What If? by Lori Connelly

Author Lori Connelly

I like exploring what if’s, especially in regards to existing relationships.  Many couples can survive a trauma initially but most will fall apart afterwards.  Few pairs can work through the aftermath, and come out of it with stronger bond.  In The Lawman of Silver Creek, I wanted to give my readers a glimpse into the lives of a couple who deeply love each other but following a traumatic event, their relationship is in jeopardy.

The Lawman of Silver Creek is a novella in my Men of Fir Mountain series.  Claire’s distant cousin, Ben, was the hero in The Outlaw of Cedar Ridge, the Men of Fir Mountain book one.  Ben and his wife, Evie, both make appearances in The Lawman of Silver Creek but each story in the series can stand alone.  Another of Ben’s cousins, Nathaniel Rolfe, is the hero of the Men of Fir Mountain book 3, working title The Recluse of River’s Bend.

The Lawman of Silver Creek book blurb:

Sheriff Matthew Marston nearly lost the love of his life to an outlaw’s attack and now is determined to protect her.  Always fiercely independent, Claire can no longer envision a future with a man who wants her to change, and abandon her dreams, in the name of safety.  In a small town, where everybody knows your name and your business, the pair can’t stay apart, especially when Claire realizes, letting go of the lawman she loves is impossible.


Fall 1891 Fir Mountain, Oregon

Energy crackled in the air. Wind howled, and thunder roared, loud and intense. Clouds obscured the sky, darkening the midday hour, as rain streamed from the heavens.

“You shouldn’t be here.”

Claire McConkey smiled in response to his gruff, inhospitable greeting and moved closer. “Why?”

Lightening streaked across the dull greyness above, illuminating her finely boned, heart shaped face. Dark brown hair blackened by water clung in tangles. The sight tugged at his deep need to protect her, but he fought it off with cold, hard reason. Another man might think the petite woman who stood only chest high before him, slender to the point that a stiff wind might blow her away, needed coddled. Her delicate appearance misled many. Sheriff Matthew Marston knew better.

Matt stepped out on the covered porch of his family’s log cabin. She didn’t yield ground. Their bodies brushed, and awareness flared. He closed the door behind him to keep her out of his refuge, sidestepping to put some space between them.

“Go home,” he ordered bluntly, his tone firm.

As always, eyes the same rich color as her hair mesmerized him. Claire never veiled emotion. When laughter sparkled in the depths of her eyes, her delight was infectious. If angered, one look would scorch whoever had earned her ill humor. He’d never had to guess what she was feeling, until now. His weight shifted awkwardly from one foot to the other. Her gaze shone with an intensity that unsettled him.

“But I’m soaked, chilled through. Won’t you ask me in?”

“No,” He was certain she was up to something, playing with him. Her soft request only hardened his resolve.

An eyebrow arched at his swift denial. “You’d let me catch my death walking in the storm?”

His eyes narrowed. Matt studied Claire for a long moment, jaw clenched, suspicion high. Mere weeks had passed since the woman who’d held his heart from the time she’d worn ponytails and he chased frogs had rejected him. She’d inflicted a wound that festered, refusing to heal. The memory haunted his quiet moments. He couldn’t understand how she could kiss him with soul searing passion one minute and then with her next breath calmly tell him that their wedding was off.

Author bio:

I was born and still live in Oregon. Despite being a good student, my teachers complained about my tendency to daydream. The tales dancing through my imagination were frequently far more entertaining than real life. As far back as I can remember I made up stories, to calm my sister after a nightmare, entertain myself in boring classes and write in countless notebooks, many never again to see the light of day. I earned a BS from Eastern Oregon State College and married my best friend almost twenty years ago. I’ve three brilliant, handsome sons, one amazing daughter-in-law, a beautiful granddaughter and two spoiled dogs. When not writing I love to read, hike, camp, rock hound, and take long walks with my husband just after it rains.

My links: Harper Impulse Website  My Blog Facebook Twitter Pinterest Goodreads  Wattpad  Written Fireside   Google Plus  Amazon Author Page

The Lawman of Silver Creek :    All Romance ebooks http://smarturl.it/silvercreek

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  1. I love the excerpt and just purchased the novella! Thank you for sharing a great post, Lori!

  2. I laughed at your comment about “spoiled dogs.” We only have one…a huge yellow Lab, but spoiling him is such fun. He loves Little Smokies sausages, so each time hubby barbecues, he cooks those sausages for Buddy. Needless to say, he has constant company while cooking.

    You also mentioned being a rock hound. Years ago, we started bringing home a huge stone from where we traveled and we made a rock garden in our backyard. What do you do with yours?

    1. We have a St.Bernard/English Mastiff mix, Bart, and a little Rat Terrier, Roxy. They wait patiently until after dinner is done hoping for a cast iron pan to lick. They love tomatoes, crusts from sandwiches, and anything a person eats if their big brown eyes will coax them to giving some over. My husband just taught Roxy how to get berries off of our blackberry bush.
      I love to find pretty rocks 🙂 The best are in the house, on some shelves but the majority are in the yard. I have Jasper around my roses and petrified wood around my apple trees and bamboo.
      Thanks so much for your comments and question.

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