Tate – Lighthouse Security Investigations Book 6 by Maryann Jordan

Lighthouse Security Investigations

The Lighthouse SI Keepers were men and women from the SEALs,
Rangers, Special Forces, Deltas, and AF Special Ops.
All having been trained in CIA Special Ops,
the Keepers were the best of the best
and ready to take on any mission.

Tate
Lighthouse Security Investigations Book 6
By
USA Today Bestselling Author
Maryann Jordan

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Country music, his parents, cold beer, and apple pie…just a few of the things Frank Tate loves. The former SEAL, now a Lighthouse Security specialist also loves his job and lives for the next mission.

But when a call from home sends him back to the mid-west, the past and present collide as danger follows the girl he left behind years before. Will Tate and his fellow Keepers save her in time to see if she has a place in his future?

Note:
Scenes and language are similar to an R-rated movie…18+ only.

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This book opens in the past at a solemn and difficult funeral for Tate. This day had many implications for Tate, even as he said his final good-bye to his friend Nathan, his thoughts were on Nora, Nathan’s sister and his girlfriend. As they lose themselves in each other trying to escape the pain of loss, Tate makes a decision that would change their future together.

Now ten years later, Tate is out of the military and working for Lighthouse Security. He likes the opportunity to accept or refuse a mission and it also gives him the freedom to visit home. This visit is for his mother’s birthday, but would turn into more.

He hasn’t talked to Nora in years and when he’s home she avoids him. A conversation he overhears his sister having brings back the memories and the reasons he had for breaking up with her. He only sees Nora at a distance on this visit but it brings up so many emotions and things that just aren’t valid anymore.

The next time he flies home, his father is in the hospital and it turns out Nora is his nurse. He needs to talk to her, they should be able to talk after all these years.

This is a favorite scene.

The hospital was new, and while small, it offered an excellent cafeteria. Choosing her food, she opted for a quiet booth in the corner. Sliding as far as she could go, wanting a few quiet moments to herself, she pulled out her phone to continue reading the latest e-book she had downloaded.

A tray suddenly plopped onto the table next to hers, and she jumped in surprise. Her gaze jerked up just as a large body settled next to hers, effectively trapping her in the booth. Her breath heaved as she stared agog when Tate offered her a wide smile.

“Wh… what are you doing?”

“What a coincidence, finding you having lunch at the same time I was hungry. And in a nice little corner booth where we can chat, won’t be disturbed, and you can’t escape.”

“You can’t just sit here like this and trap me in the booth! Are you crazy?”

“Nora, I’ve been called many things in my life. Probably most of them I deserved. But so far, crazy is not one of them.”

She opened her mouth to argue, but he continued talking, his voice now softer. “Nora, you avoid me every time I visit, and I get it, I really do. I’d just love to have a chance to talk.”

She made the mistake of twisting slightly in her seat and now faced him fully as he turned her way. His eyes drew her in, achingly mesmerizing. She felt the familiar pain in her chest and knew that heartache was real. Why? Why does it still hurt so bad? And why is he doing this now?

“Come on, Nora. It’s been ten years. Surely we can talk by now.”

Sitting up straighter, she forced her lips into a tight smile, refusing to let him see the pain that she’d buried for so long. “You’re right. It has been ten years. Quite honestly, it’s been so long and our lives are so separate, I can’t imagine that we have anything to talk about.” She turned back to her sandwich, determined to force down a bite.

“We used to have a lot to talk about. As I remember, we talked about anything and everything.”

“Yes, Tate. Used to. Talked. Past tense. Years ago.” She noticed he had not picked up his sandwich, his attention focused on her. Just keep chewing. Just chew, swallow, and for goodness’ sake, don’t choke.

“If you hadn’t avoided me every time I came home, it wouldn’t have been so many years ago.”

“You made that choice, Tate.”

“I didn’t make the choice to avoid each other forever,” he argued in return.

“Why are you doing this?” she huffed. “I’m sure anything important that’s happened in the last ten years, Caroline’s already told you.”

He twisted further, his arm now resting on the back of the booth behind her, his torso fully facing her. “I’d rather hear about you from you.”

She closed her eyes for a few seconds, her mind in turmoil. Done. I’m so fuckin’ done with avoiding. Plopping her sandwich unceremoniously back into her plate, she turned to hold his gaze once again, this time lifting her eyebrows. “So, what shall we talk about? Caroline has mentioned you’re no longer a SEAL.”

His brow furrowed as he gave his head a quick shake. “I didn’t mean for us to talk about me—”

“Hey, just trying to make conversation. If you’re not interested…”

A heavy sigh left his lungs before his top teeth landed on his bottom lip. A gesture her eyes focused on, wishing it wasn’t as attractive as it was.

“No, no, I am interested.” Turning more fully toward her, he acquiesced. “I retired from the SEALs about five years ago. Did some missions for a special agency for a couple of years. The last two years I’ve been employed with a private security firm based out of Maine.”

Not having any idea what kind of work that entailed, she battled the urge to ask if it was dangerous. “Um… do you… um… like it? The work you do?”

“Yeah, I do. The military was great, but I like working for a private company now.”

