Authors: Cheyenne McCray
Tags: #western romance
Made For You
Copyright © 2013
Made for You by Cheyenne McCray
All rights reserved. No part of this e-Book may be reproduced in whole or in part, scanned, photocopied, recorded, distributed in any printed or electronic form, or reproduced in any manner whatsoever, or by any information storage and retrieval system now known or hereafter invented, without express written permission of the publisher, except in the case of brief quotations embodied in critical articles and reviews.
This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents are products of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual events, locales, or persons living or dead is entirely coincidental.
E-book conversion by Bella Media Management.
Published by Pink Zebra Publishing.
13-Digit ISBN: 978-1-939778-90-1
First Edition e-Book
Detective Reese McBride gripped two Styrofoam coffee cups as he made his way through the maze of desks toward his own. One of his hands was partially bandaged, covering the stubs of the two fingers he’d lost in an explosion, but he managed to hold on to the cup just the same.
He neared his desk that was directly across from his partner of nearly two years, Kelley Petrova. She’d been back on the job a couple of days now after sustaining a head injury and a concussion two weeks ago in the same explosion that had taken his fingers.
Kelley had transferred to the Prescott Police Department from Phoenix when she’d moved to Prescott and had been partnered with him from the start. She was beautiful, sharp, intelligent, and a damned good detective. He’d have called her cute if he didn’t know her better. If anyone told her that she was cute, she’d likely kick his ass. Reese held back a smile. He could picture her doing just that.
She had a thin scar on her chin, the only thing that marred her otherwise flawless skin. Instead of detracting from her beauty, it added to it.
Ghost pains from the two missing fingers on his left hand caused him to grit his teeth. At least it was his ring finger and pinkie as opposed to his thumb, index, and middle fingers. It would be harder to be carrying coffee right now if he’d lost those three fingers in the explosion. Hell, that would have been the least of his problems. He had to admit he’d been fortunate too, in that he hadn’t lost fingers on his gun hand instead of his left hand.
He studied Kelley while he managed to avoid spilling the coffee as he dodged a rookie, Brad Johnson, who hadn’t been looking where he was going. Johnson apologized but Reese just grunted in response.
Reese frowned as he watched Kelley. Her pretty blue eyes looked glassy as she stared into space, appearing distracted. It was something he’d never noticed her doing before she’d sustained a concussion. The fact that she’d been injured at all made his blood boil.
It had been enormously satisfying to capture the bastard who had caused the loss of Reese’s fingers and Kelley’s injuries. The asshole was currently under guard in a hospital in Phoenix, having suffered third degree burns all over his body from a fire he’d set that had almost taken a woman’s life. The burns were no more than he’d deserved after burning another woman to death.
Wondering if he should be even more concerned for Kelley than he already was, Reese set one of the cups of coffee in front of her before taking a big sip of his own. She seemed to be deep in thought, yet she usually did most of her thinking aloud. Of the two of them, she tended to be “shoot first, ask questions later” in a manner of speaking. However, she was a professional through and through.
He snapped his fingers in front of her face. “Snap out of it, Petrova.”
Looking startled, she blinked and looked up at him. “What?”
He took his seat at his desk, facing her. “Where were you?”
She shrugged and tucked strands of her chin-length blonde hair behind her ear. “Just thinking.”
He waited a moment. He’d never been one to beat around the bush, choosing to be direct when called for. “Do you think you’re ready to be back at work?”
With a scowl, she straightened in her chair. “Of course I’m ready. The doctor cleared me and I’m fine.”
For a moment, Reese just studied her. He’d only been cleared recently himself, but he hadn’t sustained a head injury.
“Stop looking at me like that.” She gave him a grumpy look. “At least let me have my coffee before you interrogate me.”
A partial smile quirked at the corner of his mouth. “Some things never change.” She was always a little grumpy before she had enough coffee to wire Rockefeller Center’s annual Christmas tree.
“Humph.” She turned to her computer screen. “We need to pay Laura Jones a visit this morning. Looks like she called in earlier and is ready to give a statement regarding Darrell Taynor, that asshole she used to call a boyfriend.” Taynor had raped Laura after she broke things off with him, but they hadn’t been able to get her to testify.
“Glad to hear she’s finally come to her senses,” Reese said.
Kelley tapped her chin. “I wonder why she didn’t call me directly since we’ve been working her case.”
“Who knows?” Reese lowered his coffee cup. “Maybe she lost your card.”
“Maybe.” Kelley’s mouth tightened. “About time she’s ready to help put that slimeball behind bars.”
Reese knew his partner well enough to know that domestic violence was a sore point with her. She’d never gone into it, but his keen senses told him that in some way she’d been a victim of domestic violence. Not that she’d ever admit to being a victim in any way.
One thing about Kelley was she didn’t put up with any shit. She was one of the strongest, toughest individuals he knew and that had served her well as she’d worked up the ranks in Phoenix, up to earning her detective’s shield.
Reese’s stepbrother and a police lieutenant, John McBride, dropped two flat rectangular boxes on top of Reese’s desk. The top box had a sticker with Sweet Things Bakery on it along with the store’s address.
John looked at Kelley. “You’re getting too damned thin, Petrova. Need to fatten you up before someone breaks you over his knee.”
Reese held back a frown. Somehow hearing another man notice Kelley’s body gave him a feeling of unease, and he wasn’t sure why.
“Screw you,” Kelley said to John, but reached for a donut from the top box that Reese had just opened. She picked a chocolate cake donut with chocolate frosting. She bit into it and he watched her close her eyes as she tasted the chocolate flavor. Reese could tell she was holding back an appreciative moan. “Thanks, McBride,” she said grudgingly to John when she opened her eyes. He smirked and moved away, leaving the boxes of donuts on Reese’s desk.
