Sydney hates liars, despises them really, so what is she to do when the man her heart wants most turns out to be the biggest betrayer and deceiver of them all?
Sydney never finds herself in trouble. She always listens to her parents, follows the rules, and does what is expected of her, but in one moment, that all changes. The day she meets a campus police officer and keeps their relationship a secret from her family, her life takes on a dark turn...
Now scarred and tormented by nightmares, Sydney hides her fears from everyone as she moves back home and takes over her mother’s bakery.
Just when she believes she has a handle on her life, a mysterious man waltzes into her shop and turns her world upside down. Behind the beard and silver eyes Sydney knows he’s hiding something, but is the attraction worth losing herself again?
Dylan Bennett knows he is in trouble the first time he lays eyes on Sydney. Behind her wavy blonde hair and flour-covered clothes he knows that she holds the key to his undoing, but he can’t risk it.
As an undercover agent, Dylan lives his life by strict codes and calculations. He knows one wrong move could put Sydney in danger, but something about her draws him in and that may prove to be the biggest risk he has ever taken. What happens when she finds out the lies behind those silver eyes?
Will the deception become too much for Sydney or will she fight alongside Dylan to bury the one person who brings her past back to the surface?
ExcerptDYLAN STANDS OUTSIDE SYDNEY’S door, the knuckles of one hand gently tapping on the wood while holding a bouquet of daisies and wild flowers in the other.
After helping Sydney at the bakery this morning and completing a walk-through of The Grill with her brother, Dylan had asked Austin if he had a place in town he could shower and change clothes. Austin had eyed him skeptically, but had offered use of his apartment in town. Dylan was glad he had kept his duffle bag in his car since he hadn’t made it back to Asheville the previous night.
Standing at the door waiting for Sydney to answer, Dylan is fraught with something that has never happened in all the years he has been dating…nerves. He is actually nervous to take Sydney out on a date. Sure, they seemed to get along fine when they were working together, and of course the attraction between them sizzled in epic proportions, but Dylan had a hard time reconciling between the playful Sydney and the scared Sydney. The scared Sydney always fought against what they could have and that made him nervous.
She is something special, someone that deserves to be cherished and he knows that if she gives him the chance, he can prove it to her.
A creak sounds from the door hinges and Dylan looks up from the flowers to find a beautiful creature standing before him. Sydney may have been going for something quick and casual, but Dylan’s tongue practically drops from his mouth as he gazes at her. He takes note of her appearance, beginning with her long blonde hair that is tied up in a ponytail high on her head, the soft waves curling on the end and brushing past her shoulders. A red and black flannel shirt hangs loosely around her, but does little to conceal the womanly shape of her body. The pièce de résistance is the skin-tight black leggings covering her legs. Dylan is almost happy at the fact that the flannel shirt hangs past her ass, because he isn’t sure he would be able to control himself if he saw that perfectly toned portion of her body in the pants.
“I’m sorry, I’m almost ready. I just need to find my shoes. I was sucked into this antique picking show and I couldn’t pull myself away. You can come in,” she gestures as she rushes through the living room and down the hallway.
Instead of standing idly, Dylan moves towards her kitchen and looks in the cabinet above the fridge for a vase. Bingo. He chuckles to himself, thinking that it seems to be the universal spot to hold that item.
Just as he is stepping back from admiring his work on the arrangement that he placed on her coffee table, Sydney joins him in the living room. Dylan hadn’t noticed before, but she has swiped a few coats of mascara on her lashes and added a deep shade of red lipstick on mouth.
“I’m ready,” she announces, grabbing her jacket from where it hangs on a hook by the door. “The flowers look beautiful, by the way.”
She takes a hold of the doorknob, ready to exit, then glances back at Dylan as he says, “Sydney. You look beautiful.” He makes sure to emphasize the fact that he thinks she is the most beautiful item in the room. Country. World. In such a short period of time, he has become so wickedly entranced by her that Dylan would rather spend a life in solitude and have the chance to spend one day with her, than have anything else his heart desires. That thought alone would have scared Dylan a few months back, but now? Now Dylan embraces the feelings bubbling up inside of him. This high he feels whenever he is around her is more powerful than any drug he has ever come across while on the force. She is powerful, captivating, spellbinding.
And he wanted her all for himself, if she would only let him.
About the AuthorRenee Harless is a romance writer with an affinity for wine and a passion for telling a good story.
Renee Harless, her husband, and children live in Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia. She studied Communication, specifically Public Relations, at Radford University.
Growing up, Renee always found a way to pursue her creativity. It began by watching endless runs of White Christmas- yes even in the summer – and learning every word and dance from the movie. She could still sing "Sister Sister" if requested. In high school she joined the show choir and a community theatre group, The Troubadours. After marrying the man of her dreams and moving from her hometown she sought out a different artistic outlet – writing.
To say that Renee is a romance addict would be an understatement. When she isn’t chasing her toddler or preschooler around the house, working her day job, or writing, she jumps head first into a romance novel.