard his target. And though Isabel can elude the authorities, she can't escape her feelings...


EXCERPT

Tempted By His TargetBrandon stood at the edge of the beach, where jungle met sand, and watched his quarry wade out of the ocean.

He hadn’t expected to find her this soon.

Izzy Sanborn, aka Isabel Sanchez, dropped her surfboard on the shore, sluicing water from her dark hair. Her bikini top was snug, clinging to her lithe upper body, but her boardshorts were too large, almost falling off her hips. She knelt down on the sand with her back to him and inspected what appeared to be a broken fin.

His heart began to pound with anticipation. Puerto Escondido was famous for big waves, and he was almost as eager to paddle out as he was to get his woman. Oaxaca’s “Mexican Pipeline” rivaled the strength and size of Oahu’s North Shore. Surfers from all over the world came here to test their mettle.

Ms. Sanborn had quite a bit of mettle, apparently. The beach was deserted and the conditions were precarious. Surfing here with no protective equipment was dangerous. Doing it alone was damned near suicidal.

Brandon strode forward, aware that she couldn’t hear him approach over the crashing waves. He hadn’t planned to sneak up on her but he knew that she avoided strangers. She might bolt if she saw him coming.

Before he had a chance to announce his presence, she tilted her head, catching sight of him out of the corner of her eye. Quick as a cat, she leapt over her surfboard, drawing up the leg of her shorts. There was a dagger strapped to her upper thigh.

He was impressed by her quick reflexes, and more than a little concerned that she would try to gut him like a fish. Resisting the urge to drop into a protective stance, he waited for her to make a move. Instead of unsheathing her weapon and launching an unprovoked attack, she slipped her hand out from under the hem of her shorts and straightened. She also relaxed her face, as if nothing was amiss.

“I’m sorry,” he said, keeping a cautious distance between them. “I didn’t mean to scare you.”

She remained silent, her expression cool now, impossible to read. Without being too obvious about it, he studied her appearance. Her black knit bikini top molded to her breasts in a tempting way. She had a trim figure: flat belly, slim waist, curvy hips. Every inch of her was smooth and tanned and toned. Strong, but decidedly feminine.

Tempted By His TargetHe lifted his gaze to her face, noting that she was even prettier in person. Her features were well-arranged, her mouth nicely shaped. With her thick, dark lashes and fine brown eyes, she was striking.

Brandon had seen her picture in magazines, and memorized every detail, so he shouldn’t have been caught off-guard by her beauty. He shouldn’t have been dazzled by it, either. For some reason, she made him feel like an awkward teen again. The circumstances were unusual, of course. He’d never had a female target before.

 

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