Only the best stars fall…
Three-time bronc-riding champion Tom Colton’s dream of a fourth title ends when he draws Wooden Nickel, a mean little bronc with more twists than a maze. With his heart no longer in rodeo, he figures it’s time to go home to the Triple Star Ranch, the PTSD therapy ranch he and his dad founded to help others with trauma in their pasts. Tom just wants a little time to nurse his hurts and consider his next move.
Amber Hillcrest started out as a Triple Star client and stayed on as a massage therapist. Her dog Nimbus keeps her PTSD in check, but her heart remains bruised. She knows she’s too old and too broken for love, especially with the son of her boss, but he’s hot enough to fill her fantasies for years to come.
Amber tries to keep it professional between them, but Tom proves too irresistible with his big heart and charm. But someone is sabotaging the Triple Star and the neighboring Fantasy Ranch, and an ex-girlfriend keeps coming around, trying to reconnect with Tom. Tom’s hands are full of problems instead of the luscious massage therapist. But when Amber gets kidnapped, Tom will move heaven and earth to get her back and tell her how he truly feels.
Tom Colton rode his last bronc, the ornery horse dumped him and with him the chance at a forth title. He’d already decided this would be his last rodeo so he decides to go home to the Triple Star Ranch instead of staying around for the rest. As he approaches home, firetrucks and emergency personnel are sped past him. Only when he see sees it wasn’t the Triple Star did he relax a bit. The is on their neighbor’s Fantasy Dude Ranch. He stopped just long enough to unhook the trailer from his truck before heading next door to help. That’s what neighbors do in times of crisis.
Amber was relaxing in her cabin on the Triple Star Ranch when she heard the sirens, from her porch she determines the the fire was next door. Knowing she couldn’t actually help with fighting the fire, thanks to her PTSD, she could bring food and water for those who are. Stopping first at the lodge to load up what she could, she and her service dog Nimbus head next door.
Amber pulled up to the Knight’s home right behind Tom. He knew her PTSD had something to do with fire so he was a bit surprised to see her there. Although when he tried to help with the case of water his shoulder let him know his limitations.
Inside the house, his father Trip, and their housekeeper Mrs. Guthrie were already their preparing sandwiches. The Knight’s housekeeper Claire Atherton was surprised and a little relieved at their generosity.
This is a favorite scene.
Clair Atherton, the Knights’ housekeeper, bustled in from the back and stopped, agape. “Where did all this come from?”
“Howdy, Ms. Clair. We thought we’d come by and offer some refreshments to the crew fighting the fire.” Trip stepped forward with his hat in his hand. “We saw the lights and wanted to help, but we figured we’d be in the way. Made food and brought water instead.”
“Y’all didn’t need to do that, but I know Ransom and his sibs’ll be grateful. Thank you, Mr. Colton.” Some of the tension left Clair’s shoulders.
“Aw hell, you can call me Trip, now that we’re neighbors and all.” Trip bobbed his head with a smile. “Let us know if there’s anything else we can do. We’re just up the road a piece.”
“No, no, you’ve done plenty. Thank you.” Clair swung her gaze to take in Tom, Mrs. Guthrie, and Amber with her dog. “Thank you all. We’re truly grateful. It’s been a helluva summer and if it weren’t for you folks, we’d have packed it in weeks ago.”
“Now, don’t say that. It’ll all work out, you’ll see.” Mrs. Guthrie gave Clair a warm hug. “I left our lodge number on the counter in the kitchen if you ever need anything. Y’all probably have it already, but I wanted to make sure. Just give us a call and we’ll see what all we can do. Neighbors stick together out here.” She smiled as she stepped back. “We’ll just get out of your way now.”
“Have Ransom give me a call if he needs any help rebuildin’ or haulin’ anything off the ranch. I should be around more now.” Tom handed Clair his card, frayed at the corners from the time spent in his back pocket.
She frowned a moment. “Weren’t you competing in Cheyenne Frontier Days?”
Regret hit him in the gut, but not as hard as he expected. “Yes, ma’am, I was, but got some rank broncs and that was that.” He shrugged at her look of sorrow. “It’s fine. Time to let some of those young boys take up the mantle.”
