In this scene, Natalie is working in the diner when a storm blows in. A six-foot-tall, tanned, sexy as hell storm named Sawyer Nolan
* * *
Rain was common this time of year, which helped keep the temperature down and was vital to the newly planted crops. Unfortunately, it occasionally escalated into tropical storms and hurricanes. As a result of all the moisture and activity in the skies, storms were always brewing somewhere off the coast.
Even when they did culminate in a land-based storm, battering poor Galveston for the umpteenth time, they were little more than a thunderstorm by the time they reached central Texas. Despite this, the exact coordinates of the current storm system in the Gulf, its windspeeds, its trajectory, were an endless source of conversation.
“When do you think it’ll touch down?” Joe mused.
“Can’t say.” Mr. Winterman shook his head. “Any day, though. Could happen.”
“Yeah, but it probably won’t reach us,” Joe said, being a fairly reasonable and levelheaded individual despite his youthful antics and current sheriff’s uniform. Or maybe because of them.
Mr. Winterman grunted. “Right when you least expect it, that’s when it’ll happen.”
Just then, the cowbell over the door clanged. Natalie looked up, dragging her gaze over well-hung jeans, a faded T-shirt…and a face that damn near stopped her heart. Scruffy and solemn and—damn, damn, damn—familiar.
“Sawyer,” she breathed.
There was too much noise in the diner for him to have heard her, too much distance between her behind the counter and him just inside the door, but his gaze honed in on her. Recognition flared in his eyes. And something else. Something dark and hot and clenching tight in her belly.
Lucy turned too. “He’s the guy who got me all wet. That’s Sawyer Nolan? He looks so different.”
“Mmm-hmm,” Natalie murmured, although he didn’t really. Taller, bigger, thicker in all the right places, but the same clear brown eyes that lit from within when they met hers.
It had been five years since he’d made an afternoon appearance in a black suit for his father’s funeral. Another six since he’d graduated high school and left town as quickly as the Greyhound could carry him. Even after all these years and all this distance, she remembered the feel of his arms around her waist. He had been a lanky teenager, but even then he’d been taller than her, bigger than her. Now he was massive. He would engulf her. His hands on her hips and his mouth over hers. He would swallow her whole, and please, yes, where could she sign up?
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