Home > Seduced by the Assassin (Forbidden Confessions #7)

Seduced by the Assassin (Forbidden Confessions #7)
Author: Shayla Black

 


Las Vegas

March 6

9 p.m.

 

 

Ransom

 

 

The woman I can’t forget is through that door, less than ten feet from me, working. There’s a lock separating us, but that’s not enough to keep me from her.

Nothing is.

I swallow, gripping the gift box in my hand. Will she be surprised? She’s smart; she should be expecting me. After all, I made her a vow. I splayed her thighs indecently wide on my kitchen counter, stared into her golden eyes, and promised I would come for her the day she turned legal. Then—somehow—I managed to tear myself from her kiss-swollen lips before I did something irredeemable, and I left.

Now I’m here, and I’m done waiting. After seven agonizing weeks of putting space between Havana Smith and me, the unstoppable force of our attraction has me sniffing her out like a damn rutting dog.

If she falls into my arms again, I won’t stop.

So why am I standing out in the rain, hesitating?

Because I’ve lost my fucking mind.

I used to be a sane man. Well, as sane as anyone in my line of work can be. But now I’m certifiable. I’m probably on the verge of making the biggest mistake of my life and I don’t give a fuck.

I’m thirty-four…and I’m in love with a girl who’s turning eighteen today. I’m in the middle of some really dangerous shit. Oh, and did I mention she’s my son’s ex-girlfriend? Yeah, this won’t be complicated at all.

Suddenly, my phone rings. Cursing, I look at the screen and sigh. My brother Rush. He married his longtime crush a month ago, and they’ve been on a perpetual honeymoon since. I’m happy for them. Despite the fact their wedding was last-minute, it was perfect and moving.

My brothers are happy now—all except Ridge, who’s too crazy for any woman to marry. But Rand and Rush? Good for them, even if I’m jealous as hell.

You could be happy, too. Pick that lock, walk through that door, and lay your heart at her feet.

Havana will probably laugh—and she should. I’m almost twice her age. The profession I’ve chosen means I’m destined for an early grave. Besides, she needs someone good. That’s not me. Unfortunately for her, that won’t change her fate.

She’s mine.

On the third ring, I finally decline my brother’s call and tuck the device away. I’ll ring him back later. I’m not in a hurry for him to rub my face in the happiness of his marital bliss, which I know he means to inspire me to find some nice woman who will spoil me and my son and make us the family we’ve never quite been. I should want that, I know. But Ethan is grown now. I’m too late. And Rush’s nudges in that direction only make me feel guiltier.

Suddenly, the back of my neck prickles. It’s a warning. Danger.

Someone has eyes on me.

Pocketing the gift box and melting into the shadows, I scan the run-down strip mall in this crime-ridden part of northwest Vegas. Here, gang activity is high and police presence is low. I hate that Havana works and lives in this neighborhood. I want to take her from the crime and the danger and keep her safe.

But gangs and thieves aren’t on my radar now. I’m the thing they fear, and they don’t fuck with me. Someone is, though. I’m definitely being watched.

Jesus, I should worry whether I’m deluding myself into thinking I can give Havana the stability she needs—but I don’t dare now. In my line of work, even a few seconds of inattention can be fatal.

Another sweep of this corner of shopping hell doesn’t put me at ease. Most everything is closed now in this seedy section of the city. Across the lot, a woman locks the door of an off-label clothing store and runs for her car like a deer sensing a hunter. As she drives off, I see a couple of blue-collar guys at the far end of the strip, eagerly heading into a dive bar on a Saturday night to stare at scantily clad waitresses whose tits they’ll never get to feel.

They disappear inside. The light at the corner turns green. People go about their lives.

But someone is trailing me. I need to lose him.

How the fuck does anyone know where I am? Since I didn’t want to risk Havana, I didn’t tell a soul where I was going. No one should be on to me. Was I so fixated on her that I got sloppy and allowed myself to be followed?

Fuck.

Suddenly, a car screams across the lot, high beams blazing in my face. It swerves, spewing up oily rainwater in its wake. The sedan’s window lowers. Something dark and metallic emerges.

I duck and roll as I hear the report of the first shot. The second is an instant behind. The bullet whizzes past my ear.

He’s zeroing in on me, getting too close. I have to move or his third shot will tag me. I creep away from the darkened vet’s office where Havana is currently on a shift and plaster myself behind a pillar in front of an abandoned office supply store. Firing back isn’t my best course of action since I only have a handgun, and he’s in a moving car. I’m better off just GTFOing and slipping away in the dark of night.

Two boarded storefronts over, a chain-link fence cordons off a section of the lot where the property owners tried to give this dump a facelift and gave up. If I hop to the other side, I can disappear around the back to my car, then melt into the traffic beyond the alley.

Heart racing, I dash from the pillar on one side of the double glass doors to the other. The car screeches around again. The driver’s window drops. He fires another shot at me, narrowly missing when I flatten myself on the sidewalk, going as low profile as possible.

The second he misses, I’m on my feet again. It will be a race to the fence to see if he gets another shot off before I’m gone.

I launch myself onto the chain link, throwing one leg over, and I’m about to hop to relative freedom—at least there he can’t chase me without doing a bunch of damage to his sweet ride—when the fucker squeezes off another shot.

It rips through my coat and gouges its way up my arm, taking a hunk of my flesh with it. It burns. In seconds, blood wells and starts to soak my T-shirt.

That’s going to leave a mark and fucking slow me down. Adrenaline will keep me going for a bit, but it won’t last. I have to find my car and escape.

Or I’ll be as easy to pick off as a pinned target at a practice range.

A quick scan tells me there’s nowhere to hide on this side of the fence. No portico or pillars. No corners or niches. My only chance is to run around the side of the building and disappear into the alley—three buildings over.

The good news is, he’d have to be a damn good shot to hit me again. The bad news is, so far he’s proven he is.

Heaving in a rough breath, I foot-race toward safety, rain soaking my jeans. A volley of shots follows. Apparently, this guy doesn’t care who hears his attempts to kill me. Then again, no one in this neighborhood bats an eyelash at gunfire.

My mind races as I sprint for the corner. He’s squeezed off ten rounds with that Glock—I recognize the sound—and if he’s got a standard mag, he has five remaining shots.

That’s a lot of bullets to outrun.

Thankfully, he misses with the next two. Then he swings the car around, heading straight for the fence before plowing it over.

So much for the front end of his shiny Mercedes. But that’s not my concern.

He floors it, all the power of his horses zooming down on me.

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