Desire (Desire, Book 1) - By Missy Johnson


Firstly, thank you to my wonderfully supportive husband, friends and family who have been with me through this entire ride. Mum, a special thank you for constantly pimping my writing, and for being so proud of me.

Thanks to all the people who read and enjoyed my debut novel, hearing your positive feedback was a great motivator in pushing me to keep writing.

To my lovely beta readers and writing buddies, thank you for all your help, support, suggestions and feedback, that only made my writing better.

To my editor, Fiona, thank you for accepting draft after draft, question after question, and thank you for doing a wonderful job polishing my book.

Finally, I’d be in trouble if I didn’t thank my pets, Hank, Polly, Barry, Bronwyn (and Neil, the turtle).

Chapter One


“Yes. As in vanished. Gone.” I threw him a look. I knew what it meant. It’s just that opening the door at nine on a Friday evening, I hadn’t exactly been expecting a detective.

Especially a detective who was here to tell me my mother had disappeared.

“Miss? Can I please come in?” I stood aside, wrapping my arms around myself, trying to cover as much of my Betty Boop pajamas as I could. With my messy tangled dark brown hair, my miss-matching rainbow bed socks, and my unmade face, I was sure I looked a treat. It didn’t really help matters that he was hot. And not just normal hot. He was buckle at the knees, take away your breath kind of hot.

“Can I get dressed?” I asked, blushing as he glanced down at me, his eyes rolling over my body. I was sure I saw a hint of a smile.

“Uh, sure. Take your time.” He smiled.

My blush intensified as his eyes lingered over me again, this time for what seemed like a moment too long. I left him alone in the living room as I rushed to my bedroom.

Throwing on an old pair of jeans and a sweater, I grabbed a hair tie, the reality of what was happening beginning to set in.

Mom was missing.

My mother was missing and I was unsure how I felt.

The usual reaction to such news would have been shock, disbelief, and sadness. The closest thing I felt right now to any emotion was the guilt I felt for not feeling anything.

Crazy, right?

I hadn’t spoken to mom in over four years, not since I’d left home to go to college at age Seventeen. My childhood had been normal, good even, until I hit age fourteen. That’s when things had gone haywire.

Back in the living room, the detective was looking at pictures above the fireplace. I slowed to a stop, and studied him for a moment, taking in his rich dark hair, his athletic physique, and his strong hands. To me, there was nothing sexier than a man with nice strong set of hands. I blushed as I imagined those hands roaming over my body. The sleeves of his silk shirt were rolled up. I couldn’t help but notice his tanned, sculpted arms, and the curve of his ass in the grey pants he wore.

“No pictures of your family?” He asked, surprised. I shook my head. The last thing I’d wanted was memories plastered all over the walls. Moving to the city had been my way of escaping. It had taken a lot of hard work and therapy for me to be able to move on, but I’d done it. I’d dealt with my issues and filed them away. After years of hurt, things were good. I was good.

I walked into the kitchen, opened the fridge, and grabbed two cans of cola.

“My family and I are not exactly close.” I said dryly, throwing him a can. He caught it, giving me a smile. “So my mother is missing. What about my brother and sister?”

Images of Nerina and Sam flashed through my mind. Four years was a lot of time. Sam was only one when I’d left, and Neri had been eleven. If Sam even remembered who I was I’d be shocked.

“Well, your siblings are kind of why I’m here.” I froze, instantly understanding where this was going.


I had other relatives. Not all of them were fit enough to take care of a couple of kids, but he couldn’t honestly expect me to drop my life to look after a five year old and a fifteen year old who hated me, could he? I didn’t care how selfish that sounded. My life wasn’t set up to handle kids. Hell, I wasn’t sure