Cade waited until she brought her horse to them before he said anything. He reached up with his right hand and tipped the brim of his hat up with his index finger, so he could see her a little better. He could not help but see the flush of her cheeks at being caught watching him. "Can I help you with something Miss Matthews?" He drawled.
"Um, er, yes. I just wanted to see how bad the damage was and how far the repairs had come." Faith said, unable to tear her eyes from the firm muscles of his chest. All she could think was, perfection, even with the scars that dotted his body. She had completely forgotten about the other two men that were standing not four feet away from her.
Cade bit down for a moment, taking a deep calming breath. Anger was a useless emotion that only got in the way and clouded your thoughts. "As you can see, we are almost finished here. Where's Yancey?" He asked as he nodded his head in the direction she'd just come from.
"Um, I'm not sure actually." Faith shifted uncomfortably in her saddle. Her unease caused Clover to throw her head and side step. "Easy girl." She said softly as she patted the horse's neck. "I didn't see him when I went out to the barn, and I didn't see what it would hurt to come out here. It is the middle of the day you know. Nothing has ever happened in the middle of the day." She might have been just a little snippy with her last few comments, Faith thought to herself. "Now that I've seen how everything is coming, I'll just go on back to the house and finish up a few things before dinner."
Jack and John turned to look at each other. Neither one of them had ever seen her snap at anyone but her brother, and even then it had been warranted. They kept their mouths shut and tried to continue working.
"I'll come with you."
"No, you stay here, I'll be fine." Faith said in clipped tones. The last thing she wanted to do was spend half an hour alone with this man. He didn't even bother to put his shirt on, how uncouth! They might be in the west but she was still a lady!
"I told you that I don't want you running around by yourself. You should have one of us with you at all times." Cade took another deep breath. He was getting really close to being angry, and that was just not something he did. What was it about this woman that irritated him so much?
"Then John or Jack can go back with me, if I have to have a babysitter." Faith was losing the tenuous grip she had on her temper. Usually she had the patience of Job, but there was something about this man that got under her skin and rubbed her the wrong way.
"No, I said I'll go with you." In his mind, the conversation was over, he turned to get his shirt and horse. So he didn't see the murderous look his boss gave him, but he did feel her eyes boring into his back for the second time in less than ten minutes. A slight smile crossed his face for a split second before he mounted his horse and turned to follow his boss, admiring the way her britches pulled tightly over her shapely backside and thighs.
He enjoyed the few minutes it took to get to catch up to her, but as soon as he did, he was all business. "Why did you come out here by yourself?"
"I thought we'd already discussed this." Faith said without even turning her head to look at Cade.
He on the other hand turned to look at her. She was a beautiful woman. Today she was wearing a white linen shirt with her buckskins and boots. Tendrils of chestnut hair swirled around her face and the back of her neck after escaping from the Stetson hat she was wearing. The tip of her nose turned up ever so slightly. Cades eyes traveled past her full lips to her stubborn chin down to the slender column of her throat. He whipped his head around and faced the front again. It wasn't like him to get distracted, ever. People die when they get distracted, he knew he'd never live to be an old man, but he wasn't ready to go just yet.
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Keeping Faith (Book 3 in the Red Valley Series)Historical Fiction
This is book 3 in the Red Valley Series but like the other ones, it can be read by itself. Faith Matthews is a headstrong, independent woman determined to make it on her on in a mans world. She left Charleston to escape the constraints of society...