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Beau - Remington Ranch Book 4 (ebook)

Beau - Remington Ranch Book 4 (ebook)

Sweet n Steamy Romance

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 1393+ 5-Star Reviews

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SYNOPSIS

Beau Remington has built a good life for himself. He's worked hard to make his real estate company a success. He owns one of the nicest houses in town and comes from one of the most well-respected families in Paradise Valley. It's not that he isn't close to his family, it's just that he's never felt he quite belonged in the same way his brothers do.

Over the last few months he's enjoyed seeing his brothers meet some amazing women and settle down. He believes he'll do the same, some day. He just hasn't met the right woman yet. What he isn't expecting is that a chance encounter in the wine store will bring that someday a lot sooner--or that the right woman will have a five-year-old daughter in tow!

Corinne Watson has accepted a job at the Remington Guest Ranch. It's a chance for her and her daughter Ruby to make a new start in life. She's not looking for a man--dating can be too complicated for a single mom. She's certainly attracted to Beau Remington, but how could she go out with a guy who doesn't like kids, and especially her daughter?

Beau has a lot to learn about family, and with a little help from Ruby he's about to learn fast.

Available to Read on Kindle, Nook, iThings, Kobo, Phone, Computer, Tablet, Etc! Your eBook will be delivered to your provided email address by BookFunnel. 

Beau is the fourth book in USA Today Bestselling Author SJ McCoy's international hit Remington Ranch series, loved by over 1,000,000 fans of sweet and steamy romances. 

 

Chapter One Look Inside

Chapter One

Beau shut down his computer and cleared off his desk. Just as he was locking the desk drawer, Wanda stuck her head around the door to his office. She laughed when she saw what he was doing. “You know, they say it’s only untrustworthy people who don’t trust anyone, right?”
Beau rolled his eyes and tried not to smile. “Are you saying I’m not trustworthy, Wanda?”

She shrugged. “I’m saying nothing of the kind. I just find it amusing that in a town where no one locks their front door and most people leave their car running when they stop at the store, I work for the only guy who locks his desk drawer every night. It tickles me, that’s all.”
“Well, good. I’m glad I can give you a laugh. I’m going to head on home.”

Wanda nodded. “Do you want me to forward any messages, or leave ’em till Monday?”

“Why don’t you let the machine handle them? I’m sure you wouldn’t mind getting out early either?”

Wanda’s eyes widened in surprise. “You’re saying I can clock out and go home?”

“Yeah, why not?”

“Why not? Because I work for a slave driver who’d give Ebenezer Scrooge a run for his money, that’s why not.” She narrowed her eyes and gave him a suspicious look. “Are you going to dock me the hour and a half, if I go now?”
Beau laughed and shook his head. “Well, if that’s how you’re going to thank me, forget it. You can stay till six.”
She held up both hands. “Oh, no! You offered. I’m accepting. Consider me gone. My ample ass is waddling its way out of here as we speak.”

Beau laughed again as he watched her retreat. She couldn’t have described it more aptly. “Quick,” he called after her, “if you’re not out the door before me, I’ll lock you in and you’ll be here till Monday.”

Wanda grabbed her purse from the reception desk and grinned up at him. He knew what she was smiling about. Her desk, unlike his own, was littered with piles of documents, post-it notes and various and sundry office supplies, coffee cups and snack packs. It drove Beau to distraction, but despite the apparent chaos, Wanda was the most efficient assistant he’d ever worked with—and he’d worked with a lot. Most of them found him too demanding, or abrasive, and quit on him. Wanda had been with him for two years. She drove him nuts, but she’d become his right hand. He couldn’t imagine having to work without her now. And she didn’t have a problem with his so-called abrupt manner. She didn’t have a problem with him at all. She gave as good as she got, and somehow she had him smiling and laughing more than he ever had in his professional life. More than he had in his whole life, if he cared to admit it. He held the front door open and stood aside as she barreled toward it, making him think of her as a one-woman stampede.

