“Tempting Taylor” – Snip of a Wip

What’s the best thing about Mondays?  *crickets* Other than “The Voice” and “Defiance” will be on TV tonight, I have no idea, but here is something to make your day a little more entertaining. Since it isn’t always possible during the week with all the many, many “hats” I wear, I try to reserve Saturday and Sunday for writing time. What did I work on this weekend? Tempting Taylor (Triple Star Ranch #2) 

Tempting Taylor continues the story of the Murphy triplets in the quest to find their father’s killer. Cade (the Chief of Police) is struggling to find a way to make a huge balloon payment on the ranch. Amongst the murder investigation, vandalism is occurring on the property. Drew has been called in to work a missing child case. Still healing from injuries suffered in the field, Jace is a barely contained ball of fury and frustration. And that’s where we begin our story. 
*Note – This Snip of a WIP is a raw excerpt and should be considered unedited. 
            Rain trickled down the collar of his
black uniform jacket, soaking Cade Murphy to the skin as he slid down in the
muck to the car resting at the bottom of the embankment. Hell of a way to end the day. Recognizing the red Mitsubishi Eclipse
with the Bears decal and pompoms in the back glass, Cade sent up a quick prayer
for the young woman’s safety. He had written Mindy Jones a ticket for speeding just yesterday.
You alright in there, Mindy?” Cade tapped the glass of the driver’s window and
peered inside. The girl was slumped over the steering wheel. He
tried the driver side door, but the
wrenched metal was jammed shut.  The
scent of gasoline laced the air. Her car was still running. Not good. The front of her car was crushed into the base of an oak tree, no chance of disconnecting the battery cables.
for his hand-held radio, he called it in. “We have a one vehicle accident just
off Highway 13 on County Highway 99. I need EMT’s, fire and tow here now.”
to the passengers side, he tugged on the handle and the door opened.  He quickly checked for pulse, tried to assess
any injuries visually. The teenager moaned and opened her eyes. She was alive.
Thank God.
okay. I’m going to get you out of here.”
Cade was such a fixture at the school, attending all the games and events,
watching school traffic, that most of the older kids just called him Chief. 
you pinned? Does anything feel broken?”
ankle hurts really bad and my seat belt is stuck. I’m scared. I wasn’t speeding
this time.  I promise. The deer was just
there. Did I kill it?”
Figures. The kid could be dead and
she’s worried about killing a deer.
“It’s fine. Let’s worry about you right now.” He didn’t want to scare here, but if he couldn’t kill
the ignition, the gasoline could ignite causing the car to blow up at any minute. Taking out his pocket
knife, Cade quickly cut through the shoulder and lap straps of the belt. “Easy
now.” Gripping her under her arms, he helped ease her across the bucket seat
and out the passenger door.
stepped out into the rain and screeched when she tried to put weight on her
injured ankle. “I want my mom.”
get her.” Reaching in, Cade tried again to turn off the ignition, but the key
wouldn’t budge. Hell. Seeing no
purse, he quickly grabbed her cheer bag out of the floorboard and looped the strap over
one shoulder and across his chest.
you walk?”
streaming down her face, Mindy shook her head.
From the car, his scanner announced another
flash flood warning. Wonderful. He
looked up the steep incline to where his Charger was parked, blue lights
flashing. The smell of fuel was even stronger now. They were running out of time.
knelt down. “Climb on. We need to get you out of this rain.” And away from the ticking time bomb that
used to be your car.
The girl climbed onto his back and they began the
careful trek up to the road.  His fingers
grasped and slid on the muddy grass. Fear gripped him. Fate and his strength
would decide if they survived. He fought back the fear, his need to save an
innocent more powerful than the demons whispering in his ear. 
reached asphalt and Mindy let out a sob that echoed in his heart. No one would
die on his watch. Not tonight. He could go home with a clean conscious, a quiet
mind. Mindy slipped off his back and he helped her into his patrol car.
“Thanks. Can I call my mom now?”
Cade slipped her bag from around his neck and handed it to her. “Buckle up. I’m just going to move the car.” Throwing the car into drive, he drove a good distance
from the wrecked vehicle. He heard sirens in the distance as the car exploded.
“Oh, God! My car!”
your mom, Mindy. She’ll be worried.” Pale faced and shaking, the kid fished her cell phone out of
her cheer bag and dialed.
Cade listened to her relay details, he watched Deputies Vance and Creel
maneuver their patrol cars to block the road. Fire and EMT’s were just arriving
on scene. He felt a buzzing in his pocket and dug out his cell phone. Drew? He touched the screen to answer
the call. His brother wasn’t in a habit of calling this late, since he was usually on
a case or enjoying the downtime while he could. They mostly saw each other on weekends.
Hey, Drew.
Listen. I’ll have to call you back when I get to the house. I’ve got a mess on
my hands. There was an accident. Car exploded.”
There was a silent pause on the other end. It wasn’t like his brother to not ask at least a few questions.
You need to let someone else handle it. You have to come home now.”
was something in the inflection of his brother’s voice. A weary distance he had
heard it too many times, used himself. “What’s wrong?”

           “It’s Dad. He’s been killed.”