Undercover Heart -- Pamela Stone

Undercover Heart - November 2013

Hard-edged DEA agent Shayne Kelley grew up fast, shuffled from one foster family to the next. But it made him tough. And damned good at working undercover. But when an idealistic schoolteacher reunites him with the father who abandoned him as a child, his well-ordered world is shaken. He can’t seem to resist the naïve teacher and her reckless optimism. Can her sweet love crumble the wall of bitterness around his heart?

Raised by loving parents, middle school teacher Dani Cochran wants to make a difference in the world.  She works with troubled teens during summer break, believing that everyone deserves a second chance. Especially Shayne Kelley. She sees through Shayne’s defenses and enlists his aid with her juvenile delinquents. Will he teach them his cynical view of life? Or will Dani convince her students--and Shayne--that love is the strongest force on earth? But can she risk loving a man who seems destined to break her heart?

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“I knew you could be a hard ass, but didn’t take you for a sexist!” she snapped. “Never mind. It’s not your problem.” She spun toward the house.

He grabbed her arm. “Let me guess. You think you can love their problems away?” He shook his head, released her arm, and glanced at his car door. “You know what, you’re right. It’s not my problem if you want to risk your life with a bunch of juvenile delinquents.”

She leaned against the car door, preventing his escape. “You always have to have the last word, you couldn’t let me storm off.”

“I make a point not to waste my time arguing with people bent on making stupid mistakes.”

“I am going to help these kids.” Her pretty little jaw jutted out. “You could make a difference in their lives and you know it. Take Calvin for instance. He’s in a foster home and feels like nobody cares.”

“Nobody does!”

“Wrong!” Dani’s dark eyes snapped. “I care.”

“Maybe you should focus on your own safety before you get hurt. You can’t save the world, Dani.”

She stepped closer. “We have to try.”

Shayne closed his eyes and his nostrils filled with the scent of peaches. He opened them and almost drowned in her warm brown orbs. The tip of her tongue moistened her lips and he tried not to think about how incredibly sexy that one innocent gesture was. “Cut to the chase. What do you want from me?”

“I want you to be honest about your feelings. Why do you keep glancing at your car like it’s a lifeline? You aren’t running from your father, or Kyle, or the family. You handle them like you’d handle your job. Why do I make you so nervous?”

He gulped then slid a hand down her cheek. “I’m not a relationship guy, Dani. And you aren’t a one-night stand sort of girl.”

She covered his hand and held it against her face. “I think the attraction between us is too strong to just walk away. I think we owe it to ourselves to see where it leads.”

God, those eyes were incredible. “And I think you are way too innocent for your own good.”

She leaned forward and covered his lips, her mouth warm and inviting. Her breasts pressed against his chest. “I’m not nearly as innocent as you think.”

He gripped her shoulders and set her away. “Find someone else, Dani.”