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The Child She Always Wanted
Jennifer Mikels

The Child She Always Wanted
Jennifer Mikels

THIS CHILD IS YOURS….Softhearted Rachel Quinn traveled 1200 miles to her old hometown to deliver an orphaned infant to its only kin, rugged, rough-hewn Kane Riley. Trouble was, years ago Kane had unwittingly stirred womanly dreams and desires in Rachel's teenage heart. Dreams she'd long since abandoned.Worse, the brusque, brooding loner the townsfolk shunned claimed he'd be nobody's hero, refused to take his tiny niece–unless Rachel became the temporary nanny. Still, Rachel saw baby Heather gain a toehold in Kane's hardened, haunted heart. And she found herself foolishly aching to live out her lost dreams: to make this man and child hers.

Rachel made Kane ache.

She awakened feelings he’d always kept control of. He felt the heat rising within him as his hands moved over her slimness. Not just the softness of her flesh but the softness within her reached out to him. He wanted to lose himself in her. It didn’t matter that he wasn’t any good for her. That she deserved much more. He wanted her.

Kane made Rachel want again, feel again.

This attraction hadn’t been in her plans. She’d come only to bring him his infant niece. But she couldn’t pretend this was simply about baby Heather anymore. That was the problem. Nothing was simple. After fifteen years away, she hadn’t banished the thrill when Kane Riley looked at her, touched her. And now that she knew his kiss, knew what being with him and baby Heather felt like, she wasn’t sure she could ever forget it….

Dear Reader,

It’s the little things that mean so much. In fact, more than once, “little things” have fueled Myrna Temte’s Special Edition novels. One of her miniseries evolved from a newspaper article her mother sent her. The idea for her first novel was inspired by something she’d heard a DJ say on her favorite country-western radio station. And Myrna Temte’s nineteenth book, Handprints, also evolved in an interesting way. A friend received a special Mother’s Day present—a picture of her little girl with finger-painted handprints and a sweet poem entitled “Handprints.” Once the story was relayed to Myrna, the seed for another romance novel was planted. And the rest, as they say, is history….

There are plenty of special somethings this month. Bestselling author Joan Elliott Pickart delivers Single with Twins, the story of a photojournalist who travels the world in search of adventure, only to discover that family makes his life complete. In Lisa Jackson’s The McCaffertys: Matt, the rugged rancher hero feels that law enforcement is no place for a lady—but soon finds himself making a plea for passion….

Don’t miss Laurie Paige’s When I See Your Face, in which a fiercely independent officer is forced to rely on others when she’s temporarily blinded in the line of duty. Find out if there will be a Match Made in Wyoming in Patricia McLinn’s novel, when the hero and heroine find themselves snowbound on a Wyoming ranch! And The Child She Always Wanted by Jennifer Mikels tells the touching tale of a baby on the doorstep bringing two people together for a love too great for either to deny.

Asking authors where they get their ideas often proves an impossible question. However, many ideas come from little things that surround us. See what’s around you. And if you have an idea for a Special Edition novel, I’d love to hear from you. Enjoy!

Best,

Karen Taylor Richman, Senior Editor

The Child She Always Wanted

Jennifer Mikels

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

To Dan,

Always

JENNIFER MIKELS

is from Chicago, Illinois, but resides now in Phoenix, Arizona, with her husband, two sons and a shepherd-collie. She enjoys reading, sports, antiques, yard sales and long walks. Though she’s done technical writing in public relations, she loves writing romances and happy endings.

Contents

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

Epilogue

Chapter One

“H e doesn’t like company. Isn’t friendly to anyone.”

Rachel Quinn had let Velma Monroe’s unasked-for advice float past her. It didn’t matter that Kane Riley wouldn’t be pleased to have company. She was going to see him.

“He has the Maggie Lee now, a cabin cruiser to take out the weekend warrior types,” the woman said on a little laugh while she punched in the prices of Rachel’s purchases on the lone register at the Grocery Mart, a family-owned grocery store. Velma was pear shaped with a no-nonsense, short hairstyle. A few gray threads wove through the soft-brown color. But despite a stern look, an often disapproving one, she had beautiful brown eyes.

“That’s the boat that Charlie Greer named after his late wife.”

Rachel recalled that from when she’d lived in Hubbard Bay years ago, and phone calls to Lori Wolken, a close school friend, had helped her play catch-up.

“And he bought himself the Sea Siren. It’s one of those touring boats to take the summer vacationers on cruises around the islands or for whale watching.”

Hunger gnawing at her stomach, Rachel placed two candy bars and a can of soda on the counter.

She watched the woman’s eyes shift with a curious glance from her blondish-red hair to the infant in Rachel’s arms. “Thought you’d have redder hair. Most Quinns do. You’ve been gone from Hubbard Bay for some time, haven’t you?”

“Sixteen years. I was fifteen years old when my family moved away.” Quickly she paid Velma for the items, including the package of diapers and a can of baby formula.

Velma cast another look at Heather. “Young one. Practically newborn, huh?”

“Yes, she is.”

“What’s her name?”

“Heather,” she answered while pushing the cart forward.
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