A Military Romance Novella from

NY Times and USA Today Bestseller

Caridad Pineiro

For the first time in nearly two years he felt normal again . . .

Army brat Zack Taylor had spent his early life going from one place to the next, losing his home and friends with every move until he decided it was just easier to be alone.  Despite that, Zack has no hesitation in following in his father’s footsteps and going the ROTC route for college.  He has no hesitation in going back for his wounded team members after they are attacked during a mission. His dedication to his men nearly cost him his life when a nearby explosion wounds him and shears off part of his leg.  For the last two years, Zack has been rebuilding his life and finding out that being a loner is no fun.  Especially not when he’s caught the eye of sexy Samantha Whittaker whose gaze is filled with passion, laughter, and the shadows of pain.

She is fighting hard to ignore the obvious invitation in his determined gaze . . .

Lieutenant Commander Samantha Whittaker is just not interested in getting involved.  At least not until she can deal with the wounds left behind by her stint as a prisoner of war.  Physically and mentally abused, it has taken her years to find some stability and independence in her life.  Giving in to the much younger and enticing Army vet will challenge that hard won freedom. But Zack’s persistence and caring are wearing her down until she considers that maybe it’s time to embrace all that he can offer, even if it’s only for one night of passion.

Chapter 1

Zack Taylor sped across the waves, fighting for balance atop the surfboard. Awkward at first, but gaining stability as he adjusted his legs into a wider stance and bent his knees.

He rode the wave as far as he could and then kicked out, sending the board flying in one direction while he sank into the cool water. As he rose to the surface, the familiar pull of the leash registered on his leg and he swam toward the board so he could climb back on.

Grabbing the rails of the board, he slid across the surface, but thumped one edge with his prosthetic leg as he struggled to get on.  The surfboard swayed side-to-side with the sudden imbalance before he steadied it.

A little shaky, but it felt awesome to finally be able to go surfing again.

It almost felt like flying, he thought as he paddled out to wait for another set of waves.

Surfing was one of the few things he’d missed when his family had moved from place to place during his dad’s Army service.  He had picked up the sport when his dad had been stationed close to the Delaware beaches and he’d kept surfing any time that their latest deployment had been near the ocean.

Even during his tours of duty, he would find a way to surf if a beach was nearby. There was something about the ocean and its vastness with which he identified.  Sitting there, in that great aloneness, waiting for just the right wave, suited him.

As an Army brat, he’d been alone for most of his life.  Except for family, of course.

It had just been too difficult to make friends and then lose them every time his dad transferred to a different base.

Surfing had gifted him with something else:  Patience.

He’d learned it was far better to bide his time to earn a perfect ride then hurry up and wipe out in a bad wave.

When he reached the spot where a few other surfers waited for the next set, he sat up and straddled the board, his legs dangling over the edge.  Well, his one leg and three quarters of his left with the durable prosthetic. He floated there, enjoying the warmth of the sun and the wash of the water all around him.

Enjoying life and appreciating just how fragile it could be.

It had taken him a long time to get to this point.  To get past the pain and anger at his loss and be thankful that it hadn’t been worse.  To be grateful for the path on which he’d been set that had brought him here.

He gazed back toward the shore and to the growing crowd of people on the beach.  He could make out his boss and friend Mark Smith and his wife Bridget as Mark hauled the volleyball equipment down to the sand.  Following them like baby ducks chasing after their mother were another group of his friends.  His work buddy and former Navy Seal Rafe Castillo and his wife Elena. Marine Lieutenant Trevor Mason and Maggie Sullivan, Bridget’s younger sister, visiting again from New York City.

His friends.

It was weird to say that after the many years that he hadn’t had any.

And he knew that chances were that Samantha would be joining them soon.

Lieutenant Commander Samantha Whittaker.

She’d snared his attention the very first time he’d joined Mark and his wife at one of these gatherings and later again at the other parties held by the many veterans who lived along this stretch of the Jersey Shore.

