Midnight Promises (Conveniently Wed) (Silhouette Intimate Moments)

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9780373079827: Midnight Promises (Conveniently Wed) (Silhouette Intimate Moments)
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WHEN SUCH GOOD FRIENDS BECOME LOVERS, IT'S FOR KEEPS.

Jack would do anything for Annie. He'd even tell her he loved her, if that's what she needed to hear. But Jack doesn't believe in the promises love makes. He believes in friendship, and he wants to keep Annie forever--as a friend.

But sometimes friends become lovers . . .

Annie is crazy about Jack, and always has been. But he's a heartache waiting to happen for any women foolish enough to become involved with him. The only way to keep a man like him around is to be his friend--and only his friend.

Promises--the ones made and not kept, the ones meant but not made--tore these two friends apart. But when Jack is threatened by a mysterious enemy who also threatens Annie, keeping Annie safe is more important than pride or pain. More important than anything.

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Annie didn't actually sway. Her head went light and dizzy and the attic's dusty air got stuck in her lungs, keeping her from drawing a breath, but her body didn't move. That was fortunate, since only half of her was in the attic. The other half was in Mrs. Perez's garage, with her size-five work boots planted on the highest rung of the step ladder.

"Jack is back?" she managed to say as soon as her lungs started working again. "Are you sure?"

Annie couldn't see Mrs. Perez, who had been determined to stay in the garage while Annie worked so she could steady the step ladder with all ninety-five pounds of her aging body. It was an unnecessary caution. The ladder was sturdy, and Annie had a head for heights.

At least, normally she had a head for heights.

"Oh, yes," the older woman said. "I heard it directly from Ida Hoffman when I went to the grocery store this morning."

Ida had been the Merrimans' housekeeper for thirty years. "It must be true, then."

"He showed up yesterday afternoon without a word of warning. Ida said she nearly fell over when she opened the door and there he stood, grinning at her."

"That sounds like Jack. Unpredictable." Annie was pleased with herself. She didn't sound angry or upset or afraid, though she felt all of that and more. How typical of Jack to show up without a word to her! "I'll bet Ida was surprised."

"That's an understatement. She was thrilled, of course. She always did have a soft spot for that rascal."

So what else was new? Women always liked Jack--all women, all ages.

"Ida was so excited about having Jack home. She's looking forward to cooking for him. With that big old house standing empty ever since Sybil Merriman's death, she hasn't had much to do."

Annie agreed without really listening, her attention trapped between the past and the present. She frowned at the dust motes sifting lazily down the band of sunshine admitted by the attic window. Jack was a lot like those dust motes--always in motion. Even when everything was smooth and peaceful, he couldn't be still, couldn't stay in one place. One little puff of wind and he was gone.

He'd proved that, hadn't he? A little over two months ago, when he left her.

She wasn't here to contemplate past follies, she reminded herself, and trained the beam from her high-powered torch on the wiring she'd just finished redoing. It looked fine. The damned beam was trembling, though. So was Annie's hand. She scowled and shut the torch off. "All done here," she said, and started down the ladder.

"I appreciate you coming out to fix this so promptly. "Annie's former teacher held the ladder for her until Annie had her feet once more on the ground. "Give me a moment to find my checkbook, and I'll pay you for your time. Though I still don't understand why you're doing handyman work instead of teaching."

"Mrs. P--"

"Never mind." She patted Annie's shoulder. "I promised not to nag, and I won't."

While Mrs. Perez went in search of her checkbook, Annie made out her bill on the kitchen table. She was determined not to let herself start brooding over past mistakes or her current lack of direction. She'd done too much of that already. After years of working determinedly toward one goal, taking step after difficult step along the path she'd set for herself--a path she had chosen in part because of the woman whose wiring she had just fixed--it had been more than upsetting to learn she'd been wrong about her life's work. It had shaken her world.

Which was how she'd ended up making the second big mistake of her life.

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Eileen Wilks
Published by Silhouette (2000)
ISBN 10: 0373079826 ISBN 13: 9780373079827
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