Taken by Barbara Freethy

By Barbara Freethy

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Who the hell was Kayla? The machine beeped. “Nick, it’s Kayla again. I don’t know what to do. The security guard found your coat and your wedding ring in a men’s room at the hotel. I’m really worried. If you wanted out, you should have told me. ” His coat and his wedding ring? He sure as hell didn’t have a wedding ring. She obviously had the wrong number and the wrong Nick. “Me again,” she said, her voice filled with panic. “I TA K E N 11 don’t know why I keep calling, except I don’t know what else to do.

I’m not sure what you want me to say,” she said. ” “My husband. I was with him when he bought it. ” “Oh, I’ll bet he had some fun, all right. ” “He traded it in. ” The man glared down at her. “Where is he? ” She didn’t want to admit that Nick had stolen anything. But he certainly had a lot of explaining to do. “I don’t know. ” His ruthless gaze searched her face for the truth. She wanted to look away, but she couldn’t. She didn’t want to appear as if she were hiding anything. “I spoke to the police,” he said a moment later.

She asked. ” “Yes, there’s something wrong,” he snapped. “This place is a mess. There’s crap everywhere, towels on the floor, and the bed is unmade. ” “Excuse me? I don’t understand,” she said, obvious confusion in her voice. TA K E N 13 “What don’t you understand? I’ve been out of the country. ” “But you were home a few weeks ago,” she said. “I ran into you right before Valentine’s Day. Don’t you remember? ” “What are you talking about? ” Nick’s mind raced. Joanne had spoken to someone— who?

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