Curvy Girls: Claimed By The Cowboy (The BBW and the Billionaire Rancher)

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Curvy Girls: Claimed By The Cowboy

Ty Jackson was Abigail’s high school nemesis.  The popular quarterback mocked her full figure and her studious ways; hurt, she ran a humiliating picture of him in the school newspaper.  She can’t imagine anything more infuriating than the big, handsome jerk coming back from the big city and living on the ranch next door to her property…except being blackmailed into a fake marriage to help him save his family’s ranch.  But what are Ty’s true reasons for wanting to marry Abigail…and what are his secret plans for the ranch?

 

Copyright 2013 by Georgette St. Clair

This book is intended for readers 18 and older only.  It is a work of fiction.  All characters and locations in this book are products of the feverish imagination of the author, a tarnished Southern belle with a very dirty mind.

 

License Statement
This ebook is licensed for your personal enjoyment only. This ebook may not be re-sold or given away to other people. If you would like to share this book with another person, please purchase an additional copy for each reader.  Thank you for respecting the hard work of this author.

 

Chapter One

Some might call what Abigail Wintergreen did that day trespassing. Some might fling accusations like destruction of private property.

Abigail scoffed at such terms.  If she fixed the itty bitty area that she’d snipped in the Jackson’s barbed wire fence so she could ride her horse through it, then it hardly counted as “destruction”, and as for trespassing, well, the native Americans who’d roamed this wide Colorado land had declared that no man could own the earth that we trod on.

I’m siding with the Native Americans, she thought, shifting her weight from one knee to another.

She’d been waiting patiently for two hours. She’d come back to this spot every day for weeks. She wasn’t leaving without her prize…a picture of the black footed Plains ferret.

Many claimed that the shy, reclusive subspecies of ferret was extinct. 

She knew better. Her family’s property boarded the sprawling Jackson ranch, and three weeks ago, when she’d taken the family’s retriever out for a walk, she’d startled the ferret, which had dropped the field mouse in its jaws and streaked away from her, headed onto the Jackson’s ranch.

Since then she’d borrowed Molly, a quarterhorse, from her friend Cheyenne and ridden her onto the Jackson’s property every day until she found the meadow where the ferret had made its home.   She’d spotted the ferret several times, but never been able to get her camera set up fast enough.   All of her pictures captured was a blur of motion on a broad hayfield of Timothy grass and clover.

But she wasn’t giving up.  If she could produce proof that the ferret lived on the Jackson’s property, that would change everything.

She shifted her weight from one knee to another, attention momentarily distracted by the blue jewel tones of a flock of mountain bluebirds, like sapphires on the wing, soaring through the air.  Normally, she’d have swiveled her camera upwards, to capture their beauty outlined against the paler blue of the wide Colorado sky, but today, she had to be singleminded.

She’d brought the big guns. Her Nikon D4, set up on the tripod. Fixed 1000 millimeter lens. When that ferret poked his little head out of his den, she had him.

Aaaand…there he was.

She carefully aimed the Nikon D4, squinting into the viewfinder, focused…this was the chance of a lifetime, and there he was, head cocked in her direction, curiously.  Had he smelled her?  Did he know she was there?

No matter.  The picture was perfectly framed, the ferret was hers…

And he was gone, vanishing in a panic of pinwheeling legs and flashing tail, as the roar of a pickup truck sent birds and beasts scattering in all directions.

“God damn it!” Abigail pushed her finger down uselessly on the shutter release button, but she knew it was too late.

Molly had been standing nearby and grazing in the field. At the sound of the approaching truck she spooked, rearing back, hooves slashing the air, and then turned and hightailed it through the pine trees.

Abigail cursed under her breath. She knew that Molly wouldn’t stop until she’d reached her stable. That horse had a sense of direction like a homing pigeon.

Off in the distance, black clouds bunched in the sky. A few minutes ago they’d been a distant smudge on the horizon, but now they’d swept closer to the hayfields, startlingly fast, close enough that she could see the little yellow forks of lightning darting from them. Soon they’d be directly overhead, drenching the fields in one of the sudden, torrential thunderstorms that Colorado was so famous for. Maybe there’d even be a tornado.

She was deep into the Jackson ranch, too far to make it to shelter on foot before the storm hit.

Could the day possibly get any worse?

And who was out here on the far outskirts of the property, anyway? Certainly not a ranch hand come to look for stray cattle – it was mid summer, and the cows had already been driven up to mountain pastures to graze, so that the hayfields could ripen.

She stood, brushing dirt and grass from her knees, and swiveled to face the white Ford F150 that was bearing down on her.

A bandit? A criminal? Who was she facing? Her hand drifted to her backpack, but all she had was her camera equipment. She should have brought her pistol.

The F-150 screeched to a halt and the door swung open, and her stomach dropped to the bottom of her shoes when she saw who was climbing out.

Yes, indeed her day could get worse. Much worse.

She found herself wishing that she was dealing with a bandit.

 

Chapter Two

Ty Jackson had just come from the funeral of his estranged father, enduring a morning of polite, insincere condolences from people who hadn’t liked Boone Jackson any more than Ty had. 

And now, he was in no mood. No mood to face his brother again, with his verbal jabs and his simmering grudges.  No mood to deal with the bitter legacy of the Jackson ranch.  No mood for the emotions that churned through his gut ever since he’d landed in Crooked Creek.

The postcard from his mother in Europe had just served to sour his mood even further. She was on vacation with her latest boy toy, a 20 year old art student. No, she couldn’t be bothered to come back for the funeral.

