In the high desert pueblo, the old beliefs have never died. And when witchcraft can be the only explanation for murder, Luke, Tom and Rico, former renegades, must step up to save their people and the women they love.
Part 3: Rico
Though he sells Pueblo art in his Santa Fe gallery, Rico Tafoya abandoned the mystical beliefs of his heritage, an obstacle in his relationship with artist Charlotte Reyna, who is drawn to the old ways. Meditation pulls Charlotte straight into her paintings where she senses the witch who murdered Joe following her. Rico’s disbelief makes Charlotte fear they will never mesh. Terrified of losing her when she is in a dangerous trance, Rico forces his mind to follow…but is he in time to save their people and claim Charlotte’s heart?
Renegade Magic: Luke…Tom…Rico…each of these exciting stories ends with an HEA for the hero and heroine. But only the full set will finally get to the bottom of the murder mystery. Be sure to read them all!
“Then how about explaining what you’re doing here.”
Rico’s long black hair was pulled back from a rugged tanned face in a careful braid lashed with a leather thong and decorated with a single raven’s feather. His clothing was black, too—shirt, pants and boots. And he’d chosen a few pieces of pawn—a single earring, ring, belt buckle and bracelet—silver inlaid with green turquoise the exact shade of his pale green eyes. She knew that professionally Rico meant to play up the part of his tri-cultural heritage he personally ignored. He knew what it took to be a successful mestizo gallery owner selling Native American works in Santa Fe.
Charlotte chose to tell him something that would be the truth and yet not reveal too much. “I needed to see Joe’s painting once more.” Sadly, his paintings were all that were left of him.
“You were in a trance.”
“I get lost in art.” “Especially in Joe’s art,” Rico observed. “This isn’t the first time I’ve caught you so…involved. Want to tell me what’s going on? I know you’ve given a couple of clues about Joe’s murder to Jessie Gardner for the FBI investigation. The question is…how? You find them in Joe’s paintings?”
“You wouldn’t believe me.”
Perturbed by Rico’s questioning, Charlotte started to leave. He caught hold of her arm and kept her there. He wasn’t hurting her, but the warmth and strength of his long fingers made her uncomfortable. Her pulse accelerated and his gaze sharpened, making her feel as if Rico could look right through her. The escalating tension between them was palpable.
“Try me,” he said. “What do you see in the paintings?”
“Not in them exactly,” she said, despite her resolve not to involve him. “Through them.”
Charlotte thought about pushing her way out of the gallery. Rico wouldn’t really force her to do anything, not even to stay to answer his questions. And this wasn’t the same Rico she remembered from their childhood—a boy who’d had a wild imagination and who’d stood up for the underdog, often her. Maybe she shouldn’t underestimate his interest in what had been happening to her.
“All right, I’ll tell you. I’ve found a way to journey into the paintings,” she admitted.
“Are you saying you’re a witch?”