Christa Evans is having a rough night. She’s lied to and harassed, then she loses her job. And that’s before the crash that sends her car careening to the bottom of a cliff. She’d be dead if not for the big, bearded recluse who pulls her from the wreckage and carries her back to his cabin in the woods…
Loving the Mountain Man is a standalone, in the Love at Last series. Originally published in the Reindeer Games anthology, this version has been expanded with new material.
A woman on the edge…
Christa Evans is having a rough night. She’s lied to and harassed, then she loses her job. And that’s before the crash that sends her car careening to the bottom of a cliff. She’d be dead if not for the big, bearded recluse who pulls her from the wreckage and carries her back to his cabin in the woods.
The quintessential loner…
Wounded hero Micah Graham has no time for visitors. So, when he brings home the woman who nearly died on his mountain, he’ll take her in, but he doesn’t plan to let her stay. Then the storm hits.
Heating up the Holidays…together
While the snow piles up, trapping the two strangers together in the middle of nowhere, Christa and Micah find common ground in the attraction burning between them, proving that not only do opposites attract, they combust. As things come to a head, the question is: What happens once the ice melts?
“You have a lot of experience with outages up here?”
“You like it.” It wasn’t a question. I could see that it satisfied him, in some way, to be alone in the wild, without power, no connection to the outside world. How would that be, not to have to worry about anything but survival? “I get that. Must feel good to be cut off for a while.”
“Yeah?” His look was skeptical. “You’d want a shower eventually.” City girl. He didn’t have to say the words for me to hear them tacked onto the end of that sentence.
“Probably. But I don’t mind the occasional dirty weekend.” I was talking about a day or two spent in PJs, not leaving the house or showering, but the way his expression changed told me he was seeing something different. “That’s not what I meant.”
“What?” His voice was low, almost a whisper, his eyes heavy lidded, but sparkling with what looked a whole lot like interest, his tone almost teasing.
“Your mind’s on an entirely different kind of dirty.” I could easily have pretended I didn’t know what he meant, ignored the way he watched me, the shift in the air.
“One of those weekends where people stay in and watch movies in their nighties? Eat ice cream and shit?”
“Not quite.” I didn’t think he even noticed that he’d leaned over the table toward me. “I’m picturing you up here, alone, doing some kind of outdoorsy stuff.” I waved vaguely toward the front door. “No music or movies or internet. Just pure, unadulterated survival.”
“Keeps me sane.”
I imagined me—us—in this cabin, the way we were today, except in bed, together. I wouldn’t need too much distraction if I had this guy around. From out of the blue, something occurred to me. “You have a girlfriend?”
“Other than my sisters and clients, you’re the first woman I’ve spoken more than ten words to in ages.”
My brows flew up in surprise. “Why?”
He shrugged. “Don’t know. Haven’t been interested.”
My pulse quickened. Could I throw aside my insecurities and ask him? “Are you now? Interested?” There was a slight tremble to my voice.
Looking shell-shocked, he sat back in his chair, his Adam’s apple bobbing once.
Oh, crap. There I went again, voicing thoughts better left in my head. “Never mind. Forget I asked. It’s the kiss thing, you know. I thought maybe—”
I opened my mouth to respond, and closed it.
We watched each other, the last of our food forgotten, fire crackling cozily in the wood stove, the dogs snoring lightly from the hearthrug. Outside, the wind whistled through the trees.
“You?” He hadn’t moved, but the energy around him changed, grew expectant, tense.
“Yeah,” I whispered.
“Is it ’cause I saved you?”
“Partly.” I couldn’t lie now that I’d opened up once. How the hell could I parse out this insane attraction? I’d spent less than 24 hours with the guy, so yeah, the fact that he’d saved my life probably had something to do with wanting to jump his bones. But not everything. This wasn’t a savior thing. It went deeper than that. “You’re also ridiculously hot.” He looked like he’d deny it, so I forged quickly on. “You’re kind, generous, interesting. You give the best massage I’ve ever had—including from professionals—and you can cook.” I took in the dogs with a lift of the chin. “I’m clearly not the only female around here who thinks highly of you.”
“I’m a moody bastard.”
“Haven’t seen that yet.”
“I fly off the handle.”
“As long as it’s not at me.”
“Never.” His lips tightened and his eyes glittered with a small taste of that vengeful rage he’d shown this morning. “I reserve that for nutsacks who force themselves onto women.”
This man. Good God, this man. “I could like you. I could really, really like you.”
“Not much for relationships.”
Half-nervous, half-excited, I ignored a small pang of disappointment and asked, “How are you for dirty weekends?”