She stopped to wait on the sidewalk while he locked up. Once he was done, she linked her arm through his as they walked around to the little parking lot at the side of the building.

“Seriously, Beau. Are you sick or something? It’s not like you to leave early.”

Beau shrugged. “We’ve been working hard lately…”

Wanda laughed. “When don’t we?”
“Okay. Even harder than usual lately. It’s Friday. I just figured we could both start the weekend early. I feel like vegging out with a movie and a good bottle of wine. I’m sure you have things you’d like to do.” He made a face at her. “Whatever those things might be.”

She squeezed his arm and smiled up at him. “You have no idea what those things might be, do you? I don’t exist for you once we leave the office.”

He let go of her arm and gave her a quick hug. “No. Your boss is a heartless bastard. I don’t know how you put up with him. Say hi to Terry for me. I hope his foot’s doing better now he’s got the cast off. And don’t you go chasing little Nolan around all weekend. Make his momma do some of the work for once.”

Wanda shook her head with a rueful smile. “Will do, you heartless bastard.”

Beau had to laugh as she turned and opened her car door.
“One day, Beau Remington, you’re going to have to drop the front. You’ve got a big soft heart lurking behind the tough shell exterior. I don’t know why you’re so scared to let people see it.”

He shrugged. “You see it. That’s all that matters.”
Wanda shook her head. “I don’t matter one bit; I just worry that when you finally do meet someone who matters, you’ll scare her away. I don’t want that big soft heart to wither and die from never being allowed out to see the light of day.”

He raised a hand and turned to open his own car door.

“Yeah. You were doing well there for a minute, Wanda, but you lost me. You’re boring me now. I’m going home. Don’t be late on Monday.”

Wanda laughed. “Coward,” she called after him.
“What was that?”

“Nothing, boss. Just calling you a heartless bastard. See you Monday.”

Beau grinned and slammed the car door shut. Wanda made him smile. When she’d first come to work for him, he’d thought she wouldn’t last long. She’d appeared to be disorganized and didn’t know much about real estate at all. But she was the only applicant, she was a fast learner, and best of all she was thick-skinned. She didn’t take any of his crap, was what it came down to. And more than that—better than that, if he was honest—she called him out on it. She saw through the façade, in a way most people didn’t, not even his brothers. Well, Carter saw through it, but he was too nice a guy to call him on it most of the time.
He waved as Wanda pulled out and, on a whim, blew her a kiss as she drove away.

Once she’d gone, he sat there for a few minutes longer, letting the engine idle. Why had he wanted to finish early? It wasn’t as though he had any pressing plans. Or any plans at all, for that matter. He had a couple of movies he’d been meaning to get around to, and a decent bottle of wine sounded like a good idea, but that was all. Maybe he was just tired. Things had been really busy for a while now. The market was picking up. He’d sold quite a few houses that had been on the books for months. All his rental properties were full for the summer. He smiled. Except the one out on Mill Lane. That one was due to close in a couple of weeks. It had sold—to Carter and his new fiancée, the country singer, Summer Breese.

He shook his head to clear it. There was no point finishing work early if he was just going to sit outside in his car grinning to himself like an idiot. He should get going. He could hit Deb’s wine store on the way home, treat himself to a bottle of something good.

~ ~ ~

Corinne looked around the cabin and wondered for the umpteenth time what on earth she was doing here. This was going to be home? This two bedroom log cabin, on a ranch, in the middle of nowhere, Montana? This was where she was going to live, work, and raise her daughter? What in hell’s name had she been thinking to accept this job?
She sighed, as she sorted through the last of her clothes and put them away in the dresser. That desperate times called for desperate measures! That’s what she’d been thinking. Since the Williamsons had sold the hotel, life had been tough. She’d worked for them since college, starting out with summer internships and working her way up till she was hotel manager. She’d been devastated when the buyers had turned out to be a big chain. They brought in their own people and systems. During the handoff she’d met the guy who was to be the new manager. He’d encouraged her to apply—for the job of his assistant. She hadn’t though. She was used to running the place, not pandering to a guy who had made it abundantly clear that he liked the idea of having her under him!

