Monday, August 25, 2014

RELEASE DAY: Lee Ann Sontheimer Murphy "Gray's Good Samaritan"


On an ordinary Saturday morning, Robin Cavanaugh’s life takes a wild turn.  A wounded man leaps into her car at a traffic light.  He refuses to go to the hospital and after he reveals his real name, she realizes she knows him from church.  When he swears he’s one of the good guys, Robin abandons common sense to help him.  As his condition worsens, she soon learns he’s not really Spike Mc Gee, a criminal but an undercover agent whose life is in danger.  His brother, Jack, a doctor, pulls Gray through and soon, Robin is part of the action too.  Their love grows under the unlikely conditions and when Gray heads home to visit his mother, Robin comes too.  While there, Gray proposes and she accepts but a family tragedy brings them back to Tulsa.  Everything hangs in the balance as Gray goes undercover as Spike on last time…if he survives, they can find their happily ever after.



Lee Ann Sontheimer Murphy is a native of historic St. Joseph, Missouri and now makes her home in the beautiful Ozark Mountains.  As a wife and mother to three children, she spends her days penning her stories, substitute teaching, gardening, cooking, and all the other daily duties.  She has a BA degree in English and History from Missouri Southern State University and an AA degree from Crowder College.  She has worked in broadcasting, education, and retail. Lee Ann is a member of Romance Writers of America, Missouri Writers Guild, and the Ozark Writers League.  Her multiple works include full length nov-els, novellas, and short stories.  Lee Ann has also contributed to more than two dozen an-thologies including the popular Chicken Soup For The Soul series.  She writes a weekly col-umn for the local newspaper and writes several romance genres and subgenres.



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Chapter One
On a morning as ordinary as faded blue jeans, no different from dozens of other Saturdays, everything changed. As she slowed for a traffic signal behind a long string of vehicles, Robin spotted the man. Whoever he was, he ran at furious speed, racing across the open spaces between the electric substations as if his life might be in peril. Robin couldn’t imagine anything else powerful enough to inspire anyone to run so fast, so hard. Curious, she kept an eye on him to see where he went as she came to a stop at the highway interchange. Already ten minutes late for her hair appointment, midway through her weekly errands, she craned her head backward and over the dirty laundry stacked in the back seat. Just as the light went green, the runner changed course. His diagonal path would take him in front of her car so she hesitated, a car length behind the other vehicles, afraid she might hit him. At the last moment, he veered, switched course, and snatched open the passenger door. He climbed inside before she could scream or protest and spat out two words: “Hit it!”

Robin froze, uncertain what to do until the truck behind her blared its horn. After a brief hesitation, she drove forward, heart beating with a rock-and-roll rhythm. Every bone in her law-abiding body screamed to stop. Her passenger’s face shimmered with perspiration and his eyes glittered with pain. Although he had been running hard, he gasped for breath as if he had been hurt. When she sneaked a closer glance, she noticed blood dripping in staccato rhythm from beneath his leather jacket. “Hey, you’re hurt,” she said, shocked. In her comfortable world, people didn’t run or bleed from anything but a minor mishap. “What happened?”

“I got shot,” he said. Each word required a harsh-drawn breath. “Just drive, okay?”

“Shot?” she echoed. Maybe she had heard him wrong. “You were shot?”

He shot her a look from half-closed eyes and she noticed how pale he had become. “Yeah.”

Robin clamped her fingers tighter around the steering wheel as she stiffened. Whatever trouble he’d found, it wasn’t hers but she couldn’t abandon him on the side of the road either. She made a sudden, swift decision.

“I can take you to the hospital,” she said. “I’m sorry, but that’s it. Just hang on and we’ll get there as soon as I figure out if we’re closer to Hillcrest, OSU, or St. Francis.”

He’d closed his eyes, shuttered tight against the pain, but at her suggestion, he opened them and glared at her. “No hospital,” he choked. “Can’t. They report gunshot wounds.”

Disbelief cut through her anxiety so that she spoke without thinking. “Are you telling me you don’t want me to take you to the hospital?” He needed immediate medical attention. Those drops of blood she had noticed had become a stream flowing down the seat and puddling onto the floorboard. “You need to get help — you’re bleeding all over the place.”

His eyes narrowed as he glared at her. “I know, but I can’t go to the hospital. The law requires them to report any gunshot wounds. If they do, I’m a dead man. Can you drive any faster? I don’t think they saw what car I got into but they might have. If so, we’re both in trouble.”

He appeared about to collapse but he’d managed to speak up. And what he said scared her. “Who might’ve seen you?” Robin asked, afraid to hear the answer. The way he had been running, she figured it must have been the police, drug dealers, a gang, or maybe organized crime.

Her passenger slumped down in the seat. “I think maybe the cops did.”

Robin almost slammed on the brakes and her attention strayed from the road. She faced him and got a good look for the first time. He wore black leather pants, a leather jacket, and a black T-shirt. On his hands, he wore leather half-gloves and studded bracelets encircled both wrists. Although his hair was close-cropped in front, he had let it grow out in back. After his crazy run, his hair had wilted but she would bet he had had it spiked with gel before. Robin couldn’t determine if his style screamed biker, punk, Goth, or gang, but whatever his fashion statement might be, it stretched far outside her comfort zone. He had to be a criminal and she struggled to stay calm. Who knew what he might do if she provoked him?

1 comment:

  1. A great beginning! Brings you right into the story.