And now the ranch manager had called to tell him that a ranch hand who’d been out mending fences had spotted a trespasser on the eastern corner of the Jackson property; it didn’t take the vultures long to descend, did it?

Whoever was rising up from the tall grasses by the edge of the meadow was going to get more than an earful.  One wrong look,  one wrong word, and they were going to find themselves on the wrong end of his clenched fist.

Ty slammed the pickup truck door behind him and strode forward, face like thunder, drew a deep breath…and then he saw her, and his breath came out in a startled hiss.

Abigail Wintergreen. His secret high school crush and his bitter nemesis.  She stood up, and he found his gaze sweeping over her from head to toe, and liking what he saw.  She was still full figured, with those womanly hips and proud, round breasts which had tormented his teenaged wet dreams. She wore a camouflage button down shirt and green camo pants. She was dressed as if she were hunting, but the Abigail that he remembered didn’t hunt.

Her glossy chocolate colored hair, glinting with auburn, was pulled back in a ponytail, and her skin was still that delicious creamy complexion that gave away her English heritage. Roses bloomed on her cheeks, and her blue eyes snapped with fury.

“You did that on purpose!” she bit out, fists clenched, as she advanced on him.

His eyes widened in astonishment. “I beg your pardon? I did what on purpose? Drove on my own property?”

She speared him with a glare, and he could see her chest rising and falling with her quickened breath, straining the buttons of her camo shirt. The buttons rose and fell with each angry breath she took. He swallowed hard and forced himself to look her square in the eye, but he couldn’t ignore the flush of heat that washed over him.

Damn. After eight years, she still had the same effect that she’d had in high school, when she’d scared him so much that he’d hidden his attraction behind sarcastic quips and childish name-calling.

He could feel the tightening in the groin as his cock stood to attention at the sight of her. Instant erection, every time.

“You scared off the black footed plains ferret! I had him! I finally had him! And you chased off the evidence!”

He looked at her with narrowed eyes. “Black footed plains ferret. They haven’t been spotted around here since the 70s. Rumor has it that they’re extinct.”

“As if I didn’t know that.  I’ve seen them on your property for weeks, and if I had the evidence that they were there, you wouldn’t be able to plow over the land and destroy their habitat. Which is why you chased him off.”

“Seriously, Abigail? Is that what you think? How exactly did I know that you’d be out here trespassing on my family’s land? And how did I know that you were out here stalking a probably extinct beast which exists only in your own mind?”

“I saw it,” Abigail said stubbornly, hands on her hips.  Ty stared at her and tried not to picture himself grabbing those hips and pulling her close to him.

Several moments passed, and then she said grudgingly, “Okay, you probably didn’t do it on purpose. You don’t have to make any effort to be a jerk; it just comes naturally.”

“Why, thank you kindly, Abigail.” Instead of getting angry, an amused smile spread across his face.

She scowled at Ty, struggling not to openly stare. He was every bit as handsome as he’d been back in high school.  Black curly hair, chocolate brown eyes, full lips, cheekbones which hinted at Sioux ancestry, and those broad shoulders and muscular arms which came from long days on the ranch.

Although since he’d left town right after high school and headed for New York City, those muscles probably came from lifting weights these days.

Enough.   Ty Jackson was the enemy. He was planning on destroying the ranch, and Crooked Creek along with it. And he’d been a dick to her for four years straight in high school. 

“I believe the name you prefer for me is Fatigail.”

She was pleased to see him wince. That had been his high school nickname for her, him and his band of jock friends, when they’d condescended to notice her at all.

“I’m sorry about that,” he said, looking sincerely regretful. “I was young and dumb.  Teasing you was like pulling a little girl’s pigtails. I didn’t realize what a jerk I was being.”

Dark thoughts drifted through her mind, of the dull pain she’d felt when his friends taunted her, of how she never ate in the cafeteria so they didn’t have the opportunity to tease her, of the times she’d seen him kissing his girlfriend-of-the-week, and shamefully imagined his full lips brushing against her own mouth instead.

She shrugged.  “No big deal. It’s water under the bridge,” she said, not meaning it.

He paused, looking at her with an expression that she couldn’t read. Curiousity? Interest?

“So, is there anything that you maybe want to apologize for?” he said finally.

She muffled a snicker, quickly covering her mouth with her hand.

She’d never been content to play the victim, not even when she was an insecure teenager being mocked by her secret crush in high school.  On numerous occasions, she’d gotten back at Ty and his older half-brother Clayton.

The best had been the picture she’d snared of Ty during one of the rare times he dropped the ball at a football game, and run in the high school newspaper. He’d had a comical look of surprise and dismay on his face, and the picture had been copied, pasted up all over school, with sarcastic word balloons scribbled on it…

She looked to see him waiting expectantly.

“Nope,” she said firmly. She thought she saw the briefest flash of disappointment in his eyes. 

“Fine by me,” he said. “And by the way, in case I haven’t mentioned it, you’re trespassing. On my family’s property.”

She shrugged. “Call the sheriff, then,” she said.

“And your horse seems to have run off.”

Well, didn’t he have a talent for stating the obvious.

“It’s a beautiful day for a walk. I could use the exercise,” she said, and shot him a look, daring him to make a wisecrack at her expense, but he just shook his head at her.

“Walking five miles back through the woods by yourself? I don’t think so. Climb in the truck.”

Her treacherous heart leaped in her chest at the thought of being so close to Ty, but she quickly shook her head. “I grew up around here, remember? I’m a mountain girl. I’ll be fine.”  There was no way she was climbing into a truck with Ty. Just seeing him again was stirring all kinds of unwelcome memories and disturbing feelings.  The swell of those biceps, the curve of that upper lip…

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