Chance Blackwell’s return—could cost her everything!

Ten years after he eloped with Katie Montgomery’s sister, Chance Blackwell is back in Montana to sell his family ranch. Katie could lose her job and the only home she’s known. But the loyal cowgirl is keeping a secret that could shatter trust and jeopardize her future with the widowed musician and her toddler niece. Unless Chance’s growing affection for her and all things Blackwell can earn Katie his forgiveness—and his love.

“Aunt Katie, are we going to ride?”

Katie looked down at little Rosie, who was running her tiny hands down Starlight’s flank just as Katie had taught her. The second she’d seen Rosie her heart had nearly exploded in her chest. As much as she’d dreamed of holding Maura’s little girl, those dreams hadn’t come close to the reality. It hadn’t taken more than ten seconds to realize that Rosamund Maura Blackwell had Katie wrapped around every finger Rosie possessed. And she always would.

The determined expression on Rosie’s freckled face told Katie two things: one, Rosie was indeed her mother’s daughter, and two, Chance Blackwell had both his hands full. “We are indeed.” Katie bent down and gripped Rosie around the waist. She’d been teaching kids to ride since she was ten, but she couldn’t recall any lesson feeling quite this personal before. “You remember everything I told you?”

“Uh-huh.” Rosie nodded so hard her curls bounced. She gasped as Katie lifted her up to the saddle, but she didn’t squeal. While Starlight was a very docile horse, Katie had seen the horse twitch at Rosie’s high-pitched excitement over Hip.

As instructed, Rosie grabbed hold of the saddle horn and inched herself forward so Katie could climb on behind her. Boots solidly in the stirrups, she settled Rosie and reached around her for the reins, which she trailed through Rosie’s hands to give her a sense of control. Katie made a clicking sound and kicked her heels against Starlight’s flank and off they went, walking, rather than trotting at Katie’s normal speed.

“We’re riding!” Rosie cried in between bouts of laughter. “I’m riding a

“You are!” Katie kept the reins loose in her hands against Rosie’s hips, but she could tell, as the little girl shifted in the saddle and leaned into the movement of the horse, that Rosie was a natural.

Not her father’s daughter in this respect, for sure. Katie had to pinch her lips together to stop from laughing as she recalled Chance’s multiple attempts at riding. She knew what his problem was: he didn’t trust horses. The trouble was, the horses sensed it, so whenever he approached, they’d do their best to get away. He’d been bucked off so many saddles the ranch hands had started calling him Ricochet. Something told Katie that wouldn’t be a problem with Rosie. She might be Chance Blackwell’s daughter, but Rosie was also a Montgomery. And Montgomery's lived their lives in the saddle.

The woman who destroyed his dreams is having his baby!

After spending the last year trying to get his song-writing career off the ground, Wally MacIver is back in Christmas Town for good. His dreams and ambition didn't bring him anything other than betrayal and pain, mainly at the hand of his boss, record executive Grayling Stanhope. So much for thinking their "connection" was anything other than business. But the last thing Wally expects is to run into Grayling Christmas Town!

Grayling fell in love with Wally's songs long before she ever met him. Their attraction and connection was immediate, but divided loyalties and her own insecurities cost her the only man she's ever truly loved. She knows he might never trust her again, but there are some secrets she just can't keep. Somehow, some way, they've got to find a way to move beyond the past: especially now that they're going to have a baby!

“I guess I wasn’t seeing things.”
Grayling yelped and jumped. Her feet flew out from under her, and she felt herself falling. She cried out, arms flailing, as a paralyzing fear swept over her.
But she didn’t fall. Instead, she found herself caught in Wally’s arms. Wally’s familiar, protective, wonderful arms. He hauled her upright, pushed her legs under her, and stared into her face for an uncomfortable, silent, and perfect moment.
“Hello,” she whispered. She cleared her throat and tried again. “Hello, Wally.”
“What are you doing here, Grayling?”
His voice was as cold as the ice under her boots. There wasn’t any hint of the man she’d fallen in love with, the man whose talents she’d hoped to hone and nurture. The man who had made her think anything and everything was possible. And yet…it was Wally.
Her heart expanded at just the sight of him.
“I took some vacation days,” she said, the rehearsed explanation flying out of her mind the second she stared into those amazing, green eyes of his. “The office was pretty much empty, anyway. Everything goes dead around the holidays.”
“And you came here?” Wally’s eyes narrowed.
“Um.” Grayling forced a smile. Did he realize he was still holding her? Still close to her? Still glaring at her. “You spoke so highly of your home. I thought maybe I might see it all firsthand.”
“Did you?”
The combination of condescension and skepticism in his voice rang louder than Santa’s sleigh bells. “You don’t believe me.”
“I wouldn’t believe you if you told me snow was white.” With that, he stepped back and retrieved the paper bag he’d set on the top of her snow-dusted car. “Go home, Grayling.”
“I can’t. Not yet. Non-refundable ticket.” What was one more lie on top of all the others she’d told him? She needed time, probably more than she wanted to admit, to get him to forgive her. “Five days.”
“Thanks for the warning. Now I know to avoid this place until then.”
“I’m not staying here, actually.” Oh, this was not a good idea, she told herself. So not a good idea, but if she was going to do what she had to do, what she promised herself she’d do, she didn’t have a choice. “They’re full up. Everyone is, it seems.” She shrugged in that carefree way she used to feel. The way he’d expect her to take the news. “Know any good camping sites?”
He looked at her car then back at her. “Where’s your trailer?”
“Oh, the back seat will do. I’m sure.” She wasn’t actually. But she knew Wally MacIver. No matter how angry he was with her, no matter how betrayed he felt, there was no way a good man like him was going to let her sleep in her car on a cold winter’s night.
“Look for a place under a tree.” Wally nodded and picked up his bag. “It’ll be warmer.” He headed down the driveway.
Disappointment crashed over her panic. Okay, so she was wrong. Grayling bit her lip, her mind racing. “You’re really going to just leave me out here?”
“Yep.” He yelled over his shoulder. “Frank and Sylvia probably have some spare blankets. Snuggle in. It’s going to be a cold one.”
He stopped. Stood there for a long moment. Then he sighed so heavily she heard it on the wind. “Why are you here?”
It wasn’t a question aimed at her. She knew it. She felt it. How could she not, given what she’d done to him? But that didn’t stop her from answering. “I missed you.”
He shook his head, his sun-red hair catching in the shimmering and blinking tree lights. “Haven’t you screwed things up enough for me already, Grayling? You had to come here and finish me off?” Now he turned. Now he faced her.
And she saw the pain she’d caused. Guilt had piled up so high these last months she could barely see past it. But her feelings didn’t matter. Not about this. Not when they had… She brushed light fingers across her stomach and swore she felt a fluttering beneath her touch. “I know it seems that way. And I know my being here hurts you. But I had to come. I had to try to make things right.”

USA Today and national bestselling hybrid author Anna J. Stewart writes sweet to sexy romance for Harlequin's Heartwarming and Romantic Suspense lines. Early obsessions with Star Wars, Star Trek, and Wonder Woman set her on the path to creating fun, funny, and family-centric romances with happily ever after for her independent heroines. A former RWA Golden Heart nominee and 2018 Daphne DuMaurier finalist, Anna lives in Northern California where she deals with a serious Supernatural, Sherlock, and Jason Momoa addiction and surrounds herself with friends and family. When she's not writing, you can find her at fan conventions, at her local movie theater, or building her client list for her content editing services. You can read more about Anna and her books at


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