*RELEASE BLITZ* ~ Jersey Girl, by Jane Heron

#Standalone #BookBoost #ReleaseDayBlitz

Congratulations to Jane Heron on her latest release Jersey Girl. I really like the sound of this novel in which Kat, the heroine, battles to overcome a painful past and the effect it has had on her confidence and well being. It is never easy to battle our inner demons whilst trying to make room for love and romance. Hat’s off to the author for penning such a heartfelt read.

The ‘Get Kat back plan’ is now in full effect!
♥Jersey Girl♥

Book Blurb

She lost her home.
She lost her sobriety.
She lost her head.
Now she’s on an uphill battle to find herself, once more.
Will love help, or hinder the fight?
Sometimes, deciding who you are, means deciding who you’ll never be again.

Jersey Girl – mybook.to/JGirl
GR TBR – https://goo.gl/PvDZj8
Paperback – https://goo.gl/mm7x2x

Author: J A Heron
Cover: The Graphics Shed
Editing: Kyra Lennon


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My Facebook page; https://www.facebook.com/JAHeron918/
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*PROMOTIONAL BLITZ ~ Never The Bride (Dilbury Village #1), by Charlotte Fallowfield* ~ FREE download 5th-9th July

Don’t miss out on getting your mitts on this FREE eBook from Charlotte Fallowfield, the romcom Never The Bride (Dilbury Village #1). This read not only has a real feel-good factor but it made be laugh my socks off!

The book is available for download free from 5th to 9th of July 2018. Click here for my review.


Synopsis

Abbie Carter felt doomed as she clutched her bouquet and started walking up the aisle. Again. She felt like she was stuck in some kind of Groundhog Day wedding nightmare. Always the bridesmaid, never the bride. Eight dresses, most of them hideous, were already stuffed in her attic space. She had more bridesmaid dresses than relationships. Was she really that unlucky in love? She despaired of ever finding her soul mate and was convinced that if she packed away dress thirteen in her attic, she’d never get to wear the coveted white one and have her happy ever after.

That was until she locked eyes with one of the handsome ushers, whose wink turned her elegant and well-practiced glide up the aisle into a flailing Bambi-on-ice spectacle. Miller Davis was the first man in forever to make her heart skip a beat, as well as her legs turn to jelly. And, for once, her interest in a man didn’t seem to be one-sided. It was just a shame that the Atlantic Ocean separated them. Abbie couldn’t even make a relationship with her elderly fat pooch, Sumo, work, so what chance did she have with a permanent New Yorker? Her best friend, Georgie, told her to ignore the miles that separated her from Miller and to go for it, saying that true love knew no bounds.

Was Abbie fated to always be the bridesmaid, or would her wish for the perfect day with the man of her dreams ever come true?

While Never The Bride is a standalone story, it’s the first in the Dilbury Village series of romantic comedy novels. All of them will be set in the quaint fictitious English hamlet in the Shropshire countryside, but feature a different village couples’ story.

Warning, if you are of a sensitive disposition when it comes to toilet humour, then the Dilbury Village series may not be for you!

Charlotte Fallowfield’s novels have hit the Amazon #1 bestseller charts internationally for Contemporary Romance, Romantic Comedy, and Humour. Her alter-ego, C.J. Fallowfield, has also hit the Amazon #1 bestseller charts internationally for Humorous Erotica, and Romance (English), multiple times.

Links

Amazon UK

Amazon US

http://mybook.to/DilburyVillage1

Goodreads Link:

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/31742268-never-the-bride

Editorial Quotes

“The book is a rollercoaster ride of emotions and humour! This read just about killed with me laughter.”A Reader’s Review Blog

“Charlotte Fallowfield infuses this story with a rare blend of humour, angst and romance that makes this a laugh out loud can’t stop read.”Obsessed by Books

“I have never laughed so hard reading a book before in my entire life.”Mad About Books

 

~*Release Blitz for Lottery Losers by Lucy Felthouse*~ includes excerpt

Out Now in eBook and Audio—Lottery Losers by Lucy Felthouse (@cw1985)  #romance #steamy #SupportIA #IARTG

Blurb:

Winning the lottery is a dream come true… isn’t it?

