Wednesday, September 29, 2021

Read an Excerpt from O'Hara vs. Wilder by Linda Wisdom



When Sheriff Tess O'Hara's former partner, detective Jake Wilder, roars into her small desert town and commandeers her house in pursuit of counterfeiters, he reignites temptations and passions Tess thought she had left behind. She'd surrendered to his temptation for one night long ago, and now he intends to prove that the passion still burns between them.


It took a few seconds for Jake to register the sig­nificance of the high-pitched wail of a siren and the flashing blue and white lights on the vehicle following him.  Jakee swore under his breath as he pulled over to the side of the road.  Drumming his fingers against the steering wheel, he kept an eye on the rearview mirror and watched the black-and-white Bronco slide to a stop behind him.

Humming under his breath, he watched the truck's door swing open. A pair of khaki-covered legs appeared and made their way toward him.

He looked up and found his angelic smile reflected in mirrored sunglasses under the pulled-down brim of a tan Stetson.  "Is there anything wrong, Officer?  Gee, great sunglasses.  I got a pair just like them.  They're wonderful for intimidating the bad guys, aren't they?"

The officer's face could have been carved from stone.  "Hey, Slick, we've got a big problem.  Now, I know how it is.  The sun's shining, you've got the top down, the Stones are blasting on the stereo.  What else can you do but cruise down the road at a leisurely eighty-five miles an hour?" A leatherbound folder appeared in one gloved hand.  "Thing is, Slick, the speed limit around here is only fifty-five.  So why don't you be a good boy and show me your driver's license, car registration, and proof of insurance."

Jake nodded in agreement as he shifted his hip from one side to the other to pull out his wallet.  "How do you feel about one law officer making a concession for another?” He flipped open the case with his badge and identification, holding it up for the officer's inspection.  "Sort of professional courtesy."

"Hate to tell you this, Slick, but that doesn't look like a license to operate this hot little number," the offi­cer drawled, indicating Jake's bright yellow classic Corvette Stingray.  "I'd really rather see that than your Junior G-Man badge and ID card."

He sighed and pointed to the glove compartment.  "I also have my weapon in there."

"Then take it out slow and easy, and we'll both be happy.  And while you're at it, why don't you turn your music down to a dull roar.  No use in scaring the wildlife."

Jake studied the officer writing up his ticket.  "You from Crater Rock?"


"Nice town." 

"If you like peace and quiet."

"City folk like it there?"

The pen continued scratching across the paper.  "Nope.  Occupation?" the officer asked, as if Jake hadn't already shown his ID.

He pulled out a cigarette and lit up.  "Badass fed."

The officer handed the folder to Jake.  "Sign down there, please.  You have twenty-one days to respond." Jake took the ticket that was handed to him.  "And if you intend to stick around, I suggest you keep the speed down to a tidy double nickel."

Jake carefully folded the ticket and stuck it in his shirt pocket.  "I'll think about it."

The officer tapped the side of the car with a flat palm.  "Have a nice day, Slick."

Jake watched the officer walk back to the wait­ing Bronco and climb in.  He was tempted to peel out but decided against it.  He whistled a tuneless melody under his breath and stared into the rearview mirror.

"I’m flattered, Legs. You remembered your term of affection for me. I gotta give you credit.  You acted the part of the small-town cop to a tee." He reached for the gear­shift, put the car in gear, and drove onto the road at a sedate pace worthy of a society matron.  He glanced again into the rearview mirror as he drove away.  "Did you honestly think that your threats would keep me from coming out here?  Since you've decided to be hostile about this, I guess I'll have to make a few changes in my game plan, and, honey, you are not going to be happy with it at all."

The Bronco remained in place for the next five minutes while its driver watched the bright yellow sports car finally disappear in the shimmering heat waves trailing across the road.

"Damn him." The voice belonging to the person in the uniform and mirrored sunglasses was unmistakably female.


