You've heard a lot about Ravished over the course of the last six months, but haven't gotten to see a whole lot of it yet. I thought today would be a great day to remedy that, so I've got the entire prologue for you. Yay! The prologue takes place immediately before the story begins, and focuses on Kalani Abrams, a former "employee" of the Vetrov family.
This novel is the first of three in an erotic series chock full of romance, crime, mystery, violence, hell... even explosions! It's only just gone to the prereading team for approval, so don't hate me too much if there are errors, mmkay?
Summary: Lillian Maddox is trying to put her life back together after a tragic attack destroys her future as a ballerina. Special Agent Tristan Riley is racing against the clock to stop one of the most ruthless drug manufacturing outfits to set up shop in Seattle in years. When they meet on the dance floor at Teplo, neither is prepared for the explosive chemistry between them, nor for the devastating repercussions of their tryst. In a matter of days, their lives careen wildly off course.
After mistakenly accusing Lillian of horrible crimes, Tristan finds himself in a very uncomfortable position. He now has to convince her to go undercover with him to stop the Vetrov family from spilling more blood by unleashing a potent new club drug to the masses. And he has to do it while keeping his hands to himself.
Lillian has no intention of making his life easy. In fact, she's made it her mission to make him as miserable as possible for the duration of their time together. But the way he looks at her, and the wicked things he says to her, makes her yearn for something more than the emptiness she's felt since her accident. But she's not prepared to give her heart and her body to Tristan when the world he lives in terrifies her either.
Can they find a way to let go and work together, or will the sparks flying between them send everything up in flames?
* * *
Paulo Vetrov's heavy steps sounded behind Kalani Abrams, his boots striking the hardwood floor with ominous thumps. Terror fired through her like mortar exploding from a cannon. Everything raced… her mind and heart pounding so fiercely she couldn't catch a breath. Sobs wracked her body as she ran, her bare feet flying across the cold living room floor.
"Why are you running from me, Kalani?" Paulo asked, amusement lacing his deceptive, friendly tone. "My father misses you. He asked me to come speak to you."
Kalani sobbed louder, the reminder of her former employer sending another wave of terror crashing over her like waves. They threatened to drown her, crushing air from her lungs as dread and certainty grasped at her like choking vines.
No way had Anton Vetrov sent a bastard like Paulo to speak to her. Oh no, she'd warmed Anton's bed long enough to know better. His son was the worst sort of monster, a soulless sociopath who terrorized others for the fun of it. Anton set him loose on those who betrayed him as if setting loose a hellhound.
Already, Kalani's cheek throbbed where Paulo had struck her after forcing his way inside her home. Her eye had swollen shut almost instantly, the pain numbed only by the horror of the moment.
God, why had she answered the door in the first place?
Let him wrest her cell phone away from her?
That stupid mistake would cost her everything.
"Please, please," she cried, the words little more than incoherent babbling as she raced into the kitchen, wishing desperately for Thomas to appear on her porch again. She'd give anything to see him. To tell him she was sorry for kicking him out. That she loved him and didn't mean the horrible things she said to him during their fight the day before. That she wanted to be with him, had left Anton's employ to be with him.
If Paulo caught her, she'd never see Thomas again. He'd never know the truth.
Kalani rounded the kitchen table, reaching blindly for the carved wooden chair pushed neatly up against the table. The cool wood glided against her palm. Clutching the edge, she jerked downward, praying the obstacle slowed her assailant down even an instant.
The chair hit the floor with a solid thump.
Kalani kept running.
No more than five feet stood between her and the back door, the promise of freedom and safety beckoning to her like a lighthouse. If she made it outside, she could scream for her neighbors to help her. They'd call the police, and she could tell them everything about Anton Vetrov and his horrible family. In ten years as his paid whore, she'd seen enough. But their new scheme… it was the worst of all.
"You can't outrun me," Paulo sneered behind her, kicking aside the chair as she stumbled toward the patio door, hope spurring her onward.
