It took only one impusive moment on an empty two-lane highway to cost her everything.
A man's responsible for his own prosperity—especially if he's Cooper Burnett, the most determined cowboy in the West. No one knows what he sacrificed to claim a piece of Beartooth, Montana, for himself and his beautiful fiancée, Livie. No one knows what he's willing to do for love…until a stranger's twisted vendetta threatens the happy ending they should've had long ago.
One fateful mistake isn't the only secret Livie Hamilton is keeping from her fiancé. Victimized during a treacherous blizzard by a man she thought she could trust, she's pregnant…but unsure who the father is. With an unknown blackmailer threatening to expose her, she must confess to Cooper and trust he'll still protect her. But when the truth falls into place, she may lose the only man she's ever loved—or worse.
Life changed in an instant. Olivia Hamilton knew that only too well. One minute her mother had been alive. The next gone. Tonight, one minute Montana’s night sky had been clear, the next she found herself in the middle of nowhere in a blizzard – fighting to stay on the two-lane highway. Livie had driven in her fair share of winter storms, but this one was getting worse by the moment. She couldn’t see more than a few yards ahead of her through the driving snow. Add to that, she didn’t know the road or even exactly where she was. All she knew for sure was that she was stopping at the next small Montana town and getting a motel for the night. She’d call home so her family didn’t worry. As for calling Cooper Barnett… Just the thought of her fiancé made her grit her teeth. If the man wasn’t so blamed stubborn they would have been married by now and she wouldn’t have taken off after their latest fight and ended up on this road alone in the middle of Montana with the temperature dropping and— The highway disappeared so quickly that she didn’t have time to react. Through the windshield all she saw was blowing snow as the SUV suddenly jerked to the right. The tires caught in the deep snow along the edge of the highway. In a heartbeat, the SUV plunged into the ditch. Snow washed over the hood and windshield. Her head slammed into the side window an instant before the airbag exploded in her face. Then everything stopped. Livie sat for a moment, too stunned to move. She was still gripping the steering wheel, her knuckles white. It had all happened so quickly that she hadn’t had time to panic. Now though, she began to shake, tears burning her eyes as she realized the desperate situation she’d put herself in. She could feel freezing cold air coming in around the cracks in the door. Cooper had begged her not to travel because the weatherman was calling for a winter storm. But she’d been too angry with him to listen. All these had thought about was distancing herself from him by going to her friend’s in Great Falls. Anyway, the weather had been fine so she’d thought she could beat the storm. That was why she’d taken the shortcut. The storm had blown in out of nowhere. One moment it was just a few snowflakes. The next, she couldn’t see the highway. She’d thought about turning around, but it was as bad behind her as it was ahead so she’d kept going. For the past twenty miles or so, she hadn’t even seen another car on the highway. For all she knew the road had now closed to all but emergency traffic. Her situation was dire enough without carbon monoxide poisoning from the engine, she realized with a start, and quickly killed the engine. With the SUVs tailpipe would be deep in the snow, it wouldn’t take long to gas herself. A deathly silence fell over the car as her considered what to do. The car was buried in snow in the ditch miles from anywhere. She’d always been told to stay with her vehicle, but she could feel the temperature dropping and she’d foolish left in such a hurry from home that she hadn’t taken her usual precautions. She’d brought no sleeping bag or water or anything to eat and right now she had no idea how long it would be before anyone found her. She felt something run down the side of her face. In the lights from the dashboard she glanced in her rearview mirror and saw that she was bleeding from a cut over her left eye where she’d smacked her head on the side window. But it was what else she saw in the mirror that sent her pulse hammering. A single set of headlights appeared in a blur out of the storm. She tried to open her door. If she could get out and flag the person down… Her door wouldn’t open because of the snow packed around it. Near panic, knowing that the driver of this car might be her only chance at survival tonight, she shoved as hard as she could. But the door wouldn’t budge. The lights were growing closer. What if the driver didn’t see her? What if— The car slowed, the headlights splashing over her. The vehicle’s flashers came on as the driver pulled to the edge of the highway directly behind the spot where she’d gone off. She saw a man climb out of a large SUV and began to cry with relief. Life could change in an instant, she thought again as she watched the man heading toward her through the storm. He appeared to be large, nice looking, wearing a cowboy hat and dressed in formal western attire as if he’d been to a party somewhere. Olivia “Livie” Hamilton had no reason not to believe the man had stopped to save her.
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