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Authors: Kimberly Rae Jordan

Signs of Love

BOOK: Signs of Love
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Signs of Love

 

By

 

Kimberly Rae Jordan

 

Copyright ©2015

Kimberly Rae Jordan

 

 

A man, a woman & their God.

Three Strand Press publishes Christian Romance stories

that intertwine love, faith and family.

Always clean. Always heartwarming. Always uplifting.

 

All rights reserved. No part of this book may be used or reproduced by any means, graphic, electronic or mechanical without the written permission of the author except in the case of brief quotations being used in reviews or articles about the book.

This is a work of fiction. The situations, characters, names and places are products of the author’s imagination, or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to locales, events, actual persons (living or dead) is entirely coincidental.

This eBook is licensed for your personal enjoyment and may not be re-sold or transferred via any method to any other individual. If you are reading this eBook and did not purchase it, or it was not purchased for your use only, then please respect the hard work of the author who has spent many hours creating this story for your enjoyment and purchase your own copy of this eBook. Please do not participate in or encourage electronic piracy of copyrighted materials by illegally downloading or sharing this eBook. Your support of the author’s rights is appreciated.

Scripture taken from the New King James Version
®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights are reserved.

 

Available Titles

By Kimberly Rae Jordan

(
Christian Romances
)

 

~*~ BlackThorpe Security ~*~

Guarding Her Heart

 

~*~ The McKinleys ~*~

This Time with Love

Forever My Love

When There Is Love

~*~ Home to Collingsworth ~*~

Home Is Where the Heart Is

Home Away From Home

Love Makes a House a Home

The Long Road Home

Her Heart, His Home

Coming Home

 

~*~ Those Karlsson Boys ~*~

Waiting for Rachel

Worth the Wait

The Waiting Heart

 

Marrying Kate

Faith, Hope & Love

A Little Bit of Love:

A Collection of Christian Romance Short Stories

For the latest news on releases and sales for Kimberly Rae Jordan’s books, please sign up for her newsletter.

http://eepurl.com/WFhYr

 

Dear Reader ~ Thank you so much for buying Signs of Love! (This is book 2 of the BlackThorpe Security series. If you haven’t read book 1 (Guarding Her Heart) yet, click
here
to get it for just $.99) I hope you enjoy reading Justin’s story as much as I enjoyed writing it. Tackling the subject of deafness in this book presented me with the opportunity to learn about how deaf people communicate and the challenges they face. I so admire those who navigate through life with something that can make each day a challenge. I hope that I have managed to convey that admiration in this story.

For those who know sign language, I do want to make note that I am aware that ASL doesn’t translate word for word from English. I debated how to best handle this so I didn’t drive my editor crazy or get emails and reviews from readers about the grammar in the book. In the end, I went ahead and wrote the signed dialogue as if it were spoken. I hope that doesn’t detract from the story in any way for those of you who know ASL.

Thank you once again for your continued support of my books and happy reading!

–Kimberly Rae

CHAPTER ONE

“Hi, Justin.”

Justin Morrell dropped his bag onto the seat of the truck and pushed his sunglasses to the top of his head as he turned around. “Hey there, Mel. How’s it going?”

Melanie Thorpe approached him with a smile. “Not too bad. Just stopping in to check on the guy that came over earlier. Duncan Miller. Did you work with him?”

Justin rested his arm on the edge of the bed of his truck. “I got him set up on the range. Mitch was with him when I left. I’m heading into the city for the night.”

Melanie nodded. “Meeting tomorrow, eh?”

Aside from church, the Tuesday morning BlackThorpe team meetings were really the only reason he went into Minneapolis most weeks. Since he had to be in the city the next morning anyway, Justin planned to head to his apartment, take a long hot soak in his Jacuzzi tub and do some laundry. He’d spent the last two days training with a team of possible recruits for the company. To say he was sore and dirty was an understatement.

“Yep. I’ll see you there.”

“Yeah. Got flack for the last one I skipped out on.” Melanie smiled ruefully. “Guess I’d better get in there and see how Duncan is doing. Have a good evening.”

“You, too.” After she’d walked away, Justin shoved his bag to the passenger side of the seat and climbed behind the wheel.

