Following a tragic accident, Leslie Cohen, MD, is driven to live the nomadic life of a "locum tenens" physician, moving from one temporary job to another, covering the practices of orthopedic surgeons while they take time off. Deeply affected because of her loss, this enables her to avoid forming relationships, both friendly and professional. And she is determined. But all of this changes when she agrees to a one month commitment in Abilene, Texas, temporarily taking over the practice of Hal Hawley while he goes on leave to have surgery for cancer. Soon after arriving she realizes her mistake in taking on an extended post as she develops a strong bond with Doc Hawley and his wife. Even more significant is the friend she finds in Regan Wakeman, a local rancher and contractor. There is conflict in her soul as Leslie tries to protect the memories she wants to keep alive no matter how painful they might be. As the relationship with him progresses, there is a gradual revelation of the tragedy that has remained her secret until now. BARBARA BERGIN practices orthopedic surgery in Austin, Texas, where she resides with her husband and two children. She competes in reining, reined cow horse and cutting, and has been ranked nationally in the reined cow horse performance sport. She and her husband own a ranch in Smithville, Texas.