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The Cowboy: Montana Men, Book 2

By: Vanessa Vale
Published By: Blushing Press
Copyright: �2015 by Blushing Books� and Vanessa Vale
12 Chapters / 35,479 Words
Heat Level:
4.5 Out Of 5 (4.5 on 26)   |  Write a review
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For Emily Winston, leaving her old life as her aunt's ward to become a male order bride in Montana constitutes a much-needed fresh start. But among the baggage she's hauling on her way to meet her new husband is a dark secret. The aunt who raised Emily also ran a brothel, and the young woman's sexual knowledge and exploration at her own hands has left her something other than a typical virgin.

Wyatt Blake is a successful rancher in need of a wife, but his desire for someone other than the prim, obedient women of his territory has led him to select a made-to-order bride. Emily is everything he could ask for in bed, but when her secrets start to unravel, the handsome dominant employs the use of hard spankings to extract the truth of Emily's past. Will her guilt and shame mar a budding relationship further complicated by Emily's willfulness and lack of domestic skills? Or will Wyatt Blake's firm hand and sexual domination force Emily to accept her place at the side of a man who knows exactly what he wants?

Author Vanessa Vale is the undisputed Queen of the Erotic Western, and her second book in the Men of Montana series is a barn-burning love story sure to have you fanning yourself in delight.

Chapter One

Emily

The sway of the coach should have lulled me to sleep, especially with the heat of the day making the small space stifling. The flaps on two of the windows were open to fresh air, but the continuous stirring of dust from the large wheels had us considering the heat the lesser of two evils. Caroline, my remaining travel companion, was asleep, her head tilted back as she leaned into the corner, her small mouth open. The never-ending boredom had my mind restless. I was too nervous to rest, my hands pressed tightly together in my lap, as if I could hold myself down. I wanted to jump out of the stage and run in the opposite direction, but there was nothing but endless prairie for miles and miles around. The Montana Territory was not a place to roam alone, without a weapon, food or any kind of means of survival. The question was, when I met my husband at the next stop, would he be worse?

At Mrs. Bidwell's offer, I'd agreed to be a mail order bride, instead of just surviving off the good graces of others. I'd been left at the back door of my aunt's brothel one morning at the age of thirteen by my mother. I never knew I had an aunt, divorced from the family as she was by her profession. My parents had been poor and with seven children, not enough of anything to go around. My father, a cruel and abusive man, decided I could provide for the family since I'd developed womanly curves at a very early age. He dragged me the ten blocks to his sister, since the purpose for the visit suited him and offered him financial gain. He offered me to her, for money, and threatened to take me elsewhere if she declined, telling her I was quite the commodity.

I was young, but I remembered the encounter quite vividly, for it was the moment when my life changed. Aunt Trina was much kinder than my father and paid him for me without question, for the sole reason of making him go away. When I was settled at the kitchen table with the first real breakfast of my short life, Aunt Trina had told me that I would need to learn my letters and numbers in order to be a proper lady someday. For the first time, I felt safe.

Six years later, I was still at the brothel, with Aunt Trina watching me like a hawk. I was kept hidden as best as possible, but men began asking after the girl and I knew to be careful. I was wary, but became restless, ready to find a life of my own. When Mrs. Bidwell - a longtime friend of Aunt Trina's who I'd known for many a year - approached me with the prospect of my becoming a mail order bride, both Aunt Trina and I both agreed this would be the life I'd been waiting for.

The coach hit a deep rut and I was pulled from my thoughts. I missed Aunt Trina; she was more a mother to me than my real one, and I owed her my life. What would have happened to me if I'd stayed with my parents was unknown, or if my father had sold me to another madam? I was certain it would not have been good. But what of my husband? Would he be like my father - cruel and tied more more to the bottle than his family? Would he be old? Most importantly, what would he do when he discovered the truth about me? Surely there wasn't a brothel out on the open prairie, so would he be so disappointed in his new bride as to force me out to survive on my own?

"Lewistown!" The driver's voice was loud, even over the horses' hooves and the rattle of the coach.

I took a deep breath and swallowed down my nerves. People spoke of getting butterflies in their stomachs when apprehensive, but this sensation of panic was more like a carpenter's vise about my chest. My heart beat frantically, each pounding thud loud in my ears. My breath was ragged, and the heat had become overwhelming.

As Caroline stirred in her corner, I tossed the flaps up on my side of the stage, leaning out to gulp in the cooler air, the dust all but forgotten.

