A Soldiering On Novella
It’s nearly Christmas, and the last thing Duncan wants is to be dragged to a fancy party and made to play nice. And yet Mandy—his business partner and bane of his existence—somehow convinces him to attend a charity auction with her so they can scout potential clients.
Duncan is looking for an escape from the festivities when vicious armed men take over the building, trapping Mandy in a deadly situation. With no way to call for help, Duncan is the only one that can save her.
No weapons, a bad leg, and a growing realisation of his feelings for Mandy.
Author’s note: This novella can be read as a standalone, but may be more enjoyable to those that have read the previous Soldiering On books. This book ends in a HFN for Duncan and Mandy. Their story will conclude in the final Soldiering On book in late 2017.
A man with teeth like a lighthouse beacon moved into Duncan’s field of vision, grinning unnaturally wide. Duncan blinked, bringing his thoughts away from his business partner and onto the intruder.
“Mandy,” he said, eyeing Duncan’s companion with an unsubtle appreciation. “How lovely to see you again.”
Since no one looked his way, Duncan felt safe rolling his eyes.
“Charles,” Mandy purred. “You’ve done a lovely job with the decorations. So festive. It seems like the evening will be a real success.”
She bent forward to kiss the man’s cheek, oozing charm.
Charles lapped it up. “Thank you. I hope you’ll stay for the after-party.” He winked—actually winked!—at her.
Mandy wasn’t fooled. Duncan was sure he was the only one that noticed the imperceptible tightening around her eyes that showed her displeasure. But her smiled stayed in place.
“That will depend on what my date wants to do, since he’s my ride. This is Duncan.” She nudged Duncan, who obediently stuck out his hand.
Charles’ gaze shifted to Duncan for the first time. The disinterested look told Duncan that Charles had already forgotten his name. “Hey, pal. Welcome to the party.”
They shook hands and let go before it was polite.
“Well, I better do the rounds,” Charles told them. He disappeared into the crowd, which consisted mostly of men and women between the ages of 60 and 103 from the looks of things.
Duncan felt old most days, now that he was pushing forty and had retired from the military. But this lacklustre crowd made him feel positively sprightly.
“Your date?” he asked slyly.
Mandy rolled her eyes. “I had to put him off somehow. He’s obscenely wealthy, so I like to keep him onside. But he’s persistent.”
“Well, I’m happy to run point between you and any men tonight. They really should learn to take a hint.”
The fact that Charles had completely ignored Duncan and the proprietary hand Mandy had on his arm irked him. Why would it be so out of the question that they were an item?
Aislinn is a life-long reader and writer. English was always her favourite subject, and she went to University to focus on that passion. She completed a Bachelor of Arts in English and History, which she loved, and then went on to do a Masters in an unrelated field. She now largely pretends that last degree never happened.
She is the author of the ‘Soldiering On’ books, a Romantic Suspense series. She enjoys reading, writing, travelling, watching action movies (particularly if they have a romance!) and fantasising about her future cottage in a forest. Now that she’s published, her next life dream is to own a dog.