Susie Parmenter and her husband of almost twenty years, Peter, are lottery jackpot winners. They’ve been able to do everything they’ve ever dreamed of—quit their jobs, design and build their perfect home, buy expensive cars, travel the world… So why is Susie bored out of her mind? She thought being a lady of leisure would be amazing, but unfortunately the reality is far from amazing. How can she possibly tell anyone that, though?

Climbing the walls, sinking deeper into irritation and misery, Susie can’t see a way forward. But what she’s not betting on is that Peter has noticed his beloved wife isn’t happy. And he’s taken steps—drastic steps—to turn things around. But will they live to tell the tale?
Note: Lottery Losers was previously published in the Love Me Hard boxed set.

All eBook and audio buy links here: https://lucyfelthouse.co.uk/published-works/lottery-losers/
Add to your Goodreads shelves: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/40233468-lottery-losers

*****

 

Excerpt:

Susie Parmenter let out a heavy sigh and closed her book, then put it down on the table beside her. She closed her eyes and let her head loll back on her shoulders, enjoying the warmth of the summer sunshine on her skin, which was pleasant but not too hot. It wasn’t the book that was boring her—under normal circumstances, she’d have been riveted by the crime fiction novel featuring a hunky lead detective—it was life. Just lately, her world had become so dull, so predictable, that she just couldn’t summon any enthusiasm for anything.

The worst of it was, she couldn’t tell anyone. It was a problem so utterly first world it was embarrassing. Humiliating, even. Admitting her permanent state of apathy would be ridiculous, and she doubted anyone would understand where she was coming from, anyway. After all, how could you possibly tell your friends, your family, your husband, that you were bored out of your damn mind when you had, quite literally, everything? Since winning a lottery jackpot twelve months ago, Susie and her husband, Peter, had had their worlds turned completely upside down.

At first, of course, it had been amazing. They had won more than enough money to live incredibly lavish lifestyles for the remainder of their years—even if they lived to be very old indeed. So, once the cash was safely in the bank, they’d quit their jobs. Then they’d taken off on an incredible round-the-world trip, spending much of their travel time plotting and planning what else they were going to spend their winnings on. By the time they arrived home, they were ready to hire an architect to draw up plans for a custom-build home. Another two weeks later, they’d found and purchased the plot of land, and were talking to builders. Things moved fast—but then, Susie had found that was often the case when large sums of money were involved.

Now their dream home was complete. It was, naturally, stunning. The huge house stood high on a hillside in the Derbyshire countryside, with only a handful of other properties in sight. It was situated so that from one side of the house, you could watch the sun rise in the morning, and from the other, you could watch it set in the evening. There was a covered and heated swimming pool, a Jacuzzi, a sauna, a gym, a home cinema… everything a person could possibly need or want, and then some.

They employed a cleaner and a gardener, so aside from cooking meals three times a day—if they didn’t eat out or order takeaway, that was—there was nothing to do around the house. Susie had moved the furniture umpteen times, which was a novelty at first, given their old house had been so small that every single item had a place that it fitted into—barely, in some cases—and that was that. She now found herself swapping pictures around and tweaking the positions of ornaments on a regular basis, often putting them back where they’d been to start with.

She’d gotten into a routine of using the pool, gym, and sauna every morning, but that still left hours and hours of the day just waiting to be filled.

It was all right for Peter—he might have ditched his job, but these days his time was divided between playing golf, and being involved in a bunch of stuffy business boards. She didn’t really understand what he did at the meetings, if she was honest, but it didn’t matter. What did matter was that, only weeks after moving in to their beautiful new home, Susie’s boredom was at fever pitch. She was climbing the walls. Surely even board meetings were more exciting than this?

*****

Author Bio:

Lucy Felthouse is the award-winning author of erotic romance novels Stately Pleasures (named in the top 5 of Cliterati.co.uk’s 100 Modern Erotic Classics That You’ve Never Heard Of, and an Amazon bestseller), Eyes Wide Open (winner of the Love Romances Café’s Best Ménage Book 2015 award, and an Amazon bestseller), The Persecution of the Wolves, Hiding in Plain Sight and The Heiress’s Harem series. Including novels, short stories and novellas, she has over 170 publications to her name. Find out more about her writing at http://lucyfelthouse.co.uk, or on Twitter or Facebook. Join her Facebook group for exclusive cover reveals, sneak peeks and more! Sign up for automatic updates on Amazon or BookBub. Subscribe to her newsletter here: http://www.subscribepage.com/lfnewsletter

Release blitz organised by Writer Marketing Services.

