The woman he found in the woods out back was….not from around here….
“Why in hell can’t you try, just a little bit, to get along with the people here? Can you tell me that? Are you deliberately trying to make Rosa hate you?”
She closed her eyes, shook her head. “Men do not understand these things. I will explain for you. That receptionist wants you. She cannot claim you because I am in her way. That is the only reason she dislikes me, Thomas.”
Janella sighed hard, pushing one hand through her long dark hair. “Oh, I know it does not work that way here. She has to make you want her first. But do you not see, that is what she was trying to do. She does not dare to defy me or challenge me for you, so she resorts to this underhanded manner of trying to lure you to her with gifts of food and face paint and scanty clothing.”
Thomas chewed his lower lip for a moment. Then he nodded thoughtfully. “So you figure Rosa thinks that you plan to…uh…claim me for yourself. Is that it?”
She sighed, seemingly relieved that he’d finally caught on. “Yes.”
“And do you? Plan to claim me, I mean?”
She tilted her head to one side, looking him up and down. “I might. I have not decided.”
“I see.” Thomas paced across the kitchen, picked up his cup from the table and carried it to the sink. As he rinsed it he spoke slowly, evenly. “Well, before you make any plans, Janella, I ought to tell you one thing.”
He turned slowly, slung the cup into the sink and faced her. “No one is going to claim me. Not you. Not Rosa. Nobody. Understand?”
She frowned. “Oh, Thomas, do not be foolish. I did not say I wanted you forever. Only for sex.”
Dr. Duffy’s Close Encounter by Maggie Shayne is a blend of sweet romance and a little science fiction. Although I usually am not a fan of anything science fiction, I found that I enjoyed reading this book far more than I expected to. The pace at which the story was set was perfect and I think any female who reads Dr. Duffy’s Close Encounter will really identify with the character of Janella because she wanted what we all want – love. The other thing I really liked about this book was how the character of Thomas Duffy who was so closed off to any emotions, finally let the walls he built to keep others out crumble.