Monday, September 27, 2021

Read an Excerpt from Jude's Sweet Fire by Jessica McBrayer



When Jude Christensen, the Captain of the Savannah Heat hockey team, sets out on his morning run, he has no way of knowing that this particular run will change his life forever. Rescuing a tattered kitten from a feral dog leads him to meet Dr. Megan James, the captivating veterinarian who treats the cat, and catches his eye. 

Megan wonders about the man who doesn't hesitate to pay for the treatment of a kitten that wasn’t even his own and as fate continues to throw them together, Jude and Megan explore their mutual attraction. 

But when Megan becomes the target of a stalker who doesn’t like the attention she is getting from the handsome Captain who dominates on the ice, things take a sinister turn. The stalker will stop at nothing to keep Jude away from “his” Megan. As the danger increases, Megan refuses to be intimidated, and Jude must find a way to save her life as he earns her heart.



I walked closer to the fluff ball, which now lay motionless on the ground. As I got closer, I could finally see that it was a kitten, and it was in dire shape.

I remembered running past a vet’s office a few blocks back. Scooping the kitten up, I threw the branch at the dog to buy us time and bolted back in the direction I had come, hoping they were open this early. I could feel my heart beat harder fearing the kitten may have succumbed to its injuries. Smelling the copper tang of blood, I ran all-out and felt a glimmer of hope as I heard a mewling sound. When I got to the vet’s office, I found the door locked but the lights on, so I pounded on the glass, hoping someone would hear. A woman in a white coat came from the back and quickly unlocked the door. She sucked in her breath as she looked down at the bloody mass in my hands and reached to take the kitten from me.

“Help me. Please,” was all I could get out. Despite regular, intense physical workouts, I couldn’t breathe. I handed her the kitten and bent over, trying to catch my breath.

“Come with me,” she said. It was then that I looked up into a pair of devastating hazel eyes.

Jude's Sweet Fire is the suspenseful first installment in the Savannah Heat Sports Romance Series and includes a BONUS free novella download offer!

"I absolutely loved this book I laughed I cried and I got mad and I fell in love going to read the Christmas one Love it!" Luann - amazon reviewer

"Jude's Sweet Fire - the title is perfect!! There is sweet and boy is there fire! Humor, danger, sexy chemistry, it's all here!!" - Tricia for Everything Marie

If you like instantly captivating gorgeous men, fate, and love conquering all, then you'll love Jessica McBrayer's addictive series.

Wednesday, September 22, 2021

Read an Excerpt from O'Malley's Quest by Linda Wisdom



Bored with excitement, archaeologist Kate O'Malley was ready to settle down until her scheming Irish grandfather teased her with a proposal of one last adventure. And what a doozy!


As sleazy bars in tiny, sleazy Mexican border towns went, this one was no better and no worse than the others. And it didn't have to be a Friday night to bring out the regulars with the requisite number of typical barroom brawls to liven up the customers' evenings, He sat at a back table in the tavern where he could see the entrance. A bottle of tequila and a cloudy glass were the only objects on the table in front of him. With the chair tipped back on its rear legs and his sweat-stained hat pulled down over his eyes, he looked relaxed, perhaps even asleep, which would be impossible considering the noise level. But those who had met him before knew differently. The gringo was not to be bothered.

Those who had the alcohol-induced courage to challenge him usually ended up with more than a few bruises, and one sober challenger was treated for a broken collarbone. No, this man who appeared in the bar every so often seeking information or meeting people was not a man to be taken lightly. A few passed by the table murmuring a respectful "Hola, J.C.," but other than that terse greeting they left him to himself.

Which was just fine with him. His less than clean chambray shirt was left unbuttoned to combat the heat in the small bar that intensified with every live body that entered the room. He poured tequila into the glass and sipped the fiery liquid while keeping his eyes on the doorway. It would appear he was waiting for someone.

