Maggie Beauchamp runs from her stepfather's abuse, only to fear for her life when the Arizona stagecoach she is riding on is robbed. She rescues Cord Martin, who was shot during the robbery. The townsfolk think they are man and wife, not the strangers they are. Perfect. Now Maggie can hide from her past under a new name, and Cord can get the bedside care he needs. But when she identifies a robber she sees in town, Maggie sets into motion a chain of events that puts both their lives in jeopardy again.
What will happen if her past catches up with her? Can they resist temptation as they masquerade as man and wife--and for how long?
Alone and more frightened that she'd ever been, Maggie ducked down and ran along the boulders until she found an opening between them that was wide enough for her to slip in and hide. Her heart was beating so hard and fast that she was certain it would burst. She bit down on her bent finger to keep from crying out in terror. With her back flat against the rock, she listened to the shouts and laughter as the Indians did God only knew what. As the shouting lessened, she heard the team's harnesses clank loudly as if they had been dropped on the ground. Several bangs and cracks had to be the trunks and wooden boxes of goods that the coach had carried on top crashing to the ground.
Maggie concentrated on breathing slower through her mouth to keep from making any noise. She didn't dare look over the rock again, but even without giving her location away, she was certain the savages would find her. If only she had a pistol! If they found her, she would wish she were dead.
More hoots and laughter ensued until, suddenly, horses were galloping away. But as quickly as they started to leave, there was shouting, and the horses stopped. Two of the Indians sounded as if they were having an argument. The rest of their words were muffled by the sounds the horses made. A third authoritative voice quickly settled whatever they had disagreed on. The horses took off away from the coach once again. She thought they went in the direction the coach had been heading.
The silence of the desert returned. Maggie didn't need to look to know that they had taken the team of horses that had pulled the coach. She was left alone in the Arizona desert with no way to get to safety that was miles away.
Lois Carroll, who also writes under the name Lois Schwartz, has been writing since her childhood when she received a daily diary as a gift. With a bachelor’s degree in English Literature and a master's in Theater, she began her writing and editing career working at a publishing company as a copy editor. Now a wife, mother, and grandmother, she writes full time in the home she shares with her husband in the desert of Arizona. When she's not writing, she's working on her service project, Sophie's Smocks, that has given hundreds of feeding/craft smocks free to kids and adults with Angelman Syndrome. You can read about her available books and email her through her web site at: http://loiscarrollbooks.com/