The town was bigger than August Point where we'd left Eleanor two hours earlier, yet nothing but a blot on a green landscape in comparison to Minneapolis. The air was fresh, the colors verdant and bright.

"I'm sorry, Emily, I fell asleep on you," Caroline replied. Her voice was as soft and dainty as she was. Her hair was a soft pale yellow, her dress a pretty blue that accentuated the color in her eyes. Her hair was perfect; not a pin or curl was out of place, even after hours in the stage. She didn't even look overheated. How she could look so...perfect while I felt like I was coming apart, like a dress at the seams when too small? One look in the stage and my husband would want Caroline instead of me. Hands down, she was more beautiful, more poised, more...everything.

And yet, I was the one to whom Wyatt Blake was married. Even though he hadn't met me and knew nothing about me, I was his. I thought of this as the stage came to a jolting stop and a man approached and opened the door.

Lifting a hand to my hair, I tried to smooth back my thick locks, but it was of no use. Hair clung to my brow and my nape in a most unladylike fashion. The curls were rioting and out of control, as usual.

"Miss Winston?"

The sun was directly at the man's back allowing Caroline and I to only see him in silhouette. His shape was of a behemoth. He was tall, his body filling most of the doorway. Wide shoulders would require him to turn sideways to enter.

"Yes," I replied, finally finding my voice.

This was my husband and yet I couldn't see him well enough to discern his face. What I could see was his hand that reached in, big and work worn. He stood silently waiting for me to take it. I glanced at Caroline, who nodded her head, a small smile about her lips.

Ignoring my pounding heart, I placed my hand in his. The size difference was immediately apparent when he closed his fingers, so large in comparison to mine. His skin was warm. Rough callouses were across his palm, yet his hold was gentle. He stepped back and helped me down from the stage where I was able to see him for the first time.

Even with the sun shining, the air was cooler than in the stage. A slight breeze blew through my hair. He raised his hand and brushed my hair back from my face. Tilting my head back, I looked at Mr. Wyatt Blake for the first time.

His hair was as dark as my own, yet straighter than my curly hair, and it fell long over his forehead. He had a strong brow, long nose, and a wide jaw. His eyes were a soft hazel, similar in color to his shirt. If he were a woman, I'd assume he'd chosen the color to enhance this feature, but Mr. Blake did not seem one to consider such frivolous notions. My eyes were drawn to his mouth as the corner tipped up in a knowing smile, well aware he was being assessed.

I blushed hotly at being caught, but there was nothing to be done about it. I'd been waiting for this moment for over six weeks, when I first agreed I would be matched with a man in the Montana Territory.

"You are Emily Winston?" His voice was deep and raspy, yet kind. "I want to make sure the proper woman has disembarked."

I could only nod, yet when he smiled, showing off straight white teeth and little creases that formed at the corners of his eyes, I let some of my doubts slip away and offered a soft smile in return.

Caroline leaned out the doorway and watched us curiously. It had been easier watching Eleanor leave us at the previous stop, knowing that I wasn't the one meeting my destiny. But now, it was my turn and Caroline once again felt the reprieve.

Mr. McCallister dropped my satchel unceremoniously at my feet and headed with a grunt of farewell toward the front of the stage, climbing up to sit in his perch high on top.

"Don't think of heading out with this young lady hanging out as she is," Mr. Blake called out to the man as he rubbed his fingertips over the brim of the hat he held. He pinned me with his gaze.

Awareness of what happened the last time had Caroline ducking back into the empty space; the man had pulled away with the door barely latched as she called out her goodbyes. I offered a farewell of my own and Mr. Blake raised his hand ushering the driver to proceed. Once the sounds of pounding of hooves and rattling wood left us in their wake, we were quite alone. I looked up at Mr. Blake through my lashes, catching him regarding me closely.

"Well, Emily, I hope you are as pleased with your new husband as much as I am with my wife."

I turned to face him fully. "I've only said one word to you, so I am unsure of how you can make such a quick opinion."

His dark brow rose in surprise, but his smile remained. "Well, I'll have you know, 'yes' was the one word I longed to hear from your lips." He leaned in close to whisper in my ear, even though there was no one about. "Especially if it is said breathlessly and with an accompanying sigh of pleasure."

At his forward talk, I stepped back, yet was met with a smile this time that was much more playful, and a promise of his intentions. I couldn't hold him off forever; what new husband would stand for it? But delaying long enough to at least have a decent meal in my belly would help. Once he discovered the truth, I didn't want to be left to fend for myself on an empty stomach.

