Can You Forget?

Can You Forget?
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Former Nighthawk operative Tallan "Irish" O'Rierdan had never intended to accept another assignment–until the woman who had long haunted his dreams returned and made him an offer he couldn't refuse. An offer that put both their lives in grave danger….Fellow agent Mary-Anne Poole was the childhood sweetheart he'd long ago been forced to leave…and now she was his wife. Because the only way these two agents could infiltrate the closely guarded estate of an international killer–and survive–was to convince their target that their scorching passion was real. But would their marriage of convenience heal the wounds of their past–and give them a chance at a future?

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“Pretend I want you? You think I’m going to have to pretend?”

She stood speechless, unable to move or breathe, or think of anything but the sweet ache building in her, wanting, hoping….

“You think it will be an act?” Tal pressed her, his voice soft, dangerous.

Mary-Anne managed a shaky whisper. “Don’t lie to me, Tal. Lie to the world if you need to, but not to me.”

“All right—you want the truth?” He took a step closer to her, his sudden grin half-savage, highlighting his scars. “I’ve forced myself to think about kissing you, touching you and pretending to want you, oh, about two hundred and forty times since I saw you yesterday. Just in case I needed the scenario for a mission, of course.” He smiled at her, his eyes dark, unfathomable—his body too close. “I must have been training for this mission for a long time, honey, because I’ve been pretending to want you ever since I was fifteen.”

Dear Reader,

What better way to start off a new year than with six terrific new Silhouette Intimate Moments novels? We’ve got miniseries galore, starting with Karen Templeton’s Staking His Claim, part of THE MEN OF MAYES COUNTY. These three brothers are destined to find love, and in this story, hero Cal Logan is also destined to be a father—but first he has to convince heroine Dawn Gardner that in his arms is where she wants to stay.

For a taste of royal romance, check out Valerie Parv’s Operation: Monarch, part of THE CARRAMER TRUST, crossing over from Silhouette Romance. Policemen more your style? Then check out Maggie Price’s Hidden Agenda, the latest in her LINE OF DUTY miniseries, set in the Oklahoma City Police Department. Prefer military stories? Don’t even try to resist Irresistible Forces, Candace Irvin’s newest SISTERS IN ARMS novel. We’ve got a couple of great stand-alone books for you, too. Lauren Nichols returns with a single mom and her protective hero, in Run to Me. Finally, Australian sensation Melissa James asks Can You Forget? Trust me, this undercover marriage of convenience will stick in your memory long after you’ve turned the final page.

Enjoy them all—and come back next month for more of the best and most exciting romance reading around, only in Silhouette Intimate Moments.


Leslie J. Wainger

Executive Editor

Can You Forget?

Melissa James


is a mother of three living in a beach suburb in New South Wales, Australia. A former nurse, waitress, store assistant, perfume and chocolate (yum!) demonstrator among other things, she believes in taking on new jobs for the fun experience. She’ll try almost anything at least once to see what it feels like—a fact that scares her family on regular occasions. She fell into writing by accident when her husband brought home an article stating how much a famous romance author earned, and she thought, “I can do that!” Years later, she found her niche at Silhouette Intimate Moments. Currently writing a pilot/spy series set in the South Pacific, she can be found most mornings walking and swimming at her local beach with her husband, or every afternoon running around to her kids’ sporting hobbies, while dreaming of flying, scuba diving, belaying down a cave or over a cliff—anywhere her characters are at the time!

To all those who love Beauty and the Beast stories, and to those who prefer healing and peace to war, yet know the realities of this life demand that some of us give our lives to protect others—I hope you enjoy this one. And to Maryanne, my dearest friend and natural healer, this is for you.

Special thanks must go to some of my dearest friends in the world, for making this story what it is: my critique partners, Maryanne Cappelluti and Diane Perkins, for putting aside a month of their lives to help me through my first deadline with style, grace and love, and a little cyber champagne at “the end.” Thanks also to my dear friends Olga Mitsialos and Anne-Louise Dubrawski for reading, encouraging and making suggestions. Very special thanks to Tracey West, reader, fan and suggestion person extraordinaire. And big, big thanks to Susan Litman, my editor, and to Gail Chasan and Leslie Wainger, for taking a chance with this book when it had so very much wrong with it at the start!



Chapter 1

Chapter 2

Chapter 3

Chapter 4

Chapter 5

Chapter 6

Chapter 7

Chapter 8

Chapter 9

Chapter 10

Chapter 11

Chapter 12

Chapter 13

Chapter 14

Chapter 15

Chapter 16

Chapter 17

Chapter 18

Chapter 19

Chapter 20


Tumah-ra Island, Arafura Sea

“There’s fresh blood in this.” Flashing a torch around the top of the cliff face, Tallan O’Rierdan, Nighthawk code name Irish, pointed out the stain to his team partner: a skidding footprint with a small dark pool near the heel.

Braveheart, the enormous bear of a man beside him, grinned, his teeth startlingly white against the camouflage-darkened face. “So you nailed him. That was one hell of a shot in the dark, Irish.”

Tal shrugged, squelching the instinctive surge of guilt. “Nowhere vital, by the looks of it.” Yet his gut roiled. Shooting people went against all he believed in. Even hitting scum like Burstall, a renegade Fed who’d committed murder and almost killed a fellow Nighthawk, cut deep in a place he didn’t want to analyze right now. But his objectives were clear: treat anyone injured by the rebel militia’s free-for-all attack, find Burstall and bring him in—or down. “He’s still on the move—toward Ka-Nin-Put.”

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