Publication Date: July 2018
Genres: Adult, Romantic Suspense, Organized Crime. Erotic Romance, Standalone
A shadow meets the light …
When someone needs to disappear, the Chicago mob calls on Joe Rossi. A man who can move without a sound, and kill without a word, they don’t call him the Shadow for nothing.
This time, it’s a New York crime family in need of his skills, but it takes one glimpse of her to make him agree to the job.
Liliana Marcello is every inch a principessa della mafia. Her life has taught her to be wary of strangers, yet her ballet career contradicts everything by putting her on display.
It’s a man with a dark smile and a constantly changing demeanor that makes her feel safe again, but it’s the unknown that holds her back.
It takes one look …
One dance …
One word …
One smile to captivate a man.
And one second to kill a woman because of it, too.
Not all monsters hide in the shadows.
How are you supposed to see them coming?
Shoving the phone back in her pocket, she headed out of the bathroom, and damn near crashed into what felt like a fucking brick wall the second she left the room.
Liliana couldn’t have caught herself from falling even if she tried. For all her balance, strength, and grace … none of it helped very much when she ran headfirst into something as unexpected as—
“Careful there,” came a dark, rich voice.
Like a bass rumbled with his words.
Like a melody colored up his chuckles.
A strong arm had caught her easily—just one, it seemed he didn’t need two—and righted Liliana to her feet probably before she even realized what had happened. Pushing her wild waves of dark blonde hair back out of her face, she blinked.
And came face to face with him.
The mysterious man from earlier in the driveway.
He was not quite the same as he had been earlier, though. Getting a closer—really up close and personal, considering how she was balancing herself by putting her palms to his chest, and was close enough to feel his warm mint-scented breath wash over her face—look at him was bad for her insides.
Bad, because he was gorgeous. More so than she realized. Bad, because her stomach clenched, and her palms felt sweaty already. For a second, she tried to make her voice work, but nothing came.
The dark lines of the man’s face were shadowed by the hall, but it only added to the appeal of his square-cut jaw, strong cheekbones, and inviting grin. He was taller than her five foot eleven by at least six inches or more. She had to wonder if he played football, or rugby, because under her fingertips, his chiseled-from-stone muscles jumped from her touch.
“You okay?” he asked.
Liliana nodded quickly. “Yeah, sure.”
“It’s Liliana, right?”
He grinned deeper.
“Right?” he pressed.
“Liliana, yeah, but if you call me Lily, I’ll probably gut you.”
Might as well get that right out in the open and over with. She expected a bit of surprise in the man’s eyes at her warning, but he actually tipped his head back and laughed. And sweet Christ, that laugh of his was dangerous.
The sound made her breath catch.
The sight made her heart race.
“Good to know,” he said.
Laughter echoed from down the hall—her cousin, sister, and friends voices followed right after. Conversation about the movie they wanted to pick, or something like that. It didn’t really matter.
“Ah, that’s what I was trying to find,” the guy said.
Liliana’s brow dipped. “Pardon?”
“I heard noise, but this place is so big that I couldn’t find out what it was or where it was coming from. I think I got lost.”
She pressed her lips together to keep from smiling. “Well, the mansion is pretty big.”
Liliana had a good mind to ask him what exactly he was doing at her grandparents’ mansion, and why she had caught sight of her father and uncles waiting for him and the other man before she left with the girls. She didn’t ask any of that because if the guy was in any way connected to her father and uncles’ business in the mafia, he probably wouldn’t tell her anyway.
Besides, sometimes it was better not to know.
That’s what life as a Marcello principessa had taught Liliana. It was also pretty quick to teach her that even men who weren’t connected to the life were their own particular brand of dangerous when it came right down to it.
“I bet your friends are wondering where you are,” he said.
It was only then that Liliana realized how close and alone the two were in the dark hallway. Sure, someone might hear her shout if she needed to, but none of that had even factored in to her usual cautiousness.
In fact, the last thing she felt in that moment was unsafe.
“They probably are,” she agreed.
“Would you do me a favor first?”
He cocked a brow, and shrugged one large shoulder like it wasn’t a big deal before he said, “Give me directions to the downstairs—I don’t want to miss supper later. I hear that’s rude, and I’m going to be around for a while. I would hate to make a bad first impression and all.”
Liliana laughed, but not for the reason he probably thought. The last thing he did was make a bad first impression.
Far from it.
Bethany-Kris is a Canadian author, lover of much, and mother to four young sons, one cat, and two dogs. A small town in Eastern Canada where she was born and raised is where she has always called home. With her boys under her feet, snuggling cat, barking dogs, and a hubby calling over his shoulder, she is nearly always writing something … when she can find the time.
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