Paradise Valley: Lost and Found

Paradise Valley: Lost and Found

by Jodi Villone

ISBN: 9781628382990

Publisher Page Publishing, Inc.

Published in Literature & Fiction/Contemporary, Romance, Literature & Fiction

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Book Description

Fate was on their side. Destiny brought them together. Life was sweet red wine and they had their fill of it. Anna and Jeff couldn’t have been happier. Theirs was a hot consuming love. They were both strong but together, they were untouchable. It was just the beginning for them but life can be mischievous—it has its way of surprising. Fate can be cruel. Destiny could change. In the blink of an eye, you may lose everything. A match made in heaven? Yes. Will it be the perfect fairytale ending? You tell me.

Sample Chapter

Anna looked at her dad, Rick. She could still see the sadness and emptiness on his face. It looked as if he’d aged a decade since last year. Anna was still trying to deal with it as well. “Dad, have you ever been as nervous as I am right now?” Rick smiled down at his only daughter and said, “Yes. Just wait until you and Jeff have your first baby. This is a piece of cake compared to having a new life to take care of.”

Then, they were cued by the music of Ava Maria by Schubert and started walking towards the front of the church. “What a perfect day,” Anna thought to herself as she walked down the aisle arm and arm with her dad. She looked around and was completely over- whelmed and felt so lucky to have family and friends like she had and as she moved closer to the altar, Anna watched the look on Jeff’s face. She didn’t know if it was shock or excitement and she smiled at him. She then glanced at her friends— her matron of honor, Abby, and her maid of honor, Allie, who were wearing the most elegant of dresses. They both gave her a reassuring smile. Then, she looked over at the groomsmen who were Jeff’s brothers, Clay and Trip.

They heard the priest ask, “Who gives this woman to be married to this man?” Anna’s father responded, “Her mother and I do,” and took a seat next to her mom.

As they started the ceremony, Anna wondered what was going through Jeff’s head. She was a little nervous but she knew that he was her soul mate and she couldn’t wait to start a long, prosperous life together and right at that exact moment, something came over her that made her feel like an angel like she was being lifted up and lighter than ever. Maybe it was her brother, Will, being there in spirit because that is something he would have totally called her—an angel. Tears started to well up in her eyes thinking how much she would have loved to have her brother celebrate this day with her. “Will would have loved Jeff. They would have been two of the same,” she thought. He had been killed in an unrelated enemy fire and they had hit a snag in the investigation.

It had happened about a year ago when Will found out that a couple of his men were trying to sell military weaponry to unlicensed and non-military persons for some serious money. After digging, Will caught it in time and sent them home with a dishonorable discharge hanging over them but in the meantime, Will was shot by an unknown assailant. They figured it was someone on the take as well but couldn’t find the shooter and couldn’t prove anything because the two men were on the plane when it happened but the investigation was ongoing, they assured the family. Every day, they waited for that one call that would yield an answer so that they could get some kind of closure.

It had been a very long day and it was only two o’clock. The reception started at four o’clock. Their limo headed over to the North Harbor Club to get pictures. Guests started showing up at that point. Jeff and Anna made sure that there was a hotel nearby for those out of state and they provided a couple of town cars to make sure that their guests got from there to the hotel and back to their cars in the morning if needed. Everyone was to have a good time without worrying about driving. The North Harbor Club was right on the lake and it was gorgeous and because it was held in October, the weather was absolutely perfect. Jeff’s parents, Kate and Dean were so elated that one of their sons was actually mar- ried. Because they never had any daughters, Anna was pulled into their family immediately and Kate just loved her and spoiled her as she would have a daughter.

As the evening went on, Anna felt overwhelmed with sadness about her brother but also with completeness like her story was just beginning and she couldn’t wait to see where it went next. Anna was thirty years old. She had beautiful long dark brown hair with natural highlights that people envied. Her skin was of an olive hue that made her sky blue eyes the first thing people noticed. She stood about five feet four inches tall. Her gift was her personality. Everyone wanted to be around Anna. She had such a positive energy and turned heads when she walked into a room. Jeff was a very smart and adventurous individual. Jeff was of blondish brown hair with just enough body running through it. He had beautiful strong facial features with eyes just as beautiful and blue as Anna’s. His build was athletic at six feet one inches tall. The two of them were inseparable and it was almost too perfect of a match.

Anna and Jeff had met the previous summer, which was about fourteen months ago when Abby’s husband, Justin, had taken the girls out to play on the water. They skied and tubed before anchoring off with some of Justin’s other friends. They ended up anchoring next to a ski boat that was white and teal with the wakeboard tower. Anna noticed that it was nice and commented thus to Allie. Allie looked over at the boat and then looked at Anna. “The guys on it are pretty nice too.” She smiled. There were three of them that they later met, Jeff, Clay, and Alan, the owner of the boat. All were very good looking—tan and muscles vividly pronounced—but one in particular made Anna’s heart skip a beat every time he looked at her.