It was late when the stranger entered the bar. For a moment, silence descended on the bar as the men stared at the woman standing near the entrance. Women coming in there were not unusual but white women who were young and not looking shopworn were.

J.C. didn't move from his corner as he observed the visitor. He had to admit she was dressed appropriately for the occasion. Well-worn jeans, snug fitting but not too tight. A white cotton shirt that was buttoned high enough not to reveal any cleavage. No jewelry, not even a watch. Her boots looked scuffed and broken in. Her honey-blond hair was pinned back in a conservative style that emphasized her delicate features. Good, nothing to grab on to in case of a fight. The lady obviously knew what she was doing. When entering a strange situation, don't try to draw attention to yourself.

She walked confidently, looking neither right nor-left until-she reached the bar. If she was aware of the men watching her with hungry eyes she gave no evidence of it.

Pedro, the bartender, looked at her with little surprise in his eyes. He'd been working there too long to think it unusual to see a lovely senorita who was obviously not a prostitute walk into his bar.

From J.C.'s vantage point he could hear every word she spoke. He gave her points for fluent Spanish in the region's dialect. He hid a smile when she asked for a glass of tequila.

"Senorita, are you sure?" Pedro asked, looking a little worried. .

She smiled. "Very sure."

J.C. smiled. Good girl. If you want information, you have to be ready to drink with the natives.

She didn't flinch when Pedro deposited the bottle on the bar, displaying a pale worm curled up in the bottom. She downed her drink quickly without one flicker of emotion on her face.

"I'm looking for Joaquin;" she told Pedro. "I'm told he can usually be found here."

The bartender looked worried. "Oh, Senorita, a lovely lady like you would not want Joaquin. He is a very nasty man." Something occurred to him. "Unless you happen to work for him." He looked her up and down. "If you do, you must leave and return to his house. I do not want any trouble here from his women."

"I don't work for Joaquin, but I am looking for him to work for me. I understand he sometimes guides people into certain mountain regions," she explained, being deliberately vague. "I was also given Luis Ventara's name." She tapped the rim of the glass with her fingernail, indicating she would take a refill, and laid money on the bar.

"If you want a guide, you should speak to J.C. first," Pedro advised, gesturing toward the rear corner table. "He does not guide, but he can give you names of men who are very reliable. Men you can trust."

She barely spared him a glance. He didn't mind because he knew exactly what she saw. A man with several days' growth of beard, face pretty much hidden by the hat, a shirt that hadn't seen a laundry in weeks. He probably looked like a drunk who recently passed out and no one bothered to throw him out just yet. He hid a smile. She didn't look very impressed with what she saw, although nothing in her expression gave her away. He just sensed it. He couldn't wait to see what she thought of Joaquin or Luis.

"What about either of the other two names I mentioned?" she asked coolly, returning her gaze to the bartender.


Monday, September 20, 2021

Right in Front of Me: Friends to Lovers Romance (A Cajuns Hockey Romance Book 1) by Jessica McBrayer



A Friends to Lovers Romance

It's hot in New Orleans and so is the new goalie Ty 'Tag' Taggart.

Ty had a good career in Savannah with the Heat, but he was the backup and would remain that way for the foreseeable future. His mentor, Ryan, the best goalie in the league, would be Savannah's starting goalie until he retired. When a new expansion team opens up in New Orleans he's a free agent. He eagerly signs a contract with the Cajuns as their new starting goalie. He loved his old team and learned a lot, but he's looking forward to putting his own stamp on the NHL. What he wasn't counting on is seeing his long-lost childhood friend sitting right in front of him in a cafe in the French Quarter.

Lisette 'Lis' Fontenot had been inseparable from him and his sister when they were kids. Her parents dying and her grandmother moving her from San Diego to the bayous of Louisiana put an end to the three amigos. What was the chance he would see her again? Lis had worked hard to start her own walking tour company and was doing well. She'd been meeting in a small cafe with one of her employees when she looked up and saw a ghost from her past. She was staring right into the dark blue eyes of her childhood crush, Tyler Taggart. She'd followed his career with the Heat but would never admit that the crush had never gone away.

