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Fleeing horrific abuse and an uncaring legal system in the USA, Zoe lands in Norway to study archeology, specifically pre-Viking civilization. With the nightclub where she worked closed down and her apartment building condemned, she needs a new job and a new place to live.
Her roommate and fellow student Tabetha comes to the rescue and invites her to move in with her family. Zoe’s grateful for the offer and the warm welcome Tabetha’s family extends to her, even though Tabetha’s oldest brother discomfits her.
Wounded in battle against eco-terrorists who attempted to wrest control of an oil platform, elite sailor Lars moves back in with his family while he recuperates. Upon seeing his sister’s roommate, he discovers that his father’s “pow” theory of love isn’t just a cute story: Zoe stirs his blood like nothing else.
Zoe’s not looking for a relationship, but Lars’ gentle persistence shows her that she can trust him. However, an enemy wants to make Lars suffer by harming what will hurt him most, and one of Zoe’s abusers wants her back. She saved herself once, she’ll have to do it again.
This steamy romance has a guaranteed HEA.
“I’ve been practicing on Tabetha,” she admitted, “who has been kind to correct my pronunciation and everything else.”
“She’s doing really well,” Tabetha enthused. “We’ll have her speaking like a native in no time.” Without a blink she changed topics. “Is that Lars’ car parked outside?”
“It is. He was wounded recently and has come home to recuperate,” Myles informed her.
“Yes,” Adele agreed.
“It is much better to recover with one’s family than alone.”
“Remember, Zoe, I told you about him? He’s my oldest brother, the oldest of all six of us, the bossy one,” Tabetha reminded her. “He and Gullik are in the Norwegian Royal Navy.”
“That’s right,” Zoe said. “You have five brothers, no sisters.”
“Yes, that’s right.” Tabetha added with a little pout, “Can you believe I never had a date until I started at university? Every boy in Bergen was scared off by my father and brothers.”
“It’s our duty to protect our baby sister,” a deep voice interjected. “And I—”
The young ladies looked up to see who had spoken. Tabetha smiled widely, squealed his name, and rushed to wrap her arms around her oldest brother whom she’d not seen in nearly a year. Lars braced himself against his little sister’s enthusiasm and pressed a kiss to her head.
“It’s good to see you, kjæresten min,” he murmured and gave her a squeeze. He looked over his sister’s head and felt his heart thud, his belly roll, and his groin tighten. Gently disentangling himself from his sister’s embrace, he took a step forward and asked, “Who is this?”
“Oh, no, you don’t, Lars!” Tabetha laughed. “This is Zoe, my roommate at university. And she is not going to be one of your many conquests.”
He glanced at his father, whose pale bushy eyebrows met his hairline in amused understanding. The older man’s mouth moved in silent exclamation and Lars knew exactly what he said: “Pow!” Like a large gun.
A bomb. Fireworks. An explosion.