NY Times & USA Today Bestselling Author
When Devyn Groves needed a place to go, to get away, she headed for Texas, to the town her Delta Force special forces brother lived. She never thought she’d stay, she just needed a safe refuge for a while. But then she met one of her brother’s teammates.
Troy “Lucky” Schmidt fell for Devyn the moment he met her. But she was skittish, and seemingly not interested in any kind of relationship. But he slowly wore her down and convinced her to take a chance on him.
But when the reason she fled her hometown shows up unexpectedly, Lucky has a feeling the woman he loves more than anything is ready to bolt once more. But when danger strikes out of nowhere, Lucky, and the rest of his Delta team, have to band together to find one of their own.
Shielding Devyn is the 6th book in the Delta Team Two Series. Each book is a stand-alone, with no cliffhanger endings.
Devyn Groves is Grover’s sister, she moved to Texas to be near her brother when things closer to home became unbearable for her. She won’t tell anyone what’s wrong and Grover’s really worried about her even with her assurances she’s not sick again.
Troy ‘Lucky’ Schmidt is one of Grover’s teammates, and he wants to date Devyn. He wants to be the one to break down the walls she’s built around her. He seems to be making some headway but she still won’t confide in him knowing he wouldn’t keep secrets from her brother. Grover offers advice of getting a pet to assist him in winning Devyn over and Lucky does more than give it a thought. He goes to the shelter and adopts a dog and a cat that had bonded but the staff couldn’t get them acclimated and they had been on the kill list for the end of the week.
This is a favorite scene when Lucky calls Devyn after realizing he can’t take his new pets into the store to get food and stuff.
He clicked on the Bluetooth in his car and selected Devyn’s number. Grover had told him that Devyn had the day off today.
Everything about Devyn appealed to Lucky. Even her husky voice. “Hey. It’s Lucky.”
“I need your help. But I want to make things really clear from the start—your brother told me to do this as a way to manipulate you. To give me a way to spend more time with you and to make sure you’re all right. But that’s not what this is,” Lucky said.
Devyn chuckled nervously. “Oooookay. That sounds ominous.”
“I just didn’t want Grover to say something later and have you misconstrue it. I mean, I don’t think it’s a secret that I want to spend time with you. That I like you a hell of a lot. But I didn’t do this as a way to force you to hang with me. I want you to want that because you like me back.”
“You’re making me very nervous,” Devyn said. “But I appreciate your honesty. And while we’re being honest, I like hanging out with you already, you don’t have to come up with fancy excuses.”
“I appreciate that,” Lucky said, although he was afraid to ask if she liked hanging out with him as a friend of her brother’s, or if the possibility for more existed. He was too much of a chicken at the moment to even go there.
“So…what do you need me to help you with?” she asked.
“I kind of adopted a dog and a cat, and I have nothing for them. No food, no litter box, no beds. And I need it all. But I don’t want to leave them alone in my townhouse while I go out, and I can’t bring them into a store with me. I was hoping maybe you wouldn’t mind picking up some stuff and bringing it to my place? And when you get there—if they’re okay with it—maybe taking a peek at them to check them over? Health-wise.”
There was silence on the other end of the phone for a long moment.
“Devyn? Are you still there?”
“I’m here. You kind of adopted a dog and a cat?” she asked.
“Yeah,” Lucky sighed. “Grover suggested that it would help me get in your good graces, but honestly, I’ve been thinking about getting a pet for a while. I grew up with animals, and with everyone getting married and having babies, we’ve all been hanging out a lot less outside of work. And I’m not afraid to say it—my place is lonely. So I thought I’d get a cat. Except, then we walked by a kennel with a dog and a cat. A bonded pair. They were scheduled to be euthanized later this week. I couldn’t leave them.”
“Holy shit, Lucky’s a total softie,” Devyn murmured.
“Shhhhh, don’t tell anyone,” he joked.
Then he sobered. “They’re scared to death, Dev. Skittish as hell. It’s breaking my heart to think about why they’re so scared of people. I got them to trust me at the shelter, but I have a feeling they’ll be completely freaked out when I get them home. I just…I need help.”
“I can be there in forty minutes or so,” Devyn said without hesitation. “Do you have their records? Did the shelter give them any medical care?”
“Yeah. They’ve both been spayed, so they’re both female. They’ve got mats in their fur, and I think they’re both underweight, but the shelter gave them all the required shots…rabies, parvo, kennel cough, that sort of thing.”
