Jove, Nov 2004, 7.99, 352 pp.
In 1886 Cottonwood, Texas, Captain Walker Larson is moving the women and children from the town because of a pending cattle war. A young woman arrives claiming to be his wife Lacy, whom he never met before. Walker had given his now deceased father power of attorney when he joined the military and so his dad legally married him to Lacy, who runs the family printing plant in Cedar Point. Lacy insists they make love once as she wants to be a “real” wife. Walker complies before sending her safely home.
Two years later, Sheriff Riley informs Lacy that Zeb Whitaker, who tried to rape her, is out of prison and heading this way because he believes the women has his gold. Walker arrives because Riley sent a letter to his superior officer, insisting that his spouse was in danger. Walker is assigned to protect Lacy for thirty days. Lacy tells him to leave, but he refuses; instead he escorts her around town. As Lacy keeps track of how many days are left before Walker leaves, they fall in love, but the duo must stop Zeb, overcome their previous encounter and their different lifestyles to forge a permanent relationship.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner