When the Heart Falls
Misty Prescott had the perfect life—emphasis on the “had”. Cookie-cutter house? Gone. Gated neighborhood with quiet streets? Gone. Cheating jerk of a husband? Glad to be gone. With nowhere else to go, she returns to her hometown and back to her parents’ ranch. Living in her old room again was never part of her plan, but then again, neither was falling for her childhood friend’s rugged charm faster than the ink could dry on her divorce papers.
When tragedy brings Dylan McCoy back home, the last person he expected to see was the beautiful woman who claimed his heart over a decade ago. Not taking the chance with Misty when he had one was always something he regretted, but now that she's back—and single—Dylan's determined to be a part of that life she's trying to put back together.
But secrets go deep in the heart of Texas, and soon there's more than just sparks flying. When Dylan and Misty find themselves targets of one horrific event after another, suddenly, they must fight the obstacles threatening to tear them apart—and survive the danger that threatens their lives.
The smell of alcohol on her breath was enough to make him drunk. He leaned his head away from hers and took a breath of non-alcoholic air.
“Shoo, Misty! What did you do? Take a bath in Jack Daniels?” he asked, scrunching his face up a little.
“Dylan, that’s silly.” She giggled. “Where are we going?” she asked as he kept his arm around her waist and started to usher her to the door.
“I’m taking you home.” he said.
“But I haven’t finished my show!” she protested and waved her hand back toward the stage.
“I think your show is over for tonight. That poor mic needs a rest.” He chuckled.
“Dylan McCoy, are you telling me I can’t sing?” she asked and stumbled a little bit.
He helped her keep her balance and jokingly replied, “Misty, you couldn’t carry a tune in a bucket.”
“You don’t know what you’re talking about. I sing like a bird,” she said proudly and lifted her chin.
“A dying bird,” he said under his breath. They walked past the bar and Dylan nodded to Paul. “See you in a little bit.”
“I’ll be there as soon as I get closed up,” Paul agreed.
What should have been an easy task of walking her out to her car proved different. She kept tripping in the loose stone and dramatically throwing her arm in the air as she kept trying to prove to Dylan that she could indeed sing like a bird. Dylan was annoyed but amused at the same time. At one point she took a tumble and landed flat on her behind. Dylan could barely contain his laughter when she whined that her butt was bruised and insisted that he kiss it and make it better. When he finally got her out to her car, he leaned her against the side long enough to open her purse and get her keys. He hit the unlock button and the cars lights blinked twice. He walked her around to the passenger side and opened the door for her.
“I don’t want to get in,” she said like a child getting ready to throw a temper tantrum.
“Misty, please get in the car,” he said softly.
“No!” she said as she stomped her boot on the ground. “Not until you tell me that I sing like a bird.”
Dylan sighed and shook his head. He knew it wasn’t worth arguing with her so he smiled and said, “Ok, you sing like a bird.”
“Thank you,” she said arrogantly with a smile. She went to push herself from the side of the car so she could take the passenger seat, but lost her balance and fell into Dylan’s chest. His arms firmly wrapped around her so she wouldn’t fall.
“Easy now,” he said. Dylan loosened his grip a little bit after she regained her balance, but he didn’t let go. He looked down at her just as she leaned her face up to see his and their eyes locked. For a moment, it seemed as if time was standing still. He could feel his heart rate quicken as she stared into his eyes. He wanted nothing more than to lean down and join his lips with hers. Caught up in the moment, he smiled a little and leaned in toward her. The scent of Jack Daniels on her breath brought him up short. He opened his eyes and pulled back from her. He could tell she was a little confused but she didn’t question him. If she hadn’t been so intoxicated Dylan would have taken advantage of that moment and kissed her.
“Um,” he said, clearing his throat. “You ready to go now?”
She nodded her head and allowed him to help her into the car. After she was settled, he closed her door and walked around to the driver’s side. Once in, he started the car and slowly pulled out of the parking lot. Misty stared out the windshield with a blank expression. She was slowly starting to sober up and the landscape flying by was making her feel a little nauseous. It felt like her head was spinning; not only from the effects of the alcohol but from the kiss that she and Dylan almost shared. Why had he pulled away from her? She was ready and willing for it to happen. So why didn’t it? She turned to look in his direction and saw a look of confusion and concern on his face. She opened her mouth to apologize for how she had acted tonight when she noticed that he kept checking the rearview mirror. Confused, she looked behind them and saw a set of headlights trailing fairly close behind them.
“What’s wrong?” she asked Dylan.
“I’m not sure but I think that car is following us,” he said with the sound of concern clear in his voice.
Misty looked out the back window again and asked, “What makes you say that?”
“They’ve been on our tail since we pulled out of the bar,” he explained. “Your seat belt on?”
“Yes. Why?” she asked confused.
“Hang on,” he told her as he pushed the gas pedal to go faster.
The car behind them kept up with the pace and began to tail them even closer now.
“Yep! Definitely following us,” he said out loud. She wasn’t sure if he was talking to her or to himself. Just then the car flipped on its bright lights and rammed into the back of Misty’s car. She let out a scream and clutched the dashboard.
“Hold on!” Dylan yelled as he floored it. Dylan drove Misty’s car as fast as it would go down the dark country road but he couldn’t seem to shake off the other car. The car rammed into the back of them once more and they lurched forward.
“Oh my God, Dylan. What’s going on?” Misty asked through frightened gasps.
“I have no idea,” Dylan told her as he continued to try and out run the aggressive car behind them.
Misty looked out the windshield and saw a sign for a sharp turn up ahead. “Dylan, you better slow down there’s a bad turn up here,” she quickly informed him.
“I can’t,” he said.
“What do you mean you can’t? Slow down. We’re not going to make the turn going this fast.”
“I can’t, Misty. Your brakes are out!”