Lowering his sunglasses over his eyes, Justin started the truck and sat for a moment waiting for some heat to flow from the vents before heading out of the BlackThorpe compound. The physical activity over the past few days had worked up a sweat even in the cool spring air. However, now that he wasn’t moving around as strenuously, he was grateful for a little more warmth in addition to his leather jacket.

He’d barely reached the highway when his phone rang. Using the hands-free capabilities of his truck, he answered it.

“Justin! Are you coming into the city tonight?”

“Hey, sis,” Justin said when he recognized his sister’s voice. “Yes. I’m on my way in now.”

“Can you come by the house for supper?”

Justin stifled a sigh. “I’m kind of beat, Beth. We’ve been training hard the past few days.”

“Please, Justin? I’d really like to see you since we’ve missed you at church the last couple of weeks.” She paused. “And I want to talk to you about something.”

Even though he was pretty sure the argument would be shot down, he gave it one more try. “I’m a mess. I’m covered in muck from the obstacle course, and I haven’t had a shower in three days.”

“You can take one when you get here. I’ll even do your laundry.”

She definitely knew him too well. He sighed, not bothering to muffle it this time. “You win, but consider yourself warned, okay?”

Thankfully, he’d stuck a clean set of clothes into his bag so he’d have something to wear while his dirty stuff was being washed. And hopefully, his brother-in-law had some masculine soap and shampoo so he didn’t get out of the shower smelling like vanilla and roses…or toddler scented products.

Since Elizabeth and her husband, Daniel, lived between the training compound and his apartment in Minneapolis, it wasn’t long before he pulled into their driveway. He grabbed his duffle bag and laptop case and headed toward the front door of the two-story house they called home.

Having accepted the inevitable, Justin found himself looking forward to it. He always enjoyed time with Daniel and Beth, but more than that, he loved seeing his two-year-old niece, Genevieve.

The door swung open before he could even press the bell. As he got a look at his sister, he realized something was off. He hadn’t picked up on it from their conversation earlier, but she looked tired and…sad?

“What’s wrong, Bethy?” Justin asked as she stepped back to let him into the house. He kept his gaze on her as she pushed the door shut.

“Why don’t you get cleaned up first and then we’ll talk,” Beth suggested, shoving a strand of brown hair behind her ear before crossing her arms over her waist.

He didn’t like the sound of that. What was going on? And how was he going to fix it?

“Hey, man.”

Justin swung around to see Daniel standing in the entry to the kitchen with his daughter in his arms. He headed over to them and pressed a kiss to Genevieve’s downy soft curls.

“Hello, baby.” She smiled up at him and reached out, but Justin didn’t take her since he was still so dirty. “After my shower. Okay, sweetie?”

Justin shrugged out of his jacket and heard a muffled sound to his left. He turned in search of the source of the noise and froze. A woman who looked vaguely familiar stood with a young boy pressed to her side. Her dark blonde hair was pulled back from her face which only served to emphasize her delicate features and the size of her green eyes as she stared at him. Her flowing skirt almost reached the floor, and she wore a long sleeved shirt that fit her loosely. His gaze moved to the boy at her side. He looked like the male version of her with curly dark blonde hair and green eyes.

How had he not noticed them when he’d walked in? Usually, he scanned any room he entered to be aware of who was present. He had been too distracted by Beth’s obvious distress to check out what he’d assumed was a safe environment.

He turned back to his sister. “Beth?”

She frowned as she moved to his side. “First of all, you need to lose the guns. You know the rule.”

He arched a brow at her. That’s what she was focusing on? Since it hadn’t been his plan to stop at her place, he hadn’t taken the weapons off before leaving the compound, and he’d forgotten to remove them before coming inside. He looked back at the little boy who was watching him with wide eyes that seemed to be stuck on the shoulder harness he wore.

“Let me get a shower, and I’ll put them away.” The two strangers just added to the mystery of the evening. His gaze met the woman’s again briefly before he turned back to his sister. Under different circumstances, he might have thought she was trying to set him up, but something told him the woman wasn’t there for his benefit.

“You can use the bathroom off the guest bedroom in the basement,” Beth said.

With his thoughts racing as to all the possible explanations for Beth’s apparent distress, Justin made his way down the stairs. His dreams of a leisurely soak were gone, so he made the best of the hot water and tried to keep his mind from going to the worst case scenarios, but it was a challenge.

