Wild in the Outback
Documentary maker Dan Masters is completely out of his comfort zone in the wild outback Australia. Passionate park ranger, Victoria Price, couldn’t be more at home in the wilderness. After Victoria saves Dan from the jaws of a ferocious crocodile, she can’t get away from him fast enough. But her amazing rescue has been filmed during their preliminary shoot, and when the film’s investors see the footage, they demand Dan do whatever it takes to get Victoria involved in the movie. Including blackmail.
Ordered to take part, Victoria reluctantly joins Dan on safari where they fight poachers, fire ants and a powerful attraction for each other that becomes increasingly difficult to deny. But desire is a dangerous game…
Wild in the Outback was previously published as Wild At Heart. Scenes have been updated and edited. Wild in the Outback this is an updated work with fully edited and new scenes.
‘It’s a good thing the sole of your boot is so thick. It’s saved your foot. She would’ve ripped it off in an instant if she’d had a better hold. You’re lucky to have gotten away from her so easily’
‘What was that?’ The sandy-haired man spoke to her.
‘Just Big Mama. She’s big, old and grumpy. One of the most vicious crocs around here.’
‘Big Mama? You have a name for that thing?’ Dan’s eyes shone brightly out of his mud-streaked face. There were alluvial golden flecks mixing in the deep green depths.
‘That thing, as you put it, was protecting her nest.’ Victoria saw spot of pale white through the debris, disturbed by the man’s thrashing around. She gasped, horrified.
‘Crocodile eggs! I hope you haven’t broken any.’
‘Eggs!’ He half sat, then dropped to the ground with a wet splat. ‘She just about ripped me limb from limb and you’re worried about eggs.’
‘Small price to pay.’
‘Small price!’ This time he propped himself up on his elbows, wincing with effort. His biceps bulged beneath clinging wet material. Victoria noted broad shoulders, toned arms and a well-developed chest. The golden flecks in his eyes glinted. ‘I can see compassion is not one of your strong points.’
‘I give compassion when it’s due. If this were an accident, sure, I’d be all over you, but you came here on a path of destruction and you got what you deserved. I should’ve let Big Mama have her way with you, but I don’t want her nest more destroyed than it already is.’
‘I’m all for women having their way, but she attacked me. This wasn’t something that was planned. I was told being here at this time of day was going to be completely safe.’ He raised mud-caked eyebrows. The hairs looked brown beneath the muddy veneer, but she wasn’t sure. He had a remarkably familiar face, but she couldn’t put her finger on where she’d seen him.
‘A croc’s instinct for the survival of their species is to aggressively protect their young. They’re not cute little bunnies. They’re crocs, with big teeth, thick skin, prehistoric tendencies and bad tempers. There is no safe time,’ Victoria said. ‘Now get up, I’m taking you to the station. You can make your statement there,’ she said.
‘Station? I thought you were here to rescue me.’
‘I’m here to protect crocodiles, not fools.’
‘Hey, wait a minute… I wasn’t!… Wait… Harry! Show her what we’re doing here,’ he demanded.
‘The camera!’ Harry gasped. He wobbled over to clump of reeds and stooped to pick up a large black box. Victoria recognised a very new, expensive mud-splattered camera. He flicked a switch at the back and let out a yelp, his face flushed and glowing. ‘That croc moved fast, but I’m faster! We’ve got it, Dan. I’ve shot it all.’
‘Get up. I’m taking both you and Dirty Harry here back to the station before Big Mama has a second chance to rip you apart. It’s an offence to poach crocodile eggs, not to mention as stupid as hell. Now move. Or do I have to pick you up and haul you in myself?’ Victoria shook her head in astonishment, mentally rolling her eyes.
‘I can’t move.’
‘Why?’ Victoria demanded.
‘You’re a crook shot, lady,’ Dan let out a heavy sigh, reaching for his shoulder. ‘The only reason you had to bash that croc over the head is because you missed it and shot me instead.’