Laina Turner, Author
L.C. Turner, Author

The Angry Cowboy Cowboy Romance Free Chapter

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Chance was angrily changing channels in his hospital room when a nurse walked in. He tried to keep the scowl off his face because she was one of his favorite nurses. One of two who didn’t try to act like everything was going to be okay when it so clearly wasn’t, at least not in his eyes. He tried not to take his anger out on the people who were really trying to help him.

“What do you need now? Check my blood pressure? My wound?” he said, trying to be somewhat upbeat. Even though he felt like life as he knew it was over, he knew, rationally, that he had it much better than most people in the hospital, and that he was being just a little selfish. He hated that he felt like this, but he just couldn’t help the negativity that washed over him.

“Actually, no poking and prodding right now. You have visitors.”

Normally, visitors could walk right in, but Chance hadn’t been happy when some of the people from Habitat for Humanity came, so the nurses had started asking him if he wanted visitors first. One more thing he felt like a horrible person about: being cranky when people wanted to visit him. There were probably a lot of people who wished they had visitors, but he just didn’t feel like making small talk with people. Tomorrow, he was leaving the hospital to go to a rehab facility, and then he would be too far away for people to visit. The rehab facility was far enough away from the Habitat for Humanity project he knew no one would have time to visit, but that didn’t make him any more interested in seeing anyone now.

“I’m sorry, Amy. Can you please tell them I’m sleeping or something?” He noticed the uncomfortable look on her face. “I know, I know, you think I’m being a selfish jerk. And I am. I just don’t want to see anyone.”

“Well, it’s not that, though I do think you’re a bit of a selfish jerk refusing all your visitors. But I have a feeling that the two people here to see you now aren’t going to take no for an answer.”

“What do you mean?”

“These aren’t people from Habitat for Humanity.”

“Then who is it?”

“They say they’re your brothers, Judge and Cole.”

cowboy romance

Chance muttered a few choice words to himself. That wasn’t normally his nature, but he knew that Judge and Cole were like a force of nature, and what was running through his mind must have shown on his face because Nurse Amy laughed.

“I can tell you know that there’s no way you’re getting rid of them.”

“No, ma’am, you would be right about that. So go ahead and send them in.” Chance sighed as the nurse left the room.

He had been telling himself that he could hold his brothers off because he didn’t want them to worry. Of course, he had told them that he broke his leg, but he’d made it sound like it was a simple break, not such a bad one, and he’d definitely not mentioned he’d broken both legs. One required major surgery. They’d also found he had a rare blood disease when operating. In fact, he had almost died on the operating table. Now, not only was he recovering from that, but also his broken limbs. But mainly, he’d hid it all from his brothers because he knew what would happen. It wouldn’t be a brief visit in the hospital and then go back home. They would make him go back to Painted Acres Ranch, and that was the last place he wanted to go. While he knew it wasn’t rational, he blamed that ranch for everything bad that had happened to him, starting with Cole choosing to stay there and not going with him to build more Habitat for Humanity houses. But hiding from his brothers didn’t matter so much now, as two of them walked into his hospital room, Judge with a stern expression, and Cole with a concerned look.

“Chance, why didn’t you tell us how bad things were?” Judge barked without so much as a hello.

“I didn’t want you all to worry.”

“Oh, so you thought we would worry less when we were told you had surgery and almost died,” Judge snapped.

Chance almost had to grin. If nothing else in the world was constant, his brothers’ demeanors were.

“You guys are busy with your own lives. I didn’t want to take your time away from the farm and everything else you have going on,” he offered as a lame excuse. “Besides, how did you find out? Isn’t there something called HIPPA?”

“We’re your brothers and that’s what brothers do. We’re here to help each other out,” Cole said. “We found out because I’m your emergency contact and you signed off on them sharing information with me.”

“I know, but I really didn’t want to bother you,” Chance said, knowing that his brothers were right; they would’ve dropped anything to help him or any other brother in trouble, for that matter. And again, he felt like a selfish jerk because he was somehow conveying that he didn’t think they would want to show up for him.

“We’re never too busy for each other in our time of need,” Judge said, his expression softening just a little. “Your coworkers from Habitat for Humanity called. Apparently, when you stopped receiving visitors, they got worried,” Judge said.

Chance wanted to be mad, but he knew they had only done it with good intentions. “Well, you’re here. You can see I’m fine. I’m just not in the mood for visitors.”

Judge started laughing. “You’ve broken more than your legs if you think we’re leaving. As soon as they say you can leave, you’re going back to Painted Acres Ranch,” Judge said.

“I don’t want to go back to Painted Acres Ranch. There’s a perfectly good rehab facility here that will be just fine.”

“Why do you want to recoup there and not have your family around?” Cole said.

Chance already knew he was going to lose this argument. “Like I said, I don’t want to be a burden.”

“Come off it, Chance. I don’t know exactly why you don’t want to come to the ranch or what you have against it, but let’s not pretend that it has anything to do with being a burden,” Judge said.

Chance wanted to argue with him, but he couldn’t. As much as he didn’t want to go back to Painted Acres Ranch, he was getting too tired to fight anymore.

“Let’s say I do go home with you. I know I wasn’t at the ranch long, but I don’t remember there being a rehab facility on site.” Chance thought maybe logic would win out here, even though he knew his argument still wasn’t that strong.

“No, there’s not. But Brock was able to find you an in-home nurse. She’ll be taking care of you for the duration of your recovery and your rehab. It’ll be great. You’ll be home with all of us and have healthcare right at your fingertips,” Cole said.

Yeah, great, Chance thought. There was nothing great about the situation. He was laid up and soon would be trapped in some small town in Montana.

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