When his sister is found strangled in an alley, San Francisco lawman Flynn O’Rourke promises to find the man seen pocketing her jewels and bring him to justice at the end of a rope.
Flynn’s journey will test that vow to its limits. Deprived of his memory and cast up in a lonely, almost mystical place, he falls under the spell of an innocent beauty. Will he keep his vow – even though it means betraying the woman he loves?
Untouched by sensual love, Sylvie awakens to desire in the arms of a stranger with no name. Little does she suspect that the man she calls Ishmael harbors a dangerous secret – one that threatens to tear her fragile world apart.
In this excerpt, Flynn has just awakened on the beach with Sylvie bending over him.
He was dead, that had to be it. And those silver eyes looking down at him, set in a porcelain face and haloed by a nimbus of spun gold hair, belonged to an angel. Or maybe to a beautiful demoness.
He felt like bloody hell, which argued for the demoness theory. His head ached. His eyes burned. Every bone and muscle felt as if it had been pounded like cheap beefsteak. The few words he’d spoken had been ripped from the raw depths of his throat.
Worst of all, he had no idea what had happened to him.
“Don’t try to talk.” One cool hand eased his head upward. He felt the metal mouth of a canteen against his chapped lips. “Just a sip for now. Too much might make you sick.”
Coming more awake now, he could hear the lap of the tide and the sharp mewl of sea birds. His skin, hair and clothes were gritty with sand. Had he been shipwrecked? It seemed likely enough, but he had no memory of being on a boat. The blankness was unsettling. But no doubt everything would come back once his head cleared.
Pouring water into her hand she splashed the worst of the grit from his face. The palm that grazed his skin was lightly callused. His mysterious rescuer was no lady of leisure. But there was an ethereal quality about her, like a fairytale princess dressed in faded calico. Nothing about her made sense…
With a grunt, he heaved to a sitting position. The dizziness that swept over him blurred his sight for a moment. As it cleared he saw that he was in a sheltered cove, ringed by jagged rocks and pine crested cliffs. Beyond the entrance, sunlight glittered on the open sea. Nearby, on the sand, lay the wrecked hull of a boat.
The beauty who’d awakened him knelt at his side, one hand resting on a club-shaped chunk of driftwood. Peeking around her shoulder with wide brown eyes was a small, black-haired boy…
“Are you a prince, Mister?” the boy demanded.
He managed to find his voice. “A prince?” he rasped. “Do I look like a prince to you?”
“Maybe a little.” The boy frowned, then brightened. “If you aren’t a prince, where did you get that ring on your finger?”…
“Where are your manners, Daniel? The gentleman’s our guest, not our prisoner.” She turned, her expression still guarded. “I’m Sylvie Cragun,” she said. “This is my brother Daniel. And who might you be, Sir?”
His gaze flickered to the driftwood club. Her manner was friendly enough but something told him that, at his first suspicious move, she’d crack it against his skull.
Her silvery eyes narrowed. “Your name, Sir, if you’d be so kind. And it would be a courtesy to tell us where you’ve come from.”
“My name is…” He hesitated, groping for an answer to the question. But nothing came to mind – not his name, not his family or his occupation, not his home or his reason for being here. Nothing.
From a great 4.5 star review on Cataromance: “Pick up The Lawman’s Vow by Elizabeth Lane and experience the wonder and the delight of true love as well as the pain and the joy it can bring. You will find all this in one delightful story.”
You can read more about THE LAWMAN’S VOW and find purchase links on my web site, www.elizabethlaneauthor.com.