Audrey Roberts's masquerade is about to end in disaster. For years, she's written love letters to Johnny and signed them with her sister's name. Now, the man she adores is coming home to marry his pen pal and Audrey is left to face the consequences of her deception.
Injured during D-Day, Johnny Davenport is shipped home. His only plan: to find the woman whose love letters kept him sane and hopeful throughout the destruction of war. Nothing will stop him from drawing out the beautiful, shy girl he left behind and making her his wife.
But once the true writer is revealed, which sister will he claim?
August 17, 1944.
“Johnny should be here any minute.” Audrey Roberts bit her lip and almost shredded the telegram in her hands as she stood by the lace covered window.
Keeping a classroom full of third-graders entertained enough to learn their lessons was easier than the job that soon awaited her. Dropping the tattered pieces of paper on the floor, she twisted her fingers together.
Nonsense! As the eldest child of Edward and Hannah Roberts, she’d been raised to be the responsible one, the kind and considerate one, the studious one with her head in a book and her feet planted firmly in reality.
Still, a fine drop of perspiration trailed down her forehead, over her cheek and past the stiff collar of her white blouse. Nothing stirred in the late afternoon. Not even the breeze from the rickety, old fan clanging in the background. The humid temperatures languished in the interior of her mother’s first floor apartment in Mercy, Michigan.
“Why did I have to go and make such a mess of things?” Her fingernails dug into her palms. Why, she felt more skittish than the new-born colt just born on Uncle Henry’s farm. Silly nonsense. She was a grown woman in charge of educating a roomful of children.
Certainly she could handle telling her sister’s suitor that Kathryn had run off with another man. If only she hadn’t created the masquerade that was sure to end in disaster. The nerves in her stomach bunched together like a pail of her younger brother’s worms. She closed her eyes and leaned her forehead against the faded, floral wallpaper. A young Johnny’s smiling face floated in front of her darkened lids. She’d complicated things because she’d taken to him the day her younger sister, Kathryn, had introduced him to her.
Audrey had fallen in love immediately with the handsome soldier. She’d sensed a disquiet about him, a need that called out to her on a deep emotional level. She’d continued to fill that need long after Kathryn had pushed him aside to pursue a better prospect.