~*ARC REVIEW ~ Let Sleeping Dukes Lie, (Rules of the Rogue Book 2), by Emily Windsor ~*

#sensual #historical #regency #romance

 

Book Blurb

“Strait-laced. Ruthless. Arrogant.”
Alexander Westhide, the Duke of Rakecombe has no quarrel with such faint praise as he has forever shunned marriage, women and anything remotely resembling love. Indeed, the damning words merely serve to enhance his haughty façade. But beneath the controlled demeanour lies a duke beset by tragedy, a man turbulent and restless.

“Forthright. Impudent… Capricious saucebox.”
Miss Aideen Quinlan can’t quite express why she feels the need to taunt, tease and generally annoy the Duke of Rakecombe. Maybe it was for the heart-racing spar of words that always ensued, or maybe it was to see the duke’s broad fist clench on his ebony cane, green eyes glittering.
Or maybe it was because she was unable to erase the memory of his vehement kiss…

An unlikely couple.
Torn between his world of espionage and this unquenchable passion, the duke still refuses to lower his fierce defences.
If Aideen is to capture her resistant duke’s troubled heart, it is she who must follow the Rules of the Rogue.
Resistance is futile…

A sensual Regency Romance with warmth and wit, this story also includes unpalatable chefs, a darling of the Season with a secondary love story, deadly walking canes and sheep…

My Review – 5 stars

A troubled Duke meets his match… 

I loved this, the second in Emily Windsor’s Rules of the Rogue series. This delightful Regency romp pairs the dark and forbidding Alexander Westhide, Duke of Rakecombe, with Miss Aideen Quinlan, a lively and unconventional Irish miss who proves to be both his match and his undoing! It features some characters from the first book in the series, An Earl in Wolf’s Clothing, but can easily be read as a standalone.

Aideen and Alexander first encounter each other after he rescues her from a kidnapping. Since that fateful meeting, the pair have been circling each other on the rare occasions their paths cross at society functions. Aideen cannot resist baiting the Duke, rather than being repelled by his dour and standoffish behaviour, she finds herself drawn to him. Alexander is all alpha male: dominant, in control at all time and sinfully sexy – what woman could resist the challenge? Not Miss Aideen Quinlan for sure!

For his part the Duke recognises how this woman threatens his ordered existence – his work as a spy for the Crown is most definitely not conducive to forming close bonds with significant others. To ensure her continued safety and his own sanity he knows he needs to avoid becoming entangled with her at all costs – if only Miss Quinlan wasn’t so meddlesome (not to mention so damned attractive to him)!

Fate continually throws them together… Can the Duke protect this wild creature who is slowly, against his better judgement, becoming to mean everything to him, whilst still discharging his duties to the Crown? Can he safeguard her from harm? Can Aideen break through his hard exterior and charm the most inflexible of men, when he guards his secrets so well? Can she penetrate the darkness he is hiding before she loses her heart in the process?

I so enjoyed the battle royal that ensues between this couple and the games they play. Aideen is a fantastic heroine and she really is the Dukes undoing – he has never encountered an adversary quite like her. The dialogue and the push and pull between them make for a hugely entertaining read, full of witty dialogue, sensual scenes, sexual tension, danger and suspense. There is a scene at the end of the book which had me in tears (in a good way), I was so invested I their story- the characters and their relationship had become so real to me.

Recommended for lovers of sensual Regency Romances who enjoy dark, brooding and tortured heroes and spunky heroines who challenge them at every turn.

Reviewed by Tina Williams

Please note that an ARC of this book was given to me by the author for the purpose of a fair and honest review.

Purchase Links

Amazon US Amazon UK

Connect with the Author

https://www.facebook.com/AuthorEmilyWindsor/

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/15418192.Emily_Windsor

 

*REVIEW* ~ Paris Ever After: A Novel, by K.S.R. Burns

#literary #romance #paris #france #adventure

Blurb

Can Amy’s rocky start in Paris turn into a happy ever after?