Even though he didn’t appreciate John noticing Kelley’s figure, Reese considered telling her that John was right and she was getting too thin. He decided he’d rather not get his head snapped off first thing in the morning. He’d already practically accused her of not being ready to return to work after sustaining the concussion.
Again, the thought of the explosion that had taken his fingers and had injured Kelley made him grind his teeth. Yeah, thankfully they’d caught the sonofabitch arsonist, with his cousin Cody McBride’s help, but it had cost them.
Reese picked up a donut with red, white, and blue sprinkles from Ricki’s Sweet Things Bakery. He bit into the donut and had to admit it was damned good. All of his sister-in-law’s treats couldn’t be beat. Reese’s brother, Garrett, and Ricki had married in the spring.
Other officers stopped by Reese’s desk and grabbed donuts. Reese and Kelley managed to get two apiece before the two-dozen donuts were gone.
“Let’s get on over to Laura Jones’s place.” Kelley stood and pushed in her chair. “The note said she’ll be home from her late shift at Denny’s any time now.”
“Yep.” Reese got to his feet. “Let’s go.”
They headed out of the police station to their unmarked car and climbed in, Reese on the passenger side. Reese and Kelley switched off when it came to driving. Both liked to drive and had come to an early compromise. This time it was her turn. Her earlier distraction flashed through his mind and he wondered if she should be driving.
He raked his fingers through his hair. Damn, he was worrying about nothing. Kelley was fine.
As she drove the radio crackled and the dispatcher gave the code for a domestic disturbance and possible shots fired, along with the address.
“That’s Laura Jones’s address.” Kelley looked grim as she hit the lights and siren.
Reese responded to the dispatcher that they were en route.
Five minutes later they arrived at Laura’s home and killed the siren. A vehicle Reese recognized as Laura’s car was in the carport and a truck was in the driveway.
After Kelley parked the car, she and Reese hurried out of the vehicle and moved cautiously to the house. They unholstered their weapons, and stood to either side of the front door.
Reese banged on the door. “Police. Open up.”
A woman’s scream came from inside the home. Reese didn’t hesitate and kicked open the door.
“We’re coming in,” Kelley shouted as she and Reese cleared the living room.
Another scream came from the kitchen along with a child’s cry. Kelley and Reese made their way to the kitchen doorway, their weapons ready.
The scene they came upon made Reese’s blood run hot then cold. Darrell Taynor had Laura on her knees, a gun pressed to her head. Taynor held his and Laura’s eight-year-old daughter, Belle, with his opposite arm, a knife to her throat. The girl’s blonde hair was tangled as if someone had grabbed her by her hair. Tears flooded her cheeks, her blue eyes red as she cried.
“Don’t worry, Belle.” Laura’s voice shook but she attempted to soothe her daughter. “It’s going to be okay. Everything’s going to be okay, sweetheart.”
“Don’t come any closer.” Taynor’s round face was nearly purple as pressed his gun hard enough against Laura’s temple that she winced. “Put your guns down or I’ll shoot the bitch.”
“Let her go, Darrell.” Reese kept his voice calm. “This is going to end badly for you if you hurt her.”
Taynor gave a nasty laugh. “Oh, it’ll end up fine for me. You just better listen. Now put your guns on the floor.”
“That’s not going to happen and you know it.” Reese kept his weapon steady. “Calm down, Darrell. Just let Laura and Belle go and you won’t get hurt.”
“Don’t tell me to calm down,” he shrieked and the girl cried out. A pinprick of blood rolled down her throat from where the blade had nicked her.
Adrenaline spiked within Reese as he saw a shadow move behind Taynor. Someone else was there. The barrel of a gun was all that Reese could see poking from the shadows. Shit. Someone he couldn’t see had his gun pointed right at Kelley.
From the corner of Reese’s eye he saw Kelley shift, her gun still trained on Taynor. Something wasn’t right with her.
Kelley’s eyes rolled back in her head and she teetered.
“I told you to put down your guns!” Taynor shrieked.
Kelley dropped to her knees.
Two shots rang out. Reese’s heart thundered as Laura slumped to the floor, a hole in her temple. Reese would have taken the shot at Taynor who was still holding Belle like a shield, the knife to her throat. The gun was now near the sobbing girl’s head.
A man still stood behind Taynor, his weapon still visible in the shadows.
Reese couldn’t take the shot without endangering the girl.
From his side vision, Reese saw Kelley and he felt like ice-cold water had been poured over him. She had landed on her side, facing him. Blood soaked the left side of her blouse and her eyes were closed. Taynor was backing out of the door with the girl. In the next instant they and the mystery man were out of sight.
Reese crouched and put his fingers on Kelley’s neck, making sure she was alive. Her pulse was strong. He did the same with Laura, whose face was away from him, against a cabinet. Judging by the hole in her head, he didn’t hold much hope that she had survived. When he touched his fingers to her neck, he had no doubt she was dead.
Fury burned inside Reese. Taynor had killed Laura, and the unknown suspect had shot Kelley.
He unholstered his cell phone as he placed a call. “Officer down,” he said as he rushed out the back door. Taynor, Belle, and the other man weren’t in the backyard. Reese heard the sound of a truck engine starting. He ran around the side of the house to see a truck backing out of the driveway. A man was driving the truck while Taynor held his gun to Bella’s head. Since the driver was on the opposite side of the cab, Reese couldn’t get a good look at him. The license plate was covered with mud.