Title: Double Tap
Series: Code-11 KPD SWAT #2
Author: Lani Lynn Vale
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Release Date: June 4, 2015
Nico met the love of his life when he was seventeen.
Immediately, he realizes that the gap in their ages is too significant to make a move on her until she’s legal in the eyes of the law. So he joins the United States Navy, killing time until he can come home to her again.
But a tragedy strikes while Georgia is alone and vulnerable, and with no other recourse, Georgia leaves, disappearing without a trace.
After months of searching, he finds her, but quickly realizes that she needs the time to herself to work out her problems on her own.
So he leaves her be, knowing that if she ever felt anything for him, she’d come back home to him.
But it takes her years to return, and in those years, Nico changes, too.
He’s seen too much. Done too much. Lost too much.
He lives his life as a SWAT officer for KPD, goes through the motions of everyday life, but only as half a man. And not even the good half. The US military saw to that.
When the two finally come back together, one question remains. Will she love him as the man he is now, or leave him because he’s not the same man he used to be?
I spotted her the moment I topped the hill.
She was wearing jeans. Skin tight jeans that made my heart skip a beat.
She looked exactly like I remembered her.
Long legs that went on forever, small dainty hands. She was around five eight, and had a killer ass. Her hair was the only thing different.
It used to be long and brown, down to her waist.
It was the same beautiful brown color on top, yet now there was a barrage of colors added to the layer underneath the top brown layer. It was shorter, as well. Short. As in to her shoulders, short.
In fact, it really did it for me.
I made sure to scruff my boots on the gravel to let her know I was behind her, and she froze, turning slowly.
Her face was exactly like I remembered it.
A smattering of freckles still covered her nose and cheeks, and her beautiful lips were still round and full.
And God, her eyes were to die for.
Crystal fucking blue.
She was gorgeous.
Those gorgeous baby blues widened when she saw me, but it didn’t take her long and she was running.
I widened my stance and caught her as she launched herself into my arms.
She was my world eight years ago, and now, it felt exactly the same. I wanted her so bad it hurt.
Wrapping my arms around her, I buried my nose into the crease of her neck.
“Nicolas,” she breathed into my neck.
She smelled like the sun, and felt perfect in my arms. Like she was always meant to be there.
Eight years ago, I’d made the first move. Letting her know that I was interested.
I’d waited too long, though.
I should’ve done it earlier, but I was worried about propriety.
I worried that she’d been too young, that I should wait until she was graduated.
Maybe if I’d made my move earlier, she’d have stayed.
But I didn’t, and she’d disappeared.
Then I’d gotten deployed, and we’d lived on the occasional letter to keep in touch.
My favorite letter, the one that’d saved me. The one that was the first thing I’d read after the death of nearly my whole unit, I still carried with me to this day.
It was nothing special. Just a short one from Georgia telling me she’d taught a boy, in a park she ran at, how to do a sliding tackle. But it’d been the words at the end of the letter that had pulled me out of whatever zone I’d been in.
Three simple words: I need you.
The letters had gotten me through a lot of years and a lot of scary days.
She probably didn’t realize it, but she saved my life.
“Georgia.” My roughened voice croaked. “I’ve missed the hell out of you.”
I’m a married mother of three. My kids are all under 5, so I can assure you that they are a handful. I’ve been with my paramedic husband now for ten years, and we’ve produced three offspring that are nothing like us. I live in the greatest state in the world, Texas.