Amy didn’t realize how stale her life was until she jetted off to Paris without telling a soul—not even her husband—and had the adventure of a lifetime. Now as she tries to establish herself in the City of Light, she finds that despite a fun (and quirky) group of friends and the ability to indulge in French pastries whenever she wants, reinventing her life is much harder than she imagined.

Then on Amy’s thirtieth birthday, two unexpected visitors leave her wondering if she will soon be saying au revoir to Paris and the new life she’s struggled to build. Her estranged husband, Will, shows up—but is he interested in reconciliation or separation? And a young woman who arrives on Amy’s doorstep unleashes chaos that could push Amy out into the street.

As Amy’s Parisian dream starts to fall apart, she must decide: return to the stability of Will and Phoenix (if that’s even still an option) or forge her way forward in Paris? Amid secrets and surprises, set in enchanting gardens, cozy cafés, and glittering Parisian streets, Amy must choose between two very different worlds. And each has a claim on her heart.

My Review

Enchanting and Quirky Parisian Adventure – ***** 5 stars

I just ADORED this enchanting and quirky novel by K.S.R. Burns. As a self-confessed Francophile – I fell in love with the city, French people and culture during student exchange visits in my teenage years, I inhaled the book with gusto. Once again I was able to soak up the sights, sounds and culinary delights of this great city, which the author describes with such aplomb.  I very much enjoyed accompanying the protagonist Amy on her Parisian adventure, identifying with her quest to define and find herself.

Although I haven’t read the first book in the series, The Paris Effect, I found it fairly straightforward to  get up to speed on Amy’s backstory – how she had left her husband and her stale marriage in the US and jetted off to France, and her current dilemma (and WHAT a dilemma it is)!  Amy has found out that she is expecting her estranged husband’s baby and although her eclectic circle of new friends in Paris know of the forthcoming happy event she (wait for it) has neglected to inform her husband of the news…

When the man himself unexpectedly appears Amy has to decide exactly what she wants out of life. Can she bear to leave Paris, where she feels she has truly regained her joie de vivre? Will she do what many think is ‘the right thing’ and try and make a go of her marriage for the sake of her baby? Has her husband changed from the man he was before she left him? Is  reconciliation on the cards? Can she find romance in the city of Love?

There are some unexpected twists and turns as the very pregnant and hormonal Amy wrestles with this moral dilemma, encouraged and thwarted by events which occur in her close circle of friends. Throw in the appearance of a young woman whose actions may well lead to Amy being rendered homeless and a series of unforeseen events, deception, unexpected home truths and a combination of heartfelt and sometimes hilarious scenes, the novel is a brilliant read. I loved the author’s writing style, which pulled me in to the story and the environs of Paris. The depictions of both the city and its inhabitants are superbly done and I found the characterisations to be top notch – reflecting very real, albeit quirky, characters, all (including Amy) with very real flaws, making them more endearing to the reader.

If you are after a thought provoking, entertaining and quirky read with a real French flavour you will want to get hold of this book now.

Reviewed by Tina Williams

Please note, a copy of his book was given to me by the author for the purpose of a fair and honest review.

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/38322706-paris-ever-after?from_search=true

Connect with the Author

http://ksrburns.com/

https://www.facebook.com/KSRBurns

Twitter

*´¨✫) ¸.•´¸.•*´¨)✯ ¸.•*¨) ✮ (¸.•´✶ (¸.•` 📚 Release Blitz: A Sea of Smoke by Karen Lynn May 10th 📚

@obsessiveppromo @authorklynn # SeaofSmoke #goodreads

NEW RELEASE
Book 2: A Sea of Smoke
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/39891290-a-sea-of-smoke

RAGE-RESIST-REVENGE!
THIS EMOTIONAL ROLLER COASTER RIDE IS ON A COLLSION COURSE TO DISASTER

BLURB: A SEA OF SMOKE – BOOK 2

Kristen wears a smile for survival.
Her nights are spent dreaming of Jake, the lover she left behind.
Her days are spent living a nightmare with Logan, who is still unsatisfied in victory.

Jake does not have the comfort of pleasant dreams.
Shallow gratifications fail to quiet his raging mind.
Haunted by his lover’s disappearance and his best friend’s murder, he grows obsessed.