When their lives become enmeshed again how will she ever keep her feelings in check? Especially when he only thinks of her as another sister?





I unwrapped myself from the death grip of my sticky sheet. After I untangled myself, I sighed. Sleeping in New Orleans with no air conditioning wasn’t for the weak. You had to have stamina to handle the heat. My fan barely put out enough breeze to move the heavy air around. Even when I had it pointed straight at me. But being raised in the bayous I was more prepared for the N’awlins’ climate. After a quick shower, I put my long blonde hair in a messy bun and outlined my blue eyes with a little eyeliner. Anything else would melt off. I grabbed my phone to call my nanna.

Every time I headed home to the bayous and Nanna, she commented how I was losing the old ways. She was the only thing that tied me to the backcountry. Whenever I was there, I always made time to learn another one of her herbal remedies. We would go wildcrafting for the ingredients or fishing, or I would help her with small repairs to the aging house. I enjoyed whatever crazy plan she had. She was eccentric, and I loved that. So different from my upbringing in San Diego. When my parents died, she brought me to Louisiana to live with her. I was scared and grieving. I’d just lost everything. She became my whole world. And I’d never been more grateful.

“Missy, are you listening to anything I’m saying?” I was lost in thought.

“Sorry, Nanna. My mind wandered.”

“I was telling you about the reading I did for you today. You are going to meet the love of your life soon, but there will be some hardships,” she said. Did I mention she dabbled in tarot card reading? She was always ‘asking the cards for wisdom,’ as she called it.

“How am I supposed to meet anyone? I sleep and then do tours. No room for anything else,” I said.

“Maybe he’s going to take one of your tours?” she asked.

“Maybe. Nanna, I have to go. I need to eat something before work,” I explained.

“At least you’re eating. Come see me soon and I’ll make some of your favorites. You need to fatten up,” she said. I thought I had just the right amount of curves. At five-four, I had to be careful of what I eat, or it went straight to my ass, but she was right. I hadn’t been eating that well.

“I will, Nanna. Love you,” I said. Hearing her voice always made me feel homesick.

“Love you more, Cher.” She hung up then. I let the sadness sweep through me instead of fighting it. 


Friday, September 17, 2021

The Courage to Dare: Sizzling Romantic Suspense (The Man in the Arena Book 1) by Taylor Lee



Praise for The Courage to Dare …
Book 1 in Taylor Lee’s HOT new romantic suspense series: The Man in the Arena Series.

“USA Today best-selling author Taylor Lee does it again! The Courage to Dare is a hugely successful entry from an author who is dramatically raising the bar for Romantic Suspense. From the first page to the last, the sparks fly between Sheriff Luke Lang and Dr. Avajli Patel. The Courage to Dare has everything you’ve come to expect from Taylor Lee. Memorable characters, high octane action, and Lee’s special brand of sizzling hot romance." Only the Best

“A tribute to the Teddy Roosevelt quote—The Man in the Arena, Taylor Lee introduces her most challenging and complicated hero yet. Luke Lang is gravely injured and wracked with guilt. But he refuses to let the beautiful doctor help him. While he shoves the ‘Doctor’ away, he can’t stop wanting the woman.” Primo Plots

“A shy foreign ‘geek at heart’ Dr. Avajli Patel is accustomed to controlling her life to the nth degree. The arrogant Sheriff and wounded special ops survivor teaches her a new meaning of control. It’s hot!” Romance Reads Reviews”

•The sole survivor of a special ops mission he led, the grievously injured commander goes back to Northern Minnesota trying to find a reason to live--other than drinking himself to death

•Not a good option for the newly elected Sheriff of a busy county…

•She’s a medical doctor from India. He dismisses her traditional methods as quackery. But as much as he tries, he can’t dismiss her.

