Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Travis's Appeal by Marie Ferrarella

Kate’s Boys #4
Travis is a lawyer. Shawn and Shana O'Reilly come to him to get some legal work done. Travis is taken by Shana, who is a lovely young woman. Shawn, her father, wants to leave everything to her in a trust. His secret is that his daughter, Susan, is really Shana's mother. She had Shana when she was 16. Shawn and his wife adopted Shana.
Travis asks Shana to meet his family on the first date. She is surprised by this. They continue to see each other and then Shawn dies and Shana's life falls apart.
Will she forgive Travis for keeping the secret from her?

This was an okay story. I wish there would have been a bit more to the story. I felt bad for the position that Travis was in.

From the author:
He never mixed business with pleasure. But when fresh-faced Shana O'Reilly appeared at his office door, she threw no-nonsense attorney Travis Marlowe's carefully ordered world into a tailspin. For the first time ever, he couldn't stop thinking about a client—and not just because of her father's mysterious request to adjust his will.
Shana wasn't looking for romance—she had her hands full with her family and her business. But she couldn't shut off the electric current humming between her and—of all people—the new family attorney.
Talk about finding love where you least expect it....

It was another typical day in paradise.

While the carefully made-up newscasters talked about "storm watches" and blizzards hitting every state both east and north of New Mexico, here, in Bedford, happily nestled in the middle of Southern California, the sun was seductively caressing its citizens with warm, loving fingers.

Travis Marlowe would have preferred rain. He wished for a gloomy, rainy day where the sun absented itself and illumination came from artificial sources rather than the incredibly bright orb in the sky.

Rain and gloom would have far better suited his current mood. Moreover, the lack of light would have soothed his present condition. He had no idea why his head hadn't killed him yet.

It was true what they said. No good deed went unpunished.

All right, it wasn't exactly a good deed. It was part of his job. Kind of. While the firm's bylaws didn't state that burning the midnight oil was part of the job, he still felt it was required—even if he was the only one doing the requiring.

Angry little devils with sledgehammers pounded along the perimeter of his temples.

That's what he got for staying up most of the night, working out the kinks in Thomas Fielder's revocable living trust and then deciding to sack out on the sofa in his office rather than driving home at almost five in the morning.

The firm, leather sofa, while perfectly fine for sitting, was definitely not the last word in comfort for sleeping. Not only his head, but his neck ached, thanks to the rather strange position he'd woken up in this morning. His neck felt not unlike a pipe cleaner permanently bent out of shape.

To add insult to injury, every time he turned his head, horrible pains shot out of nowhere, piercing the base of his neck and making Travis wish that he'd died sometime in the early morning.

But here it was, a brand new sunny day and he had to face it. And look relatively happy about it.

Taking the change of shirt and underwear he kept in the bottom drawer for just such an emergency, Travis hoped that a quick shower in the executive bathroom would help set him back on the right track.

"Go home," his father, one of the senior partners for the family law firm where he worked, said by way of a greeting. A quick assessment had Bryan adding, "You really look like hell."

Bryan Marlowe made no secret of the fact that he was quite happy that at least one of his four sons had followed him into law. Not a man to brag, it was still very obvious that he was proud of his son. Travis thought, if his father was telling him to go home, he must look like death warmed over—or a reasonable facsimile thereof.

"I'll look better after a quick shower," Travis promised. He was about to nod at the clothing in his arms, but stopped himself—and prevented another onslaught of pain—just in time.

Bryan snorted as his eyes traveled the length of his son. "That will be one hell of a rejuvenating shower." Pausing, Bryan frowned. "Why didn't you go home last night like everyone else?" he asked.

Travis shrugged, his broad shoulders moving beneath a light blue dress shirt in desperate need of an iron. "You know how it is. You keep telling yourself ‘Oh, just one more thing'… and then, suddenly, it's morning. Or close to it."

Somewhere on the floor honeycombed with suites, one of the attorneys slammed a door. The sound reverberated throughout the hall. Travis winced as the sound ground its heel into his head.

"Headache?" Bryan guessed.

There was no point in lying. "Yeah. A doozy."

The answer just reinforced Bryan's initial reaction. "Like I said, go home, Travis. Take a personal day and take that shower in your own bathroom."

Travis had no desire to go home, where time hung too heavily on his hands. "I'm fine, really. Besides, never know when I might need one of those personal days. Better to save them."

Bryan frowned. He had a case he wanted to review before his early morning appointment arrived, but as his wife Kate had taught him, nothing was more important than family. And right now, that meant Travis.

"I wish to God you needed to take one of those personal days. You know, Travis, when you told me that you wanted to go into family law, I don't think there was a prouder father under the sun. I mean, I love all of you boys—and Kelsey," Bryan tossed in his daughter's name. Because she was the last born, and a girl, he had a tendency to place her in a category all her own, something Kelsey bristled at when he did. "And I'm proud of each of you, but I'd be lying if I didn't say I was a little disappointed when Mike, Trevor and Trent didn't follow me into the field. I always envisioned all five of us having our own company."

The corners of Travis's mouth curved. "Marlowe and Sons?"

"Something like that," Bryan freely admitted. "Still, one is better than none and your brothers all have done very well in their chosen fields."

Read more here.

ebook, 227 pages 
Published May 15th 2013 by Silhouette Desire (first published January 1st 2009)

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