At first she’d thought it would be easy to find another job in Napa Valley. She had a good reputation, so did the hotel. It hadn’t worked out that way though. It seemed everyone was adjusting in the new economy. There were many older, more experienced managers looking for work, and they were snapped up when positions became available. Corinne was a little way down the list. She’d thought it would just take time, but after a year of working three jobs, she’d had to face reality.

Her sister, Carly, had come up to Montana on vacation with her husband. They’d brought Ruby with them, just to give Corinne a break. She’d thought it was a joke at first when Carly had called her to say there was the possibility of a job managing the lodge at a guest ranch. It wasn’t a joke though. And now she was here, moving into this cabin, getting ready to start work, and start her and Ruby’s life—in Montana of all places! No joke. No joke at all!

She started at the sound of a knock on the cabin door. She hurried to open it. “Oh, hi, Shane. Is everything okay?” Her new boss was one hell of a hunk of cowboy. All six and a half feet of him. It was a good thing he wasn’t her type. He wasn’t! And besides, he was engaged and she didn’t need a man in her life. She had Ruby to think of. And as Corinne knew from bitter experience, single moms with small kids were better off staying away from the dating scene.

“Everything’s fine. I just wanted to make sure you’re settling okay. See if you need anything?”

“Mommy?”

Damn. Ruby was up from her nap. “We’re fine, thanks.”
Shane gave her a puzzled look. “Do you have any groceries or anything yet? We only stocked you up with bare essentials and you haven’t left the ranch once since you arrived.”

She smiled. Hoping to fob him off, though he did have a point. “We’ve been busy getting settled. I’ll drive to town tomorrow.”

Shane cocked his head to one side. “Are you okay to drive by yourself?”

She nodded. “Of course!”

“Mommy?” Ruby wasn’t going to wait much longer before she started to yell.

“Are you sure?”

“Absolutely. Thank you. Now if you don’t mind?”

He looked a little taken aback, but covered it quickly with a smile. “Okay. I’ll get going, but if you need anything at all, you just holler.”

“Thank you.” She closed the door behind him and turned back to go see Ruby. How could she admit to her new boss that, yes, she was a little worried about driving around out here? That she was worried about taking Ruby on the half hour drive up to town and the grocery store, while she herself was still unsure of the roads? She felt stupid, but she was used to knowing her environment, knowing what challenges might put themselves in her way and how she would handle them and the headstrong Ruby at the same time!

She opened the door to Ruby’s room and smiled when she saw her daughter sitting there cuddling her favorite bear. “Are you all right?”

Ruby nodded and held her arms up. She was always snuggly when she first woke up, it didn’t last long though.
Corinne sat down on the bed and wrapped her in a hug. “I love you, Ruby.”

“I love you, too.”

Corinne smiled and rested her chin on top of Ruby’s head. No matter what else might be changing in her world, this was the one constant. Her daughter, and the love they shared. Ruby was a handful, there was no denying it. But she was Corinne’s handful. Her reason to keep going, to keep trying. Her reason to build a great life, and be a great example. She sighed. How she hoped she could do that, that coming here hadn’t been a mistake.

“Are you okay, Mommy?”

“I’m great, sweetie. Just a little tired from getting us moved and settled in.”

“You should have taken a nap, too.”

She smiled. “You’re right. I should have. But it’s too late now. I need to start thinking about dinner.”
Ruby’s eyes lit up. “Can I have chicken fingers?”
Corinne sighed. They were Ruby’s favorite. Her comfort food, and, of course, she didn’t have any. She didn’t have much of anything yet. Shane had been right. She really did need to get to the grocery store. “We can have them tomorrow.”

