(3 book romance bundle).., p.3
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       (3 Book Romance Bundle) "The Cowboy's Love" & "Sex with the Billionaire" & "Loving the White Billionaire", p.3

           Julie Allen, Carla Davis, & Monica Brooks
 

  ***

  “Thank you so much for this again, dear,” my mother said as she gave me a hug and a kiss. It was around six fifteen, and we had just had a nice dinner so they wouldn’t have to stop for food on the way to Galveston. They had booked a hotel right on the beach and were planning on having a nice night there together before starting any activities in the morning. Apparently the hotel had a Jacuzzi and everything. I was sure they were going to have an amazing time.

  “It’s nothing, Mom. You’ve done so much for me, the least I can do for you is let the two of you go on a trip for your anniversary. It’s the big three-O.” I could see my mother was about to get emotional as she turned around and tried to hall her own luggage out the door. But after my father gave me a tight hug, he picked it up along with his own so she didn’t have to carry it.

  “Such a gentleman,” my mother told him quietly, kissing him on the cheek. I waved to them as they closed the front door behind them. As I heard their truck start and drive off, I suddenly felt very alone. The house was quiet.

  I sat down in front of the television and just stared at it, flipping through channels as I realized there was nothing to watch. There would be no work on the land until morning either, so I literally had nothing to do. I picked up my cell phone and dialed Rachel’s number instead, knowing that she was leaving soon. Maybe she would want to come over and have a final sleepover or something.

  “Hey, what’s up?” Rachel asked when she answered the phone. I could tell I was on speaker for some reason.

  “Not a whole lot; I’m just a little bored and lonely over here. My parents let me watch the ranch while they go to Galveston for their 30th anniversary, and it’s so quiet here. There’s nothing to do until morning. When do you leave?” I asked her, trying to hint at the fact I wanted her to come over.

  “My flight goes out tomorrow evening at eight. I’m actually trying to pack my things now and having a really hard time. Guys seem to be so much better at this stuff than we are.” I imagined her trying to fit all her hair products on top of her clothes and sitting on a piece of luggage to get the thing to close. “Maybe I can come over in the morning, though. I’d love to say goodbye. I’m really going to miss you.” Well, that answered that question.

  “Yeah, I would like that. I’m going to miss you too. I’m going to miss all of you. I can’t believe we’re all going to be apart again. Just promise you’ll keep in touch.” I was feeling a little sorry for myself in that moment when really I shouldn’t have. There were worse things than your high school friends moving away.

  “Of course I will. In fact, I’ll probably be back to visit for at least holidays. And you know that I can fly you up to New York to see me. I mean, I’ll be pretty bored myself until I find something to do. We’ll talk all the time. But hey, I’ve got to get to packing or he’s going to kill me for not being ready for that flight. He’s dying to have me there with him now.”

  “Alright, I’ll see you tomorrow,” I told her before hanging up just as a knock came at the door. I wasn’t sure who it could possibly be since my parents were gone. Maybe it was Miles or Lauren. I went to the door and opened it without looking out first. Guerra wasn’t really the place where people showed up at the door to harm someone. But I did get a surprise when I saw who was there. It was the local sheriff. He was an older gentleman and had been sheriff most of my life. But like my dad he was still a very fit man.

  “Good evening Ms. Milligan,” he greeted me, tipping his hat.

  “Good evening, Sheriff Tate. What brings you by this evening?” I asked curiously. It wasn’t every day that the sheriff just knocked on your door even in a small town like Guerra.

  “I’m afraid there’s been an accident, Star. Your parents have been in a car crash.” I froze and stared at him like he was crazy. I’d just seen them like an hour before. They had just left with smiles on their faces. What was he talking about? Plus, my father was an excellent driver. He had never been in an accident.

  As my mind began to process it, the first question came to mind. “Are they alright?” I asked, beginning to feel panic rising in my chest.

  “I’m afraid I don’t have all the details. I have a report from witnesses that it was getting hard to see because it was dusk and started to rain near Hebbronville and there was a curve in the road that the other car missed. So, they hit your parents pretty hard. They were flown to the hospital in Laredo where they could be better cared for. I have come to escort you if you like. The fastest way is to take 16 which is where the wreck happened, so you have to have a police escort to get through.”

  “Sure, let me get my things,” I said quietly as he nodded. I turned down the hallway to my room and leaned against the wall for a minute and just counted my breathing for a few seconds. I didn’t know what was ahead of me, but I had to keep it together. Mom and Dad were going to need me.

  I went into my room and slipped on a pair of jeans and a better shirt. I also grabbed a bag and threw in something clean just in case I was at the hospital a while. Then, I walked out the door, following the sheriff to his vehicle. My body moved by itself. I had no train of thought. It was like my mind was in a complete fog as the sheriff took off from the ranch.

 

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