Texas Ranger Edwards was assigned to accompany and protect Dr. Marion Reeves, an acclaimed anthropologist and author while researching in the desert area. In 1879 such a person was rare, for that same person to be a female even more so. The petite, pretty woman confronting Edwards as he met his new assignment surprised him. Not wanting to become a babysitter for a spoiled miss, he tried to convince her that the desert was too dangerous for a woman even with the protection of a Ranger.
Marion was sure of her abilities and her knowledge and needs to accomplish her field work. The two rubbed along well together until confronted by a band of renegade Comanche, part of the same Comanche tribe that Edwards had a history with when they took him captive and then tortured him years before.
A small town in southeastern Texas in 1878 was an unusual place to find a matriarchal society, but these sister’s were running the town without breaking a sweat.
Josie Heinz is the twenty-four year old female sheriff of the little Texas town founded by her German forefathers. Along with her younger sister, Laurel Heinz, who is the Judge, Schoolmistress, Head of the School Board, Librarian and Mayor, they kept the town safe and the moral compass pointed in the right direction. But the ladies were getting older and men in town had always considered them off-limits due to their father being the town’s sheriff and the ladies’ independent nature in general.
Only new rancher Will ‘Woody’ Woodrow and displaced Texas Ranger Ben Crocker didn’t know that and they found their respective women very attractive and available for dalliance with a little persuasion.
Pinkerton Agent Emma Marsh sent on assignment to study Texas Ranger Henry Hawkins, found more than she bargained for. Her boss, Allan Pinkerton, wanted Hawk as a possible agent and wanted Emma to check the man out before they spoke together at the Chicago office.
The two dissimilar agents found themselves together on assignment so Pinkerton could see if the two could work together when they had to and they did, very well. Which only meant Pinkerton would continue to pair them even if it was getting a little uncomfortable for the two people in question as their attraction for one another grew.
How were they supposed to work as equals if Hawk insisted on taking the lead on everything to protect Emma when she was perfectly able to take care of herself - and him.
Texas Ranger Jason Tanner is sent to get Dr. Henry Manville for a case only to be faced with a Dr. Henrietta Manville, local veterinarian and sometimes medical examiner for the Texas Rangers. Although coroners had been around for centuries the study of forensic medicine in 1883 was in its infancy and several eastern states already had people on staff doing such jobs, but none of them was a women.
Henry was being called in to investigate several murders of hookers that had occurred in the southwest section of Texas and the Rangers wanted to know if they were connected since the first few deaths had not been suspicious. Having the occupation they did, the women’s deaths didn't raise any questions from local sheriffs.
Henry was a qualified medical doctor but after the loss of a young patient, couldn't bring herself to face another living patient. But the dead ones she found talked to her readily. After having studied the scientific field by going back to the eighteenth century writings, learning about poisons and reactions of the remains of the human body to temperature and climate, Henry had gotten a reputation for being able to find the cause of death accurately. She normally took a back seat to others, not wanting the notoriety that could come with this type of work. This time she was doing much more to find the killer.
Pulling the bright red bandana from his pocket, Ben wiped the sweat from his forehead before replacing his weathered ten-gallon hat. His hair remained matted to his head, sticking to his neck and the back of his ears with perspiration. He hated the Texas desert on days like this although he loved the beauty of it at any other time - especially after a sudden rain when the flowers bloomed overnight.
That wasn’t the case today. The buds hidden deep inside the plants, trying to keep cool and protected from the scorching heat. The only plants available for view were the various cacti with their poky spikes of inconsistent lengths and sharpness.
Bringing the binoculars back to his eyes, he slowly moved them across the horizon, stopping to stare at any shadow that was large enough to hide a body, either dead or alive. He had been doing the same thing for the past six days, days he can’t get back and he kicked at the dry sand turned into rocks hard as concrete.
He decided to get back to his horse left standing in the shade, what there was of it, cast by an ant mound now the sun was getting close to setting. He would set-up a quick camp, wake-up early in the morning while it was cooler and begin his search all over again. It was his job and no one else was going to do it for him, not unless he got himself snake-bit or fell into one of those cacti like a damn fool. And that wasn’t a Ranger’s way of dealing with frustration so he’d just have to maintain his sense of persistence and patience.
