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Love at Eagle Station

Love at Eagle Station

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A town full of acceptance. A heart full of prejudice. Can they both find peace and . . . love?

Can Layla convince him to stay? Can Nolan admit he was wrong? Can they heal together? Come visit Inheritance Bay and find out!

Main Tropes

  • Grumpy Hero
  • Forgiveness
  • Women Friendship

Synopsis

A town full of acceptance. A heart full of prejudice. Can they both find peace and . . . love?

Inheritance Bay is a town that welcomed Layla Cartia and her brother and unwed mother.The people here treated the unconventional family as one of their own, so Layla would doanything for this town, especially now that it’s facing economic hardships.Hardships that threaten their homes.Nolan Taggert, also known to his financial firm as the Reaper, is in town looking to set upa call center. But Nolan doesn’t want a town official to show him around; instead, he picksLayla, a local, to show him the true spirit of the place. Nolan knows all about small towns.They‘re filled with judgmental and narrow-minded people. But if Layla can get Nolan to seethe beauty and refuge she has found in Inheritance Bay, maybe he could heal the woundsmade so long ago.Can Layla convince him to stay? Can Nolan admit he was wrong? Can they heal together? Come visit Inheritance Bay and find out!Get your copy today!

Intro into Chapter One

Chapter
One

 

Layla
Cartia was prone to making quick decisions and speaking her mind. Her brother
assured her it would come to bite her on the rear one day, but after thirty-two
years, she thought the probability of that happening was slim to none.

She
needed to think and act quickly because she was a potter. Clay demanded action
and a firm resolve. She had just finished a set of four bowls, and nothing gave
her more satisfaction than looking at a finished piece of work. There was
something to be said about making things with your hands. She was able to put a
bit of herself into every piece she created. Layla liked to think that she
imbued her clay works and pottery with a bit of herself.

Layla
locked the front door of her shop, Clay Comforts. Her brother had been operating
the front of the store most of the day, leaving her to take care of the bowls
she had finally finished. Layla was a member of the Breeder Rescue Group. The
little furball she took with her to the store was called Princess; the dog was
a rescue Yorkie. She had been raised in a puppy mill and had never been out of
a cage. Now she was adjusting to walking and being able to just be a dog.

Layla
was tired and would fall out on the couch she had put in the back of the store
and go to sleep if her rescues weren't waiting for her at home. She knew her
brother had put them in the guest bedroom, but they still needed some love,
food, and hopefully, she would be able to get them to walk a little farther
today. Some dogs raised in cages and puppy mills seldom got to walk outside of
their cages, so getting a newly rescued dog to walk around could be a
challenge. To help them, Layla always padded the surrounding area with padding
and rugs so they could explore.

She
couldn't wait until Princess was ready to see all of Inheritance Bay. The Bay
itself was a source of peace and serenity for Layla. Her mother had arrived
here with no past, and the town of Inheritance Bay had accepted her and her two
children. Layla grew up a child of the Bay. She knew how to kayak on the bay,
swim in the bay, frequent the picnic areas around the bay, and most of all, she
knew how to take long naps on the grass under the evening stars. Layla loved
the town that had accepted and raised her.

Things
weren't going so well for the Bay area, though. Layla was an optimist, but she
didn't turn a blind eye to her surroundings. Inheritance Bay barely got by on
the tourist influx that happened only three months of the year. She did pretty
well with her pottery abroad and in town, but the town needed more. Layla had
heard that Marjorie had sent out some letters to ask people to come back to the
Bay. Layla wasn't so sure how that was going to go, but she would be open-minded
if it helped the town.

"Layla,
you going home, child?" Mason Byers asked from across the street as he
made his way down the block.

"Yes,
I am, Mr. Byers. Make sure you take care of that limp," she replied. He
smiled, waved her off, and moved on.

Layla
smiled as she walked home. She was an integral part of the Bay. Everyone knew
everyone here. They all accepted her, and most of the older people had helped
raise her and her brother. Through good times and bad, the town stuck together
to make it. Except maybe Conner Sanders. He had bought up land, but no one knew
what he was going to do with it. His new fiancée, Riley, seemed like she was
going to help him make some decisions, but Layla didn't like to get ahead of
herself. She would wait and see how it all panned out.

"Have
you decided to do your duty yet, girl?" a voice called out to her.

David
Tasker—the only man who somehow thought she could single-handedly save
Inheritance Bay. Layla closed her eyes and tried to think of something that
would be calming. His house was on the way to hers, and she didn't know how he
did it, but he always managed to be outside when she was going home.

"Mr.
Tasker, funny that you should be out here this evening."

"I’m
surprised you can see the problem and be unfazed. It must be a generational
thing,” he complained. Layla didn’t want to give him the time of day, but she
was raised with manners that overlooked the rudeness of elders. She couldn’t
remember a time when she had seen Mr. Tasker happy. When she had arrived with
her mother at Inheritance Bay, Mr. Tasker’s wife had already passed at a very
young age, and Mr. Tasker was never the same.

His
goal was to make Inheritance Bay the way it was when his wife was alive. Now,
Mr. Tasker thought she was the way to make that happen.

“I
hope you have a good day, Mr. Tasker,” she said, making sure she was still
moving as well as answering him.

“If
you really meant it, you’d do what you should and bring your business to the
Bay and let everyone know the famous potter lives here.”