Jeff was so wonderfully charming and flirtatious. He was the first one to speak to her. He winked at her. “I’m Jeff. What’s your name beautiful?” Anna felt her face flush from embarrassment. “My name is Anna. Are you from around here?” “I am now. My buddy, Alan got me a job out here.” He pointed to Alan. “My brother, Clay and I are actually from Texas.” Clay heard him and said, “Hey, I’m Clay.” Jeff looked over at Clay and said, “This is Anna and her friend?” He paused for an introduction. “Oh, this is Allie,” Anna said quickly. Jeff finished his sentence, “Allie.” Anna admired his strong Texan accent. It made him that much more charming. “So, are you available? Taken?” Jeff asked Anna teasingly. She smiled and shyly said, “It depends who wants to know.”

“Well, if I was asking, ‘Are you available?’” “Yes, I am.” “Would you and your friend like to come over and hang out on our boat for a little while?” “Sure,” Anna replied so he grabbed her hand and helped her jump over and did the same for Allie. Anna had a halter bikini top on that accentuated her breasts and her bottom was covered by a wrap that tied just below the waist. Jeff checked her out and thought to himself, she’s really cute. Anna caught him, “What are you looking at?” she asked. “You,” Jeff replied. “You, Anna, are very pretty.” “Thank you” and she smiled and looked away. He moved closer to her. “Can I take you out tomorrow night and maybe just hang out with you on the beach this evening? I promise I’m not a weirdo or anything like that.” All of a sudden, they hear, “Yes, he is, don’t believe him” from Clay. “He’s my brother; I should know.” He laughed. “No, he’s a good guy. Don’t listen to me.” In the meantime, Clay and Alan were flirting with Allie pretty hard. She was starting to feel uncomfortable because she didn’t want to choose and Jeff caught on to what was going on and asked if they could all just hang out that night. “We could hang out at the bar on the beach, dance, and sit by the fire.” “That sounds like fun,” Anna said. “Should we go home first and change?” Jeff looked at Anna up and down and said, “No. I think you look great in that.”

Once everyone starting docking back at the marina, most of the people who were hanging out by the sand bar were younger and all had the same idea. Anna asked Abby, “Are you and Justin coming with?” “Absolutely, I want to know more about these guys you just met.” “What are you drinking?” Jeff asked Anna. “Just a light beer would be fine or whatever. I’m not picky.” So, he grabbed them a couple of beers and they walked down the beach. “This is a good spot. Let’s sit,” he said to Anna. Anna asked him, “So, you, Clay, and Alan are all from Texas. What brings you here?” “Alan actually moved out this way for a job opportunity and set me up there as well, so I followed. Clay is just here visiting. I have another brother, Trip, who is the youngest. Clay and Trip help with the ranch.”

Anna took a sip. “Your family owns a ranch?” “Yep, but even though I love it there and helped them out for years, I just had other things I wanted to try and do before I made a decision of making that my life. My parents were very understanding and supportive of that.” Anna asked, “What about Clay? It seems like you two are awfully close. Does it bother him that you are out here?” “No. Trip and Clay will come out and visit often enough. They will never leave the ranch. It’s their passion. I just had a different idea of what I wanted.” “What about you? Do you have any siblings?” “Yes and no. I had a brother. His name was Will. He enlisted in the mili- tary and ended up killed almost three months ago. It was murder, and they are still investigating.” “I’m sorry, Anna.” He put his arm around her, and Anna said, “It’s okay. I just want closure for my family. It’s been very hard on my dad. Will was a year older than I was and a pretty awesome brother to have. The last time I saw him was at Abby’s wedding.” Anna tried to fight the tears. “I’m sorry. It’s still too fresh to not get emotional about it. I have a lot of good memories. I have really good friends. They are the ones who got me through.” Jeff looked at her and wiped away the tears. “I understand. I hope they catch whoever did it.” There was silence for a few moments, and Jeff asked

“Did you grow up here? I don’t hear a Southern accent.” Anna smiled. “No all three of us moved from Virginia. That’s where we grew up. Allie and I followed Abby out here. We just fell in love with the area. Allie and I have a townhome together and Abby and Justin have been together for a while. They rent a nice home in Statesville. They were married five months ago; actually, right before Will was killed.” Jeff was playing with her hair unconsciously and asked, “What’s Allie’s story? Is she seeing anyone right now?” “No, she’s been out a few times with Brian but nothing serious. Why?” Anna looked at him and laughed. “No reason. She just has her hands full with those two and he looked back by the bar.” “Do you need another drink?” he asked Anna. “Maybe. I want to check on my friends anyhow.” Before she went to get up, he pulled her to him, “Can I kiss you? I’ve been wanting to ever since I pulled you over into our boat.” Anna smiled and whispered, “Yes.”