“Okay, that’s good. You know I’m not a vet, right?” she asked.
“I know, but you’re a damn good vet tech. I realize I need to bring them in for a complete workover, but I can’t do that when they’re so scared. They need time to relax. To see that they’re safe with me. That I won’t hurt them. And shoving them back into this crate and hauling them off to be poked and prodded isn’t going to do a damn thing to make them trust me.”
“You’re…This is a side of you I haven’t seen before,” Devyn admitted.
“What, a Delta Force Operative can’t be concerned about two helpless animals?” Lucky asked, a little snappier than he probably should’ve.
“It’s not that. It’s just…most people wouldn’t care this much about a stray dog and cat.”
“I’ve seen a lot of shit on missions—animals being abused in the worst ways—and I haven’t been able to do a damn thing about it. But I could do something for Angel and Whiskers.”
“Do you have a preference for food or anything else?” Devyn asked in a tone Lucky couldn’t interpret.
He mentally kicked himself for talking about abused animals. “No. Although neither are really young, so don’t get kitten or puppy food. Oh, and I’m thinking a pink collar for Angel; she seems as if she’d like that. Don’t get retractable leashes, those are dangerous as hell. And get Whiskers a harness so she can go on walks with us. I have a feeling she won’t be happy if I take Angel for a walk and she doesn’t get to come too. And the dog bed should be really fuzzy. Big enough for a thirty-pound dog and ten-pound cat, because they’re inseparable. They don’t weigh that much right now, but I’m sure I’ll overfeed them when they give me the pathetic dog and cat eyes. Oh, and toys! Get some harder ones Angel can chew on, and some of the stuffed ones. We’ll have to see if she destroys them to get to the squeaker inside or not. And catnip stuff for Whiskers—”
Devyn burst out laughing.
“What?” Lucky asked.
“Nothing. So you want me to get half the store then?”
Lucky chuckled. “I’m being ridiculous, I know. But you didn’t see them, Dev. They need pampering more than anyone I’ve seen in a very long time. You’re gonna fall in love the second you meet them.”
“I’m sure I will,” Devyn said quietly. “Okay, I’m out of here. I’ll be at your place as soon as I can. I’m not sure how much stuff will fit in my Mini Cooper though. Do you need a crate?”
“Yeah, I think I do. They’ll feel safer in there. I need to bring the one the shelter gave me back to them. It’ll be a place they can hide in if they need to. I’m thinking a plastic one. Medium. I can call Grover or one of the other guys to pick it up if it won’t fit in your car. You really do need something bigger, Dev.”
“Nope. I love my Mini. It’s old, but it runs great and it’s not boring, like a sedan would be. I’ll see what I can do about the crate. I agree with you that if Angel and Whiskers are already skittish, having a crate for them is a good idea.”
“Thanks for helping me out,” Lucky said.
“Of course. See you soon.”
Lucky clicked off the phone at the same time he pulled into the parking space in front of his townhouse. He lived in an end unit in a row with five others. His neighbors were mostly military families, and he’d never had any issues with anyone. He had no idea if Angel was a barker, but he hoped not for his neighbors’ sakes. So far he hadn’t heard the dog make a sound, so he hoped that boded well for his future relationships with his neighbors.
“We’re home,” he told his passengers. “I know this is all very scary, but I promise your lives will be smooth sailing from here on out.”
Stoker, Susan. Shielding Devyn (Delta Team Two Book 6) Kindle Locations (374-429). Stoker Aces Production, LLC. Kindle Edition.
This certainly is an major ice breaker for these two and eventually they reach a compromise on what’s bothering her. Unfortunately the problem shows up in Texas and brings some trouble with it.
I love this story, the new pets and all the guys. There’s fun, laughter, tears, some OMG and some sizzle as well. You should also know that Susan is driving us crazy with peeks of Sierra at the end of all these books.
I can’t wait for the next book in this series, which still isn’t Sierra’s LOL.
5 Contented Purrs for Susan!
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New York Times, USA Today, and Wall Street Journal Bestselling Author, Susan Stoker has a heart as big as the state of Tennessee where she lives, but this all American girl has also spent the last fourteen years living in Missouri, California, Colorado, Indiana, and Tennessee. She’s married to a retired Army man who now gets to follow her around the country.