Texas Ranger Noah Blake was representing his troop at a local cotillion when he saw the most gorgeous woman he had ever seen and has to meet her before her family surrounds her with male protection that would block him out. But Bethany Parone is just as anxious to meet the tall Texan and makes sure her dance card has an opening for him. They meet, they dance and they fall in love within moments of seeing one another across the dance floor.
They marry in secret within days at the Catholic chapel in the old Indian grounds and a brief honeymoon occurs. That is until they both realize that in their hurry to wed, they had both forgotten the reality of life. Where were they to live, what was Bethany to do when Noah was sent on assignment, how were they to be a couple when Noah’s life was one nomadic trip meant for men only.
The young couple can't find the answers soon enough and Bethany returns to her uncle who raised her to mend her heart and put her life back together as they had once planned.
Now five years later, Bethany wants to marry a man who is headed for great political things; but not if married to a divorcée. Bethany must get an annulment from her first husband so that her life can continue on the path set by her uncle, and seconded by her. She returns to Texas and has to follow her still nomadic husband as he goes from assignment to assignment until they can get the proper papers signed in front of a judge.
Cassandra Worthington had just lived through the worst days of her life when Texas Ranger Tucker rescued her from the Comanchero taking her with other captives across the Mexican border to be sold as sex slaves. She had been abducted from a stage coach on her way to her job as surveyor with the Southern Pacific Railroad.
Cassandra had accepted years earlier that her life style and personal preference did not leave room for a husband and children, but she loved her job and the travel that went with it. She knew it was a trade off for the kind of life a normal woman of 1874 lived. The freedom to accept jobs or not, the freedom to live in the big cities while exploring the western territories and getting paid for doing so was more fulfilling.
Tucker had always wanted to be a Texas Ranger and had accepted the limitations it placed on his life. He would not have the freedom to go wherever he wanted, or the freedom to live anywhere besides where the Rangers sent him or the freedom to marry and raise a family. He felt the trade off was well worth the pittance of the pay he received, the unexciting monthly food rations and the leaky tent he called home. Tucker loved being a Ranger more than anything else and was happy with his choice. Meeting Cassandra Worthington wasn't going to change anything - except loving her did.
Creeping up behind the large conifer, Nathan peered toward the adobe building. Shadows thrown by the fire danced across the barren walls but he couldn’t see the captive women. Occasionally, a large frame would darken the window and he knew one of the abductors had passed between the fire and himself. The dark, cloud-covered night was working in his favor and he used it to move-in closer.
Motioning to the other three Rangers and two local lawmen, all of whom waved silently back to let him know they were in place and ready to charge on his signal, he readied himself for the attack. The cabin’s door opened then closed quickly as a tall man shoved a woman out with him. He lifted her skirt and began to undo his trousers with his one free hand, keeping the struggling woman pinned against the wall of the rough clay-brick building.
Nathan stood and rushed the cabin pointing for one of his men to take down the man otherwise occupied. The woman gave a short, surprised yelp, as the butt of a handgun knocked the man attacking her unconscious. There wasn’t time to do things gently. Besides, these men wouldn’t understand gentle. They had kidnapped a saloon full of women and one innocent young lady who was in the wrong place at the wrong time.
There were more shrieks and screams as he burst through the door and men scattered, taking refuge behind furniture and the women, if they could. One man, who had been on top of one of the young women, rolled her over to use as a shield.
Nathan cursed under his breath then shouted, “You’re surrounded by the Texas Rangers, give yourselves up. No one wants to die tonight.”
The man using the young woman as a shield snarled, “Say’s you.” Then shot at Nathan before a barrage of shots rang out around him.
Flipping the wooden table to its side, Nathan took shelter behind it. The posse shot back but only at men not cowering behind a woman. A blond-haired woman gathered several of the girls into one corner as they covered their heads as protection from the splintering wood flying around them. Some covered their ears with their hands to lessen the noise.
Three of the original five men in the cabin were lying badly wounded or dead on the floor leaving the man holding the younger woman in front of him. His smile was of a wolf that had escaped with a lamb, a very succulent lamb.ea
Who doesn't love a cowboy? And the Texas Rangers were the best of the best, ridin', shootin', ropin', and lovin' in the new state of Texas following the civil war. Meet some of these rugged men and the unusual women they fall in love with - even though neither of them expect it. Josie a rare female sheriff, Emily the professor and Beth the archeologist are three to find their reason for staying in Texas after an encounter with a Ranger.