Title: Catching Preeya
Series: Paradise South, #3
Author: Rissa Brahm
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Release Date: July 8, 2016
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Flight attendant Preeya Patel wears her mother’s wanderlust-genes like a catwalk model. After quitting med school, she flies fast-and-free through her twenties—a staunch middle finger to her Dr. Dad. She wants the life of her dreams—a wild ride with a savage partner in crime to go with it. But dreams don’t often match what fate delivers…
Young widower, Dr. Ben Trainer, is flying to Mexico, joining yet another vaccine mission, alleviating his grief and guilt one needy soul at a time. And…risking his life might just set him free.
When an in-flight emergency throws Ben and Preeya together to save a child, logic and whimsy collide. Both lost souls’ find something hot and deep and true—an unforeseen connection. But dreams morph, old nightmares haunt, secrets surface. In order to navigate their futures, they must face their pasts.
Will Preeya recognize the man of her wildest dreams? Or will Ben fly from this second-chance love before her eyes open? A fight—or flight—to the finish…for love.
The AEDs? Preeya swallowed hard and nearly choked on the dryness in her throat. Please don’t need the defib pads for this boy. This child.
Ben’s hand met hers, as if sensing her terror. “Probably won’t need ’em; it’s just in case. Second epi shot, please.”
While he checked the boy’s carotid again, she placed the injector in his free hand.
“Pulse and breathing are slowing.” He held the shot up to his face and checked the injector’s dosage. “Another point-three milligrams…here we go.” He slammed it hard into the boy’s other thigh.
They both stared at the child. At his eyes and face, his throat, his chest…which had ceased any and all movement. The boy’s breath had stopped.
“Okay, buddy, let’s do this.” Ben glanced at his watch to note the time again, then rose up on his knees and began CPR.
“The pads, now?” Preeya asked from the floor while holding Ben’s waist to balance him through a rough patch of turbulence.
Between counts, “No, not yet.”
Ben finished two swift breaths into the boy’s mouth, now purple lips. Still nothing. “Yes—two, three, four—the pads.” Breath, breath. “But, Jesus, a defibrillator on this age heart…”
Shit, was Ben getting concerned?
“I’m going to grab the AEDs myself—Leena’s taking too long.” She spun toward first class to go, but Ben grabbed her wrist before she took a step.
Ben couldn’t say a word to follow up his touch before she heard it. A gasp.
A gasp from heaven, that’s what met her ears.
The boy jolted, his torso suddenly perpendicular to his legs, clutching his neck in his hands, air flooding into his shocked and oxygen-deprived body. The lanky and frail twelve-year-old body, now sitting up with life.
Alive, thank God.
Alive, thank God.
His mother came running up the aisle toward them and knelt at her boy’s feet. Ben slid behind the boy at the window end of the row and let the child rest on Ben’s chest while the child continued to oxygenate.
Preeya’s heart racked her rib cage and, officially dizzy from adrenaline and pure fear, she let her body slide to the floor then surrender back onto her calves. She swallowed back the emotion, held it at the brink. Oh God, that mother’s terror. Dear Jesus, the weight of the mere thought of losing a child made her never, ever want kids. Thoughts of losing Prana, her baby sister, swept in but Preeya blew them out again with a violent gust as quick as they’d come. No, not ever.
Leena was there the next second, heaving with relief. “Oh God, thank you.”
“Landing…?” Ben asked of Leena.
“Boise. Seven minutes out.”
“With this type of allergic event, we don’t know if there will be another episode. Have an ambulance standing by. And two more injections at the ready.”
Preeya got up from the floor. “The kit in the front has two more. I’ll get ’em. And waters…” The boy’s mother brought one back for her son as Preeya had instructed. “I’ll bring back a few more bottles.”
“Yes. Please,” Ben said, his head leaning against the hard window shade, the boy still panting, eyes closed, weak, wilted against Ben’s sweat-drenched and heaving chest.
Preeya started down the aisle, but looked back over her shoulder.
At Dr. Ben Trainer.
How’d he do it? Moment by moment, breath by breath, he’d pushed life back into the lifeless. He literally breathed a second chance into that near-dead boy, that hardly-lived-yet son of that mother, that gasping-and-grasping child, the brother to that wailing little girl. To keep it down, all of the erupting near-death and too-close, Preeya bit her bottom lip. Hard. So hard it might’ve drawn blood—she didn’t know or care. But the sharp pain did its job. No tears. Breathe, and no tears.
It had been just way too much life and death. Perhaps she’d stumbled upon yet another subconscious reason for having dropped out of medical school. Life and death. Not for her.
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Contemporary romance writer Rissa Brahm grew up in New York and has since lived in all four corners of the United States, and beyond. The beautiful paradise of Puerto Vallarta, Mexico—the core setting of her hot & heartfelt debut series, Paradise South—is Rissa’s most recent and beloved home.
After two decades of working in the rigid—and sometimes blurry—world of finance, she's taken hold of her truest dream, writing hot and heartfelt stories full time.
When not chained-by-choice to her MacBook, she is embarking on outdoor adventures with her husband and little girl, laughing to tears with a good rom com, eating amazing Indian food with something chocolate for dessert; reading good, hot scorchers in bed; biking, long walks, and yoga; zoning out to killer music from across the decades and the globe; and getting lost only to discover a new exciting route home again. You can connect with Rissa on Facebook, Twitter or by email anytime by heading to www.RissaBrahm.com.