Love Kaylea Cross's heart pounding romantic military thrillers? Sylvia Day’s and Maya Banks red hot sexy heroes, feisty heroines and high adrenaline action? Fern Michael’s compelling characters? Grab The Courage to Dare and prepare to be addicted.


The Man in the Arena Series: The Courage to Dare; The Courage to Love; The Courage to Triumph is A tribute to the Teddy Roosevelt quote—The Man in the Arena. Taylor Lee introduces her most challenging and complicated hero yet.

Ladies of the Night, Taylor Lee’s NEW Sexy Suspense Collection: Sapphire, Book 1; Ruby, Book 2, Topaz Book 3, Diamond, Book 4 . The Ladies are covert agents in a secretive, off the grid security organization. Highly trained fighters, they’re as gorgeous as they are dangerous. The only thing these formidable women are NOT is “ladies.”

The Blonde Barracuda OMNIBUS Collection Taylor Lee's Sizzling Hot Romantic Suspense Best Selling Collection. INCLUDES Big Girls Don't Cry, In the Still of the Night and Every Breath You Take plus FOUR additional EXCLUSIVE NOVELLAS

The All Fired Up OMNIBUS Collection, Taylor Lee's Bestselling #1 Hot New Release—the ULTIMATE Sizzling Romantic Suspense collector's edition! INCLUDES Playing With Fire, Trial By Fire and Ring of Fire and the EXCLUSIVE You Light My Fire: Short Story Finale

The Dangerous Affairs Collection Sizzling International Intrigue. Best Selling in both Romantic Suspense and Military Romance and Women's Sleuths ! INCLUDES: The Moscow Affair, The Bangkok Affair, The Rio Affair PLUS THREE Novellas.

The Red Rock Collection Sexy Romantic Suspense. Bestselling in Romantic Suspense, Military Romance and Mystery Thriller. The Collection INCLUDES: Red Rock Rises, Red Rock’s Revenge, Red Rock’s Redemption: Book 3 PLUS THREE Novellas.

The Grandmaster’s Legacy Collection: If you think Shades of Gray is HOT, snatch up Taylor Lee's "The Grandmaster's Legacy," a four volume Collection of Erotic Historical Suspense. Warning: Intense, Explicit, Steamy HOT!
The Bad Ass Brigade: Bad Guys Beware, The Good Guys Are on the Prowl." A Sampler of Sizzling Romantic Suspense. Cops, Firefighters, Special Ops, Covert Agents, and Bad Ass Poker Players--HOT Men and HOTTER Women kick up a storm--and heat up the sheets in the process.

Wednesday, September 15, 2021

Read an Excerpt From Twist of Fate by Linda Wisdom



Diner waitress Allie Walker dreamed of grandeur, but even she never fathomed of being switched into the body of Brianne Sinclair, the world's most beautiful heiress. Dreams come true? Not for long. For when Allie came to as Brianne, there was a dead fiance at her feet--and she was holding the smoking gun!

Only struggling private investigator Pete Hackette believed her innocence. As Allie, she'd had a fierce crush on him, and now, as Brianne, she'd finally made Pete fall in love with her. But which woman was he really in love with? And which woman would survive when the real murderer was finally revealed?




Allie tasted the coppery flavor of fear as she spied the knife in his hand. It seemed to move in slow mo­tion toward her. Before she could utter a word, she felt a sharp pain in her chest, then a cold feeling in­vade her body. Just as suddenly the cold disappeared and a damp warmth flooded her skin.

She looked down to see her blood flowing freely down her chest. She looked back up at Whit. She was too stunned to react. For a moment, his anger receded and fear took over. Just as rapidly, it disappeared.

"Now maybe you'll know I mean business," he said cockily, although white lines appeared at the edges of his mouth when he realized how serious her injury was.

