Coming in 2016: An explosive new romantic suspense series set in the Dublin underworld.
“If the price is right and we approve of the job, we’re not too fussy who we work for. I’ve always had a code of honor, and I don’t give a crap if it’s not one recognized by a court of law.”
Semi-reformed gangster, Lar Delaney, joins forces with his brothers and cousins to form a private company of mercenaries. They’ll sell their services to everyone from government agencies needing off-the-books jobs to criminal organizations.
His last hit turns out to be his first love…
As a final job for his mob boss uncle, Lar Delaney agrees to eliminate one last target. Through the crosshairs of his sniper rifle, he realizes that his target is a former girlfriend—a woman who supposedly died five years previously.
Moira Collins is an intelligence agent whose cover has been shot to smithereens. When she finds herself on the wrong side of an assassin’s rifle, she’s appalled to recognize the only mark she ever let herself fall in love with.
EXCERPT FINAL TARGET.
This scene occurs directly after the first sex scene.
Moira pulled on the rest of her clothes and made an attempt to tame her curls. Wearing a wig was a lot easier than dealing with her natural mane, but she’d started Tina’s legend out with her natural blond hair and couldn’t change it now. “So our appointment at the Natural History Museum is still on for Tuesday?” she asked, anxious to steer the conversation into neutral territory.
“Yeah. You do some digging, and so will I.” He was fully dressed now, she noted with regret. “I’ll send you some pictures I’d like you to look over.”
He cocked an eyebrow and grinned. “Not dick pics. I photographed your intelligence file.”
“You never did tell me how you got your paws on it. Care to share?”
Hesitation flickered over his handsome face and his smile faded. “We all have our secrets. If you’re so keen on us sharing information, why don’t you tell me why you’re after my uncle? You’re taking a hell of a risk working in his club.”
Moira weighed her next words with care. “Why didn’t you rat me out to your cousin just now? You had the perfect opportunity to do so.”
“Greg’s an eejit.”
“I figured that out for myself,” she said dryly, “but it doesn’t explain why you’re reluctant to blow my cover. What’s in it for you?”
“Maybe I wanted to wait until I’d seduced you.”
“Nonsense. You could have forced me to sleep with you after you’d blown my cover.”
His eyes flashed. “That’s where you’re wrong, Ms. Moira. I’ve never coerced a woman into sex, and I don’t intend to start with you. If you’d told me to stop at any point, I’d have obeyed.”
She believed him. Lar wasn’t a good man in the usual meaning of the term, but he had a strong sense of right and wrong. Which was why the trump card she was about to play would prove effective. “You don’t like Frank.”
He regarded her warily. “What makes you say that?”
“You have a strong sense of family loyalty. In all the years you passed information on to Irish intelligence, you never shared details that could implicate any members of your family in wrong doing—except for Frank.”
His face paled beneath his tan.
“Oh yes, Lar,” she said in her most seductive voice. She stepped closer and ran a fingertip over his strong jawline. “You’ve read my intelligence file, and I’ve read yours.”
He was upon her in an instant, pinning her against the wall. “What do you want from me, Moira?” he growled. “Why are you telling me this?”
“Remove your hand from my throat,” she gasped, “and I’ll elaborate.”
He eased the pressure, but only slightly. “Talk.”
“I know all about the deal you brokered to secure your early release from prison. I bet Frank would love to see a copy.”
Lar’s silence was laden with tension. He didn’t take his eyes off her, nor did he release her from his grasp.
“I need to know more about Frank’s dispute with my father and the Orange League,” she continued. “You’re in the ideal position to help me dig for details.”
He sneered. “And if I refuse, you’ll tell Frank I betrayed him?”
“Precisely,” she said with a smile. “You always were quick on the uptake. So what’s it to be, Lar? A swim in the Liffey wearing concrete shoes, courtesy of your uncle? Or a mutually beneficial collaboration with me?”
His expression was unreadable but she sensed anger oozing from his every pore. “I’ll roll with the collaboration,” he said, and skimmed a finger across her throat, “particularly the mutually beneficial part.”
She trembled under his touch and fought to keep her wits about her. All semblance of control evaporated when he leaned in to nibble her earlobe. “But know this, Moira. Two can play at the information game. I didn’t get your MI6 file from one of my contacts. Frank gave it to me.”
Moira’s heart lurched, then hammered against her ribs. “Frank has my file?”
“Oh, yes. He knows you didn’t die in the bomb that killed the rest of your family, and he’s seen your official agency photograph.” He tugged on a blond curl. “Pity you didn’t wear a wig for this undercover character. You’d better pile on the makeup and hope he doesn’t recognize you.”
She swallowed, trying to calm her racing heart. “Why does your uncle have my file?”
Lar leaned close, and Moira smelled Tina’s cheap perfume on his cheek. “Because he wants you dead. And he’s hired me to kill you.”
Copyright Zara Keane 2016