A building off to Tansy's right caught her attention and caused a hitch in her heart. Elliot Construction and Lumberyard.
Beck Elliot, the groom behind door number one, the door she hadn't chosen.
Oh boy. Was she making another mistake? Should she have started over somewhere else?
Ding, ding, ding. The low-fuel indicator chimed, and the little red light blinked on. Shoot!
Tommy's Texaco loomed.
Relieved, she flipped on her turn signal, veered into the lot, and pulled up to the gas pump.
And there it sat. A big red truck with Elliot Construction on the side.
The door to the gas station opened, and Beck Elliot, looking hotter than any man had a right in dusty jeans, a faded T-shirt, and old work boots, stepped outside. He tore the wrapper off a candy bar and took a bite.
Then his intense, midnight-blue eyes met hers. The chill had her rubbing her arms even though the temperature read seventy-five in the shade.
As she got out, her gaze collided with Beck's again. His eyes radiated resentment and betrayed hopes. Hers? She figured they held remorse, hurt, and impossible-to-deny desire.
Beck nearly choked on the bite of chocolate. What the hell? He tossed the bar into the trash barrel outside the door.
Months ago, he'd heard rumblings that Tansy'd enrolled her daughter in the local preschool, but since no one had said anything else about it, he'd figured she'd changed her mind. That fancy SUV of hers was loaded to the roof, though, way more than she'd need for a quick visit.
His chest constricted, and he swore under his breath. Why would she return to Misty Bottoms? She looked like one of those emaciated French models in the magazines his mom read. A good strong wind off the coast would blow her from here to Atlanta.
The strong, carefree Tansy he'd known had disappeared. She'd become… He didn't know. Ethereal came to mind.
Not his business—and she'd be the first to tell him that.
“Hey, Beck,” Tommy said. “Got your truck filled for ya.”
“Thanks. I left the money on the counter. Later, pal.”
Without another word, without another glance toward the woman he'd once expected to marry, Beck hopped in his truck, turned the key, and pulled out of the gas station, reminding himself that Tansy Calhoun—no, make that Tansy Forbes—was history. Ancient history.
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