The chair crashed into the wall half a second before she slammed into the faded wood.
Kalani clawed at the door, desperately trying to unlatch the sticky lock.
The salt of her tears burned her injured eye. Sobs caught in her throat, choking her.
"I told you," Paulo said, so close his hot breath washed across her neck.
"No," Kalani cried when the lock refused to cooperate. "No, no, no."
Paulo's arms closed around her, dragging her backward, away from the door and the promise of safety on the other side. He spun her around, one hand raised. His dark hair lay perfectly on his head. His brown eyes were too lovely, his face too beautiful.
Kalani wanted to vomit at the excited gleam lurking in his dark gaze. He looked as if watching her scramble for her life turned him on.
She kicked her feet, trying to kick him.
Paulo grunted when her bare toes connected with his shin.
His hand came down across the side of her face again.
Pain ripped through her already throbbing cheek, stealing her breath.
"Where are the papers you stole from us?" he asked her.
"Go to hell," she tried to scream at him, but the words were little more than a pathetic whimper. Kalani tilted her head back to spit in his face, determined to fight until she couldn't fight anymore. If Paulo wanted to kill her, she intended to make him work for it. She wouldn't go quietly like his other victims. Victims she'd kept silent about for so long, pretending they didn't exist. Pretending her boss wasn't a monster just like his son.
And for what? A steady paycheck? A life off the streets? A few hits of Ecstasy?
Maybe she deserved death.
"Stupid woman," Paulo snapped, shoving her to the ground. He dropped to his knees above her as she struggled to catch her breath. In one quick, effortless move, he captured her arms between his legs before reaching into his pocket to withdraw a plastic baggie.
Horror turned Kalani's vision black for a moment when she caught sight of the syringe inside the bag. "Please. Oh god, please. Don't," she pleaded as Paulo loomed above her, his weight crushing her.
He ignored her, instead reaching inside the baggie.
Kalani attempted to thrash beneath him, fighting for escape that eluded her. Paulo was too big, too strong. Try as she might, she barely managed to wriggle beneath him.
He jerked the needle from the bag, and leaned forward, grabbing a handful of her hair to wrench her head to the side.
"No!" Kalani screamed as he pushed the needle into a vein in her neck. "No!"
"Quiet," Paulo whispered, depressing the plunger. "This won't hurt at all."
Kalani's neck burned, giving away his lie. She jerked beneath him again, unwilling to give up and just let him kill her even if that is what she deserved. She might as well not have bothered though. He merely sat still, seemingly unaffected by the way she tried to buck beneath him in an attempt to throw his weight off her.
"No one steals from the Vetrov family," he said when she stopped fighting him, stopped fighting the inevitable. "While you choke on your own vomit, I'll find those papers. You'll die, and no one will even know why, you stupid little whore."
"Oh god," she groaned when the drug hit her system in a rush. Her heart rate sped, faster and faster. Her body jerked involuntarily. Everything around her slowed, blurring, fading. "I'm sorry. I'm so sorry," she tried to say, though whether she apologized to god, to Paulo, or to Thomas, who she'd never see again, she didn't know. And it didn't really matter anyway. The words were little more than soundless gasps.
Fluid filled her mouth, gagging her.
She scratched at the ground, grasping for air, for breath, for another chance, but it didn't come. After everything she'd done in her life, she should have expected that, she supposed. But she hadn't.
Death, it seemed, didn't care if she regretted her choices or wanted to make amends.
And neither did Paulo.
Kalani's fingers twitched, and then lay still.
"Whore," Paulo whispered, reaching out to stroke her cheek.
His hateful, angelic face was the last thing Kalani saw.
FALL– The Ragnarök Prophesies: Book Two is now available at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and KOBO. FADE - The Ragnarök Prophesies: Book Two is available at: Amazon US | UK | DE | FR | IT | ES | Barnes and Noble | Kobo | Books-a-Million