He cleared his throat, filling the silence between us. "My buckboard is nearby and the ride to the ranch is an hour. Are you prepared for another journey?"

He looked at me with such concern that I felt poorly for even considering he would abandon me for the secrets I carried, but I had to be realistic. Perhaps being a distance from town would be to my advantage. "Yes, of course," I replied.

He picked up my satchel, then, with one hand at my elbow, led me to his buckboard. After putting my bag in the back with coils of barbed wire, he helped me up. Going around, he joined me, the seat dipping beneath his heavy weight. Clucking his tongue to the horse, he took us out of town.

There was one main thoroughfare with several offshoots and buildings here were made of wood just as in August Point, only there were more of them. It was later in the afternoon, but people were going about their day. Mr. Blake tipped his hat on occasion to people we passed, and I asked him about them, the town, his ranch. In my nervousness, and perhaps with a dollop of sheer curiosity, I maintained a healthy stream of chatter.

"Inquisitive, aren't you?" he replied humorously, and answered my questions one at a time.

It wasn't until the town was well behind us that Mr. Blake pulled on the reins and stopped the wagon, the horse snorting and blowing at the delay. I looked over at him in question and opened my mouth to speak, but he silenced me with a kiss. Not a simple peck, but an assault on my senses. It was my first kiss and it was nothing as I'd imagined. I expected cold lips pressing against mine, a mere brushing and then gone. Mr. Blake, it seemed, was not a man to do things in half measure. At first, yes, his lips brushed over mine, but they were warm and gentle, but only briefly. His tongue plunged into my mouth at my surprised gasp and I tasted him, minty, as if he'd eaten a peppermint candy from the mercantile, with a hint of something else. Something manly and dark that promised my every carnal desire would be met.

I didn't know how long we kissed, but when he pulled back, my fingers - to my surprise - were tangled in his silky hair at his nape. I moaned low in my throat at his retreat, which had me blushing. Or perhaps it was the carnality of it that did that. The kiss had bumped his hat askew and he righted it.

"Now I know how to quiet you," he replied, his voice rough.

My blood was heated, moving thickly through my veins. My nipples had tightened beneath my corset; even the softest of fabrics was abrasive against the now tender tips. I had not known them to respond in such a fashion before. How strange, yet tantalizing. And further down, between my legs, I was wet. I knew what happened to a woman when aroused. I'd lived in a brothel for six years, but� this was the first time I'd experienced any of the activities I'd heard about, and the neediness that accompanied it.

My own fingers in the dark - or playing with items that had been delivered for the girls yet I'd snuck away for my own use � had never made me feel this way. With a man, with Wyatt, it was so much more intense, so much more....more. It didn't matter, however. If I lived with whores and tried some of the tools of the trade and found pleasure in them, there was no question I was one. But neither was I a typical virgin.

"I've been wanting to do that for weeks, even before I knew who you were. I've longed to be able to kiss my wife, looked forward to taking liberties with her--I still am, for all that--when I didn't even know your name."

The flush of pleasure at his words had me glowing brightly, as if a candle lit me from the inside. I clenched my thighs together in certain anticipation and to ease the ache. "You received word, obviously, of my arrival," I stated, my breathing uneven. He wouldn't have been waiting for the stage if he had not anticipated me.

"I did. Just the expected date of the stage and your name."

"Mrs. Bidwell assured me that you were the perfect choice for me," I confided, shifting some of the weight of becoming his bride onto the decisions of another.

He grinned rakishly, no doubt using that as a weapon against a lady's defenses to take liberties. It was most assuredly working on me. His handsomeness was overwhelming really. How had he remained unmarried for so long? And why?

"And do you agree with her?" he asked.

I licked my lips. Mr. Blake's eyes dropped to my mouth as I did so, his eyes widening briefly. "I...I don't even know you."

Turning forward, he flicked the reins and we were moving once again. "Let's remedy that. Once we get to the ranch, we'll get to know each other very well."

