Having Faith(Callaghan Brothers, Book 7)

By: Abbie Zanders

Callaghan Brothers, Volume 7




Acknowledgements


Special thanks to Aubrey Rose Cover Designs for this amazing cover!

Special thanks also go to some very special ladies – Deb B., Anjee Z., Shelly S., Carol T., Tonya B., Susan J., Perryne D., Carla S., and Shayne R (and a few of you who prefer to remain unnamed – you know who you are) - for reading the first draft and making invaluable suggestions. This is a better story because of them.





Chapter One




“I take it your date didn’t go so well last night,” Maggie Callaghan said with genuine empathy. She piled yet another scoop of vanilla ice cream onto Kieran’s slice of apple pie and flicked a glance at him with those swirling green eyes.

“It went well enough,” he answered with a lazy shrug. And it had. It had gone like every other date he’d had in the last six months. Nice. Normal.

The problem was, there was very little that was normal about Kieran or any of the men in his family. They were a strong bunch steeped in strength, loyalty, and honor. Highly skilled in weaponry and combat, they comprised their own special off-the-books ops team, and were often called to undertake the missions no one else wanted. Everyone in the small, sleepy town of Pine Ridge, Pennsylvania knew the rumors, of course; but only a privileged few knew the truth.

Maggie raised her eyebrows expectantly, so he continued. “I took her to see that new movie everyone’s been talking about, then a late dinner. It was nice.”

Maggie snorted softly. “Nice, huh? Callaghan boys have about as much use of “nice” as I do a rat infestation in my cold cellar.”

“Yeah.” Kieran gave her a crooked, boyish grin. Maggie understood. She always got it.

As normal as they tried to appear to the rest of the world, they needed more to retain their mercurial interest past a few hours, days at the most. They needed women who embodied the spirit of their hearts – their croies. Anything less held only temporary satisfaction.

Unfortunately, Kieran hadn’t found his yet.

All six of his older brothers had found their croies, or soul mates; he alone remained single and unattached. At six-foot-five, with two hundred and seventy five pounds of rippling muscle, blue-black hair and icy blue eyes – and the owner/operator of the hugely successful BodyWorks Fitness Center - he was quite the eligible bachelor. It seemed that every single woman – and even some not so single – wanted their chance to snag the last remaining Callaghan, to find themselves in the inner circle of the wealthy, powerful clan. While flattering, it was also disappointing.

So far, none had been successful in capturing his heart and soul, and Kieran was feeling restless. After seeing the kind of bond his brothers had with their wives, he couldn’t help but hope he would be as fortunate. He wanted a woman who loved him because she couldn’t help herself, not because of his business, his family name, or social status.

“You have to have faith, Kieran,” she told him with an enigmatic smile that sent a shiver of foreboding through him. “Your time will come.”

“Something you’re not telling me, Mags?” he asked suspiciously, the fork suspended midway between the plate and his mouth. Besides being the one they all went to when they needed a place to unload, Maggie Callaghan was also known for her frequent flashes of prophetic insight. Though she routinely denied having any such ability, every one of them had witnessed the strange phenomenon – her emerald green eyes would gloss over and begin to swirl like there was a tempest within. Kind of like they were doing right now. Before he could call her on it, though, the swirling clouds stilled and her eyes were back to normal.

“Well,” she said, her infectious grin growing to epic proportions as she set down the pot and sat down at the table with him. She leaned forward conspiratorially and whispered loudly, “I’m pregnant.”

“Jesus! That’s great, Mags!” Kieran said excitedly, reaching over to wrap a bear hug around her much smaller frame. “Mick didn’t say a word.”

Maggie’s face flushed a pretty rose color. The moment he eased up on his steel-like embrace she rose and scooted back over to the stove. Kieran’s eyes narrowed, immediately suspicious. “You didn’t tell him, did you?” he accused softly.

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