“Oh, but please!”

Ruby had been very good so far with the move and all the upheaval, but Corinne knew that edge to her voice.

“Tomorrow, sweetie. We’ve got a lot left to do for today and it’s a long way to go to the store.”

There was another knock on the cabin door. Corinne sighed. And she’d been worried about never having anyone around! Ruby climbed down from the bed and followed her to the front door.

“Cassidy!” she squealed when she saw the woman standing there. “Is Summer Breese with you?”
Cassidy smiled at Corinne. “Hi. Shane said you were busy, I won’t keep you.” She looked down at Ruby. “Summer isn’t here, no. It’s just me.”

“That’s okay,” said Ruby. “I like you.”

Cassidy laughed. “Well, I’m honored. Thank you.”
Corinne gave her an apologetic smile. “Sorry. Ruby is the biggest little fan girl when it comes to Summer.”
“Don’t worry. I know how she feels. Summer’s awesome. You’re going to have to come out for lunch with us both as soon as you’re settled.”
“Yes!” cried Ruby.

Cassidy laughed. “You get to go out with everyone all the time. I was thinking it would be nice for your mom.”
“Oh, she can come, too.” Ruby turned around. “I’m going to find a dress to wear.”

“I don’t mean right now,” said Cassidy.

“I know.” Ruby smiled back over her shoulder. “I just need to have one picked out.”

Corinne laughed once she’d gone back into her new bedroom. “Sorry. She likes to be included, and to take charge!”

“I noticed. I don’t know how you do it. I mean, she’s awesome, but wow. She must be a handful.”

“She can be.”

“How do you even get anything done? You’re like wonder woman, getting moved in and settled and keeping up with her the whole time.”

“Don’t you believe it. We’re nowhere near settled in and I haven’t even made it to the grocery store yet.”
Cassidy nodded. “That’s what Shane was worried about. Do you want me to run up and get you some stuff? You can do me a list, I don’t mind.”

Corinne considered it for a moment. It would make life easier—especially if she were to put chicken fingers on the list! But no. She couldn’t bring herself to ask for help like that. Shane and Cassidy had been so kind already, and he was her boss after all. She needed to appear capable and confident, and she was—even if she didn’t feel it right now. “No, it’s kind of you to offer, but I’m fine, thank you. After Shane stopped by I realized he was right. We’re about to drive up to town. I need to get familiar with where everything is.”

Cassidy looked doubtful. “Are you sure? I really don’t mind.”

“I’m sure. Thank you.”

“Okay. Well, I guess I’ll leave you to it so you can get going. You’d better go soon so you can get back before dusk.”
Corinne wanted to laugh. “Should I be worried? Do the vampires come out at dusk or something?”

Cassidy laughed. “No. You’re safe from them. It’s the suicidal deer that like to throw themselves in front of your vehicle. They do it all the time, but it gets worse at dusk and daybreak.”

“Oh. Great. Thanks.”

Cassidy shrugged. “At least they’re not vampires.”

Corinne liked her. She hoped they might become friends.

“That’s true. I should be grateful for small mercies, I
suppose.”

“Yep. Have you got your cell phone handy? I’ll give you my number in case you ever need it for anything. You’ve got Shane’s, right?”

Corinne nodded. She was relieved to think that if a deer did throw itself under the car, or if she were to break down, she’d at least have someone to call.
Once Cassidy had gone, Corinne found Ruby in her room, with all of her dresses laid out on the bed. She sighed. All of the dresses she’d unpacked and hung in the wardrobe this morning.

“Do you think I should wear the purple one when we have lunch with Summer?”

Corinne smiled. “Yes. It’s lovely. But for now, we need to get going.”

“Going where?”

“To the store to get your chicken fingers.”

“Yay! Thank you.” Ruby came and flung her arms around Corinne’s legs. “You’re the best mommy in all the world.”
Corinne smiled. Moments like this made it all worthwhile.

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