This scene does come into play later on in the book. After facing constant rejection in Mitch’s Win, Patty has decided to take matters into her own hands and is going to make Greg Wilson marry her. But she’s going to need the help of a sleazy, scummy character who would be willing to do whatever it takes to get Greg to marry her. I’m hoping to bring Patty in for an interview. I think she might be fun to talk to. 😀
This book should be out before June. And it’s the 3rd book in the Montana Collection. Mitch’s Win is Book 1 and Boaz’s Wager (due out next month) is Book 2.
Patty Dixon entered the saloon and lowered the hat over her eyes. This was the last place she wanted to be. But desperate times called for desperate measures. She could only hope that no one would realize she was a woman. She had her hair tucked under a wig and a fake long beard covering her face. To top it off, she’d borrowed her father’s duster and boots. Beside that, she wore her own shirt and denims, but no one was going to open the duster to find that out.
Allowing her eyes to adjust to the smoke filling the place, she thought over her plan. If her father knew what she was doing, he’d forbid it—which was exactly why she’d waited until he was asleep before leaving the ranch. And now she was in the seedy part of town, the part she’d never venture to under ordinary circumstances.
“Buddy,” a gruff voice called out.
She glanced over her shoulder at a large man who stood behind her.
“I can’t go through you,” the man said.
Oh! She quickly moved aside so he could enter. Then she proceeded further into the establishment. She studied the men who were laughing, drinking, playing cards, and—if she saw clearly—a few were trying not to cry into their beers. From the other side of the room, a group sang out of tune around a piano that’d seen better days. And from the stairs at the back of the room, a lady wearing very little was waving to someone. Patty’s gaze went to the man who looked to have a winning hand.
She grimaced. She didn’t know what the gesture he gave her meant, and quite frankly, she didn’t want to know. She was on a mission. She continued scanning the room and finally caught the man she was looking for. John Meyer. She’d heard rumors about him. He wasn’t one to be trifled with.
But what choice did she have? She’d exhausted all her other options. As long as she was careful, everything would be just fine. Taking a deep breath, she proceeded forward, weaving around tables until she reached the one she needed.
John set the cards on the table and snickered. “Read ‘em and weep, boys.”
The other men at the tabled groaned and threw down their cards.
“I got to get another drink,” one muttered as he rose from the table.
“Me too,” a second agreed.
“I’m out,” a third said. “I’m not losing any more money tonight.”
“Come back when you learn to play like a man,” John told the third man as he collected the pile of coins in the middle of the table.
That left no one at the table but John. This was her chance. Patty stepped forward and cleared her throat.
“You want somethin’?” John asked as he counted his winnings.
Taking that as an invitation, she plopped down in the seat as she’d seen other men do and leaned back. Then, in the lowest voice she could muster, she said, “Need your help.”
His eyebrow rose. “You feelin’ alright?”
“Feel fine,” she replied, wondering why he’d ask such a ridiculous question.
He leaned forward and, before she could stop him, tugged on her beard.
She gasped and quickly brought it back up, giving a quick glance around to make sure no one else saw what he’d done.
He chuckled. “Didn’t think you were a man. So, what’s a lady doin’ in a place like this? Unless you plan to entertain men with the soiled doves upstairs.” He wiggled his eyebrows suggestively.
She swallowed the lump in her throat. “No. I want to hire you for a job.”
“I can certainly do the job, little lady,” he said, leering at her in a way that made her squirm.
“I’m not sure what you mean, but I want you to make it so that Greg Wilson will marry me.”