Texas! Lucky by Sandra Brown
By Sandra Brown
Published by Bantam Books (1991)
Texas! Lucky was the first novel in a series that features the Tyler siblings – Chase, Lucky and Sage – who lived in Milton Point, Texas. As the title suggested, Texas! Lucky was about how Lucky, the middle sibling, eventually found the love of his life.
Lucky Tyler was having a drink at the local bar when a lone woman – who apparently hailed from outside town – was harassed by local thugs Little Alvin and Jack Ed. Lucky did not wish to seek trouble with Little Alvin and Jack Ed, but he was conditioned from a very young age that women should be respected. When Little Alvin and Jack Ed did not cease their advances despite the woman’s protests, Lucky had no choice but to confront the two bullies so they would leave the woman alone.
Lucky had to engage in fistfights with both Little Alvin and Jack Ed in order to save the woman, and he himself sustained some injuries following the fight. Lucky won nevertheless, and he had expected the woman to thank him for saving her – when she simply snubbed Lucky and said that she could have handled the situation even without Lucky’s interception.
Lucky was naturally irked by the woman’s arrogance, so he followed her when she left the bar, notwithstanding his wounds. He followed the woman until she checked-in for the night at a motel, before he barged himself into her room to demand an apology.
The woman was shocked when she discovered Lucky following her to her room, but she tried to stand her ground nonetheless. Until she found Lucky had really injured himself while trying to save her in the bar. Sympathetic, she allowed Lucky into her room and tried her best to nurse his wounds. The woman introduced herself as Dovey, but she was reluctant to share any more information about herself. Lucky found himself really affected by his injuries that he finally had to spend the night in Dovey’s motel room.
Sometime during the night, Lucky woke up in such a confused and groggy state that he did not think twice before making love to Dovey, whom he found was sleeping by his side. Dovey apparently did not mind Lucky either, for she responded positively to his actions.
The very next morning when Lucky woke up with a clearer mind, he found that Dovey had left the motel room. Lucky suddenly felt that he had lost something important in his life when Dovey walked out on him that morning. He was determined to search for her and possibly, make Dovey his.
Still shaken by his encounter with Dovey, Lucky was in for another surprise when he went back to his family home and learnt that that there had been a terrible fire at the Tyler Drilling Company’s garage last night. Tyler Drilling was a family business which he and his older brother Chase managed after the death of their father about two years ago. The building had burnt to the ground and authorities believed that the fire had been an arson. But the worst of it all was that Lucky was the prime suspect!
Tyler Drilling had been in a bad financial situation and the authorities suspected that the fire had been self-inflicted in order to claim the insurance money. Lucky’s mother Laurie, his brother Chase, his sister-in-law Tanya, his younger sister Sage, all had strong alibis that they were not at Tyler Drilling when the fire happened. But since Lucky had not been home last night, he was the only one without an alibi – and thus the prime suspect.
Lucky then realized that only Dovey could help testify his alibi that night. The fact made Lucky even more desperate to locate Dovey.
Unfortunately, Dovey left no clues to her identity. She had even strangely registered herself as a Mary Smith with a fake home address when she checked-in at the motel. It was as if Dovey had not wanted anyone to trace her identity nor whereabouts.
Lucky was devastated and felt like losing his mind, but luck never deserted Lucky. One day, about a week after the incident, Lucky was browsing through the newspaper when he saw Dovey’s picture and byline in it: she was actually Devon Haines, a newspaper columnist in Dallas.
Without further ado, Lucky sped to Dallas and barged into Devon’s office to confront her. Lucky told her his predicament, hoping that she would be sympathetic and willing to testify for him. So he was extremely taken aback when Devon suddenly refused to present herself as his alibi during the night of the fire.
Following Devon’s decision, Lucky continued to pester her non-stop with hopes that she will finally succumb. But Devon was a strong woman who was not easily swayed. Lucky was curious as to why she would not help him, until one day she finally let out her secret: she was actually a married woman! Her testimonials regarding Lucky being with her that night would certainly tarnish her reputation.
Devon’s husband Greg Shelby was currently imprisoned for involvement in a white-collar crime he committed before they married. He was arrested only two days after their wedding, and the marriage had not even been consummated yet.
When Lucky had made love to Devon on that fateful night, she was on the way back to Dallas after visiting Greg in prison. She had been very emotionally unstable at the time, for Greg had earlier refused his rights to conjugal visits by Devon: as if he himself did not want to be intimate with Devon. Feelings of frustration and rejection had made Devon succumb to the pleasure that Lucky offered that night. However, she did felt guilty and loathed herself for being weak against Lucky’s lovemaking.
Devon’s admission about her marital status had stung Lucky much more than the fact that she could not help him produce his alibi without risking her own marriage and reputation. Lucky knew he should not continue to ask her to help him, and less so to hope that they could possibly start a special and more meaningful relationship. But he could never get Devon out of his mind.
One day, Devon suddenly changed her mind and was willing to help out Lucky. Devon and Lucky believed that her testimonials would be anonymous and would help clear out Lucky’s name. With Devon’s help, Lucky was finally cleared and Tyler Drilling was able to claim the insurance money they so needed for the business. The case even seemed to have drawn to a good ending when authorities finally picked up Little Alvin and Jack Ed as the real perpetrators of the arson.
Lucky was lucky, but Devon had been unfortunate following her decision to help Lucky. An irresponsible party had leaked Devon’s statements regarding Lucky’s alibi to the media and as a result, Lucky and Devon’s one night tryst became headlines in the newspaper.
The news had angered Greg, who had seen the headlines while reading the newspaper in prison. Greg refused to communicate with Devon again and she was devastated. Actually, Devon’s marriage to Greg had not been for love but more like a business agreement between them. Devon had used Greg to get insider information about white-collar crime so she could write good articles in the newspaper. While Greg used Devon to write positive things about him so that people would be more sympathetic.
Greg’s refusal to consummate their marriage was sign enough that he was leaving the chance open for both of them to get out of the marriage easily. Devon had the opportunity to annul the marriage anytime she wanted, but she had refused to do so out of conscience. She had felt responsible to go along with the sham marriage since she had also used Greg to get what she wanted.
As time passed by, Lucky had an idea regarding the reality of Devon’s marriage to Greg although Devon had been trying to keep most things secret. To confirm his suspicions, Lucky had gone to see Greg himself in prison and had a talk with him. Greg’s frank and nonchalant answers confirmed that Greg and Devon were not even in love with one another, and that Greg was angry over Devon’s tryst simply because the scandal had affected his own image. And Lucky was shocked when he learnt that Greg’s marriage to Devon had not been consummated. The fact had made Devon actually more ‘married’ to Lucky than Greg himself!
Following his meeting with Greg, Lucky had tried to persuade Devon to annul her marriage to Greg, but she stubbornly refused to do so. It seemed like the end of the road for Lucky and Devon’s relationship.
Ultimately, it was Chase’s wife Tanya’s sudden death that brought Lucky and Devon together again. Devon had been close to the Tylers when she had agreed to help testify for Lucky, and so when she heard about Tanya’s death, Devon was also grief-stricken and had paid the family a visit. Tanya’s death, as well as Chase’s bereavement, had made Lucky and Devon realized that life was just too short and uncertain to waste without spending time with the ones you truly loved.
Devon eventually annulled her marriage to Greg and married Lucky afterwards.
NOTE: Readers who underwent heartbreak following the death of Chase’s wife Tanya would certainly want to read the next novel in this series, Texas! Chase in order to see how Chase regain his happily-ever-after again.
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