TITLE: BAD MEDICINE
"You're too stupid to live, Rafael Solis!"
Chloe Palmer's words still echoed in Rafael's memory. The last words she'd said before she shot him and left town.
Now she was back, if only for the short haul. She was prettier than ever and she still had that 'go to hell' attitude.
Rafael stared at her profile throughout the funeral service. Head held high, she'd made eye contact with no one, though she had to know he'd be there, still in love with her after seven long years.
Chloe filed outside and stood apart, her back to the assembled mourners. She turned when he neared, wary, assessing him.
"I'm sorry about your dad, Chloe."
"Yeah, well..." She paused, avoiding his eyes. "It's not like he didn't have it coming."
"You're looking good." Rafael cleared his throat, prepared to ask the question, not certain he could bear the answer. "Are you married?"
She shot him a sharp glance under heavily mascaraed eyelashes. "What's it to you?"
"Nothing...Nothing at all. I just wondered if you had someone here with you. That's all."
"Yeah, I got someone here with me." She jerked her head toward her mother, standing in a small circle of friends outside the church.
"Your mother, of course." Rafael remembered how hard it had always been to talk to Chloe when she was in a mood. Like she resented every word she gave out in conversation. Her prickly defenses had protected her soft, vulnerable core...from everyone but him.