“My name is Nicola. And I don’t know who I am anymore.
I’ve been thrown into a whirlwind of lies and danger. My entire existence is a deceit. Even the illusion of safety has been torn from me, leaving me raw and functioning on pure adrenaline. It seems I can trust only one person. A man…whose forest green gaze makes my already upside down world wobble a little on its axis.
This is my story. It’s a story of hate and greed and violence. But it’s also a story of love and hope and fighting for what you believe in. I can’t let the war I find myself in define me. Or I’ll be no better than the shadowy figures who are trying to take us down.”
“If you love thrillers with strong women who know how to stand up for themselves, with hot bodyguards and secrets to unveil then look no further. You will be happily entertained.”
A hand wrapped around her arm and she was tugged backward, hitting the firm heat of a wide chest. She tried to pull away, thinking she was dealing with another overzealous flirt. “Back off, buddy.” She jerked her elbow backward, earning herself a very satisfying grunt of pain. But the hand on her arm didn’t let go.
Hot breath bathed her ear. “Real funny, Elena. Now stop screwing around and come with me. You know it’s dangerous for you to be in here.”
She frowned, realizing he’d mistaken her for someone else. Nici turned her head and slid her gaze up, inhaling a quick rush of air as she got her first look at him.
His skin looked golden under the lights, his wide, square jaw taut with anger as he glared down at her. His eyes were a shade of forest green she’d never seen before, the lashes framing them thick and black. The lights played over his inky black hair, dancing along the glossy waves where it was longer at the top and dimming where he’d shaved it close on the sides.
He was huge, probably six foot five or six, with wide shoulders and massive arms. The hand on her upper arm easily encircled it, with long, dense fingers. He wore a round-necked shirt that glowed white under the spinning lights and lovingly hugged his pecs. The shirt was tucked neatly into a pair of dark denim jeans which looked painted on. A brown leather jacket covered the shirt and Nici wondered what he was hiding underneath it. It was way too warm, both outside and in, for leather.
Nici’s mouth watered as she stared up at him and she almost forgot to yank her arm away.
She remembered a beat later, when he tried to drag her toward the door. “Come on. Let’s get out of here.”
“I’m not going anywhere with you. Let go of me.”
She stomped on his toes and ground down, feeling the soft leather dent as she put all her weight onto his foot.
“Son of a…” Quick as a wink he wrapped a muscular arm around her waist and hauled her off her feet, throwing her over his shoulder. She gave a little scream, tugging frantically on her short skirt in an attempt to cover her butt.
“Put me down you Neanderthal.”
“I’m taking you home and your father can deal with you.”
She kneed him in the belly and her bruised kneecaps screamed as she hit the unforgiving surface. “Ouch!”
She could almost feel him smile. “Serves you right.”
A man in a shiny suit circled around Nici and stepped in front of her abductor. The man carrying her toward the door barely hesitated as the manager held up a hand. “Sir, I’m going to have to ask you to…”
“Mr. DeVitis appreciates your concern for his daughter but you need to step out of my way.”
Nici squirmed, pounding on his back. “This man is abducting me, do something!”
The manager blinked, his mouth opening and closing before he finally frowned, inclining his head. “Give Mr. DeVitis my regards.”
Her abductor didn’t bother to respond. He started toward the door, bodies magically moving out of his way as they neared the exit. As the door opened to admit a loud group of happy partiers, Nici’s head came up and she searched the crowd for her friends. Nobody. They hadn’t even seen her get abducted. Dammit!
“Well looky here. Such a pretty little ass…” A moist hand caressed her buttock and, like a cobra, her abductor struck, a big fist smashing into the young drunk’s face and sending him to the floor like a large sack of potatoes.
“Learn some respect, punk,” her abductor said on a growl before plunging them outside into the warm night air.
She barked out a shocked laugh. “You’re telling him to respect me? That’s rich.”
He didn’t even hesitate, his long strides took them quickly toward the street and he finally lowered her to the ground. She immediately went after him, fists flashing and elbows flying. She used every trick she’d learned in hours of self-defense classes but he seemed to anticipate all of them, easily shutting her down.
When he had both of her fists trapped in one of his big hands, a black eyebrow lifted in irritation, Nici tried the last trick in her arsenal. She went perfectly still, deliberately softening her muscles.
To her supreme annoyance, he grinned, pushing her toward the car. “Not gonna work, Elena.”
The door opened behind her and her abductor gave the dark suited man who’d opened it a smile. “Thanks, Mike.”
The doorman had longish blond hair, a square jaw and piercing gray eyes. “My pleasure. So, Elena, love the new hair style.”
Nici gave him a glare and then, hoping to catch them off guard, let all her weight drop to her heels and sagged downward, her hand tightening around the handle of her purse. She really wished she could get to the gun she carried in a hidden side pocket, but there was no way he’d give her that much time. So she did the next best thing. She screamed, launching herself off her toes and swinging the bag toward his head.
Her grabbed her arm with one hand, tugging the purse easily from her grasp, and shoved her backward with the other.
She hit a soft leather seat and slid, hands scrabbling for purchase even as she skidded toward the far side of the car.
His hand snaked out and grabbed her ankle before her head connected with the door and, in the same move, he shoved in behind her, lifting her legs to rest across his lap. “Let’s go, Mike. Gordon’s anxious to hear that she’s okay.”
His gaze flashing with humor, the man he’d called Mike quietly closed the door and walked around the car, sliding behind the wheel. A moment later the engine of the long, black limousine rumbled to life and it glided away from the curb.
Barnes & Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/revealing-nicola-sam-cheever/1125551874?ean=2940154169070
Sea to Sky Books: http://www.seatoskybooks.com/978-1-63587-971-1-revealing-nicola