Date Published: January 2013
He’s annoyingly gorgeous, provocative, and fast becoming her best friend. But he also has a secret that makes the little hairs on her arms stand on end...
It wasn't nicking an expensive watch or diamond brace
let that landed streetwise Jona Montiniere in the clutches of the police. It was a darn sweater. A judge decides that she has to return to her terminally ill mother, that god-awful dragon, who dumped her in an orphanage more than twelve years ago. Worse, for the coming six weeks, she has to do charity work on a strange aunt’s vineyards in France.
Yeah, right. Jona is determined to sneak off at the first chance she gets. But then she meets Julian, the dragon’s caretaker. Playful, understanding, and sinfully sexy, he’s everything she dreams of—but she’d be damned if she let him know and break through her stonewall of protection. And then he awakens her mother from the dead with a simple touch…
When the first week in her new home is over, Jona is asking herself two things. One, how could it happen that she ended up in Julian’s arms after only three days? And two, how the hell do you keep an angel earthbound?
Hi, I’m Piper. I’m an Austrian lass—totally uncomplicated and up to anything fun.
I grew up in Vienna, not by free will but because my parents decided to move there when I was only 4 years old. Ugh, that was hard. I hated the city. Everything about it. So I moved back to Upper Austria right after graduation. There are trees now in front of my window instead of just another ugly gray building, and I love to be woken by the singing of birds every morning. One of my favorite movies? Snow White. The dwarves’ house would be one epic place to live.
At seventeen, I met the love of my life, but he was a playboy, and though he was also the inspiration for many of my teen romances, I didn’t make it easy for him to get me. It took him another four years of fighting for me until I finally decided to give that “couple-thing” with him a shot. I’m now married to this man ;-) It’s cool if you can say: I tamed Casanova. What I’m currently reading? The Fifty Shades of Grey Trilogy.
We have a ten-year-old son, and together we travel a lot…although I sometimes wish the trips were shorter because I can’t wait to get back to my laptop and my many stories. Unless we’re in Disneyland. No stress to go home then. ;-)
So, you see, I’m leading a pretty normal life.
Of course, it’ll all change the day my books follow the act of Harry Potter, and I’ll become richer than the Queen. I swear I’ll never again clean my windows myself then. Yeah, one day… LOL
LINKS TO BUY
“Then you are going to live with your family.” The bang of his little wooden hammer slamming onto the small round plate sealed the matter. “Now get out of my courtroom and don’t come back.”
I was so screwed.
When they started making plans over my head, and voices mixed to a painful blur, Quinn let me wait outside the room. I had to promise not to run off or pick up a fight with an officer again before he opened the door for me. I restrained from giving him the finger and slipped out.
Elbows propped on my bent knees, I sat on the floor in the hallway with my back resting against the windowed wall. The chain of the cuffs rattled mockingly. With them on, I wouldn’t get far on an escape for fresh air. I might as well surrender to my horrendous fate.
Utterly miserable and confused about my new future, and no less annoyed by the glances of passing officials, my head dipped back, my gaze focusing on the blank ceiling. Out of habit when I was by myself—and stuck knee-deep in shit—I started humming a song I didn’t know the name of. It always had a strangely soothing effect on me. Odds were I had made up the melody myself over the years. But I’d hummed, whistled or tapped the rhythm with my fingers so often that the tune wouldn’t get out of my head ever.
The door to Abe’s room opening opposite me didn’t disrupt my low singing. But when my mother’s blond friend came out and leaned one shoulder casually against the column in the middle of the hallway, the hum died in my throat.
“Hi,” he said with a compassionate look that made me wish the traitor, Quinn, had taken off those damn handcuffs so I wouldn’t look like a complete idiot.
Lips pressed together, my fingers waggled in a feeble greeting. The mere sight of this man sent a quiver of excitement to my stomach.
“That was quite an interesting…situation in there.”
With an evil grin, I hoped to send the message Mind your own crap, buddy to him. Out loud, I said sweetly, “Glad you enjoyed the show.”
“I didn’t really.” He wrinkled his nose. “Getting involved with Laurel and Hardy in there wasn’t your best idea. Even a smart girl like you might get hurt in a fight with those two.”
Yeah, sure. My eyes narrowed to slits. But his words warmed my heart in an unfamiliar way.
The young man nodded his chin at my tied hands. “They look a little uncomfortable.”
And they bloody well were, but I shrugged it off like it was nothing unusual. “The latest fashion. You heard the judge, I wear them quite often.”
A teasing smile played around his lips that spiked my blood pressure. “Shall we take them off?” he said.
He must be kidding. “Unless you’ve got teeth like a hacksaw, I don’t see how that would work.”
He crossed the hall to me, pulling out a key-ring from his pocket. He squatted, leveled his eyes with mine, and shook the ring in front of my face. The friendly jingle of metal filled the high hallway.
My mouth fell open. “Where did you get these from?”
“You stole them from Quinn?” I pulled my hands out of his reach.
“Of course not.” The blond god gave me a pointed look. “I asked for them.”
Why would this guy ask my officer friend to release me? Frowning, I concentrated on the safety pin in my jeans. “Quinn wouldn’t free me when I asked him to.”
His intense blue eyes locked with mine. “I had to solemnly swear to keep an eye on you. Now hold still.” Cool fingers curled around my wrist to fix my hand while he unlocked the first cuff. Sparks tingled on my skin, my hand trembled slightly.
Why would he give his word to an officer, to free me? Why even care? He’d do well to stay behind that door, holding my horrible mother’s hand instead of setting mine free. With a click, the other cuff came off. I flexed my hands and rubbed my burning wrists. The shackles had left bright red lines on my skin.
“Better?” He tilted his head and arched one beautiful brow.
My head bobbed, but I found no breath to answer.
“Okay then.” He used my knees to push himself up and stretched to his full height.
He probably expected my gratitude following his selflessness. My gaze focused on the ripped hems of his jeans, my lips remained sealed.
When he turned on his heel and marched off to the left, I glanced up. “And now you’re going where?” The words shot out before I could stop myself.
“Bathroom break.” His arched brows dared me to object.
My lower lip threatened to pop from between my teeth as I chewed on it. Don’t speak! “But you’re supposed to keep an eye on me.”
After studying me for a couple of seconds, his expression softened even more. “You’re not going to get me into trouble.”
I let him take another stride away from me. Two. Three. Four. “How can you be so sure?” Shut the hell up, Jona. “After everything you know about me, I’ll probably be gone when you get back.”
A shrug of one shoulder and his beguiling smile struck me silent. “I trust you.” A moment later he disappeared around the corner.
I am becoming a huge fan of Piper Shelly's. I feel in love with her Game Series and this book is no different. There is so much going on in this book that I don't even know where to being. First you have Jona who grew up in an orphanage and then for "punishment" is sent back to live with her mother. She then has to learn and adjust to her family and to her mother's caretaker Julian whom turns out to be an angel.