"No!" she whispered as she saw her surroundings seem to grow foggy and eventually turn black.

This isn't fair! she raged as the darkness surrounded her. He shouldn't be allowed to get away with this. Please, don't let this happen!

As if her heartfelt plea had been heard, the darkness seemed to fade to a misty gray fog. She still couldn't see anything, but she sensed a presence with her.

Do you want another chance? the presence asked, the unisex voice seeming to come from inside her head.


You may have to take on a problem even greater than your own.

I don't care, she heard her own voice answer as an echo inside her head.

Then it shall be.


"Brianne. Brianne! My God, what have you done?"

When Allie opened her eyes, she instantly knew that something was very different Not just with her sur­roundings; her body felt different too.

First of all, she didn't feel any pain in her chest, only in her head, which ached abominably. Next she realized she was kneeling on a very soft carpet. That alone told her she wasn't in her apartment. The beau­tifully dressed woman standing next to her, wearing a shocked expression, wasn't anyone she knew. Then she felt cold metal in her hand and looked down. That was when she saw the lethal-looking handgun. She was not only holding a weapon, but lying at her feet was a man dressed in a tuxedo. What caught her at­tention was the bright blossom of red flowering on his chest. There was no doubt in her mind that the color wasn't there because he'd spilled catsup on himself.


Allie realized the woman was talking to her. She unsteadily rose to her feet, and when she turned, she saw a mirror on the wall behind the woman. The re­flection staring back at her was more than a surprise. It was a shock that shook her to her toes.

She felt like Allie. She thought like Allie. The trou­ble was, she didn't look like Allie.

Instead of glossy black curls flowing to her shoul­ders, ash blond hair was pulled back in a French twist, with tendrils straggling across her pale cheeks. A white-and-silver, strapless gown covered her slender body instead of a pink polyester waitress uniform that had seen better days. She was positive she could see her own reflection in the mirror, but it looked like a faint mem­ory in the background.

What the hell was going on?

"Brianne, what happened here?" The woman grabbed her arm and pulled her around. "What have you done?"


Monday, September 13, 2021

Read an Excerpt From Stained by Jessica McBrayer



Top 100 Amazon series.

I absolutely love this book and this series. I'm currently reading the next book in this series and it's excellent. I want to get a tattoo at Thorn's shop. I'm from the East Bay and the descriptions are spot on!

Thorn works after dark. That’s when she combines her gifts as a tattoo artist and her powers as a natural born witch to weave magick into her ink. Her tattoo parlor, Stained, on Berkeley’s quirky Telegraph Avenue draws clients from all walks of life. Her work is in high demand from the supernatural community and the undead.

With her raven familiar, Thorn’s been on the run all her adult life. She won’t talk about why. Only she knows of the horrors in her past. She only wants to practice her art of tattooing in peace. But when a murderer targets her clients, Sé, a tall, dark and Irish detective is assigned to investigate. They must trust each other to survive the cat and mouse game that ensues.

If You like suspenseful, supernatural, riveting stories then you like Jessica McBrayer's well written book.


Blood pooled with ink as the needles pierced her client’s skin. Thorn colored in the intricate design. Her stomach tightened as it always did, but years of practice kept her from showing it. The man she tattooed flinched as the pain registered. She smiled to herself. Pleasure and pain would soon be his addiction as it often was for those who came to her.

Her nitrile covered hands moved swiftly as they dipped the needles into ink and moved back to the design. The outline evaporating into blood and a more permanent ink. The flesh raw after she was done with it.

Her shop, Stained, tucked into the slightly seedy, increasingly funky but always vibrant Telegraph Avenue, hummed with the noise of tattoo machines, music and people milling around looking at the artwork displayed in books. Antique prints of ‘painted’ tattooed ladies gave the shop a burlesque feel. Thorn loved everything about it. Being just a few blocks from UC Berkeley, the shop was a favorite with students and more faculty and staff than one might guess. Each tat station was open to the public eye except for one back room where the artists could work on more private areas. She had chosen dark blue blending to cerulean towards the ceiling to soothe the customers, unlike the bright reds of so many other shops.