With so much on the line, Kristen plays the game and bends to Logan’s will despite the pain it brings her.

With nothing left to lose, Jake lives on the edge. Consumed by emptiness, he will never rest until he finds the woman he loves. And hurts the man who shattered his world.

The tables have turned, the stakes at an all-time high. Now, it is just a matter of time before the fine line between love and hate is crossed.

An unforgettable and gripping dark romantic suspense tale that will leave you on the edge of your seat.

But this twisted, emotional roller coaster ride is not over yet!

Purchase Link: https://getbook.at/aseaofsmoke

BOOK 1 – A WAR OF HEARTS: FREE FOR A LIMITED TIME STARTNG 5/10/18

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/39308551-a-war-of-hearts

What happens when passion erupts into dark obsession?
They’re about to find out the hard way.

Logan is poison and Kristen knows it.
She’s developed a hatred for the increasingly risqué lifestyle he is addicted to. His lust for deviant sex, women, and drugs threatens to destroy her world. Yet every time she tells herself it’s over, his seductive powers draw her back.

That is until she meets Jake.
Together their worlds are rattled by a love so powerful it promises to change their lives forever.

Unless the manipulative, self-destructive Logan has his way.
As he struggles to preserve his crumbling sanity, his determination to keep Kristen at all costs spirals out of control.

While Jake will die for Kristen.
Logan is ready to kill for her.

Lose yourself in this dark, passionate and deeply emotional tale of toxic love, obsession, revenge and murder.

Purchase Link: https://getbook.at/awarofhearts

Watch for Book 3 – Turn to Dust!

http://mybook.to/AWOHseries

Author

Karen Lynn, a native New Yorker has always loved writing poetry and short stories with intense characters struggling to find love and survive in a troubled world. After years of working in the legal field, Karen moved with her son to Oregon. Inspired by the rain and Portland’s creative culture, Karen has been able to follow her dream of writing novels.
A War of Hearts is her debut novel in this dark romantic suspense series of the same name

https://www.twitter.com/authorklynn
https://www.instagram.com/authorkarenl
https://www.facebook.com/klawriter
awarofhearts.com
https://www.awarofhearts.com/

Hosted by Obsessive Pimpettes Promotions

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~*Sergio: A Dark Romance, by Natasha Knight – Chapter Reveal*~

Buy the Book

Amazon US
Amazon Universal
iBooks
Kobo
Nook
Goodreads

Synopsis

I’m the first-born son of the mafia king. The favorite. Destined to rule, I’m a dangerous man, a ruthless one. But in my world, you have to be.

Then Natalie stumbles into my life. Wrong place. Wrong time.

Twice, fate put her in my path.
Twice, fate placed the innocent lamb at the mercy of the monster.
I gave her a chance to walk away. Told her it would be better for her if she did.
But she didn’t listen.
And now it’s too late.
Because I’m not good. I never wanted to be. And I won’t let her go anymore. See, I’m not the hero. When I touch her, it’s with dirty hands.

I know my reckoning is coming though. I know I’ll burn for the things I’ve done, the sins I’ve committed. And I don’t deny hell is where I belong, but I want my time first. I want my time with her.

She’s mine.
Forever.
No matter what.

Author’s Note: Sergio: a Dark Mafia Romance is an intensely emotional, steamy and dark standalone romance set in the Benedetti Brothers Mafia world. Be prepared: this is not a traditional romance.