He’d be lying if he said that it had been anything other than a rockin’ hot bod and stunning face that had made him take notice the first time.  But it hadn’t taken him long to see past her beauty to the strong and smart woman inside.  One who laughed often, but whose gaze was shadowed by pain.

He wondered a lot about what had put the darkness there and what would drive it away.

He also wondered if he’d misread something else in that gaze:  Desire.

He thought he’d seen it after the first couple of times that they’d talked.  A hesitant half glance and that look that said she maybe wanted more, but was afraid to say so.

Which puzzled him considering the kind of woman she was.

Independent.  Determined.  Capable.

Ex-Navy, she was now in the Coast Guard and used to dealing with men on all levels.

He’d thought she’d be a little more direct about what she wanted.

But then again, maybe he could be a little more direct as well.

He wanted to get to know her better.  Emotionally.  Physically.

The latter thought made his gut twist painfully.

He glanced down at lefty and wondered what she would think when she realized.  How she would handle the revelation.  Would she not care or shy away?

Fuck that, he thought.

Today was going to be a day for firsts.

His first time surfing in two years.

His first time asking a woman out since he’d been wounded.

Maybe even another first if they hit it off.

A man could dream after all, he thought and as the ocean surged beneath him, he flattened onto the board and paddled into the wave.

As he caught it just right, he popped to his feet and flew toward shore, smiling all the way. 

If you liked EMBRACE THE NIGHT . . .

You may enjoy these other Military romances by Caridad Pineiro.


STAY THE NIGHT, December 2014

TAKE A CHANCE Box set, November 2014

ONE LAST NIGHT, October 2014



EMBRACE THE NIGHT is also part of the HOLDING OUT FOR A HERO box set, specially priced at 99 cents and available for free reads at Kindle Unlimited.

About the Author

NY Times and USA Today Bestseller Caridad Pineiro is a Jersey Girl who just wants to write, travel, and spend more time with family and friends. Caridad is the author of nearly 50 novels/novellas and loves romance novels, super heroes, TV and cooking. Caridad writes dark and sexy romantic suspense, erotic military romance, and paranormal romances for those who live to love on the edge. Her sweet, but still naughty side, Charity Pineiro, writes contemporary romances packed with emotion and humor. For more information on Caridad/Charity, please visit http://www.caridad.comor http://www.rebornvampirenovels.com. You can also find Caridad/Charity on:

Twitter at https://twitter.com/caridadpineiro
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Tsu at https://www.tsu.co/CaridadPineiro 
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Caridad also sends out a newsletter to her friends! To subscribe, please visit www.caridad.com.

Additional Books by the Author

Additional Books by the Author Writing as Caridad Pineiro

Novellas in the Take a Chance Military Romance Series


STAY THE NIGHT, December 2014

TAKE A CHANCE Box set, November 2014

ONE LAST NIGHT, October 2014



Books in The Gambling for Love Romantic Suspense Series

THE PRINCE’S GAMBLE November 2012 ISBN 9781622668007 Entangled Publishing

TO CATCH A PRINCESS August 2013 ISBN 9781622661329 Entangled Publishing

Books in The Sin Hunter Paranormal Romance Series

THE CLAIMED May 2012 ISBN 978-0446584609 Forever Grand Central Publishing

THE LOST August 2011 ISBN 978-0446584616 Forever Grand Central Publishing

STRONGER THAN SIN November 2010 ISBN 0446543845 Forever Grand Central Publishing

SINS OF THE FLESH November 2009 ISBN 0446543837 Forever Grand Central Publishing

Other Novels by Caridad

THE FIFTH KINDOM July 2011 ISBN 9781426891885 Carina Press

SOLDIER’S SECRET CHILD Dec 2008 ISBN 0373276109 Silhouette Romantic Suspense


GHOST OF A CHANCE, paranormal short story November 2012 ISBN B00AUGV89G

HER VAMPIRE LOVER October 2012 ISBN 9781459242289 Nocturne Cravings Novella

NIGHT OF THE COUGAR June 2012 ISBN 9781459231153 Nocturne Cravings Novella

THE VAMPIRE’S CONSORT April 2012 ISBN 9781459222731 Harlequin Nocturne Cravings Novella