~*~*~

Alana Jensen felt a tug on her skirt and looked down at her son, Caden. She watched as he signed the words for big, strong man and guns. Before replying, she searched his face for any sign of distress, but the expression on his face seemed more curious than anything.

That is Beth’s brother. His name is J U S T I N.
She signed back to him, spelling out the individual letters in Justin’s name.

Caden’s mouth turned up at the corners as he lifted one arm and made a muscle then used his other hand to do the sign for the letter J against it. Alana smiled as she mimicked the movements. Caden didn’t always come up with a sign for someone’s name so quickly. That he did for Justin spoke clearly of his interest in the man.

“Sorry about the guns, Alana,” Beth said with a sigh. “Justin knows I don’t like him to wear them in the house.”

“You need to cut him a little slack, babe,” Daniel said as he set Genevieve down on her feet. The little girl headed straight for Caden, who took her by the hand and settled onto the floor with her toys. “Those weapons are just a part of who he is. You know he didn’t mean any harm by wearing them in here today. He hadn’t been planning to stop by.”

Alana felt bad for Beth and her husband. They’d been through a rough couple of months and from the looks of things, they hadn’t been keeping her brother abreast of the latest developments in their life. Unfortunately, from the brief look she’d gotten of him, something told Alana that Justin wasn’t a man who appreciated being left out of the loop.

Justin Morrell had come as something of a surprise to her. Given Beth’s small, though rounded, stature and open, expressive nature, Alana had expected a male version of that, but Justin appeared to be the opposite of his sister in every possible way.

The second he’d stepped into the room, he’d dominated everything. Daniel wasn’t a small man, but even he looked short next to his brother-in-law. Alana guessed Justin was a good four to five inches over six feet with a build that suggested hours of work in the gym. Even relaxed, she had been able to see the definition of the muscles of his arms…as, apparently, had Caden. The man’s firm jaw and square chin gave him a chiseled look that, when combined with his deep-set dark blue eyes, definitely made him an attractive—albeit dangerous looking—man.

She was glad Caden’s mind seemed to not have retained the memories of their past that might have made him afraid of a man like Justin. Too bad the same couldn’t be said for her.

“Let’s get dinner prep finished up so we can eat when Justin’s done. I’m sure he’s hungry,” Beth said. “When he comes off these training days he seems to be half-starved.”

“Does he do them often?” Alana asked, a little uncertain where the question had come from. She told herself she was just being polite.

“Yes. He’s in charge of the security teams that are part of BlackThorpe as well as the ones that are sent to them for training from outside agencies. He does have other staff who work with him who could do more of the training, but he seems to like to get in there with them,” Beth said as she set a bowl of salad on the counter.

Alana picked it up and moved it to the table in the dining room adjacent to the kitchen. She had been at the Olson home for dinner several evenings over the past couple of months. By coming into their lives at such a stressful time, she’d been able to see the raw dynamic between the husband and wife. Now she’d get to see the one between Beth and her brother.

Conversation stopped for a bit when Daniel used the electric knife to slice up the huge roast he had pulled from the oven. She took the spoon Beth handed her and scooped the vegetables out of the large pan into a bowl.

Alana had her back to the entrance of the kitchen, but she didn’t need eyes in the back of her head to know that Justin had walked into the room. Something in the air around her changed, and when she looked over her shoulder, she saw him there. His imposing presence was only emphasized by his stance. Even in stocking feet, with his legs spread and fingers splayed across his hips, he was a formidable figure. He wore a pair of camouflage pants that had a variety of different pockets and a black long-sleeve T-shirt. Thankfully, the weapons were nowhere to be seen.

“Now I’ll hug you,” Beth said with a smile when she spotted him. She set down the whisk she’d been using to make the gravy and went to her brother.

His arms wrapped around her, and she all but disappeared into his embrace. He bent down and kissed the top of her head.

When she stepped back, she said, “Where are your dirty clothes? I’ll stick them in while we eat.”

“I took care of them. They’re already in the wash.”

Justin’s gaze moved around the room, and Alana froze when it landed on her. His eyes narrowed briefly before he took a couple of steps in her direction. “Hi. I don’t believe we’ve met. I’m Justin Morrell.”

“Oh, I’m sorry,” Beth said. “Justin, this is Alana Jensen. She’s a friend from church.”

BOOK: Signs of Love
3.09Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
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