CHAPTER 1

Prologue

Natalie

“Wrong place, wrong time, sweetheart.”
The words echo in my head.
I’ve done this before. Twice in my life now, I’ve been at the wrong place at the wrong time. Isn’t there some sort of karmic balancing? Like isn’t it enough to witness this kind of violence just once in a lifetime?
Last time was six years ago. I was fourteen and standing in front of the freezer of the convenience store down the street from my house deciding which ice cream bar I wanted. I remember the humming of the air conditioner. Liking the cool inside on that too hot August day. It was one of the few times my parents let me go alone. We didn’t live in the best neighborhood.
The men came in so quickly, I barely registered the fact they were wearing ski masks before the first gunshot went off. I dove to the ground and shut my ears to the commands they shouted, but the man with the greasy shirt saw me. He came at me and I would have screamed if I could find my voice, but the others’ screams muted me, and when he gripped me by my hair and hauled me to my feet, I followed where he led me.
Another gunshot was followed by another scream and I swear I saw red splatter the walls.
Blood.
But when he threw me to the ground in the last aisle and I registered what he meant to do, it all became surreal.
Gunshots and fists and screams all seemed in the distance. Like they weren’t part of my reality anymore because my reality was about to change. My reality came down to him and me on the floor of this forgotten shop, with blood seeping from beneath the aisle divider. Fear in the voices of the others trapped here with me. Him with his pants undone. Him with his hands in my jeans. Me watching, mute. Trying to shove him away.
I remember the bell over the door going again.
Remember the sound of footsteps.
Someone cursing.
I remember the sound of a gun being cocked. Readied. How I knew what that little click meant I’m not sure, but it’s an unmistakable sound. I remember the look on the face of the one between my legs as he registered cold steel on the back of his head.
We looked up at the man in the dark suit at the same time. He wore black from head to toe, a dark angel. His pistol shone bright in the blinking fluorescent light. The angel called me to go to him. I did. I scrambled to my feet and went. He glanced down to where my jeans were undone before meeting my eyes. He pulled me to him, put one hand on the back of my head, burying my face in his belly.
He told me to keep my eyes closed. To cover my ears. Said he’d try not to get blood on me.
I didn’t think. I did as he said. Put my hands over my ears. And I swear I know what a bullet tearing through flesh sounds like now.
But all that I’ve managed to file away. Locked up in a box until now.
It’s his words that play back over and over again. The sound of his voice that I recognize as now, so many years after that terrible day, I crouch behind the decrepit machinery in this abandoned warehouse and hide.
“Wrong place, wrong time, sweetheart.”
Sweetheart.
I’ll never forget that voice. Never forget the casual way he called me sweetheart. And I recognize it now. The man in the suit, my dark angel. The man who killed without flinching. The man who saved my life once. It’s him. He’s here.
And when he shifts his gaze in my direction, I swear he hears the pounding of my heart against my chest. Swear it’ll give me away.
Except that this time, if he finds me, he won’t be saving me.

