Ruthann can barely remember the dashing young pilot whose plane went down in flames over Nazi Germany. Having done her bit for the war effort in a munitions factory and with the knowledge that her fiance isn’t coming home, she accepts employment as a third grade teacher in a small south Texas town.
In one moment on the first day of school, the piercing blue eyes of the superintendent changes her life forever. Gentle, artistic Drew Mallory, his own life derailed on a battlefield in the previous war, is beloved by faculty and students alike, but he’s long considered his personal life at a standstill.
With a grown daughter who disapproves of her father moving on, and despite the twenty year age difference, Drew and Ruthann begin a tenuous relationship. When it spawns a series of vicious attacks on Ruthann, she finds herself on the brink of another more personal war.
Should she retreat for her own safety? Or can she do battle for the man she finds herself loving more than life?
Targeted Age Group:: Adult
What Inspired You to Write Your Book?
Born during WW II, I've always been fascinated with the impact of that conflict on the personal lives of the people who lived through it both at home and on the battlefield. As a retired teacher, the school setting was a familiar one for me. May-December romances and/or December/December love stories have brought home to me the meaning of enduring love. I always like to throw in a little suspense, so this story offered that opportunity.
How Did You Come up With Your Characters?
Ruthann is a composite of so many young women who lost husbands and fiances in the war and found themselves having to move on alone. Drew is the gentle soul many women feel epitomizes real manhood.
The headlights of the car had just illuminated the faded green sign reading "Camden, Texas, pop. 10,366" when a sharp pop followed by the crack of breaking glass caused Ruthann to brake without putting in the clutch. The car stalled and died. Drew threw open the door and pushed himself off the seat. "What…"
Ruthann abandoned the driver's seat and skirted the car, bringing his cane with her. He grabbed it but didn't let go of the door.
"There's a flashlight in the glove compartment. Check the tires."
Ruthann did as he said but stopped short at the sight of the shattered back window. "Drew, look at that."
"A tire must've thrown up a rock."
"A back tire? How could it hit the window from that angle?"
"Get Nathan Wolfe to explain the physics of it, because I can't. I'll drive from here."
Ruthann got in on the passenger side. "I'm sorry about your window."
"It can be replaced." He stopped with his hand on the ignition. "But you can't." He drove a few yards and pulled into a rest area. When he held out his arms, Ruthann slid into them without a word.
He smoothed her hair and cupped her face in his hands. "I can't explain the difference you've made in my life. I feel new somehow. I can't remember when I last felt whole the way I do now."
"Are you very sure I'm what you want, Drew? What you need?"
"Everything." His mouth caressed hers. "Everything, precious girl."
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