The man she worked on grunted, trying not to move, as she continued, adding ink and wiping away blood so she could see clearly. The design made itself known. As she wove it into existence, she chanted under her breath a spell of healing into the ink. She had created a sacred space in her store so she would be protected while she chanted and worked her spells.

Gérard, Reese, and Gwynn worked with her tonight, and they were busy with customers too. Gérard with his creole accent, Reese with her red hair, t-shirt and jeans, and Gwynn dressed in a hemp dress with her blonde hair thrown up in a messy bun held together with chopsticks. Jason, her intern, worked the front, helping customers, running errands for the artists and selling t-shirts and other souvenirs. Tonight he wore skinny jeans showing his boxers and a rainbow Muppets t-shirt.

Thorn had more work than she could handle, and that was the way she liked it. The shop was open during the day with a talented, experienced crew. Thorn covered the hours from early evening ‘til midnight and had a steady flow of customers until she shut the doors. Besides her discreet late-night patrons, she catered to a select clientele and never took walk-ins. The high fees from her late-night clients fed her bolt fund.

Her present client had made his appointment six weeks ago. He’d opted for a custom-designed pinup girl, and it was turning out nicely. She’d drawn up the design last night, and he loved it. Halfway through the night, Raven, her familiar, swept into the room onto his perch and cawed, “Trouble.” He was a large, midnight black raven, talons that could shred a man to ribbons and a beak like a bowie knife. He refused to be named. He mentioned that names held power over the being, and he wanted no binds on him, so she just called him Raven.

Raven would have warned her mind-to-mind if it had been a real threat. Whatever was coming was more likely some kind of annoyance.



Friday, September 10, 2021

Read an Excerpt from Line of Fire by Taylor Lee



Discover how challenging elections can be when sex and violence are in the mix.

Facing political opponents is a piece of cake for Gia. Facing her insecurities about her superstar lover is another matter.

Gia’s unconquerable political skills make winning the election a sure thing. If only she was as confident of her ability to capture and keep her inimitable lover. The arrival of one of his former paramours doesn’t help. Particularly, when the sexy blonde agent isn’t above sowing seeds of doubt in the insecure Gia—just for the heck of it.

Corrupt doesn’t begin to describe Gia’s political opponents. Try hooking up with international terrorists. Oh yes, and silencing a pregnant mistress when necessary. They might have been able to get away with it, if not for Logan and his super- secret agent team.

Unfortunately, the villains conclude if they can’t take Gia down at the polls they’ll have to take her down… permanently.


The tall, blonde woman gazed in the mirror at the gray-haired man sprawled on the bed across the room. His head was thrown back against the headboard. His eyes were closed; a greasy sheen dampened his forehead. With her back to him, Nadia was able to study him unhindered. Not that he was likely to notice her surveillance. It was clear he was much too agitated to pay attention to anything but his own anxieties. 


Reaching for the bottle of Cîroc Ten vodka, she poured a healthy amount of the crystalline alcohol into a glass and added two ice cubes from the silver ice bucket. Picking up the glass, she planted a soft smile on her face and turned to face him. As she ambled toward him, she allowed her thigh-high negligee to open slightly, revealing the abbreviated lacy slip beneath. 


Swaying her hips from side to side as she closed in on him, Nadia tossed him a sexy wink. “I have a suggestion, Stewart. In fact, I have several.” Eyeing his wrinkled formal attire, she pursed her lips. “May I suggest that you would be more comfortable with fewer clothes?” she teased. “Make that a lot fewer clothes.” When he frowned, she quickly added, “After you take a sip of this extraordinary vodka, that is.”