************************************************************************

Chapter 1

Sergio

Fuck. I hate these fucking warehouses. Dusty and always frigid.
I’m flanked by two of my men. Four more soldiers trail us with a dozen more outside. It’s to make an impression. Joe and Lance Vitelli have overstepped.
Lance. Who the fuck names their kid Lance in this business? It’s no wonder he’s acting out. Trying to prove he’s not a pussy.
Our footsteps echo off the old machinery as I follow Roman, my uncle, through the main room and to the back where the brothers are being held. There’s no door to that room and the glow of the single light bulb is a contrast to the pitch black of the rest of the place.
The sound of a fist connecting with flesh is followed by a grunt. The grunt, I know, belongs to either Joe or Lance. I pick lint off my sleeve and adjust the cuff of my shirt as we near the entrance. Roman steps into the room, stands to the side, folding his hands together. He takes in what’s going on, then turns to me, gives a brief nod and waits.
I walk into the room, crack my neck. Slept bad last night.
The sight that greets me is not an unfamiliar one. The offenders are sitting in straight back chairs, but they’re not bound. There’s a splattering of blood on Joe’s white shirt. It’s fresh. I guess he’s the one who took the punch I heard.
“That’s disgusting. Get something on his nose,” I say to one of my men.
“It’s fucking broke,” Joe whines, taking the wad of nasty cloth someone just shoved at him.
I go right up to him. Lean down to get my face in his. “You’re lucky you’re not broke. Be grateful or that’ll change.”
He breathes in a sharp breath and I know he’s biting his lip not to reply.
“Sergio,” Lance starts. Lance is the older brother. The slightly smarter one. Or the one with a healthier fear of death.
Of me.
I straighten, turn to him.
“Mr. Benedetti,” he corrects.
I wait.
“My brother screwed up, but it’s fixed. The girls are back home. No harm, no foul, right?” He attempts to smile but it fails and his lips droop.
“In whose territory do you live?” I ask. It’s been a long fucking night already and it’s not close to over. I’m tired, so I’ll get to the point.
“Yours, sir,” he answers.
“In whose territory do your families live? Mothers, sisters, wives, daughters.”
Lance’s face, which was pale when I got here, goes gray. “Yours, Mr. Benedetti. Benedetti territory.”
I nod, shift my gaze to Joe. “To whom has your father pledged your family’s loyalty, Joe?” His eyes narrow and when he doesn’t answer right away, Lance clears his throat to, but I stop him. “I’m asking your fucking brother.”
“Benedetti,” Joe says through gritted teeth.
“DeMarco’s were once loyal to us too, until they weren’t,” I remind them. What happened to that family should be enough warning. What is happening and still will happen to Lucia DeMarco, most precious daughter, should be enough. My father’s right about fear. But there’s more to it. Ruthlessness. It’s what truly gets you respect in this business.
He is ruthless.
And I am my father’s son.
“You have a sister, don’t you?” I ask. “Anna, right? How old is she now?”
Lance just stares back at me, his eyes wide with fear.
I may not agree with how my father is handling the DeMarco girl, but I understand it. “Lucia DeMarco’s age, am I right?”
“She’s only sixteen, sir,” Lance says, his voice a little quieter.
“Yeah, Lucia DeMarco’s age when they lost the war they started with us.” I don’t need to say more.
“Sergio—” Lance starts. “Mr. Benedetti—”
I raise my hand to halt him. “Let’s just be clear. I’m going to give you a warning. One chance, because I know your father. He’s been a friend to my family. But if you overstep again, the consequences will be more…permanent.”
Lance swallows.
“Benedetti’s do not deal in flesh trade. Is that clear?”
“Yes, sir,” Lance says quickly.
I look at Joe. If looks could kill, I’d be dead right now.
I grab a handful of Joe’s hair and tug his head backward. “Is that fucking clear?”
One of my men cocks a gun and Lance whimpers like a fucking girl.
“You the tough one?” I ask Joe. “Sucks to always be in big brother’s shadow, doesn’t it?” He exhales, shifts his gaze away from mine, but not to his brother. I’m right. Like Dominic, my youngest brother, he knows he’ll never be boss and it fucking kills him. “Am I fucking clear, Joe? Or do I need to make an example?” I squeeze the handful of over-gelled hair and if I twist just once in the wrong direction, I’ll snap his neck. Quick and clean. No blood on my suit. And he knows it.
“Clear,” he says.
I release him, wipe my hand on my pants and decide I’m not done yet. “Now, show me your loyalty. Your gratitude for my family’s generosity in this unfortunate event.” I step backward, giving him space. He knows what I want and it’s going to kill him to do it.
But he’s going to do it.
I wait. I’m patient.
“Joe. Just fucking do it,” Lance orders his brother when a full minute passes and Joe hasn’t moved.
Joe’s face is a fiery red and his eyes are filled with rage. But soon, the leg of the chair scrapes across the concrete floor as he drops to his knees at my feet.
I look down at him. Give him more space. And my smile widens as he prostrates himself and his lips touch the toe of my shoe.
I want to kick the son-of-a-bitch, but I don’t. I’m a man of my word. I will give them one more chance.
A sound comes from the metal ramp that runs along the perimeter of the large office forming a second level. I look at it. It must have been an observation deck to oversee the plant.
I don’t know if anyone else heard it. A glance at Roman tells me he did, but the others haven’t noticed. I nod to him. He steps out of the room and two men follow.
When I return my gaze to the spectacle in front of me, I’m very aware of my periphery. I want to catch any movement because that sound was too loud for a mouse.
“Get them out of here,” I say to the two soldiers behind the brothers.
“Yes, sir.”
I watch as Joe and Lance are walked rudely out of the room. After a few moments, I turn to my men. “Let’s go,” I say loudly. They walk out. I hang back, switch out the light, listen to the footsteps echo as they vacate the building. I reach for the handgun in its holster beneath my jacket and walk silently toward the direction from where the sound had come.

 

About the Author

USA Today bestselling author of contemporary romance, Natasha Knight specializes in dark, tortured heroes. Happily-Ever-Afters are guaranteed, but she likes to put her characters through hell to get them there. She’s evil like that.

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