Rhonda on 10/21/2015 09:18pm
A Western with a sexy twist. Emily grew up in a bordello but somehow remained untouched by any man. Wyatt is a Montana man anxious for a woman, a wife who will meet his needs in bed for a lifetime. It made perfect sense to him to leave the matchmaking up to a madam he knew. While the couple life starts out a little rocky, Emily's sore "ass" is proof Wyatt has very specific expectations and persuasive ways to keep his new young bride in check. I really enjoyed this story. The author made the instant attraction between the newly married couple very believable, you could feel the smoldering hot connection. The scenes with the wooden sex toys were a sexy twist. I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
Rhonda on 10/21/2015 09:18pm
" A Western with a sexy twist. Emily grew up in a bordello but somehow remained untouched by any man. Wyatt is a Montana man anxious for a woman, a wife who will meet his needs in bed for a lifetime. It made perfect sense to him to leave the matchmaking up to a madam he knew. While the couple life starts out a little rocky, Emily's sore ""ass"" is proof Wyatt has very specific expectations and persuasive ways to keep his new young bride in check. I really enjoyed this story. The author made the instant attraction between the newly married couple very believable, you could feel the smoldering hot connection. The scenes with the wooden sex toys were a sexy twist. I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review."
gail on 09/01/2015 03:11pm
bit too tame doe me,,, like more than romance,,,
gail on 09/01/2015 03:11pm
bit too tame doe me,,, like more than romance,,,
JANE A on 07/16/2015 05:51pm
This is my favorite book from Ms. Vale to date. The characters are so endearing, the sex so incredibly hot, and the twist at the ending is so very satisfying. This is already a reread for me.
JANE A on 07/16/2015 05:51pm
This is my favorite book from Ms. Vale to date. The characters are so endearing, the sex so incredibly hot, and the twist at the ending is so very satisfying. This is already a reread for me.
char1972 on 04/25/2015 11:00am
I like this book a lot it is full of twists. One never knows who or what to believe. It is very suspenseful. I love the ending.
char1972 on 04/25/2015 11:00am
I like this book a lot it is full of twists. One never knows who or what to believe. It is very suspenseful. I love the ending.
Brittany Barnes on 04/22/2015 10:19pm
I have come to absolutely love Vanessa Vale's books. The Cowboy is a hot and sexy read that anyone would enjoy. Be prepared for a fire with this one. I'm looking forward to the next book.
Brittany Barnes on 04/22/2015 10:19pm
I have come to absolutely love Vanessa Vale's books. The Cowboy is a hot and sexy read that anyone would enjoy. Be prepared for a fire with this one. I'm looking forward to the next book.
Marybeth on 04/08/2015 06:29pm
This was a good addition to the Montana Men series. Wyatt has ordered a bride from Mrs. Bidwell, a Madame in a brothel. He does not expect to receive a bride who is a virgin, but not that innocent about what goes on between men and women. Emily knows a lot, but because she was raised in a brothel, she never learned to keep house or cook meals. But, Emily pleases Wyatt and that is all that matters. There is a happy ending and I give this 4 stars.
Marybeth on 04/08/2015 06:29pm
This was a good addition to the Montana Men series. Wyatt has ordered a bride from Mrs. Bidwell, a Madame in a brothel. He does not expect to receive a bride who is a virgin, but not that innocent about what goes on between men and women. Emily knows a lot, but because she was raised in a brothel, she never learned to keep house or cook meals. But, Emily pleases Wyatt and that is all that matters. There is a happy ending and I give this 4 stars.
Meg on 04/02/2015 02:43pm
This is the second book of Montana Men series. Emily Watson, a mail order bride, arrives to meet her new husband, Wyatt. One look at the woman and Wyatt is a happy man, anxious to stake his claim on his new wife. He is shocked to discover that the woman sent to him is obviously not a virgin. Emily has been dreading that he would uncover her past and learn she’d been raised in a brothel – however, she is quick to explain that while she is a whore, she was a virginal one before he took her. Wyatt listens to her story and begins to educate her that she is not truly a whore but men, even husbands, truly wish their wives to become their whores in the bedroom. He also begins to teach her that when she does something naughty or puts herself in danger, it will be her ass that pays the price. All seems to be going well until a beautiful blonde woman arrives to announce she is the true Mrs. Wyatt.
Meg on 04/02/2015 02:43pm
This is the second book of Montana Men series. Emily Watson, a mail order bride, arrives to meet her new husband, Wyatt. One look at the woman and Wyatt is a happy man, anxious to stake his claim on his new wife. He is shocked to discover that the woman sent to him is obviously not a virgin. Emily has been dreading that he would uncover her past and learn she۪d been raised in a brothel however, she is quick to explain that while she is a whore, she was a virginal one before he took her. Wyatt listens to her story and begins to educate her that she is not truly a whore but men, even husbands, truly wish their wives to become their whores in the bedroom. He also begins to teach her that when she does something naughty or puts herself in danger, it will be her ass that pays the price. All seems to be going well until a beautiful blonde woman arrives to announce she is the true Mrs. Wyatt.