Reaching for the glass, the agitated man grabbed it with both hands and tossed back the potent alcohol as if it were water. Smacking the glass down on the bedside stand, he rose to his feet and shoved her to the side. Striding across the room toward the floor-to-ceiling window, he looked out into the dark street below, then turned back and glared at her. “I don’t have to tell you that was a challenging meeting, Nadia. You aren’t stupid. If anyone knows how treacherous those fucking Russians are, it’s you. But I swear to God when it comes to outright perfidy, no one beats those vicious Colombian bastards.” 


His voice was strained with anger and stippled with what Nadia knew was fear. Reaching for the silk handkerchief in his breast pocket, he swiped at the sweat glistening on his forehead and upper lip. As if aware that the perspiration on his face intimated the slightly rancid odor emanating from his body, the usually fastidious man stripped off his Versace suit coat and tossed it on the sofa. Grabbing the elaborate bottle of Cîroc Ten and an empty glass, eschewing ice cubes, he filled the glass to the brim with the pricey vodka and sank onto the armchair beside the bed. 


Reaching for the Cîroc Ten, Nadia sidled up next to the agitated man. Murmuring softly, she intoned, “Not to kick a man who’s already paying through his ass for his miscalculation, but from what I understand, you did all this to prevent a nonentity of a woman from winning a race she never could have won?”


He snorted in disgust. “That shows how ignorant you are. In addition to being as accomplished a politician as her ass and her tits are Hustler-worthy, Gia Tremaine, the ‘nonentity,’ is backed by the most accomplished moneyman I’ve ever run up against.” He groaned aloud. “Christ, in addition to banging her, the fucker actually might be in love with her. Which makes Logan Fowler the most dangerous man I’ve ever tangled with. Oh, and to underscore my concerns, apparently the motherfucker is former Special Ops—make that Delta Force.”


“Hmm. Challenging, indeed.” Nadia blew out an audible sigh. “Love and politics. Add the resulting mayhem of illegal contributions—yours—hmm. Not to put too fine a point on it. You appear to be up against a formidable man—not to mention a more than formidable woman . . . ”


Ensuring that the clearly intoxicated man finished what was now his third full glass of eighty-proof alcohol, Nadia managed to get him undressed and onto the bed. Crawling up over him, she sat on his thighs and shot him a sultry gaze. She eased off her negligee, then reached for the hem of the diaphanous slip. In a lazy movement, she inched the filmy concoction over her head and tossed it aside, revealing her naked body. At his groaning albeit inebriated interest, she crawled up over him and positioned herself above his upturned, flushed face. Smiling down at him, she murmured, “C’mon, big guy. You know what I like. What we both like. How about I show you what I can do with that my expert tongue, and then if you’re up for it, you can show me what you can do with yours . . . ” 


Nadia waited until she was sure the snoring man was dead to the world, and would be for some time, then rose to the side of the bed. Slipping on her discarded negligee, she retrieved her phone from the chest drawer. She stole into the bathroom and locked the door securely behind her. Unhooking the faux emerald from the chain at her neck, she clicked the latch. Removing a miniscule drive, she inserted the microSD card into her phone and hit send. 

In minutes, her phone vibrated. Nadia grinned as she read the incoming message. “Damn, Agent Antiov. You haven’t missed a beat since we worked together eight years ago. I should have known if anyone could help us take down that pretentious prick it was you. By the way, naughty lady, thank you for strategically placing the mirror the way that you did. It was nice of you to ensure that all of us egregious voyeurs had an uninterrupted view of your ‘assets’ while you went to work on our target. Particularly when you got him so drunk he couldn’t have gone after your scintillating bod if he’d tried.”

She shot him a disdainful emoticon confirming the drunken man couldn’t have gotten his flaccid dick in her  if his life depended on it. Her grin widened when she read his closing acclamation. “I trust you won’t mind if I add a personal note, Agent? That being that the years haven’t diminished your impressive backside. It is as spectacular as it ever was. —L”



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