She narrowed her eyes at him, but nodded slowly. “If you say so. Thank you all again. I’ll let the Knights know this is all from you.”
“Thanks, Ms. Clair.” Trip waved then shooed Tom, Amber, and Mrs. Guthrie out in front of him.
“Are you sure we shouldn’t do more?” Amber hesitated before she reached her Jeep, her gaze riveted to the flashing lights of the trucks near the barn. Her jaw clenched as her dog leaned against her legs, but she held fast.
“Right now what they need most is for us to get out of their way.” Trip rested a hand on her shoulder. “You head on back to the Triple Star, now. They have our number if they need anything.” He swung toward Tom. “You comin’ too?”
“Yup.” Tom dipped his head, waving his father off. “I’ll be right behind you.”
Trip nodded and escorted Mrs. Guthrie to his truck and Tom paused beside Amber.
“How you holdin’ up? Need anything?”
She took a deep, steadying breath and summoned up a smile. “I’m upright and moving forward. Right now I’m okay.” It sounded like a rehearsed speech, something she said to reassure herself as well as others, but if it helped her, he thought it a good idea.
“I’m glad to hear it. I wanted to ask you if you could fit me into your massage schedule tomorrow? I took a bad fall today and my body feels like it’s been run over by a tractor.” He grimaced as he tried to straighten his shoulders. “Would you have time?”
Amber blinked at him. “You want a massage from me?”
He nodded. “All the guests and even Mrs. Guthrie says you’re the best.”
“That’s very kind of her.” Amber shot another nervous look at the firefighters. “Let me think over my schedule on the way back to the Triple Star and I’ll let you know when we get there. Fair?”
Tom grinned. “Yes, ma’am. That’d be great. Thank you.”
He touched the brim of his hat in a way he knew thrilled women and sauntered to his truck. He was hamming it up pretty good for her, but he didn’t care.
For some reason he wanted her to see his sexy cowboy stuff. Hell, no one has noticed for a long damn time. Darlene had certainly lost interest over a year ago.
Maybe he’d be able to interest Amber in more than just his saunter and his hat. Focus on the massage, jackass, and leave the lust on the floor of the corral. He hoped his dick would listen to him when the time came.
Muir, Siobhan. Rope a Falling Star (Triple Star Ranch Book 1) (Kindle Locations 303-345). Three Lakes Books, LLC. Kindle Edition.
The massage Amber gives Tom does wonders for his pain, but not much for his fantasies. Little does he know Amber feels the same, but can’t see her way clear to even think about it. She’s older than him, has flashbacks and he’s the bosses son. All terrific reasons to stay away from him other than professionally.
Now Tom has it in his head to pursue her, and he can be very persuasive. Of course nothing is going to be straightforward. His ex-girlfriend shows up with the excuse her father wants them back together. Tom’s more than a bit skeptical about that reasoning, but lets her know he’s not interested anymore.
Then things start going wrong at both the Triple Star and Fantasy Dude. Lots of questions and not a lot of answers.
I loved the slow, but steady build of Tom and Amber’s romance and the way Tom overcomes all her doubts.
I will definitely be continuing this series.
5 Contented Purrs for Siobhan!
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Siobhan Muir lives in Cheyenne, Wyoming, with her husband, two daughters, and a vegetarian cat she swears is a shape-shifter, though he’s never shifted when she can see him. When not writing, she can be found looking down a microscope at fossil fox teeth, pursuing her other love, paleontology. An avid reader of science fiction/fantasy, her husband gave her a paranormal romance for Christmas one year, and she was hooked for good.
In previous lives, Siobhan has been an actor at the Colorado Renaissance Festival, a field geologist in the Aleutian Islands, and restored inter-planetary imagery at the USGS. She’s hiked to the top of Mount St. Helens and to the bottom of Meteor Crater.
Siobhan writes kick-ass adventure with hot sex for men and women to enjoy. She believes in happily ever after, redemption, and communication, all of which you will find in her paranormal and dauntless romance stories.