“By the way. My anonymous tipster contacted me again. He said he’s helped us out so much, it’s our turn to help him. He wants to know the name and description of every female we find. I think someone he knows was taken, and he’s searching for her.”


“And you have no idea who he is?” Hector asked. “Or how he knew what we’d found.”

“No, but I’m working on it.”

Another round of silence. Mia splayed her arms in a what the hell are you waiting for gesture. “That’s it. Dismissed.”

For Hector, the rest of the week ticked by torturously, every second agony. Not just because he foamed at the mouth to confront Phillips, a man he knew was responsible, but because of Noelle. Every day she grew bolder, said something naughtier, wore something more provocative. He’d thought resisting her before was tough.

This was tough; this was hell.

He would walk by, and she would make sure to brush against some part of him. He’d sit next to her, and she would play with a strand of his hair. He’d decide to snack, and she would decide to feed him by hand.

His resistance was crumbling. He yearned to take her up on her nightly offer and stay over. Quite simply, he wanted to be with her, whether he could touch her or not. He wanted to breathe her in, laugh at her smart-ass remarks. And they were funny as hell. A guy never knew what she’d say next.

Like the time he told her to stop dressing like she was asking for it, and she said, “Wait until you see the outfit that begs for it.”

The next day she’d examined her red satin sandals and with a frown said, “I’m thinking about buying two snakes.”

His are you kidding me “Why?” had caused her to shrug.

“I’d name them Leftie and Rightie and when they were big enough, they’d become Mamma’s boots.”

Dallas had heard Hector’s laughter as he’d passed by his office. The agent had stopped, looked inside, and though he’d smiled at them both, there’d been fear in his eyes.

His vision hadn’t yet happened. Hector hadn’t woken up naked next to Noelle, but if this kept up…

He had used every spare moment of his time trying to control his ability. So far, no luck. He’d scorched dozens of vegetables and nearly burned his house down. Now sexual frustration was a constant knot in his gut. In fact, his arms were currently itching, and his f**king tux offered very little relief.

None of that. He stood in Noelle’s foyer, waiting for her to come down. Tonight was the night they would nail the slaver’s ass to the wall.

No other enslaved women had been found, but no one else had been abducted or killed, so, gold star on that front. As Hector had figured, Gordman had refused to talk. Now it was time to see if Phillips would slip up and—

Noelle glided down her staircase, and Hector’s mind simply stopped working. His heart stopped beating. Her lips were plumped and glistening, color high in her cheeks. Her eyes were heavy-lidded, almost slumberous. Silky brown hair cascaded in luscious waves.

Her dress glimmered against her body like violets trapped in sunlight, one creamy shoulder left bare. The material flowed over her curves, molding to her like a second skin.

“I know what you’re thinking. I do look good in a variation of blue.”

A slit rode the length of her legs, revealing a mouth-watering glimpse of thigh with every step she made. But the best part? A studded amethyst choker wrapped around her neck. Bondage and seduction at once.

I’ve tasted her. Been inside her. “I thought you said this thing was black and white,” he managed to croak. Have to get inside her again. Soon.

Have to make it safe for her first.

A wanton smile that started his heart back up, but it was jacked into an unsteady rhythm. “It is.” That silver gaze swept over him when she paused on the last step. “You look… amazing.” There was reverence in her tone.

He actually felt himself blush like some stupid kid. “I won’t embarrass you?” He’d rather die.

“No, but I might embarrass you.” She closed the rest of the distance to trace her polished fingernails up the lapels of his jacket. The scent of jasmine and honeysuckle accompanied her, his favorite, as sultry and drugging as a moonlit night, and his stomach tightened. “I don’t think I’ll be able to keep my hands off you.”

Then she stepped back, ending the connection. Her expression cleared, and he had to fight the urge to return her to where he wished she could stay forever. In his arms.

Noelle had known Hector would look amazing in a tailored tux, but nothing could have prepared her for this. He was perfection personified. Sexy and devilish and utterly irresistible. Jacket, vest, tie—no bowtie for him—in black Italian silk, and he wore every piece with confidence.

During the entire twenty-minute drive to the old Glassky mansion where the party was being held, she stared at him, craving. He hadn’t bothered to style his hair, yet the results were stunning. Those dark strands were exquisitely disheveled, the locks of flax like moon-kissed highlights. The hard gleam in his eyes gave him a don’t-mess-with-me vibe, especially since one of those eyes had been blackened during his fight with Gordman and had only just now begun to fade.

She wanted him in her bed. Wanted to fall asleep in his arms every night, and wake up to him every morning. There was nothing she wouldn’t do to make that happen, either.

This past week, he’d managed to keep his distance. But every morning at the office, when he’d first spotted her, he’d looked a little more despondent for not having locked their relationship down, his temper sharpened another degree. Any day he would break. And when he did, she would make sure he never regretted it.

Their car stopped at the base of a hill. Just outside her passenger door was a pier of steps that led to the front doors of the home. A red carpet had been rolled out, and reporters consumed both sides, holocameras flashing bright lights in the darkness.

The mansion itself was red and white brick, with multiple rectangular windows. The sides stretched wide and wrapped backward, as if hugging the jewel-toned gardens just beyond. Steepled layer after steepled layer made up the roof, with eight different chimneys adding to the height.

“Are you ready—” She stopped. Hector had turned an unpleasant shade of green. She leaned over, making sure to brush her lips against his ear, and whispered, “I want you so much, it’s like a fever in my blood. Now get out of the car and come get me. Also, I forgot to wear any panties.”

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