NOCTURNAL WHISPERS February 2012 ISBN 9781459221437 Harlequin Nocturne Cravings Novella

AMAZON AWAKENING December 2011 ISBN 9781459282766 Available Harlequin Nocturne Cravings Novella


AZTEC GOLD January 2011 ISBN 9781426891045 Carina Press Novella

Crazy for the Cat in MOON FEVER Oct 2007 ISBN 1416514902 Pocket Books

Books in THE CALLING/THE REBORN Vampire Novel Series


DIE FOR LOVE, December 2013, Entangled Publishing

BORN TO LOVE, November 2013, ISBN 9781622663705 Entangled Publishing

TO LOVE OR SERVE, October 2013, ISBN 9781622663477 Entangled Publishing

FOR LOVE OR VENGEANCE, September 2013, ISBN 9781622662937 Entangled Publishing

KISSED BY A VAMPIRE (formerly ARDOR CALLS) October 2012 ISBN 9780373885589 Harlequin Nocturne

AWAKENING THE BEAST Collection featuring HONOR CALLS October 2009 ISBN 0373250940 Silhouette Nocturne

FURY CALLS March 2009 ISBN 0373618077 Silhouette Nocturne

HONOR CALLS February 2009 ISBN 9781426828362 Nocturne Bite

HOLIDAY WITH A VAMPIRE December 2007 ISBN 0373617763 Silhouette Nocturne

THE CALLING COMPLETE COLLECTION October 2008 ISBN 9781426807657 Silhouette Includes Darkness Calls, Danger Calls, Temptation Calls, Death Calls, Devotion Calls, and Blood Calls–as well as the online read Desire Calls.

BLOOD CALLS May 2007 ISBN 0373617631 Silhouette Nocturne

DEVOTION CALLS January 2007 ISBN 0373617550 Silhouette Nocturne

DEATH CALLS Dec 2006 ISBN 0373617534 Silhouette Nocturne

TEMPTATION CALLS Oct 2005 ISBN 0373274602 Silhouette Intimate Moments

DANGER CALLS June 2005 ISBN 0373274416 Silhouette Intimate Moments

DARKNESS CALLS Mar 2004 ISBN 0373273533 Silhouette Intimate Moments

Romantic Suspense Series

SECRET AGENT REUNION Aug 2007 ISBN 0373275463 Silhouette Romantic Suspense

MORE THAN A MISSION Aug 2006 ISBN 037327498X Silhouette Intimate Moments

Additional Books by the Author Writing as Charity Pineiro

NOW AND ALWAYS June 2013 ISBN 1490362770

FAITH IN YOU July 2013 ISBN 1490412697

TORI GOT LUCKY December 2013




Copyright Notice

This book is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents are the product of the author's imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual events, locales, or persons, living or dead, is coincidental.

Copyright © 2015 Caridad Piñeiro Scordato

All rights reserved. Except for use in any review, the reproduction or utilization of this work in whole or in part in any form by any electronic, mechanical or other means, now known or hereafter invented, including xerography, photocopying and recording, or in any information storage or retrieval system, is forbidden without the written permission of Caridad Piñeiro Scordato.


All rights reserved under International and Pan-American Copyright Conventions. By payment of the required fees, you have been granted the non-exclusive, non-transferable right to access and read the text of this e-book on-screen. No part of this text may be reproduced, transmitted, down-loaded, decompiled, reverse engineered, or stored in or introduced into any information storage and retrieval system, in any form or by any means, whether electronic or mechanical, now known or hereinafter invented, without the express written permission of publisher.

EMBRACE THE NIGHT Cover design ©2015 Caridad Pineiro Scordato

Manufactured in the United States of America