Layla
didn’t answer because she refused to have the same old argument with Mr.
Tasker. It was true, she had found some level of success with her crafts, but
she also valued her privacy. Her brother was just as well known for his skills
as a potter, and he had tried to do the same thing. He was stalked until it
caused an accident that left him with a limp and almost took his hands. When
her brother had come out of the hospital, he made her promise never to put
herself in that position.

Still,
the accusation stung when she heard it from Mr. Tasker. She was caught between
her promises to her brother and saving the place that had accepted her lone
mother when it appeared she had nowhere else to go. The slam of Mr. Tasker's
porch door with no spring gave her some relief that he had gone inside. While
one pressure was gone, another resurfaced.

Another
thing that weighed on her mind was the question of where her mother was from
and why had she been alone with two children and finding her way here in Inheritance
Bay?

Her
thoughts were disturbed by the smell of steaks on the grill as she walked up to
her house. Steaks? Layla looked and saw the beckoning plume of smoke rising
from her next-door neighbor. When she opened the door to her home, she dropped
her purse and went to check on her charges. She had three altogether. While the
other two were asleep, Princess was standing, sniffing toward the screen door.

“You
can smell it, too, huh?” Layla said. It smelled like a great skirt or T-bone
steak, and from the smell of it, the person knew how to season it. She smelled
the bold flavors of garlic, olive oil, and a little bit of chili powder.
Sighing, she picked up a nearby basket and then picked up Princess and put her
in it. Layla knew everyone, and she knew that whoever was next door was a
visitor to the area.

“Let
me see if I have a Welcome to Inheritance Bay cup, and if so, we can get the
introductions out of the way. Our neighborly duty will be done, and it will be
a bit of air for you tonight. The walker texted her daily report, you didn’t
feel like walking like the other dogs and had to be carried today but don’t
worry, I’m sure tomorrow you’ll be more open to the experience,” she said to Princess.

Layla
walked out of the front of her home to see a shiny sports car in the driveway
next door. She shook her head and smiled to herself. It looks like someone
hasn’t heard about seawater and fancy cars
, she thought.

So,
whoever was next door was more than likely a snowbird. Snowbirds were city folk
who came to get away and then went home. Layla remembered the council saying
they would open up some houses for rental to raise cash, but she hadn’t
realized it was the house next to hers. Layla shrugged. She guessed it made
sense, though, as she lived in a cul-du-sac conveniently located in the midst
of town.

She
had her mug in one hand and Princess in a basket in the other. She was sure she
was the epitome of small-town charm, knocking on the door. After she knocked,
her cell phone rang. Unable to answer it, she let it go to voicemail, but then it
buzzed. So, she looked on her smartwatch to see the text DO NOT GREET THE
NEIGHBOR!
from her brother.

Just
as she was about to turn away, the door opened.

“Really,
I’m not here two hours, and I’m getting crank doorbell rings.”

The
man sounded annoyed, and Layla was insulted that he thought that was what was
going on. She wouldn’t go into his house, but she wasn’t going to run, either.

“It’s
not a doorbell crank. I decided to be neighborly,” Layla replied. The man was
about six foot one with curly black hair and a well-shaped beard that seemed so
in style these days. With blue eyes, a square jaw, and what looked like a
dimple in his chin, he could have been gorgeous if not for that attitude.

“Neighborly?
You mean nosy,” he said gruffly.

“Nosy!
Wow, I should have listened to my instincts and went back home.”

“Aw,
come on. I know how these small towns work. When I came over that bridge into
town, all the elderly women had their dentures 
clacking about who I was and what I’m doing here.”

“You
are so full of yourself. I, for one, don’t know who you are or why you’re here,
and I don’t care. Also, for your information, the elderly women are not gossips;
they are some of the nicest women you could know. Although, you might push even
them to not be as charitable as they usually are.”

“So,
you’re saying no one told you about me?” he said with a smirk, and his arms
covered his well-made chest if the shape of his shirt could be trusted.

“I—”
Layla stopped the denial that was coming to her lips. Then she saw him smile triumphantly,
and the dimple on his cheek that was only a hint deepened true.

“I
knew it. They sent you!”

“Stop,
they didn’t send me. They told me too late not to talk to you, and I have to
say if you are this prickly with everyone, I can understand.”

“You
mean, you don’t know who I am?”

Layla
rolled her eyes and then remembered she had the cup. “Listen, I don’t care.
Here, take the cup. Welcome to Inheritance Bay, and may your stay be short!”
she said as she pushed the cup into his hand and turned with Princess in her
basket. Princess, of course, was trying to look at the man. There was no
accounting for Princess’s taste.

“Hey,
my name is Nolan Taggert and—”

“Really,
Mr. Taggert, that’s nice that you can say your name, but I don’t need it. You
can have a nice life and vacation. We don’t need to speak. We don’t need to say
hello. We don’t need to interact at all because—”

“Would
you please let me finish my sentence!”

Layla
turned and found Mr. Taggert right behind her on her driveway on the way to her
house. “Well, I can’t see how the sentence would matter either way, but—”

“I’m
Nolan Taggert, and I work for Conner Sanders, the Wealth Builders owner and owner
of one-third of this town. I’ve come to see if it’s worth saving or not. Do I
have your attention now?”

Layla turned to look
at a smug Nolan Taggert standing in her driveway, and the only thing she could
think was that her brother was right about her quick attitude and quick mouth. Nolan
Taggert was the man who had come to deliver the bite.

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