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Out of Sight

Out of Uniform Series, Book Two

The Wild Rose Press

Heat Rating: SIZZLING
Word Count: 71,800
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After a brutal attack leaves Mia Jones with a traumatic brain injury, she learns the key to discovering her attacker’s identity lies within her damaged brain. As she battles to recover from her injuries, she finds it’s not her fiancé by her side but her foster brother, Hank.

When navy pilot, Hank Taggart ditches his plane in the sea, he thinks the worst has happened—until he returns home to learn Mia, the closest thing he’s ever had to family, is in ICU. While struggling to accept the end of a career that defines him and battling his own medical diagnosis, he must also suppress his newfound feelings for Mia.

With Hank rejecting her love at every turn and the bad guys upping the stakes, Mia wonders, which fate is worse: falling into the hands of her enemy or losing the man she loves.

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If the navy’s findings didn’t go his way, he’d have more than a few days off. He shoved that worry aside. He refused to waste the few moments he had before The Fiancé arrived focusing on something he could worry about later.

Her smile brightened. “I’d. Like. That.”

“When are you getting out of rehab?”

She wrinkled up her nose. “Hate. That. Word. Rehab. Sound. Like. Detox.” She fiddled with her hospital bracelet. “Discharge. A couple weeks.”

So soon? His gaze landed on the arching scar that covered the side of her head. Surely she wouldn’t be capable of caring for herself in just a few days. “Where will you go afterward?” he asked, wishing he could be the one to care for her. The place he was renting was far from ideal, but he’d jump at the chance. Except that privilege now belonged to another man.

“Tripp’s mother insisted.” Her gaze turned to a two-story building just beyond the garden. “Otherwise, live. In. Milestones.” Her expression darkened, her thoughts surely rushing to the same place as his. After being removed from the foster home, they’d been sent to separate group homes.

Oh, hell no. Not if he could help it would she ever spend a single night in another soulless institution. Hank’s stomach knotted, and he managed a bit of gratitude toward the Brooks family. He still didn’t like the arrogant jerk, but at least Tripp had seen to this. “Have you two set the date for the wedding?”

“Before the attack—May tenth.”

“Have you postponed it?” he asked, hoping he didn’t sound too eager. No man would ever be good enough for her and Charles Brooks III fell well below the mark.

Mia shifted in her seat. “Tripp. Doesn’t. Want. Lose. Deposit. On. Reception.”

Hank rolled his eyes. Even he knew the loss of a few hundred dollars wasn’t the appropriate motivation for moving forward with a wedding—and he didn’t have a romantic bone in his body. “Are you going to be up for that? What do the doctors say about your long-term prognosis?”

She shrugged. “Too. Soon.” After a moment she added, “They’re being optimistic. So. I. Don’t. Give. Up.”

He couldn’t imagine her doing that. Even now, looking like she’d gone twenty rounds with Mike Tyson, she acted ready to take on the world. “You’ve been through so much, angel. It just isn’t fair.”

She barked a laugh. “Haven’t. You. Heard? Life. Not. Fair.”

“But you’ve had more than your share of trouble.”

“Everything happens—for a reason.” She let out a breath. “Mrs. Brooks says, ‘God doesn’t. Give. More. Than. We. Can. Bear.’”

Never a particularly religious man, he especially didn’t like when a person tried to shove their beliefs on to others. From what he knew about the formidable Mrs. Brooks, the woman from a privileged background hadn’t had much in her life to put her theory to the test. “If that’s true, then God must think you’re a badass.”

Mia covered her smile with one hand while she smacked him on the leg with the other. “You’re. Naughty.”

“No,” he said, teasing back. “I’m just telling it like I see it. You’ve been through a helluva lot and you deserve a break.”

“We both do.” Her smile faded. “Both. Of. Us. Have. Why. You. Should. Date. Be happy.”

She’d found her Prince Charming in Charles Brooks III. As much as he loathed the too-slick, Gone With the Wind throwback, he wouldn’t stand in her way if Tripp made her happy.

A few droplets of rain pelted them. “I guess we better head back inside.”

Mia held up a hand. “Not yet. Maybe it won’t get worse,” she said, even as the sprinkles turned into full-on rain.

“Better not chance it. He scooped her into his arms. “Sugar melts.”

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