Her Cowboy Inheritance

By: Danica Favorite

A new life. A new start.

And a new love at the Three Sisters Ranch

Inheriting a ranch with her two sisters is the fresh start widowed mom Leah Holloway desperately needs. The problem? Leah knows nothing about ranching. And the only person willing to teach her is Shane Jackson, the handsome and oh-so-infuriating cowboy next door. Trusting each other means they’ll risk everything—including a connection that might just blossom into something dangerously real...

Soon she would be lifting bales of hay like they were nothing...

Leah put her hands on her hips and heaved in deep breaths. “I know this gets easier with practice, but wow. You must think I’m really stupid for not thinking about things like this.”

Shane handed her a bottle of water. “Not stupid. Inexperienced. I know you think I’ve been hard on you, but I don’t want you to fail simply because you hadn’t thought everything through.”

She nodded.

“You’re smart and capable,” he continued. “You have more grit and gumption than a lot of people I know. I understand why you don’t trust easily. But I’m asking you to have a little faith in the fact that I’m here to help you. I made a promise to Helen, and I’m doing for you what Helen always wanted to do.”

She brushed the hay off her pants. “I’ve given you more trust than I’ve given anyone else in a long time.”

Shane didn’t want to think about trust issues.

He hoped he could continue showing her that he had her best interests at heart...even when she didn’t understand.

Chapter One

Leah Holloway stood inside the old ranch house in Columbine Springs, Colorado, unable to believe that in the twenty years since she’d last been here, everything seemed almost unchanged. Except for the silence and emptiness.

“It’s weird not seeing Grandma Nellie sitting in her rocking chair, isn’t it?” her sister Erin said, coming behind her.

Leah turned. “She wasn’t our grandmother.”

“The closest thing we had to one. Besides, everyone called her Grandma Nellie.” Erin put her arm around her and gave a squeeze. “You doing okay?”

Everyone asked her that, and Leah hated having to answer the question. Of course she wasn’t doing okay. How could anybody be okay when everything in her life was falling apart? Everyone had a million questions for her, and Leah hadn’t had the chance to process what had happened. She’d been too busy trying to stay strong for her kids, doing everything she could to keep a roof over their heads, and now this.

Not that being here on the ranch was necessarily a bad thing, since the surprise bequest was literally the only reason she and her kids wouldn’t be living on the streets. But it was one more set of emotions being thrown at her that she didn’t have time to deal with.

Fortunately, her sister Nicole came in, carrying a box. “Isn’t this great? I can’t believe this is all ours.”

Erin gave their sister a small smile. “The happiest I remember being as children was the summer we spent here with Helen. The Colonel was on another temporary assignment, and she brought us here to her family’s ranch. I remember wishing we could stay here forever and never have to see the Colonel again. Who would have thought the wish of a ten-year-old would come true twenty years later?”

For a moment, Erin looked wistful, but then she shook her head. “It’s crazy to think that Helen remembered us enough to leave us her family’s ranch. I feel bad that we didn’t stay in better touch with her.”

Leah shrugged. “The Colonel would’ve never allowed it. Not with the way he threw her out. He thought she was a bad influence, allowing too much disorder in his household.”

“I don’t remember that,” Nicole said. “I barely remember Helen at all. I still think it’s weird that she left us her estate.”

The lawyer had given them a letter from Helen, outlining the reasons for her bequest. They’d all read the letter, but Nicole, who had only been six when the Colonel had divorced Helen, hadn’t responded to it the way Leah and Erin had. How could she? She’d been too young to understand so much of what had happened.

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