That was rational. She wasn’t a kid again, in a patrol car paralyzed by terror.
Dread gripped her at the realization that, as much as she hated the idea, she
would have to trust this cop.
“I repeat, this is the police. Come out with your hands up.”
A convulsive swallow, and she tried again. “I’m coming out.”
the heavy flashlight, then hesitated, blinded by the powerful beam of his
your flashlight to the floor.”
only possible weapon. “This is my place. I can be here.” Even to her own ears,
her voice sounded tight with dread.
behind your head and come down the steps.”
forward. That voice kept whispering in the back of her mind. He could be a
rogue cop. He could rape and kill her, bury her body out in the woods somewhere
and no one would even know she was gone. If he made one wrong move, she’d take
her chances and run. Poised for flight, she couldn’t keep a hard shiver from
wracking her body.
technique in cop school. She tried to see beyond the blinding light but
couldn’t make out his features. “My name is Emma, and this is my property.” She
paused. “Can I put my hands down?”
and moved behind her. She tensed as he gripped her wrists with one warm hand
and conducted a quick pat down with the other. “Is there anyone with you?”
fast internal debate on whether to admit there was no one else, but realized
she had no choice. She was alone. “It’s just me.”
leather cop belt, the hiss of his radio, even the scuff of his boots on gravel
brought back frightening flashes of memory that served to reinforce that she
was at his mercy. And that this could go very, very badly for her. To the
depths of her soul, Emma hated feeling so vulnerable.
flashlight so it wasn’t shining directly in her face, he stood back, watchful.
A stillness settled over him. He stared at her, making her aware of the pull of
his gaze. After a long, arrested moment he appeared to gather himself.
his belt, low voice reporting his location and situation, then strode back to
his vehicle to open the rear door.
something, then moved to the driver’s door to reach in and flip off the
headlights. His radio buzzed and he paused to respond. He had the sure,
economical movements of a supremely self-confident man.
eyes were on her but he was a good thirty feet away. He responded to the radio
and took his gaze off her to lean farther into the vehicle.
it. Just slip into the darkness and find safety in the trees. But that would be
madness. So far he’d done nothing threatening, other than being a cop, and,
more importantly, she hadn’t done anything wrong. But having the legal right to
be here sure didn’t make her feel any safer.
Great, the cop was a mind reader.
Man, Diane Benefiel has been an avid reader all her life. She
enjoys a wide range of genres, from westerns to fantasy to mysteries, but
romance has always been a favorite. She writes what she loves best to read
– emotional, heart-gripping romantic suspense novels. She likes writing
romantic suspense because she can put the hero and heroine in all sorts of
predicaments that they have to work together to overcome.
A native Southern Californian, Diane enjoys nothing better than summer.
For a high school history teacher, summer means a break from teenagers, and
summer allows her to spend her early mornings immersed in her current writing
project. With both kids living out of the house, in addition to writing, she
enjoys camping and gardening with her husband. Diane loves hearing from her