She nodded, unable to think of anything else to ask. Looking back down at her now-unappetizing sandwich, she grabbed her water, taking a long sip.

“And you?”

Her gaze jerked to his face, but the intense look in his whiskey-colored eyes caused her to shift her attention back to her plate. Lifting her shoulders in a slight shrug, she replied, “Not many changes around here. I’m obviously a nurse at the hospital.”

She jumped as his large hand landed on her forearm, the heat searing from his touch. She tensed, fighting the desire to jerk her hand away mixed with the desire to lean into his warmth.

“I was out of contact for long periods of time when I was on missions, but Caroline told me about your dad and then your mom—”

“Yes, well… um…” Tears pricked the back of her eyes, and desperate to keep them from falling, she swallowed deeply. I haven’t cried in a long time… why does he still have this effect on me?

A wince crossed his face, hitting his brow. “I’m sorry, Nora. I was gone on a… a mission. Missions, actually. I didn’t get word from Caroline until much later for either of them. I… I’m sorry.”

She nodded rapidly while pressing her lips tightly together. Finally, clearing her throat, she managed to whisper, “Well, there was nothing you could have done.” She forced her gaze back to his face, a tremulous smile on her lips. “It doesn’t matter. I’m… I’m fine. I’ve got a good job. I’ve got good friends. I’ve got a small apartment that’s all mine. And your family has done an amazing job over the years of stepping in and making sure I was never alone.” Even as the words left her mouth, she knew they were a lie. Oh, yes, I’m very much alone.

Sparing him a glance, he appeared to be struggling but remained quiet. She noticed everything about him, just like so many years before. The crease in his brow when he was thinking hard about something. The way his gaze held hers when she spoke, making her feel as though she had his full attention. Now, she also noticed the crinkles emanating from his eyes and the few flecks of silver at the hair closest to his temple. Whatever she had imagined, it did not appear his life had been carefree. She gripped her fingers together, fighting the urge to reach up and touch the stubble covering his jaw. Looking back at her plate, she sucked in a ragged breath.

Please just eat your lunch, Tate. Eat, make small talk about the weather, and then leave. At least give me that. Just then, her hospital phone rang, and she quickly answered. Listening, she made a shooing motion with her hand. “Move, move, move. I’ve got to get back up… a new patient has arrived, and they need me to see to it.” Grateful that he shifted out of the booth, she leaned over to grab her tray.

“No, Nora. You go on, I’ll toss this out.”

With a quick nod, she turned and hurried out of the cafeteria, the bizarre conversation they just had still playing over in her mind. Shaking, she entered the empty elevator and leaned back against the wall. She dropped her chin and stared at her shoes, her body quivering as she tried to make sense of the whirl of emotions.
Maryann Jordan. Tate – ARC copy: Lighthouse Security Investigations (Kindle Locations 585-640).

There are still many unanswered questions and Tate wasn’t expecting the bombshell Nora drops on him. As he comes to terms somewhat, his father is getting ready to be discharged from the hospital. What he doesn’t expect is for Nora to be reassigned elsewhere.

Let’s just say that with Nora taking care of a guarded prisoner, Tate need to know everything he could about the man. He manages to get some of that information from his friend Billy, now a sheriff’s deputy, who’s assigned to this detail. Being protective is in Tate’s blood so he calls his office to get more information and doesn’t like what he finds out.

There are many hold your breath moments, and plenty of suspense and intrigue as this story unfolds. Tate and Nora really deserve their HEA, but they have to deal with the past and everything else first.

Once again a book I couldn’t put down.

5 Contented Purrs for Maryann!

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Maryann Jordan

As an Award Winning, Amazon International Bestselling and All-Star author, Kobo, and Barnes & Noble Best Selling Author, I have always been an avid reader. In 2013 I started a blog to showcase wonderful writers and finally gave in to the characters in my head pleading for their story to be told. Thus, Emma’s Home was created.

My first novel, Emma’s Home became an Amazon Best Seller in 3 categories within the first month of publishing. Its success was followed by the rest of the Fairfield Series and then led into the Love’s Series. Soon, other spin-off series came along and 8 of my books have made Amazon top 100 Bestselling books.

Gabe, from the Alvarez Security Series won Silver Medal and 5 Star Review by the 2016 Reader’s Choice Awards.
Honor Love was an award winning novel from the 2016 Reader’s Choice Awards.
Serial Love was an award finalist novel from the 2016 Reader’s Choice Awards.
Coming Home was awarded the 5 Star Review by the 2017 Reader’s Choice Awards.
Discover Love was awarded the 5 Star Review by the 2017 Reader’s Choice Awards.

My books are filled with sweet romance and hot sex; mystery, suspense, real life characters and situations. My heroes are alphas, take charge men who love the strong, independent women they fall in love with.

I worked as a counselor in a high school and have been involved in education for the past 30 years. I have just retired and look forward to more time with family and writing!

I have been married to a wonderfully patient man for 36 years and have 2 adult, very supportive daughters.

When writing, my dog or one of my cats will usually be found in my lap!

I love to hear from readers, so please email me!


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