Cover & Excerpt Reveal
Bounty for Hire Book Three
Alek Kairis is a man on a mission to keep those around him safe from the dangers of a lurking dirty cop. But, before he can protect everyone, Alek learns of a deep secret that could not just change his life, but change his ability to protect those around him.
Tess Michaels only wanted her brother’s safety; she did not realize that she too would be placed in danger. Yet, the danger that is following her is not the only threat she faces. When she learns the truth of who her son’s father is, not only will her life change, but so will her child’s.
Once the truth comes out, there is no going back for Alek or Tess. What’s worse is that their ever-growing attraction is a distraction that neither of them need. Can Tess and Alek work together, or will danger and secrets tear them apart forever?
Genre: Erotic Contemporary Romance
Release Date: June 12, 2013
Publisher: AJ Wiliams
Of all the things that she had been called in her life, ‘sweet cheeks’ had never been one of them. Who did this barbarian think he was talking to? All Tess wanted was a yes or no to get help for her brother. Instead, she’d been shot at, and hauled up by rough hands. Okay, she was gently picked up off the floor, but still, it was the principal of the matter.
Tess also had to listen to a bunch of bickering when all she wanted was a simple yes or no answer. But when she finally received one, it was the end of discussion for her as they all continued talking around her.
Tess knew that she should he thanking her lucky stars that she was still alive and that Keylee was going to help. All her thoughts were pushed aside when the god-like man informed her she was going home with him.
The nerve of him.
She hesitated when she saw his truck. The truck was a beast. Did he seriously think she was going to get in there with him? The thought of being alone with him soothed some of her ruffled feathers, but then again, she didn’t know these people. Maybe she should call Eva back and see if there was a different place to hide or something, because, well, because her body was having a strange reaction to the god-like man named Alek.
Deciding to break the silence as they walked to the truck, Tess asked, “Do you think before we leave you could get my bag out of the trunk of the car?”
* * *
Alek turned to her, surprised that she even asked him something. The wide-eyed woman was just staring at him, first in lust, then in anger, and now… Well, now he wasn’t so sure, but with her outburst just a few minutes before, he didn’t expect her to ask anything—more like demand something. “Sure, hang on for a second.”
Alek drove them around from the alley and parked his truck right in front of Sloan’s Bonds and Bounty. He watched as she was about to get out of the truck when he placed his hand on her forearm, stopping her from leaving.
“Stay here, I’ll get it.”
He saw her eyes narrow for just a second before she nodded her head in agreement. As he pushed his truck door open and started to climb out he became aware that her lips were moving. Yet all he heard out of her mouth was, “You do know that calling someone sweet checks is very degrading,” in a curt tone.
Alek focused his eyes directly at her. He couldn’t help but laugh as he closed the door behind him. He was still laughing as he went to her car to get her luggage. He wasn’t sure how long it had been since he laughed that hard. But the look on her face as she said it—man, that was priceless.
Taking a moment to pull himself together, he looked at the damaged window and then turned to look at the dark red fusion riddled with bullet holes. Alek just shook his head. Hearing the click of the trunk door opening, he strolled over and grabbed the two black bags out of the trunk. Setting them down on the ground, he closed the trunk, then pulled his cell phone out of his pocket. He stood to the side, glancing quickly at Tess while he waited for an answer on the other line.
After the third ring, Alek heard “Hello” in a deep voice.
“Hey, Bob, it’s Alek. Look, I know you and Martha have Dyson this week, but we have a situation here at Sloan’s and I need you come down here and board up one of the windows.”
“Sure, Alek, give me a few and I’ll be down.”
“Thanks, Bob, and just so you know, there’s glass all over the place so take care over here, will ya?”
Alek could tell that Bob wanted to know more but he would see the damage when he arrived.
Alek heard “See you later” as he was pulling his phone away from his ear. Hitting the end button, Alek shoved his phone back into his front jeans pocket. As he stood there looking at Tess, something came to him.
Bending down, he picked up the black bags and walked back to his truck. Opening the door, he threw them in the back and then climbed in, only briefly giving Tess a glance, as if double-checking his suspicion.
Once on the road, Alek kept his focus on the road in front of him. How was it possible to only meet a woman for just a short few seconds, and already not like her or the lip she offered? It was not possible, was his only thought, yet here he was stuck in the damn truck with her.
“So, are we going to talk about what just took place?”
He stormed at the windshield. Not once did Alek take his eyes off the road. He feared if he looked at her, there was a good possibility that he would see something that at this time he really did not care to see—such as the hurt and fear she was holding back.
“Look, I already said my brother is on the run. He’s innocent and I’m trying to get help, to not just keep him alive, but prove his innocence,” Tess said.
“And what, buddy? Seriously, that’s the story.” This time, Alek heard the hiss in her words.
Maybe he was being a little rough on her making it seem as though he didn’t care. The fact was that he cared a whole hell of a lot. He was just pissed off because one of his windows had been shot out; and secondly, because this woman didn’t know who the hell he was. Okay, so he hadn’t realized who she was immediately either, but that was not the point. The point was that he did realized it now dammit, he wanted her to know him as well.
The then there was the fact that Keylee volunteered to do this job without even a team discussion. Something this important needed to be talked over. Plans needed to be properly made.
The longer Tess kept quiet, the more he thought about bringing up their past, but decided against it. When the time was right and he needed her to remember, he would refresh her memory. Until then, he would hold that information to himself.
“Come on; seriously, this kind of crap just does not happen. I mean, really, I get that you’re pissed. I’m pissed, but do not think that for one second I’m joking.”
Alek watched out of his peripheral vision as she turned slightly to face him.
“I have been laughed at since this shit started. I’m sick of being laughed at. So listen to me closely, buddy. I plan on being a bitch, a pest, a nag, and any other name you can think of. Because right now, I’m facing so many things, it’s just easier to be angry then deal with what’s staring me straight in the face. I mean, my brother is running for his life, and I was just fucking got shot at.”
Alek could not help wincing as she screamed the last two words in his directions. Maybe he wanted the story or a story that she would tell him, but hearing just that little bit of information really did him in.
He turned to her to tell her he was sorry, but before he could say a word she continued.
“Look, I’m sorry, okay? I really am. I was told you guys would help. I understand that it’s pretty unorthodox to hire a bounty hunter, but like I told Keylee, hiring a bounty hunter was about my last chance before I took matters into my own hands.”
As much as the situation sucked, Alek was kind of glad that she landed on his doorstep. He should be thanking whoever sent her to him. Not just for the fact that he and the rest of them could help her, but also because he had been searching for her for a year.
“Why don’t you start at the beginning and then let’s decide what we need to do next, unorthodox or not. You need help, so…” His words were calm and lightly spoken.
Alek heard as she took in a deep breath.
“Sure, okay fine.”
He could tell that Tess was doing her best to keep it together. He couldn’t blame her for the little breakdown. Anyone could have broken down like that. Nonetheless, it didn’t stop him from pushing her. He needed to know her limits and just really who sent her their way. Because honestly, who in their right mind would ever think about hiring bounty hunters for what she needed? There were perfectly good and capable private investigators as well as private security out there that had the same, if not more, qualifications that he and his friends and co-workers had.
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