Margaret Corcoran on 04/01/2015 11:03am
I loved this story. It is well written with spicy sex and spankings. This series is getting better and better. It is full of real emotions. I highly recommend this story.
Margaret Corcoran on 04/01/2015 11:03am
I loved this story. It is well written with spicy sex and spankings. This series is getting better and better. It is full of real emotions. I highly recommend this story.
anon on 03/30/2015 03:25pm
Again, Mrs. Bidwell has chosen wisely. This time she’s found a lovely girl who is a bundle of curiosity wrapped in singed innocence and she’s the perfect choice for Wyatt Blake and he knows it, too. The Cowboy is another fun read in the Montana Men series.
anon on 03/30/2015 03:25pm
Again, Mrs. Bidwell has chosen wisely. This time she۪s found a lovely girl who is a bundle of curiosity wrapped in singed innocence and she۪s the perfect choice for Wyatt Blake and he knows it, too. The Cowboy is another fun read in the Montana Men series.
SH on 03/29/2015 09:37pm
Oh, the second in the series and boy, is it fantastic! What a great plot, with sexy hot dominant cowboys and submissive women who still have some sass. Very well written and keeps me turning page after page. I love this series and can't wait for the next!
SH on 03/29/2015 09:37pm
Oh, the second in the series and boy, is it fantastic! What a great plot, with sexy hot dominant cowboys and submissive women who still have some sass. Very well written and keeps me turning page after page. I love this series and can't wait for the next!
char1972 on 03/29/2015 01:05pm
Great book. Good mail order bride with a great mystery and a twist. Well worth the read
char1972 on 03/29/2015 01:05pm
Great book. Good mail order bride with a great mystery and a twist. Well worth the read
Redrabbitt on 03/28/2015 07:27pm
Emily Winston needed a new life and became a mail order bride through Madame Mrs. Bidwell, along with two other mail order brides, Ellen and Caroline, all traveling together to the Montana Territory. Wyatt Blake is a successful rancher and along with friend, Ryder Graves, had entrusted Mrs. Birdwell to help them locate the perfect wives for their baser proclivities. Emily being raised by an aunt in a brothel, is well acquainting with sexual terminology and general understanding, but she is still a virgin. What Emily never has learned how to do was cook, clean and run a household, but she can make up for it in the bedroom and that pleases Wyatt. Wait, who is this other woman claiming to be Wyatt's wife by proxy, and calling herself Emily Winston? Now will the real Emily Winston please come forward, and who is the imposter. This story has a nice mystery and suspense element, witty dialogue and hot sex with a lusty wanton woman. Maybe being raised in a whorehouse has it advantages after all.
Redrabbitt on 03/28/2015 07:27pm
Emily Winston needed a new life and became a mail order bride through Madame Mrs. Bidwell, along with two other mail order brides, Ellen and Caroline, all traveling together to the Montana Territory. Wyatt Blake is a successful rancher and along with friend, Ryder Graves, had entrusted Mrs. Birdwell to help them locate the perfect wives for their baser proclivities. Emily being raised by an aunt in a brothel, is well acquainting with sexual terminology and general understanding, but she is still a virgin. What Emily never has learned how to do was cook, clean and run a household, but she can make up for it in the bedroom and that pleases Wyatt. Wait, who is this other woman claiming to be Wyatt's wife by proxy, and calling herself Emily Winston? Now will the real Emily Winston please come forward, and who is the imposter. This story has a nice mystery and suspense element, witty dialogue and hot sex with a lusty wanton woman. Maybe being raised in a whorehouse has it advantages after all.
Timberlan127 on 03/27/2015 11:04am
This story has some interesting twists and turns to it. It starts by giving the reader a real feel for the emotions that Emily is feeling as she gets closer to her destination as a mail order bride. Along with all of those normal emotions she has the extra fear that when her intended husband finds out that she grew up in a brothel he will send her back. She soon learns that her Cowboy husband is very happy with her sexual knowledge as long as she uses it only for him. Hot erotic scenes make this sexy story difficult to put down. Enjoy!
Timberlan127 on 03/27/2015 11:04am
This story has some interesting twists and turns to it. It starts by giving the reader a real feel for the emotions that Emily is feeling as she gets closer to her destination as a mail order bride. Along with all of those normal emotions she has the extra fear that when her intended husband finds out that she grew up in a brothel he will send her back. She soon learns that her Cowboy husband is very happy with her sexual knowledge as long as she uses it only for him. Hot erotic scenes make this sexy story difficult to put down. Enjoy!

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