They kissed until Anna felt like it was getting a little too heated. “I need to check on my friends.” So, Jeff pulled her up out of the sand and leaned down for one more kiss, smiled at her, and said, “Let’s go find them.”

Anna and Jeff had been dating since the day they met on the boat. He was two years older than her. She was and very ambitious and mature. They saw each other almost every day for the past five months. They had done every- thing they could possibly do as a couple. They spent a lot of time with friends and did a lot together and spent a lot of time at his townhouse. They finally felt comfortable enough with their relationship that things started to get very serious. So, as

Jeff set up an evening in, he made dinner, uncorked the wine, and threw on some music while he waited for Anna. When she walked through the door, she caught the aroma of food. It smelled really good. He came in to greet her with a kiss, a smile, and a glass of Pinot Grigio. “Thank you. How sweet,” Anna commented. “Whatever you are making in there smells delicious.” He grabbed her hand and pulled her towards the kitchen. “Well, dinner is done, and I have made grilled Greek chicken salad with all the extras. So, have a seat and enjoy.” As they ate and talked about their day, Jeff said, “I think it’s time you meet my family.” He waited to see the expression on her face before he proceeded. “What do you think about going to Texas for a week? Could you get the time off formwork?” She finished her bite of food and looked at him. “Really? You are ready to introduce me to your family?” He smiled. “We’ve only been together every day for the past five or six months. I think it’s time. Don’t you?” “Well, sure,” Anna responded. “I would love to meet your family. When did you want to go? I’ll have to put in for the time off.” “I thought next week. That gives you a week to get ready.” “I will check with the boss and see if it’s okay.” Jeff said, “If not, we’ll plan a later date.” So, as they cleaned up the kitchen, drinking their wine, they talked about the trip and what to expect. Jeff came over to her and grabbed her waist. “You are just going to fall in love with the ranch.” He pulled her to him, kissed her lips, and whispered, “Let’s go to the bedroom.”

“She is so beautiful,” Jeff was thinking as he was kissing Anna’s neck and letting his hands feel every curve of her body. He wanted her in the worst way. He couldn’t have been more aroused than he was at that moment. They hadn’t had sex up until that point and it was making them both crazy. Anna groaned with his touch and that pushed him over the edge. He started to unbutton her shirt, feeling her breasts over the top of her bra. His breath started getting heavier as he couldn’t get her naked fast enough. He was hoping she felt the same. He needed the release. She did too. Anna felt Jeff’s hard chest, which had her begging for more, and then she felt his hardness against her. She sighed and felt Jeff’s heart racing and his breath getting heavier, as he was trying to undress her. She wished he would just rip everything off. He started to kiss her now naked breasts. He licked them and played with her nipples until she started to undo his pants. She pulled him out and played with his erection. As her pants came off, they explored one another with excitement and anticipation as they knew tonight was the night. Jeff spread Anna’s legs and kissed her stomach down to her smoothly shaved wetness that made him throb. Anna gasped and she thought it was going to be too much. She couldn’t hold out much longer. The way he used his fingers to manipulate her sexual pleasure and how he made her feel with his tongue had her moaning. She was so aroused that she cried out and he knew she had reached orgasm. Anna had not had enough. She wanted him to slowly slide inside as she wanted him to give her more. “More,” she thought to herself and as she grabbed his penis, she looked Jeff in the eye and whispered, “I want more.” He grabbed her arms and held them over her head against the pillow, as he teased her with his tongue on her breasts. He slowly slid his hardness into her and it felt amazing. Jeff muttered, “This feels too good” as he started into her. As he went in deeper with each plunge, he whispered, “I love you, Anna, I won’t ever hurt you.” Anna breathily replied, “I love you.” Jeff looked into Anna’s eyes and began to move faster and deeper. Anna felt a jolt of relief from Jeff, as he moaned and cried out her name. Anna felt the throbbing and finished with him, as they both looked into each other’s eyes.

The chemistry was definitely there. Jeff and Anna had been dating for five months, and at that point, as early as it may have seemed, they had already had conversations about marriage. It just seemed right—they were right. Anna was a little nervous meeting the whole family. She knew it would be okay if they were like Jeff and Clay. As they finally checked their luggage and were on their way to Texas, Jeff couldn’t have been more excited. He knew his parents were going to absolutely love Anna.


Excerpted from "Paradise Valley: Lost and Found" by Jodi Villone. Copyright © 2014 by Jodi Villone. Excerpted by permission. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher. Excerpts are provided solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.
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Author Profile

Jodi Villone

Jodi Villone

I am an independent author and my interests varies in writing such as; suspenseful romance, children's fantasy and comedic pieces for mothers like myself.

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