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Colorado Courtship
Carolyn Davidson

Colorado Courtship
Carolyn Davidson

Choose A Man Or Be Left Behind!So said the code of the West for women alone on wagon trains. But newly widowed Jessica Beaumont had a baby on the way, and what kind of man would willingly take on another man's child? Apparently the rugged, handsome kind, for wagon-train scout Finn Carson staked his claim on her early…and swore never to let go!Finn Carson Was An Honest Manwho honestly wanted Jessica Beaumont to cherish and love forever. But would this fetching beauty accept him if she discovered his connection to the danger stalking her? Or would their chance at happiness be lost before it was truly found?

“You’ll find me easy to please, Jessica,” he said. “All you have to do is smile in my direction.”

Such foolishness! “A smile will do it?” she asked.

“Just looking at you gives me pleasure,” he told her, and she laughed, a quick, harsh sound.

“I’ll put some stock in that if I didn’t know how I look these days, Finn.” She set her jaw, deliberately acknowledging her own shortcomings.

He laughed at her. The man had the audacity to touch his fingers to her cheek and then bend to kiss the tip of her nose. “You don’t know what you’re talking about, Miss Jessica.”

Then he was laughing no longer, his mouth taking hers fiercely, his need powerful, elemental. And then they lurched, almost in unison, as the baby made its presence known to them both, a tiny hand or foot poking indiscriminately in protest…!

Acclaim for Carolyn Davidson’s recent titles

The Texan

“…heart-touching characters and a vivid, mythic setting…”

—Romantic Times

A Marriage by Chance

“This deftly written novel about loss and recovery is a skillful handling of the traditional Western, with the added elements of family conflict and a moving love story.”

—Romantic Times

A Convenient Wife

“Carolyn Davidson creates an engaging, complex plot with a hero to die for.”

—Romantic Times

The Tender Stranger

“Davidson wonderfully captures gentleness in the midst of heart-wrenching challenges, portraying the extraordinary possibilities that exist within ordinary marital love.”

—Publishers Weekly

Colorado Courtship

Carolyn Davidson

www.millsandboon.co.uk (http://www.millsandboon.co.uk)

Sometimes those who point out our faults are not truly appreciated. But if the truth be known, I owe an enormous debt of gratitude to the women who read and critique my work and let me know when and where I have fallen short of the goal. They do their best to make me look good in front of my editors, and to those ladies I offer my heartfelt thanks for their efforts on my behalf. Brenda Rollins and Betty Barrs, this book is dedicated to you, with love.

And as always, to Mr. Ed, who loves me.

Contents

Prologue

Chapter One

Chapter Two

Chapter Three

Chapter Four

Chapter Five

Chapter Six

Chapter Seven

Chapter Eight

Chapter Nine

Chapter Ten

Chapter Eleven

Chapter Twelve

Chapter Thirteen

Chapter Fourteen

Chapter Fifteen

Chapter Sixteen

Chapter Seventeen

Prologue

Saint Louis, April 1862

He wanted her.

With but a single glance he acknowledged the desire flaring within him, knew instinctively she would fit neatly into his arms should he lift her against himself. His mouth tightened, as did the pressure of his knees against the sides of the horse he rode, and the black gelding sidestepped, tossing his head impatiently.

Appearing small and fragile beside the tall wagon, the woman’s face was in profile, her features finely drawn. Woman? She seemed but a girl, clad in a poorly fitting, voluminous dress. From beneath her sunbonnet, dark hair hung in a long braid down her back, the end tied with a bit of ribbon. It was a feminine touch, almost an aching reminder to the watching eye that, no matter the adversity, a woman’s need for such small fripperies would prevail.
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