By: Brenda Jackson

Her heart ached when she thought about the man who had proved that fact to her.

Canyon Westmoreland.

She’d fallen in love with him the first day she’d laid eyes on him, but that love ended when she discovered he’d been unfaithful to her. She could tolerate a lot of things, but the one thing she wouldn’t tolerate was infidelity. Trust was paramount and a loss of it meant an end to everything…even a relationship that had held so much promise. Or she’d thought it’d had promise. Obviously she had been wrong.

Now, after three years, she was back in Denver. The scandal that had hit the law firm where she’d worked in Austin, and the firm’s eventual shutdown by the Texas Bar and the justice department, had made leaving a necessity. She’d known she would miss her mom, and that she was taking a chance with her decision to return to Denver, but Spivey and Whitlock was the one law office where she wouldn’t have to start at the bottom. She needed the money because she had more than herself to think about these days. However, to assure that she didn’t run into Canyon, other than for business, she’d deliberately moved clear on the other side of town from Westmoreland Country.

She knew the story of how Canyon’s parents, aunt and uncle had died in a plane crash, leaving fifteen orphans. Staying together hadn’t been easy, especially since several of the siblings and cousins had been under the age of sixteen. But together, the Westmoreland family had weathered hard times and was now enjoying the good times thanks to the success of the family’s land management firm, Blue Ridge.

Canyon’s parents had had seven sons: Dillon, Micah, Jason, Riley, Canyon, Stern and Brisbane. His aunt and uncle had had eight children: five boys—Ramsey, Zane, Derringer and the twins Aiden and Adrian; and three girls—Megan, Gemma and Bailey. From what Keisha knew, the majority of the Westmorelands were now college educated and successful in their own right, either working for the family firm or in their chosen profession. She’d met most of them when she had attended the annual Westmoreland Ball while she was dating Canyon. The ball was a huge event in the city and benefited a number of charities.

Her thoughts shifted back to one Westmoreland in particular. Canyon.

The Grand Canyon, as she would sometimes call him during more intimate moments.

The memories of those times hurt the most. She had loved him and had believed he loved her. She had opened her heart, and her home, to him. He had moved in with her after they’d dated for six months. She’d assumed their relationship was moving in the right direction. He had proved her wrong.

The blaring of a horn prompted her to glance in her rearview mirror. What in the world? she asked herself, frowning.

The drivers of the two cars behind her were engaging in some kind of road rage. It appeared that the driver of a burgundy car was trying to run the driver of a black sedan off the road.

Deciding the last thing she needed was to get involved in what was going on with those two drivers, she increased her speed and drove on ahead, leaving behind what she perceived as two hotheads vying to be king of the road.

Keisha checked the clock on the dashboard. She was eager to reach her destination and the person waiting for her there.

* * *

Canyon watched the black sedan speed off. Although he’d gotten pretty close to the car, the tinted windows had prevented him from determining if the driver had been a man or a woman, but he was leaning more toward a man.

He returned his attention to the road in time to see Keisha turn the corner a couple of blocks ahead. He continued to keep his distance, not wanting her to know she was being followed. It had been a long time since he’d been in this section of Denver, but because of the nature of his business, he knew about all the new development in the area. Several housing communities had been constructed, along with a number of shopping places and restaurants.

He watched Keisha put on her car’s right blinker to turn into what he at first thought was a doctor’s complex. Upon getting a better view of the huge sign out front, he saw it was Mary’s Little Lamb Day Care. He frowned. Why would she be stopping at a day care? Maybe she was doing one of her coworkers a favor by picking up their child, or she could have volunteered to babysit tonight for someone.